Average User Score: 7.6Oct 3, 2012Ahh Max Payne, too long it has been since we had a fresh installment but like Hitman Absolution that is coming out this year it is great toAhh Max Payne, too long it has been since we had a fresh installment but like Hitman Absolution that is coming out this year it is great to have a new title in the series. Infact Hitman blood Money & Max Payne 2 are games I so enjoyed they have become mainstays in my games library and I go back to them a few times a year to blast through certain sections again.
Max Payne 3 is a worth addition to the series, however despite its amazing graphics and decent story I dont think it managed to surpass Max Payne 2 overall.
Graphically the game is incredible and the setting is quite good though I enjoyed the Seedy Favelas and the flashbacks to events in the USA most of all. Max Payne was always about gitty urban environments something that seems to have been a little lost in MP3. The Shooter mechanics I found suffered a little in this outting also. A cover mechanic was added which I found added little to the game and I found flind fire mostly worthless as it was innaccurate and did not deter the AI or force them into cover at all thus of no use to open up opportunities to move from cover to cover. The addition of this new mechanic also detracts from what made MP1 and 2 so great which is bullet time. Compounding this Bullet time no longer slowly recharges on its own (unless that was just a result of the difficulty i was playing on) as it did in the previous games but must be replenished by killing enemies.
As a result this made the gameplay experience feel slower and less like the john woo films the first two games were modelled after. Also slowing the game down even more were the custcenes. is the story good ? yes do the custscenes tell it well ? yes did we need cutscenes so frequently ? no did we need all of the cutscenes ? no like a good film some scenes would be better off left on the cutting room floor and a lot of the internal dialogue could have been conducted while roaming the levels instead of as fixed cutscenes.
Some of the fights are rediculous with waves and waves of bad guys throwing themselves at you and just trying to overwhelm you with sheer numbers which in a half a dozen sequences they irritatingly will over & over again until you get lucky and manage to get through.
Overall I enjoyed the single player experience. Multiplayer is interesting but the community is quite small and game hard to find in my experience. The other game modes are fun for a while but it doesnt last and there are really no particular missions from the main game I find myself wanting to go back and play more than once or twice and I put this down to the new way bullet time charges itself and the fact the game is designed around more cover based shooting now.
Worth a look but I still think Max Payne 2 is the best of the series thus far.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.5Oct 3, 2012My first play experience with Blacklight was not great. I was left wondering is this pay to win or what ? I wont say I am a tournament winningMy first play experience with Blacklight was not great. I was left wondering is this pay to win or what ? I wont say I am a tournament winning Ace in the Shooter department but Im no slouch either, Im emptying clips into folks from the standard rifle using controled bursts and then getting seemingly 2-3 shotted by opponents who have upgraded weapons. When it shows the killcam I can see their health is almost gone & when im firing I see the redbox registering hits but so often this happens where they seem to pip me at the post. To win 1 on 1's i generally have to be behind someone on get a headshot in the opening exchange.
In any case upon further playing I retracted previous statements about being pay 2 win.
Apparently I was playing on the non level restricted servers, instead I should have stayed on the "Proving grounds" set of servers for players level 1-10. Having tried the level restricted servers I found it was actually pretty good fun, sure the odd person has slapped down RMT and bought something a little overwhelming but not many. The Default Assault Rifle Reciever with a couple of 3800GP (GP being Game Points earned ingame) modifications is actually really good and premade weapons of other types can be rented for as little as 200 GP a day (thats just a little less than 2 full matches worth of GP).
In any case Skill does come back into play and the Counterstrike Style per match unlocks are good fun, i particularly like the flamethrower & hardsuit which is kinda like the Mech in District 9.
I am out of the Proving Grounds now (locks you out at level 11) and have earned enough GP for a couple decent weapon upgrades for my A/R and managed to get some items from the free offers around the net. More than enough to hold my own against hgih levels in the open matches now. Worth a look if you can get it working, but it does have some technical issues. When you run the launcher and it starts to patch (particularly the very first time you run the patcher) just leave it running. The progress bar wont update until it gets to like 90%+ or if it does it will show like 3% then no movement till its finished, which is what it did to me. If it cant patch it actually returns an error fairly quickly, I left mine patching overnight when I first installed.… Expand
Average User Score: 8.1Oct 3, 2012Fun but repetitive, may be best played in short bursts. Once you have seen what each trap/attack does to each type of enemy it gets a littleFun but repetitive, may be best played in short bursts. Once you have seen what each trap/attack does to each type of enemy it gets a little boring. The enemies themselves are not very varied either. Replayability is really lacking unless you really love beating your friends scores, in this respect the game is sorely missing Co-op mode something which has been addressed in the sequel. But for the Price of admission its a decent casual single player game to while away some time.… Expand
Average User Score: 5.4Oct 3, 2012This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I must confess to being very dissapointed with Halo when I finally got it on Xbox all those years ago. It was an xbox exclusive, a game that had originally been planned for PC release and was going to be a large open world game where as the masterchief you roamed the Halo hooking up with ragtag bands of marines and took the fight to covenant while trying to uncover the secrets of the halo, no 2 playthroughs would play the same if you made different decisions and they even hinted at allowing "drop in" co-op in the early interviews.
What we got was fairly much that story but on rails and towards the third quarter of the game it was quite repetitive. Sure it had all the beauty we knew to expect from the early videos but the single player was just... ok. Co-op was great fun 2 plyayer on xbox and if not for that I probably never would have completed the game on the console.
Then halo 2 arrived and it started off very cool, it let you play as the MasterChief to begin with fighting the covenant on earth in some very memorable battles. Then you got to play as the fallen Arbiter on the Covenant side which was also cool.
Here the game took a turn for the worse, back in the master chiefs shoes you are transported to another halo like the first one... ugh. It was at this point in H2 on xbox that I stopped playing, recalling how horribly repetitive the areas in the later halo game had been. Being that I do not like the concept of paying my ISP and then paying for Xboxlive service I never took either game online.
Since then Halo 1 came to PC and was since upgraded to Halo CE or the Halo Custom Edition which is a lot of fun, the fact that the CE allows custom maps and mods (theres even a halo 2 weapon mod and the community is still active with new maps) has kept it alive far past where I though it would exist and the Vs gameplay with vehicles is actually a lot of fun.
Eventually Halo2 also appeared on PC but only for Vista users. I bought it a year or two back for about $10 in the clearance bin at JB Hifi alongside copies of Shadowrun (that other Vista only games for windows launch title) with the intent of seeing if the online community was any good for it. I installed it and sat down to play a little single player to tweak my settings and get a feel for the weapons.....
OMFG the mouse even at speed 10 (Max) felt like I was trying to turn in a tub of concrete, keyboard was permenantly mapped and you couldnt edit it (not a big deal I guess if you like WASD standard settings) and general game performance was pretty lousy. I stopped playing the game but didnt uninstall it.
Recently I was reading some gufff about the next Halo installment in passing & one of the user comments was that Halo 2 is hard to surpass as the best of the series which I found surprising, more surprising were other comments by quite a few people who agreed that Halo 2 was the best of the series thus far. Hmm I thought, maybe I should give it another chance ? ugh but the controls were horrible and the game performance terrible.... well sort of.
After a bunch of tweaking in nvidia control panel & maxing out all my halo 2 graphics options the mouse is actually quite responsive and the gameplay not choppy. Turns out the game tries to limit itself to 30fps capped, if your system exceeds this (especially if you have vsynch off and are pre-rendering frames) then the game starts dropping frames which makes it look choppy and interferes with your mouse control. long story short I am 90% happy with how it feels now.
So I played through the first Masterchief section & the Arbiter section, and arrive back on the fourth Halo where I abandoned the game on xbox. Oh dear how wrong I was, after a slightly slow start to this section there are some extremely exciting shootouts and vehicle gameplay to enjoy. The environments look a little dated (low res textures by todays standards) but the player/creature/vehicle models were always incredibly detailed in the halo games & got a lot of love to the point they still look exceptional IMHO.
My recommendation, if you havent tried Halo 2 on PC and you can find it someplace cheap grab it. The Story and single player gameplay are well worth it (sadly no co-op in PC version), multiplayer seems dead with Halo CE being the far more active title for multiplayer (no doubt due to the modding options). That said the Ingle Player portion of Halo 2 is really good and worth a look for FPS fans, though I am not sure how available it is in 2012, a recent stroll through some local games retailers showed me they are still stocking Halo (probably because people need the game keys for Halo CE) for PC but no sign of Halo 2.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.4Oct 3, 2012I Got the boxed retail copy of this on release day installed and registered on steam, I actually tried multiplayer first and well.... letsI Got the boxed retail copy of this on release day installed and registered on steam, I actually tried multiplayer first and well.... lets just say I never manged to get to the single player within the first few weeks so I will just review the multi to begin with.
Multiplayer: Um... this is what an infantry based wargame should be all about. Intense firefights where things like picking your spot & useing overlapping fields of fire actually mean something and running off on your own will usually get you mutilated, fortunately VOIP is built into the game itself. before we get to that the mechanics in Multiplayer work differently to single player. Probably the biggest difference is that Armour & health recharge/recover when you are in cover (like most squad based shooters) moving the game to a slighly more strategic cover based shooter.... sort of. We have the fairly standard multiplayer leveling up and unlocking system with their own tweaks and flairs, killstreaks unlock new armour customizations faster and so on. There are 3 classes to choose from and each as their strengths and weakness.
Basically there is something for every occasion and I am sure there is a class there that appeals to everyone, although there is no support class. Thats because ammunition can be picked up from fallen foes and fallen battle brothers alike. At level 4 you unlock the armor customizer (before that you are stuck as an Ultramarine or a default chaos space marine) which lets you pretty much make your marine on either side look however you want using the armor components you unlocked, there are a lot of insignias & loads of colours to choose from and each individual armour piece can be coloured in multiple parts and individual armour pieces changed out as you see fit (so you can have Mk4 armour on 1 leg and Aquila armour on the other leg if you really want for example) they give you 8 slots on each team to make custom looks if you like to switch between them as you see fit & there are also a ton of Space marine chpters with preset armour sets you can then customize ontop of that (first 2 I made were Blood Angels death company and Blood Angels veteran squad armour). The level of customization is impressive and means lots to unlock later on. You can customize the loadouts of the 3 basic class slots & as you unlock the custom slots they let you decide which class to put in each of the 5 custom slots and let you configure the loadouts for each based on the class you picked.
The weapons are fairly balanced although I found the default boltgun felt a bit weak at times in the begining but maybe I just took a while to master it. The unlockable weapons are not really more powerfull just different & usefull in different situations.
It is not another COD or BF game nor is it meant to be, But it does feel like a squad based wargame and everything about it screams epic battles even though you are only playing with 16 people. If you ever played Dawn of war/ DOW 2 and thought "man it would be so awesome to be in that combat in a first/third person shooter" then Relic have granted your wish. Single player: its a gore fest and a lot of fun, the story and gameplay moves along at a breakneck speed for the most part & I found myself pushing further & further to see what would happen next. Around the middle of the game I found it getting repetitive with the same enemies over & over and I was glad when the story finally took a turn and presented new enemies to overcome.
I found the last third or so of the game more challenging and fun although the format of the final boss battle was quite a letdown.
Overall this is a great and while I enjoyed the multiplayer Vs gameplay significantly more the Single player & Co-op postions other people will find the opposite.… Expand
Average User Score: 5.9Oct 3, 2012I forgot to cancell my pre-order in the end but I put a lot of time into the early accessn the better part of 7 days or something.
InI forgot to cancell my pre-order in the end but I put a lot of time into the early accessn the better part of 7 days or something.
1) It really is an unabashed WoW clone and it shows, the gameplay feels dated.
2) Theres nothing specifically bad about the game but there is nothing outstanding either, leaving me indifferent to it.
3) Storylines I tried thus far were poorly paced, dull and predictable. Infact the Bounty hunter one is full of cliches which would be tolerable if they were not such poor representations of the cliches in question. The great soundtrack is not even used to good effect building to dramatic or "tragic" events.
4) Worlds feel dull and lifeless.
5) Everything is on rails, areas have specific paths to your next goal and there is very little "getting off the beaten track" or exploring.
6) Game engine is dated & fairly average, graphics only slightly better than KOTOR & KOTOR2 which are quite old games. This would not be such an issue if the gameplay was not so slow and boring.
7) By level 10 in both Jedi knight & Bounty Hunter I was bored.
8) pacing of the game is quite slow even for an MMO, they really want you to hang around and subscribe as long as possible.
9) You could be forgiven for not realising Bioware made this game, it lacks polish particularly in the storytelling which is what Bioware games are famous for. Quite a dissapointing effort from one of my favourite studios. That said ME2 and DA2 were both had a similar lack of polish & care and i guess early signs that the quality control Bioware was once famous for was fading fast.
10) there are several Free 2 Play MMO's using unknown IP's that I have enjoyed more than this.
I ended up selling my unopened box copy because the game is just plain boring.
Star Wars: The old Republic is Star Wars but mediocre, im not sure even going F2P can save it.… Expand
Average User Score: 3.6Oct 3, 2012I enjoy SMNC as much as I did MNC and even better this is free.
That said my current rating for the game as it stands is: Gameplay 8/10I enjoy SMNC as much as I did MNC and even better this is free.
That said my current rating for the game as it stands is:
My Score as the game stands: 6
There is just a lot of bugs to do with logging in, chat, finding a game, creating a team & getting the team in a game which is why I gave a seperate functionality score. if they can fix all that then 8/10 is what it deserves but right now players waste too much time trying to get into matches which means time spent stuffing about is higher than time spent enjoying matches.… Expand
Average User Score: 5.1Oct 3, 2012RAGE has been out a while now but I only just got to this review in part because I only just dragged myself through it.
Graphics: IDRAGE has been out a while now but I only just got to this review in part because I only just dragged myself through it.
ID Software are known for their graphics engines, first it was Wolf 3D Engine which Lead to Doom Engine which was recycled into Rise of the Triad, Blake Stone and eventually even Duke Nukem and the unforgetable Shadow Warrior. Then came Quake the engine of which was enhanced and used in the sequel and also famously used in Halflife. From there Various Engines came along in the ID tech family leading us to The Engine Rage is designed to show of Known as ID Tech 5 which is quite nice and know available for all Bethesda partners to use but only them. Where the graphics suffer is in that they are designed for Console, interestingly items often look nicer from a distance than up close, good from far but far from good. Up close textures take on a truly grainy horrible appearance which it seems no amount of hours of config tweaking will ever be able to fix. Probably the most Heinous sign of consolification is that within a few seconds of killing a non lootable enemy they magically disappear, giving you little opportunity to take a look at the enemies you face which from the various screenshots around the internet are interesting and very detailed. So I give 8 because of the grainy up close textures and the idiotic decision to remove all bodies.
This is where the game truly does Shine, I found the sounds, ambient effects & music to be excellent and the games use of surround sound is some of the best I have encountered.
While the graphics have come along way from the days of Doom, Sadly the game play has not. In a nutshell this game plays like Doom in a modern engine with slightly upgraded AI (and I do mean slightly) some scripted attack sequences and slightly less flat levels than Doom. Does anyone remember the original team fortress ? It was the first FPS to include head shots, following that was Golden Eye on N64 and for most PC gamers probably their fondest head shot memories came from a little game called SiN ? (or if your younger maybe you discovered the joys of head shots & dismemberment with Soldier of Fortune). In Any case RAGE does not have head shots..... well it does they just don't really do anything. In Rage you you get a head shot and maybe a piece of armor or a hat flies off and an enemy gets stunned a moment then keeps shooting at you having taken no extra damage for the headshot, hello pre-1996 game mechanics... it is not really acceptable IMHO 15 years after head shots became the norm to exclude them from your game. If you don't want them to influence game play heavily then design around it (give enemies head armor to blow off like in Bet on Soldier or something.
In Short there are no head shots and to top this off enemies are simply bullet sponges. The craptastic AI usually marches them straight at you (I played through on Normal difficulty) and the fast enemies who are weaker and like to melee and use heavily scripted climbing & swinging attacks are easily dealt with. In fact once you have the shotgun you can safely complete 98% of the game with just that and buckshot shells, a fact which is very telling. Beyond beating down bullet sponges with Adamantium heads the game usually has you doing mundane things like go through a level, hit a switch to move to next part, pick up a mission item etc. It even does the cheap "close a locked gate behind you and don't open the gate again until you kill all enemies who rush you" mechanic which was also popular in the 90's. The game makes you often backtrack through the same level and sometimes even sends you back to the same level to do something else more mundane than your last visit. There is a crafting component but you wont use it unless you are forced to IE: building certain items to reach gear stashes, building items such as remote control bomb cars to complete objectives only they can reach. There is driving, its nothing to write home about and is more like a mini game than anything.
I found the Story underwhelming, there wasn't much to make me care about anything going on in the world beyond my own survival and you go from average Joe to "The Messiah" in the Blink of an eye. Speaking of Blinking, just when you think the story is getting a tad interesting you blink & the game credits are rolling past & its all over..... The Setting (quite possibly owing partly to the art style) also felt a lot like Borderlands, only borderlands pokes fun at its own attempts at story and concentrated on fun game play instead.
If its a toss up between RAGE and Borderlands (Since they seem so similar) I would go with borderlands over RAGE every time.… Expand
Average User Score: 8.2Oct 3, 2012I am just going to put this out there right up front: Spec Ops: The Line is going to be 2012's most underrated & overlooked game of theI am just going to put this out there right up front: Spec Ops: The Line is going to be 2012's most underrated & overlooked game of the year.
Which is a shame because IMHO it is a must play, that and it is a game that is firmly made for adults.
Im not really going to recap what the game is about but in brief: You are the leader of a 3 man Delta Force team dropped into Dubai to find out what happened to the US 33 Regiment who were sent in to evacuate the city after it was swamped by hellish sandstorms. The game is a third person cover based shooter and you can give orders to your 2 squad mates of various types but you must keep them alive, thought in this when they get incapacitated you can revive them or order the other squadie to revive them. If you need to know more you can probably check other reviews.
Ok right up front, the single player portion of the game should be held up as a prime example of how companies should approach single player. Spend some money, bring in great writers from day 1 and use great voice actors. Then rely on your story as the primary focus and build all your mechanics around the story & setting to compliment it.
It has probably not been since Halflife 2 or possibly halflife 1 that I got so deeply immersed and invested in a games story. I cannot talk about the story too much without spoiling it but needless to say there are at least 3 endings & the game forces you to make complex moral decisions that not only affect the ending but also the ongoing story & dialogue within your squad (A sign of good character writing). I also cannot recall ever feeling genuine remorse for accidentally killing a civilian in a game until now and the kicker there is this game doesn't even punish you in any way for doing so. There are moments in the story where you do an action or pick a course of action, then the game seems yo make you question what you have done and in some cases the game does an excellent job of leading you along a sense of foreboding like **** WTF have I just done" and then revealing perhaps what I can only reveal as the ugliness of war. There have been some moments where my blood has turned to ice or ive had a cold shiver down my spine and some truly gut wrenching moments where I have felt physically ill.
Other publishers truly should look at the single player portion of this game & really consider where they go with future titles.
The Cover based shooter mechanic is solid, its basically the tried and true mechanic thats been around since gears of war with a few tweaks here & there. The Sand: Dubai is in a desert & has been smashed by sandstorms & so Yager have seen fit to use this in the game. This comes in the form of firstly sandstorms that kick up during games where you have to hold one hand over your face which makes firing a 2 handed weapon more innacurate, cuts visibility distance to varying degrees (some storms are worse than others) makes it impossible to hear much and can be generally quite disorienting. Secondly what I call sand traps, there are places acrross the game where you can see sand running out like you might see from an hourglass, shooting these usually unleashes a torrent of sand of various sizes that can entomb or stun enemies and block pathways.
All the game play I found solid and the story is excellent while the firefights are intense but not constant and the scenery is stunning.
Not the most important part of this game & certainly not the focus but its a solid effort limited only by a small community.
- Solid cover based shooter.
- Unforgiving (Realistic ?) weapon damage, 2-3 shots to the body = death. headshots of any sort = death.
- Good map design, theres realy only 1 map that can be a sniper fest and even then it genrally doesnt happen
- Great spawn system. Not sure how this actually works but I have never seen or experienced spawning too near or infront of enemy players.
- Lots of Weapons, Perks, armour etc to unlock and a lot of possible loadouts to experiment with
- 5 classes to play as
- Five Interesting game modes, one of which I have not seen in a shooter before.
- Latency I have found to be good even when playing Americans & Russians.
- Gameplay remind me oh so much of the early days of Counterstrike but WITHOUT the having to sit out the rest of th round after you die since SO:TL lets you respawn.
- Custom games can be setup.
- Peer to Peer only. I usually really hate this but my experience has been not to bad. I hosted some weekend games for Americans & Russians and the US Players thought I was in the US in the end. When I said I was Aussie they said they were surprised the latency is so good. - Games are limited to 4 Vs 4, though I dont know if this is really that bad as the maps, gameplay modes and more tactical gameplay are kinda made complimentary to 4 vs 4.… Expand
Average User Score: 6.5Dec 30, 2010I rated this game as an 8 but it is a solid 8. Playing this took me back to the early days of the grand theft auto series which was also topI rated this game as an 8 but it is a solid 8. Playing this took me back to the early days of the grand theft auto series which was also top down and gave rewards for running people over. The only reason I didnt rate this higher than 8 is because the game is relatively short, however for the price tag it is still good value & you can always try to outdo your scores in the other game modes.… Expand