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
Youtuber JackFrags (along with a bunch of other YouTube channels and outlets except for us and Kotaku) visited Ubisoft recently to get a peek at the long-in-development Tom Clancy third-person shooter RPG hybrid The Division. A lot of the videos that made their way to the Internet last week were short and had voice-overs, but JackFrags put up 50 minutes of commentary-free footage featuring some co-op mission action and Dark Zone shenanigans. The footage was recorded on Xbox One, for reference. Watch the embedded video below if you want to know more:
My hype level for the Division has been steadily climbing since the previews started hitting. I’ve seen some complaints about the “bullet sponge” nature of the enemies, but it makes sense if you think about it as an RPG first rather than a twitch-based shooter. I’m in the beta that will be hitting the PC at the end of January so I’ll most likely be streaming the game for anyone interested.
Who else is riding that Division hype train? Anyone on the fence?
To use an analogy that is perhaps a bit staid by this point, playing Fallout 4 is like eating your favorite dish for the hundredth time. It’s still filling and satisfying in its own way, but has lost some of the magic it once had.
Don’t get me wrong, Fallout 4 is not a bad game; I’ve put around 40 hours into my adventures in the Commonwealth and I’ll more than likely be close to double that by the time I’m done. Even though Fallout 4 hews closely to the established Bethesda formula, there’s a reason it works so damn well. Continue reading Heading Back Into The Wasteland in Fallout 4
Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain is the greatest action-stealth game I’ve ever played. Every aspect of the gameplay in Hideo Kojima’s farewell to the series he’s been heading up for over 25 years is tight, responsive and open to wild degrees of experimentation. So often in Metal Gear Solid 5 you’ll think up some crazy way to test the game’s systems and more often than not it will work. Extract yourself out of a hot zone by holding on to a fulton balloon on top of a shipping container? Want to use the tape of someone pooping to stop soldiers from investigating the outhouse you’re hiding in? Go for it.
The beauty of Metal Gear Solid 5’s gameplay is that nearly everyone will have a different story to tell about how they engaged with a certain mission or took down a base. This is the best feeling Metal Gear game to play by a large margin. Gone are the archaic controls and the contorted claw shapes you would have to twist your hand into to do something simple like aiming down a weapon’s sights. When you are in the open world of Afghanistan or central Africa, you really feel like you can make the legend of Big Boss come to life. Continue reading The Amazing Open World and Lackluster Narrative of Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain
The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt is, by many people’s reckoning, the greatest game that was put out in 2015. It has won hundreds of Game of the Year awards and is hailed as a technical achievement and the exemplary model of how to handle post-release content and patching. But even with all of its clout it just couldn’t grab me.
This is the first Witcher game I’ve played in earnest, having not played the original game and putting just a token effort into two. I’d clock my Witcher 3 playtime at around 15 hours but that’s just an estimate.
I hunted monsters, flirted with Geralt’s past lovers and met the Bloody Baron and the Crones, both of whom were engrossing for different reasons. I love the world that CD Projekt Redhas realized with the Witcher but I could tell even early on that the story was going to do some major wheel spinning and the combat wasn’t varied enough to grab me. Continue reading The Witcher 3 and Other Games That Didn’t Grab You
Nothing screamed “the next gen is here” more than Ubisoft’s E3 2012 stage reveal of Watch Dogs. The PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One weren’t even revealed yet, but everyone knew what Watch Dogs was heralding when Ubisoft showed it off for the first time.
Two years and one delay later, we finally get to hack the mean streets of Chicago. Is Watch Dogs a next gen standard bearer or does it barely straddle the line between the last generation and this one? Continue reading Review: Watch Dogs
I know, we were all pretty down about Hideo Kojima’s latest foray into the ever-retconned mess of the Metal Gear Solid universe when we discussed the E3 2014 trailer in our most recent podcast, but this 30 minute gameplay demo of The Phantom Pain has me intrigued. There’s no uncomfortable sexual torture or ash-smearing, just Big Boss being a fricking bad-ass and infiltrating a Russian outpost to search for intel. As a bonus, we also get a glimpse of Mother Base, which, if memory serves, wasn’t an actual location in Peace Walker. The gameplay demo starts at around 41 minutes into the show, but I suppose you can watch the rest of it if you happen to understand Japanese. Don’t worry, the demo is narrated in English.
It looks like Kojima Productions have made a lot of really smart updates to the formula of Metal Gear Solid. While the “iDroid” is a little out of place for the mid-80s (which is when TPP takes place) it allows you to tackle the open world in a variety of ways thanks to waypoints and soldier-tagging. Also, Fulton-ing sheep looks hilarious. So, did this pique anyone’s interest?
Are you confused by the lack of information about what the available game modes of Destiny? So am I, which is why I’m grateful that Bungie put out a video where Jason Jones explains what you’ll be doing when the Destiny Beta drops on July 17, or when the full game hits on September 9. Check it out:
So it seems like we have the Tower (third-person social space), story-missions, a free-roam/do side-quests type of thing, Strikes, and a multiplayer arena. Destiny seems to have a lot of stuff to do but I still can’t shake the feeling that it might be kind of bland. That might just be me though. How is Destiny shaping up for you?
Just because nobody seems to even care about waiting for E3 anymore, CD Projekt RED drop a metric ton of info about the Witcher 3: Wild Hunt earlier today, including this awesome trailer. It’s actual in-game footage (albeit with fancy cuts) as opposed to the CG-only trailer from last year. It has everything you’d expect from a Witcher game and it also looks super rad. I know CD Projekt RED said they’re drawing some inspiration from Skyrim this time around and I can definitely see that. The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt will come out on February 25, 2015 and will be available on the PlayStation 4, PC and Xbox One.
Dead Rising 3 was apparently only a timed Xbox One exclusive as the third (ish) chapter in Capcom’s wonderfully silly zombie-slaying franchise is coming out to Steam in Summer 2014. Not only in it getting a PC version but it’s also coming with all the standard Steam bells and whistles. This also coincides nicely with the news that the Xbox One controller can now be used on the PC. I’m excited for some co-op action and a better framerate when I finally get my hands on this. Who’s with me?
Ubisoft’s long awaited open-world hackathon Watch Dogs is finally upon us. The embargo lifted late last night and a torrent of reviews flooded in from all over the Internet. It seems that Watch Dogs is getting fairly positive scores across the board, mostly being criticized for some funky driving mechanics and for not really being that unique of an open-world game outside of the hacking abilities.
Here are some review scores from some other websites you may have heard of:
I’ve got Watch Dogs sitting on my PC right now but InFamous: Second Son is currently taking up most of my gaming bandwidth (along with Battlefield 4 and some Company of Heroes 2) but I expect to get to it soon. I hear there’s an interesting glitch right now where taking to the river will cause you to lose your police pursuit as the Chicago PD of Watch Dogs doesn’t have a maritime presence.
Has anyone here played Watch Dogs? What are your initial impressions?
We you perhaps hoping for a little gameplay footage from the upcoming current-gen only Batman: Arkham Knight today? Well, you’re in luck because we have exactly that for you. “Evening the Odds” shows off a bit of everything from Knight, including the Batmobile, gliding, and transitioning from the Batmobile to gliding. It all looks pretty great, too. Have a watch:
Batman: Arkham Knight is a very pretty looking game, no doubt helped along by the fact that it isn’t cross-gen. What did you guys think of this short glimpse of Arkham Knight gameplay?
Do you know what the definition of insanity is? Not getting a sequel to 2012’s stellar hit Far Cry 3. In a surprise leak/announcement today, Ubisoft officially unveiled Far Cry 4 which will be coming to the (deep breath here) PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One on November 18, 2014.
Not much is currently known about Far Cry 4, other than that it takes place in a fictional region of the Himalayas called Kyrat and you’ll be fighting the reign of a self-appointed king. You can feast your peepers on the box art for Far Cry 4 by clicking the previous words. Looks more like a Pink King than a Yellow King to me, but maybe we’ll go to Carcosa in Far Cry 5.
Far Cry 3 was one of my favorite games of the last generation and if Ubisoft can turn around some of the less appealing aspects of that game (nonsensical “white savior” story and a rather bland second half) then we’ve got a huge hit on our hands. If the logical progression from flamethrower dubstep is elephant-riding RPG madness, then consider me sold.
Who’s on board for a little more Far Cry when it hits every consoles except the poor Wii U this November?
The next game out Bungie in their post-Halo days is no doubt a big deal, but I don’t think anyone’s leaning on its potential success quite as hard as Activision. With Call of Duty: Ghosts’ weak showing last year, Activision is no doubt hungry for their next hit shooter. $500 million could wind up making Destiny the most expensive video game in history, which is a significant gamble for a company that often seems like it likes to play it safe.
$500 million is quite an insane number to be spending on development and marketing, but a lot of that is going towards the development of Destiny’s next-gen engine (which is in-house, a tradition for Bungie) and a lot of back end infrastructure costs. I don’t know about you guys, but with $500 million behind it, Destiny’s servers better not crap out on launch day.
What do you guys think? Is Destiny worth this price tag? Are you going to pick up the game on September 9, and for what platform?
After an unexpected week break we’re back in your digital media player with an episode of the GamerSushi Show. I couldn’t think of a clever title this week, but Jeff, Anthony and I talk some video game news and give thoughts on what we’re playing. You know, the usual deal. We also find time to bust out a few impressions at the end.
Just in case you forgot, this is how it goes: listen, rate and we’ll catch you next time.
0:00 – 3:06 Intro
3:07 – 18:53 Watch Dogs multiplayer video (and other stuff)
18:54 – 30:10 Dark Souls 2 and Trials: Fusion
30:11 – 37:41 Marty O’Donnell terminated by Bungie
37:42 – 40:10 Snoop Dogg Call of Duty: Ghosts announcer pack
40:11 – 42:54 Outro
Watch Dogs will be upon us very soon, and as such Ubisoft is rolling out walkthorugh videos detailing what you’ll be doing in the game come May 27. The most recent video showcases the multiplayer modes, which range from asymmetrical mobile app versus in-game combat (which I saw at last year’s PAX Prime) to a four-on-four objective-oriented mode. Check out the multiplayer offerings of Watch Dogs below:
Is it just me or does Competitive Decryption Combat look like a ton of fun? What do you guys think about this glimpse at Watch Dogs’ multiplayer modes?
After 2012’s less-than-stellar entry, the Assassin’s Creed series seemed poised to spend the last few years of its life cycle fighting irrelevancy. While Assassin’s Creed 3 might have sold well, it turned off a lot of people, myself (an admittedly hardcore fan of the franchise) included. Half-baked mechanics, buggy presentation and a bland protagonist were all parts of the gumbo of disappointment that was AC3.
Not long after that game released, Ubisoft announced a follow-up that would take place in the Caribbean during the Golden Age of Piracy. The new protagonist would be Edward Kenway, father and grandfather to the Assassin’s Creed 3 playable characters Haytham and Connor, respectively. With a game poised to take advantage of the naval combat introduced in AC3, could Black Flag right the ship? Continue reading Review: Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag
When Watch Dogs was delayed last fall shortly before its release date, we were all sad pandas. Back then we didn’t know that Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag would be a rollicking good time, so Ubisoft’s modern-day tale about oppressive surveillance seemed like a sure-fire way to kick off the next gen.
Until yesterday I’d never heard of Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor, Monolith’s new game that shows you what happened inbetween The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. In this game you’ll play as Talion, a ranger of Gondor who gets possessed by a wraith and then uses his new found powers to systematically assassinate a variety of orcs and Uruk-hai. This gameplay trailer for Shadow of Mordor shows off some cool abilities you can use and details the nemesis system which sounds too crazy to actually be true. Give it a watch!
For a game that I didn’t even know existed until recently, Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor looks like a guaranteed fun time. What do you guys think about this trailer? Are you on-board for some orc killing?