Reviews by TETfromLondon
Better than the reviews give it credit for.TETfromLondon | March 1, 2014 | Review of THIEF
I'll start by saying that I'm not a veteran of the franchise. I've played a small amount of the original, and plan to play more, but the only thing I've gathered from it is that it hasn't aged well, although that doesn't necessarily mean that it isn't worth playing. I'm therefore reviewing this one from the perspective of someone new to the franchise, so understand that if you are a veteran, you may disagree.
Thief is a game with stealth as its selling point. A lot of people have compared it to Dishonored, but I don't entirely agree with that comparison. In Dishonored, if you choose not to be stealthy, you will have a tricky fight on your hands which may have bad consequences after you've finished. In Thief, if you choose not to be stealthy, you will die. The combat feels difficult, but not badly done, although it probably would get on my nerves if I had to do a lot of it. The stealth is quite good, as sneaking around avoiding detection is very satisfying. The AI is not too bad, and the main reason people think it is is because in all the videos, the brightness has been turned up for recording, therefore making it look like guards are staring straight at you standing in a brightly lit area when in fact you are in darkness. There are occasions when it's a bit slow though.
The movement is also fantastic in this game, as it feels incredibly fluid. The bow is also nice to use, although I would like it to be slightly more difficult.
The environments are fun to explore, so you can steal anything that isn't nailed down. Just like in Eidos Montreal's previous game, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, they are open and there are lots of different routes through them, although there are occasions where I'd like to see more. Still, when people call it linear, it's a lie. People are saying that it takes you 8 hours to complete the game, but I feel that that's a bit unfair, as I am only on the third chapter, and have already played for almost 8 hours. I'd be surprised if I complete it in under 15.
Lastly I'd like to mention that in usual Square Enix fashion, the PC port is phenomenal. There are tons of options, including a field of view slider which I'd recommend bumping all the way up to 110 degrees to get the full experience of the game (you can see most of your body when you look down, which I really like). The game is a lot of fun on both a keyboard and gamepad, so you should try both out to see which you prefer. Overall, Thief is great, and I'd love to see more.
Good, but with port problems.TETfromLondon | March 1, 2014 | Review of Resident Evil 4
Resident Evil 4 is one of the greatest survival horror games (and arguably greatest games) of all time, but even though it has been ported to almost every platform, PC has never had a good version. The gameplay and gunplay are the same as they used to be, and the main changes are to do with the graphics and controls. The game now looks far better and can be played with a mouse, although it is still fairly clunky, so a controller of some sort is ideal. The textures are now pretty decent, although there are some that stand out for not being so good, and there are occasional glitches.
If you've ever played a Capcom game before, you know that the plots and dialogue are written by someone who's been locked in a room for 20 years with nothing but a box of cheesy 80s action movies for company, and this is no different. Don't let that put you off though, as the game is still overall worth getting, now is the time to get it.
A masterpiece.TETfromLondon | Feb. 17, 2014 | Review of Deus Ex: Game of the Year Edition
This game made waves when it was made back almost one and a half decades ago, and it still holds up today. While the graphics haven't aged at all well, and the gameplay is clunky, the game is still surprisingly accessible for anyone playing now. I went in planning to speed run it, and ended up so enthralled that I devoted over 40 hours to my first playthrough. The game has excellent choices that it forces you to make (although a few more of these with slightly more impact would be appreciated) and the first level does an excellent job of pulling you in. The stealth mechanic is still very much working, and it's impressive how much depth there is to the world, and how many secrets there are in it. It's also worth noting that neither the augmentations nor the skills are overly complex, so those who are put off by overuse of RPG mechanics will be OK with this game, but they are complex enough that RPG fans will enjoy them too. This game is a masterpiece and is so cheap now that there is no reason not to get it.
Fun, but not well optimised.TETfromLondon | Feb. 3, 2014 | Review of Assassin’s Creed® IV Black Flag™
Before I begin it is worth noticing that this review is for the PC version (more specifically, for those with AMD GPUs, since I don't know how it performs for Nvidia cards), and the game would have scored much better with a better PC version. However, I can't score it very highly, because it doesn't run at all well on my system, even though it should. I have it on the lowest settings with all unnecessary things like V-sync and anti-aliasing turned off, and I get around 25 fps. My system isn't that powerful, but Far Cry 3, a game published by the same company, gets 30+fps with much better settings, despite looking as good and arguably better. Tomb Raider (one of the best ports of the last few years) runs at all times at 40+ fps on ULTRA! Yes, ULTRA! It is easily better looking on ultra than AC4 is on low. Therefore, there's no excuse for this game running at a framerate that is borderline unplayable.
Moving past that, the game is probably the best Assassin's Creed since 2 (if 3 had run like this, I would have given it a 50, so my score for this game shows how good the quality is compared to 3). The world is amazing, the gameplay has been changed for once (although the stupid tailing missions and over-simplified, unchallenging combat are still there) and the protagonist is now more likeable than a loaf of bread. Also Desmond (my personal least favourite character in gaming history) is gone. However, I can't bring myself to play it for more than short periods because I get such a headache from the PC port.
Therefore, if you like Assassin's Creed games, you'll like this. If you don't like them, you'll probably like it too, as tons of new gameplay features have been added. However, get the console version unless you have a very powerful PC, because otherwise you'll be sitting watching a Powerpoint presentation of awesome moments. Without this issue, I'd have scored it an easy 90.
Improves on the original.TETfromLondon | Jan. 18, 2014 | Review of Batman Arkham City: Game of the Year
I was massively impressed with Arkham Asylum, due to the excellent gameplay and the fact that it made me interested in Batman despite my pathetic knowledge of superheros. In my opinion, this game is even better.
The game has now gone from a BioShock style non-linear world to a full open world that you can glide around. It's small, but big enough to be fun, and there are still random events that you can find. Even more impressive is the dialogue that goes on between thugs. There's a lot of it, and it's all really well done. More than once, I stopped to listen to it.
The already excellent combat system has been expanded and improved, and is easily one of the best in any game. Mark Hamil's joker (one of the highlights of the first game) has returned, and is still great, as is the rest of the voice acting.
My only major criticisms of the previous game, the boss battles and the ending, have both been improved, and the game therefore surpasses the original, at least in my opinion. There is no reason not to get it.
Amazing game.TETfromLondon | Jan. 18, 2014 | Review of Batman: Arkham Asylum Game of the Year
This game is absolutely fantastic, whether you care about Batman or not. I have to say I'm impressed by the fact that Rocksteady was able to make the game so accessible to anyone but not alienate the existing fanbase, which is something that games frequently do wrong. This one does it right by including random audio logs and challenges around the island including tons of references to the comics, but in the main campaign, the comic book stuff is not nearly enough to overwhelm you. I was surprised that the game actually managed to make me vaguely interested in some of the characters that I had never heard of or cared about before. This is partially due to some of the excellent voice acting in the game. The Joker is a particular highlight.
The gameplay is also exceptional. The combat system is incredibly satisfying to use, and never gets old. The game's other main strength is its openness and non-linearity, in a style similar to the original BioShock and BioShock 2. However, you are also able to glide around the island with the great flight controls, and it is worth exploring because of some of the things that you'll find.
The only weaknesses of the game are the boss battles and the ending, which is only a bad ending due to the terrible ending boss battle. Honestly, a lot of the boss battles aren't even that bad; they're just bad compared to the rest of the game (except the ending boss battle, which sucks).
Overall, definitely worth purchasing.
Pretty good.TETfromLondon | Jan. 17, 2014 | Review of Mirror's Edge
It is fairly rare to see an original concept or IP coming from EA, but that is what Mirror's Edge is. And it certainly isn't a bad game. The parkour is a very fun system to use, and even since this game came out, few other games have attempted the same thing. While it is fun and fluid enough, it isn't as extensive as I'd like it to be.
The city is also very nicely designed, and I love the aesthetic. However, a lot of environments are reused, and you'll get sick of seeing the same room again and again throughout the game.
The story is also decent, although they didn't do as well as they should have given the concept that they had. Also, some of the cutscenes done in a sort of cartoon (it could be anime or something like that, but I know very little about this kind of thing) style seem a little too arty and pretentious for my liking, and at times also seem like they just didn't have the budget for them and wanted to cover it up. Admittedly that's hardly their fault, but it's still a little annoying. The soundtrack is great though.
Overall, I'd recommend the game, but only on sale, as it isn't worth full price.
Not great on your own.TETfromLondon | Jan. 17, 2014 | Review of Borderlands 2
Borderlands 2 has a great art style and interesting characters. However, the game itself is a little lacking. While it is nice to see a game avoid the generic gritty brown that plagues modern shooters, the garish nerf-style guns do get quite repetitive. Honestly, repetitive describes much of the rest of the game. Although difficulty is scaled up throughout the game, you still just end up fighting wave after wave of enemies, which does get a little dull.
The world itself is alright. Some of the characters are interesting (the highlights being Claptrap and Handsome Jack), although in areas it feels empty. Honestly, the world isn't enough to engage you unless you have friends playing with you. Fortunately, this is where the game shines, as it scales up the difficulty when other people join, which is nice.
Something else that is worth noting is that there is way too much DLC for this game. It does seem to devalue the whole experience and gives me a sneaking suspicion that parts of the game were cut out and put in DLC. Not that I know that, since you'd have to be a billionaire to get it all.
Overall, Borderlands 2 is a game that is fun for a while, but gets old fast, and is a little uninteresting without other players.
A little linear, but still fun.TETfromLondon | Jan. 17, 2014 | Review of Hitman: Absolution
Hitman: Absolution may disappoint fans of the series. In many areas, it is very linear, removing some of the charm of the earlier games.
Many of the levels give you fewer options than in the previous games. However, options are never completely absent. There are still different ways to kill people, and you can still use costumes and stealth.
There are some positive changes. The graphics are beautiful and the character models are some of the best ever. Some of the crowds in certain areas mingling together look very realistic.
The combat system is also an improvement. It feels more satisfying than in the old games. The melee combat could have been slightly improved though, and adding QTEs into the hand to hand combat really wasn't necessary.
Another problem is difficulty. You have to turn up the difficulty settings or you are pretty much invincible. The score system is also unwelcome. I really don't appreciate being constantly told off for killing someone. For a kill, you lose 250 points, to earn those points back, you have to kill them undetected, and hide their corpse. If you are spotted, the only thing that can earn those points back is by completing the objective. I would honestly recommend ignoring it, at least on your first playthrough. Also annoying was how disjointed the story was at points. If you missed one cutscene, it was possible to have no understanding of where you are, what you're doing, who the characters around you are, and why you are garroting them. I will also address the now notorious scantily clad nuns from the trailer. Without spoiling anything, I will mention that the reason for them being in skimpy fetish outfits is basically non-existent.
Something I will add for PC users is that the port is pretty decent, which is a recent trend for games published by Square Enix.
Overall, the game is good, but may be lacking for fans of the series. If you are a newcomer though, I'm sure you'll enjoy it.
Great for a newcomer to the franchise.TETfromLondon | Jan. 17, 2014 | Review of Tomb Raider
Having never played a Tomb Raider game before, I didn't know what to expect. However, I wasn't disappointed by this game. Firstly, I'll mention that this game is extremely well optimised on PC, at least for AMD GPUs. I turned on ultra graphics settings and still got above 40 frames per second on a fairly low end gaming PC. This seems to be the trend for Square Enix published games of late. However, in the graphics settings, unless your PC is insanely powerful, don't turn on the TressFX hair settings. This makes Lara Croft's hair look insanely realistic, and tanks the framerate more than any other setting (and in case you're interested, no this setting is not on consoles).
Graphically, the game is excellent, especially on PC. The facial animations and character models are great. The environments are very nice too. The fire effects are a bit weird though.
The game world itself is open, but it doesn't feel this way. The game does suffer a bit from focusing on the set pieces a lot rather than the actual gameplay, Uncharted style. However, these are integrated flawlessly into the game, and the transfer between gameplay and cutscenes is very smooth. The combat is pretty good. The bow is nice to use, as are the other weapons, although they are limited. The game also has a nice stealth mechanic.
The story is quite strong, but the transition between panicked and inexperienced Lara and murderous psycho Lara is a little too fast. Still, overall the game is great and worth a buy, especially on sale.
Great.TETfromLondon | Jan. 17, 2014 | Review of Deus Ex: Human Revolution
I will admit that this game took a little while to draw me in; longer than the original in fact, but once I got into it, I was enthralled. The multiple ways to complete objectives are back, and there are some great ones. The game also looks great and has a very unique art style focusing on black and gold (a welcome change from the popular gritty brown). The voice acting is also good, although their are one or two weirdly horrendous sounding NPCs.
The greatest improvement in the game is the combat. The shooting is now far better. The guns are more satisfying. The AI is more intelligent, and the non-lethal weapons are now vaguely useful. The hub areas are even better than in the original game. They are huge. They could be more frequent though.
The main criticisms I have are the boss battles and the ending. The ending is a forgivable issue, since it is a prequel, so they couldn't do anything too drastic. The boss battles, however, are real problems. The fact that the only possible strategy is shooting the boss with no non-lethal option is very annoying. However, there aren't too many of these battles, so it's not too much a problem to dissuade you from buying the game.
A major strength of the game is the variety of ways in which you can complete it. The length can be anywhere from around 15 hours to 35 hours, depending on whether you read all the logs and do all the side quests (and I highly recommend that you do). Overall, this game is fantastic, and I highly recommend it.
Decent.TETfromLondon | Jan. 17, 2014 | Review of Mafia II
Mafia 2 is an open world crime story following a well voice acted and realised albeit extremely generic Italian-American gangster named Vito. The characters are possibly the highlight of the game, as they are all well done, (although get ready to here a lot of Goodfellas mobster accents) and the facial animations are excellent. The story is also well done and it is nice to see the environments change.
My main issue with the game is to do with the fact that the open world feels unnecessary and tacked on. It is not well fleshed out in the way that games such as GTA or Saints Row are, and this is particularly noticeable when you see that all the clothes shops are run by the same character model, and all the gun stores and so on. It is very empty with no real side missions, and the only interesting moments that aren't during the main story are during police chases, often when I had stolen the money from the various shops around the city. And although the police are vicious when chasing you, they are fairly easy to outwit, as sometimes they were summoned to my location by a gunshot when I stole money, but didn't notice me when I ran out of the store because I had holstered my gun. Also, the economy is stupid, because once you have robbed a few stores, you have more money that you will ever need, because you can buy nothing but guns, ammo and clothes, and if you kill the shopkeepers, you can steal those things anyway.
Overall, while Mafia 2 isn't bad, if you are looking for a good open world game, then this isn't for you. If you are looking for a good story driven game, then this may be more your thing.
Get it with the season pass.TETfromLondon | Jan. 16, 2014 | Review of BioShock Infinite: Burial at Sea Episode 1
This DLC is a great reminder of the previous games from the franchise. It brings back many of the gameplay features from them, such as the huge arsenal of weapons. The DLC feels like something that's worth owning rather than a cash in because it allows you to see Rapture before it became ruined by splicers, which the previous games didn't do. There are also many more familiar features returning such as the Big Daddies and little sisters. It also sees the return of Booker and Elizabeth, who are still just as well voice acted and animated. The DLC looks just as good as the main game, and the story is still very well written. I recommend this to any fan of the franchise.
One of the greatest shooters ever made.TETfromLondon | Jan. 16, 2014 | Review of Half Life
This game is easily one of the most influential first person shooters ever made, as it was one of the first that embraced the idea of first person narrative. While it is debatable whether this has had a positive effect, it is still a fact that you can see this game's influence in many modern games.
One of the game's major strength's is its ability to change its environments. It starts out as a busy science complex, then a ruined survival horror science complex, then outside in the desert, and so on.
The game also has an interesting selection of guns and enemies. It falls down a bit on voice acting and characters, although the sequel changed this. Overall, the game is very well worth owning.
A classic.TETfromLondon | Jan. 16, 2014 | Review of Portal
This game is easily one of the greatest puzzle games of all time, and if you don't already own it, there is very little reason not to buy it. The portal gun is immensely fun to use, and feels very fluid. The aesthetic of the game is also very nice, and still looks great today. The game also has a great sense of humour, with Glad0s making some great jokes, and she has a great voice actress too. Even though the game is extremely short, it has plenty of replay value. Honestly, the only major criticisms I can think of are to do with the fanbase, not the game itself. Honestly though, the whole 'the cake is a lie!' and 'Still Alive' crazes are pretty much over now, so it's not even much of an issue any more. So yes, you should definitely get it.
Fun, with a great sense of humour.TETfromLondon | Jan. 16, 2014 | Review of Saints Row IV
After a fairly mixed response to Saints Row 3, the developers probably felt that they needed to do something more to differentiate Saints Row 4 from the other competing open world games. Therefore, they chose to go for aliens and super powers. The main problem with this is that it could very easily have alienated (no pun intended) the series' fanbase. However, I personally believe that this is a very good addition to the series, for various reasons. Firstly, the superpowers are extremely fun to use, and makes gameplay very enjoyable. There is also the humour. The writers seemed to realise for this game that there is more to comedy than vulgar humour, and there were a lot of extremely funny jokes and parodies in this game, as well as some excellently timed music in the missions.
There are, however, a few issues. There are a few bugs, and graphically, the game isn't great. That's only a minor issue, but it's worth noting. More annoying, however, is the shimmery pixel effect that happens around buildings and civilians fairly often, just to remind you that you're in a simulation. This honestly gets annoying quite quickly, and unless you're playing the PC version, you can't mod it out. There is also the fact that it is the same city from SR3, although this isn't a major issue as exploration of it is completely changed thanks to superpowers. There is also the fact that most vehicles are completely useless. The side quests are also very repetitive. However, none of these issues make the game bad, and it is still well worth buying.
BAHAHAHAHAHAHA!TETfromLondon | Jan. 16, 2014 | Review of Aliens: Colonial Marines
This game is a perfect example of how to waste a huge amount of time doing almost nothing. After creating a superb and enticing game demo that drew people in, they realised that they had to create an actual game, and set about making the demo graphics worse, creating horrendous texture bugs, making the alien corpses fizzle out of existence, and replacing all the awesome moment from the demo with generic fighting against human enemies. The AI is pitiful, and you'll need to play with friends if you want any kind of help. These problems are probably due to 50 different companies arguing over how to develop the game for a few years, then, once the gearbox staff had happily sat round flicking their ears and developing Borderlands for a while, we ended up with a bland, unfinished mess. Only worth buying on sale.
Worth the money.TETfromLondon | Jan. 16, 2014 | Review of Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons
I went into Brothers: a Tale of Two Sons with high hopes, having heard the reviews, and was largely impressed. I will start off by saying that although it highly recommends playing it with an Xbox 360 controller, I completed the entire game with a keyboard, and although it was slightly awkward at times for reasons that will become clear if you see the game mechanics, it was still very much playable, and not owning a controller should not deter you from buying the game.
The game centers around the idea of 'one player co-op', and this mechanic is implemented fairly well. You control the two brothers simultaneously with the thumbsticks on the controller or the WASD keys and directional buttons on the keyboard, with an action button for each brother. The puzzles require both brothers to do something simultaneously and although none are particularly challenging, they do require you to think. It is nice that the game always makes sure not to repeat itself and the gameplay has plenty of variety.
The environments are some of the best in any indie game I've ever seen and look utterly beautiful. They have an immense sense of scale. The art style is also very nice. The music is also eerily beautiful. It is also impressive that the game manages to convey a story despite the fact that no real language is spoken throughout the game; only gibberish.
Overall, the game is easily one of the best of 2013, and there is no reason not to play it, especially since it can be completed in a sitting.
One of the best open-world games ever made.TETfromLondon | Dec. 20, 2013 | Review of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim is one of the most detailed and beautiful games ever made. The world looks stunning, and is filled with different people and creatures to interactive. There are pretty much endless quests to go on, or you can just explore the world. Probably the best aspect of the game is that it hardly restricts you in any way. You have plenty of dialogue options and ways of doing quests and objectives. There are huge numbers of weapons and spells to use for combat or other things, as well as clothes, potion and armour. The game also has great mod support, so if you ever run out of these things, you can add more into the game.
My only criticisms would be the fact that the combat sometimes feels clunky, the bad voice acting, and the annoying number of caves in the game.
Early review.TETfromLondon | Dec. 17, 2013 | Review of The Walking Dead: Season 2
This review isn't particularly focused on the story, firstly because most of it isn't out yet, and secondly because it is almost impossible to discuss the story without mentioning spoilers. All I'll say is that it is so far keeping up the high standard of the first season. In terms of gameplay, virtually nothing has changed. However, there have been some fairly major changes to the user interface. It is now entirely mouse driven when selecting a speech option or an action, rather than using numbers. I personally didn't like the controls of Season 1 that much, and to me, this interface actually feels far more intuitive than before. The art style is also the same as before. I'll say little else as I'll just ruin it, but if you liked the first Season, you'll probably like this one too.
Amazing for the price.TETfromLondon | Dec. 16, 2013 | Review of Far Cry 3 Blood Dragon
Blood Dragon is a game based on the original Far Cry 3, reusing may assets such as the landscape and vehicles. However, it does a great job of re-skinning these things. The landscape now has a purple-red colour. The animals are often cyber-versions of themselves or alternatively zombified versions. It looks and feels very nice. There have been minor gameplay changes. Your character moves far faster, jump higher and can survive falls from great heights. Their is also a new arsenal of weapons available, all of which are fun to use.
The game is very self aware, parodying cheesy 80s sci-fi movies, with over the top voice acting and plot and 80s sci-fi style music. You play Rex Power Colt, voiced by Michael Biehn. The dial has been turned all the way up to 11 for this game, and the only major criticism I have is that it gets a little old by the end, especially the looping music. Still, you will get at least 15 hours of gameplay out of this, which is amazing value for such a cheap game.
Fantastic.TETfromLondon | Dec. 14, 2013 | Review of Rising Storm
The original Red Orchestra 2 was very good, but I would argue that this is better. The teams feel less evenly matched. The Allies might have better weapons, but the Axis might have better placement on the map, meaning that the different teams require different strategies. This is something that the triple A war games never dare to do, so it's nice to play a game that does. The maps are also fun to play and well designed, and the game is extremely immersive, just like Red Orchestra 2. The game has the same problem; the graphics aren't great, but this is completely forgivable due to the fact that this isn't a huge budget game. Overall, I highly recommend it.
Great game.TETfromLondon | Dec. 14, 2013 | Review of F.E.A.R
When I got this game, I was told that it would terrify me. I was disappointed in that regard, but I was overall very impressed by the game. The graphics are good enough considering the time that it was made, and the weapons feel good. The environments also feel good. The game will remind some people of the original Half Life, and if you enjoyed that, you will probably enjoy this too. It has a good story and nice settings. However, the enemies do get a little repetitive. There are, however, one or two scary moments that liven up the game. There is also a very nice and satisfying slow-motion mechanic, which makes the shooting more fun. Overall, it's well worth a play.
Great fun in co-op.TETfromLondon | Dec. 14, 2013 | Review of Left 4 Dead 2
Valve pretty much redefined the co-op genre when they released the original Left 4 Dead, and there was a lot of anticipation for this one. They didn't change the formula much from the previous game. It's definitely very fun though. The campaign and maps are good, and the zombies are fun to fight, especially with friends. However, it is still very much playable with random people online if no friends are available. The game also has great mod support and still has a very active player base, so it's not hard to find a game. It is worth noting though that if you're getting this game in order to get scared, that's probably not going to happen. Still, if you're looking a fun co-op game or a fun zombie fighting game, it doesn't get much better than this.
Better than the original.TETfromLondon | Dec. 14, 2013 | Review of Portal 2
The original Portal did much to innovate, and received deserved critical acclaim. Therefore, there was much hype surrounding the sequel. It did not disappoint. As well as the mind-bending puzzles, the game is much longer, and has more focus on the funny dialogue that gave the original game a sense of personality. The addition of Wheatley (voiced by Stephen Merchant) is one that vastly improves the comedy of the game, and GlaDOS is just as sassy. The game has a wonderful art-style and colour palette, and also changes between futuristic areas and old, decaying ones.
Another fantastic thing is the addition of co-op. The co-op campaign is completely different from the single-player campaign, and has just as much replay value. Be warned though, communication is key, so you really need to have a headset to be able to play it properly. Overall though, even if you are only planning on playing one of the campaigns, it is well worth the price of admission.
Still good.TETfromLondon | Dec. 14, 2013 | Review of BioShock® 2
This game doesn't achieve the same lofty heights as the original, but that doesn't stop it from being a good game that's worth playing. This time, you play as a big daddy. The combat is therefore noticeably better than in the first games, which is good, as it was the original's weakest feature. A lot of the new weapons such as the drill (your default weapon) feel much more satisfying than the old game's weapons. You are also now able to dual wield weapons and vigors, which adds a lot to the gameplay. The hacking mini-game is also better than it was before. However, the game falls down on its story, which, although good, is not as good or innovative as the original's. Nor does the underwater city have the same impact. Still, it is a decent game, and notably has the very good 'Minerva's Den' DLC, which has a story that is in my opinion better than this game's.
One of the best games of the last decade.TETfromLondon | Dec. 13, 2013 | Review of Spec Ops: The Line
Having scrolled down the review page, I've seen reviews saying 'Decent cover based shooter. 66/100'. Those people have missed the point. I honestly have no idea how, because it was sitting in front of them in flashing neon lights, but they missed it. Spec Ops: The Line is a shooter with decent gameplay, good interaction with your squad, a good cover mechanic, very nice environments, and satisfying gunplay. It also has one of the most powerful stories of any game ever made. Taking heavy inspiration from the novel 'Heart of Darkness' (the book that Apocalypse Now is based on), Spec Ops: The Line is an emotionally jarring story following 3 soldiers in a sandstorm ravaged Dubai. The voice acting and writing are phenomenal, and make the atrocities of the story harsher and more vivid. Very few games have attempted to tackle the horrors and true toll of war. Modern Warfare 2 attempted to do it with the notorious 'No Russian' mission, but Spec Ops takes it to another level. It is darker, grittier, and infinitely more mature. Adding to this is the fact that you see your two jocular companions change throughout the game. You see them deteriorate mentally and physically throughout the game. No game has ever tackled the effect of war on a person's mind in this way, and it is a very bold move to do so. It even goes a step further and makes the player feel genuinely guilty for some of the things they do throughout the game. Trust me when I say that you will feel awful after some of the things you do. The game is topped off by several excellent endings, all of which adequately complete this harrowing experience.
All of these features make the game stand out among the increasingly generic crowd of modern military shooters that are all that ever seems to sell these days. I would not hesitate to call it a masterpiece, and would immediately recommend it to anyone. There are few games more worthy of your time than this one.
Better than the main game.TETfromLondon | Dec. 13, 2013 | Review of BioShock 2: Minerva’s Den
Bioshock 2 was fairly good, but it failed to live up to the lofty standards set by the original game. The story just didn't feel as good, and didn't motivate you to play on in the same way. The story didn't suffer from the same god-awful ending, but still wasn't very memorable. However, Minerva's Den is a definite improvement. There is similar gameplay (you're still a big daddy), but there are a few new guns that feel good. The vigors are also there, so the gameplay in general feels the same. Being a DLC, the campaign is significantly shorter than the Bioshock 2 campaign, and can be easily completed in 3-5 hours. However the story are better (although the villain is a little generic). The game centers around a mysterious computer called the thinker. The player is given a relatively ambiguous task that seems to change a little throughout the game, alternating between escaping and getting certain printouts of code (I won't spoil anything else). The game is strong, but the ending is what really puts it above the main game. It's a genuine surprise, and is executed extremely well, and makes the game satisfying and fulfilling. If you have Bioshock 2, you really ought to get this as well.
A great multiplayer fps.TETfromLondon | Dec. 13, 2013 | Review of Battlefield 3
Battlefield 3 is an immensely beautiful and satisfyingly gritty game. There are hundreds of hours of fun to be had in the multiplayer. The levels are well designed and varied, and there are maps and game modes for any taste. The maps are huge, but it is easy to get around them with the array of vehicles, especially in the DLCs (which are far more worth the money than the Call of Duty DLCs). The destruction is also great, albeit a little disappointing after Battlefield: Bad Company 2. The glaring weak point of the game is the campaign. It is extremely generic and holds your hand throughout. Still, the game is well worth the price for the multiplayer.
Insanely fun.TETfromLondon | Nov. 20, 2013 | Review of Just Cause 2
The Grand Theft Auto series is very good and a lot of fun, but sometimes it's good to not take things so seriously. Just Cause 2 is very good at this. You play Rico, a character with a physics defying, immensely satisfying grappling hook that can strap objects, vehicles and people together, as well as being useful for zipping around the game world. This is useful, as the map is enormous. Fortunately, there is also a fast travel system that you unlock fairly early on in the game, as well as a plethora of excellent vehicles, including many types of plane, car and helicopter. The campaign is hilariously cheesy with some of the worst voice acting ever, but this is not the focal point of the campaign, nor is it supposed to be taken seriously. The brilliant shooting, driving, flying, grappling and parachuting (with your infinite supply of parachutes) is an experience that is one of the most fun you can have in any game. There are hundreds of hours of fun here. Just download the demo and you'll understand. I would recommend this to absolutely anyone.
The true aliens experience.TETfromLondon | Nov. 20, 2013 | Review of Natural Selection II
Many people will remember watching the film 'Aliens' and wishing that there was a game that accurately recreated that atmosphere. Unfortunately, most of the actual 'Alien' games have failed to do so. However, Natural Selection 2 is as good as it gets for the genre. Both the creatures and the humans feel fun to use, but both are played in different ways. There is a great element of strategy involved, as if you split off from the rest of your team, or attack at the wrong moment, or as a human, if you wander off by yourself, you will probably die quickly. Adding to the strategy is the fact that both teams have a commander, so fans of strategy games such as Starcraft will feel at home in this role. If not, then there is no need to do it and you can just be a normal soldier or alien. The game also looks excellent and the environments are brilliantly designed. I would highly recommend this game to anyone.
A great start to a franchise!TETfromLondon | Nov. 13, 2013 | Review of Batman: Arkham Asylum
Speaking as someone who doesn't really care about comic books, it is quite hard to get me interested in anything super hero related. However, Batman: Arkham Asylum is an excellent game with a great story and atmosphere and one of the best third person fighting mechanics I've ever used. There really isn't much else to say about it, except that there's plenty of replay value. Well worth buying, especially at a low price.
Brilliant!TETfromLondon | Nov. 12, 2013 | Review of Bioshock Infinite
Bioshock Infinite is an extraordinary game with one of the best stories I've ever played. It follows Booker Dewitt, a man who owes a debt and has come to the mysterious floating city of Columbia in order to pay it. The city itself is stunningly beautiful, as well as the graphics and locations in general. Throughout most of the game, you are accompanied by Elizabeth. However, the game doesn't feel like one giant escort mission, as she is perfectly capable of defending herself, and will even help you in combat by finding health and ammo for you. The gameplay is nothing special, and the gunplay is mediocre. However, the skyhook mechanic is a very enjoyable way to get around the city. Also, the mechanic in which Elizabeth summons in objects such as sentries from other dimensions is also useful and unique. However, gameplay is not the focal point of the game. The story is superbly written with excellent dialogue, and one of the best endings to any game ever made.
One of my favourite games of the last few years.TETfromLondon | Nov. 4, 2013 | Review of Dishonored
Dishonored is one of the most satisfying games that I've ever played. The combat is extremely fun and the powers, especially the blink mechanic, are extremely well integrated. The game's art style is unique and looks great, and there is a lot of thought put in to the huge levels. You could probably spend a couple of hours on each one, exploring them and finding different ways to complete various tasks. The campaign will take you around 8 or 9 hours to complete. However, due to the vast number of ways in which you can complete your various objectives, you will want to go back and replay the entire campaign or individual levels. You can be stealthy and not kill anyone, and this will cause a less dark outcome overall, or you can kill everyone in your path, which changes both the ending and the game's world. I have spent at least 60 hours on this game, and am in the middle of finishing the game again. Also, the story DLCs; the Knife of Dunwall and the Brigmore Witches, are both very good and both are well worth owning. This game is one of the best purchases that I have ever made, and it is a bargain, especially on sale.
A superb open world fps.TETfromLondon | Nov. 4, 2013 | Review of Far Cry 3
Far Cry 3 is an extraordinarily fun game with an interesting story and beautiful world. The island itself looks extraordinary, and hours can be spent exploring it. This game also has immensely satisfying gameplay, with an enormous variety of weapons to use. There are also exotic animals to hunt. This is in addition to a very satisfying campaign with some great characters (Vaas in particular). The multiplayer is also quite enjoyable, but it is not the focus of the game, and you will spend far more time immersing yourself in the single payer than the multiplayer. Topping this off is a very nice map editor which has a lot of fun in it for people who are creative. All in all, an excellent game.
Worth getting, especially on sale.TETfromLondon | Nov. 4, 2013 | Review of Max Payne 3
Speaking as someone who has never played the old Max Payne games, I was worried that I wouldn't be able to get into this one. However, I need not have worried, as I found myself drawn into the story quickly. The levels can be a bit repetitive, but this is not a problem as the combat and game mechanics are extremely fun to use. The game looks excellent, and the story is compelling. The levels are fun, especially with their superb destructible environments. And of course, bullet time is excellent. This doesn't even mention the solid multiplayer mode. I would strongly recommend this game to anyone who enjoys 3rd person shooters.