Reviews by Arteus
Still a masterpieceArteus | Feb. 28, 2014 | Review of Resident Evil 4
Resident Evil 4 is an old favorite of mine and I've owned it on the PS2 and Wii in the past. When I saw that it was being brought to Steam with a bit of a graphical upgrade and the promise of running at 60fps I pre-ordered it and waited for release. Now that I've played it I can say that it seems to be a competent port with no massive problems. The game will run at 1080p at a solid 60fps, play perfectly fine with a mouse & keyboard or a gamepad and the textures are indeed slightly better than they were in the original release of the game.
Now, anybody expecting a massive graphical upgrade need to get their heads straight; Capcom could have grabbed the same mess of a PC version that they originally released and thrown it on Steam to make a quick buck. The fact that the textures and fps are better at all is something to be happy about, they don't need to be magically making the game look modern. This is a port, not a remake.
With that out of the way the game plays well, runs well and looks as you would expect; like Resident Evil 4 but slightly better than you're used to. Personally I still prefer the Wii version simply for the incredibly fun control system but the Steam version is nothing to scoff at. Definitely worth a purchase if you're an old fan of the game or a newcomer that has yet to play this masterpiece.
Gorgeous but dullArteus | Feb. 21, 2014 | Review of Dear Esther
Dear Esther is a game I was really looking forward to at first but ended up letting me down in the end. While the environments are beautiful in places the gameplay just isn't there at all. While I find the term "walking simulator" a bit overused nowadays I just can't say it doesn't apply here. You walk around and listen to the narration as you do so. There's very little in the way of exploration, I spent a good amount of time thoroughly exploring every single bit of the maps and got nothing out of it. It doesn't help that you walk at a snail's pace and doing said exploration just wastes even more of your time because of the trip back to the main path.
My score is based almost entirely on how beautiful some of the environments are and how cheap the game tends to get during sales. If you feel like checking out some pretty environments it wouldn't be a bad purchase if you find it for a couple of dollars. Don't buy it if you're looking for anything more than an interactive (if that) story though.
Fantastic SandboxArteus | Feb. 21, 2014 | Review of Just Cause 2
It's easy for me to say that Just Cause 2 is one of the best sandbox titles I have ever played on my system. Running/flying/driving/sailing around the islands of Panau and causing chaos is almost endless fun, especially with the massive amount of vehicles, weapons and gadgets at your disposal.
Now, it should be mentioned that the actual storyline is mediocre and nothing to write home about but the sandbox elements do indeed make up for that in spades. The graphics are still great after all of these years and the game performs fairly well on a good range of systems. The game even has multiplayer thanks to the free JC2:MP mod that is available through Steam from a talented group of modders.
If you want some crazy sandbox action you should already own this game, I should have to tell you to get it. If you don't already have it somehow, buy it. The game frequently goes on sale and can be found for around £3 if you catch it at the right time. It's an absolute bargain.
The best of the seriesArteus | Feb. 19, 2014 | Review of F.E.A.R
Despite being the first of a new series, F.E.A.R. is still the best. The sequels may have improved the graphical fidelity but it's the original that absolutely nails the gameplay. F.E.A.R is a horror FPS that balances the horror and the action perfectly; it's scary but not too scary, full of action but not to the point of being annoying.
The combat is fluid and feels fantastic, the sound assets are great for the time and it never really starts to feel repetitive. The graphics, while dated, also hold up reasonably well to this day. It should also be noted that even for full price this game is great value, I managed to get through everything in just over 10 hours and every second of it was fantastic.
I highly recommend F.E.A.R, even if you never intend to play the (fairly mediocre) sequels.
Absolutely incredible.Arteus | Feb. 16, 2014 | Review of Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons
This game is easily my game of the year for 2013. What first looked to me like a small-time indie game that probably wasn't worth my time ended up being one of the most phenomenal titles I've ever played.
This game tells an engaging story without a single word of spoken English; characters speak complete gibberish yet still convey emotion incredibly. It's only a 2.5-3 hour experience but it doesn't need to be any longer, it's the perfect length to finish in a single sitting and you will never feel that it has outstayed its welcome. The level and puzzle design is perfectly done, you should never need to think overly hard and you should always have a good idea of where you're meant to be going and what you're meant to be doing.
Graphically the game really holds its own. I can see this title being one of those timeless games that never quite looks outdated visually; it's bright, colorful and charming. It should also be noted that the control system is unusual but not bad at all, you control each brother with a separate analog stick and bumper and it works perfectly that way. Also, that's me recommending that you play this game with a gamepad, the keyboard controls work but are nowhere near as comfortable.
If you have any taste in games at all you should purchase this game, lock yourself away from any distractions, pick up your gamepad and play through this game in a single sitting. You won't regret it.
LudicrousArteus | Feb. 16, 2014 | Review of Rise of the Triad
Not bad, not bad at all. This is an ideal game for people that want to return to the days of fast-paced first person shooters with large levels packed with secrets. This game is packed with all of the weapons from the classic release and they made the transition perfectly. There's nothing like speeding through a level and blowing everything in your path into little giblets.
Graphically the game is pretty dang good, certainly nothing to scoff at. Sadly however, the game isn't the most optimized thing in existence. I was unable to run it at more than 15fps on an AMD quad core 3.2GHz and a HD6850, regardless of what settings I attempted. Thankfully I later upgraded my PC and it runs well enough for me to be writing this review. Still, if you're worried about your PC not being up to the task you may want to hold off altogether or at least wait for a good sale before purchasing this title.
AstonishingArteus | Feb. 12, 2014 | Review of The Walking Dead
This game sets out to tell a story and it succeeds in every possible way. This is my personal GOTY for 2012 by far and I can't wait for future seasons to expand upon the story. The emotional connections that you build in this game will keep you on the edge of your seat almost constantly, the tension is incredible.
The art style is made to be reminiscent of the original comic series and Telltale nailed the aesthetic to a T. The only flaws the game has are a few bugs that ended up being ironed out in patches anyway. Purchase this game, it's a good 12 hours of absolutely phenomenal storytelling and you won't regret it in the slightest.
Still the best...Arteus | Feb. 11, 2014 | Review of Hitman: Blood Money
It's not too often that I play games all the way through but this game had me hooked. Even after playing Absolution I still consider it the best game in the Hitman franchise by far, even if it isn't quite as graphically impressive. What the game does have it provides in droves; it's tense, deliberately paced and most importantly just outright fun. The game allows for you to approach situations in a variety of ways depending on how you're feeling. If you want to poison some food you can go ahead and do that. If you want to go in guns blazing with no regard for your final score...well, nobody is stopping you.
It's a great time, I have no qualms in recommending it.
AstoundingArteus | Feb. 10, 2014 | Review of Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition
For me, buying this game was simply a matter of curiosity. I had heard good things about it and I couldn't really ignore the fact that the devs had brought it to PC after an outcry from the community.
This is now my favorite game of all time. No other game has challenged me this much without being outright unfair. The combat is slow, deliberate and tense while the story is indirect and requires heavy interpretation that will differ from player to player. I managed to complete the game a good half-dozen times over multiple characters and every playthrough was as fun as the last; keep in mind that I rarely beat games and when I do I generally drop them afterwards. This title hooked me from the very start and I still jump on from time to time for a few boss fights, speedrun attempts and PVP action.
The only thing that really detracts from the game is the quality of the port, that is, there isn't any. The developers admitted it wouldn't be a good port and they weren't lying. Thankfully, the use of Durante's DSfix can have the game up and running with very few issues, just be sure to play with a gamepad unless you're feeling masochistic.
Can't complainArteus | Feb. 9, 2014 | Review of 10 000 000
As a lover of "match 3" styled games I have no issues at all with this game. It takes a classic formula and mixes it up by making every action correlate to your character's performance in the dungeon. The controls are simple, the upgrades are fun to obtain and the combat, despite being controlled by matching tiles, feels like it has impact. The sound effects are well done, the music is catchy (reminds me of VVVVVV) and in the end it's just a simple game that offers a good amount of challenge in the later stages.
My only real complaint would really be that you can quite easily end up in a tough battle with no combat-related tiles readily available to you but hey, that's just the luck of the draw.
Not too shabbyArteus | Feb. 5, 2014 | Review of Grand Theft Auto IV
As a game, Grand Theft Auto IV is solid. While a lot more serious than prior titles in the series, GTA4 retains the core mechanics that made the previous games a success. The graphics hold up fairly well even after a few years and can be modded to be better quite easily.
The main problem with this game is the quality of the port, it's an incredibly awkward game in this regard and can work fantastically on one system and then sub-par on something with similar specifications. It's certainly more demanding than it should be as a result.
The game is definitely worth a purchase if you have a powerful system to play it on. Anybody unsure about the strength of their PC may want to wait for a sale however, just in case it doesn't run quite as well as you would like.