Reviews by Mattiebo
Beautiful, Brutal and tons of funMattiebo | Jan. 29, 2013 | Review of Far Cry 3 - PlayStation 3
Far Cry 3 is a unique and exciting open-world first-person shooter set on a vibrant and beautiful island full of pirates, who want to murder your face, and animals, who also want to murder your face. Ubisoft have done a brilliant job with this game, and it's great to see that they have taken the criticism from Far Cry 2 and used it to create one of the best games of 2012. There's a lot to do in the game. In the single player side you can free roam around the huge environment, do main quests, side quests, play poker, go hunting, take out strongholds, explore caves and hidden areas and much more. On top of that is a full 4-player co-op campaign, online competitive multiplayer and a map editor. You have the freedom to play the game as you want. You can carry up to 4 weapons and you can choose them from a range of choices including flame throwers, sniper rifles, assault rifles, pistols, SMGs and RPGs. You can also customise most of these weapons with custom paint jobs, silencers, sights and more. This customizability means that you can shape the game around the way you want to play. If you want, you can arm yourself with a bunch of heavy-duty equipment and run into a situation all guns blazing, or you could sit on top of a cliff, picking people off one by one with a sniper rifle. One thing that makes this game truly amazing is how dynamic the environment is. There are loads of types of wildlife scattered around the island and the vast majority of them will attack you on sight. Bears, tigers and komodo dragons can be hard to kill and could pop up at any time if you're in their territory. No matter if you've completed Amnesia: The Dark Descent or braved the woods in Slender, nothing can prepare you for the pure terror when you realise that you've just dived into shark-infested waters. Swimming on the surface of the water has truly been one of my most terrifying gaming experiences and that just proved the realism of this great game. My only real criticism is that the side-quests sometimes don't really give you proper instructions. Otherwise, it's an absolutely brilliant game and I recommend it to everyone..
It's games like this for which THQ will be missedMattiebo | Jan. 27, 2013 | Review of Saints Row The Third - PC DVD
THQ had a number of great franchises; Darksiders, Red Faction and, of course, Saints Row. I didn't play the first in the series and, although I bought it, I didn't play much of the second one, but then I picked up this third game and I could see what all the fuss was about. Saints Row: The Third is a crazy, stupid and ultimately incredibly fun open-world GTA-style game. You start by creating a character using the plethora of options giving you the ability to make just about any abomination you can think of (or, you know, a normal character if you're into that kind of thing.) There are a lot of similarities to GTA, from the car-jacking to the open world, but Saints Row also throws in some more unique things like insane missions, ridiculous weapons and a car with a cannon that sucks up and shoots out pedestrians. The game is double the fun when you play with someone else online. You can play through the story co-operatively and it will save the progress for both players. For now we don't know of the fate of the next Saints Row game. It was in development before THQ went under and so it may never be released, but it could also be purchased by a publisher. At this point we don't know, but I'm sure we're all routing for the latter. While you're waiting, however, pick up this brilliant game.
The best version of a great gameMattiebo | Jan. 26, 2013 | Review of The Elder Scrolls v Skyrim - PC DVD
Skyrim is a game that I was massively excited for on its release of 11/11/11. I originally bought the game on PlayStation 3 but due to lag a save bloating problems, I decided to pick it up on PC instead. My experience was instantly improved and it's a game that, over a year on, I'm still playing regularly. Mods are what really make the PC version of this game special and they make it possible to play through the game several times, having a different experience very time. Seeing as this disc activates on Steam, you'll be able to use Steam's Skyrim Workshop to install mods at the push of a button, or you can alternatively use a modding website like Skyrim Nexus to find mods that might not be on the Workshop. The game itself features hours upon hours of gameplay with loads of quests, dungeons and loot available to you. You can do the main quest to reveal your inner dragonborn, side with the assassins of the Dark Brotherhood, join the warriors at the Companions, practise magic at the College of Winterhold and steal things for the Thieves Guild. My personal favourite quests are the Daedric quests which have you doing deeds for god-like people in return for powerful items. The game also has two available DLC packs (Dawnguard and Hearthfire) with a new one, Dragonborn, out soon. If you're into modding, you can download the Skyrim Creation kit for free and do just about anything you can think of, or you can just find what you desire among the plethora of mods already available. I think every PC gamer should own this game. If you don't like something within the game, there's probably a mod to fix it and you can guarantee to see some exciting content in the future.
Very good game, but lacking somethingMattiebo | Jan. 26, 2013 | Review of Playstation All Stars Battle Royale - PlayStation 3
PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale is a great game. You get to play as 20 of PlayStation and Co's most recognisable faces and beat up you opponents to build up AP meter before letting out a one of 3 super moves (per character) depending on how much AP you have. When PSASBR first showed up, people thought it would just be a shameless rip off of Nintendo's brilliant Super Smash Bros series, but the gameplay shows that it is more than that. The only way to score in the game is by using a character's super moves and so fights get incredibly chaotic as the fighters try to build up as much AP as possible. Every character is unique in the way they move, their super moves and their normal moves which are executed using the face buttons paired with a directional button. The story mode is something that you may expect from a Capcom fighter like Street Fighter X Tekken or Marvel VS Capcom. You pick your character, watch a cut-scene, do a few fights, watch another cut-scene, fight the boss and then watch a final cut-scene. You unlock things for specific characters by reaching certain levels with them, and you level them up by winning matches and completing the many goals. Unfortunately, this is the only way to unlock things in the game and so you may feel that there is no point to play the game with anyone other then your mains. While there is a lot of unlockable content for specific characters including costumes, taunts and victory music, the fact that you can't unlock anything for doing other things is a bit disappointing. That may just be because I'm used to the Smash Bros series in which you unlock things left, right and centre for doing just about anything, making it a more exciting experience. The online multiplayer is solid, but people often use the more cheap and spammy characters like Kratos and Radec. Characters like this desperately need to be nerfed, but unfortunately that doesn't seem to be happening. If you can get a fair fight, however, the multiplayer side is fun. The future for the game is sure to see some new characters in the form of DLC, including 2 new characters coming soon for free. Frustratingly, PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale is very close to being an absolutely brilliant game and I feel like my only criticisms; the lack of unique unlockables and the overpowered characters, could have easily been changed during development. As a result, I feel that the game is not close to being as good as Super Smash Bros, but it's definitely still worth a try.
A perfect gift for a PS3/PS Vita ownerMattiebo | Jan. 26, 2013 | Review of PSN Live Card 35 - PlayStation 3
Giving someone £35 to spend on the PlayStation Store gives them a lot of options for things to buy. Here are some of my recommendations. - PlayStation Plus 3 Month Subscription (£12, PS3 + Vita): A service which is updated monthly with great new games which you can play for no extra charge as long as your subscription lasts. - Retro City Rampage (£9, PS3 + Vita): A brilliant open-world retro style game which is absolutely crammed with references to just about everything from the 80s and 90s. Also features cross-save, allowing you to continue the game on your Vita after playing on your PS3. - Journey (£10, PS3): A Beautiful game with some truly innovative mechanics, like the ability to find random players without having any way to communicate with them. - A PS One Classic (~£4, PS3 + Vita + PSP): There are loads of classic PS1 games on the store including Crash Bandicoot, Spyro, Final Fantasy VII, Metal Gear Solid and Tomb Raider. - Supersonic Acrobatic Rocket-Powered Battle-Cars (£8, PS3): There are a few PSN games which are a lot of fun, but this one tops it for me. Play in split screen with friends.
Blew my expectations out of the waterMattiebo | Jan. 26, 2013 | Review of Lego Lord Of The Rings - PlayStation 3
I haven't played a Lego game in a while, in fact, I think the last one I played was the original Lego Star Wars on the original Xbox. As a result, I wasn't quite sure what to expect when I picked up Lego Lord of the Rings, but I was beyond pleasantly surprised. The most surprising detail is that the game is open world; giving you a massive chunk of middle earth to run wild in while you accept quests from NPCs and find hidden secrets whilst being showered in Lego studs (the currency). While the world is open, the main quests take place in the more linear levels you would expect from a Lego game. You can also revisit these levels if you want to get a better score, attempt to unlock something or to use a new ability that you've unlocked via new characters. Cut-scenes are hilarious, using the actual voice audio from the movies tied in with some great physical comedy. The story is a slightly sped-up version of the three Lord of the Rings movies, and there's even a bit of The Hobbit thrown in too. You'll run into loads of characters including ones you know and some a bit more obscure and you can buy the ones you don't get for free when you see them. All of the great features that I remember from the Lego Star Wars games are either still there or improved. This is the result of 8 years of evolution since the first Lego adventure game in 2005, and I feel that Traveller's Tales simply don't get the credit they deserve. For the first time in years I'm excited about the next Lego game. Buy it.
Stretching Drake's limits; physically and mentallyMattiebo | Jan. 26, 2013 | Review of Uncharted 3 Game of the Year Edition - PlayStation 3
The Uncharted series is a wonderful franchise, placing you in the shoes of Nathan Drake as he attempts to uncover historical secrets and the evil people trying to exploit them. Uncharted 3 is no different, keeping to the third-person cover-based shooter formula and throwing in incredible visuals in amazing setpieces. After the brilliant Uncharted 2, Naughty Dog must have wondered how they would top such a good game, and so they decided to make everything bigger in Uncharted 3. The game takes place just about everywhere; on land, in caves, at sea, in the sky, and it looks great at all points. The Uncharted series is truly a trilogy that every PS3 owner should play. Personally, my favourite game in the series was Uncharted 2 for the single player experience, but Uncharted 3 steps it up in the multiplayer side of the game. You can play multiplayer on a range of maps and game modes including the ever-updating 'Lab' in which Naughty Dog can test out new map features or game modes. As you play online, you'll have the chance to find treasures which, upon collecting a full set (usually 3-4 pieces), you'll unlock a new customization option for your multiplayer characters. Along with the competitive side is the co-op modes which you can play with 2 other people. These include a horde-style mode and a mini-story exclusive to the online co-op. Overall, Uncharted 3 is a great game. I would recommend playing the series in order if you haven't already, but if you're just looking for an Uncharted multiplayer experience then this is the game to pick up first.
Strays too far from previous GTAs, but fun none-the-lessMattiebo | Jan. 7, 2013 | Review of Grand Theft Auto IV Platinum - PlayStation 3
Grand Theft Auto IV is an interesting game. Rockstar took a risk with this much-loved franchise by ditching the silly fun of its predecessors (which has since been adopted by Saint's Row) in favour of a more serious look into crime and immigration. It's still a fun game with some genuinely funny characters and writing, but it has certainly lost some of the old GTA spark, which fans are hoping will return with GTA V. You play as Niko Bellic; an immigrant from an unspecified part of Europe. The story involves him and his cousin Roman trying to become rich and live the "American dream" in Liberty City. The story features some great twists and characters; something that Rockstar Games are brilliant at. There's a lot of content and it's topped off with several multiplayer modes which, unfortunately, aren't very populated anymore. However, playing Free Roam with a group of friends often results in hilarity. it's definitely worth playing if you're a fan of the Grand Theft Auto series and for the low price is is currently at, I see no reason to miss out on it.
Good fun, but lacks depthMattiebo | Nov. 16, 2012 | Review of Motostorm Apocalypse Platinum - PlayStation 3
Motorstorm: Apocalypse aims to take the series in a new direction by adding extreme destructable environments which can alter the race in massive ways. The game is very fun and this new mechanic can help to shake up the races to no end. With 12 vehicle classes, every type of racing fan can feel at home, but the larger vehicles (like the monster truck) don't really seem to work as well in the in-door areas, of which there are many in this game. The campaign ultimately lacks depth as it feels like you're just playing race after race with no real progression or purpose. It's fun, and if that's all you want then it's perfect, but some people may want a bit more interaction from characters than just a few lines of text in the loading screens. The music is a little bit disappointing as Mostorstorm games usually have a good soundtrack while this one only features original songs used to set an apocalyptic mood. Fortunately, you probably won't notice the music over the sound of your vehicle. It's a fun game and one that Motorstorm fans will definitely enjoy, but if you're looking for a racing game which is driven by narrative nad has a large online community, this unfortantely isn't it.
Bethesda's 2008 masterpiece is a must-playMattiebo | Nov. 16, 2012 | Review of Fallout 3 Game of the Year - PlayStation 3
(Yup, 2008, not 2009 as stated on this page) Bethesda Gam Studios are responsible for some of my favourite games ever; Oblivion, Skyrim and, of course, Fallout 3. This was my first experience in the Fallout universe after I hadn't played the original (and very different) games. Fallout 3 is a first-person shooter set in the post-apocalyptic Washington DC. The large map is filled with real-world monuments which have been affected by the war, and the dark post-apocalyptic life is apparent on every corner. While the game is a few years old now, it is still very playable and this version includes the 4 DLC packs, most of which are great. The game features a lot in terms of gameplay time and is filled with dark humour which will certainly make you laugh a few times. If you haven't played this yet, I can't recommend it enough. I'd also suggest buying Fallout: New Vegas (developed by Obsidian, but using the same engine and some of the same assets) when you've finished with Fallout 3. I'm very excited to see what Bethesda have up their sleeves next, and I'm keeping my fingers crossed for it to be a new Fallout game.
A good delivery of a mediocre promiseMattiebo | Nov. 16, 2012 | Review of Ratchet and Clank All 4 One - PlayStation 3
I often think back to playing my first consoles; the Nintendo 64 and PlayStation, and remember great quality games which often included local multiplayer. Unfortunately, these days it seems like we can only get one or the other. Some games that would be perfect for local multiplayer simply don't have it, while a lot of the games that do have local multiplayer really can't keep you playing long enough, and this unfortunately falls into the latter. All 4 One does not feel like a Ratchet and Clank games, but it does look and sound like one. It is built from the ground up to appeal to people playing local multiplayer with up to 4 players. Each player takes control of either Ratchet, Clank, Qwark or Nefarious and play through the game which is presented similrly to the proper R&C games, but with an annoying fixed camera making it a pain to really do anything in the game. You'll have to rely on awkward crossheirs to shoot things and just hope you're facing the right way when you go to hit things. The game features a lot oof weapons, as in most R&C games, and you can use gadgets like a hook shot which is often hard to use properly given the perspective. It's a bit of an awkward mess, but is not absolutely terrible. If you can get it for a cheap price and have some friends to play it with, then it might be worth it, but otherwise, avoid.
Absolutely brilliant sequelMattiebo | Oct. 11, 2012 | Review of Borderlands 2 - PlayStation 3
I've been playing this game for around 2 weeks now and, after being a big fan of the original game (despite all its flaws) I was hoping that this game would be amazing. To my delight, it is. It took me around 40 hours to beat the story with one character and I still have a True Vault Hunter mode (essentially new game plus) playthrough and a bunch of side-missions to play. The game is crammed with content, and you can even play the game through several times using different characters. Multiplayer is extremely fun and it's easy to play with friends using the drop-in/drop-out mechanic. Of course, a major part of Borderlands is the guns, and the guns in Borderlands 2 are more varied and impressive than ever. The guns and their properties can be identified by their branding, with manufactorers like Hyperion, Jakobs and Maliwan all feeling different. If you like fun, you'll love Borderlands 2.
Easily one of the best games I've ever playedMattiebo | Sept. 15, 2012 | Review of Portal 2 - PC DVD
Portal 2 is an absolutely incredible game with unique gameplay, an amazing story and fun co-op multiplayer. It somehow manages to top the original game, which is considered by many to be the best game ever made. In the story you play as Chell; a mysterious woman who never actually speaks. After "killing" GLaDOS in the original game, you are awoken by a bumbling robot core named Wheatley (voiced brilliantly by Stephen Merchant). Soon, Wheatley accidentally wakes GLaDOS, and you are forced to continue testing the portal gun and various other additions. The story features several twists which you won't see coming and the voice acting a humour is some of the best you'll see in a game. In the co-op mode, you'll be playing as one of two robots; Atlas or P-Body. You can play co-op online and even cross-platform between PC and PS3. The co-op chambers are very challenging, and you will have to use both of your robots to complete every room. Recently, Valve released a chamber editor for the game, and so your Portal 2 experience never has to end. You can install and play new chambers designed by other players via the Steam Workshop through a one-click installation. Everyone should play this game, and the PC is the perfect platform to play it on.
The definitive Batman experienceMattiebo | Sept. 15, 2012 | Review of Batman Arkham City - PlayStation 3
With Christopher Nolan's briliant Batman trilogy now at an end, it's no wonder that gamers are left wanting more, and Rocksteady have got that and then some with their brilliant Batman games series. Arkham Asylum was an incredible game with great visuals and even better gameplay mechanics, but Arkham City sets out to improve on that formula further, and somehow it succeeds. Unlike in Arkham Asylum, Arkham City features an open world environment. Bruce Wayne has been thrown into Arkham City; a large part of Gotham sectioned off to house some of the city's most dangerous criminals. The story is as great as you would expect, featuring more iconic Batman characters than you could possibly name. As with Arkham Asylum, there is also a ton of fan service that comes in the form of subtle hints and secrets. You start the game with some of the gadgets retrived in the first game, but you quickly build upon your arsenal with new tech. As you level up in the game you can spend skill points on new skills and uses for gadgets. Riddler trophies and riddles make a return and are more challenging than ever. Also returning is a large number of the voice talent including Kevin Conroy and Mark Hamill. I would recommend this game to anyone.
A fun, but unnecessary piece of contentMattiebo | Sept. 15, 2012 | Review of Red Dead Undead Nightmare - PlayStation 3
Red Dead Redemption is a brilliant game in many ways; the single player is full of twists and turns, the open world is full of life, the free roam multiplayer mode is simply amazing and the in-game minigames serve as a fun pass-time. For some reason, Rockstar decided that this game would be better with zombies, and thus, Undead Nightmare was born. Undead nightmare, available as DLC for the full game or as a standalone seen here, throws the world of RDR into a zombie apocalypse. The game features a new story, a completely new gameplay experience and new attractions within the game world. The story features Marston trying to find the cause of the zombie outbreak after his wife and son were infected. During the story you'll see plenty of the characters from the main game, along with other people getting chewed up by the brainless undead. While the core gameplay mechanics are still in place, you'll find yourself playing Undead Nightmare very differently. There are several types of zombies all of which can be taken down in different ways, but you can usually just ride past them on a horse. The world also feels very different. It's always dark and key areas of the game have been changed to give them more of a horror game feel. If you're looking for more RDR, this is a great addition, but you should be aware that this is really quite different. There are few things more satisfying than riding your horse through a crowd of zombies.
Hours of post-apocalptic goodnessMattiebo | Sept. 15, 2012 | Review of Fallout New Vegas Ultimate Edition - PlayStation 3
Ive spent a lot of time playing the Fallout franchise on PS3. They're fun, they last a very long time and are full of humour and general gaming brilliance. I would recommend anyone play both games (Fallout 3 and New Vegas), but I would suggest you play Fallout 3 first. New Vegas improves on Bethesda Game Studios' Fallout 3 formula, adding new gameplay mechanics including cooking and crafting along with a hardcore mode and the addition of iron-sights on guns. The developers are Obsidian Entertainment; a team that includes many of the people behind the original Fallout Games, and so you'll likely to find a lot of references to those first games within this version of the post-apocalyptic Mojave desert. Voice acting is as solid as ever, which is always surprising given the amount of NPCs in the world. New Vegas is espcially good for its quests. There are loads of quests throughout the wasteland, with the downside being that exploring isn't as rewarding, because most explorable buildings are linked to a certain quest. New Vegas presents you with several factions to join or go against. This takes over Fallout 3's Karma system in terms of importance, as you actions towards certain factions will either better or worsen your reputation with them. The main story forks out into several endings, but unfortunately ending the game will wipe your save file, as in Fallout 3, and so you may want to avoid the main story altogether until you've played enough of the game. There are several DLC packs available on the PSN Store too to keep this game fresh.
Fun but flawedMattiebo | Sept. 15, 2012 | Review of Dead Island - PlayStation 3
Dead Island rode into the gaming scene on one hell of a hype train with its brilliant debut trailer, and at launch this turned out to be a bad thing for the game. While it's a good game overall, Dead Island struggles in some of its most needed aspects. If you can get over the cliche of a zombie apocalypse and the incredibly un-likeable cast of playable characters, you can have a lot of fun with this free roam action/RPG. The large amount of glitches make it frustrating at times and in my experience, multiplayer has been the worst effected. This game has been patched a lot, though, and many of the reviews for the game when it had just came out refer to things which have now been fixed. There isn't really anything else like Dead Island on the market. It takes loads of uninspired concepts and puts them into an open world. If you're looking for a game which involes a lot of multiplayer first-person zombie killing in an open world, then Dead Island is definitely the game for you, but if you're sick of zombies and cliches, it's probably best to sit this one out or wait for a price drop.
Hundreds of hours of entertainment for a one-off paymentMattiebo | Aug. 29, 2012 | Review of Guild Wars 2 Digital Deluxe Edition (2) - PC
The original Guild Wars was a great game, and part of the reason for that was its one-off payment model, meaning that you don't have to pay hundreds of pounds in order to keep your subscription going. Fortunately, Guild Wars 2 also uses this model, which is certainly a plus on top of this incredible game. I have been playing for around 50 hours and am never short of things to do and find new experiences around every corner. GW2 is truly a revolutionary game which breaks away from MMO traditions. For example, the usual MMO quest system involving taking a quest from an NPC, doing it and returning to them is replaced with multiple unique quest types. Firstly is the personal story, your unique storyline determined by various choices you make in the game. Also available are tasks, which are quests with multiple contributing factors set in specific parts of the map, and world events, which bring loads of players together to complete a single goal. Combat has also moved on form simple button presses, as in most cases you'll need to aim your attacks or even place them. There are many underwater parts in Tyria which you can jump into, revealing a new skill set. You can breath unlimitedly under water as every character wears a breather. There are 5 races and 8 classes to choose from, and each playthrough will be drastically different. As I said, I've spent 50+ hours playing as an Asuran Necromancer, and when I'm ready I'll be starting a new character for a completely new experience. I can't recommend this game enough.
A reboot done rightMattiebo | Aug. 7, 2012 | Review of Mortal Kombat Komplete Game of the Year Edition - PlayStation 3
I've never been much of a fighting game fan, but have always been willing to try them. I'm usually terrible of them and get bored after about 10 minutes, but Mortal Kombat has always been different. I may not still be good at the game, but even if I lose I'm happy to just watch my character's head roll around the floor, and there's plenty of that gore in Mortal Kombat. This isn't a traditional series reboot as the story actually involves Raiden travelling back in time after the events of the last MK game. However, if you played the original MK games then you'll see plenty of familiar scenes. Along with the story mode (which is presented through cut-scenes between fights) you can play through the Challenge Tower which is full of challenges which will test you in many ways. The Krypt returns in this game, providing a shop presented as a huge graveyard. Using koins earned through the story mode and challenge tower you can unlock alternate costumes, finishing moves, concept art and music and there's a lot to unlock. As you would expect in a fighting game, MK also includes a multiplayer mode. You can play 1 vs 1, 2 vs 2 and also a special King of the Hill mode in which 8 players take it in turns to fight and the winner stays on. The game is hard and as a result it can be very frustrating. Then again, that could be just because I suck at it. I still had a lot of fun with it.
A gaming masterpiece, if a bit shortMattiebo | Aug. 7, 2012 | Review of Portal 2 - PlayStation 3
Before Portal 2 I had not fully played through or owned a Valve game. Somehow throughout my many years of gaming I had dodged Half-Life and Team Fortress, but Portal 2 was a game that changed all that. This game is incredible, mixing puzzles of increasing difficulty with a funny, interesting and compelling story which you will actually care about. Not to mention the co-op mode which you can play with a friend over PSN or even with someone on a PC over Steamworks. My only criticism for the game is that it is too short. Completing the single-player game the first time will probably take you around 9 hours with co-op taking around 5 hours, and as the puzzles don't change you probably won't play it through again unless you're looking for trophies or one of the many secrets within the game. Despite its length, Portal 2 is an incredible game which everyone should play. Buying the PS3 version also scores you a code for a downloadable PC version, so you're getting two games for the price of one.
An interactive adventure unlike anything elseMattiebo | Aug. 7, 2012 | Review of Heavy Raid MOVE EDITION - PlayStation 3
Quantic Dream have spent the last decade trying to make great interactive adventure experiences, and Heavy Rain is the result of that work. Some say this that Heavy Rain is more of an interactive movie than a game, but you cannot simply put your controller down during a scene as the game will constantly require your input. I have completed this game both with and without the PlayStation Move controller, and the play-style is completely optional with neither Dualshock of PS Move dampening the experience, however, the Move controller can make the game more emersive as you will be reaching for door handles and examining objects by moving your hand. The graphics are great and the characters are too, and as long as no one has spoiled it for you, the ending can be truly shocking. This isn't a game for everyone, but it is certainly not just an interactive movie.
Unlimited possibilities, endless funMattiebo | Aug. 3, 2012 | Review of Little Big Planet 2 Platinum - PlayStation 3
I was a big fan of the original LittleBigPlanet and I spent a lot of time creating and playing levels and so when LBP2 was announced I was very excited. When it was finally released I was not disappointed. Where LBP 1 allowed you to create your own platformer levels, LBP 2 allows you to create your own games, and there are plenty of them to play over the internet. Even if you don't like to create games in LBP 2, you have access to a plethora of games from other people including first-person shooters, top-down RPGs, fighting games and many other games. Personally, I find it really fun to create my own stuff, although a lot of what I've made hasn't actually been published. The game acts as a way for someone who doesn't know how to make real games to release their creativity and make one using the simplified tools. Also, LBP 2 features a long story mode which acts as a way to show you what is possible in the game and also a way for you to unlock the many materials and objects to use in your own levels.
An interesting sequelMattiebo | Aug. 3, 2012 | Review of Dead Rising 2 - PlayStation 3
Dead Rising 2 is a game that you will probably either really enjoy or not enjoy at all. Unfortunately, I didn't like it very much, but I can see why people might. At its core, the aim of the game is to keep your daughter from turning into a zombie by giving her Zombrex. You must do this while saving other survivors in the zombie apocalypse and while defeating those who have gone a little bit insane. Although these are the main plot points, they aren't exactly necessary to complete the game. If you fail to give your daughter Zombrex in time, you can still continue playing the game. The boss fights are usually incredibly difficult, and you might find yourself chating to complete some of them. One of the major mechanics in the game is the ability to craft your own weapons out of random parts you find lying around. You could make a gun-mounted wheelchair, spiky boxing gloves or a stick with 2 chainsaws attached to use against the zombie hordes, and there are plenty more combinations too. As you move through the game, you'll also find plenty of weapons, and just about anything can be used as a weapon, from a large teddy to a water gun. Killing large groups of zombies creatively with the many weapons never gets old, but the repetitive nature of the missions and boss fights are enough to bore you. Overall, Dead Rising 2 is a good game and if you like the first game you'll probably love this, but if you don't like zombies, escourt missions, hard boss fights or constant pressure to get to places on time, then you probably won't like it.
Rocksteady's defining masterpieceMattiebo | Aug. 3, 2012 | Review of Batman Arkham Asylum - PC
When I first played a demo of this game, I wasn't completely sold by it. On my second play of the demo, I understood it a bit more and enjoyed it as a result. Then I bought the game, and it is an incredible experience. Rocksteady did the impossible and made a brilliant Batman game. The game is dark and gritty, but Mark Hamill's Joker will keep you smiling throughout your quest to take him down. The amount of detail in everything brings Arkham Asylum to life, with things like scarcely-visible newspapers providing fan service by referencing people and events from the Batman universe. The gameplay is also really fun, making you feel powerful as if you really are controlling the Dark Knight. There are plenty of unlockable items, weapons and character files which give you an extra incentive to explore. Even when you've completed the main storyline, you can participate in the many Riddler challenges which range from collectable trophy items to tough riddles and everything in between. Batman: Arkham Asylum is an amazing game and you owe yourself to play it if you haven't already.
An amazing co-op experienceMattiebo | July 2, 2012 | Review of Borderlands Game of the Year Edition - PC
Borderlands may not have the best storyline, but its gameplay is un-matched for fans of FPS and RPG games. The game features literally millions of guns which can be found either by killing enemies of looting chests, and you'll often find yourself switching up your loadout and playing completely differently as a result. Although it is very plausable to play the game on your own, Borderlands was made with co-op in mind, and it is incredibly fun to play with friends while using microphones. Playing in a group increases the difficulty, but also increases the qualitiy of the loot. This version includes every DLC pack, which actually adds quite a lot to the game. the Zombie Island pack is slightly repetitive, but adds a new gameplay style to the game in which you'll be fighting off hordes of zombies. The other DLC packs include Moxii's Underdome Riot, which isan arena, and the other two which are new campaigns, adding new areas, quests, monsters and more. Borderlands is an absolute gem in the FPS genre and I would recommend it to anyone.
Probably not worth buying at full priceMattiebo | June 25, 2012 | Review of Who wants to be a Millionaire - PC
It seems odd to have a game based on a popular TV series without including any of the official presenters. The game is pretty straight-forward; you're presented with 4 possible answers for each of the 15 questions which get progressively harder. If you're buying a quiz game, then this will probably suffice, and I feel that it does cater to the Who Wants to be a Millionaire audience. That said, there are probably much better quiz games available, and you could probably play something of similar quality for free on the internet somewhere.
Bad story but great funMattiebo | June 25, 2012 | Review of Just Cause 2 - PC
If you're looking for a game with great writing and voice acting which takes fits into place in a clever and intriguing storyline... this isn't it. However, what Just Cause 2 lacks in a storyline it gains in fun. The open world is an amazing setting for causing utter chaos and, equpped with your trusty parachute and grappeling hook combo, you have all the tools you need to do just that. The reason I bought this game was because of the upcoming JC2-MP mod, which will make the game playable with your friends, and I can't wait to play that.
One of the definitive indie games of this centuryMattiebo | June 23, 2012 | Review of Super Meat Boy - PC
Super Meat Boy holds a special place in my heart as one of the first truly indie games I have played and loved. In that sense, it is comparable to other Indie greats like Minecraft and Amnesia: The Dark Descent. The game was made by 2 people; Tommy Refenes, who programmed the game and Edmund McMillen, who provided the brilliant art style which is also present in his other games like Gish and The Binding of Isaac. Super Meat Boy is a hard game, and you'll probably find it frustrating at times (read: most of the time) as you try desperately to finish the level. The gameplay has you running and wall-jumping through levels specifically designed to be torturously hard. As you progress, of course, the gameplay gets even harder, but the game never gets repetitive or boring because of this. As you play through the game, you can also unlock special characters from other indie games including Commander Video from BIT.TRIP RUNNER and Steve from Minecraft, who each have different abilities. Also, you can unlock a dark version of most of the levels, which make the game even harder. If you manage to complete every level in the core game, you can simply hop onto the user-generated levels and play them. Even better, you can make your own levels using the level creator. For me, Super Meat Boy will always be a game that inspires me. Seeing how much time and effort Refenes and McMillen put into making this game really puts into perspective just what Indie gaming is all about. If you're interested, you can see the game being made in the recently released Indie Game: The Movie, but until then, I recommend this game to anyone.
A great game to play the way you wantMattiebo | June 22, 2012 | Review of Deus Ex Human Revolution (1) - PC
I never played the original Deus Ex games, and so I wasn't entirely sure what to expect when I started to play this one. I'm glad to say I was pleasently surprised. Human Revolution is a great example of an RPG which really gives you the opportunity to play the game how you want to. If you want to sneak around the environments you can do that, or you can run in all guns blazing. Of course, each play style has its own ups and downs, with the latter method being more of a last resort. The areas in the game mostly feature several different paths designed for the playstyles, with some paths taking you to the high-ground where you can take down your enemies from above, and other paths taking you around the patrolling guards. You are free to mix these paths up and exploration can often be rewarded with new guns or ammo. Aumentations are purchased via Praxis points which can add new dimensions to your play style, with special abilities including an augmentation which stops you from taking fall damage and one that lets you see through walls. These work to make your experience even more unique to you. One thing I love about the game is the attention to detail. Near the start of the game, Jensen gets an email unrlated to any quest mentioning that his dog had been put down. If you go to Jensen's apartment, some pictures of the dog can be found. These details are incredible and although they'r nothing to do with the storyline, they make the game a bit more immersive. My main complaint about Deus Ex: Human Revolution is the boss battles. If you've read other reviews then you've probably heard this a milion times, but the boss battles are ridiculously hard, especially if you are a stealthy character. Fortunately, various items and weapons can be found in the boss battle rooms, making it at least possible even if your play style doesn't suit the full-on approach. Overall, Deus Ex: Human Revolution is a brilliant game and it has made me want more from the series.
A must-have for Guild Wars fansMattiebo | June 19, 2012 | Review of Guild Wars Eye of the North - PC
Guild Wars is a great MMO split into 3 different campaigns, with each being a stand-alone game which connects to the others. Eye of the North, however, is an expansion pack which adds new areas, enemies, items, spells and features to Guild Wars. The expansion is designed to be a challenging questline in which you meet several new races including the Asura and Norn, which are both playable races in Guild Wars 2. The questline itself is fun and very rewarding, especially if you are planning on buying Guild Wars 2. The expansion also combines some of the three campaigns best bits, including Nightfall's heroes system and Prophecies' map. Eye of the North also gives the player completely new experiences such as the Norn and Dwarven Fighting Tournaments. The best part of the Eye of the North is the Hall of Monuments, which allows you to display your accomplishements that you have acquired while you've been playing the game and others which you can accomplish with some work. Dedicating things to the Hall of Monuments earns you rewards for the release of Guild Wars 2, and there are a lot of reward to earn, giving you an extra incentive to play the game in ways you've never played it before. Eye of the North is a great expansion to Guild Wars, and I recommend anyone with the game to buy it. After all, it's never to late to earn yourself some Guild Wars 2 rewards.
Not really a Sims gameMattiebo | June 19, 2012 | Review of MySims - PC
It's clear from the first sight of this game that it not designed to appeal to the average Sims player. The game was obviously designed to appeal more to kids, and so if you're looking for a new Sims game to play, this probably isn't it. The first major change is how the game is not a completely open simulation game and there is actually a story and unlockable areas on a map which is completely pre-determined. You will have to explore the world in order to find resources called essences in order to build things. This will take you to new places and you can use these essences to more build unique things. The game is good for a few hours of entertainment, but it is in no way a traditional Sims game and you're unlikely to come back to it in a hurry.
One of my favourite gamesMattiebo | June 18, 2012 | Review of The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim - PC
I first owned this game on the PlayStation 3 before buying it on PC, making it one of just three games that I have purchased on several platforms at once (the other 2 being Borderlands and Oblivion). Being a huge fan of Oblivion, I was massively excited for Skyrim ever since it was announced at the VGAs in 2010. I was anticipated for the game, but was also slightly worried. I wanted this to be an incredible game which I would play for hours, but I thought it would be very hard to live up to the hype. Luckily, it did. Skyrim is set in a huge open-world land, north of Tameriel (where Oblivion was set). This world has everything you would expect from an RPG including towns of people offering several quests, dark caves crawling with enemies and epic landmarks. With so many things in the game, you'll likely find yourself fully immersed in the experience. Making the game even more immersive are the NPCs using the Radiant AI system, in which they can create an unscripted objective using your progress data. For example, you could be informed of a Dragon Wall (where you learn the words of power that form dragon shouts) by an NPC, who will only point it out if you haven't already been there. Recently, Bethesda also released their Skyrim Creation Kit which has been used by the community to make incredible mods. Almost every day new mods are uploaded, giving players an endless amount of playability. The first official DLC for the game, Dawnguard, will be released this year too, adding a lot of new things to offer a completely new experience. I haven't completed everything in Skyrim yet after around 8 months of playing, and every new thing I encounter gets me excited. The game was definitely my game of the year for 2011, and one of teh definitive games of this generation. I could go on, but maybe it would be better to experience it for yourself instead.
Utterly odd, awesomely funMattiebo | June 15, 2012 | Review of Gotham City Imposters - PC
When I first saw this game I thought it was just another downloadable FPS which I would throw away after a few weeks. When it came out, reports of game-breaking bugs and matchmaking problems made it even less appealing to me, but I decided to buy it while it was cheap on a GMG sale, and I'm glad I did. I've played a lot of multiplayer FPS games and after a while, they just all get so samey and boring, but Gotham City Imposters aims to shake up the formula a bit. An FPS set in Gotham City seems like a strange idea, but the iconic landmarks and characters that are payed homage to server as terrific fan service in an FPS that is as much about having fun as it is about shooting the guy in the cardboard mask in his face. The game is packed full of customizability. You can unlock and buy new weapons, appearence items, calling cards and slogans, all of which contribute towards making your character completely unique. Gameplay-wise, GCI plays pretty much like any other FPS, but with fun additions including the ability to fly and move really fast depending on a special item you can choose in your loadout. If you're looking for a fun, over-the-top first person shooter with tonnes of customizability and a lot of reason to keep playing (I believe the level cap is at 1,000), then Gotham CIty Imposters is a great game to consider.
Great game in a great seriesMattiebo | June 15, 2012 | Review of Tom Clancys Splinter Cell Conviction - PC
I've been a fan of the Splinter Cell series since I played Double Agent (which made me play the other games and a HD remake of Pandora Tomorrow when it was released on PSN), and I'm very happy with this game. The story is good and is told in an interesting variety of ways (in cut-scenes, interrogation scenes, flashbacks and more) and the gameplay, although quite different from previous Splinter Cell games, is just as fun and stealth-oriented. Conviction also has an online co-op mode and an online vs mode, both of which are fun. The co-op mode doesn't quite match the feeling I had when playing Double Agent, but it's still great and the mode also has its own story line. My only major criticism isn't really to do with the game itself. The game uses Ubisoft's U-Play DRM and if you try to play the game without an internet connection or during maintenence, all of your single player progress will be deleted. U-Play isn't all bad though, as you can unlock new content through achievements. I recommend this game to anyone who likes stealth-based games.