Archives for : October2013

It’s Official…Next Gen Sucks: A Darker Image Editorial

As of this writing the next age of gaming begins on November 15th for Playstation fans and November 22nd for Xbox fans (And before you ask, Wii U does not count) and all ready it seems like the wheels are coming off. Scandals abound for both systems and no matter which way you go you are losing something you were likely looking forward to.

ps4

Let’s start with the PS4. Driveclub, the premier racing game for the system was suddenly delayed only a month before launch. Normally this would not be that big of a deal but Sony has been pushing this game as the second coming of racing and they even went so far as to promise it as a free Playstation Plus game day 1, Can you say embarrassing? How could they be that close to launch and not know before it was not going to make it? This whole thing just smacks of incompetence, and I love Sony!

And a couple of days ago my personal deal breaker came along. The PS4 will NOT support suspend/resume at launch. Knowing Sony that could mean never. We all know how they love to strip out features as the systems age, what is to say that they ever go back and add it. Feels shady to me. REAL shady. Not to mention there is a day 1 patch just so the damn thing will do what it’s supposed to. Didn’t we crucify Microsoft for this just a while back?

spybox one

Speaking of Xbox One, things continue to look bad over Microsofts way. After telling us they would spy on us and keep you from actually using your system and games how they should be at E3 they backed off and said they would be nice. Now Microsoft would NEVER lie or mislead consumers, right? RIGHT??? In addition to being $100 higher than PS4 in the worst economy ever the SpyBox One is having trouble hitting 1080p on several big games. What games you ask? Only Call of Duty: Ghosts and Battlefield 4, you know the big sellers for any system. It’s also said that Microsoft’s own Killer Instinct is only 720p! Man I can’t wait to upgrade! Oh wait, could it be considered an upgrade if games run at the same resolution as the 360? Sigh.

Oh and looking forward to Forza 5? Hope you have good, uncapped internet as the game is only partially on the disc, you have to download the rest day 1. Yay technology? But at least they will not be any DLC on the disc. What about the power of the magical clouds? If you believe that nonsense, Ouya has unicorn power. For reals.

blast processing

The original Sonic the Hedgehog on Sega Genesis claimed to have a “blast processor” to make it better than Nintendo. Well it didn’t and it wasn’t. The cloud is todays blast processing, just you wait and see.

And the systems themselves are not the only ones having problems. Ubisoft at the last minute delayed Watch_Dogs, another case of how did you not know this before? Bundels were sold of PS4 with the game and much confusion and screwed up orders ensued. Watch_Dogs must REALLY be fucked up as Ubisoft are some greedy dudes. They’ll ship anything. That does make you wonder what games will be rushed out garbage (With day 1 patches! Hell yeah!).

All this nonsense has done is make me leery of jumping. I will head out on the 15th and if I can find a PS4 whenever I get up I’ll get one but I’m not chasing it, at least until Infamous Second Son if it doesn’t get delayed…

Robot Chicken Season 6: TV Blu-Ray Review

Warner Brothers
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robot chicken season 6

What they say: Robot Chicken is back for its Sixth Season of hilariously insane, wackadoodle, totally off the wall stop-motion animation! This season’s 20 brand spankin’ new episodes will flash images across your retinas and flood your brains with an overabundance of mind-melting pop culture spoofery that will most likely cause your head to explode and leave a stain on the couch that will never come out (sorry Mom)!

robot chicken season 6 1What I say: Robot Chicken has been trucking on for 6 years and as always each episode packs a lot into its short 15 minutes. The show is as savage as it ever was in its parodying of pop culture. And yes that involves all the bllod and gore as well as potentially offensive material you’ve come to know and expect. This 20 episode season really takes it to everybody with a range of subjects like kids programming such as Dora and the Chipmunks and even poor old Mario get the horrifyingly funny eye placed on them. In some respects the show hasn’t changed a bit but as long as there are pop trends to poke fun at there shouldn’t be a problem. These episodes are completely uncensored but really that just means the potty words aren’t bleeped.

Despite the lo-fi claymation animation the Blu-Ray really brings out the love robot chicken season 6 2and attention the crew brings to these shorts. The episodes all look fantastic and it really makes it a joy to watch again. Also of note in this release is the two hours of extras and special features. Every episode features commentaries, not to mention the deletes scenes and a lot more. For the true fan these is a lot to like here. If you’re not a fan, this isn’t the collection to change your mind. But the show remains true to its self and if you are a fan this is another must have collection.

Rating: 8/10
Blu-Ray: 9/10

Call of Duty: Black Ops II: Apocalypse: PS3 Add-On Review

Publisher: Activision
Developer: Treyarch
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Purchase Call of Duty: Black Ops II on PS3 here!

cod apocalypse logo 2

What they say: Call of Duty®: Black Ops II Apocalypse deploys with two all-new Multiplayer Maps and the return of two completely re-imagined Multiplayer classics. Origins, Treyarch’s deepest and most imaginative Zombies experience yet, transports players to a Dieselpunk-themed First World War, returning the four original characters! Armed with an arsenal that includes Wonder Weapons that harness supernatural powers, a diesel-drone and Mark IV tank, as well a new perk machine and power-ups, our heroes will be challenged to fend off an infestation of undead that has overrun the war-ravaged French countryside and the ruins of a mysterious ancient civilization below it.

cod apocalypse 2What I say: As things wind down for Black Ops II Treyarch has decided to take us on a trip down memory lane for this final map pack for last years blockbuster. Featuring four multiplayer maps and a new zombie experience , Apocalypse is a fitting goodbye. Two of the maps included are retooling of maps from World at War and Black Ops I with two completely new maps for you to learn and enjoy.

The highlight of the pack is definitely Frost. Taking place in a frozen over Euro city, Frost is a lot of fun to explore and exploit the multi-level shenanigans in cod apocalypse 3order to school your boys. Frost is a visual treat and that makes it fun to see it come up in the rotation when you are playing. Pod is probably the weakest of the bunch. It had a good idea at heart taking place in a failed community of Pods, but the map feels dated with too many snipe points. It’s more frustrating than fun. The first of the remakes, Dig, is familiar being a remake of Courtyard but the map was popular for a reason as its pretty fun and it’s tweaked enough to make it worth revisiting. And finally we have Takeoff, which is a remake of Stadium. It didn’t get a much as a polish as Frost but it still holds up and those choke points are still a killer.

cod apocalypse 4Saving the best for last we have the new Zombie mode, Origins. Revisiting the foursome of characters from the first Zombie mode Origins finally shows us how the whole zombie mess got started and what our heroes can do t deal with it. Taking place in WWI the French countryside makes a compelling setting for this outing with plenty of steampunk goodness including giant robots you have to deal with. Over the course of the mission you will start in a lab eventually visiting a war-torn battlefield, various bunkers and a ramshackle church. Origins does a good job of bringing all the various zombie lore from the last three Treyarch COD games together. This adventure brings the zombie story full circle and I hope this doesn’t signal the end of it.

Overall the pack is a bit of a mixed bag, but honestly, it’s worth the purchase just for Origins, the multiplayer maps are just the icing on the cake.

Rating: 8/10

Lone Survivor: The Directors Cut: PS3 and PS Vita Game Review

Publisher: Curve Digital

Developer: Superflat Games

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lone survivor logo

What they say: In this psychological survival adventure, the masked protagonist must escape from a city ravaged by disease, by any means necessary. Lone Survivor: The Director’s Cut is a new kind of adventure where the choice of how to survive is up to you. Sneak through without firing a single shot, or kill everything in your path. Eat and sleep well, or resort to drugs to keep going. Search for survivors, or try to escape the city alone. Look after your mental health, or descend into madness. Lone Survivor is a game where your choices genuinely matter. This extended edition of Jasper Byrne’s horror masterpiece expands Lone Survivor’s deep story with hundreds of tiny new details, more locations, more dialogue, more side quests, more craftable items, and even two completely new endings. Lone Survivor: The Director’s Cut really is the ultimate version of this acclaimed game.

lone survivor 1What I say: Survival horror has been, well…dead for quite some time. With Resident Evil becoming the gaming equivalent of a big dumb action flick and Silent Hill fading into the void, there really has not been anything to tickle the fancy of horror fans…until now. Feeling like a lost SNES/Genesis game from David Lynch, Lone Survivor definitely brings the creepy and the survival back to Survival Horror.

You start off the game nameless and alone in your apartment racked by odd dreams. The world around you has collapsed and the aftermath of some kind of

Mr. Lynch, is that you?

Mr. Lynch, is that you?

tragedy looms large. Monsters roam the halls and you have to juggle stealth and your precious ammo to survive. You must also take care of yourself by sleeping and eating when needed and food is a bit of a rarity. When you do sleep you sometimes meet individuals in your dreams that can offer help or offer cryptic clues as to what’s going on. As the game goes on you seem to lose what little hold you have left on your sanity. Despite the pixel-ish graphics the game just exudes creepiness. Everything contributes to the feeling of dread. The blurry graphics just add to the mysterious feel and the music is beautifully matched to the surroundings.

lone survivor 3Lone Survivor: The Directors Cut is the Survival Horror game we’ve been missing and it was a touch of pure genius to mix the look of a 16 bit side-scroller with the sensibilities of a PSOne era horror game. Games like this make me be grateful to be a games in this new indie era. Fresh experiences like this are worth supporting. Even if you have played the PC version there are several new endings and other tweaks made. Both the PS3 and Vita version are pretty much identical and they support cross-save which is always nice.

Rating: 9/10
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!

Grand Theft Auto V: PS3 Game Review

Publisher/Developer: Rockstar
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gta v packart

What they say: Los Santos: a sprawling sun-soaked metropolis full of self-help gurus, starlets, and fading celebrities, once the envy of the Western world, now struggling to stay afloat in an era of economic uncertainty and cheap reality TV.

gta v 1Amidst the turmoil, three very different criminals plot their own chances of survival and success: Franklin, a former street gangster, now looking for real opportunities and serious money; Michael, a professional ex-con whose retirement is a lot less rosy than he hoped it would be; and Trevor, a violent maniac driven by the next big score. Running out of options, the crew risks everything in a series of daring and dangerous heists that could set them up for life.

The biggest, most dynamic and most diverse open world ever created, Grand Theft Auto V blends storytelling and gameplay in new ways as players repeatedly jump in and out of the lives of the game’s three lead characters, playing all sides of the game’s interwoven story.
All the classic hallmarks of the groundbreaking series return, including incredible attention to detail and Grand Theft Auto’s darkly humorous take on modern culture, alongside a brand new and ambitious approach to open world multiplayer.

What I say: There was a moment fairly early in the game where I, playing as gta v 2Michael, just finished a heist and was barreling down the road in a fancy stolen car. As I was speeding along Don Johnson came on the radio singing “Heartbeat” and at that moment experiencing a game surely inspired by Miami Vice creator Michael Mann, hearing Don Johnson really made it hammer home how extraordinary this game really is. That, my friends, is the exact moment I fell in love with Grand Theft Auto V. Now no matter what I say or think, this game is huge. It has already made over a billion dollars. It truly is nice that something that sells that well is actually worth experiencing.

gta v 3For the first time in a GTA game the player controls three different protagonists. Michael, a retired robber dwelling in boredom from being in witness protection; Franklin, a young gangbanger looking to increase his lot and finally Michaels “friend” Trevor. Trevor is psychotic at least and insane at most. After an action packed setup you meet the characters one at a time and once you finish their introductory missions you can switch between the men as you see fit (or the story allows). All three storylines are compelling in their own right although Michael and Trevors story seems a little more developed than Franklins. As the men get to know each other better and do heists together they stories become more intertwined. The characters can also grow by improving their skills. Everything you do from running to shooting to swimming can raise your stats and at time raising these can be supremely helpful especially the ability to hold your breath underwater which allows you to find cool stuff under the ocean surface.

The game looks fantastic and as it’s likely the swan song for this generation, it definitely sets the standard. The game also does a fine job of making Los Santosgta v 4 feel like a living breathing place. The things you do over the course of the game can often be heard being reported on by the games fictional news channel Weasel News. There are also a wide range of music channels with literally tons of songs, if you change the channels regularly it will be a while before you hear a repeat. Sound design as a whole is pretty impressive as well from the gunplay to the sounds of the cars everything has an authentic feel to it. It really immerses you into this world.

But alas, not everything is sunshine and roses. There are however, a couple of gta v 5problems. As with every GTA game driving can be a chore. Yes you can increase your driving skill but it really does not seem to matter that much. I mean I don’t expect Gran Turismo but I would settle for Burnout, you know? Piloting the planes and choppers suffers from the same problems. The controls are far too floaty in these instances and that can lead to some aggravation in playing some of the missions. And of course the AI is still out to get you. If you’re just driving along then it’s generally smooth sailing, but get in a race or mission and suddenly public enemy #1 or you’re magnetized, I can’t tell which. Literally every car on the road is after you. But hey, there are always cabs you can call, right? But luckily the game allows you to skip missions after you fail them three times. So if something is too aggravating you can move past it.

The game also suffers from some horrendous pop up at times but this is limitedgta v 6 and only shows up once or twice usually during helicopter missions and you are speeding over the city. But the rest of the game is so damn good it’s easy to overlook these issues. GTA V definitely delivers a satisfying experience and one that feels fitting to cap this generation and be ready to move on to the next one.

Rating: 9/10
Recommended!!!

The game also has an online component that has just went live. Our review for that will be coming soon!