Scrapland: landfills at the edge of the universe

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Aina Martin
@ainamartin
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When GTA meets Short Circuit

The comparison with GTA, albeit obvious (albeit mentioned by American McGee himself), is at least inevitable. The non-linear "mission" game structure is very reminiscent of Rockstar's masterpiece, as well as the dual ability to move around the city either by vehicle or on foot, wandering around the city airways or visiting indoor locations. As for the flight mode, the main autonomous means of transport is represented by funny and imaginative flying vehicles, while as regards walking it is possible to take advantage of public transport such as the subway, which allows you to move from one neighborhood to another. from Scrapland in a few moments.



It is thus possible to create a real fleet of machines to be used in any situation

When GTA meets Short Circuit

Ships are fully customizable; at specialized workshops it will be possible to buy and assemble new parts that increase performance and firepower. It is thus possible to create a real fleet of cars to be used in any situation, exploiting the most aggressive characteristics of each individual car. The use of vehicles is very important for the purposes of game missions, and often the races and bets to be overcome take place right on board the spaceships. Wandering through the busy airways of the city, you can come across power-ups and bonuses to be exploited to increase the car's life points or the number of bullets and long-range missiles. The management of the weapons is taken care of, and it is possible to improve the efficiency of the vehicle's mouths by preparing upgrades that improve, for example, the automatic aiming speed or the firing speed. During the aerial combat, a good dose of strategy is also required as it is called to keep an eye on parameters such as the level of overheating of the weapons that can leave us defenseless at the very best. By attending the most infamous clubs in Scrapland it will then be possible to hire mercenaries who for a fair sum will lend their defense and collaboration services during combat missions, while causing many problems in those situations in which the scarcity of power-ups will lead them to compete with the player to grab the precious objects.



Many clothes

The action in Scrapland it is not the exclusive prerogative of aerial battles, in fact many problems await poor D-Tritus even inside the buildings. One of the most appreciable features of the game is the possibility of assuming the appearance of 15 different automata with really interesting properties, copying their appearance and features through the terminals of the "Big Database", a sort of container of everyone's "souls" the robots of Scrapland. To complete the missions it will in fact be necessary to take on the appearance of another robot to access otherwise unreachable areas, or to take advantage of its unique characteristics and special shots, very useful in many circumstances. The appearance of the individual druids is really varied and goes from the clumsy structure of the policemen, from the imposing body supported by tiny paws, up to more bizarre solutions such as those of the little spy robots able to fly in any direction. Obviously, every advantage has a price to pay, and for D-Tritus, assuming the guise of another robot means trying in every way not to submit to the watchful eye of the police. Scrapland, ready to recognize after a few moments the exchange of personalities and to return it with a good dose of laser beams and machine gun shots. In the third-person mode the game takes on the typical contours of the action game, at times assuming stealth characteristics akin to Metal Gear Solid (if you allow me a slightly blasphemous comparison for once). Some missions require you to sneak around a map to gather information or take photos for the newspaper; in these situations, to escape from the watchful eyes of the policemen and the flying cameras, we will have to rely on the radar that will constantly keep us updated on the position of hostile robots and the relative orientation of the visual field, represented by the characteristic triangular segment. A second indicator will then show the degree of attention of the enemy until the alarm is triggered which will definitely attract the attention of all the robots located nearby who will begin to point to D-Tritus to facilitate its capture by the police. The mixture of actions carried out inside the buildings and in the open air is successful and homogeneous, capable of creating an engaging continuity, without sudden breaks and jumps in the plot. Often the player is asked to move from one location to another and at the same time to deal with the headaches related to air transport in particularly "hot" areas. The mission structure is quite varied, and allows the player to experience a considerable number of different and complex situations.



Overall

In an overall view, the gameplay appears captivating, albeit devoid of revolutionary innovations capable of making a miracle cry. It is clear that the stubborn fusion of an aggressive "GTA-style" genre with a captivating and irreverent setting nevertheless gives Scrapland the peculiarity of arousing even the most critical and shrewd eye a truly precious source of curiosity. As for the construction of the plot and above all the creation and characterization of the characters, we can say that we are faced with a small masterpiece of refined and sagacious satire: the scene of the archbishop's murder, in the early stages of the game, it is really tasty and the richness of the details makes it even more satisfying. Details that return in every nuance as a happy motivation indicating the degree of quality that this production still achieves. The creation of the character models, such as that of the screenplay and direct direction such as that of a real animated film are all really positive components that substantially affect the overall caliber of the game. Longevity increased by a multiplayer mode that focuses the attention of players (up to 16 at the same time) on the most animated aspect of the game, that linked to the fighting and speed races with fully modifiable futuristic vehicles. The graphics sector is not affected by noteworthy weightings, and even on a medium power configuration, with all settings at maximum the game appeared fluid.


we can say, we are faced with a small masterpiece of refined and sagacious satire


Overall

The use of textures that are not too complex, but at the same time pleasant, and the richness of the play of light, the complexity of the structures and the models of the characters give Scrapland the typical aspect of animated films that for some years now have been depopulated in cinemas all over the world. The localization of the title is limited to subtitles, but the dubbing in English gives a good idea of ​​the atmosphere that you are experiencing, giving the characters an appreciable depth.

Comment

Overall Scrapland it did not disappoint expectations, proving to be a thick title, while not abandoning the more sarcastic and irreverent tones. It is not the usual American McGee, there is no blood, no violence (explicit, even if some situations are clever satirical transpositions, really appreciable), no bloodthirsty girls. Scrapland it is not hallucinatory, but fun and light-hearted, a concentrate of fun and really cool variety, and we are sure that D-Tritus will enter the hearts of many players. Recommended for everyone, no particular requirements. Just the desire to have fun, with style.

    Pro:
  • Varied and satisfying graphics, never heavy
  • Compelling and fun storyline
  • Varied gameplay
    Against:
  • At times too "arcade"
  • The darker tints of the plot tend to clash with the overall "carefree" aspect of the game

Not the usual McGee

Scrapland is the latest product of the brilliant mind of Amercican McGee, a well-known face in the videogame world and dear to all those who love dark themes, with decidedly gothic features, typical of his most famous productions (Alice in the first place, to finish with the brand new “Oz” project which includes a horror-hued remake, this time in a film version, of the story of the Wizard of Oz). Yet the title in question has nothing to do with the grotesque world so dear to McGee's screenwriter, as much as if anything it totally entrusts its potential to the genius of a mind capable of creating situations at the antipodes, but equally engaging. Playing the role of a cute android called D-Tritus, the player is called to live a witty and exciting adventure on the edges of the galaxy, between robots and colorful spaceships, darting through the streets suspended in the void in an immense and very futuristic city- dump. Scrapland it is a real space dump where robots without any prospect of a dignified life have decided to rebuild their independence away from the abuses of hated human beings. Although purged of the unwelcome presence of human beings, the company of Scrapland it suffers from all the typical deviations and malevolent forms of corruption attributable to man. As in a sort of hyper-technological Far West a Scrapland the various factions of robots divide up the power at the least worst, creating many problems for public peace. The police are corrupt and disordered, the economic power is in the hands of a self-styled organization of robotic bankers capable of controlling not only money but also all forms of information, while the robotic priests, under the orders of the archbishop, try to keep an apparent dignity by preaching peace and serenity among robots. In the general chaos the poor D-Tritus, unemployed and in constant search for a source of income that is as honest as possible, but above all profitable, must manage to stay afloat in this chaotic situation. Arrived at the city registry for registration, and received the first instructions on the laws of the city, he was given a job, from that moment he will be a photo reporter for the colony's newspaper. But the ways of earning a Scrapland they are numerous and very twisted; D-Tritus will soon discover that taking photos for the newspaper is not the only opportunity offered by the square and will soon make the acquaintance of illegal gambling dens, illegal betting rounds, shootings and speed races aboard spaceships.

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