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Random thoughts and news in the world of video games.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Quick thoughts on Resident Evil: Revelations

I've been playing the HD version of Resident Evil: Revelations on the Xbox 360. Here are some thoughts on the game.

Released in early 2012 for the Nintendo 3DS, Capcom has given Revelations the high-definition treatment by releasing it on consoles and PC. It's a return to classic Resident Evil gameplay that fans have been clamoring for. This is not Resident Evil 6 or Operation Raccoon City by any means.

Because of it being a port from a handheld, it's not the most visually impressive Resident Evil game out there, but overall it's suitable. Enemy visuals like the Ooze enemies who melt into the ground in a gooey mess could have used a little more polish.

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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Xbox One reveal light on games, big on console capabilities and used-game confusion

The long-awaited reveal of the new Xbox console from Microsoft happened May 21. It lasted roughly an hour and focused mostly on the console's capabilities. Many gamers seemed upset at this, but E3 is coming up and Microsoft is promising a heavier focus on games during their big presser there.

The Xbox One (interesting name) looks bulky. It will feature a Blu-ray drive, 8GB of System Memory, an 8-core CPU and a 500 GB HDD, along with a new and improved Kinect that will be bundled with every console. A big focus was on live TV, having the Xbox One hook up with cable and use the Kinect to change channels simply by saying a TV station. I'm very skeptical if it'll work that great, but it's very nice in theory. The controller looks nice, too.

Do you like sports? There was a lot of that. EA Sports games in the console's first year include Madden NFL 25, a UFC game, NBA Live 14 and FIFA 14. Interestingly enough, FIFA 14 will have exclusive Ultimate Team content on Xbox One, which could have huge implications over in Europe where the franchise is hot on rival Sony's PS3.

In my "WHAT!?!" moment of the reveal, Steven Spielberg announced he will be involved in bringing a Halo TV series exclusively to the console. I don't think any one really asked for this.

What about games? There was very little of that, although they promised 15 exclusive titles in the console's first year -- eight being new IPs. Remedy Entertainment showed off a peculiar trailer for Quantum Break, which mixes live footage and actual gameplay. Apparently it's about mastering time to survive the present and save the future. Forza Motorsport 5 made an appearance, as well as the expected Call of Duty: Ghosts. The new dog companion became a big hit online.

No price was announced (probably at E3) and the release date is sometime this year (a concrete date probably at E3).

Xbox One's ability to play used games, as well as having to always be online, were hot-button issues after the conference. Massive confusion ensued when media started reporting that users will have to pay a fee to play a used game on their account, but Larry Hryb, director of programming for Xbox Live, aka Major Nelson, commented on his blog that there are potential scenarios being discussed, and when playing at a friend's house, "there is no fee to play that game while you are signed into your profile." "Your profile" but not your friend's? That has fee written all over it. Hopefully everything becomes clearer come E3.

Quick thoughts on Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D

I'm re-entering the world of Donkey Kong Country Returns 3D for the 3DS. Here are some thoughts on the game.

This is a quality port of the popular 2010 Wii title that brought back the joys of the Donkey Kong Country games from the 1990s. Gone are the waggle controls that annoyed many. DKCR 3D controls only with the handheld's buttons, and they work great.

The visuals do take a small hit, though. The crisp, 60-frames-per-second graphics from the Wii version are not here, but you won't really notice it when playing in the foreground. When Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong get blasted into background areas, you'll notice some graininess.

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Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Quick thoughts on Mario and Donkey Kong: Minis on the Move

I've been directing charming Nintendo wind-up toys to the goal in Mario and Donkey Kong: Minis on the Move on the 3DS eShop. Here are some thoughts on the game.

Nintendo could have released this game at retail for a much higher price than $9.99. It is jam-packed with content, featuring more than 180 stages and several sets of mini-games. It also comes with a level creator, offering up endless replayability since you can create your own puzzles and play what others have created online.

Dragging path tiles onto the grid with the stylus is very responsive, even during the more hectic times where a lot is going on. The visuals on the top screen are nice, but you'll hardly ever look at them since all of your attention will be on the bottom screen. Sadly, they feel kind of wasted.

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Thursday, May 2, 2013

Quick thoughts on Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon

I've taken a trip back to the glorious 1980s in Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon. Here are some thoughts on the game.

As a standalone downloadable title from Ubisoft using the Far Cry 3 engine, Blood Dragon is a funny first-person shooter. It's chocked full of 1980s references from movies like "The Terminator" to adjusting tracking on a VCR. It does a good job at not taking itself too seriously.

However, Blood Dragon is short on content, which is expected due to its $15 price tag. The main story is only a few hours long, while extra side missions, which get repetitive, are another few hours. It's a good game to pick up if you have nothing to do on a Saturday.

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