Destiny Beta: First Impressions! Plus a PVP Guide!

Here it is, the game that almost everyone has been waiting for. The game that promised to live up to the hype. Well, lucky for me, I got a Beta code, and I haven’t really put many hours into it, but what I have played, I’ve really enjoyed. It’s kind of weird that I can’t categorise this title, it really is. I’m not sure whether to call it an RPG, MMO or an FPS. It has aspects from all three genres, but whatever it is, it works. Anyway, bad things out of the way first. One of the only problems I have with the game is the sensitivity. It’s backwards in a way. If you play any FPS/RPG game, you will understand what I mean. When aiming on the hip, it seems quite sluggish, whilst aiming down the sight seems insanely nimble. It’s like, right, I see the enemy, he’s sprinting, better ADS and holy crap, what’s happening. Apart from that, I’ve seen nothing that could count as a terrible mechanic. Right, I’m going to try and split this down into the 3 genres up above, wish me luck!

TOWER

You go to a place called The Tower (pictured above) for quite a few different purposes. You go here to encrypt certain weapons, armour ETC that you have found on your journeys. You can buy weapons, ships, vehicles, armour or pretty much anything you need. This is where the MMO aspect comes into play, for me anyway. Even though it’s a social place where people go just to relax for a bit, it reminds me of the type of place you would see in an MMO game. The view is third person, which is another reason it gives off the MMO vibe. Even though you can’t really battle here, I’ve seen people having fun. I’ve seen people kicking a ball around, chasing it, and then inevitably losing the ball. The view from this place is astonishing. As you look out into the city below, you will be amazed. This, for me, is where the Next Gen vibe kicks in. This is what Next Gen should be like. Nice graphics, and awesome gameplay.

Bungie RPG

After you have been to the tower, you will probably be wanting to level up, right? Well, you and a few friends can form a fireteam and complete missions together. This is where the RPG aspect comes into play. As you complete missions, you gain XP, find weapons, Armour ETC, which can be scrapped for money, or you can wear it, whichever you want. Anyway, it’s really fun just completing missions in a kind of open world where you will see other people who aren’t even doing the same mission as you. You can cross paths, help each other out and then go your own way. The enemies have levels too, so you will have to watch what you come across. There are hidden bosses which we found out to be level 20 bosses. Considering you can only get to level 8 in the beta, it’s best to just look at them from a distance. Nothing hurts them, and why would it? You are 12 levels lower than them after all! The enemy AI is very well done, in the way that they dodge your attacks, and counter in groups, which can be very deadly. Overall, I was happy with the few missions I was able to do on the Beta.

destiny_classes

Now we come to the PVP aspect of the game. This is a 6 v 6 game mode (there will be more game modes at release) which is like Domination from a majority of FPS titles. This is actually quite fun. It’s like a mixture of Halo, Call of Duty and something completely new. The gun play feels fine, as long as you are using the right weapons that is. In the beta, we have two different maps. One on Venus, which I found to be quite dark, so you have to be aware at all times. The other map is on the Moon, and I actually love this map. You drive around in vehicles, you can sit on turrets, or do whatever you want. It’s such a fun map. As you are running around, you will see a red outline appear on part of the map. This means that someone is in that direction, and as you get closer to them, the light centres itself on the map. Whilst this gives you an idea of where people are, it doesn’t guarantee that they are where you think. In my opinion, one of the best things about the PVP is that the class is whatever you want it to be. The weapons you have in your inventory, are the weapons available for you in PVP, so as you can tell, this makes every game different. I’ve not played so much of the PVP, but I’ve played enough to know what works, and what doesn’t on these maps. Overall, the multiplayer is fun. It brings something different to the game, which is nice.

pvp

If you’re having trouble getting an advantage over your enemy, then this is the place for you.

  • As you are running around, keep checking your map every so often, as this will notify you when an enemy is near.
  • If you think your enemy has a better weapon than you, throw a grenade in his direction, look for a flanking root and take him out from the side/back.
  • Always, and I mean ALWAYS use a fully automatic rifle in PVP as the one shot rifles don’t really match up with the Automatic rifles on the two maps.
  • Make sure you are aware of your surroundings. If you know the map, you will know how to escape those tricky situations.
  • If you are injured, jump around and continue to pressure your enemy. This could give you a better chance at living.
  • If someone is in a vehicle, use your special ability to take them out instantly.
  • Never be afraid of using melee on an enemy, as it will take a lot of health off them.
  • Simple yet effective tip: make sure you’re comfortable with your sensitivity, as it can help a lot more than you think.
  • Try not to catch an enemy point on your own. Always make sure at least one person is with you.

Right, I hope this helps you! Have fun with Destiny, and remember, if you have an Xbox Live subscription, the Beta went public today! So get on, kill things and have fun.

TwiiSteD-BeAsT

Wolfenstein: The New Order

WolfensteinTheNewOrder

As in every Wolfenstein title, you play as William Joseph “B.J.” Blazkowicz, and as usual you are thrown straight into the action. The game opens with quite a nice cutscene (no spoilers) which leads to you being in a dogfight. You have to do certain tasks whilst the pilot weaves in and out of battle. Your plane almost sinks, but thanks to Blazkowicz getting rid of the cargo, the plane stays in the air. After this, you have to take down a few German fighters whilst protecting your squadron in the process. It’s a pretty nice start to a game. Unlike many other FPS titles, Wolfenstein has always been unique in the way that everything is different. The Nazi’s won World War 2, things changed and you get to see what would have happened if they had have won the war, which is a really interesting take on things. So, the first 20 minutes of the game are quite good. I’m really enjoying the mechanics, the controls and pretty much the way the game looks.

Our protagonist has changed a little over the years

Our protagonist has changed a little over the years

So, after playing for a little while, I’m just about half way through on chapter 4, yet I’ve been playing for roughly 5 hours now. This is what I love about Wolfenstein. I love how you get sidetracked with everything around you, so the main mission takes longer than anticipated. Trying to find collectibles, search every building in sight is what makes this game so interesting. Yes, you can blast through the game without checking out the awesome scenery, or you can take your time and enjoy the journey. It’s such a nice change for an FPS game to not just have a rushed campaign. Wolfenstein: The New Order tells a lovely story too, as well as the gory cut scenes, which is what people want from this game. People want the game to look nice, they want the story to be compelling and above all of this, they want to have fun (me included), and Wolfenstein brings us that. Even though there is a lot of blood, it’s always fun to shotgun a guy in the face, resulting in his head being non-existent. We love things like this in FPS games, it’s what makes them fun. One of the main things that makes Wolfenstein unique, is the enemies. You fight Nazi creations, meaning robots, robot dogs and many more interesting things that you wouldn’t even see today, yet this game is set in 1960, so just imagine if Germany did win the war. Would we have seen this? Maybe, who knows. Even though it doesn’t exist in real life, it’s always amazing to see it at work in a video game. It gives you a sense of what might have happened in an alternate universe, or anything weird like that. This is why I love the campaign to this game. It brings something fresh, something new.

The Panzerhund 1960 isn't friendly one bit

The Panzerhund 1960 isn’t friendly one bit

Gameplay wise, the game doesn’t feel clunky, or slow. The game feels quite good, and with being a fan of the Wolfenstein series, I’m glad that is has stuck to it’s roots whilst adding new features. The lean system is pretty good, there’s no doubt about it. You can use the lean feature to look over objects, around objects and even under some doors. It’s a really nice feature and I’m glad Bethesda have implemented a decent lean feature unlike certain games where it feels like a hindrance more than it is helpful. One of the other new features is the perk system. You have Stealth, Tactical, Assault and Demolition. Completing certain things for each one will allow you to unlock that perk. They all have their uses, and they are a great feature in the game. Now, back to the fun part of the game. My favourite feature in Wolfenstein has to be dual wield. Never have I had so much fun running around with akimbo shotguns before, or akimbo assault rifles. It’s ridiculous, but it’s what makes the game that more fun to play. Without features like that, I don’t think the game would have the same feel to it.

You can never go wrong with dual wielding

You can never go wrong with dual wielding

To end on a high note, I think if you enjoy any type of FPS game and want a change, you should pick this up. I think any fan of the FPS genre would enjoy this game. If you have played it before, you will know what I mean when I say that it’s a very interesting game to say the least. If you haven’t played Wolfenstein before, you’re missing out. Even though The New Order doesn’t have a multiplayer option, that doesn’t make it any less of a good game. Bethesda have done an amazing job once again with this game and I can’t wait to sit back down and play it. So yeah, pick this up, you will enjoy it, I’m sure.

TwiiSteD-BeAsT

The Optimist: Project Cars

 Optimist Logo

I’ve not been active for a few months. I took a break from writing for a while because I had a mental block, which I couldn’t overcome for some reason. Anyway, I’m back now, and hopefully these ideas are what you want to read. In The Optimist I will be writing about a future title and giving my optimistic opinion on what will hopefully come out of them. I hope you enjoy.

 

Project Cars

Project Cars caught my attention about a year and a half ago when I some how came across a website which was showing some images from the game. I thought it looked very interesting to say the least. Fast forward to now and I am genuinely looking forward to the release of Project Cars. With it’s amazing graphics, wide variety and stunning features, it really looks like the total package. I’ve been a fan of near enough every genre of video game since I was very young, and one of those main genres was racing, so you can see why I’m so excited for this. There hasn’t been (in my opinion) a really amazing racing title for a long time, on Xbox at least. I know Sony has Gran Turismo, but I haven’t played that since the 4th title way back when I used to still regularly play on my Playstation. So, to me, this game will be amazing. It just looks too good to be true. We can expect many things from this game, and hopefully those things are amazing. Sometimes a game can look good, but sometimes it won’t play very well, but being the optimist that I am, I’m sure we won’t have any problems with Project Cars.

PC1

Visually amazing

 

What I want from Project Cars is a Forza/GT hybrid, but 10x better than that. I want every kind of racing car you can think of, I want more than 15 tracks (60 confirmed tracks at the moment) to race around and I want the game to be fun. The best part about this, is that Project Cars can do all of this. You choose from 8 tiers of different race categories, starting off from the simple Go Kart racing, working your way up to the spectacular LM Prototype Racing, which sounds more amazing than anything I can think of. The amount of cars you have is still questionable, but with the amount of racing that you can do, I don’t see why this title won’t feature a lot of vehicles. You have Formula 1, you have off road racing, you have GT racing and pretty much anything to do with racing. I’m sure we will see a wide variety of vehicles in this game. Just think of the potential here. You start as a Kart racer, working your way through 8 tiers of racing, meaning that the gameplay should be very lengthy, which is one of the main things any gamer can ask for, especially the gamer who hates playing online multiplayer. It’s going to be great for you and me, the gamers.

PC2

8 Tiers of pure racing

So Career has a few details, but not too many. It still sounds very promising. You start your career by creating a driver and picking where you want to begin. From here you will sign a contract to race for a team (not sure what team) and if you do well in your career, you will be offered contracts from other teams, which sounds quite good. Other features include invitations to special events, growing as a driver, evolving as a driver and hopefully being remembered in the Hall of Fame. Now this is something I want to play. I want to race for a team, and I want to play this career mode because it seems different than other titles. It seems fantastic and I can’t see why we won’t love it. With career mode, I want variety, I want a different approach than all the other titles. Imagine being involved in a crash that is your fault and then your team fire you because you can not be trusted, only to have a less successful team pick you up and offer you a contract. You could take this unsuccessful team to glory, or you could wreck their careers and throw the opportunity back in their faces. Now, I doubt this will happen, but I want things like this. Different things. Being different is not a bad thing in the gaming world, it’s being the same that kills developers.

PC3

It has rain! Something Forza doesn’t have

 

Online Multiplayer is the place where people just love to be destructive morons. My recent experience with this, was in Forza 5. I recently had a 7 day ban for griefing, and I’m not sure it was fair. Every multiplayer lobby you go into on Forza, someone smashes into your rear end and puts you in the gravel, yet I got banned for being a destructive moron, but only when I finally had enough. After countless times of being taken out, I finally lost it and smashed one person off the track (he previously had taken me out numerous times in previous races), leading to a 7 day ban, which was absolutely stupid. Now, this is what could make or break this title. The fact that Forza has no in game penalty system allows people to be destructive morons, and this isn’t acceptable. If Project Cars has a penalty system, it will be a God send. Formula 1 has a penalty system, so I can’t see why this won’t. Anyway, enough of my rant, the online multiplayer sounds very promising. From what I have read, you can create your own team with your friends. Still, I don’t know how true this is, but I’m hoping it is a feature. It would be just a lot of fun having your own team with a bunch of friends. You could have different teams racing in each race, which would be excellent in my opinion. As long as we have something that works, it will be amazing, I’m sure. Another thing that Project has over Forza is the option to be able to practice and qualify for races. This is like Formula 1, and I like it. It allows people to be a little competitive whilst having fun. It does sound very interesting. Let us all hope that the multiplayer isn’t a destructive environment, this way, we can all have fun, which is what we would love.

PC4

This is in game! How ridiculously nice

 

So Project Cars should be one of the greatest racing games to come to console/PC for a while. From what I’ve seen, it can only get better and it is already looking and sounding amazing. There are also community challenges where you can win actual prizes, which is fantastic. The amount of things this game is capable of is quite something. It hopefully will live up to my optimism. It will hopefully be one of the greatest racing titles we have played. Project Cars releases in November 2014 and it it being brought to us by WMD (World of Mass Development). Not a long time to wait now, and considering I’ve been following this game for roughly sixteen months, I can’t wait. Thanks for reading, as always.

 

P.S. Here’s a trailer: Project Cars Trailer

TwiiSteD-BeAsT

Trials Fusion: The Review

Trials Logo

Yesterday was the release of Trials Fusion, and like a lot of people, I have had my fair share of fun with the Trials series. Of course, I was expecting something great from this game, as you do when a game like Trials is announced. The endless fun is something that Trials does better than most other games, so obviously I was expecting a lot from RedLynx, maybe a little too much. I don’t know, I just feel like there aren’t enough games to play on the current gen right now, so I’ve started to expect a lot from companies. Anyway, back on the topic of this review. Trials HD was good, Trials Evolution was brilliant, and now we have Trials Fusion, another title in the series, and it does do something great, but I feel that it has a lot more to offer in the future.

 

trials-fusion

Trials Fusion hit  shelves on the 15th and 16th of April

The first thing I expect you to dive into is the career mode, like always, considering this is the best way to start your Trials experience if you’re a new player, or just to get back used to the Trials feeling. In career mode you start out by going through a training programme at the start of each location, and after completion, you unlock a new bike/quad bike. Trials starts out easy, as usual, but as you progress it gets a little bit difficult, which is not unusual, but what Trials does compared to other games is get insanely difficult once you pass the hard levels. Once you get to extreme, you are truly tested, and this is not easy for many gamers, me included. So, make sure you practice before you lose your mind with these extreme levels. They are good, and fun (sometimes), but it is kind of refreshing to have hard levels in a game considering how easy a lot of games are nowadays.

Inferno IV - the hardest track in Trials Fusion

Inferno IV – the hardest track in Trials Fusion

Now for the part that I think will be the best part of Trials, the most promising aspect of this game and probably the best experiences. Track Central was a bit hit on Trials Evolution, with people creating their own tracks and skill games. We saw so many different styles, and so many different games built within Trials, it was mind blowing, it really was. This is where Trials really shines brighter than most other titles. Trials is one of the only titles that allows the community to use building tools to create anything they want, and without that, I don’t think that Trials would be as successful as it is now. This means that there is tons of new content every week (sometimes every day) for you to play without paying for it. As of now, the community haven’t made many tracks/skill games, but give it time and you will start to see many amazing creations, I have no doubt about that.

Track Central is where you will find community creations

Track Central is where you will find community creations

The only disappointing thing about Trials Fusion is the multiplayer, as of now. At the moment you can only play local multiplayer, which isn’t that great. It’s pretty much what you had on Trials Evolution with the Supercross tracks. Having no online option at the moment isn’t a big worry considering Ubisoft/RedLynx are planning to bring in a new and improved multiplayer feature in the future, but it would have been nice to have something to play with your friends, even if it was the same as Trials Evolution just for now, it would have been nice. Playing with friends is always better than playing solo in games like this, because of the endless fun you can have whilst competing against each other. Anyway, I’m sure the new and improved multiplayer will make up for the wait when it’s finally released.

This is what Trials Fusion Local Multiplayer looks like

This is what Trials Fusion Local Multiplayer looks like

Overall, Trials Fusion is just what you would normally see from RedLynx. It’s a job well done in giving us something that we want. Also, you have a choice to buy the season pass which gives you 6 lots of future content, and if you buy it all together from a retailer, it can be as low as £29 in the UK. This is amazing price for a game released on Xbox One and Playstation 4. So go and get Trials, have fun, create madness and get mad at the unforgiving extreme that is known as Trials Fusion.

TwiiSteD-BeAsT

Titanfall: First Impressions

titanfall_logo

Like a lot of people, I am an avid FPS fan. One of the very first FPS games I fell in love with, was Call of Duty 4: Modern warfare. As you can probably tell, I had big hopes for Titanfall when I found out Vince Zampella and Jason West (part of the original Infinity Ward team) were two of the people behind this project. Respawn formed in 2010, promising that they would produce a “Call of Duty killer”, and to say that, you must mean it. It’s not going to be an easy feat to kill off one of the most successful games to ever surface. Titanfall was known as project ‘CoD Killer’ apparently, meaning that Respawn meant business. Fast forward to the year 2014 and we have a beta for Titanfall. Like everyone else, I applied, and I waited for the confirmation Email telling me that I had successfully attained a beta code.

respawn logo

After playing my first match of Attrition (Team Deathmatch to you and me) I fell in love with Titanfall. I don’t know what it was. It just felt like I had found that love for the FPS genre that had been missing for so long. It was like a breath of fresh air. I know some people are wondering what the hell is it with this game that has everybody talking so much. Well, let me tell you. From the start of a game, until the very end, it feels alive. You feel the adrenaline pumping inside of you as you snap an enemies neck, or when you run along a wall just to  jump kick a passing enemy in the face. Everything feels smooth, balanced and just absolutely amazing if I’m honest. The best part about Titanfall, is that you don’t have to be good at the game to enjoy the experience. Respawn were very clever by introducing AI companions (along with enemies) into the multiplayer universe, meaning that the least skilled players can still have fun by killing these minions, and helping the team at the same time. It’s genius. You never feel cheated when playing the game, which is rare these days considering how the FPS genre has gone over the last few years. The pace of the game is always fast, and never feels sluggish, which is also another thing other FPS games have failed to accomplish.

making-titanfall
The obvious talking point are the Titans. Even though they are a big part of the game, they are not overpowered in any way. The best part about it is that each player gets a Titan, meaning that no one feels left out. At the start of each game, a countdown begins on the bottom left of your screen displaying how long you have to wait until your Titan will arrive. Getting kills on minions, or enemy players will cut down that time. Calling in a Titan is a wonderful feeling. You see your Titan come out of the sky and land in front of you in a spectacular way; it’s beautiful. Once you are in the Titan, you can wreak havoc on the enemy by doing anything you want. You can kill them with weapons, melee, or just by simply standing on them. Taking down a Titan isn’t too hard if you have a team willing to help. You have an anti-titan weapon which will drain the shield of an enemy titan, allowing your team mates to take it down with ease. Being in control of a Titan is one of the best feelings I’ve had in a long time. It’s super fun just annihilating the enemy whilst they try to take you down the best way they can.

Titan

Movement feels amazing and I was a little sceptical at first when I heard about the parkour side of the game, yet it fits perfectly. We (as gamers) have had experience with a certain title known as Brink. The hype for Brink was ridiculous, and it promised to be the next big thing. The next big thing turned out to be a massive disappointment in a way that was unjustifiable. Titanfall is what Brink should have been, in the way of movement. Jumping from building-to-building whilst wall running has never felt so smooth. It’s weird how Respawn have made this fit into a modern FPS game. The best thing about this, is that it stops camping. Yesterday I was playing with a friend and someone was trying to camp on a rooftop, trying to pick people off as they ran by. He got his neck snapped 5 times and jump kicked 3 or 4 times. People will eventually learn that camping is not effective in this game. As you make your way through each multiplayer map, you can run along the walls at a slant, meaning that you can still engage in battle whilst you are making your way around the buildings. This is something that Brink tried to do. This is what I was expecting from Brink, but thanks to Respawn, we now have a game which feels amazing. A game that brings the FPS genre back to life.

Titanfall2

My conclusion is that if you haven’t picked up the Titanfall beta, you definitely should do. It is a wonderful FPS game that is for everybody. You can be experienced, or even a new player and I’m sure you will enjoy the experience. There is something for everybody in Titanfall. I have to applaud Respawn Entertainment for creating such a wonderful game. I just hope that the finished product will be as amazing as the beta. The beta is now open for everybody who owns an Xbox One, and I’m sure it is open for people who play on PC too. Go and give it a try, you won’t regret it.

BEAST2

Call of Duty: Ghosts: Xbox One Edition: The Review

Ghosts tite

Does it suck? How bad is it this year? Is it still a pile of you know what? Well if you would just read my review for a couple of minutes, I shall tell you. We all know that Call of Duty hasn’t been up to scratch since Black Ops was released back in 2010. I have always been a fan of Call of Duty, but even I can see that the franchise has been going downhill faster than a sled on a cold, winter night. Since the release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2, a lot of the fans have wanted another satisfying experience. The only thing we have had since then is a lag infested multiplayer with overpowered weapons and sniper rifles that beat everything. This is not how an FPS should be, and I’m sure that Activision, Infinity Ward and Treyarch all knew this, yet they still produced these games because they would earn a hell of a lot of money off of them and that’s ridiculous. Anyway, what could IW do to bring the series back? Could this be the game that brings the fans back, could it be the start of something fresh or is it just going to be another half completed FPS?

IW logo

One of the main companies behind the Call of Duty franchise

A lot of people seem to forget that Call of Duty has a campaign. You see all these people buying Call of Duty just for the multiplayer these days, and I can understand why. The campaign’s usually nothing spectacular, long or really that entertaining, but it’s still something to do. Usually a Call of Duty campaign takes between 3 – 6 hours to complete – depending on how fast you want to complete it that is – and that’s not very long for a single player experience. Call of Duty: Ghosts doesn’t really change that fact. It’s still a very short campaign, yet it feels better than previous attempts. You have the similarities like the whole Modern Warfare 2 fiasco, where Infinity Ward were criticised for taking a scene from Modern Warfare 2 and implementing it into Call of Duty: Ghosts. Now, that is lazy, yet I didn’t mind it as much as I thought I would. I liked MW2 and the scene wasn’t really noticeable until all the media outlets started pointing it out. I do agree that IW should never have replicated a scene from a previous title. The Call of Duty franchise has always given us a movie which we can play. The campaign is something which you would see in a movie, and they don’t shy away from that. You will see the typical explosions, the save the world scenario and everything else you would expect to see from this game. One of the new features is a dog. Yes, a dog. Riley (Tribute to Simon “Ghost” Riley from MW2) is a very helpful ally in this story. He will sniff out enemies, attack enemies and even protect you from time to time. It’s a nice little feature which they have added in to the game. If nothing else, it’s because people love animals, but it’s nice.

Riley_CODG

Who’s a good boy? The face of a killer right there

I almost forgot the plot… well, Ghosts opens up with Elias (the father of two of the main characters in the game) telling Logan and Hesh the story of how the Ghosts formed as a unit. Whilst Elias is telling his sons about the legend of the Ghosts, the Federation have hijacked a space station. This is the home of the Orbital Defense initiative (ODIN), an orbital superweapon that could lead to destruction if it was to be placed in the wrong hands. This is where the story really starts and you will have to battle on the space station with the Federation. From here on out you control Logan (mainly) and you, Hesh and Riley fight through a war torn USA to find the people responsible for this. There are quite a few twists and turns in this story. It has improved over previous attempts in my opinion, but like always, it’s not a very long campaign, and it can be easily completed within a few hours, so if you’re looking for longevity in this, you’re really looking in the wrong place.

One small step for man. One giant... wait a minute, is that a gun?

One small step for man. One giant… wait a minute, is that a gun?

Over the years we have seen Treyarch bring success with the on-the-side Zombie game mode. A big group of the people who buy Call of Duty, only buy it for Zombies. Treyarch got the fans hooked on something which wasn’t multiplayer. They had the fans working as a team (most of the time) in this game mode. Infinity Ward have tried over the years to bring something similar to the franchise by introducing Spec Ops. Spec Ops was a fairly decent game mode, yet it just wasn’t up there with what Treyarch had on offer. So now we move into this new world. A world which isn’t Modern Warfare, a world with no Spec Ops. Infinity Ward have brought us Extinction. There’s no doubt that Infinity Ward have seen what Treyarch have done with their very popular zombie series over the years and thought about bringing something similar to the table. Extinction is a survival based game mode, just like the zombies game mode, yet it’s not the same. You have a rank in Extinction, and as you rank up, you will unlock better equipment and more classes. As you start, you will be given a drill to destroy the hives, and as you survive each wave of alien, you will be given an objective. Completing the objective along with destroying the hive will reward you with a squad point or two which can be spent on upgrades during the game. Unlike the zombies game mode, Extinction has a health and armour bar, meaning you will always know when your health is low. This is a great feature and it should have been introduced to the zombie universe a long time ago. In all, there are 14 hives for you to destroy, 3 locations and quite a few creatures for you to slaughter on your way to freedom. At the end of Extinction, each player will have to arm the nuke simultaneously in order for it to be active. After the nuke has been armed, you will be given a set amount of time to escape. Escaping sounds easy, doesn’t it? Well you are wrong. Escaping is the hard part. You have to run through each location just to get back to the starting point. More aliens will spawn, you will be cut off and you will have to watch your back, along with your allies. This is a fun game mode, and it does have promise. I can see Infinity Ward treating this in the same way as Treyarch did with the zombie game mode. It will probably have a story, and it will probably go on for quite some time. So if you’re into solving these mysteries in Call of Duty, this is a game mode for you.

Isn't he lovely?

Isn’t he lovely?

Now for the moment you have all been waiting for! Multiplayer! Well, maybe you haven’t been waiting for this, I don’t know, but I have to cover everything. Multiplayer is what you would expect from any Call of Duty title. A six on six battle to see who can win the game. This year, IW have changed the way (not a major change)  you rank up. Before you start playing any game mode, you will have to create a character. This character can be male or female, it’s completely up to you. You can choose from these customization options:

  • Special – Two types of Ghillie suit.
  • Gender – Male or Female.
  • Head – Variety of player models.
  • Headgear – From hats, helmets and masks.
  • Uniform – From police attire to Ghost attire.
  • Patch – Same as emblems from previous titles.
  • Background – unlockable backgrounds.
  • Clan Tag – If you want to show your teams abbreviated name.
  • Guard Dog – If you bought the wolf skin, you can change it here.

So after you have gone through the confusing method of doing this, you can finally play a game. You will notice the normal game modes which have featured in previous titles, along with new game types. These new game types are:

  • Heavy Duty – TDM, Blitz, Dom. Players have more health.
  • Cranked – Kills give you extra abilities, 2x scoring, and 30 seconds to live. Chain kills to stay alive.
  • Search and Rescue – Defend and destroy the objective. Grab dog tags to respawn allies and prevent enemy respawns.
  • Blitz – Each team has an objective zone at their base. Enter the enemy team’s zone to score points for your team.
  • Hunted – Players start with limited equipment. Take control of drop zones to get better equipment.

Bringing in something new meant getting rid of some of the old apparently. You will notice that Headquarters (a fan favourite in my eyes) and Demolition have been removed from the playlist altogether. I’m not sure if it is because of how horribly received they were on Black Ops 2, or if they just figured that the community wouldn’t miss them, but it’s sad to see them go either way.
As usual you will have 10 prestiges to get your hands in to. Each time you manage to get the XP to prestige, you will have to make a new character, meaning that this character will now have the prestige icon instead of the previous badge. This is a new feature and it’s nothing special, yet it’s still something new.
In my opinion, the multiplayer has improved considering how bad it has been since Black Ops. It feels more smooth, and you don’t feel as cheated when you die. In previous titles you would die because of poor hit detection and lag, where as now, you will still get it occasionally, but nowhere near as much as you would in previous titles. In a way, it feels more like MW2 did, but with less aim assist. The aim assist has been dumbed down for this title, which I like. I hated the over the top aim assist on the previous titles. It would help the enemy so much, even if they couldn’t aim at a certain range. Now, it feels fair again. It feels like if I have better accuracy than someone else, I will win the battle. It is not perfect, no, it’s far from it, just like most games, but it’s still got that Call of Duty feel to it that the community have grown to love.

"Hey guys, what's happening?"

“Hey guys, what’s happening?”

Overall, if you have been a fan of Call of Duty since the good old Call of Duty 4 days, I think you might like this. The new fans will like it. If you’re a fan of Battlefield then I doubt you will like it. Although if you’re like me and you play both, then I suppose you will. It’s all down to your own opinion. It’s not perfect, like I said, but it’s taking the right steps on bringing the series back to where it was. Hopefully this is the start of improvement.

BEAST5

Forza Motorsport 5: The Review

Forza logo

Cars, cars, cars and even more cars! That’s what Forza is all about, and if it wasn’t, I think we would be quite frustrated. The fans of the popular racing game always love it when a new Forza is announced, and I can see why. Being an avid fan of Forza since the 3rd instalment I couldn’t wait to try this game on Xbox One with the new controller. The new controller has touch-sensitive triggers, meaning that you can control the braking distance and acceleration a lot better than previously on the 360. This makes the game feel more realistic (unless you have a steering wheel) and a lot more exciting. The bar has been set by Turn 10 with racing games on this new generation. Other developers will have to keep up.

Turn 10 raise the bar with Forza 5 on Xbox One

Turn 10 raise the bar with Forza 5 on Xbox One

Forza 5 kicks off with you in a race to familiarise yourself with how the game plays (if you had forgotten that is). From here on out, it’s all down to you to earn in-game credits and buy the vehicles that you desire. Forza has always had a wide range of vehicles for you to choose from. If I knew how many was in this game, I would tell you, but there are too many to count. This is not a bad thing though. Any car enthusiast would be in heaven if they were to play Forza 5 with the amount of vehicles Turn 10 have to offer.
This game feels very similar to Forza 4 (as you would imagine) only smoother and a lot better. With it being on Xbox One, you can control your car the way you always intended, without going to fast around a corner, or going to slow into a turn. This is what the fans of every racing game have been waiting for.
The main thing that blew my mind was the way that every race is different. This is because of the amazing thought process behind the AI. Unlike previous Forza titles, you will be facing off against Drivatars. Drivatars are based off other gamers around the world. After each race, your drivatar will sync a little more, meaning that it will act like you within no time. This is amazing and I never thought gaming would ever come to this. You will come across a drivatar that will be very aggressive, meaning he will brake really late, he will crash into you and he will give you no room to pass him, unless he makes a mistake (which is likely). Other drivatars will stick to the racing line and drive like any normal person, but they will make mistakes. This is what makes Forza 5 absolutely brilliant. Here is a video to show you what I mean: this is from the Youtube Channel officialxboxmag – Forza 5 gameplay.

Something which can happen in any race during a Forza session

Something which can happen in any race during a Forza session

One of the nicer single player features has to be the voice overs from the Top Gear crew. I know we have had Jeremy Clarkson in the past doing voice overs for Forza, but this time we have the trio. As you choose an event you will hear either Jeremy Clarkson, James May, or Richard Hammond describe in great detail about the cars which are involved. This is brilliant for anybody who is interested in cars. You learn a lot from the three Top Gear presenters as you continue through the many events Forza has on offer, and if you already know a lot about cars, you can just sit back, relax and listen to these three know-it-alls go on about something you love! If that’s not enough for you, the game also features The Stig.. well kind of anyway. It’s The Stigs digital cousin. During each 8-10 race event, you will come across The Stig who will challenge you to a race. This is a nice feature that Turn 10 have included within the game.

The three know-it-alls of Top Gear

The three know-it-alls of Top Gear

Now onto multiplayer. Multiplayer in the past has been pretty much just pick a track, a mode, a car and you’re done. This time it’s a bit different. This time it’s a lot better, in my opinion. As you select the multiplayer option, you are greeted by a voice which tells you that “this is the multiplayer hoppers” and then you are told exactly what happens next. You will see 4 menu’s at the top of the screen which read: Monthly, League Select, Class Races and Special events.
In the Monthly column you will see things for beginners, things like RS 3 vs. 1 Series M Coupe and so on. These will change every 4 weeks as the title says.
League select allows you to choose between: Modern Sport Compacts, American Motorsport, Iconic Sports Cars and Track Toys. This gives you a wide variety of choices.
If that’s not for you then you have Class Races. You can choose from D to X class. So, you can go from racing in a Mini Cooper one race, to racing in a Lotus F1 car the next. The choice is yours and it’s amazing.
There are also special events that include drifting challenges, different class challenges and a lot more. This game offers a lot to any gamer who wants to get into this genre, or to a gamer who already loves this genre.

Keep going and you can show this off to your friends

Keep going and you can show this off to your friends

Turn 10 have raised the bar for any other competitor hoping to bring out a racing game on the Xbox One. The only downside to this brilliant game is the fact that the cars cost a lot of credits. Turn 10 have promised to release an update to fix this. At least they listen to the community, unlike other developers. This update is said to bring the prices of the cars down, as well as bring in new game modes. Once this happens, I’m sure everybody will be happy. If you haven’t got this game, I would definitely recommend it as it is just an amazing title. It looks amazing, and it plays amazing. Graphics are nothing without gameplay, but this has both. So go out and get this when you can. You won’t regret it.

BEAST5

RYSE: Son of Rome: The Review

Ryse logo

On the 22nd of November was the release of the much awaited Xbox One. Like every other gamer that got their lucky hands on one of these, I ordered a handful of games – one of them being RYSE: Son of Rome. This game had me hooked when I first saw it at E3. It looked like something I had rarely (if ever) seen before, so of course I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it myself. On the 22nd of November, I finally did. Could this game be the warrior that it promised, or was it just going to be another soldier that died in battle?

RYSE

Crytek gave RYSE a lot of hype during E3

So, with this game being my most anticipated game on the Xbox One, I did not want to be disappointed. I wanted to play a game that was refreshing, and new. I just wanted something different from the usual FPS game that has been driven down our throats every year since 2006/2007. With RYSE, we have something different, we have something fresh and it is great. I’m not going to say that this is the best video game as of now! That wouldn’t be true. This doesn’t have to be the best game though, that’s the thing. It just has to be new, and refreshing. I keep linking those two words a lot, and that’s because the gaming industry needs to take note. We need games like RYSE to keep gamers interested, to keep them (dare I say) entertained. With RYSE, I got what I expected. I had a good time, and that’s what matters. Video games are a form of entertainment, and a lot of people forget that.

Ryse image

Are you not entertained?!

RYSE brings us an adventure that is different from other titles. It brings us a hack and slash story that plays quite well. One of the main aspects that caught my attention, was how the game felt like you was watching a movie. This has been tried and tested in the past and has never really taken off. Crytek has turned that around and made this game as enjoyable as they possibly could. Yes, the gameplay is quite repetitive at times, but what would you expect from a hack and slash set in Roman times? You are not going to see the protagonist doing any major moves, or I should hope you don’t see that anyway! That would be very unrealistic and Crytek would have a lot to answer for if they did that. With that being said, you will see the protagonist blocking, attacking and executing enemies in a very gory fashion. It’s what any gore-lover would want!
RYSE is also a beautiful game to look at. The graphics are extraordinary to a point that makes you question if this is a movie, or just another video game. Well, it feels like both, as I stated earlier, and that’s not a bad thing. Crytek have always had an outstanding engine, as we all know and they use it’s full potential in RYSE. 

One of the many executions in Ryse

One of the many executions in Ryse

The campaign is good. It’s not amazing, but it is good. You will see tons of action as you wade through each of the chapters. In RYSE you will see our protagonist (Marius Titus) join the Roman Army in Britannia after he witnesses the murder of his family. Marius seeks revenge on the Barbarians, and he must overcome the odds as he slashes his way through the enemy. You will come up against tough enemies throughout each chapter, and as the story progresses you will come up against a handful of bosses.
The campaign isn’t too long, which isn’t usually popular amongst gamers, but the story it tells is wonderful. Crytek have done an amazing job of making you want more from RYSE, and with it being a first attempt on the new console, I can only say that they have done a great job.

RYSE Marius

Marius doing what he does best

Along with the single player campaign, Crytek gave us a Co-op multiplayer game mode known as Gladiator. In this game mode, you and you friends can team up against waves of enemies inside of a Colosseum. Each wave is different, meaning that you will have to work well as a team to take down the different enemies that this game mode presents.
You can “Be Your Own Hero” in this game mode. With the gold you earned in combat you can purchase different types of equipment. RYSE multiplayer offers a wide range of equipment, such as: armor, shields, weapons and consumables to customise your own gladiator.
This game mode is fun, and it offers a lot to the gamer. They could have added a few more game modes on release, but I’m sure they will bring in more in the future. Nonetheless, this is a lot of fun with your friends and I would recommend it to anybody who is a fan of the hack and slash genre.

RYSE co op

It’s time to entertain

So after playing this game for a while, I must say that I wasn’t left disappointed. It was everything that I expected. A lot of critics have been saying bad things about this game, but I can’t see why. It’s everything you would expect from this type of game. You’re not going to see spectacular movie moments and you’re not going to see tons of explosions. You are going to see swords swinging, archers shooting and a lot of people dying. This game is a lot of fun and if you were lucky enough to get an Xbox One, I would suggest you try this out. Crytek could improve on this game and have themselves a nice little franchise going for them, and I don’t see why they won’t do that. This game is fun. Go and buy it if you haven’t already!

Beast GTA logo