Reviews by Youshless

80

Batman Arkham City ver. 2

Youshless | Oct. 31, 2013 | Review of Batman Arkham Origins

Yes, Batman is back. Is it an original, no. Does it add just enough to make it worth experiencing, YES!

COMBAT This is not as drastic a move as from asylum to city but you definitely get the sense that Origins is a refinement of previous iterations. The combat is identical to B:AC but adds a few more variations of enemy to tackle in new ways. This tries to add another dimension to, an already, highly gratifying combat mechanic. It certainly doesn't fail at this, but it can feel that the additions have been done just to say they have changed something.

ENVIRONMENT Origins looks very similar to B:AC and, for a lot of the buildings, it has even used the assets from the previous game. However, the level designers have done a much better job this time round. The buildings in B:AC were too close together leaving very little space for the "Dive and Glide" mechanic. This has been resolved in Origins, thankfully! Because of this, although the map is 3 times bigger, it feels much easier and less tedious to move around the world. The addition of snow definitely adds to the isolated feel the game puts forward. It's Batman, alone with a city full of villians! Another necessary addition that really adds something to the game is the Batcave, and with it, the ability to fast travel. I personally rarely used this feature as there is so much to do on the way to objectives and because traversing the environment is so much better now.

GRAPHICS Origins on the PC looks fantastic. It's not exactly "next-gen" but it stil lcan hold its own in the current gen. // Also, bear in mind that Rocksteady (developers of the previous 2 Batman games) haven't worked on this game and will most probably be bringing something new next year; for next-gen. // The addition of PhsyX powered by Nvidia seems wasted here. Unlike with Borderlands, there is very little use for Physics in the game and I would recommend leaving this feature off. One of the biggest let downs in terms of graphics is the facial animations. Whenever a close up of people talking occurs it can be very easy to feel pulled out of the experience. I know this seems like a minor, and for the most part it is but when a game does so much right, you concentrate on the details. Another reason it is so disappointing is because this developer haven't crafted this City from scratch, they have used a lot of assets from the previous game and therefore should have had time to refine other areas.

OVERALL If you are expecting the next big jump forward for batman then you will be disappointed. However, if you want a more refined batman experience, with improved (for the most part) mechanics then you will be happy to play Origins. The Story here is what you are really playing for and it can be very intriguing and fun. Detective missions hold your hand too much and the multiplayer is a minor past time at best, but overall I think Batman fans will find enough of a game here to replay it! Completionists will definitely get their money's worth!

100

A rich experience that you MUST play!

Youshless | April 23, 2013 | Review of BioShock Infinite Post

Bioshock Infinite is a game of passion, precision, ambition and thought provoking narrative. The first thing you will notice about Bioshock Infinite is its saturated colours, detailed environments and living/breathing NPC's (None Player Character's). The place is alive and you can feel it!

The graphics are gorgeous and perfectly stylised to give an authentic but refreshing art style that always seems to capture the mood of the moment and have your jaw dragging along the floor.

The narrative here is probably one of the best in the games industry and its complexity can parallel the likes of Inception (Christopher Nolan). The dialogue feels meaningful and realistic, while mixing humour and other emotions effortlessly.

The mechanics in the game are finely tuned and capture both realism and fantasy. From wielding a pistol to creating an elaborate set of traps you will not be disappointed by the quality of weaponry. However, if I was to be critical, I would say that the variety of mechanical and "magical" weapons can be a little underwhelming. I can understand that the reasoning behind this is to push the player to use both instead of focus on one (i.e. just use guns, or just use powers) but I would have appreciated a robust customisation tree for each gun/power. For example, levelling a certain power would allow a basic "skill tree" to manipulate how the power works. In this example the fire power could be used either defensively by creating firewalls etc. or more aggressively like fireballs or volcanic eruptions.

This, I would agree, could have destroyed a lot of what makes this game so amazing and I do feel that every choice made in developing this game was justified. It's purely personal preference.

To say that this aspect of the game was a disappointment would be a crime!

The rail system which was sold as your main form of transportation in marketing the game was, unfortunately, not as I had expected. I was hoping to be able to move freely around the whole, or at least a large part of Columbia, using the rail system. This isn't the case. The rail mechanic is used for 2 major scenarios; to reach higher areas of environment, or, to circle a specific area during large shoot-outs. I have hope that the rail system is utilised on a grander scale in the upcoming DLC!

Bioshock Infinite takes you into a world full of beauty, mystery, corruption, morality, humour, sadness, action and complexity. It does this in a way that I have never experienced before and find hard to believe I will for a very long time. My gripes with the rail system and weapons hold no bearing on the rating I give this game as this would remove the very point of Bioshock Infinite. Bioshock Infinite is a clever and exhilarating roller-coaster ride that you won't want to leave...buy this game, enjoy it and then play it again. Oh and don't forget the season pass because there is plenty more of Columbia to see and feel!