Monday, January 11, 2016

Christmas 2015 Gaming

Welcome to the Manx Lads annual post for 2016, just for a change I'm going to moan about the state of gaming by going through what I played over the Christmas break and how ultimately shit most of it turned out to be.  Lets start with the PC games:-

Witcher 3 - This is supposed to be the ultimate fantasy RPG with fan boys spending hundreds of pounds on new graphics cards just to get the most out of this game.  It does look very pretty...but it plays like an absolute dog.  The controls are clunky (collision detection is shocking) the combat has no satisfaction to it and the thousands of side missions are just the same thing repeated over and over.  Overall it is a deeply enjoyable story but just a terrible game and one which I gave up on completely after about 30 hours of game play.  Play Skyrim instead.

Fallout 4 - Didn't like this to start because it was so simple but then when I got my head around the fact that it's just a simple shooter with a few basic RPG elements I really started to enjoy it.  Unfortunately I then reached the level in the game where everything just seems very easy and I lost the will to finish the main story.  This has never happened with a Fallout game for me before.  I'm about 30 hours in to the game and now haven't touched it for a couple of weeks and am not really feeling the need to.  On the other hand the game of Fallout New Vegas I started a month before I bought this I'm still enjoying.  Figure that one out.

Struggling to come up with something that I wanted for Christmas I settled on an Xbox One, if for no other reason than a couple of the lads already have one and when push comes to shove I enjoy the more casual approach to online gaming on the Xbox than the hardcore PC gaming scene.

Halo 5 - The thing I enjoyed most about the early Halo games was the fight between 2 alien species, the rival technologies and the idea of trying to save something by being the one super weapon the humans had.  The big battles could be approached tactically and even though there was a lot of repetition in the later levels the earlier parts made up for it.  Halo 5 has lost that, the human weapons feel redundant, the scale of the worlds seems to have gone and every battle can be easily won running around shooting everything in the face.  Also to the developers, there is absolutely NO joy to be had in killing the same boss baddy over and over and over.  Talk about lazy fucking development.  Online is okay and I have a sneaky suspicion this was the main focus of the game.  I'm much happier playing through the first couple of games on the Masterchief Collection instead.

Fifa 16 - I haven't played a Fifa game in at least 10 years but this came free with the Xbox so it would have been rude not to give it a go.  I'd suggest that anybody wanting to be bored to tears with possession football could stick to watching Man Utd.  Quite why EA have though to use this as inspiration for a football game is beyond me?  The players run around like they are stuck in treacle or at the very least all carrying hamstring injuries.  It's so bastardly slow that any enjoyment ebbs from you after the first couple of minutes.  I started a league that will never ever get finished.

Elder Scrolls Online - It's like a really simplified Skyrim (which in turn is a dumbed down Oblivion) where you get the joy of having every quest you embark on ruined by a bunch of fucking muppets jumping around constantly killing re spawning enemies to level up ASAP.  Seriously never has the satisfaction of sneaking up on an over powered enemy in the hope of getting a sneak hit bonus with your bow being ruined so quickly as when **NINJAFACIAL69** jumps over your crouching body and evaporates everything in  the cavern with his level 87 fire magic.  Cunts.

Star Wars Battlefront - Now we're talking, Battlefront 2 is one of my top 5 favourite games of all time.  I must admit that I tried this first on the PC Beta but gave up after getting annihilated in every game.  I enjoy using a controller but it combined with 36 year old reactions is no match for a 13 year old with a mouse and keyboard!  Instead I got the EA pack on the Xbox which gave 10 hours of free play, 10 hours which were by far my favourite gaming over the Christmas and New Year period.  Graphically whilst nice the Xbox version doesn't even come close to the shear beauty of the PC on even medium detail levels.  Resolution, anti aliasing and texture levels all seem to have taken a big hit. Who cares though because some of the online modes are brilliant and the authenticity to a Star Wars nut is undeniable.  Not only that but the level of gamer makes the whole experience far more enjoyable to other casual gamers.  Needless to say I bought the game and continued to play it...except now it's all a bit...samey.  There is no single player to speak off and as enjoyable as the multi-player is for a quick blast it doesn't really feel like a lot for your money.  Thinking I maybe had rose tinted spectacles on remembering Battlefront 2 I decided to get it working again on the PC.  After a  little bit of messing I had it up and running.  ONE game of capture the flag in the Jedi Archives with all the different classes going at it hammer and tongs reminded of what I'd been missing.  There is no comparison, one is a game that will stand the test of time, the other is a very nice looking online demo.

Hopefully in 2016 developers will get their asses in gear and try to find that balance of gameplay, graphics and most importantly fun.  And on that note, Happy New Year!

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