November 29th, 2018 by Kurt "Chet" Christel

A Battle of Mediocrities

The past week or so, we were faced with some really good games. Like Let’s Go Pikachu and Let’s Go Eevee. And probably Warriors Orochi 4, I guess. But you know what wasn’t great? Fallout 76 and Battlefield V, two big ticket games. Both were set to make a splash in the crazy release season that is November. But neither could achieve what the wanted. Fallout 76 was vastly undercut by it’s monotony and lack of direction. Battlefield V was just the same Battlefield as always with a new coat of paint. BFV also had it’s critics for its inaccurate portrayal of WW2 by people on the internet, but that’s the internet. Everybody hates everything on the internet. Besides that, both games got major BETA playtests from regular users. This is honestly a good step, allowing the actual PLAYERS some advanced look at the game instead of some journalist who intends to write a giant think piece. Both of these games have a huge focus on multiplayer. Fallout 76 is the first major multiplayer game for Bethesda and Battlefield V is a multiplayer game with a campaign tacked on. Only their campaign was even shorter AND less interesting.

Either way, we haven’t finished enough of either to give you a consensus. But… if you are absolutely dying to play an online shooter game, we have something interesting for you. We are going to compare the games using our review system. But instead of the score, we are going to say which game did it better! Let’s start, shall we?

Graphics

Battlefield V is flat out gorgeous, with heavily detailed maps and great lighting that really set the mood for a lot of maps. There are some glitches but it works for the most part. The smoke grenades set up some serious smoke particle FX. And the detail of the character faces is surprisingly detailed for a game that doesn’t have too much focus on what the player looks like. Fallout 76 looks… exactly like it did several years ago. Fallout 3 and New Vegas never looked that great. Fallout 4 didn’t look that great. Fallout 76? It’s markedly improved, sure. But does it look great? No way, it looks as trashy as its level design and full of all sorts of ugly textures. Several of the ugly textures have taken more than 20 seconds to pop in. Yikes.

Victor: Battlefield V

Story

Battlefield V is one of the many, many, many, many iterations of World War II presented in game form. Somehow, it managed to make history even more boring, despite trying to spice things up with some creative historical fiction. What you get here is a mere 3 stories, as opposed to 5 in the previous entry. It’s really hard to feel anything for these characters because you spend such a small amount of time with them. It ends up being boring. Fallout 76 is boredom incarnate. Using the gaming worlds least interesting way of telling stories, any thing plot related in the game is played out in VERY LENGTHY audio logs. They can’t be paused or fast forwarded. If you interact with your pip-boy and click the wrong thing, the tape will stop and you have to start it over. Other than that, you only other window into the events of the game are logs written on terminal screens. In old Fallout games, this was done for lore. In 76, they are main story points. Super lame. All the same, when it comes down to brass tacks, it would seems that Fallout 76 still has a better overall story. Having a ton of lore is better than a bog-standard WW2 plot.

Victor: Fallout 76

Audio

Battlefield V has all the standard sounds you’re used to hearing. The audio was on autopilot in this regard. Every single gun sounds like it did in every other game. You will not in any way be inspired by the sound design of the weapons, nor will you be interested in the orchestral OST. It’s there because it’s supposed to be there, not because it wants to do something engaging. Fallout 76 surprisingly has a decent OST going for it. The ambient music that plays while you’re wandering the world is noticeably better then previous versions. It’s actually notable and really adds to the mood of the game being very lonely and desolate. And if that doesn’t tickle your fancy, there’s always the old sock-hop records to keep things going. The fantasy weapons also have wonderful unique sounds.

Victor: Fallout 76

Gameplay

In Fallout 76, you are bombarded with nonstop activity. The game is always online, so that means no pause menu. If you want to look at the map, it’s realtime. If you need to sort your junk on your Pip-Boy, that is also real time. There is nowhere safe to be when you play this game. You absolutely will be bombarded by enemies at any and all opportunities, with very little time to rest and get a bearing on things. In Battlefield V, the campaign is atrocious. But the multi-player is on point. It weird, the game is so much better in multi than single. It makes you wish the they skipped the campaign, instead of Black Ops. Anyway, the game is direct and lets you “play it your way”, which is very important. Divided into four classes, you can spawn is as a specialist in Assault, Medic, Recon, and Support. Don’t let the names fool you, all of them are combat roles. It’s what you do with them that matters. Either way, BFV manages to be a great shooter while Fallout 76 stays wonky as ever.

Victor: Battlefield V

Fun

To put it simply, there’s an easy dichotomy here. Fallout 76 has a “make your own fun” approach to game design. If you want to have any fun, you want to team up and do fun stuff together with your friends. Otherwise it’s a drag. Battlefield is good at grouping you with interesting colleagues that you help out during the many combat modes. Even if you aren’t on voice chat, the game finds a way to make you feel connected with your squad. It’s admirable that it manages to gel so well with random strangers. Meeting random strangers in Fallout 76 are few and far between. They are also as underwhelming as ever.

Victor: Battlefield V

It is clear that the winner is Battlefield V with a victory spread of 3-2. We haven’t heard too much of the game in the blogosphere of gaming. But this may be because the game just… is fine. It’s not spectacular. It’s just fine. Despite early complaints, the bottom line is that BFV is a better experience than Fallout 76. If you need a brand new game to satisfy your itch for fast paced, online, multiplayer shooter action, you could do worse than picking up the latest Battlefield. Me? I got so bored during the campaign that I jumped into multi. I never do that. Not until this iteration. How surprising!




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August 30th, 2018 by Vega Montanez

Another jam-packed October coming up on our wallets gamers but fear not the great folks at EA have our back. Or maybe they just have their best interests in mind. Who cares, however you look at it Battlefield V has been delayed.

Oskar Gabrielson, general manager at DICE, has said in an official blog post (no bogus crap) that Battlefield V has been delayed to November 20th. That’s right a nice little Thanksgiving shootout. Should be amazing.

The post kind of seems like they are crediting player feedback for the delay which means someone was listening. I just hope they were listening to the right complaints.

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battlefield v
May 28th, 2018 by Vega Montanez

Battlefield V brings a war campaign!

In a move I think everyone can universally agree we weren’t expecting, the Battlefield V announcement brought some crazy plot twist. This year, for the first time in almost a decade Battlefield & Call of Duty are very different games. Outside of both being First Person Shooters, the majority of the ways the games will play out. I’ll do a full on comparison but for now let’s talk about whats going on.

First, and foremost, Battlefield V is coming to a home console, i.e. not the Switch, near you on October 19th, 2018.

That gives us all plenty of time to get ready. And get ready we need to because the guys at Dice are doing it big again. Contrary to popular ridiculous belief, single player campaigns are going no where and Battlefield is more proof. Much like the way the campaign played out in the recent Battlefield 1, Battlefield V will spotlight lesser known battles during WWII. The campaign will also feature stories about small rebel soldiers protecting their hometowns alongside the soldier stories.

A new game mode was announced and it’s not Battle Royale!

Combined Arms is a four player squad mode with infiltration missions. You and your team are paratroopers dropped to go in behind enemy lines, do some crazy missions, and be out without being detected. The nice thing is you can also play this alone. Yup, taking shots at the lack of campaign in Black Ops 4 still.

But there is still a Battle Royale, sort of. If you play Battlefield, congratulations, you may recognize a sweet little mode called Grand Operations. Well not really a game mode more like a match type. Anyway, if you’re familiar with Grand Operations incredible match types, you’re in for a crazy surprise. Instead of a full fledged mode, Grand Operations will now have an additional round called Last Stand. All remaining players fight till the one winner is left. The Battlefield spin; the more time you spend in squads the more ammo and health you get to pick up. So how long can you trust the people you’re with?

The final piece of big news from the announcement is the end of the premium pass. Going forward all major post release content will be available for free. Of course there will probably still be other paid DLC, we’ll have to wait and see.

There you have it folks. Battlefield , available on PC, PS4, and Xbox One on October 19th 2018. Pre-Order today to get access to the beta and other cool in game stuff.

Check out the trailer




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December 20th, 2017 by Kurt "Chet" Christel

Exciting gameplay clips from the hit game!

One of the most exciting SWBF2 gameplay videos you will ever watch.




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December 20th, 2017 by Kurt "Chet" Christel

Lootbox-free discussions! (Mostly)

In all honesty, even without the lootboxes, Star Wars Battlefront 2 is still a massive failure in many regards.




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December 20th, 2017 by Kurt "Chet" Christel

This isn’t the multiplayer game you’ve been looking for.

I really cannot restate enough how disappointing Star Wars Battlefront II was to me. I knew based on all of the feedback from the beta and the pre-release reviews that it wasn’t going to be great. But I specifically wanted to give DICE and/or EA the benefit of the doubt and see if it really was just as bad as everyone said it was. So I played it. And… it was worse than I even imagined.

Many people would come to the website and think we are trying to be edgy with the score we gave to this game. Not quite. While the language I personally used was lost bashing, it was a very inspired brand of bashing to say the least. After hearing so many negative comments and so many negative reviews (AKA 6/10s, the mainstream games journalism equivalent of “bad”), I went in with rather low expectations, and not even those were met.

I stand strong in everything I said and don’t think I was being harsh. To shortly reiterate the review, I found that story was particularly abysmal in its stupidity. The audio was a snorefest of generic music with lazer noises and bad soundalikes. The gameplay really wasn’t all that fun with its needlessly confusing starcard system. And then the loot box fiasco was just the icing on the cake. Fun fact, Ubisoft recentaly globally rolled back all their scheduled 2018 releases and I have a slight suspicion that they intended to implement loot boxes but are now backpedalling. I have no proof of this, just merely a speculation.

So, you may be asking yourself, what’s the point of this article? Are you just here to kick SWBF2 while it’s down? Well, no. This is because it’s not “down” at all since it appears to somehow still be a successful release. But as much as there were many great games this year, there were also 3 major titles that were massive disappointments.

Sonic Forces came out recently and I harped on that being only good for the soundtrack. But would I play that game over playing SWBF2? Yes, this buggy, poorly slapped together mess of a game is still a better and far more entertaining experience, made doubly so because it’s short. And well, that soundtrack, hot damn.

Mass Effect Andromeda was a huge letdown across the board thanks to janky animations, clunky combat, and god awful scripting. But it’s still Mass Effect and as much as I like to joke that SWBF2 was Star Wars game with mass Effect assets, one thing still stands. Andromeda does have substance. By now, Andromeda should also be fairly patched (I hope) to a point where all the multitudes of bugs and glitches have been fixed.

What else was a letdown? Agents of Mayhem, Volitions spiritual successor to Saints Row, was quite mess. It was buggy just like Andromeda, but only half as much. The way the script and character design was made, I genuinely have no idea what audience they had in mind when they made this game, it’s all over the place in tone and script. But after finishing the campaign, I still had stuff to do, and time permitting, I would have done it because even with all the repetition, it was at least playable. A weird design, but playable.

And that’s just 3 examples. I’m not saying that Star Wars Battlefront 2 is the worst game of the year, the game runs ok, the graphics are good, and at its core there’s potential for improvement. This, on the otherhand, is a heavy letdown because it didn’t have good press before it came out, and was even worse for wear on release date. But to all the fans who are angry at the bad reviews, you ire is misdirected. Don’t get mad at the reviewers for giving your bad game a bad review. Refocus your attention on EA and ask why, oh why, did they make the decisions they made for the game. You deserve more and you should be asking for more.




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November 3rd, 2017 by Kurt "Chet" Christel

Ignore Battlefront II, just play the first one some more.

Star Wars Battlefront II is making it’s way to shelves whether you like it or not. But if it sucks, why not just keep playing the first one instead. The first one doesn’t have loot boxes and has a great player base.




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October 23rd, 2017 by Kurt "Chet" Christel

Capture your hearts’ content while being discontent with EA.

Folks, it’s been a long week. I’m tired. Here’s some sh*t that happened this week in case you missed it.

1) Destiny 2 Leviathan raid gets BTFO’d

Merely an hour after it went live, the first ever raid for this MMO-lite game was beaten in an hour. Which would be impressive except for one thing, it was faked. That’s right, the raid was quickly beaten because instead of being good sportsmen and just playing the damn game, everyone had to go and ruin things by using an exploit. The sad part is the exploit isn’t even that hard to pull off. Several videos went up instruction players how to get all the great loot without the hard effort.

2) Pokemon Go does the monster mash.

Everyone’s favorite alternate reality mobile game collectathon is going strong. It’s the getting to the end of October and everyone has Halloween fever. What’s the best part about this holiday? THE CANDY OF COURSE. Every pokemon you catch will earn you a whopping SIX candies. On top of that, there are a handful of other ways to rake in some extra sweets. If that’s not enough for you, the game will be ramping up the scare factor the only way it can. The spooooooky pokemon you know and love will be a lot more common as the 31st draws closer and closer. You’ll have increased chances to catch a Zubat, Golbat, Gastly, Haunter, Gengar, Drowzee, or Hypno. Why not take your pokemon with you while Trick or Treating?

3) Capture footage now even easier on the Switch.

Having a dedicated screenshot button on the Switch was a brilliant idea. Even more brilliant is the new update for the crossover console. Update 4.0 bring an impressive new feature. Pressing and holding the capture button will now automatically lock in and record the last 30 seconds of your gameplay. For many games though, not all of them. They’ve also made it easier to transfer your user data from Switch to Switch which would be nice. Considering Nintendo’s track record for releasing slightly updated versions of their handhelds, I can’t wait to get my hands on a theoretical new switch that will have a longer battery life.

4) Capture footage now even easier on the Xbox One.

The Switch wasn’t the only console with a major update. The Fall 2017 Hardware update for the Xbox one has added a lot of new features. An even further improved Home button was one of the features, while a more streamlined desktop accompanied the changes. You can now add games to your homescreen, instead of just pin, and get a more informative preview of the latest news and community activity about whichever game you choose. But most importantly, if you plug in an external USB 3.0 compatible device, you can now capture gameplay footage up to 60 minutes long.

5) EA adds pay to win elements to Star Wars Battlefront II.

I mean, it’s hard not to have heard this news, it’s everywhere. People played the demo and are pretty concerned that the current “loot crate” craze has poisoned the well and that Battlefront II is the most recent victim. EA has backpedaled on this a little bit, saying that they will make core elements to the game be progression-based, but that has yet to be seen. We are all just hoping that the single player campaign isn’t just some tacked on garbage. We can only hope that after the ruckus this game has caused, everything will turn for the better in the end.

6) EA shuts down Visceral Games.

EA is apparently not happy with f*cking up things yet, so here they are again. Visceral Games, creators most well known for the Dead Space series, was working on a standalone Star Wars game. After some focus testing, EA decided that the project was no longer worthwhile and terminated the company. Nice going, EA. You’re well on your way to re-earning that “worst company” award. I mean, other worse companies deserve it usually, but you manage to really stick your mistakes in everyone’s faces, don’t you, EA?

7) Good news for Mario XCOM fans.

Did you think Mario+Rabbids Kingdom battle was an easy game? If you did, you might have been playing in easy mode. This challenging game is getting even tougher with some newly announced DLC. Dubbed the “Ultra Challenge Pack”, it contains 8 new super hard scenarios to fight your way through. Owners of the season pass already have access and can download it whenever they want. Tread carefully, this DLC isn’t playing around.




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