With a revival of the nostalgic, classic video game series, developer Eidos Montreal and publisher Square Enix have released a brand new version of “Thief.” Probably the game that started it all for the sneaky, stealth video game genre, “Thief” looks to steal the hearts of its fans and maybe even gain some new ones with the all-new release.
In the game, players control a master thief, whose goal is to steal from the rich through the use of stealth and covert challenges while avoiding as much combat as possible. Players must use the environment and shadows to their advantage as they pickpocket, steal and occasionally incapacitate guards and other nonplayable characters. With money stolen, players can buy weapons and equipment at the end of each mission.
The game has some pretty stunning graphics and superb lighting in its Victorian fantasy world. The mechanics are very solid and fairly easy to grasp, as the game teaches you all the buttons necessary to steal and sneak your way to fortunes. The voice acting is OK, while the sounds are top notch. It was very rewarding to pick locks and pickpocket nonplayable characters without them noticing.
However, for me, the game fell short in a lot of ways. First of all, I’m a fan of the first-person shooter genre, so sneaking around without causing mayhem while playing this game drives me crazy. Although players can cause mayhem and fight their way through, the repetitive combat animations made fighting dull and not as rewarding as I thought. Also, the city — although it is visually appealing, traversing through the shadows and darkness of the Victorian structures becomes boring. I also didn’t feel connected to the story nor the players within the game and only somewhat enjoyed the cinematic cut scenes.
With some pretty stunning visuals and enjoyable controls, “Thief” should be welcomed positively by fans of the stealth genre. As players sneak through the shadows with tons of loot to plunder, the game lives up to its name. Although this first-person shooter gamer does not particularly enjoy the slow pace, “Thief” shines as a stealth title and provides some one-of-a-kind pickpocketing fun.
Read it on Connect Statesboro.
With the NBA All-Star weekend done and NBA basketball season halfway over, I thought I’d stack up how I feel developer Visual Concepts and publisher 2K Sports did with this year’s iteration of their NBA video game. Having LeBron James of the Miami Heat as the cover athlete and serving as the music curator for the game, “NBA 2K14” was another slam dunk for the video game series.
As with each year, “NBA 2K14” delivers an NBA experience that is solid and true to the real game. Instead of just updating rosters each year, Visual Concepts pushes the boundaries and introduces new features, better graphics and more realistic gameplay than the previous years’ titles. The game has received rave reviews across the gaming community, with a grade of 87 out of 100 on Metacritic at the time of writing this article.
New features include many things, from new game modes to hours of commentary. One such new mode, which isn’t found on the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One versions, is the “LeBron: Path of Greatness” mode. This new mode allows the player to control LeBron James’ career and attempt to win his multiple championship rings. There are also more than 50 hours of new commentary from Steve Kerr, Kevin Harlan and Clark Kellogg. Plus, this year, 2K Sports and Euroleague signed an exclusive multiyear deal that allows Euroleague teams to be featured in the game.
For me, the biggest improvement to the game is the “My Career” mode. The many story sequences with players’ characters make the NBA experience immersive and entertaining. The game gives players a feeling of actually being a part of the team by rewarding or disciplining them for actions on and off the court. The ability to have situations and/or conversations with players, coaches and agents creates a NBA simulation unlike any games in the past.
With little negatives aside from a few bugs also found in the previous games, like weird animations at times, “NBA 2K14” is a must have for all basketball fans. On-court improvements and a new game mode make this version of “NBA 2K” the best yet. So ladies, let your men upgrade to a next-gen console, because “NBA 2K14” is one of the best displays of next-generation gaming graphics to date.
Read it on Connect Statesboro.
Coming soon to the Xbox 360 console is yet another free-to-play title, provided players have an Xbox Live Gold membership to play online. The first-person shooter game “Warface,” published by Microsoft Studios and developed by Crytek, will be released later this year. Hoping to capitalize on the first-person shooter genre with a less serious style, “Warface” is a fast-paced, exaggerated take on FPS-style games.
I’ve been playing the beta version of the game on Xbox 360, and I’d describe it as a cross between “Counter-Strike” and “Call of Duty.” Players can choose to join one of four different classes: rifleman, sniper, engineer and medic. Each class plays differently and has access to different equipment. Like other shooter games, the play style will be very familiar to FPS players, but there is also an option to do a running knee slide. Sliding kills are fun and entertaining to achieve.
While the game is free to play with an Xbox Live account, “Warface” has a store where weapons, items and gear can be bought with actual money or credits accumulated through playing matches. Outside of the multiplayer matches, “Warface” also features a full co-op mode, in which teams of five players complete objectives and eliminate enemy forces while racking up points. This mode is similar to games like “Left 4 Dead” and “Payday.”
The game mechanics are pretty solid, even if it has a very arcade-type feel to it, and the graphics and sounds work well for the title. Although the gunfights aren’t as serious as found in other FPS games, weapon choices really have an effect on points and kill totals. I enjoyed the customization options available for weapons, items and even the actual gear the in-game player wears.
Although it’s a beta version, I’m having a lot of fun playing “Warface.” If you’re interested in trying it out, sign up at www.warface.com/xbox and put on your best warface!
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Probably the weirdest game I’ve reviewed is this week’s featured game “Jazzpunk,” a comedic adventure game developed by Necrophone Games and published by Adult Swim Games for PC via Valve’s Steam platform. It’s kind of hard to describe “Jazzpunk,” but I’d say it is what I’d imagine I’d experience while tripping on acid and watching 80s spy movies.
In the game, the player takes the role of Polybank, a spy for an agency that does espionage missions for anyone. Polybank’s in-game boss gives him Missionoyl pills and sends him them on these missions, which are filled with hilarious mini-games, zany puns and much more. The player is encouraged to investigate everything in the game’s world, which plays out like an interactive novel with many puzzles to move the story along. In addition to the main mission puzzles are side missions that add to the amusement of this odd game.
I found all kinds of games and weird jokes in the first mission, like whoopee cushion pranks, a “Frogger” mini-game and a “Space Invaders” mini-game. The game also includes some adult content and situations involving sexual content and morbid humor. In the streets of the first missions, I found a female robot prostitute, who serviced me, and I pushed a man over a bridge into oncoming traffic.
The controls are simple in the game, as the player can strafe, jump and use items. Despite its simplicity, the game is loaded with a ton of popular references or memes, some funnier than others. The sheer amount of jokes and games within the game gives the player a lot of things to do while playing through. Players have no fear of death or losing the game, as they simply can’t. I really didn’t find any negatives with the game outside of wanting more of the zany missions and jokes, as it has a play time of about three hours.
I think “Jazzpunk” falls in one of two categories for players: they’ll either love it or hate it. Watching the trailer or a short bit of gameplay definitely will help players decide whether it’s the game for them. Although the game’s world is crazy and somewhat disturbed, I found myself enjoying the references, jokes and mini-games it had to offer. If you don’t enjoy games that require you to search around a sandbox-like area, this game probably isn’t for you — but if you enjoy crude, silly humor and extras, “Jazzpunk” will be more than a solid game for you.
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Warface Xbox 360 Edition is coming soon, but some of you won’t have to wait very long at all – the game’s beta starts today, and Crytek is looking for folks to test the game out. Take a look:
Or… there’s another chance for you to get in. For a shot at those, just answer this question: What are the four classes of soldier you can choose from in Warface? (PROTIP: watch the video)
Got the answer? Great, don’t put it in the comments! Email the correct answer to [major AT xbox DOT com], using the subject line “Warface”. They’ll randomly select from correct entries and reply to winners with codes by this Friday, February 7th. Good luck!
Warface will be available exclusively on Xbox 360 as a free-to-play with Gold title. Oh, and be sure to stop by Xbox Wire for more on this class-based shooter.
Every once in a while, a game takes social media by storm, and everyone and their mothers begin to play it. Most recently, those games included “Candy Crush” and “Farmville.” Well, there is a new game in town, and it’s been taking over the mobile scene as the most downloaded app in the App Store and is at the top of the charts on both Apple and Android. This new game, developed by Hanoi and published by .GEARS Studios, is an overnight success called “Flappy Bird.”
“Flappy Bird” is a side-scrolling, simple, two-dimensional game in which the objective is to fly a bird, by tapping the screen, without hitting the pipes. Each time the player flies the bird through a set of pipes, a point is awarded. If the bird hits one of the pipes, the game is over. With simple mechanics and graphics reminiscent of “Super Mario Bros.,” players of all ages have grown attached to the gameplay.
Although the game sounds easy enough, do not be fooled, as the actual ability to fly through the pipes takes a little skill and precise timing. The bird is not nimble at all and requires perfect timing of a screen tap to make it through the pipes successfully. The game takes some patience on the part of the player because once the bird hits a pipe, no matter how far the player has advanced in the game, it’s game over — and the player must start back from the beginning.
“Flappy Bird” is very addictive, and this is amplified when players begin to compare their scores with their friends’. Adding in the fact that the game is totally free makes a great recipe for a hit game. The game has typical 8-bit graphics, but it works here, as it is supposed to be simple and to the point. Also on the audio side are simplistic sounds with no music, including one sound for flapping wings on each tap, one for successfully passing through a gate of pipes and one for when the bird hits something.
“Flappy Bird” is one of those games you love to hate. The simplistic features add to the addiction, as the player cannot understand how a game so simple can be so hard. With so many of their friends playing, many players won’t accept defeat easily and feel obligated to play to see if they can beat them. If, for some reason, you are of the few who haven’t downloaded the game yet, feel free to do so now — and instantly regret it because of the insanely addictive gameplay. You’re welcome.
Read it on Connect Statesboro
Another Laura Croft eye candy