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This certainly has taken a while , has it not? let’s get this out of the way before I start to the folks thank you for the positivity in the prior blog post , I seriously meant to write more but I have been far more busy than i could have ever hoped this year.
Well holy hell was I wrong huh? so much for that next chapter in gaming I thought was going to show up in 2014 , if you ask me this year has more a less been a grand demonstration of how not to release video games. But for better or worse here is most of the stuff I played(kind of) in 2014 and what I think about it.
Castlevania : Lords of shadow 2:-
Just so you know I have never finished any castlevania game before lords of shadow 1 , I am pretty much just comparing the second to the first without nothing really else to go on here. The second entry is definitely a weaker one , rather than build on what they established they kind of toned it back to get even more people to play. Rat stealth aside the combat has been broken down into a limited number of moves and the game has some weird only walk straight parts , still I like that the game delivered what was promised at the end of the first and it tells a story about draccy that I can care about.
Opinion: Francis Ford Coppola's Bram Stoker’s Dracula : The Movie: The Video Game
Your either surprised that I immediately went with another vampire game or you just did not know that there was a game based on the second blade film. A hidden gem(nope) that can be enjoyed on the Xbox 360 thanks to backward compatibility , this is does not really try to tell the events of the film again. Instead you pretty much get the Wesley Snipes experience with a combat system that is similar to Too Human but more functional. I like how all his animations are just like the films , also startopia devs made this.
Opinion: The second blade film is one of my favorites of all time however I do not recall a giant sumo vampire god at the end. Also xbox version is better because it has trench coat physics.
Yaiba: Ninja Gaiden Z
A bad joke is a joke that is not really funny and leaves you feeling insulted. This sentence sums up a lot of this game , it more a less plays like an asian themed splatterhouse. The story and characters just do not work and the gameplay goes back and forth from repetitive to frustrating. The one true draw to play this is either going to be arcady fun for people who want to escape the serious mechanics of the main NG games or just a chance to face off with Ryu , play it or not you're not going to be missing much.
Time crisis: Razing storm
Finished: Razing storm campaign- Nothing else really
When you get back from work you may want to play video games but you might not have the mental energy to deal with an RTS or even following the story of a more cinematic game.
Rail shooters are pretty damn easy to follow and provide quick enjoyment , which is why I hooked up an older TV and explored a bunch of PS2 rail shooters. My rail shooting brought me to a used copy of razing storm , the FPS campaign is in its own league of awfulness. It’s that strange time when japanese developers were trying to make something closer to western games and shit like this is the result.
Opinion: Fake che guevara in giant spider mech , also most of his blabber is annoying rant laugh.
Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeros
Finished: Main story - side missions not played
Here something people will not forget , the time when they paid to play a demo. A very nice demo still , unless it is a secret or something I think this game is called metal gear but it doesn’t really have a metal gear? I dunno you tell me. It is a pretty game on whatever you play it and sandbox stealth is well executed. If you beat peace (piss) walker be ready for some dark story stuff.
Opinion: The slower you move , the longer it lasts.
INTERMISSION: HARDWARE GOING NO WHERE (SKIP THIS IF YOU JUST WANT THE GAMES STUFF)
I feel the need to tell you i bought some new systems this year , I do not think you care about what I think when it comes to the Ouya and I have not played enough to tell you what I think of the Wii U.
The focus here is going to be the Xbox One , some hopefully brief thoughts:-
It is not the system the media will have you think is the right purchasing choice, from the get go Microsoft did a lot to make you not want this system. Before you ask I will tell you that I guess I got the system because it had exclusives I wanted to play( at the time at least) , my main 3 tests were being able to play used games , no-region-locking and not being forced into online.
I have all that on the Xbox One , still cons include third parties not being on the same level with ps4 versions and still having to pay for online.
If I am not mistaken I thought consoles were meant to eliminate the pc related headaches by removing the need to install and patch games , you just put the game in and play. Not any more apparently , now all we need is norton antivirus notifications to minimize games at the worst time and video driver updates.
A GENERATION NEXTER:-
Ryse: Son of Rome
Further proof that crytek don’t spell check often, I would call ryse a bad game but it is not really a game if you ask me. It’s would you would call an on rails man-stabber , the pros end at good looking and well animated. The story is ye olde action with some fantasy drool , gameplay would have benefited from actual mechanics. You’re not selling me on next gen here and when this got ported to pc I was not at all bothered.
Opinion: The deadliest game of UNO you will ever play also pc version has nomad so its better.
Dead Rising 3
A welcome sequel . I always thought i would enjoy this series more without the stressful time limit. I want to replay this on nightmare some time since the normal difficulty is too easy , if you choose not to download the gigantic xbox one patch you still will have a bunch to do.
I find it odd this was ported to pc as quick as it was , does not seem like they really wanted it from what I can see.
Opinion: Dead rise , sales drop.
Wolfenstein: The new order
The wolfenstein before this focused on the occult with a bit of sci fi , this one goes full on sci fi. This is what I would call one of the better games of the year , but I can’t help but feel there was a decline in quality as the game progressed. It does what it says on the box , magic FMVs can try hard to kill the games flow but in the end its more a less a good A to B journey..a replayable one at that. I like the added stealth approach and Blaz actually saying what he thinks.
Opinion: It won’t save shooters but its got its heart in the right place.
Yeah uh...well ummm….being a master thief can be tough , especially with clingy ghost girl friends. People probably wanted something closer to human revolution here , this is not something I can hate as much as Hitman: Absolution. I think bad map design(pointless hub world) and glitches just killed off any flow here , the writing did not do much to help and the gameplay was not the best. If you are ever to play this , do so without all the fancy shit enabled and you should have something to move slow in the shadows about.
Opinion: Hand animation department is quite effective.
Definitely a point to be brought up in the “not a good year for Ubisoft” conversation , clock hounds may not be the best especially if the graphical downgrade turned you away. Still I enjoyed the game for enabling the vigilante fantasy and having a plot that I wanted to see play out. The downside for me was the game invasion not really working well , either way I like this game.
Opinion: That is not how computers work.
Current multiplayer level: Dont know , dont care.
A game with pure generated hype , not much content and gameplay that got old for me. I will mention the game did get some extra content post launch and is part of the reason I got the Xbox one.
Opinion: I got nothin.
Oh whats that? you did not expect japanese developers to use ID TEch 5 , well neither did I. You wanted a next generation resident evil 4 but this is not that , this is more of a Mikami’s greatest hits. The story does not make sense until like 8 chapters in so be patient , I love this game for the swashbuckling enemy arenas and very satisfying gore.
Opinion: Needs more spanish dwarf royalty.
Call of duty: Advanced warfare
Current multiplayer level: Don’t Care
At this point there just not going to be that game thats like MW1 again , I do not like the story here you could play the missions in pretty much any order and they would make as much sense. The multiplayer does bring some needed fresh mechanics but they are eventually taken apart by old tactics that the franchise has become loathed for.
Opinion: Kevin Spacey.
Halo: The master chief collection
My progress with this game was pretty much handicapped by the state it was released in , this is pretty much the highest point a game can reach when being broken at launch.
The game content and patches will bring your xbox hard drive to its knees , patch after next seemed to slap the game back and forth between playable and not. From what I hear the campaigns have glitches that hinder progress, I cannot confirm this because I bought this collection for the multiplayer( I beat the campaigns on pc and xbox 360).
I at this point am grateful that the game has been sortve fixed however this is something that could have been avoided by delaying the launch and having a beta. The amount of data to be downloaded is unreasonable once you factor in the day 1 patch and the weekly patches to fix multiplayer. Given some testing and an additional disc for content they could have had a more stable launch and by that time the Nightfall episodes would be finished and could be included on the additional disc.
Having bought this at launch I can say it has been a train wreck in which I was in the front seat , this includes advantages like being able to see the forums descend into madness in real time.
Current multiplayer level: 60-soemthin I think
I chose to bring this up again because of the excellent post-launch support that has continued into this year , you can check the previous blog to see what I think of it(it’s cool). Cheap dlc and community encouragement is how to keep your game alive.
Opinion: The drill is still jammed.
Steam sale buys can be a tricky affair , no? a more a cinematic beatem up with a french touch , the gameplay goes from button masher to tactical button masher. It is ironic how a game that tries so hard to be memorable is so forgettable.
Opinion: The VCR sections of the game are so fucking tedious when playing with a keyboard and mouse.
Lost planet 3
Capcom decides to outsource this to SPARK and you end up with their most playable game yet. Anime mechs are ditched for space trucker space rigs , things go great with the space trucker vibe until stuff gets all serious. On foot combat is either tense or boring and never in between. I like what I played here its not lost planet 1 fun but its a message on family values and snowstorms.
Opinion: Dtoid comments paint game protagonist Jim Payton as video game Nick Cage.
Current Multiplayer level: Huh? You said somethin?
Not a game I immediately would recommend but it cost 5 dollars for a beta key or will eventually be free to play once its finished. This has nothing to do with Legacy of Kain , it is however a fun team-oriented game. Animations are very well executed but having to unlock classes is a bummer.
Opinion: Not left 4 vampire but close enough.
This has a special place in my heart because the scourge project : Episodes 1 and 2 came out some time back when I was in university , playing the improved re-release now feels as if I have come full circle.
The same game but with improvements and additional story to wrap up the game is what you get here , this started as their task to port the game to console but ended up taking 3 years to compress the game. Hopefully you can see the design PDF on their website which details the improvements.
This is pretty much a poor mans gears of war but the circumstances made this game I will remember , shout out to Starwars7 for the both playthroughs.
Opinion: Its that moment when you turn your head to the side and focus as if you can see through time and space , nostalgia.
Finished: I got the ass blood to prove it.
I am rather puzzled as to how people can consider this a bad game but you are more likely to have enjoyed it if you watched the original film.
It seems the developers have found the way to make a successful horror game and its not cheap jump scares but more creating the atmosphere of constant dread and stress. A lengthy and challenging experience with some great art design I truly wish the game had more technical polish sicne I would have liked to finish it without having to reinstall it 4 times.
The glitches and cheap deaths were not enough to kill my enjoyment for the game for me so I must have enjoyed it and the 70s VHS look is so welcome , when compared to a year of meh I can say this is my personal favorite.
Opinion: Don’t walk under vents that are leaking drool.
IN CLOSING: POINTLESS OPTIMISM
Once again there you have it some bad writing and bad jokes to help you in deciding what to buy/play , 2014 turned out to be the gas station bathroom on the way to what people playing games for a while imagine the next generation would be.
I am disappointed that rather than learn from old mistakes companies are either making new ones or repeating them , I do regret not including more in this blog post since memory and time have been fleeting for me. My final observation of 2014 is that it has been a year of bad launches , games delayed to 2015 and an oddly big focus on stealth games. I would like to predict what is in store for next year that way I can look smart if it happens, but I would rather leave you with some crappy fan art( mostly copyrighted stuff so please don’t sue me) and I hope that this year was pleasant for you. If not at the very least 2015 can’t be as bad as 2014 , right?