Tag Archives: PS3

Intellivision Gen2 is coming out on PC and Mac

IntellivisionGen2_01

Today on The Retro Magazine website, the Blue Sky Rangers, Realtime Associates and Retro Magazine will be working together to get the Intellivision Gen2 games onto PC and Mac.

nighttrap

Intellivision Gen2 began as a set of games playable from the PlayStation 3 Home online service. It eventually appeared on the PlayStation Vita as downloadable games before making it’s way onto iOS and Android. These games were, AstroSmash, Shark!Shark! and NightTrap, they were remade and designed with new school graphics whilst maintaining the original gameplay mechanics of their original games on the Intellivision. It was announced that Utopia, Sea Battle, Deadly Discs, and Snafu might appear too on the PC version of Intellivision Gen2.

You can read more about this on the Retro Managazine Web site.

You can join the Intellivision Gen2 Facebook page right here.

GreatBitVlog 11: Pickups

loads

Today I got myself a whole handful of games, ranging from new to used at a pretty good price!

It was a good bargain find if I do say so myself! the whole lot came to about £40. Granted it wasn’t an awesome carboot sale moment. But when the mornings are dark, making carboot sales suck, it’s nice to get bargains from website and charity shops!

Did you find any bargains recently? Did you get anything from the GamesCollection’s January sale? Do you know any charity shops with awesome games in them? Tell me in the comments below!

Another, really again? Virtual Reality headset…

really

Whilst searching Twitter, I discovered an article on Kill Screen named, 3DHead is the gloriously inevitable clusterf*ck of our dreams. This was what I greeted to…

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Sony Announces New Playstation Now Service as Microsoft Cries Pitifully in the Corner

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Sony  just announced more details about it’s upcoming streaming service Playstation Now at the 2014 CES show in Las Vegas. But before I dive into that bit of news, does anyone remember Gaikai?

A few years ago Gaikai was  founded partly  by Dave Perry (of Shiny and Earthworm Jim fame) as a game streaming service that streamed select AAA titles directly to your browser via YouTube, Facebook and other social media sites. Because all of the content rendering was done on a remote server, even gamers with slow PCs could play, provided they had a fast enough internet connection. Needless to say, I was enticed by the idea of playing games without having to upgrade to the latest video card. Continue reading

achievement

Why I Hate Achievements

I dislike Achievements, Trophies, Awards, Stamps, and/or any other form of in-game pop-up that encourages my self esteem and ego. I have good reasons why, that’s why I’m writing a blog about it.

XboxAlist

When Microsoft announced achievements for the Xbox 360, it sounded like a great idea, to me and to a whole lot of other people too. We were all hooked, and people are still hooked, except for me. Eventually, I discovered that achievements are just things to improve your “E-Penis” on Xbox Live and your friends. Sure, that element might sound good to people, but what I see in achievements is a list of things to do in a game so that you look good at playing them; in other words, it’s a long list of in game chores to do to “extend your experience in the game”. Or as I like to call it “Create content without actually making any content.” Continue reading

The best way to review EVER!

I’ve been really bad at keeping up with my blog, plus I kinda stole this from Kotaku. But here’s an awesome way to review a game! Write a script that’s the game review, eat one hell of a hot pepper, then read said review, film it and stick it up on Youtube! I swear this is better than reading any IGN review in the last 8 years!

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Fezing it up on other platforms and Telltale Poker Night 2!

Fez on other platforms.

Yup, one of my favourite Xbox Live arcade games, Fez, is going to get released on Steam, PS3, PSVita, Ouya, and iOS! It’s so nice to see this awesome game get out of Microsoft’s exclusivity.

Oh yes, I freaking love this 2.5D puzzle platformer! I love the fact that it’s getting some love for the Ouya too! I guess this is going to be another one of those games I have to purchase multiple times like I do with Super Mario Bros!
 Click here to check out Fez on 360 in the meanwhile before it releases on other consoles.

TellTale Poker Night 2.

What’s the best Poker game you can get? Poker Night from Telltale was awesome with it’s wit and humour. But yesterday they announce that there’s going to be a sequel! A Poker game sequel!? How does that work? Different personalities that’s what!
Sam from Sam and Max, Brock from Venture Bros, Ash from The Evil Dead, Claptrap from Borderlines, and to put the cherry on the top of the cake, GLADos from Portal is the game’s dealer! Heck yeah! It was announced yesterday, mind you it was the First of April, but TellTale did announce that this is real and no joke!

 Click here to play the First Poker Night game 😀

Why I hate the Batman Arkham games!

In 2009, RockSteady Studios released a very hyped up Batman game called Batman Arkham Asylum, that then had a sequel in 2011 called Batman Arkham City. These games got a lot of hype and news, and they were pretty good games for the most part…
So why do you hate them Ian? Well, both of these games are the digital equivalent of watching a great theatrical play, you’ve been watching it for a good two hours and it’s getting near the end, and for whatever reason the lead actor forgets his line and whilst stumbling on his words he trips over something, knocking over a prop that lands on someone, but there’s a thin metallic object on top of said prop that falls over and beheads the actor that was standing next to the actor who’s crushed under the prop; the actor who’s beheaded body stumbles toward the audience and a massive haemorrhage squirts at the audience who freak out and try to flee the theatre in sheer fear as they run over each other, and of course at least one person dies from that. That’s what happens in this game, they have a great beginning, a great middle, and then it turns into a terrible end where you wonder why it had to suck so badly…  Let me explain this…
WARNING: SPOILERS WILL BE USED HERE, SO IF YOU’RE AN ANTI SPOILER SORT OF PERSON, CLOSE THE DAMN WINDOW NOW!

Batman Arkham Asylum

The biggest issue with the ending of Arkham Asylum is that you “fight” Joker. However you don’t need to be a huge comic boffin to know that Joker is a weed compared to the likes of Batman. So how do end the game? Do you use Bruce Wayne’s excellent detective skills to find where the Joker is hiding? Nope. Do you chase a flocking Joker around the Asylum? Nope. Instead you do actually have a fist fight with the Joker. “But how is that even fair if he hasn’t got a gun Ian?”, well here’s RockSteady’s approach towards balancing a fight between the Joker and Batman. Batman visits Bane in the game who’s turned into a psychopath  because Ivy has injected Bane with a special venom that contains a virus called “Titan” that manipulates the human body to turn anyone into a “hulking” beast. See what I did there, “Hulk”, you know, DC… Marvel… Yes I’m a huge nerd get over it. But what happens with this Titan virus? Oh yeah! Joker uses it on himself!
I’m not kidding here, you fight a muscular oversized Joker so that a fist fight between him and the dark knight somewhat balanced…  Well, clearly more in his favour, But that hook shot of yours and his ludicrously long nails put you in a better spot, as you pull him down with the hook shot, causing Titan Joker to fall on his hands, with his long nails stuck in the wooden floor as you pummel his face in. And that’s it. Again, you don’t need to be a comic book buff to understand that this wouldn’t ever happen in the comics or the films, rather Joker would hide as he sends his goons to shoot you, or he would pull a gun on Batman. But no, traditionally in games, the lead protagonist has to beat up the antagonist, so RockSteady had to make a Bane sized Joker for Batman to fight… Thanks for the disappointment guys…

Batman Arkham City

I was dumb enough to buy the first game at full price with an incredibly lack-luster ending, so I was dumb enough to buy the sequel thinking and believing that RockSteady would improve the ending. But I was very wrong, so wrong it might possibly be worse than the first game. How so? Like this…
The plot of Arkham City is that after Joker was taken away from the fight in the first game, the Titan virus is slowly killing him, and now he’s managed to turn all of Gotham City into a villian’s playground as he holds it hostage unless Batman finds him a cure, which a certain Doctor Freeze has been making. However Joker being the total bastard he is infects Batman with the titan virus with a syringe, and there’s only one cure. Batman being smart about this gets hold of Doctor Freezes cure and uses it on himself to prevent dying, but now with a dying Joker in the midst, who will Batman fight as the final boss in this game? Twoface? The Riddler? Ivy? Penguin? Cat Woman? Oh no no, let’s use a better character that everyone knows…!

…Clayface

Yeah…  Everyone knows Clayface right? He’s been used in EVERY FILM AND EVERY TV SHOW. Notice how I’m being sarcastic here…? The biggest problem with Arkham City is that not only do you fight this guy twice, but after defeating him the second time you think you have another hour or two left before you reach the game’s climax. Oh no, you beat the game, and it’s mega anti-climatic! this is the video game equivalent of watching a pretty good film before the film abruptly stops and you’re told to leave as the film equipment isn’t working. What’s sad about that statement was that actually happened to me once and had to go back to the cinema the next day to watch said film that stopped on me. So yeah, you beat Clayface, who I ended up reading up that in the comics that he’s the 73rd greatest Batman villain ever voted by fans…  [sarcasm] Great… that’s an achievement right? [/sarcasm]. What’s makes things worse is that as Batman cured himself with the only titan cure in existence, the Joker dies, and it’s pretty damn bad, it’s like Super Man without Lex Luthor, or Mario without Bowser; Batman and Joker are a match made in heaven despite their sheer hatred for each other. When you think Batman, you can only think of Joker as being his ultimate rival. Think of it like Wily Coyote if he actually caught Roadrunner? Oh wait, Seth MacFarlane made a joke about this…
OK, sure Batman could deal with any one of his bazillion rivals in the next game. Maybe Joker will return from the dead as a zombie or something! I mean come on, almost anything game, TV and or film related now has zombies in it right? Why not the Joker, they have done it to the Marvel heroes at least. It’s bound to happen…
God damnit!

Review for Bioshock Infinite

Bioshock now has it’s third game, Bioshock Infinite, a game set before the events that took place in Rapture in the first Bioshock game in the 1910s. Set in a city in the sky, named Columbia, is spreading their message about America’s brilliance to the rest of the world and how the rest of the world is terrible and how they’re better than everyone else.
One of the many covers in the game, the Beach Boy’s “God only knows” in barbershop quartet style.
You play the role of a character called Booker Dewitt, a man in his late thirties/early fourties who is on a mission to rescue a teenage girl from Columbia, and bring her back to New York. But in the plot of games, movies or even books, it’s never that easy and Booker is caught up in a mess where he is treated as an Anti-Christ around a bunch of white loving, right winging religious types who are after his head.
The beginning of the game shows plenty of racism like this, and you have the choice to go against it or support it.
You begin your quest on a little rowing boat with a couple taking you to what looks like a light house. But it turns out that it’s a way to get up to the city Columbia in the sky by launching a pod into the sky and crashing it into a baptist church. Similar to how you went down into Rapture in the first Bioshock game in a bathysphere.
The ultimate question to ask about this game is how does it compare to the likes of the previous Bioshock titles. Well, if I compare this with Bioshock 1, or even System Shock 2, there are some big differences, and some of which aren’t for the better either. One of these is the games bigger emphasis on combat rather than puzzle and role playing mechanics seen in previous titles. One of the major things you’ll notice is how there are no hacking or unlocking in this game, instead you just collect lock picks and your partner in crime, Elizabeth, the girl who you’re trying to rescue, does the work for you. Which to a degree removes the puzzle solving and level upping hacking skills like you did in System Shock 2. However Elizabeth isn’t all about making the game a bit too easy, she can be handy. In a gun fight, she can scope the scene and try to find med kits and ammo, and when you need it, she can throw them to you. Though this does sometimes happen outside a fight where she’ll throw you a coin what feels like once every five minutes, and that dear sirs can get annoying; though it was hilarious to see her lob a coin from so far away with such extreme throwing precision. Someone should make this girl a baseball or cricket pitcher! 
The new Psy/Plasmid powers in this game, called “Vigors”, aren’t terribly impressive. To be honest you can actually beat the game using just two of the eight vigors made available to you. Plus the final vigor that you collect is a real disappointment as it just pushing enemies away. At least the Bucking Bronco vigor launches your enemies in the air, why do I need to “Push them away”. After beating the game, I found out through websites that you can mix and combine these vigors, which is never actually explained in the game, and if it was I missed it! But I honestly felt like the vigors were there for “flashy effects” rather than deep gameplay and puzzle solving mechanics. 
As the puzzle solving is practically gone, the game really does concentrate on combat. In each skirmish, there are a lot of enemies coming after you. Which you can take as either a good or a bad thing. Good in the sense that this is the first time that a “Shock” game has thrown a lot of enemies towards you as you’re now in a more open environment. Though on the bad side the combat does feel a little crazy as I felt that some enemies would take a thousand bullets before dying, turning this Bioshock into a Killing Floor game rather than an actual “Shock” game. Sure there’s a lot more bad guys, but why am I wasting so much ammo on these guys anyway?
Something that I had noticed was missing the feel of suspense entering a new room. Maybe if you forgot playing Bioshock 1, or never played it before. Bioshock had it’s classic enemy, the Big Daddy, a big hulking man in an aqueduct suit wielding a massive drill. Taking them out was a pain, but a necessary pain, as you needed to kill them so that you can take it’s little sister in order to progress in the game. But they would appear randomly in the game meaning that they were never in the same place in each play through, meaning that you could walk into a room and “BOOM!” a Big Daddy in the room sees you and charges at you with drill in hand to turn you into cannibal curry! It’s just that in Bioshock Infinite that’s not there, now there is the over powered enemy, in fact there’s two, the Handy Man, and the Patriot, but if you re-play the game, they’re always in the same place, therefore removing any fear you have with these enemies, which I have to say is a bit of a shame.
“So is there anything gameplay wise that you like about the game Ian!?”, oh yes there is dear sir! Going back to Elizabeth, she has the ability to open these inter-dimensional “Tears” where an object from a parallel universe can be brought into the game. Some places might have a few of these “Tears” that Elizabeth can open up and give you an advantage in battle, depending on what’s available, you can bring in extra cover in the battle field, turrets, rocket launchers, turrets that are mounted on balloons called Mosquitoes, extra med kits, boxes of ammo, or even random people from a parallel world that can be used as distractions to the enemy. Sometimes these extra objects can be the difference between winning and losing a gunfight, which makes opening these tears with Elizabeth worth it.
As for graphics, this is something I am pleased with. Not that I ever disliked the graphics of previous “Shock” games, but it’s great to see that Irrational Games are pushing the way in graphics. Be it textures, lighting, water modelling, it’s all gorgeous. Bare in mind that I was playing this on the PC, which I can easily say without looking at the console versions is the best version for graphics, I mean come on, the XBox 360 is seven years old, and the PS3 is six years old, and they can’t be upgraded, so that assumption has to be reasonable. Though I will suggest that if you’re like me, and many others, with an nVidia graphics card, be sure to download the latest driver update to reduce the crazy amount of screen tear. But once fixed it looks absolutely stunning on my PC monitor. What’s more impressive are the facial expressions on Elizabeth’s face, they look really good without going into the “uncanny valley” of terrible looking facel models. Though to be honest some of the NPCs could’ve had better work on them.
There has been a major amount of motion-capture work used on Elizabeth’s face to make her as realistic as possible.
Here’s a great example of the dynamic lighting used in the game. You can see the beam cast from behind the bronze statue, not only does it cause the light to change around the body of the statue, but the bronze reacts in different ways to the reflected light, and there’s great use of lens flare to add in effect that’s never over done.
Going back to this picture again, the NPCs could have had more work, way do the couple’s eyes look like they’re about to pop out?
Now, for the Coup-de-grass of the game. It’s plot, story and ending. I’ll try to write this without spoiling it, because it’s so worth playing this game for it’s ending! As you progress in the game, you slowly start understanding the story behind Elizabeth, her Farther, Comstock, her mother and the little conspiracies and battles in the city of Columbia. Not only that, but you learn about a group of people called the Vox Populi who wish to defeat Comstock and turn Columbia into a borderline Socialist community. But you discover something very big at the end of the game with an awesome plot twist that’s so worth beating this game for. For some it might be a little unoriginal, but for me I didn’t see it coming. Plus you learn a bit more about these reoccurring twins that appear and disappear in thin air and about their dark devious experiments. In a similar plot to the other “shock” games, you discover that you’re not quite the good guy, but the reason for why you’re not the good guy is very different, but still mind blowing as you watch the final cutscene play and have your mind set in every direction and around corners!
So, do I recommend Bioshock Infinite? Yes! BioShock Infinite, even with it’s slightly disappointing gameplay mechanics, rather boring vigors and bigger emphasis on combat; it’s still worth playing the game for it’s beautiful graphics and awesome story. The game is simply a great experience that any gamer should witness and not spoil. It’s not a perfect game by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s still a game that people should have in their collection and keep. It’s a keeper! So grab yourself a copy!

Update time!

OK, Back from holiday to Turkey, and I need to write before I get too lazy. So let me give you guys an update on a few things about me and gaming…

Turkey

About the whole CRT and LCD monitor thing I mentioned about in the previous post. I did a little research and it turns out that LCD PC monitors are out there in Turkey, but they’re fairly small. According to someone who I meet in Turkey, LCD monitors larger than 17 inches are rare to find in homes and offices because they’re very expensive, so if you’re Turkish, and you want a 21 inch screen, chances are you’ll hunt down a CRT screen, which is quite impressive considering you can’t find them anywhere in the western world any more. Maybe Turkey should make an industry for CRT monitors for MAME cabs and arcades!
Whilst I was there though, when I was in Antalya, one of the biggest cities in Turkey, I found a few of these “PlayStation Cafes”. Think of it like a Cyber Cafe, or a PC Bang, but you replace the monitors and PCs with a few wall mounted TVs with PS3s attached to them. Sounds like a good idea, unless you go into a bad one. Like I did… The one I went into was hardly decorated, brick wall, concrete floor, a table for a cash desk, and those white plastic chairs you find EVERYWHERE! But what’s worse it that you cant just “have a look” inside a PlayStation Cafe, you have to buy something. As I was watching some guys play Pro Evolution Soccer, I had this disgruntled clerk thrust a warm can of Pepsi in my face and told me that I had to pay for it, and I had to pay 7 Turkish Lira for it, which is about £2.75! Damn expensive! Rather than cause a problem, I purchased it anyway and left, Turkey is just one of those countries whereby some places you have to buy something when you enter a shop or cafe, it’s just how they make money…
Me in my the British IBM shirt!

the British IBM

So yeah… the British IBM had a gig in Cambridge, and it was pretty good. Bit of a shame that the other bands were a bit naff, maybe they were trying to make the British IBM even more awesome. Plus there were a few laughs between tracks such as bar-codes and why I shouldn’t win any more prizes. Plus I got to listen to their new track, so it was all awesome!

Steam Early Access

Here’s a cool service, Steam has introduced something called “Early Access” where by you can play games before they get released. Think of it like playing a game’s Beta. But unlike Beta testing where you’re only playing about 60% or so of the game, you get to play the whole game, but you can put you’re own input into the game’s final development, such as how to make the game better, or point out any bugs in the game. Think of it like playing gold release games before they’re technically gold.