Tag Archives: Xbox

Bioshock Infinite (PS3 – 2013)

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Our ruggedly handsome protagonist, Booker DeWitt

Man, Bioshock Infinite was surely one hell of an experience. It was nothing short of a brilliant story, with incredibly written characters of both good and evil affiliations. It was a game that didn’t fear reprisal, and included some themes that you wouldn’t normally find in a first person shooter or video games of any kind for that matter. It tugged at the heartstrings, frightened you and intrigued you every second of gameplay. With favourable combat dynamics, breathtaking visuals and loads and loads to find; Bioshock Infinite is one game you’ll play through again and again.

The main setting of the game is Columbia, a floating city in the sky that has seceded from the United States. I cannot imagine the amount of work that went into creating this setting, but the culmination leads to one of the most stunning locales I’ve ever seen in video game history. From the Comstock Center Rooftops to the Hall of Heroes and leading to the Sea of Doors, you will never tire of the ever changing scenery. Obviously the most intense visuals in the game come when you are hanging from the Skylines in combat, or traveling through different areas. The setting also contains reactive materials such as puddles of water to shock and oil slicks to burn which adds to the already high octane action.

If you like the sights, I’m sure you’ll enjoy the sounds. Surprisingly enough this soundtrack contains recorded versions of songs released in the latter half of the twentieth century. My favourite being “Everybody Wants to Rule the World”, which they have remade into a lovely barbershop along with other hits like “Fortunate Son”, “God Only Knows” and “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun”. Along with the edge of your seat combat music, this game couples some interesting covers with an enticing array  of music.

Swapping Plasmids out for Vigors, Bioshock Infinite offers some interesting powers to overcome obsticles and dole out punishment to your enemies. Firery “Devil’s Kiss” grenades, a deadly “Murder of Crows” and a bulletproof shield from “Return to Sender” are among the deadly choices you have in the way of ingested abilities. That isn’t all these provide. For extra combat bonuses, some of these vigors can be used in tandem to create some killer combinations. For example, using the Bucking Bronco alongside Devil’s Kiss causes damage to all those you have suspended in the air or shocking a person in a group being attacked by your Murder of Crows causes the crows to shock and stun the enemy. These combos can be very useful in a pinch.

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Burn baby burn!

Then there is the story and oh man, what a story it is. You are Booker DeWitt, former Pinketon Employee who has become a man in debt, working as a Private Investigator in New York. Your task is to retrieve a young woman, Elizabeth, from the flying city of Columbia. Along the way, you find clues to her mysterious power, your connection with her and the enigmatic religious leader Comstock, and the lives that you and the people of Columbia lead in different universes.

This game introduced themes and touched upon topics you don’t see within gaming frequently. These include blatant racism against multiple cultures and religion. Even some racial slurs appear in the game. This was actually kind of refreshing. I was impressed that this game wasn’t afraid to touch upon some of the more antiquated views of the early 20th century. The heavily Christian tones are incredibly apparent, with numerous references to baptisms, prophets and saviours. Again, something you don’t see, but glad it was in the game.

Each game is not without its problem, but they pale in comparison to the amazing pros. The guns leave nothing to the imagination; they are very simple styled weapons you can find in any first person shooter with the exception of the Skyhook. You have your pistol, rifle, shotgun, sniper rifle. They are very vanilla weapons and I was disappointed as each have their drawbacks and never seem to do much damage near the end of the game causing you to frantically find ammo just to finish an enemy you spent an entire clip on already.

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Ra-tat-tat…

Final Word: Get this. Get this now and enjoy the hell out of it. If you had any interest in playing it even in passing, you have a duty to buy and play this ultimately fulfilling game. It follows in the series of thinking games where your actions have consequences, in a world where you really begin to care about the characters and their personality and plight. Bioshock Infinite was nothing short of amazing.

Final Grade: A

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A Third Skyrim DLC (and should I care?)

Just recently, as I scrolled through my newsfeed, I noticed that Bethesda had announced their third downloadable content “Dragonborn” for the award winning and reviewed by me ‘The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim’. At this I let out a deep sigh; for as a Playstation 3 owner I am still waiting to play the first downloadable content that Bethesda shipped out to the Xbox 360 on June 26, 2012 and shortly later to the other Microsoft dominated console, PC, only a week later. This comes shortly after their plans for The Elder Scrolls Online release were posted. One full MMO, and three DLC later, we PS3 players are still waiting. This raises a few questions which I will attempt to ask and answer at the same time. You may dismiss this as the rantings of another “PS3 fanboy”, but I’m not, I’m only a PS3 owner who believes that he and the other players are due their DLC.

Coming to PS3… whenever.

1)      If Microsoft can pay for scattered releases, why can’t Sony?

Sony darling, it’s not like you’re hurting in cash.  Sony Computer Entertainment is a division of a much larger company that creates household items of an everyday sort.  It would not be too much of a stretch to put a little money into your coffer and outbid Microsoft. This is a good hint that either Microsoft loves their fans, or they’re just too rich to be outbid. What does this say of Bethesda though?

2)      Consider this.

Consider that between posts about DLC for Skyrim, I practically forget the game exists. I’ve been busy playing Borderlands 2, Pokemon Black 2, and an admittedly Bethesda game called Dishonored. People have moved on from Skyrim, especially people on the PS3, who beat it long ago. If people forget about your game, when you release the DLC a year or more, no one will care. I’m more than willing to pay and play, but get a bloody move on.

It is apparent that they create the game for Xbox and port it over to the Playstation, which is why the myriad of bugs is constantly more prevalent on PS3 versions than they are on the Xbox/PC versions of Skyrim. This is something that should be worked on while the game is in development. If you know you’re going to port something over, can you please for god sake work on it while on the fly? It is the equivalent of developing two games at once, sure, but you’re going to be in a position where you won’t have to say to the customers “We are not satisfied yet with Dawnguard‘s performance on the PS3. We would like for every to have a chance to play Dawnguard, but we aren’t going to release it for PS3 knowing that some people’s experience in Skyrim will be worse.” Wait, so if you make the game for Xbox, wouldn’t the same problems be on that version?

3)      Bethesda, can we believe you?

It is incredibly hard to buy the “game isn’t performing well enough” excuse that Bethesda shoved down our throats almost four months ago. However this might just be part of the excuse that Microsoft has asked them to fabricate in order to cover up their buyout of Bethesda’s scattering releases. What worries me even more is that this will make it the third DLC directly available for Microsoft and none for the Playstation. If you have a deal where Microsoft has bought the rights to your content and it is to be released first for that system, don’t fuck around; be honest and let people know. It has never been this brutal, we’ve never had to wait this long to be appeased. This leads me to my next question;

4)      How long before we can sue for false advertising?

It clearly states on the back of my copy of Skyrim, “Add-On Content”. How long before the statement becomes a fabrication and we have the right to say “There is an inherent expectation that we are able to get the content in a timely fashion or we have the right to some kind of compensation.” What I fear is that the Playstation 3 users will likely never get this content in the form of a downloadable content and what will happen is that Bethesda will release “The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim: Game of the Year Edition” and we will be forced to shill out another sixty plus dollars for what will likely be an even buggier version of the game that we have come to know and love.. as pretty goddamned buggy. So finally;

5)      What can Bethesda do to keep its PS3 player fan base?

Stop doing this to your fans. You cannot imagine the frustration we are enduring when we are promised something, it is given to someone else and for months we have no news on progress to remedy the issue. So I have a few suggestions:

–          The DLC should be available at a discount price.

–          It should be released all at once.

–          PS3 players would be appreciative if they got something Xbox didn’t.

–          Do not add them as part of a GOTY; if you do drop the price in half.

–          Give the next game to Sony and the PS3, let them have the timed exclusive DLC first.

As a person who stood outside in the blistering cold suffering from bronchitis to get this game almost one year ago; this is a big kick in the nuggets. Right now, you have a good chance of losing me. Suck up to me Bethesda; suck up to all of us. Post-haste!

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