Category Reviews

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Assassin’s Creed Chronicles: China- Fun and frustration in a tale of vengeance

With the Assassin’s Creed franchise turning out yearly titles it may be time for Ubisoft to shake up the formula a little bit. Going from a full 3D experience to a 2.5 one may not be the full answer, but it does give fans a different way to play an Assassin’s Creed title. In some ways the transition helps some elements, making them a bit more satisfying. Others, however, suffer a bit, mainly due to controls that are at times less than precise. But the overall package does provide some entertainment as well as some satisfaction. Assassin’s Creed Chronicles: China will most likely please fans of the franchise, but it probably won’t convert any of its detractors. And in pleasing this fan it worked for the most part, so in that Ubisoft and developer Climax Studios succeeded...

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Mortal Kombat X- Blood, guts, and lots of fun

I’ll admit this right off the bat: I love fighting games. I’m just not very good at them. Because of this, it’s always nice to have games in the genre that come along that even someone of my skill level can truly enjoy. The Mortal Kombat franchise for the most part did this for me, really striking home with 2011’s Mortal Kombat, the ninth entry into the series. WB and NetherRealm did even better with Injustice: Gods Among Us (2013), featuring a great story mode with characters from the DC universe and smooth gameplay, with plenty to do for a solo player. Now WB and NetherRealm have upped their game once again with Mortal Kombat X. Once more, the solo player has plenty of game here, and then there’s the online modes to stretch things even farther...

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Daredevil: Hell’s Kitchen gets its hero in a worthy series

NOTE: While I’m going to try and keep this review as spoiler free as possible for those who haven’t seen all 13 episodes for the Netflix series, some minor ones may creep in here and there. For the most part, this will be a general, overall review of the entire series, without taking each plot point in turn for the individual episodes.

Daredevil leapt off the comic book pages to the big screen in 2003 and wasn’t overly received well by either fans or critics. Some complained that Ben Affleck just wasn’t right for the role of Matt Murdock, that Michael Clarke Duncan brought nothing to the role of Wilson Fisk (aka The Kingpin) other than his size, that Colin Farrell was a bit over the top as Bullseye, and that Jennifer Garner’s Elektra missed the mark...

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Life is Strange Episode 2 “Out of Time”- Predictable events and an untimely loss of power

Episode 2 of Square Enix’s and Dontnod Entertainment’s tale of teenage angst and time manipulation Life is Strange picks up the day after Max’s horrifying vision of a massive tornado that sweeps in to destroy Arcadia Bay. “Out of Time” continues the mystery revealed in “Chrysalis”, but doesn’t offer any more clues or even any answers. Contrived situations raise their head for Max to use her time manipulation cheat, though her power does fail her towards the end at an inopportune (though predictable) time. The characters still don’t truly stand out from their standard cliches, and those that seemed to undergo a brief change in the previous episode, like Victoria, revert to form here...

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Furious 7- Everything you’d expect from the franchise, plus a touching tribute to Paul Walker

Family. That’s the big theme running through Furious 7, the latest in the Fast & Furious franchise. Dominic Toretto (Vin Diesel), his sister Mia (Jordana Brewster), her now husband and former FBI agent Brian O’Connor (the late Paul Walker), Dom’s love Letty (Michelle Rodriguez), and the comedy relief team of Roman (Tyrese Gibson) and Tej (Ludacris) are all back, trying to carry on from their London adventures covered in the previous film. Things seem to be getting back to normal, but it all doesn’t last, as the brother of their last adversary Owen Shaw (Luke Evans) also takes the notion of family to heart, and comes seeking revenge on the group along with DSS agent Hobbs (Dwayne Johnson)...

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Bloodborne: Bloody adventures in the town of Yharnam

I’ll get this out of the way right up front: This is not the full review for Bloodborne, so there won’t be a score yet at the end. I’ve been playing it a fair amount since its release on Tuesday, March 24, and have close to 20 hours into the game. Bloodborne is huge, with a lot of areas to explore along with the Chalice dungeons, dungeons you unlock and are randomly generated, thus delivering a fresh experience every time. The stamp of From Software’s Souls series on the game is quite evident, from the similarity in the controls, to using a hub world to level up, and in the oppressive (in a good way) atmosphere that surrounds the mysterious and afflicted town of Yharnam...

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Battlefield Hardline: War hits the streets

The Battlefield franchise has long dealt with warfare in its most familiar form: That of conflicts between nations. In recent years terrorists have replaced rival nations as the go to bad guys, making for huge set pieces involving military hardware. Now, in an effort to shake things up, EA, with developers Visceral Games and DICE, have moved war to the city streets, focusing on the war on drugs instead of the war on terror. Was this move successful? In a word, yes. Battlefield Hardline ended up with one of the most engaging single player campaigns since Bad Company, and the multiplayer modes featuring cops and criminals proved to be just as engaging as that featuring soldiers and terrorists...

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Resident Evil Revelations 2: Episode 4 “Metamorphosis”- Things end with a bang in a satisfying but slightly predictable finale

“Metamorphosis” winds up the main campaign of Resident Evil Revelations 2 with a predictable bang, and even though the ending feels like somewhat of a cheat, it still satisfies. The two halves on the chapter are a bit more uneven this time around, with the Claire/Moira segment feeling very abridged and a bit rushed, and the Barry/Natalia segment is drawn out until the big showdown between our heroes and the Overseer. Both segments have their share of cheap deaths, and both have a part where switching between characters is a must. There is one part in the Claire/Moira half that can influence the Barry/Natalia section, but in the end it truly doesn’t make a great difference, just a change of the path followed...

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Resident Evil Revelations 2: Episode 3 “Judgement”- Deadly puzzles and more interesting developments

Things continue to ramp up with Episode 3 of Resident Evil Revelations 2. “Judgement” takes things up a notch by adding some well done and deadly puzzles to the mix, and forces players to make use of both characters in the pair during their respective segments. Co-op players may have a slightly easier time, and for solo players you need to be on your toes to know when to switch between the characters, Any indecision can end in gruesome death, and it makes for some very tense sequences. The story adds a couple more twists and turns, and ends once more on a very interesting cliffhanger. It has me quite curious as to how “Metamorphosis”, the final episode, will wrap things up...

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Resident Evil Revelations 2: Episode 2 “Contemplation”- Things are getting creepy

“Contemplation” gets us right into the action following the first episode of Resident Evil Revelations 2, “Penal Colony”. The opening cut scene has us following members of Terra Save as they try to deal with the horrors of the island. Once the cut scene has ended, things are back in the player’s hands as we’re reunited with Claire and Moira, who are making their way to a mysterious tower. Again we have some familiar horror game environments to move through- the ramshackle seaside village, the ruined city- and while they’re perfectly serviceable, they’re not very memorable. But at least we’re out of the prison, which opens things up to include some weather effects. We also get some new enemies, along with a couple of frustrations (things that should be long out of games)...

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