Average User Score: 4.4May 21, 2015I picked up NG3 expecting to have a similar frustrating experience at my own failure to do something (i.e. not being "ninja" enough) as I didI picked up NG3 expecting to have a similar frustrating experience at my own failure to do something (i.e. not being "ninja" enough) as I did back in Ninja Gaiden 2 (still haven't finished it on Path of the Acolyte because the game is *that friggin' hard*...and because of not being ninja enough). Here, the entire experience is, as everyone has said, incredibly dumbed down. What happened to chopping off limbs and heads? What happened to the level of ultra violence that was present in past games that the series was known for? What happened to the tight responsiveness of fluid combat present in Ninja Gaiden 2? All these questions can be summed up with one answer: they've all been cut out.
In Ninja Gaiden 2, I've rarely had to yell my lungs out at the screen in frustration due to getting killed by the same attack I keep failing to dodge "that one time." Here in Ninja Gaiden 3, I've been repeatedly yelling again and again and again at getting hit by a myriad of attacks without being able to effectively dodge them. Case in point: boss battles. One of the worst offenders in this game are the barrages of homing missiles. These attacks in particular fake the difficulty by giving you a slew of exploding projectiles that are nigh impossible to escape from without a scratch. On top of that, the variety has been cut out, both in weapons and ninpo.
After all that's been said and done, Ninja Gaiden 3 is supposed to be fun; it clearly isn't. It's a humongous disappointment. Play it if you want, but my advice is to simply skip it.… Expand
Average User Score: 6.6Apr 7, 2015I've kept watch on the game's development since the day they announced. I've also taken part in both stages of beta (getting into the gameI've kept watch on the game's development since the day they announced. I've also taken part in both stages of beta (getting into the game during the very second week of closed beta; this was May 2013) and what I've seen over the years has been a series of ups and downs.
First, the ups. The concept is absolutely amazing and fresh. I can't think of any other time that superheroes were adapted into a MOBA, and DC Comics is just *rife* with characters to adapt into the game, along with their Elseworlds counterparts. You can play as the classic Batman, but how about a steampunk Batman that uses sound-based pistols? Or a vampire Batman as seen in Red Rain? There's also the fresh concept of having the game based around a two-lane map, which makes for different variations of play for a five-man team instead of using the same old formula that's been done again and again with a three-lane map. Oh, don't get me wrong, there is a three-lane map, but the general consensus has been that using a three-lane map is a tired concept from Defense of the Ancients 2 (Dota 2) and League of Legends. The champion kits are uniquely designed so that you can see the style of each hero or villain as you play them.
Now come the downs. There are several bugs with the in-game audio. On the main map, there comes a point where one of the major objectives activates which fails to clear the sound muffling after it happens. Further matches stacks the muffling until the audio cuts out altogether. Fortunately, this kind of issue only happens when you play match after match after match on the same map (Coast City Marina), and it can be cleared by restarting the client. The community has some rude people that have something to prove, and their rude behavior doesn't help their cause at all. These same kind of people are the same kind found in League of Legends who are trigger-happy in reporting people for "intentionally" feeding the other team instead of working with them.
Despite the bugs and already signs of a toxic portion of the community, the game did just release on Steam, so Turbine does have kinks to work out and more champions to add. Until then, the game's incredibly fun to play and is a far cry better than Marvel's Diablo-like MMORPG (where you can have fifty Hulks in a team instead of making a unique hero of your own).… Expand
Average User Score: 7.9Feb 26, 2014This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The two biggest issues with this game are the QTEs (you come to know me as harboring a fierce hatred for QTEs in general, as they dumb down combat) and the camera. The final boss fight involves a series of QTEs to kill him once and for all, and they absolutely *must* be done within a fraction of a second to do it properly. Even when I pressed Shift to use Blade Mode correctly and on time, the game still punished me as being not quick enough and I lose 25% of my HP. The camera hardly faces the direction you want to, making the fight even more difficult to go through. I could tolerate the level of unfairness in the combat mechanics to a certain degree but the final boss fight was the last straw. The game worked and the story was okay at best, but the QTEs and sloppy camera really put me off. I'd say it's worth checking out if you're a fan of Metal Gear and/or Devil May Cry, but ultimately the issues with this game will piss you off as much as it has done to me (and I was playing on Normal). Otherwise, I recommend skipping it altogether.… Expand
Average User Score: 4.8Dec 17, 2013If there is any word I would sum up this game with it would be "over-hyped." Every single CoDfish that drools over this game are eitherIf there is any word I would sum up this game with it would be "over-hyped." Every single CoDfish that drools over this game are either stupid or zealous fanboys. The game itself is merely a cut-and-paste version of Black Ops and, for the most part, the entire Modern Warfare series.
First off, there's the campaign. Somehow I finally managed to work up the courage to play the damn game, since I played World At War a couple months back. I usually play games for their story and in my honest opinion, the story for this game is absolute garbage. The plot twists were horribly predictable and, despite the very few choices you actually get to make in the game, it feels like many of the crap you get put through is just scripted to happen. The plot is some B-movie story that any idiot writer in Hollow-wood could come up with. The story is so convoluted that it ends up being laughable at how poorly it was written.
The mechanics are downright awful. Like most CoD games I've played, oftentimes the enemies will hit you cheaply. I mean, you're supposed to be a damn SEAL, whose fighting reflexes are supposed to be good. Instead every melee shot requires a brief "cooldown" before you can swing again. Meanwhile, the enemy you're fighting against swings again and again in no time at all (for every one swing you get, the enemy throws *at least* two, usually resulting in a very cheap death). And don't get me started on the same stupid thing that Treyarch just loves to put in that every serious gamer absolutely despises: infinite spawners. This means that enemies will just keep coming endlessly until you're able to actually push through the area (running very low on ammo in the process), and when you pass the area, the enemies just suddenly stop. Infinite spawners are just a cheap way to keep the player "entertained" while doing more cut-and-paste AI bulls*** in the next area. At one point, I even found that a simple jump across a space to an open balcony seemed simple enough if I sprinted the gap. However, I somehow fell short every damn time until I did a regular jump across, which somehow did the trick (I mean REALLY?!?! I couldn't make the jump with a faster sprint-jump?!?! I raged so hard at this obviously-scripted point).
Multiplayer. Hate it. Cut-and-paste Modern Warfare. No skill using weapons that are already stabilized for you. That's all I have to say.
All in all, Black Ops II is a game that was overly hyped with almost no difference between Modern Warfare and Black Ops. I won't be surprised if Ghosts turns out to be more of the same cut-and-paste drivel that Treyarch calls a "much-improved sequel." Just quit lying to us and admit that your modern-era CoD games are all pretty much the same game wearing different skins. Verdict: skip it unless you're an easily-fooled, diehard CoDfish.… Expand
Average User Score: 8.5Aug 19, 2013I first caught wind of this peculiar game when I briefly worked for a small-time website. I decided to look into it for myself about the gameI first caught wind of this peculiar game when I briefly worked for a small-time website. I decided to look into it for myself about the game and I was impressed by its concept.
Being a checkpoint officer looking at a bunch of immigration documents may seem like it's boring work, but throw in the constant threat of terrorists looking to breach the safety of the wall, coupled with the fact that you have a large family to look after (seeing as how you're the only breadwinner), makes for an unforgettable experience. Trying to follow protocol as quickly and as accurately as possible is much harder than it looks, as your superiors are constantly monitoring your work. For example, the lady you just stamped a visa for had as minor a detail as the wrong gender on her passport. Of course, practice makes (almost) perfect; some days you can get through without a hitch, others you missed a slight detail or two.
The concept is well-built into the story. Especially with a guy named Jorji. Once you've played through it, you'll come to like Jorji as I have. Developer Lucas Pope made a fantastic game and I'll be sure to keep a watch for more title from him.… Expand
Average User Score: 5.5Apr 25, 2013I wasn't sure what to expect when I was first introduced to League of Legends about a year and a half ago. At first, I thought the play styleI wasn't sure what to expect when I was first introduced to League of Legends about a year and a half ago. At first, I thought the play style was bit weird and my brother let me play on his account for a while until I made my own account. This was my initiation into the MOBA world. After gaining a lot of experience with MOBAs through League of Legends, here is my assessment of the game:
Visuals Anyone who slams League of Legends because of the graphics should go look up the term "cel-shaded" because that is exactly how the game is supposed to look. The simpler style of cel-shading allows Riot more free range on the gameplay without being overly taxing on the average gamer's graphics card. Besides all of that, I personally think the graphics give a good presentation. What I wish Riot would do is update the look of a champion every time the splash art changes. I see a number of champions who look exactly like their old splash arts even though there are a number of distinct differences between the texture of the sprite and the design of the splash art representing the champion (e.g. Amumu and Ezreal). I'm keeping in mind the complexity and time required to do so, but it still wouldn't hurt to make a few updates to a champion's texture model as their artwork evolves.
Gameplay MOBAs can be difficult to pick up for gamers who are relatively new to action-RTS types of games like League of Legends. However, since Riot designed the game to be more casual than some of its competing games, it is more newbie-friendly than most. The tutorial also points freshmen players in the right direction in terms of basic strategy and the building of items in a particular set.
Sound The sounds of the game are very well-timed, except there are some instances where some sound clips play out despite the ability getting interrupted part-way.
Ranked Ever since Riot Games mostly abandoned the Elo system in favor of a new league system. Instead of having one giant ladder, players were divided up in groups and placed in different leagues (complete with five divisions each of varying levels) according to their evaluated skill level. Frankly, the advancement is a joke. Supposedly, the "league points" are divided and distributed based on the team's overall skill level and whether they win or lose. However, in the lower-level leagues it is far easier to lose points than to gain them. Players on the forums have repeatedly complained about progression slowing to a crawl while penalties are unfairly large for losses. I'd hate to say it, but I agree with them. It makes no sense to progress through the ranks if progression slows down while ascending the ladder, especially so if rewards pay out the bare minimum for wins (i.e. one or two league points) for higher-ranked players while penalties grow abnormally large (e.g. 20-25 points per loss). Despite the league system still being fairly new, it still suffers from the same problem the old Elo-based ladder had: lack of motivation. Players felt like they weren't progressing on the old ladder due to the large number of players on one ladder. Even though climbing the ladder is somewhat easier under the new system, several hours or days of progress can still be undone with simply one or two losses, thus defeating the motivation to progress. Although Riot's best intentions for the ranked system was meant to encourage solo players, the ladders as a whole still favor pre-made teams.
Balancing Balancing the game is tough work. Just ask the guys at Blizzard Entertainment. :D But seriously, the balancing seems a bit unfair for lower-level players, as it appears that the balancing among champions only come by way of internal testing and feedback from the best professional players around the world. Still, it's better than next to no balancing at all (like Heroes of Newerth). Some champions that many players believe have too much power are either left alone or have superficial nerfs while retaining their overall level of power.
Overall, League of Legends is one of the best experiences in online gaming that I've had (and sometimes the most rage-inducing frustration, but that's eSports for you). It's not perfect, but the game has its merits. Plus, League of Legends boasts the largest number of active players in the world. Not bad for a computer game that's only been out for less than five years.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.9Apr 25, 2013This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I will admit, when it comes to StarCraft, I am biased towards the Terrans (human power for the win!), so I loved the new tech tree for the Terrans. The campaign for Wings of Liberty was also very well written, coming off in the same Firefly-style presentation. While Jim Raynor's group is still fighting a war unlike Malcolm Reynolds' crew, they're still in the same position: limited resources. The final bug payoff was saving his girlfriend, Sarah Kerrigan, from the clutches of the Zerg and turning her human again.
When Heart of the Swarm was released, I got my hands on it as soon as possible to see how the story continued. Kerrigan still maintains a level of dominant control over some Zerg but her power is greatly weakened because she's human again. The tutorial was simple (yay) and the addition of hotkeys helped access the hero's abilites quicker (double yay). The Zerg may be complex at first for non-native Zerg users like me, but once you get the hang of the mechanics, they're pretty easy to play. I played the game for several hours, completely immersed in the storyline...until one fateful moment in the game changed that.
After being deceived by the Dominion that Raynor had been killed, Kerrigan goes about the sector regaining control over the Swarm until she heads to the true Zerg homeworld, outside of Terran space. Here she learns that the original primal Zerg have no psi ability whatsoever (and thus no connection) and live in pack through domination. It is here that Kerrigan decides to re-infest herself and return as the Queen of Blades once more, pretty much giving a giant middle finger to everything that Raynor (and the player) did in Wing of Liberty. Except here's the catch: the old Queen of Blades was controlled by a fallen Xel'Naga, whose name is revealed as Amon. He wants to return to the galaxy and wipe every living being from existence, and he was using Kerrigan and the Swarm to do it. That is, up until Raynor's use of the Xel'Naga artifact severed her connection to Amon. Thus Kerrigan, after re-infesting herself, is still pretty much herself after becoming the Queen of Blades once again. I *hated* that writing, but at the same time, the player realizes that Kerrigan was right. In order to face Amon by the time he returns, she needed to re-assume her identity as the Queen of Blades. The best part of Heart of the Swarm was the conclusion. After assaulting Korhal with the combined forces of Kerrigan's Zerg and Raynor's Raiders, Kerrigan finally confronts Mengsk face-to-face. In one last plot twist, HE HAS THE FREAKING ARTIFACT!! The lying scumbag uses the artifact to torture and weaken Kerrigan. I honestly thought that Megsk would have the last laugh up until Jim reaches through the busted door to destroy the detonator operating the artifact. With no tricks up his sleeve left, Mengsk finally got was what was coming to him and dies (after four games, too). I *will* say that the final battle was a bit disappointing, however. Compared to the finale of Wings of Liberty, this one was pretty easy on Normal. I can't even beat Wings of Liberty on Normal, despite Terrans being my strongest race! (DISCLAIMER: I do not play StarCraft II on multiplayer, so my skill reflects how casually I play the game) In terms of new units, there's not a whole lot to offer. Sure each faction has a couple of new tricks, but that's just it. The addition of only two or three new units per faction really drives home the "expansion" point while the overall game feels a bit like a standalone sequel otherwise. I'm not exactly sure what to expect with Legacy of the Void, but I sure hope Blizzard can pull off a story as grand as Wings of Liberty. Given that it's just the second and final expansion, though, I hate to say that I'm not expecting a whole lot.. Overall, StarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm is a great continuation of the story and game I personally enjoyed.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.3Apr 3, 2013This is an updated review after I had originally written some scathing criticisms about Heroes of Newerth.
Since writing my originalThis is an updated review after I had originally written some scathing criticisms about Heroes of Newerth.
Since writing my original review, I discovered that the game was updated a few months ago with bots and other improvements. The addition of bots piqued my interest and I downloaded Heroes of Newerth again. I was actually quite impressed with the changes that adding bots did to the game. Although there were still a lot of rude people (mostly from Europe, therefore I permanently avoided using those servers after games with guys who cussed repeatedly over the voice chat at mistakes teammates made), I enjoyed the updated tutorial (thank goodness!) which better introduced me to the game than the original did last summer. I also liked the AI of the bots to a certain extent. The number of bots are very limited. Developer S2 only made a handful of bots internally, leaving the rest of the bots for the community to create. Other than that, predicting the bots' behavior after a few rounds helped me settle into the steep learning curve a lot easier than the first time I played. Since Co-op vs. AI was added, the player community overall improved a lot, especially after I learned that vote-kicking outright was replaced with vote-kicking AFK players only.
However, I still have some issues with the game. I've been playing off and on for a few weeks now and I noticed something that the game lacks, and that is balancing. Every single update that comes out, there is only the cosmetic bug fixes to some heroes so their abilities respond better, but overall, I've seen absolutely no hero balancing whatsoever. Therefore, a hero that's fed early can snowball out of control very easily and single-handedly fend off the entire enemy team (or kill them within a second as soon as they spawn at the fountain). Not even the champions of League of Legends can do this sort of slaughter! It's ridiculous.
Overall, the bots (and a friendly player) brought me back into the game. While it's still not a cakewalk for new players to pick up the game, the overhauled tutorial and new bots will still help rookies get familiar with the game. I'd still recommend League of Legends over Heroes of Newerth due partially to the lack of hero balancing but if you can grasp the mechanics quickly, the game is a fun, fast-paced alternative MOBA to play if you're looking for something new.… Expand
Average User Score: 6.2Apr 2, 2013I enjoyed the expansive universe and the varied missions, as well as the different officers you could have. Basically you could be whoeverI enjoyed the expansive universe and the varied missions, as well as the different officers you could have. Basically you could be whoever you wished in Starfleet or the Klingon Empire. Another plus is how the story unfolds in "episodes" over an entire arc involving one enemy race as the primary antagonist, the game's equivalent to a regular season. However, the combat suffers from the same repetitive tactics in every single mission/episode. The biggest frustrations came from battling the Romulans. Every single space battle that happens, the Romulan ships always pull the cheapest maneuvers to instantly destroy your starship, the most used one being where the Romulans hold your ship still with a tractor beam before unloading a massive volley of heavy plasma torpedoes that quickly overload your shields and destroy your ship in one shot. That would be fine if they used it a few times, but the AI seeks to *abuse* that tactic as much as possible in every single mission's space battle (all within the Romulan "season"), causing the mission to be nearly impossible to complete even though the difficulty of the mission is the same as the level your character is at when you attempt it. The ground battles are nearly the opposite. The ground missions are generally very, very easy compared to the space battles if your away team has good synergy between the skills you've given them to use in battle.
Another issue I have is the exploration. Whenever I'm between missions, I wanted to explore some random world to feel like a true explorer, as was promised from the first looks of the game prior to its release. Instead, I'm forced to stay in space to either 1) run an errand for a new race, 2) fight a battle, or 3) answer a distress call. Afterwards, there isn't even an option to explore the world, at least as far as I knew after scanning the entire UI for the option.
So, here is the bottom line.
+ huge universe to explore
+ visiting familiar places from all of the TV series before Enterprise
+ varied missions
+ the TV-series-like feel of the story missions
Cons (in minuses):
- AI repeatedly abusing cheap maneuvers in space battles to get insta-kills
- ground battles are too easy in comparison to space battles (PvE)
- no option to explore random worlds
The abusive AI in the PvE space battles were way too much for me to continue playing the game any further and I stopped playing. If I ever go back to it, I hope the AI has been improved to where they stop spamming the same one-shot-kill tactic in every single space battle (as the Romulans).… Expand
Average User Score: 8.5Mar 12, 2013This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I drained a lot of time into this game because the story was engaging. Like reading a good book for the first time, I wanted to keep going to find out where it all ends. The Tomb Raider series has always dabbled in the supernatural and this one is no different. Instead of some South or Central American ruin, this franchise prequel take us to the Asian version of the Bermuda Triangle (the Dragon's Triangle in the game) south of Japan. The scenery is beautiful and the environment is a bit reminiscent of the Lingshan Islands from Crysis. The controls functioned well, although there were times where they inevitably ran into a problem or two. Most of the functionality of the game (i.e. scenery, controls, story) was solid, making Tomb Raider a huge hit from Crystal Dynamics. This was a great telling of how young Lara Croft goes from young archaeologist fresh out of college to a hardened survivor. However, I do have some complaints about some of the game's features that are pretty much never needed in an action game: quick-time events and button mashers. The quick-time events, while some are to be expected, are kind of unnecessary. It's understandable that they're meant to simulate reflexes, but they're always done exactly the same way. Just when you're ready to sit back and watch a cutscene, a quick-time event appears. And usually paired with these QTEs comes the frustrating button-mash events. I have yet to see a need for button mashing in an action game. The reason why I think button-mashers are the worst feature for any action game is because they feel out of place, not to mention the irritation at mashing your best just to fail. A prime example of this is towards the beginning when Lara is wrestling with a large wolf. The first thing you have to do is to mash the left and right buttons to push it off. I've died at least *eight times* mashing like crazy only to have the wolf chomp on Lara's throat and kill her. Then after a couple QTE prompts, you have to mash the E key to repeatedly stab the wolf with an arrow; if you don't, the wolf bites Lara's neck and she dies (same death scene if you fail the first button-mashing event). The times when I had to mash buttons during a life-or-death scene really pissed me off the most during the course of the game. Another thing that doesn't make sense is the end boss. More often than not, it's some guy that somehow never gets shot until the final battle, and even then he takes hits like he's no stranger to getting shot and stabbed in vital areas of the body, and even then it takes *forever* for him to die. I can understand him taking about five or six bullets and not dying right away, but tanking at least twelve while he's casually loading shotgun is just ridiculous and unrealistic. Aside from all of these problems, as well as some other minor glitches, the game was a good experience and one that I'd certainly recommend.… Expand