Mass Effect: Andromeda

The long sought after sequel to the Mass Effec trilogy is set to arrive next year.

Check out the first behind the scenes look including gameplay – https://youtu.be/e4p_-kG6dSo

 

Update… Fuck EA, so looks like none of us are allowed to publish videos for their games. Posted the Andremeda vid above and it was immediately blocked due to copyright.

Here it is from them – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uG8V9dRqSsw

Toss the clowns a dislike if you are of the mind for censorship….

Begun the VR wars have…

Right now it is like console wars sadly

The OR store has some content that is available on Steam, but for the most part they have exclusive titles only available on Rift. This is a crying shame, and quite frankly anti-consumer.

On the other side of the coin the Vive has a lot of exclusives, but it is mostly due to room scale / motion control. There is no walled garden here, pretty much all the Vive games available that are designed for seated experience are available for Rift too.

I imagine that the majority of the exclusive titles will end up being available to Rift owners when touch launches and devs add the coding for them.

I have both headsets myself and I am currently selling my Rift if that is any indication.

The main reason is primarily fit and feel, and the God rays. I wear glasses, and the Rift is absolutely horrible for glasses owners. They just plain hurt when using Rift, so I am forced to use contacts. This is less than ideal as I do not wear them with any regularity, so I have to plan ahead of time if I want to use my Rift, there is no “let me just pop this on and check this video out” endeavors.

The Vive gives me this, just slip it on comfortably over my eyewear.

Also the God rays are unacceptable, and I am not using hyperbole here, Oculus NEVER should have got this HMD past the quality assurance stage. There is never a dark scene that is not affected by them. Anything dimly lit will display them and they are horrendous. Completely breaks the immersion.  The best way to describe them is if you have severely smudged glasses and look at a streetlight or headlights at night. Everything gets a smudged white hue.

Additionally once you play the few exclusive Rift titles, there was very little left to do. Chronos, Lucky’s Tale, Eve and Edge of Nowhere were fantastic, and were true fleshed out stories (as opposed to a lot of Vive games) but still, beyond that I could not see a reason to keep it.

On a long enough timeline I imagine we will see the console war evaporate and both HMDs will have all the same games, it is the only way VR as a whole is going to succeed is if we can all just agree that all titles should work on both. End of the day they are nothing more than monitors strapped to our heads, if a TV manufacturer pull that shit they wouldn’t sell any TVs.

Could you imagine if Game of Thrones would not play on any TVs except those made by Sony? People would burn their house to the ground. (WITH LEMONS!!!!!)

Review – Uncharted 4 – To boldly go…

So hot off the heels of replaying Uncharted 1 through 3 I could not wait to dive into Uncharted 4.

I was expecting the usual fare, good dialog, charismatic characters, beautiful locations and of course, some great adventuring.

Well let me tell you just how surprised I was to find out this was barely even the surface of Uncharted 4, and instead I got a much deeper experience, a masterful mix of Assassin’s Creed, Metal Gear Solid with a pinch of Tomb Raider for good measure.

If you took the good from all those franchises and mixed them up, you would have the delicious game that is Uncharted 4.

What UC4 does that all the previous iteration have not is feel deeply human. Don’t get me wrong, the reason most of us keep playing the Uncharted series is the wonderfully human Nathan (Fillion) Drake. But this go round is much more complex.

We get to see where his relationships have taken him, his wife, his brother, best friend, all very well developed into what is essentially one long interactive movie.

Nathan and Elaina interact in a way that so many couples do, and it feels real, you can easily buy them as a real couple out exploring the jungle together.

The game play as well has seen a major advancement in design. What was a polished 3rd person cover based shooter, is now a full on sneaking mission game if you choose to play it that way.

You can in many cases bypass any combat at all if you choose stealth, from hiding in long grass, to immobilizing enemies with total stealth. There are even trophy reward for just such actions as passing an entire encounter without alerting any guard or killing anyone.

This significantly adds to the Ludonarrative Dissonance of past games, where mild mannered nice guy Drake goes from friendly banter to full on murder mode without a second thought.

This makes for a much more “real” story, in which you feel like you are more of a cat burglar than a death machine.

On top of all this the games visual are unlike anything I have seen in a game before, PC or otherwise. Naughty Dog has truly outdone themselves in the polish department, from the opening boat scene with water dripping off Nate’s face, to the most intricate details in caves and ruins you are exploring.

The pacing of Uncharted 4 is spot on as well, a mix back and forth of puzzle solving and combat / stealth, then the occasional exploration level thrown in for good measure.

And, as a final cherry on top, UC4 is no longer the short 6 hour romp we have seen in past games. I managed to make it through in 17h 30min on hard, with minimal exploration outside of the main path.

And speaking of paths, Uncharted really has gone off the beaten. In previous games the way forward was cut and dry, there was simply one entrance and one exit, and things were very linear in nature.

Well about 50% of the way through UC4 the series goes in a whole new direction, trading tight quarters for full on sand box mode. Exploration of Madagascar is done via vehicle, and there is no set path forward, with optional ruins to explore, and fights to be had (or avoided) From this point forward the game opens up in almost every level, with multiple routes to achieve your goals, and more than one way to proceed.

Never have I played a more well rounded, well thought out and conceptualized game than Uncharted 4. It has gone on to be my all time favorite game I have ever played. A title previously held by Final Fantasy 7 for the past 20 years.

Giving Uncharted a 10/10 does not do it justice, we almost need a new scale as the bar has been raised so high.

Go buy it now, you owe it to yourself as a gamer.