Sunday, 31 October 2010

Braid Review


Braid is an Indie 2D platform game with puzzles based around time manipulation. You play as Tim who lives in an apartment at the top of a building. The game is split into 6 worlds. Each World is made up of levels. Each Level has Jigsaw pieces to collect. The main challenge of the game is collecting the jigsaw pieces which are sometimes out of reach or blocked by different obstacles. To complete a world you collect all the jigsaw pieces and then put them together to make a picture.
World:2 Level:Three easy pieces

The graphics in the game look very good thanks to the watercolour art style, and the multiple layered animated backgrounds. At the beginning of every world there are books which tell a story. The stories can be confusing, but there is some extra meaning to the stories if you spend the time to think about it. All the levels in braid are very well designed and there is little repetition in the puzzles. The game is not very long.

The game does have good replay value because there is a speed run option with times to beat. There are also secret stars to collect. The stars are very well hidden and very difficult to find and also reach. As a bonus for collecting the stars you get a more full ending to the game.

The soundtrack is very nice. The music is relaxing. When you rewind time the music also plays backwards.
World:4 Level:Fickle companion

Braid has excellent puzzles that are unique and very satisfying to complete. Global scoreboards for speed runs would have improved the game. I recommend playing Braid.

Score 9/10

Friday, 22 October 2010

Resident Evil 4 Review


Resident Evil 4 is a horror game played in 3rd person view as police officer Leon Kennedy.

It is the 4th game in the series and is different from previous instalment of the series by having the camera follow the character. In Resident Evil 1,2 and 3 the camera was fixed for every room. It is the first game in the series not to be set in Racoon City.


Leon a police officer from Racoon city is sent to Europe to protect the president’s daughter who has been kidnapped. The enemies are zombie like humans that have been infected with a parasite. There are also monsters in the game which are the result of experimentation on the parasite. Ada is a police woman previously known to Leon is an independent agent not working for the police.

The cut-scenes in the game are really nicely done and the voice acting very good. The story is shown by cut-scenes, but also notes and videophone. The videophone works well and some of the conversations with the enemy are good. Notes are left throughout the game by different enemies. There is information in the notes that happened minutes ago in the game, I don't know why they would write these notes in such short time however the notes are very useful for understanding more of the story.
Leon shhots possesed villagers.


The game features a nice selection of guns like shotgun, riot shotgun, semi automatic rifle, and handgun. The guns are all very upgradable for shot power, shot rate, ammo capacity and reload speed.

The game has some really good bosses that look really unique, and also need different tactics to beat. Sometimes you will need to use the environment to beat a boss. Some boss fights last a very long time if you don’t have powerful guns and lots of ammo.

There are a lot of quick time events, and you will need to get good at them. In my opinion there are too many quick time events. The inventory in resident evil has each weapon taking up a set number of squares in the inventory. With limited squares in the inventory, if you carry large weapons you will have less space for ammo and health kits. Overall the inventory works well.

To change weapons you will need to go to the inventory and this can become very time wasting when wanting to throw a grenade because you need to go to the inventory, equip grenade, exit inventory, throw grenade, enter inventory, select weapon, and exit inventory. I think there should have been a button to change weapons.

Melee knife attack is very powerful and very useful when you do not have ammo. A good tactic is hitting enemies with the knife once they are on the floor. When an enemy is stunned if you walk close to the enemy there will be a quick time option to kick the enemy.

The game has a lot of replay value through treasure hunts, shooting galleries, and extra missions where you can play as Ada.
Leon vs El Gigante.


Overall I liked the game. It is fun. I really liked the enemy characters and how each one needed different tactics. The story is complex, and will make most sense if you play other resident evil games. The is atmospheric, the early parts of the game set in the village are scary.

Score 7/10

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Sol Survivor Review


Sol Survivor is a tower defence real time stratrgy game that has similar gameplay to plant vs zombies.  It is set in space with goal to defend human colonies from the bad aliens called the Acendancy. The game has campaign and multiplayer modes, global scoreboards and achievements.


You set defence turrets in strategic locations to destroy the attacking enemy. Enemies move along a preset path meaning you can plan the locations for turrets so the most enemies are hit.

There are different defence turrets such as flame thrower, laser, radiation, and canon. All the turrets have different pros and cons. Turrets are upgradable in game and one of the decisions you will have to make is whether to upgrade turrets or build more. Turrets need a resource called mass to build. Mass is regenerating. Support units can be called to help defence turrets. Missiles, mines, and increasing the turret rate of fire are support units.

You play each game as an executive officer.  Different officers have different weapons to choose from.

There is an in-game encyclopaedia where you can get information about enemies, turrets, executive commanders, and support units.

There is single player campaign mode with Easy, Normal, Hard, and Intense difficulty. There is a single player Survival mode with where the challenge is to last as much time as possible.
Laser and Canon turrets next to critical hit booster


Co-op multiplayer is a lot of fun because you can work as a team to use the turrets specific to your commander to help other players.

There are six campaign modes. You can replay all the campaign in co-op mode and also play a mode called duo campaign where one player drops turrets and the other is in charge of support.


I like Sol Survivor because it does have a lot of tactical depth. The multiplayer works very well and the campaign mode is good. The soundtrack in the game is excellent. A downside to the game is setting up defences can get repetitive.

Score: 7/10

Saturday, 2 October 2010

Sonic 4 Episode 1

Sonic The Hedgehod 4 Episide 4 is soon to be released (2010 release date), and it is the first from the main series since Sonic & Knuckles was released in 1994. It will have similar gameplay to Sonic & Knuckles but with improved graphics. It aims to capture the quality of the classic sonic games and update them.
Sonic jumping

The story is Dr. Eggman the main villain has been collecting animals and turning them to robots, and sonic must stop him doing this at all costs. The story in Sonic 4, continues where Sonic & Knuckles left off. In sonic 4 Dr. Eggman returns to get Sonic once and for all using all his know how to build some powerful and destructive machines.

Expect to many returning enemies from the earlier games. Motobug the ladybird type robot on a wheel. Obinaught the ball surrounded by 4 moving spikey balls. Chopper the robotic fish from the Greenhill zone that jumps and bites you when crossing bridges.

Some of the confirmed levels are Splash Hill and Lost Labrynth.

Friday, 1 October 2010

Team Fortress 2 Update

There was a major Team Fortress 2 update today which added with new weapons, hats, trading system and microtransactions. It is now possible to buy the items you want instead of waiting for them to be dropped randomly.
items available through in game cash shop
All updates for Team Fortress 2 and other valve games up till now have been free. Is this the begining microtransactions being used in more Valve titles?