Katawa Shoujo Review (PC) A Casual Review

You know what I love about being a gamer?  The new experiences that once in a while comes along and takes you completely by surprise.  I have been graciously invited to join the team here at John Heatz.  This is the first time I have ever worked with a team on a blog before and although a few might think this isn’t a big deal I want you to know that it is to me.  I’m looking forward to bouncing ideas around and probably will be the guy with a different opinion, like the other day when certain people said they didn’t like Unchartedcoff Drakulas coff or that they never finished the games.. coff JohnHeatz coff and I had to single-handedly defend Naughty Dogs honour but that’s a tale for another day 🙂 I will still be blogging at Gamers Therapy, so don’t be sad.  Think of it as I’m spreading my awesomeness a little further now.  Don’t be a stranger.  Beyond!
Continue reading

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out Of The Shadows Review (PC) A Casual Review

I’ve grown up with The Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.  Right from the eighties cartoon show, to that horrible Saban produced series, to the rebooted version that is currently on Nickelodeon.  They haven’t made a decent turtles game in a long time, and i mean a really long time.  Still no matter how horrible each iteration can be I am always willing to give the turtles a chance.

Let’s just jump straight into it.  The level’s seem poorly designed with no clear indication of which way you’re supposed to be heading and interactive objects aren’t clearly marked, making levels that are actually easy into one annoying chore.  While running between checkpoints on the levels, everything feels rather stiff.  Ninja turtles are supposed to be fast and swift  but these guys are just clunky occasionally  getting stuck next to each other, or getting caught between a rock and a hard place.  then they’ll just stand there looking like four green idiots.  Space bar, left click and right click are going to be the most common of combinations.  Space bar to do everything, slide, roll, jump, wall run, evade.  Left click for primary attack and right click for kicks, no seriously for kicking.  While that is pretty much the way to do it, It just doesn’t feel right, almost like Rocksteady had a baby that was actually engineered in a test tube, it broke out, fell on it’s head ,it’s brain splattered on the floor and then it tried to make a game… 

The combat has some great potential, mimicking that of Batman:  Arkham Asylum and Arkham City, except without the fine tuning and polish.  You’re attacks feel very sluggish and delayed and counters have to be precise in order to keep your combo up.  Speaking of keeping your combos up, IT IS SERIOUSLY HARD TO KEEP YOUR COMBOS UP!  You’re timing has to be perfect.   They should maybe have implemented a lock on camera of sorts, or tried zooming the camera out slightly so you can see all your targets. When you are surrounded by a group of enemies, it is difficult to see at what point you have to counter because all bad guys are standing on top of you.  When an enemy is about to attack they either flash white which means you can counter or orange to counter multiple attacks from the same enemy to red which means you need to jump out the way.   You can also pull off team take downs and things but they are so difficult to setup, one with getting the combo’s high and the other is that your turtle brothers end up doing their own thing which also adds to the frustration.

tmnt combat

Further more the boss battles are highly annoying and it’s a button mashing extravaganza.  One big boss, and all the minions to attack you at the same time.  Frustrations through the roof and I’ve played Ninja Gaiden.  

Visually the game looks good, not great but perfect for what the developers were going for.  New York feels dark, dank and dirty.  Just the sort of place you would expect four giant mutant sized turtles who happen to be trained in martial arts to roam.  The graphics are nothing really impressive.  Combining slight cell shading with traditional 3d makes it look interesting but nothing special.  They could have gone in one direction and the outcome would have been the same.  I heard there were a few frame rate issues on the console counterpart and there are definitely frame rate problems on the PC as well.  Nothing game breaking mind you but they are there.

The story is as generic as it could get.  April gets kidnapped, turtles have to save her, fighting a whole bunch of new enemies and old enemies.  Trust me, you’ve been through this before.

It is with a heavy heart that this game gets a low score because i really wanted to enjoy it.  I honestly could not, due to the shitty controls, bad level designs, stiff combat and in general just bad energy from this game.   Read how this rating is given after the score.

Gameplay  :  1

Story           :  1

Graphics     :  2

Bullshit       :  0

4/10

My rating as a test is based on one of United We Game’s bloggers, Dean Mozian who presented this idea of how to review games.  Without further adieu, i present to you The Bullshit Review Scale. Explained in his own words:

“Scores are based on three categories:

Gameplay
Story
Graphics

Each of these categories gives a max of 3 points which can total as much as 9. The 10th point comes from what I like to call a “bullshit” point…

Bullshit:

This idea of this point is to award the games you especially liked. It can be because all of the pieces came together really well or maybe the game has a special lasting appeal that keeps you coming back.  It could even be just because you’re a fan of the developer.  Really, any reason whatsoever.”

Leave a comment if you think the scoring is wrong, if the method works up to a point, or if you enjoyed the game.  ‘Till next time.

The Matrix (The Movies)

The Movies box art

The Movies box art (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This was the first little video that i put so much effort into while playing The Movies.  This project is about 2 years old now.  I originally had 24min of footage but my PC crashed and i was only able to recover this 10min worth.  Still it’s better than nothing.

This was a rough draft so the sound levels are all over the place and there are some snippets of the The Matrix film in here as well that I used as part of a drawing board.

This was my first video so don’t judge me to harshly but i am open to suggestions and criticism.  Anyway watch it and let me know what you think. I have been thinking of getting back into this but it’s a lot of time and work that goes into it.  So still kind of on the fence.    Feel free to encourage me if you want.

 

Also stay tuned for my Supernatural snippet coming later today.

Hitman Absolution (PC) A Casual Review

Image from http://vgfaq.com/guides/hitman-absolution-evidence-locations-guide/When you first start up Hitman Absolution you are greeted with the traditional cut scene introduction. Agent 47 has a new target, his former handler Diana. She has kidnapped this girl Victoria who by what the movie shows us has been experimented on by “the doctors”. Going against the agency has now gotten a kill order on her head and who better to take down this target than Agent 47 himself.  The first mission you undertake is to infiltrate Diana’s residence and eliminate her but before 47 can deliver the final blow he has a sudden change of heart. Diana asks him to save the girl and he complies by escorting Victoria to an orphanage and starts his own investigation into the agency themselves and que Hitman Absolution.

The first thing that i noticed about this game is how sharp everything is.  It looks juicy and sometimes a little blinding.  I’ve noticed that a lot of Hollywood films love using optics on the most basic of light flares and Hitman seems to be following the trend right through to a slight flare when light bounces off his head.  The game play is good and the controls might take a little getting used to but once you get the hang of it you shouldn’t have any problems.  Traditional elements are back such as disguises, hiding bodies, you’re assassin wire thing, and those cool guns of his and they’ve introduced a new mechanic called instinct which when activated allows you to see where guards are and where their paths lead as well as any interactive objects on the level as well.   I haven’t noticed any bugs or anything either.

You might be wondering why this sounds rather boring as opposed to some of the other reviews I’ve done and it simply is because while Hitman:  Absolution is a great addition to the franchise this latest installment feels a bit empty.  It looks like Hitman, walks like Hitman but it just doesn’t feel like Hitman.

Why do I say this I hear you ask?  Well it’s quite simple really.

I have never finished a single Hitman game.  I don’t think I’ve ever finished one whole mission because it was just so damn hard for me.  I kept getting caught and I didn’t have the patience to walk around an entire level just to find alternate routes and watch people and their set paths.  That’s just me.  In Absolution however I’ve gone through quite a few levels already and easily I might add on the normal difficulty.  By that statement alone this doesn’t feel like Hitman to me because I’ve been able to get through missions without hassle or any kind of effort really.  The levels also aren’t as open as i remember the others being and it feels like the game is pushing you in one very limited direction.

I don’t know if this will be a good or bad thing for hard core fans of Hitman or not but I’m leaning on bad.

Its almost like the game wants me to succeed and that irritates me because it never cared about me before.  It’s just not that challenging.  It’s to easy to infiltrate and while the stealth thing is cool and is one of the best things i love about this game you could actually just walk in guns blazing.  It would take a while and it would be stupid but you can because i did it and somehow survived.  If i did that in any of the other games I would be dead in  seconds.

Don’t get me wrong I’m not bashing this game at all, it looks good and it plays well.  But the previous installments were in a league of their own. I always thought that the guys who played Hitman were in a league of their own if they were even able to get to level two or three.  If i can get to the sixth level of this game then I’m sorry it’s just not as challenging as what Hitman used to be.

But hey that’s just my opinion.  I do think it is worth a look and I hope that the true fans of this franchise aren’t disappointed by what this game has to offer.  I’m sure you guys will probably play on extra hard anyway.

Till next time

Image

Dishonored: First Thoughts…

Dishonored

I have read so many mixed reviews on this game that I eventually folded and decided to give it a try.

Set in a fictional city called Dunwall, you play as Corvo Attano, a legendary bodyguard to The Empress.  Corvo gets framed for the Empresses murder and is forced to flee the city.  He becomes an assassin to seek revenge on those who conspired against him.  He is aided by a loyalist group who are trying to reclaim the city and is given supernatural abilities from an individual known only as The Outsider.

The game is played through a first person perspective and there is a lot of emphasis on the word stealth.  The city is plague ridden and you will see rats often roaming the streets.  Health seems quite rare to find and you have to look for any  food and potions that’s laying around the city.   As you explore the city you will find runes and bone charms which upgrade your abilities and adds certain perks to items.  (I am still playing this so there might be more to it than that)  You can also engage guards with a bit of sword play and counter attacking and using a secondary attack which includes, guns and a crossbow from what I’ve seen.  However the more guards or people you kill, more of the rats will come to feast and spread the plague which apparently affects the ending.  So it is encouraged to assassinate your targets in a non-lethal way which honestly to me, sounds a bit stupid.  I kill targets but only render guards unconscious.

To be very honest it did take me a couple of hours to get into this game.  The story seems rather predictable and your character is the strong silent type.  (No seriously, i haven’t heard him say anything yet)  There seems to be no character development at all which unfortunately leaves me no choice but to deduct points.  Surprisingly enough I am still playing this game for some reason.  I think I started to enjoy the actual game play when i started figuring out how and when to use your abilities and to me there is no greater reward than completing a mission without getting detected at all.

Once I’ve finished it i will post my final thoughts