Geekly Review #167

Well back from holiday, which means back to work, but it also means back to games, so every cloud and all that!

The Division

During my time away some friends had been hitting The Division pretty hard and levelling up quite quickly, so when I got back I decided it was time to finally make the jump to level 30 after lingering around the low 20’s for a while. So we powered through my remaining story missions all on hard for the extra xp and within a day I’d hit level 30 and could now start to get some good gear and get my gear score up. As my friends were already 30 and had some decent gear they were kind enough to drop a fair few bits for me to start me off and I was soon at 180 gear score decked out in all Gold tier loot – still a long way to go, but it’s a good start.

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I picked up the season pass for The Division in the Winter sales and I’ve been really enjoying the game since, it’s another one of those games that has got a lot better since its launch. We hit up the dark zone for a little bit too and I’m happy to say that for the most part it was good fun, until some super decked out dude wiped us all out a few times within seconds, clearly we’re not quite ready to take on the top dogs.

division-dark-zone

Now that I’m level 30 it means that I can start to benefit from the loot dropped in survival mode, which means I will be playing that a lot more. I’ve only played a little of it so far, but I did really like it and thought it was a great step in the right direction for the game.

January Games

Other than that I haven’t been playing much else since my return, but I am eagerly awaiting a few titles. One of which is Conan Exiles coming to PC next week. It looks to me a lot like a cross between Rust and Ark with the base building from Rust and the more PVE style stuff from Ark, but there will obviously also be PVP too. I’m quietly hoping that it will turn out very good, so keep your eyes peeled here for more about it soon.

Check out the latest trailer for the game!

Another game – and another survival game, due to release in January is Hellion. I’ve spoken about Hellion a few times before with  a ‘One to watch‘ and ‘Games I can’t wait to play‘ I’m really excited to give it a try. My hopes for the Jan releases are kind of fading though as all seems to have gone very quiet and there is still no sign of a Steam store page for the game.

Both of the games I will be covering here and I will likely be doing some videos with them on my YouTube channel too, so keep an eye on that too if you want!an

-Will

Firewatch – Warning Spoilers Below

As mentioned last week I had started Firewatch, well I was aware that the game was short, and managed to complete the game in one long sitting. I went into the game completely spoiler free, I had no idea what the game was about other than being a park ranger, I had no idea what to expect in terms of style of game, I had it in my mind it was a walking simulator like Everybody’s gone to the rapture.

Well first up I was completely blown away by how captivating the game was. Once I had started it and gone on a proper exploration I was addicted to it. Visually it’s stunning and the park offers some great views and visuals. Now as the game progressed this is where I finally started to find out what the game was about. Being terrified.

Coming back from day one and finding someone had been into my tower was unsettling. As the days progressed and more clues are unraveled that you and Delilah are not alone within the park it gets more and more intense. Each trip out to find out what’s going on resulted in sweatier and sweatier palms. The expectation as the game ticked along that I’d eventually climb over a rock or turn around to see someone never went away. The smart thing about Firewatch is that aside from the girls in the lake and the shadowy figure all on day one, you don’t encounter another human being again throughout the entire game. The final scenes when you escape the park, make it to the chopper and see another person on the chopper reach out to help you was genuinely one of the biggest sense of relief moments I’ve experienced in a game in a long time.

I’ve since read that if you play the game ignoring Delilah over the radio throughout the game, it’s a different experience, I’ve avoided reading as to why it’s different, and based on how short this game is I’m definitely tempted to play it again trying this. It will now have the same intensity to it on a 2nd play through now that the plot and moments are known, but I’d be happy to try it again to experience a different relationship built with Delilah.

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Tomb Raider Definitive Edition

So with Firewatch completed, I’m onto another game that I got for Christmas. Tomb Raider The Definitive Edition. Now I played this game on the Xbox360 very late on, I did a write up on it here. Looking back over the article, I was full of praise for the game. Well the definitive edition doesn’t capture my praise quite as much as the original did back then.

I can’t put my finger on the issue, but it feels very different. I recently completed Uncharted 4, so perhaps that’s the problem. On the first play through of Tomb Raider, I had played any of the Uncharted Trilogy prior to TR reboot, so this action adventure felt fresh and new. Now playing this definitive edition of TR, I’ve played the UC trilogy and 4 and have had my eyes opened to how incredible action adventure games can be.

That’s not to say TR Definitive Edition is bad or somehow got worse than the original game back on last gen consoles. It’s just that it’s sort of showing it’s age. I also never noticed the first time playing, how silly the bad guys are in this. Literally 5 character models recycled over and over, and It also made me chuckle at about 30% through where you shoot an arrow at a guard to save Sam who is about to be sacrificed and the guards attack Lara saying “This is for Vladamir”, as the beat Lara, they are stopped and beckoned, the guys beating Lara up called “Nikolai” and “Dimitri”. Let’s just go out and get the most Russian sounding names we can and use them. It’s not funny, But it made me smirk for some reason.

Anyways I’m still playing it, and I am enjoying it. The game is still smart with it’s puzzles and hidden tombs to raid. The leveling mechanics are still as simple as they ever were. Visually you can see the difference as it’s had an overhaul. I think it just suffers a bit now compared to the outstanding Uncharted 4. I’m still anticipating playing the sequel though Rise of the Tomb Raider once I’ve done this.

tr

– Murr

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