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Kevnvek

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About Kevnvek

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    Great Sage Equalling Heaven
  • Birthday 06/04/1990

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    California

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    AudaciousKevin
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    Kevnvek
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  1. Ensiferum just released a new album. Finnish folk metal, they're pretty cool.
  2. Congrats to all the winners, and thanks as always for hosting this, Siren, and Kira for making the list.
  3. This is a pretty cool version of the Dexter theme. https://soundcloud.com/milanrecords/daniel-licht-david-poe-lucky-from-dexter-8-ost
  4. I feel the same way about it. I've only played it a bit and gotten to about level 3 or 4 and not even far enough to leave the island I was started on (after you get out of the initial location; being unspecific for the NDA). It just kind of feels like there's not a whole lot to do, and what there is, is too easy. The combat is incredibly easy. I'm used to playing TES games on at least hard to get the sense of the world actually being big and dangerous, and monster/bandit/dragon/etc. encounters actually being something to be wary of. I even did a quest to banish an ancient evil body possessing spirit and it didn't feel as epic as it should have, what with all the dialog. Just kill a few skeletons then activate a couple switches to kill the boss. I'll give it one more chance in a couple hours tonight while the beta is still live, but then I'm going to play some more Ni No Kuni.
  5. The main games have a pretty intricate and deep story, even with all of the weird little things that they throw in. Metal Gear Rising was a little different and more into the future of the series in terms of technology, and quite a different style of game from the usual. This DLC sounds stupid to me though. One of those useless "it was all just a dream" sort of things. There were weird things in the series, but never blatantly aliens and time travel.
  6. "When we initially designed and implemented the auction houses, the driving goal was to provide a convenient and secure system for trades. But as we've mentioned on different occasions, it became increasingly clear that despite the benefits of the AH system and the fact that many players around the world use it, it ultimately undermines Diablo's core game play: kill monsters to get cool loot. With that in mind, we want to let everyone know that we've decided to remove the gold and real-money auction house system from Diablo III." http://us.battle.net/d3/en/blog/10974978/
  7. Apparently you not only make the player the president of the United States, but also give them superpowers. Saint's Row IV is a bit of a departure, even from how wacky the last game got. The Earth is threatened by evil alien overlord Zinyak, and the player and the gang are abducted right out of the oval office. Being trapped in a simulation a la The Matrix leads to some interesting gameplay possibilities, as well as tons of awesome references. It's not long before you start getting super powers to play around with, and once you do, things change. A lot. I was pleasantly reminded of other power fantasy freeroamers like Crackdown and Prototype as I super sprinted, jumped over buildings, ran up walls, and glided through the air. I don't believe I even used a car more than was necessary for the few missions that required them. Superpowers Kick Ass (sorry about that one). All of the great humor is still intact, and maybe even taken a bit further. Saint's Row IV is chock full of references to movies and other games. At some points it almost feels like a grand video game parody similar to the recent Deadpool (even including a few metaphysical references), but Saint's Row IV still manages to rein it in with it's own crazy plotline beyond just hilariously exploiting other games. When choosing your character's voice during character creation, you are given the usual Male and Female 1, 2, and 3 voices, with the humorous addition of Nolan North listed by name as a seventh option. I really enjoyed Troy Baker's (Male 1) voice for the main character in Saint's Row: The Third, but the choice was obvious when presented with these options. There are even some funny moments where he breaks the fourth wall as a voice actor. When asked to continue causing mayhem, the player is asked to "Just be yourself!", to which a character with the Nolan voice will respond, "Be... Nolan? Ok." This breaking of the fourth wall again reminds me of his recent performance in Deadpool. This is not a glitch, disturbingly enough. Throughout the course of the game you are given plenty of new toys to play with. I will state outright that I loathe dubstep, but I couldn't help but find myself using the Dubstep Gun as my mainstay weapon early in the game, for how simply overpowered it was. It's a weapon that shoots out energy blasts in sync with the dubstep music it plays, and the track it plays can be changed by choosing a different skin for the weapon (all weapons now have skins that can change the entire look, skin, and sometimes firing effect and sound of the weapon). (Opinion) Hey dubstep's so bad you can kill people with it. Go figure. Later in the game you can get a weapon which launches out black holes to absorb and destroy all enemies in a certain radius, which when coupled with infinite ammo unlocked in the upgrades menu (as with the previous game), is a force to be reckoned with. Death by wub wub. What a way to go. The graphics are just as good as they were in Saint's Row: The Third. You play through a digital version of Steelport, complete with signs and billboards proclaiming things like "Obey authority", as if you are in the movie They Live!, while statues of your alien overlord oppressor watch on. I was a little let down that a large part of the clothing options seem to have been simply carried over from Saint's Row: The Third. The soundtrack includes many popular songs from various genres to hear on the radio as with the previous game and now an option to hear the radio while on foot, which is handy when you can run faster than any vehicle in the game. The soundtrack is once again often used to humorous effect to add drama and cheesiness to certain scenes. The sidequests in the game consist almost entirely of the activities you find on the map, from racing through markers with your superpowers, to insurance fraud, tank mayhem, and everything in between. The structuring is such that you are rewarded for doing particular sets of these activities with things like new weapons and upgrades for your superpowers, so you are incentivized to seek out these activities. Later on you can even perform special side missions for some of your Homies to unlock superpowers for them, which they can use when you call them for back up. Some activities are more entertaining than others. Speed Rift was one of my least favorites. The controls for both keyboard/mouse and controller worked perfectly fine and were well mapped out (and reconfigurable), but I had a bit of an issue with the weapon selection radial wheel. When using a controller you hold the B or O button (I used a PS3 controller on my PC) to bring up the radial menu and select your weapon with the left analog stick. This menu disappears the moment you release the button. On the keyboard you can scroll through your weapons with the scroll wheel or select them with a hotkey, 1-8 (or in my case 1-4 and Z X C V since they all cluster around the left hand on the keyboard). The problem is that using a scroll wheel on a radial menu isn't very intuitive. It rotates around in the direction you scroll, and for some reason you can't seem to just hold a button and move the mouse in a certain direction to select your weapon. Worse, even if you memorize which hotkey is for which weapon, tapping the button will always bring up the menu on the screen where it will hang for a full second, obscuring what you are doing without freezing time. It doesn't disappear nearly as quickly as when using a controller. One other thing that I wish was included, which hasn't been since Saint's Row 2, was the ability to replay specific missions. There are some fun ones that would be enjoyable to play again without having to manually keep a save before them or replay the whole game with a new character. A lot of the clothing options are reused from The Third, but you can still be creative (or make a blatant cosplay) Saint's Row IV was a blast to play. Some may say that it's hardly Saint's Row at all anymore (after all, I barely even used cars in the game), but it's gone in an interesting direction regardless. I'd almost say it's like a big parody of Saint's Row, in a good way, and somewhat a parody of games in general. The superpowers add a great amount of fun factor to the experience. Why spend 10 minutes driving across the city when you can hop over buildings and dash or glide over there in 2? The humor, the fun gameplay, and all of the awesome references make this truly an enjoyable gaming experience, and a great example of what can make a game fun without trying to be too serious (but don't worry, it still has its moments).
  8. Apparently you not only make the player the president of the United States, but also give them superpowers. Saint's Row IV is a bit of a departure, even from how wacky the last game got. The Earth is threatened by evil alien overlord Zinyak, and the player and the gang are abducted right out of the oval office. Being trapped in a simulation a la The Matrix leads to some interesting gameplay possibilities, as well as tons of awesome references. It's not long before you start getting super powers to play around with, and once you do, things change. A lot. I was pleasantly reminded of other power fantasy freeroamers like Crackdown and Prototype as I super sprinted, jumped over buildings, ran up walls, and glided through the air. I don't believe I even used a car more than was necessary for the few missions that required them. Superpowers Kick Ass (sorry about that one). All of the great humor is still intact, and maybe even taken a bit further. Saint's Row IV is chock full of references to movies and other games. At some points it almost feels like a grand video game parody similar to the recent Deadpool (even including a few metaphysical references), but Saint's Row IV still manages to rein it in with it's own crazy plotline beyond just hilariously exploiting other games. When choosing your character's voice during character creation, you are given the usual Male and Female 1, 2, and 3 voices, with the humorous addition of Nolan North listed by name as a seventh option. I really enjoyed Troy Baker's (Male 1) voice for the main character in Saint's Row: The Third, but the choice was obvious when presented with these options. There are even some funny moments where he breaks the fourth wall as a voice actor. When asked to continue causing mayhem, the player is asked to "Just be yourself!", to which a character with the Nolan voice will respond, "Be... Nolan? Ok." This breaking of the fourth wall again reminds me of his recent performance in Deadpool. This is not a glitch, disturbingly enough. Throughout the course of the game you are given plenty of new toys to play with. I will state outright that I loathe dubstep, but I couldn't help but find myself using the Dubstep Gun as my mainstay weapon early in the game, for how simply overpowered it was. It's a weapon that shoots out energy blasts in sync with the dubstep music it plays, and the track it plays can be changed by choosing a different skin for the weapon (all weapons now have skins that can change the entire look, skin, and sometimes firing effect and sound of the weapon). (Opinion) Hey dubstep's so bad you can kill people with it. Go figure. Later in the game you can get a weapon which launches out black holes to absorb and destroy all enemies in a certain radius, which when coupled with infinite ammo unlocked in the upgrades menu (as with the previous game), is a force to be reckoned with. Death by wub wub. What a way to go. The graphics are just as good as they were in Saint's Row: The Third. You play through a digital version of Steelport, complete with signs and billboards proclaiming things like "Obey authority", as if you are in the movie They Live!, while statues of your alien overlord oppressor watch on. I was a little let down that a large part of the clothing options seem to have been simply carried over from Saint's Row: The Third. The soundtrack includes many popular songs from various genres to hear on the radio as with the previous game and now an option to hear the radio while on foot, which is handy when you can run faster than any vehicle in the game. The soundtrack is once again often used to humorous effect to add drama and cheesiness to certain scenes. The sidequests in the game consist almost entirely of the activities you find on the map, from racing through markers with your superpowers, to insurance fraud, tank mayhem, and everything in between. The structuring is such that you are rewarded for doing particular sets of these activities with things like new weapons and upgrades for your superpowers, so you are incentivized to seek out these activities. Later on you can even perform special side missions for some of your Homies to unlock superpowers for them, which they can use when you call them for back up. Some activities are more entertaining than others. Speed Rift was one of my least favorites. The controls for both keyboard/mouse and controller worked perfectly fine and were well mapped out (and reconfigurable), but I had a bit of an issue with the weapon selection radial wheel. When using a controller you hold the B or O button (I used a PS3 controller on my PC) to bring up the radial menu and select your weapon with the left analog stick. This menu disappears the moment you release the button. On the keyboard you can scroll through your weapons with the scroll wheel or select them with a hotkey, 1-8 (or in my case 1-4 and Z X C V since they all cluster around the left hand on the keyboard). The problem is that using a scroll wheel on a radial menu isn't very intuitive. It rotates around in the direction you scroll, and for some reason you can't seem to just hold a button and move the mouse in a certain direction to select your weapon. Worse, even if you memorize which hotkey is for which weapon, tapping the button will always bring up the menu on the screen where it will hang for a full second, obscuring what you are doing without freezing time. It doesn't disappear nearly as quickly as when using a controller. One other thing that I wish was included, which hasn't been since Saint's Row 2, was the ability to replay specific missions. There are some fun ones that would be enjoyable to play again without having to manually keep a save before them or replay the whole game with a new character. A lot of the clothing options are reused from The Third, but you can still be creative (or make a blatant cosplay) Saint's Row IV was a blast to play. Some may say that it's hardly Saint's Row at all anymore (after all, I barely even used cars in the game), but it's gone in an interesting direction regardless. I'd almost say it's like a big parody of Saint's Row, in a good way, and somewhat a parody of games in general. The superpowers add a great amount of fun factor to the experience. Why spend 10 minutes driving across the city when you can hop over buildings and dash or glide over there in 2? The humor, the fun gameplay, and all of the awesome references make this truly an enjoyable gaming experience, and a great example of what can make a game fun without trying to be too serious (but don't worry, it still has its moments).
  9. All of what makes Orcs Must Die! fun to play is there, and improved. All of the traps, the strategy, the weapons. The gameplay is largely the same, but new weapons and traps abound, as well as a new upgrade system. Several new traps range from bug zapper-like shock turrets to bear traps, and an awesome new guardian, dwarves that throw explosives and can melee enemies that get too close. Dwarven mud wrestlers. Always effective. There are so many new weapons and traps that I barely had a chance to try them all by the time I finished all of the main story levels. I did find myself sticking to old favorites, but only because they worked so well. Namely the crossbow, excellent for picking orcs off from a distance and now with an added secondary stun attack that can stop enemies, including large ones, dead in their tracks; and the wind belt, which gives you a spell to push enemies, perfect for throwing them to their demise over a pit or back into your deadly traps, or buying yourself some time. It never gets old. All items (including the newly added trinkets, which give you a constant passive bonus when in the inventory, and an active spell when used) can now be upgraded with damage bonuses, perks, and more. For instance, the crossbow can gain a perk to generate extra mana with each headshot, allowing for more frequent use of spells like the push mentioned above. A perfect place for the wind spell. You can keep the orcs in the kill zone you've created. The name of the game now is replayability. You gain skulls as upgrade points for completing levels and occasionally mid-level for accomplishing feats such as kill combos. New modes like Endless, a 40 wave endurance challenge, give you more opportunity to collect skulls in addition to replaying levels on Nightmare difficulty. These skulls are then used to buy all of your upgrades. The game truly encourages you to develop your own play style, because there are a lot of tools and upgrades to choose from. Thankfully a respec option has been added, a feature that lets you refund all of the skulls that you've spent. This option was grudgingly absent from the first game, so it could get annoying when you bought a trap that didn't fit your play style. Unfortunately you can't individually remove upgrades so you just have to remember where you've put all your points if you want to refund some. You can place up to 25 guardians at once. Glorious. One thing I did find annoying is that in order to play the new character The Sorceress, you have to make a separate profile with completely separate unlocks. This means that none of your upgrades or unlocks carry over and it's like starting the game over. With how many unlocks there are this can be annoying. The draw of playing as the new character is that she has a few unique weapons such as the polymorph ring, a ring that can turn enemies into other things like harmless chickens, or turn the sorceress into a powerful ogre. Some weapons are unique to the Sorceress, while the War Mage has a few of his own as well. Of course having the second character means another great addition to the game: co-op. You can now have a friend join you for the slaughter. From the campaign menu you can invite a friend to join you. Once in game you each get 6 trap slots and each have your own money. Currency from kills seem to be shared to an extent, where you also get a few points from kills by your partner and their traps. The game certainly seems geared towards co-op, as playing a later level I was able to 5 star it, whereas I had difficulty completing it solo. With most of the later levels having the orcs come at you from at least two directions, having someone to focus on either side of the Rift makes things much easier. The graphics are still just as fine as the original with a mildly cartoony style, and rock/adventure style music that sets the tone before the taunting victory theme that makes its return. There are actually fewer levels, 15 versus the first game's 24, but with the added Endless mode, and the inclusion of Classic mode (10 levels from the first game for those who own it), and all of the permutations that can be made to your loadout, there is tons of replayability. Orcs Must Die! 2 is a nice improvement over the first game and definitely worth checking out for fans of the tower defense or third person action genre, or anyone looking to have some plain old fun slaying orcs.
  10. The Reapers have finally arrived, and have begun to lay siege to civilization around the entire galaxy. Even after all the warnings Commander Shepard had given, no was prepared, nor could they truly be even if they tried. The stage is set as the Reapers begin their assault on Earth and Shepard is forced to retreat aboard the Normandy. The only hope for Earth now is for Shepard to rally together as many of the other galactic races to stand together against the Reapers as he can for one last stand. The core game has some awesome moments, good dialog, a stellar soundtrack, and great setpieces. The combat and gameplay mostly just expands upon the system from Mass Effect 2, which is hardly a bad thing, as its improvements over the first game were massive. The Reapers are enormous and really set the tone of helplessness as they ravage cities in the background. But then there's everything else. For all its flaws, Mass Effect 3 has some very nice graphics and scenery, on a grand scale. As much as it pains me to say it, Mass Effect 3 felt like a huge step back from the second title. Where Mass Effect 2 portrayed a dark, epic story to follow the mystery of the original, Mass Effect 3 just felt like it didn't accomplish as much. Outside of the main missions everything just felt awkward. Several incredibly awkard moments, particularly in a few of the romance scenes (namely the whole thing with EDI I won't spoil), completely unnecessary sidequests, an equally unnecessary feeling metagame in the galaxy map, and the worst quest log I have ever seen in a game, all start to bring down what otherwise is a fairly great game. The quest log consists of a single vague paragraph for each quest that never updates until the quest fades out after completion. The quests are mostly flying to a system and using the "upgraded" scanner that conveniently attracts Reapers you must fly around to avoid (and never really feel threatened by because you can keep reentering the star system to reset them), or talking to a few people around the Citadel. Often when I finally would figure out what to do in a quest it would just outright break and become unfinishable. Just keep leaving the system and returning and you can get all of the hidden items by doing fly-by scan/grabs, regardless of the Reaper presence. A multiplayer mode has been added to the game, which admittedly is good fun when you've unlocked a good class to play with. It is the first time you get to play as any of the other races in the series, after all. It only features one mode, defending against waves with one to four players, but it serves its purpose. You can level up your character similar to the single player leveling system, but in order to get new weapons and gear you have to spend credits you earn and simply hope you are lucky, as the items you get from the packs are random. You can buy them for real money via Bioware points (a dollar for a medium chance at good items, two for better chances), but that option just seems shady. Multiplayer isn't free from the design flaws either. A system known as Galactic Readiness modifies the amount of War Assets you have in game (points gathered by recruiting fleets that amount to how good of a defense force you have against the Reapers in the endgame.) By default it is at 50% and will never drop below that, but through multiplayer you can raise it up to 100%, so for example your 800 War Assets can become 1600. The problem here is that you are essentially forced to play multiplayer in a traditionally single player RPG where multiplayer by all accounts never really needed to be included. Many long time fans of the series may not want to bother with such a strange notion as a cooperative horde mode tacked onto their RPG, but in ignoring it will have a harder time of getting a better endgame result. Being able to smash everything to death as a Krogan is a fun diversion from playing as Shepard. Which brings me to my final gripe about the game: the ending. Without going into specifics, I was highly disappointed. In the last moments of Mass Effect 3, it felt like all the decisions I had made in the previous games had meant nothing. Not to say that there aren't (very slightly) different endings, but there isn't even an epilogue. A simple Fallout style narrated slideshow would have done wonders, explaining a little bit about the state of the galaxy in various regions you've affected. Instead, in the famous words of Willy Wonka, you get nothing. As per the description of many bad game endings, you make a choice, some weird stuff happens, then it just ends. With all of the good buildup and drama from the previous games, it was a major disappointment. In space, no one can hear you scream. But they can hear all those swooshy sounds that spaceships somehow make. It's such a pity that there were so many irksome things bringing this game down. I loved the first two, and really wanted to enjoy this one just as much. It may be a better game if you could ignore the sidequests entirely, but then you wouldn't get very many War Assets. You could ignore the tacked on multiplayer (which, to be fair, has its moments where it is pretty fun, despite its unnecessary nature), but then you'd have even less. And even after all that, it's hard not to be disappointed with the end result of the game either way. As it stands, Mass Effect 3 felt like it could have benefited greatly from a longer development time. Fix the questlog, spruce up the sidequests with something interesting like Mass Effect 2's, where every major sidequest had its own unique location, and put the effort into making a truly epic epilogue that the fans deserve after investing so many hours into the series as a whole. That the game is receiving perfect review scores from so many major sites is appalling. The underlying game is good, but dragged down by so many things that it just becomes mediocre despite all of the potential to become truly great.
  11. Your move, universe. The game starts out with a level very reminiscent of the final boss battle of N64 classic Sin and Punishment. You fly around using your lock-on projectiles to fight the entire freaking planet. Or rather a colossal, menacing entity emerging from it. The story is certainly very epic and Japanese, taking inspiration from various sources including anime and mixed Asian mythology. The entire structure of the game is modeled after an anime series, with levels being separated by episodes, including credits, commercial break wipes (where the logo and a screen shot transition in and out, and a commercial would normally happen in between), a big "TO BE CONTINUED" at the end of every level, and even previews for the next episode. After completing each episode you are also treated to some still scenes of artwork, some of which is fan made, explaining more of the story than what can be shown in the cutscenes. The entire game feels like an anime, with long scenes of crazy action and story, and gameplay sections in between. All of the superpowers and craziness of a good action anime are here for your entertainment needs, in addition to a well crafted, grand scale story the likes of which you'd expect from a good anime. There's even a Japanese voice over option for good measure. Collateral damage? What's that? Outside of the cutscenes, which are often interspersed with quick time events (which are well implemented and never seem unfair), the gameplay can be divided into two main categories: brawler and shooter. The shooting mechanics (all of which involve Asura shooting energy out of his fists rather than using weapons) are simple but effective, having you either fly or run around in an on-rails or 2D environment. You aim the reticule over targets to get multiple lock-ons for your energy missiles to blast at, while holding another button to shoot your basic projectile that simply fires straight at the reticule. It serves its purpose as a means for Asura to fight colossal things that are entirely out of pummeling-to-death range, but it's in the brawler mechanics that the game truly shines. You can run, jump, punch, dodge, enter aiming mode to fire your basic projectiles, and unleash a power attack that takes a short while to recharge. While most normal enemies do have health and can be defeated, your goal is to use all of Asura's moves to build up his rage so you can hit the Plot Advancement--er, Burst button, at which point Asura's rage will reach boiling point and he will destroy anything in his way until he gets to the next section of the game, usually through quick time events. At the end of each level you are given a rank based on completion time, battle points, and your accuracy with quick time events. On top of the multiple difficulties (the hardest of which is thankfully available from the beginning), this adds a good amount of replay value to the game. The game isn't necessarily all that short, but it certainly can be beaten in only a day or two. There is still plenty of replay value for getting a better score, and enjoying some of the gameplay sections (the cutscenes can be paused and skipped, both of which should be standard in games today). The boss battles in particular can be great fun when you've learned all of the mechanics of the game. This may be a mild spoiler, but partway through the game you get to control a second protagonist, Yasha. His move set is roughly the same as Asura's, just more stylish. Asura's Wrath isn't quite like any other game I've ever played. It is a perfect example of not only games as art, but how entertainment multimedia doesn't need to be so black and white. You could easily say this would have worked better as a pure anime, or with more gameplay. But as an anime it wouldn't have had the same impact, being surrounded by so many similar animes that inundate the market. And if the gameplay was extended, the game could get repetitive and drawn out (though personally I believe there could have been more gameplay segments, or at least some form of challenge mode to let you play around in). How the game is now, it never felt too repetitive, or like the cutscenes dragged on for too long without any interaction. Asura's Wrath takes the best elements of both and attempts to craft them into one innovative package. In this day and age of gray shooters and fetch-questing talking simulators, it's not an easy risk to take, especially with a game of Asura's Wrath's scale, but it paid off. Buy it, rent it, wait for it to go on sale, or whatever you're comfortable with. If you like anime, or even just a good, over-the-top story, Asura's Wrath is definitely worth checking out, solely on the merit of it being something completely innovative in gaming.
  12. All the signature humor is there, with various areas, new and old, to explore. You start with none of your spellbook spells from the main adventure, but a few new ones await, such as a spell for pulling objects and enemies towards you, and a spell to place portals like those in the eponymous game (guess which). Having not played Magicka in ages, The Stars are Left provided an experience that was both familiar and new. There are new robes and items to find, and many new Lovecraftian enemies to combat. The boss fights in particular are quite well done, requiring quick thinking on the part of all players involved. The final showdown with Cthulhu (not much of a spoiler, who else did you expect to be the final boss in a Lovecraft inspired Magicka DLC?) was one of the most fun and challenging battles I've had in Magicka in a long time. There were some changes that I noticed that I didn't care for, though many of these may have been from previous updates and not this latest DLC. Likely because of a rebalance due to the added player vs. player modes, many spells and effects seem to be much less effective, and last a shorter duration. Self shield (shield with no elements) in particular seems all but useless now, expiring in a few short seconds if you don't stop to boost it, and it can't be renewed with a healing spell anymore either. And this was one of the easier puzzles to navigate in the final dungeon, despite all of the enemies that spawn on you as you try to walk along the invisible path These are only small complaints, and some of the updates are rather nice. It is now possible to queue up your next spell while casting, so you can ready your next beam attack and use it right after the previous one to keep up the assault on a tough enemy. In single player you can now find a faerie at checkpoints that will revive you once before you get a game over. And perhaps best of all, chapter select and the ability to resume from checkpoints have been added. You can choose the chapter you want to play when starting single player or hosting an online match. And now when you exit the game, you will restart at the last checkpoint you reached, rather than having to redo the whole level. Changes aside, and back to the Stars are Left DLC, there is enough content-wise to make this a very worthy purchase. I've been waiting for a new adventure mode since I first beat Magicka, and am glad to see the new content, and also cannot wait to see what else Arrowhead Game Studios have in store for the game. If you are on the fence about purchasing the new adventure, you can join any player that owns the game in co-op without having to own it yourself. All the co-operative fun of griefing each other repeatedly until you eventually work together to overcome the next tricky area or boss is back in full force in this new DLC, making it a great addition to Magicka that any fan of the game should check out.
  13. Almost all of the side activities return as well. You can buy shops, complete faction challenges, recruit assassins, and collect those notorious collectibles. The assassin recruit metagame is much the same, but now you can capture cities by doing certain contracts, and gain an income of money and ingredients. As for the collectibles, they're not so bad this time around. There are 100 data fragments and 10 memoir pages. After collecting half of them you can get an in-game map showing the location of the rest, so it's much less tedious this time around. Sadly, there are no hidden glyphs or puzzles to solve. In Eagle Vision you can now see the patrol routes of guards. Being my first Assassin's Creed on the PC, the controls took a bit of getting used to. But once I figured them out and remapped a few buttons, the controls work quite well without a gamepad (though gamepads are supported). The only time I had any difficulty was when trying to jump sideways after running partway up a wall. Auto-climb (the button you need to hold to perform acrobatic moves) and jump are mapped to the same button, and it takes a little bit of effort to direct Ezio the way you want him to go, more so than a quick release and re-press of a gamepad button while rotating an analog stick. The graphics are as beautiful as ever, even more so with the better graphics of the PC version. There are a few new features, such as bomb crafting. You gather ingredients to create different types of bombs with effects ranging from distracting your enemies to outright killing them. Also added to Ezio's repertoire of tools is the hookblade. Essentially all it does is extend Ezio's reach when climbing, and add a few grapple moves, though the extra reach is often fairly helpful when climbing towers. Also added is another minigame where you defend your assassin's dens. It's a bit like tower defense, where you place units and walls to stop oncoming waves of enemies. Despite these few new additions though, Revelations doesn't seem to have advanced much from Brotherhood. Brotherhood itself wasn't a huge step up from Assassin's Creed II, but at least it added enough cool new features to make it a great game. Revelations however doesn't seem to add very much on top of that. In fact a couple things are missing: horses and usable boats, granted they aren't very necessary in the Mediterranean city of Constantinople, which is a bit smaller than the vast expanses of Rome previously seen. This is the Animus Island, a central hub of sorts while Desmond is stuck in the Animus. Think somewhere along the lines of Inception and Lost and you'll get the idea. The game was still enjoyable, but I couldn't help but feel like I was playing an "in-between" game, before the next big Assassin's Creed game. The ending outright points to another game, and without spoiling too much, with a title like Revelations I expected more to be revealed. Most of the new conspiracy intrigue you get at the end is stuff you already know from AC II and Brotherhood at this rate. Granted, the ending to AC II is very hard to top, when it was the first major reveal of the series. The multiplayer makes a return as well. In terms of gameplay it is essentially the same, but it can still be great fun. It's refreshing to play a multiplayer game where it's not all about the kill/death ratio. You get more points for skillful, calculated assassinations than running around stabbing everyone. New to the multiplayer are two modes, Artifact Assault and Corruption, capture the flag and infection respectively. In Artifact Assault each of the two teams has a flag to protect, while at the same time they can sprint or sneak over to the opponents side and steal their flag (I personally found sprinting and using chase breakers and decoy abilities to be the most effective). Corruption starts a few players out as "zombies" who must kill other players to convert them to their team, while the "humans" gain points from hiding and evading their hunters. Overall Assassin's Creed: Revelations definitely had some cool moments in the story, and it was fun to play as Altaïr for the few flashback scenes he was in, but as I said, it just felt like an "in-between game". It essentially felt like Assassin's Creed Brotherhood in a new city. Most of the fun features are there from the previous game, but as much as I love the series, this entry sadly felt a bit like filler. Now, I'm not exactly saying that this game isn't worth getting. If you enjoyed Brotherhood, you will most likely have fun with this game and should by all means check it out, especially for the multiplayer. I just wish there was a little more variety and innovation.
  14. Finally the first trailer for Grand Theft Auto V has arrived. Fans of GTA: San Andreas will be excited to hear that the fifth numbered installment of the series is returning to Los Santos. It is unclear whether San Fierro and Las Venturas are in the game as well, but some of the countryside appears to be there, with mountains to climb and do crazy things off of. If you look closely you can spot several things added since GTA IV: Sea-doos, semi trucks with trailers, blimps, and even airplanes and fighter jets. That's right, airplanes appear to be returning. Fans will still undoubtedly have many questions such as: whether the planes will be flyable, how much of the San Andreas area the game will take place in, how the multiplayer and Free Roam will be, and when the release date is. One thing is certain. The wait will be agonizing for this next epic Rockstar game.
  15. Kevnvek

    [Review] - Sequence

    Sequence is a bit of an odd mix. It's a rhythm game with RPG elements such as item drops, equipment and leveling, but it requires just as much skill progression on the player's end as it does for developing your character's level. In the game you must fight a series of monsters and a boss on each of the seven floors of a tower, with your ultimate goal being to reach the top and escape. Three boxes with incoming notes are presented to you and you must switch between them to perform different tasks. One for defending by blocking enemy attack notes, one for gathering mana by hitting those notes, and one for casting spells by expending that mana. If you miss a note in a spell, it won't be casted but you'll have still lost the mana. It all gets a bit hectic, but once you get the hang of it, it can be quite satisfying. Most of the music you jam to is by Youtube sensation Ronald Jenkees, so you get an array of interesting pop/techno/electronic tracks to play along to. Probably one of my favorite things about the game was the dialog and humor. It has one of the funniest tutorials I have ever seen in a game, breaking the fourth wall and poking fun at things like experience points, and the correct pronunciation of "mana". It has a sarcastic wit about it, with a clear inspiration from Square Enix's The World Ends With You as stated by the developer, Jason Wishnov himself. With every boss encounter you are greeted by a hilariously deranged individual that will have you laughing at their ridiculousness. Their oddities mostly come from their speech mannerisms, ranging from a man who talks as if he is a text based choose your own adventure computer game, one who talks in excessive metaphors like a noir style detective, and others. One of the best things about the game, it's only a $3 Xbox LIVE indie game, or $5 on Steam. The production values in the game easily rival those of indie games at three times the price. The game is fully voice acted and it will take over ten hours to complete the story mode. I myself put in over twenty hours, so there's plenty of value to be had. There is also a demo on the Xbox LIVE marketplace. If you are a gamer and don't laugh at the tutorial at least a little, then there is no hope for you. Sequence is a fantastic game. Hilarious dialog, fun and strategic skill based gameplay, and addictive RPG elements synergize into one very unique and satisfying experience. And at the low price, it is a very easy recommendation to make if you are into rhythm based gameplay.
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