Monday, April 29, 2013

Something About Watch_Dogs

Not even a full year ago at E3 2012 Ubisoft did something unexpected, they completely stole the entire show by unveiling a game called Watch_Dogs. The title came entirely out of left field, no one really saw it coming and it was displayed so well that it even overshadowed the game I thought would be king of show, The last of Us.

Now today there's been another unexpected reveal, the release date for Watch_Dogs. As it turns out the game is due to land for everyone on November 19 this year. I've been completely caught off guard by this date, as I'm flat out surprised by the incredibly quick turnaround from reveal to release. Usually when this type of high fidelity, new IP game is shown off it takes some 2-3 years before you see it on store shelves. As a result I'm a little worried that Ubisoft might be rushing Watch_dogs to market.
The reason they would do this is clear though, the game received enormous positive reception at E3 last year and it's going to be a cross gen title. In other words it'll be on just about all available consoles (PS3, PS4, WiiU, 360, PC, and presumably the NextBox), meaning it has good chances to rake in cash better than many other titles out in the season.

I think the reason why so many people are attracted to Watch_Dogs is because it plays with some familiar concepts of both fiction and reality. The game deals with surveillance and how just about everyone has a digital footprint these days. Most important above everything are cellphones, just about everyone has one. Cellphones carry people's lives, being jam packed with loads of personal information, and many of them have GPS tracking features.

Now think about the traditional Cyber Punk story. In the future we live in a dystopia controlled by one or more conglomo-corp, we're heavily surveillance, and extensively controlled, yet we're lead to believe we still have freedom and make out own choices. Watch_Dogs is a combination of modern day technology and traditional story setup from you're typical dystopia cyberpunk.

I think that this is what makes it so appealing to so many people. Other than just looking like a really fucking fun game anyway!

----Strife Out----

Thursday, April 04, 2013

Stealthy Confessions

I feel that one of my favourite play styles is, and has been, making a comeback.

I've been playing games that focus on remaining hidden for over a decade. It all started with the original Metal Gear Solid on the first Playstation. I played that game to exhaustion, and subsequently did the same with it's sequel MGS2. Moreover though if I'm ever given a choice of playstyle I always default to being a thief, rogue, or assassin. This was reinforced by my discovery of the game Oblivion back in 2006, where I was simply blown away by the game's levelling system, where I actually got better at being a thief by being a thief!

Now today the stealth genre seems to be coming back into the light, with games like DeusEx and Skyrim having major mechanics that allow stealth, and more recently Dishonoured focusing on it entirely.
Now with the advent reboot to the thief franchise I think it's time I make a small confession.

Despite my love for stealth play, I've never actually played any of the Thief games. This is even more surprising considering I prefer to be a non-lethal thief over a deadly assassin or combat ready rogue.

My experience with the Thief series is limited to playing through about a quarter of Deadly Shadows. The game had stability issues on my machine, and it's story didn't really grab my attention, which is why I dropped it. However, with thief being rebooted I feel like I'm finally going to get a chance to experience a quality stealth game that doesn't focus on killing people. Dishonored was good, but I was disappointed by it's lack of shadowy corners to hide in. I also wasn't to impressed with how I had to keep hiding under tables to avoid detection.
I liked Dishonored for what it was, but I was more disappointed by what is was not.
Now, with the return of thief, I can't help but feel it might be what I wanted out of Dishonored.

----Strife Out----

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

BioShock Infinite and Bill Bower

So there's something that I'm just having a hard time wrapping my head around when it comes to these Bill Bower reviews. Why do so many people not like them? Then there's the bigger question, why are people bothering to watch the video if they know they don't like Bill Bower?

Weather or not people actually want me to do these reviews has never been the question. I'm doing them for myself, and to stretch the boundaries of my writing skills. The people who come and ask me to do a "normal review" just aren't gong to get what they want. I did "normal" reviews for Fallout New Vegas and RAGE, and I hated doing those. They were just the same as guides, but stuffed full of opinion and no factual substance. If I'm going to be opinionated then I prefer to be loud about what my thoughts are.

Ultimately I think most people just don't like the idea of me being mean, even when I'm delivering comments under a completely different persona. If I was to drop Bill Bower but still do reviews, I wouldn't change my writing style; And I don't think any of us want an angry, snide, and sarcastic William Strife, and I right?

----Strife Out----