The Division Delivers But Only in Fits and Starts

Tom Clancy’s The Division, a game about American sleeper agents taking back New York after a brutal viral outbreak, released at the beginning of March after one of the most prolonged hype cycles in recent memory. I’ve played a decent amount of the Division, completed the story and found every single collectible (all 290 something of them). I’ve fought tons of bullet sponge enemies and spent minutes scratch my head over whether some gear is better than others thanks to the somewhat impenetrable item stats.

The Division is getting a significant patch next week that is adding an end-game activity called Incursions and bringing in sweeping changes to loot, crafting and a whole bunch of other stuff. This impression covers everything pre-patch and some of my feedback might be addressed come release, but this is what I thought of The Division during the first month of its life. Continue reading The Division Delivers But Only in Fits and Starts

Destiny’s April Update and Why Sterling Treasure Boxes Are No Big Deal

After months of waiting, Bungie is dropping a sizable content update for Destiny next week in the form of the April Update which features a new Strike and updated Taken versions of the Winter’s Run Strike and the Prison of Elders. It also brings in new armor, gear, some customization for said armor and gear in the form of “Chroma” and a Light level increase to 335 (from 320).

To earn some of that gear, you’ll need to get one of the new Sterling Treasure boxes. You can acquire three of these by playing the new Level 41 Prison of Elders, one round of the weekly Crucible playlist and logging in on the weekly reset. Aside from the three boxes you can earn just by playing, you can also buy Sterling Treasures from Eververse, the microstransaction store at the Tower. This last source of the new hotness is giving the Destiny community a bit of pause. Continue reading Destiny’s April Update and Why Sterling Treasure Boxes Are No Big Deal

The Reaction to Assassin’s Creed Artwork in Uncharted 4’s New Trailer Was Blown Way Out of Proportion

In the wee hours of this morning, a new trailer for Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End dropped and during one section of the trailer, series protagonist and half-tuck advocate Nathan Drake glances at a framed print of…Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag concept art.

Yes, the upcoming PlayStation 4 exclusive has a piece of concept art from an entirely different game series in its trailer. Honest mistake? Homage? Continue reading The Reaction to Assassin’s Creed Artwork in Uncharted 4’s New Trailer Was Blown Way Out of Proportion

Talking Up a Storm in Firewatch

When faced with adversity, most of us would like to imagine that we would face our problems head on and confront them. In reality though, the most appealing path is to get as far away from your issues as possible and hope that the distance means you won’t have to deal with it, at least for a little while.

This is the case in Firewatch, a first person adventure mystery game from Campo Santo. In the Summer of 1989, playable character Henry takes a temporary job as a fire lookout in the Shoshone National Forest in Wyoming, far away from civilization and his own personal hangups back in Colorado. Continue reading Talking Up a Storm in Firewatch

Ubisoft Announces That Assassin’s Creed Will Have No New Game in 2016

It feels like one of the collective wishes of the Internet has been granted today as Ubisoft announced, hot on the heels of the release of the refreshingly good Assassin’s Creed Syndicate and ahead of the motion picture adaptation, that Assassin’s Creed will not have a new game in 2016.

In a blog post titled “A Message from the Assassin’s Creed team“, Ubisoft talks about how after the release of 2014’s less than critically acclaimed Unity the team wanted to step back from their schedule and reexamine the development pipeline for the series. Continue reading Ubisoft Announces That Assassin’s Creed Will Have No New Game in 2016

Rise of the Tomb Raider is a Great PC Port if You Have the Rig for It

A mere three months after its exclusive Xbox One release, Rise of the Tomb Raider has arrived on the PC bringing the rebooted Lara Croft’s mass-murdering rampages to PC players everywhere.

On the scale of PC ports from Arkham Knight to Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain, Rise of the Tomb Raider falls closer to the latter, but it still requires a beefy rig to get the most out of it. The minimum requirements are pretty forgiving (i3 or equivilant, 2GB GPU) aside from the 6GB of RAM, which is quite the ask for most builds. For reference, I’m running an i7-2770k, 16GB of RAM and a 4GB GTX 980. Despite the taxing nature of the game I ran it on the highest quality with nary a dip below 60 fps aside from a couple areas at the end when everything was popping off – fire, lighting, multiple enemies, collapsing geometry, you name it. Continue reading Rise of the Tomb Raider is a Great PC Port if You Have the Rig for It

Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate is a Great Return to Form

Assassin’s Creed is the gaming world’s whipping boy for the case against annualized releases. While Call of Duty pulls this trick as well, the sheer scale of an Assassin’s Creed game means that the stress fractures brought on by a quick turn-around are more readily apparent.

Last year’s Unity could be seen as the tipping point in the series. With a buggy launch and a poor reception, despite its decent co-op mode, Unity left the series balancing more closely to irrelevance than ever. Ubisoft needed to right the ship with the follow-up title, and thankfully Syndicate was the shot in the arm Assassin’s Creed needed. Continue reading Assassin’s Creed: Syndicate is a Great Return to Form