Archive for March, 2016

rip free delivery

I was an 80’s child. I grew up in the 80s, and while I didn’t live the 80’s party life, or even the 80’s high school life, I still experienced the music, movies, Cartoons, Television, fashion and culture. I also ate the food! The food wasn’t too different obviously! Sure, there was the occasional strange recipe, but for the most part it was your typical food that you eat today! Which is more than can be said about 70’s food!

One major difference though, and the thing I probably miss the most is that back then food delivery services offered free delivery! You ordered your food, and they brought it to you! Nowadays? That’s pretty much long gone! You will be hard pressed to find a free delivery place. These days, if you want your food delivered to your door it’s going to run you anywhere between 3 to 5 bucks extra.

If that wasn’t bad enough, nowadays not only do you have to pay delivery fees, but you have to have a minimum dollar amount before they will deliver it to you. The minimum differs from place to place, but I think the most common amount is $10. To be fair, most full meals will run you more than 10 bucks, so odds are you will meet the minimum anyway, but that’s beside the point! Either have a minimum amount, or have a delivery charge! If I am giving you an extra 5 bucks for gas I guess, just bring my a 5 dollar hamburger!

Back in the 80’s they didn’t charge you a delivery fee! That was practically unheard of! You wanted food? Just call the delivery place up and make your order, they would give you your total with no hidden charges and then bring it to your door in 30 mins or less! because that’s how the 80s rolled! I’m not sure when they went with “Mo’ money, Mo’ Money, Mo’ Money” business model…but it kinda sucks!

Alas, this is the world we live in now, and I am sure in time they will figure out other ways to tack on extra dollars to your bill, because…why not?

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lifeless planet

Lifeless planet is a game available on PC through Steam or GOG, as well as the Xbox One home gaming console. The game is an indie title developed by “Stage 2 Studios“, and published by KISS Ltd. In fact, it is one of the better games published by KISS Ltd in my opinion. Most games that KISS Ltd releases, just aren’t my cup of tea, so it doesn’t really take much for me to consider a game to be one of their better games. If it doesn’t make me want to smash my head through my monitor, it’s one of their better games!

Lifeless Planet tells the story of an astronaut sent to a fertile green planet. Their pod crashes on the home world, and he has become separated from his crew. Even more confusing? The planet isn’t a forested green world like they were led to believe! It’s instead a barren wasteland void of any life! As you search for your crewmates, you begin to discover signs that you aren’t the first visitor to this planet!

So, what type of game is it you ask? It’s a mixture of game genres! It’s mostly a third person perspective exploration/walking simulator. You just walk, and as you journey the story begins to unfold around. You can follow the trail clearly laid out in front of you, or go off on your own and discover things hidden around in the game world. Be warned though, traveling off the beaten trail can often lead to danger!

The game also has platforming elements, where you are required to reach an area just out of reach by jumping from rock to rock, or crates, or anything that will boost you up high enough to reach your goal. It also has a lot of puzzles to solve! Between the platforming and puzzles, the game will really put your mind to work!

Movement is smooth, and the controls are very intuitive. At no point did the game ever leave me confused or frustrated with the controls! It was all pretty smooth sailing! If mouse and Keyboard isn’t your cup of tea, the game is also 100% compatible with the Xbox 360 USB PC gamepad! Which, was also flawless! Basically, no matter how you decided to play, controls won’t be an issue!

So, the game has an amazing and captivating plot, and great gaming elements and super spiffy controls! That’s all fine and good, but how are the graphics? Remember that the game is an Indie game! So, it’s not on par with other AAA titles. For an Indie game though? The graphics and animation is outstanding! The world even reflects in the visor of the astronauts helmet! It really is gorgeous, and very well done! There’s a wide variety of locals, from wastelands, to caves, to volcanic hotbeds! All very beautifully rendered!

Unfortunately, the game lacks any type of audio options. Making it impossible to lower sound in the game, or to disable the few voice overs that exist. A lot of the voice overs are russian, and hearing spoken russian dialog distracts me when I am trying read the “Auto-translated” text. Having a way to disable it, or at the very least turn it down enough so that it’s not a distraction would be ideal.

As far as glitches go, the game seems relatively glitch free! I did encounter one glitch however. What happened was, I picked up a rock and carried it onto an elevator and used the elevator button. This froze my controls and prevented me from moving or dropping the rock. All I could do was bring up the pause menu, but even then the “Restart from last checkpoint” option was missing. I eventually had to quit the game, and then go back into it. No other bugs or glitches were encountered, and the one that I did encounter? I was unable to duplicate it.

Overall I had a fantastic time playing this game! Which is good, because the last two games I played sucked so bad that I was about ready to give up on gaming altogether! The story was it’s self was so interesting that I just did not want to stop playing until I was finished! Kind of how like when you read a good book, you don’t ever want to set it down? I had a similar experience with this game!

Should you get it? Well, the game is 20 bucks, which is a bit expensive for what you get. I finished the game in 4 hours roughly,and the majority of those 4 hours were spent wandering around exploring. I imagine it could be finished much quicker for someone who is just rushing through the game. If I had paid 20 bucks for it, I would have been a bit upset! For 20 dollars, I expect a little bit more than just 4 hours. Thankfully I got the game(As well as several others) for just 4 dollars in a bundle deal from Indie Gala.

I would suggest that if the game sounds interesting to you (And it should, because it’s awesome!) that you wait for either a Steam sale, or for it to be included in another Bundle(It has been bundled several times, so odds are that it will be bundled again).

PROS

  • Great plot
  • Easy to understand Controls.
  • Flawless Gamepad support

CONS

  • No Audio Controls.
  • Tad overpriced for what you get

Overall Score: 8/10

mohpaI’ve told you before how Gaming is a pretty cheap hobby! Between all the excellent sales and bundles, it costs almost nothing, and if you really wanted to, you could grab only freebies and would literally cost you nothing! Let’s be honest, free is always good! Which is why I thought I would let you all know about this fantastic freebie offer! It’s only for a limited time, so be sure and grab it while it’s available.

The game is the classic WWII FPS “Medal of Honor: Pacific Assault” from EA games. and it can be yours for absolutely nothing! No tricks and no gimmicks…As long as you claim it before they remove it as a freebie, it’s yours! Now the game DOES require Origin, which is basically like EAs version of steam.

Instructions on Claiming: First go here! Once there,  click the orange ‘Download Now Free’ button located on the right hand side of the screen. At this point you will need to log into your Origin account (or create an Origin account if you don’t already have one). Then just follow the on-screen instructions and the game is yours to keep(Even after the limited time freebie giveaway ends).

This giveaway could be available for days, weeks or even a few months. You never can tell with EA, so grab it as quickly as possible. It was available free at the time of this writing however.

In my opinion Medal of Honor and Battlefield are the two best wartime FPS franchises on the market, with Call of Duty a distant third, so it REALLY is worth grabbing! Anyway, happy gaming!

rambo game

I am honestly not even sure where to begin. I love the Rambo movies! I even watched the 2008 “Rambo” movie to completion. Hell, I even watched the Animated series(Though, to be fair I was a wee child at the time, and wasn’t too picky with my cartoons). I also love video games! So, basically “Rambo: The Video Game” was basically like someone coming along and bumping into me, and knocking my chocolate bar into their peanut butter jar! It’s 2 great tastes, that go great together!

Now, this is by no means the first Rambo video game! There have been several video games based on the franchise that have released on various platforms. They’ve been released on everything from the Commodore 64 to the mobile platform. This however, as far as I know is the first time a Rambo game was released on PC(As well as Xbox 360 and PS3…Though this review is for the PC version, and I am not sure how similar it is to the console versions).

The game is a little old! It came out in early 2014, and like I said earlier, was released on PS3 and Xbox 360. Some of you maybe wondering why I took so long to play the game, if I love games and Rambo so much. The answer to that is “Time”! As much as I love games, I still have other things to do in my life. Which means that a good number of games slip past my radar, or just get put on the back burner until I can find the time to play it! R:TVG is one such game that found it’s self on the back burner.

The idea of a Rambo game is fairly exciting! It has a lot of potential, a large ready-made fan base and tons of game styles to choose from! Basically, when it comes to making a Rambo Video Game, it’s almost impossible to make a stinker! That is unless you are the game developer Teyon! Somehow, they managed to create a mess of a game, based on a good franchise. Then, somehow managed to shovel it all up and convince Reef Entertainment to actually publish the thing!

You might recognize the name of the Developer! Teyon has developed a few other games in the past(The heavy Fire games, as well as a several lesser known titles)..The publisher hasn’t published anything else other than this game, though they do state that they have a Terminator game coming out! Of course, that was first announced in 2013, and they have revealed no information about it! No screenshots, concept art or even who the developer is going to be. So, there’s a chance it won’t see the light of day! Maybe Rambo ruined it for them?! Who knows!

Back to the game at hand! Rambo: The Video game(Which I am just going to refer to as Rambo from here on out) is an on rails shooter, much like the developers other more well-known franchise “Heavy Fire”. It begins at the funeral of John J. Rambo! The story is told mostly as flashbacks during Rambos eulogy. Starting with Rambos escape from a Vietnam POW camp, through the events of Rambo 3, and though there are some differences between the game and the movies it’s basically the story you all know and are familiar with(Assuming you have watched the Rambo movies of course).

The graphics aren’t bad in the game! Don’t get me wrong, they aren’t great either! Although, the model they used for Rambo? That is pretty bad! In fact, it’s one of the worst likenesses of Sylvester Stallone that I have ever seen! If I were Stallone, I would sue!

rambo model

As I mentioned before, the game is an on rails shooter! Which basically means that you have no control of the character. You just move the crosshairs around the screen and shoot the enemies popping out at you. Once you blast away your enemies on the screen, the main character will automatically turn around, or move forward and a new batch of enemies will pop out so you can gun them down. However, Unlike a lot of On rail shooters, Rambo does give you some “Partial Control” over the movement of John Rambo. At least in the sense that you can sometimes take cover behind something. It’s not much, but it’s something!

I’m going to be blunt here! On rails shooters belong in the arcade! At the very least played with a light gun, or a wiimote! Something like that! Playing the game with a gamepad or even a mouse cursor just sucks! I have always believed that certain types of games are better off on certain platforms. MMORPGS are better off on PC, platforming games are better off on Consoles and On rails shooters are better off in arcades.

So, it goes without saying that the games controls are annoying! Both the gamepad and mouse controls just stink! To be fair, that can’t be avoided because of the type of game it is…but why make that type of game when you know it’s going to stink for anyone not using a light zapper, or at the very least a wiimote?

Thankfully though, the whole game isn’t just shooting. There are a few On Rail “Stealth” moments and On Rails Melee moments, but those are basically just QTE cut scenes. They allow less interaction than the shooter aspect! Plus, a good many people hate QTE in games(I myself love them, but I am just weird).

Then to make matters worse, the developer apparently felt that you don’t need to manually save! All saving is done automatically through a checkpoint system. Now, checkpoint saves are pretty common these days, but allowing manual save or quick saves is always nice! Though, to be fair it isn’t really needed since the game isn’t that difficult! Enemies pop out in the same locations at the same time, so if you fail and get killed enough times, you will eventually memorize the pattern and blow them away easily enough. It might be more of a challenge if the placements of enemies were more random?

The sound in the game is equally bad! Rambo and Troutman are basically audio clips taken right from the movies, and at times they are can be hard to hear, and rarely seem to fit with the other voice “Actors” (And I use the term loosely since this is some terrible voice acting work. It’s almost laughable really) in the game. It’s horrible, and honestly if they couldn’t afford Stallone to come in and do some voice work…hire someone who does impressions! What you did here is just shoddy work man!

To be honest? There’s nothing redeeming about this game, aside from the fact that it’s Rambo! Should you buy it? I wouldn’t recommend it! Not even to a hard-core Rambo fan! The game costs 25 backaroos on steam which is about 22 dollars more than it’s worth! If you catch it on sale, and it’s only about 3 or so bucks? By all means grab it! Otherwise don’t bother, because the game is just bad!

If however you absolutely MUST experience the “action packed journey” that is RAMBO: The Video Game, just watch a YouTube walk through! The person playing it in the videos experience will be identical to your experience since it’s an on Rails shooter…the only difference is you will still have 25 bucks in your pocket, and can munch popcorn while laughing about how you dodged a bullet by not buying the game.

PROS

  • It’s Rambo
  • Variety of locations.
  • Different “Game modes”
  • QTEs(Unless you hate them)

CONS

  • Poor modeling
  • Bad Voice Acting.
  • Poorly ripped Soundtrack audio from films.
  • Bad controls
  • No Manual Save
  • QTEs(Unless you love them)

Overall score: 1.5/10

unearthed-trail-of-ibn-battuta

I am just going to come out and say it: Unearthed is an Uncharted/Tomb Raider clone. It’s basically a generic version of uncharted targeted toward the budget PC game market. The game makes no attempt to mask this at all! In fact, they seem to take pride in the fact that they are a cheap knock-off.

Still, as far as knock-offs go, the story isn’t half bad! It’s an episodic game, and has a decent plotline that could evolve into an interesting story. Though, it seems as if we will never really know for certain, since Episode 1 came out in 2014, and no episode 2 has ever followed! Will one eventually pop up? Possibly, though I wouldn’t hold my breath for it! The first episode ends in a cliff hanger too! So, if you are someone who really enjoyed the game? Too bad! No ending for you!

The game is made by Semaphore, but a part of me has to wonder if this is the gaming branch of Asylum films. It’s just insane how much of a blatant knock-off this game is. Still, that doesn’t bother me much! I actually don’t mind cheap knock-offs! In fact if I am being completely honest, it being a knock-off of Uncharted was the main reason for buying it. (That and it was on sale for only 99 cents!)

Anyway, like I said! The game is an Uncharted knock off, which means it features many of the same elements from Uncharted. Stealth kills, rooftop chases, driving, riding passenger while firing guns at pursuing enemies…Everything you would expect from an uncharted game, just in a miniature format. Everything is shorter.

So, how is the game? Well, it starts out ok! everything seems to be textured nicely. Unfortunately, while the textures used were fantastic, a lot of people had a shine to it. This made people, and their clothes occasionally look like plastic! It’s not present in everything, but the few times it occurs is a bit of a distraction.

As far as the acting goes, I wasn’t that impressed. The voice acting wasn’t that great at all! In fact, it was some pretty poor voice acting! Maybe some of the worst that I have heard in a video game. They really should have just went with no voice over! That would have been an improvement!

As I start actually playing the game, the first thing I notice is the poor animation! Still, this is an indie game, and I am sure the company isn’t set up with motion captioning studios. I have seen worse in Indie games…Hell, I have seen worse in some AAA titles too! So, the characters move stiffly and nothing feels smooth! It’s about on par with what you would expect from a 5 dollar game in terms of animation.

What isn’t on par with what you would expect is the amount of glitches! Seriously, was this thing even beta tested? I was killed by invisible enemies, detected and shot through walls(Which kinda defeats the purpose of taking cover really), Died from fall damage while going down some steps and even jumped THROUGH a pillar and off a ledge instead of jumping onto the pillar! All that was just what I encountered during one play through! I can only imagine the bugs that I haven’t yet encountered!

The game is 100% Xbox 360 gamepad compatible, but the controls are also very shoddy! You can use them, but everything feels clunky, and I just can’t seem to move exactly the way I want or need to! This makes it especially annoying when trying to maneuver across thin walkways above a deep chasm.

The “Puzzles” are also very simple. There’s no way you will have trouble solving any of the puzzles in this game, but apparently it has a hint feature just in case! I am kind of curious if anyone has actually used it, but I am assuming they haven’t, and if they did I doubt they would ever admit it.

Lastly, the game is SHORT! I mean, obviously you expect it to be short, but it’s REALLY short. The game can be complete in an hour and a half! Most of that isn’t even real gaming either! A good portion of that is just walking down a street, driving around repeating roads and “Fist fighting” foes!

Is it worth picking up? I suppose if you get it on a 99 cent sale like I did, and you enjoy cheap knock-offs and the chuckles they can bring..then sure. Otherwise, 5 bucks is asking way too much for what the game provides.

PROS

  • cheap!
  • Good textures!
  • Rips off Uncharted!
  • Nice Variety of levels
  • Gamepad support

CONS

  • Low asking price is STILL too expensive.
  • Poor animations.
  • Poor voice acting.
  • Incredibly glitchy
  • Flawed controls.
  • Simple Puzzles
  • Incredibly short.
  • Incomplete game that ends in a cliffhanger.

Overall rating: 2.5/10

Many steam users who owned the game “Days Under Custody” on steam, were sent a notice yesterday. The notice informed the users that their copy of Days Under Custody was being revoked! Valve, then pulled the game from their libraries. The notice read as follows:

Your recent Product code activation has been revoked due to a problem processing payment for this item. The games associated with this product code can no longer be played as a result. This could be due a problem with the payment methods you used to acquire this item from a third-party seller; or a problem with how the third-party seller acquired the Product code. Please contact the seller you acquired the Product code from for assistance.

If you would like to purchase the item, please visit the Steam Store. Otherwise you may choose to delete the local content associated with these games.

Users of Steam who were sent this notice flocked in droves to the forums for the game, demanding an explanation. As it turned out, all keys that were issued by the authorized bundle dealers Daily Indie Game, and Indie Gala were revoked! This includes not just activated keys, but keys that have yet to be activated! Many people tried putting in another key to get the game added back to their library, only to be notified that the key they were using was a duplicate.  Obviously, people demanded answers, and as of the time of this writing, the situation has yet to be corrected. The developer did however respond on the forums to the problem stating:

We apologize for this issue. It results from a miscommunication with our contact at Valve. All keys were not supposed to be revoked, just extra keys that were not previously distributed in bundles. As some of you may know, there is a big issue with 3rd party sites selling Steam keys. It is causing lots of issues and was one of the major topics of conversation at GDC this year. We were simply trying to ensure that extra keys were not going to make their way to these third party sites. We are working with Steam to correct the mistake and will ensure that folks who purchased the key via Indie Gala or DIG will have their game restored.

Hopefully the situation gets corrected, since it has left a lot of feathers severely ruffled.

rotr

I had been looking forward to playing Rise of the Tomb Raider since it was announced, and decided to pick it up on steam, because it was on sale for fairly cheap! I can’t remember the exact price, but it was cheap. Did it live up to my expectations?

Here’s the thing about ROTR: It’s very much like the original Tomb Raider. It doesn’t really bring anything new to the table! In fact, the graphics are very similar to the graphics found in the original Tomb Raider PC Release(We’re talking about the reboot of course, not the very first original Tomb Raider game). This isn’t a bad thing! The graphics in the original were absolutely breath-taking! I am completely happy with the graphics in both games, but it does leave me confused on why ROTR requires such a beast of a computer to run! The game is currently one of the current higher requirement games out there, and I just don’t understand why. Granted, I am not a game developer, so there is probably much that I don’t understand.

As I said, a lot of the game is very similar to Tomb Raider. This statement also includes gameplay mechanics. There are very few new tools at your disposal, The few new tools that DO exist don’t even come into play til toward the end of the game, and even then aren’t that interesting. It boils down to the same Ledge Climbing, Rock Scaling gameplay as the original. Complete with sliding down snowbanks/waterfalls and having to move left and right to avoid obstacles.

What the game DID do right however was the storyline! It had a very appealing any interesting storyline the focuses on an artifact that can grant eternal life. It also has an evil group which is a secret society who is seeking the artifact for themselves, and a group of rebels who are trying to keep the artifact from falling into the wrong hands. It has some twists, Moments of betrayal, Moments of loyalty…It has everything you could want from an adventure story of this type.

One thing that might upset some people, is that Rise of the Tomb Raider doesn’t have a multiplayer mode. What it does have instead is an expedition mode.I haven’t really mucked around with expedition mode too much, but it seems to offer you a variety of different modes that let’s you replay chapters of the story, while also giving you the option to increase or decrease difficulty through the use of cards which can be purchased using an ingame currency(Or using real cash apparently). Personally, I don’t find the lack of a PVP based multiplayer game disappointing at all. I love the fact that a game company still focuses on the creativity and story based captivation of the single player campaign.

Don’t get me wrong, I like when a game has both a rich and full single player campaign as well as a PvP mode. It’s just that more often than not developers go the lazy route and just toss in some half assed single player campaign that is completed in a half hour and basically serves as a tutorial for the online game mode. Other developers even go the more incredibly lazier route and toss out the campaign mode all together and stick you with a multiplayer only FPS, that when the servers eventually go down, or people quit playing..you are stuck just running around shooting bots. At least with a campaign, you have that to fall back on when the servers are gone.

Speaking of rich storylines! Rise of the Tomb Raider is an incredibly long game! It took me 22 hours to complete it, and that’s just the main story. That’s not including all of the optional tombs and side missions. I did a few of them, but there’s still plenty more for me to go back and do! There’s also the expedition mode which as I said before I have only lightly dabbled in.

Now, this long storyline might be good or bad. Depending on your view. I loved the game and the story, but even I was getting to the point where I was wishing the game was just over. There is such a thing as too much of a good thing I suppose. Like I said, I enjoyed the game. but 22 hours is a long time to find out what’s going to happen. For me, the perfect length of a main campaign is about 15 hours. Any more than that, and my attention starts to wander. This is mainly due to my ADD, so it may not apply to you.

Overall though, it was an enjoyable game. If you were a fan of the last Tomb Raider game, or the Uncharted game series(Which the gameplay shares similarities with) then you will most likely enjoy this title.

PROS
-Gorgeous Graphics.
-Long and in-depth story.
-Many Side missions to keep you occupied.
-Decent replay value
-Flawless gamepad support
-Impressive voice acting & Mocaping.

Cons
-No PvP based Multiplayer
-Game might be TOO long for some players.
-Micro transactions.
-High system requirements

Overall score: 7.5/10