Reviews by bradysam
GOTY 2013bradysam | Aug. 14, 2013 | Review of Bioshock Infinite
I can definitely see this game getting GOTY for 2013 as it is perfect in just about every way. The graphics and sound design are incredibly well realized allowing you to become properly immersed in the sky city that you get to explore throughout the game. The gun play again is amazingly well done and each of the weapons feels useful and powerful after upgrading. The addition of the sky lines to the "-shock" series is a great, great choice and really helps to push along the gun fights and keep the pace hurtling along. As with the other "-shock" series games as well the city is amazingly well realized and you can imagine the greater world around Booker and arguably the best part is listening to the Voxophones and fully exploring the civilization around you. The story is also top notch with several well thought out and realized twists (some obvious and some not so obvious). Overall it's incredibly easy to recommend this game and is definitely worth picking up even at full price. I can't wait for the DLC to be released either as that's looking just as good. If you like FPSs then definitely check out this game.
Amazing gameplay and amazing storybradysam | Aug. 14, 2013 | Review of BioShock
This is easily one of the best shooters (and potentially RPG) of the past 10 years. The story is told perfectly through recorded audio messages around Rapture, talks with characters, flashbacks of previous inhabitants and through messages scrawled on the walls. The atmosphere is perfect and it is realized perfectly. The game play is spot on as well having to juggle between plasmid powers and guns to inflict the most damage and the "boss" fights with the Big Daddies are still some of the best battles within games today. It's incredibly easy to recommend this game, either for the story, for the atmosphere or the game play itself. But if you have the faintest bit of interest in this game you should go out and get it as it is easily worth it.
Tense, strong gameplay, but far too shortbradysam | Aug. 14, 2013 | Review of The Walking Dead: 400 Days
The original game was one of the few games that had me genuinely invested in each of the characters and feeling tense and worried about their safety. It was an excellent game to play though and this DLC carries on that trend perfectly. There are 5 short stories to play through, each with multiple endings as well as an epilogue section, which is directly affected by the outcome of each of the other short stories. Whilst you can play through the whole thing in less than 2 hours it's worth playing through at least once more just to see how your decisions affect the story. It's an amazing piece of DLC for an amazing game, it's just unfortunate it's not any longer, but it sets up the next game perfectly.
3 MP additions and 1 SP additionbradysam | Aug. 14, 2013 | Review of Aliens: Colonial Marines - Season Pass
I was disappointed with the season pass for Colonial Marines. I enjoyed the base game very much, despite it's flaws and enjoyed playing through both the single player and the multiplayer parts of the game. The season pass didn't work for me though, there are 2 map packs included; the Reconnaissance Pack and the Movie Map pack for a total of 8 new MP maps, which are OK. A new multiplayer game model Bug Hunt, which is a basic Horde mode, which whilst fun should have been included with the base game I feel. As well as a new single player campaign; Stasis Interrupted. The new campaign feels even more like a by the numbers FPS, with very basic map design and a bad story, which doesn't really fit in to the Aliens universe. If you can get it for cheap then it's potentially worth it, at the very least for the Bug Hunt DLC, which is fun, especially with a few friends. But the new maps are average and the SP content is no where near as strong as the main campaign. Otherwise it's difficult to reccommend.
Fun, bloody, but short shooterbradysam | Aug. 14, 2013 | Review of The Darkness II
In the Darkness 2 you initially play as Jackie Estacado and struggle with trying to control the Darkness. After almost being killed you end up going on a bloody journey of revenge and discovery as you try and find out who organized the hit, and why. The story is very well done and you really feel for Jackie as a character, particularly with his relationship to Jenny, his previous girlfriend. The game play is split into frantic action sequences where you have to face off against numerous enemies; which can be dispatched through use of the environment, darkness powers or guns, and slower more investigative story sequences across two locations. The sound design is excellent and the celshaded graphics were an excellent choice for the game, and help to give it more of a comic book feel. The only criticism of the campaign is that it is short at around 8 hours for a first play through, but given the quality I feel that it is a fair trade off.
There is also and online co op component to the game where you can play with up to 3 others to take on specific online challenges. Each of the 4 characters play very differently, each with their own loadout of darkness powers and weapons. Everyone is sure to find a character which suits their play style perfectly.
Overall, it's a very well put together game, which is highly reccomended, especially to FPS fans, but ideally should be a little longer.
Tense thoughtful gameplaybradysam | Aug. 14, 2013 | Review of XCOM: Enemy Unknown
It is easy to see why this game received such a high amount of praise from critics and why the turn based genre has been making a come back. The game play is excellently done, it initially guides you without ever feeling that it takes the control away from you and keeps ramping up the difficulty every time you start to master the battles. It's definitely possible to lose this game and you need to manage your resources and base building very well to ensure that you will succeed. Once you have a grip on everything though and once you finally start pushing the enemy back it feels as if you have really achieved something. Everything about this game is excellently done. If you're a fan of the strategy genre then it's definitely worth getting this game if you haven't already. If you're not then you should try it at the very least and it will probably convert you because it is that good.
Fun open world LEGO gamebradysam | Aug. 14, 2013 | Review of LEGO Batman 2: DC Super Heroes
I enjoy the LEGO series of games, and this one is no exception. There is plenty to see and do. The city is huge and there is a massive amount of content to unlock and puzzles to solve. The campaign is a blast to go through and it's still very enjoyable to go through a level you've completed using the free play option so that you can find and unlock everything. The DC universe translates incredibly well into the LEGO universe and is a game I keep coming back to again and again. Once more, highly reccomended
Modern day MMO with great ideasbradysam | Aug. 14, 2013 | Review of The Secret World
Firstly, I want to say that I love the premise for this game. It's set in the modern day world where myths and legends are coming to life and magic is returning. The first chapter is very well done and the story really shows promise. However, once you're in the second area is seems to start degenerating into a typical MMO. There are plenty of go here and kill x amount of enemies quests and the combat starts to feel very samey. Whilst there are investigation quests throughout, which I feel are an excellent touch they seem to appear less and less the more you go through the game. These are excellent because they let you fully interact with and explore the world they have created and you have to really think about what the solution could be. I made it through to the end so that I could see the story through, and it ends up average. They keep adding episodic content to the game, which is essential, as otherwise the end game content is just running the same dungeons with increasing difficulty for better loot. Overall, it's a well thought out game, but I get the feeling that due to budget or time constraints they couldn't quite get it fully realized. It's definitely worth playing if you're a fan of the setting as it's quite interesting, but unfortunately it comes across as just another MMO for the majority of the gameplay.
Fun western game with a frustrating duel mechanicbradysam | Aug. 14, 2013 | Review of Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood
This is clearly a western game through and through. You travel through deserts, saloons and a church. The action is tight, fast paced and you can even choose partially how you want to play. By picking one of the brothers you can choose to specialize in close combat or distant combat, which is a nice touch. The graphics are what you would expect as the game is almost 4 years old now but the gameplay more than makes up for it. The only criticism I have is that I found the duel system to be very unintuitive and difficult to fully master. Even so they add a lot to the tension, and general western feel of the game. Highly reccommended.
Fast paced, stylish, fun western shooterbradysam | May 26, 2013 | Review of Call of Juarez®: Gunslinger
This is a highly stylized arcade style shooter. The art design is similar to borderlands with it's slight cell shaded graphic novel look which suits it perfectly as the maps are bright and very eye catching. The shooting feels tight and works perfectly. You also get a "concentration" mode where you can slow down the game to make precision shots for higher points/experience. You also get the choice of 3 game modes: story, duels or arcade. The story is dripping with style and is a fun journey through the wild west. Duels are intense and once you get used to the control scheme are again very fun, it never feels unfair when you lose a duel only that you have to be faster. Arcade mode is somehow even faster paced than the story with 10 levels that only last a few minutes each where you have to try and get the highest score possible. I usually don't have much interest in chasing high scores, but it's very rewarding in this mode and is something I can see myself playing through many times. Overall it's a very well put together game, the graphics, gameplay and sound are all excellent. It being set in the wild west as well only adds to the experience. For only £12 as well it's very good value, you should definitely pick it up if you have any interest in shooters, the wild west or chasing high scores!
Perfect for quick gaming sessionsbradysam | May 15, 2013 | Review of 10 000 000
It's another tile matching game meets rpg but it's done very well. You can add rooms to your castle and improve your character so that you can get further and further into the dungeon (and ultimately escape). To escape you need to run from a wall of death closing in from one side and multiple monsters, doors and chests the other side. It's fast paced and ultimately it's fun going for one more run to try and beat your last score and get closer to the end. Unfortunately it definitely comes across as being optimised for playing on your touch screen phone as sliding tiles with the mouse sometimes feels cumbersome and it's not the kind of game that you want to play for more than 20-30 minutes at a time. But if you're looking for a tile matching game and something to play quickly whilst waiting for something then there's definitely a lot worse you can do. On sale it's definitely worth checking out.
Good stealth game, great action gamebradysam | May 13, 2013 | Review of Dishonored
Dishonored is a very good game to go through. It's a creative and quite original first rather than an addition to any current game series. It's got a slight Bioshock vibe and a slight Thief vibe whilst managing to be it's own game. Through playing it it feels that stealth is how the game should be played. It's incredibly satisfying using the various tools and techniques available to your character to reach the end of a level without being spotted or killing anyone. However sometimes when playing like this it seems to drag a lot more and feels more like something you should be doing rather than something that you want to be doing. You can completely disregard this though, especially after about half-way through the game and just run through a level killing guard after guard using your powers and weapons to whirl through them not worrying about stealth at all. It's very fun being able to do this but it feels like you shouldn't be able to. There are multiple ways to complete each level and it's fun being able to experiment and see how you can get past each section, but ultimately it feels like there's a right way and there are other ways that you can also complete objectives. Overall though it's definitely worth a play through, especially if you've not played a stealth based game before.
Short but funbradysam | May 13, 2013 | Review of Sleeping Dogs: Zodiac Tournament
This is another good expansion to Sleeping Dogs which is highly focused on the melee combat. It adds a few new moves and costumes, which are fun to play around with. However, it doesn't take very long to go through. You can replay any of the missions at any time after beating it (just over an hour for me), which is a nice touch and adds to some of the replay value. If you enjoyed Sleeping Dogs and especially if you enjoy old Kung Fu films it's worth it. It's almost a little too expensive as it's very short, but easily worth it when it's on sale.
Fun, cheese-fuelled rompbradysam | May 1, 2013 | Review of Far Cry 3 Blood Dragon
This game is the definition of insanity. Bright neon lights wherever you look with an intense, pumping 80s soundtrack spurring you from one encounter to the next.
The game is much more fast paced than Far Cry 3 and if you played Far Cry 3 you'll recognize a lot of the mechanics, animations and basic models. It's obviously a retexturing of the original game, but it's done very very well. As you play as Rex Power Colt you actually feel like an unstoppable cyborg badass; you don't take fall damage, you can hold your breathe indefinitely and the weapons you wield all feel like they can take down a small (or in some cases large) army.
It's not quite as long as the original Far Cry 3, partially because it feels like it plays a faster and is a lot more action rather than stealth orientated, but it's definitely worth every minute as it is full of high octane action. There are also plenty of cheesy one liners and it often pokes fun at FPS mechanics adding to the joy that this game already elicits. It would just be nice if it was longer, but it's a very, very worthwhile experience.
Fun for the die-hard Aliens fanbradysam | April 25, 2013 | Review of Aliens: Colonial Marines
Whilst this game has received a lot of negative feedback, admittedly most of it deserved, I still found myself enjoyed the game. The single player story was average but there are several sections where you feel like a true part of the USMC. Everyone wants to take down hoards of Aliens using the classic pulse rifle. The multiplayer is where this game really shines though. The Alien AI is removed as you're playing against other people and there have been plenty of tense, exciting moments where I have been struggling to survive as the last survivor against alien after alien. Similarly playing as an Alien is incredibly fun. Whilst it takes some getting used to, once you are used to it you feel like one of the deadliest predators in the universe! If you can play this game online then it's definitely worth checking out. The single player is average with some shining moments, but these would probably only come across if you are a huge fan of the Alien franchise.
GOTY 2012bradysam | April 25, 2013 | Review of Far Cry 3 Deluxe Edition
This was definitely GOTY for me in 2012. The characters were well realized, the story was excellent with a few twists and turns along the way and you actually ended up caring about what happened to Jason Brody and his friends. Most importantly though the game play is superb. The combat is fast, exciting and fun. The exploration is excellent and always rewards you. There are also plenty of collectibles to find for bonus XP to keep you occupied for a long time. If you like shooters even remotely you should pick up this game!
Fun DLCbradysam | April 25, 2013 | Review of Sleeping Dogs: Nightmare in North Point
This is a fun DLC pack to go through. It isn't particularly long, but the new enemies are interesting to fight and look good! Definitely worth a play through if you enjoyed the original game