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GBU Game Review for Mafia II (PC)

Also on Xbox360 and PS3. I played it on PC cuz I’ve got a pretty sweet rig and the graphics on this bad boy look way better than the console versions. I give it a 7/10. A high 7 though, I wanna give it an 8, but the flaws are just a touch too heavy.

The Good – If you dig your games with a heavy Godfather/Goodfellas flavor, here you have it. A fully realized, nicely detailed world set in a 40s-50s New York like city. You play as Vito, a guy just out of the war and ready to work his way up in the mob world since “the working man is a sucker”. The gameplay is very much like a GTA, 3rd person everything, on foot, driving, that sort of thing. You take on missions of that type of variety as well…..drive so-n-so here and there, go kill this guy, go rob this place, and so on. It’s not the most original, but the gameplay overall is just fun enough to make you wanna finish the storyline.

The storyline is the star of this show, and the way it’s told as well. Heavy cut scenes before and after every mission, it’s all interesting stuff. It’s almost like an interactive movie, the dialog and voice acting are all up to snuff. If you like the way the Sopranos characters talk, you’ll be at home here. Presentation and whatnot are all top notch, radio stations in the cars play music of the time, all good stuff, and the game’s orchestral score kept me in the feel of things. Some missions have a bit of branching, meaning you can go about completing stuff in different ways.

The Bad – Sadly, there’s plenty of that here….first off, this may not be a bad thing to some people, but the game is painfully linear. Here you have a huge open world, highly detailed and all that good stuff….but….you really only have your missions to worry about. You wake up, go here, do that, go back home to finish the chapter then wake up to do it all over again. No real side activities, no doing things out of order, etc. While the shooting action can be fun, sometimes there’s just way too much of it, and you better take cover, because if you don’t, you will die….ALOT. That’s not fun. Way too much driving…..I love my driving in games, and I get it when it comes to open world games, but c’mon. When there’s really nothing to do between point A and B, driving sections should be short. Oh yeah, checkpoints, during big shootouts, blow.

The Ugly – Aww man, the ending. It is pretty unfulfilling….you would think with the cinematic quality of everything, the end would be epic. Instead of going out with a bang, it’s more of a fart :-\

GBU Game Review for Mafia II (PC)

September 10, 2010 Posted by | Good Bad and the Ugly - Game Reviews | , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on GBU Game Review for Mafia II (PC)

Grand Theft Auto – Old West?

Of course I mean Red Dead Redemption. It’s basically GTA set in the old west. Currently sitting pretty with a 95 on the ol metacritic. I ain’t ready for a review, but some thoughts? Sure. Is it that good? Depends. Personally, I love it….if you’re a GTA diehard, you’ll probably love it too(it comes from the GTA creators). Some of the big time critics actually like it better than GTA, the whole western theme talks to them.

Rockstar Games had a previous game known as Red Dead Revolver, it was more of a linear game, it’s claim to fame was something called ‘Dead Eye’. When you’re out and about shootin bad dudes, with the click of a button, everything slows down bullet time style, so you can have time to choose where you wanna shoot. Let go, BANG! BANG! BANG!, giving you the feeling of the fastest draw around. ‘Redemption’ doesn’t really have a connection to ‘Revolver’, but ‘Dead Eye’ is in there. And it’s open world vs. linear of course.

When you get in there, it’s a living breathing world, walk around the town and you get to see all the stuff that used to go down back in those days. From the cool, to the mundane. It follows the typical mission structure, instead of cars, you ride horses though(durr). And a ton of mini games that just drapes you in it’s atmosphere. You wanna break in horses? Check. Herd cattle? Yup. Hunt and sell the animal pelts? Get out the knife. Have a drink and/or gamble at the saloon? Why not. There is a TON of things to do. And the game looks damn good doing it. Who would’ve thought desert, tumbleweed, and the like could look so detailed in a game. It’s fun to just ride around and enjoy the scenery….until you get shot at of course.

It wouldn’t be a Rockstar game if gritty violence didn’t play a role. You’ll face masked gunmen, stagecoach robbers, and other unsavory types that come from that setting. So far, my only real beef is the same as the GTA games. The onfoot action can, for lack of a better phrase, blow chunks. But it’s easily dealt with and the good greatly outweighs the bad. It’s definitely worth trying out, but you gotta spend some serious time with it, you’ll need more than a half hour to decide if you wanna stick with it or not. Review coming as soon as I finish the story, which is awesome and compelling BTW. YEE HAW!…..sorry, I shouldn’t have done that :-p

*the trailer above describes the game better than I can, but I found it after I wrote this up :-/*

June 4, 2010 Posted by | Normal Stuffs | , , , , , , | Comments Off on Grand Theft Auto – Old West?

GTA: Episodes From Liberty City, PS3 & PC, 3/30/10

Joystiq reports on what everybody and they momma knew…that the GTAIV Episodes would eventually find their way to the PS3 and PC. Dropping on March 30th, the rest of GTAIV’s fans can enjoy these gems. Third party exclusivity has been so hazy this gaming generation…these were obviously a timed one for the 360. Either way, great news for GTA freaks everywhere.

As was the case with the 360 versions, gamers will be able to purchase the episodes separately as DLC for 20$ a pop. Or a disc with both for 40$.

January 29, 2010 Posted by | Normal Stuffs | , , , , , , | Comments Off on GTA: Episodes From Liberty City, PS3 & PC, 3/30/10

GBU Game Review for GTAIV: The Ballad of Gay Tony

Here we are with the second piece of promised DLC for GTAIV. Exclusive to the Xbox360(for now, if rumors are to be believed that is), for 20bux off of the Xbox Live Marketplace, or on the “Episodes From Liberty City” disc. Which is 40bux but it also comes with “The Lost And The Damned”. I liked this DLC even more than the last one, this gets a 9/10 from me.

The Good – Rockstar has really gotten the whole storytelling thing down, everything from the dialog, the voice acting, heck, even the way the cutscenes are directed…all top notch and masterful. Wanting to find out what happens next really keeps things moving. Liberty City remains a lively gaming world with plenty to keep you busy. While GTAIV toned down alot of previous GTAs’ insanity in favor of a more realistic crime drama style, TBoGT has some new activities that brings back some of the craziness of San Andreas that are fun as hell. Stuff like parachuting, helicopters that pack some serious artillery, even the police APC.
New weapons turn the fun meter up a few notches too. Machinery like the automatic shotgun with explosive shells and the silenced machine gun just tears things up with a prowess that makes sure the enemies hide from YOU. Radio stations, a GTA staple, have been updated with newer songs that keeps you draped in the atmosphere of the character(Luis Lopez) you’re playing. Luis has part ownership of a couple clubs that Gay Tony owns, you have to option of running one of them certain times at night. Again, the feel has been fitted to a tee. The thumping music, people dancing, drinking, the whole package. Some cool mini games for dancing and drinking are there as well.
The campaign is lengthy and the mission’s fun to frustration ratio is the most minimal yet. You’ll hardly come across a mission that’ll give you a hard time, the feel and pacing swim along just right. It’s nice starting off and your character already has a nice place to live, nice clothes, and he’s already established in the city. No need to build up, you just jump right in. I know some people who fell outta love with GTAIV, they felt the story just took too long. Not an issue here, the fat’s been trimmed, so to speak.

The Bad – Basically, if you’re not a GTA fan to begin with, this game ain’t changing your mind. While driving still feels great, it would’ve been nice if the on foot controls were updated/tweaked. They get the job done, but nowhere near where they could/should be in feel. With the disc version of the game, licensing issues prevented Rockstar from carrying over all the music from the original GTAIV game, to make up for it they threw in 3 new radio stations. While the downloaded version gets access to ALL of the original disc radio stations/songs, but not the new stations, it’s too bad this small feature separates the two since music is such a big part of the GTA experience.

The Ugly – If you don’t like The Sopranos way of things, or any crime drama of that sort….stay away….The title of the game has “Gay Tony” in it, and you play as a latino character in quite an ugly crime underworld. Take a guess at some of the things you’ll hear from some of the game’s less than savory characters.

November 10, 2009 Posted by | Good Bad and the Ugly - Game Reviews | , , , , , | Comments Off on GBU Game Review for GTAIV: The Ballad of Gay Tony

4th! Podcast

Rich and I got together to talk about more Lost and Damned, Brooklyn Chocolate Stouts, Warschtiner, Star Wars force unleashed, ALL the controllers back to the Atari 3600? Join us for our latest installment yo!4th_podcast

March 7, 2009 Posted by | The Master Control Cast | , , , , , | Comments Off on 4th! Podcast

3rd Podcast!

The 3rd! Master Control Cast. We talk about achievements, lost and damned, world of warcraft, sega genesis,star wars force unleashed and the touchy subject that is the horror movie Eden Lake. Stay tuned for the 3rd podcast!

February 28, 2009 Posted by | The Master Control Cast | , , , , , , | Comments Off on 3rd Podcast!