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Posted:
2010-04-19

homer

Super Gamer Dude

7.9

Call of Duty has been a prominent first-person shooter throughout the years. The gripping action and heart-racing missions have proven to be addictive amongst players. Now with Modern Warfare 2, all the factors have been improved and will surely make fans and gamers begging for more in the end.

Modern Warfare 2 continues the legacy of the Call of Duty saga but this version is the least traditional among the other Call of Duty games. The main game package is divided into three pillars of gameplay. Fans who like single-player games will still have their main campaign, gamers who like to cooperate with other players either through a local or online connection will have the new Special Operations mode, and last is the multiplayer which got even better. Each mode is 100 % standalone that it does not have any connection with the other modes, so you actually get to have three different experiences in one game.

Gamers should definitely try the single-player campaign mode first, which is absolutely back and more intense than past campaign modes. Fans will truly appreciate the improvement in the mode as they are thrown into the bustling streets of Rio de Janeiro, the very cold mountains of Kazakhstan, the very dusty roads of Afghanistan and a whole lot more destinations. Modern Warfare also offers stunning visuals that are steps over Call of Duty 4 and World at War. There is an emphasis on intricate terrains in the environment, interesting weather effects, and a whole lot that adds improvement to the chaos and action of the entire game. A great audio also accompanies the stunning visuals with effects from returning weapons and a very captivating score by Hans Zimmer that will truly complement some game scenes. With the dazzling visuals and a captivating audio, you would feel like you are watching an action film when playing the game.

The campaign mode has its issues, though. For newbies, it’s quite short. But despite its shortness, Modern Warfare 2 is definitely more chaotic; brought by better visual effects, upgraded production values, and very tough scenario designs. Realism is even more exemplified in Modern Warfare 2 with better visuals, which is more pronounced when it comes to bloody scenes. There surely were effects in previous versions that showed blood with the screen getting red. But this time, blood splatter can truly be noticed as more real-looking on your screen throughout the game. Though others find this as a distraction, it’s still quite amazingly awesome.

Modern Warfare 2 is also the debut of the Special Operations or Spec Ops mode. This mode is actually an arcade-inspired challenge mode. The mode can be played with a single player for the most part, but is actually intended to be around two people’s team play. The Spec Ops mode is divided into 5 tiers that have missions where there are three possible stars to gain based on the level of difficulty in each of the 23 missions in the game. Fans and gamers will truly be surprised with this mode because of its entertainment value and is actually longer than the single player campaign mode.

The multiplayer in Modern Warfare 2 got even better, as well. Being the front bearer in the Call of Duty saga, Modern Warfare 2’s multiplayer visuals and effects indeed got a good boost. You are guaranteed to be in for an engaging experience with the multiplayer mode enhancements.

Overall, Modern Warfare 2 really proves to be one of the best first-person shooter games out in the market. But there’s a catch for those who prefer to play the single-player campaign mode. It is really short and it only forms part of the entire Modern Warfare experience. If you opt to immerse on all three modes, then you will definitely have one hell of an experience and action with Modern Warfare 2.

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Posted:
2010-10-06

dementedde3

Lowly Worm

Everyone should know by now that Infinity Wards latest is not to be missed, and it was more than just a video game release. It amassed millions of hours of playtime and had gotten endless amount of press over the past year, making it practically a force of nature unleashed on the Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and PC. Every nuance of the game as been inspected, every detail has been examined, to the point that if they wanted an unspoiled experience when their copy arrived they would need to make an effort to avoid the news about it. The developer has honed its well-worn formula to achievable and logical shine, far from shunning the weight of expectation; rarely in mechanics, it crafts a campaign that surprises with scope.

The series of Modern Warfare 2 is back on the hands of Infinity Ward, the developer that brought us Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, the most significant multiplayer FPS. But between Call of Duty 4 and Modern Warfare 2 was another game that managed to be successful in its own right, which was Call of Duty: World at War, it never had a chance at being another Modern Warfare, though.

I need to get one thing straight – it was obvious that Modern Warfare 2 wasn’t going to be able to compete against its original, but that’s not to say this sequel has practically no chance of being anything other than a great game. COD4 had featured a strong single player campaign and was nearly perfect as a multiple game, Infinity Ward is simply building off this. Their mission, which turned out to be very successful, was to keep gamers interested and to add to the franchise regardless of how much time they might typically spend on a first-person shooter. Modern Warfare 2 has a top-notch online experience, a great single player campaign, and a new Spec-Ops mode that lets players test their skills in one-off missions and builds off COD4’s popular coda.

The single player campaign in MW2 takes everything a step further, but can be found a lot similar to COD4. The story is much harder hitting; they get you ready for a much more in-your-face look at nuclear attack, terrorism, and hand-to-hand combat than the previous game. Despite that MW2 is more of a mature game than the series’ previous titles, it also takes the story and goes completely over-the-top with it. It’s a military plot combined with different vehicular sequences, and slow-motion action stunts along the lines of the Watchmen movie.

The story isn’t entirely clear why certain things take place, following it can be very hard and muddled, and many of the character’s relationships with one another remain foggy. While there are some missing links they don’t really detract from the story and their almost always clear what your character needs to accomplish, why you’re on a specific mission, and the larger strategy that you are operating under. The story doesn’t quite hold up for the same period as the original, which is a huge shock since COD4’s campaign mode was a quick run through. It’s not by much but I would have imagined Infinity Ward trying to make something longer with their sequel to listen to all of the criticism. You may want to not ask too many questions and suspend your disbelief though, especially if you’re geo-politically minded. One point that’s interesting though is that you never fight in the anonymous, sandy regions found in COD4, instead the game mentions many specific places and countries which you never step foot on. Another thing is how quick the set pieces get put together just apparently after America went to war. It looks like the war has been going on for years!

This is a title that oozes a confidence built on collective experience, from the comforting and safe assault course opener. It’s the sort of videogame that doesn’t flinch in delivering set-piece after set-piece understanding exactly what its audience wants with barely a pause to load the next scenario. The commitment certainly isn’t questionable, but the politics may be.

The developer has – controversially – included an extremely graphic depiction that the player has full control over of a very specific act of terrorism early on in the game. This is something of a talking point, unsurprisingly, and to ignore the issue would be remiss.

I wouldn’t say it was deeply disturbing but the level is, without the doubt, an experience that is the most thought-provoking I have yet encountered in any mainstream game. Providing you’re immersed in the context and its atmosphere it can also be a pretty sobering experience, but you can easily skip or ignore this level if you don’t want to put yourself through a fairly clearly-defined moralistic mill. Despite the abhorrent undertone running beneath, it’s powerful in a way that videogames rarely are, and I just can’t help but admire it in some twisted way. It shocked me all the way through of playing it.

For those of you in the persuasion of wondering what all the fuss was about, as there will be a significant chunk of the gamers that will end up feeling this way, MW2’s action beat and constantly assaults the senses that proves the primary draw.

At times the visual panache and superlative gunplay borders best-in-show which is here Infinity Ward steps above and beyond criticism. Set-piece animation is integrated in an almost seamless fashion within the level design, enemies crumple realistically under fire, and you’ll be hard-pushed to spot a single respawning set of foes, which even if early reports of veteran difficulty as a direct consequence are to be believed.

The colour and lighting is noticeably improved in this second iteration, the crisp 60fps console versions are surprisingly well-detailed, and whilst the environment remains resolutely non-interactive, it’s a sheer pleasure to keep the eyes locked onto the screen when things are being blown up for you with relative frequency.

New additions to the mission structure will be pleasingly well judged, from climbing mechanics that offer up a healthy dose of tension to vehicle sections that work within the confines of the physics engine – it’s all integrated with a strong taint of talent and money behind the scenes, but whilst all this is great fun the majority of the missions will be familiar (clear the house, destroy the AA gun, follow the tank, etc). Even this is still done brilliantly, its Infinity Ward’s baby after all, and even though Treyarch may well be an improving off-year custodian, the fingerprints are unmistakable.

There is a new part to the game called The Special Operations (Spec Ops). These are short missions where you have a very clear goal – kill this many rebels, win this race, get to this point, etc. They are basically run through missions on either normal, hard, or veteran modes that are Call of Duty skill challenges in order to win stars. More stars will win you some achievement points and will increase your ever-present completion percentage. The missions include defending a point and stealth escapes, though you also get vehicle missions like a snowmobile race and a helicopter attack, even though their varied they stick to the same operations and settings handled in the game. These Ops can be fun, but not long lasting as there isn’t any way-points making the missions very challenging – you have to start over by making one critical mistake, which is not so easy when you have attack dogs and about 40 guys to kill. Anyone who dreams of getting 1000 Xbox achievement points must know that Veteran-level challenges are only for the most skilled gamers and anyone else putting in the time is going to be disappointed. Ops is a great way to improve your game while playing with a friend as it can be done in single player or multiplayer (including local) modes.

It’s all about more within MW2’s multiplayer. More mayhem, more levels, more weapons, more skills, and so on. COD4’s multiplayer has become the baseline against which all online FPS games are measured, and what better way could there be to follow this experience with MW2? With highly customizable skills and weapons and huge skill streak bonuses, Infinity War this time made sure to keep Veteran players interested while allowing new players to get into the game, with solid early level weapons and death streak bonuses. You feel like your achieving something with every session you are playing multiplayer because you are building up towards the next level. So that next holographic sight or launcher could be right around the corner. This means two things – there is a constant sense of achievement whether you were victorious or not and you don’t want to put the game down. It might not be a huge step up from COD4 but it’s still a great experience with enough changed to keep things interesting.

This may arguably be the best online FPS right now, but not everything is perfect with the multiplayer though. The game is now largely silent as MW2 has basically killed voicechat. This was about the opposite in COD4, this was mainly put down by numerous homophobia, racism and cheating. So instead Infinity Ward decided to curtail the chat, except allowing it in a few games. Most players (at least on the Xbox 360) have unplugged their headsets because the cuts that were made were large enough. Teamwork is what could have taken MW2 multiplayer to the next level, unfortunately it just doesn’t look like its going to happen in this generation.

MW2 refines and builds on the most solid of bases and is spectacular, as a whole, in all the right areas. This game has problems just like any other, but despite this it’s a game you should play for what it does achieve. The single player subject matter is often hard to follow and mostly over-the-top, but it also has powerful settings and compelling characters with a thought-provoking undertone. It really gets players into the mindset of the game as it’s a much more cynical look at the battlefield than previous titles. Spec Ops often requires a second player due to its difficulty, but it’s the single biggest addition to the game, and lets players perfect their skills in scenario-based combat which becomes quite rewarding. It’s definitely not as brilliant as its original, since it’s the same type of exercise but with a few different ideas added in, but MW2 is still a brilliant game in its own merits and stands proudly head up high above most other FPS shooters. This is a game every FPS and war veteran fan should definitely buy.

User Reviews

Dishonored (PC) - 2891 reviews

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Posted:
2013-05-23

8times8

Super Gamer Dude

7.7

Dishonored is a first person shooter created by Arkane Studios with the publisher being Bethesda Softworks (Yes, they do make more than just Fallout and Elder Scroll games.) The computer that this game was played to completion on has an Intel i7 processor (3.4GHz), 16 Gigs of RAM and an AMD 7970 3GB graphics card. This is to say, all bells and whistles were turned up to the max for the play through of this game. 1080p with 60 frames per second was the goal and it was achieved here.

Rats! No, this is not to say the game is bad as it is quite good, but that, there are rats everywhere. Welcome to the world of Dunwall, a town that has become infested with a rat plague. This plague is central to the story line of the game. The game's main protagonist is named Corvo. At the beginning of the game, you are the bodyguard for the Empress and are subsequently framed for her murder. From there, a very interesting whimsical tale of deceit and double (triple) crossing takes place that keeps the gamer enthralled until the game's end. The game was played with an Xbox 360 controller on the PC with the wireless receiver. Controller lag was negligible.

Technically, this game uses Unreal Engine 3, which is a very common game engine, used in games such as Unreal Tournament, Bioshock and Gears of War on the Xbox 360. However, this is a very modified version of it and it shows artistically in the graphics. This is a beautiful game as small touches such as debris in dilapidated homes and markings on walls add a distinct flair to the look of the game.

Gameplay has been the calling card of the game ever since the first trailer was shown. Imagine using Garrett from the Thief series, jumping around on rooftops, but also imbued with magical powers. Solid Snake and Sam Fisher do not have anything on this brand of stealth. Therefore, jumping from a three story building to do an assassination strikes a chord for the blood lust in us all. You are encouraged to use your environment for the best way to complete a mission as you are not given a large abundance of ammunition. In fact, it's quite scarce in the game so if you were thinking that you could Rambo through a level, think again. The game's story line can and will change depending on how you as the gamer proceed through the game. Are you violent and kill everything in sight? People in the game might not be willing to help you on some of your quests. These are some of the consequences that you face in the game.

As mentioned earlier, the story line follows the pursuits of Corvo after he is framed for the murder of the Empress. As in most cases, there is usually a heir to the throne for the sake of successful succession. In this case, is it the late Empress' daughter Emily. Emily becomes a pawn for many characters in the game as there are numerous people vying for power.

In conclusion, it's good to see that money was well spent here. Great voice actors and actresses such as Susan Sarandon, Carrie Fisher (Princess Lela of Star Wars fame) among many others lead this all-star cast. This is Arkane's first ever game together, but they have shown that they are willing to compete with the best developers out there. With knowledge that this game sold extremely well and this is now a franchise, let's cross our fingers that Dishonored 2 blows us away as much as the first Dishonored has.

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Posted:
2013-06-21

omanic

Super Gamer Dude

8.4

Battlefield 4 on the PlayStation 4 is a first-person shooter video game developed by EA Digital Illusions CE (DICE) and published by Electronic Arts, this is the actual sequel to Battlefield 3 as the story continues.

The Battlefield series is about to add Battlefield 4 to its collection and, from what is so far known, it takes the war game genre to another level of sophistication. There are single player and multiplayer capabilities, with the multiplayer allowing up to 64 participants and this will almost certainly prove to be the most popular of the two. Game modes include Playground, Obliteration, Elimination, Commander and Spectator. Little is known about the first three, or whether there are more to be added to the list, but Commander mode makes a welcome return from when it was last seen in Battlefield 2142 and Spectator mode is new to the series and gives a new perspective to the play.

The Commander mode is really an overview in which one of the multiplayer participants takes on the role of Commander, and with his overall display of the battle scene, and view of the positions and numbers of men and vehicles, the Commander can direct the course of the overall action. Of course the Commander cannot actually take a physical part in the action which he is directing. Spectator mode allows a player to view the action from the position of another specified player, and in this mode the various combatants are color coded to differentiate squad members, team members and enemies.

There are three playable factions, USA China [Peoples Liberation Army], and Russia with the previous troop classes retained, these being Assault, Engineer, Support and Recon. Much of the content from previous titles is retained but there are of course many refinements and improvements both in weaponry, vehicles and gameplay. The game also uses the tried and tested Frostbite 3 engine.

Battlefield 4 has a bewildering array of weaponry among which are 5 assault rifles, 2 carbines, 3 marksman rifles, 3 sniper rifles, 8 personal defensive arms and, if your aim is not too good, 5 shotguns. These come with various optical and laser aiming and pointing devices as well as bayonets, knives and variations of ammunition. There are, in addition, 7 explosive devices including mines and grenades.

The vehicles also appear in a wide variety of forms. There are light armored fighting vehicles with their various mounted armaments, infantry transporters and heavy, main battle tanks. Then we have aircraft, both fixed wing and and helicopters, and marine assault craft. Many of these vehicles have specialized upgrades available for them.

Other elements which have been bought into Battlefield 4 is the mix of emotion, the game creators DICE decided this time round they would incorporate emotion to pull at the heart strings of the gamers, whether this will actually work is untested until the beta release is launched later this year. An example of this is teamwork, Dice stated that they want people to engage more with the on screen characters, making the gamer actually care about what happens to their team-mates whilst playing the extensive campaign missions along the dynamic landscapes in a war type environment.

If the advanced publicity, which is based on trailers and gameplay at exhibitions is to be believed, this game will be a great addition to the Battlefield stable which is currently thriving in all areas. It remains to be seen if rumors of female combatants being included are true.

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Posted:
2010-10-26

Mike_Likes_To_Write

Super Gamer Dude

5.8

Sam Fisher returns in Splinter Cell Convition; as all great fans of splinter cell will know Sam Fisher is now on the run. He has gone in search for his daughters killer for revenge. If your new to the game series and you didn't know the background story...unfortunately they don't really tell you in the game. Other than the obvious remarks to him trying to find out who killed his daughter your going to be pretty lost, which was kinda a big error to start with. Especially when they talk about people you never meet and then you find out they died and your left sat there like "well why mention him if hes not in the game?" and the game (if it could talk) would say "well you should know". Which is awful stance for the game to take.

Anyway...

Story -- 6.5/10
Tom Clancy is a well known writer who would never write the same kinda crap over and over again, oh wait! The game starts off well and different from the last Splinter Cells, you are on your own and on the run from your old organisation which sounds fun and refreshing until you hear some terrorist are about to take over America. Classic Clancy stuff, which is the problem. He's done this many many times and its got to the point where the next splinter cell either has to be unbelievably brilliant or the last one for Sam Fisher at least.

Game Play -- 6/10
Nothing new other than the pretty awesome tag and kill system. In which you...tag and kill, it gives some pretty fun kills to watch but I always think anything you just watch in a game that isn't story relevant shouldn't be their. However the beauty of jumping down on to some guy and shooting 4 other guys in the head in about 2 seconds makes up for the fact you really do nothing. The control layout is different as per normal to Clancy games showing that he is "a head" of the gaming world. Takes a while to pick up but not to difficult.

Graphics -- 6.5/10
Over all, pretty good. That's about it really...
The other thing is that it gave a good cinematic feel which is a good and strong way of keeping the story going, however the story isn't that strong to start with so after a while the cinematic interrogations become a pain.

Online -- 4.5/10
While you are probably already getting the feeling that I hate this game and i am picking at all the bad points, I promise you this. The online is AWFUL, certain games are not meant to enter the online world and is clear that Splinter Cell Conviction is one of them; in the past Splinter Cells it was ok but with practically no players online and many bugs it falls short of what it could have been.

So overall I would say this game is not the worlds best, especially for the great Tom Clancy its a bit of a disappointment. For all of those great fans out there I would say buy it despite all of the above, its interesting to see the direction of the NEW Sam Fisher in a darker mood and it reveal's some secrets that you may remember. Most importantly to all new customers who are thinking about trying Splinter Cell for the first time here is what I say: BUY SPLINTER CELL: DOUBLE AGENT its much better and you don't need to know anything other than the basics (Sam Fisher is one awesome super agent). The story is way better, along with the characters and the choices that will impact on if each side believes your a traitor makes it even more difficult to make some moral decisions.

(Just like to add; some other reviews may say the opposite but I aimed this for people who are new to Splinter Cell)

Hope I was helpful =)

User Reviews

del - 2891 reviews

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Posted:
2011-02-13

Mike_Likes_To_Write

Super Gamer Dude

8.3

Kane & Lynch are back and its darker and deeper than ever. Kane, who you played in the first game, is mercenary who was convicted of killing tens of innocent people for which he denys. Lynch, who met Kane when he bust him out of death row, is a schizophrenic. Kane reluctantly teams back up with Lynch for another job, this time you play as Lynch. However they accidentally anger the Shanghai underworld and are left on their own.

Story -- 8.5/0
The story suits the game play well, the story finds them on their own. Against Shanghai underworld; full of twists, backstabs, death, betrayal and lots of blood, the story sticks true to its motive. The way that the characters are shown is perfect, we know they are not good guys but we still would hate to see them fall and die, however theres plenty of times when they do. This helps create unique characters and when we find a character dead this also shocks us back and lets us know that they are not afraid to kill off people, again drawing us deeper into the story.

Gameplay -- 9/10
The jump'y camera movements and style was inspired by the "Youtube look" as they call it. This helps give it a unique, gritty, dark amateur feel. However the cam holds its self still when you get into fights, this transition is so subtle that I, myself, have never noticed it. The layout is that of a basic third-person shooter with cover to use. A great example of how dark the game is, is a very odd one. The camera will normally blur out the image of someone you shoot in the face. While that sounds horrible and not very gruesome, when you run around and shoot some one point-blank in the face and it suddenly blurs it out, your attention is draw to it instantly and you will probably say "Awe man, I just shot that dude in the head!". However you may not say that as you are probably not a stereotypical 60's American teenager...anyway.

Graphics/Sound -- 8.5/10
The style compliments the characters and storyline well with the graphics matching a amateur video of two mad men you could find on the internet. The character detail is great, however the voice sync is not very well done. But the feel of the game is to always keep moving, hence the jump'y and rolling camera movements along with short cut-scenes to always keep you in the action. So you may notice bu just like me just sit there and think "Meh..." and carry on. The environments and weapons all feel realistic enough with time obviously spent on the more dominant areas, eg the cars, weapons, clothes and environmental reactions to fights.

Online -- 7.5
With a unique multi player and new type of online games it instantly sets its self as a unique game. It use's the lobby picking style, normally typical to computer online games, still allows people to join friends with alot of ease. Or make new friends through familiar lobby's. For a list of what online game style's there are you can find them on other sites, but a quick list is Fragile alliance, under cover cop and Cops and Robbers. For more info on what they are visit either, and/or any other game websites you know and trust. Just to leave you saying, there all brilliant online games.

Overall this game definitely tops the first Kane & Lynch and draws you into the world and thoughts of Lynch. To all new and old fans out there I say its a must buy, to new fans it doesn't matter which you buy first but I'm sure if you buy this you'll want the first so you can see some back story to what they say...so you might as well just buy that one first. Its cheaper and it will let you know if you like it.

Hope This was helpful! If so push the thank button and/or give this a thumbs up, if not please feel free give me a thumbs down =)

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Posted:
2013-04-23

trinity

Super Gamer Dude

8.0

Resident Evil 6 had one of the most controversial development cycles of the series. Capcom expressed an interest in getting more casual fans to gravitate towards the series, and this acknowledgment caused an uproar among long standing fans of the series. Capcom's attempt to reach out to a wider audience does not go unnoticed, in Resident Evil 6, nor does it help make the game better. Only the strong points of the game, the ones that more often than not come from past entries into the series, pull Resident Evil 6 from out of the dregs on mediocrity and make it a game worth playing, just not one that is must play.

Instead of simply making one game that appeals to a certain niche, Capcom decided instead to combine four separate games and smash them into one game under the same engine. The result is the largest, most epic and most varied entry into the series, but it is also the most muddled. Rather than having one campaign Resident Evil 6 has four. Each campaign follows one or two different character from the Resident Evil series. The game's storylines intersect and overlap but each one can be played individually and has its own beginning, middle and end. The Tarantino-ish take on story telling is very effective and when they intersect it can be very satisfying. It is encouraging to see Capcom take this approach with Resident Evil, and it provides hope for where the series might go in the future.

The issues with Resident Evil 6 become apparent when the player realizes that some of the campaigns are simply not fun to play. Each campaign has its own feel and pace to it, Leon Kennedy's is a fantastic journey not unlike previous entries into the series, and is full of suspense and legitimate fear. On the other hand Jake Muller and Sherry Birkin's action-packed campaign seems like a generic pop and shoot game with a broken cover mechanic.

Extended fire fights and car chases are not the things fans remember when they think about the Resident Evil series, and Capcom's attempt to grab some gamers from Gears of War and Call of Duty by adding these elements did not work in Resident Evil 6's favor. Ada Wong's campaign is similar to Leon's, only with more stealth elements and it too is a great testament to the Resident Evil series. Chris Redfield's campaign meanwhile, falls somewhere in the middle of the two extremes.

Fortunately, regardless of the campaign, the graphics are top notch. With a greater emphasis on dark environments than in Resident Evil 5, the atmosphere is incredibly creepy, when it isn't being interrupted with gun fights and car chases. The controls are mostly solid, except for the cover mechanic, which is border-line broken, but most of the game can be played without it.

The good parts of Resident Evil 6 are some of the best in the series, and are a real testament to how good Capcom can do the survival horror genre.

Unfortunately the campaigns that put an over emphasis on action bring down the experience quite a bit. If those shortcomings can be overcome there is a great storyline and some terrific game play to be had here.

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Posted:
2013-05-28

double07

Newbie

6.5

Call of Duty: Black Ops II on the Xbox 360 is a first-person shooter video game, developed by Treyarch and published by Activision.

Well it's that time of year again. There's another Call of Duty out and of course it's immediately the best game in the series yet, the best selling in the series, the list goes on. So here's what I think of it. Whether you agree or not well that's up to you. So, here, we...go.

Black Ops 2 probably has one of the most interesting stories in the Call of Duty series to date. Using a similar system as the original Black Ops where the story alternates between flashback sequences, set in the 1980's towards the end of the Cold War where the player controls Alex Mason, and present day sequences set in the year 2025 where the player controls Mason's son David. The story is centered around the game's antagonist Raul Menendez with the flashback missions telling the story of what caused Menendez hates America and his decision to take revenge of both the USA and the Western world. The present day sequences then go on to detail what Menendez's revenge involves and how it is carried out whilst David Masons struggles to prevent Menendez's devious plan from coming to fruition.

What is, perhaps, the most interesting feature of the game's story is the use of an RPG-esque mechanic where the player's actions throughout the game effect the outcome of the story. This is effected by factors such as the choices the player makes at certain points, whether the player finds hidden information in certain missions and whether or not the player successfully completes RTS style strike force missions.

Personally I would have liked them to keep the game's setting entirely in the future which is far more entertaining and interesting than the 1980's sequences. On another personal note it felt like the characters were for some reason unknown to all but the writers are all overly gruff about everything for no reason at all. In fact it got to the point that I found myself quoting lines from Batman at points which was entertaining up to the point where I lost my voice.

Overall the angle the story is approached from makes up for the fact that in terms of writing it is merely average at best.

Black Ops 2's multiplayer is largely the same as previous Call of Duty titles. It offers a smorgasbord of game types in which any player will surely find something to keep them entertained for hours on end. What is perhaps the most interesting feature of the multiplayer is the class customization.

Firstly Black Ops 2, unlike its predecessor has returned to the treadmill style unlock system of leveling up to unlock new weapons and then using these weapons to unlock attachments for them which is frankly a terrible system, however the unlock points system has been kept for score streaks, both types of grenades, perks and wildcards. But that's not the point.

The main point of interest is the 10 slot system that is used. Put simply the player is given 10 slots which the player can use for weapon's attachments, perks, grenades and wild cards. This gives the player a certain level of freedom as they can choose any combination of weapons, attachments, perks, grenades and wildcards. This means that the player can go with the standard loadout of primary weapon, secondary weapon, 3 perks and both lethal and non-lethal grenades. It is the addition of wildcards is what gives players the increased freedom. Wildcards give players bonuses ranging from carrying multiple primary weapons to extra perks meaning that a player could choose to go weapons heavy with 2 assault rifles with lots of extras but no perks or they could choose to take just a pistol but have lots of perks that give them little advantages over other players.

The kill streak system has also received a makeover. Although the rewards are the same as the previous titles but with a futuristic twist such as the K-9 robot dogs. However, this time around instead of getting a certain number of kills to get a reward. Players must now earn a certain score instead of kills. This feels like an attempt at encouraging teamwork as the required scores are often awkward numbers such as 450 points which is the equivalent of four kills and an assist, however this doesn't really do much in the end as it can easily be over come by just getting an extra kill and going over the required score.

To be perfectly honest with you the multiplayer is just the same as the previous games in the series and anyone reading this will probably know whether they like it or not already.

So, here we are at the final verdict. Now I could give this a score out of 10 but frankly that's pointless because my definition of let's say 8 out of ten will be different to everyone else's so I'll just summarize the game and let you make the decision for yourselves. Black Ops 2 is, for all intents and purposes, a Call of Duty game. If you don't like Call of Duty already then you won't like this one. If you're new to the series it's a decent entry point for learning how the game works and getting used to the game but don't expect most of the new features such as score streaks to be in the next edition as it will most likely revert to the Modern Warfare set up.

Call of Duty: Black Ops II on the Xbox 360 is really aimed at players who are already invested in the series but want to see a bit of an innovation to the game but not so much that it's an entire overhaul.

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Posted:
2013-05-29

ratty

Newbie

8.5

I have never really been a huge fan of racing games. However, I’ve always had a soft spot for the Gran Turismo series by Polyphony Digital. I guess that’s because Gran Turismo is more of a racing simulator than a racing game. Gran Turismo 5 is the latest entry into the series and although it doesn’t live up to the hype, it’s still a great game.

Gameplay 8/10

As a racing simulator, the way the vehicles handle is one of the more important aspects of gameplay. In that regard, Gran Turismo 5 is a vast improvement over the games in the series before it. The physics system employed here really gives each car a distinct feel. Even a teenager with a learners permit can easily tell a 1969 Mustang from a 2009 Corvette with their eyes closed. Well, if they could still drive with their eyes closed. With that in mind, this is definitely not a pick up and play type game. It will take many hours behind the wheel for a Gran Turismo novice to gain any kind of comfort level. Although, the inclusion of many driving assist options make the transition from arcade racer to simulation racer much easier. There is one thing in particular though that many players, myself included, wanted to see in Gran Turismo 5 that was inexplicably left out. Well, it wasn’t really left out as much as it just wasn’t fully implemented. I’m talking of course about the allowance of all cars to be fully damaged from accidents. Yes, the cars do take damage, but it isn’t very realistic. If you hit a concrete wall head on at 200 mph, it would be crushed. Not in Gran Turismo 5. Here it would look more like you ran into a shopping cart at 25 mph. This is one area where the game was over-hyped, as players were just expecting more from the damage system in a game that was in development for 7 years.

Car Selection/Models 8.5/10

There isn’t a racing game in the galaxy with the car selection on display in Gran Turismo 5. There’s everything from an old VW van, all the way up to prototypes that only exist in some car designers mind. There’s even a DeLorean as seen in the Back To The Future Movie Franchise. How many racing games can boast that? All these cars look gorgeous on the track too, most of all the Premium models. There are two types of cars in this game, Standard and Premium. The Premium models are flawlessly detailed and feature 100% true-to-life cockpit views. Standard cars, while graphically acceptable for a PS3 game, really suffer from the cockpit view standpoint. Each standard car only has a basic shadowy interior with almost no detail. This is very disappointing since the cockpit view is my favorite view to drive from.

Tracks 6/10

Don’t get me wrong, there really is nothing wrong with the tracks in Gran Turismo 5. The low score is based more on lack of variety than anything else. Yes Polyphony Digital added day and night cycles and changing weather, but unfortunately this great feature isn’t available on all the tracks. This really makes for a high level of redundancy when you consider the vast amount of cars at your disposal, and such a small variety of tracks to drive them on. There is a Course Maker, but it seems more like a last second tack-on than a full fledged feature.

Sound 9/10

I’m not really in love with the soundtrack in this game, but that's easily remedied with the option to play tracks straight from the audio library stored on your PS3 console. Want to drag race while listening to Metallica? Go for it. How about a 100 lap race around Daytona Speedway while blasting Taylor Swift? If you’ve got the songs on your hard drive the opportunity is yours for the taking. Where the sound really shines though are the cars and their corresponding effects. Each car sounds exactly as it should and is easily identifiable by sound alone. Plus nothing beats the thrill of blowing away that rival car on a straightway while hearing my Camaro roar like the beast that it is.

Final Score 8.5/10

Gran Turismo 5 was over-hyped and it shows with the lack of vehicle damage, poor track selection, and a failure to have all cars rendered as Premium models. Even so, there’s no way to deny it’s an outstanding game because the positives far outweigh the negatives. Gran Turismo 5 is proudly displayed in my gaming collection and is without a doubt my favorite racing game in a long time. Hope to see you in my rear-view mirror very soon. Happy Gaming!

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Posted:
2014-11-07

brownie

Newbie

6.5

'Diablo III: Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition' for the PlayStation 4 is an action role-playing video game and is rated M for Mature, the game contains blood and gore and was published and developed by Blizzard Entertainment.

You ask a dozen different fans what Diablo means to them and you will no doubt get a dozen different responses. Some will shout out in joy about the way the series sculpted their gaming life to follow while others will mention sleepless nights spent at LAN parties. No matter what answer you get you will no doubt find yourself staring at the same core answer: Diablo is important and it means something. So when 'Diablo III' finally landed it came with an appropriate amount of fanfare. The initial offering was met with exuberance and then that exuberance turned to acceptance before everyone acknowledged that, well, the game was juts OK. Blizzard isn't okay with just O.K. So now we have the Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition hitting the marketplace and fans everywhere are once again going nuts.

For those people that played the 'Diablo III' release they noted that there were a lot of good things mixed in with a lot of not so good things. The action was all there but the reward system seemed out of whack. Let's not even discuss some of the difficulties fans had with getting online and playing with other people. So on that note we can definitely see where Reaper of Souls set its sights as it came to consoles and PC's everywhere. With two years of patching built into the release as well as a whole lot of fan feedback, this expanded edition of 'Diablo III' makes for a special treat.

An expansion without new content doesn't make any sense so let's take a look at what Reaper of Souls brings returning players to try out. Ultimate Edition first takes aim at the avatar of your control itself. You will see an increase in the maximum level cap along with an additional passive slot to play with. The skill system has been re-worked and streamlined and returning players can import their old avatar with ease. There is a new class as well to focus on: the Crusader. The Crusader is a special sort of Holy Fighter that capitalizes on medium to close range melee. All of these glossy new additions, tweaks, and re-works make the gaming experience so much more enjoyable and smooth. If this is your first foray into 'Diablo III' then make it your only one, do not look back.

Looking past the avatar itself we can see that there are a few new game modes to be played with. Kicking things off is the Adventure Mode. Adventure Mode offers players a completely unlocked game to play through. The storyline quests from your traditional Campaign Mode will be unlocked an in their place all of the waypoints will be accessible. In this mode it is time to kill things, a lot of things perhaps, on your way toward maxing out your avatar with the sweetest gear available. Followers of the 'Diablo III' storyline, no matter how cheesy it may be, will be excited to see that there is a fifth chapter of the storyline being added to take place in Westmarch.

As you fight your way through dead, undead, and dying enemies you will no doubt come across loot and goodies. Reaper of Souls changes the way that we interact with these things as the loot system has been re-worked. Loot 2.0 has lowered the amount of overall drops in favor of giving more frequent useful drops that fit your class. If you are playing for a friend there is now an in game mail system for you to send loot to wherever you need it to go. The endless hack and slash gameplay is as smooth and polished as ever and it will play just like any other Diablo game released before it.

'Diablo III: Reaper of Souls Ultimate Evil Edition' for the PlayStation 4 is a must own addition to any Diablo fan's library. This is probably the best, most complete, Diablo entry that we have ever been lucky enough to have in our hands. Who knows when Blizzard will drop something as good as Reaper of Souls in the future? It just might not happen. There is an almost endless replay value to keep you coming back for more.


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