Retro Game Friday: Kingdoms of Amalur

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering the only game made by the infamous 38 Studios. It’s Kingdoms of Amalur!

Plot Synopsis: A mortal known as the “Fateless One”, who, having died before the game’s outset, is revived in the experimental Well of Souls by the gnomish scientist Fomorous Hugues. The first and only success of the experiment, the Fateless One must escape the facility when it comes under attack by the Tuatha Deohn, a subsect of the immortal Winter Fae, who are currently waging a “Crystal War” on all the mortal races in the name of their new god “Tirnoch”.

Plot: The plot is okay, and there are plenty of sidequests, however it’s not completely original enough to be truly noteworthy to me. The fact that there is obvious and blatant nods to actual Earth mythology is a big demerit for the writing. That being said the story was enjoyable enough.

Gameplay: This played a lot like both Skyrim, in the freedom aspect (mostly although not like Breath of the Wild or Metal Gear Solid V), and Fable in the button usage and combat system.  There was enough customization to feel like you your character was unique and special for you, but not so overwhelming that you are required to spend 10 hours to get the perfect look. Although I suppose almost any game with a customization system could count as such if you want to be really picky. The combat was frenetic and fast paced, and it felt like if you put World of Warcraft and made it a single player console game. Sort of. That’s just the feeling I got from playing it.

Art: The art is okay, and while it’s aged somwhat poorly it’s not as bad as games from the 90’s or 00’s in terms of aging.

Music: Pretty standard fantasy fare, not too amazing or too spectacular though.

Overall: This is a fun game, although it has it’s flaws. Worth a shot playing it if you can find a copy.

For those who like: Action-RPGs, Fantasy, Drama, Frenetic Combat, Good Plot, Decent Artwork.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

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Retro Game Friday: Battlefield 1942

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering the first entry in a series that is incredibly popular now. It’s Battlefield 1942!

Plot Synopsis: Look up World War II.

Gameplay: This was a pretty revolutionary game at the time, as it had a massive amount of players that could play in a single match at one time. 64 players was pretty amazing. As for the rest of the gameplay it follows the now standard Battlefield formula of capturing locations and holding the majority of them to slowly whittle away the enemies spawn tickets which let an enemy respawn upon death. 1942 also allowed players to pilot various vehicles ranging from Jeeps to bombers. This made the matches get really insane when you had all 64 players playing.

Art: The art has aged poorly, but that’s to be expect of a 3D game.

Music: I don’t remember a whit, I was having too much fun gaming with my friend online.

Overall: It’s might be worth a try if you can get a free copy, but I’m pretty sure the servers for online play are down now so it’s not really worth spending any money on this.

For those who like: FPS, Military Games, World War II, Vehicular Mayhem.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Retro Game Friday: Black & White 2

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering the sequel to one of my favorite games. It’s Black & White 2!

Plot Synopsis: The player is called to the world from a “pure prayer” and thus comes upon a scene of a Greek city being devastated by a huge Aztec army. After the player saves a certain number of people, their people are transported to a new land with a handful of refugee worshipers, the player must re-establish a power base from which to eventually defeat the Aztec empire.

Plot: The plot was okay, but really the meat of the game was always in the gameplay.

Gameplay: Like in the first game you could evil or good, or more neutral. Frankly I enjoyed the more neutral path as I got to make my populace happy, but was an absolute terror to my enemies. One of my favorite tactics was to have my creature toss corpses into enemy areas to cause chaos. Yeah I’m particularly evil in that manner, but frankly it was effective as hell.

Art: The art is much improved from the first, but it still has aged poorly. It’s better, but you can really tell how old the game is (12 years). There are probably mods out there to improve it if you wanted to play the game now.

Music: I honestly don’t remember much of it.

Overall: A great sequel.

Video Game Tuesday: Mass Effect 2 [Spoilers for Mass Effect 1]

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This week I’m continuing my review of the Mass Effect Series! Spoilers for the first game after the jump.

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Video Game Tuesday: Battlefield 3 [Console Edition Review]

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This week on Video Game Tuesday I’m covering the second most recent entry of a favorite series since the first one back on the PC, it’s Battlefield 3.

Plot Synopsis:  Battlefield 3‘s Campaign story is set in 2014, and covers events that occur over the span of nine months. Most of the story takes place in the Iraq/Iran region. Other locations include the Azerbaijani border; Paris, France; andNew York City, New York. Most missions occur as flashbacks on part of the interrogation of Staff Sergeant Henry Blackburn, and do not occur in order of events.

The Campaign puts the player in control of four different player characters. For most of the story, the player controls SSgt. Henry “Black” Blackburn (portrayed by Gideon Emery), a member of the U.S. Marine Corps 1st Recon Battalion and main protagonist. The player also controls Sgt. Jonathan “Jono” Miller, a M1 Abrams tank operator deployed in Tehran; Lt. Jennifer “Wedge” Colby Hawkins, an F/A-18F Super Hornet Weapon Systems Officer; and Dimitri “Dima” Mayakovsky, a Russian GRU operative. The main antagonist, Solomon, is an overseas asset for the Central Intelligence Agency. Non-player characters include: Misfit 1, Blackburn’s squad (including David Montes, Steve Campo, Christian Matkovic, and Cpt. Quinton Cole); Dima’s GRU squadmates Vladimir and Kiril; and CIA Agents G. and W., who interrogate Blackburn for much of the Campaign.

Plot: I made to the first flight mission in the campaign and than had to stop playing because the control scheme for consoles, and to be honest for PC’s as well, is convoluted as hell without a flight joystick which won’t work for anyone not playing the PC version.

Gameplay: It features the classic King of the Hill Game type where you try to dwindle the enemies store of reinforcements, read respawns, by capturing certain locations on a map and hold the majority of them while killing the other team. I really enjoy this type of gameplay and except for the flight controls, which suck like I stated above, I enjoy hopping into vehicles and using them to destroy the other team. I really wish the flight controls would have taken a hint from the Star Wars Battlefront series, or I might have actually played this game for more than 3 days. When it comes to graphics and some gameplay decisions it’s great to be life-like.Except when certain gameplay designs make it hard for a beginner player to have fun then it ruins the rest of the game.

Music: It was decent, but got old really quickly.

Art: It’s a first person shooter, you are looking at a gun most often and they looked okay, but it wasn’t anything spectacular.

Overall: A disappointing game, that should only be played by those with a masochistic streak who enjoy beating their heads against a wall when using a controller to fly planes.

For those who like: The Battlefield Series, Vehicles in their FPS games.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above, or shitty controls that get in the way of fun.