Category Archives: Action

God of War Review: Gods and monsters

God of War’s long-overdue venture into the Norse wildlands gives Kratos and the series a chance to leave the blood-soaked ruins of ancient Greece behind. And after the patricidal events of God of War III, you would expect Kratos to have found some peace.

And it would seem things were going to plan for a while, but the new God of War game starts with signs it’s all falling apart for the Ghost of Sparta once again. Years have passed, it’s never said exactly how many, but we find Kratos has a new family and a young son, Atreus.

Continue reading God of War Review: Gods and monsters

Robinson: The Journey Review – A faceful of dino

When thinking about the games I desperately want PlayStation VR to gel with, anything first-person leads the way. Doesn’t matter if it’s getting behind the wheel in DriveClub, gunning down murderous clowns and wendigos in Until Dawn: Rush of Blood or even aerial combat (I’m not traditionally a fan) in Criterion’s stunning X-Wing mission in Star Wars: Battlefront – I’ll be there, ready to push my face into it.

It can all be a bit manic though, stressful even – I’m just waiting for a good deal on Resident Evil VII, honest. I could do with something I can sit down with for a few hours and just enjoy being ‘there’. Robinson: The Journey may just be that game. Continue reading Robinson: The Journey Review – A faceful of dino

Ghost Recon: Wildlands Review – Best enjoyed online

Single-player fans have enjoyed a number of high-quality open world titles recently, with Horizon: Zero Dawn and Final Fantasy XV leading the way. However, look for open world games to play online with friends and the list next to GTA V is short to say the least. Step forwards, Ghost Recon: Wildlands.

If you’ve recently binged on Netflix’s Narcos series and thought to yourself, ‘Man, this would be great set today as an open world game’ then you’re in luck. Every third word is ‘Sicarios’ or ‘Puta’ and you and your pals are tasked with saving Bolivia from another deluded cocaine kingpin crackpot – no amusing pot belly and moustache this time though – it’s all facial tattoos nowadays. Continue reading Ghost Recon: Wildlands Review – Best enjoyed online

Horizon: Zero Dawn Review – The thrill of the hunt

Horizon: Zero Dawn sees Killzone developers Guerrilla Games move onto fresh hunting grounds with a completely fresh genre and setting. This new world shows humanity going back to basics, but with a neat futuristic sci-fi twist. Humans may be running around in tribes with spears and arrows again, but instead of mutants, zombies or aliens, they’re fending off legions of robotic wildlife.

There’s a whole metal ecosystem to take on, everything from grazing cattle-like creatures, giant stampeding bulls, limo-sized alligators (or Snapmaws as the locals call them), all the way up to laser/missile-firing T-Rex (the dreaded Thunderjaws). As setups go, it’s one of the most original I’ve seen in years. Continue reading Horizon: Zero Dawn Review – The thrill of the hunt

The Last Guardian Review – An untameable classic?

Despite an infamously long wait for The Last Guardian to claw its way out of development hell, it wasn’t long after pushing past the opening cutscene that I began to think it was perhaps released too soon.

While ‘rushed’ might seem like an odd word to describe the game’s torrid journey from PS3 dev kit to living room PS4, there’s certainly a lot of areas that seem to have a ‘that’ll do let’s just release this thing’ vibe. Or maybe that’s unfair. Perhaps it was more of a school exam-style ‘time’s up, pencils down’ type of thing as the game was pried from genDESIGN’s (formerly Team Ico) hands by the powers tired of indulging a studio’s desire to make the perfect game. Continue reading The Last Guardian Review – An untameable classic?

Song of the Deep Review – Lost at sea

A little girl’s father fails to return after trying to find a lost civilisation at sea and she’s just had a vision that he’s drowning. Does she radio him? Alert the coastguard? Put some money in the ‘leccy meter and turn on the lighthouse?

Nope, this young lady’s first instinct is to build a submarine and go find him herself. She has a rough idea where he was headed, and seeing as this is a 2D game, she thankfully chooses to set off to the right, which is always a good start. Right and down a bit. Continue reading Song of the Deep Review – Lost at sea

Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End Review – One last time

The PS4 has been doing pretty good for exclusives so far, but this is the one many of the Sony faithful have been waiting for. Naughty Dog has said this could be Nate’s final adventure, so there’s a lot to live up to, to make sure he goes out on top.

We pick things up a few years after the last game and find Drake working an honest living in salvage. He’s settled down with Elena and is playing it straight. There’s clearly still an interest in exploring lost lands in the hope of finding an epic haul of treasure and the introduction of his thought-to-be-dead older brother is the perfect spark to rekindle his passion for adventure. Continue reading Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End Review – One last time

Ratchet & Clank Review – Lombax to the future?

Another HD Remake? Well, no. Oh, a complete reboot for the series? Maybe, but again, no. Not really. No this PS4 release is more of a ‘reimagining’ of the original. Don’t worry though; Insomniac has done a much better job of reimagining the original than Tim Burton did when he ‘reimagined’ Planet of the Apes in 2001. Right, let’s stick the word ‘reimagined’ back in its box before my spellchecker dies of shame.

With Ratchet & Clank finally getting the animated movie treatment, Sony and Insomniac decided to hit the story reset button, which admittedly does make sense considering the family-friendly vibe of the game and the need to introduce the series to the younger generation. 3D platformers are a rarity in today’s climate which is a shame as Insomniac’s stellar record with the Ratchet series (yes, I’m ignoring Q-Force) must not have sold enough to make other studios want to bother. Could this be a test to gauge interest in both the series and maybe the genre itself? Continue reading Ratchet & Clank Review – Lombax to the future?

The Division Review – Trust no one

It was an honest mistake. I’d only just survived a bandit ambush. Adrenaline still pumping, I caught a flutter of movement in the corner of my eye. I spin around and open fire. Realising my mistake straight away, I drag my aim sideways before releasing the trigger. Thankfully I only grazed what turned out to be a fellow scavenger, rather than another indiscriminate and murderous bandit.

I immediately raise my hands, trying to communicate it was an honest mistake and I meant him no harm – hoping he would be happy for us to part company amicably. Despite my immediate ceasefire though, The Division has marked me as a rogue agent. An untrustworthy type who attacked an innocent in The Dark Zone – an area controlled by violent maniacs watching over valuable weapons and armour. Continue reading The Division Review – Trust no one

Alekhine’s Gun Review – Cold War Caper

For all of Hitman’s success over the years, there haven’t really been many impersonators. Sure we’ve had stealth shenanigans from the likes of Metal Gear, Dishonored and even Far Cry, but no other games seem to have attempted the whole ‘hiding in plain sight’ ethos with players stealing costumes to roam around under the noses of the guards before taking out their target. For fans of old school Hitman games though, Alekhine’s Gun craves your attention. Continue reading Alekhine’s Gun Review – Cold War Caper

Far Cry: Primal Review – The cat’s whiskers

If there’s one series we never expected to explore a 10,000 BCE prehistoric setting, it was Far Cry. Here’s a series so accustomed to the FPS genre, it was hard to imagine it doing anything else other than giving us a AK47, some C4, a bloody big map and a long journey to take over it. If you were a gambling man, you’d say this new setting was more likely to come via Assassin’s Creed.

Thankfully, it turns out Far Cry is a worthy brand to give this caveman-sim a shot. Even with the removal of guns, that Far Cry DNA is truly present in Primal. There’s a huge world to explore, irritable locals and the wildlife is so much more than window dressing as it’s purposefully included in gameplay and the game’s crafting and upgrade systems. More to the point, we all know Far Cry has been at its finest when it started letting us play with a bow and arrow. Continue reading Far Cry: Primal Review – The cat’s whiskers

Lego Marvel’s Avengers Review – Smashing and hoarding

“Hasn’t this been released already?” You’d certainly be forgiven for thinking as much. Lego Marvel’s Avengers certainly shares some similarities with 2013’s Lego Marvel Super Heroes. There’s a near identical open world hub based in Manhattan and enough comic book characters to make Sheldon Cooper’s head spin. Continue reading Lego Marvel’s Avengers Review – Smashing and hoarding

Just Cause 3 Review – Appetite for Destruction

We’ve had more than our fair share of open world sandboxes on the new-gen consoles, but the wait for Just Cause 3 has been a rather long one. After all, nobody quite does explosions like Rico Rodriguez.

Just Cause 3 does so many fun things right, but the number of basic elements that it utterly fails at is truly shocking. My first few hours with the game were not good at all actually. However, as I got used to the rough edges, the fun side of the game eventually prevailed and I found myself reluctantly being teased into having a good time. Continue reading Just Cause 3 Review – Appetite for Destruction

Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection Review – Still jaw-dropping

No trilogy rocked more socks off PS3 gamers than Naughty Dog’s all conquering adventures. But have they stood the test of time and who is this remastered collection even for?

To be honest, it’s an easy recommendation for any gamer. First and foremost has to be the new Sony converts. If you didn’t have a PS3 last-gen, or simply missed out on the series (you can’t play everything) and now have a PS4, this is an essential purchase. Continue reading Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection Review – Still jaw-dropping

Mad Max Review – Bleeding out on the blacktop

Mad Max Review - Bleeding out on the blacktop

Mad Max is a treasured movie series, and it was a great surprise to see the recent Mad Max: Fury Road reboot turn out to be pretty damn good. The pressure is certainly on for Avalanche Studios to deliver with their Mad Max game, which has been in the works since around 2008. So, it’s perhaps not unfair to have high expectations, especially when you consider the same studio is responsible for the ludicrously fun Just Cause series, with a third entry set to tear through stores later this year.

Just think about the comparison though. Just Cause games are set in a tropical paradise and give you tonnes of guns, skydiving, mid-air car surfing, anything-goes grappling hooks and the fun cranked up to 11 for the duration. Mad Max is set in a desert wasteland, car fuel must be scavenged and fought for, ammo for your rusty sawn-off is in dire supply and just staying alive is a constant challenge. Can you guess which game is more fun to play? Continue reading Mad Max Review – Bleeding out on the blacktop

One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 Review – Riot Control, Japan Style

One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 Review - Riot Control, Japan Style

One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 is all about smashing through big crowds. No matter which character you’re controlling, you’re essentially a god, eternally smashing through thousands of weakling enemies per stage with an extraordinary set of physical skills. It’s gaming in its purest form of empowerment. And it’s enormously fun.

There’s a problem though, and it’s one familiar to anyone that’s played a Dynasty Warriors game or one of the earlier One Piece titles – there’s really not much else to it. But in the right sized doses, this could find a place in your heart.

Continue reading One Piece: Pirate Warriors 3 Review – Riot Control, Japan Style

Gauntlet: Slayer Edition Review – Too old school?

Gauntlet: Slayer Edition Review | Too old school?

The dungeon crawler video game genre really does owe it all to 1985’s Gauntlet. The top down multiplayer title has been copied ever since with similar titles in the action/RPG genre, most notably the new genre king, Diablo III, which has built upon Gauntlet’s sturdy foundations.

So yes, if you’re a retro fan or recently found yourself absorbed by the world of Diablo III on PC or consoles, there’s certainly fun to be had with this PS4 update of the recent PC remake. The graphics are slightly shinier than the PC version and there are new items to unlock, but realistically, there’s no reason to double dip unless your mates never wanted to play on PC. Continue reading Gauntlet: Slayer Edition Review – Too old school?

God of War III: Remastered Review – Excellent/Pointless

God of War III: Remastered Review - Excellent/Pointless

God of War III is still an excellent title in the action genre pantheon. Having played through the HD makeovers of the original two games earlier this year, I was well placed to get stuck into God of War III again and it’s aged wonderfully over the last five years.

If you enjoyed God of War 1 and 2 on PS2, but found yourself picking up an Xbox 360 over a PS3 last-gen (thus missing out on God of War III), you’ll certainly want to take a look at this remastered edition if you now own a PS4. This is a grand finale to the main trilogy that any action fan deserves to experience and there are certainly cases to be made that GoWIII is the best entry to the series. Continue reading God of War III: Remastered Review – Excellent/Pointless

Batman: Arkham Knight (Review)

Batman: Arkham Knight Review | A Knight to Remember

This is the end folks. Rocksteady’s last Batman game. As we saw with Warner Montréal’s Arkham Origins, you can’t just ask another studio to copy the formula and come up with the goods. Wipe away those tears though and step into the world of Batman: Arkham Knight.

This final adventure sees Batman finally playing on home turf in the expansive Gotham City. A dream come true for gamers, but the Scarecrow wants to make it everyone’s worst nightmare. He’s been cooking up a small ocean of his trademark fear toxin to make a whole city lose its mind and tear itself apart. Continue reading Batman: Arkham Knight (Review)

The Witcher III: Wild Hunt (Review) – An unpolished classic?

The Witcher III: Wild Hunt Review | An unpolished classic?

A reliable sign you’re playing an absorbing game is how it makes the time fly. I was constantly interrupted by my TV’s two-hour auto-shutdown notification throughout my time with The Witcher III: Wild Hunt. Geralt’s adventures will cut through the days and nights so fast it’ll shock you.

The Witcher III marks the series’ debut on PlayStation and as such will be played by many gamers unfamiliar with the past games. There’s no getting around the fact that you’re going to be at a loss just diving in, I’d seriously advise reading a few wiki summaries of past events and  brushing up on some of the main characters so you won’t feel too left out. Continue reading The Witcher III: Wild Hunt (Review) – An unpolished classic?