Wolfenstein was one of the game's responsible for the first-person shooter, being responsible for spawning a genre that is still alive and kicking (not to mention extremely successful) in the current generation. One thing the original Wolfenstein was lacking was a plot, outside of the bare bones “kill all Nazis that you come across.” It's ironic then that over twenty years later the newest entry in the series, Wolfenstein: The New Order, would be praised for it's tightly woven narrative above all else. You'll come for the gunplay and the action, but stay for the interesting characters, inventive ideas and unique setting.
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It wasn't until 2012 that gamers stood up and took notice of Far Cry. PC gamers were fond of the original game in 2004, but that game never really caught on with the console crowd, while Far Cry 2 had some interesting ideas but was ultimately mired in poor gameplay decisions. Maybe it's because the bar was set low that Far Cry 3 blew us away with its story, characters, vast open-world gameplay, the seamless integration of wildlife with firefights, and the wealth of activities to undertake. Far Cry 4 had a huge task to undertake when it came to creating a game as memorable as it's predecessor, and Ubisoft's inspiration seems to be taken from the old adage “If it's not broke, don't fix it.” In other words, this game could easily have been Far Cry 3.5.
In gaming, sequels are an opportunity for a development team to take an established franchise, cling to what works and then shake things up a bit: a new setting, new character, or new features, for example. Call of Duty is one of those franchises that flew in the face of this, offering nearly the same game with every iteration; you'd frequently find the same B-movie military story, the same multiplayer, and even in later games, Activision would frequently bring back old rehashed Call of Duty multiplayer maps. For awhile, sales numbers were through the roof, as gamers flocked to each new iteration regardless of how repetitive they were, but then something changed: Gamers stopped buying. Call of Duty: Ghosts underperformed compared to its predecessor, prompting a change – the biggest change yet for the Call of Duty franchise.
The age of Kickstarter is upon us. A few years ago, it seemed like everyone and their mother was pitching video game ideas on Kickstarter, with ideas running the gamut from the poorly thought out to the amazing. The best ideas were callbacks to gaming's past, games that would fill gaping genre holes that the current big name publishers were too afraid to touch. One of the most promising Kickstarter projects was for Divinity: Original Sin, a PC role-playing game that promised to bring us back to the golden age of role-playing games, mimicking some of the genre's best titles like Baldur's Gate and the original Fallout. With the release of Divinity: Original Sin, it's safe to say that a new golden age of computer role-playing games is now upon us.
One of the first publicly shown next generation games, Watch Dogs has had its ups and downs since its grand unveiling. What was once supposed to be a launch title for the PlayStation 4 was pushed back into 2014, with the game's once majestic graphics seemingly downgraded for last generation systems. Is the game that was once called a “Grand Theft Auto killer” still worth picking up?
Five years ago, Yoshinori Ono of Capcom once stated that there would only be one version of Street Fighter IV, that Capcom wouldn't succumb to version after version of the game like Street Fighter II did. Fast forward to the present time, and we're now on our fourth iteration of Street Fighter IV, dubbed Ultra Street Fighter IV. Does the game add significant changes to warrant yet another purchase? Should Capcom have stuck to their original promise of just limiting the game to one version?
Despite selling over 15 million copies, Diablo 3 was considered a failure by many gamers when compared to its predecessor. What went wrong? The horrible loot system, the real-money auction house, a poorly scaling difficulty system and poor online infrastructure, just to name a few problems. So why purchase the first expansion pack, Reaper of Souls? Because Blizzard is finally righting the golden ship that came so close to sinking.
In 2007, Jason West and Vince Zampella, as part of acclaimed developer Infinity Ward, once changed the first-person shooter genre forever with the release of Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare. The multiplayer mechanics that Modern Warfare brought to the table, including killstreaks, perks and a leveling system akin to an RPG game, would redefine the genre, cementing the legacy of these two creators.
After numerous delays and the bankruptcy of original publisher THQ, the status of South Park: The Stick of Truth was unknown for quite awhile. When it was announced that Ubisoft would gain the publishing rights of the game, many wondered if the game would actually be any good due to all the issues. Adding to these issues were the fact that developer Obsidian is known for producing great games marred by bugs and glitches, and that we really haven't seen a decent South Park game since the show's inception. The truth about South Park: The Stick of Truth is that Obsidian and Ubisoft have delivered a love letter to fans of the show.
In 2007, Ken Levine and the team at Irrational Games brought us BioShock, heralded by many as one of the most defining games of this console generation. Levine and his team did not work on the sequel, BioShock 2, a sequel that, while decent, did not live up to his predecessor, due to the fact Levine was crafting the next big thing for the BioShock franchise: BioShock Infinite. Is BioShock Infinite a worthy successor to the Bioshock franchise? Does it succeed in ways that BioShock 2 did not? Read on to find out!
One of the most oft-debated discussions in any comic shop or among friends when discussing the vast DC Comics universe is “Who would win in a fight?” It's a bone that DC throws its fans time and time again, with numerous Batman Vs. Superman match-ups for fans to enjoy; however, the results of these fights may not be what you expected as it's just that one writer's interpretation. Perhaps you truly believe that in a no-holds barred slugfest Superman really could defeat Batman, and what of the fights you may want to see that will most likely never get written? Bane Vs. Flash? Joker Vs. Aquaman? Lex Luthor Vs. Doomsday? If you've ever been the type to assemble DC Comics dream matches in your spare time, Injustice: Gods Among Us is the answer you've been waiting for.
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It’s safe to say that fans are used to seeing Lara Croft by now; since her debut in 1996, she has starred in over nine games, including a remake of her first adventure and a spinoff, been played by Angelina Jolie in two films and had not only a comic book tie-in but also an animated series. She has done battle with enemies ranging from tigers and humans to dinosaurs and mythological creatures and travelled to every continent on the globe. It's safe to say Lara has seen and done it all, so what can Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix possibly do to make this iteration feel different?
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