Oculus Rift Sold to Facebook for $2 Billion!

 FBOCULUS

On Tuesday 25th March Facebook announced that they have bought the emerging Virtual Reality hardware company for $2 Billion. This has caused quite a few rifts among developers and Kickstarter pledgers.

In Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook post he stated the following, ‘Immersive gaming will be the first, and Oculus already has big plans here that won’t be changing and we hope to accelerate. The Rift is highly anticipated by the gaming community, and there’s a lot of interest from developers in building for this platform.’

He then went on to say, ‘After games, we’re going to make Oculus a platform for many other experiences. Imagine enjoying a court side seat at a game, studying in a classroom of students and teachers all over the world or consulting with a doctor face-to-face — just by putting on goggles in your home.’
After this news Notch (Markus Persson), the creator of Minecraft was quick to come out with this tweet: –

 

We have also seen a massive backlash from Kickstater Pledgers who are now demanding a refund on their Kickstarter page where it all began.

One angry backer commented, ‘I think we as backers have a right to the product too, and I’m not okay with my money being spent on technology that goes into the hands of Facebook.’

Another said, ‘I feel used. So frustrated right now. That is uncalled for…’

 

At first when I heard the news I was on the band wagon with everyone else. What the hell have Facebook got to do with this product? But then if you think about this more, Virtual reality is far more than just gaming. We have only seen it within this prism because that is all we have really pushed it for. Facebook is a communication based company and VR can easily be worked into this format.

I think this is a good a move for Oculus Rift, with the new VR headset from Sony (Project Morpheus) and rumors that Microsoft are also working on one, I feel this could be a the boost they needed before the titans come out to play.

Facebooktwitterrssyoutubeby feather

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? NO ITS A F”*#%NG TITAN!

Titanfall

Here it is! The game that could possibly bring Xbox One back into contention with the PS4 for sales and also perhaps change up what has become a somewhat stagnant FPS genre.

titanfall pic

So what are we liking about Titanfall? Well firstly Mechs, 3 of them to be precise with many customisation options for how they can be used (although many would say this is not enough) and a dynamic system that mixes Pilot combat (when outside of your Mech) and Titan combat (inside of your Mech).

The way that this game has managed to balance the fast paced Pilot combat with the big blasting Titan combat is very impressive! A good player can take down a Titan in one on one combat as well as getting crushed underfoot (or blasted to bits with one good shot) and this is where Titanfall really has got things right.

What they have also included is basic level AI which serve as cannonfodder and a way to see how the flow of the battle is moving. Yes, many people say that they would prefer just PVP. However, I am a fan of how “Grunts & Spectres” move around the map giving ample opportunity to shoot or even sneak behind and snap a little bit of neck! By killing opponents your Titan is effectively built faster and once this is achieved, can be summoned from the sky by activating Titanfall (ahhh man they used the name of the game for what happens! That’s so cool).

The player then has the option of either jumping inside of this giant Mech to start causing mayhem, or use them more defensively as a guard or a follower much like a big brother looming over the shoulder of a 14yr old ready to pound the face of any would-be bully.

burn cards

The Burn card system has been implemented as a new type of perk system where by playing the game you will collect useable cards to be used in later fights. These vary from the useless and stupid, to upgraded versions of weapons all the way to calling a Titan instantly in or giving double xp. I like the system I would not call it perfect however I definately like it and find myself saving certain cards for when I know I can get the most out of them.

Quick action is the name of this game. Jumping in from a drop ship players run towards the other team opting to attack AI opponents, reducing build time towards the all important Titanfall and you getting into your giant robot of death. There are of course various play modes available for you to decide on how you want to bring carnage to the battlefield.

 

RocketfirePersonally I find myself playing a mix between Attrition (which is your classic death match), Last Titan Standing (which is a team based battle between 6 Titans and the last man standing wins) and Capture The Flag. The parkour elements of the game really gives this last mode a bit more of a twist on the classic type of game play and can make for some crazy matches!This is not saying that the other modes are bad, just that I have found my time split mainly between these modes. Out of all of them, I must say I have fallen in love with Last Titan Standing.

The bad bits???

While the gameplay is brilliant, it does feel rushed as there is certainly a lack of dynamic game modes and no private servers! Customisation although there is a little bit is limited and we are yet to know if the season pass which they have kindly charged us 20 bucks for will have anymore weapons or content or just more maps!

AND THE MAPS! The maps do well mixing up terrain and areas so that there are places to move out of sight and mix the Titan VS Pilot game up. I was however hoping for a little more out of a next generation title. One level has Dragons (or Alien creatures that look like Dragons)that you are told to watch out for but all they really do is randomly gobble up an AI unit not really affecting the player in anyway.

Also this is next generation! Now completely destructable maps would ruin the gameplay (as all you would do is level the field and just Titan up), but I would love to see some elements in the map that change as the battle progresses. I guess we will just have to wait till later instalments to see if we receive such wonders!

titan build

The Game doesn’t look amazing at certain times on Xbox One where there is a definite wobble on the screen, but this is mainly at the beginning drop screen and doesn’t really affect when actually in the game play itself. I cannot speak for PC gamers, but it does look pretty nice on the screen shots that I have seen.

The campaign is a joke! You are forced to do it to unlock two extra Titans and regardless if you win or lose on a map you still go through to the next mission. Overall, each factions campaign can easily be done in less than 2 hours! The story line itself is weak and you have no real interest in what is going on in it as you are trying to concentrate on the gameplay itself rather than the silly voice overs, cinematics and people giving up their lives for the sake of doing the right thing (this isn’t even really a spoiler as you will care as little about the story line as I did).

IS TITANFALL THE ULTIMATE FPS?

The simple answer to this is no. While it does bring something totally new to the table, there are big parts missing. No doubt this game has done well and Xbox must be happy with the 96% uplift in console sales due to this game, but after a recent announcement Titanfall 2 will be cross platform and I am sure a lot of the things you could do to add to this entertaining game will be saved for the second installment.

If you had to describe Titanfall in one word, it would have to be fun! This genre has become quite stale over the years and Titanfall brings new ideas and mechanics to the FPS genre that it was longing for! Burn cards are a nice twist on a perks system but need fine tuning. Many of the cards really are pointless such as cloaking as a spectre which actually does not help the player at all.

titanfall 2

In short, this is a great game that unfortunately was rushed to market. That does not mean you should not get involved with it, far from that I urge anyone with a compatible system to pick up this game and have hours of multiplayer fun shooting from Titans and jumping wall to wall throwing grenades at packs of AI. This game is exactly what the Xbox One needed, a game to actually make people want to buy the next generation of consoles and so far is showing to have worked. 

I do not remember the last console game with this much hype. It certainly was not in 2014 and this has the chance to get in early as a contendee for game of the year. Will it win? Well probably not, but just having your game associated with such prestige is certainly a very good thing.

Now if you will excuse me, my Titan has just fallen and I need to jump in and start blowing stuff up again. If you need me just hit me with a Plasma shot as that will certainly get my attention!

GRUNTS, MOVE OUT!

 

Facebooktwitterrssyoutubeby feather

Diablo 3 Reaper of Souls launch event!

From the outside, Meltdown London looks like your typical London bar. However once inside, you can definitely tell that this is a bar created by gamers for gamers!

The work that had gone into setting up the launch event was incredible. There were posters, banners and cardboard cut-outs everywhere and with the dim lighting completing the atmosphere, it definitely felt that we were going to be in for one hell of a launch event.

The place was packed out with eager gamers ready to get their reaping on or at the very least snag some of the cool giveaways that were up for grabs. XMG_UK were there providing the competition questions and Blizzard did not disappoint with the amount of swag to battle over. T-shirts, posters, and collector’s editions were there for the taking as well as some uber prizes including a limited edition statue!

As well as being quiz masters, XMG_UK also brought the tech wizardry in the form of three very shiny laptops for people to try out Diablo 3 Reaper of Souls when it went live. Those laptops weren’t the only thing teasing people with Diablo 3 Reaper of Souls though. Around the room TV’s were showing what was in store, as well as a live streaming of the launch event in the US and a ominous timer counting down the hours and minutes until release!

Blizzard’s Community Manager was on hand to host the event and she did amazingly well keeping everyone buzzing and enjoying themselves. She wasn’t the only Blizzard person on-site though, Alex Mayberry Senior Producer for D3 was on hand to answer questions, sign Blizz stuff and generally be awesome. 🙂

As the counter hit zero, a massive cheer went up from the fans and people rushed to the laptops to get in on the early action. Many others rushed for the doors eager to get home and start massacring demons from the comfort of their computer chairs! Everybody though was very happy to finally be able to start enjoying the expansion. 🙂

For those that remained, the after party kicked off with champagne and another round of smoking cocktails prepared by a very clever mixologist who was brought in to provide Diablo themed drinks all evening. Here’s a quick video of those cocktails in action:

 

As the crowds thinned and the place became quieter, sustinance in the form of many pizza’s was provided by the kindly souls James from XMG_UK and Martin from MMOBuff.tv. Thanks guys!

Overall it was a fantastic evening and much fun was had by all. Check out my impromptu sticking of microphone into people’s faces throughout the night otherwise known as interviews!

And as always, until next time, GAMEOVERYEAH!

Facebooktwitterrssyoutubeby feather

Most anticipated games for Game Over Yeah

2013 was a year with some pretty big titles released. Now with the current gen bad boys of Xbox One and PS4 well and truly up and running, it’s time for some even bigger games to come out in 2014. Titanfall has certainly done very well in leading the charge, but what else is out there that will make you start scrabbling under the sofa cushions for extra change?

The awesome foursome have shaken the magic 8-ball, consulted the wise and mysterious internet and put together their most anticipated games for 2014.

 

MIKE’S PICKS

WATCH DOGS

We couldn’t do a list for most anticipated games of 2014 without the most anticipated game of 2013 that was postponed to 2014!

Watch Dogs was due for an end of year release around the time of the Xbox One and the PS4 launch. However, the developers were not happy with the state of the game and instead choose to push the release date back to “Spring 2014”.

 

watchdogsboxartagnostic

Well Spring is here and Watch Dogs is around the corner! The game follows Aiden Pearce, a hacker and former thug with a history of crime that led to a violent family tragedy. Watch Dogs is set in Chicago where a central network of computers does a Kevin Bacon and connects Everything Everywhere (EE joke). Armed with futuristic hacking technology, Aiden can pretty much control the city whilst he journeys on his mission to bring about his own form of justice. Think GTA but with control of everything around you in a sort of Terminator 3 robot esque way and you are starting to paint the picture of what Watch Dogs is meant to be all about.

 

Why do we want it? Well last year’s E3 trailer had everyone drooling and the team even went to an event at the local cinema to see an early build in the flesh and it looked tasty! Best thing eaten all year tasty not just that week! While recent press releases and videos have certainly not looked quite as good as original, we are yet to set judgment on Watch Dogs until it is finally released on May 27th.

This is another title that the next generation of consoles really needs to show the difference between the new and old and really push people to purchase these devices. GOTY? Possibly? With a game like this it is very hard to live up to the hype it has had building for 3 plus years but Ubisoft didn’t rush it out and this we hope is going to show in the final build. Oh and did we mention that it has 50 plus hours of gameplay! We like that amount, we like it a lot!

 

EA SPORTS UFC

So ok maybe only one person on the team is really looking forward to this title, but it is starting to look like a title that could again push the next generation of consoles to where we want them. Using the Ignite engine used by EA to make Madden 25 and Fifa 14 on Xbox One and PS4, EA have been leaking snippets here and there of how the game looks and it looks bloody brilliant! Characters really look like the fighters and in-cage antics have been mirrored into the screenshots and videos that we have seen.

ufc

 

Whether it is the custom way Anthony “Showtime” Pettis throws his flashy kicks or the intensity of a Cain Valasquez takedown, the game really does look good. Building on the success of EA MMA and now having the license away from THQ (rest in peace), they look to put on a show that may have all the spectical of a live UFC event. Is this the next generation of fighters? Will it be able to attract fans that are not MMA or UFC fans already? EA have said that “Its as real as it gets” and from everything we have seen so far, I hope that this is true and not some rubbish to build up a flop of a game. One bit of good news is that it sounds like they are going to use a 2 year release on new titles. This hopefully means changes will happen unlike some of the other sporting franchises that they have done work on in the past. And in the words of the infamous Bruce Buffer announcer for the UFC “IIITTTTTTSSSSSSS TTTIMMMMMEEEEEEEEEEE” or at least it will be soon!

 

DEAN’S PICKS

RIME
This game was showcased at E3 as part of PS4’s conference but no one seems to remember it, I can’t seem to forget about it. It’s the only game on the roster that got me excited about the current gen. It looks like the visual beauty from Flower mixed in with elements and story taken from Ico or Zelda.

rime

The world gives the impression of being massive and unique which is refreshing. The story line is supposed to be that a boy is trying to escape the island because of a curse. There is also meant to be narration, so I’m feeling that it might be similar to the narration from The Stanley Parable which I personally loved. Now not a whole lot has been shown in the E3 trailer so it could all change. We know too well games completely changing from when we’ve first seen them showcased (like Alan Wake and Alien Colonial Marines), but I look forward to seeing more footage from this and getting my hands on it later in the year if it indeed does come out in 2014.

 

THE EVIL WITHIN

I’m still a little torn on whether this should go on this list. While there seems to be a little bit of hype due to Shinji Mikami of Resident Evil fame, it could go either way with this one. I’m excited because the game play so far has looked pretty good and stayed with being a true “survival horror” game. I also really enjoyed Shadows Of The Damned and that seemed to have a great feel to it, a mixture of comedy and suspense.

EvilWithinScaryEveryone seems to complain about the Resident Evil games losing the Survival Horror element these days and instead comparing them more to action titles. If this title does return on track, it might suggest that maybe the shift of focus was the studio and not the creator, which could then lead to more debates.

The most recent game play trailer for The Evil Within, explains that the main character in the game is Detective Sebastian Castellanos, who rushes to a scene of a murder with his colleagues and then all hell breaks loose.

The game play reminded me a lot of the Saw series as there seemed to be a lot of traps around the place and it’s seems to have scares around every corner. If this is truly a return to survival horror I think this will be amazing game in 2014, but time will tell. This could either be a massive game or a massive flop.

 

LEON’S PICKS

DESTINY

Destiny_box_art

Coming from Bungie (the creators of the extremely successful franchise ‘Halo’) and being published by another giant in the FPS scene Activision (who published the valuable ‘Call of Duty’), this game is hotting up to be one of the big FPS games of this year.

Coming out on Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Xbox One and Playstation 4, this maybe the game to compete with Titanfall for FPS of the year.

Here’s a quote from their website:

‘Destiny features a compelling story line, competitive multiplayer, cooperative gameplay choices, wide open public combat destinations, and third-person community spaces where you can repair and rearm before going out on your next  adventure.’

 

ALIEN ISOLATION

Alien_IsolationAfter the failure of the last Alien game (Aliens Colonial Marines) a lot of people I have spoken to have been skeptical about this title. However, when the trailer dropped for this game, I saw the true survival horror feel that we have not experienced within  the Alien universe.

This game is due to come out late this year and will be released on Xbox 360, Playstation 3, Xbox One, Playstation 4 and PC. This is likely to be the last big game to come out on the old generation of consoles.

Here’s a quote from their website:

‘Discover the true meaning of fear in Alien: Isolation, a survival horror set in an atmosphere of constant dread and mortal danger. Fifteen years after the events  of Alien™, Ellen Ripley’s daughter, Amanda enters a desperate battle for  survival, on a mission to unravel the truth behind her mother’s disappearance.’

 

DAVE’S PICKS

DIVINITY: ORIGINAL SIN

DivinityOriginalSinLogoAs I already own this on Beta, I feel my first choice of anticipated game is cheating slightly.

Way back in 2002 Larian Studios released one of my all-time favourite games, Divine Divinity. Now 12 years on, they have early released their third Divinity installment through Steam for eager fans to play and provide feedback.

The game itself is your standard RPG fare. Beastly creatures stand between you and your reward of gold, shiny items and renown across the land. You can play as your usual variety of classes ranging from the spell-slinging Wizard to the muscle-bound Warrior. However, you can tweak your classes slightly allowing for less rigid templates.

Where the series really stands out is it’s writing. The previous two games contained excellent story telling in the form of humour, heart-warming moments and at times, a little sadness. The story in Divinity: Original Sin is no exception and as an added bonus, this game comes with an editor allowing those among you who love writing stories as well as reading them, to spend many happy hours designing your own adventures for friends to conquer.

Combat is turn-based and very solid. A big plus goes to the ability to interact with your environment when fighting and this is especially noticable when spell casting. Is your foe standing in long grass? Burn him out with fire! That dastardly creature too quick for you? Freeze their path with ice! It’s a simple touch, but comes across incredibly effective.

While it is still very much in its Alpha stages, it still looks and plays incredibly well and I for one cannot wait for the full release later this year.

 

CHILD OF LIGHT

ChildofLightLogoContinuing with the RPG theme and going back to Ubisoft, Child of Light is my second choice of games to watch out for. It looks absoultely gorgeous and could be a strong contender for RPG of the year. It’s also coming out really soon!

If you’re not already aware of this title, the premise is simple. You play a girl who wakes up in a strange land and have been tasked with the simple quest of returning the Sun, Moon and stars from the evil Black Queen. It plays like a cross between LIMBO and Rayman but with Final Fantasy style combat. Add to that a crazy big levelling up system and the ability to craft a massive range of items, this game will keep you playing for many hours.

Did I mention it’s coming out really soon? 🙂

Facebooktwitterrssyoutubeby feather