My Month in Games: End of Year Mega-Post!

 

So I’ve been away for a while, and despite evidence to the contrary, video games are *still* a thing people are into in early 2016. Who saw that coming?

Here what I played in November and December.

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Until Dawn – PS4

Along with the rest of the Internet, I wasn’t exactly foaming at the lips at the thought of playing a game based on every bad Horror Film trope of the past 30 years, but Until Dawn *really* surprised me.

Imagine a David Cage game without the bad voice acting, self important writing and iffy controls. Throw in some genuinely scary moments and an some fun performances from famous faces and you’ve got Until Dawn.

It’s scary, it’s corny and it doesn’t overstay it’s welcome. Until Dawn is a fine addition to the horror genre, and one that I hope we see more of in future.

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Mad Max – PC

I loved Mad Max Fury Road, I loved it’s action, it’s score and most of all, I loved it’s style. Mad Max The Video Game however, doesn’t have any of that. Nope.

Snore inducing mission types, frustrating driving mechanics and the most generic action hero you’ll see this side of a Call of Duty game, Mad Max bored me to tears.

On the plus side, it runs well on my PC, which for a WB game is a damned miracle.

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Guitar Hero Live – PS4

I’ve a confession to make. I’ve never played a Rock Band/Guitar Hero game. Apparently I was too busy playing Football Manager and getting fat whilst those games were in-vogue. I’m sorry.

As a total n00b to the world of Guitar Hero I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I found the game to be utterly addictive in the best way.

Whilst the games DLC strategy is a little frustrating, the game itself has been a mainstay in my PS4 since it’s purchase. Guitar Hero Live fills a similar role to that of Rocket League in that it scratches that competitive itch without asking too much of my brain.

I’ll likely never be very good at Guitar Hero, but it does what it needs to do perfectly, and for a game series we figured we’d seen the last of, I don’t think that’s all that bad.

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Ryse: Son of Rome – PC

I think we as a community need to sit down and talk about Ryse: Son of Rome. A game that in my opinion has been unfairly maligned for being nothing more than a QTE laden cut-scene. This simply isn’t the case.

Ryse does certainly have an awful lot of QTE’s, but it’s far from the only thing going on here. Firstly the game’s setting is almost entirely it’s own. When was the last time we saw a big-budget game set in ancient Rome? Give me more of this guys.

Secondly, man this game looks sexy on a decent PC. I can’t speak to the Xbox version, but this might be one of the better looking games I’ve ever played. Character models all look fantastic, the lighting is on point and the facial animation combine to create a fully realized world.

I guess I should say something about the combat. Yes, it’s almost entirely done by pressing a combination of QTE’s. However, I don’t think it’s as tedious as some would have you believe.

If you get a chance to play Ryse, give it a look. It’s not the steaming pile of boredom that people make out, and who knows, you might even enjoy it.

 

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Hard West – PC

With news that XCOM 2 would be delayed until February 2016, we needed something to fill the void. Up stepped Hard West; XCOM meets Red Dead Redemption with a sprinkling of the supernatural about it.

My initial impressions were positive. The game plays well enough, although unlike XCOM it’s almost entirely gun-play based, and the gun-play itself is a little tiresome at times.

I’ll be honest with you, Hard West is still in my ‘To-Do’ list. I put about 5 hours into the game before deciding I needed a change of pace and jumped head-first into Mad Max. However I plan on going back at some point in the near future.

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Rocket League: Snow Day – PS4

You know how the entire theme of this blog is basically Ice Hockey and Video Games? Well they’ve only gone and put an Ice Hockey mode into one of my favourite Video Games.

Snow Day is the only mode of Rocket League I bother with anymore. It’s the perfect video game.

 

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