Let’s Preview: Phantom Dust (Part 3 of 3)

 

Just in time for the Christmas season; Part three of three of Phantom Dust. The cult classic (and now totally free) action/strategy game, from the XBox era, in today’s Let’s Preview.

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s Preview: Phantom Dust (Part 2 of 3)

 

Just in time for the Christmas season; Part two of three of Phantom Dust. The cult classic (and now totally free) action/strategy game, from the XBox era, in today’s Let’s Preview.

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s Preview: Phantom Dust (Part 1 of 3)

 

Just in time for the Christmas season; Part one of three of Phantom Dust. The cult classic (and now totally free) action/strategy game, from the XBox era, in today’s Let’s Preview.

 

 

 

 

Let’s Preview: Gigantic (Part 3 of 3)

 

Just in time for the Christmas season; Part three of three of Gigantic, a free to play Strategic Hero Shooter, in today’s Let’s Preview.

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s Preview: Gigantic (Part 2 of 3)

 

Just in time for the Christmas season; Part two of three of Gigantic, a free to play Strategic Hero Shooter, in today’s Let’s Preview.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Let’s Preview: Gigantic (Part 1 of 3)

 

Just in time for the Christmas season; Part one of three of Gigantic, a free to play Strategic Hero Shooter, in today’s Let’s Preview.

 

 

 

 

Armada’s E3 picks: Gigantic (2015)

 

MOBAs, or Multiplayer online battle arena (or ARTS – action real-time strategy) are a genre of game that has gotten popular in recent times. From Defense of the Ancients & League of Legends to Infinite Crisis & Smite they all have garnered hardcore fans and even tournaments (with cash prizes no less) devoted to the playstyle. That being said, it’s a flawed genre. Not because of the RPG elements of the games or the use of items, armors, and weapons players can choose from within the field of battle (overwhelming at times but you get used to it). It’s flawed because MOBA’s are (generally) unbalanced: range characters can decimate melee types; some characters have superior abilities while others are just liabilities; and my favorite – when the going gets tough just run away to safety or just back off until more of your teammates show up and then rush like reckless jobbers. MOBAs have potential, no doubt, but I’m just waiting for the one game that can break the cycle and actually have MOBA gameplay that’s (majority) skill and not stat based. Gigantic may be that game, we’ll see later this year.

 

 

 

Games & Gear of 2015: Gigantic (2015)

Gigantic

 

Gigantic is not just big or huge, it’s… GIGANTIC! Sorry I couldn’t help myself. Anyway Gigantic is another character class game that pits players against each other in team based blood sport. However what separates this from others of its type is that you have a giant beast behind you (literally), a Guardian. Every time your team does well your Guardian will become more powerful, if your team eats dirt your Guardian will get weaker. Once a Guardian gets too weak it will be vulnerable to enemy attack – if it dies game over for that team. However if the Guardian becomes in empowered then it will launch onto the field of battle and wreak it (along with the enemy players and their Guardian). Gigantic will be free-to-play which is a plus, however it will also be playable on the Xbox One console in addition to PC so like I said Gigantic is not just big or huge, it’s… GIGANTIC – savings on your pocket book.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This just in (Or not) – Star Wars: The Old Republic’s first expansion announced – Rise of the Hutt Cartel

Rise-of-the-Hutt-Cartel

 

Star Wars: The Old Republic is one year old today, yay! You know the first year is always the hardest, and like a Boss swtor came from smelling like a rose in the end. Servers are always packed, content leaves people contented, and now it’s free to play from beginning to end. So how do you follow up? By announcing their first digital expansion ‘Rise of the Hutt Cartel’; so remember the Hutt Cartel? A group of business men (slugs?) who profit from everything from slavery to supermarket in the Star Wars universe? Ok, good. Now imagine that same Cartel decided to, oh I don’t know, try to become the next great superpower in the galaxy and willing to challenge both the Republic and the Empire into to do so. Yeah, those slugs have been asking for it for a long time now, you get to punch their ticket – in the spring of 2013. Yeah I know it a wait but with new enemies to fight, a new world to explore, new gear to earn, and a raised level cap (level 55) waiting is something I can do for swtor. Oh! And you preorder now too, it’s cheaper if you subscribe, and you can get an early start in you do it by January 7.

 

 

 

Game Review – Guild Wars 2

 

The original Guild Wars is a massively multiplayer online role playing game that had, at the time, did something no other online RPG has done before: be free to play. Sure you had to buy a copy of the game, but after that you could play and go on adventures with thousands of other player online til Doomsday – no subscription needed. Many people looked upon this with skepticism, even ridicule, but you know what? It succeeded far better than anyone could predict, well maybe not ArenaNet & NCsoft. Thanks to them more and more in the game industry are turning towards the f2p model; better profits for companies and more enjoyment for the games – a la carte gaming is on the rise. As for the creators of Guild Wars; they released a sequel to the series weeks ago, after years of equally successful DLCs and expansion packs. They’re trying to catch lightening in a bottle again, this time however by making this MMORPG break the static nature of its genre, making it more dynamic and realistic (well as realistic as a fantasy based reality can be). Does it succeed, let’s find out.

 

 

 

To be honest people I’ve played very little of the original game and know less of the mythology, but fortunately what happened in the first game doesn’t really apply towards this one. Here’s the real quick skinny: Dragons, the once great caretakers of the land of Tyria and who were in hibernation, are now awake and are threating all great races on the world. The great races were hurt by the dragons in the past individually so now they have to work together in order to survive. Those races are the Norn, Charr, Asura, Sylvari, and of course those loveable Humans; all with different ideologies, priorities, and experiences. They must put aside past (or even present) prejudges and work towards defeating the dragons or all will suffer; no matter who they are.

 

In order to change the face of MMOs Guild Wars 2 has done radial things to the standard formula, many of which I can’t list because I would be here all day. However here’s a few of the more important features. Any quest can be done cooperatively if you’re in a group or not; meaning as long as a player contributes in one way, shape or form they’ll get credit, gold, and experience points. Which is good, because another thing Guild Wars 2 does differently is that their whole world is one big random event. Almost as soon as you leave the your starting instance and enter into the world you’re greeted by an event, not a quest you get from a NPC (although they are still there too), but an event – that how well you and other players do will dictate what happens next. If you’re victorious in a phase of the event then you might go on the offensive and take it to the enemy where they live or fight the Boss or go collect mystical ‘whatevers’ from ‘someplace’. However if you lose a phase then you’ll spend the rest of the time trying to regain ground. Whether you win or lose at the end of it all, you still get unique interesting experience not often found in MMO’s. These are merely two examples on how the game really pushes the envelope to the good; and there are many, many more. However…

 

 

Ranking

 

 

The question was then, as it is now, do all these crackerjack changes work in practice as it sounds in theory? On the whole, yes. They have created one of the most impressive MMO’s I’ve played to date. The amount detail the creators put in their character models, individual effects, and the events and quests of their living world is down right staggering. Even the simplest things like resource gathering has been made convenient for all by letting every player mine the a node, chop a tree, or collect a herb without interfering or pouching from another player collecting from the same source – brilliant. But with such novel ideas, some come with a cost: the difficulty level for one. The game is relentless: pick a fight with the wrong enemy, turn down the wrong alley, or tempt fate by joining the wrong event too soon and its over. Their class system is equally tricky because they were specially made to eliminate the famed role playing trinity and thus be able to survive on their own. However thanks to the combined difficulty of crafting good equipment, finding good equipment, and the high end abilities not available til other abilities are unlocked, makes what there’s trying to do is stagnated a bit. Even the stories of player characters themselves, as diverse as they are, did nothing to make me care about them, their world, or why I should even fight to rid the world of the dragon threat.  It is these reasons (and a few more I chose to admit for fear of being a nitpicker) that this game didn’t get a perfect pass from me. The game is still incredibly good and a paradise to hardcore MMO gamers out there, but I can’t ignore what the game lacks either. It is worth $60.00? Yes. It is worth plowing through to level 80? I can’t say… It really depends on what kind of gamer you are: in my opinion Guild Wars 2 is for gamers who like challenge over emersion – who like to play the game rather than live in the world. And if that’s you then welcome home, your game has finally arrived.