The Witcher 3: Blood & Wine

 Open World Action Games, Role Playing Games, Short Take  Comments Off on The Witcher 3: Blood & Wine
Aug 152016
 

Status: Complete Most Intriguing Idea: Contrasting Geralt’s ideals directly with chivalry Best Design Decision: Colors! Colors everywhere! Worst Design Decision: Grandmaster gear Summary: If you notice nothing else about Blood and Wine, the final expansion for The Witcher 3, you will likely notice the colors. I had replayed the bulk of the main game before heading there and that experience really emphasized how washed-out the base game looks. Everything in the North seems ever so slightly gray, but nothing like that is happening in Toussaint. Beauclair is also the game’s best town, capturing to the fullest that Old World feeling [Read more…]

Apr 182016
 

Status: complete / platinum Most Intriguing Idea: Taking the open-world shooter away from actual shooting Best Design Decision: Well-chosen achievements Worst Design Decision: Bullet… er, arrow-sponging bosses Summary: After the combat bow was one of the better parts of Far Cry 3, 4 and Blood Dragon, we finally get a game where it’s the star. Far Cry Primal rolls the series setting back to Europe 10,000 years ago so there are no guns, only arrows, spears, clubs, and flint knives. There’s no camera either, so the main character Takkar quickly gains the ability to summon an owl that can “tag” [Read more…]

Syndicate, and the Future of the Creed

 Critique, Open World Action Games  Comments Off on Syndicate, and the Future of the Creed
Jan 042016
 

A rumor is now circulating that Ubisoft will, after holding to an annual release schedule for several years now, not release a new flagship Assassin’s Creed game in 2016, giving its next game extra time to possibly rebuild the series from the ground up. If true, I can only commend the decision. The series has been coping with exhaustion for some time, as its most recent entry makes clear. Still, Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate is… not bad. Which, coming after the flaming fiasco of Unity, is a welcome turn for the better. Unfortunately, despite being fun most of the time, Syndicate [Read more…]

Foundering in Skellige’s Seas

 Critique, Open World Action Games, Role Playing Games  Comments Off on Foundering in Skellige’s Seas
Aug 182015
 
Foundering in Skellige's Seas

With different degrees of success, Velen and Novigrad use their structure, their quests, and their storylines as an integrated whole to project Geralt’s inner life into the game world. In Velen The Wild Hunt airs Geralt’s worries that his “family” won’t fit back together after their long time apart. In Novigrad the game threatens the relationships that have already been working in The Witcher games. Once he reaches Skellige, the game turns its attention back to Yennefer and Ciri. In this region, however, the game loses coherence and as a result feels much more ordinary and even dull. Skellige’s failure [Read more…]