Fps Tagged Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Fps RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Hellbound Review: Bloody Homage to Doom https://www.gameskinny.com/d6tcn/hellbound-review-bloody-homage-to-doom https://www.gameskinny.com/d6tcn/hellbound-review-bloody-homage-to-doom Fri, 07 Aug 2020 15:25:17 -0400 David Jagneaux

The header image for Hellbound on its Steam store page describes it as a "90s FPS, 30 years later," and I couldn't possibly think of a more apt summary.

For better or worse, playing Hellbound feels like you found an old Game Design Document for a hellish, bloody shooter conceived at the height of 90s shooter fever and gave it to a 2020 development studio.

Hell is invading with demons. You're a big, strong, one-liner tough guy with massive guns, a cool temper, and a gravelly voice. There's some cursing, some blood, and lots of bullets to go around. That's it, that's the formula, and it mostly nails what it's going for.

You can finish the entirety of Hellbound in just around three hours on normal difficulty, including all the times you'll die. It's pretty short — even by retro standards. I livestreamed the entire thing in one go  you can watch it here or above if you'd like.

One of the major draws for Hellbound then, just like the old-school shooters that inspired it, is the satisfaction of finishing levels on hard difficulties and sprinting through them quickly. At the end of each, you'll be graded on how many enemies you kill, how many items you find, and how many secrets you uncover, in addition to your completion time.

Not only that, but the game literally warns you in the intro splash screen that it's designed to be difficult, just like the 90s, and states that not everyone will like it for that reason.

You'd have to be a bit of a sadist to dive into the high difficulties head first here, but I fully expect some people to enjoy that particular type of self-punishment. I'd say Hellbound is certainly hard but not as brutal as the blood-soaked games of yore. A generous system that allows you to save at literally any moment goes a long way towards making it more palatable, as do the stylish and polished visuals.

That being said, the publisher is well aware of the type of game this is, certainly factoring in the short length, and has priced Hellbound accordingly (it's only $15 at full-price and has a launch discount right now), so don't expect to get a dozen or more hours out of this campaign unless you replay it several times on higher difficulties. 

Weapon variety is a bit of a sore spot. Even if I only end up using the shotgun for 90% of the game, as was the case here, I still like knowing I have a bunch of other cool weapons to pick in a pinch. In Hellbound, you've got your bare hands, a big two-handed melee club, a basic semi-auto rifle, a triple shotgun, a minigun, and a rocket launcher. That's it. 

Each weapon in Hellbound has an alternate function, like the semi-auto rifle and minigun let you aim down sights with a right-click, whereas the triple shotgun shoots out three shots instead of one, and the rocket launcher becomes a grenade launcher. That helps with the variety, but it still seems a little paltry. Given the short length and small level count, it wasn't surprising, though.

More impactful to the generally repetitive feeling is the fact that there are just four enemies in the entire game, other than the boss. You've got the basic grunts, who all mix up and use any one of your various weapons, a larger version of those guys that always has rockets, a tall enemy that throws fireballs just like the Imp from Doom, and four-legged crawlers that charge and leap at you to deal massive amounts of damage. They're also faster than you even if you sprint, which can cause some real chaos.

Map variety on the other hand is quite nice. Levels are just large enough to encourage exploration but never devolve into aimless labyrinths, ensuring you've always got a way forward laid before you.

It all looks like you're in Hell no matter what, which is appropriate, but there is still a good deal of visual variety. I particularly liked the outdoor environments with enormous, red glowing moons in the distant sky and swirling vortexes of energy that all felt truly captivating.

The world-building is pretty generic, though, as literally every line of dialogue and loading screen description, as well as the overall aesthetic, could've been ripped directly from a Doom game and you'd have never known the difference. It almost feels like Hellbound is just a really sophisticated Doom spin-off mod.

Speaking of, Hellbound feels made for mod support. Give intrepid players the ability to add in new weapons, new enemies, new levels, or at least new survival maps, and this game could go on to have a truly dedicated fanbase. There is a ton of potential.

After you finish the main campaign's seven maps (that's six larger levels and a final boss fight), there's a wave-based survival mode that's heavily focused on how long you can stay alive while reaching a high score. It's addictive and the overall frenetic gameplay is honestly a bit more suited to this game mode than the campaign itself given how satisfying it is to strafe and sprint backwards while shooting. You'll need to have top-notch kiting skills to last longer than just a few minutes on any of the survival maps.

Hellbound is a well-paced shooter that doesn't hang you up with obtuse puzzles or awkward platforming very often. The jump button is really only used as a means-to-an-end, and you shouldn't need to worry about too many death pits here. Movement is extremely fast, slick, and smooth, so it always feels really great to tear through the game's environments.

There is one section near the end of a late level that involves scouring a multi-tiered structure to locate switches where an elevator bugged out on me once, and I also had one crash to desktop, but other than that, it was pretty flawless from a performance perspective on high settings.

Hellbound Review — The Bottom Line

Pros
  • Fast, snappy controls
  • Aesthetic, structure, and premise feel ripped directly from a 90s-era Game Design Document
  • Extremely bloody gameplay
  • Very satisfying shotgun
  • Absolutely rocking soundtrack
Cons
  • Very short campaign (just around three hours)
  • Lack of enemy variety
  • A small handful of weapons
  • Just one boss fight at the very end

Hellbound is the kind of game that you'll know you'll want to play or not just by reading the summary or glancing at screenshots. If you're a fan of 90s-era retro FPS games like Doom and Quake, then there is an extremely high chance you'll appreciate this particular brand of punishing, yet rewarding, demon slaughter.

There are plenty of ways Hellbound could have expanded beyond the framework it borrows from to color outside the lines a bit, but even as a play-it-safe tribute to 90s shooter royalty, it still manages to serve up a cold, hard dish of bloody brutality gritty enough to make Doom Guy blush.

[Note: A copy of Hellbound was provided by Nimble Giant Entertainment for the purpose of this review.]

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4-Player Co-Op Horror GTFO Escapes into Early Access This Year https://www.gameskinny.com/30epc/4-player-co-op-horror-gtfo-escapes-into-early-access-this-year https://www.gameskinny.com/30epc/4-player-co-op-horror-gtfo-escapes-into-early-access-this-year Mon, 25 Nov 2019 09:55:35 -0500 Ty Arthur

A new hardcore horror co-op game is due to hit Steam Early Access sometime next month. It comes from Swedish game development crew 10 Chambers Collective, which includes members who previously worked on Payday: The Heist and Payday 2.

The game, called GTFO, will require stealth-based teamwork between 4-player groups to survive an underground complex where you and your team members are being held captive by The Warden. It's a shooter through and through, and pseudo-survival mechanics, such as scarce ammunition, will make an appearance. 

Using the Rundown system, new levels will regularly replace old ones in frequent content updates, and more difficult scavenging expeditions into deeper areas of the complex will unlock as players progress.

You can now wishlist GTFO at Steam, and a teaser trailer showcasing recently announced features of the Rundown system can be seen above.

GTFO is expected to land in Early Access for $34.99 by year's end, and signups for an early beta test are available now. The Early Access phase will be utilized to tweak how the Rundown system works to balance expedition length and difficulty. 

10 Chambers Collective also commented on the upcoming release:

Each work order in the Rundown represents an expedition into a different part of the complex where the environment, the population of monsters, the objective, and other conditions can all be vastly different and offer diverse gaming experiences.

What makes the Rundown a unique and exciting concept, is the countdown timer. When time runs out, the Rundown and its objectives get replaced by new ones. The previous Rundown is wiped and won’t be playable anymore.

By using this system, 10 Chambers Collective are able to keep GTFO dynamic while also compelling the game’s community to focus on a common set of expeditions. Gamers will be always able to come back to GTFO for fresh new challenges that they can take on with their hardcore gamer friends.

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more on GTFO as it breaks. 

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Generation Zero Takes Players To Alternate 1980s Sweden Filled With Hostile Robots https://www.gameskinny.com/qihvb/generation-zero-takes-players-to-alternate-1980s-sweden-filled-with-hostile-robots https://www.gameskinny.com/qihvb/generation-zero-takes-players-to-alternate-1980s-sweden-filled-with-hostile-robots Tue, 19 Mar 2019 09:49:58 -0400 QuintLyn

Yesterday, THQ Nordic shared the release trailer for its upcoming open-world FPS set in 1980s Sweden. Generation Zero takes players to an alternate version of the Scandinavian country where hostile machines roam the countryside. The game was one of our most-anticipated games of the year. 

In Generation Zero, players will defend themselves against these massive robots while [sic] unravelling the mystery of what is really going on."

This game isn't just a run-and-gun, however. In order to survive, players will use various tactics to lure, cripple, or destroy enemies. There's also player choice: take enemies on solo, or coordinate with up to three other players to complete objectives. Those electing to play in co-op will be able to compliment each others skills in combat by "support downed friends ... [to] share the loot after an enemy is defeated."

NPC enemies in Generation Zero are persistent, meaning that when a player destroys enemy armor, weapons, or other gear, that damage remains even if the enemy escapes. The next time a player runs across that particular foe, it will still be suffering from that same initial damage.

The interesting thing about this sort of mechanic is that it gives players the option to leave an enemy alive and come back for it when they're better prepared, rather than having to beat an enemy down all in one go.

On the more techy side of things, players may find it interesting that the game is rendered with the Apex engine, which was created by Avalanche Studios and used in games such as Just Cause 4 and Rage 2. This allows Generation Zero to have a dynamic day/night cycle, unpredictable weather, and, theoretically, complex AI behavior.

And, for the 80s fans among us, particularly where music in involved, Generation Zero features a full 1980s soundtrack. Queue the New Wave now.

Generation Zero is set to release on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Windows on March 26. To learn more about the game ahead of launch, be sure to head over to the game's website

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Rage 2: Hands-On First Impressions https://www.gameskinny.com/uc89g/rage-2-hands-on-first-impressions https://www.gameskinny.com/uc89g/rage-2-hands-on-first-impressions Wed, 30 Jan 2019 10:00:01 -0500 Joey Marrazzo

In 2011, Bethesda came out with a brand new IP titled Rage, which was developed by id Software. It was an open-world adventure game set in the post-apocalypse, and it received decent critical response.

However, at first glance, many players may have thought it looked bland and not that exciting. I for one passed on the game due to it seeming pretty boring.

Fast forward to 2019 where id Software has partnered with Avalanche to develop a sequel to the game in Rage 2. I was able to get hands-on with the new title last week to see if it feels more interesting than the original from eight years ago.

The Story

You play as a character named Walker (who is a lefty by the way), and you can decide whether you want Walker to be a male or female at the very beginning of the game. You are now in the post-post-apocalyptic world where you have the basic necessities to survive and go on with your day.

The Authority from the first Rage entry is back and taking on your home town. You and three other secondary characters work together in order to bring down the Authority with something called the Dagger Project.

Despite the return of the Authority and the Wasteland itself, you won’t feel lost in the new game even if you didn’t play the first Rage, as Rage 2 is set up to be a stand-alone title.

The Missions

While there is a lot of story you can play through, there are a lot of side missions available as well. The two optional mission types that I was able to play were a bounty mission and a car race.

To find a mission, you can pause the game, look at your map, and see a bunch of different icons appear on what seems to be a pretty big area of land. When I asked id Software Studio Director Tim Willits about the size of the map, he mentioned that it wasn’t the company's goal to create a big map, but instead it focused on making the world dense with a lot of activities and side missions to play.

Whether you are taking down enemy camps or just driving around in the Wasteland, you will always find something to do in Rage 2.

The Combat

Killing enemies, whether they are weird looking creatures or just ravagers in camps, was a lot of fun. Using a combo of weapons and abilities, taking down opponents never got old in my time with the game.

Furthermore, there are a vast array of weapons available in the game that you can access through your weapon wheel (think Doom). Each weapon has an iron sight equipped and an alternative fire option. 

My favorite weapon was the Firestorm Revolver, which allows you to shoot charges at enemies, and then you get to watch the enemies blow up. It was always a satisfying view.

There is also something called a Wingstick. It basically acts like a badass boomerang that can do serious damage and sometimes kill the enemy. 

Then there are the abilities that I mentioned — freaking awesome. These abilities are called Nanotrites, and they are the core of the progression system in Rage 2.

Throughout the map, you will see Arc Centers, which can be a bit difficult to complete, but they reward loot and Project Points. Those Project Points allow you to upgrade your group's stats on the Project Tree and unlocking abilities — Willits mentioned that you will be able to deal serious damage once your abilities are fully unlocked.

There are a few abilities that stood out to me. One of those abilities is called Slam, which allows you to rise above the ground and then slam down, killing or injuring the surrounding enemies. Another one is called Shatter, where you basically use the Force to kill any enemies that are right in front of you.

You are allowed to continually use these abilities, but there is around a 20 second refresh time. You can’t just spam the same ability over and over again.

A refresh timer is in place for the dash mechanic as well, but it is only around five seconds here. Dash allows you to quickly move forward, backward, or side to side with a press of a button, and you will definitely want to use it in combat when a giant monster is running towards you.

Furthermore, after using your guns, grenades, and abilities to go on a nice killing spree, your Overdrive meter will fill up. When filled, you can unleash your Overdrive to get full health and make your weapons do extra damage. You should definitely save this for when you are surrounded by a good amount of enemies, or a single enormous one, because it helps out a lot.

The Gameplay

This game is a lot of fun to play, and while I didn’t get to choose a difficulty, the game had challenging moments. For example, enemies don’t just stand there and wait for you to move, they rush you and will deal damage.

The part of the game I played was about 25% into the story, and I had to get into a club owned by Klegg Clayton, a rich, celebrity loving egomaniac. Why does that sound so familiar?

In order to get into his club, I had to be famous, and, in order to become famous, I had to go on two television shows. The first TV show turned out to be test to see how good I was at killing enemies, and, using a combination of the rifle, shotgun, and abilities, I was able to take down most of the enemies.

The next TV show I had to appear put me in a car race. Casually driving around the Wasteland was a lot of fun and felt pretty good — it wasn’t wonky to me like the driving in Just Cause 4 — but, when I was racing, the controls did feel a little weird.

To be fair, I was boosting to gain extra speed for most of the race, so that could be the reason for the strange handling. Or I may just be a terrible driver in video games. In either case, I was able to win the race, despite being in last place and getting derailed for the majority of it.

The World

The world in Rage 2 is something that you want to take in. There are different biomes throughout the map, and you will see many items that can assist you as you explore. 

That might be giant barrels that you can shoot to blow up near an enemy or ammo and health crates that always come in handy. There is also some humor here, and I found a box that was labeled "Just a Box." Of course, I had to pick that up.

This humor extends to talking with NPC’s and reading signs that say things like “Don’t clap back. If you basic, you basic.” You can immediately tell that this game is a lot of fun from its world.

Additionally, the characters that populate the world have a cartoony look to them and varied personalities. The graphics are not in the style of The Last of Us, but they are good and fit with the tone of the game.

The DLC

In a Q&A, Willits basically said that there is going to be DLC for Rage 2. He couldn’t say what the DLC will be because even the developers don’t know at this time, but they are going to create the post-launch content based on what the players seem to be enjoying. So if players say they are enjoying going to enemy camps and causing chaos, then that may be the focus in future DLC.

It was also stated that there will be free and paid DLC. This was not elaborated on since the developers are still finalizing details. It is also being decided if microtransactions are going to be included in the finished product.

The Specs

If you are an owner of the Xbox One X or PlayStation 4 Pro, you will be playing Rage 2 at 60 FPS. It will not be in 4K because they wanted to focus on making the game super smooth to play.

Before I even asked if the game was coming to Nintendo Switch, Willits led off the Q&A session by saying that they are investigating it. While they were able to put Doom and the upcoming Doom Eternal on Switch, I really hope that they find a way to bring this open-world craziness to Nintendo's console as well. 

Final Thoughts

Rage 2 is Sunset Overdrive if it had a crazier and edgier cousin that loved the color pink. The open-world of the Wasteland is full of entertaining people and a lot of missions to complete besides the main story. This is a fun game. 

Rage 2 releases for PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One on May 14.

I definitely had a great time playing Rage 2, and thank you to id Software and Bethesda for letting me check out the game.

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How to Beat the Competition in Insurgency: Sandstorm https://www.gameskinny.com/ykczo/how-to-beat-the-competition-in-insurgency-sandstorm https://www.gameskinny.com/ykczo/how-to-beat-the-competition-in-insurgency-sandstorm Tue, 18 Dec 2018 11:23:08 -0500 John Schutt

Because Insurgency: Sandstorm tries to bridge the gap between hardcore simulation and casual FPS, strategies from both camps are applicable when fighting across its sandy battlefields.

Like a simulation, you won't be getting back up from a couple of bullets, and don't expect to dump an entire magazine without looking at the sky. Like a casual FPS, you can get away with taking out entire teams after a flank or jumping across a long sightline if you're quick enough. 

Neither is easy to do consistently, but if you follow the three rules outlined in the guide below, you'll have a much better chance of pulling off plays that'll have voice chat singing your praises.

Soldiers run down what looks like a middle eastern street in Insurgency: Sandstorm

Tip 1: Set the Pace

The first rule of any match is this: the team that sets the pace wins. It's a classic FPS strategy; if you and your team can determine how fast or slow the game flows, you have complete control over who is where when, and how they're going to act.

It's a trickier task in this game, though, as you die so quickly and one misstep will put the reins of the match back in enemy hands.

How, then, do you grab hold of a round and never let go? Simple: be methodical.

You have to embrace the Insurgency's slower gameplay and approach almost every engagement with caution.

Remember:

  • every corner could hold an enemy
  • that "corpse" is probably going to shoot you
  • stay out of sight as long as possible
  • keep some cover between yourself and open space
  • watch where your teammates are headed and use them as bait/cover
  • use smoke
  • take the short route
  • never take the long route

Most of all, use your ears. Sound is paramount in Sandstorm, and you'll hear your enemies coming from a mile away. Remember, though, that they'll hear you coming, too. To shake up their position, approach from a direction they don't expect. Get a teammate to help you and punch through their defenses. 

Once you've started capturing an objective, slow the pace down. Let the enemy come to you, and once you know you've got friends on the point, take off on your own to scout around and strike from an off angle. 

Your ultimate goal is to keep the enemy team off balance, but keep them from descending into chaos. Chaos breeds unpredictability, and if you can't control your opponents, everything you worked for will be for nothing. 

Like I've talked about in previous guides, the funnel effect is your friend. In Sandstorm, maps have natural chokepoints you can use to create effective kill boxes, but again, don't overstay your welcome at any one of them.

If you have to start guessing at where your enemies will be coming from, you have to start all over again.

A soldier holds an M-16 from a first-person perspective while watching a firefight

Tip 2: Keep Team Composition Balanced

There are flashy ways to play Insurgency: Sandstorm. Few of them will win you matches.

Instead, focus on playing the long game. The second rule of winning in this game is: play the role your team needs, not the role you want.

Ask yourself before each match:

  • Are there a ton of riflemen but only one observer?
  • Is the commander spot open?
  • Is there only one sniper, and is he doing his job?
  • Could the team use someone with a shotgun or SMG?

Unlike most AAA FPS's on the market, you will rarely succeed through brute force alone. And sometimes that means giving up the spotlight in favor of becoming the enabler. You won't get the shiny credits at the end of a round, nor will you rack up a huge kill count. But your team will thank you for biting the bullet.

Every role in Sandstorm is a powerhouse in its own way. The commander and his observer can block off entire sides of a map with smoke or close air support. That gives the snipers breathing room to move into an advantageous position and hold down a sightline for long periods.

With overwatch, the riflemen and CQC soldiers can move toward an objective without fear of reprisal. And when the boots on the ground secure a forward position, the commander and his observer can move forward and get a line on a better chokepoint to control.

In other words, following Rule 2 makes Rule 1 easier for the whole team.

Everything cycles, but remember that your enemies will have the same idea. Your job is to be better than they are at playing your role. If you can't, it might be time to switch things up.

A player leans to get a better line of sight on their target as teammates provide suppressing fire

Tip 3: Bravery Before Foolishness

Flashy plays are possible in Insurgency: Sandstorm, and though they don't win matches on their own merits, they can enable you and your teammates to accomplish the otherwise impossible.

That's why the third rule of this game is: take calculated risks but don't jump headlong into enemy fire.

I know it sounds obvious, but you have to know that you will rarely, if ever, be shooting or bunny-hopping your way out of a mistake. Instead, when you do want to make the clutch play your team needs, take in the whole battlefield first.

Consider the following: 

  • What pushes have failed previously?
  • What successes have you had on the outskirts of the objective?
  • How long has it been since you surprised the enemy team?
  • Which route has your team routinely not been taking, and have you tried it yet?
  • Where would you sit if you were waiting for the odd flank?

Your answers to these questions should inform what play you make, though every risky endeavor puts you deep in harm's way. 

You'll need to be confident in your movement and your shot, and you'll be putting some of your faith in teammates (a travesty, I know) to keep the majority of the enemy team occupied.

Gather a couple of buddies you can trust, or think you can trust, and set out. You have to be careful when and how you spring your trap, but once you're in it, dedicate yourself to staying alive as long as possible.

Even if you're the only one left — or the only one who went — the big plays depend on being a consistent thorn in your opponents' side for an extended period.

If you can accomplish even one such play per match, you'll open up opportunities for your teammates to make something of themselves. And that, I think, is the ultimate win.

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Insurgency: Sandstorm is unlike most other FPS titles on the market, but many of the same strategies still apply, even if you have to adjust them to the game's unique mechanics. If you want to know more about the game, be sure to head over to our review and see why it ight be a gem in the desert. 

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Insurgency Sandstorm Review: A Niche Worth Scratching https://www.gameskinny.com/jy7an/insurgency-sandstorm-review-a-niche-worth-scratching https://www.gameskinny.com/jy7an/insurgency-sandstorm-review-a-niche-worth-scratching Mon, 17 Dec 2018 11:24:04 -0500 John Schutt

There are almost too many shooters to choose from these days, but most of them share more than they'd like to admit. The big names have a fast time to kill ratio, low weapon recoil, regenerative health, fast, if not instant, respawning, and if you're lucky, some wrinkle dropped in to make the experience feel new.

Insurgency Sandstorm is none of that (except the fast TTK). Instead, it favors a design philosophy that sits somewhere between military simulation and games like Red Orchestra. It's unforgiving enough to cater to more dedicated players but those without the time or willpower to sink their teeth in can still get their money's worth.

For this review, I'll be focusing on three primary pillars of any multiplayer-only title: map design, gunplay, and long-term fun factor.

The Playspace

Without good maps, a multiplayer game fails regardless of its other mechanics. Games that have stood the test of time, and some that haven't, live and die based on the quality of the playspaces they offer. Insurgency Sandstorm is no different.

My general impression of the maps is as follows: they will win no awards for ingenuity, nuance, or innovation, but they do the job. 

Maps follow a three-lane structure, usually with two lanes relatively open for snipers and DMR users to control, and a middle lane best suited for ARs and SMGs. 

Objectives are almost purely the purview of close-quarters weapons, usually located in a building with tight corridors and more than a few corners for planters. Certain maps spice things up with points sitting in open-air spaces, but usually, offer plenty of low cover so you can crouch or go prone.

Initial spawns are somewhat inconsistent, with some maps having respawn points with short, direct paths to an objective for one team and a challenging, longer route for the other. Because guns kill so quickly in this game, it's harder to flank than more mainstream titles. Miss one enemy and you'll find your sneaky maneuver fail in less time than it takes to blink. If you pull it off, though, that's a lot of points on the board.

Probably the biggest problem with the maps is also a spawn area issue. There are one too many sightlines that look almost directly into an enemy uncap, leading to many frustrating deaths from someone (especially snipers) holding the sightline you have to take to get to the objective.

However, I am impressed by the level of complexity on show.

Most maps offer at least three alternate routes to an objective, though there are a few exceptions. Verticality is hard to pull off when player movement is as sluggish as it is in SandstormHere, though, there are plenty of power positions, rooftops, awnings, and other geometry to climb on that don't completely break map flow.

The maps are sizeable, too, and depending on the game mode, they create a real sense of progress and sometimes story as you take objectives and advance. 

Sure, there are consistency problems, but no map ever made is perfect on every pixel.

The Gunplay

Insurgency Sandstorm will not please everyone with how the guns feel. Most weapons lack easy recoil control, even with a grip equipped, and they will send your aim into the sky at the earliest opportunity.

You are, as with actual guns, best-suited tap firing from anything except point blank range, and thankfully, you can switch the fire mode on every weapon save the single-shot rifles and snipers (for obvious reasons).

Assault Rifles

Ever the workhorse of the FPS, the AR class is the best overall weapon system to use for new players or players who want fast but consistent gameplay. Each of them is functional at medium range, and while they don't drop enemies quite as quickly as SMGs do up close, their utility sets them apart.

Submachine Guns

Guns in Sandstorm kill in one or two bullets, three or maybe four if your opponent is wearing heavy body armor. SMGs take a little more to get through kevlar, but they fire quickly enough and reliably enough from the hip that you're almost uncontested up close.

The problem? Because they kick so hard and shoot so fast, anything outside of close range is almost impossible to connect, especially when you factor in damage drop off.

Designated Marksman Rifles

Bundled with the ARs in the class creation screen, the DMR serves as a middle ground between a sniper and assault rifle. Semi-automatic and high damage, they falter a little bit up close but will outclass an M16 or AK at distance every time.

Their recoil is easier to control because of the need for a new trigger pull every shot, and if you're quick, you'll be taking down bad guys with one shot to the stomach and up.

Shotguns

The shotguns are usable at a surprising range, and if you manage to get up in someone's face, they're going down nine times out of 10. The pump action is also quick enough that, if you have the drop on a group of enemies, you'll likely be able to take out several of them at once. 

Sniper Rifles

As one-shot-kills to almost every area of the body, snipers are some of the most powerful weapons in all of Insurgency Sandstorm, but they're hamstrung by slow rates of fire, low magazine sizes, and a general need to be at a significant distance to play their role correctly.

The aggressive sniper playstyle is still possible, and incredibly effective, but you don't have nearly as much room for error as in other titles. One miss and you aren't just dead. You no longer exist.

Fun Factor

Is Insurgency Sandstorm fun? Yes, but not always for the reasons you might expect.

The gameplay is perfectly serviceable and offers plenty of opportunities for crazy moments, clutch plays, and close calls. If you stripped it of most of the communication and spectator options, leaving it as a rote shooter, it wouldn't stand out, but it wouldn't be the bottom of the barrel, either.

What sets Sandstorm apart for me is its dedication to a more old-school style of player connection: 

  • A comma rose of functional but fun and silly voice commands (insert Need Smoke spam here)
  • Open mics across the whole team, and that includes the enemy at the end of a round
  • Glitchy, sometimes unpolished character animations that are more charming than they are off-putting

The community helps too.

Sure, you'll get your share of trolls, racists, and other unmentionable people, but odds are, with a player base as small and dedicated as Insurgency's, you'll be laughing at someone's antics more often than you will be yelling at their anger.

People I ran into were willing to help, apologized when they made mistakes, and were ready, willing, and able to play the less desirable roles for the good of the team. Maybe I got lucky, but I spent much of my time playing Insurgency Sandstorm in stitches.

Pros: 
  • Unforgiving, satisfying combatSandstorm's combat loop is up there as one of the most enjoyable I've played. It's fast, the weapons are enjoyable to use and master, and demand concentration and skill to use effectively
  • Communication options that facilitate fun: Offering a commo rose in the vein of Team Fortress 2 and a wide variety of amusing voice commands, Sandstorm allows it's player to create enjoyment on top of its high quality gameplay.
Cons: 
  • Average maps: There's nothing special or revolutionary about Insurgency Sandstorm's maps, and when the core gameplay is solid, their mundanity really stands out.
  • Graphical Inferiority: Like the maps, the graphics in Sandstorm are at par or maybe just above it. They won't win any awards, and despite the glitchy animations adding character to the game, nothing about this game's aesthetic puts it heads or tails above any other shooter out there.

Overall, I had a pretty good time with Insurgency Sandstorm. There were a few hiccups that soured my experience from time to time, and I know for a fact that the game is not for everyone.

It is unapologetic in holding onto its niche, and much of its design will turn off players used to a more casual experience. But if you're into a more hardcore experience that's still got some quality of life mechanics, you're likely to find hours of fun in this gem in the desert.

[Note: The developer provided a copy of Insurgency Sandstorm for the purpose of this review.]

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Battlefield 5 Rotterdam Gameplay Emerges From PAX West 2018 https://www.gameskinny.com/ri0gs/battlefield-5-rotterdam-gameplay-emerges-from-pax-west-2018 https://www.gameskinny.com/ri0gs/battlefield-5-rotterdam-gameplay-emerges-from-pax-west-2018 Wed, 29 Aug 2018 17:49:45 -0400 Jonathan Moore

Those eager to see how Battlefield 5 actually plays on Nvidia's new flagship RTX 2080ti GPUs got plenty to choose from today as a flurry of gameplay footage emerged from PAX West. In the video above, Nvidia shares a montage of multiplayer gameplay captures from PC Master Race's LATAM and JAGS

The gameplay focuses on a Conquest match in Rotterdam, a map previously shown in trailers, such as EA's official Gamescom trailer. There's a lot here that Battlefield veterans will recognize, from how the match is set up to how scores are recorded and how the minimap is positioned. However, you can also see some of the improvements EA's made to the core Battlefield experience, such as refined soldier movement and the increasing-importance of squad play. 

However, one of the primary draws of this specific video is that it showcases how the game will run on Nvidia's new graphics cards -- and how ray tracing might impact gameplay. Without getting our hands on it ourselves, it's currently hard to say whether ray tracing will in fact impact moment to moment interactions.



Based on the gameplay video, however, you can tell that the improved lighting effects do add some depth to the overall experience. For example, with shadows realistically casting themselves over guns, you'll theoretically be able to catch enemies flanking you -- or see muzzle fire on your periphery.  

There are other, longer videos that showcase even more of Battlefield 5's gameplay, such as one taken by PC Gamer while at PAX West 2018. You can view that here to get an even more in-depth look at what the game has to offer ahead of its impending open beta. 

If you're interested in taking part in the beta, here's what you need to know: 

  • Battlefield 5's open beta begins September 4 for pre-orders and those who subscribe to EA/Origin Access

  • The open beta begins for everyone else on September 6 

  • Conquest will be featured on Rotterdam

  • Conquest and Grand Operations will be featured on Arctic Fjord

The open beta period will also feature Battlefield 5's Tides of War mode, "an evolving journey featuring a new narrative every few months." The mode allows you to customize your company — the soldiers that make up your multiplayer classes — as you experience certain aspects of World War II through various missions, narratives, and more. Participate during the beta, and you'll receive a special dog tag. 

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more news and information on Battlefield 5 as it develops. 

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MOTHERGUNSHIP Launches in July https://www.gameskinny.com/wbbdm/mothergunship-launches-in-july https://www.gameskinny.com/wbbdm/mothergunship-launches-in-july Thu, 28 Jun 2018 14:32:46 -0400 Erroll Maas

Grip Digital and Terrible Posture Games have announced that their gun-crafting bullet hell FPS, MOTHERGUNSHIP will launch for PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One on July 17 for $24.99.

MOTHERGUNSHIP is a spiritual successor to 2014's Tower of Guns, where aliens have invaded earth, bent on its destruction. It's up to the player to customize their best creations to ultimately destroy the Mothergunship.

In addition to the main campaign, MOTHERGUNSHIP will feature an Endless Mode with leaderboards, and it will give players a place to test their best creations against the strongest enemies. Post-launch updates will feature even more gun parts, levels, and enemies.

MOTHERGUNSHIP will be released digitally on PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on July 17, 2018. The game will also receive a physical release for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One from publisher Sold Out in August.

The exact release date for the physical version will be announced closer to launch. A Gun Crafting Range demo is currently available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more news and information on MOTHERGUNSHIP as it develops. 

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Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 Homes in on Battle Royale, Raises the Zed (Again) https://www.gameskinny.com/7s593/call-of-duty-black-ops-4-homes-in-on-battle-royale-raises-the-zed-again https://www.gameskinny.com/7s593/call-of-duty-black-ops-4-homes-in-on-battle-royale-raises-the-zed-again Thu, 17 May 2018 16:52:47 -0400 Zach Hunt

Today, Treyarch gave the public its first look at Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 during a live stream reveal event. Set to release on PC, PS4, and Xbox One on October 12, it was officially confirmed that the upcoming entry in the perennial military shooter will not feature a single-player mode, focusing instead on frantic multiplayer action -- including a new battle royale mode and a fully fleshed-out Zombies mode. 

In a surprise to no one, Black Ops 4 will mark the franchise's foray into the battle royale scene via a brand-new mode called "Blackout." Taking place on what's being promised as the biggest multiplayer map in series history (a sort of amalgam of previous Black Ops multiplayer maps), players will battle in the same last-man-standing style that has made games like Fortnite so insanely popular.

Treyarch promises vehicular combat (air, sea, and land) along with the inclusion of characters, weapons, and even zombies from previous Black Ops games.

Check the trailer below to learn even more about the mode:

Speaking of zombies, longtime fans of the Treyarch CoD games were treated to the news that Black Ops 4 will include three Zombies "experiences," available on Day One. Modes will have difficulty levels, tutorials, and online challenges. There will also be at least100 customization options by which players "change the fundamental rules and systems of the gameplay experience, [including] tools and social systems."

In the video showcasing the first of these episodes called "Nine", a group of gladiator-like combatants fend off a swarm of nasties in a Roman-style arena.

The second of the Zombies experiences, called "Voyage of Despair," is set aboard a luxury ocean liner (think The Walking Dead meets Titanic). Not much was revealed about the third of these Zombie "experiences," but Treyarch went to great pains to assure the audience that Zombies will be a major focus of Black Ops 4.

It's also worthy to note that the PC version of the game will use Battle.net, Blizzard's digital distribution platform. Black Ops 4 will follow in the footsteps of Destiny 2 in that regard. 

As always, stick with GameSkinny as we inch closer to the October 12 release date of Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 for all the news, tips, and guides any zombie-killing battler royale could hope for!

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Vaas Montenegro: How Ubisoft Created an Iconic Villain https://www.gameskinny.com/3kf5t/vaas-montenegro-how-ubisoft-created-an-iconic-villain https://www.gameskinny.com/3kf5t/vaas-montenegro-how-ubisoft-created-an-iconic-villain Fri, 06 Apr 2018 16:04:12 -0400 Miles T

Did he ever tell you what the definition of insanity is?

Vaas Montenegro, the primary antagonist of Far Cry 3, is one of the most enduring and well-remembered villains from recent video game history. He frequents many a top-10 list of bad guys, and general consensus from gaming communities is that he's the strongest and most revered villain in the Far Cry franchise, maybe even of any of Ubisoft's titles. More than the traditional psychopathic stereotype, Vaas is a villain in every conceivable sense, but the way Ubisoft created him goes beyond what's expected within the medium. So why has Vaas developed such a sway over our collective memories? Why has his character become such a phenomenon of our evildoer consciousness?

An engaging big bad

(Warning: Spoilers ahead)

Far Cry 3 opens with Vaas in the most dramatic way possible, establishing him early on with the clear psyche of a ruthless killer, kidnapper, and torturer. However, rather than the early segments demonstrating this superficially, we get an insight into his thinking and his neurotic mindset, enough to pique our interest without ever telegraphing his actual intentions. More importantly, though, he isn't just presented as a cold or bland murderer. Vaas is immediately portrayed as an unnerving but ultimately engaging and enthralling personality, brought to life by some incredibly believable acting and dialogue. He's given the capacity to control a scene, and actor Michael Mando does an exquisite job of taking your awareness and throttling it until you pay him every ounce of attention he deserves with the kind of confidence and swagger we associate with the highest of society.

His character is so effective because he is always portrayed as the dominating force in any scene. You're under his spell, living within his rules and according to whatever whim he dictates for you. As players, we are always off-guard, and that's so incredibly exciting. A similar example is that of Ramsey Bolton, for those familiar with Game of Thrones. Ramsey is similar in character type, and he was also a personal favorite of mine throughout the show due to his ability to steal entire scenes, shock you with every action he took, and astound you with each dastardly deed he enacted. He was unpredictable, he was unsettling, and he was surprising -- all components that allow for moments that can equally horrify and delight you as a viewer or player. Vaas is cast from the same mold and takes on the mantle of psychopathic maniac in all the best ways.

It would be wrong to assume that Vaas does heinous actions simply for the sake of doing so, however. Ubisoft managed to avoid that tricky problem of using violent actions simply for the sake of them, instead using those actions as a means of exposition to develop his overall personality and backstory. Take the scene in the hut where you are swiftly taken hostage, Vaas spewing gasoline all around before dissecting his rather complicated relationship with his sister. We learn he only started killing for the sake of his family, his rage and anger overflowing as he loudly exclaims, "Them or me? Me or them?" while he beats his chest. Our antagonist clearly has a damaged and malfunctioning psyche, but can we truly trust his stated motivations for what he's doing? The destructive nature of his violent acts means we can never tell if he does things because he has no inhibition, or if it's driven by this aforementioned psychological issue that's been deep-rooted within him. We as players are left wondering and questioning, without the ability to effectively empathize.

When lacking empathy works

Empathy is a largely universal human trait, demonstrable across the majority of the spectrum of our species, with a minority being the exception. Generally, empathy is considered the way in which human beings connect with one another. More importantly, it's a crucial mechanism developers use to create a link between the player and their antagonist or protagonist. That's what makes Vaas such a peculiar paradox to this norm.

As players, we generally connect and are enthralled by Vaas' character precisely because we can't empathize with his personality, morality, or rationale. For example, with other Far Cry villains, such as Hoyt, Pagan Min, or even the newly introduced Joseph Seed, we can at least empathize with their point of views to a very particular extent. This actually allows us as players to use our theory of mind to debunk and challenge their rationale with our own and to compare it against the "heroic" actions of our avatar. These other Far Cry villains also had more redeemable and sympathetic aspects to their characters; for example, Pagan Min effectively dropping everything at the end of Far Cry 4 to give to Ajay. Vaas, however, has very few or none of these qualities that are on display during our time with him.

We can't understand his mindset, we can't sympathize with his motivations, and we can't use theory of mind or empathy to create a connection with him. He's an enigma, something completely outside of our "normal" expectations. This feeds the aforementioned unpredictability of his actions. If we cannot appreciate his inner workings, his moral compass (or lack thereof), then we cannot predict or anticipate what he's next going to subject us to. He's not simply a "psycho" for the sake of being psychopathic; it's a foundation from which to establish an entity we're unlikely to have ever come across in real life or in most other games. This allowed the developers to build up an intrigue and mystery surrounding Vaas, keeping players off-balance, on edge and yet itching for the next encounter.



These encounters are brief, intensely visceral, and deeply intimate. Vaas fills the screen and reaches right into the depths of the psychopathic psyche. But these instances are short-lived and relatively abrupt, quickly ending with a shake of his fist or a bullet from his chamber. By keeping things rapid and succinct, we're always desperate to see more of his evil: vile but exciting, devastating but impressive, horrifying but intriguing. We as players can usually never get enough of the action, so by limiting it to effectively small snippets of adrenaline, the player becomes spurred and motivated to push on, and Vaas never overstays his welcome or becomes boring or repetitive.

Using anger to develop, not define

Earlier it was established that Vaas clearly has an innate predisposition towards anger and rage. We witness him commit some rather vicious actions during our time with him, either in cutscenes or dialogue. However, Vaas isn't simply portrayed as an angry man or a raging bull; at times, he's shown to be a cool-minded, tapered, and efficient villain, capable of the worst crimes but with little emotional resonance. This gives us as players -- and our protagonist -- the sense that Vaas isn't just a hate-inspired being and that he's a more sinister form of evil than sheer fury. Take the example of Kratos from the God of War series -- the epitome of the angry game character. Very few people relate to Kratos or expect anything other than anger, whereas with Vaas, we can predict we're going to witness some form of violence, but we lack any expectation of how he is going to deliver it.

Put simply, if a villain is formed only by his innate and feral desire to be angry, the character will become far too one-dimensional to remain interesting or enjoyable. As with any character, in real life or in virtual, people need to be multi-faceted, a combination of traits that create a more holistic form. For Vaas, anger forms one of these facets. At times, he releases his fury, and at others, he controls it, condenses it, and applies it into something much more sinister and intimidating. The intimate moments when you're locked up, surrendered to his grasp, are when he can demonstrate this most effectively. This is most noticeable in your first scene with him, trapped in the cage, or when he's pouring petrol over you and popping finger guns against his head.

Not just another monologue

One of the recent issues raised with the newly released Far Cry 5 is that its primary bad guys only talk at you, reeling off their motivations like checklists, without any real interaction to demonstrate the desires that drive them. This was also something I personally found to be a problem with Far Cry 4's Pagan Min, who seemed to be defined by his colorful suit and willingness to spew dialogue at you, without any background behavior to flesh out his intriguing personality.

On the flip side of this, Vaas generally combines action with dialogue, whether it be toying with you to run from him ("Run, Forrest, run!") or having his goons send people spiraling down a waterfall to a gripping death via drowning -- all the while chillingly divulging what the definition of insanity is. Even at his end, drugging you, chastising you, and baiting you in to finally end him, he never relents or relinquishes to you up to his last moment, where he begs you to finish the job you started.

But more than just this fusion of brutal action and gratifying dialogue, Vaas also directly influences and develops both Jason as the protagonist and we as the players. We descend further into the island, wiping out dozens of thugs in outposts, taking up more and more lethal weaponry, mastering our own inner abilities to become relentless, seething killers with no remorse for the lives we butcher in order to finally get our vengeance. Vaas' character helps to define and create our own, as we build up our understanding of the location, master new abilities, and make ourselves powerhouses to match his killing efficiency. He successfully transforms Jason into a murderer, a fellow slayer built in his own image -- just with less grace with words. This can all be seen by the final choice at the end, where selecting the "bad" ending completes Jason's descent into the darkness he started out with so much intent to end.

The use of Vaas' catchphrase is not just there to give him something easily memorable. It's there to show how we as players continue to do the same things (killing, butchering, murdering) over and over again, expecting things to change, to become better, more idyllic. Then when Vaas is finally gone, we still continue on our carnage-fueled rampage, barreling through even more of the paradise island to finish off yet another villain in Hoyt, spurred on by Citra and her own questionable motives. He creates and defines not just himself but also those around him. Characters gravitate and react according to him -- never the other way around. He forms the basis and foundation of Far Cry 3, as without him, the game would lose most of its unique personality and its flavor.

An enduring legacy ... of insanity

Vaas Montenegro is a video game villain who endures because of his character, his ability to captivate and disgust all at once. We as a species rarely forget that which shocks or horrifies us; we hold those memories, those experiences, much closer than we would ever wish to. Vaas forms the perfect blend of madness, rage, disconnection, and psychopathy as to be totally unique, separated from the norm and our expectations of what a traditional "bad guy" can be. Even more incredible is that Vaas only has roughly 15 minutes of actual in-game screen time or dialogue, leaving many pleading for a prequel surrounding him in order to give us more of the mystery. Coupled with Michael Mando's ability to wrestle control of entire scenes, to arrest your senses and dominate your emotions, Ubisoft managed to create an altogether special and powerful personality which they've struggled to recreate ever since.

They say the definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over again and expecting things to change. So Vaas did things differently, and changed everything.

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Best Far Cry 5 Funny Moments from YouTube & Twitch https://www.gameskinny.com/anw9k/best-far-cry-5-funny-moments-from-youtube-twitch https://www.gameskinny.com/anw9k/best-far-cry-5-funny-moments-from-youtube-twitch Thu, 05 Apr 2018 17:03:10 -0400 Ty Arthur

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That about does it for our roundup of funny Far Cry 5 YouTube gameplay. What's the funniest thing you've seen so far in your playthrough of this Montana mayhem simulator? Let us know in the comments below! 

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If you're just jumping into the insanity, be sure to check out our Far Cry 5 guides here:

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Unexpected Animal Attacks

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The sudden bear attack may have gotten all the press in the teaser trailers (and those can be hilarious when you are fishing or just got done taking out a bunch of cultists), but nearly every animal in this game has gone homicidal and has a taste for human flesh ... even the turkeys.

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Seriously, go try hunting a turkey with a bow and arrow, and maybe just go ahead and miss one. They will go all aggro and can actually take you out if your health is low! I'm imagining the deputy then getting filled with stuffing and baked at a nice even 350 before being served.

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Always be on the lookout for those randy bulls as well! They have a tendency to come out of nowhere and knock whomever is currently talking to you way across the screen.

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Image courtesy of PretsOnline

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Helicopter Versus Animal

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When you combine homicidal animals with co-op open-world gameplay, a ton of available vehicle types, and destructible objects, there's bound to be some interesting kill combinations.

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If you've run dry of ammo or are having trouble hitting cougars and moose with a bow, you could always just grab a helicopter. Of course, not all of them come with mounted guns, so sometimes you've got to improvise. Crashing the bottom of the helicopter into an animal and dragging it into a building is always a viable option!

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Image courtesy of Gamesprout

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Flying Corpses

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Turns out this cult does have magic powers after all, because sometimes their dead bodies just start flying around the screen for absolutely no reason.

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I haven't personally witnessed this bug in-game yet, but there's a bunch of videos online of it happening after an outpost is liberated. I guess those fanatics just aren't interested in staying dead and would like to jump back into the fight!

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Image courtesy of Gamesprout

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/w/i/n/wingsuitmayhem-a5068.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/w/i/n/wingsuitmayhem-a5068.jpg","type":"slide","id":"182145","description":"

Wingsuit Kamikaze

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Co-op Far Cry 5 is absolutely nuts (think of the Wild West of GTA 5 Online, but put it in the wilderness), and some players have come up with some truly innovative ways to take out their enemies.

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Did you know you can use your parachute and wingsuit to take out planes? Yup, just go up real high and aim straight for the propellers at the back of the plane. Sure, you'll get mulched, exploded, and fall hundreds of yards to your death, but maybe your co-op companion will be nice enough to revive you after the fact!

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Image courtesy of PretsOnline

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/r/a/trafficfatalities-e4896.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/r/a/trafficfatalities-e4896.jpg","type":"slide","id":"182149","description":"

Traffic Fatalities

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In what may be a nod to one of Montana's deadliest features -- our icy, high speed limit highways and perpetually drunk population -- people sure seem to die a lot by vehicle accident in this game.

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In the screenshot above, a player has stopped to untie a kidnapped Montanan ... only to have her plowed over by a passing van a second before reaching her.

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The van wasn't even a cult vehicle, either! Some passing motorist just didn't feel like stopping to avoid hitting the lady sitting in the road. Whoops.

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Image courtesy of LaMey

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/a/n/dancingpeaches-cf966.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/a/n/dancingpeaches-cf966.jpg","type":"slide","id":"182138","description":"

Dancing Peaches

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Hunting down the graphical glitches in open-world titles is basically its own mini-game at this point (remember how hilariously Dog Meat behaved when Fallout 4 first launched?), and Far Cry 5 suffers from a fair share of them.

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Just having Peaches and Cheeseburger as your fangs for hire and going for a swim is pretty silly on its own, but if you lure Peaches into a river and then pull out your fishing pole, things get really bizarre.

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Try hooking Peaches with the line, and a glitch will occur where she pops up on her hind legs and starts dancing wildly! I mean, I know most cats don't like being in water, but this is a bit silly....

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Image courtesy of Gamesprout

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/l/i/flightschool-63a5d.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/l/i/flightschool-63a5d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"182150","description":"

Flight School Flops

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Did you know flying is hard and requires actual knowledge and training? Yeah, nobody realized that before now.

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Trying to land a single-engine bomber in the wilderness leads to all sorts of hilarious mishaps and funny Far Cry 5 gameplay, but even just lining up on your target for a bombing run can be a challenge.

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In what was probably my own personal most hilarious moment, I decided to try taking out a convoy of heavily armed trucks in John's region with a bombing run instead of going at them with small arms fire. I managed to entirely miss every single truck ... instead lighting the entire forest on fire and destroying every vehicle around them.

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As I was turning around for a second run, I ran straight into a particularly tall tree and got ejected to my death. No worries, I'm thinking, my companions will revive me! Except that forest fire I'd started was still going, so they both ran directly into flaming death, ending the quest early. Lesson learned, I guess.

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Image courtesy of LaMey

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/h/y/physicsfails-b6bfc.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/h/y/physicsfails-b6bfc.jpg","type":"slide","id":"182144","description":"

Physics Fails

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Very odd things can happen when bodies interact with the vehicles in Far Cry 5, and this seems to be particularly true of the bodies of important characters like the main cult leaders.

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In the pic above, a player has attempted to load John Seed's lifeless body onto a truck bed to go drive it around enemy territory ... only things don't quite work out as planned. 

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Somehow he gets stuck in the wheel well, but the situation goes truly nuts when punching the body away from the vehicle. Something in the code is obviously messed up, as the truck goes spinning and flying off into the sunset!

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Image courtesy of Andrew Curran

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/u/i/suicidalcompanions-56692.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/u/i/suicidalcompanions-56692.jpg","type":"slide","id":"182142","description":"

Suicidal Guns for Hire

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If Far Cry 5 has one glaring gameplay issue, it's got to be the AI. This game is a ton of fun, there's no doubt about that, but sometimes the companions are just flat-out stupid.

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From animal companions that will rush into a forest fire to try to revive you (and immediately get burned to death, of course) to guns for hire who will hurl themselves off cliffs or walk directly into your line of fire, these allies in your fight against the cult aren't the sharpest tools in the shed, that's for sure.

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In the unbelievable image above, a gun for hire got into a car and is about to drive it directly into an explosive silo for no apparent reason. Apparently the apocalypse was just too much for him to take, and he decided life wasn't worth living anymore.

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Image courtesy of Gamesprout

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Copulating Cows

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Yes, what you think is happening in that image above is exactly what is happening in that image above. Ubisoft actually created an animation for a bull to mount and ride a cow.

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This particularly disturbing image is from the Testy Festy side quest, where you are tasked with acquiring three different types of bull testicles to be cooked and eaten -- flambé style (kill 'em with fire!), shredded (mulch 'em with the death tractor), and "blue" (take 'em out while they are doing it!).

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For those wondering, yes, the Testicle Festival is a real thing in Montana, and they really do serve bull testicles cooked in a variety of ways. If the apocalyptic Seed cult didn't convince you to stay out of our state, maybe that little factoid will do the trick?

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Image courtesy of GameSpot

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/c/5/fc5cov-945c0.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/c/5/fc5cov-945c0.jpg","type":"slide","id":"182137","description":"

With a tagline like, "In a place where anything can happen, everything will," you know you are in for a wild ride with Far Cry 5, which just may be the best entry in the series so far (apart from the shark-punching glory of Far Cry 3, of course). But some of the best parts about Far Cry 5 are its funny, crazy, and truly bizarre moments. Luckily, many of those scintillating moments have been captured by Youtubers and Twitch streamers the world over. 

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Between pre-launch bugs that were lovingly captured by early reviewers and some intentional insanity found by the gaming populace at large after its official release, there's a treasure trove of Far Cry 5 fails and funny moments to experience!

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Here we're rounding up some of the funniest moments you can find while wandering Hope County, Montana, from unexpected killer turkeys to homicidal motorists and flying corpses!

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Each Far Cry 5 video at the bottom of the following slides is pre-loaded to start right at the craziest moments -- so don't worry about having to find the right spot. We've already done it for you!

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Follow the links below to magically skip to a specific slide if you'd rather not click through each one:  

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And if you're looking for any guide content on Far Cry 5 while you're here, make sure to check these tips and tricks articles out: 

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Ion Maiden: Taking Shooters Back to the Nineties https://www.gameskinny.com/nnyfj/ion-maiden-taking-shooters-back-to-the-nineties https://www.gameskinny.com/nnyfj/ion-maiden-taking-shooters-back-to-the-nineties Tue, 06 Mar 2018 15:43:00 -0500 Stephen Delucchi

Ion Maiden, developed by Voidpoint and published by industry veteran 3DRealms, is the genre- and time-jumping FPS prequel to 2016's top-down action RPG Bombshell. Players once more find themselves in the role of Shelly "Bombshell" Harrison, a smart-mouthed firebrand and the titular character of the original, though this time playing from her point-of-view. 

Ion Maiden takes a step back in time, being the first game to utilize the Build engine in nearly two decades. This is the same engine that brought to life Witchaven, Shadow Warrior, Blood, and of course, mostly famously, Duke Nukem 3D

The team at Voidpoint has created some truly beautiful sprites that look sharp in HD without losing the feeling of the classic Build engine games. And when hitting enemies with bombs, they give a satisfying -- and gory -- explosion very reminiscent of Duke Nukem 3D. Shelly will lob plenty of verbal harassment at enemies as she kills them, and she's certainly not above playing soccer with their dismembered heads. 

For fans of classics such as Blood or Duke Nukem 3D who are looking for something with a taste of nostalgia but with a new experience, this is definitely a game to keep on your radar.

Though an official release date has not yet been announced, you don't have to wait to give it a try. A preview campaign is currently available via Steam's Early Access, giving the player a mission just long enough to get into the rhythm of the game but short enough to leave you immediately wanting more. 

The preview campaign gives access to multiple weapons, including the bowling-bombs, revolver (Loverboy), and shotgun. The mini-gun will, sadly, have to wait for the full release. 

 

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Deep Rock Galactic Review: Danger, Darkness, Dwarves, and Dismay In Early Access https://www.gameskinny.com/7r3m8/deep-rock-galactic-review-danger-darkness-dwarves-and-dismay-in-early-access https://www.gameskinny.com/7r3m8/deep-rock-galactic-review-danger-darkness-dwarves-and-dismay-in-early-access Fri, 02 Mar 2018 14:12:52 -0500 Ty Arthur

This oddball dwarcraft (or maybe dwarf 'em up?) title was one of our most anticipated FPS games of the year off of the strength of its intriguing concept and eye-catching art style.

Of course, four-player team shooters certainly aren't anything new -- from Left 4 Dead to a whole lot of WWII games and Space Hulk: Deathwing, we've tread this ground before.

What's different with Deep Rock Galactic is the focus on taming the environment, navigating by tunneling or climbing, and its underground interesting setting -- where one wrong step sends you plummeting to your doom.

The darkened corridors of a bug-infested planet make for a crazy multiplayer ride as you and your equally greedy dwarf co-workers try to make as much money as possible for your intergalactic mining corporation.

A player holds a minigun in a blue and green cave as he searches for gems in Deep Rock Galactic The game has strong contrasts between light, dark, and a riot of colors

Band Of Dwarf Brothers

After the tutorial mission and jumping into a quick match (or looking for specific matches that are at your skill level), Deep Rock Galactic features four different -- and quite satisfying -- classes to pick.

Each strongly showcases a different focus on how to achieve goals in an underground tunnel complex, and there's a lot more variation than in the typical shotgunner/ sniper/ assault rifle loadout you'd expect from an FPS.

Make no mistake, DRG is very much a team-focused outing. You want a well-rounded group of miners to be able to get around effectively. Without the zip lines, platforms, and quick tunneling options you will find it hard to reach high or low locations -- or to get to your team mates who may have been overrun by skittering awful monsters after falling into a chasm.

The engineer can launch platforms, set down turrets, and take out big enemies with the grenade launcher The engineer can launch platforms, set down turrets, and take out big enemies with the grenade launcher

Tunneling Terror

While there are periodic swarms of enemies to fight while mining, the real enemy here is the terrain and the lack of light. In fact, that interplay between light and darkness is one of the game's strongest points.

The experience can get very tense, either via claustrophobia from tight tunnels or agoraphobia from overly open spaces where you can easily fall to your death if you aren't paying attention.

Learning how to tunnel with your pick or use the special ability of your class to reach new areas is crucial, as there are wide open cave structures to fall into without any light to highlight your footing.

When you finally complete a map's objectives, there's limited time to reach the escape pod at the end of missions, which forces you to work in tandem with your team mates to get up to higher areas or tunnel through tight spaces.

Zip lining across a chasm to reach some red sugar health rocks Zip lining across a chasm to reach some red sugar health rocks

Disgruntled Dwarves Of The Deep

In one match I played during early access, figuring out how to reach the mining objectives was a fun puzzle to work out between players. In the next, it was an intensely frustrating case study in how procedurally generated maps can go very, very wrong.

We found two out of 10 alien egg objectives quickly, but then couldn't find any others. There was no obvious way out of this wide circular chamber and we just ended up running in circles, tunneling random directions with nowhere to go. After about 45 minutes of a match that was supposed to be on a 1-Star "short length" mission, we finally admitted defeat and all just logged off in frustration.

Similarly frustrating experiences pop up for newbies in several different major game mechanics. A voiceover tells you to mine Nitra veins for ammo, but it doesn't seem to work. I mined plenty of the ore but remained at zero ammo after surviving several waves of enemies. I tried depositing my stash in the MULE but still remained at zero ammo. After pressing every possible button, I couldn't find any sort of crafting menu to turn it into ammo.

After losing that round because none of us had any way to effectively fight without ammo, I had to hit the forums to discover the secret. Apparently, all the teammates have to deposit Nitra until hitting a certain threshold, then there's a separate keyboard option to call down an ammo resupply. Annoyingly, there was no indication of any of this through in-game prompts or in the controls menu.

A player holds a shotgun on a precipice overlooking a dark abyss in Deep Rock Galactic There's a whole tunnel system way, way down there in the dark

The Bottom Line (So Far)

Variety is one of the bigger issues for Deep Rock Galactic right now. More level types are a must, and Deep Rock Galactic will absolutely need a lot more enemy types and expansions on the progression system before full release.

Fortnite felt overly complex at first, but now that I'm used to all those different ways to pick new skills and upgrade characters in a multiplayer focused game, this feels overly simple by comparison.

Some of the physics are also quite odd and need of tweaking, which is bad for a game based around the concept of mining. If you dig out the middle of a column for instance, the top of the column stays floating in the air. Whoops. Sadly, there's no split screen for console players either, although that just seems to be the way things have been going in the industry lately.

Deep Rock has plenty of positive aspects going for it, though. The game is surprisingly stable for an indie early access title, and I never experienced a single crash.

I'm also loving that these graphically pleasing co-op style games have been landing a lot lately, like Fortnite, Sea Of Thieves, and now Deep Rock Galactic. They don't need to be hyper-realistic, but instead offer something more interesting to look at over extended periods of time.

The game's unique style with gruff, grumbling, greedy dwarves working in tandem has something very special brewing... if the developers can overcome some glaring issues in early access.

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Dwarves, Aliens, and Loot: Deep Rock Galactic Blasts Its Way Onto PC and Xbox One https://www.gameskinny.com/cba0y/dwarves-aliens-and-loot-deep-rock-galactic-blasts-its-way-onto-pc-and-xbox-one https://www.gameskinny.com/cba0y/dwarves-aliens-and-loot-deep-rock-galactic-blasts-its-way-onto-pc-and-xbox-one Thu, 01 Mar 2018 11:54:03 -0500 Jonathan Moore

Deep Rock Galactic, the procedural FPS exploration title developed by Ghost Ship Games, is now available through Steam Early Access and Xbox Game Preview. Focusing on frenzied co-op gameplay and destructible environments, DRG shows players what it's like to be a badass dwarf on the prowl for glorious bounty. 

Part shooter, part exploration game, part mining extravaganza, Deep Rock Galactic has been in development for several years and acquired what appears to be a loyal following through its closed Alpha builds. Adding new bosses, new alien enemies, and new mechanics over that time, Ghost Ship Games says DRG might have finally launched, but development on the game is still at fever pitch. 

We’re absolutely thrilled to be launching onto Xbox and PC, and we have big plans for the continued development of Deep Rock Galactic - new enemies, new biomes, new upgrades, even new playable classes!

--- Søren Lundgaard, CEO/Co-Founder Ghost Ship Games

At launch, Deep Rock Galactic features 4-player co-op, four classes (Driller, Engineer, Scout, and Gunner), and completely destructible environments. On top of that, each cave players explore will be 100% procedurally generated, adding a factor of replayability to DRG

You can grab Deep Rock Galactic on Steam and Xbox One for $24.99. Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more news and information on DRG as it develops. 

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6 Sci-Fi Games We're Looking Forward to in 2018 https://www.gameskinny.com/elp5m/6-sci-fi-games-were-looking-forward-to-in-2018 https://www.gameskinny.com/elp5m/6-sci-fi-games-were-looking-forward-to-in-2018 Wed, 14 Feb 2018 12:24:33 -0500 Alberto C.

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Naturally, this list isn't final and shouldn't be taken as the only sci-fi games coming out in 2018. These are merely some of those we think have at least the potential to become hits either due to their setting, gameplay, and/or story.

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Some of these might not even be released this year, but since the developers haven't explicitly stated otherwise ... fingers crossed.

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Are there any sci-fi games you think should be on the list? Let us know in the comment section below.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/o/u/source-89b1f.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/o/u/source-89b1f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179218","description":"

Star Citizen

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Developer: Cloud Imperium Games
Platforms: PC
Release date: TBA

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Even if you're not a fan of space flight simulators, chances are you've heard of Star Citizen because of the insanely successful crowdfunding campaign. To date, the developers have raised a whooping $178 million dollars. To give you an idea, vanilla World of Warcraft cost about $80 million adjusted to today's inflation.

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There are two reasons why you would want to keep an eye on this game. First, the ambition, vastness, and ridiculous amount of features that are being developed. The game will feature both space and FPS combat; will have a single-player component (Squadron 42) that will be voiced with celebrities such as Mark Hamill; and will include a persistent online multiplayer mode like that of an MMO.

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The second reason is the same as the first, but if it goes wrong. If Star Citizen fails to deliver, it's going to become one of, if not the, major stories of game development failures in all the history of video games. After all, how many developers get their hands on 178 million dollars without corporate and publishers' strings attached? Hopefully, though, it'll be a success and will deliver one of the most impressive and vast games ever made.

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A feature trailer, released just a few weeks ago, can be seen below:

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Consortium: The Tower

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Developer: Interdimensional Games
Platforms: PC
Release date: 2018

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Probably the easiest way to captivate your interest in Consortium: The Tower is to think of it as a blend between Die Hard and Deus Ex. Think of another FPS with RPG mechanics, like System Shock, only instead of being surrounded by a spooky space station and mutants, you start by freefalling onto a tower in the year 2042.

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The tower is occupied by different mercenary factions with whom your relationship will vary depending on the actions and decisions you make throughout the game. As part of the RPG experience, you'll have the options of deciding how to proceed, allowing you to blast your way through, sneak around, or simply charm the NPCs through sweet talk.

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The game is already in an Early Access stage on Steam.

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"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/y/s/system-shock-reboot-tech2-720-6cfb6.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/y/s/system-shock-reboot-tech2-720-6cfb6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179217","description":"

System Shock Remastered

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Developer: Night Dive Studios
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One, Mac, Linux
Release date: Q2 2018

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Unlike some of the other titles on this list, System Shock Remastered is not a sequel to any game nor a new IP. It is instead a complete remake of the original title bearing the same name. The original game, along with its sequel, System Shock 2, became renowned for their original storyline, futuristic setting, and gameplay mechanics that combined FPS and RPG elements.

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Set aboard a space station controlled by a rogue AI, the player (a hacker who played a part in contributing to the present situation), awakes from being in a coma and must battle mutants, cyborgs, and the AI itself to find a way out and survive.

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The studio working on it already has experience with the franchise by having contributed to the development of System Shock: Enhanced Edition and has already acquired IP rights for System Shock 3. The remake is being done with Unreal Engine 4, and you can see some of their work in the video below:

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"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/x/maxresdefault-db1b7.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/x/maxresdefault-db1b7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179216","description":"

Metro Exodus

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Developer: 4A Games
Platforms: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Release date: Q4 2018

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The Metro series puts you in the shoes of post-nuclear-stricken Russian Federation citizens that survived the initial massacre by finding refuge in the subway system of Moscow. Set in the near future, the games are based on a combination of survival, stealth, and FPS mechanics.

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After two games of almost exclusively closed quarters and dark rooms, Metro Exodus will take us to a more habitable part of Russia while continuing the plot of the main character, Artyom. The game's story will cover a time span of a whole year, feature weather and daily life cycles, and combine a mix of linear and sandbox levels.

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The gameplay trailer, featuring the 28 Days Later soundtrackwas released in June of 2017 and can be seen below.

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MechWarrior 5: Mercenaries

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Developer: Piranha Games
Platforms: PC
Release date: December 2018

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MechWarrior is one of those franchises that most probably wouldn't have heard of aside from the most veteran players. As the name indicates, the central theme of these titles is centered on mech-versus-mech combat.

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Set 1,000 years in the future, Mechwarrior 5: Mercenaries will put you in the boots of a mercenary mech pilot who will travel star systems and take contracts from the various political entities embroiled with one another in a conflict known as the Third Succession War.

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Unlike the predecessor in the franchise, Mechwarrior OnlineMechwarrior 5 is the first game in 16 years that will feature a single-player campaign as its centerpiece. Along with this, it has also been confirmed to feature four-player co-op gameplay.

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Check out the gameplay teaser below.

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"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/1/9/2/1920x1080-logo-e5cf6.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/1/9/2/1920x1080-logo-e5cf6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179213","description":"

Cyberpunk 2077

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Developer: CD Projekt Red
Platforms: PC, possibly PS4 and Xbox One
Release date: TBA

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The developers of The Witcher series, one of the most acclaimed series in the PC industry, have been relatively quiet about the development of Cyberpunk 2077 since it was first announced in May of 2012. The most recent information, posted about a month ago, came from the game's official twitter account that contained a mere *beep*.

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The piece of "information," if it can even be called that, gained a lot of traction within a short amount of time, and there is no surprise as to why. The high expectations are fueled both by the quality of CD Projekt Red's titles and by the user-friendly commercial practices of the company. The Witcher series has seen a steady improvement in quality, while at the same time the developers have abstained from shadowy commercial products like lootboxes and microtransactions.

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The game takes place in a futuristic, cyberpunk open world that bears a resemblance to the world of Blade Runner. Cyberpunk 2077 will also feature a multiplayer component, though not much else has been announced,

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You can check out the trailer below.

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"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/z/i/a/ziaomeenzr2cgrobf18a-63c06.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/z/i/a/ziaomeenzr2cgrobf18a-63c06.jpg","type":"slide","id":"179385","description":"

There are still many months to go in 2018, and that gives us plenty of time to think about those upcoming sci-fi games that both look promising and have at least the possibility of being released in 2018. From much-anticipated titles to lesser-known franchise entries, here we've compiled a list of six upcoming sci-fi games that we can't wait to get our hands on.

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"}]]]>
Combined-Arms, Sci-Fi, FPS Angels Fall First Gets a New Trailer for 2018 https://www.gameskinny.com/p4tff/combined-arms-sci-fi-fps-angels-fall-first-gets-a-new-trailer-for-2018 https://www.gameskinny.com/p4tff/combined-arms-sci-fi-fps-angels-fall-first-gets-a-new-trailer-for-2018 Wed, 24 Jan 2018 11:19:21 -0500 Alberto C.

The pace might not be what most expect or hope for, but at least it's confirmed that Angels Fall First is not just alive but pushing on with its progression by releasing a brand-new trailer for 2018.

The nearly two-minute-long trailer released on Friday is a simple promotional video compiling in-game gameplay that unfortunately doesn't reveal any new information about the game or the release date.

In Early Access since October 2015, AFF's slow pace of development is not even a surprise when taking into account that development studio Strangely Interactive is a small, independent team that works on the project during the evenings and weekends. TL;DR, it's a part-time project.

The game should be especially interesting to fans familiar with the Battlefield and Battlefront style of gameplay. Self-described as a first-person, combined-arms, sci-fi wargame, AFF focuses on large battles with specific team-based objectives that go beyond mere point-capturing. Instead of what seems like a blend between (the original) Battlefront 2's space battles and the particularly characteristic Titan mode of Battlefield 2142AFF's stage-progression objectives are to be completed with specialized vehicles and infantry roles. The latter type of gameplay will also include a squad and commander system to create greater team cohesion in the pursuit of objectives.

You can go to the Steam page and official website for a full list of details on the game. Stick with GameSkinny for more information on Angels Fall First as it develops.

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Warface Gets New Battle Royale Mode https://www.gameskinny.com/uk7lz/warface-gets-new-battle-royale-mode https://www.gameskinny.com/uk7lz/warface-gets-new-battle-royale-mode Fri, 08 Dec 2017 11:00:50 -0500 Caio Sampaio

Fifteen armed participants and only one winner. The prize? Staying alive. To claim it, there is only one choice: scavenge your surroundings, find a weapon, and fight for your life. But do it fast. The battleground constantly shrinks, converging every contestant in one location for a final shootout. The last man or woman standing wins. This is the premise behind the Battle Royale game mode, which is now part of Crytek`s free-to-play FPS title, thanks to its latest update. The publisher My.com made the announcement through a video (above) uploaded on the official YouTube channel of Warface

To fit the gameplay style of Battle Royale, developers built the largest PvP map in the game`s history and placed over 70 different weapons on the battlefield for you to discover and upgrade your equipment. However, the location of each gun is random, meaning that you need to handle a different arsenal in every match. Apart from the firearms you find in the map, there also are supply drops, which provide better gear, but they grab the attention of other players. Should you expose yourself and go after the supply drops? It is up to you to decide whether the risk is worth the reward. 

The location chosen for Battle Royale in Warface is the Mojave Desert, USA. This choice makes sense, considering the goal of the developers. According to a press release issued by My.com, "Crytek has painstakingly crafted the Battle Royale mode to combine the special atmosphere of its survival warfare with Warface’s original gameplay." Moreover, this location has the benefit of featuring large open areas, while also containing small buildings, thus giving you a vast number of tactical possibilities. These facts bode well for the future of Battle Royale in Warface, but the number of titles featuring this mode continues to increase, which leaves a question begging for an answer. 

Why Has Battle Royale Become Popular?

This game mode exploded in popularity after PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds (PUBG) became available, as evidenced by its record of most concurrent players on Steam, set on September 16th, after reaching 1,349,584 users. Other games, including Fortnite and now Warface, have implemented this game mode, but why are players so attracted to it? On November 1st, the YouTube channel Extra Credits uploaded a video that answers this question. Read the conclusions in the paragraphs below. 

First, it is important to understand the type of experience that Battle Royale creates. Some players may reckon that it focuses on action because its core gameplay mechanic consists of shooting. This logic, however, is incorrect, according to Extra Credits. As the YouTube channel says, the Battle Royale mode is a "multiplayer thriller," and the secret for its success lies in a single word -- suspense.

To understand this conclusion, it is crucial to comprehend what a "thriller experience" means. "It aims to put the audience in a heightened state of adrenaline," states Extra Credits. However, contrary to most online shooting game modes, Battle Royale builds adrenaline through suspense and hooks players with an almost overwhelming amount of apprehension. To accomplish this objective, it employs thriller storytelling techniques, which consist of the following four items:  

1- Clear stakes

2- A continuous sense of threat

3- Time pressure

4- Escalating danger

If you have played any game featuring the Battle Royale mode, you can probably recognize these four traits. It contains clear stakes, as you know that your life is on the line. On top of that, you feel a continuous sense of threat, because, thanks to the size of the map, it is impossible to be 100% aware of your surroundings. Therefore, there is always the chance of you being on the crosshair of another player, who is just waiting for the right opportunity to take you down. You also have time pressure, as the map constantly shrinks.

Finally comes the escalating danger. As the area gets smaller, so does the distance between players, meaning that every second you spend alive increases the chance of encountering an enemy. With these four elements, Battle Royale became a success, using thriller storytelling techniques to build suspense and create an experience that leaves you sweating with tension. But there are other factors that play a significant role in the popularity of this multiplayer game mode.

A Big Payoff:

If you survive through most of a Battle Royale match, the moment to face the remaining soldiers will inevitably arrive. If you triumph over the enemies and become the lone survivor, you will experience "fiero." The author and game designer Jane McGonigal describes this term in her New York Times best-selling book Reality is Broken: Why Games Makes Us Better and How They Can Change the World

"Fiero is what we feel after we triumph over adversity. You know it when you feel it -- and when you see it. That’s because we almost all express fiero in exactly the same way: we throw our arms over our head and yell."

What Jane McGonigal calls "fiero" is described by science as your reaction to dopamine. This is the neurotransmitter responsible for you feeling pleasure upon achieving a desired outcome. It is important to observe that you receive more dopamine for getting what you want when you anticipate the reward or event. Therefore, activities that provide you with anticipation tend to be more engaging. This is the conclusion of the psychologist Jamie Madigan in his book Getting Gamers: The Psychology of Video Games and Their Impact on the People Who Play Them:

"It turns out that what really excites us is not so much the loot as it is the loot drop. And, if you want to get really specific about it, it's the anticipation of the loot drop."

Jamie Madigan comments on the use of anticipation to increase your satisfaction when obtaining new loot, but the principle applies to Battle Royale as well, because expectancy is a crucial part of the experience. When the end of the match starts to draw near, you see the player count drop. Once you realize that you have a real chance of winning, you start to build anticipation, as every enemy neutralized gets you a step closer to your goal -- one by one.

When you finally win, you reach your desired outcome, which gives you dopamine, making you feel happy. Anticipation boosts this effect and causes an abundance of this neurotransmitter. In other words, it causes "fiero.” Of course, it is possible to have this effect with other online game modes, but Battle Royale is a unique experience. It combines anticipation with thriller storytelling techniques, thus becoming a multiplayer thriller, as explained by Extra Credits. It is all a mind game. 

A Changing Game:

The last factor that contributed to the rise of Battle Royale is the fact that you can only expect the unexpected, thanks to the randomized nature of the weapons that spawn on the map. In one round you may find an assault rifle, while you may discover a shotgun in another. This fact prevents you from using a dominant strategy. Matthew O. Jackson describes this term in his Stanford research paper A Brief Introduction to the Basics of Game Theory:

"A dominant strategy for a player is one that produces the highest payoff of any strategy available for every possible action by the other players."

The random weapon spawn ensures the lack of a dominant strategy, thus keeping players from exploiting a single modus operandi. This ensures that the experience continues fresh, because you constantly need to change your style and adapt to the different firearms that you pick up from the battlefield. With a vast map containing a plethora of areas to explore, you will be able to play the Battle Royale mode for a long time before it becomes tiresome.

Conclusion: 

The popularity of the Battle Royale game mode is undeniable. To ensure that new and innovative ideas make their way into the video game industry, we must understand what makes the current ones compelling. Using the analysis from Extra Credits and the authors mentioned herein, it is possible to shed some light on why Battle Royale became a success.

Using thriller storytelling techniques, it deploys the four factors necessary to craft an experience that leaves the audience on the edge of the seat. On top of that, Battle Royale also provides great satisfaction once you conquer the battlefield, giving you dopamine after several minutes of anticipation in heart-stopping tension.

These two factors, combined with gameplay that changes every match due to the different weapons you find, ensure that a game of Battle Royale will have you hooked, whether you are playing PUBG, Fortnite, Warface or any other game that includes this feature. If you wish to experience Battle Royale with graphics powered by the same engine that brought Crysis to life, make sure to sign up today on Warface's website. 

 

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Make America Nazi-Free Again With Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus https://www.gameskinny.com/a5ybn/make-america-nazi-free-again-with-wolfenstein-2-the-new-colossus https://www.gameskinny.com/a5ybn/make-america-nazi-free-again-with-wolfenstein-2-the-new-colossus Fri, 27 Oct 2017 17:26:45 -0400 Ty Arthur

Now that you've had time to get your fix of Destiny 2 and Quake Champions, it's time to shift gears to a hallowed American tradition: putting down the Nazis! 

Call Of Duty, of course, is about to switch from futuristic space battles to classic WWII gunplay next month, but first up we've got this utterly black-hearted (in a good way) alternate history with Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus.

In a world where the Third Reich built the atom bomb first, the U.S. is obviously a very different place in the 1960s. And that's where broken hero B.J. Blazkowicz comes in, ready to make America Nazi-free again, one hatchet throw and robotic body slam at a time.

 Or if that's not your thing, you could always dual wield grenade
launchers and human-melting laser guns!

A One Man Guerrilla War

As a single-player focused experience (more of those please, developers!), there's some really interesting world building going on that will make you think of the Homefront series. There's even a bit of something like 1984 in this tale of America gone horribly wrong.

Unfortunately, as a whole, the game doesn't have the openness of the latest Homefront, although it does break out of the typical corridor shooter fare with some unique level design. What sets the battle areas apart are the many ways to travel under, around, over, and through to flank your opponents (or more likely, be horribly flanked by dozens of Nazis). Learning these layouts is crucial to success -- using vents, side hallways, hidden staircases, and so on to stay alive. 

It's sort of a weird juxtaposition for a Nazi-killing guy with a giant laser gun in a suit of metallic power armor to be pulling a Dishonored and emulating Corvo, but stealth is actually a legitimate option in many places in Wolfenstein 2. Killing the commanding officers from stealth can be critical to staying alive -- and not getting swarmed by enemies. Plus, it's just satisfying to poke some SS officer on the shoulder, see the look on his shocked face, and then hatchet him to death.

Whether you go stealthy or loud, though, there's a high degree of difficulty in many of these levels, so get ready to git gud! Make sure to use the save feature, as the checkpoints aren't always forgiving and there are frustrating firefights you don't want to redo.

 Some of the levels will make you want to pick the pacifier difficulty

And Now For Something Completely Different

Those difficult levels where a one-man personal war is waged against the Nazi regime will frequently surprise you with their oddity and ingenuity. After taking a grenade blast and having half his intestines removed in an impromptu surgery, B.J. obviously isn't in tip-top shape, spending months in bed and starting the real action of the game in a wheelchair.

This reviewer was surprised and delighted to discover you actually play the first level fully in the wheelchair. MachineGames did a phenomenal job of making that feel organic and using clever level design to make that paradigm work (since obviously, you can't go up or down staircases). From using huge cogs to get across areas to a harrowing gun battle on a conveyor belt that keeps getting reversed, there is some ace level design on display in The New Colossus.

Having a sister-in-law with spina bifida, this was a nice touch that had me stoked to tell her all about Wolfenstein 2 -- where even people in wheelchairs can rack up an impressive Nazi kill count. Thanks, MachineGames, you made our day with that one!

Whether it was a deliberate attempt at inclusion on the developer's part or just a chance to show the stark contrast between the protagonists and the Nazis (despising the disabled who aren't part of the perfect race), either way, it was a welcome change of pace in a genre that often does know how to slow down, even for just a few minutes. 

 Wolfenstein is an equal-opportunity Nazi-killing simulator!

Things get even more unexpected and different from there, straddling the line between what's believable and what's just outright bonkers. Based on that description, you might think that this is something along the lines of Saint's Row or Borderlands, but that's not really the case. Wolfenstein II plays it straight most of the time and gets absurdly dark, with a few ludicrous jokes thrown in here and there. Even those jokes tend to be of the extremely morbid variety, however.

The story and characters don't pull any punches on the racism or gore fronts either. Not too many games make you relive your abusive childhood at the hands of a xenophobic father who blames all of his failures on anyone who isn't white.

Eventually, you have to decide whether or not to shoot your faithful childhood hound to avoid daddy's wrath. If you have the emotional fortitude, you can pull the trigger... or if you have a conscience, you can pull the gun to the side before firing and get a verbal beat down for your efforts. Sadly, you can't shoot the dad (I tried). 

But it all serves to show that B.J. is a broken man, and not just physically. It shows the psyche of a man on the edge, one that's out to take no prisoners. And the great thing is that it's all organic. There's actually a surprising level of storytelling going on here as he deals with the state of the world and his own family.

 An unhinged lady Nazi just hacked off my friend's head and is now making me kiss it. Anybody else ready to start shooting? 

The Bottom Line on Wolfenstein 2

The gameplay side Wolfenstein 2 is incredibly solid. There are plenty of enemy types, from SS soldiers to giant robot dogs and a whole lot in between, as well as a sense of progression as you can eventually unlock new abilities.

Besides just run-and-gunning, there are traps to utilize to microwave, burn, or electrify enemies, along with plenty of weapon types. Most of those are a pleasure to use, although unfortunately, the big, devastating guns slow you down and often aren't worth using with how quickly your health depletes.

Making up for that shortfall are spectacular levels that do very unexpected things, all offering up a cathartic experience for those who aren't super stoked about what's been going on in the news lately.

The Doom reboot sort of set the standard for frantic FPS action with insane weapons on modern consoles, and while Wolfenstein II doesn't quite hit that mark with its slower speed and harsher difficutly, it does some amazing things with the level of technology in the game's story. 

From the story to the game mechanics to collectibles and replay-ability, Wolfenstein 2: The New Colossus really delivers. If you loved the first game in this "rebooted" franchise, you're going to get more of what you love -- and then some -- with this sequel. 

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Warface Celebrates 4th Anniversary With a Glimpse of its Future https://www.gameskinny.com/2tuu1/warface-celebrates-4th-anniversary-with-a-glimpse-of-its-future https://www.gameskinny.com/2tuu1/warface-celebrates-4th-anniversary-with-a-glimpse-of-its-future Tue, 24 Oct 2017 15:50:39 -0400 Caio Sampaio

48 million players, 179 countries and more than 70 updates. These are some of the numbers that display the growth of Crytek`s free to play competitive FPS game. Released on October 21st 2013, the title has just gone through its fourth anniversary.

To celebrate the occasion, the publisher My.com uploaded a video (above) on the official Warface channel on YouTube, displaying what players can expect from the game's next expansion, which will become available in December.

The Pripyat Update:

The developers expect it to bring a unique experience to the Warface community. In an exclusive interview with GameSkinny, Michael Khaimzon, the creative director of the game, spoke about the new content and shared some insights: 

“It has been in production for almost a year, so there are lots of new things coming. New environment, new enemies, new boss fights, and a new chapter in the Warface- Blackwood duel. Let’s not forget, though, that, in addition to this mission, the update will also include new weapons, achievements, and many other things."

Apart from the items listed by Michael, the package will also feature a new narrative-driven cooperative mission (above) held in Pripyat, Ukraine, at the heart of the Chernobyl exclusion zone. After decades of isolation, players will explore the ruins left by the worst nuclear disaster in history.

The mission will mark the next chapter in the conflict that drives the universe of the game, wherein the world is facing its most severe financial crisis. While most people on the planet dive into poverty, a group of capitalists holds most of Earth's wealth. They hired the paramilitary group Blackwood to protect their facilities worldwide. Players join the Warface squad to take down the monopoly.

With this premise, the expectations from developers to deliver a unique experience are high. While they give the final touches to the Pripyat mission, the material My.com has shared online allows us to start having some thoughts about the arrival of the Warface arsenal in Chernobyl.

First Impressions: 

The trailer shown previously in this article is not the first media My.com has shared about the Pripyat mission. In the past month, the publisher uploaded three other videos: Soon in Warface: Special Operation in Chernobyl, Next in Warface: Welcome to Chernobyl and Pripyat: Behind the Scenes.

Through the footage available, we can have a glimpse of what type of experience the developers of Crytek have created. 

Chernobyl may seem as a familiar environment to some players, thanks to Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (2007) and S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl (2007)but the developers of Warface made sure to add new elements to the old formula. 

As the image above displays, players of the Pripyat mission will travel through environments that combine the desolation of a post-apocalyptic setting with the high-end technology of Blackwood. The result is an interesting contrast of old versus new, which can create unique and memorable locations, as Horizon: Zero Dawn (2017) and the Fallout franchise have proved.

It is also worth mentioning the effort Crytek put into bringing Pripyat to life. The company sent 30 developers to the real-life location to study how to best reproduce it in Warface. As consequence, the team added to the mission 230 furniture models, 6 kilometers (approximately 4 miles) of terrain, 800 objects and 400 textures, along with 30 buildings and constructions from real life.

These numbers show that Crytek emphasized the ambiance and the immersion of the new mission, staying true to the source material, while adding new elements to the world, such as the Blackwood buildings. Whether Crytek will hit the right balance between old and new, we will only discover in December.

However, we can claim that, by creating a version of Chernobyl we have never seen, the Pripyat mission has the potential to become one of the grandest experiences a player can have in a Free to Play shooter, thanks to its unique setting.

Apart from releasing new footage on the upcoming mission, My.com and Crytek also found other means to thank the fans of Warface for their continued support throughout these four years.

Player Rewards:

On October 19th, My.com announced (above) that players would receive many bonuses during the four days in which Warface celebrated its anniversary. According to a press release, the giveaway included: 

  • Four gift cards, one for each day Warface celebrates its anniversary, with the chance to get various prizes, including the Black Hawk axe;
  • From October 19th through the 22nd, players can obtain a golden random box every day for accumulating 100 kills in any game mode. The boxes may yield various items and even permanent weapons. Only one box can be obtained per day;
  • Special anniversary skins for the Fazil UE3, AP-84 Custom, Anatolia RK-102, S60B3 and Abada 266 mm for players in every day that they play;
  • From October 19th through the 22nd, every player will receive a 400% bonus to all their gains, including Warface dollars, Crown Points, XP, and VP.
  • Increased VIP booster on October 22nd to wrap up the celebration.

As Crytek and My.com celebrated the fourth anniversary of Warface, it is normal to look back at accomplishments from the past, but we must also wonder about what lies ahead.

What the Future Holds:

In this regard, Michael Khaimzon claimed that his team is studying methods to bolster the storytelling of the game. Therefore, it would be no surprise to see future missions of Warface featuring deeper plots.

However, the Creative Director pointed out that this is not an easy task. Due to the fast pace of the game, it is difficult to find a mean to convey a narrative without interrupting the action.

Storytelling, however, is only one of the aspects that Michael and his team aim at perfecting. Crytek's free to play title will continue to expand, with new missions, features and weapons. To stay updated on the progress of Warface, as it marches forward, make sure to join today on the game's website.

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Destiny 2: The FPS Too Complicated For Its Own Good https://www.gameskinny.com/bfezc/destiny-2-the-fps-too-complicated-for-its-own-good https://www.gameskinny.com/bfezc/destiny-2-the-fps-too-complicated-for-its-own-good Wed, 20 Sep 2017 16:33:17 -0400 Kieran Desmond

Destiny 2 is a more simplified experience than its notoriously convoluted predecessor, but there are still some glaring issues with this new chapter that need to be ironed out.

After fully leveling two characters in Bungie’s latest offering, it’s clear to me that there are three main areas within Destiny 2 that could do with some polish -- the lore, the post-story grind, and the details on where specific pieces of gear can be found.

With all the resources Bungie has at its disposal, these issues can most certainly be addressed and improved for not only veteran Guardians like myself, but for newcomers as well. 

The Problem with Destiny’s Story

Something you don’t hear very often is that Destiny actually has a great story. But it’s true. The problem is that it has always been hidden away; in the original Destiny, the Grimoire cards carried the game's lore, whereas in Destiny 2, the lore is attached to gear and subclass descriptions. 

The Grimoire, which required you to log into the Bungie website to access, has now been removed from the site. Luckily for us, Destiny has a truly amazing fanbase, many of whom set up websites of their own which compile all of the lore (so far) into elegant and relevant categories. My favorite of these, and a great place to start for the lore-ignorant among us, is the Seraphim Archive, which sorts out all of Destiny's lore into a coherent and readable chronology.

However, Bungie can't seem to effectively parse out Destiny 2's story in an easily digestible fashion. BioWare faced a similar issue with the Mass Effect trilogy, but eventually implemented the Codex, which contained both written and voiced entries and was a delight to peruse. It's Bungie’s failure to implement a similar system that forces fans to consume the game’s story through secondary sources. Because of this, many Guardians will never experience the gripping tale of how Auruash became Oryx or how all the Fallen houses were once at peace with each other.

I've long thought that Bungie should take all of the great lore that they've painstakingly scribed and apply it to comic books, an animated series, or even a live-action film or miniseries. For the sake of reaching as many people as possible, please give us anything but a wall of text.

Wondering where this lovely lady got to in Destiny 2?
This Grimoire Entry from D1 gives us some indication.

How Do I Get Raid-Ready?

So you've beaten the story. Congratulations! The next thing on the menu is the Leviathan raid; but how do you get your Power Level high enough so that you won’t die from a Psion merely glancing in your general direction? Seriously, without looking it up, would you have known? I'm guessing not quite.

Power Level advancement is essentially locked behind Exotics, Clan XP rewards, and weekly Milestones that award Powerful Engrams. It’s never mentioned in-game that these are now your only avenues of going beyond the 265-275 soft Power Level cap. This can be a frustrating fact to learn after hours of needlessly farming faction tokens and legendary engrams that basically get you nowhere. Well, unless you're looking for a particular item, but more on that later.

On top of this, there’s the issue of mods. Every exotic drops with a +5 mod, meaning that every time you receive an exotic, it’s actually 5 levels lower than it says it is. Again, this is never clearly stated and has been a big source of confusion when it comes to maximizing your Power Level.

Let's look at this a little closer. Let’s say an Exotic drops at 290. Soon after, you receive a Powerful Engram that decrypts into a Legendary 289. “Damn!”, you might think, “If only it was a couple of levels higher. Oh well, I guess I’ll chuck it in the vault or dismantle it”.

Stop! Remember that the Exotic is 290 due its intrinsic +5 mod, meaning it’s actually only 285. If you infuse your new Legendary into the Exotic, it will go up to 289 and it will keep the mod, resulting in a 294 Exotic. Incremental level increases like this contribute to the steady crawl up to max Power Level, but the lack of clarity means more casual players will almost always lose out.

It’s also worth noting that Legendary gear has a chance to decrypt with a +5 mod already attached. The lesson here is always inspect your gear to check for mods. In the original Destiny, once you'd leveled up a piece of gear, it's border would change from white to yellow. A similar indication of whether or not gear has mods attached would be a welcome addition to Destiny 2.

Hey, This is Cool, But How Do I Get X?

Destiny 2's armor is a much more cosmetic feature this time around. There's less focus on armor-specific abilities (except for Exotics) and more focus on how badass your Titan looks as a neon-pink space knight. 

I'm still not sure how I feel about this change; I like having the choice of multiple, cool abilities on gear. I also like not being restricted to certain bits of gear because of said abilities. We're only three weeks in, so we'll see how that opinion shifts as the game comes into its own.

But as the header suggests, sometimes you'll have a piece of gear that you really like the look of, but are unsure where you got it or how to get the rest of the set. In order to figure out how to get what you're after without turning to Google, which Destiny seems to heavily rely on, you'll have to go around to each planet and social space's vendor to take a look at what their Legendary Engrams can decrypt into. Not only are many Guardians oblivious to this feature because of a lack of clear signposting, but it's also a huge pain in the ass.

Every vendor has an extra set of rewards that you can receive, titled "Additional Rewards". If you have no idea what I'm talking about, check out the bottom row of gear in the image below. Those bonus rewards are actually on a 5 minute rotation. So for example, if you're looking for the Errant Knight 1.0 Hunter armor set and all you need is the chest piece, if it's not listed in the additional rewards, just wait and it might be in the next rotation. This is another feature Bungie doesn't disclose and I only discovered myself by pure accident.

By the end of the game, there are at least 10 vendors spread across five different spaces, which can get confusing as to who will unlock what gear. It can also take up a bunch of your time going from planet to planet if you're trying to figure out which vendor has that sweet cape you're looking for. I feel that in the advanced universe of Destiny, there would be some kind of wireless-network-type technology, something that would allow the instant exchange of information across vast distances... the internet, they may call it.

Oh, and here's a crazy idea: let us Guardians see what each of the vendors has to offer from an interface in the cockpit of our ships. Such a feature would kill multiple dregs with one stone; it would add a feature to our ships, keeping them from being useless cosmetic items, as well as redefining why you'd ever choose to go to Orbit in Destiny 2, making it relevant again.

---

A key thing to keep in mind is that Destiny 2 is still in its infancy. Issues like the ones I've raised above are being echoed by the community, and Bungie does listen. But don't expect too much too soon. It's going to be a busy few months for Bungie, so I doubt we'll see the much-needed vendor gear compendium or any other huge changes for a good while yet -- if at all.

That's not to say they won't fix anything, however, and I'm sure Bungie has a long list based on what I've seen of the Destiny sub-Reddit. Much like D1, in a couple of years, we could be looking at a completely different beast with new features that will make us forget all about our month-one gripes. I can't wait until we can poke fun at vanilla Destiny 2 saying, "Hey, remember when we couldn't see which gear had mods equipped?!".

Let me know in the comments below if you agree with me, if you think I'm totally wrong, or if I missed something you think is too complicated in Destiny 2 -- I'd love to discuss it with you. And if you need help with some aspect of the gamecheck out some of our Destiny 2 Guides!

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