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12:08 PM on 09.11.2014

NHL 15 Review (PlayStation 4)

 

EA Sports' NHL 15 is the first entry in the series to be released on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. As a huge sports fan, particularly with hockey, I was expecting NHL 15 to bring new, amazing experiences on the current generation of home consoles. But despite both looking and playing great, this entry is missing a number of features that greatly hurts the experience and makes NHL 15 feel dull. NHL 15 is a good game, but it's a game that is not worth returning to once you have had your full experience with it.

 

 

Presentation: NHL 15 looks great. Players look like their real life counterparts. If a player has a missing tooth in real life, their character will be missing a tooth. Subtle features like this add to the realism. Stadiums also are presented well. During the pre-game commentary, players will see real footage of the city and their team's respective stadium. Fans seem to be more into the action in NHL 15. You can hear shouting, cheering and booing from the die-hard fans, who have face paint and jerseys on. Fans still look awkward when moving around, but their cheering and attire are satisfying enough.

Calling the games are NBC's Mike "Doc" Emrick and Eddie Olczyk, along with Ray Ferraro between the benches. Before each game there is brief analysis of the game before the first faceoff. It's a nice touch seeing Emrick and Olcyzk commentating beforehand, but they look out of sync with how the game looks. Emrick is known for his loud calls and excitement, but he does not fit the role when announcing the games. There is the occasional high-pitched scream from the man, though these expressions are few and far between. There isn't much depth to the script, either. Within an hour I knew which lines would be repeated throughout my experience.

The music in NHL 15 is great, especially between periods or faceoffs. Bands like Young the Giant, Fallout Boy and more are featured, making this soundtrack more memorable and enjoyable than previous installments.

 

 

Gameplay: The gameplay in NHL feels fluid and fun for the most part. The game is quicker and the new physics are a welcomed addition to the series. Pucks will bounce off the boards, sticks and pads like the real game itself. Where the game really suffers is with online versus play. A number of games I played online felt extremely stiff and clunky and it became frustrating trying to generate offensive opportunities. Online play feels slower paced, unlike the offline game modes.

Using the poke check at times feels too easy. A defenseman will be far away from my forward and the sticks won't touch and I'll lose the puck with ease. The physical play in NHL 15 felt inconsistent. I would line up for a big hit and the opposing player wouldn't budge. Obliterating an opposing player and causing a turnover feels amazing, but the lack of consistency when checking players caused me to play more of a man on man defensive game. Another issue I had is with transitioning from player to player while in the defensive zone. Switching players three to four times to get the desired player quickly became tiresome. I wish the transitioning among players was easier.

 

 

Where Are The Game Modes?: NHL 15 is missing a number of game modes on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. EASHL is a staple of the NHL series. Many players, like myself, pour countless hours into this game mode. It's available on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions, but it's nowhere to be found on Xbox One and PlayStation 4, which is annoying because many people buy the NHL games for this feature. Connected GM is also not in NHL 15. Hockey Ultimate Team mode still offers players the ability to create their dream team by purchasing packs and setting their lineups. GM Mode is in NHL, but there is no season mode. Players like myself who want a one season experience will have to use GM Mode, which has a lot to offer, but GM Mode can be confusing for those who don't understand hockey well. GM Mode allows players to run a franchise in any way they desire. Be A Pro mode is fortunately still in NHL. Players can decide which position they want to play and can choose to enter the NHL draft, which is random, or choose their favorite team. Players will automatically be on the NHL roster, which to me impedes the sense of growth from the minor leagues to the NHL. Future game modes like Playoff Mode and Online Team Play will be added with patches.

 

Verdict: NHL 15 is a good game. It plays well, features a great presentation and is a game hockey fans should try. Because of a number of widely loved game modes are not in the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 versions, the experience feels dull and true hockey fans will quickly grow tired of the short number of game modes. NHL 15 feels like a missed opportunity for an excellent entry on the new consoles.

+Great presentation

+Fluid gameplay

-Lack of depth in the game modes

-Playing online feels stiff

7.5/10

  read


12:03 PM on 09.08.2014

I'm Not Anticipating Destiny. Is That Bad?

  

Destiny launches tomorrow in North America and has already launched in other areas throughout the world. For those who have already gotten Destiny and for those who are incredibly excited for Destiny, I'm happy for you. Destiny looks like it is going to be an epic game, but I'm not anticipating Destiny. Don't get me wrong, Destiny is going to be THE game to play for many people, but I'm not that excited for it. Is that a bad thing? Is it because I've hyped games too much before and they haven't panned out like I hoped they would? I'm getting Destiny at its midnight launch and I will play it for hours. The hype is just simply doesn't exist. Let's find out why as I discuss my thoughts on Destiny one day before its release.

 

We Know Destiny Is Going To Be A Good Game- Bungie and Activision are behind Destiny. I will buy almost anything Bungie makes because I know it will be good and Bungie is consistent with their works - at least from what I have experienced. As for Activision? They do publish this game called "Call of Duty," which is pretty fun, though I don't care for that franchise anymore. Destiny has a respectable team under its wing. What could go wrong? I don't think anything will go wrong. The game has been marketed well. Both the Alpha and the Beta were well received and have people extremely pumped for this game, and we have seen just enough with footage, trailers and more so that nothing is spoiled and the craving or the itch for the game can be remedied.

 

Dem visuals, though.

I Blame Myself For My Lack Of Hype- Prior to a few weekends ago, I didn't watch a single second of Destiny gameplay, trailers, or previews. I tried to shun myself from any footage regarding the game. Perhaps this wasn't a smart idea because I haven't fallen in love with what the game will offer, like many other people have. Destiny could be a blind purchase for me because I know nothing about the game. Normally that is okay, but with a game this big and the magnitude of its launch and hype, I need to watch videos and I to have to sit down and see what Destiny has to offer. The only way I'll grow any form of hype is by watching videos, doing research on which character suits me best and seeing what the game has to offer.

Where Is The Hype? My most hyped game of all time is Diablo 3. I was expecting the greatest game ever because how much I loved Diablo 2 and how excited I was for the next installment. Diablo 3 ended up being a great game, but it was extremely disappointing to me. My anticipation was through the roof and it maybe was way too high? But I seldom am legitimately excited for games today because I was so disappointed with one game. I understand that isn't fair, but I just have lost interest in preparing myself for a major release.

 

Destiny is going to be a game that many people will love, and many people won't love. I'm hoping to fall in love with the game, which mixes various genres of video games into one huge MMO. I think looking at gameplay today will determine whether or not I am excited for Destiny. I think Destiny has great potential and will be awesome nonetheless. Will you be getting Destiny? Are you excited? As always, thanks for reading and share your thoughts!

  read


12:55 AM on 09.02.2014

Video Game Remasters I Would Like To See

This year I have read about a large number of remasters that have come to the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, and I have read about a large number of remasters that are coming to consoles in the future. I'm not against remakes and remasters, but too many have been and will be released. Some of these games are fewer than three years old. Why are they being remade? A few - like The Last of Us and Halo: The Master Chief Collection makes sense in their own ways. Nonetheless, there are a number of games I would like to see remastered. These are games I may have not played when I was younger, or these games are just so fantastic that more people need to play them. Most of the games in this list are RPGs, but people need to experience these games regardless.





Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King- While this game was ported to iOS devices, I'd like a console remaster. I don't know how I missed this gem on the PlayStation 2, considering I played so many amazing RPGs on that system. I've heard nothing but great things about Dragon Quest VIII and I'd love to play it as a remastered version. With Dragon Quest Heroes being announced recently, maybe there's hope of a remaster for a Dragon Quest game.





Legend of Dragoon- I've only briefly played this RPG on the PlayStation 1, but from everyone I have spoken to who has played it, they all have said that it's underrated and does not get enough praise compared to Final Fantasy, Breath of Fire, etc. I can play Legend of Dragoon on my PlayStation 3, which is great, but this game has such a large following and so many people want a sequel or a remaster. Why haven't we gotten one yet?!





Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch- I do contradict myself with this choice because the game is fewer than three years old, but Ni No Kuni is a wonderful RPG that so many people haven't played. The game has sold under two million units. That is an atrocity! Ni No Kuni is full of charm and has great characters, a memorable story and an awesome soundtrack. This game was one of my favorite RPGs of last generation. Ni No Kuni is a must play for any RPG fan and anyone who missed out on this gem.





The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask- I think everyone and their mother wants a remake of Majora's Mask. It's amazing how many people want this game to be remade. I don't doubt that Nintendo has considered this idea before. I played this for the first time this year and I fell in love. Majora's Mask is so dark and unique. The side quests are special, the masks all serve some form of a purpose and the three-day mechanic is weird to ascertain at first, but the mechanic is what makes Majora's Mask unlike any other game in the Legend of Zelda series. We saw a 3DS remake of Ocarina of Time, so why haven't we received a Majora's Mask remake yet?! The video game community would literally explode if this remake were officially announced.


There are so many awesome games I have missed out on, whether they were on the Atari 2600, Super Nintendo, or Xbox 360. These are just a number of remasters I would like to see. Which games did you miss out on? Which games would you like to see remasters of? Share your thoughts! As always, thanks for reading.   read


2:21 PM on 08.30.2014

My Favorite Sidekicks In Games

Hey, all! I just finished reading an awesome blog from SecondServing about his favorite sidekicks in video games. I shared my favorite sidekicks and he said I should write about them. So here I am, ready to write about my favorite sidekicks in video games. There are so many awesome sub characters, main characters and non-playable characters in video games, but I thought I would share two that I like the most. Without further adieu, here are my favorite sidekicks in video games!


Toad (Super Mario Series): When I think of the Super Mario games, I don't think of that dang plumber, I think of that adorable, selfless Toad who does whatever it takes to get Mario his power ups, which he probably loses IMMEDIATELY! Toad is always there in one of his many houses providing Mario encouragement, stars, 1-ups and power ups. Does he get any credit? No! Mario just runs along, loses the gifts from Toad and doesn't even say thank you. Toad has a family to feed - he works hard for those gifts! But seriously, Toad is wonderful. He always has a smile on his face and he's getting his own game. Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker looks wonderful and Toad will once again be in the spotlight. Toad is an under appreciated sidekick, in my opinion.


Reyn (Xenoblade Chronicles): Xenoblade Chronicles is one of my favorite JRPGs and it's important to me because of the characters. Aside from the main protagonist, Shulk, Reyn is my next favorite character in the game. Though Reyn is a main character, I view him as Shulk's number one guy; his partner in crime. Reyn is always supportive of Shulk and encourages Shulk to make the right decisions and be the best he can be. I'd like to consider myself similar to Reyn in the sense that both he and I love being supportive and helping others when they're down. Reyn is selfless and honest. He isn't afraid to share his thoughts when something is troubling him. Reyn seems like he is a great friend to have and a great partner in combat. That is why Reyn is one of my favorite sidekicks in video games.


Those are my favorite sidekicks in video games. There are so many that are memorable characters that deserve to be mentioned, but Toad and Reyn are the two that stick out the most to me. Who are some of your favorite sidekicks in video games? Share your thoughts! As always, thanks for reading!   read


3:02 PM on 08.25.2014

Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition Review

After pouring countless hours into Diablo 3 and Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls on PC, I told myself I was finished with Diablo 3 for a while. But with the release of Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition on consoles, I have once again fallen in love with the dungeon-crawling action and endless loot that Diablo 3 offers. Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition is an excellent game that offers an addicting experience for both new players and returning players.


Presentation: Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition looks great on consoles, particularly on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Playing on a television as opposed to a PC allowed me to notice little details I hadn't seen before in the areas throughout Diablo 3. Players can appreciate the aesthetics of their characters more because they are bigger on the screen. The game runs smoothly on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. The game didn't slow down and the frame rate stayed consistent when there were a large number of enemies on the screen at once. The game has the beautiful cutscenes Blizzard is famous for. The soundtrack in Diablo 3 sounds strong on consoles. It's subtle and intense enough to fit the premise of the game. I rarely actually heard the soundtrack on PC for some reason, but I can hear it well in the Ultimate Evil Edition, which is nice to know.


Story: The story remains unchanged in Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition; stop the prime evils from taking over the world and creating chaos. Included in the Ultimate Evil Edition is the expansion, which includes the fifth act of the game, though not much for the story has improved. Unfortunately the characters seem hollow and dull and the plot is not anything worth remembering. Malthael has the potential as an interesting antagonist, but the story is not the main focus of Diablo 3.


Gameplay: The gameplay in Diablo 3 is fluid. There are six different characters, including the crusader for the first time on consoles, and each character has a wide variety of skills to choose from, which can lead to different builds among players. The Diablo series is known for its randomly generated loot and the dungeons that players can explore over and over again Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition is no different. The loot players will get in Diablo 3 pertains to the character they use. For example, Barbarians will get gear with strength based stats and Witch Doctors will get gear with intelligence based stats. Finding the next legendary, or super powerful item from a monster or an elite pack of monsters, is what makes it worth playing through areas over and over again.


Ultimate Evil Edition Features: Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition comes with a number of features - features that are new to the console version. Like previously mentioned, included is the Reaper of Souls expansion, which includes the Crusader character.

Also new is the Apprentice Mode, which is aimed for lower level characters quickly gaining levels and loot. Players will group together, primarily with a high level character. Lower level characters will gain stat boosts for the duration of the multiplayer game. Nemesis Mode is where a monster who kills a friend in one game can enter your game, stronger than before and players have the opportunity to avenge the fallen ally.


Co-op: Playing local co-op on consoles is more fun than playing on PC. Everyone remains on the same screen and when one person moves, everyone moves. Players can't run off and attract unwanted monsters. Online multiplayer does not have the same benefit, though. Entering a lobby with friends online is a breeze and you can gift items to friends with the mailbox feature, which is located next to the player's stash.

I have some minor gripes with Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition and these do not hurt the experience in a major way. If an item is close to an entrance, sometimes I will exit the area rather than picking the item up and I will have to go back into the area to get the item. In local co-op, only one person at a time can access their inventory, the shops and the blacksmith. Other players will have to wait for the player to finish so they can access the aforementioned inventory, blacksmith and shops.

Verdict: Chock-full of content, Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition is a strong version of Diablo 3 on consoles. With pretty visuals, an addicting loot system, fluid gameplay and convenient co-op, Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition is a must own for new players and experienced Diablo fans. It could have had a better story with more complex characters, but the story is not the primary focus.

9/10

[b]
+Great visuals

+Fluid gameplay and addicting loot

+Diverse playable characters

-A forgettable story[/b]   read


7:10 PM on 08.23.2014

Disgaea 4: A Promise Revisited Review

The Disgaea games are strategy RPGs that never truly takes themselves seriously, and that is what makes each game unique and a joy to play. Disgaea games always have a charm about them and Disgaea 4 is no different. With Disgaea 4 being ported to the PlayStation Vita with all of the downloadable content and receiving a new name - "A Promise Revisited" - Disgaea 4 is another great entry in the strategy RPG series.


Presentation:

Disgaea 4 looks great on the Vita. The main characters look detailed and their outfits are very distinct despite being small on the screen. The environments are bright and colorful. Each chapter has a unique setting. My favorite part of Disgaea 4 is the unique animations that occur when using skills during battles. It seems like the developers had a lot of fun designing the animations because each skill, whether the player or the enemy uses it, is a joy to watch. Sometimes I went to the Item World solely to see the animations. Complimenting the visuals is a nice soundtrack that features serious tracks, to up-beat tracks. They help set the tone throughout the story and I didn't grow tired of the tracks.


Story:

Disgaea 4 revolves around former tyrant vampire Valvatorez and his werewolf servant, Fenrich, whom wish to overthrow the current president of the Netherworld. Valvatorez has regressed from being a feared tyrant to a mere Prinny instructor, which reasons are revealed as the player progresses further in the story. The story overall is enjoyable, primarily because of the hilarious writing and strong characters. Just when you think the story is taking a serious tone, the writing immediately switches to a comedic tone, which is fine because Disgaea titles should never be too serious. This game has taught me more about sardines than I thought was possible. In the beginning of the story, I lost a crucial battle and the game actually ended and I had to begin the game at the first chapter again. This was a surprise to me. Luckily my gear and levels were still intact.

My biggest issue with Disgaea 4 stems from the latter part of the story. Without spoiling anything, the last few chapters became tedious for me. "Final episode" was the title for a number of chapters towards the end of the game and I got really annoyed by this. I was expecting the chapter I was playing to be the ending, but the story dictated otherwise. They do tell you when the final chapter is truly the end, though I would have preferred a definitive final chapter without the game leading me on.


Gameplay and features:

The Disgaea series is known for its unique, strategic combat and the addicting, endless Item World. Each item the player can own has its own world, full of randomly generated levels. Progressing in these worlds will cause the item to level up, increasing its respective stats. This feature can lead to potentially hundreds of hours of level grinding - something the Disgaea series is famous for. Every tenth level in the Item World features an elite monster, sort of like a sub boss within the Item World.

Disgaea also has Geo Blocks and Geo Panels, which are special blocks with effects that can either benefit or hurt your party, along with the enemies. Effects like invincible, reverse damage and deathblow can force the player to think more strategically on how to handle each battle. Destroying Geo Blocks on certain panels can cancel out effects or place the effects on different panels. Players on Geo Panels can receive damage when the color of the Geo Panel they are standing on is changed. Destroying all of the panels and having a clean battlefield will improve the bonus at the end of the battle and will cause a flash to occur, which will damage the enemies.

The strategy RPG series also has numerous different job classes, ranging from mages to warriors to demons such as Prinnies and dragons. The characters can equip different weapons and can learn skills that relate to the weapon they use.


Verdict:

Disgaea 4: A Promise Revisited on the PlayStation Vita is a great entry in the Disgaea series and a great stand alone strategy RPG. The game has great visuals, a good story with memorable characters and hundreds of hours in the Item World alone. Whether you like RPGs, anime or endless level grinding, Disgaea 4 is worth owning.



8/10

[b]
+Great story with strong characters

+Countless hours of level grinding

+Great visuals

-An annoying number of "Final Chapters"[/b]   read


2:54 PM on 08.15.2014

My P.T. Impressions!

P.T. is a playable teaser for the next Silent Hill title, also known as "Silent Hills", which is being made by Guillermo del Toro and Hideo Kojima. The title will star Norman Reedus of The Walking Dead and The Boondock Saints. This sounds amazing! I haven't played a Silent Hill game since Silent Hill 2. I remember playing that on my Xbox and it is still the best survival horror game I have played. Here are my impressions of what I experienced playing P.T.

http://www.destructoid.com//ul/user/2/229858-279681-silenthill670x376jpg-620x.jpg

I played the teaser for about 15 minutes and it is weird, realistic and actually pretty scary. The first thing I noticed while playing this game is how simple and normal the house you're in seems. I don't like to assume things, but I assume they were using the Fox Engine and it looked great. I mean look at Norman Reedus in the picture above. That looks realistic! There is a radio playing in the background, which had a really odd transmission. They talk about who I assume were the previous owners of the house and how the husband murdered his wife. It was just twisted how the husband was able to commit a gross act like that.

http://www.destructoid.com//ul/user/2/229858-279681-maxresdefault2jpg-620x.jpg
My face when the woman in the bathroom popped out.


The doors really reminded me of the early Resident Evil titles when you transition from room to room. Every time I walked through a door in this teaser, I thought something was going to pop out. Well... that did happen and I screamed when I saw the face pop out of the bathroom door. The doors transitioning from loop to loop got slightly darker each time. When a door would close right before I was going to walk through it, the hairs on my body stood up because I thought something would be behind me. I was playing this teaser for the first time and I did not know what to expect; Kojima is a genius and del Toro is known for his works with horror films. They're the perfect duo.

http://www.destructoid.com//ul/user/2/229858-279681-279576DDASS1jpg-620x.jpg

The Slender man type figure, the woman who comes out of nowhere and the perfectly dark bathroom; All of these made the teaser that much better. I am sold on what Kojima and del Toro can accomplish with this series and I can't wait to have my friends play this so I can see their reactions. I don't normally get scared easily, but this teaser really went above and beyond and I am incredibly excited for Silent Hills. Have you played P.T.? If so, share your thoughts and your experiences!   read


3:40 PM on 08.14.2014

The Games I Have Played The Most

I am only twenty years old, but I have played a large number of video games throughout these twenty years. A few games way more than others - probably significantly more but I have played plenty of games nonetheless. For this blog, I thought I would list the three games I have played the most. The total number of hours I have played these three games are what determine my list. Without further adieu, enjoy!

Diablo 2: Lord of Destruction- When I first started playing Diablo 2, the expansion was already out so I'm going to include the expansion in the list. I played Diablo 2 over a 10-year period and it is the game I was addicted to. People have World of Warcraft, Skyrim, other games and I had Diablo 2. I played this game everyday for those 10 years. I had the best gear you could get for all of my characters, all of my characters were just under level 99 and I was in love with the game. I can't estimate how many hours I have put into Diablo 2, but I would guess the number is over 2,000 hours. Towards the latter years of my Diablo 2 experience, I didn't play as much. Maybe it was because I did the same thing over and over for years and it eventually became stale? I'm not sure to be honest. But I'll never forget doing Baal runs with my level 96 Blessed Hammer Paladin. The music? So much nostalgia, my friends. But that is another topic for another time.

Final Fantasy X- The Final Fantasy series is probably my first or second favorite video game series and Final Fantasy X is my favorite in the series.  Being the first Final Fantasy I played, I fell in love with the world of Spira and its characters. Every time I play it, I get lost in the wonderful settings that are complimented by the beautiful music, of course, composed by the legendary Nobuo Uematsu. I have played this game for roughly 500 hours in total. It's worth noting that I have played numerous files, but one file in particular is where I completed the game to its entirety (Ultimate weapons, Monster Arena, etc.), recording around 300 hours in that file. "To Zanarkand" - the track most affiliated with this game is my favorite piece of music ever. I could praise Final Fantasy X for hours.

Super Smash Bros. Melee- I can't tell you how many hours I have willingly poured into the Super Smash Bros. series, but Super Smash Bros. Melee - the second installment - is where I played this series the most. I remember playing everyday with my brothers and friends and never growing tired of the intense, fast-paced action. Link and Star Fox are my bread and butter, though I probably am atrocious at these games today, seeing as I haven't played one in years. But with Super Smash Bros. 3DS/Wii U arriving in a few months, I plan on playing the older games again to prepare myself so I can kick some serious butt!. The nostalgia will burst in like the Kool-Aid man bursting through a wall.

What are some games you have played the most? Share your thoughts! I'd love to see what you guys have poured countless hours into. :D   read


5:17 PM on 08.11.2014

Does The Wii U Deserve To Be The Punching Bag

Like the title of this blog asks, does Nintendo's Wii U really deserve all the criticism it receives? Whenever I am reading through comments related to the Wii U, I always see people calling the Wii U a "joke" and people say, "it has no games." I am a Wii U owner, and a damn proud owner at that. I use my system more than I use my PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita. I will admit that Nintendo has poorly marketed this console and has done a poor job at making the Wii U known as a legitimate home console for gamers, which has led to some issues I have with how Nintendo has put its console out there. But does it deserve to be the laughing stock while the PS4 and Xbox One receive far less criticism? I certainly don't believe so. Here are my thoughts.

Poor marketing: Over a span of two years, I have seen fewer than ten commercials for the Wii U. I also have not seen any advertisements at my local GameStop except for Mario Kart 8. If I am a casual gamer, how am I supposed to know that this console exists? For the commercials I did see, they were around families playing together in a casual manner. Who is your demographic, Nintendo? The families with young children? The gamer that has loved Nintendo for years, like myself? Establish whom this console is aimed towards! I have had friends come over and they did not even know what a Wii U was. These friends, who happen to play video games often, did not even know there was a new Nintendo console. A parent who walks into a store might not know the difference between the Wii and the Wii U. This is a huge issue for me. Nintendo has not provided the Wii U with an identity. Hopefully Nintendo will work on marketing the system - especially when Super Smash Bros. is ready to be released. I feel the major lack of marketing has greatly hurt the ability for the Wii U to sell. Look at the picture below. Are they still trying to attract casual gamers, or do they want the hardcore gamer?

Year One Comparisons: You could argue the Wii U had a pretty decent first year for games, though many of the games  - at least at launch - were ports of older games already released on other systems, which annoyed me because I wanted current ports or more exclusives ready at the system's launch. But aside from these ports, the Wii U had strong first party titles for its first year. The Xbox One and PlayStation 4 also have strong first year games that are continuing to grow. Why does the Wii U get ridiculed?

Wii U First Party Titles: New Super Mario Bros. U, Pikmin 3, The Wonderful 101, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD

Wii U Third Party Titles: Assassin's Creed 3, Mass Effect 3, Darksiders 2, Batman: Arkham City.



Xbox One First Party Titles:  Forza Motorsport 5, Dead Rising 3, Killer Instinct, Ryse: Son of Rome

Xbox One Third Party Titles: Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition, Thief, Titanfall, Watch_Dogs, Wolfenstein: The New Order



PlayStation 4 First Party Titles: Resogun, Outlast, Killzone: Shadowfall, Knack, Infamous: Second Son

PlayStation 4 Third Party Titles: NBA 2K14, Call of Duty: Ghosts, Rayman: Legends



The Xbox One and PlayStation 4 for the most part have very similar third party libraries. Like the Wii U's third party games, a large number these games can be played on the previous generation of consoles, like the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. The PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are getting remakes of games that aren't even five years old. The Last of Us: Remastered makes sense because people have bought PlayStation 4s and did not experience the game last year. But Sleeping Dogs? Metro Redux? I understand that developers are still trying to understand the hardware of the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, but I want new games; fresh, next generation games that will blow me away. Late 2014 and 2015 will 100% offer that, but I do not want my library to feature games I could have played a few years ago. The Wii U's third party games have the same issue, but why does the Wii U specifically get flak for having older games? It just does not make sense to me.

Can The Wii U Turn It Around? - I don't believe the Wii U will ever surpass the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in sales, but I do believe it can show life and can turn itself around with quality games, which will lead to sales. While this is entirely my opinion, I believe the the Wii U currently has a strong library and this year looks to have some good games to finish the year. Games like Hyrule Warriors, Bayonetta 2, Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, which looks ADORABLE and most importantly, Super Smash Bros. Wii U will be the biggest releases for the system. I personally think Hyrule Warriors will be successful because Dynasty Warriors and The Legend of Zelda have such large fan bases. Super Smash Bros. Wii U will be THE game to own this holiday season and will sell many consoles. 2015 looks even better for the system with games like Zelda Wii U, Xenoblade Chronicles X, Yoshi's Wooly World, Shin Megami Tensei X Fire Emblem, Mario Maker and more. The Wii U has games, people! My biggest issue with Nintendo, though, is the time between major releases. In February we received Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze, in May we got Mario Kart 8 and we will get Hyrule Warriors in September. That is too long of a wait period between major releases on the Wii U. Hopefully Nintendo will fix this major annoyance. And hopefully if the system picks up sales and improves, third party support will grow and Nintendo will take advantage of third party games on their system.

Final Thoughts: I do believe the Wii U does deserve some of the criticism it receives, but it does not deserve to be the joke among the video game community. The Wii U, like the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, has its issues. The system has games, is getting games and is not a flop. These are simply my thoughts on why I feel the Wii U does not deserve to be the punching bag. Share your thoughts!   read


12:50 PM on 08.07.2014

My Favorite Games of Last Generation

The Xbox 360/PlayStation 3/Nintendo Wii generation - also called the "last generation" for games - has had a large impact on me both as a passionate video game fan and as a person. The last generation is where I grew the most in the aforementioned aspects. I learned to appreciate narratives more in video games, rather than simply relying on action based games with poorly told stories. I developed a love for what I experienced with each game. Perhaps as I grew older and matured, I learned to appreciate the beauty in video games? I don't exactly know. But I do know that there are a number of games from the previous generation that caused me to feel moments of happiness, sadness and many more emotions, which was weird at first because I never thought video games could cause me to have legitimate feelings for people that were not friends and family. The most important thing is that video games made me feel immersed in their respective worlds and I legitimately cared for the characters I played as. I no longer viewed video games as a simple hobby to take my mind off of life for a bit; I began to view video games as art. Anyways, enough with the rambling. These are three of my favorite games from the Xbox 360/PlayStation 3/Nintendo Wii generation.

Metal Gear Solid 4- I know the Metal Gear Solid series can get incredibly confusing. But when you know the stories and the characters, the series becomes that much stronger. I played MGS4 (Metal Gear Solid 4) a few years after its release. Leading up to this epic game, I completed Metal Gear Solid 1, 2 and 3 and studied the original Metal Gear titles so I could understand everything prior to MGS4. Within the first five minutes, I immediately fell in love with the setting for MGS4. That OctoCamo? Badass, my friends. The story was gripping for me, even as a standalone story. But because I was so invested in the characters throughout the series (Even though Metal Gear Solid 3 did not invoke Solid Snake), I felt much more attached in an emotional sense. Spoilers: That final fight against Liquid Snake was something else. When they played the songs from the previous Metal Gear Solid installments, chills ran through my body. And at the end when Solid Snake met Big Boss after attempting suicide, tears ran down my face. Metal gear Solid 4 was the perfect ending to the perfect soldier.

The Mass Effect Trilogy- Bioware has created some of my favorite games ever - Mass Effect, Knights of the Old Republic and Dragon Age: Origins. Mass Effect, in particular, is my favorite among their works because space fascinates me. The idea that humans found technology, which was able to thrust them 200 years into the future, was an awesome premise for a video game. Role-playing games are my favorite genre in video games, so Mass Effect felt right at home when I played it. The worlds (quite literally) in Mass Effect were unique and different from one another. There were many races, all with different origins, political views and interesting people. The characters were my favorite part of the Mass Effect trilogy. Some characters would travel with you across all three games, others only for one game. But these characters all had back stories and different issues they had to face. Like Commander Shepard, I grew to love these characters. They trusted you and you trusted them. I prefer a smaller cast to grow attached to, but I thoroughly enjoyed the larger group you of people who join Shepard through the trilogy. That was the beauty of Mass Effect and I hope to experience that joy and emotion again with future games.

The Last of Us- Last (Pun intended) but certainly not least, the greatest video game I have ever played. I have written about this game before and my love for it. But The Last of Us - at least for me - is a masterpiece in every sense of the word. It has a deep story with complex characters, the world feels realistic and it features a beautiful score to mix this beautiful package together. No other game has given me an experience like the one The Last of Us gave me. I kept wondering why certain characters did or said certain things, I felt so attached to the protagonists and the world. It was amazing seeing how Joel and Ellie learned from each other and how their relationship grew. The scene where Joel and Ellie encounter the giraffes was so beautiful and completely unexpected for me; the second time a video game has caused tears to stream down my face. I felt bad completing this game in less than a week. But because I was so immersed and in love, I could not hold back. The second I completed the game, I played through it again. The picture below epitomizes what The Last of Us means to me.

The Xbox 360/PlayDtation 3/Nintendo Wii generation is quite possibly my favorite generation of video games. I have so many great memories and I hope to grow new memories with the new consoles and new games we will be receiving. There are so many amazing titles. Honorable mentions include Dragon Age: Origins, Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, Dead Space and many more. What are some of your favorite games from the previous generation? Share your thoughts!   read


12:18 PM on 08.02.2014

Games Many People Like But I Can't Get Into

There are a number of popular games, or well-received games that many people like, but I don't. These games are by no means "bad" games; they are games that I did not enjoy as much as other people because I could not get into them, I did not understand the praise, or they just weren't my type of game. I appreciate these games, but I am not a fan of these games listed. Here we go!


Call of Duty: I respect the Call of Duty series and I was a long time fan at one point. But these games, at least for me, have become boring and repetitive. My annoyance with the series stems from the newest (not so new) installment, Call of Duty: Ghosts. I recently bought a PlayStation 4 from someone, and one of the games I received was Call of Duty: Ghosts. I played about three missions in the campaign, and about ten matches online and this solidified my feeling towards the series. I love when a shooter has a strong story, but those are few and far between. I feel like Call of Duty: Ghosts tried too hard to be something it is not - a popular online shooter with a story that is worth remembering. Call of Duty is known for its competitive multiplayer and I felt bored with its online. Maybe I'm the only person who feels this way? I don't know. I understand why people love these games, but they aren't for me anymore. I prefer story driven games these days.


Tearaway: This game has been highly praised and has reviewed very well. Tearaway is very unique and Media Molecule has done a great job creating an upbeat, joyous adventure. But I could not get into this game. I know it sounds crazy because I am praising the game for being unique and intriguing, but it honestly was difficult to play. The objective of the game is basically to deliver a message to yourself while you play as a piece of paper. Iota, or Atoi the main character, depending on which gender you choose, embarks on a special journey and helps many people along the way. That sounds perfect for me because I love helping others and going on unique adventures. What could possibly be wrong with this game? I hate sounding negative, but I felt bored while playing Tearaway. Maybe it simply does not appeal to me? Probably. I wanted to finish the game instead of being placed into areas that pushed me further from the destination. I understand why people can like this game. It just wasn't for me.


World of Warcraft: I tried World of Warcraft and I liked what I played, but I felt incredibly overwhelmed. It could be because I'm 10 years late to the party, but there was just so much to do and I didn't know where to begin. I would have needed at least three months to better understand the hype and the praise. Perhaps one month isn't a fair judgment for a game this massive, but I could not get hooked in that amount of time. I really do wish I could enjoy it more, but even a few friends who are into this MMO said it takes a long time. Maybe, sometime in the future, I will play World of Warcraft again and truly lose myself in the incredible world the game offers. Again, it is nothing against the game; it's the fact that I'm playing it way later than I should have.


I feel bad that I could not enjoy these games like others have. I do not believe the games I listed are "bad", they're just games that did not appeal to me for whatever reason. Every person has different tastes in games, movies, etc. and I respect everyone's feelings regarding what they like or dislike. What are some games that many people enjoy but do not appeal to you? Share your thoughts!   read


1:07 PM on 07.28.2014

My First Video Game Console And Memories

All of my life I have loved video games. But when and where did this love begin? Well, it started with my first video game console and my earliest memories on the Nintendo 64. I don't usually talk about the Nintendo 64, but this blog, at least for nostalgic purposes and for an admiration of the console, will include my memories and feelings on the Nintendo 64. I would not love video games if it were not for my amazing parents and my awesome brothers. I love you, you awesome people!


My first experiences with video games are because I grew up with older brothers. Around age four or five, I got my first taste of the legendary Nintendo 64. At the time, this was the only video game system I knew of. I did not know about the NES, the SNES, the Sega Genesis, etc. I thought Nintendo was a company that made an awesome home console and I did not know until later how innovative Nintendo was and how impressive their track record was. Looking back in retrospect, it's funny when your parent refers to every video game console as "that Nintendo game" because that was the most popular name in video games at the time.


My brothers and myself put a colossal amount of time into some of the best games on the Nintendo 64. One memory was experiencing the magical world of Hyrule in The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. I have so many great memories  playing that masterpiece with my brothers. We beat the hell out of that game and to this day, that is my favorite game ever. I remember playing Goldeneye and Perfect Dark against my brothers and against computers. Rare was a powerhouse in the 90s! I was not as good as my brothers when it came to competitive games, but I still had so much fun. Very recently, one of my brothers and myself played the original Super Smash Bros. for fun and memories from prior times came rushing through my mind. We used to play that game for hours on end - never growing tired of the same game modes over and over again. With the biggest smile on my face, playing the game over ten years later, I got to experience those memories of Super Smash Bros. again. StarFox 64 is also a game we played through well over 100 times. Trying to beat each other's scores and clear each level without getting hit added so much depth to my experiences with the game. "Do a barrel roll!" will stick with me for years. One little phrase like that is funny, but it also means so much to me because I think of bonding with my brothers with video games.


The Nintendo 64 was not just a great console with great games - it was the system that began my love for games. I made my way to other video game consoles and made more memories as I grew older, but none of those memories will ever compare to the ones I have from the Nintendo 64 era with my brothers. The Nintendo 64 is the reason why I want to be in the video game industry in some form. The Nintendo 64 is also why I am excited for the future so I can introduce video games to my child. I want to gain new memories sharing my passion with those I love and I want others to gain memories with people they love. Whether it is an NES or a PlayStation 4, people should play games to have fun and to create memories because video games are a beautiful medium.


What are some of your earliest memories with video games? Share your thoughts!   read





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