Results 1 to 6 of 6

Thread: The Gamer's Gazette - Issue XI

  1. #1
    Gen. Chris's Avatar BatHex
    Moderation Overseer Content Director Citizen

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Gotham
    Posts
    9,822
    Blog Entries
    6

    Default The Gamer's Gazette - Issue XI


    Issue XI



    Hello everyone. How is your new year so far? How about Atilla? Are you enjoying that? Well I am happy to bring you both the eleventh issue of the Gamer's Gazette as well as the results of the Best Games of 2014 competition. First up, we have a review of Blackguards, written by Mhaedros. Secondly we have newcomer Meelis13, with his nice review of Mirror's Edge. We then have a review for both Medal of Honor and its sequel Warfighter, followed by a review of the re-released Grand Theft Auto V, and finally a review of the Assassin's Creed Unity DLC, Dead Kings. And as we recently entered a new year, Mhaedros chose to write an impressive and insightful reflection on the last year in gaming. Following that, we end Issue XI with the results of the Best Games competition.

    I'd like to thank you all for participating in that, as well as supporting us by reading this current edition. Thank you, and look forward to Issue XII coming soon.
    Gamer's Gazette Director
    Gen. Chris



    Contents






    Blackguards
    Blackguards
    Blackguards


    Blackguards
    Blackguards is a tactical RPG developed and published by German Daedelic Entertainment. The game takes place in the Dark Eye universe, which is..a fantasy universe with a world called Aventuria..It’s got dwarves and elves I think, although I’ve only seen half an elf in the game so I might be wrong. Oh and there are bad people, who you need to defeat..

    After having played Blackguards I may be a loremaster of the universe, but going into it I had never heard of the franchise before. What I saw was an XCOM-esque fantasy game with a Northern dwarf and a load of fugitives ending up as the good guys. And though I would certainly say the new XCOM + expansion are much more fleshed out, Blackguards certainly does a good job recreating the type of tactical gameplay.

    You play as a character created by yourself, you chose your play style, appearance and even gender at the beginning of the game. Want to be a mage with a fire-fetish? Fine! A masterly marksman? Go ahead. You get the idea. But the issue is, when you first create a character and you have no idea how the rules of the game work, it can be a bit difficult to know what to create and what skills to spend points on. In my own playthrough I created a ranger and for half the game I insisted on having a knife as secondary weapon, not realising I could at any time have put points into, say, a big axe in order to actually have a useful secondary weapon. At the bossfight of the third chapter I spent about 45 minutes hitting a man with my fists because I had ran out of arrows the battle before and never remembered to equip more.


    The combat is a combination of satisfying and horribly annoying

    Blackguards is split in two different types of game. One is a tactical battlemap on a hex based grid where you turn by turn move and use your characters to tear the limbs off your enemies, and this is where the majority of the game takes place. And this is all very enjoyable, I absolutely adore these turnbased tactical battles, but..the difficulty is ridiculously inconsistent from battle to battle. Some fights you will walk through like a breeze, desolating any opposition even on the hard difficulty, but others will start off by crippling all your characters, push you over and proceed to kick you while singing “get up, I’ll stop when you get up, get up already sucker!”. And I have a creeping suspicion I could have avoided being kicked in the stomach by playing as a spellsword instead of an archer.


    So many skills...

    I guess my main issue with the battles is that, even when going down to easy difficulty, there are some battles that will drive you insane. I’m all for a challenging game, but when I am on my tenth replay of a single battle and I just get torn apart on easy I’m just not having fun anymore. Easy should be for people who are fed up with a map or just want to get through the story, you can’t make a game so difficult people rage-quit because they can’t get through a map. Or I’m just too stupid to get through those maps, but I like to think it’s the games’ fault.

    On the battle map there are a few things to keep in mind. Health bars of course, as well as astral points (mana / magicka). Then there are possible bonuses and nerfs that will help or hinder characters, such as altering the speed at which they move or changing the chance of hitting your target. Here a weird thing comes into play. There is a percentage chance of everything, that is carefully calculated according to the rules of the Dark Eye. Which means that there will be times when two characters keep trying, but failing to hit each other, turn after turn, hour after hour. As your characters progress and become more experienced though, thankfully this issue slowly goes away. But you will still be missing 99% fireballs on occasion and that can be horribly obnoxious.


    Oh so many skills

    The lesser part of the game consists of travelling through the towns of Aventuria, seeking new quests, shopkeepers that can sell you loot, or physicians to heal your wounds. This is fairly straight forward, when travelling you see a parchment with a map painted on it, and to get to a new location you simply press on the button with the name of said location on it. This moves you to a new screen, a basic camera shot of a city with a few merchants to talk to and possible quest givers. It’s a curious take on merchants, but I appreciate the beautiful graphics these scenes are made out of, often with over the top colours and sunrays. They supply moments of calm and beauty in a world otherwise rotten to the core.


    The map is simple, but functional

    The visual design in Blackguards is quite exquisite. Every battlemap is carefully designed uniquely for whatever purpose it may have, there is no re-using old maps in this game. Granted, some maps are more interesting than others; a large open space with a lake in the middle isn’t quite as fun to play as a long pathway inside a cave with stalagmites and stalactites, the appropriate of which will fall on your head if you leave a character below it at the wrong moment. The colour palette and sunrays I mentioned earlier aren’t unique to the cities either; every map looks amazing, with different kinds of filters tech savvy people could probably name.

    As I mentioned earlier, the city views offer calm beauty every once in a while, when you return to a city after exploring or dungeoncrawling. Every city is unique with its own set of buildings, town squares and people. Some are larger than others, the southern capital of Mengbilla is made of multiple camera shots, each as beautiful as the other.


    The cities offer a moment of calm and beauty

    I have heard some people say they dislike the way Blackguards has handled this particular part of the game, that the curious colour palette and the over the top sunrays are bad for the game; I could not disagree more. I think it is important companies try to do something other than the 50 shades of brown norm.

    The music and voice acting in Blackguards are amazing. The music especially is really good, look it up, but I think the actors are central in the delivery of the story, which can sometimes be a bit.. meeh. Don’t get me wrong, it’s by no means a bad story, it’s quite standard high fantasy with old evils being awakened and unlikely heroes being forced to fight the evil and a plot twist and love and betrayal and all that, but if it hadn’t been for the way Naurim say’s “Let’s kill them all!” or Zurbaran the mage tries to flirt with powerful women way out of his league, I might very well have turned the sound off and started a podcast before the end of the game, even despite the amazing music.



    I think I have been quite positive in my review, but unfortunately I don’t think the game came all the way through. It gave me about 30 hours of a comination of fun, despair and anger and the random number generator that just wouldn’t let anyone kill anyone else for 15 minutes. I say 30 hours, I never actually finished the game. I came to the final battle of the second chapter in about 10 hours, but stopped because I was being handed by arse by a giant louse. Later I pushed through and put another 10 hours into it, until I reached a dragon that was handing my arse to me. Then I, to my shame, retreated and just left the dragon and pushed through the story for the benefit of this review, which took another 10 hours.


    I still wake up screaming after this battle

    I got to the last or second to last battle and realised to my horror, I was having no fun anymore! I had already before turned the difficulty to easy because my arse was by this point a common commodity to be given to me all the time and I just couldn’t get through some battles without it, but here it just stopped. I like to think of myself as a decent tactician, but some battles in this game feels more like there is a single correct way of winning them rather than something you can win if you possess a good tactical mind.

    My point is that while I certainly enjoyed myself for most of the game, it does have a tendency to make me hate it because it has a very bad grasp on difficulty. I kind of have to assume a game is wilfully too difficult when I barely get through a level on easy difficulty with a single hero alive.


    7/10


    Mhaedros

    Mirror's Edge
    Mirror's Edge
    Mirror's Edge



    Hello readers. I am very happy and proud to present to you my first review as part of Gamers Gazette team. This time I will review one very interesting first-person game called Mirror's Edge. Happy reading!


    Basic introduction

    "Once the city used to pulse with energy. Dirty and dangerous, but alive and wonderful. Now its something else"- Faith Connors, opening lines of Mirror's edge

    Mirror's Edge was developed by DICE and published by EA. It was released in November 2008 for Xbox 360 and Playstation 3, with windows version following in January 2009. It is a first-person puzzle game with shooter elements, with main focus being on parkour.

    System requirements (from Steam page):

    • Supported OS: Microsoft Windows® XP SP2 or Vista
    • Processor: 3.0 GHz or faster
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM or more
    • Graphics: DirectX® 9.0c compatible video card, Shader Model 3.0 required. Video card must have 256 MB, NVIDIA GeForce 6800 or better
    • Hard Drive: 8 GB free space
    • Sound: DirectX® 9.0c compatible sound card
    • INTERNET CONNECTION, ONLINE AUTHENTICATION AND ACCEPTANCE OF END USER LICENSE AGREEMENT REQUIRED TO PLAY. TO ACCESS ONLINE FEATURES, YOU MUST REGISTER ONLINE. ONLY ONE REGISTRATION IS AVAILABLE PER GAME. EA ONLINE TERMS & CONDITIONS AND FEATURE UPDATES CAN BE FOUND AT www.ea.com. YOU MUST BE 13+ TO REGISTER WITH EA ONLINE.



    Story

    Catalyst for story- death of Robert Pope and you can see Faith's sister in background (yes, she's a cop)

    Mirror's Edge is set in unnamed utopian city, controlled by totalitarian dictatorship. Now mind you, this isn't usual totalitarian dictatorship, as people seem to do fairly well, crime is almost non-existent and life is comfortable. To fool people further, sham elections and trials take place. However, some people still want liberties back and since communication is under government control, runners appear (note that this is all before Mirror's edge events) as independent lines of communication, using rooftops to make their way across town.

    This all creates stage for Faith, young Asian-European female runner, to appear on stage. After training mission, event pictured above takes place- Faith's sister, who happens to be a cop, is framed for Pope's murder- Pope being politician, who planned to bring liberties back. And as it happened, also Faith's family friend. That sets tone for rest of game, where Faith tries to get to bottom of this conspiracy. During the story we also see flashbacks of what caused Faith to be a runner.

    Faith's character is quite well done, with she being smart and resourceful, but rest of cast (maybe with exception of Merc, ex-runner and Faith's boss) feels quite bland.

    What I like about the story is the cutscenes- they are animated instead of using same visual style as in-game view. Having female character as lead in this game was also spot on (to be fair, male character would've felt too generic for such setting, making game a lot worse in generic department) Also the setting is excellent- totalitarian government controlled utopia? To be fair, in modern society, this kind of thing is actually real threat, which is why I am actually bit disappointed in story- it had potential to be so much more, even as first part of planned (but later scrapped (current reboot is prequel to Mirror's Edge)) trilogy, to go more in depth of possible dangers of modern society as such, yet it managed to cough up quite generic plot of saving family member, that some parts just don't make any sense and not to mention, game ends with cliffhanger. Sure, it wasn't meant as girl takes down totalitarian dictatorship story, but it doesn't mean it shouldn't throw some more background in besides some vague mentions and elevator messages.

    Another grief point was that despite game focusing so much on runners, only 2 active runners sides you are seen and one of those 2 only in 1 cutscene. And the fact that you could see "plot twist" coming from almost at start.

    Still, even with the focus on the generic plotline, it still managed to make you think at some points, such as would you prefer comfortable life with someone else in control of it or possibly uncomfortable, but free life. Also, despite shortcomings, it managed to lay pretty decent base for rest of planned trilogy.


    Gameplay

    "We call ourselves Runners. We exist on the edge between the gloss and the reality: the mirror's edge. We keep out of trouble, out of sight, and the cops don't bother us. Runners see the city in a different way"- Faith on runners

    Gameplay is focused mainly on parkour. To help the parkour, you have "runner vision", which makes things you can use seem red- do note, however, that in hard difficulty it is disabled.

    But back to parkour- I really like how well its done here. You need speed, timing, quick reflexes and thinking to navigate map. At first it might seem, that game lacks on accuracy department, but that's the point here- you need accuracy to move trough puzzles. That said, however, game is remarkably forgiving for beginners, with you being able to slouch trough most of the campaign with slow tempo.

    But what makes the game fun is the fact that you can very easily go trough most of the game without stopping, if you get the hang of things. Wallrun, hop fences, all with speed and elegance. I consider this one of great examples of easy to play, but hard to master games. Also many settings offer you more than one way to achieve goal, leaving it up to you as player to find best possible solution.

    At times you are also harassed by cops, which makes combat necessary at times, though with clever enough movement, you can get past cops without fighting them. There are some areas where fighting is inevitable however. Combat system is actually part of parkour- sure, you can just stand to a cop firing his pistol and try to punch him, but it most likely won't work. Your best bet is to keep moving and stinging your enemies, divide them and beat them up. For beginners, slide kick is probably best move, but not by far only one. However, without experience, combat seems quite limited and repetitive and its harder to master than parkour. You can also use guns guards drop or you get when you disarm them, but I personally find it much more fun to try and find ways to take them down without guns. Plus there is achievement for finishing campaign without guns, so there is that. I thus truly like the developers decision of drop Faith carrying her own weapon idea.

    If you do plan on using weapons, consider that each weapon affects agility- pistol and one-handed smg allow you do most free-running with you being able to do most stunts, SMG and shotgun make you bit slower and you cannot perform stunts while carrying them and LMG-s cause you to walk.

    In addition to story, there are also time trial mode, where you can try different courses on maps you already raced trough on (illustrating multiple options to complete tasks). You can also try and finish entire story chapters in time attack and compare your best times with world's leaderboards.
    So there is much to do here!


    Sound & Graphics
    First the graphics- for 2008 game, I consider them very nice. I do agree they seem bit pixelated, but I have never cared much about that. Also, graphics here affect gameplay directly- thus the bland white cityscape, which makes it easier for player to see "runner vision" targets and add extra difficulty in hard mode. Also, considering the setting, its perfect- beautiful on outside, but it also makes you bit uneasy, because it seems so.. sterile.. unnatural even- no dirt, not even dust. It gives you impression of having beautiful prison cell- or at least it should. But maybe I'm just overthinking here. Either way, I still enjoy graphics a lot in this one.

    Now, the sound. Music is great- in addition to iconic "Still Alive" (not to be confused with Portal song with same name), game music is great- it amplifies every situation without getting disturbing and at times, you don't even know its there until you turn it off. Very stimulating music.
    Voice acting, however, is quite dull and bland. Sure, some characters like Faith and Merc have fairly good voice acting (I really enjoy Faith voice acting), then other characters voice actors seem to push it too much, making voice acting seem out of place.


    Summary
    Mirror's Edge is excellent game when you get a hang of it and even when you don't, it still offers hours of fun. However, bland voice acting, too generic story with plot twist seen from start and story that doesn't make sense at times take a lot away from this game.
    I still recommend it, just for sheer fun of finding paths, where you can fluently slide from one objective to another, as its quite unique experience in gaming.

    Score: 7/10


    Medal of Honor
    Medal of Honor
    Medal of Honor


    Medal of Honor (2010)
    Set in the mountains of Afghanistan, Medal of Honor takes you through the eyes and ears of several soldiers in the opening months of the war. The world and level design created by Danger Close is quite graphically impressive and somewhat beautiful, despite the arid and barren geographical location. The level of detail present in the gameplay is superb, and really helps to draw you in. The lighting and textures present in the game standout as among the best in first person shooters that I have seen, and add a degree of immersion into the game that only sets it above competing shooters.
    One of the strongest parts of this game is the missions available for play. Every mission includes a variety of objectives necessary in the successful completion of the level, and the missions themselves do contain enough variety to keep the game interesting. As you are playing the game mostly as Tier One operators, the missions mostly include missions appropriate to soldiers of that particular skillset. These missions are mostly behind-the-lines type missions including sabotage, rescue, raiding terrorist camps and villages, and more. Outside of the two operators, the player also plays as a Ranger and an Apache pilot, lending more mission types to the game and even more variety. The missions and level designs are all very nicely made and executed, including one particular mission where you, as the player, can really sense the desperation of the moment as you and your team struggle to fight off waves of enemies while the ammunition slowly drains and the cover available dwindles into nearly nothing. The missions are fresh, and rather fun for a first person shooter, and the fact that it is based on real world events really adds a bit of realism and emotion to the story.
    Of course, Medal of Honor is a first person shooter, and therefore a discussion of the combat and gameplay is a must. As pretty much everyone is well aware of how the mechanics of a first person shooter are, I will instead discuss some different things that the game incorporates. The player has access to two main weapons at once, typically weapons that are given to them at the start of the mission. These come pre-loaded, and cannot be customized before missions, but they are tailored to specific missions, i.e., stealth missions come with silenced weapons. The player may also pick up weapons dropped by enemies along the way and use them, but they must drop a weapon in order to do this. When low on ammo for the two guns the player starts out with, it is possible to request ammo from members of your team and receive a huge, albeit somewhat unrealistic, amount of ammo, and can do this as many times in the mission as necessary; it is literally impossible to run out of ammunition in a mission. This only works for the US weapons, with your team members stating they cannot help you if you try to request ammo for an enemy weapon, which does add a little bit of realism to the game. The player also has access to a pistol (different for each player) and a knife. The pistol has unlimited ammunition, which does take a bit out of the realism. There are also other aspects to the combat that are unique to specific situations or missions, such as long range sniping sections, machine gun sections, and even one mission with you playing as the gunner in a helicopter (unfortunately the helicopter flies by itself). Helpful indicators are also present, such as when a headshot occurs on an enemy, and when a grenade is close by, red for dangerously close, and white for relative safe. A nice feature included is the “lean and peak”, which allows for the player to lean from behind cover slightly to get a look at the surroundings or to shoot at the enemy. While the AI is somewhat good compared to most FPS’, the combat is rather easy, even on harder difficulties, only really presenting a challenge when enemy combatants cannot be seen easily despite the hit indicator telling where the shots are coming from. At some points, it just feels like a turkey shoot rather than a battlefield, but since you are playing as elite soldiers, I suppose this is a way to make you look superior. In all fairness, a lot of first person shooters feel like the playable character is some sort of elite war machine, so at least for this game it is somewhat accurate.
    There are, unfortunately, some negative aspects to the game. For one, and this seems to be endemic to many first person shooters, there is very little to no character development. The playable characters never speak, and you rarely ever see what they actually look like. Even the non-playable characters are covered very lightly, receiving not much more than a shallow personality and whose dialogue mostly consists of giving commands. The game also does boil down to some cliché and somewhat unbelievable sequences, but this is not a serious issue. A more annoying problem is the sometimes confusing objectives, the HUD utterly unhelpful in these instances in directing you to where you need to go, but again it should not be a huge issue unless you keep making the same mistake over and over. Only thing I particularly care about is the fact that you will never run out of ammunition for your weapons through the “ask for ammo” mechanic, which pretty much means you can just blaze away all your ammunition without any regard for conservation. The game is also, I feel, far too short at about five hours to justify the full price at release, but luckily I bought it recently for a sixth of the original price.
    Other positive aspects of the gameplay are also worthy of mentioning. For the most part, the game is graphically quite beautiful, though there are some instances where the scenery does “pop in” a bit. The tactics, actions, and other methods employed by the characters are incredibly realistic to actual combat operations, propping the game up quite a bit in my eyes. The combat can be quite immersive, with explosions really rattling the senses and the scene, complete with a sort of “ringing” when the explosions were close by. In fact the entire atmosphere of the game is one of the more superior aspects of the entire game, with a wonderful score provided by Ramin Djawadi (Game of Thrones) and the sounds (gunfire in particular) and voice acting being quite superb. Djawadi delivers a cinematic score that really helps the game feel like an interactive movie set in the opening days of Afghanistan rather than a game. Another interesting aspect to the game is how the missions play off one another, often leading directly into the next mission as the game switches between characters fluidly as they all participate in the same operation within miles of each other. This is a cool little feature that actually really kind of grabbed me, especially during one particular day in the gameplay. Another cool little thing that also got my attention was that some weapons had different “skins” in campaign, such as the AK-47, suggesting the haphazard nature of the enemy weapons coming from different makers (different woods, stocks, etc being used depending on the manufacturer). It’s not a huge deal, but it is kind of cool to see rather than seeing everyone armed with the same weapon in the same condition over and over.
    Overall, it is clear that the game was meant to be an attempt to take the Medal of Honor series into the modern day, and the War in Afghanistan was likely chosen to bring a bit of emotional depth to the game for the current generation of gamers. The game is fun, and for the most part well made. I am aware of some glitches the game suffered from, but I did not experience any. Maybe most have been fixed since release, and no longer trouble the game. Regardless of its troubles, I would say this game is more than worth playing, and the emotional ride is a well-crafted story marred only by little things that in the end do not cause much harm to the enjoyment of the game. If you can find this game cheaply and you enjoy first person shooters (especially if you like the more recent Battlefield games), I would recommend this game.
    8/10

    (The limited edition for the PS3 also comes with a re-mastered version of the 2002 game Medal of Honor: Frontline, which was actually my main reason for getting this game)


    Gen. Chris

    Medal of Honor Warfighter
    Medal of Honor Warfighter
    Medal of Honor Warfighter


    Medal of Honor: Warfighter (2012)
    (Spoilers for the first game ahead)


    Continuing the story after the loss of Rabbit, Medal of Honor Warfighter takes you back into the fight by beginning where Medal of Honor left off. This time, you take control of two SEALS, Preacher and Stump, as they fight their way across the world.
    The gameplay of Warfighter remains very similar to its predecessor, and as such there is little reason to really discuss much of that without heavily repeating myself. So instead, straight to the positives and negatives. For one, Warfighter is even more graphically beautiful than its predecessor, fully utilizing the Frostbite 2.0 engine in order to bring impressive graphics to the game. The cutscenes specifically are among the very best I have ever seen, while the gameplay itself is also very well done. The entire atmosphere remains satisfying, with even more realism than before, with gunfire, explosions, and pretty much everything else combat-related really making the game one where you really feel like you are in a combat situation. The audio, comprising of excellent voice acting as well as the return of Ramin Djawadi as composer, also really helps add to the scope of the game. Missions are interesting, if a bit disjointed, including some vehicle missions that, with the exception of one, were really well made. And the game HEAVILY improves in one regard that I really criticized in the previous game; character development. The game shows how the life of an operator can affect his personal life, with the main character Preacher (returning from the previous game) on the verge of divorce due to his lifestyle. This was a welcome change for me.

    There are unfortunately several negatives that do present themselves over the course of game play. The most obvious one is the length of the campaign; roughly five to six hours. This is frustrating, as the campaign left me with wanting more. This seems to be a prevailing problem with the newer generation of first person shooters, the developers of which seem to be focusing more on multiplayer rather than single player. I would prefer developers focus on single player but I seem to be in the minority in that regard, and therefore we continue to get these short campaigns. Within this campaign lies a rather convoluted main plot; whereas the side story of the operators and the effect on their family life was an extremely welcome addition to the character development, the main story is just muddled by the constant location change. This is in stark contrast to the previous game, which focused on a single campaign in Afghanistan, whereas this game seemed to try to fit as many "real world" events into it and try to piece it together into one coherent story. It stumbled in that regard. The previous game was built on real world operations in Afghanistan, while this attempts to replicate that success in some ways but mostly failing in its goal. The game also suffers from very linear game play as well as essentially copying much of its content from its predecessor, which would be fine in some ways but given its shortcomings in other regards it only serves to bring it down. The one vehicle mission mentioned earlier was very, very scripted, to the point where it felt like I did not even need to be there. The only really new mechanic that was introduced into the game involves door breaching, where you can choose the method to do it as well as gain new ways by gaining sufficient head shots on previous breaches (time slows down for them, allowing for easy kills). The problem? In the end, it does not matter. None of the methods really effect the time you are given for slow motion nor disorient the enemies any more or less. So in the end its pretty much a useless new mechanic, and not really worth the time needed to select a different method of breach: the ones you have at the beginning of the game will suffice throughout the campaign. There are also a few glitches that have plagued others, but by the time I played it I believe the patches have fixed most of those problems. The only major glitch I encountered was one that made it impossible to load a mission where I left off, so I had to start the mission over. More of an inconvenience (it was the final mission anyway) than a real problem.

    So yes, this game does have problems. Many of them, in fact. But is the game fun? Very much so, and it is worth your time especially now that it is so relatively cheap. This game is far from great, but I do not believe it deserves the harsh reviews it has received. Again, the game has likely improved a lot through patches since release, so the game others have reviewed is not the game I have played. This is a fun and exciting, albeit short, campaign, and a solid game overall. And even though it failed in many regards, I believe it is still worth a play. It is just a shame that its failures have likely stalled or perhaps even cancelled future releases.

    6.7/10




    Gen. Chris

    Grand Theft Auto V (re-release)
    Grand Theft Auto V
    Grand Theft Auto V

    Grand Theft Auto V (PS4, 2014)
    Nine years after a botched robbery attempt, Michael de Santa (real name Townsley) lives a relatively quiet life in the city of Los Santos under witness protection with his wife and two children. Though he lives a life of luxury, his life is far from perfect. Also living in Los Santos is Franklin Clinton, a young gangbanger who aspires for a better life and who works as a repo man for a less than credible car dealership. A chance meeting between the two as well as a misunderstanding leads to Michael and Franklin being forced into committing a high profile heist in order to pay off the resulting debt. The heist catches the attention of one Trevor Phillips, a former associate of Michael’s in robbing banks and who believes Michael to be dead. Traveling from the desert town of Sandy Shores to Los Santos and discovering that Michael is indeed alive, Trevor’s sudden appearance causes the worlds of both Franklin and Michael to unravel as they both must deal with the trouble it brings.

    --
    After a five year absence, Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto franchise came back with a bang in Grand Theft Auto V. Set in the fictional State of San Andreas and in a way an HD remake of GTA San Andreas, the game takes place mostly in the city of Los Santos and the surrounding desert, based on Los Angeles and its own arid climate. The scope of the game is absolutely extraordinary, and feels like a living and breathing world no different than ours. Though not the same as San Andreas that featured three cities and multiple diverse locations and small towns, GTA makes up for this in the exceedingly beautiful city and landscapes that are present in the game. Where you are fleeing from the police in the Los Santos canal (based on the LA canal), cruising through Vinewood Hills in a fancy sports car, or visiting a cult in the mountains north of the city, the game has practically everything you could ask for in a city and a state. The draw distance in the game has also improved to the point where you can see things from a much greater distance than you could in previous games, really enhancing the beauty of the world. The level of detail in the game is absolutely mind blowing, and simply does not disappoint. Rockstar really threw everything into creating a masterpiece of a world for the players to play in. The map is huge, and with so many places to explore, you will almost always find something new.
    What almost immediately sets this game apart from its predecessors is the characters. Unlike in previous games where the player took control of a single protagonist (with the exception of the DLC content of GTA IV), the player has control of three interesting and unique characters that all have a story of their own. Though you initially only have control of Franklin and Michael, Trevor becomes available later in the game, and Rockstar takes full advantage of the new system. Each character has their own missions (main and side missions), where only they participate, while all characters can also take part in many of the missions, where the game will either offer you the option of switching between all the characters or making the switch for you. This allows for the player to build a diverse set of characters each with their own strengths and weaknesses while also allowing for the player to participate in all aspects of a single mission in a more realistic way than previous games where the main character did everything. Switching between the three characters is easy, and only limited by the point of the story you are in (some characters are unavailable at certain points) or limited by the point in the particular mission the player is doing. Each character has their own safe house, car, relationships, skills, money amounts, and more that all make them unique and fun. Additionally, with all characters available you can drop in on them at any time and see what they were doing just before you take control. This can range from Michael coming out of a movie theater to Trevor waking up hung over and confused and in the middle of nowhere. Every character has a different personality and a different sense of morality that creates an interesting story as well as gameplay possibilities. Finally, each character also has a “special ability” to utilize at certain key moments: Franklin can slow down time while driving and increase his driving ability, Michael can enter a sort of ‘bullet time’, and Trevor can enter a state that allows him to deal double the damage while taking half the damage he normally would. In addition to each character having their own strengths and weaknesses, having three characters allows for the player to engage in three separate yet linked stories, allowing each character to grow on their own when they are not interacting with each other.
    Missions and their effect on character and story progression has been changed slightly from previous games. For the most part, most missions no longer reward the player with money or respect or any sort of tangible benefit. A lot of the missions involve the specific character’s person lives, but many of them involve the overall story; the pursuit of money. The point of most of these missions is the groundwork towards pulling off increasingly more difficult heists throughout the state. These heists are the main way for the player to make money, and each character has their own money amounts. For the heists, the amount of money obtained depends on the quality of participating NPC’s. For exampe, for a heist the player can recruit people a selection of people to act as an extra gunman, a hacker, a getaway driver, etc that all have their own levels of skills that can affect the outcome of a mission. Their skills directly affect their ability in the mission, and making a poor choice such as a bad driver could cause you to lose a significant chunk of money should they screw up. Their skills also determine how much of a cut they can get from the heist, which is something to consider. Additionally, these heists are different in that the player can choose two ways to do the heist, typically simplified to a “loud and dumb” way versus a “quiet and smart” way. Also, in an improvement over its predecessor, GTA V has checkpoints during missions. Failure will not mean starting over from the very beginning of the mission. The benefit of this cannot be overstated at all, as some missions can take a very long time to complete, and failure near the end would be enormously frustrating.
    Side missions are also numerous and diverse. These are known as “Strangers and Freaks”, involving the character interacting with a large variety of people throughout San Andreas, from a paparazzi trying to get a perfect compromising picture of a celebrity to an exercise enthusiast that you try to keep up with in varying activities (running, biking, swimming). Each character has their own side missions with different people and some of the Strangers and Freaks are shared between characters. Additionally, the game has a number of “random events” that can occur throughout the game. These can range from catching a wallet thief to driving a person somewhere to rescuing someone from a dangerous situation. These can reward you with small amounts of cash, a person to participate in side activities with (such as golf), or even a new person to add to your heist crews.
    Overall the missions are fun and fresh for the franchise. You can also go back and replay the missions whenever you want in order to take advantage of the new “full completion” mechanism that offers increased challenges in completing each mission. There are around a hundred and thirty missions and side missions, and fifty random events, lending the game a huge story and amount of side activities to play through.
    As far as other facets of gameplay are concerned, Grand Theft Auto V does not disappoint even in the slightest. As implied by the title, driving cars as well as operating other vehicles is a large component of the game, and features an (in my opinion) improved driving mechanic. Grand Theft Auto IV was criticized for its driving and Rockstar seemed to have listened, making the driving a bit more forgiving than before and allowing for cars to take a significant amount of damage before becoming inoperable. It’s still possible to really mess up the vehicle in one hit and make it difficult to drive, such as a wheel on your car getting jammed under a damaged wheel well, or getting your tires popped and the rubber coming off, but overall it seems more difficult to completely wreck a car to the point where it will not start. Some players are not happy about the controls and physics being relaxed a bit, but as far as I’m concerned it makes for a much more enjoyable experience.
    In addition to cars, other vehicles are heavily featured. Planes make a return due to the incredible size of the map, and with a large variety of those and helicopters, it is easy to quickly travel around the map at certain stages of the game. There are also two main military aircraft, an attack helicopter and a fighter plane, available if the player is willing to take the risk in stealing them from the military base north of the city. Boats and other watercraft are also available, with the notable addition of a single-seat submersible that is used during a heist but is also available later for just diving.
    Combat remains similar to the Grand Theft Auto IV with the addition of far more weapons to play around with as well as an improved cover system. With several categories (pistols, assault rifles, machine guns, sniper rifles, heavy weapons, etc) available, each category also has several different weapons to choose from with varying degrees of power and capabilities. Getting the weapons is easy as you can acquire weapons from dead enemies or by visiting the various gun stores around the state that offer weapons available for purchase depending on what stage you are at in the game. You can also purchase five different levels of body armor to protect yourself, with appropriate levels of cost for each one (ligher armor being cheaper, for example). With such a large variety of weapons comes a new way to switch guns: the weapons wheel. Pressing the appropriate button will bring up the wheel and slow down (but not stop) the gameplay as you select the weapon you desire. This makes it simple to change from a shotgun for enemies that are just a few feet away to a sniper rifle to pick off an enemy significantly farther away. The combat also allows the player to take cover from enemy fire by running behind an object and “sticking” to it. You can then blind fire around the corner or come out briefly to aim properly. The only REAL problem is the fact that the shooting reticle is somewhat small and can be difficult to see in certain conditions, especially while driving and firing, while the AI has the magical ability to shoot accurately at moving targets in a car from a great distance. Overall, the combat is fun but perhaps a bit too easy, especially with higher levels of shooting skill where you can headshot people at a hundred yards or more away with a pistol. Also, wounded enemies will no longer try to retreat out of the line of fire, but will instead fire at you from the ground. The game also takes into account headshots from the enemy on the character; it is now possible for one shot to kill you. Even still, the combat is rather fun and the enemy AI does seem to be substantially improved, if a bit too much improved.
    Speaking of combat, the police of course return to the franchise, and they return with a vengeance. The police are quite trigger happy and will search for you quite thoroughly. When given a wanted level the player must attempt to get out of sight of the police. When no police are nearby, the player is considered hiding, and must stay away from any cops and their cone of vision (established on the mini map). If spotted again, the police chase after the player, but if the player remains out of sight long enough the police will give up. There are varying levels of difficulty, represented by five stars, and with each extra star it becomes more difficult to escape as faster law enforcement vehicles and helicopters join the pursuit. At higher levels the enemies are better armed and armored, and substantially more difficult to kill. The helicopters also function as platforms for men to take shots with carbines at the player, or even rope in four officers into the immediate area. The police have substantially better AI than before, and this comes at a cost of more aggressive police who can be called in in seconds by witnesses with cell phones. The AI is actually quite something to behold, with police attempting to box you in or do the pit maneuver to bring the chase to an end. You will hardly ever see them on the streets outside of wanted levels, however, and if you do they will typically be chasing other criminals.
    Outside of the missions and the story overall, there is a large amount of features available for the player. Featuring a return to the franchise is the ability to customize both your character, your cars, and even your weapons to a limited degree. You can buy a variety of clothes to alter the appearance of your character at several clothes stores. You can change these clothing arrangements at that character’s safe house. It is also possible to customize vehicles, from changing the color to changing the suspension to even armoring the car so that it could take more hits/bullets. Characters can also visit several barbershops and tattoo parlors to change the physical appearance of each character. Finally, the guns themselves can be changed at a gun store by buying weapon modifications, which can be a silencer or an extended clip or even changing the color of the gun (though only two additional colors are available in addition to the standard black color. Though there is not as much customization overall in the game compared to its predecessor San Andreas, GTA V does offer more than GTA IV.
    Another large feature of the game is the cell phone. Making a return from the previous game, the cell phone in GTA V allows each character to call and be called during the course of the game. The cell phone is important in several missions, enabling the player to receive updates outside of the missions and during, and allows the character to access the internet and even play the stocks online for a bit of extra cash. This cash can be put towards buying more customization for the characters or even toward the purchase of properties that can be used to boost each characters’ income.

    Though the game came out over a year ago and already broken numerous records and won pretty much every award under the son, Rockstar decided to take advantage of the new capabilities of the PS4 and XBO, and eventually the PC, to re-release an even better game, complete with improved graphics and even many updated or added on features towards the gameplay itself. On the Playstation 4 this manifests in several ways. Rockstar utilizes the remote itself to add a new dimension to the game. The built in speaker in the controller is used for all cellphone and radio chatter that occurs in the game should the player wish it, ensuring the the sound itself does not mix much with the in game sounds such as shooting. The lightbar on the PS4 is also used, changing different colors depending on the situation. All three characters are given their own light color, represented by their in game colors represented in mission icons and other ways. Michael's light turns blue, Franklin's green, and Trevor orange. The light bar is also used when the police are after the player, and flashes between red and blue intermittently. While none of these features are particularly ground breaking, it does show that Rockstar considers the features of the Playstation 4 and used them to their full potential.
    The graphics are of course improved on in the transition from last generation to current generation, but Rockstar took it a step further by adding other new features as well. Players now have the option of playing in first person mode, a first for the franchise, and one that adds so much to the game. While it can be an awkward transition, the feature makes the world feel more alive, and even changes combat and driving quite significantly. The world simply feels much more alive when you feel like you are actually in the game, and there is no denying that it is a significant improvement over its predecessor. There are also new, smaller things to do in the game itself, but those will not be discussed as they are fun to discover all on their own.

    I could go on and on about the game and its features, so instead I will wrap it up. Grand Theft Auto V is an amazing step forward for the Grand Theft Auto franchise. It builds upon the work of its predecessors and improves them (or brings them back) and even manages to introduce some new features. The atmosphere of the game is fantastic, with the world feeling almost too real, and the story can really suck you in. Of particular note is the weather effects, which are sometimes scripted into a mission to provide a dark or intimidating atmosphere for the plot, and with the new graphics of the PS4 effects such as rain look even better than before. The addition of more than one protagonist is a fresh take on the franchise, and ensures that the story never grows old as each character has their own motives in what they do. The combat and evasion of enemy NPCs is fun, though perhaps a bit easy. The writing and the voice acting are superb, the best of the series in my opinion. The soundtrack, featuring both real world music as well as an original score, adds much to the scope of the game. The re-release also adds new music overall to the game, which is a positive for many but for someome such as myself it does not matter much. The game is of course not without controversy, including a full and interactive torture scene, and has managed to offend pretty much everyone with its satirical look at aspects of American life present in dialogue, the world, and even the radio. And the ending…Well, the ending can play out in three different ways, offering the player a choice in how the journey ends. Really the only criticisms I can offer is that the heists are the primary way of making money, which can be a slight drag early on in the game. The countryside is also mostly unused, specifically the most northern part of the map, which I feel is a waste as the developers clearly put a lot of time and effort into making these places. Much of it is mountainous or desert, and while it does add to the realism of the game it is simply wasted space. Many of the places are so unused that I have significant areas of unexplored map even by the end of the game, and there plenty of things to explore. But perhaps the point is to explore them on your own, or use them in GTA Online. But even with these small negatives, there is no denying that Grand Theft Auto V is quite possibly one of the best games of all time, and is certainly one of my favorites. This game is simply breathtakingly awesome, and having now played it twice, I still want to play it again. It is that fun, and that good.



    10/10



    Enjoy some of my gameplay





    Assassin's Creed Unity Dead Kings
    Assassin's Creed Unity Dead Kings
    Assassin's Creed Unity Dead Kings


    Assassin's Creed Unity Dead Kings (2015)

    Set a few weeks after Assassin’s Creed Unity, Dead Kings sees the return of Arno Dorian to Revolutionary France, this time set in the small town of Franciade on the outskirts of Paris. The location of the tombs of the French royal family, Franciade is the target of raiders and pillagers. Arno must travel deep into the catacombs of Franciade to find the artifact that is currently being hunted by none other than Napoleon.
    As this is simply a DLC the review will be mercifully short compared to that of the main game, so first up is the positives of the game. For one, the DLC is actually rather impressive in its size. The city of Franciade consists of five districts, two of which are the catacombs underneath the city. The size of the above ground portion is rather large by itself, roughly a quarter of the size of Paris in the main game, which the underground portion makes it larger but is mostly tunnels and small and large chambers. Despite its smaller size it is nonetheless just as graphically pretty as Paris, and feels just as alive. The city also has a different atmosphere, which is much darker than Paris and fits the theme of the DLC as well as distinguishes itself as its own. The atmosphere really is one of the coolest aspects of the DLC, and Ubisoft Montpellier should be commended for making it so dark and brooding. Another large positive of Dead Kings is that it allows the player to really make use of a fully upgraded Arno in a different adventure than Unity, while obtaining the cool new Guillotine Gun. If stealth is your preferred approach than Dead Kings will definitely not disappoint, as virtually the whole underground portions are stealthy incursions into the catacombs, though stealth is not absolutely necessary if you are a guns-blazing kind of player. Aiding this in one small way is a new mechanic that involves raider leaders; if Arno successfully kills the leader, the raiders in the area will not fight, and instead run away. Stealth is certainly encouraged here, as a sneaky assassination of a leader can mean no fighting at all. Although this feature can be a bit glitchy at times, it does fulfill its purpose and again sets it apart from Unity. Another good aspect of the game is the collectibles and extra activities make a return, with Franciade having their own side “Franciade Stories” missions, murder mysteries, and other things to do once the DLC is completed.
    However, the game does have some negative aspects, some of them shared with Unity. For one the story of Dead Kings is not overly interesting. Without spoiling much it simply does not have the payoff of completion, and simply does not seem overly important in the grand scheme of Arno’s story. It also does not really feel like its own adventure, but rather a sequence that was cut out of the main game. This is in direct contrast with previous DLC adventures such as Tyranny of King Washington and Freedom Cry whose stories were completely separate and very distinct from their base games. It feeling like a cut sequence is also not helped by the fact that it is even named sequence thirteen, which you can begin after completing the story in Unity by simply taking a carriage fast travel to Franciade. This also makes the story of Dead Kings feel very anticlimactic, as the story was easily ended in Unity yet this feels like Ubisoft’s way of saying “No wait, THIS is Arno’s ending for the French Revolution”. And overall, like Unity, Arno’s adventure just does not feel as interesting as it could have been. There are other more minor negatives, such as the somewhat glitchy nature in certain areas, as well as the refillable lantern that is needed for some parts of the game such as bugs that can attack Arno without the lantern, or puzzles. The puzzles part is alright, but overall the lantern feels unnecessary. The guillotine gun is fun, but overall useless if you are a stealth-minded player as its secondary function obviously makes it quite unsuitable for staying quiet.
    Overall, Dead Kings is not a bad DLC. It, like Unity, could have just been so much better. Again, Arno’s adventure was simply underwhelming over both Unity and Dead Kings, and the ending of this DLC is simply not fulfilling. But the game is still a fun extra adventure in Revolutionary France. The gameplay is still solid, the exploration is fun, and it still has the same quality audio and graphical features that were a huge plus for Unity. The soundtrack alone is quite a treat to listen to, and the city, despite its atmosphere and some familiarity with Paris, is very cool to look at. The guillotine gun and the new enemies were a big plus as well. But overall, the game simply feels unnecessary. Luckily, due to the huge mess that Unity was at launch, Dead Kings was free, and honestly I feel that that helped it tremendously. If you did enjoy Unity, even only a little bit, there is no reason to not play this DLC. I just hope, in some way, that we do see Arno and Revolutionary France again, as the whole setting was simply not utilized in the way it could have been.
    7/10





    Year in Review
    Year in Review
    Year in Review
    2014 has, according to many been a terrible year for gaming. Ubisoft dropped a pile of unoptimised poop (Assassin’s Creed Unity) in the laps of their loving fanbase, and further released one game with hype so plentiful literally nothing could have lived up to it despite being a decent GTA clone (Watch_Dogs), and another that was exactly the same as the last game in the series, only with more framerate issues and a new map (Far Cry 4). Thief was released and while I doubt anyone thought it would live up to the shadow of it’s predecessors, many people disliked it a lot for what it pretended to be, but couldn’t quite achieve.

    Gamergate happened, for better or for worse depending on your point of view, but I think everyone can agree the events leading up to it, the harassment and the threats, were a dark spot for the industry. I’m not taking sides in the debate, but to go to those lengths, to actually threaten a real person is to lose any credibility one might previously have had.

    But why Mhaedros, are you here to make us look back with regret and pain? Is your article just going to list all the failures of 2014? Well no, of course not! I’m here to talk about the good times! My own good times anyway.


    Alien Isolation

    I don’t think many people expected Alien Isolation to be quite so...Alieny, or Isolationey for that matter. It took a look at the rulebook, “Alien games must be based on Aliens rather than Alien, Alien games must have guns and fast paced action”, it sniggered and it did the reverse. A slow paced terror simulator, having you slowly sneak through a 25 hour game with an immortal Xenomorph looking over your shoulder the whole way through. People probably expected Colonial Marines 2, with a launch as successful as Rome 2, and what they got was innovative, good gameplay. I don’t expect everyone to like Isolation, it is a very tedious game what with a punishing save system and the creeping feeling of helplessness and, well isolation, but I do expect everyone to be happy that CA and maybe especially SEGA had the courage to make and publish this game. SEGA being SEGA obviously had to release a sub-par Sonic game to make up for the praise they received.


    South Park the Stick of Truth

    While Ubisoft spent the year making one turd after the other, they also published South Park the Stick of Truth. You might think Uplay at this stage, but lo! Uplay isn’t necessary to play it! You might think bug riddled mess, but no! It’s a great game! I think what makes Stick of Truth a success is that the creators of South Park, Trey Parker and Matt Tray, were closely involved in the makings and that it looks so similar to an actual episode of South Park. If you put one next to the other it would be difficult to say which was which. But not only does it contain the iconic art style and the vulgar yet witty humour we South Park fans enjoy, it also has a really competent turnbased combat system! That’s just as vulgar as the rest of the game! I’m super cereal. Whether you play a warrior, a mage or a jew doesn’t matter, you’ll have a blast farting your opponents to submission, whether they be other children, aliens or homeless people. That said, this is not a game for everyone. It is rather short and it the idea of farting people into submission isn’t amusing to you (as if anyone thought that wasn’t amusing) you won’t be enjoying it, despite the great combat.


    Middle Earth Shadow of Mordor

    Shadow of Mordor was a weird game for me to play, because on the one hand I really like Tolkien and really hate Peter Jacksons interpretation of Tolkien’s work and on the other the gameplay is so much fun. The story is essentially wank and wouldn’t be worth playing if it wasn’t for the really good Batman Arkham style combat and the Assassin’s Creedesque climbing and assassinations. Turns out Ubisoft wasn’t the company to deliver a good AC this year. But what really stands Shadow of Mordor out among the open world action adventures is the Nemesis system, the oh so wonderful Nemesis system. While the real antagonists of the game are boring and forgettable, I will never forget the orc that killed me while I was hunting information, and who rose through the ranks until he was a Warchief and how I on multiple occasions tried, but failed to kill him. Every time I would fail and he would kill me, he would gain some new traits, immune to ranged attacks, immune to stealth finishers. In the end I got him in single combat, after having killed all the orcs around him. And everyone that have played Shadow of Mordor have their very own stories of their very own vendettas, against randomly generated orcs! The Nemesis system is a strike of genius from Monolith and despite the horrid story I await whatever they make next with great expectations.


    The Banner Saga

    Seldom do games make me feel like the Banner Saga did, simply with some beautiful visuals and a small textbox saying “X has died”. The first time it happened I was thunderstruck, what kind of game would take X from me like that! I was hoping X would return, that he had simply hurt himself, but X was gone...And just like that the game had me. Most of the Banner Saga is essentially a long cutscene with amazing visuals and the occasional battle. The turnbased combat is a lot of fun, so much fun I went and downloaded the free multiplayer Banner Saga Factions after finishing the main game, just so I could play some more battles. But what really makes the Saga stand out is the grim reality of it all. The gods are dead and the world is falling apart and all you can do is try to survive, whether that means letting some villagers join your caravan to strengthen your numbers, or letting them starve because you can’t afford the extra food consumption. Heroes are given to you and taken away again, and losing them makes you feel. The abrupt ending was a bit disturbing, but what with the recent news of a sequel and the 9 amazing hours of fun and sorrow I put into it before the end, I’d say it’s worth playing.


    Wolfenstein the New Order

    So the New Order came. It, as Alien Isolation, took a look at the rules of modern FPS games. It looked at all the silly 5 hour long shooters that really only cater for multiplayer and it looked at the boring gunplay of so many games. And it put not one, but two shotguns in your hands and it told you “Look there? That’s a robot nazi army. Kill it”. And it was fun, oh so much fun. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced gunplay so fine as in Wolfenstein the New Order and I don’t think anyone expected it to be as good as it is, purely because we don’t get good single player games in the FPS genre anymore. And accompanying the joyful massacre was a soundtrack so good I still occasionally look it up and listen through it while working, not to mention the German covers of real songs from the 60s which are just beautiful. Wolfenstein the New Order is by far my favorite game of 2014 and my personal Game of the Year.


    Many say 2014 has been a really bad year in gaming, and in some ways that’s true, but if you look away from the large titles, away from the big franchises that ought to be, but aren’t dependable, I think it has been a really interesting year. We had a surge in oldschool RPGs with Divinity Original Sin and Wasteland 2, we had cool crowdfunded indies such as the Banner Saga and Blackguards and we even had one or two innovative AAA titles. All we can do now is close the chapter that was 2014, hopefully leaving some unpleasantness behind and look forward to the new year.


    Mhaedros


    Game of the Year Winners Results
    Winners
    Winners
    Finally, I am happy to bring you the results of the second annual Best Games competition here on Total War Center.




    1st Place: Rook, The Banner Saga
    2nd Place: Goat, Goat Simulator



    1st Place: Wolfenstein the New Order
    2nd Place: Far Cry 4



    1st Place: Child of Light
    2nd Place: Shovel Knight



    1st Place: The Banner Saga
    2nd Place: Ultimate General Gettysburg
    3rd Place: This War of Mine



    1st Place: Augustus Campaign, Rome II
    2nd Place: Art of War, Europa Universalis IV
    3rd Place: Viking Conquest, Mount and Blade Warband



    1st Place: Alien Isolation
    2nd Place: The Evil Within



    1st Place: Dragon Age: Inquisition
    2nd Place: South Park The Stick of Truth
    3rd Place: Divinity Original Sin



    1st Place: Banished
    2nd Place: Goat Simulator
    3rd Place: Football Manager 15



    1st Place: Football Manager 15
    2nd Place: FIFA 15
    3rd Place: NBA 2K15



    1st Place: Endless Legend
    2nd Place: Stronghold Crusader 2 & War in the West (tied)
    3rd Place: Distant Worlds: Universe & Door Kickers (tied)



    1st Place: Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor
    2nd Place: Far Cry 4 & Valiant Hearts The Great War (tied)
    3rd Place: Wolfenstein The New Order



    1st Place: The Banner Saga
    2nd Place: Endless Legend
    3rd Place: Wolfenstein The New Order

    And finally...



    1st Place: Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor
    2nd Place: Alien Isolation
    3rd Place: Dragon Age: Inquisition

    Once again, a thank you to Mhaedros for creating the art of the competition. And thank you for participating in this, everyone. I hope to see you all next year.


    List of Contributors/Other
    List of Contributors


    Mhaedros - Writer






    IlluminatiRex - Writer



    Meelis13 - Writer




    Gen. Chris - Editor





    Under the patronage of Omnipotent-Q, Patron of IlluminatiRex and Meelis13
    A social rights activist lobbies to get a ramp installed because people in wheelchairs can't use the stairs.

    A social justice warrior gets the stairs removed because it's "offensive" to people who can't use it, and declare war against anyone who disapproves.

  2. #2

    Default Re: The Gamer's Gazette - Issue XI

    I didn't even know this existed. Great stuff!!

  3. #3
    Gen. Chris's Avatar BatHex
    Moderation Overseer Content Director Citizen

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Gotham
    Posts
    9,822
    Blog Entries
    6

    Default Re: The Gamer's Gazette - Issue XI

    Don't forget to check out the other issues, Bunny. Some good stuff there as well.
    Under the patronage of Omnipotent-Q, Patron of IlluminatiRex and Meelis13
    A social rights activist lobbies to get a ramp installed because people in wheelchairs can't use the stairs.

    A social justice warrior gets the stairs removed because it's "offensive" to people who can't use it, and declare war against anyone who disapproves.

  4. #4
    Kjertesvein's Avatar Remember to smile
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    6,554
    Tournaments Joined
    1
    Tournaments Won
    0

    Default Re: The Gamer's Gazette - Issue XI

    Great issue guys, but one thing I don't understand:

    Also, in an improvement over its predecessor, GTA V has checkpoints during missions. Failure will not mean starting over from the very beginning of the mission. The benefit of this cannot be overstated at all, as some missions can take a very long time to complete, and failure near the end would be enormously frustrating.
    Can you describe what you mean by improvements to checkpoints?

    there is no denying that Grand Theft Auto V is quite possibly one of the best games of all time, and is certainly one of my favorites. This game is simply breathtakingly awesome, and having now played it twice, I still want to play it again. It is that fun, and that good.
    As a PC Master Race I've had to endure dirty console peasants (coworkers) praise of this game for sooo long, jet I've not even tried it. I'm more salty than a polish salt mine. He he.

    ~Wille
    Thorolf was thus armed. Then Thorolf became so furious that he cast his shield on his back, and, grasping his halberd with both hands, bounded forward dealing cut and thrust on either side. Men sprang away from him both ways, but he slew many. Thus he cleared the way forward to earl Hring's standard, and then nothing could stop him. He slew the man who bore the earl's standard, and cut down the standard-pole. After that he lunged with his halberd at the earl's breast, driving it right through mail and body, so that it came out at the shoulders; and he lifted him up on the halberd over his head, and planted the butt-end in the ground. There on the weapon the earl breathed out his life in sight of all, both friends and foes. [...] 53, Egil's Saga
    I must tell you here of some amusing tricks the Comte d'Eu played on us. I had made a sort of house for myself in which my knights and I used to eat, sitting so as to get the light from the door, which, as it happened, faced the Comte d'Eu's quarters. The count, who was a very ingenious fellow, had rigged up a miniature ballistic machine with which he could throw stones into my tent. He would watch us as we were having our meal, adjust his machine to suit the length of our table, and then let fly at us, breaking our pots and glasses.
    - The pranks played on the knight Jean de Joinville, 1249, 7th crusade.













    http://imgur.com/a/DMm19
    Quote Originally Posted by Finn View Post
    This is the only forum I visit with any sort of frequency and I'm glad it has provided a home for RTR since its own forum went down in 2007. Hopefully my donation along with others from TWC users will help get the site back to its speedy heyday, which will certainly aid us in our endeavor to produce a full conversion mod Rome2.

  5. #5
    Gen. Chris's Avatar BatHex
    Moderation Overseer Content Director Citizen

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Gotham
    Posts
    9,822
    Blog Entries
    6

    Default Re: The Gamer's Gazette - Issue XI

    In grand theft auto 4, there were no checkpoints during missions. So if you failed, you had to start all the way at the beginning of the mission. With lots of driving it was a pain. With this game I imagine the missions were so large that this method was not feasible.
    Under the patronage of Omnipotent-Q, Patron of IlluminatiRex and Meelis13
    A social rights activist lobbies to get a ramp installed because people in wheelchairs can't use the stairs.

    A social justice warrior gets the stairs removed because it's "offensive" to people who can't use it, and declare war against anyone who disapproves.

  6. #6
    Shankbot de Bodemloze's Avatar From the Writers Study!
    Content Director Citizen

    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Midlands, UK
    Posts
    14,096
    Blog Entries
    2

    Default Re: The Gamer's Gazette - Issue XI

    Great issue, really enjoyed Mhaedros' sum-up of 2014.
    THE WRITERS' STUDY | THE TRIBUNAL | THE CURIA | GUIDE FOR NEW MEMBERS


    [2016 Member Awards | VOTE NOW!]

    PROUD PATRON OF JUNAIDI83 AND VETERAAN
    UNDER THE PATRONAGE OF MEGA TORTAS DE BODEMLOZE

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •