Demo Impressions – The Darkness 2

Hi, just a quick impressions today of the just released Darkness 2 demo. Going to be running down what I thought of the demo, so here we go –

The demo consists of a stage broken into a few parts with small cutscene segments in between. You start off in an enclosed room, where a cutscene plays out. Basically, the Brotherhood has captured you, and are trying to capture the Darkness. Each segment of this scene is around ~1-2 mins long, and in all it gives a pretty good impression of the art style and voice acting of the game.

The second part of the demo contains the Restaurant/Subway stage that you see in all the press demos. Gunplay feels much better than in the first game, and the Darkness itself also seems much more badass. This stage is very much on rails – the first part of it doesn’t even allow you to move, but whether or not the rest of the game will be this scripted is still yet to be seen. The art style is still very comic book style, but it looks good nonetheless.

Anyhow, I highly recommend checking out the demo for yourself, as it’s definitely worth the time.

The Darkness 2 Releases February 7th.

Wakfu – Review

Wakfu is a nice little mmorpg – tbs, that’s got me hooked for a while now. For anyone who’s familiar with Disgaea, Bastion, or any of the really old final fantasy games, you would be familiar with the Wakfu interface. With classic exploration and action-y combat, Wakfu is a nice game to check out when you’re bored. Although there are quite a few flaws and problems in the game, it is justified because it’s still just a beta. I am really looking forward to the real game, which contains well, bug fixes and new classes / items / etc. The distinct classes makes Wakfu a cool game to fool around with, as you can try every class, and try out their different skills. Abilities and skills are easy to level up, and you don’t really need to put too much consideration into it. Basically, it can be a very relaxing game to play with friends, or if you’re a try hard, you can spend lots of time and plan out various strategic points dependent on the class you chose.

The character design is nice and cute, but the sprites do need a bit more work, as it seems a bit too much like a flash game right now. The art fits it’s style, so I’m not too worried about that. Combat is simple, although it might seem confusing at the start, after a few fights, you’ll get the hang of it very fast.

The combat is simple. as I’ve already said. Choose your starting position, then you can choose to move 3 blocks (as you start with only 3 MP – Movement points), and you start with 6 energy to use on either a normal attack or a spell. You can see  the basic interface above^^

The biggest problem that I see with this game is the insane lag I get sometimes. I’m not sure if it’s the game itself, or if it’s the North America servers I’m playing on. One thing I know for sure is that it’s not my computer. Sometimes, lag spikes lasts up to 5 seconds, and in the middle of a combat (with a timer!), it’s very VERY frustrating.

Regardless, I would imagine that it would be a very interactive and fun game to play with a lot of friends, as you can join parties and go on quests and fight monsters like any other mmo. I’m just playing alone right now because no one wants to play this unknown game 😦 Still, I think it’s pretty interesting, and it’s free!!!! (and not limited beta <3) Even though I really liked this, there are too many problems with the game right now, so I can’t really give it a very high mark, but if the whole game ever comes out and I think that there are major improvements, I’ll definitely come back and make it higher ^_^

Overall, give it a try! If you don’t like it, then too bad, but if it appeals to you, then who knows, maybe it’ll become one of your favourite games 😀

sycknesS’ Karma Build

Hi, this is the main build that I use when I play Karma.

What I’m trying to accomplish with this build –

Using this build, you end up with lots of AP, decent health if Rylais, good resistances, and sufficient mana/health regen – Perfect for Support-ish Karma that still does lots of ap damage.

Summoners –

Heal/Flash –  + 

CV’s overrated.

 

Runes –

 – Magic Pen Reds

 – Mana Regen Yellows

 – AP/Level Blues

 – Flat AP Quints

OR –

 – Magic Pen Reds

 – Armor Yellows

 – Magic Res/ Level Blues

 – Flat AP Quints

Masteries –

21/0/9

Main Build –

Start Doran’s Ring/ Faerie Charm + Wards/ Boots + 3

Philo Stone

Boots of Lucidity

Blasting Wand

Large Rod

Abyssal Scepter

Zhonya’s

Deathcap

+ your choice of 2 extra/support items

I prefer Rylais/Reverie

 

Review – Batman: Arkham City

Arkham Asylum was an amazing game. It’s fluid combat, great atmosphere, and memorable characters and plot made it a blast to play. After such a great debut, all eyes were on Rocksteady as they neared the release of their second Batman game – Arkham City. And I tell you now, Rocksteady delivered one of the best action titles of all time. Arkham City kept everything that Asylum did well, and made many huge improvements.

Arkham City’s story is extremely memorable. Set four months after the events at the Asylum, Quincy Sharp, now the Mayor of Gotham, has built a sprawling megaprison in the heart of Gotham City. He’s transferred all the prisoners from BlackGate and Arkham Asylum to the new prison, appropriately named Arkham City. The new prison is run by Dr. Hugo Strange, and Batman has to go in and figure out what’s really going on within the walls of the prison. If you buy the game new, you also play an extra four missions as Catwoman. These Catwoman missions tie into the main plot perfectly, and even change the whole beginning of the story, which is one of the best starts to any game within the past 20 years. If you want to buy the game used, you get the option to buy the Catwoman DLC for $10. If you choose not to get Catwoman, you still get a complete story, but it won’t be as enjoyable as if you have Catwoman unlocked. The ending is a little anticlimactic, as it feels like that the game throws too much information at you at once, but other than that the story is very compelling.

People who played Arkham Asylum will be immediately familiar with the returning FreeFlow combat system. The premise is simple – Left Mouse to attack, Right to counter, and #s for gadgets, and it works extremely well. You always feel as powerful as you should as Batman, and you’ll never feel overwhelmed by 20 vs 1 situations. The other half of combat is taken up by Predator style gameplay. Here, you’ll be swinging through vantage points, attempting to survey your environment as best as you can, waiting for the best opportunity to silently take down your foes. The games delivers a healthy mix of both Predator and Arena style gameplay, and in lots of other situations you can pretty much choose how you want to engage your enemies. While playing as  Catwoman, you really do feel like Catwoman. You use a much more agile style of combat, and your gadgets function differently from Batman’s. It’s tough to create two distinct playable characters in a game that centres on one, and Rocksteady pulled it off perfectly. Boss fights are a little on the easy side, but become drastically tougher in the New Game Plus mode on Hard.

Movement is extremely similar to the first game. You still grapple your way across buildings, glide through the sky, and sprint across the ground. You get a few more ways to fly around, such as grapnel boosting, but there haven’t been any drastic changes. As Catwoman, you pounce across rooftops, using your whip to cling to buildings before jumping up them. Since you don’t fly, it’s harder to get around the city at a fast pace, so you’ll be running and jumping the whole time.

One of the great things about Arkham Asylum was the way in which it captured the overall atmosphere of the prison. Arkham City also manages to pull this off perfectly. Hearing prisoners nervously chat amongst themselves really helps establish the dreary mood of the City, and everywhere you go there are broken highways, ruptured ground, and torn posters. You really feel like you’re in Arkham City, which is something that most games don’t manage to do.

After you finish the story, there’s still plenty to do. Riddler challenges return, there are side quests to complete, trophies to find, and a new game plus (which is a  to finish. There’s tons of replay value here, and you’ll be playing for weeks after completing the main game.

However, even Arkham City has one big downfall. There’s one fatal bug that exists that wipes away all your saves randomly. The chance of encountering this is less than being struck by lightning, but just in case, back up your files, and you’ll be fine. I did encounter this bug when I was around 40% done the main story once, but I actually felt compelled to play it again. This doesn’t happen with many games, but it did with this one, so that says something.

Overall, Arkham City is amazing. It is one of the best games of the past decade, and you should play it.

DLC

Nightwing Bundle – $6.99. 8/10 value.

Robin Bundle – $6.99. 8/10 value.

Arkham City Skins Pack – $4.99. 5/10 value.

Challenge Missions Pack – $2.99. 6.5/10 value.

sycknesS’ Top 10 Most Anticipated of 2012

Hello again. Instead of the usual review, this time I’ll be counting down my most anticipated (PC) Games of 2012.

From 10 through 1 –

The original Darkness was pretty cool. I only played ~6 hours of it, but what I played was highly enjoyable. It’s story was very emotional, and possessed a certain human like quality. From what I’ve seen of the Darkness 2, it looks to improve upon basically everything the original had, and add a lot more. Co-op should be really fun, and the addition of quad-wielding will be sure to open up a host of new Darkness powers.

Future soldier looks to be a grand return to Ghost Recon’s stealthy past. While most of the past few games focused mainly on CoD style Rambo gameplay, this game seems to emphasize on tactical, stealthy, team based gameplay. Of course, the option to lone wolf is still there for players who want it, but it isn’t the main part of the game anymore. Multiplayer is what I’m most excited about, as I feel like it might achieve what Brink didn’t – tactical team based gameplay. If this game delivers, it will definitely be one of my favourite shooters for a long time.

I personally just got into Hitman earlier this year, and loved it. I’ve only played Blood Money, but it’s deep, stealthy assassination cover style gameplay always got my adrenaline pumping. As one might imagine, I was pretty happy to learn that another Hitman was coming out. Here’s to hoping that it delivers an even better experience.

Borderlands was a great RPG/FPS with a big emphasis on co-op. There were a lot of varied quests, a big open world to explore (although you never got the chance to do so because everything was out to kill you), and a lot of loot to collect. Most of that loot consisted of lots of guns. ~100k to be exact. The original also packed in a ton of replay value, and if BL2 improves on that, it should be a ton of fun to play.

I’m really looking forward to ME3, but I’m not sure that what I’ve seen in previews has really excited me yet. The overall game looks better, but the combat seems to be more focused on 3rd person shooting. If they keep RPG elements as good as they were in previous games though, ME3 will be a thrilling conclusion to the series.

I really like Prototype despite all it’s flaws, so Prototype 2 has me very excited. From what I’ve seen of Dev interviews, they seem to know exactly what went wrong with the first game, and are working to improve upon it. Environments seem much more unique, combat looks to be slightly less difficult/annoying at times, and tendrils look amazing. The story seems to be the exact same as the first game, but the main character from the original is now the bad guy, which is kinda cool.

As a LoL player, any new (non HoN) MOBA is pretty exciting, and a Valve created sequel to the most popular MOBA of all time is as good as the genre gets. From what I’ve seen of the beta, the game is already very deep, even in it’s unfinished state. And as we approach launch date, I’m sure Valve is working hard to create a great competitive game that will be played for years to come.

If you aren’t excited for Bioshock Infinite, there’s probably something wrong with you. The newest title in the franchise is set in a completely different world, and looks to deliver everything the past games did and more. The world of Columbia looks stunning, and the characters seem very unique, each with very interesting pasts.

What can I say, it’s the sequel to one of the best games of all time. That is all.

And my #1 most anticipated game of 2012 is….

Guild wars 2! I’m not just excited for this game because of it’s deep gameplay or amazing open world. I’m excited because it may just change the MMO scene forever. It’s an AAA MMO without a subscription fee, running on a much better engine than WoW, and packing a lot more content than most modern MMOs. If this game markets well, it may very well change the future of MMOs.

Dragon Age II – What Class Should I Choose?

So, here we are again. The first and probably the most important choice you will make in Dragon Age II – The class you choose. I’ll take a little time here to explain what each of the classes can do and what you should look for in each class.

Warrior: Basically, you are a tank. Don’t expect to do tons of damage. Your shortage of stamina won’t allow you to spam (not to mention the cooldowns aren’t that short). Think of yourself as a stun-bot or a support tank. STUN STUN STUN TAUNT AOE BUFF BUFF DAMAGE REDUCT!!11!!

That would be the general idea of warrior, even in warrior, there are still several different things you can choose to become, each greatly differentiating the play style.

One-handed: Basically, sword and shield. You sacrifice the ability to do tons of AoE (area of effect) damage, but you gain the ability to well…..become a stun bot. Usually, this type of warrior is built very tanky, with lots of health and resistances to just well…. tank it out, buff teammates, and taunt enemies so your rogues and mages can do their job.

Two-handed: HEY LOOK I HAVE A BIG SWORD :D!! As the name suggests, you wield a large double handed sword, which allows you to damage enemies in a very large arc in front of you. It’s quite useful against groups of small and insignificant enemies, but when you get into major boss fights, you waste all your energy and do no damage. It’s best to still build some tankiness, as you will die quickly otherwise.

OMG I’M FINALLY LEVEL 7 WHAT SPEC. POINT DO I GET?

If you are aware of the 3 choices, then you can skip this part, but if you don’t wanna read all the text, then here’s a summarized version.

Reaver – The blood mage of warriors, you can hurt yourself to become more powerful and has the ability to steal an enemy’s life.

Berserker – Not relying on magic, you plow through everything you see with unmatched strength, stamina and speed.

Templar – Using the chantry’s “powers”, you are able to resist more magic and able to cleanse your team of curses and bring wrath to the demons.

Rogue: So, there are 2 types of rogues, ranged – and melee. Both excel at what they do, and their roles are somewhat similar. Rogues have the ability to use long cooldown single-target abilities to burst down enemies incredably fast. Something to consider for rogues is whether you want to build attack speed or critical strike.

Melee / Attack speed: This is more focused on getting weapons that ultimately makes you attack very fast and thereby making up for the extra damage that archers do. Attack speed is more recommended on melee rogues, who simply attack fast and use abilities to nuke.

Ranged / Critical Damage: Archers do not shoot super fast, but rather making the shot count for lots of hurt. You may not cut stuff up as fast as melee rogues, but your damage will not be any weaker. Archers have a decent amount of AoE, and combined with your natural nuking attacks, if you can stay alive in a fight, you will carry your team to victory.

SPEC. POINTS:

Assassin: I believe that no matter what, this is a tree that all rogues should max first. The passive abilities to regain stamina and the buff / debuffs / epic nukes from this tree is simply amazing. If you’re looking to do damage, this tree is a must.

Duelist – Good at taking a single target and distracting enemies. If you’re looking to be able to sustain a bit more damage against bosses, or you think that you might need to take damage for the team, then this is a pretty good tree to go.

Shadow: First of all, for this tree to work, you must get stealth. (Necessary) Combined with assassin, you will be a walking shadow, and destroying any that comes to close. This tree has lots of great passives and actives, but remember, if you take duelist, its better to not take shadow, as the playstyles will counter each other and you will be forced to choose one.

Mages: Ah….Mages…. What can I say, they’re mages :D. Mages excel at making or breaking a fight, with tonnes of AoE spells, buffs, and debuffs and disables, a good mage can leave enemies on the ground, trying to find their own teeth on the ground. Heals can really save a teammate and revives can really change the outcome of a fight. There are so many spells, and trying new things is quite fun when you’re playing a mage.

SPEC. POINTS:

Blood Mage: Not only do they consume their own health to use spells, they can take health from teammates to replenish their own. Able to drain life and even control the minds of enemies, this type of mage is sure to be fear on the battlefield.

Force Mage: You can’t say a character has disruption until you’ve seen a force mage. Able to slam, throw, suck in, and slow everyone in a huge radius, this mage is the master at breaking the enemy’s lines and disrupt enemy casters. Although, only on of the spells do damage, so it’s less focused on dealing pain.

Spirit Healer: MEDIC!!! MEDIC! Well, that’s basically what you are. Able to heal, buff and even revive teammates, it’s always good to have a spirit healer. Of course, that means sacrificing damage for more support-ish spells, it’s all just your choice.

That’s all I have for now…But the next post will be on your trusty companions! ~Jack~