News: DC Universe Online

 

In my view, there isn’t enough information on the web about some of the awesome free stuff Playstation 3 owners can download from the store, so I thought I would take this opportunity to jot down some thoughts and info, on the rather cool MMORPG (Massively multiplayer online role-playing game) that is DC Universe Online.

If you haven’t played this genre of game before, it’s basically an RPG (Play as a character, complete quests, level up etc.) but played in an environment with other players, these players can help you in your questing, or you can battle against them in PvP mode. There are numerous quests to complete, 30 levels to obtain for your character and you can explore Metropolis and Arkham City.

A few words of warning though, the file size is a good 16GB, so it may take many hours to download, and it installs a trophy patch but you can’t achieve said trophies, unless you are a paid monthly subscriber of the highest level.

In it’s defence, you can explore a large and familiar open world (familiar to comic book/super hero geeks anyway) and creating your own superhero is immense fun, yes even if you are a Man (It doesn’t have to involve Lycra, and yes you can fly!)

Look out for a full review when I have played this a little more…so addictive…be warned. Let me know if you give this a try, and the type of character that you create, in the comments section below.

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Review: Battlefield 3

Over the past few years the October/November game release schedule has never been one to disappoint. This year sees a handful of top class titles being released almost on top of each other. After being impressed by the multi-player beta of this game, I decided to invest my hard earned cash in this, the first of my Christmas gaming purchases.

Firstly to the single-player campaign which has received a lot of negative press, some reasonable and some undeserved, I don’t agree that the game should have been solely an online experience, but am left disappointed with the single player experience, the story, although told interestingly through a series of flashbacks, isn’t really that gripping or emotive, the difficulty tends to be all over the place, with me ace-ing one chapter, and then dying countless times on the next, I think the quick-time events aren’t synced as well as they should be, but perhaps that’s just me, and on occasion it isn’t immediately obvious what my next objective is.

However, in it’s defence there are many great things about the campaign, the variety within the chapters of the story, the sound design is truly amazing, and destructible environments add a little something extra to the game as a whole.  The lighting effects are also very good throughout, and without spoiling anything the campaign does contain some rather memorable moments.

This game only truly shines when it’s multi-player experience is added into the mix, with all the usual FPS shenanigans of different modes and maps, but with added classes/roles which genuinely change how you play the game, vehicles, and again, destructible environments.  Sounds are immese, gameplay is fast paced and you are rewarded for both run and gun, and stealthy thought-out gaming styles, I would go so far as to say this is the most well rounded multiplayer experience on any console at the moment, the maps are huge, the biggest I have played, and the variety of modes mean that I won’t tire of the game quickly.

There’s lots of weapons and upgrades to unlock and the addition of forming mini squads is welcomed and works well.  You can track your progress in the browser based Battlelog system too, which really adds another great element into the experience.  There are also 6 co-op missions based loosely on the events of the story, but I shall refrain from commenting on these, as I have only had the chance to attempt one of these so far.

The final verdict is a lacklustre single-player campaign mode, but possibly the best multi-player experience around at the moment;

General Scoring

Gameplay 8/10 Lacking in single-player but amazing in multi-player, pick up and play addictiveness.
Graphics 8/10 Great lighting effects and smooth lag free visuals.
Sound 10/10 Simply excellent.
Music 7/10 Good choice of music in many scenes, but nothing special.
Story 7/10 Lack lustre but told in an un-ordinary way.

Wildcards

Pacing 8/10 The single player campaign may be lacking but the story is well paced.
Trophies 8/10 Challenging but fair.
Multiplayer 10/10 Guns recoil, vehicles are easy to drive, maps are huge and different play-styles are rewarded.
Variety 8/10 The use of different locations, weapons and vehicles keeps things fresh in both modes.
Immersion 7/10 Dialogue is clichéd in single-player, but the multi-player experience is an addictive one.

Total Score: 81%

In summary with regards to first person shooters, after buying and playing a couple of Call of Duty games, I found it difficult to see why the games are so popular, as I didn’t connect with the campaign, and find the multi-player maps full of annoying run and gun type players, with the game rewarding people playing with little or no style or strategy.  For the best single player campaign experience, Medal of Honor gets my vote, for all your multi-player needs, it’s Battlefield 3 you should pick up, and if you are after something a little different…immensely fun but just as challenging, I say check out Uncharted 3’s multiplayer modes

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News: Playstation Plus Content November 2011

It’s a great month to be a Playstation Plus Subscriber in the UK/Europe, not only do we all receive the usual goodies of a PSN title and minis etc, but this month, to celebrate the release of Uncharted 3, Naughty Dog have given us 4 classic Crash Bandicoot PSOne titles! The first 3 in the platformer series, as well as the highly underrated Crash Team Racing.

So if you aren’t yet a subscriber, I can highly recommend the service, you get so much for your £40 yearly payment, here’s this months freebies in full;

  • Hydrophobia: Prophecy (PSN)
  • Rumble Trucks (mini)
  • Where is my Heart (mini)
  • Crash Bandicoot (PSone)
  • Crash Bandicoot 2: Cortex Strikes Back (PSone)
  • Crash Bandicoot 3: Warped (PSone)
  • Crash Team Racing (PSone)
  • I Am Alive! (Dynamic Theme)
  • Start the Party! Save the World (DynamicTheme)
  • Bulldog Avatar
  • Eagle Avatar
  • Panda Avatar
  • Shark Avatar
  • Wolf Avatar
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Exploits: Battlefield 3 Multiplayer: Engineer.

 

So it’s finally here, BF3, and I’m loving what I have played so far of both the campaign and the multiplayer, I want to play more before reviewing the game in full though, so here’s 3 tips for anyone looking to play as an engineer in the multiplayer modes, please share your own hints and tips in the comments guys! 🙂

1) Rockets: Right from the offset, an engineer is equipped with a rocket launcher that, with one well executed shot, can take out an enemy tank. You can also use it to destroy enemy cover, to pathe the way for your team mates to storm in and launch an assault.

2) Repair: Engineers have the ability to repair vehicles, this will prove key in same game modes and on some maps.

3) Recommended weaponry: Engineers shouldn’t really aim to engage in combat with enemies in the distance, or those running, instead, arm yourself with a mid to close range weapon, and use this when disturbed from your role in order to defend yourself, and when defending an objective.

See you on the Battlefield!

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News: Golden Joystick Awards

So the Golden Joystick Awards took place last week, what does everyone think of gaming award shows? Let me know in the comment section below.  This is the only gaming awards ceremony voted for entirely by gamers themselves.  I love the fact that gaming has it’s own awards show and hope that it goes some way as to promoting the industry, here’s a list of the winners from this years ceremony and my thoughts on them;

  • Action/Adventure Game of the Year  — Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood. For me this award would have gone to Enslaved: Odyssey to the West, I’ve found the puzzles to be genuinely challenging, the story is well written albeit a little simple and the game is jaw droppingly beautiful with solid combat.
  • Mobile Game of the Year  — Angry Birds Rio. The Heist should have won this one, several mini-games each increasing in difficulty with a real prize for completion!
  • Roleplay Game of the Year  — Fallout New Vegas. This one got my vote, simply just an excellent game.
  • Massively Multiplayer Online Game of the Year– World of Warcraft. My choice here would have been Aion, but in honesty, PC MMOs aren’t really my thing, with the exception of Guildwars.
  • Fighting Game of the Year  — Mortal Kombat. Definitely the best in the category, fast responsive controls and a great range of game modes and classic characters.
  • Racing Game of the Year — Gran Turismo 5. Tough call for me, Dirt 3 would be my winner, closely followed by Shift 2:Unleased, however I am yet to play GT5!
  • Sports Game of the Year — FIFA 12. I don’t play sports games, based on demos, my votes for Virtua Tennis 4.
  • Strategy Game of the Year  — Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty. Not a strategy fan myself, but I found Ruse was very well executed and quite unique, so that would get my vote.
  • Music Game of the Year  — Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock. DJ Hero 2 would have got this one, so much fun, and much cooler than guitars!
  • Free-To-Play Game of the Year — League of Legends. This should have gone to Bejewelled 3, because those games are quite possibly some of the most addictive of all time.
  • Downloadable Game of the Year  — Minecraft. Agree with everyone on this one, simple ideas are often the best.
  • Shooter Game of the Year  — Call of Duty: Black Ops. Medal of Honor was robbed here.
  •  One To Watch Award  — Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. Definitely one to watch, so good call here gamers/voters.
  • Ultimate Game of the Year  — Portal 2. For me, this is Fallout New Vegas, although I haven’t played Portal 2 yet, but New Vegas is a huge game and one of the best of all time in my opinion.

So, over to you guys, what games would get your votes?

 

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