The Last Guardian – Cantankerous Cats and Catastrophic Cameras

From the onset, it’s obvious The Last Guardian is a specifically designed experience.  Fumito Ueda and Team Ico are known for their deliberately sparse and evocative worlds but a failure to pay attention to the flawed gameplay undermines such meticulous craft in The Last Guardian, creating a serene world that is equally horrific, beautiful and unnecessarily frustrating.

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Naut – a free game full of fun and folly

Naut is a gem of a game and a delightful start to the year. Think of it as an appetiser to upcoming exploration games of 2015 such as No Man’s Sky, only this game is more like a road trip in a dynamic environment with little to do and broken physics. This makes it sound messy and it is, which is precisely why it works well. The gameplay is wonderfully juxtaposed by the vivid colours, cinematic camera and epic soundtrack. It is almost serious but the only way to describe actually playing it is goofy; the great sort of goofy that breeds enjoyment.

As a Naut, you wander Mars in a Cadillac-esque car alone or in co-op. The only clue as to what you should be doing is in the tag line: Is there life on Mars? I’m not sure about the answer to that, but there’s certainly life in Naut.

It’s a god awful small affair, but it’s a wonder to behold.

Naut was made by Lucie Viatgé, Tom Victor and Titouan Millet and the best part is it’s free on PC, Mac and Linux over at itch.io.  Check it out here.

A dinner date with Destiny – Day 3

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If variety is the spice of life, Destiny is a Korma.

I have only been playing for about five hours, so take my musings with a pinch of salt. However, I am bored of the structure already, and that is worrying for five hours of gameplay. It reminds me of the first Assassin’s Creed game; it is good looking and works well technically , but my, oh my, it is repetitive.

My girlfriend pointed out that all I was doing was the same as any other game. By this she meant that it looked like – beyond the superficial makeup of the game – COD.

And she was right. All I was doing was shooting things – attacking, attacking, attacking.Destiny_20140909210820

I haven’t bought COD since Black Ops, and with good reason too. I am bored of simply shooting wave after wave of the same enemy just to grind through some sort of rank progression.

Still, the feedback from shooting a gun in Destiny is very good and grinding has as much appeal as any other game that involves grinding.  So if you like a good grind and shooting countless same-faced enemies in the face, this is the game for you.

A dinner date with Destiny – Day 1

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So far so good. Destiny has surprised me, entirely because I did not think it would.

A general avoidance of persistent online games and FPS fatigue ensured my weariness of Bungie’s latest, but I find myself itching to get back to it ASAP.

First off, the game hits with it’s beauty. That said, I am worried about the level variety; despite their beauty, they don’t strike me as memorable. What they lack in variation they make up for by being vast enough to accommodate the three classes’ strengths.

I – uncharacteristically – picked a female human Hunter,  I mention this because it may explain why I am enjoying the game so much. My familiar lazy gaming mind told me to jump in as a male Titan, but it is a new generation of consoles, if I can’t change now when can I? So my enjoyment could stem from this solely.

So far I have fought Wizards, fought very generic enemies over and over, and listened to some nonsense about the darkness approaching.

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The story strikes me as nothing special, and yet I am enthralled with the influence of Star Wars that Bungie proudly wears on its sleeve. My most memorable moment so far has been speeding on a Sparrow – which, make no mistake about it, is a speeder – down a river surrounded by waterfalls and cliffs.

It was beautiful; not quite sublime but certainly impressive.

Main Course: The Last Of Us Remastered Review

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Two weeks ago I booted up The Last of Us Remastered with a bitter taste in my mouth – I was repeating the actions I had made little over a year ago.  A week later, after fighting through a fungus filled America again, my love for the world and characters that Naughty Dog previously introduced me to has been rekindled. Continue reading

Main Course: Watch_Dogs Review

How much fun you will have with Watch_Dogs will completely depend on a) how much you care about that E3 trailer and b) whether you enjoy Ubisoft’s already established open world formulas.  Getting it out of the way – technical and graphical expectations have not been met, but you know that by now. Continue reading