Bound By Flame had potential, its excellent crafting system and skill trees are a good basis for any RPG, but the unbalanced combat system doesn't do a good job of exploiting them. The characters and story are hard to care for when most characters lack any emotion and expletives are used in every other sentence. If you are desperate for an RPG to play in your wait for The Witcher 3, then Bound By Flame could satisfy your needs for a short period of time. Bound By Flame doesn't bring anything new to the RPG genre, nor does it improve on any existing elements. A short play-time combined with an uninteresting story and unbalanced combat makes Bound By Flame tough to recommend, it frankly just isn't a good game.
Transistor gives players a dazzling world to explore, a customisable combat system that anyone could find pleasure in, and a story that can pull on even the toughest person's heartstrings if engaged with. Transistor is a worthy follow up to Bastion and it shows that Supergiant Games aren't finished with bringing truly jaw-dropping worlds to the videogame industry. The linearity and confusing opening hour do hinder the game somewhat, but as you come to understand Transistor, you'll be swept away by its charm and beauty.
Despite its shortcomings, Entwined is a visually stunning game that gives the likes of Rez and Child Of Eden a real run for their money. The gameplay is interesting enough that it will keep you captivated throughout the nine levels and the challenge mode gives the player that little bit of extra content. The soundtrack is one that will long stay in our heads because of its beauty and the way it interacts with the levels themselves, setting a certain mood for every level. The freezes at the beginning and within levels were an annoyance, but they weren't enough to upset our enjoyment of the game. Entwined blends its gameplay, visuals and soundtrack into one beautiful piece of art that should be experienced by anyone who has the chance to play it.
Overall, One Piece: Unlimited World Red feels like a game made for fans of the series, and ultimately, they're the only people we can consider recommending this game to. Anyone unfamiliar with One Piece will have a tough time completely understanding what is going on and who every character is, and this really hinders its accessibility. While the character models and the variety in locales are real high points for the game, the combat and repetitive level structure make the game a complete bore to play through by the halfway point. Fans of One Piece may get a kick out of One Piece: Unlimited World Red, but newcomers should look elsewhere.
The Last Of Us Remastered absolutely deserves a place in your PlayStation 4 collection, despite whether you've played it before or not. The improvements this remaster brings only helps to show you how much of an incredible, beautiful, emotional and downright amazing game this is.
CounterSpy has a lot going for it, its unique take on the Cold War is one we very much enjoyed and the cel-shaded art style definitely caught our attention and demanded we admire it. However, a few too many annoyances got in our way of truly enjoying the game, such as the occasional awkward placement of an enemy and the unfair situations you can find yourself in when you are overwhelmed with guards. If these flaws had been refined and tweaked with just a little during development, CounterSpy could have been something truly fantastic.
inFAMOUS: First Light is simply more inFAMOUS; if you enjoy the games then we recommend you pick this up, however if you're not a fan then First Light won't change your opinion in the slightest. We enjoyed learning more about Fetch's past and her neon power in the game, however the battle arenas felt a little tacked on and there only to fulfil the role of adding a few more hours to your playtime. Fetch is one of the best things to come out of the two inFAMOUS games this year, and seeing her take centre stage in inFAMOUS: First Light proved how good of a character she really is. Fans love her and in turn will love inFAMOUS: First Light too, a game that we recommended to anyone with an interest in the series.
Flockers is a decent game and although it doesn't do anything new its gameplay is mostly enjoyable, with a few frustrating parts here and there. The game's humour and replayability are evident from the outset. The chance to compete against friends and the Angry Birds-style star scoring marry well with the zany premise, but the gameplay is lacking in variety. A dearth of innovation as you progress through Flockers only serves to hurt it, and by the time you reach the closing levels the game has already far outstayed its welcome.
EA have struck pure gold with Fifa 15, the series is back where it needs to be following the few setbacks of Fifa 14, and this year's additions have taken it to a whole new level. The improved Premier League experience and commentary gives the player a real sense of purpose and occasion as they soak up the atmosphere from the fans, and then the teams take to the pitch where Fifa 15's new dribbling system can be enjoyed to its fullest. We hope that EA brings a little customisation to the new tactics and an improved defence system with next year's iteration, but these are only minor flaws in what is an utterly fantastic game. If you like Football, you must play Fifa 15.
Shadow Warrior's fun factor is off the charts, its swordplay is entertaining and the game's story explores so much more than you might think at first glance. Repetitive level design and technical issues do hinder the experience somewhat and make the later levels a bit of a drag, but then Lo Wang and Hoji will crack a joke and everything is almost forgiven. If you're looking for humor and a bucket load of fun in this busy gaming period, then look no further than Shadow Warrior.
Styx: Master Of Shadows showed some potential. Styx himself is an interesting character and the game's use of amber allows the player to be creative in their approach to each mission, but unfortunately these ideas have been thrown into a game which lacks the enjoyment to appreciate them. The frustrating moments far outweighed any fun we had with Styx, and the game's repetition solidified this by making us do those frustrating sections over and over again, which only helped to create a very unenjoyable experience. We only hope that Styx sticks to those shadows he is so masterful of, because we don't want to play a game like this again.
It's obvious that Never Alone's Inupiat influences took precedence throughout the whole game, and as a result its gameplay took a hard knock. Some serious AI flaws and glitches ruined any enjoyment we could have with the game, as we spent more time wrestling with its problems than actually gaining any satisfaction. Never Alone is just not an enjoyable or fulfilling experience, and that is why it is best left alone.
Lara Croft And The Temple Of Osiris is a worthy follow up to its 2010 precursor and expands on everything that was put in place in the Guardian of Light. Whether experienced in single-player or in four-player co-op, the game is a lot of fun and always keeps the player guessing about what they'll be doing next. While the story does leave a lot to be desired, the fascinating tombs and user-friendly controls make up for it and create an enjoyable experience that anyone who is a fan of Lara Croft could appreciate. If you've already finished all of 2014's blockbusters and are looking for something to play over the Christmas period, look no further than Lara Croft And The Temple Of Osiris.
It's clear to see that The Crew had potential, but the promises it made just simply aren't realised in the final product. While the thought of a digital America to drive across is certainly exciting, The Crew does a very bad job of executing on it and building an interesting environment to drive around in and discover. And when the bland world is combined with an easily forgettable storyline and the worst car handling we have ever experienced in a videogame, it's easy to understand why we did not have any fun with the game. The levelling up system and car customisation are the two good things among an otherwise hugely disappointing feature set. The Crew promised so much, but delivered so little.
The Escapists set out to create a fun and realistic prison escape game, and it has done that with flying colours. The player will immediately sympathize for their inmate as they begrudgingly follow the prison's schedule, but then bask in the excitement as they start to plan their prison desertion. The three-step system of increasing your stats, getting better jobs and then crafting the items you need works wonderfully and creates a smooth and logical experience that anyone could enjoy and appreciate. However there are areas for improvement, one being a story that could tie all six prisons together which could help the player build up a connection with their inmate. Also, the game would benefit from a more in-depth tutorial than the one we see at the beginning of the game. Otherwise, like us, players may be lost at the start of their stint in prison and not entirely sure of how to go about forming some sort of escape. The Escapists doesn't quite reach the heights of The Shawshank Redemption's emotion, relationships between characters or interesting story to tie everything together, but it does create an engaging and noteworthy experience that should be played by all.
Life Is Strange is off to a near flawless start. Its story, characters and world are all incredibly interesting and in combination have built a fascinating plot that we can't wait to continue in the second episode. Max's time travelling ability is an innovation in the interactive story genre that allows us shape the story exactly to our liking and is a compelling plot device in itself. If Dontnod can iron out the lip-syncing problems and continue the quality of Chrysalis in future episodes, then we have something very special on our hands.
If you've never played a Super Stardust game before, then Super Stardust Ultra is an easy sell. You're getting a host of fantastic game modes to explore along with fantastic graphics and a smooth framerate. This is the complete package and there hasn't been a better time to suit up and take a ship for a spin. However if you've already played Super Stardust HD then the extra game modes and visual enhancements may not be worth the asking price. The game will remain to be an arcade classic, but existing fans will find a lot of disappointment here if they're looking for a new experience. In the end, this a good update to an already fantastic game that deserves its place on the PlayStation 4. But next time, let's have a brand new game Sony.
Overall, this first foray into Resident Evil Revelations 2 is a good one. The two campaigns are both fun, tense and engaging with a strong Raid mode to back it up. The co-operative gameplay is interesting to experiment with and provides the player with a variety of ways to tackle situations. While the lack of online co-op is a bit of a head scratcher and the graphics aren't up to par, Penal Colony was very enjoyable and more than worthy of a playthrough. If Resident Evil Revelations 2 continues in the same vein, then we can't wait to get our hands on future episodes.
Bladestorm: Nightmare is almost impossible to recommend to anyone but the most die-hard fans of musou games. While the game's story and setting does have some potential, it takes a backseat to the action and is left to a few throwaway cutscenes before battles. Gameplay becomes tedious far too early, and when combined with a combat system that requires little thought, it makes for a boring experience. When you throw all these monotonous elements into a game that also isn't very easy on the eye, then you get an example of a bad videogame. If you are a huge fan of these types of videogames then maybe you'll find something to enjoy, but anyone else should stay very far away.
Ultimately though, LA Cops is a very mediocre experience. The 1970s theme is largely unexplored, the story is almost non-existent and its gameplay is flawed in a number of ways. While the targeting system does have potential and we enjoyed progressing through the upgrade tree, they're not enough to save this game from utter mediocrity. There is some fun to be had in LA Cops, but its repetitive nature, frustrating AI and tedious gameplay means it will be very short-lived.