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Saints Row 4: Commander In Chief Edition
1 New from
This is my 1st Saints Row game iv played. Dispite trying to be as neutral as possible to all games as a reviewer, i couldnt help but get that 1st impression of what the game would be like from TV commercials, so i was never intending to actually get the game or rush out to review it. However after having seen a twitch live stream i regularly watch start playing it, i just had to try it out myself, it looked fun. And oh yes it was indeed a fun game, my 1st impressions were totaly off.So the game itself, well in short its MAD. Its totaly OTT and thats a good thing. As this is the 4th in the series most people will alreayd know what to expect so ill just go through the Pro's and Con's.Pro's:Its crazy over the top and encourages wantant destruction and chaos just for fun.You have super powers. :DIt rips some great aspects and features from great movies and games, and most importantly, does them right.Has good overall customisation.Co-op gameplay can be a blast.For a game thats been made to have a good sized open gameworld and stay consol bassed, the graphics are not half bad.Spec requirments are modest. Was able to run maxed out with 8x AA and even downsample at 2400x1350 resolution with a GTX 780 and only drop down to the 50's in FPS in rare casses, most of the time caped at 60 with around 75% GPU usuage.
Cons:As i usualy point out with 'most' games of the past 11 or so years, its too damn short. The storyline can be completed really quikly if you so choose (8hours, likely less). I personaly took my time and done about half of the side quests 1st and what not but i still managed to complete it in about 16 hours of gameplay.Some of the customisation was lacking. Visualy you have alot of options but character size was not one of them. Additionaly there were limited voice options and only a very basic tone changer for the voices available.The 'world' or in this case 'simulation' was restricted to one city, where as the storyline tells of many cities being hit by the invasion and many more people abducted, thus ..where are they, where are the other simulated cities? its somthing that was missed and could have been used to increase the length fo the story and thus the game.The interections with the ships crew seemed great rigth at the start untill you realise they use the same lines over and over till the end of the game, nothing changes.The Glitches. oh my yes the glitches(not the intentional 'simulation' glitches i might add). Such as it is with large environment open world games that are made with harsh deadlines like these, there are alot of glitches and bugs, nothing to game breaking, if u get stuck in an object or stuck in an animation simply reloading the last checkpoint, or saving then reloading will sort it out. But the fact they are there reduces any sense of 'quality feel' to the game.Car physics. So with the introduction of the super powers, using a car is somewhat obsolete, however when u do use them, they have a very odd physics movement to them, u can almost move sidways with them, its not right and could have been done much better considering the amount of vehicles in the game.Difficualty: This is a hard one, its a Pro and a Con depending on how far into the game you are. On normal difficulty as soon as u get ur super powers, the game turns super EZ mode, however as you progress through the game things start to balance out and become ...less easy. The final fight however has a totaly different difficulty level. All the way up to it the game was playing like any other game on normal mode from the 00's, easy bassicaly, but the final fights difficulty is totaly different. Im not saying its hard by any stretch, its just not expected.
DmC: Devil May Cry
7 New from
Well having played the prior 4 games as they were released i was saddened to hear the changes that were being made..angry infact, like a alot of people. However, the game itself is good, u need to beat it into ur own head that its not actually DeviLMayCry 5..infact i found it best just to think of it as Not any type of Devil May Cry, becouse it really isnt anything like the originals dispite the attempts at retelling the story. Anyway the game itself is a great hack and slash game though imo it is a bit to simplified interms of combat and also the starting difficulties r not anywhere near hard enough. I ,without second thought, started on nephilim, the hardest starting mode...it felt like i was playing normal mode ..not hard. After 1 completion the next mode is unlocked which feels much more like how the previouse mode should have been.
Unfortunatly this game is another example of how difficulty modes have all gone down 1 level in the past decade. 'Normal mode' is now called 'hardmode' ..'Easy mode' is now 'normal mode' ..and a new' baby mode' is now in place of 'easy mode'. Any modes beyound this are simular. For DmC the 'Dante Must Die mode' feels like the original 'hardmode' which is available at the start of the game from the original games..u have to go above Dante must Die mode (another play through) to get access to a difficulty that actualy feels right. Granted this has another 2 modes above that which may and probably will be much more hardcore ..but having to play through the game 3 times just to get to a difficulty that should have been available with in 1 .maybe 2 playthroughs.. is rediculus ..ill likely get bored b4 then. Anyway difficulty mode screwups aside.
The graphics for the PC version are ur typical consol port. Same base but with slightly better lighting and textures..nothing to write home about..but atleast it shouldnt have a problem running on low end gaming rigs. Its a shame so many great games are still being dumbed down to totaly out dated consols, but thats buisness for u.
Sound wise the music is fitting to the environment imo. The voice acting is good to.
Story..well u cant get away form the fact that its trying to be DevilMayCry here..as much as i tried to ignor it. Big bad from the original DevilMayCry is here same name and all..along with Dante and Virgil u cant help but compare the games. So.... the storyline is much more modern and i guess 'realistic' set in a dirty gritty city. Some major changes in the story ..1 major one infact is Dante and Virgils parrents ..Sparda is still there and his history hasnt changed much if at all..but their mother ..well i wont spoil it but its a major change ..the mode for the hardest starting difficulty 'nephilim' will give u a clue. Dante himself is much more .... rough..and tbh he acts like a complete asshat for the beginning of the game..not very likeable ..not like the original at all, who could make u laugh now and then and acts more like som1 who knows he's practicaly immortal.
Anyway the game is great, it would have gone down alot better if it wasnt trying to be DevilMayCry ..if the characters names were different and the storyline tweeked slightly to move further away from the real DevilMayCry series..and ofc the name of the game changed ..then i think this game would not have got all the stick it has gotten during its development.
Anyway i give this game ..as a game.. is 4/5 ...As a Devil May Cry game unfortunatly is gotta be a 2/5
Guild Wars 2
Guildwars 2 has been a very highly anticipated game and thankfully it has very little wrong with it from my point of view.Since i have yet to reach end game do please take my review with a pinch of salt.
The only letdown i find is that the combat is still tab targeting. If mmorpgs are going to evolve they need to get away from the mundain and super easy combat of tab targeting. Thankfully although Guildwars 2 is still tab target, there is some manual aiming required. You need to make sure you get in range yourself, and be pointing in the correct direction, skills can still be used even if you not in range and generate a CD. Additionaly you need to dodge and activate blocks yourself, although imo the dodge mechanic could be made better, only allowing 2 dodges in a row isnt enough.
What i really like about guildwars 2 however compared to even the action combat mmo s out atm is that you cannot out level an area. If your level 50 and want to complete quests in a level 30 zone, you get down leveled to the area level plus 2 so that you notice a slight advantage but can still easily be killed it your not carefull.The skill system could be improved imo, more weapon skills to chose from for each weapon type would be perfect, a fixed set of 5 skills for a 2her, 3 for main hand, and 2 for off hand make the system not very customizable. Granted you can customize traits that act like passive buffs and condition effects yourself, but it still feels limited. And you can use a variety of weapons and thus skills.. but even so i would have prefered say 10 skills for 2h sword and you have to chose 5 of them yourself. and the same for each other weapon.
The voice acting overall is great, and there is alot of it. The music is nice aswell. My only complaint is that the sound channels sound mudled in some cases. Like a person speaking will sound very close but infact are far away, and visa versa. This may just take some tweeking on arenanets part though.
The graphics style also is better than i expected, though done in a handpainted style, the quality is good. However the antialaizing is horrible. They only allow FXAA ingame and you cant force CSAA through nvidia controll panel with the latest drivers. The only way to increase the quality to help reduce jaggies is to render the game via -supersampling-. You have 3 settings ingame. you can ether render the game bellow your resolution, at the native resolution, or at a higher resolution -supersample-. The problem with this is it has a massive performance hit. i really think in the future they should add CSAA and-or MSAA options to the game.
The leveling speed isnt to bad, and they cant really make it any slower since even if you complete say the 15-25 map for your race, you still are not level 25 by the time you finish, requiring you to do more events or move over to another races 15-25 level zone and do their quests. But i would still prefer if they could add more quests and slow the leveling speed.
I would continue on but, it would get to long so all ill say is that the game is good, in a perfect world i would have liked to see a game that took apsects from a game like Tera Online and combined it with aspects from Guildwars 2. notible the combat from Tera with the story and gameplay in terms of levels from Guildwars 2. Alass this is not a perfect world.
Darksiders 2: Limited Edition
3 New from
Darksiders 2 'DS2' continues on from DS1, but is a stand alone game, meaning you can, like me, play this game without playing the 1st.The game itself is great, it has the potential to keep you playing for as much as 50 hours, up to 100 if your slow.However that will only happen if you like the cheap time sinks that have been added to extend the time you play it. These 'sinks' are in the form of collectables, and a 100 level arena.If you just want to play the game like a game of old, i.e for its story and gamplay, then you will probably be playing it for anywhere between 20 and 40 hours, depending on if you play it through a second time using its 'NewGame plus' feature that allows you to play through a second time using gear and skill points from your first playthrough.
The game itself reminds me alot of the legacy of kain series for the PS1 , more specificaly the Soul Reaver half. However it also has simularities to zelda, and god of war. All in all not a bad bunch of games to be simular to.
It has an impressive rpg aspect to it aswell, you can pick up and chose you gear, shoulder pads, chess armor, leggings, boots, gauntlets, amulet, primary weapon and secondary weapon. Some of these you can build up/level/enchant youself by feeding less wanted gears stats to a 'blank slate' possesed version and thus create some monster weapons. You also have skill points to use to gain abilities, and you pick up storyline skills aswell that are need to solve puzzles, like a grapling arm for glimbing, a gun for shooting distant objects (also usfull in combat) to name a few.
However its letdown is in its 'fine tuning' there are bugs in all versions of this game, and they can cause greif, like corrupting saves files for example.
Its biggest letdown by far though is the PC version, it is a direct consol port with next to no PC modifications. Screen resolution, vsync, gamma control, and different buttons are the only differences between the PC and consol versions. The textures and effects are identical, which for a PC means they suck. However this does mean very low PC requirments and thus constant high framerates.
As a game DS2 is great, however the developers who made it have not done much to help their repuation with the PC version. Thus i dock it 1 star.
Sennheiser HD 202 Stereo Headphones (HD202)
I have just purchase my second pair of these headphones after having owned my first pair for just over 2 year, they then stoped working on 1 side, which i tried and failed to repair. The old ones are now acting as spare parts.The only downside to these headphones are their known reliability issues that tend to arise after around 2 or 3 years of use depending on usage.Having said that though, the sound they produce and their cost mean they are worth it.
At 115db they are some of the loudest closed back headphones you can get for said price and the bass they produce is imense compared to alot of other 30pound headphones.The frequency range is good for closed back headphones and they produce a very nice quality of sound, you would have to spend over double the price (70pound) to get a better quality.
The long wire allows for use in almost on situation. They are comfy aswell, comfy enough for me to fall asleep in bed with them on atleast :)
Overall 4/5 let down by reliability.
I own the original ps1 version and it never ceases to amaze me how often i remember a game looking great, then go back to it and am astonished at how crappy the graphics was :P .. that may just be due to seeing it on a 42" plasma now, than a 15" crt tv back then :P ..but anyway.
This remake stays true to the original in almost every respect, there are places where the locations of enemies is off slightly or missing and also the writen (and i asume the english speech) is slightly different.
The option for 2 types of speech wasnt really necessery imo, no one in their right mind would want to listen to the english voice acting in a game like this (its horribly out of pace and dont really match the characters). I've heared the japanese voices on their version which tbh matches up so much better, even better infact than the phantomile voices, though it should be mentioned that those phantomile voices were done by japanese voice actors also. Just goes to show, when it comes to voice acting, go Japanese :P
The overall appereance of the game is very colorfull, though im a little dissapointed the orginal cg movies used in the PS1 version werent redone in more up to date CG, instead they use in game visuals. In terms of quality, well 'for a Wii game' its great, though ignoring the fact its a Wii game, the distant graphics is very very blocky, only disguised by a blurr effect which ends abrubtly and can look odd when for example u see a windmill blade go thru the edges of the blur effect.
Personaly, as with all Wii games i buy, i have ported it to my computer and played it on Dolphin which makes it look 4 times better (literally 4x the resolution) and i sugest any1 else who can do this.. does.. . It makes up for nintendo's weak consol.
For what the game is, 4/5, let down only by how short it is.
Monster Hunter 3: Tri
9 New from
Having played the PSP versions of the monster hunter series i have always loved just how long this came can last even though being a relativly simple game in terms of what it is.
In simplified terms the point of the game is to max out your armor and weapons by beating up monsters. But...
This game requirs skill, real skill, not stats. Dodging, blocking, counters, everything that you may have seen to be 'automatic' in alot of other games, is 'manual' in this games series.
Becouse of this, how 'good' this game is to people is generaly dictated by their compitance as a gamer. You wont like this game if you consider games like Aion, Rift, and the majority of Wii games to be 'hard' or 'challenging'.
So 'buy this game for a long lifed challenging game' is the best advice i can give.
Well to put it bluntly its major flaw is the consol it has been released on. The Wii is just to weak a consol to fully alow people to appreciate the game in terms of its graphical apeal. Which i asure you can be much much better.
Just port this game to your PC and run it on Dolphin (emulator) and you will see how good the game looks (for an emulated Wii game, remember textures will still look blocky) in 1920 x 1080 HD with internal resolutions of up to 2560 x 2112 and 9x SSAA. (this will mean ofc, no online, which tbh is a big part of the game)
The ability to use the Wii's motion controls to play the game just dosn't work well considering how precise and well timed alot of fights requir you to be (you can still use classic gamepad ofc). There for it would have been alot better to put this on a consol designed to be played using a classic gamepad and have the ability to show much better graphics and have more content, which imo is somthing the Wii version lacks slightly(though not enough to make a fuss about).
Having said all that..Im not a 'graphics nerd', as like i said, i played the monster hunter series on the PSP which has no AA or AF to speak of and tbh is rather blocky, but the game makes up for this, as it does on the Wii, its just somthing that could have and should have been addresed.
Devil May Cry 4
4 New from
First of all, lets put this game into chronological order.
DMC 3 (young Dante) - DMC 1 (Adult Dante) - DMC 4 (Older Dante) - DMC 2 (Mature Dante)
So this game takes place between the 1st and 2nd installement of the DMC series.
The story like the others is stand alone but characters in the game come from previouse titles, Lady and Trish to be exact. So its beneficial to know who they are just from a story stand point.
The plot itself is, well kinda like the other games, people try to use Demon power, they fail, they need beating. But this game has a love interest between Nero and Kyrie which drives his involvment. Dante is just there for some fun, oh and to get back not 1 ..but 2 swords that one of which ,'Sparda', Trish 'missplaced' :P . The other was being used to seal the Devil Gate (Virgils Yamato sword from previose titles).
Unlike the other games, except maybe DMC 2, you don't play Dante as much as the other character Nero; there are 20 missions in total. Which considering Dante is the main character of the series does seem a little odd.
However, thats not to say Nero isnt a fun character to play, the oposite infact, he's very fun to play, specialy with his Devil Arm.
Game play mechanics for Dante include 'styles' i.e sword master, gunslinger etc and he gets 3 different melee and 3 different ranged weapons to play with. Nero does not have these options but his Devil arm makes up for that and he also has a gun and his sword.
All in all, like most games i end up playing and reviewing i find this a little to short. This game in particular i tried to take my time with, but i still managed to complete it on its highest starting difficulty in 12 hours ( for me that 2 days plus a couple hours the day i got it).
Though after 1 play through things, like Bloody palace, are unlocked for a challenge, and an extra 2 difficulties (1 for Consoles) are unlocked which allow you to play through the game again with upgrades from your 1st play though. So that will add replay value to the game.
It is imo that the majority of a games data should be used with the main story/plot of the game so that u can spend up to and above 24 hours to play through the game just once not including bonuses/secret/achievment/challenges etc etc etc. Alass most games currently ,and in the past handfull of years, and gone with the 50/50 route ( or more in favor of the later) . Shorter story, longer replayability.
Finaly, for the PC this game has some nice graphics, Max out your settings, including 16xQ AA and you will be hard pressed to say they could have done better.
Overall i score this 5/5, deffinatly worth getting for the PC over its console counterparts.
1 New from
This is one of those games that really isnt being done justice by nintendo's woefully weak consol. However, even with that said, this game is damn right awesome. To be honest it would be a waste of your, the readers, time to say what has already been said in praise of this game by the other reviewers here.
So instead ill just give some advice.
Buy this game, jump on your computer, download Dolphin, and port this game to your computer. With dolphin running this game on a 'gaming' computer, you can see Xenoblade in true 1920 x 1080 HD with 'internal resolutions' of up to 2560x 2112, and if you have a truley monster of a computer u can add 9x SuperSampling Anti Alaising (SSAA). Only then will you truely see how great this game is.I will add though, Dolphin is not 100% full proof, it will crash, BUT Xenoblade has a save anytime feature so no worries.
So yea, if you have a Wii, just buy this game, u cant go wrong, even if you dont a computer to port it to, u should still be pleased with the game itself dispite the graphics.
StarCraft 2: Wings Of Liberty (PC & Mac)
7 New from
Advice: If you can get this game on the cheap i.e 1/3 the cost of a normal game, then buy it. if not. Look else where.
Having played the old games i can say that this keeps honest to the orginal, both in terms of story and gameplay.
The Graphics: Could have been made a little better by making the game more 3 dimentional (more than it already is), thus alowing buildings to that look taller and bigger. Also i would argue that the scaling of things could have been done better. Buildings being bigger mainly, thus making units look smaller. Increased camera controls on the zoom and pitch woulda been nice also. Most of the structures in the game have kept the same shape, though with tweeks to make them look alot better.
Sound/Music: No complaints, uprated versions of the old. Tbh if you dont like the music in the game, then u couldnt have liked the orginals music ether, i personal think its suits it.
The Package: Blizzard has taken a RTS which used to have 3 campaigns (like most RTS) and split it into 3 seperate games each costing the same as one whole game. This obviosly is a marketing stunt one which i personal will not fall for.You get the feel as you play the game that it has been unneccerilly fleshed out, with both HD and SD movies, loads of cutscenes(for a RTS) both HQ CG and Game quality, achievments, challenges, things that dont make a RTS, merely compliment it. Stuffing so much of this into a RTS which only spans about 26 missions is rediculous. For me, due to blizzards actions over the past years, they have lost ALL credability.
The Game itself in terms of quality i would say is 4/5
The Game taking into account content quantity and Blizzard, is 1.5/5 a fair score, its 1/3 of a game.