Archive for the ‘Initial Thoughts’ Category

It has taken far too long for me to get around to playing this game. I reviewed the soundtrack a while back, but hadn’t got onto the actual gameplay. I’ve had it sitting around for a while, but in between work, Final Fantasy XV and NieR: Automata, there just hasn’t been the time.

But I’m finally there and my initial thoughts are promising. I still love the music and it totally blends with the gameplay. The quests are varied and interesting. The story… well, without having played the earlier games in the series, I’m not entirely sure I’m following it all and I certainly don’t understand the nuances of the relationships between the characters, but I get the gist.

The negatives: I keep having to check the controller scheme to work out which buttons I’m supposed to be pressing and I still haven’t got the hang of defending in a fight. In fact, I’m not sure I’ve ever defended in a fight, outside of the training level. It would be useful if you could customise the controller scheme. Perhaps them I’d spend less time rolling around on the ground like a fool. Let’s see how the rest turns out.

Full Review: Black Flag (2013)

I’m playing these games in entirely the wrong order – but it’s working for me. I started with Rogue, in which you’re not really an assassin at all, but the enemy. Now, I’m a pirate. And I love it. I mean, bombing around the North Atlantic sinking French ships was great, but now… Now I can sink whoever I like. Edward Kenway is, quite frankly, a complete bastard, but I like him. The characters are great – some nods to real life pirates – the music is fantastic and the language… Well, they are very rude.

In comparison to Rogue… This game already seems stronger. Yeah, Shay was far more likeable, since he was doing the right thing and Edward’s only out for himself. The animations are much the same – identical in some places, as are a few of the maps. And there is a multiplayer mode… but I don’t play well with others, so I’m ignoring it.

Full Review: Black Flag (2013)

“Initial Thoughts” isn’t really appropriate for this review, but I’ve not finished the game yet. However, I have clocked up over 120 hours so far.

It’s a grid-based, turn-based battle system where the focus is on exploiting the weaknesses in your enemies without breaking randomly assigned rules. There are a few storylines and mission strings to follow, but for the most part, you just take on battles as you like, fighting a variety of opponents in a range of settings. Almost guaranteed to keep you going for a very long time!

A return to the top-down, adventure games! I love this so far. It’s very similar to the old Zelda games – in fact, I’m pretty sure it’s using a version of the map used in the Minish Cap. I’ve got this feeling like I’ve been in this world before.

The nicest thing about this game is the ability to merge to walls and move in an extra dimension. As a seasoned Zelda player, this is a nice change. It makes solving the puzzles a little more challenging – the hookshot is not always the answer!

I’m expecting great things!

It took me a little while to get used to the controls on this game, but after the recent Tomb Raider reboot, it’s quite nice to return to the old, familiar,  puzzle-solving variety of Tomb Raider. I started playing on Xbox first, but also have the Wii version of the game, so I will be making a comparison between the two platforms.
My only doubt is that they seem to be handling the plot with a handy crowbar – unless, of course, I’ve forgotten something important from one of the older games. Lara seems very happy with shooting people, which happened more sparingly in previous instalments and I’m not sure what’s going on with her mother. We shall see in time.

Being a huge fan of the music of Final Fantasy, I loved the first Theatrhythm game so much, but this one is so much better. Compared to Theatrhythm’s 40 or so tracks, the 200+ included in Curtain Call feel unending and with extra songs still being released as DLC, it’s going to take me much longer to get through them all. (more…)

I think I’m going to like this game. It reminds me a lot of FFXII and older Tomb Raider games – on map battles and lots of puzzles to solve. And, like most Square Enix games, the soundtrack is brilliant.
In fact, I was being won over before I’d started playing; the very first line dialogue in the game is shouted at you by an angry-sounding young woman and liberally sprinkled with profanity.
The tutorial level is set in 2049 and lets you experience the kind of manic, seemingly endless battles that you will encounter throughout the game. You are the father and you are fighting the monsters to protect your young daughter. But something happens and, for some reason (I haven’t worked it out yet), the next time we see them is 1300 years in the future. The mystery deepens… and I’m looking forward to solving it!

Tomb Raider has always been one of my favourite games, ever since I was a kid watching my dad play the first game (“When I grow up, I want to be Lara Croft”). And since this reboot was made by Square Enix, one of my favourite games companies, I was expecting great things from it. However, as good as this game may be, Tomb Raider never used to be a pure shoot-em-up, which this is. Yeah, there are four optional tombs that kinda pass as puzzles, but for the majority of the game, you’re just shooting the blokes on the island – something most of the other TR games steered clear of. It is a great game – but is it really Tomb Raider?

Full Review: Lightning Returns (2014)

It’s really very different from both games in the FFXIII series so far. The paradigm system has gone, the garb/schemata system is in and you have far more control over the battle. The ATB engine has been overhauled completely. The monsters are once again visible in the field, like in XIII, but the pre-emptive strike system of XIII-2 remains. Unfortunately there’s still no sign of a return to the RTB system of XII, with the loading screens still taking up more time than I’d like, but at least with the SOLDIER garb, I get a proper victory fanfare.

Full Review: Lightning Returns (2014)

I really enjoyed this game…to start with. The story was simple but intriguing and the gameplay was relatively easy to understand. It’s obviously a rhythm game, so a sense of rhythm helps and mine’s not too bad. Sometimes it took a couple of goes to work out the timings between cues and actions, but generally, not too difficult.
However, I got stuck about halfway through. After ten attempts at the same level, I’m frustrated but no closer to winning. I can’t work out what I’m doing wrong and I can’t win – even using items that make it easier. Perhaps my timing is not millisecond perfect. It lost priority to Theatrhythm Final Fantasy. Now that’s a good rhythm game!