2011 VGA Recap

12 12 2011

In cased you missed it, the Spike VGA’s were last Saturday.  I don’t want to hype them up or tear them down but, I don’t really care about them.  In fact, I don’t care about any awards shows.  They never seem to have the same taste in entertainment as I do, so I disregard them.  This years VGA’s had some improvements over last years, Zach Levi is no NPH, but you could tell he certainly had some interests in video games.  But let’s face it, the VGA’s are a time for larger game companies to show their grand accomplishments and “latest and greatest” trailers.  I’m not complaining, I ate up the Mass Effect 3 and Metal Gear Rising trailers like krispy kreme kreme straight off the conveyor belt.  But for you, I did pick some of my favorite videos and compiled a convenient list here for your viewing pleasure:

Reapers Attack in the new VGA Mass Effect 3 trailer

“Sorry” Kojima, Metal Gear Rising looks bad ass

What is “The Last of Us”?

Alan Wake and Agent Cooper

Bioshock: Infinite brings eariness to the skies

And for those of you who do care Skyrim won Game of the Year and Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 won Best Shooter.  I don’t really agree with either of those, but more so on the side of MW3.  That’s why I tend to sway away from these award shows.  Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception took Best PS3 game while Batman: Arkham City rightfully won Best Xbox 360 game.  Portal 2 didn’t take home enough awards but was able to snag the Best PC Game category.   

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What is “The Last of Us”

11 12 2011

Mass Effect 3, Metal Gear Rising, Bioshock: Infinite and Alan Wake all made impressive appearances at this years VGA’s.  But none of them matched the buzz and excitement around Naughty Dog’s new Playstation 3 exclusive, The Last of Us.

Even with this stunning trailer, that Naughty Dog’s c0-president claims is all in-engine, nothing much is known about this title.  Everything is speculation and rumors at this point.  No release date or even release windows are known.  In the trailer we don’t know what city it takes place in.  We don’t know who Ellie, the young teenage girl seen, described as “wise beyond her years”, is.  We don’t know what her relationship is with Joel, the protagonist male who’s a “ruthless survivor”.  We really don’t even know how they became “survivors” and what they are “surviving” from.

All we have is speculation, and I’m going to speculate the hell out of this 2 minute trailer.  From the looks of the city, whatever “epidemic” that has plagued the human race has been going on for a very long time.  Ellie seems very confident and non shelant when she’s searching dead humans and defending herself against whatever mutated monsters are attacking her, suggesting she’s been in the shit for most of her life.  The monsters don’t seem to be as much zombie as they appear much more like the “Rage” infected from 28 Days Later.  It’s assumed that The Last of Us will run on the same engine as Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, and I’m going to boldly say right now, with two protagonists it’s very likely that this game will support co-op play.

With Playstation’s full support and Naughty Dog taking hold of the reins, The Last of Us is already on it’s way to being a very successful venture.  Whether it goes in the direction of Dead Island, Uncharted or Resident Evil, The Last of Us could possibly do no wrong.  But I’m trying to contain my excitement for now until more steadfast information is released.

Video is compliments of GameTrailers.

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Uncharted 3 Does Great Things with the Hand it’s Dealt

7 11 2011

Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception Review

With two previous stellar titles Naughty Dog was tasked to finish yet another great Uncharted title.  Easily one of the more anticipated titles of the year, Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception meets all expectations.  I’ll cut to the chase and admit right now this game scores an “A”, but it isn’t perfect.  It just does some things well, and a lot of things right.  The “Uncharted” series has always been known for great stories, strong action, and beautiful graphics.  So, combine the last two “Uncharted”s, then add improvements to everything, bake them at 350 and voila, Uncharted 3.

I really could have just began this review with, “my Fiance wants to actually watch me play Uncharted 3 and is bummed when she misses parts of the story”, so you know it has to be good.  That’s “Uncharted’s” strong point.  Beyond  the insane graphics, which I swear are the best I’ve seen in any game to date, the story continues to be interesting and never stagnant.  Who’s writing this stuff?  The main story is exciting, but the small interactions and side conversations between each character are both thought provoking and intriguing.  *SPOILERS* Chloe and Sully fist bump, Sully and Drake holding hands, and Drake saying “sorry” to Elana after lightly touching her wedding ring were so emotionally touching to me.  Those little things, such attention to the smallest detail is what makes Uncharted 3 such a great title.  It makes me feel the care and compassion that the Naughty Dog team puts into this series.

Let’s put stellar graphics and an amazing story aside, how are the games mechanics?  The mechanics are solid, “Uncharted” continues to pull you through each chapter by gently leading you in the right direction, and sends in a heavy dose of enemies to face throughout each one.  I found myself doing something more in Uncharted 3 than it’s predecessors, hand to hand combat.  For some strange reason the enemy AI in Uncharted 3 is either unintelligent, or crazy, because they all want to run up to you and box.  In many fire fights I was pulled out of cover to battle two goons who literally ran up to me for a punch in the face.  And the hand to hand combat isn’t “Uncharted’s” strong point, previously finishing the incredibly smooth combat system of Batman: Arkham City left “Uncharted” looking smooth, but feeling clunky and slow.  The stealth could use some work also, Drake is apparently bright and noisy because I couldn’t sneak past more than a few enemies at a time. It’s fine, just don’t expect to be Solid Snake.  All of those mechanics together work, I enjoyed using every weapon, and the combat although being clunky, still functioned properly with no hangups.

Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception is an emotional thrill ride.  It’s the movie you wish they would make.  History, murder, narrow escapes, mystery, villains, and endless action make it very difficult to put the controller down.  Naughty Dog has created an incredible title that is emotionally genuine.  I don’t think I’ve ever felt so deeply connected to any characters in any other game.  Seeing how Nathan and Sully began made their friendship even that much more special to me, and then Naughty Dog had to go tug at my heart strings with the relationship between Elena and Nathan.  I was always at the edge of my seat, and for that, Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception, I applaud you.

“Responsibility is doing great things with the hand you’re dealt.” –  Victor “Sully” Sullivan (I think that’s how it went)

Uncharted 3: Drake’s Deception scores an A.





Uncharted 3 multiplayer Beta

1 07 2011

Managed to get myself into the Uncharted 3 multiplayer Beta.  I was forced to accept a contract of privacy agreements, so I’m really not too sure what I can talk about.  All I know is, they make it very clear not to slander a “game under construction”, and not to talk directly to third party publishers.  I plan to do neither of those things, but I thought I would give you at least some details into Uncharted 3’s multiplayer.

I’ll start by saying the beta is very basic.  At this time the four game types are: Team Deathmatch, Co Op, Hardcore, and Three Team deathmatch.  These types will change systematically over time.  You choose a hero and a villain, customize 4 load outs with a main weapon, pistol, grenade type, and 2 special perks.  You earn perks from medals, and use $, earned through matches, on weapons and add-ons.  I’ve played 2 maps so far, and each map had similar feels to Uncharted 2’s, except one, Airstrip. Airstrip does something very creative.  It starts you on the tarmac with a plane taking off, then lands you in the actually map.  Mechanics are solid so far, just learn to roll a lot to dodge bullets, hang from ledges to sneak up on people, the normal things that make the Uncharted 3 multiplayer feel like the single player experience.

I’ll keep you updated with anything new that comes up, that I can divulge anyway.  Keep posted, should have something new after the 4th.