Reviews by SASteve

85

A dragon genocide

SASteve | May 31, 2014 | Review of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim®

Skyrim is a game about murdering dragons, as you probably know. You play as a mythical warrior that has dragon blood running to his veins, therefore he has to kill them, this part is not properly explained, but who the hell cares, right? It’s the fact that you kill dragons that makes this game so praised. The action takes place in a medieval setting, like any fantasy story and its dog, in which you have to fight big hairy monsters and take their loot in order to sell it and buy more health potions.
The combat is not really challenging, but it works, at least most of the times. The first person camera can be very confusing because all the monsters pile up in your face, but you are going to continuously slashing their face anyway, so there is no need to worry. If you are new to this game your strategy would probably be to run up to an enemy and attack them till they stopped moving, it’s not really challenging, actually I don’t think you can play Skyrim in any way to make it harder, you can increase the difficulty, but you can exploit the bugs and the secrets in the game anyway so you’ll just have to spend more time tin order to become over powered than usual (the hidden chest in Dawnstar is still there). You can also choose a different type of combat, but it basically boils down to just attack them. The thing that really makes Skyrim awesome is the fact that you can just find adventures while you wonder around the map, there are loads of areas on the map and it feels very wild, I personally enjoyed to roleplay as a smug almighty God, shouting apart everyone that annoyed me. There is also a crime system in this game, which is absolutely ridiculous, not because it exists, just because it’s not really punishing, you just have to press “e” to serve your time in jail, after that you are free to go , it seems a little bit GTA for me. You are losing skill progress while you are in jail, but you can very easily recover it, which makes thing rather perplexing, why would I pay for my crimes when I can just click my way out of it? Money is more useful than the skill progress, if you want good weapons and armor, you will have to grind like you are a gold mill, it’s really hard without exploiting the game, but again, why would you play fair when you can just take what you need? It’s not more challenging, it’s more dull routine.
So, is Skyrim any good? Many other critics declared this game as the best of it’s year, although I would have to disagree with them, Skyrim is not a bad game, it’s a fun little RPG that you can very easily play for hours and you’ll always come back to explore this fantasy land.

85

Renaissance God simulator

SASteve | May 31, 2014 | Review of Assassin's Creed 2 Deluxe Edition

Assassin’s Creed 2, as you probably know is a game developed by Ubisoft in which you play as a young Florentine nobleman, Ezio Auditore da Firenze. Everything starts well, fact that should ring an alarm bell in your head, so of course things get messed up pretty fast, so Ezio starts in a quest to avenge his dead relatives, not quite like Batman, although they are both some rich dudes in silly outfits that make a living out of jumping on someone’s head. The game controls usually well, and I say usually because you run and jump with the same button, which can feel like you are suddenly controlling Spiderman that has a urge to fuse with the nearby wall. The assassinations are the core part of this game, as you can tell from the title, so you have many tools to help you stab people more effectively, like: hidden blade, dual hidden blades, poison blade, poison dart, crossbow, throwing knives, hidden pistol, throwing coins, punching people to death and unlockable chainsaw gun (just kidding). As I previously said, this game is one of the easiest games I’ve ever played, partly, if not entirely because of the game-breaking counter attack. You can basically kill unlimited enemies without getting killed just standing there and wait for someone to attack you in order to complete a Quick Time Event.
Another complain I have, besides the dodgy controls is the difficulty. If you are looking for an assassin experience with lots of careful planning and some sense of achievement, you’ve come to the wrong place, because Assassin’s Creed 2 one of the easiest games I’ve ever played. The only things that makes this game “difficult” are the jumping puzzles, which can be excruciating because of the controls and the stupid level design in some parts of the game. When I say stupid level design I am thinking at the instances that the game made me do some kind of an ultra mega jump that I won’t ever use again because outside these puzzles the jumpy-climby part works without the ultra mega jump! Want to know why? Because it’s extremely hard to pull off and the parkour it’s all about going from point A to point B in the shortest time, so you don’t have time to fiddle around with the jumping controls to make them behave properly for 5 seconds. Fortunately, most, if not all of those puzzles are “optional”, but if you want the best armor in the game you have to do them. Speaking of “optional” things that there are in Assassin’s Creed 2, this game introduced in the series the Sim City aspect: you have a villa, the place is a junk yard, it’s your job to invest in it so you can make more money that will eventually pile up, because there aren’t really that many things to buy, besides weapons (considering the fact that you get the best armor from side-activities). The story is one of the strong factors of this game, well one of the stories. The story is divided into two different stories: the present one and the past one, because we are not playing as Ezio actually , we are playing as a smug teenager from the future that relieves the memories of his ancestors because the memories are stored in his DNA, as you can probably tell, this is the bad part of the story. The good part is in the past, in the Renaissance Italy, with Ezio and the other interesting characters, which leads me to another question: why do we need the DNA memory storyline? The games would have worked just fine without this sub-plot that is nowhere near solving, and, Frankly I stopped caring a long time ago and apparently so did Ubisoft. After all those complaints you are probably legitimately wondering why I gave this game such a high mark, well that’s because I really enjoyed this game, maybe it’s just the fact that I consider Renaissance one of the most amazing historical periods. Combine Renaissance with some interesting characters, an interesting plot, a parkour mechanic and some nice architecture to climb on and you’ll have a nice game. It’s not the best game I’ve ever played, but I really enjoyed it and I think I will play it again sometime.

100

Surpasses any human expectations!

SASteve | May 17, 2014 | Review of Portal

         Portal is a game developed by Valve after feeling sorry about the long wait between Half Life 2’s episodes.
         The plot kicks off with you waking up and being ordered around, by a feminine robot voice, that could as well be your fussy mom, into solving puzzles and receiving cake. Considering the fact that we are on a site that sells games, I will try and keep this review spoiler-free  as if that’s possible. Let’s face it, you’ve heard “The cake is a lie!” joke a billion times now, it’s like trying to hide the “arrow in the knee” dialogue line from Skyrim.
          One of the things I like about Portal, besides most things (everything) is the way they managed to combine storytelling without breaking up the gameplay. I always liked it when games did that because  games should be more about involving the player. I am not against cut-scenes as long as they are not overdone, it is a game after all, not a 10 hour long movie.
          The gameplay is absolutely amazing, it revolves around, as you could probably figure out from the game’s title,  shooting portals and solving puzzles. It’s unique and it’s just damn good from a gameplay standpoint, some might argue that is short (4 hours tops, if it’s the first time playing), but I’ve played this game many times after I finished it.
          The dialogue (or monologue) in this game is very dark and funny, it’s like a tragicomedy. The way that the robot voice, GLaDOS interacts with you it’s very interesting  and the fact that it tries to behave like a human makes this game truly amazing.
          To sum this up, Portal is an unique puzzle game that contains dark humor and cake.

90

Bad port, but the game itself is amazing

SASteve | May 5, 2014 | Review of Dark Souls: Prepare to Die Edition

One thing first: You shouldn’t play this game without a controller, it is a very bad port and it runs like crap. Get off to a flying start , are we? Don’t get me wrong, the game is not bad, but the port is just horrifying, if you are going to play this game, I suggest using dsfix (google it) in order to fix some port related problems. And also this game is excruciatingly hard and has no difficulty setting. Now that we thrown the technical part out of the window, let’s talk about the game, I’m not going to give you spoilers, so stay calm. The combat in this game is very complex and it might be unforgiving if this is your first time around. There are certain mechanics (parrying) that require precision and might be really hard to get the hang of them. The environments are amazing, the world is huge and without loading screens which gives you the sense of immersion in that dying world. Most people might say that this game is a parade of boss-fights without a story, which is not true, the game is not telling a story at all, but it allows you to discover it by yourself. The fact that there are very few cut scenes and NPCs gives the feeling that you are alone. The major NPCs have their own story-line which you can follow if you want to learn more about them and about the world. Also, you can watch lore videos on Youtube for more details that might have slipped you. The community plays a huge role in this game, they can help you or kill you, which goes well with the atmosphere of the game, you’ll never know what’s in an undead’s head. I'll give it this mark because it's a really great game, but keep in mind the fact that is not a good port. Personally I think it deserves the money!

Praise the sun!