Console Goodness to Look Forward To

The remainder of this year and on into 2015 makes being a gamer awesome. There are some great titles moving in on us and I’m more excited right now for them than I have been in several years. I know, I could have basically just copy-and-pasted multiple pages from a “Coming Soon” list, but I have managed to narrow it down, dadgumit! Right now on my radar are:

Destiny

Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare

Dragon Age: Inquisition

Alien Isolation

Evolve

The Witcher III: Wild Hunt

Mortal Kombat X

Super Smash Bros. (Wii U)

Disney Infinity 2.0: Marvel Superheros

Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham

Little Big Planet 3

The Order: 1866

 

Maybe titles include:

Bloodborne

Dying Light

Metro Redux (played Metro: Last Light briefly on the PS3, interested enough to play more)

The Evil Within (not sure if I can keep my eyes open long enough to play this one from what I’ve seen on demos)

Like I said, can’t wait for these titles to start releasing. Unfortunately, my wallet won’t be able to support my habits appetite, but we will make the best of it. What are you looking forward to the most? Any particular system going to get all the love with your purchases? I’m going PS4, except for Smash Bros, of course. This is a great time to be a gamer, and it’s about time we have such a great selection to choose from. No matter your system of choice in the coming months, you can’t seem to go wrong.

 

Destiny Beta Play (PS4)

Destiny_box_art

I originally wanted to write a nice long and detailed opinion piece on my experiences with the Bungie Destiny beta. But, as we all know, I’m not exactly a professional in the review front, so I thought I’d just stick with what I know and type something else instead. So welcome to my personal post on the Destiny beta experience.

Through the PS4, with my preorder of the game through Gamestop, I got the early access along with many others. I wasn’t 100% sure I was even going to like this game, considering I’m not exactly the target FPS type of guy. If anyone that has read my blog before remembers, the only reason I picked up the Call of Duty series was because of my son. So considering I got to try it out for a tiny $5 deposit on a game that I could cancel (and with the approval of our wonderful Gamestop friends, redirect that cash toward another preorder, possibly), I figured I couldn’t lose. Better than spending a full $60 and regretting it!

Will I be canceling my preorder of Bungie’s Destiny?

Heck no!

Destiny is a beautiful (I tend to overuse that word, I know) game play experience. It’s rich in story and gameplay depth. The fact that you can play through the campaign as a single player or bring friends along, forming a Fireteam, is a fantastic option to have. And with this being a FPSMMORPG (a mouthful, I know, but that’s how I’d classify it) it delivers on all fronts of that genre. The first person experience is very comfortable to slip in to and I loved every second of it, even when I got my butt handed to me by the AI. The MMO aspect is a nice feature, knowing there are others around populating the world. It’s actually comforting to be out scouring a location crawling with enemies and suddenly have a Fireteam come running in to help mop up a group of Fallen. And finally, the RPG portion, the leveling of your character class and discovering the loot crates, which were far and few between, and also unlocking new weapons and customizable armor are all fun additions to help you create a unique game world to get lost in and invest valuable hours with.

The story, considering this was a beta build, was fleshed out well enough to give you more of a demo feel. Voice overs by Peter Dinklage as your personal Ghost was a bit dry, but Bungie still have another month or so to add more depth to the flatness of the performance. Not to jab at Dinklage, I’m sure he did exactly what was asked of him. The missions were involved enough to set up what you were working for and of the danger coming to the Last City on Earth, protected by the dormant Traveler. Our characters were level-capped at 8 but you were given enough experience to grow your classes powers and get a real feel for what they could do. The skill trees/options were also visible, allowing you to browse what you could unlock as your character progressed. Hovering the cursor over a particular skill allowed you to glimpse changes that the upgrade would have on your stats, such as increasing or decreasing armor, strength, etc. It was all a very nice preview of things to look forward to in the final release in August.

On a personal note, concerning the gameplay and story, that I really enjoyed was the fact that you are playing against your environment. At least, as far as I’m concerned, the actual story mode and locations allow for PVE, pitting us Guardians – a.k.a., the human players – against the enemy Fallen, which are computer controlled. It’s nice to play against an AI enemy, in my opinion, especially in an FPS. That human vs. human PVP action is what I dislike most about games such as Call of Duty and Battlefield and such. You get the extremely competitive players in there and they tend to ruin it for everyone else by going freaking nuts and trying to outgun and outrun each other, taking the fun out of the entire event. That’s not to say you can’t engage with other players, but when you do, it’s as allies working toward a common goal – such as with the random events that can happen at various locations. Everyone will get a notification when an event is happening and a timer will go off. You then have a set amount of time to reach the specified area and join others against a common objective. Work together and achieve victory, and everyone is rewarded. If you should fail, so be it. Go on back to what you were doing before.

Fear not, competitive players. You won’t be disappointed. You haven’t been left out. One adventure I didn’t partake in, sadly, was The Crucible. The Crucible is where you can go and get your fix of combating other Guardians. I know there are at least 6 versus 6 matches within the hallowed walls, allowing players to get in there and battle it out to see who is the best. For those true MMO min/max folks, this will probably also allow them to go all nerdy with the final release and create those perfect builds for character classes so others can follow the same cookie cutter designs. I’ll save all that fun for the folks who like that kind of thing. Don’t worry, I don’t plan on getting in your way!

So as the beta trial weekend wraps up over the next day or so, I have to say that I’m sold. Bungie has brought me into their fold with Destiny and I absolutely can not wait for September 9, 2014 to arrive so I can pick up my retail disc. I’m a fan, hook, like and sinker. What I’ve experienced first hand, read on other sites and watched from other players has given me an excitement for a game that I haven’t felt in some time. That may not be saying much for the hardcore lot, and it may sound odd to the more casual groups, but for me and others like me, we understand. If you didn’t get a chance to experience it for yourself, I hope you are able to gather enough information in the coming weeks to make a decision, one way or another. As for me and my console, we will be answering the call and preparing for the good fight when the call comes.

Be brave, Guardian.

 

 

Currently Playing: Destiny Beta (PS4)

What a fun game! Bungie has shown their talent and skill again with Destiny, and this is only the beta release that we’re playing! I’ve only gotten to invest a small amount of time into the game, so far, but it’s been fun and exciting. There are still some balancing issues and the AI can easily go from challenging to questionably glitchy in some cases. But again, it’s just a beta build. I’m playing a Guardian Warlock class, currently level 4.

The website and Destiny App are nice additions to your out-of-game experience and for sharing your character information. This game is going to rock when it is finally released.

Destiny_box_art

Ouch! (A Quick Blurb)

My wallet very nearly died today. There was actually a point where it slipped into a coma toward the end of the Nintendo E3 video showcase. So many wonderful games coming out this year and in 2015 that it just couldn’t take it anymore. I’ve seen highlights of Sony’s presentation and I watched the video presentation of Nintendo this morning, but have yet to see what Microsoft had to offer. Right off the bat, though, I can say that I’m very proud of Nintendo and think they blew Sony & Microsoft out of the water with their announcements. The hardcore community may not think so, but Nintendo has really stepped up and delivered. Not to mention they’re pretty much the only company offering new titles THIS YEAR and not in 2015. Oh, and if you want to talk exclusives, Nintendo again. Sadly, it’s probably too late to save the Wii U, but at least they’ll go out fighting. And if, just IF they can somehow turn those lackluster sales around, wow. That’ll be one of the greatest comebacks I’ll have witnessed. I’m rooting for them, that’s for sure.

Playing Some Mario Kart 8

Mario Kart 8 for the Wii U is a beautiful and fun game. While Nintendo dips their toe in the video sharing department, they come up lacking. I’d like to see the ability to record longer segments, not just the game selected “best of” features. But hey, I suppose it’s all chalked up to the “you gotta start somewhere” section of technology. It’s Mario Kart, what more can you expect when the main goal here is to have a blast with friends, family and online multiplayer strangers!