A Sampling of Gaming Delights
I've had the chance to play some of the earlier segments of some various games and thought I would offer my thoughts as some early-impression reviews. I sampled these on a Playstation 4, for those who are curious.
Dragon Age: Inquisition
There is an overwhelming amount of things you are given to do at the start, but as many websites helpfully point out, you shouldn't spend all your time in the first big area (the Hinterlands) and instead play the missions that take you all over and let you explore the fascinating world of Thedas. That said, despite such a neat plot and mostly-interesting characters serving as your allies, the game-play itself can be a bit tricky. I'm supposed to be the Herald of Andraste (kind of like the 2nd coming of the world's Messiah) and I can kill a dozen demons with ease but I can't even handle a single bear with my full party backing me up? It's annoying, and the controls can be a bit floaty, but the story and all the cast are just so great I can't let myself get too mad at how a simple fight with a cave-spider nearly kills me.
4 out of 5 stars--although as it is such a huge game and I'm still in the earlier stages I could grow to love it more.
Lego Batman 3
The humor within the games continues to be top-notch, the controls are spot-on (except for the occasional weird occasion where a button with multiple functions does the one other than what you wanted), and it's a great game to play with a friend. I love the "Lego" game series and this is another stellar entry, something I can tell just from finishing the first few levels..
5 out of 5 stars.
The city you wander through (called Harran) is gorgeously rendered, but it seems every character in the game wants to send you on fetch quests for their camera or some chocolates instead of giving you something interesting to do. This mixture of the fun from exploring but boredom from the awful story and mediocre missions results in something that is oftentimes fun, but also can irritate me. Although the mission where a man who isn't quite right in the head has you grab a copy of the movie, "Charly," is a clever reference, what with how that movie came from the book, "Flowers for Algernon" where a severely mentally challenged man becomes a super-genius. Nice allusion there.
3.5 out of 5 stars.
Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor
The much-discussed and very-interesting feature of the game that I expect to see copied immensely in the future is, "The Nemesis System," whereby you can fight and kill (or seriously hurt) a variety of monsters, or kill certain ones so others gain a higher-ranking in Orc society, so that when you do kill them you get more power points. Basically, no matter what, in the end Orcs end up dead (and sometimes buggily come back to life), but you can influence how soon they get murderized in interesting ways. That said, besides the solid controls and intriguing system of making enemies in the game it is mostly another unremarkable open-world full of revenge and gore--a shame considering how rich the Middle Earth is when it comes to potential lore (although in my playing there was some fun interacting with Gollum).
3 out of 5 stars.
Far Cry 4
3 out of 5 stars.
Fun Was Had
I may not have played a ton of the games, getting more than 9 hours in some and just 4 or so in others, but I enjoyed trying these various ones out and imagine you will too.