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Sunday, November 15, 2015

Fallout 4: Tips for Beginners

Rather than write a review on how awesome this game is, I've decided to give a few pointers on those few unfortunate enough not to have gotten the game by now or players who for some reason find themselves locked out and having difficulty at every corner of this game. My first playthrough was... not great. I got up to level 37 in about 3 days. Impressive if you didn't consider my many failures. I was constantly locked out of a few missions via a small miscalculation or simply not having the skill required to enter an area. Learn from my mistakes.

Despite what you've been told, Intelligence is critical. Not just for unlocking terminals or for hacking bots, but for anyone else playing the game. Intelligence actually gives you an increased amount of experience points. Not sure how much, but I've been playing on my new save file for about a full day and I'm halfway back to my previous save's level.
Charisma may seem like a stupid thing to pick up. Really doesn't help you at all much in combat on the surface, but you'd be wrong. Once you max out your Charisma, get ready to take everyone's caps. Not only do you get a base lowering of the amount things need to be purchased and get more caps for selling things, but you can persuade just about anyone to do anything. Don't want to do a quest but still want a few caps? Most people who ask you to do something for them will often have a persuade option. So instead of doing a lengthy, and possibly dangerous quest for a few measly hundred caps, you can get the money straight away and more all while doing everything at your leisure. Charisma also has some nice combat effects. Male characters can gain a damage boost against female characters and bi versa for females. You can  also put points into a perk that lets your companion do more damage, do no damage to you and can eventually carry more stuff.
While you're plugging your points into Intelligence to be able to hack more terminals, do the same for Endurance and get better at picking locks. Unlike The Elder Scrolls, Fallout makes it impossible for you to open doors through picking if you don't have the proper skill. At the very least, get it so that the level for picking and hacking is maxed up to their master level. Further on in the game (about level 40+) you can actually make it so you will never be locked out of terminals for failing or have picks break.
One of the many things Dark Souls has taught me is to pick my build well. Do I want to be heavily armored and a tank or quick and deadly? Similar here as well. Before you start plugging perks into random things, try and check around the tree. You have full access to see who and what you want to be. While my first character had maxed out Strength and could deal more damage with melee weapons and hold more stuff, my current character is far better even with his measly 4 points of Strength. There are always ways to get by having low Strength like chems, stuffing your followers like pack brahmin or even just being cautious with what you carry and only keeping the useful stuff.
Settlements are actually extremely useful for a variety of reasons. When I first saw it at the E3 presentation, I thought it was a neat gimmick to be able to build towns, but it actually is quite handy. Its basically your own base. Early on in the game, you can meet up with a guy who will direct you to places that can be taken over as settlements. Eventually, this can become your own little town. You can fortify its defenses, have your own special vendors, have a convenient place to store all of your things or even just a safe place to hide out if some rogue Deathclaw is on your tail. You can also upgrade your weapons and armor at specific places in your settlement, so it can help you along the way if you're not a hoarder like the rest of us.

These were just a few of my own personal tips for this great game. I've left out a few things but that's more of a personal feeling or it would spoil a few missions for some people.
As always, thanks for reading and hope you have safe travels in the wasteland.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Fans Ruin Games Because They Can't Accept Change

Very literal title, huh? Well I'm going into this with my guns loaded and not holding back. This topic has been gestating with me for some time and no matter how many years pass, it always seems to be relevant. Please, if you feel the need to, leave your hateful (or nice!) comments below. I look forward to tearing them apart.
I'm not a person who likes every single game, but I can always find merit... in most games. I only have one game I consider to be wholly unredeemable that I've reviewed on this site. I'm not going to say what it was, but it has the lowest review I've ever given anything. My previous worst game was a terrible vampire game, but even I could find some merit/effort put into it. Tangent aside, I can always find a positive. Not saying I like most games, but I'm generally a very positive person when it comes to my favorite medium. Which is why it pains me so much when other gamers kill a decent franchise or game. I picked up DMC a while ago because it looked great and I heard a lot of positive things, unfortunately, after the game sold abysmally. I wondered why people hated it so much, but I did see a few things. Not game killing things, just annoying fanchild gripes. Capcom hasn't always had the best track record with games, but when compared to other gaming companies that have more poisonous reputations, at least in the public's eye, like Ubisoft or EA, they're probably one of the least worst and that's really sad to see that they're doing poorly just because they don't have the best selling titles or the franchises that no matter how bad they are still manage to break even.
A game series that was never super popular but I enjoyed thoroughly was Fable. True, there were A LOT of failed promises, but ultimately the games were passable. In some weird turn of events, the games got better over time but the review scores went down with the game. The first Fable is a clunky, dumb, fun mess but people remember it fondly... for some reason. Fable 2 made a lot of things better but wasn't as well received as the first game. Fable 3 was by far my most favorite. It was fun, had a new twist on things, made me feel for not only the protagonist as a character, but the main characters around them. It humanized the villain and gave you world changing choices that ultimately affected EVERYTHING about the entire game world. Evil and good actions actually mattered apart from a simple visual change. Magic felt AMAZING, allowing you to combine two different spells into one powerful and unique attack that never lost its touch. I personally think it was the best Fable game... and people hated it. The series has taken a significant nose dive from Kinect fodder to some weird MOBA game that is supposed to come out (or came out? I don't even care to search). Much to my dismay, I never got to pick up a copy on Steam so I could play it to this day whenever I wanted before the game was fully taken off Steam. I talked about it before but not in such detail.
Change is needed to keep something from stagnation. Change can be good or bad, but its needed every once and a while. Fallout 4 is coming out next week (yes yes yes yes yes) and the game looks almost nothing like it's predecessors. Fallout 3 completely changed the gameplay and entire genre of from the previous titles and is still considered one of the greatest RPGs of all time even to this day. Same thing with all of the Elder Scrolls titles. Stopping my love for Bethesda (if only for just this moment), a new Call of Duty is coming out. It looks, and sounds like, its going to be drastically different. You actually have a character now in the main campaign. A character whom you design and craft. They will level up through the story and become the thing you want them to become. Its different and I hear people ALREADY hating on it. Call of Duty isn't my franchise of choice, but I can get some good clean fun out of it every now and then. Advanced Warfare was a damn good game but didn't do as well as the other, poorer titles. Now, I'm asking you as a gamer and a fellow sensible being. Don't pan something just because its different. This new Call of Duty could be the start of something amazing. Where developers actually put a lot of time and effort into making what is essentially a cookie cutter shooter into something more. At the very least, give your ideas some thought. Play the game for more than an hour before posting your "0/10 OMG THIS GAME SUX SO HAAARRD" review on Metacritic. Because you, as the consumer, dictate what games will be made next year. And the year after that. You decide how amazing these games will or won't be.

Friday, October 30, 2015

The Binding of Isaac: Afterbirth DLC Review - 9/10

The Binding of Isaac was a game developed by Nicalis. The game features the titular character, Isaac, as he tries to escape his mother who is convinced by a voice in her head that she must kill her son. Isaac must descend into his basement, fending off horrific creatures created from his own psyche, collecting powerups and other useful items to kill the bosses and finally his own mother. The game was well received which then spawned a new, updated edition that only further added to the game. This DLC aims to do the same.

The Good:
More everything. Music, levels, rooms, enemies, bosses, powerups. Even a new character. The game is superb as is which is great because this only adds to a spectacular game. There's not much to say other than the fact that there's more of this great game. Extending your play with new modes, new challenges, Daily Challenges and even a new character.

The Bad:
Hey, so this game is tough. I mean like pretty tough. Not impossible. If you're playing the base game or the full package for the first time, you're going to be limited by the characters and powerups you can use straight off the bat. This DLC makes you do some of that all over again. I'm not sure how far this goes, but I've been playing the standard game for a few hours this morning. When I started it up again and got to the new content, all of my characters were locked again. And these characters aren't easy to get. Madeline forces you to collect 7 hearts in one game. Cain needs 55 coins in one game. Azazel requires you to make three deals with the devil in a single game. But worst of all, for me, is Samson, who requires you to take no damage for two full floors. I'm not sure why this is, but if this has changed, I'm not sure what else has.

"Such a high score but only one small paragraph of good v. a large paragraph of bad?" If you need to know anything about me and my reviews is that if there's a significant chunk of one bad thing but a high score, I usually like the game. We often criticize the things we love heavily because we love them. The DLC is great, minus a few tiny bits. If you're a returning player or a newbie, I highly recommend it. More play time, more enemies, bosses and powerups. What else could I ask for?

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Star Wars The Old Republic: Knights of the Fallen Empire Review - 9/10

Knights of the Fallen Empire is (I believe) the third expansion pack for The Old Republic MMO. Unlike the other expansions, this adds a continuation to the main story line rather than just a side track of missions.

The Good:
Props to whoever came up with the story line for this because it's better than the base game. Without going too far into it, the main story of the Jedi Knight class 'kills' the Emperor and leader of the Empire currently. Each class has their own little introduction mission but basically you are searching the galaxy as a united faction of Empire and Republic forces now at 'peace' for whatever remains of the immortal Emperor who has committed genocide to gain more power. The story is simple but with enough twists and turns to make you feel its more of an experience rather than an add on or an addition. It really feels like it was crafted specifically to add more story rather than simply a new raid/Operation or more gear and enemies.
One of the smaller faults I can find with the base game would be the companions. While decent, you were always stuck with them unless you purchased an optional companion from the start. Each companion was fitted to a specific role, which means even if you were a healer, you could be stuck with a healer as your first companion. The new update has changed it so each companion can have their roles switched at will. If I'm a healer stuck with another healer, I can simply switch them to be a tank or even a DPS character. This isn't intrusive either. I can switch roles as much as I please and as often as I please, and so far I have seen no limitation to this.
The main villain of the story is much more of a presence than a figure or an end goal. In the base game, you never had one true enemy like Handsome Jack in Borderlands. You were always skipping from enemy to enemy as the chapters progressed, which felt odd and never really all that great. In this, the main enemy (or in this case, enemies) is front and center. You have a clear goal with little deviation, allowing you to develop a further bond with said villains.
The writing has also seemed to have taken a great leap forward. While the base game was serviceable, this new expansion is allowed more gravitas or simply depth. These are not fly by night characters but those who really test what it means for your character to exist. The world feels more alive than simply a 'Go do this then that' sort of experience. The villain's motives may not be 100% clear to you but the way they present it gives you a feeling they actually believe in this rather than simply being a raving lunatic or bored person.

The Bad:
With each new update of an MMO comes the clarity of "This could have been better" from the developers. A few changes have been implemented, most notably a switch for your character's HUD which basically alters how you previous slotted your skills in the previous update. Its annoying but it can get used to. However, for players who've been playing long, this will undoubtedly make your gameplay a bit more difficult as (speaking personally) I use muscle memory across all my characters. With a few deviations, all skills I place I then place on my other characters to make it easier to use them. It makes it easier when I switch from my Sith Warrior to my Jedi Knight. Each of the skills are basically the same which makes switching characters as seamless as possible. Apart from that, a few of the skills have changed. For one, the aforementioned Knight and Warrior, both had a skill that reduced an enemy's armor. This has been taken out completely and I have no idea what other skills may have been stripped from other characters without looking through the massive patch notes. Its nothing major its just an annoyance I have to get used to along with any other mechanics that may have changed.

If you've got the chance, I highly recommend getting this. The game itself hasn't released for all players but will on October 27th. You may have missed out on a few rewards leading up to the game, but that's no excuse to miss out on a really good expansion pack.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Are MMO's Dead/Dying?

As I renew my subscription for The Old Republic, I remember all of the people who keep telling me how the game is failing or how it will be shut down within a few months. I look at the new expansion, Knights of the Fallen Empire, and wonder if I should continue sinking my time and money into what may or may not be the saving grace for a game that struggled when first released.
I think what needs to be said first is that an MMO takes more time and money than a regular AAA game. Destiny (yes, Destiny is an MMO no matter how much you deny it) has had a very rocky start and continuing rocky path. From the lackluster DLC to a person directly tied to the game insulting the customer/fanbase that purchased the game in the first place, its not hard to see why. I'm not dogging on Destiny, I'm just saying this is basically what happens. World of Warcraft was a massive giant back in the day. Now its dwindling. Its not a bad thing, just happens. Games loose their interest after a time. The oldest game I'm still playing since when it was released would have to be Dragon's Dogma, and even then its more of a every now and again thing.
Unlike most game genres, MMOs have their own time table. I can play Skyrim until the world freezes over but an MMO will stop eventually. No matter how popular, no matter how much money it may make, its going to end. And I mean end as in no one will be able to play it ever again. Of course, you have your exceptions like Runescape which have basically been around since the dawn of time. The horrible fact you have to realize when playing an MMO is eventually the servers will shut down. That's just facts. Companies can't keep up a server going forever. That costs time and money that could be spent on other things. Part of the horrible thing about this is how much time you've invested in the game. I've probably spent about over a thousand dollars with The Old Republic, minus the subscription fee. That's really excessive. Part of the reason I don't quit is because I've put so much time and money into the game it would be a waste to stop now. Its not something I'm proud of but its just a fact.
The Old Republic is set to release a new slew of content with Knights of the Fallen Empire. It promises a whole new addition to the current story, adding in extra items, higher level cap and all the same stuff that usually comes with an expansion. One could see this as the final death throws while others could see it as a revitalization of the game. What was a slow burn release now finally ignites and makes it's mark. The expansion releases about a month from now, so for now all I can do is wait.
To answer the previous question in the title: no, I don't believe so. No genre completely dies. Not as long as there are those who want to see it still go on.

Straddling the Line Between Annoyance and Success (Video Game Bosses)

While I didn't get to post my reviews or even thoughts about either Mad Max or The Phantom Pain because I purchased them so late, I've been playing them a lot. Aside from guns, violence, blood, cars and both based off of insanely popular series, the games themselves don't have much in common. Mad Max is more about the downfall of society when savagery is left in place of basic resources while Metal Gear is more about espionage and ridiculous yet hilarious moments.
Both games have bosses and... if I'm being honest, I have my gripes with them. Metal Gear's bosses are vibrant, really varied and seriously annoying at the worst of times. Mad Max has the same carbon copy boss for each warlord in an area. I'm sure they change it up later in the game but this is all I've seen. In the case of Max, I really have nothing to say about their bosses, which is probably bad. The worst thing you can do is fall into obscurity. You're not the best so you'll never be praised and gain the recognition and possibly money to go along with it. While being the worst, is bad, you still get some notoriety or at the very least infamy and end up as some GameGrumps or other Youtuber's butt of a joke. While Max is a great game, the bosses win no awards. Apart from a different color scheme, the first three bosses I've killed look and fight the same way. The only difference is their 'personality', a term I use loosely since its more or less a few lines of dialogue here and there.
On the other hand you have The Phantom Pain, who's bosses are insane to say the least. The Parasites, Quiet's sniper duel, Metal Gear Sahelanthropus, the Man on Fire. Each boss is difficult in its own right and defeated in it's own way with it's own backstory, fleshed out characterization and difficulty. But the problem with some of these enemies is, while memorable, are kind of annoying. The Parasites follow you relentlessly and soak up bullets like there's no tomorrow, not to mention having the ability to regenerate their health as well as the fact that there's never only one. Quiet's duel is considered boring by most people since you can easily find her and as long as you have a sniper or long ranged weapon, she's easy as sin. The Man on Fire and Sahelanthropus are bullet sponges that have to be killed in their own unique ways. (SPOILERS) When you actually have to straight up and kill the Metal Gear, the fight itself is probably the most annoying thing for me. This relentless twelve story mech just stalks you and does its best to kill you with its limitless arsenal. If you do manage to get it down to less than half it's health, it breaks out it's instant kill move. I died at least five times that fight.
While Max had the easier bosses, Metal Gear had the most satisfying. Being stalked by the Man on Fire was tense and heart pounding. I had to search around my terrain to get him in a place where there was water. Blast him into it or just make water fall onto him rather than firing off every bullet in your arsenal. Each time I defeated a boss it felt complete. Of course, most times the boss got up again in a later chapter and was even more annoying than before. The feeling of tackling something really challenging and over passing it is a feat unto itself.
I think the best example of this would be any game from From Software, from Demon's Souls all the way to Bloodborne. Each of the bosses was well crafted to be as difficult as possible. You had to tackle challenges that didn't equate to any other boss and each one was weak to its own thing. One minute you could be fighting a lumbering, lazy giant who's powerful swings were a death sentence. Next, you could face off against a duo or trio of enemies that challenged where you kept your mind not only on your terrain but on surprise attacks. The enemies would kill you easily but ending them was a triumph in itself. To conquer a great challenge with the feeling in the back of your mind that there is always another, more powerful enemy just over the bridge.
In the end, I think what it really comes down to is a personal standpoint. Every 'Souls' game I play is met with challenging difficulty that needs to be overcome by my skill. While Borderlands is more about timing and having the right weapons. Or maybe an MMO which challenges you and your party to use their skills and items sparingly and work as a team in order to grasp victory with that last sliver of health.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

One Piece Pirate Warriors 3 PC Review - 8.7/10

One Piece is both an anime and manga series consisting of pirates, powers and basically everything else in between. The series itself has been running since the late 90's, with over 700 chapters of manga and anime as of now. While the game isn't a complete story of the entire series, considering it isn't even near over yet, the game consists of the beginning of the show/manga up to what has been currently released in the anime series. The game itself is based off of the Dynasty Warrior's style of gameplay, as seen in the recent Wii U title 'Legend of Zelda: Hyrule Warriors", where you fight mobs of enemies nearly single handedly over a map completing objectives along the way.

The Good:
I've always been a fan of cell shaded graphics. It gives any game it's in a nice look and style while also being easy to run on whatever platform it's on currently. The style fits nicely with the game's combat and story, making for fast gameplay without any hiccups.
This is the first 'Warrior' title I've played and I'm sorry to say that considering I actually kind of like it. 'Warrior' is basically, as I mentioned before, you playing as a sole bad ass running through a map and clearing hundreds of enemies by yourself or with a few allies. Not only does it feel really awesome to crush through enemies with well timed attacks and combos, but the speed is also something really great. I don't play games that go this fast that much but I have to say that its pretty awesome.
I've actually been a fan of the show for a while. I started pretty late, having my own little marathon through about 200-300 episodes. The show is funny, with some really great fight scenes and some pretty cool story telling. The game pulls some of that in as well. Basically, I'm rewatching the entire series again but this time I get to play it. While the game isn't as lengthy as the anime, clocking in at least a few hundred hours if you were to watch all of it, its still a pretty decent chunk of the show.
Combat is super fluid. You can easily run from a tough fight or to one if you wish. Combos are really the bread and butter of this game and they are insanely satisfying. Even though I usually stick to one combo that gets the job done, I never really get sick of it. Even if I do, I can just switch to another one at my whim and it just feels really great. While its good to sit back and have a thought provoking story with deep characters and dark stories, its always nice just to have some mindless fun every once and a while.

The Bad:
I've always been one of those 'easy' players. I always want to choose the easiest difficulty first and then, after beating the game, going up in difficulty to either sweep back around for all the harder difficulty achievements or just to challenge myself. This game makes it abundantly clear, every single time a mission is completed, that you can't get an 'S' rating on a level playing on easy. Okay, I get it. Whatever, but I don't have to be constantly reminded of this. Yes, I'm playing on easy, don't judge me. Its minor but a minor annoyance still.

This game isn't for everyone, I can admit, but its fun all the same. Its fast, fun and offers a pretty decent amount of gameplay time.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Why Video Game Movies Usually Fail

So, hey, new Hitman movie. Is it going to be good? I'm not going to hold my breath. That's not to say it won't be good, rather that its not the best idea for a game to movie adaptation. I have a few thoughts on why most, if not all, video game movies fail.

1. Don't work with fighting games.
While the first Mortal Kombat movie was an exercise in cheesy goodness, the sequel was not. Of course there are other issues why the sequel failed: switching actors, purposefully cheesy script and dialogue, horrible CGI over extremely good practical effects. But the main reason is the cast. Fighting games have the most characters possible. Hell. Now if you don't have at least 10 characters to choose from in fighting games, people will tear you apart from the lack of a sufficient roster. The original Mortal Kombat had still far too many characters for it to work in a movie. Fans of Reptile, Scorpion and Sub Zero were probably not too happy to see their favorite characters under used. The reason it wasn't too much of a blow is because those three characters are basically the same visually. They don't have much personality either and in Reptile's case, most of them don't even really talk. Point is, you have to put all the roster of characters in and NOT choose someone to be better than another. Fanboys/girls will rage all day about how their favorite character was misrepresented or, "Come on? Defeated by THAT character? You must be tripping!"

2. The premise must be simple.
As much as I hate to admit it, The Elder Scrolls can never have a movie. Think about all the awesome things about Elder Scrolls apart from combat and magic. The biggest thing to come up is the lore. From countless books, tomes and just simple throw away dialogue from random NPCs, Elder Scrolls thrives on you wanting to know more. You hear someone talk about the Fall of Kavatch (probably spelled that wrong) or the Eruption of Red mountain. Either you already know, want to know or don't care. You have agency to dive deeper into the lore of the games to find out more about the Dwemer or not. With movies, you can't know what will and won't be important. You have so much to work on and so limited time to explore what really is necessary. Its similar to the point about fighting games. You either focus on a character or event no one wants to know about or an event/character everyone wanted but is never mentioned.

3. You can only use action for a genre.
While you may disagree, action is really the bread and butter of simple stories. Die Hard doesn't have too much depth other than its action yet its still a good movie. Comedies are a possibility but you could always run into the problem of a joke just not being funny. In action, as long as you keep it awesome it can really do no wrong. Physics be damned, this thing will happen and most people will like it. If you choose drama, you might as well not even make a direct video game movie but a spin off like so many fan made films online. Fantasy has the same problem like mentioned in the second point. Too much in too little time. Action really cuts away the fat of all of the complexities. If Hitman was a thriller, it probably wouldn't do well. Slasher, definitely not. Thriller implies Agent 47 is in some sort of actual danger and is frightened by it. But, if you've ever played a Hitman game, you'll know 47 has the emotional range of a door. Slasher is immediately taken out for similar reasons. Of course they can't kill the main character and of course 47 would have to be the slasher. Otherwise there's no one to project onto. As awesome as a fight between 47 and Jason Vorhees would be, it would have to be action at best. Jason hunting a character who doesn't even flinch in the face of gore or death or 47 hunting someone who... well I take back my 'expressions like a door' for 47 and put it on Jason. He literally never shows his face.

Celestian Tales: Old North PC Review - 8.5/10

Celestian Tales is a turn based RPG available on Steam. It focuses in on a story with six main characters in a fantasy setting.

The Good:
There are a total of six main characters you can choose to play as, all with their own skills, backstory, beginning prologue and such. You choose one of the characters and follow their story that intersects with the other six. I haven't gotten around to playing all of them, but they all seem the same save for the prologue. Each character begins in their own small backstory which then leads into the main game. Its not often you see this level of detail from a kickstarted game or even from most triple A titles and publishers.
The sprites and other visuals all look exceptional. I'm not sure, but I think most, if not all, the artwork was done specifically for this game. While most characters fall back on a similar expression, its a very nice touch.
Combat is fairly decent. Which is to say it isn't broken. There's a fair bit of strategy but nothing insane. You attack, buff, healing item. All the standard stuff. That's not to say the system isn't lacking, it's just choosing to go by a familiar system we've seen and probably played. Point is, its not difficult to get into combat.

The Bad:
As far as I've played, you don't really get to make a whole lot of choices in this game. Sure, you can walk (relatively) where you want and use the skills you want but you can't make any dialogue choices. Apart from small things, the story will do as it pleases. Is your character kind of an elitist dick? Well too bad! You can't change it. I know this is par for the course when it comes to original RPGs like Final Fantasy, but this is 2015. We've made some serious graphical, not to mention mechanical, leaps when its come to games. Even hollow choices, while terrible, would have given me the illusion of choice. Its more like an animated movie I can control sometimes but ultimately I have little agency over. This isn't a terrible thing. Ni No Kuni had pretty much the same thing story wise. You were following Oliver's story and every so often you could just say yes or no, but I, at best, tolerated that.
You choose from six different characters who are all designed a certain way. You can't change this (as far as I've seen), so you're basically stuck as whatever the developer wants you to be. For you guys, you get all of two white characters to choose from. For the ladies, they get four white girls. While (most) of the characters don't look terrible, a token character maker would have been great. Instead, I have to play as a blond haired, slightly tanned guy. It doesn't detract from the game, it just makes me feel like I have less input in the overall game.

I'm not at all disappointed in my purchase. This is a pretty decent game that I might continue playing. I believe its still at a reduced price at the time this will be posted, so if you like the game you should pick it up soon for a fairly cheap price.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Choice of Robots PC Review - 8/10

Choice of Robots is an interactive novel available on Steam. It was marked down by 40% so I thought why not pick it up. The main basis of the game is that you have created robots. Not all robots but something significant to you personally.

The Good:
This is a very minimalist game. Its basically a novel but online but one you make up as you go. Through specific set choices, the story unfolds for you in different ways. You start off choosing where the story begins. One choice is you being judged by a robotic Anubis, weighing your life on scales, testing you on your life and the sins you've committed. Another has you sitting with a robot in a somewhat romantic setting and you reminisce on your life. Each of these stories plays back into a main story. Though your first choice will (presumably) affect the multiple endings, the main story is a almost completely a blank slate for you to mold. You can even name some important characters, such as yourself and the robot you build.

The Bad:
This is definitely a niche game. Shooter and RPG fans are not going to able to immediately pick this up. Rather this is more meant for people who enjoy books or someone who is getting into writing for themselves. I find it enjoyable though not many other people will.

The Meh:
Personally, I would have made some drawings or even music for this. At times, the experience feels kind of muted. You really need to engross yourself in what you're doing otherwise you're not likely to enjoy the experience. Basically, if you don't like reading books, this probably isn't for you.

I understand this was a pretty short review but there isn't much to talk about. This game is more of an experience. You really need to play it for yourself. The game is really cheap at the moment. Slightly more expensive than a soda but less expensive than a sandwich at the store. If you have a few bucks, I suggest you give it a try.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Windows 10 from a Gamer's Perspective

The ultimate problem when faced with a new operating system is, "What are the downsides?" Apart from the visual aspects, what you really want to work is the system itself. After a few years of straight console gaming, I've gradually evolved into a greater amount of PC gaming. Its quicker, easier, more convenient but also a whole lot less reliable. When your console works, you can just go on your PC to dick around or find out what's wrong. When a PC gamer's PC stops working, that's pretty much the worse possible outcome.
For starters, most people will have gotten this for free, so cost is not really an issue. Of course, you would have had to reserve a free copy of it, so if you're reading this now its more than likely you will have to purchase it. It looks... different. Not a bad different, its just that I've been used to Windows 7 for so long its a bit jarring.
The problem I DO have with this is the drivers. Ah, sweet sweet annoying drivers. If you don't know what drivers are, basically they're the systems on your computer in laymen's terms. Sound, video, battery. Stuff like that. Drivers connect that stuff to your PC so they actually work. Apart from that, even I'm not entirely sure what they are. About two years ago, I got the worst virus ever. And I mean the worst. Corrupted my hard drive. Had to get a completely new hard drive and add a new operating system to it. With the help of my tech savvy brother, we got it working again. Although, I wasn't able to play any games. The driver that would basically read my video card was non existent. I had to go search and download an entirely new driver just so I could play video games again. It was not a pleasant experience. Now? Windows 10 has a problem for some people where the sound driver doesn't work. Basically I don't have any sound. "Why is that such a problem?" you may ask. "Can't you still play games?" Apparently not as I've found out. I've tried three of my games of which two flat out don't work (Dark Souls 2, Dragonball Xenoverse and Fallout: New Vegas). Dark Souls 2 'works'. I mean that in a sense that I could start it up and the game actually goes to the title screen. Apart from that, I know nothing else. Xenoverse on the other hand, does not. It says I need a 'Shader model 3.0 or better'. I would like to point out not only did I do a PC review of this game so you know it works, but I have no idea what a shader model 3.0 is so I have to add that to my list of things to manually fix. New Vegas on the other hand just flat out does not work. Apparently lacking a sound device makes it unable to work as well.
So, to recap, this does not work as well as my previous OS. All of these things can be patched in at a later date and I can manually fix them (maybe) but I shouldn't HAVE to. That being said, all of my PC related reviews will have to be put on hold for the foreseeable future. Thanks for all of your support. I hope to have this working soon.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Why Can't We Have Good Vampire Games?

This is somewhat of a personal topic for me. Generally speaking, I love vampires. The whole mythology, the violence, the whole allegory of how man becomes or births it's own monsters. All of it is awesome. But what makes that such a difficult topic to transfer to video games? I know what you're saying: "But what about Vampire the Masquerade?" Yes. It is a good game. In fact, its the best vampire game we have. But that's inadmissible here. Just about everyone knows about that game, and even if you don't its sure to be brought up if talking about vampire games. Its basically the one exception to the rule so we're going to look at my personal points on why we haven't had a good game and possibly how to make a good vampire game.

1. Understanding what a vampire is.
"What is a man but a miserable pile of secrets?" Generally when adapting a famous character or a certain famous monster, the problem becomes in representing said monster well. Most people end up fantasizing the hell out of vampires. In terms of movies, Twilight being, "I know he's a horrible monster, but he's MY horrible monster!" or to Dracula Untold trying to make one of the most heinous and the first well known serial killer in all of history, Vlad the 3rd or Vlad the Impaler who is the real world inspiration for Dracula, and trying to make him a sympathetic character are both wrong. That's not to say a good film, game or any piece of media can't be made out of this but the ultimate problem comes from the crutch you've already made for yourself in which this thing has become more than its supposed to be. Vampires are at the same time blood sucking monsters who prey on the living while also being everything about men amplified. Greed, lust, hatred. All of these things make for a great vampire. From a gameplay standpoint, understanding that a vampire is basically a human but who has ultra awesome powers gives you a clear enough template for a good narrative and understanding how said character you're playing may act or what kind of abilities the player will have access to.

2. Picking the right genre.
Essentially, any game can be made into a vampire game. Slap a coat of paint on XCOM, change a few game mechanics and you've got a vampire strategy game... which sounds awesome. I would love to play that. Generally the best way to go is Action/Adventure and if you really want to make the player feel awesome and have as much control as they should, add a dash of RPG leveling/progression. Last vampire game I played was DARK (no, that's not a typo. The game is called Dark, but for some ungodly reason the developers felt like they needed to have the game's title in full caps) which was a very very bad game. It took my worst game of all time before I fell into a worse game. The game was a stealth action game. Loose on the action point. As annoying as some of the mechanics were, the fatal flaw became making you as a vampire a joke. You couldn't use guns at all and if you strayed from using stealth, you either had to use any one of the powers you got to kill them because the game was predicated on one hit stealth kills and if you tried attacking head on, all the enemies blocked your attacks. Not to mention that the game had blood points for each attack that made no sense. So the skill that makes the enemy look one way takes the same blood point for the skill that reaches across the room and kills an enemy instantly. While vampires are far from being invincible, they are extremely powerful. Anything that takes power away from you is going to be a negative in the sense that not only are you being unfair to the gamer but you're also not being sensible when it comes to being true to vampire mythology. Your character needs to be like Adam Jensen in Deus Ex. They're powerful and have a lot of skills focused on whatever they need to do. In stealth, they're a silent predator. In combat, they're their enemies worst nightmare.

3. The 'Superman' principle.
If you're unfamiliar with this its basically Superman can never have his own game that is good. Depowering Superman is a bad idea if you want to fit it into the plot to make everything seem less like a cake walk. If you give too much power, you'll be boring your audience. Force the audience into a structured narrative and you'll make it boring. RPGs have their own sense of progression. In Skyrim, I don't start out with all the best spells, armor that can't be penetrated by anything and a weapon that can kill anything with one shot and unlimited ammo/durability. I have to work my way to that point. Kill all the dragons, gain all of the shouts, craft and enchant the gear that suits me perfectly. Superman is very cut and dry. He can do basically anything and when he's faced with something that can kill him, he evolves in a contrived way or he absolutely crushes it. I shouldn't feel my vampire isn't 'vampire' enough. I should be able to explore different abilities that vampires may have, use strengths that seem plausible and be able to be my own character. Basically if I can't place myself in a character and get invested in them, why try at all?

Thursday, June 11, 2015

"I will not be preordering the new Batman and here's why"

Its not often that I talk about outright not playing/black balling a game. I'm generally a positive person. One of my worst reviews on this site was a 5/10. Long story short, I like to have fun rather than be a snarky internet critic or jaded for the sake of being jaded. We have enough of those people and some are really good at it. But this... THIS is something I need to say.
I will not preorder Batman Arkham Knight. I may not even buy it at all. And the simple reason is because of our old enemy, 'Preorder exclusives'. Today I went to Best Buy and GameStop. I was just browsing the shelves for some missed gems so I could quickly drain my bank account as usual. At GameStop I saw it: the Batman PS4 bundle. Basically you can buy the game (when it comes out of course) bundled with a PS4. Nothing wrong with that, in fact its great. Might get some more PS4 units sold which I have no qualms about. But GameStop has their own deal. A deal designed to screw you over.
Preorder this bundle and not only will you get your PS4 and a copy of the game, you will also get an EXCLUSIVE TO GAMESTOP ONLY access to play as The Red Hood. Oh, and also the ability to play as Harley Quinn with 4 EXCLUSIVE challenge maps. Oh, but here's the best part. EXCLUSIVE TO PS4... ONLY, Preorder and you'll receive two Batman skins as well as one for your Batmobile. Also access to PlayStation EXCLUSIVE Scarecrow Nightmare Missions.
NO. NO NO NO NO. STOP IT. This is awful. So, if I don't have a PS4 I can't get this extra content? Oh, I'm sorry. If I don't have a PS4 AND preorder the game, I can't get this EXCLUSIVE content? NO. That is terrible to everyone. Let me further clarify that Xbox One owners get none of their own exclusive content. And looking on Steam right now, the only thing you get for your preorder is free access to the Season Pass. Don't preorder it but still want the Season Pass? Prepare to shell out FORTY DOLLARS. THAT IS ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS SEPARATELY FOR THE GAME AND SEASON PASS.
I've personally always been on the fence about preorders. They're not bad. They offer up an incentive to get a few bits of extra content while you reserve a copy of the game. Understandable. But, when you can't get that content later, you've just been fucked by the company. When other platforms don't even get access to that content, you've just been fucked by the company again. Now I can understand that maybe Sony shelled out some money to get some extra exclusive content. Fine, they deserve that. Special content only available at a certain store? I don't even have a problem with that. But THIS. This is something I have a problem with. If you preorder it on any other system, you miss out on the skins and a few missions. If you preorder it for PC, you get absolutely nothing other than saving a few bucks. This. Is. Not. Good. I don't think I have to tell you why this isn't. No, I SHOULDN'T have to tell you why this is bad.
Am I demanding that Rocksteady give exclusive content to the other systems? No. Am I calling for a boycott on the game? No. The purpose of this is to inform you. Inform you about these poor business practices. Inform you that you are being screwed over, Xbox One players. Inform you that you weren't even a second thought, PC players. Buy the game if you will. I will not. I hope the game is fun for your sake. I also hope that this will stop. That this annoying trend of exclusivity will come to a halt immediately. That we as the consumer are treated as business partners rather than walking wallets.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Dwelvers PC Review - 8.5/10

Dwelvers is a dungeon management game. Dungeon management is kind of like an RTS except all your troops (or in this case minions/monsters) all follow their own agenda unless otherwise instructed to. The goal of the game is to mine into other dungeons, kill other monsters and heroes in order to have the biggest and best dungeon ever. The game is in its pre Alpha state but the product itself is finished enough to give me a decent review.

The Good:
I never thought I would have this much fun with a game like this. I always wanted to play Dungeon Keeper but I could never find it on Steam or anywhere else. While I believe this game doesn't have as much content, you could consider it a spiritual successor at least. Your main objective is to basically just mine through the small area you've been given. Within your area, you construct various pens and rooms to satisfy or strengthen your minions. The biggest problem you'll be faced with is the fact that you'll need to keep building more beds and such to satisfy your troops throughout the massive dungeons otherwise they'll have to walk back miles to get back to the main dungeon's first room.
The game has a good amount of strategy to it. Your troops can die but they can either be brought back to health just by sleeping in a bed or even become ghosts who can still fight for you. You get new troop types by killing other, newer monsters. Taking over enemy locations will allow you to build those places in certain cases. I've only found two, though I suspect this number may go up once the game is fully finished.

The Bad:
The game doesn't really explain much. Sure, there is a tutorial mode, but I shouldn't have to play it in order to know basic things. For example, every time you build something it costs materials. However, those materials need to be picked up manually by your troops. You can easily become overwhelmed with tasks once you've gotten a pretty good ways through the game. Resources to build these things are not infinite apparently. The one big problem I faced was trying to get more wood... however, there is no wood in the game at least not in this build. Does wood come from vines that are sometimes in the walls? If so, that is finite as well, or as far as I've seen. Apart from digging into my floors, I just can't find any more vines. After a while of messing around, I found that there is a mining block you can build over certain blocks. However, even that takes wood to build so build it too late and you can't build it. Even then I have no idea if the vines are even being mined. My wood count doesn't go up in the slightest and it doesn't look as if the vine is being mined at all. I think you're supposed to trade with other tribes but the game told me that after I had already exhausted my resources in order to build a trade station.
Speaking of not explaining much, I have no idea how to get more troops or get newer troops. Sure, I said that you get them by killing newer monsters but that doesn't always work. If you want to build a kitchen and a bar you need a Piggeh, a special type of monster for that. To get one you need to build a bed for it and they will just appear/be made. One time, I mined into a labyrinth, which I never found again after that playthrough. In that dungeon, there were these minotaur like creatures. After I killed them, nothing happened. I didn't get to make them or have them made for me. So I just didn't care after a while and then the game spits out one for me without any notice. A few times, a lot of my troops will complain they are hungry despite the fact I have a place where they can eat as well as a farm that gets the food. Am I missing something?

The Meh:
This is one of those games where you need to be using a mouse and not a track pad. Unfortunately, I have a laptop so I'm stuck using my USB mouse. I say need because you need to use the scroll wheel to move the camera 360. If you don't, prepare to A) not be able to finish the tutorial and B) constantly have your view obscured. You won't be able to see past walls unless you tear them down, which is bad if you accidentally bring enemies back to your base because they'll trash the place much easily now that nothing is impeding them. If this game could have a 'lower wall' tool like in The Sims, that would be greatly appreciated. At the very least, a few walls would be nice.

This is... actually a really good game. While I have a few gripes, its nothing to keep from playing/enjoying this game. For 15 bucks, its not a bad buy. The state the game is in may be incomplete, but there's enough to get me wanting to play it a little bit more.

Monday, May 18, 2015

The Witcher 3 PC Review 10/10

The Witcher is (presumably) the last game in an RPG trilogy. Each game has done it's own unique take on the RPG genre. The first game was a slow, methodical, PC exclusive game. Its combat was rich, complex and very non newbie friendly. The combat was overhauled in the second game when it was released for 360 to draw in new players though it still stayed somewhat off putting when compared to other games like Elder Scrolls in terms of simply being able to pick up the game and play it without knowing the subtle nuances of every single detail.

The Good:
Another game that reminds me I need to update my graphics card. This game is beautiful in just about every way. From the striking scenery to the character models, this game does it's best to make sure the world feels real. The game still runs but its choppy at the lowest settings for my PC. Then again, 'still runs' is better than doesn't run at all.
It has been a few years but from what I remember of the second game, but from what I remember I can say that the combat has been improved. Wards feel properly like awesome magic while sword play is balanced through dodges, blocking, counters and the like. Its less mashing either the quick or heavy strikes and more skirting around opponents to get the best advantage and using your magic properly to affect the outcome of battle with as little damage gained as possible if possible. The enemies vary drastically as well. Men use various tactics but nothing too surprising in terms of what you'd expect a human to be able to do. Monsters on the other hand are the exception. Sure, you might understand how they work after a few times battling them, but they always seem to surprise you. Maybe the jump from out of the ground or even just circle around the marshes and uneven terrain to get the jump on you. You also have to be careful around them considering fighting something like a drowner or even a wolf is no easy task and should be handled with utmost caution if you don't wish to die. Basically, combat is good. Best I've seen in the series in fact.
One of the things I wasn't too happy with in the previous titles was the story. Well, I suppose the lore is a better way to say it. You were told about some things but you never really had the full picture. I know I never really finished either of the first two titles, but I shouldn't be left wondering about simple facets of the world when I'm halfway through the game. I'd hear about important characters through single sentences or characters that had pivotal moments for other characters in vague details. It wasn't bad, it just felt like I was the odd man out in a conversation I was desperately trying to interject myself into. Here, a lot more is talked about. "Where are the other witchers?" I asked myself while playing the second game. Now, I can see more than one witcher as well as their base. I always wanted to know what the Wild Hunt was and now I know... kind of. At the very least I can see what they look like.
Exploration seems to be key but you can be punished for running into enemies that are far above your level obviously. Then again, if your skill triumphs over the enemies you can pretty much do as you please. Apart from that you can also go underwater and apparently other enemies can be in the water with you as well. I've only seen drowners so far and, true to their name, they try and drown you. Areas vary from forests, marshes, bogs, cities and just about everything in between. There's a lot of varied places you can go to and they're visually stunning enough so that you're not always going to be bored.

Honestly, I have nothing much else to say. The game just hits all the right spots and I've enjoyed myself so far despite the choppiness I've had to deal with, but that's my computer's limitations. Its a really great RPG and it seems every other reviewer thinks so as well. Buy it if you like challenging RPGs and rich stories.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

In the Minority

I really miss the days of cartridge gaming. Weird topic, huh? Oh well. I've been playing with my 'new' PS2, buying all the games I've never had before and mostly being disappointed because next gen has spoiled me so much. The thing that I disliked most about the PS2 was the fact it required memory cards. Yes, plural. If you're trying to get every single game for the system, you're going to have to go through a few memory cards in order to do so. Not to mention the immense backlog for the PS1, and now you've got double the amount.
The advantage cartridges have over disks is pretty easy to see. Each one has its own contained memory where as a disk requires memory to be copied. So instead of having to delete stuff from a hard drive or a memory card, all you have to do is plug and play. The downside is the fact that each cartridge has its own internal battery that holds the game's memory. As we should all know, batteries don't last forever. A few years ago, there was a big thing going on where people realized that the batteries for the original Pokemon Red and Blue should be dying around this time. A game that's so recognized and launched an entire series, this was kind of big. Not insanely but thinking about all those Pokemon you caught and kept (if you grew up when it was released), that's a pretty big punch in the gut for everyone who grew up. Or a wake up call to say, "Your childhood has been over for quite some time."
"But why don't you just get a higher memory space on your memory card?" I hear you asking. Well I have. Got the biggest one I could find, in fact. 128 mb, which by today's standards is pitiful. Weird thing is, this cartridge acts like its an 8 mb and only holds as much as the 8 that I got with it. So screw me, right? I can't seem to find why this is because obviously no one really cares anymore.
Internal memory always has its own problems. Its better if you can upgrade it, but you're always going to be stuck in that place of "I will never have enough memory for every single game," which sucks. The idea of not having to worry about that with things like the Jaguar and the SNES was amazing. Now I'm constantly deleting things from my PC or console because "There just isn't enough room for all these games." Currently I have about 538 games on Steam and I'll just let that sink in. I can never have enough room for ALL of those games, so most times I'm not even bothering to download them. I've probably only played about 25% of those games and even then there's a select few I actually care to play again. Right now I've got a little over twenty that I either play frequently or just enough to let them continue taking up space on my hard drive.
What's my point? Well, nothing really. I've always been fascinated by the divide from the generations. Each one has its own leap that sort of trumps the other. From the PS2 using DVDs and memory cards to the PS3's blu ray and hard drive. Of course the original Xbox's standard memory to the 360's jump to a up-gradable  hard drive that you could take out and put back in working order in less than a second. Is it progress for progress' sake or is it a logical jump? I certainly can't say for sure.

Blog Update

Hey everyone. Sorry about the lack of posts. Not a lot of games have been coming out so... ya, no reviews. This is just more or less a quick update on the blog and what we're doing/what we will be doing or are thinking about doing.
I actually wanted to pick up Majora's Mask for 3DS as well as the Xenoblade, but my 3DS has a problem (which I'm told is common) where the shoulder buttons just don't work anymore, so I'm a bit cautious when picking out 3DS games now and reviews are probably not going to be flooding in for games. Xenoblade also REQUIRES the newest 3DS model which has a circle pad and apparently you can't play the game without it so I'm thinking about picking up that... when I have enough money...
I've been doing some serious thinking into getting an Xbox One so I can broaden the reviews a bit. Mostly its just been PC for various and obvious reasons. While I'd personally like to get a better PC (or even better to build one) it doesn't seem like that's going to be all that possible, money wise and time constraints at least.
We've been seriously thinking about starting a Youtube channel, mostly starting with the PS4 just for it's ease of use and all that. Its not definite but its definitely on the horizon. If we do, I'll be sure to tell you how you can see our videos. On a somewhat related note, we've also been starting a retro games collection, starting with a PS2 and an original Xbox. We've got a few games but if there's something you'd like us to look over specifically feel free to tell us. I've personally just been getting all the games I never had as a kid because I never owned a PS2 before. We'd like to make this into a thing but we're not sure if that's even possible at this point, its just more for fun's sake than anything and pure nostalgic value.
In any case, thanks for reading this blog. Its always nice to see those views pile up and I'm always grateful to see people reading my work. I'm not sure if any games are coming out in a while so you may or may not see a review come in. In the meantime I'll just be talking about random things or whatever I feel is pressing on me at the moment. Thanks for the support!

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Why is no one talking about this? - Dreamfall Chapters, Ori and the Blind Forest

I think one of the more infuriating things about this industry (apart from the shady business practices) is the great or just good games that get over shadowed. We all know what the next Call of Duty is but most games slip under the radar. Its even more unusual when it seems like no one is talking about a game at all. Youtube has its own people posting about their "Top 10 Underrated Games" lists but even then that doesn't cover all of them. This weekend, I picked up two games, one I heard about but never played and another I'd never even heard of.

Dreamfall Chapters is one of those kickstarter children popped out some time ago, October of last year to be precise. Its a continuation of the Longest Journey series that was around during the time of the original Xbox. I always wanted to play it if only for how unusual it looked and probably because of the lack of things people said about it. Even the worst games get their own time in the spot light to get roasted for their five minutes of fame, but this series was just that one title I always saw at GameStop (or EB Games back then; god I'm old...). I never got to play them because I was too young when it came out to pick up an M rated game, too poor to pick it up on the 360's arcade and not really interested to pick up the games on Steam. Too bad for me.
Its a standard point and click game. Pick up item, combine item with another item, solve puzzle with said combination. I've never really been a fan of these games though I suppose The Walking Dead series from TellTale has warmed me up to the idea. Its also sort of in the same vein as Walking Dead. There's a heavy focus on narrative but not in a bad way. Walking Dead was about the loss of humanity and the futility in trying to reclaim it. The story it told was never forced into your face and you were free to respond to it how you pleased. I can't really get a focus on the theme of this game other than "authority is bad" but it doesn't really matter. The writing is really good and haunting at times. Tragically beautiful at points and funny in others. Juggling both dry comedy and saddening writing is no easy feat but welcome when done right.
Speaking of writing, I really like the world building. I've never played any of the other games in the series but it never felt like I needed to. I decided to go in blind rather than get caught up. Thankfully there was an option for me to be caught up to speed in the game which is a nice tough. Its difficult to make a world feel real but the game did a pretty good job. Rather than be assaulted with exposition dumps or dragged kicking and screaming past terms and events I really wanted to know about, each dialogue felt natural and fluid. Though I missed a few terms, common sense filled me in pretty well. I knew what was a curse, what was their term for currency and generally all that was going on. In contrast, if you've ever read a book with just massive amounts of exposition filling the reader in versus a story like 1984 which doesn't hold your hand in anything, its leaning more towards 1984 but not too much so that its alienating.
I have my qualms about the game in certain areas but its a puzzle game and that's pretty par for the course.

Speaking of puzzle games, Ori and the Blind forest. I give off this groan whenever I hear that a game is going to be exclusive to a certain system, especially when it interests me. I can deal with it when its for a handheld system, especially in this generation considering the mechanics of both the 3DS and Vita are unlike any other system to date, but when it comes to consoles its really annoying. I don't have too many qualms about it, I understand the practice, but I just hate it how something might not get the exposure it should have gotten because not everyone had that particular system. Its like if your favorite series had its own cannon continuation but it was on a completely different system and then failed so now you can't expect to see any more games in the coming years. This game looked amazing to me and heart breaking. I was really excited for it but it just kind of fell through once I knew I couldn't play it for lack of owning and Xbox One. Lucky me it was on PC.
This is one of those few times when I debate giving a perfect score if I was reviewing it. Breathless is really a good way to describe something like this. Its like watching a painting move before your very eyes but slowly so you have time to appreciate it as the art itself begins to change. As far as puzzle platformers go, its pretty standard with a few variations. The story and visuals are really where it excels. There's combat but its done in a way I feel I can get stronger. If an enemy is too tough, I can usually end up using my cunning or just coming back later after I've gotten stronger or a better ability. Each encounter you have shouldn't be enraging but rather rewarding. If it is enraging, the player should feel in control so as to not feel as though they've reached and impassible point but rather have options apart from sticking it out to just straight up quitting the game.
Puzzles shouldn't be annoying as well. If I feel the need to window the game just to look up a quick commentary, then you've done something wrong. I did have to do it once, but it was more my fault. Rather than explore the puzzle, I got frustrated and looked up a walkthrough. Of course it was the easiest thing to solve so I felt like an idiot.
In terms of writing its more of a vacuum. Rather than dialogue, visuals are represented. While there is some text, most of it is just telling you minor things. "Go to Point A!" kind of stuff. Its difficult to make me feel sad or any emotion other than unintentional anger for a particular character. Its a greater feat when you make me feel for a character without even having any dialogue spoken. I don't like to feel heartbreak but it invests me in characters. Like how Tali is just my favorite character in Mass Effect for the things she did rather than me being told by the game, "SHE IS AWESOME. YOU LIKE HER NOW." An opposite example would be "Press button to pay respects."

Both of these games are worth their price tag. Good games that I had completely looked over until now and its unfortunate that I did.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Early Access: Oblitus

So I guess I'm starting up a new thing here. Early Access is going to (obviously) look at early access games on Steam. The point being is that I either feel these games are in a state which, while being unfinished, I cannot definitively pin a static score to. That is to say if I either feel a game has some untapped potential in the early access list, I feel it would be 'unfair' of me to evaluate all I've seen/played so far.

Oblitus is an early access game I never heard about. Literally. I just happened across a Youtube video... somehow, about it. The game is supposed to be '2-D Dark Souls', which I can kind of see. Nameless faceless protagonist you are, you have been given a loose directive to find... someone. This objective now tasks you to kill things/avoid being killed by things. I... kind of like it. The immediate problem is not knowing what the hell is going on. After the ten minute loading screen (yes, ten minutes) I was dropped into the main menu and then into the game after a short tutorial. You have a shield and a spear. Pretty standard stuff. You have a variety of moves, mostly just in poke with spear, throw said spear, block, parry, roll and jump.
Progressing into the game you may find small 'power ups'. Said power ups will give you different bonuses. However, as I've seen, these bonuses don't stay once you die and they don't come back with you once you die. First run I got heavy armor. Second run was a poison spear. Third was a spear that went through enemies. And last was an invincibility roll. This is kind of annoying. I don't mind not being able to take said items with me when I respawn but the problem is that I have no idea what said items do. In Dark Souls, I may take a risky path in order to get that one item that is just the most awesomest thing ever and not care about dying once I get it. In Mario, die and your power ups are forfeit. The difference is with Dark Souls and Mario, each of those power up are in static places. So if I was a Mario savant, I know exactly where to get the next mushroom and then fire flower. I can accurately go forward knowing full well what is going to happen. Randomized rewards are... interesting. They keep game play blind like in The Binding of Isaac. I have no idea if said power up was worth having my health shaved off.
Back to not being told stuff, you have a health bar riiiight in the top left hand corner. Difficult to see and since its not numbers, its hard to know how much life you actually have. Its a circle that empties itself when you take damage. Goes from green to yellow to red. Pretty standard. Apart from that, there's a moment when the damage I took led to me having almost no life bar. I mean in the sense it was either so low it was outside of my 20/20 vision, or some problem with the resolution obscured it. When I fought a boss after getting the heavy armor, my damage didn't seem to change at all. I seemed to still take the same amount so I was unaware if it did much of anything at all.

The game shows promise. I feel there's a lack of focus on certain aspects, but the game is playable so there's that. Combat is interesting and definitely has a 'think first' motif. Each enemy varies in how you must deal with them. Some easy enemies will be clunked in with harder enemies so you have to use your moves perfectly to survive unscathed. If this game was finished, I'd probably buy it. I do like the atmosphere and handling of certain things, so I'd say its not bad.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Dragon Ball Xenoverse PC Review - 9/10

The very first anime I ever saw as a kid and recognized it as anime was Dragon Ball Z. The series stuck with me all the way into adulthood. The adolescent violence, over the top fight scenes and ridiculous amounts of yelling. Its the perfect anime. All joking aside, I really love it. All of it actually. Though most people don't seem to hold it in such high regards, at least parts anyway. Everyone remembers Z but no one really wants to acknowledge GT and the first series is barely even mentioned. The games don't really help either, focusing on a specific series rather than the whole entirety. While this game doesn't have the first series, it does have Z and GT which is a step in the right direction. But enough delaying and onto the review.

The Good:
I might say this too much but it bears repeating: a game that runs well is better than the prettiest game. While I'm not saying the game's visuals aren't striking, what I mean to say is that it runs smoothly thanks to cell shading. Looks nice and it runs nice. Most every game tries to do the best graphics and the best shadow/water effects, my PC chugs just trying to render a single frame and even then its still screwed up. While I did have a few drop points here and there, it never became a problem and was at sensible times like during a brightly colored and flashy super move. Point is, it runs great and it looks great.
One of the things I really dislike about Dragon Ball games is their almost complete leaning on fighting. Sure, the entire series is based on fighting but we have enough fighting games out there. Too many clones of the same game with the same functions. Set in a small arena, 3D fighting on a 2D plane, over reliance on combos and exploits. This game does have some of those things but it doesn't dwell on them. For instance, there are a few large maps such as on Namek and even multiple stages to switch between maps in a single mission freely. Combos are there but they aren't thrust into your face or the core of game play. Dragon Ball has always been fluid. One fight can go through multiple stages, elevations and even different places. The stages rarely stay static so it always bugged me that the maps in previous titles were more scenery than actual... well, maps. You usually have wide open spaces, not only the ground but also in the sky and now even the water.
Another gripe I have about fighting games is cheapness. At the beginning, you're given everything you can get. Apart from unlockable skins and even some finishers, this never changes. So when I get to a boss or fight that is insanely difficult or just plain cheap I just want to throw the controller out the window. Adding in the ability to get stronger and faster through game play definitely makes me happy. The fights in the game are far from easy and I have a few losses to prove it. Though at the end, I can just go back and grind for more Xp or even just power through it by skill alone. Basically, the game is more accessible with the ability for veterans to take their course and the rest of us to take what we want.
While the character creation leaves some to be desired, it still is a welcome addition. Rather than pick that one fighter simply because they have the best moves, I can make someone to my own liking and add the skills and abilities I WANT. Do I want to be a namekian with a kameha wearing some Frieza soldier armor? Now I can! Or how about play as a female majiin with some of Vegeta's moves and Piccolo's armor? Now I can! Apart from that, each race as well as gender has their own additions and subtractions. Females are usually quicker and with a higher ki count while males have greater defenses and do more melee damage.
Back onto the subject of the previous games, they were always static. They always followed the same arcs to the letter and any deviation was considered a side mission. Here, the entire story is basically a 'what if' scenario. What if all the baddies won their battles? What if the Z fighters weren't strong enough? While we'll probably never see each individual enemy's ideal world as they see fit, we do get to see a small snip it of if they win. The ones who were supposed to stop them are lying face on the floor and an evil smirk cuts across their face. You are a time traveler and someone is messing with time, making it so Goku and his friends fail in each of their major fights. You need to go back in time and help them. I love this idea so much. Not only do we get to gloss over the major points of the series, we also get to be apart of it. One funny part was during the fight with the Ginyu Force in which your character accidentally switches bodies with Ginyu. An awesome point was when I fought Frieza in his final form while Namek burned beneath our feet. Its one of those things you just have to experience to see how awesome it really is.

The Bad:
Unfortunately the character creation leaves much to be desired. Why can't I have a skinny majiin male? Where are the female Namekian and Frieza's race choices? Its not a huge deal but there's a point where you have to see that there was some really cool stuff on the cutting board. You know what I would have liked to have been? A kai. While this can be added into future DLC, I just want it now rather than later.
The tutorial is lengthy and somewhat annoying. Once you've created your character, you walk around the hub world just... talking to people. Some people have blips over their heads to signify something to say but the game doesn't tell you that you need to talk to just about everyone before you can proceed. During this time you can't fight, play, buy items or gear. Also be wary of simply clicking without reading. A mission required me early on to go into a portal. Too bad I skipped over that part because I didn't know how to go through it. What you need to do is lock on and press B. Of course I, being an idiot, thought you could just fly through it.

The Meh:
The game is sort of structured like an MMO and its clear to see. There's a somewhat big focus on online. While I wasn't able to play because I think the server for the game isn't up, after a certain point in the game you can see other people's characters walking about. Not the people playing as the characters but simply stock characters like NPCs. Its not a bad thing but usually MMOs don't last very long. This game was based off of the failed MMO for Dragon Ball Z and it really shows. Even in characters. You 'apparently' can have more than one character. Only problem is all the other slots are locked out. So I basically just have been deleting my current character to see what the other races look like... which sucks.
Its hard to tell when items become available to you. I had two sets of armor for preordering and I did not like their look at all, but they functioned so I had no choice but to wear them. You never really know when the new set of gear is going to be available because it doesn't work by your level. I'm 15 right now and I've only just gotten access to lvl 5 stuff. Super moves can either be rewarded via missions but you can also buy them... sometimes. After you've bought them they just kind of vanish. I haven't been able to buy new skills in a long time. Speaking of gear, there's no real easy way to see which gear is better. It works off of increments of stat changes, however, it doesn't tell you if said stat change is better or worse than the stuff you're wearing even if you've bought it. It just shows what will be lost and what will be gained by putting on the armor and I don't mean loss as in the skills that are currently modified by your current gear.

I'm calling it. This is the best Dragon Ball game I've ever played. Its a solid game and at the end of the day I feel it was worth the price of admission. While you won't be able to preorder it anymore for the special little goodies, the game is worth it. Its fast, its fun and you will have fun as well.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Why We Shouldn't Have Gaming Awards

Ah yes. Gaming awards. This is generally a weird subject for gamers. First off I'd like to give my opinion on award shows: they're dumb. I know I'm coming out of the gate swinging my biased bat around like a kid trying to smash a pinata, but I stand firmly by this. Award shows are about as interesting as... something that's not very interesting. Okay, so maybe I'm not a word smith. I consider award shows to be dull and sort of cancerous. The whole process is rigged to be either the most pretentious or the obligatory "this movie was actually good" category that pops up every once and a while. With no input from those who ACTUALLY saw and liked the movie, award shows are more Rotten Tomatoes and IMDB scrolling until they find the movie that was pretty highly rated and had that one actor who was in that other movie that fans liked but they didn't give even a participation reward to because 'gorsh I sure love them'.
The same reason I don't like award shows is the same reason I don't vote for the president: my choices don't actually matter. In the rare occasion an actually deserving movie gets the nod like Tropic Thunder, sort of brings people back to the thought that, "No seriously this time award shows are finally getting their stuff together and taking their faces away from the tight grip of their butt holes. I think award shows would have a lot more clout if they allowed actual real people to chime in to vote. But I feel much like what is the Electoral College to voting for the president, they'll somehow shaft everyone in one fell swoop
The reason you can't quantify what is 'good' is because movie is an art form. That would be on the same level if I gave awards to a Salvador Dali painting. Art is subjective. One person would see a brilliant take on the social economical norms of their respective culture and time period, while another person would just see a gloopy pile of paint. Yes, I'm going to hammer in that games are an art form. Accept it. If I saw a painting that got the 'Painting of the Year' sticker plastered on it, I'd feel a bit weird. First off that's not the painting I would have picked and neither would most people. Second I don't need to be told when art is pretty to look at by a person I've never met. In gaming its different. Movies often have their awards plastered all over their box but its more of a "You should buy this because people said it was really well made" kind of thing. Comes off as less pretentious when you do your best to market what people have actually said. However, the gaming industry has taken this to it's logical breaking point, releasing all new 'versions' of their game with the tag line "Game of the Year". The game doesn't even have to be actually good or even that no one liked it. The gaming industry thinks of us all as cows looking at shiny objects, Game of the Year, or GOTY for short, being the crowing achievement of shiny stuff. This can also happen for good games. See Arkham City's GOTY box art in all its messy glory, simply plastered with praises for it being a good game. Yes it is a good game though I feel as though I will vomit from your choice of box art.
Gaming award shows are even worse. Generally speaking, I don't mind people reviewing games. I feel that would be very hypocritical as it is literally my job to do so. Giving a score to a game is a decent way to tell if a game is good or bad. Reviewers use general and quantifiable ways to say if its good or bad. Good games should be rewarded and bad games should be punished. I am not disagreeing with you there. However, in this industry it has become increasingly apparent that shady practices often come into play. The most recent has to be with the debacle of Shadow of Mordor. The developers were so scared their game wasn't going to be well received so they did some underhanded stuff to get better reviews like paying off people. They must look red with embarrassment now considering that their game was actually great. In fact it was the best Lord of the Rings game I've ever played... excluding the Lego games. Those are usually good.
There is no committee of people dedicated to making sure sub par games don't get to slap that coveted GOTY sticker on their box so any idiot could do it. If you know anything about the economy, know that over saturation of a thing with devalue said thing. I know its tough to sell games in this industry but you don't have to do it in a patronizing way. I think the problem also arises with gaming gems. Games that surprised just about everyone but quickly fell off the map. In fact this is what this whole post is kind of about. I've been playing Dragon's Dogma again, a game I consider to be my favorite of all time. The problem arises when a game we like or adore is not getting the praise it deserves. This ties back into the whole 'Games are art' motif. Often times good games get shoveled under a pile of mediocre or bad titles. The good games often have a difficult time shining through the muck and gaming award shows are if the industry hands a shiny stick to the game to get out of said muck. However, that stick is wrapped in barb wire and alcohol. Its a double slap in the face when a poisonous industry content on lining their pockets at the expense of others gives awards to games. Suddenly that industry we have a love-hate relationship with becomes like an abusive figure promoting something. No matter if it is good or not, you have to take whatever they say with a grain of salt, knowing full well this is a horrible person who probably likes horrible things.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

What can I expect from Dragon Ball: Xenoverse?

Excuse me if my grammar is terrible during this post because I'm jumping up and down with excitement, figuratively of course. While I must wait an excruciating amount of time for this game to release, it has given me time to research about the game. And looking at the calendar it will come out in two weeks so ya, I have a LOT of time. In any case, over my browsing the web, here are some facts to hopefully get you excited for the game.

1. Its going to be open... kind of
Open world may be too much to ask for but this game will have more of an actual world. You'll be able to travel around certain parts of Earth in terms of Dragon Ball's world. While it hasn't been completely clear as to how open or what parts we'll be able to travel around in, it seems that the game has a bit of progression outside of simply just 'fighting mode'. This isn't new for Dragon Ball as a few years ago, in Raging Blast, you were able to travel around an albeit small but still free to travel around Earth.

2. The game will feature the same sagas as the anime including Battle of Gods, as well as a new story
The game itself is centered around you going through the same sagas from Saiyan to Buu. This is pretty standard, seeing as how basically every single game has had this story. The only difference being the GT games and any additions to the normal Z story. Pretty standard, except the story is flipped. Not to go into too much detail, your character is from the future and some bad stuff is happening. So you and Future Trunks go back in time and essentially mess with the time line to your own liking. Not sure as to what 'your own liking' will entail, but aside from that the story this time is flipped. Speaking of 'your character'...

3. You can now create your own character, complete with race options
FINALLY. I've always wanted this! You can now create your own character, complete with gender (equality high five) and clothing options, as well as being able to choose from a few races. From what I've seen, the races are from Earthling, Saiyan, Majin, Namekian and even Frieza. Not only that, but apparently races DO have an affect on gameplay. Namekians can use healing items to a greater advantage as well as regeneration when low on health as well as high health and defense. Saiyans have lower health but larger attacks and can become stronger if revived. No word on what other stats the other races have but I can presume that the Majin will have increased defense and regeneration and Frieza will have higher levels of Ki. Not only all of this, but you can choose to become and apprentice of one of the original characters, allowing you to learn their special moves and even be able to use their clothing options. Also, leveling up... which is awesome.

4. Differences in combat
Not a lot of them, though two worth mentioning. First you can now fight underwater. This isn't a huge deal, but considering this is probably the first time any of the games have added this in makes it somewhat significant. Will you be hindered underwater? Will ki blasts be ineffective? We'll just have to wait and see. Lastly, you can teleport behind targets. Sort of like an instant transmission, you can pop behind someone for a few quick attacks. This does have its own limit being its own ki meter, so you can't just BAMF in back of someone for instant wins. Still it adds a new level of depth to the game.

This really needs no introduction. NO. QUICK TIME. EVENTS

6. The game is (sort of) based off the failed MMO
Don't you just hate it when you don't get the cool things other people get over seas. Dragon Ball Online shut down almost two years ago to Korea and Taiwan. Why it wasn't released here or anywhere else, I don't know. The game also allowed you to create a character with gender and race options as well as level up... and that's pretty much where the similarities end.

7. A bunch of new characters
Well... new as in you can play as them. Of course there are the cool ones like Gogeta and even Beerus, And then... Raspberry? Appule? Whatever. A bunch of characters you can choose from which is cool. Might be like a 'Dan' situation but whatever.

Bonus: Preorder exclusives
I preordered the Steam version which gets me two types of armor and access to SS4 Vegeta. From the website I'm reading, it also says that there is planned DLC so you might want to fork over a few extra bucks for that extra content when it comes out.

So as you can see, I have a lot that I'm going to be fretting over I would like to say, however, this game releases on a Friday. So far, I've been getting random Tuesday releases, which really screws with my sleeping/work schedule, making me choose to whether I want more traffic to this site by releasing my review sooner or sleeping and getting to work on time not sleepy. Whoever made this game release on a sensible time, I could kiss you.
In any case, the game releases on February 27th on Xbox One, 360, PS4 and 3 as well as PC.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Dying Light - PC Review 8.7/10

I'd just like to say first off my PC isn't amazing. Its basic at best. It has the requirements to play something and not much else. I'll try not to focus on the aspects of the graphics too much but if there's a problem with the performance then I will DEFINITELY talk about that. At the very least you should be able to play the game at a decent frame rate. I know I'm going to get a lot of hate for this but what it comes down to is if I can run the game by what I've been told by the page on Steam, then I have an expectation to play it. Crashes, frame dips and texture tearing have somewhat to do with graphics cards but they should be limited to the very least possible to ensure that whoever is playing the game is actually being able to play it. From the guy who hasn't upgraded his PC in years to the person who has bought a PC specifically for this game or has the best specs available, in the same way a normal edition console player vs a special edition console player.

The Good:
Despite the fact I had to lower my settings to a ridiculous degree, this game looks great. Mostly the scenery which is sort of a third world country setting with just a dash of zombie apocalypse. You don't really see that setting as much. Dead Island was close but more pleasant part of third world country type deal. Bugs flying around, run down shacks. Its all very nice. Unfortunately the game doesn't run as well as I'd hope and the frame rate dips but its playable and that's really the most I need.
The zombies are actually (kind of) smart. They're easy to take down but they come at you from multiple angles. Making you always wary of a possible attack. There's also not too much difference between the special zombies other than the truly malformed ones, so you can't just immediately know which one to kill and which one to avoid if you just scan a crowd.
You can craft a lot of things just out in the field, such as a medkits, fire crackers and even some thrown weapons. It was a bit annoying in Dead Island where if you needed something you'd either have to find it or go to that one special vendor for molotovs.
While the ability to repair weapons has been greatly diminished, what little repairing you can do can be done in the field as well as crafting weapon mods. Even though you can't really upgrade a weapon the same was as you could before, you now have the ability to what little you can on the fly in the field.
Leveling up is done in a unique way. You now have three skill trees that level up opposite of each other. Fighting, Running and Scavenging. You gain more points for Fighting the more you fight and it levels up separately to Running which can be leveled up from anything as simple as kicking to making successful jumps. It's sort of like with Borderlands 2 where the more often you fired a weapon of a certain type, the better you were at handling a weapon of that type from then on. Or more like Sleeping Dogs where you had three different level up bars which each corresponded to their own level up perks, rewards/benefits and each had their own way of leveling up independent of the other two. It really forces you to be a master of all trades. If I want to kill zombies better, I'll need the combat tree also the sprint tree because of some of the bonuses it offers like dodging or getting me closer to bashing their brains in more efficiently.
I really love how the game doesn't limit me. There's a lot of ways to kill zombies cheaply or tactically, and the game encourages it. A bit further on you'll find some barriers that you'd usually see blocking some sort of entrance like we have in the real world. Spikes that are littered about to limit mobility. After some luck, I found that if you kick or herd zombies into these, they immediately get killed. The game didn't punish me for doing this, and in fact it rewarded me. I spent a few minutes kicking zombies into the barriers and still getting the xp I would if I bashed their brains in the old fashioned way. Sometimes cars will be on fire and if a zombie walks by it will catch on fire. Herd a zombie on fire into others and they'll start a chain reaction. There are also some oil slicks around so if they get set on fire, its a trap for slow witted zombies. There's also some chemical spills lying around and I experimented with kicking a zombie in one. This game really rewards you for just being clever or perspective. You don't see that a lot which is much appreciated.

The Bad:
Parkour isn't all that great... Don't get me wrong, it functions. A good portion of the prologue teaches you how to effectively use the surroundings to your advantage. Zombies aren't great climbers so you can make use of that, though this doesn't mean that you can always get away from them by standing on top of a sedan. Why is this bad? One particular mission I'm stuck on is a jumping puzzle. This guy asked me to get some stuff for his mom. Instead of letting me in his home, I have to get through the roof. I have to do a few jumps to get to this really unfair jump which is clearly meant for me to cross it, but I've died twice to it, loosing some scavenging xp as a result. The game also expects you to make some of these insane landings. In the prologue, you need to activate these traps. Later on, you'll need to have pinpoint accuracy in order to get to some of these places, which is sort of unfair.

The Meh:
Seriously? What's up with the government always being evil? The story is you're basically working for this pseudo government organization. At first it seems as if they're being really decent, actually trying to stop an even bigger catastrophe and finding a permanent cure for the outbreak. However, this is quickly kicked aside later as your contact asks you to steal information that will help cure the plague. So much for that hope.

This is actually a really good game, and I like it. I just wish I could turn down the settings a bit more so I could actually play this at a smooth 60 fps. If you haven't already, I suggest you buy it. Suffice it to say this is the best zombie game so far in 2015, at least that I've played so far.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Preorder Blues

Hey guys. First off, I'd just like to say thanks for reading this. Its a little weird for a post, but then again no subject is really too weird for me to talk about. I've probably talked about this subject before but apparently no one has listened considering it needs to be pointed out again.
Video games are really the only system that ever does this. Sure, you can argue with things like Amazon, paying upfront for an item to be delivered at a specific date, but even then you don't actually purchase said item till it is within a certain vicinity of being delivered to its final destination. For instance I've ordered three items and I've been charged for neither of them as of late. Preorders are the equivalent of putting your jacket on a chair in the movie theater to save a seat, but instead you left about 5 bucks. Of course there's a whole bunch of things that can go wrong with basically reserving a game for yourself. For instance in the case of the latest Duke Nukem game (topical reference, right?), the game came out fifteen years later. While GameStop handled it well enough, still accepting these decade old preorder slips in, its not always the case like right now where Best Buy is cancelling some preorders for the new Majora's Mask 3DS.
But I'm not really going to talk about the practice of this, rather going to talk about preorder bonuses. Its... weird. I'm more on the positive side of this fence. Prepurchasing a game gives incentive as well as extra income to show how well liked the game is or just how much people are excited for said game. In terms of triple A companies and titles, this is little more than a few extra numbers on their sales. In terms of indie games, this can be a huge bump. Okay, so how do we get people to preorder our game or at least give a greater incentive to do so? Preorder bonuses. Special content given 'free' to those dedicated customers that shelled out a few extra bucks for us. You can't see it, but I'm giving a thumbs up. This is a really cool idea. Personally, the best in my opinion is the season pass. YES, season passes are becoming less than... great. Its basically saying, "We are going to make you pay more for the full experience of this game." But in another light, its more saying that "We are making those who bought are game a bit happier with the realization that there will be more content on the way." Most of my reviews detail the first few hours of a game. Mostly because I feel that's because those few hours are really supposed to be what the game represents. You wouldn't continue eating something that tastes bad, so I shouldn't have to slog through a bad game because there's this one thing that totally redeems it in the end. Also I'm not that well known so a review copy is less likely for me, but whatever. Basically, I'm not hugely affected by wishing for more content other than, "I like this game past the review I did and I would still like to play more of it."
My negative point with preorders are lockouts. Basically, I have this game but I don't get that small little bit of content that was promised before hand. You may say that the incentive goes further to make sure that you preorder it again, which I tend to agree. However, that is a stupid business practice. Its like if you ordered a hot dog but the guy asked if you wanted some relish or mustard. You said no and started eating. After the first bite you change your mind and offer the vendor some more money to get some relish. A) Since you've taken some of the hot dog, he now has to put less relish on it but you are still expected to pay full price for the extra. B) He in turn makes more money or at least the same amount as you would have given him before. Refusing me is just a poor business idea.
Some companies do this better than others. EA recently made it possible for those who didn't preorder Dragon Age: Inquisition to get the content offered if you preordered the game. You may say that EA is putting profits first and I would say... yes. Its also sensible. Other people can now get this content for a small and reasonable fee, thereby making it so everyone can play at the same level or have the same amount of play and experience as others. I preordered Dying Light and they did something that is incredibly stupid. They've locked out some major content for those who don't preorder. Now I'm not talking about some weapon, schematic or skin, no this is an actual game mode for the game. This is... insane. They've made no comments as to why this is or if the content will be available later for free or purchase. Essentially now, if you don't preorder the game within a few hours of when this post will (hopefully) be posted, that means you will not have a major part of the game. This is not a new thing. Metro Last Light did the same thing with Ranger Mode. Basically, you were locked out of a few things IN THE GAME like an alternate difficulty. The only difference is THAT was available as paid DLC day one. As messed up as that sounds, this is worse. You've basically just been locked out of a game. This is not some special edition with added content, no special bonus, this is a part of the game cut out.
Will I be playing Dying Light? Of course. Will this reflect my view of the game? Eh... maybe. Its a poor business practice and pretty stupid. So if Dying Light is a good game despite this, they've basically made a few potential buyers have to do a double take. If its a bad game, then essentially its a bit worse considering they're trying to bleed a few more bucks just to make some money back on their bad game. I hope this isn't a trend that continues this year, or at least gets a little better. Say give us the option to buy it later for a sensible price. It gives you more money and it gives us more content. Its a win win.

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