Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Assassin's Creed III: The Tyranny of King Washington - The Infamy DLC Review

In the first episode of The Tyranny of King Washington (Of 3 episodes) we see an entirely different Assassins Creed 3 universe. Connor is well.... Never was actually Connor, and is known as Ratonhnhaké:ton like he was in the first few sequences of Assassins Creed 3. He was never apart of the assassins and is now dressed in a pretty cool looking wolfskin suit. George Washington has become in possession of the Apple Of Eden and has become corrupt with power. Washington has been doing awful things to the people like burning down villages, and now it's up to Ratonhnhaké:ton to save the day by killing Washington, and put an end to his madness. He can't do it as his current self though. He has to gain different powers (More on that later) Let's see what's in store for this DLC adventure.

While playing the DLC there is a noticeable twist to this alternate universe as Ratonhnhaké:ton who isn't Connor the Assassin still has memories of this other life which is also known to us as Assassins Creed 3. To make things worse no one has any idea about this other life he speaks of. I think we will be hearing more about this in future episodes. At the start of the review I talked about how the player has to keep gaining powers and you might be thinking "How does he do that?" well Ratonhnhaké:ton drinks a special tea which in return allowed him to meet different animal spirits. I liked the idea because it rewarded us with alterations to the gameplay in the DLC. I feel the twist was to freshen things up which I think was necessary.

Ratonhnhaké:ton needs to keep acquiring different powers in each episode to stop Washington's reign of terror. In this episode he is looking for the powers of the wolf which will give him new wolf related perks. These perks include the ability to call a small army of wolves to Ratonhnhaké:ton's aid (Very similar to calling Assassins in previous games) he will also gain the wolf cloak. The wolf cloak allows Ratonhnhaké:ton to become invisible for a certain amount of time and will help the player during the stealth missions in the DLC. Gaining these powers did feel different to the Assassins Creed I have been used to. Props though for changing things up with the new DLC.

Although I did say the DLC feels a little different to the usual Assassins Creed games it does still keep many of its old ways. You can expect to be doing similar missions to AC3 in this new DLC as well like eavesdropping for example.The episode overall was decent and I felt it did a good job of building up to the big finale already. The first episode also does well to get the player wanting more as this is how I felt once the episode was over. When it was over I wanted to power up Ratonhnhaké:ton and become the hero who puts a stop to Washington. You get about 2 hours of gameplay in the DLC which is lacking for the price being asked (800 points/$10)

The Final Verdict

To put one word on this DLC it would be... Disappointing. Not because it is bad (It's actually pretty solid) I find it disappointing that it's in episodes as I think the DLC would have come off much better as one neat 6 hour package. I am looking forward to see how this story unfolds and I am looking forward to EP.2 next month. In my opinion though I would wait for all 3 episodes to come out before purchasing unless you really need more Assassins Creed in your life right now.

(All three episodes will be put together for one overall review in April)

+Leaves the player wanting more
+Decent story
+Cool new perks
+Feels a little different to other Assassins Creed adventures

-Don't like it being in episodes
-Too short

Final score


Monday, 4 February 2013

Dead Space 3 Review

 I've been a big Dead Space fan since the very first game was released in 2008. I will admit I was worried with the release of Dead Space 3 because of the addition of multiplayer as I am not a big fan of CO-OP in games (Resident Evil being one of them) and it also looked like the game would be focusing more on the action rather than the horror and scares. Lets see if Dead Space 3 can be a satisfying end to this great game series.

Dead Space 3 continues the story of Isaac Clarke and his on going battle with the Necromorph infestation. In Dead Space 3 Isaac wants to stop it once and for all. The game takes place after the events of Dead Space 2, and is mostly set on the snowy planet of Tau Volantis. The story brings back old characters like Isaac and also Ellie Langford from Dead Space 2 who plays a big role in the 3rd game. Now this is a non spoiler review so there won't be much more discussion about the story so you can all have a fun (Non spoiled) game. Isaac and Ellie end up getting split up en route to Tau Volantis and this is when we meet new comer John Carver who will be your CO-OP partner in Dead Space 3.

Overall I thought the story was another solid addition to the Dead Space series with the first part of the game being a bit slow to kick in but soon after the game really starts to kick in and show what a story should be like. I said before it is a non spoiler review so if you are interested in playing through another solid story by the Dead Space series then pick this up but just remember the first part of the main campaign starts pretty slow and takes a while to really kick in.

One of the bigger additions to Dead Space 3 was the new weapons upgrade system. Gone is the store from the previous games in the series. Upgrades now take place on a weapons bench and can be used to have upgrades like more ammo and damage added to your guns. This is only scratching the surface for what this good old handy bench can do. Weapons can be taken apart and you can use the best parts from one gun and add it to another to make an even more powerful gun. You can also even craft your own gun by looting different resources around the Dead Space 3 world. Looting is a very important feature in Dead Space 3 if you like to craft your own weapons so remember to search high and low for these resources as well as in dead bodies, lockers and crates. Now that the store is gone from Dead Space currency needed to be replaced and that is what you are getting with the looting resources feature. There is so much to do at the weapons bench with so much endless possibilities that make for a great feature.

Is the game more action and less horror? Well in my opinion it is a little bit more going down that route. The game does have its fair share of jump scares and what I like to call "That Dead Space feel" but at times the game can feel like a big shoot em up style game. Older Dead Spaces used the suspense of enemies while Dead Space 3 kind of depended on the amount of enemies coming at you to up the suspense level. Like I said Dead Space 3 does have its fair share of scary moments but doesn't really touch the older games suspense and horror. To add to the down play of suspense and atmosphere some of the environments in the game just don't have that feel of horror anymore. The new direction the game has taken is pretty disappointing in my opinion but I still had a sigh of relief that the game did still have its "Dead Space moments" and didn't turn out like Resident Evil 5 2.0 with the game becoming what it isn't.

Now another controversial subject is the addition of multiplayer while it is optional and as much as I hate playing CO-OP in games I still will talk about it and review it just like any other game. CO-OP does what was expected to happen the horror is almost non existent in CO-OP as games are just not as scary when you are all alone with no one to come and help you. Necromorphs increase in numbers during CO-OP which adds to the whole "more = scary" it doesn't at all it just turns the game in to one big shoot out with your friend. Although it is cool that you can now play CO-OP with a friend and also good that you get to see a whole other side of the story with John Carver, Dead Space just doesn't feel "right" with CO-OP but honestly it doesn't ruin my single player experience with a horrible A.I character like Resident Evil 5 (Okay I promise last time I mention Resident Evil. Sorry!) so I don't hate it as much as could of done had it been forced upon me but still CO-OP isn't my thing and I am not fan of it. At least CO-OP fans should have some fun with this new addition.

Sound in video games doesn't really get as much praise as it should do in my honest opinion. Sounds/Music can really make a moment that much better and it happens with Dead Space 3. The music really helps you get in to this Dead Space world and really brings it alive. There is also praise for the lack of sound at points to really turn that creepy/worrying feeling up. I mentioned before how music can help make a moment while lack of sound can also be as much as effective in a type of game like this and it works very well with Dead Space 3. Along with great music, Dead Space 3 also boasts some pretty amazing voice acting to again draw us in to the game. The game along with some awesome sound has some solid graphics too.

Dead Space 3 also has some new enemies to fight in the game and these are the Unitologist soldiers who unlike the Necromorphs act like Humans... Well obviously? Well that means you can expect them to be taking cover and popping back up from cover to try and shoot you with some grenades flying around as well. Soldiers will also turn into Necromorphs that can also carry guns. Their aim is terrible and isn't much difference between the too. Necromorphs also return and can at times be a tough challenge while at other times can be pretty simple to beat. There are also some boss fights too.

The Final Verdict 

Dead Space 3 was a solid video game release. Although it was a little bit of a let down compared to previous Dead Space releases. The scares and atmosphere are still there but are noticeably toned down.The story is awesome in my opinion. I really enjoyed the story so much that I just didn't want to put the controller down and stop playing. That shows how much I liked the story although the start is a little weak it picks up in a BIG way mid way through the game. CO-OP is meh and not needed and the new weapons upgrade system is pretty well done and a welcome addition to Dead Space. I think the game is worth a purchase but it should be noted some people could find themselves feeling let down if they are big fans of Dead Space. Still worth a purchase for me.

+Great story
+Weapon customizing
+Great use of sound and music/Voice acting is top quality

-Horror toned down/more action

Final Score