Reviews by FLD
Squad 7, move out!FLD | March 6, 2015 | Review of Valkyria Chronicles - PC
One of the, if not THE, best early PS3 exclusives hits PC out of nowhere and the results are glorious. Valkyria Chronicles is a Japanese real-time/turn-based hybrid strategy game with an anime visual and story style. If anything part of that sentence sounds good to you, then you will not be disappointed. This game is such a perfect fit for the PC that it's mind-boggling that it took so long to be ported. And it's a great port, too. Even my ancient system was able to run the game at a constant 60 FPS, even at 4K. This is a criminally underappreciated cult classic and any fan of strategy games owe it to themselves to give it a shot.
Best Resident Evil in a whileFLD | March 6, 2015 | Review of Resident Evil Revelations 2 Complete Edition (1) - PC
Revelations 2 borrows a lot from what is arguably RE6's best aspect: its combat. Everything else is more in line with the original Revelations, for better and for worse. It's more atmospheric, has an episodic story structure that has you playing from multiple characters' perspectives and suffers from rather mediocre visuals. While the original Revelations had poor visuals because of its origin as a 3DS title, Revelations 2 was designed as a budget title from the very start. Whether or not that matters will largely depend on how much importance you attribute to graphical fidelity. But overall, and considering the price, if you like Resident Evil then you can't go wrong with Revelations 2.
Decent shooter with some weird camera choices.FLD | Oct. 9, 2013 | Review of Kane and Lynch 2 Dog Days - PC
If you liked the original, this is essentially more of the same. Some weird aesthetic calls were made when it comes to the camera in this one, though. If you hate shaky cams, you're not going to be a fan of this one. Other than that, Kane & Lynch themselves are still as despicable as ever and I think that alone makes the game worth a look. It's not too often you get characters this vile and repugnant in gaming and that's pretty interesting, I think.
Kinda like a really messed up version of Splinter Cell.FLD | Oct. 9, 2013 | Review of Manhunt STEAM - PC
This game is seriously messed up. You stab, choke and murder people in all kinds of way. If you're easily shocked or offended, you might want to steer clear of this one. But otherwise, this game is a really solid stealth action title. If you don't mind the depravity there's some really good gameplay to be found here. Just keep in mind it's not for the faint of heart.
A true Rockstar classic.FLD | Oct. 9, 2013 | Review of Bully Scholarship Edition Steam - PC
This game might not have been as big a deal as Grand Theft Auto but believe me, it's every bit as good. Bullworth Vale is as much fun to explore as any iteration of Liberty City. The cast of characters are memorable and hilarious. The story is what you'd expect from Rockstar. This game is a classic and since we're unlikely to be getting a sequel any time soon, you owe it to yourself to give the original a shot if you haven't yet.
This game is a blast and you should definitely give it a shot.FLD | Oct. 9, 2013 | Review of PACMAN Championship Edition DX NA Post - PC
Forget everything you know about Pac-Man. This is something else. A mostly time trial- and high score-based affair, this game is crazy fun. In this, you run around the levels getting chased by dozens of ghosts. Dozens! It's a very satisfying thing to finally grab that pellet, turn around and start munching on a ghost line that spans almost the entire screen. You truly can't go wrong with this one.
Like a much, much weirder version of Zelda.FLD | Oct. 9, 2013 | Review of Anodyne - PC
This game is very weird. The world presented in it is eerie and strangely beautiful. The gameplay is obviously heavily inspired from older Zelda titles such as Link to the Past but it's a much more relaxed affair. This all sounds great on paper so I went in with high expectations but the game didn't quit grab me, for some reason. I stopped playing after a couple hours and although I've been meaning to get back to it, I've yet to do so. I wouldn't say it's bad, though, so I'm really not sure what it was that didn't click with me.
A great trip down memory lane.FLD | Oct. 9, 2013 | Review of Sonic Generations - PC
This was the first Sonic game I played in over a decade. I think the last one was Sonic 3 back when I still owned a Sega Genesis. So, this was a great trip down memory lane. I know the Sonic series has had a bit of a bad reputation in recent years but as someone who skipped out on that entire phrase the series went through, I enjoyed this one a lot. It actually has me thinking of checking out some of the older games I missed out on.
Really weird puzzle game.FLD | July 7, 2013 | Review of The Ball - PC
On the surface, The Ball vaguely resembles Portal. It's a puzzler played from a first-person perspective and has you interacting with the environment through a gimmick item. But any similarities stop there. This is a different beast altogether. It has a completely different tone and feel and the puzzles are actually quite different. Not as good as Portal. Not even close. But worth a look if you enjoy the genre.
I am the Bat.FLD | July 7, 2013 | Review of Batman Arkham City Game of the Year Overflow 1 - PC
Batman: Arkham Asylum redefined superhero games. This wasn't some rushed piece of garbage cashing in on the license. This was the real deal. You were Batman. Arkham City raises the bar and expands on the concept beautifully. The freeflow combat system needs no introduction by now. It is fluid, fast and responsive. Add in all the quick-fire gadgets and you really start to feel like the badass Batman should be. This game is also loaded with content. With over 400 Riddler challenges, it will keep you busy well beyond the 8 hours story campaign. And considering this edition includes all the DLC, this is the ultimate bang for your bucks. A great way to kill time while we wait for the next one.
This game is amazing.FLD | July 7, 2013 | Review of Sleeping Dogs - PC
Sleeping Dogs isn't particularly original and is, in fact, quite derivative. But my god is it ever greater than the sum of its parts. The meat of this game, the melee combat system, feels straight out of Arkham City. Smooth, responsive and fun. The shooting, while overall not central to the gameplay, works well enough. The cars handle well enough and there's a good variety of them. The open world is vibrant with colors and the oriental setting really make it stand out from the crowd of open-world crime games. But the story is where this game really shines. One of the best of its kind, in my opinion. The plot itself is fairly standard fare, but the characters are very well developed, protagonist Wei Shen in particular. My only complaint would be that it is kind of lacking in the side-quests department. One of my favorite aspect of the game was the police cases you get to solve and there's only a very limited amount of them. Overall, this game is well worth your time in money. And considering it goes on sale all the time, there's no excuse not to give it a shot.
Fun but dated.FLD | July 7, 2013 | Review of Devil May Cry 4 Overflow - PC
Devil May Cry 3 stands among my favorite games of all time yet for some reason I only recently got around to playing this one. I hadn't heard very good things about it but I'd always meant to play it eventually. Having recently done so, I have to say I was not disappointed. In many ways, it feels like a prettier PS2 game. The controls feel kind of archaic and to say the graphics are dated would be an understatement. But as a massive fan of the Devil May Cry series, this game was both a fun and nostalgic experience. If you can get it on sale, I would recommend it.
Don't expect Blood Money 2FLD | July 7, 2013 | Review of Hitman Absolution NA - PC
This game got a bit of flak at launch and people were claiming that it had "ruined" the series. Well, that's fairly ridiculous. True, in their attempt to make a more story-driven campaign that finds 47 on the run, some design sacrifices were made. A good third of the campaign feels less like Hitman and more like a standard stealth-action game. But the other two thirds? They're the Hitman you know and love. Some aspects are disappointing, sure. For example, the way the levels are separated in sections can make them feel rather small compared to the previous games. But as a fan of the series since its early days, I thoroughly enjoyed Absolution and can't wait for the next installment. This isn't the perfect game that many expected but that doesn't mean it's not worth your time.
BioShock through and through.FLD | July 4, 2013 | Review of BioShock Infinite NA Post - PC
I'm of two minds about this one. On the one hand, it seems like a lot has been cut from it. Many of the things they've shown in early trailers is nowhere to be seen and the game we got feels like it was scaled down considerably. On the other hand, this is still the BioShock you know and love. Your enjoyment of Infinite will greatly depend on whether that's what you wanted or not. The first few hours were almost euphoric for me, and the game is still pretty good and has one of the most mind-blowing ending in recent memory. But the further I got into the campaign, the more I realized this was just more of the same. Not necessarily a bad thing but this game looked like it could've been so much more.
Hello, Commander.FLD | July 4, 2013 | Review of XCOM Enemy Unknown NA Overflow 1 - PC
XCOM is the most fun I've had with a game in years. I've sunk around 50 hours into it in the first month alone and I'm well past 100 by now. The base-building aspect of the game is fairly straightforward and overall not very deep. But the turn-based tactical combat is where this game really shines. It's just so much fun, I can't get enough of it. Playing this in Ironman mode on Classic difficulty is one of the most challenging and satisfying gaming experience ever. Carelessly moved into new territory? That soldier that's been with you since the beginning just got killed! Ended your turn in half-cover while in combat with three enemies? Nope, kiss that sniper goodbye. It can sound frustrating (and it sometimes is) but that's XCOM, baby. There's nothing quite like the feeling of a mission well-executed with no casualties. Some say the campaign has little replay value, but personally I can't get enough of it. Best strategy game ever.
Buy this game.FLD | July 4, 2013 | Review of Dishonored Steam - PC
This game is amazing. The first level was linear and didn't really grab me, but once I got into the first proper mission, I was very pleasantly surprised. It reminded me very much of an old favorite of mine: Thief. Dishonored is heavily inspired by Looking Glass' classic, that much is undeniable. It's not purely a stealth game, though, as combat is still very much a viable option. That might be disappointing to some but if you ignore it and play purely as a ghost and take time to explore each level, this can be a very rewarding game.
Think Legend of Zelda meets God of War.FLD | July 4, 2013 | Review of Darksiders (1) - PC
Darksiders is about as derivative as it gets. Overall quest structure is lifted straight from Legend of Zelda and the combat borrows heavily from titles such as God of War. But if you're going to be borrowing, might as well borrow from the best. The end result is a solid action games with decent dungeons and puzzles. The story and art style is where the game really shines. Designed by comic book artist Joe Madureira, Darksiders has a distinct look to it that feels part comic book, part heavy metal album cover.
Cool visual style and fun gameplay.FLD | July 4, 2013 | Review of The Darkness II Overflow - PC
The Darkness II is a short but fun FPS. The Darkness powers mix up the gameplay nicely and by the end make you feel like a complete badass. The game has a nice comic book-y visual style that really fits well with the source material. Worth a look if you're sick of generic shooters and want something that has a little bit more style.
Incredible sequel, not-so-incredible portFLD | Aug. 16, 2012 | Review of Darksiders II - PC
Only a few short hours into the campaign, it's quite clear that Darksiders II is one of those sequels that improve on the original in just about every respect. Much like its predecessor, Darksiders II is a strange hybrid of God of War-style combat mixed with a Legend of Zelda quest structure, only this time there's a dash of Prince of Persia platforming thrown in for good measure. It might sound weird but it works. The RPG elements are also much heavier. Death gains experience through combat and levels up while enemies drop loot such as secondary weapons and pieces of armor (some of which have level requirements before Death can equip them). The biggest problems are on the technical side of things. First of all, on first launch the game throws you straight into the opening cutscene and you can't access the options menu until you gain control of Death. Only then can you adjust the resolution, but you have to restart the game for it to take effect. There's also a v-sync option and a gamma slider and that's unfortunately all the graphical options you have. As for the actual graphics, it looks... okay. The game has a great visual style and is quite colorful but the graphical fidelity isn't very high. The textures are fairly low-resolution and do a disservice to the otherwise beautiful aesthetics of the game. On the plus side, it runs great on my three years old rig. If you were a fan of the original, then expect to be blown away but be advised that this is as basic a PC port as it gets.
Great sequel, not so great PC port.FLD | Aug. 14, 2012 | Review of Darksiders II Limited Edition - PC
Only a few short hours into the campaign, it's quite clear that Darksiders II is one of those sequels that improve on the original in just about every respect. Much like its predecessor, Darksiders II is a strange hybrid of God of War-style combat mixed with a Legend of Zelda quest structure, only this time there's a dash of Prince of Persia platforming thrown in for good measure. It might sound weird but it works. The RPG elements are also much heavier. Death gains experience through combat and levels up while enemies drop loot such as secondary weapons and pieces of armor (some of which have level requirements before Death can equip them). The biggest problems are on the technical side of things. First of all, on first launch the game throws you straight into the opening cutscene and you can't access the options menu until you gain control of Death. Only then can you adjust the resolution, but you have to restart the game for it to take effect. There's also a v-sync option and a gamma slider and that's unfortunately all the graphical options you have. As for the actual graphics, it looks... okay. The game has a great visual style and is quite colorful but the graphical fidelity isn't very high. On the plus side, it runs great on my three years old rig. If you were a fan of the original, then expect to be blown away but be advised that this is as basic a PC port as it gets.
A solid expansion that does not quite change the game.FLD | June 20, 2012 | Review of Sid Meiers Civilisation V Gods Kings Expansion Pack - PC
Gods & Kings is by no means a game changer. If you don't already love Civilization V then is is unlikely to change that. If you do love it, though, then this expansion holds a good amount of content. The new religion and espionage systems in particular are a very welcome addition to what was already a fairly deep game. The ability to customize your religon to suit your playstyle makes it a particularly useful tool in your quest for victory. Going for a science victory? Then choose religion traits that grant you science bonuses. Espionage, while being the simpler of the two new game mechanics, is particularly fun. It is a shame that your spies aren't actual units on the map as everything is done through a menu. But that menu adds an interesting level of complexity to diplomacy while also allowing you to get a research boost by stealing tech from your enemies when you find yourself lagging behind. Overall, Gods & Kings is worth the asking price if what you want is to breathe new life into your Civilization V expenrience. If you were hoping for a game-changer, though, then this isn't the expansion for you.