Reviews by backslashio


Its like Sim City 6 without EA

backslashio | March 12, 2015 | Review of Cities Skylines Deluxe Edition - PC

Think of an oldskool Sim City game and then remember what it was like - cities as big as your PC could actually manage and no "always online" drm for what is basically a single player experience. That's what this is! You essentially start off with a small block with the option to buy more and more land as you progress and can build your city in a number of ways including some fancy highway underpass and roundabouts rather than boring straight lines everywhere. If you eventually get tired of the city designs there's also a Steam mod workshop that's free to use! Unfortunately, whilst fun the game lacks in challenge - on easy you only have to worry about extremely minimal matters, you won't struggle financially and there's little crime even when there's no police stations around. You can turn it up to hard mode where you get zombie outbreaks but for the realistic player there needs to be a realistic big problem. Outside of challenge there's numerous bugs, buildings will sometimes go abandoned for no reason with no solution to fix apart from demolishing and traffic can get stuck on a single lane instead of using the other empty lanes but these should be patched and corrected eventually.


A different kind of TIm Schafer game

backslashio | March 11, 2015 | Review of Broken Age - PC

Whilst many people wanted some kind of Monkey Island/Grim Fandango-ish setting from the Kickstart game the art style has drastically changed to something you'd normally find in a kids book. But if you look past that you'll realise it's a wonderfully detailed world (x2, one for each character) with many great characters and that witty charm & humour of the old. Don't be put off by the looks, instead immerse yourself with imagination and meet a talking breakfast spoon & a wolf who's been lurking on a spaceship and on land face against a giant monster who eats people as some kind of annual tradition. Also be aware there's 2 chapters to this game and the 2nd chapter isn't out yet, leaving the plot on a cliffhanger but the 2nd chapter will be a free update.


Good gameplay/story letdown by graphics

backslashio | Feb. 27, 2015 | Review of Resident Evil Revelations 2 Season Pass - PC

Okay, first the good stuff, its got a nice premise of being transported to an island where there's all sorts of weird stuff going on. Switching back/forth between a combat heavy person and a fragile one allows for some different game mechanics where some can do certain things that the other person can't and you have to monitor both of them at the same time when things get dangerous. It takes some mechanics from RE4 including the 'wait here/follow me' commands. Now for the bad stuff, brace yourself because this is by far the worst looking Resident Evil game since Code Veronica and its poorly optimised for PC. Problem 1, the dreaded mouse cursor stuck during cutscenes even though I'm clearly using a controller. Problem 2, the opening screen splashes a lot of Japanese text that probably shouldn't be there. Problem 3, there's messages saying "do not turn off the console" indicating a lazy port. The framerate is also beyond a joke no matter what settings you use, if you look at the water, it stutters, if you zoom in with your torch, it stutters even with a mid decent PC. Hopefully patches will fix this because I'm getting headaches! Overall, its a good game that's held back by production values and a poorly done PC port. If you can, get it on PS4/XBOne (XBOne has the best version)


Better than Grid 2 but not Grid

backslashio | Feb. 4, 2015 | Review of GRID Autosport (2) - PC

Its a shame that after so long from the first game of the series its yet to be surpassed. Traditionally this would be normal for any other genre except racing, driving doesn't feel as fun as it once was and whilst its challenging there's issues holding it back. For one, the 'quick fix' cockpit view return, merely a blurred pixelated stencil with rearview cameras that don't work at all! At least its something but its so terrible I doubt you'd want to use it. Career mode feels like there's too much grinding before you get to the championships. Whilst having a variety of racing styles is nice its very weird to hop between F1, Endurance, Sport Cars & Demolition. It may seem like good value however it also means that none of them feel perfect. If you're itching for a racer it'll qualify your needs but don't expect anything new


Great game, now with polish!

backslashio | March 3, 2014 | Review of Resident Evil 4 Biohazard 4 - PC

It's had quite a few re-releases on various platforms with PC originally being the absolute worse with incredibly bland textures & stability issues. Now, years later its been polished to playable form and supports the 360 controller While the game does still show its age as its not a complete HD remake its enjoyable as it used to be. Yes, the controls might still seem sluggish to today's standards but if you can look past that you'll enjoy the ~30 hours of content including Ada Wong's missions. It will always be the RE game that reinvented the franchise with a somewhat faster pace but still retaining the horror elements and some great set pieces. Get it, you won't be disappointed!


Great tactical shooter!

backslashio | Sept. 8, 2013 | Review of Full Spectrum Warrior Complete - PC

This was pretty unique for its time, its like an early version of Valkyria Chronicles/Star Wars Knights Old Republic where it seems like you're playing in realtime with your small group of soldiers but then the gameplay pauses to allow you to choose what you want to do for the next plan of action. If you're usually terrible at FPS games and wanted to have a better chance at finishing the game then this one's ideal for you!


Good game!

backslashio | Aug. 2, 2013 | Review of Bully Scholarship Edition Steam - PC

Whilst somewhat dated by today's standards it shows that Rockstar can make a mature themed game with the presence of a school yard. If you like GTA you'll enjoy this, there's a lot of fun to be had with plenty of sidemissions to keep you interested Hopefully one day they'll announce a sequel for the next-gen era


A good return to F1 racing games

backslashio | March 29, 2013 | Review of F1 2010 - PC

Before F1 2010 the genre was too few and far between. Now in the hands of Codemasters the game brings new life with a slick presentation, sweaty palms and a soundtrack of engine roars! This game borrows the same time rewind mechanic from the Dirt series too which means that instead of having to restart a race after screwing up on the last corner is no longer an issue as well as avoiding huge time penalties for collisions If you like F1 racing games you'll love this! The only thing that's missing is in-game commentary although for some its not a required feature


Lots of content yet lacks polish

backslashio | March 29, 2013 | Review of FUEL - PC

FUEL can be a very fun game in the right environment yet other times it can be frustrating due to the AI and a lack of things to do/see in such a vast racetrack. The graphics look quite outdated when viewed up close, lacking the polish that the Dirt franchise received and after a couple of hours the game can seem a bit stale if you're still in singleplayer mode If you're interested in 'outback vehicles' then its definitely worth trying as its probably the only semi-decent racing game for that particular genre. Otherwise, it might be best to try something else for your racing needs


Not as good as Dirt 2

backslashio | March 29, 2013 | Review of DiRT 3 - PC

Unfortunately whilst its an alright racing game a lot of the content is locked out by DLC yet still shows up in almost every menu you navigate through. The first person perspective of moving around a caravan for the menus is now gone and replaced with a stylish yet somewhat bland menu and rather than gaining money to buy a car that you actually want you're instead randomly awarded cars for your progress and the usual car stats don't apply apart from the specifications which makes it incredibly hard to figure out which car is better than the other. The core of the racing can be fun yet seems to lack that arcade style from the previous game and the tracks aren't as varied or as fun. The minigames involving doing tricks are more frustrating than fun too which also slows down your progress. Overall, a good but not great game


Batman takes it up 10 notches!

backslashio | Jan. 21, 2013 | Review of Batman Arkham City Game of the Year (1) - PC

If you thought the original was good, well then imagine that game x10 and you'll have Batman Arkham City with a freeroam city! The combat itself has evolved to a state where a whole range of combinations is possible and feels much more fluid, not to mention kickass drool worthy! Besides the traditional new range of gadgets & the return of some classics you'll also get to look forward to playing as Catwoman who has her own particular fastnfurious style and can crawl upside down on the ceiling or use her whip to take out thugs from all angles! The story has a bit of an Avengers movie theme tied to it which basically throws as many different Batman colleagues and villains as it can, leading to optional sidemissions (riddles, puzzles, phonecalls, hostages, popping balloons, flying missions) which helps give the game a whole variety of different types of gameplay. From start to finish this game is an "edge of your seat" moment and you won't want to stop until you've completed every bit. Highly recommended!


Original was better

backslashio | Jan. 21, 2013 | Review of Borderlands 2 ANZ - PC

For some odd reason I had more fun with the original than I did with this. The storyline seemed more interesting, the environments, whilst drab had their own particular charm and the game ended within a reasonable amount of time whereas Borderlands 2 seems to go on & on if you try and complete all the additional sidequests too. Perhaps its because after Borderlands 1 I felt like I was done with it until the sequel where I'd hoped something had changed to make it its own game with a new compelling type of gameplay. Instead its more of the same except visually prettier with different types of enemies and even more gun randomness combinations Perhaps with a more talkative main character & a better story structure I would've had fun that would hide the level grinding and endless enemies. Instead, I was completely underwhelmed and didn't bother trying to finish it. Its one of those games where "more of the same" is actually bad rather than good!


Great but not the RE you once knew

backslashio | Jan. 21, 2013 | Review of Resident Evil 5 - PC

Firstly, this is a much more action orientated game than the previous entries which had far more scare factor. The game will make you jump or frighten you but purely in tension only. Its a shame that because of one friendly NPC's AI it almost wrecks the whole game! Sheva, your partner (which you can't get rid of!) will do stupid things and get herself into trouble at nearly every turn, forcing you to babysit her for the entire game unless you get a friend to jump in and take control. With a friend, the game is much more enjoyable, without a friend you can still have fun but you'll be playing the game for longer for the wrong reasons The storyline is pretty enjoyable for RE and there's an awesome showdown at the end with a few compelling characters. If you get the GOTY edition there's plenty of additional content that's definitely worth playing! Recommended


Skip Dead Rising 2 & get this!

backslashio | Jan. 21, 2013 | Review of Dead Rising 2 Off the Record - PC

Basically this is more like a remixed version of Dead Rising 2 with more content yet less reason to own both, particularly since they cut & paste Frank West into the exact same story except that this time he's got a camera which allows for some easy experience points. The game doesn't have a particular main weapon as EVERYTHING in this game is interactive, cash registers, pot plants, a toy gun that fires plastic balls! The interaction doesn't end there either, you can find a key to drive a sports car inside a shopping mall or use a wheelchair for transport AND you can walk into any clothes store to alter your outfit (whilst zombies are chasing you in realtime). The story is nothing fancy but there's enough extras with an element of 'Dead Island' where you can mod weapons, level up and learn new combat skills. There's something for everyone in this game but may require more than first impressions before you truly start to appreciate it


Better than the average Olympic videogames

backslashio | Jan. 21, 2013 | Review of London 2012 The Official video game of the Olympic Games - PC

Its true that this might be the best Olympic version ever but that doesn't stop your attention span from fading. Some of the mini-games are good but most aren't which result in spamming a single button, particularly the running & weightlifting events. A 360 controller is a must for this unless you like destroying your keyboard! Visually, the presentation is amongst Virtua Tennis with even fabric clothing detail and realistic water effects. However unless you play this in multiplayer the fun is shortlived and the career mode requires constant replays if you want to witness all of the events or play the events separately in the additional menu option. Only recommended for the most passionate fans or some party fun


Same old Lego formula but with original voices

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of LEGO Lord of the Rings AU - PC

There's only one difference between this & the previous Lego entries and that is the voice acting with most of it pulled directly from the movies themselves, giving each character much more charm than the usual Sims-like speech. The game follows the storyline from start to finish apart from occasional improvisation. Its nice that they've made this game freeroam so you can tackle the main quest when you want to or attempt one of the many sidemissions or simply walk around the world. The combat is still the same as it ever was, jumping sections are still extremely frustrating, fending off attackers still relies on pressing 1 button and situations will arise where you need a particular character to find a secret area. This Lego LOTR game can still have its addictive charm yet I highly suspect its because its LOTR & has the licensed voices. If it weren't for that I doubt it'd be getting much praise. Traveller's Tales needs to step it up a notch next time instead of pumping out the exact same formula since their Star Wars debut


Thought provoking

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Spec Ops The Line - PC

A solid shooter with more to it than meets the eye. One of the few games that'll make you wonder which person is the real bad guy in a dire situation of kill or be killed. The dialogue is slick, the voice acting is great and the gameplay is compelling. For those looking for something outside of the typical common cliche shooter you'll want to experience this for yourself! Recommended


Eat your heart out GTAIV!

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Sleeping Dogs - PC

This is how its done, an entertaining John Woo styled 80s classic with a focus on hand to hand combat rather than relying on the typical gun. The graphics are spectacular, there's a lot of attention to detail and you'll feel like your a part of the asian experience with a populated city, triads and fight clubs! You'll grab enemies and throw them into a fish tank, slam their heads into walls or kick them into phone booths. This range of combat makes it all the more satisfying especially when you learn new moves! The whole city felt filled with life & pork buns and I enjoyed every moment of it, one of the most satisfying open world game that demands a sequel!


Atmospheric yet little else

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Metro 2033 (1) - PC

This was supposedly an underrated game, whilst I'll admit it looks gorgeous, has promising characters & a decent introduction into the world of unknown it failed to hold my attention with an unfair checkpoint system that was vulnerable to losing a whole bunch of progress should you suddenly die. For whatever reason I couldn't quite get into it but perhaps you'll simply need to experience it for yourself to be a fairer judge. Its hard to fault, you'll either like it or you won't


Underrated shooter from the creator of Yakuza!

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Binary Domain - PC

I'm simply baffled as to why this game failed to get the media attention it deserved. Its a solid adrenaline arcade styled shooter with great characters, an engaging futuristic storyline and an excuse to whip out the microphone to dish out some commands or chat to your teammates. The graphics are polished and the gameplay has an incentive to be as destructive as you possibly can, shooting off individual robot limbs never gets old and metal shrapnel flies everywhere during the process! Guns can be modded and nanomachine technology can be added to your characters for bonus abilities Overall, its a fast paced fun game with a refreshing range of charismatic characters that actually make you care about them - especially 1 particular female!


Disappointing Final Fantasy JRPG alternative

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of The Last Remnant - PC

I was really hoping for something to tide me over between the popular Final Fantasy series and for a while I was convinced I was missing out when this was a 360 exclusive. Well, there's nothing to get excited about, whilst the port is slightly superior to the 360 with a smoother framerate it fails at almost everything else. The world is completely flat, the environments are samey, the storyline is boring and the combat is merely ok. I tried my best to like it but in the end I spent far more time downloading the game than I did playing it


An improvement, but only slightly

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of F1 2012 - PC

I've played F1 2010 & 2011 and whilst I'm impressed with the graphical enhancements its a shame that little else has changed. The career mode doesn't feel like a career, merely races between menu screens. There's no classic tv audio commentary either during the races which allows for repetition to rear its ugly head and without full control of the rules you'll be constantly penalised for what seems like minor issues. If you're looking for an arcade experience, this isn't it. For F1 simulation lovers, get your racing mits on and steering wheel ready!


Great fun!

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Saints Row The Third - PC

The big problem with Saints Row 2 on PC is that it was almost unplayable with sloppy controls & no support for a 360 controller and major glitches. This is a thing of the past! Saints Row 3 returns with a very polished looking game, the gameplay is like GTA x 10 with exaggerated physics and characters that resemble a Saturday morning cartoon (but for an older audience). The character creation alone allows for hilarious results & worth the price of admission If you like fun you'll love this!


Finally a PC release for an awesome game!

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Alan Wake - PC

This was originally supposed to be a PC game yet suddenly became a Xbox 360 exclusive. The game was in development for years and only in the final few months did that news become apparent! Thankfully Alan Wake has eventually arrived to PC and its backed by a superior port to make this the best experience ever. Its a very story focused game and no wonder since the main character is a writer who goes on holiday to escape the pressure of writing his next award winning novel. Instead he slowly descends into darkness as darkness consumes the town & its people and his creations come to life. Only he can write himself out of this nightmare and the light is the 'key'! With a movie-like experience you'll feel like you're in an entertaining horror flick. You'll be connecting with characters, desperately stocking up on batteries for your torch 'weapon' and collecting manuscript pages scattered around the forest to find out how this nightmare happened in the first place. A great game and one to be experienced with the lights out and the surround sound turned all the way up!


Simply fantastic!

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Deus Ex Human Revolution (1) - PC

One of my favourite and best blind buys ever! I'd heard of Deus Ex before yet never bothered researching about it as it didn't seem like my kind of game. Oh boy was I wrong! The key thing here is a fascinating story combined with brilliant voice acting set in a futuristic world where augments are all the rage for superhuman abilities. The gameplay is a combination of stealth and action, the decision of how things progress is up to you. Want to stealthily hack into the police building? You can do that. Want to approve with guns blazing? You can do that too! Its great how the game tailors up to the way you normally play games Its a hard game to fault, the environments, the cities, the characters, all of them are memorable and there's many modifications to be made with your weapons/armour allowing for once inaccessible places to become available and finding even more goodies for your arsenal Easily a contender for one of the best games in the past 10 years and gives Mass Effect a run for its life!


Only worth playing for nostalgia value

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Duke Nukem Forever - PC

Everyone remembers Duke Nukem 3D. It was amazing, it had level designs which linked brilliantly together with its environments, the shooting mechanics were compelling and there was a general bad-ass vibe from start to finish. Now here, we have Duke Nukem Forever (or Did Not Finish), after so many years of waiting the outcome is not only a dated game but has merely become a fan service viewing with many frustrating mini-games and very little focus on guns. The gun mechanics are terrible, there's no precision shooting, the weapons lack oomph & destructive power, ammo is severely limited, you can only carry a small amount of guns at once. Besides that there's barely any shooting to be had anyway! Instead of killing bad guys you'll be a miniature Duke driving around in a toy racing car, hopping across a burger joint, lifting weights or playing awful pinball/pool/air hockey for the sake of achievements/increased ego health bar. Its like playing a baby version of the real Duke Nukem to the point where you'll forget why you even like Duke Nukem in the first place. Play it for the nostalgia and leave for everything else.


Good despite being repetitive

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Dead Island - PC

From the first preview trailer I automatically assumed this would be a story focused game with excellent writing and a compelling narrative. Instead its a hack'n'slash presentation with 4 main characters lacking a proper introduction and tossed into a holiday island filled with zombies. You'll encounter survivors and help them reach to safety which eventually becomes your main safehouse where you can mod weapons to devastating effect yet you'll be constantly on edge as durability is limited although makeshift weapons are always at hand. Boat paddles, pipes, hammers, whatever you can get your hands on! This is a freeroam environment and you can transport via cars to not only get to your destination faster but also to mow down any zombies in the way! Despite the game being made for online co-op in mind you can thankfully still enjoy it in single player mode. Worth the price for any zombie fan!


Great game letdown by simplistic combat & story

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim Nexway (1) - PC

Its a shame that for a world that's so beautiful, so engaging with many various quests on offer it fails in numerous ways. For starters, the story isn't particularly strong with a main character that says nothing aside from text prompt choices and the story has about as much in common as it does with Borderlands which is almost non existent apart from 3-4 scenes in a potential 70-80 hour game! Thankfully though you'll spend most of your time simply exploring the landscape and doing many sidequests & dungeons along the way. The combat unfortunately is not so good, long range weapons & magic are fine yet when it comes to daggers and swords you're blindly swinging your arms with no real engagement or skill apart from keeping the enemy in front of your face until it eventually dies. A nice addition to the combat though is that you're freely to switch between weapons/magic on the fly and the more you use a particular combat method, the more skill points you'll get which will unlock powerful attributes. If you can forgive its simplistic story & uninvolving swordplay you're in for a treat! Its so visually spectacular its hard not to be impressed by the amount of effort that's been put in


A fantastic sequel!

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Mafia II - PC

Easily one of the biggest visual changes to the original game since the transition between GTA2 & GTA3! Straight away you're thrown into the story with a war prologue and witness the return of a soldier from duty. There's a magical sense of your surroundings as a warplane flies over the city, the snow falls and you'll meet and greet your old run down neighbourhood. I've never experienced a game that pulls you in as much as this, not even any in the GTA series! You'll want to play this game for the story & the fantastic characters as you'll be addicted from start to finish. Unfortunately despite it being an open world you're restricted to the main story with no sidemissions on offer but that's for the better considering the game's Mafia styled setting. A definite "highly recommended" seal of approval!


A nice revision for the series

backslashio | Jan. 14, 2013 | Review of Hitman Absolution (1) - PC

Playing the old Hitman games today is hard. The controls felt stiff, gunplay was awkward and graphically even the latest Blood Money looked retro. Now, the series has had a serious change with a cover system, better gunplay, a predicted movement ability and a whole lot of visual makeover. Unfortunately the story isn't as engaging as Blood Money with forgettable characters and the environments are only partially interactive with a very linear approach to taking down your targets. Whilst there's still variations of taking down your target there's less freedom in the levels which make it feel like you're playing an entirely different game - similar to the changes in Splinter Cell Conviction. Overall, a solid if unremarkable entry


Promising game ruined by a low budget & outdated engine

backslashio | July 28, 2012 | Review of The Last Remnant - PC

The game looks alright in the screenshots but once the game's in motion you'll notice a lot of screen tearing that can't be controlled with v-sync because there is no v-sync option! The graphics are simplistic yet if you turn all the detail up to full get ready to be presented with an almost unbearable framerate drop when battles ensue. Environments have that eerie perfectly flat landscape look which makes the game look 10+ years old, I know its a low budget game yet I thought other RPGs besides Final Fantasy surpassed this incredibly dated presentation by now. Its made by SquareEnix too, where is the love? As for the gameplay itself its alright, there's nothing really wrong with it & it has an optional Japanese audio track. In fact the battles are quite engaging however its just the presentation that you'll have to put up with to get your entertainment.