Monthly Update – Completing Games

I was not distracted by Destiny, in fact I did not play it at all over the Easter break. Firstly an update on Watch_Dogs 2, I like to play video games using the soundbar plugged into the TV & not a headset, Watch_Dogs 2 has a lot of adult language which made it very difficult to play with the kids around so I decided to scrap it in favour of the following, I completed Tiny Troopers & it's DLC before moving onto Costume Quest 2 which continues the fun gameplay from the first game & adds new costumes to enjoy.



Firewatch was next on the list, another walking simulator game but with a very good story & nice visuals to enjoy. Much better than the last walking simulator game I played Welcome to the Rapture.

Next it was some mech action with TitanFall 2. I have not played a FPS campaign for a long time & with the added bonus of a mech it was great fun to enjoy.



Brilliant level design, especially the time travel level & a nice short concise campaign.

I also finished off Letter Quest Remastered which is perfect for those short periods of time to complete a level or two.

My current game then is Horizon Zero Dawn, it is an open world adventure set in a future where humans have regressed back to tribal factions & robotic creatures roam the land.

 

The game reminds a bit of the recent Lara Croft games in gameplay due to the main weapon being a ow & arrow, campfires being your save points & hunting animals for skins but the setting & visuals are completely different & stunning. Especially in 4K, this is the most beautiful game I have played thus far on the PS4.

The robotic creatures are unique in each type having their own attack style & weakness. You have various weapons to use to your advantage, the tripcaster is my current favourite which you can use to lay tripwires for the creatures to walk through & shock, blast or catch fire.

I've played quite a bit of the game currently level 20, the main plot is about Aloy finding out why she was outcast from the tribe at birth? Who is her mother? What happened to the land to cause the creatures to roam? & lots more questions which the game slowly drip feeds you the answers.

There are various different tribes in the game, all having their own agenda which make the game more interesting, I am very impressed with the game thus far, this is on the same level as The Witcher 3 yes potential Game of the year material!

Nothing new on iOS, the usual &  I'm back playing Disc Drivin hoping a sequel is announced soon, a tease by developer may have hinted something.

I purchased Star Ocean & Persona 5 to add to the shelf which includes XCom 2, Final Fantasy XV & Abzu. E3 next month so we should find out what titles are coming out for the remainder of this year, Red Dead Redemption 2 please!

Until next month, keep on gaming!

Firewatch (PS4): COMPLETED!

FirewatchFirewatch has been on my wanted list for quite a while, but I felt I should both clear a few other games out first, and wait for a sale before picking it up (plus, it had horrible framerate issues to begin with – these have mostly been patched out now). This week, thanks to it both being on sale and me picking up some very cheap PSN credit, I nabbed it from the Playstation Store for just £8.92. And then I completed it.

The plot, which I’ll be vague about because spoilers, involves you, as Henry, taking a summer job as a fire warden in a remote part of the Wyoming wilderness. Your marriage has run into… complications… and you’ve decided to escape for a while, so this seemed perfect. You’re stationed up a watch tower, alone but with another nearby warden called Delilah for company via a radio link. You’re tasked with chasing off some teens for starting a campfire, keeping an eye on things, and generally hiking around a bit mainly just to pass the time.

Firewatch
So pretty.

Delilah chats with you, and you get to know a bit about each other (how much is up to you via dialogue choices) as the days pass. Soon, however, it becomes clear that something is going on. Somebody is listening in on your conversations. Someone is watching. Something is happening.

Firewatch

It could be some sort of conspiracy. Is Delilah who you think she is? Are the teens? Who keeps starting fires? What is the fence for? At times, it’s a mystery, at others, it’s almost paranormal. From the moment things get a bit weird, though, it’s utterly compelling.

Firewatch is a Narrative Discovery Game. Some people call games like this, Gone Home, The Stanley Parable, and so on “walking simulators”, but I take offence to this as there’s more to it than that. Yes, they’re very light on actual gameplay elements – Firewatch has no real puzzles and very little interaction bar opening stuff and chatting – but the exploration is how you progress the story, so I prefer to the term “narrative discovery”. I’ve said many times that a good story in a game can overcome most other limitations, so even though most of your time is spent walking around (although having to navigate by map and compass is fun) you’re following an excellent tale.

Click to view slideshow.

Henry doesn’t see much in the way of other people (or animals) in and around his watch tower, although I did adopt a turtle and call him Turt Reynolds, so you really feel how isolated he is. Even Delilah, who can see you from her tower feels a hundred miles away. When you enter a cave system and can no longer contact her by radio, you immediately feel vulnerable as your only lifeline is cut off – this is amplified when you make certain discoveries too.

In all, it’s a wonderfully told story, with some beautiful scenery and is pretty short so the long hikes never get a chance to become tedious as they surely would if the game was twice as long. The ending is perhaps a double twist, the discovery of may come as a disappointment to some, but I actually felt it was a relief: Again, spoilers so I won’t elucidate. If you liked Dear Esther, Gone Home or even Life Is Strange, then I can’t recommend Firewatch enough.

Here’s part of my playthrough, roughly the middle third of the game. It contains lots of spoilers, so beware:

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