I’ve been looking forward to this last week for a while because there was a lot of new video game content to get my hands on.
Halo 5: Warzone Firefight
I’ve been spending some time back on Halo 5 as the new Warzone game mode ‘firefight’ went in to beta. Firefight – if you don’t know was in Halo 3: ODST and Reach. It was a co-op game mode that pitted you against waves of increasingly difficult enemies. Now it’s back in Halo 5 and it’s great fun. You now play with up to 8 players and have to complete four waves of enemies utilising all you Warzone REQ’s.
As it’s only being tested at the moment there is only one map playable, but I still had a blast playing on it multiple times. It can be pretty challenging at times, but I don’t think it was too difficult, I found that using the Ghost was really helpful as it could make light work of the rounds where you have to take out multiple targets – I’m talking the ones where you have to take out 100 of X enemy.
I can’t wait for the full game mode to be implemented as I can see myself playing quite a bit.
Destiny has also seen an update this week which has added in a few new missions, a new strike and a few other bits and bobs. Naturally I wanted to try these changes out. The new missions and strike are fairly forgettable to be honest. The best changes have come from the way that you can now earn loot. I’m not 100% certain on the rules of it, but essentially you get a lot more loot that is guaranteed to be a higher light level than your character enabling you to level up a lot more effectively. In one evening I managed to go from 304 to 310 which normally could’ve taken days of grinding raids. It’s a great change and allows the more casual players to actually make some meaningful progress towards the new light level cap of 335.
The Prison of Elders has also seen a change in the form of the Challenge of Elders. It’s basically just a buffed up version with a boss level every time. But it’s only three rounds instead of the normal five. We managed to two man it fairly easily so I don’t think it’s really much of a challenge as the name would suggest. But it’s nice to have another end game activity to play in.
All in all I’m pretty happy with the new content and I’m looking forward to the next Iron Banner event. I’ve been away from Destiny for a while, but it looks like I might be back!
The Black Death
I’ve been waiting for this for a while and this weekend we finally got to take a look at the game as ‘press’ were given access to the game a few days before the release date tomorrow (19th). I plan on doing a more in depth write up at a later date after I’ve played more and once the game has become more populated when it’s out.
Firstly the game looks really nice and runs pretty well too. There were some issues with crashing and a few graphical issues where objects were seen floating around, but I can forgive that.
My first few minutes were filled with finding treasure in a cave, killing some animals, getting killed by bandits, getting drunk in a tavern and buying some equipment – it was fun. But, and maybe it’s just because there weren’t many people around, it all feels a little pointless right now. I’m sure once the game becomes more populated it will change, but I felt like it was doing things with no purpose. I don’t really understand the plague mechanics right now, you can get a little infected by being to close to dead bodies, but I don’t know what that actually means. Again it’s probably because there wasn’t anyone else on my server.
Also your hunger goes up way too quickly right now. I’m sure over the first few weeks we will see lots of small patches delivering tweaks and changes.
I’m really interested to see where the game will go and I will continue to play it and keep an eye on development as I think it has a load of potential.
Finally, I spent a bit of time playing the Doom Multiplayer Beta on Xbox One. To be honest I was pretty underwhelmed by it. It just didn’t really do anything for me. It wasn’t particularly bad it just felt a little bland. I wasn’t really paying much attention to Doom before, but now I feel even less inclined to follow it’s progression.
It just let me saying “Meh” after I as done with it.
While Will had a weekend of gaming, my weekend was spent watching films. In 2015 I had a good start to the year watching new films frequently, but near the back end of 2015 I just stopped watching new films regularly. So I spent Saturday and majority of Sunday watching some films I’d intended to last year. I started up the comedy Daddy’s Home starring Will Ferrell and Mark Wahlberg. I was looking forward to this based on the 2 leads previous film together The Other Guys, which was hilarious. This film was pretty funny with some hilarious moments, but didn’t capture the same comedic bond or continuous comedy that the Other Guys had. Next up I went with Trainwreck. Truth be told I actually only wanted to see this to see how John Cena and Lebron James were in it as I’d read good things about their roles. John Cena’s brief stint in the film was pretty funny, especially the scene in the cinema trying to sound hard but just coming over as a homosexual. It made me chuckle. The 2nd half of the film really slowed down though comedy wise. It became a bit of a slog to watch but I persevered regardless which was worth it to see Amy Schumer jump on a trampoline and face plant a mattress.
Sunday I kicked the film marathon of with Creed, The spiritual successor to the Rocky franchise. To sum it up quickly with one word…Incredible. The film has done well in that this can now be a new franchise in that ‘Universe’, but it won’t need to rely on Rocky being in future films. Creed as a series can go on and be the next saga in this Rocky / Creed timeline, but from this first film and how well Rocky was used in it, Sly can leave this character alone now and let Micheal B Jordan’s ‘Adonis Creed’ be the starring role. Of course use throwbacks, keep imagery of Rocky and Apollo in future films after all Creed is the next step in this massive franchise.
Next up was Quentin Tarantino’s latest film, The Hateful Eight. I wasn’t really sure what to expect with this film. Violence was a given, but other than that no idea. What we did get was a film that felt like Tarantino had gone back and taken inspiration from Reservoir Dogs. With the whole of the film taking place in 2 locations. A stagecoach and a cabin, with the film being massively about dialect. Clues were dropped throughout the chapters to just what exactly was going to happen and it resulted in a dramatic finale after seeing the answers put out for you in one of the chapters. A surprise face to show was Channing Tatum who had a decent but brief appearance. A long film as standard with Quentin, but it never felt slow. There was always tension in every scene and each character continued to build up the drama with everything that they had to say.
And to change the pace completely and to see the weekend out I watched Pixar’s latest movie The Good Dinosaur. This film from what I had read hadn’t quite lit the box office up as much as your traditional Pixar film. Unfortunately for The Good Dinosaur it released in the same year as Pixar’s wonderful Inside Out which was one of Pixar’s strongest films to date. So It was always going to be a tough film to follow especially in the same year. For some reason based on what I knew about it’s success I approached this film with an already negative state of mind, thinking that’d I’d probably dislike it. Happy to say that it simply wasn’t the case at all. Pixar are renowned for their incredible craft, This film seemed like it was simply Pixar showing off at how incredible they are at making worlds and environments. The visuals on display for the setting for this film were simply jaw dropping, and I think Pixar knew this with some scenes that almost seemed as if they were boasting such as a shot of a plant that’s dry, then being heavily rained on. Seeing the water effects on show and the branch with lively leaves go limp and the raindrops dripping off the leaves. I’m making a big deal about it, but it I can state enough visually this film is a masterpiece. Another thing I think that would have put people off this is the dinosaur models / characters, Let’s face it, they don’t look particularly great. But within 5 minutes of the introduction of the film you suddenly realize why these character designs were approved and it makes sense. It’s also a Pixar film that tugs on the heartstrings with one particular scene comparable to that of the opening of Up or the scene that makes everyone well up in the Lion King, I’ll say no more than that.
As for the main dinosaur Arlo, you end up rooting for him so much, The poor little guy cannot catch a break and you immediately support him and will him to succeed on his journey.
And that summed up my weekend, Glad to have finally caught Creed, Hateful Eight and Good Dinosaur in particular.