Monthly Archives: June 2015

“Batman: Arkham Knight” Update and Debacle on the PC

Well, they can’t all be good. If you guys read my earlier posts, then you know that I bought Batman: Arkham Knight for the PS4 on midnight with additional content. I am loving it so far, and will have a review on it released soon. However, I don’t think just playing the game on the PS4 necessarily restricts me from talking about the PC port. If you guys know what’s happening on there then you have a right to be concerned. It’s just like Mortal Kombat X, where the people on the PC are unlucky, as players have so far encountered extremely poor frame rates, poor performance and numerous crashes. There are even some people who aren’t able to play it. Due to these issues, many Steam Users have posted negative reviews and warned to stay away form the game. Now I am a gamer who understands the inevitable bugs, as I’ve run into some minor ones on my copy of Arkham Knight. And while this may not be as huge a disaster as some other games including Arkham Origins and Battlefield 4, it’s still ridiculous. Thankfully, Rocksteady and Warner Bros. Studios have stepped up to the plate and written an apology to the fans. The game has been removed from Steam following the feedback until the games issues have been fully dealt with. It may end up hurting their bottom line, but the game should be in far better state and released in the way it should have been. I’m still disappointed at how a highly skilled developer like Rocksteady was able to let a terrible port get released in such a state. Still, this is the type of company that I like to see: someone who takes full responsibility for their mistakes and sets out to make up for them, even if it puts their bottom line at risk. This is a sign that gaming companies are actually listening to the feedback of their fans, and take them into account. This means that we should continue fighting for better gaming. Remember to check back in for my review of Batman: Arkham Knight soon. I will be using the PC debacle as a weight in the game’s final score.

E3 2015 Impressions

OK, it’s been almost a full week since E3 began, so I must talk about my thoughts on the games that showed. We were all blown away by the gameplay demo for Fallout 4, No Man’s Sky showed us a scale unlike anything seen before, Total War is tying in with the fantasy genre, and Halo 5: Guardians looks gorgeous and epic. As far as EA goes, I am excited for the new Mass Effect game, Andromeda, and I’ll talk more about Battlefront in a little bit. It looked liked the Doom franchise was back in full swing with more stylized violence, Assassin’s Creed looks like it should be able to redeem itself, and Black Ops 3 may or may not turn the franchise formula on its head. There were also a few fresh new I.P.s that caught my attention. For the PS4, Horizon Zero Dawn looks both gorgeous and engaging. On the Xbox One, backwards compatibility is finally available, Rare finally gets a game to work on, Gears of War 4 comes to life, and the Holo Lens shows off the potential of the future. For Honor looks like medieval games can become realistic and historical rather than fantasy. Kitchen for the PS4 with the Oculous Rift looks amazing and intense. Now I had to save the most controversial showing for last. What I’m talking about is Star Wars: Battlefront by EA and Dice. When it was first announced that the same people behind the disaster Battlefield 4 were reviving the Battlefront series, many Star Wars fans were less than pleased. I’ll admit the E3 gameplay was better than I thought it would be. Although several reviewers say that the flying controls are like crap. Others are accusing EA of making the gameplay are a direct re-skin of Battlefield’s multiplayer. (Which isn’t a terrible idea) EA has already screwed up once this year with the release of Battlefield Hardline. But I must say, that I have higher hopes than I had previously.

“Batman: Arkham Knight” Update

Attention all readers and Followers!
Batman: Arkham Knight, the conclusion to the epic Batman Arkham franchise by Rocksteady Studios, is almost upon the horizon. I have already reserved my PlayStation 4 copy of the game, which I will receive on Midnight this Monday. I will immediately start playing it. However, I absolutely refuse to rush through it. I will write up a full, honest to God review on it, but I can’t get through 2015 without a nice emotionally-resonant Batman story. We all know what happened with Arkham Origins, but let’s not talk about that. All of the early reviews on consoles say that it’s one of the best games of the next generation.(Although that’s not saying too much) I have been a humongous fan of Batman for years now, so please give me some space for this highly anticipated game. Remember to tune in around July for the full written review of Batman: Arkham Knight.

“Mad Max: Fury Road” Movie Review

I’m sorry this a little late, but I’m glad I finally got to see it. This post-apocalyptic action-adventure film was released on May 15th, 2015, so far grossing over $314 million worldwide. Released 30 years after the third film, Beyond Thunderdome, director George Miller unleashes all his repressed rage in this rollercoaster ride. Set in an unspecified future in the Australian Outback, the world has run low on water, oil, and a handful of other energy sources. After getting captured by a slaver named Immortan Joe, Max Rockatansky finds himself entangled in a treachery by Furiosa, a lieutenant who’s trying to escort some wives to a better place to live. Max reluctantly tags along, eventually dragging a disgraced War Boy named Nux into the group. They’re looking for a place called the Green Place, a supposedly green and prosperous land where Furiosa lived as a child. What I found interesting is how the film was able to incorporate numerous themes into the plot and the character interactions. Immortan Joe’s control over the water is reminiscent of an old event in the Bible, Furiosa is searching for redemption, and the wives are desperate to find a new home for their children. In one scene a wife is seen praying; when asked who she’s praying to she answers, “To anyone who will listen.” This is a grim world, and many have lost their faith. So it’s more or less a cautionary warning of what we will come to if this scenario happens. The action sequences and stunts frequently had my jaw drop to the floor at how they were even possible to film. Essentially filmed as one giant car chase, the seamless transition from one vehicle to another as they are destroyed is nothing short of amazing. Accompanied by George Miller’s pitch perfect direction, the performances from the cast are believable, as we watch their moral decadence swing in the balance throughout all the plot’s twists and turns. The fantastic orchestral soundtrack by Junkie XL adds a level of atmosphere unparalleled in many other films. Note that this film isn’t for everyone, as the action can graphic sometimes, and the subject matter is pretty heavy to handle. Even with that, Mad Max: Fury Road is by far my favorite movie of the year. It works well in so many areas. Story, pacing, atmosphere, acting, themes, and action. If you love post-apocalyptic stories and fast-paced action, look no further this film. Even if you don’t get much context as to why some of the warring factions exist.

“Daredevil” T.V. Show Review

I know it’s unusual for me to review a T.V. show, but I had to make an exception, as there was a lot of hype surrounding Daredevil. This critically acclaimed superhero show from a Marvel Studios and Netflix collaboration aired its episodes on April 10th, 2015, and almost instantly was renewed for a second season. After the lackluster and disappointing Daredevil movie starring Ben Affleck, Marvel wanted to make sure they would never make a mistake like that ever again. And they achieved that goal with flying colors. About 20 years after losing his eyesight in a car accident, Mathew Murdock becomes an attorney at law in his adulthood. But, after confessing to his Catholic priest, Murdock becomes a masked vigilante in Hell’s Kitchen. He must contend with Wilson Fisk, an extremely wealthy and up-and-coming crime lord who wants to paint the city in his vision. We’re also presented with a wide cast of interesting and relatable characters. These include Murdock’s best friend, Foggy, their secretary, Paige, a reporter, Ben Urich, and a number of memorable villains. This show is unlike anything Marvel has ever done before. This is a dark, gritty, mature, and realistic superhero story I have been waiting for. It may not be fair to compare the show to the films, but it’s set in the same universe and the show makes several subtle references to the Avengers, so I’ll just run with it. Since this a Netflix show, I’m obviously going to binge-watch Daredevil;that is until I have to turn the T.V. off. No God forbid, you’d get up off you’re butt and leave the couch. And with that in mind, I would recommend watching a few episodes at a time as it can be a lot to handle. Without spoiling too much, at one point early in the season, Kingpin is able to decapitate a man with a freaking car door. And what I find fascinating is that, just like Game of Thrones, despite a pretty large cast, there’s not a single dull performance from any of the actors. And there’s never a throw-away character.(Bring it on Foggy Haters) Each and every person is presented as and developed into flawed, interesting characters worth investing in. There will be a few moments where you’ll despise the main villain, and then others that you want him to succeed. In fact, there were a handful of moments when I was frustrated with the writers’ decision on certain characters’ fates. Spanning 13 episodes and each one lasting me at least 50 minutes, I fell love with every moment. I’m so pumped for the second season, even if that means I have to wait for nearly a year for it to come.

“Jurassic Park” Movie Review

Before this franchise attempts to redeem itself, I must look at the original. This science-fiction adventure film was released June 11th, 1993, grossing $914 million originally, later going over $1 billion from its 2013 3-D re-release. Based on the acclaimed novel by Michael Crichton, the plot follows a millionaire struggling to keep his business in place after a fatal accident. To show the investors bringing two scientists, the millionaire brings a mathematician, and a lawyer to his private island to show them what his business is: gathering and cloning dinosaur DNA and creating more dinosaurs in real life. Unfortunately, their visit is interrupted when Dennis Nedry, a greedy and corrupted employee, hacks the park and lets all the dinosaurs. The survivors must find their way off the island, while the millionaire is struggle to let go of research with so much potential. There are a few noticeable differences between this film, such as when the kids are lost from the group and the ending which I won’t spoil. The script itself has a a few flaws such as inconsistent dialogue that can either be underwritten or perfect for the scene. The direction is unquestionably masterful, showing Steven Spielberg’s true talent behind the screen. Easily the best thing about Jurassic Park is its groundbreaking special CGI effects. Receiving an Oscar for Outstanding Special Effects, the detailed recreations of creatures such as the T-Rex and the Velociraptor still hold up, despite being 2 decades old. The pacing is near perfect, as it creates some of the most intense moments ever seen onscreen. Especially the scene where the kids retreat to the kitchen, and two Velociraptors track them down. And, oh, the soundtrack by John Williams. The main core is an unforgettable as we are introduced to the dinosaurs for the first time. Much like his previous works, he manages to capture both magic and wondrous adventure perfectly. It’s sad, then, that such a humongous film’s reputation was slightly tainted by the two lackluster sequels that followed up. I hope to God, that Jurassic World will be far superior to them if nothing else. All in all, the original Jurassic Park still stands up as one of my favorite films by Steven Spielberg. Even the late Michael Crichton, author of the novel, liked the movie when it first came out. That is a true testament to this film’s quality and success.