What could I possibly say about The Last of Us Remastered which hasn't already been said both in other reviews and my own piece for This is My Joystick? Somewhere inside of me I know I’m just stamping up and down on old ground by writing this. And yet, here I am.
For newcomers to the series, Abe New ‘n’ Tasty will be a fiendishly clever platformer, a caricature of modern life in which a downtrodden and oppressed society fights against the ever present grind of corruption and tyranny. Back in 1997 the game was popular partially because you could make Abe fart on command.
I’ll openly admit that I’ve never played a Sacred game, I own them all through various bundles of the Humble variety and several sales online but I’ve never actually found the time to sit and play through them. I’m told by trusted friends that these games are “fun, for action-RPG’s” and usually personally recommendation from the same people who introduced me to Dark Souls is all I need to be interested in a game or franchise.
Imagine my surprise then when I sat down with Sacred 3. Keen Games have taken what was essentially a poor mans Baldurs Gate (which is still a compliment) and turned it into a poor mans Dark Alliance.
I'll hazard a guess that many video game reviewers, whilst playing The Stanley Parable, felt a sense of horror and dread unlike anything they have felt in a long time - confronted with the same "how am I going to write about THAT?" sensation that I myself found during my time with the game. Fortunately The Stanley Parable (HD reimagining of the 2011 Source Engine mod) gives you enough to openly talk about without delving into the realms of spoiler-town too much.
Since March of this year I've been somewhat conflicted about what I want to do with this blog. Should I keep it as it is - a collection of my reviews, articles and associated writings about the video game industry? Should I start covering gaming news on here as well as reviews like I used to? (no, that one was a stupid idea) Should I leave the blog to stagnate and focus purely on my freelance pitches to other websites or simply deactivate the site altogether?
In a weird twist from the norm, I’m writing this intro after writing the rest of my review. I need to do it this way around for a single reason. I like Call of Duty, I have nothing against the series as an enjoyable (if somewhat elitist and wanky) multiplayer experience and get some friends together and you can ensure a thoroughly good time playing it. I’m also a fan of the Call of Duty campaigns, they have become my guilty pleasure as of late, they are usually a spectacularly cinematic rollercoaster through a admittedly questionable storyline but we don’t mind. We really don’t, we sit there and eat it up because whatever flaws the story or characters have we can forgive and forget because the action is usually engrossing enough to distract us from the flaws.
These days the term “Console Port” has become synonymous with a poorly optimized version of a game. Far too often we see both PC and console games traversing the great platform divide and emerging as something less than it once was. Games will have a poorer framerate, less optimized resolution, poorly mapped controls or simply less impressive graphics - whatever the reasons for the label, the label has stuck. Fortunately Blizzard have taken enough time and care with their console port of Diablo 3 to try and break that trend - with it’s gameplay not only intact but - dare I say it - improved by the addition of a controller input and only a few niggles keeping you from enjoying the full PC experience, Diablo 3 is the reason that ‘console port’ is now a badge of honor once again.