The Elder Scrolls Online: Morrowind Review (Xbox One)

Although TESO: Morrowind is being marketed as a new standalone release it is actually only an add-on, a very big add-on, for the existing Elder Scrolls Online experience bundled with the original game. And for those who have yet to jump back into the land of Tamriel with a few friends, now is the time to do it.

Not only has the whole online experience been tweaked, refined, and smoothed out since my review of the initial release of TESO, but now with the inclusion of Morrowind it will bring an immediate smile to anyone who played the original Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind game, and fans of giant mushrooms.

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Cars 3: Driven to Win, PS4 Review

The Cars franchise is one of Disney Pixar’s well loved products and rightly so, over the years Lightning and Co. have made it across the line in various videogames, probably most notably in the first incarnation of Disney Infinity.
Here we are in 2017 enjoying the third movie, which incidentally looks like a huge improvement over the second, with Driven to Win – a polished and exciting racing game that picks up after the events of the film.

We’ll just take a pause and speak in hushed tones for a moment, it’s also not just for kids. While the game could be levelled at the younger demographics there is plenty to keep an arcade or avid cart racer fan happy.

Okay, Rev, Rev, Rev – let’s go.

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Dreamfall Chapters Review (Xbox One)

Following up on 1999’s The Longest Journey and 2006’s Dreamfall – The Longest Journey, Dreamfall Chapters is the collection of five ‘books’ released episodically on the PC between October 2014 and June 2016. Effectively a series of point and click adventures, the Dreamfall games have been very well received right from the release of the original, The Longest Journey, well, on PC at least.

Back in the golden era of point and click, Lucas Arts reigned supreme and I was a huge fan of the genre on my PC. Unfortunately I’m am far from convinced that these games work well on consoles. Or maybe these games are now too mundane and slow paced for our hectic, need everything now, style of living.

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Tekken7 Review, PS4

Tekken a fighting franchise that’s as old as the hills, if there is a block where these games live then Tekken has been around it a few times.

There’s not a lot you can say as far as setup goes, it’s a 2.5D brawler, pretty much in the vein of every other Tekken so far, a huge array of fighters to battle with or against and a deep, complex, emotional narrative.

Maybe the last bit was a tiny lie.

Technically and visually the game is top notch, after waiting a day or so for the 48gig download I was pleasantly surprised by the intro and the shiny looks. The intro to the single player sequence of fights goes along the lines of old spiky hair dude apparently kills someone’s mother when they were young, they try to fight him and get thrown off a very high cliff. Years later (now) old spiky hair dude ends up fighting with and against scarred red eye due, who is something to do with the boy thrown off the cliff, but by now I’ve started skipping. Even when Nina and her leather catsuited bottom come flying into the fray.

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RiME Review, PS4

It was the year the PS4 launched and Tequila Works had a colourful and exciting new game showcased as a Sony exclusive.

That game was RiME, evoking memories of anything Team Ico related even at that early stage it looked serene, enigmatic and had a simple quality that made you want to know it better. Blockbusters teased in that year came and went, blockbusters from following years have been and gone, then it was suddenly now and the time for RiME.

First off this isn’t an easy gig, it really is fair to say the game has delivered in spades and if I had a choice I would leave it right there, smack on 111 words. But, life isn’t like that, life is something else.

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The Surge, Review (Xbox One)

High fantasy swords and shields combat in video games, is just not my thing…blasphemy I know. Personally I dig Sci-Fi settings, full of mech suits and advanced weapons.  So roll up ‘The Surge’ to tick some boxes! It does have to be said, under the hood it is essentially a Dark Souls wannabe, but to actually label it as such without qualification, sells it way short.

After an awesome and pretty disturbing opening sequence, where the main protagonist gets out of his wheel chair and into a new set of robo legs. You are chucked into a partially destroyed factory complex and taken through a few basic combat encounters to learn the ropes. Controls are straight forward and camera controls are great. Some initial audio logs and interactions with a holographic lady lets a plot begin to form.

That being said, after about 5 hours of playing I honestly couldn’t tell you what the story was or who the main characters were. However, that’s not the game’s fault. I was just so focused on gathering gear, tech materials (XP) and opening up shortcuts that I just didn’t care. The star of this game is its combat, everything else just became secondary.

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Prey Review (Xbox One)

Sometimes games, even big Triple-A titles, just fail to pique your interest with all their promotion and hype. Meh, another reboot, another sci-fi shooter, another save the planet storyline…. This was Prey, for me anyway.

Then one snippet of commentary about the game hit my ears, ‘a sort of spiritual successor to System Shock 2’. Excuse me?!?

So I quickly watched a short promotional trailer and all of a sudden I was fizzing like a little kid on Christmas Eve waiting for Santa to bring him a new bike. And what a bike it turned out to be!

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Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3, PS4 Review

In the open world of shooter games such as the FarCry titles, I am always looking for ways to play the ‘sneaky sniper’ type character.

Sniper: Ghost Warrior 3 has been designed from the ground up to offer this exact experience, with open world situations geared towards an elite military sharp shooter. Unfortunately some glaring technical miss-steps stand in the way of this game achieving its goal of a refined sniping experience.

Anyone who has played an open world shooter in recent years will know what to expect here, as Ghost Warrior 3 walks some very well-trodden ground. That’s not to say the open world design and mission structures are terrible, they just don’t stray far from the norm. Within each large open world region is a safe-house. These are the main character’s base of operations and have the traditional ‘Equipment’, ‘Skills’ and ‘Communication’ stations to help you prepare for each mission.

Skill points are earned by playing in a particular way, so sniper kills earn points in the sniping skill tree. Whereas a run and gun play style, will earn points to spend on assault skills. The skill tree will seem very familiar to most and frankly didn’t alter my approach to the moment to moment gameplay much as I leveled up. Once skills are chosen and gear has been selected, the mission always starts with driving the forever handily parked SUV, to the mission start point.

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Vikings – Wolves of Midgard Review (Xbox One)

I love when a great game slips right under the radar and surprises you. Even more so when it is a genre you really enjoy. Vikings – Wolves of Midgard, an action role playing game from Games Farm, has done just that. And having just watched all four seasons of Vikings on TV, I am well primed for this adventure.

Unfolding from a central hub that is your home village, you embark on a series of raids to obtain various goals and to unite the tribes against a greater evil. Once each area is united or conquered you can revisit it in the form of a hunt, with the goal of killing a set number of animals or monsters. It is a format that works and with the ability to return to areas, missing out on gathering collectables during the original raid is no longer a game killer.

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Mass Effect: Andromeda, PS4 Review

I would hate to sit down and actually add up how much time I have put into the Mass Effect universe over the years. I could probably make a rough guess and say it would be in the hundreds of hours. And that’s not even counting the series of novels and comics I have also worked my way through.

Lets just say, it is safe to assume that I’m bit of a Mass Effect fan. Now after a 5 year hiatus, Mass Effect: Andromeda has arrived and it is wonderful to be back amongst the Biotics, grumpy Krogan and deep lore, that makes Mass Effect such awesome Sci-Fi goodness.

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