XBox One has been out for about two weeks now and I know I haven’t posted any reviews yet, but I am sorry I’ve been busy… playing XBox One. It’s not that I didn’t want to share my experiences with you all but between XBox One, work and shooting for Whiskey and Waffles, it has definitely eaten into my review time.
But as is the policy here on The Flickcast, if anyone sends us a copy of something we review it and I am holding up to that end of the bargain as the team over at Twisted Pixel have sent me a download code for Lococycle.
The guys from Twisted Pixel Games have done a great job of creating compelling characters even with limited time to get the story across because of the average length of a XBox Live Arcade game being shorter than your standard fair in their past titles. The most interesting aspect of Lococycle is that they are able to do this with a character who doesn’t even speak English as one of the main protagonists.
A sentient motorcycle named I.R.I.S. accidentally hooks her Spanish speaking mechanic and makes a run across borders to the Freedom Rally while being chased by “her” creator Big Arms. While I did love ‘Splosion Man and Ms. ‘Splosion Man, the repeated quips did quickly grow repetitive. In Lococycle though, there were only a few very rare occurrences that it felt like a line was repeated. The entire time, I.R.I.S.’s personality just kept building.
One billion dollars in merchandise shipped to retailers on day one. Quite the ambitious feat and though Grand Theft Auto V set the record for the fastest entertainment property to hit a billion dollars in actual sales in three days, Call of Duty: Ghosts is in a unique position in how they will reach it. This is the first Call of Duty since Call of Duty 2 to be released on a crossover year with a new console launch.
Not all gamers who are planning on purchasing the PlayStation 4 later this week or the XBox One next week are going to be able to afford a double purchase and considering what we’ve seen with the next gen graphics, it is certainly splitting the sales. And considering it is also a yearly franchise, there isn’t that same gigantic level of hype for a new Call of Duty the way there is for a new Grand Theft Auto. That said, Call of Duty: Ghosts is a game you are going to want to play.
Call of Duty: Ghosts is the first entry into the Call of Duty franchise from Infinity Ward since the conclusion of the Modern Warfare trilogy two years ago. They not only needed to introduce an entirely new set of characters but a new status quo as well. Set in a world similar to that of Modern Warfare and Black Ops, this version has a group of allied forces fending off an attack from the Federation.
Normally, we are too busy to be able to come back and do reviews on DLC for game,s but as you saw in my recent review of the Deadpool game, I really enjoyed it and was looking for a reason to go back. That reason came from a download code for the Merc with a Mouth map pack.
For $2.99 on the PlayStation 3 or 240 Microsoft Points on the XBox 360, players can download two additional maps for the game’s challenge mode along with two new costumes. Spoiler alert: This DLC pack was actually a preorder bonus from Gamestop upon the original Deadpool release so if you already did that, then you probably don’t need to make this purchase… or read this review… so… sorry!
So first off, let’s talk about costumes. For some reason which isn’t ever really discussed, the costume options are only available in the Infinite mode which is a wave based level of the challenge modes. Still not entirely sure why these special outfits are only available in the challenge mode when it is just a skin swap over the character so keep that in mind if you didn’t go through (or like me just didn’t spend a lot of time) in the Challenge mode. The D-Pooly costume resembles Deadpool’s selfstyled MC look while the X-Force outfit represents the grey and black from when Deadpool joined up on Wolverine’s black ops team… but they are only available to the challenge mode.
Last year, players got to experience a Walking Dead experience that rivaled the comics with Telltale’s The Walking Dead. Sticking to a traditional point and click adventure style of storytelling rather than an action game or shooter (like AMC’s The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct).
Last week on Tuesday for PSN users and Friday for XBLA users, Telltale released a special episode for The Walking Dead. Meant to act as a bridge between season 1 and the upcoming season 2, there is a departure from part of what people loved so much of the first season for. But, the new aspects of the game and its storytelling keeps the hook there for players for the next season.
The first thing players will note in The Walking Dead: 400 Days is the separation from the main characters in the first season. Where there is an appearance from some periphery characters, the majority of those seen in the game are new to both the game and the comics. There is also a group of six characters players take the role of (five characters with their own chapter and then one epilogue) as opposed to only playing for Lee in the previous title.
This is where things start to feel starkly different. Part of what was so addictive in the first season of The Walking Dead was following the relationship between Lee and Clementine. In 400 Days though, before you can get too invested in a single character, you move onto the next. The long term results of these actions also remain to be seen as to how these characters will play a role in the second season alongside those who made it through the first.
Last year, the Deadpool shinanigans began on preview night of San Diego Comic-Con. A “leak” and fake website hinted that Activision’s next Marvel property was going to be Hit-Monkey. This red herring was quickly proven wrong the next day when Deadpool took Comic Con by storm, announcing himself that he would be starring in a game developed by the team behind Transformers: War for Cybertron and Transformers: Fall of Cybertron from High Moon Studios.
From there, Deadpool wrote his own press releases promoting his single player adventure that would have appearances from Wolverine and a few of the more scantily clad X-Men. And what came from Deadpool was something not many would expect, a good game.
Deadpool has a lot to overcome as a game. First, it has to take on the stigma of being a licensed title which is something that can still sadly go either way right now. For every Wolverine: Origins or Batman: Arkham Asylum, there is still a X-Men Destiny or Thor: God of Thunder. Deadpool also faces a problem that games like X-Men Destiny and Thor did not have to deal with: Name Recognition.
As much as the comics community knows who Deadpool is, he isn’t known by the mainstream community at large. Right off the bat, there is an uphill battle on sales that Deadpool must deal with. But, for those who either recognize the Merc with the Mouth or have someone turn their attention towards the schizophrenic red and black clad, potty mouthed lunatic, there is a very pleasant surprise waiting for them.