Tag Archives: Xbox 360

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…

Continue reading

A Catch with the PlayStation 4

ps4nomediacentre

With the PS4 and XBox One coming out in a few weeks, Kotaku published an article on their website quoting that the PlayStation 4 will not have DLNA on it.

Now for the not quite tech savvy people out there, “What is DLNA?” Well DLNA is a network protocol that allows machines such as PCs, Roku boxes, PS3s and XBox 360s to look for media on other machines. 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 Next XBox name revealed a day before it’s announcement?

So yeah, last night, IGN left a Facebook update showing this image…

infinity

So yeah, XBox Infinity. I’m pretty sure this was once a joke on Cheap Ass Gamer on one April Fools that got them into trouble with Kotaku. It’ll be funny if it’s the actual name seeing that they will announce the next console later today. I just hope I won’t want it!

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!

Review for DLC Quest on PC

It’s not like you find a game that pokes fun of the games industry everyday of the week. And over the last 10 years or so, the gaming scene has changed a fair bit; micro-transactions, faux money, freemium gaming, etc… But if there’s something that gamers get a little annoyed with is DLC, downloadable content. So what’s better than making a game that pokes the idea of DLC! Well that’s DLC Quest for you! Now before you put your knickers in a twist, and/or grunt in disgust, you only have to pay for this game once, the level of satire in this game is quite high, and a lot of it is very faux indeed…

The game’s story, if you even call it a story, I mean come on how many times do we hear this? At least it happens in every Mario game right? lol! But the Princess, to whom you’re going to wed get’s kidnapped by “Bad Guy”, no I’m not making this up. And it’s you’re role to save the Princess from Badguy. But there’s a catch, you start off only being able to move left, you don’t animate, can’t jump and you can’t pause. You you can do is move right, and that’s it! Whilst moving to the right you collect a few coins until you come across a man that sells things to you. The game’s DLC.
This is where you find that the DLC you buy in the game isn’t actually real money, but the coins you collect in the game. In essence, the game is pretty much a Wonder Boy/Monster Land clone, where by the shops are made to look as if you’re playing a game on the iPad or Android where to progress quicker you have to pay with real money. The game itself is simply a spoof about modern gaming whilst looking like a Wonder Boy game with an 8/16 bit graphical look.
Oh yes, there’s horse armour in the game! But I’m not going to tell you what it does! heh!
This game was originally released on the XBox 360 Indie games section of the Live Arcade, and now it’s released on Steam through their Green Light scheme. Which is always a good thing, I do appreciate Steam’s love for independent games development. But how does a game that was made on the 360 work on a PC? Well, the game does have full controller support, but using the keyboard isn’t bad either. After all there’s only four keys that you use once you unlock everything. Left and Right is controlled with the cursor keys, whilst Jump uses the Z key, and attacking and talking uses the X key. In menu you might have to use the Up, Down and space key, but you hardly use those in gameplay; so the game is very keyboard friendly for such a console-centric game.

The only real downside to this game is it’s difficulty and ease to beat. I was able to beat the game the first time in about 20 minutes, and I got the best ending in about 25 minutes. But then I have to remember that this game did cost me less than £2 and it’s more of a games industry gag than a full blown game. But regardless of it’s lack of difficulty, it’s still a pretty good game with laughs on the way, especially if you’re like me who keeps an eye on gaming news a lot. What good about the Steam Edition of the game is that it comes with it’s sequel, DLC Quest: Freemium or Die, which I have yet to play yet, but it looks promising as it looks like it has a lot more to it than it’s first game. What would have been nice is to add enemies in the game that can actually harm you, yup, there’s no really enemies in the game apart from a huge troll that blocks your way and Badguy. You can unlock a zombie monster pack, but they don’t really harm you, but you can mow them down with the gun you earn later in the game. It would’ve been nice if these zombies that you pay with in-game money would attack you; or maybe it’s the developer trying to say that modern games are too easy.

So, should you get DLC Quest? If you’re a gamer who’s been playing games for a long time, yes. It jabs jokes into the rib cage of the modern gaming industry. It would’ve been nice if there was some actual challenge to the game, but then again it might be better to treat this game as if it’s a piece of art to display how pathetic the modern day gaming scene is with it’s downloadable content and micro-transactions. It’s simply worth having just to remind us that gaming back in the day was a little better than what it is now.

Unique Games: Every Extend Extend

OK, OK, I’ve been very lazy recently with my blog writing, and I’ve hardly wrote anything for the week. So allow me to tell you about a unique game on the PlayStation Portable called Every Extend Extra…
Published by Q Games, the guys behind Lunines on the PlayStation Portable. Every Extend Extra is a very unique game that plays somewhat like a bullet hell sh’mup, but not quite…

Let me explain to you what’s happening in this video, it’s very hard to explain what’s happening unless you actual play the game. but the idea behind Every Extend Extra (I’ll just call it EEE from now on, too many words beginning with “E”) is that you move a bomb around the screen as enemies appear in groups, as you close in on an enemy, you press the X button to detonated the bomb, and you kill the enemy on the screen,  however you’ll lose a life too. But that enemy will explode too, and it’s explosion range can kill off other enemies, causing a chain reaction. The bigger the chain reaction, the more points you earn, the more lives, called extends, hence the name “Every Extend Extra”. The game is simply about timing explosions right to rack up huge chain reactions to earn lots of points and lives, however there is a little more to it than that. There are power up that need to be picked up, you’ll notice in the video above that there are white, green and pink enemies. These are your basic enemies, the white enemies are the most common, when you blow them up they don’t drop anything. Blowing up the green enemies will drop green crystals, these give you bonus points. Blowing up the pink enemies will drop pink crystals, these earn you a “Quicken”, which allows you to move the bomb quicker across the screen, but in turn will make the enemies move faster too. However in each stage, there’s a unique “Larger enemy”, simply called a mini boss. Mini Bosses can shoot lasers at your bomb, causing you to loose a life without detonating. but if you blow up a mini boss, they drop a yellow crystal, which give you more time on the clock when collected.
At the end of each stage, there’s a boss themed around the style of the level. The boss shown above is very much like a carousel, a carousel with KILLER LASERS! It attempts to lure you inside and zap you with lasers, but the idea behind the bosses in this game is to get them caught up in chain reactions from exploding grunts; and the more explosions it get caught in, the more damage it does. In this case, the killer carousel is made of two halves, and you’ll have to take each one out at a time. Though once one is gone, it’ll go into a shooting frenzy, and you’ll have to dodge bullets and wait for a good chance to get the second half caught in a huge chain reaction of explosions.
Let’s say you don’t want to play this game on the PlayStation Portable. You either don’t own one, and/or you’d rather play it on a big screen. Well you’re in luck sunshine! There’s a sequel made on the Xbox 360’s Live arcade called “Every Extend Extra Extreme”, or “E4” for short…
The Xbox Live arcade game is a little different to the PlayStation Portable game as there’s bosses or level progression, it’s all about building huge scores in an near endless game. The gameplay is identical to it’s PlayStation Portable counterpart, except there’s now a new rhythm game play element added to it. There’s a bar on the bottom of the screen that pulses, this acts like a metronome, the idea behind this is that when you detonate your bomb at the apex of the metronome bar, you earn a multiplier on top of the points you earn from your chain reaction. Adding to the rhythm elements of the game, you can add your own music to the game, where it will find out how many beats per second the song is, and builds the metronome bar around the musics beat.

But there’s one very good and insane reason to own E4, it’s crazy leaderboards! You might think hitting a million points in a game is good, heck hitting a billion points is god-like. Think again… Trillions of points! Adequately called “The Trillionaire’s Club”, this is one hell of a leaderboard! This makes Twin Galaxies look like a Cub Scout group! Sorry if that might offend people, I love the idea of Twin Galaxies, but when you have scores in the trillions, it’s a totally different story! Last time I looked, the person at first place scored something on the lines on thirty three trillion points! That’s insane! It’s a pure gaming marathon score that, and I would love to have three days to myself with no interruptions just to see if I could beat that score!

If you’re interested in getting these games, you can get the PlayStation Portable game new as low as £2.95 from the Game Collection website!

You can download Every Extend Extra Extreme from Xbox Live Market Place for 800 Microsoft Points.

Alternatively, if you’re one of those types who want all their games to be on physical discs. No fear! There’s a collection of Q Entertainment games on one Xbox 360 disc called “Qubed”. Though to be honest, it was released in limited numbers, and very hard to find, therefore people like to hike the price up a bit for it!