When XCOM: Enemy Unknown released back in 2012, it was an enormous breath of fresh air fro the tactical genre of video games. More exciting was the fact that the game appeared on consoles as well as PC. The expansion pack, Enemy Within, released shortly after, and it was just as well received as the original game. The spin-off, XCOM Declassified mucked with things a bit, but was still a fun game. Cue the sequel to Enemy Within: XCOM 2, which sees a PC-only release. More aliens to kill! More countries to save! Jump into the Skyranger and I’ll give you a full briefing.
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One of the most anticipated games this year has been The Witcher 3, and it was expected that it would raise the proverbial bar in many ways. The game series, as I’m sure you are already aware, is based on the books by Polish fantasy author Andrzej Sapkowski, and since the games have introduced the west to his world and characters, his books have become popular in parts of the world where Polish isn’t the natural language. Thankfully, you don’t need to have read the books–nor, for that matter, have played the prior games in the series–to understand the events of the game. But if you’re still sitting on the fence about the game, let me leave you fully enlightened after this review.
My last review of Grand Theft Auto V was for last-gen systems, and since then, it’s received a release on current-gen consoles, and now a belated release on PC. Either way, the game is huge, and on PC it’s crazy huge, physically speaking. The retail version contains a crazy 7 discs, while purchasing the download version on Steam will run you around 60GB. Hope you weren’t thinking of using your regular capped account for it! Incidentally, grabbing the retail version nets you a nifty map that you can frame or hang on your wall or use to wrap a small body in. Since the games are functionally similar, my prior review still stands, so I’ll be highlighting the differences of the PC version of the console version.
Wrestling games based on the WWE have been around since before it changed its name from WWF, and featured Shawn Michaels and Bret “The Hitman” Hart and the original Big Daddy Cool Diesel. The latest game in the series makes its debut appearance on Playstation 4 and Xbox One. That’s not the version we’re looking at today. Let’s get the Playstation 3/Xbox 360 version into a half-nelson and hope we don’t get KO’d.
Hardcore anime and manga fans will most likely have heard of Hirohiko Araki’s Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure, a story set across several generations of the Joestar family, the main character of which is always nicknamed Jojo. The rest of you non-otaku will in likelihood have never heard of it. It obviously doesn’t have the western popularity of, say, Naruto. So it seems odd that Namco Bandai managed to localize All Star Battle and bring it to an audience that, frankly, isn’t too aware of it. Let’s delve in a bit and see if we can solve this mystery.
Movie tie-in games are a dime a dozen, aren’t they? Very seldom are there good ones, and those that are usually aren’t tied to a specific movie release, but have had time to be polished and scrubbed (such as the brilliant Batman: Arkham series). This time around, and tied to the film release of Spider-Man 2, we have the video game. Does it fall into the same traps that so many tie-ins do, or will it be able to web-sling its way out of the mire of tie-in hell? Let’s find out. Read more
Tales of Symphonia was one of the most successful Tales games to ever grace the now-aged Playstation2 and now-defunct GameCube, and it saw a followup, oddly enough, on the Wii with Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World. The games were so popular, in fact, that they’ve given rise to books, manga, audio dramas (Japan only, sadly), and four anime films. The two games have been remastered in HD and brought together again for the PS3, now titled Tales of Symphonia Chronicles. Fans of JRPGs would be well advised to join me in this review—I have a few good tales of my own to regale upon you.
Four years ago, we reviewed the sleeper hit Demon’s Souls. It popularized a bare-bones RPG where everything was trying to kill you, and where being killed was the best start to a game ever. It was followed up by a more popular Dark Souls, which made its debut on non-PS3 consoles, and now we have the direct follow up, titled Dark Souls……II. Ready to die again? And again? And again? Good! Let’s get going.
Back in 1998, Eidos released Thief: The Dark Project as a massive “up your ziggy with a wahwah brush” to the entire first person shooter genre. As you probably already know (but which, for the sake of narrative flow in a review, I’m going to tell you again), the game eschewed the “3 guns a-blazing, 2 foes a-dying, and a partridge in a pear tree” style of FPS that was made popular by Doom, Hexen, Quake, and Unreal. Instead, it opted for a “tread softly and carry a big bag for loot” approach. First person stealth! How novel! And of course, the game was an instant success. So now in 2014, we have the highly-anticipated reboot of the game, simply titled “Thief”. Let’s open the bag of loot and see what we’ve absconded with. Read more