Tag Archives: Xbox one

I played OverWatch for the First Time and it was Hard to Kick old CoD Habits.

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Overwatch is currently enjoying a major gaming boom as it celebrates its one year anniversary since release while surpassing the 30 million registered players mark.  To celebrate the one year milestone, Blizzard Entertainment opened up the game for everyone to play a “try before they buy” session, offering a weekend of free play to those not yet submerged in the world of Overwatch.

While I didn’t partake in the free offer, I did go out and purchase a physical copy of the game (50% off thanks to the one year celebrations) and it turns out, this game is not like any game out there on the market.

Overwatch is a first person shooter that offers only a online multiplayer mode and falls somewhere between the grittiness of Call of Duty, the team based game-play of Destiny and wackiness of Grand Theft Auto V Online.

Coming off a heavy dose of Call of Duty Modern Warfare Remastered, I was not ready for how different and difficult to adjust to, Overwatch was going to be.  Don’t go off alone, don’t expect solo based kill streaks, don’t assume you get all your characters information just off what’s in-front of you on screen.  I learned the hard way that there is a right way and a wrong way to play this game.

There are currently 24 playable characters on the Overwatch roster, each one different from the other yet grouped together in their base class skills.  From healers to tanks, offence and sharp shooters, the character you choose to play will have a vast effect on how the team unites to win the match.

A character like Ana for instance, is equipped with a sniper rifle, stun pistol and a biotic grenade.  While her rifle can inflict damage to opponents, it also, when targeted at team mates, heals them.  The same applies to the biotic grenade and can be useful for a quick burst of health to ailing team mates earning you bonus points.

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The other sniper wielding character – Widowmaker – offers no health support, though she’s more nimble in her ability to reach high sniper nests and has a stronger damage count on her rifle.

Knowing just how your character works will enable better team participation though be prepared to substitute a high kill rate for high team health regeneration or damage blocking rate.

There are certain characters that will always be picked by other players – bow master Hanzo, scrap gun wielding Roadhog, robotic defense unit Bastion and ninja Genji are guaranteed to be in a starting line-up but it’s how you use your character to bounce off those selected ones that can make a difference.

Unlike CoD, going out as a lone wolf with a sniper rifle is not going to ensure a high kill streak or a grand team win.  Overwatch is all about team play – which characters have been selected, how they interact with each other and how you put your best foot forward to ensure your team wins.  The game modes in Overwatch aren’t aimed for high kills, it’s all about zone points and that’s how the characters within the game have been created.

I will admit, after two hours in, I was ready to give up.  Some characters like Genji, McCree and Bastion felt way overpowered against my Tracer or Lucio with their seemingly perfect hit rate and bullet strength.  It wasn’t until I stepped away from the console and researched into just how certain characters played that I began to understand.

I was drawn to Ana from the get go with her brooding hood and long scattered rags but couldn’t get a hang of why her sniper rifle wasn’t as good as widowmakers, and that was because Ana was more about team support versus solo kills and just like her, I learnt Pharah works better from above than on ground level and Tracer requires lightning quick reflexes to get the kills. These things that I couldn’t pick up from game play  were discovered from seeing and reading how other experienced players used these characters.

Once I understood the purpose of Overwatch, I began to enjoy it more and more.  Sure Bastion’s turret is like the most inanely annoying thing on a map but there is a way around it (Ana’s sleep dart!!) and I’m now OK with not aiming for that high kill streak because I know that’s not necessarily going to win us the match and yes, loot boxes are incredibly frustrating especially when you like to use Ana but keep unlocking items for Winston who you never use – but that’s another discussion all together.

Overwatch’s free weekend of play is over, but is available for purchase in digital and physical copy formats for PS4, Xbox One and PC.

Where to Next for the Call of Duty Series. WWII and Beyond.

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The official announcement of the next installment in the Call Of Duty series has just been announced confirming the setting to be in World War 2 bringing the first person shooter series back to its ‘boots on ground’ origins (Call of Duty 2 from 2005) but this time with Sledgehammer Games (MW3 and Advanced Warfare) taking the reins.

Taking the series back to its beginnings, according to Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg (in an interview with Polygon.com) was a plan that was put into motion three years ago and was not based off the less than positive player response to 2016’s ultra futuristic based Infinite Warfare, noting back in 2014 when the decision was made, the player passion for the historical war setting.

With the high praise for Modern Warfare remastered, which came as an add-on to the Infinite Warfare release, it really is no surprise that Activision have decided to go back to what CoD players loved most from the series but there is that lingering worry of bringing back a classic while keeping it fresh and modern so as not to bring about that ‘seen it, played it’ feel that is always lurking when playing Modern Warfare Remastered.

While the game (MW Remastered) itself is a stellar moment within the series, (and one I am enjoying playing at the moment over the Infinite Warfare release) the remastered release of the 2007 issue showcases just how dated the game is when compared to more modern releases.  Developed by Raven Software, the remastered issue offered nothing really new to the original release with updated graphics, rendering, sounds and animations.  The inclusion of semi-customizable multiplayer characters (including female skins) were a nice touch along with the ‘depot’ which allowed players to spend their game earned tokens on mystery cases filled with player skins, weapon skins and calling cards and emblems.

The question now begs, with WWII the official setting for the next Call of Duty outing, do Activison have plans to continue down the route we’ve traveled down once before?

The series has delved into WWII numerous times with 2003’s Call of Duty, 2005’s Call of Duty 2, 2006’s Call of Duty 3 and 2008’s Call of Duty: World at War.  2010’s Call of Duty: Black Ops took place in the Cold War and partially within the Vietnam War while all other outings have focused on fictional modern era and futuristic warfare.

One setting that the franchise has never delved into (and one I personally would like to see) is gangland/urban warfare.  While Call of Duty is military based, there’s nothing stating the series couldn’t delve into this area without compromising their tactical themed game-play.  The gangland-and-or-urban warfare theme has featured within games such as Grand Theft Auto and the Saints Row series, but is yet to be given the first person shooter treatment that games like Call of Duty offers.

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Saints Row feature Gangland Warfare, a theme yet to be seen within the CoD Series.

Details about the multiplayer within CoD WWII are still sparse to none but it has been revealed that a ‘social space’ called Headquarters will see players, much like that in Destiny, all converge to show off gear and interact with each other before heading off into a match with Sledgehammers Chief Development Officer Michael Condrey confirming to me that character customization AND playable female soldiers will both feature in this next game.

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Call of Duty: World War II drops November 2nd with exclusive pre-order beta access for PS4 users (date to come).  Pre-orders now open either on line or in store with your local retailers.

Fallout 4 Officially Coming this year Plus a Reddit User Spills All!

A screen from Fallout 4 Trailer
A screen from Fallout 4 Trailer

The countdown clock on the Fallout 4 website has officially ended, revealing the official announcement of the Fallout 4 game, with a trailer, heading to PC, Xbox One and PS4 later this year.

Bethesda are keeping information very very close to their chest with no official information released on story-line, how Fallout 4 fits into the Fallout timeline or customization options, though that’s not to say there’s no information floating around the web.  Eleven months ago, a disgruntled, former Bethesda employee (who was fired for dishing out confidential game information) took to reddit to spill all the beans about having played the game and what users can expect.

In Fallout 4, you are in Boston, and it takes place in the year 2287, exactly 10 years after Fallout 3. In Fallout 4, mixing things up, we are making the game more “Story Based” and the player character will finally talk, and narrate his story line” – reddit user SandraReed begins.  “At the beginning of the game, you create your character (You can only be a male in the main story), and afterward, you start the game with a blast. After the blast, you awake to see the building you are standing inside blown apart and your wife, Lydia, dead. Robots and Androids are storming the place, killing and kidnapping the people inside. You, known as “The Officer”, must escape and get revenge.”

Other notable claims include the map of Fallout 4 being three times the size of that in Skyrim, Fallout 4 takes place in Boston, you can import your Fallout 3 data and that could have an impact on the story depending on your previous choices and 5 DLC expansion packs have been scheduled.

Obviously, all this information is speculation until Bethesda play their hand at E3 next week, and here’s hoping the company haven’t taken a step backwards by removing the ability to play as a female character (SandraReed does note female character can be played…once you have finished the main story line).  Users like myself who have followed and played the game from dot one as a female character may feel a bit hard done by that they won’t be able to continue on.

What are your thoughts about the trailer and the revelations released by SandraReed on Reddit?

Bethesda is Giving us Fallout 4 Anticipations.

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                                                                      Fallout 4 is coming!

As a massive fan of Bethesda’s Fallout game series, a little part of me geeked out when it was announced that they would be holding a conference at the mega E3 gaming expo later this month – the first time they have ever appeared at the event.  Could they be actually announcing a followup to the very awesome Fallout New Vegas released back in 2010?

Judging by this website it seems that not only is the news true, but that Bethesda could in fact be announcing the game earlier than the June 14th E3 expo and to quash any fears of the website being fake, Bethesda sent out the following tweet:

Set in an alternate reality where a failed Chinese invasion of America resulted in thermonuclear war, the Fallout series puts you as a custom player tasked with navigating a massive wasteland, rebuilding civilization in some form in the wake of the apocalypse. Fallout 3 was set in the Washington DC area, New Vegas in a Vegas like setting, while previous games have taken place on the West Coast of the US.

Can’t wait to see just what is revealed in 14 hours time!