Tag Archive: Bioshock


Bioshock Infinite

New trailer for Bioshock Infinte arrives on the internet.

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Bioshock is my favourite game of this generation, so I was already pretty damn excited for the second installment, but after seeing the great swag that comes with the Collectors Edition I’m jumping up and down like a school girl.

As announced on The Cult of Rapture the Collectors Edition will cost approximately $99.99USD for the Xbox 360 and PS3 versions, and $89.99USD for the PC. That’s a fair bit of coin, but you also get a fair bit of swag including…

* BioShock 2
* Vinyl 180g LP featuring the orchestral score from the original BioShock
* CD containing the BioShock 2 orchestral score
* A 164 page 8-inch x 11-inch hardbound artbook chock full of developer commentary
* Three posters featuring vintage ads from Rapture (rolled)

Of course you’ll need a record player to hear that Vinyl glory, but regardless it would make a fitting decoration for any bedroom or den. The collectors edition will ship the same day as the normal version of the game, which is set for a Feb 9th 2010 release. 2K Games have said that this is a single production type deal, so get your pre-orders in early.

Unsure if this will ship to Australia.

Gears of War 2

I’m going to be that annoying cousin that comes out once a year to see the family for Christmas. Don’t pretend like you don’t know who I’m talking about, he’s loud, obnoxious, drinks a little too much and always says inappropriate things when your elderly grandmother is in the room. I’m going to come out and say Gears of War is the new franchise for Microsoft to hide behind and pretend it was all their idea. Gears of War instantly became the must have title for the Xbox 360, and really has been overshadowing Halo 3. Now we have the inevitable sequel at our doorsteps, the question is did they get it right?

 

Gears of War 2 (GoW) is what I would call a perfect sequel. It builds on the first one, and while not changing too much that people came to love and respect, still moves ahead in leaps and bounds that make you sit back and think how you lived without these new additions.

 

First thing that makes me happy to see is more development in the story and the characters. The story this time has the feel of an epic movie, of urgency, and I actually care about the characters unlike first time around. The game feels and plays like an action movie, with memorable characters, which is becoming harder and harder to find in games these days. Sure it’s no Bioshock, but GoW 2’s story definitely makes the first GoW mean a lot more which is great, it compliments its roots.

 

Controls are more refined, and while it still offers a nice little training exercise for new comers, if you have played the first GoW then nothing has changed in way of controls. The covering system is more refined, and using tables and desks as cover is really cool as now Marcus will flip them down and hide behind them.

 

Nice to see some new weapons, and more refinement in the old favourites, the Lancer is as badass as ever! The new Locust machine gun is a nice touch, the Longshot has a better scope and there are some very nice new weapons for you all to enjoy. Of course, all of these weapons are used by the Locust, and there are no shortage of new spectacular enemies.

 

Technically the game is great. The sound has been totally re-worked. The guns actually feel like they have weight and substance, the shotgun is a booming thunder of death, and the grenades wouldn’t be out of place at a rave club they sound so meaty. Graphically the game is stunning, but I wouldn’t say it’s 100% improvement on the original’s already fantastic graphics. Acheivements are put to great use here, with continual pop-ups at key moments to see how far along you are to obtaining it, for instance when I hit the 15 active reload mark it popped up stating “Once More With Feeling 15/30” which is nice to know when you are working towards them.

 

One of the scenes in the single player campaign is one of the most memorable I’ve ever played, so much blood, I seriously think the kiddies should be kept away!

 

All in all Gears of War 2 is Microsoft’s next big title, and it deserves to be the face of the Xbox 360. Improving everything from the first classic, but still feeling exactly the same in a strange new world, this is the must have title of 2008

 

9/10

Fracture

Original ideas in gaming these days are few and far between, and while it seems every title is claiming to offer us something never seen before, usually I end up being disappointed, like a kid who waits all day to buy a chocolate ice-cream to have a stranger steal said ice-cream, eat it and then crap it back out into their cone. It’s sad, depressing and makes you never want to trust anyone again.

Having said that it’s now time to look at Lucasarts newest game Fracture. Looking at it for a quick overview, it’s simple a run of the mill 3rd person shooter with not much to offer like that one plain cheerleader on the squad who always tries to hard to get somebody’s attention. What is Fracture’s claim to fame? Something they like to call Terrain Deformation (TD) but we’ll get to that in a moment.

So basically you play as Atlantic Alliance soldier Jet Brody, a slightly less manly and wimpy version of Marcus Fenix in the battle against the Pacificans. It’s the 22nd century and the Pacificans started altering DNA to keep up with the changing climate, while the Alliance put a ban on Genetic Engineering and chose to go with Cybernetic Enhancement. The Pacificans get pissed, cry to mum and then decide to say a hearty “Fuck You” and take over the world and have a tea party at the end with jam and scones and whipped cream. Standard story for any futuristic shooter these days

Fracture is a simple 3rd person shooter with some rather interesting weapons. You have your standard machine guns, rocket launchers and the like, but the real fun is to be had tth the TD grenades. You collect a set of grenades that can alter your terrain to your advantage on the battlefield. Let’s say you are getting pwned by a bunch of bad guys and need some cover, throw a TD grenade and boom there is a hill right there in front, giving you the cover you need to regenerate your health, reload and get ready for action. There are a multitude of these weapons that raise or lower terrain, create a gravity pull and the like, and while they are cool to see in action, they aren’t used enough. The puzzles that require TD to complete are simple and predicatble, and I honestly feel if the developers really pushed the boundaries with TD the game would have been much, much more interesting.

AI leaves a bit to be desired. All the enemies look the same, drab colours and not enough variety, and why they aren’t the smartest bunch and aren’t too difficult to dispose of, Fracture makes up in the number of them, they just keep coming and coming wave after wave, and often gameplay ends up being tired and boring, kill bad guys, get to checkpoint, move onto next area, kill bad guys and so forth

Controls are simple and easy once you get a grip on them, and once you have the TD functions down pat you will be out there ripping it up on the battlefield. Graphics are actually quite decent, and the TD effects look breath taking! Audio is also damn solid running through my 7.2 system (only running 5.1 though)

It’s true, Fracture does offer something that gamers haven’t seen in a game before until now, but instead of capitalizing on that idea, it was used in a boring and uninventive way. All in all I actually really like Fracture, it’s fun and while sure it’s run of the mill and not a game that stands out like Bioshock or Little Big Planet, it was a blast for the weekend I completed it. I hope Lucasarts takes some feedback, goes back and releases a sequel that utilizes the potential that this title really did have

6/10

If we were to think of FPS games as beer we’d have a stark comparison. We’d have the high quality german import beers, namely Bioshock, Rainbow Six Vegas and Call Of Duty 4 to drink and enjoy, before we emptied that six pack and moved on to the lukewarm piss your cousin mopped off the toilet floor and put into beer bottles and made his own beer namely Haze.

 

Sure your cousin talks it up but no matter how much sugar he throws in to sweeten the nectar (pun intended) it leaves a horrilbe taste in your mouth and once you have digested in your mind what you have just drank you begin to vomit you guts up like your fourteen year old sister who came home pregnant last July.

 

That’s right Ubisoft have served up another tasty turd compliments of the Hype Train after we were all just starting to forget about that whole Assasin’s Creed thing. He’s in the past, he’s from the future, DNA reconstruction WTF!

 

Haze puts you in the role of Shane Carpenter, fresh out of college and joining the Private Millitary Corporation Mantel. Mantel soldiers are hand forced a drug called Necatar, which enhances their vision and increases their health and strength. For all the good this drug does it sure as hell doesn’t increase brain activity which brings me to my first gripe… CHARACTERS AND VOICE ACTING.

 

Some of my favourite lines

“It’s like taking candy from a cippled baby”

 

And who can forget the timeless battle cry “BOOSH”

 

The NPC’s are uninteresting and do little to forward the story even when they are attempting to, and you end up just hating them by the end of the second or third level. Voice acting, even by the protaginist seems lacking and phoned in, and overall the player tends to not connect with the characters of the game.

 

The story is like a kebab, good idea in theory but horrible the next morning which has you sitting with the porcelain princess for most of the day. Haze’s idea’s were intriguing but due to shitty voice acting and not ever going into anything in great detail, it’s all it is, a good idea that is never explored to even 25% of it’s potential.

 

Graphics are very average, but there are some shining moments. Smoke from fires when in open environments billow out realistically, and looks fantastic, and some of the ligting effects are really done well. It’s not the worst game to look at, but it’s sure as hell not the best either.

 

Got your run of the mill guns here that Charlton Heston would be comfortable handling on his back porch while waiting for Michael Moore, and they all seem pretty weighted and sound fantastic. This is where Haze shines, the sound. Guns and explosions sound, whats the words I’m looking for, FULLY SIC!

 

Mulitplayer, while lacking game modes is a lot of fun. It’s not going to overtake Cod 4 anytime soon but it’s good for a change. Also drop in, drop out 4 player co-op does make the single player worth playing again a second time round with some friends.

 

All in all Ubisoft once again fooled us in thinking this was going to be a gem, and with Free Radical involved we all bought it! Haze is a solid game but it’s not going to wow you, and with it’s terrible voice acting, a story that could have been amazing but was under developed and  average graphics, it’s going to be a game you either love or hate. I personally quite like it, but to keep an objective view I’ll give it the rating it deserves

 

6/10

 

2008 Shaping Up Big!

Looks like after an AMAZING 2007 for gaming, 2008 is not going to slow down and really push the boundaries of this gamer’s wallet…

Let’s just think back to last year, we saw a lot of quality titles, Bioshock, Call Of Duty 4, Super Mario Galaxy, Metroid Corruption and many more that were huge hits and high quality games.

But just in the space of this month I’m currently finding myself with too many big games to review, not enough time to do it, and too much excitement to sit down and play one of them at a time…

Condemned 2: Bloodshot is a great game thus far, been waiting for this one a long time, and it will be the first review I post. Rainbow Six Vegas 2 just arrived in my office today (a day before release in Aus) along with a copy of Super Smash Bros. This is going to be a big weekend, thank god for the easter break is all I can say 😛

 Then I start a new job next week, which is a 40 min drive away from my home, so don’t think I’ll be doing too much gaming for a little while, but what are you guys playing and looking forward to?

Bioshock 2 Surfaces

bioshock_guy.jpg

Well after the huge success of Bioshock in 2007, finally some details have surfaced of the sequal from 2k Games.

It is said to be a prequel based before the events of the first game.

My speculation here, but I imagine it could be the leadup to the fall of Rapture, which will only make the first game a lot more important and has potential to make another hit game here

Bioshock was the first game in a long time that had me excited. Word is we can expect Bioshock 2 in 2009