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By Jonathan Balofsky On 26 May, 2017 At 02:46 PM | Categorized As Featured, News, PlayStation, Reviews, Reviews, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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Guilty Gear has undergone a major resurgence of late. It began with Guilty Gear Xrd Sign and doesn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon. The latest release in the series is Guilty Gear Xrd Rev2, but does it really offer much in comparison to Gulty Gear Xrd Revelator? Or should you avoid it?

I will begin by stating what I felt to be a key point. The combat has been refined yet again by Arc System Works and is smoother than ever. The game continues experimenting with different playstyles for players who do not want the standard inputs and that is highly commendable. Along with the amazing tutorial, Guilty Gear Xrd Rev 2 has the unique nature of appealing to two different groups of players at the same time. I must say again about the tutorial, in that it is one of the best tutorials ever made for a fighting game. It teaches you exactly how to play a fighting game if you were unfamiliar and will help you not only in this game but others as well.

The revised combat has more than a few balance adjustments. I would say that most fans will notice them depending on the time they put in to the previous game, the more time the more you will notice and vice versa. More notably in my opinion, is that there are animation additions almost everywhere. This is just a gorgeous 2.5D fighting game and I do not think I have ever seen a better one. Everything just feels smooth and fluid. My complaints about the little moments of stiffness in Revelator are gone, and even the online works so much better. It seems Arc System Works took each and every criticism to heart and set out to make the ultimate Guilty Gear game. I have to say that in my opinion, they succeeded. The music is top notch as always in the series, but it just feels even more epic here. It feels that the music has been kicked up a notch or three and that gives the game a more exciting feeling.

In terms of the roster, there are two additions, Baiken and Answer. Answer is a difficult character to learn, but very rewarding, while Baiken is true to past iterations. I like that not much was changed in terms of the roster, but what was added, were well done and excellent additions.

There are of course multiple online modes and story modes, as to be expected in a Guilty Gear game, and to be honest, I feel this is one of the most complete fighting games around. With its cheaper price ( and even cheaper digital price if bought as a DLC  upgrade), I cannot recommend this enough. Guilty Gear Xrd Rev2 is just an awesome game all around, and one of the best fighting games for both fans and newcomers to the genre. I urge you to check this out as soon as you can. You will not regret buying this game anytime.

By Jonathan Balofsky On 21 May, 2017 At 09:53 PM | Categorized As Editorials, Featured, News, NINTENDO, Opinion, Reviews, Reviews, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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LJN is one of the most reviled names in retro gaming. The publisher put out some of the worst games on the NES, SNES and other systems, but not all their games were bad. One game that tends to get a lot of hate is Back to the Future on NES but I feel this hate is unwarranted, and the game is actually nowhere near as bad as is claimed.

Back To The Future admittedly does have a bizarre way of adapting the game, and it seems to have nothing to do with the movie at first. I was one of many people who thought this until it was made apparent what I was missing. Back to the Future on NES plays much like an arcade game more than anything else, and its various levels and styles all play like something out of an 80’s arcade game. While we may remember the big names like Street Fighter, Final Fight and Smash TV, the truth is that there were many arcade games that were just like Back to the Future. When looked at in that context it becomes a lot easier to see what the developers were going for and I can appreciate it. Indeed, the levels on the streets are the most reminiscent of this style, especially with getting power-ups like skateboards and weapons. It is clear what the developers were going for, even if they didn’t hit the mark.

Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying this is an amazing hidden gem for the NES ( though I would argue another LJN licensed game, Nightmare on Elm Street, actually is a hidden gem), and there is a difference between “not a bad game” and “a great game”. I view Back to The Future on NES as more middle of the road, nothing too bad but not anything great. I actually managed to have fun wasting time with it, and even the side levels like catching hearts or catching notes were fun. Arcade games would often have hard segments like this to guzzle more quarters, so again, I get what they were going for.

Now, I will address the major complain people have. The music is atrocious and cannot be defended as it is. The thing is, the music was not supposed to be like that. The music as composed, was a faithful 8 Bit rendition of the music from the movie. Now I have heard two explanations for what happened with the music to make it what it was. One explanation was that the music had to be licensed separately and when this was found out, it was sped up to hide it. The other explanation is that it was programed into the game wrong and it was sped up and not fixed due to the game being rushed out.

If you do not believe me about the music then listen to this

 

 

 

All in all, Back to the Future on NES cant really be called a terrible game. Its just kind of there. It can be enjoyed and for all the complaints about Marty looking weird, even faithful licensed games like Batman made strange choices in character appearances. I don’t understand the hate and I thank people like 8-Bit Eric for helping make me aware of the game’s good qualities . I encourage you to try the game again and consider it from this perspective. Just avoid Back to the Future II and III on NES, as that game is truly horrible.

 

(Thank you to Larry Bundy Jr for sharing the video above. You can check out his youtube channel here , I highly recommend it)

(Check out 8-Bit Eric’s channel here.)

The article was inspired by Cygnus destroyer ( Check him out here)

The above was the opinion solely of the author and does not necessarily reflect the views of Real Otaku Gamer and its staff

By Kira Nance On 17 May, 2017 At 05:47 PM | Categorized As Featured, PC Games, PlayStation, Reviews, Reviews, Reviews, ROG News, Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 0 Comments

No GravatarFirst and foremost, I would like you to take into consideration the fact that getting myself to write this review is comparable to pulling teeth. The moment I began my complicated relationship with Rise and Shine I was immediately taken back by the beauty of the beast. Oh man, is this a beautiful game, but beauty is only skin deep after all. While platformers at not my specialty they are also not my Achilles heel, yet I consistently found myself in the position where I was too frustrated to continue. Rise & Shine is a little bit like being in an unhealthy relationship and being too stubborn to leave. Perhaps like dating a supermodel whom, while she is beautiful, is so very used to going on looks alone that they fail to nurture other aspects of their being. I wanted to love this game, perhaps I still do but that’s not necessarily a good thing. 

It’s no surprise that Adult Swim Games has, as of late been dipping their toe into the proverbial pool that is console gaming. After the success of titles such as Katana Zero, Headlander and Rick and Morty Simulator: Virtual Rick-ality it makes perfect sense. The folks over at Adult Swim bring a refreshing attitude to the entertainment table, expressing a strong desire to provide quality entertainment over profit “We don’t have an agenda to sell something. For us, we want to create a really amazing experience.”  said Adult Swim’s Ashley Jex-Wagner, director of events “That’s the most important thing for us is for everyone to have a good time“. 

It seems the developers at Super Awesome Hyper Dimensional Mega Team are on the same page. In an interview with Invision Community, Enrique Corts (Art Director, Creative Director) stated “Our focus has always been making really polished hardcore games that add something fresh to the table. We believe in making things properly since day one, so we only launch our games when they are completely ready and as much bug-free as possible, even if that means we risk our financial health. Sometimes is really tough having our own quality bar so high, but this is the only way to success we understand.

The four-person team based out of Spain has already seen success in the mobile market with Editor’s Choice titles, Pro Zombie Soccer, Pro Zombie Soccer Apocalypse Edition, and Supermagical, all of which have received Game of the Year in the App Store. Rise & Shine is Super Awesome Hyper Dimensional Mega Team’s first PC/console title release and consequently my latest headache. So, the big question here is did Adult Swim and Super Awesome Hyper Dimensional Mega Team accomplishes their goal to provide us with enjoyable quality content? Well, I’d have to say yes and no.

With the combined powers of Adult Swim Games and Super Awesome Hyper Dimensional Mega Team, comes Rise & Shine a true “think and gun” gem that while frustrating is definitely worth your time. Rise & Shine is basically a playable homage to classic video games. Warped versions of beloved characters such as Link, Marcus Fenix, Q*bert and the Duck Hunt dog make hilarious appearances. The gameplay itself is a bit of a throwback, think Metal Slug meets Contra. This 2-D side-scrolling shooter is anything but basic, sometimes it’s even overly complicated. There’s a cover system to employ similar to the one used in Gears of War but this doesn’t ensure safety from all enemies especially the more volatile ones. Combining aspects of arcade shooters, bullet hells, and puzzle platformers staying focused in Rise & Shine is a major challenge in itself.

You play as Rise, a young boy of Gamearth, who upon receiving a legendary smack talking gun by the name of Shine suddenly becomes his planets greatest hope for survival against the invading Nexgen. You gun your way through 14 levels of unique puzzles, endless robot armadas, hungry zombies and intimidating bosses. Shine also conveniently bestows his wielder with unlimited respawns, unless you share the likeness of Link apparently. Unlimited lives, thank you, Shine, I thoroughly tested those boundaries. You have the choice to load Shine with his standard ammo or electric bullets, electric doing more damage to some enemies and next to nothing against others. Rise & Shine also grants you fun explosive bullets to detonate at will and the ability to guide your bullets remotely (RC), though only through a limited radius. Utilizing each bullet type is essential for navigating the puzzle solving, projectile dodging, enemy slaying chaos that is Rise & Shine. Bosses are no joke, only adding to the retro gaming atmosphere here, for example, the final boss takes upwards of 90 minutes to beat. 90 painfully tedious minutes. Considering the game consist of a mere two hours of actual gameplay with almost no storyline to spice things up, I found this to be severely annoying. I’m sure eighty percent of my time was spent severely immersed in boss fights. Taking damage is never an option as two hits from a base level enemy or projectile is enough to kill you at any point. Mastering the fine art of bullet spray is probably the best defense in Rise & Shine and quite possibly the best way to stay sane. 

The controls are slightly over complicated, requiring you to aim with the left trigger, shoot with the right trigger and guidance is provided by the right stick. When your screen is full of enemies, storms of bullets, lasers, and explosions this less that kind control system gets in the way. add in the bumpers to cycle through ammunition all while dodging, jumping and dashing to avoid getting hit. Oh, and don’t forget to reload. Seriously I’m exhausted just explaining all that.

Visually, the folks at Super Awesome Hyper Dimensional Mega Team nailed it. This is where the quality of the game shines through. The story while lacking in detail, plays out in charming comic panels that showcase the developers love for comic books. Each level’s background is made up of hand-drawn illustrations with multiple parallax scroll layers, giving new depth to each scene as you progress. I seriously lost myself in the artwork of Rise & Shine, it was easy to imagine myself gallivanting around the streets of Gamearth blasting away space grunts. The in-game audio and soundtrack are top notch thanks to the talent of Jerry Goldsmith Award nominee Damián Sánchez (Reservoir Dogs, Blues and Bullets). However, aesthetics alone cannot carry a game and Rise & Shine left me raging in the end. It’s a title deserving of your time and respect but I can’t in good conscience recommend it for anyone with anger issues.

Review code was provided by the publisher.

 

By Jonathan Balofsky On 16 May, 2017 At 04:23 PM | Categorized As News, News, News, NINTENDO, PC Games, PlayStation, ROG News, Xbox 360/Xbox One | With 0 Comments

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This is unexpected. A new name has entered the arena of E3 as Devolver Digital will be holding a conference.

 

There are no full details yet, but this is a pretty big deal as Devolver is one of the fastest growing publishers and a new conference at E3 is always big news. Hopefully new details come soon.

By Jonathan Balofsky On 16 May, 2017 At 11:10 AM | Categorized As Featured, News, NINTENDO, Nintendo Switch, Reviews, Reviews, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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Disgaea is a well loved Strategy RPG series that made its home on PlayStation systems, although it did have an entry on the DS. Now the series has returned to Nintendo systems with Disgaea 5 Complete on the Switch. This contains Disgaea 5 as it was on PlayStation 4, and has all the DLC that came with it.

Disgaea 5 is about a conflict between demons in the various netherworlds and has a fully realized plot and characters. In fact, the characters are a major selling point for this game. There is the protagonist Killia, the overlord of Gorgeous Seraphina, Red Magnus and more. Each character has a unique personality and mannerisms and the various interactions they have in the game are always great to watch. Sometimes they are downright hilarious, especially Red Magnus, who is based off pro wrestlers like the Rock.

The gameplay, for those who are not familiar with Disgaea, is similar to the Final Fantasy Tactics series, with battles set up in the same way. You advance around the battlefield and plan your moves carefully. You can team up characters for attacks, throw characters to move farther, and combo your moves. Different battlefields will have different obstacles and each character has unique abilities, including passive abilities that will provide either new challenges or new ways of winning. Disgaea is essentially a 3D game of chess with better visuals and great storytelling. Once you get the idea of what to do, you will start to have a lot of fun and lose yourself in it. Characters have unique moves as well such as the overload, and the different moves for the monsters. Each character has to be handled differently which offers a challenge and a good sense of reward. When you hit the right move, you will be amazed at what you can do.

Then there are the recruitable classes, whom you can interact with when off the battlefield. There are numerous classes that you can hire and customize, including their personalities. This means you can set up your party to be exactly the way you want it, which is a great touch. Speaking of being off the battlefield, there is a great overworld of sorts, with Seraphina’s pocket netherworld serving as your base. there are shops to go to, different characters to interact with, and more skits available. As you progress in the game, you unlock more characters and the world changes a bit each time. The characters are great, with witty dialogue and good voice acting. In fact now is the time to mention that Disgaea 5 has some of the best voice acting ever in a game, along with some amazing music. The visuals are a perfect match for the sound and the skits become great to watch as a result.

If you feel overwhelmed by the idea of a tactical RPG, Disgaea 5 offers several tutorials on how to play the game, each offered when starting a new part of the game or exploring a new mechanic. These do a great job of explaining things and getting you up to speed. If you feel these tutorials aren’t necessary though, then they can be skipped completely and you wont need to worry about hand holding the entire time. The game has a perfect balance with the tutorials and I recommend checking some out.

One thing I found very cool, is that the game still has Trophies from the PS4 version. They even sound have the same sound effect and can be seen by talking to a character in Seraphina’s base.

As mentioned, this version of the game has all the DLC and it is obtainable right away. You have your choice of when you access it though, so don’t feel rushed to use it all.

Disgaea 5 is an excellent experience on the Switch. Whether docked or in handheld mode, this was a lot of fun, and I lost hours to this. I highly recommend checking this out as it is one of the best games for the Switch right now. You will not regret this.

 

A code was provided for this review.

By Jonathan Balofsky On 11 May, 2017 At 02:30 PM | Categorized As Featured, News, NINTENDO, Nintendo Switch, Reviews, Reviews, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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The Nintendo Switch has developed a good library in a short time. There are games of all varieties and one that cannot be ignored is Kamiko. The game is an arcade style action game that is reminiscent of the original legend of Zelda while still being different in its own way.

In Kamiko you play as one of 3 shrine maidens, each wielding a different weapon. There is a sword, a bow and a mirror which is used for throwing along with a short sword. The different weapons open up different possibilities for playing and does give the game a good amount of replayability, if not true variety. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of different enemies and environments but it all goes by fast. That said, the game is designed to be played in short spurts like an old arcade game. It isn’t meant to be an epic adventure like the Legend of Zelda despite the seeming similarities in design.

The music in the game is charming and fitting. It has an old school vibe that fits with the art style giving you a retro feel while still being a modern indie game. In fact, design wise this game feels more like a “what if” type scenario. What if Zelda was a coin-op arcade action game?. Granted, Nintendo themselves sort of made a game like that on the famicom with Nazo No Murasamejo ( The Mysterious Murasame Castle, a game that should be brought back), but this has the advantage of being a modern look back rather than a contemporary.

The game can be completed in a short time, but that is why there are 3 different characters. You play through the game more than once and enjoy it more than once. Its a nice addition and I approve of it. Overall, Kamiko doesn’t do that much different or new but it is a very competent game for what it does do. It has a very cheap price that is hard to pass up and to be honest, I see no reason not to try it.  It is a game that, while not perfect, does deserve your attention. I recommend it.

By John Kinsella On 10 May, 2017 At 02:25 PM | Categorized As Featured, PlayStation, Reviews, Reviews, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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If you have played Persona 5, you know how great a game it really is. Though I’ve only had it a short amount of time, it seems like ages, and it has really become something I treasure. Having only played Persona 4, I was ready to try out the series next iteration. Jumping into this beautifully designed alternate world Tokyo, I was spellbound, and from the moment the game started up I had no doubt in my mind I would do anything to finish this game.

The game follows the story of a protagonist, fresh out of getting kicked out of his old school due to a scuffle and thrust into a whole new world.  The young man may look mild mannered, but he is a devious and cunning mastermind. Of course, that really is only when he needs to be, as usually he is able to keep peace. He meets a wonderful cast of characters, some who help him and some who harm him. As a Persona game it is up to you who you forge relationships with.

Persona 5’s story is certainly one worth playing to the end, as it really makes you think about the world. There may need to be some upheaval, and it is a shame the Phantom Thieves don’t exist. For the uniformed, The Phantom Thieves are the protagonist’s group. Honestly, I felt like I grew playing this game, and that I honestly do want to figure out something I can do to change our planet for the better.

Besides a wonderful story, the game itself is one of the best I’ve seen. Its battles flow brilliantly as do its cut scenes and tranisitions. Depending on where you are, the transitions change and that is something cool. As you travel all around Tokyo, you will see so many different things that it almost feels like you have been to Japan after playing it.

Back to the characters of Persona 5. They are all so unique it is hard to choose who you want to spend time with. Now, there are people who make guides where they max out everything in one run, but I personally just go with the flow. Though it does pain me that this first playthrough is clocking at 100 hours, and my main character didn’t end up with any of the amazing women. This just gives me an incentive to play the game again for a fuller experience. Seriously, it is difficult when you have a punk doctor, a teacher, a shut in hacker, and a student council president among others to choose from.

The characters themselves also have touching stories that make you feel like even though you may be putting in work, it isn’t for nothing. These people feel and live their lives, slowly becoming more and more attached to the protagonist. When you max any of the social links,  you feel this connection to the character, as you have experienced something with them that has changed them. It’s just like any real friendship, you go through something together and part of you is bonded to them forever.

Besides the wonderful story and characters, there are also have amazing dungeons, which the game calls palaces to explore. These Palaces are inside of the characters minds, and just like their outside self these worlds are distorted. You never know what kind of dungeon theme you are going to be plunged into next. They vary so differently that it is honestly shocking. One of the best parts of the game is simply to see how people see the world. I have to wonder what kind of Palace I’d have.

So, in conclusion, Persona 5 is hands-down one of my favorite games. It honestly is a contender for Game of The Year right now and will at least finish in the top 3 I’m sure. Persona 5 truly is its own game, so don’t feel like you need to play other Persona games to play it. If it sounds at all interesting, it is definitely worth picking up. When playing it, just play like you are the character it honestly makes everything all the more relatable, at least that is what I thought.

 

By Cataclysmic Knight On 9 May, 2017 At 03:48 PM | Categorized As Indie Spotlight, PlayStation, Reviews, Reviews, ROG News | With 0 Comments

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Developed By: Fire Face Corporation
Published By: Adult Swim Games
Available For: PS4 (reviewed), Windows

One side of the second building.

I had never heard of Small Radios Big Televisions before I received a review code for it, but a quick glance online made it look like Fez if it was a point-and-click puzzler. Diving in, I was presented with a building against a rather plain red background and absolutely no tutorial or clue as to what to do. Moving the left joystick moved the cursor, and when it moved over the only door present it became clear this was what I was meant to do – open the door and begin. Exploration is unique: instead of being given a character to move around, you merely move the cursor and whatever room you’re currently in tilts to allow the cursor to reach everything. To enter a room or interact with things, just press X with the cursor over it. Some things, like cogs, require dragging to complete puzzles. This may sound pretty standard, but the fact that I never saw myself and the view was pulled so far out gave the game an entirely different feel.

It was when I found my first cassette that the game really became special. These cassettes are better than music (yes, even Star-Lord’s Awesome Mixes), they’re virtual reality! Each one has a very specific experience and is clearly labeled with things like Road, Forest or Stream. Like any VR experience these are all first-person, and while some of them offer automatic movement along a pre-programmed track you can’t actually control yourself at all. You can, however, look around with the cursor, and the goal here is to find green gems. To make matters even more wild you’ll come across magnets as you explore the main game which warp any cassettes you currently have. Idyllic, lovely settings become ruined and corrupted when entering them again which is necessary to find additional gems.

Your TD-525 provides some simple diversions, but at what cost?

After each area is completed there’s a mysterious conversation between two people. As a huge fan of story in games this was an excellent addition. They’re all very short, so folks who couldn’t care less don’t have to wait long, and they’re just long enough to tease at what’s going on. Between the lack of any kind of setup, the mysterious setting, the VR tapes and these dialogues the game’s world is constantly unraveling into something interesting. There’s also writing and graffiti on the walls of several of the rooms that elude to a much darker tone. It’s almost painful how much I want to talk about the story of this game! Unfortunately, this is one of those games where giving any details would hurt the experience.

Things get a little dark at times.

I am NOT good at puzzle games. A quarter or a half of the way in I typically start needing a walkthrough here and there, and by the last quarter or so I usually end up spending more time watching videos on how to solve the game’s puzzles than actually playing it. That wasn’t the case here, and while I ended up feeling rather smart a few times I worry that hardcore puzzle fans will be rather bored here. The difficulty in the game comes mostly from navigating through the areas and locating the green gems in the cassettes: as the game progresses rooms end up having quite a few diverging paths that make it easy to forget where to go or where you just came from. There is a map in the game, but I didn’t get any use out of it personally. The fact that doors are always closed until you first enter them and stay open once they’re opened helps, but the later areas require a fair bit of backtracking.

The audio and art fit the retro theme incredibly well. The 3D styles of the last century are evident here and the music is subdued and enjoyable, although one or two of the pieces may have been a little repetitive in the background as I hunted down gems. I also liked that the game took advantage of the DualShock speaker for inserting cassettes; as someone somewhat new to PS4 I’m always excited when a game takes advantage of it. It all came together to draw me far more into the world of Small Radios Big Television than I could have expected.

Small radios provide big insight into the plot.

I really loved that the game doesn’t hold your hand yet still ended up making perfect sense. It was awesome that even a mediocre puzzle gamer like myself could figure things out! Although the gameplay is rather simple and half the puzzles are just hunting for green gems in cassettes or navigating small labyrinths of doors the setting and story more than made up for it to me. I even felt compelled to go back through and find the two lenses I missed the first time around; completing the game unlocks the ability to go back and the doors are thankfully all closed once again. The mystery was a bit simple but deep enough to keep me excited about every scene, and the ending had a really unexpected, Twilight Zone-ish twist. If you’re a big fan of story games like me and have a few hours to spend on a unique little puzzle adventure title I’d highly recommend Small Radios Big Televisions.

Disclaimer: A code was provided for the purposes of this review

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Prey was a 2006 game by Human Head Studios that brought in some truly innovating gameplay to the FPS genre. It was like little else before it.  Now fast forward to 2017 and Prey has been revived, mostly in name only as this is more of a spiritual sequel to System Shock, by Arkane Studios and Bethesda Softworks, but fans of the original should be aware there are elements of the original present here.

Prey plays as a hybrid between survival horror and first-person shooter and does so admirably. Bethesda games are well known for having some glitches and shaky models, it’s expected by now and there is a charm to them. Prey takes these shaky models and glitches and makes them into gameplay elements. Everywhere you go there are enemies of some kind, and the game gets really creative with them. I have to give it to Arkane Studios, the enemies in the game are well thought out and well designed. The enemies can be anything and this creates a great degree of paranoia that is perfect for the game. You will never know where the enemy is, because of the nature of the enemy. This game is billed as the spiritual successor to System Shock, and I truly feel it surpasses its inspiration. It successfully pushes horror to the next level, while mixing in a perfect amount of action.

The game offers unique abilities as part of the story, and these offer so much variety in the gameplay. Prey is a unique type of game, given its story and the way the game lets you go about it. Using the abilities is a big part of the game, but the game makes it personal when you use the powers. It messes with you and forces you to question everything.  It’s a great twist on the usual Survival Horror and FPS gameplay and a welcome innovation.  The game’s abilities, while new and not those of the original game ( again, this is an in name only reboot), still does have a feeling of a connection to the original. This might be surprising but the original Prey’s abilities had a psychological impact that is present in many ways in this game. There are humorous aspects as well, such as becoming different objects which are amusing and great for getting ahead in the game. It is really well done and when used right, creates a rewarding experience, There are also the game mechanics that stand out, such as recycling, and the various weapons and upgrades. Prey is a game you will want to play through more than once ( more on that in just a bit), and it will definitely continue to be fun and exciting,

The story is interesting, if a bit flawed, and has some very neat twists. That said, the way the storytelling is done through the gameplay is good and the visual style of the game adds to its enjoyability a great deal. The big thing for me with the immersion was the music. The soundtrack was absolutely amazing and some of Mick Gordon’s best work, and helps to both set the mood and draw the player in, in the right way and at the right time. It switches from intense action to creepy scares in just the correct amount and keeps things fresh for the player. The story of the game takes a while to appreciate, and there are pacing issues and some things that still don’t work well ( the flaws mentioned), but once it is complete, you will want to play the game again to see how it all fits together. Admittedly, the story isn’t the draw of the game for me, but it plays its part well in the game. That said, the characters are developed well and the setting and scenario and very well thought out and developed. Arkane said they wanted Talos I to be a character itself and they accomplished that.

Prey’s biggest flaw is that the pacing in general, not just in the story, seems off at times, but that can be easily overlooked. All in all, I think Prey is another knockout title from Arkane and Bethesda, and I cannot imagine not recommending it. It just feels great to play and I want more of this experience. It was really well done.

 

Disclaimer: A code was provided by Bethesda for the purposes of this review.

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As of May 1 2017 ( or May 2nd if you live in EU), it has been 15 years since the release of The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind. In the time since, gaming has gotten even bigger and The Elder Scrolls series in particular has continued to grow, and it seems that many, while acknowledging Morrowind is a great game, don’t realize why it was.

The Elder Scrolls: Arena, the first game in the series, was a fairly average for the time CRPG. it was rooted in the D&D model and many things introduced in the game were changed in some way, or drastically expanded on to provide new explanations later on. The races were presented differently, The Daedra were not present and some key locations and didn’t have any real significance to them besides acting as shout outs to other works, such as the writings of Tolkien. The Elder Scrolls: Daggerfall saw the series go into a more fluid 3D form than before, introduced the Daedra and some concepts and characters that would become important later. But it still wasn’t  quite The Elder Scrolls we know today. Those games were very much based in the typical fantasy elements that were often used, and it wasn’t until Morrowind that the series really set itself apart.

It isn’t that Morrowind had a bigger open world than the previous games. Daggerfall was much bigger than Morrowind, which is only set in part of the fictional province. No, it was that Morrowind felt alive, like it was a unique land that was a breath of fresh air from the normal tropes of fantasy. We weren’t getting a European based fantasy story, we were getting weird fiction and it was awesome. This was the game that introduced so much to the series. The Daedra got their proper personalities, we got a true backstory for the games, there was a unique cast of characters, and every choice you made had consequences.  The game began the series tradition of starting out as a prisoner, and handled the protagonist in an interesting way, that to explain it now would be a spoiler as I want you to play this game and appreciate it.

This was the game where The Elder Scrolls set itself apart from the pack, and another way it did that was through its Xbox port. It wasn’t a good port, as the Xbox simply wasn’t meant to handle such a game, but it helped expose the series to a new audience. It was this game that brought us the mystery of the Dwemer, and it was this game that took those shout outs to Tolkien and actually made them distinct and different.  The different races all became unique in their own right, and we got to learn the mythological lore of the series that still goes on in the current games. The Elder Scrolls : Oblivion and The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim owe much to Morrowind, but so do games like Mass Effect and Dragon Age. This was the game that showed what could truly be done with Western RPGs. That they could rival and surpass the JRPGs.

So I say to you now, if you haven’t ever played Morrowind, give it a try. Yes it has dated graphics and a clunky control scheme, but mods can help with that. This game brought so much joy and so much innovation, that it deserves to continue to be appreciated today!