Hotline Miami Is off the Hook

Hotline Miami CarI’ve been late to more than a few parties in my life (The Last of Us: Remastered I’m looking at you), and Hotline Miami is only the latest in a long line with many more to come I’m sure. But holy moly, am I glad I showed up, even if I was more than just fashionably late.

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Give Star Wars Battlefront a Chance

Star Wars BattlefrontA new Star Wars Battlefront game has been announced, and I’m actually kind of jazzed to see how it shapes up and shakes out. I have heard some murmurings — some grumblings, if you will — that, although it looks cool, apparently it hasn’t been designed to please everyone.

This strikes me as crazy. In this day and age, when there is such a high volume of people playing games, it seems unfathomable that the game wasn’t designed with every single person’s wants in mind.

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Guitar Hero: Live Looks to Change the Game

Guitar Hero Live

Activision has recently announced Guitar Hero: Live, a new installment in the Guitar Hero series. This, of course, comes on the heels of the announcement of a new Rock Band game by Harmonix.

With comparisons inevitable, Activision has generated a small amount of criticism from vocal naysayers that the the game industry juggernaut is simply jumping on the bandwagon (pun intended?), hoping to cash in on the slow-burning excitement for the revival of peripheral-required rhythm-based games.

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Minecraft on PS4 Is Block-Tastic

Minecraft PS4Like most gamers, I’m a huge Minecraft fan.

Even though I already have the game for the Xbox 360 and PS Vita, I couldn’t resist buying yet another version of the game for my PS4. Thankfully, after buying it for the Vita, I received a $15 discount on the PS4 version, which made the pill a tad bit easier to swallow. I mean, it was going down either way, but I’m not one to pooh-pooh on savings. [Read more…]

In The Last Of Us Remastered, Attention to Detail Is the Biggest Draw

last of us remasteredLook, I might be late to the party (and I may also have had to backtrack a bit from early assessments), but I fully admit that The Last of Us Remastered is fantastic. I haven’t been this immersed in a linear action game in a very long time.

I could go on and on about the things I love about the game, from the beauty of the world to the genuine likability of the various characters to the satisfying nature of the visceral combat. But for me, the biggest draw, the thing that catapults The Last of Us into the upper echelon of gaming and sets it apart from other titles I’ve played, is the level of attention given to the little details. [Read more…]

Infamous First Light Is the Perfect Size for Me

First Light 3Infamous and Infamous 2 were both lauded by the community and raved about by the gaming press at large. I, however, was no fan. [Read more…]

Trophies Feel More Satisfying than Achievements Ever Did

Trophy 1I’ve been gaming on an Xbox 360 for the better part of the last 8 or so years. During that time, I’ve amassed a decent amount of “Achievements” to reflect my many, well, achievements.

However, with my recent acquisition of a PS4, I’ve been unlocking “Trophies” instead, and although they essentially function the same way as “Achievements” do, I’m still getting used to the announcement in the upper-left corner of my screen.

Trophy 3To be perfectly honest, I always thought the term “Trophies” was kind of silly. I mean, there’s no actual physical trophy you can put on display. Achievements are just what they sound like: A non-material entity that denotes an accomplishment.

But the more I see the word “Trophy,” the more I feel like I’ve achieved something greater, that I’m being rewarded with more than just some kind of symbolic recognition.

Trophy 4

It’s all quite silly of course, I know. Still, the feeling of pride I get when I see that I’ve unlocked a “Trophy” makes it seem as if I was not only in a heated competition, but managed to come out on top.

PS4 Remote Play on the Vita Is an Interesting Endeavor

livingroomvitaI recently was gifted both a PS4 and a PS Vita for my birthday. I am eternally grateful for both (much to the chagrin of Microsoft, who lost a long devoted customer). One of the first things I wanted to try out was the remote play feature, which allows you to play console games on your Vita.

I’d heard a bit about it before I boarded the Sony train, but I hadn’t spent much time investigating the specifics. “Why not just jump in blind?” I thought. “See what’s what.”

My initial impressions is that it’s a really cool — albeit limited — feature that holds a ton of promise. [Read more…]

Move It! Is a Challenging and Fun Little Puzzler

Move It!I’m not a huge proponent of mobile gaming, especially now that I have a dedicated handheld gaming system in my newly acquired Vita (and Minecraft). However, from time to time, I stumble upon free mobile games that actually tickle my fancy. For the most part, these are puzzle games of some sort, which I find to be the best fit for short bursts of on-the-go gaming.

Might as well challenge your brain while mindlessly staring at your smartphone, that’s what I always say.

The new kid on the block — or at least new to my block — is the free edition of a game called Move It!. It’s similar to the old tile moving games from my youth, but with a slight twist: You’re tasked with sliding different shapes around a grid while attempting to get the red square into a designated area.

It seems easy enough — and at time it can be — but there’s also an optional objective to complete each puzzle in a set number of moves. This adds a nice little challenge and some replayability.

It won’t solve world hunger or replace Tetris. But for a simple free mobile puzzle game, it’s definitely no slouch.

Grand Theft Auto V on PS4 Looks Even Better than I Hoped

gta downtownThe moment I started up Grand Theft Auto V on my new PS4, I knew I’d entered a different Los Santos. Yes, I realize it’s the same game world I hung around in on my Xbox 360, but the higher resolution and graphical prowess made it feel like a brand new city.

gta radio towerAfter porting over my online hooligan, I set out into the world. Heists were forgotten completely; all I wanted to do was drive around and look at the environment. I revisited areas I’d been to countless times before, viewing them in a glorious new light. And by the way, the lighting in this version is fucking stunning.

gta churchI spent a majority of my time taking snapmatics. If you’re familiar with my recently concluded “Grand Theft Auto V in Pictures” series, you’ll know that that’s something I love doing.

gta baazzarI couldn’t help but to grab my (in-game) phone and hit the (in-game) streets to snap a few pics as I gazed mouth agape at the sights. So I thought I would do an addendum to my now-defunct series and also highlight the marvelous, stunning achievement that Rock Star Games has pulled off.

gta los santosOne great new feature is the ability to lock the focus and adjust the zoom levels. This can lead to some interesting field of view juxtapositions, allowing for some pretty interesting results. Just look at that wall. So realistic, so very very realistic.

gta graffitiIf you like these, feel free to mosey on over to the Rock Star Social Club snapmatic page and search for my profile: JulianWhatThe. Make sure you check out my gallery as it continues to blossom.

gta flyersFor now, just enjoy the view..

gta construction