I was so excited when the message about the final chapter of Cognition: an Erica Reed Thriller, dropped into my inbox, that I let out a little squeal of joy. In public. People looked at me.
That should be your warning that I’ve become remarkably invested in this adventure game series.
I’m not very good at real-time strategy games. I attribute this to my inability to multitask well, but that’s not to say I don’t enjoy playing them. The biggest problem I have with them is that most revolve around micromanagement, and since AI War, with its robust automation and smart unit management, I’ve become more of a macromanagement kind of guy. Why? Because it means I can focus on the strategy part. You know, the important part. Not the frantic juggling and tedious busy work part. Homeworld and Company of Heroes, allegedly two of the finest real-time strategy games evar, turned me off because I had to nanny certain units. I’m sorry but, engineers, you need to fix those tanks right in front of you. And repair frigates, those nearby damaged ships need looking at. Do your fucking jobs. The more granular my level of involvement the more distracted I am from the strategy, and for me, that’s a problem.
Exhausted from a trip, you drop your bags at the threshold of a dark, strange, lonely house. The night is late and stormy. No one comes to greet you; no one is home. You did tell them not to make a big deal, not even to pick you up at the airport. “Like, really, seriously, you don’t have to pick me up.” Exact words, in a tone that said “Nothing would make me happier than to reach the gate and see you smiling there.”
A tone that said “please pick me up, I’m so tired. Pick me up, I haven’t seen you in a year and I can’t wait. Pick me up, I’ve missed you and I love you and I want to hear everything that’s happened. I wish you’d stayed suspended, waiting for me, but I know you haven’t, and I’m not sure where the new house is, I’ve never been there. So please pick me up. It’s been so long. Please pick me up.”
But no one did. So, all on her own on a dark and stormy night, 22-year old Kaitlin Greenbriar, has gone home.
Dragon’s Crown is one part loot-dropping dungeon crawler, one part 2D brawler. It has a satisfying, tight core loop with high appeal: kill things, take their stuff, get that stuff identified and sold, equip better stuff, use better stuff to kill bigger things, take their stuff, repeat and repeat. … Dragon’s Crown is exactly the game we needed right now.
As a fan of the setting in general, Shadowrun Returns gave me very much what I wanted, and I can mostly only fault it for leaving me wanting more.
“It’s not that I wouldn’t recommend Face Noir to a hardcore fan of the genre. There’s just a lot better that’s floating around out there right now in adventure game land, and despite a layer of modern polish and some pretty good art and sound design it doesn’t add a lot for the English-speaking audience.”
This is Telltale throwing us a bone – a nice meaty bone with some good stuff on it – and hey, I can think of worse things to do with five bucks.
It’s powerful, it’s brutal, it’s stark and funny and tragic. It’s long enough to satisfy even though you don’t want it to end by the time it does. No one else is doing quite what Naughty Dog has done here.
In most every modern 3D video game, you play as a badass white dude who is an expert at every weapon he encounters, regenerates his body in a way that makes him essentially indestructible, and mercilessly massacres other men by the hundreds. In High Moon Studios’ Deadpool, I play as Deadpool. Take that, ludonarrative dissonance!
I don’t know if the game will replace my bi-weekly D&D game, but as an adaptation of the D&D system in general there’s a lot to like about it. I can see myself spending a lot of my upcoming evenings in Neverwinter.
…most of the traditional “review” stuff is in the video portion; if for some reason you dislike videos and prefer not to read the many words, here’s a sum-up: 4A Games done brung it good. Were this year’s competition less stiff, Last Light could, flaws and all, easily contend for Game of the Year.
What you’ve heard about Deadly Premonition is probably wrong.
Deadly Premonition is not so bad it’s good.
It’s really, really good.
…a delightful, charming, fantastic tale with some clever puzzles and a well-realized fantasy world.
After the amount of yammering on I’ve done about Star Trek games, I would be remiss to not review Star Trek: The Video Game, based on JJ Abrams’s version of the franchise and bridging (some of) the gap between the 2009 movie and this year’s Star Trek Into Darkness. The game was described at E3 as a “bro-op,” alluding to the highly cooperative nature of the Kirk-and-Spock-centered gameplay the game intends. To adequately explore this, I called on my friend and fellow Trekker Kristine Chester of Fanboy Comics to help protect New Vulcan from Gorn invaders.