So, with the news that Infinite’s next DLC was going to be taking everyone back to where it all began in Rapture, I figured it might be a good idea to tackle Clash in The Clouds for one last glorious romp in Columbia.
Thus began my slow descent into madness.
The DLC is well done for what boils down to a bunch of challenge maps and an art gallery, but it is quite possibly the most frustrating experience I have ever had.
Why it was so very frustrating had nothing to do with bugs, or glitches, or terrible control schemes. Oh no, it was frustrating by design. Blue Ribbon Challenges. These challenges are essentially the only way to make a ton of cash in order to unlock the various sound tracks, concept art and character models, additional challenge rooms, and not to mention weapon and vigor upgrades.
Sure, they start off simple enough. For example, one of the earlier Blue Ribbon Challenges is to complete the wave, only taking shield damage. BAM! I owned those challenges! Then the frustration started to happen. I failed a challenge. I went to see if I could restart the wave. No such luck. I was forced to deal with the shame of not getting a ribbon, a hole gaping on the scoreboard. The monotony of the waves is broken by frequent, yet subtle changes in the map, one wave might have plenty of cover tears, the next might not have the skyline to cruise around on.
However much fun it might be to have a ton of waves of assorted enemies to dismember, murder, and/or otherwise annihiliate, it quickly becomes a grind when you realize that unlocking rewards is a pain in the neck. You need silver eagles to upgrade weapons and vigors in order to proceed and survive the more difficult waves and maps, but silver eagles are also the only way to unlock things like concept art and game music.
In the end, I would say that Clash in the Clouds is worth the money if you purchased the season pass, but if you aren’t a fan of challenge maps… Flip a coin to decide.
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