Geekly Review #272

This last week has been a good week of gaming, so let’s get stuck in to the update.

DiRT Rally 2.0

Yup, that’s right I bought DiRT Rally 2.0 and I love it. It’s probably been about 5 years since I last properly played a racing game, in fact it might even be longer, I don’t what the last racing game I played actually was. But I’ve had half an eye on DiRT Rally 2.0 for a while now, I kind of just wanted to blast a car around for a bit of fun and that’s exactly what Dirt is, fun!

I’ve started off playing the career mode with the first car you get and it took me a couple of stages and a few resets (you get 5 each stage) to get the hang on it, but once I did I was flying and having a great time. There is something about rally games that I like over track racing games, and I think it’s that the courses are usually super narrow and tricky to navigate so when you start picking up some speed it starts to get pretty intense.

One thing I’ve noticed though is that it’s not very difficult so far – bar me learning to drive again, and unless I’ve missed something there is no option to increase the challenge, but maybe that comes with newer faster cars?

It’s a really good looking game too, with the rain effects and night time stages feeling looking especially good.

Alongside the traditional rally there are a few other events to take part in like daily/weekly challenges, but there’s also rally cross which sees you racing against other cars across a number of events to get through to knock out stages and take the championship. It’s really good fun and a nice change from the normal rally style.

For the most part my game library tends to involve a lot of games that require you to shoot people, so it’s nice to have something a little different every now and then.

The Occupation

Speaking of something a little different The Occupation releases tomorrow and I’ve been getting stuck in to it ahead of it’s release (full review to come later this week).

It’s 1987 in North West England; A time of 80’s British pop, grand architecture and political unrest. An explosion has triggered a controversial act which threatens to erode civil liberties of the population to be rushed into place. You are tasked with investigating and questioning people on their actions from a tumultuous night which resulted in the loss of many lives. Each person has a different account of the night’s event and you must use the tools at your disposal to get the results you need for your investigation.

Time’s a’ tickin

I’m only a couple of acts in at this point, but I really like it so far. Weirdly it’s pretty intense, but I think that’s because you have a set amount of time to do your investigating in each Act. For the first one you have an hour before you have to attend a meeting and it’s actually an hour of real time. You’re free to do pretty much whatever you want in this hour and tackle your objectives how you what. With your free time you will be hunting for clues and evidence to help you solve the mystery of what really happened on that night. But you will have to be wary as you explore as you don’t want to get caught by the security guards or anyone else.

I won’t lie there are a few technical issues with the game, at one point I was in a room where I shouldn’t have been and the janitor walked in on me, I was in full view but for some reason he didn’t see me even though he was pretty much in my face. I was able to just slip away unseen, it was clearly a bug, but it’s the only major one I’ve noticed so far, plus there has been a patch since then, so it could all be ironed out now – guess you’ll have to stick around for the full review after all…

It’s a really promising game and if it continues as it has started then it could be a great little gem of an indie game that offers something you might not have played before.

Insurgency: Sandstorm

One of my favourite shooters of last year has had it’s first major update to it and it has got me back playing it again. This update has added in some new guns and other bits and bobs, but the most notable addition is probably the Team Death Match game mode. It’s what I’ve spent all my time playing since jumping back on it and it’s a lot of fun.

There is one problem though, the game still has some real performance and loading problems. It seems that unless you have a beast of a PC and or have it installed on an SSD then it’s not going to load very quickly. I frequently have matches where my gun doesn’t load in for the first minute or so meaning it’s basically impossible to engage in combat. It’s frustrating as hell because I really like the game, but these issues should be a lot better by now.

It’s nice to see that the developers are adding fresh content to the game though and I still think it’s probably the best ‘hardcore’ shooter around at the moment offering the best intense and brutal combat. I can see me playing for quite a long time to come!

-Will

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