Tag Archives: us

The Last(PS3 Game) of Us

10 Feb

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It’s not surprising that the team at Naughty Dog, the people responsible for the beloved Uncharted series, to pull off a game that not only keeps the player engaged with great gameplay but also legitimize story in games. In games it’s rare to come across a good story since it’s just a framing device to get the players in the game that you don’t mind sitting through but it’s different in the case of The Last of Us. At face value TLOU may look like your typical, generic zombie shooter, but it looks can be deceiving as it’s played.

In TLOU you play as Joel (Troy Baker), a middle aged man who, after 20 years of surviving the disaster of the cordyceps virus that creates the zombie-like hordes, must escort a young orphan girl Ellie (Ashley Johnson), who was born and raised in the new desolate world, to a group of mercenaries in order to get a weapons cache. The pathway there is rife with zombies and the occasional group of “sane” survivors who will shoot first and ask questions later.

Speaking of the zombies, they come in three flavors: Runners, which are basically feral humans in the first stage of the virus; Clickers, who are the iconic cauliflower, faced biters that cannot be engaged physically; and finally the Bloaters that throw fungus bombs with pinpoint accuracy and God help you if it gets a hold of you.

The gameplay is probably the best thing about the game as you have to make do with what you find in a wonderfully realized scavenger system. Everything you use from health items made of rags and alcohol to more Macguyver-esque smoke bombs made of fire crackers and sugar is crafted in real time. As for the firearms you use, it’s all up to what particular ammunition you can find and you’ll want to horde every bullet and only use it in last resort scenarios.

The reason for this being that the shooting is less arcade and more simulator, with aiming being more realistic, jostling with natural movement and the fact that it takes multiple bullets to take a human down unless you get a headshot and good luck with that.

The game also emphasizes stealth and that the fact that there is always different ways to go about different situations. All that is well and good but what about the game giving you an A.I. companion that runs around in tense situations? Thankfully Ellie doesn’t technically exist as she’ll give her position away but not make the enemies alert which is one of the smartest decisions made in game design but will inevitably make the games immersion break from time to time.

On top of all the greatness there is still room for a game that looks absolutely gorgeous. A perpetual sunset beams across the dilapidated buildings covered in luscious overgrowth and water effects that look like water and not bunches of paper Mache.

TLOU is a beautiful game that keeps its finger on the tension and applies more pressure as you explore the world in an effort to face past problems and create a more enjoyable future.

See you later!

DBSLAYER7

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Injustice: God(I love this games)s Among Us

1 May

Injustice

Imagine a world ruled by Superman and all of his values were immediately flipped after The Joker goes too far with one of his pranks.

The story, which is mostly presented through a promotional tie-in comic, is that The Joker, using kryptonite laced fear toxin, tricks Superman into thinking his pregnant wife Lois Lane was his ultimate enemy Doomsday. Thinking this he subsequently kills her and his unborn child which activated a detonator linked to Lois’ heart that set off a nuke in the heart of Metropolis. Basically, in one fell swoop, Superman killed his family and the city he had sworn to protect. This leaves him with nothing but a new mission. After the tragedy Superman decides that sitting on the sidelines and dedicating himself to one city and the will of the people isn’t enough and opts to get rid of all evil in the world without due process and becomes a tyrant in order to prevent what happened to him from ever happening to anyone else. Pretty heavy stuff to be sure but this actually takes place in an alternate universe and heroes from the “good” universe we know and love are pulled over  to try and end Superman’s reign of terror.

The plot is actually an excellent framing device as to how and why characters from the DC universe would be fighting each other.

The game has been touted as Mortal Kombat with DC characters (No not that one). This makes sense seeing that the developer NetherRealm Studios were the ones responsible for the Mortal Kombat Reboot in 2011.

The gameplay take cues from more popular fighting games like MK and Street fighter in terms of controls. The basic fighting is set on light, medium, and heavy attacks and the different combos that can be executed with them for each character.

With a game like this it would be expected to have each character use the same set of moves just with a different coat of paint. In this game however each character is completely unique. While the fighting is pretty basic and similar each character has a personal set of skills and techniques that add a great deal of variety during battles. Batman uses different gadgets and martial arts, while superman shoots lasers and hovers around the stage. With 24 characters on the starting roster the possibilities seem endless.

Another plus for the gameplay is the interactivity with objects on the stage, from throwing cars on Gotham’s streets to kicking someone into Doomsday in the Fortress of Solitude. The games levels are also multi-tiered allowing players to knock their opponent into another part of the stage through damaging cut scenes giving yet another layer of comic book style fighting.

While the campaign is short at just around 4-5 hours the replay value is immense. Of course there are offline and online modes that allow you to play as your favorite character with friends on the couch or people from around the world. Not to mention a huge set of challenge battles and arcade modes can keep single players busy. There is also a mode featuring “S.T.A.R. Labs missions”, which are a varied set of fun mini games, like using Catwoman’s cat to steal gems. Doing all these things in and out of the Campaign will net you experience points used to access bonus features and other features.

Injustice: God’s Among Us is a must buy for lovers of DC and fighting games as both sides of this entry to the licensed game genre shine as bright as the sun.

I give this game two thumbs up.

This has is and always will be my opinion. Thanks and see ya later!

DBSLAYER7