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    Wednesday
    Jun182014

    Arrange Your Wallet's Funeral; Steam Summer Sale Starts Tomorrow


    Running from June 19th to June 30th is the annual Steam Summer Sale, where console gamers don't realize how much they are actually wasting on games. Rejoice, PC gamers and get games like Tomb Raider for less than ten dollars. Been waiting to nab Arkham Origins incase you missed the Batman 75 sale when it was ten dollars? No worries, it'll probably dip to $7.50 this week. The Steam Summer Sale is a place to discover new games or buy the ones you couldn't have before. My favorite purchase in the Steam Summer Sale was Tropico 4, which was glitched at 3.50$ for a few minutes. This happens frequently in the Summer Sale and you will not get in trouble for purchasing a game at an errorenous price. Below is my personal guide to the Steam Summer Sale.

    Do you want to buy a game in the Summer Sale? Well, guess what, Don't. If the game is not on sale as a "Daily" or "Flash" sale. Don't purchase it. Set an alarm every 8 hours starting at 1PM EST and try to power nap as much as you can. Check Flash sales AS SOON as they start to find any glitched prices. If you see any super savings, purchase the game AS A GIFT IN YOUR INVENTORY and leave it as that. If the game you wanted to buy did not become a flash or daily, on the last day of the sale you are free to purchase it since the price will not go any lower. "Wait a minute, now I have all these gifts in my inventory! Why?" well, now you can TRADE THOSE GAMES or SELL THEM at a higher price for any other game you may have missed or could not afford. That is the beauty of Steam. You can purchase gifts for friends or trade them for other games. On the last day of the sale, activate the games you REALLY want into your library and trade the rest off for a profit. Enjoy!

    Tuesday
    Jun032014

    Rocksteady Delays "Arkham Knight" In An Attempt To Make It Good


    Rocksteady Studios announced today that they are delaying the cash-grab sequel to the franchise-ruining "Batman: Arkham City". The studio also released a plethora of boring screenshots and a trailer shoving yet-more Batmobile gameplay down our throats, as if Batman uses it 95% of the time he's crimefighting. Their excuse for the delay? Guy Perkins - marketing manager - said ""We just want to make this the best experience that we can, and that takes time".

    I am very hopeful that Rocksteady does stick to that promise. Arkham City was a muddled mess of a storyline with horrendous character design and frustrating gameplay. Arkham Origins polished that format and gave a depthful emotional journey full of betrayal and suspense, so one has to wonder why a fourth game is even necessary unless they milk out The Joker once more. Arkham Knight doesn't have a release date anymore other than "2015". 

    Monday
    Jun022014

    "Marvel Heroes" Celebrates It's Highly-Anticipated 1 Year Anniversary


    Marvel Heroes is one of the most unique games on the PC market right now, and it's completely free-to-play. On the surface, it's a casual ARPG. However, it blends in the best features of an MMO and after one long year of constant upgrades and rebuilds, Marvel Heroes celebrates it's 1-year anniversary by renaming the game "Marvel Heroes 2015". The devs have claimed that from now on, internally, they are considering this upcoming 12 months to be their "2014-2015 season" by eventually adding brand new story content, heroes, costumes and end-game modes. However, this Wednesday - which marks the 1-year anniversary - a mega patch is coming into the game to include a collosal amount of content. 



    "Marvel Heroes" is free to play in the purest sense of the word, and I can officially vouch for this. Their structure rewards players for loyalty and hard-work. You can practically unlock costumes, heroes, items and special boosts all in-game -- for free -- as long as you are happy with spending a lot of time to EARN the items the right way. After a month of gameplay, I had 3 heroes unlocked, and with only one being purchased (due to a Buy1GetRandom1 sale). However, that random hero gave me someone I already had. Nevertheless, Gazillion recognizes how this may be a downer, so if you get a token of a hero you already have, you can use it to upgrade that hero's Ultimate Power. As someone who rarely spends money on games, I felt obligated to give "Marvel Heroes" a measly 5$ for "Taskmaster" due to how great the game is. Additionally, the game also gives out promotional codes and giveaways to help boost motivation for players -- including giving away keys to a free hero this week -- as well as weekly events that buff loot in certain areas. 

    As the game approaches it's one-year anniversary, it will reward players with an amazing amount of loot for being loyal. If you login all next week, you must use a level 30+ hero to access a special mission and receive 365 free gifts including a fortune card of each kind, a free STASH tab, a free, exclusive Punisher costume from the Greg Rucka comics and an "Old Lace" pet. Next week's patch will also introduce "Raids" -- a popular feature in many MMOs -- as well as an "Omega System" which helps make character builds and traits far more depthful and unique. 


    Overall, next week's "Marvel Heroes 2015" patch needs to be checked out by everyone, even if you wrote this game off before. CEO David Brevik said that he hopes press and journalists revisit the game, because he regrets not keeping the "beta" tag on the game for another six months after it's launch for a massive revamp featuring a whole new level of gameplay elements. The game has since introduced Runes/Recipes, Blessings, Unique items, Cosmic items, End-Game gameplay modes, difficulties, Team-Up heroes and much, much more. If you're not playing the best MMO in a very long time, you're missing out. This game makes Diablo 3 look like a Fisher Price toy. 

    Monday
    May262014

    "The Wolf Among Us" Episode 4 Trailer & Release Date

    Below is the latest trailer for the fourth episode in the "The Wolf Among Us" video game series by Telltale Games. The episode is set to release on Tuesday May 27th on PC/Mac, Playstation 3 (NA) whilst releasing on the 28th on Playstation EU and Xbox 360. Check back to ThinkMcFlyThink later in the week for a review. 


    Friday
    May162014

    PC Review: The Walking Dead Episode 3 - "In Harm's Way"

    MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD



    "In Harm's Way" is the third installment of the second season of TellTale Games' critically acclaimed video game series; The Walking Dead. This installment features the group and Clementine's struggle after being captured by an old enemy of her new friends - Bill Carver - whose out to not only get his child back from an impregnated Rebecca, but also to make sure they don't cause him any problems in the future. There's lots of potential in this episode; will the group submit to Carver and live by his rules? Would they attempt a revolution? Where's Luke? So, did the episode live up to expectation? [Everything spoken in this review is through choices from my playthrough. Don't take it as gospel since the game changes based on the player's own choices.]

    Although it may not be everyone's cup of tea, and it isn't always mine, this episode is chalk-full of character moments. Additionally, there is plenty of drama and suspense sprinkled throughout TellTale's third episode, but this one really tells us who the characters are and shows their true colors. We're introduced to new characters like Reggie who are pretty well developed and despite biting the bullet, he is actually a pivotal part of the development of the episode. After Carver kills him, it knocks down the dominoes of drama as even Bonnie - who helped kidnap Carlos' crew last episode - questions her allegiance to Carver and his ways. Overall, there was some really good character moments in this episode that I'll get to.



    The character development in this episode was superb, but I almost felt that it was sort-of lacking for Bill Carver who dies at the end after a gruesome beating by Kenny with a crowbar; reminisce of Batman: Under The Red Hood. To me in this episode, Bill wasn't taken in a straight direction. For example, the only thing he asks of the crew is to do their chores and help out with the community so he can earn their forgiveness and rejoin the community and live in peace with him, however he kills (new character) Reggie over a simple mistake and didn't even twitch at the action. You could say that Bill was never going to forgive the crew and just kill them all after they've contributed enough, but Bill is killed before we could ever find out. Although I have to tip my hat to Telltale for not dragging out the "evil emperor with a sanctuary" route that Robert Kirkman ever-so recycles. Instead, in this episode, classic character Kenny evolves into something we'd never thought he'd become thanks to the writers taking a big swerve. It is within this scene, i think, that we get a surefire definition of everyone involved in the episode. Kenny slowly takes out a crowbar and asks people to leave so they don't have to witness what is about to be done to Bill; this scene tells us who realizes how bad the world really is based on whether or not they left. Naturally, as Clementine, I voted to stay and it's a really badass moment when Kenny says "This is about to get ugly" and Clem says "I know."; this is a moment that actually made me like Clementine, a lot. There are plenty of scenes throughout the game that showcase who these characters are what they're willing to do but this scene, by far, might be my favorite in the entire series.

    The latest installment of "The Walking Dead" is downright terrifying, not because of the settings or the zombies; it's the character development that really shocks you. This episode is all about empathy, and the choices you make have a cost; especially the ending scene where Kenny's girlfriend gets bitten and you have a choice of killing the walker that bit her or cutting her hand off; and I've played both endings which are equally amazing. This review took so long because I played through the episode maybe 3 times which is very rare for me with a Telltale game. It's downright excellent. I've got to say it; In Harm's Way holds the best scene Telltale has ever made. It's the aforementioned scene with Clementine saying "I know". Additionally, it's extremely hard to find a fault in this game considering almost every scene is excellent. Telltale, you really won this month.

     

    Friday
    May092014

    PC Review: The Amazing Spider-Man 2 Is A Suprisingly Fun Swing


    The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is Beenox's latest foray into the world of Spider-Man. It features a storyline adjacent to the one of Marc Webb's feature film while keeping in continuity to Beenox's previous Spider-Man movie tie-in. This game features some classic Spider-Man villains that have yet to show up on film - such as Shocker and Kraven - but also features the ones from the film as well. Beenox's take on The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is very interesting, and they've obviously poured a lot more into this than their previous attempts at bringing Spidey's world at life, which people feel have been very repetitive and boring. However, is this game worthy of buying, or is it another lame cash-grab?



    The gameplay in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 is not bad at all, hell, it's actually quite fun and even though it takes a bit to learn and can feel unpolished on the get-go, Beenox has finally perfected the swinging mechanic and made combat something I look forward to doing in this game. Also returning to the game from the previous installment is the "web Rush" system, which allows you to specify targets in the immediate view and, well, rush to them by shooting web.

    This system is similar to Arkham City's grapnel gun, except the web rush system allows complete freedom in the destination, including the air. I didn't play much of the previous installment of the franchise, but in that game I hated the Web Rush system. However, in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, it feels much, much more defined and polsihed, even when you aren't in targeting mode. It's incredibly useful when you're high in the sky, prancing around skyscraper to skyscraper. You can graciously go from one end of the map to the other just by strategically web-rushing, and very quickly. I honestly use this system more than the swinging, which has been perfected for maximum fun and travel. Speaking of web slinging, Spidey's webs now connect to buildings, and the swings can be boosted. Also, another cool feature within the web slinging mechanic is the slingshot, which has an excellently fluid animation and shoots you far through a street for expedited travel. Overall, The Amazing Spider-Man 2's web swinging mechanic is all-out fun. There's multiple ways to travel throughout the city to find objectives and such.



    The combat, however, isn't as polished but it's still fun and that's really all that matters to me -- the fun factor. The system is basic, X to punch, A to jump, LB to web-pull, RB to web-rush and B to seismic blast/web shoot your enemies. You can string together a couple of basic combos, but there's no real depth to it. However, shooting huge blasts to giant foes to knock them down somewhat feels satisfying, especially after web-rushing towards them and beating them down. It's a combo that feels fluid even though there's no real depth to it, and that's what I like about the combat in this game - it's not deep but it's fluid and elegant, and can almost feel like poetry in the right position such as Kingpin's boss battle. Admittedly, at times, it does feel broken at times, however that may simply be due to user error. In addition, the player can practice the combat system in Challenge Maps available in an Arcade Machine located in a comic shop owned by Stan Lee. In the end, The Amazing Spider-Man 2's combat is incredibly fun and mostly fluid, but head-to-head combat isn't the only way of playing the game.

    The game also boasts stealth combat, similar to that of many other superhero games. And to be quite honest with you, I feel as though The Amazing Spider-Man 2's stealth is more fun than the Arkham series'. In The Amazing Spider-Man 2, you can sneak behind enemies and "Stealth Takedown" them by pulling them towards you and Spidey knocks them out and ties them to the floor. Alternatively, you can sneak onto poles, walls, roofs, chandaliers and many other things and pull thugs towards you and tie them up into webbed-coccoons. The system could definitely use work by adding a lot more of a variety in animations and takedowns, but surprisingly it works for a Spider-Man game and the execution fits the character. I love it because it allows freedom. I can web-zip to a whole new side of the wall in an instant instead of trying to circle around multiple gargoyles like a trapeze act. I can crawl on the roof and slide slowly down and take out and enemy before he knows it, instead of having to wait for the enemy to get in the perfect position below me. The stealth isn't perfect, and could definitely use some refining but I've played games with worse.



    Admittedly, one of my favorite aspects however is the voice acting. Sam Riegel reprises his role as Peter Parker and although his lines can get repetitive quickly, the delivery is fantastic and he brings some true emotion to the role of Peter Parker - as if he were playing the character in a feature film. Steve Blum does a fantastic job as Kraven The Hunter, capturing the character well. However, my favorite definitely had to be JB Blanc as the Kingpin/Wilson Fisk whose voice was just excellent. It was dark, brooding but also wise and scary and I had to look at the credits to see who the actor was. It was an all-around powerful performance and I can't wait until the next game to hear him in the role again. Speaking of which, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 has an important post-credits scene setting up Beenox's next movie tie-in that also features the Kingpin. Overall, The Amazing Spider-Man 2's voice direction and casting is superb.

    To summarize, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 feels like the game that Beenox has been trying to make for years. It incorporates all the best features of their previous attempts at Spider-Man whilst polishing and refining them. Additionally, a few more months of development time and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 would've been the perfect Spider-Man game. It ranks high in my list of favorites along with Spider-Man for the Playstation and Web of Shadows. We know that Beenox is working on some non-film Spider-Man games, so I look forward to playing and reviewing their next entry.

    Saturday
    Apr122014

    Firaxis Games Announce "Civilization: Beyond Earth"



    Firaxis Games is releasing Civilization: Beyond Earth this fall. Now, you're probably thinking it, but no, this is NOT an expansion pack for Sid Meier's Civilization V. It's a fully-fledged standalone game set "Beyond Earth" where players can encounter new civilizations and planets. Additionally, the game will scrap the "tech-tree" in favor of a "tech-web" which starts with simple ideas and branches out into much more broader, and crazier things. The developers promise that by endgame, each faction will be severely different from another. Beyond Earth will keep the traditional hex-sized tiles and still restrict one unit-per-tile combat, but allow satellite and orbital strikes to help buff the player. You can read all about Beyond Earth at IGN with quotes from Firaxis Games.


    Thursday
    Apr102014

    First Trailer for THE LAST OF US: REMASTERED for PlayStation 4

     

    The first trailer for Naughty Dog's The Last of Us: Remastered dropped today, giving us a brief but beautiful glimpse of the game's improved graphic fidelity by showing one of the most genuinely moving and hard to watch scenes in the entire game.

    When Naughty Dog and SCE released The Last of Us just last summer, no one could have predicted the rave it would recieve.
    As it was more or less touted as the PlayStation 3's swan song, with some of the best visuals the console had seen (and even rivaling that of the PlayStation 4), many were already hoping for a re-master as the PlayStation 4 released in November.

    Well, as it is, that's exactly what Naughty Dog had been planning all along, according to Naughty Dog co-president Evan Wells to IGN:

    “We had a lot of people on the forums saying ‘can I play this on PlayStation 4?’ We had actually been anticipating that, and started working on it pretty much as soon as we finished the PlayStation 3 [version]," he explained. "We weren’t sure if it was going to go anywhere, but when we saw the fans clamouring for it we doubled-down, and put more effort behind it.

    "The graphic fidelity has been turned up to eleven. We’ve got 1080p, we’re pushing the draw distances further, we’re creating higher resolution character models, better lighting, better shadows.”

    The game will include all DLC for both single and multiplayer as well as pre-order incentives:

    Pre-ordering The Last of Us Remastered at a participating brick and mortar retailer, you will get 100 Supply Points for Factions mode, bonus skins for Joel and Ellie, increased crafting and healing speeds in the campaign, and increased reload speed and clip capacity for select weapons. Pre-ordering on the PlayStation Store will net players early access to the Brawler Survival Skill, additional loadout points, and some costume components, all for use in Factions Mode.

    No release date has been confirmed; but I'd expect it (personally) to be around the games 1-year anniversary this summer.
    For more, read my review of The Last of Us here.  

    Thursday
    Apr102014

    Review: The Wolf Among Us Episode 3 - "A Crooked Mile"



    DISCLAIMER: This "review" will be filled to the rim with SPOILERS. Future reviews will also have a similar disclaimer if SPOILERS are contained. This review serves more as a discussion of the events in the game.

    In my eyes, I was truly worried about this episode of The Wolf Among Us. After the way the second episode ended, the rest could easily be predicted if you've read the comics. It implied the cliffhanger character, Icabod Crane, was a normal big, bad serial killer using prostitutes to live his dirty little fantasies about Snow White, which was hinted at in the comics. I thought the next three episodes would have focus on Bigby hunting him down. But, boy, I've never been so happy to be wrong. The third episode of The Wolf Among Us - "A Crooked Mile" - pushes everything in full-throttle and turns the investigation upside down.



    This episode features an incredibly pissed off Bigby Wolf demanding answers and turns the game into a no-holds-barred suspenseful investigation. It starts off immediately where we left off, with Bigby discovering the photo of Ichabod with Beauty, where he then goes to Lily's funeral to talk to Snow and tell her the urgency of the crime. This small funeral scene by Telltale was really touching, and that's what I like about The Wolf Among Us. The gloves are off to do almost anything in this noir-esque New York City with characters from almost any piece of fiction. The Lily funeral scene was very genuine , yet quickly turned suspenseful, but not because there was much action, but because you're worried about what's going to happen to these characters that Telltale has made you grow to love. TweedleDee and TweedleDum invade the funeral to tell Bigby to back off of and with Telltale, you almost never know if what you say will have big consequences. Did telling them to "Fuck Off" ensure the death of one of the characters at the funeral? Luckily, it didn't, but my actions did cause some pretty bad consequences.

    Fast-forward and Bigby and Snow are now in the Fables Business Office with newly-introduced character Dr. Swineheart (who Fables fans know is important to the lore and will discover something vital to Bigby and Snow's future) who gets Bigby all checked up. The next few minutes actually lost me, honestly. We go from Bigby contemplating how to find Crane since he smashed the magic mirror, to Bigby finding a ripped page from a magic spellbook. It's all too convenient, and then Bluebeard comes in and starts rambling about helping to find Crane. I think, it was just something in the pacing of the dialogue that made me lose track of where it was going. Thankfully, it picked itself back up not minutes later and explained enough for me to make a harrowing decision. And this is what I have to praise, I had to actually think about picking where to investigate first because I thought - that much like the first episode - my choice would have some very big consequences.



    The difference for me - and in a good way - that separates TellTale's The Walking Dead from The Wolf Among Us for me personally is that I know who the main character is. I know his motives, his ambitions, his personality and his future. I've read a ton of Fables issues so I know some start and end points for this character. So when making hard decisions, I choose what I honestly think Bigby would do, or I play and act how I think Bigby would act. For example, when investigating Crane's apartment, I ran into Jack and from reading Fables, I know how much of a shit Jack will end up being to Bigby so I try to give him the worst shit I can. I'm a hard ass because Bigby is a hardass and served Fabletown for years trying to protect the city. The ending for example, also lets you to decide to kill someone or not when Bigby is in full Wolf mode, and that was one of my favorite scenes of the episode, actually. But in the end, Telltale really makes the game your own by letting you choose the narrative even if you have an idea of how the character acts, because sometimes, all of the choices are all in the same tone or "morality" column.

    All in all, The Wolf Among Us jams a ton of content into one episode. From it's start as a small investigation into the death of an unknown Fable into a giant conspiracy in Fabletown, I'm nothing but curious as to where they're going with this "Crooked Man" storyline. There has been no references to the comics about Ichabod's early days in Fabletown other than that he embezzled money from the city and had some sexual obsession with Snow White which was obviously portrayed in this episode. I'm not worried that The Wolf Among Us is going to disrupt Fables canon, because honestly, the past episodes have only been adding to the mythology.

    Thursday
    Mar202014

    PlayStation Exclusive Content for WATCH DOGS Revealed 

     

    From Eurogamer comes news detailing the PlayStation exclusive content in the upcoming Ubisoft venture, Watch Dogs, complete with a trailer just for the occasion.

    The cyber-action game hits stores this May after a lengthy series of delays and set-backs; but if you're a PlayStation gamer you'll be getting a few extra missions to envelope you in the virtual and expansive rendition of Chicago.

    Those playing on Sony platforms will get an extra hour of gameplay, split up into four missions, which will delve further into the world of hacker organisation DeadSec.

    PS3 and PS4 gamers will also get an exclusive outfit and a hacker boost, which enables an extra battery slot on your mobile - the rechargable meter which regulates your use of hacking powers.