Jan 30, 2012

Why You Should Sign the Latest WWE Petition

Have you seen the latest petition against WWE Games? It's from a gamer by the name of John Bonham whose tired of World Wrestling Entertainment games being made by THQ. Just by reading the petition you get the idea that the guy is a dedicated fan. He ought to consider reviewing games to be honest. In the petition he lists a number of valid reasons as to why THQ should stop making WWE Games. He makes a convincing argument. Convincing enough for me to sign the petition.

I signed the petition because I feel like WWE Games aren't welcoming to new players. I come from the old school when wrestling games were fun. The days of WCW vs NWO on the Nintendo 64. Those grapple based wrestling games were beyond fun back in the day. I don't understand why these games aren't still being made today. I've played a couple of the WWE Games, and I don't like them. For starters I have no idea how to even fight in these games. I go to training and I get even more lost. I've literally played 10 minutes of the WWE Games and I was done. Wrestling games need to go back to the N64 model. Update that and you'll probably gain more fans.

If you want to read the petition click the link below.

Jan 19, 2012

Feeling Skeptical about Resident Evil 6? Me Too.

Let's cut straight to the chase. Resident Evil 5 was not good. The best thing about Resident Evil 5 was the graphics. The story was wack. The plot spends the whole time trying to surprise you, but I saw the plots twists coming from a mile away. The clues were so obvious. You would think a game with a weak plot would have a great gameplay. Unfortunately that's not the case with Resident Evil 5.

Resident Evil hasn't been the same since decided to switch the style up and become an action game. The action formula worked great when it was introduced in Resident Evil 4, but by the time it hit Resident Evil 5 it was redundant. Resident Evil 5 is basically a co-op version of Resident Evil 4. If Resident Evil wants to be an action game, it should at least be good. Resident Evil 5 is a mediocre action game at best. Resident Evil 5 couldn't hold it's weight with action games such as Grand Theft Auto or Gears of War.

I am hopeful for Resident Evil 6. One of the main characters is Leon Kennedy. Leon has a track record for being in great Resident Evil games. Resident Evil 2 is arguably the best game in the series, and Resident Evil 4 is a classic. If he's coming back for Resident Evil 6 that's a good sign. The trailer for Resident Evil 6 looks like another action adventure game. A lot of quick time moves are shown throughout the trailer. I really hope they incorporate survival horror aspects into Resident Evil 6 like their doing in Resident Evil: Revelations. I'll definitely be picking Resident Evil 6 up when it's released on November 20th 2012. If it's another disappointment I might be done with this series.

Jan 18, 2012

PlayStation Vita Boston Meetup Impressions

Welcome to the Vita Hill Social Club. That's the name of the pop up shop where gamers around the United States are allowed to experience the Playstation Vita before it hits stores next month. The shops will be open until launch and allow gamers to try out various games on the Playstation Vita. Today was the official meetup for the Vita Hill Social Club in Boston Massachusetts. I was one of the people who attended, and I figured I'd share my thoughts about the experience.

Overall the Boston Vita Hill Social Club meetup was fun. I got there two hours early, and was able to play the Playstation Vita before the meetup began. I went so early because of the free t-shirt giveaway for the first 100 people that arrived. I expected to have to wait in line for two hours, but the store was open for people to play the Playstation Vita. I walked right in, registered for the PlayStation Vita Social Club, and minutes later had a Playstation Vita in my hand with Uncharted: Golden Abyss to play. Employees made it clear that they wanted me to enjoy my experience, and brought me juice and granola bars while I played Uncharted. It was cool.

The Playstation Vita is a fun piece of hardware. I really enjoyed the time I had playing Uncharted: Golden Abyss. The graphics were nice and the touchscreen controls were a nice touch. It kind of felt weird using the controls, but I bet I'll get use to them as I play the Vita more. The Playstation Vita is a wide. It's bigger than a cellphone, but it's not as heavy. I brought my Nintendo 3DS to make comparisons, and I'd say the Playstation Vita is lighter than the Nintendo 3DS. I can't really say the graphics to the Vita are better than the Nintendo 3DS though. In 2D the Vita wins hands down on graphics, but the 3D on the 3DS look impressive as well.

At 4:30 we had to wait in line outside for the meetup to begin at 5:30. The hour wait wasn't so bad. Our host for the night, Sid Shuman, appeared and handed out free slices of pizza to the people waiting in line. The pizza was pretty good as I enjoyed having conversations with others waiting in line. The doors opened at 5:30 sharp and I was apart of the first group that got in the door. I received my free shirt, got more slices of pizza, and proceeded to play Uncharted 3 on the Playstation 3.

I was able to play the Playstation TV for the first time at the Vita Hill Social Club as well. The 24 inch screen is small, but the picture quality is impressive. I was captivated, by the level of detail in the picture quality of Uncharted 3 as I played it. I tried on the 3D glasses and they were interesting. It got dark as I put on the 3D glasses which of surprised me. I didn't have enough time to get the full experience of the 3D effect on the TV, but I'd buy one if I didn't already have a TV. I had to leave the Vita Hill Social Club for the next wave of people to experience the Vita, but I had a good time. I plan on buying a PlayStation Vita on launch day, but I might stop by the Vita Hill Social Club again.

Jan 17, 2012

Happy Birthday ErrolGames

What you thought I forgot?

Jan 3, 2012

2012's Most Wanted

New year, new videogames. 2012 has a lineup of releases that looks solid. This year marks the return of many beloved franchises as well as sequels to some of the most impressive games around. Here's my list of most anticipated titles for 2012.
Resident Evil Revelations 
This might be my most anticipated game of the year. I'm curious to see what Capcom has in store with Resident Evil: Revelations. Capcom promises that Revelations will bring the series back to it's survival horror roots, which I couldn't be more excited about. Add the fact that it's release is only a month away and you've got me sold.

Twisted Metal
Twisted Metal makes its next generation debut this Valentines Day. I'm a bit skeptical about this game. I wasn't a fan of Twisted Metal Black, but I haven't played a Twisted Metal game in years. That alone is enough of a reason for me to check this out. 

Asura's Wrath
I mostly put this game here because it's an original title. It's not a sequel or a remake, which means it's probably going to have a hard time standing out from the titles coming in February. Hopefully Asura's Wrath gets good reviews and stands it's ground against the competition.

Playstation Vita
Despite all of the negative stories, I'm buying a Playstation Vita on launch day. Why? Because it's being released two days after my birthday. A new portable videogame system sounds like the perfect birthday present to myself. I'm looking getting my hands on one and trying it out. Hopefully the Playstation Vita has an arsenal of quality titles that makes me happy that I bought one.

Uncharted: Golden Abyss
Sony made the right move by making Uncharted: Golden Abyss a launch title for the Playstation Vita. It made my decision to buy a Vita on launch day that much easier. Hopefully Sony keeps up the quality titles on the PS Vita. I've got hope for it.

2012 marks the return of my favorite snowboarding series. SSX is the NBA Street of Snowboarding. SSX is over the top. It's known for it's gorgeous visuals, and damn near impossible tricks. I've been waiting for a new SSX for years, and I can't wait to see what we have in store with this one.

Mass Effect 3
Another adventure with Shepard? Bring it on. This time it looks like we'll be trying to save planet Earth. If Mass Effect 3 is anywhere near as good as Mass Effect 2, I'll probably invest at least 50 hours into it. Can't wait to play as female Shepard again. 

Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater 3D
March 2012
Metal Gear Solid on the 3DS? Yes please. I've actually never played Metal Gear Solid 3. Ok I did, but I was too focused on Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas to get into it. Metal Gear Solid 3D is kind of like redemption for the days I put off the PS2 version. I'm curious to see what the game is going to look like on my 3DS.

Tony Hawk's Pro Skater HD
Summer 2012
I must say that it's about time Tony Hawk went back to what it does best. Old school Tony Hawk is one of the best videogame franchises of all time. It just over saturated the market with yearly releases. It's been years since Activision released an old school Tony Hawk game. This summer marks the return of Tony Hawk's Pro Skater. This version includes locations from the first and second Tony Hawk, and is going to be sold for a whopping $15 dollars this summer. First Day Purchase indeed.

Grand Theft Auto V 
Honestly I don't think we'll see the release of Grand Theft Auto V in 2012. All we've seen so far is a minute long trailer. When a new Grand Theft Auto is released, Rockstar makes sure the world knows it's coming way ahead of time. I hope we get more details about the GTAV this year. Is the multiple characters perspective true? What's the time period? Is it going to be on the Wii U? Things like that.

Wii U
I doubt the Wii U is coming in 2012 as well, but I wouldn't rule it out. One thing noticeably missing from this list is upcoming games for the Wii. It's a bad sign when the only game I can think of coming this year for the Wii is Madden 13. I do hope we get more details about Wii U this year. What is the price going to be? What games are in development for it? Does it perform better than the PS3 and Xbox 360? Guess we'll just have to wait and find out.

The crazy part about this years most anticipated list is that with the exception of Tony Hawk, all of the games listed will be released in the first half of the year. This either means that the holiday season will bring even more great games, or it will be quiet due to flood of the games being released in the first half. I think the holiday season will be great. Maybe I'll do another most anticipated list as games get announced for the holiday season. Until next time.

Jan 2, 2012

Saints Row the Third #GameofTheYear

Pros: Fun Game, Doesn't Take Itself Too Seriously, Customizing Cars, Clothes, Looks Etc. is excellent, Shooting mechanics are great, Missions are fun, Level Design is nice, Funny Game,  Plenty of Side Missions and Activities to do, & Professor Genki's Mini Game's are Excellent.

Cons: No Jewelry Stores or Customize Crib Options, Not as much depth with customizing as seen in Saints Row 2, Parts of the Story never get explained, & Glitches.

I've been a fan of Saints Row since the first one. Witnessing the growth of the only game that survived the "Grand Theft Auto Clone" era has been a pleasure. Saints Row has truly evolved into it's own series. If Saints Row 2 left any thoughts of a "GTA Clone" in my mind those thoughts are now gone thanks to Saints Row The Third.

The first things I want to point out is the improvements Saints Row The Third has over Saints Row 2. The shooting mechanics are a lot better in Saints Row the Third. You now press L1 to aim and R1 to shoot. This allows for more strategies to use during shoot outs. In Saints Row 2 you had to tap the Right Stick to aim. This lead to me using a mostly run and gun approach in Saints Row 2. I would tap the right stick to aim at times, but I seemed to do a great job at running and gunning. I still found myself running & gunning in Saints Row the Third, but I'd switch it up and aim my gun more often.

I also love the new quick dive ability added to Saints Row The Third. If you're running and you press jump, your player leaps forward and dives. This move has gotten me out of plenty of sticky situations. If you find yourself in the center of a gunfight, you have a chance of surviving by leaping your way out of it. It also makes getting over obstacles, and going from the 2nd floor to the 1st floor much more convenient. One leap and you're there.

When it comes to customizing things in a videogame, no series does it better than Saints Row. I spent hours inside of clothing stores in Saints Row 2 customizing outfits. In Saints Row The Third I found myself customizing more than just my outfits. I'd customize every car I brought to my Garage. No more having to go to Rim Jobs to customize my cars. I still had to go to Rim Jobs, but I'll explain why later.

One store I frequently visited was Image As Designed. I became obsessed with customizing my characters looks. First he looked too old, then he looked too basic, then he looked too plastic. I eventually worked it out and was satisfied with the final outcome of my player. I love Saints Row because it really allows me to play as the character I want to play as. Ever since the first Saints Row I've played as a Caucasian Male with white hair. I initially chose him to defy the stereotype of being an African American male gangster, which evolved into me loving my older British character. I tried to play as an African American Female for my second playthrough of Saints Row the Third, but I felt the that none of the voices matched the person I was playing as. I also imagine my player in Saints Row 3 to be a guy who acts before he thinks. The older male whose both handsome and clueless fits my view of the leader of the Saints perfectly.

Customizing outfits in Saints Row The Third is fun, but I feel like it's limited when compared to Saints Row 2. In Saints Row 2 you had plenty more options about how you wanted your character to wear something. Let's take a baseball jersey for example. In Saints Row 2 you could choose the logo on the jersey, whether you wanted the jersey buttoned, tucked, and you got to choose number. In Saints Row The Third you can only choose the color of the baseball jersey. I found myself spending less time customizing outfits because there weren't enough options with what to do with my clothes. Sure I could change the color, but why not be able to change the design like before? Maybe I want leopard print on my jersey.

The Story to Saints Row 3 could use some work. It took me a second playthrough to realize there are some serious gaps that don't get explained in the plot. One thing the game doesn't explain is what happened to Johnny Gat. One minute Johnny's on a plane talking smack through the intercom. Then you hear him get caught by a rival gang over the intercom. Next thing you know you're at a safehouse with Shaundi talking about funeral arrangements for Johnny. When and how did Johnny die? I would've thought a character that's been a staple to the franchise would at least die on screen. I expected it to be a dramatic cut scene that would make me go "that's messed up," but no. We just hear that Johnny died on the last mission and move on.

Another thing I feel the game never really gets explained is why the Saints are in Steelport. I kept getting the feeling that I either missed something, or the game would explain it later. It says in the Saints Row Wiki that it's from the Saints getting bored of Stillwater at the end of Saints Row 2. I don't remember that part, so a little refresher would have helped in Saints Row the Third.

Speaking of things missing in Saints Row The Third, where are the Jewelry stores? Being able to buy necklaces and rings at a clothes store isn't the same. It sucked seeing random characters wearing gold and silver jewelery while I'm stuck choosing choosing cheesy colors for my choker necklace. I was really looking forward to seeing how the gold or silver on my belt buckle would match my other jewelry, but sadly that wasn't the case. I couldn't even buy belts in this game. I like the idea of buying jewelry and clothes at the same place, but please bring back gold and platinum jewelry in the next Saints Row.

It was also a bit of a letdown that I couldn't customize any of the houses I bought or received throughout the game. Some of the places you stay in Saints Row the Third are flat out crappy. The only good they serve are to get rid of cops and gang notoriety when I enter. In Saints Row 2, I enjoyed walking around a crappy apartment that I transformed into a luxury pad with a few upgrades. Not being able to customize cribs in Saints Row The Third is a missed opportunity.

One thing that makes a return to Saints Row is side missions and activities. The difference now is the activities only have 3 levels (Easy, Medium, Hard,) and they're not required to advance the story.  One side mission I enjoyed was Gang Operations. Instead of advancing the story to take out Gang Operations like before, all you gotta do is explore the city. Gang operations pop up on your map as you explore. Once you get to the location of the fist you must kill all of the gang members there. Once they're all dead you own the territory. Simple and fun.

I can't mention activities without mentioning Professor Genki's Super Ethical Reality Climax. Professor Genki's activity is a game show based around the idea of killing enemies. You must fight your way through rooms full of enemies and traps. You gain points by killing enemies and once you have enough points you must escape before the timer runs out. This new mini game easily is my favorite Saints Row activity I've ever played. Fight Club in Saints Row 2 was great, but Professor Genki is better. Everything from the commentary to the search for health made me enjoy the game immensely. I hope Professor Genki, as well as Fight Club, makes a return in return in future Saint's Row games.

One thing I have to point out is the small glitches that occurred as I was playing the game. I'm not going to lower the score due to any of them, a patch could easily fix most of them, but I will point them out. One glitch I noticed was during the Vehicle Theft side missions in the Saints Book. There were many instances where I would steal the car I needed, but the game wouldn't acknowledge it. It got frustrating driving all the way to the chop shop for the car to not be accepted. I found the glitch would occur if I managed to steal a car with no notoriety. The boat that's north of that Restricted island comes to mind. Instead of driving through the island I would simply swim to the boat. The game wouldn't acknowledge that I'd stole the boat until I walked on land and received 5 star notoriety.

Another glitch would occur when I wanted a vehicle delivered to me. Sometimes the car wouldn't show up. When I call back I get a busy signal forcing me to have to steal some car that doesn't have nitrous. Places such as alleys and parking lots were notorious for this glitch to happen. My solution was to walk to the street that and call for my vehicle then. 9 times out of 10 my car would show up when I called on a street. It got frustrating when my car wouldn't show up. All of the cars I owned were so fast I really didn't want to steal a slow car from the street. This resulted in me going to Rim Jobs a lot to pick up cars that weren't delivered. If it weren't for the vehicle delivery glitch, I'd hardly ever have gone to Rim Jobs.

The soundtrack to this game is pretty good. My favorite radio station would have to be K12. There was this one song that had no words that was great to me. Every time it came I'd find myself nodding my head. One thing I noticed was there were a lot of Odd Future songs on various playlists. It cool that whoever was in charge of music was a fan of Odd Future, but it's a bit much. I don't really listen to Odd Future. I find their music to be too random for my taste, but it's all good.

Saints Row the Third is my official 2011 Game of the Year. It gets this award for reminding me why I love console games. For most of 2011 I would only play my 3DS with thoughts that console games have gone to hell. Saints Row the Third is mindless fun. I haven't been able to zone out and just play. Thank you Volition for making a great game, and I look forward to the next one.