Xbox One Elite Controller Review

I’m no professional gamer. I know this. I also know that I probably don’t need a controller like the new Xbox One Elite controller. I knew I wanted one though and get one I did. When it arrived, I was pretty excited to see what the talk about professional controllers really meant. The one word that immediately comes to mind when I think about the Xbox One Elite Controller is this. “Quality”.

The quality of this product is immediately evident when opening the box and staring back at you is not a plastic controller in a molded plastic bed. No. What you see is a black nylon hardshell zip up case with the XBox logo emblazoned on the front. Below that is USB cable that also feels far superior in quality when compared to about 99% of the other USB charge cables and you get a set of AA batteries… Wait.. What?!? No rechargeable battery pack? Fine. That’s something I was able to overlook for the time being. I had saved the best for last and needed to get at that controller.

After unzipping the case, I’m greeted by a sleek and sexy looking black and silver controller (seriously no color even on the face buttons Just shades of grey)staring back at me with piece of foam between the hand grips housing 2 more sets of thumb sticks, one set curved at the top similar to the Sony Dual Shock and taller than standard Xbox and a standard looking Dpad. When picking up the controller in my hand for the first time I could immediately feel that this was not your typical Xbox controller. From it’s weight, to the rubberized grips to the satin like finish on the remainder of the controller the strong magnetization of the swapable metal components this controller was the nicest controller I’d ever laid hands on.

The metal paddles on the underside of the controller never made much sense to me but after trying it out for a little bit, I can already see why pro gamers prefer a configuration such as this as it allows them to keep moving with their sticks and firing with the paddles without having to stop moving one way or the other. For sure an advantage to those who participate in lots of competitive fragging. It takes some time to figure it out and admittedly I wasn’t doing really great with it but I plan to get back to trying them out more in the future.

Wrapping up, the Elite Controller for Xbox One is amazing. The finish, the packaging and configuration all screams “high quality”. If you aren’t an elite competitive gamer this controller may not be for you. And that’s OK. It retails for $149.99USD and that’s one hell of a high cost for a regular every day gamer but if you, like me, enjoy some of the finer things in life (more expensive beers and wines to name a few) you just might be able to justify the expense as the last controller you buy for the Xbox One. There is one thing to mention as I kinda glossed over it at the beginning. The simple fact that a $150+ controller doesn’t come with a rechargeable battery is something of an oversight that shouldn’t have happened and that happens to be one and only thing preventing the controller from getting a perfect 10 out of 10 score.

Feed Your Console gives the XBox One Elite Controller a 9.5 out of 10.

Review – Fallout 4 (Xbox One)

My hands shook and my stomach churned in excitement as I feverishly tore into the package before me. All I could think was “Finally – the day has come”. The day I’d been waiting for, for what seemed like a lifetime. Today was the day that the latest installment of my favorite game franchise Fallout 4 arrived and I could barely stand the wait and I paced back and forth waiting for the install to finish.

Fallout for me has always been a world I can get lost in. That goes back to the days of the original. I’ve played through fallout 3 and New Vegas 3 times a piece each time differently than the last and each time took no less than 80 hours so to say that excitement that filled the air in the days leading up to release was high to say the least.

In typical fashion of the Feed Your Console team, we will endeavor to avoid spoilers despite there being countless sites out there who divulge the game’s story. The basis of the story sets the player on a mission to find who took his/her son and for what purpose did this happen. For the first time in the franchise, we’re treated to protagonist who not only has a voice but can be a woman as well. In the beginning of the game when setting up your character, players are met with an incredibly powerful character creation tool which morphs the main protagonist’s face in unimaginable ways (See link for some amazing examples). From there, we’re placed smack dab in middle of a pre-war suburban area set within the series’ 50s-esque era. It doesn’t take long to throw you into the world of Fallout with the bombs beginning to drop, the player and his family must run through the streets to their local Vault-Tec vault for protection.

One thing to that’s always struck me as funny about the Fallout series is it’s ability to set you on track to a main story yet distract you from the main mission so easily. I was bound and determined that I would focus heavily on the main quest then after, I’d jump back into the game and continue doing the side missions. That last all of 45 minutes as I suddenly found myself spending no less than 3 hours screwing around in my first settlement.

The team at Bethesda has made a plethora of changes to the games some of which I loved and some, I have to say I wasn’t overly thrilled with. The combat system is still as awesome as it ever was with a few changes. Actually playing the game without utilizing the VATS system is a completely viable option now whereas in previous games it felt much to cumbersome and I rarely ever did in 3 or New Vegas. It just gives the game a whole new feel. VATS has changed a little as well in that now instead of freezing time, time slows down AND the player manually triggers a critical hit after their meter has filled up. It’s no longer a random successful critical hit.

More companions! You read that right. There are 13 companions to find throughout the vast expanses of this wasteland. Each with their own unique style, missions and dialogue help to keep the game fresh and exciting over multiple play-throughs. My personal favorites are Strong, the Supermutant, Nick Valentine the old school private investigator and Dogmeat the ..well… German Sheppard.

Settlements – Perhaps the single biggest addition to the game is the ability to find and build settlements. If you’re the Minecraft/creation gamer, this is going to be your thing. Basically, settlements are found and built from the ground up using supplies you find and break down in the wastelands. Seriously – Everything has a purpose now including pre-war money all the way to the cleaning solvents. It can all be broken down into it’s base components and turned into something else which you can use to rebuild civilization within your settlements. When building your settlements, the people will demand things and they look to you to provide for them. They need water, crops, defense, beds all of this falls to your shoulders. At times when out exploring, you’ll be notified that one of your settlements is struggling and needs help. If you wait too long, you will lose settlers. For some reason Bethesda opted to leave us to our own devices when figuring out how to set up supply lines and their importance. I feel the settlement building needed a solid tutorial. Chances are someone like me would probably have spent more time mucking about in the building options.

Another aspect of establishing your settlements, you must build. I’m not a Minecraft fan. I don’t understand the appeal or the success. Maybe that’s dating me and I’m showing my age but building things in games is not something I have any desire to do. Not in Halo’s Forge, not in Minecraft and not in the Sims. For Fallout though, I was game to give it the old college try and try I did. I literally spent an entire day travelling, scavenging, scrapping, selling, sleeping… Rinse repeat for 9 hours bound and determined this was going to be the game that got me on board with building things in my games. After all that time, I spent no more than 30 minutes struggling with how to build a simple home with power and lights and furnishings. The game beat me. I tapped out. I found that building wasn’t as intuitive as it first looked in the videos online. I couldn’t get the lights to power on in my house save for 1 lowly light in the middle room. I have no idea what I did but I stopped frustrated.

The leveling system has been tweaked a fair amount. Instead of earning skill points and perk levels, now the player gets a single perk point for each level they gain and that point is put into one of the various basic skills OR they can apply the point to a more focused perk (“Bloody Mess” for example) some of which have minimum level (ie:lvl 21) AND skill level (Strength lvl 8). Some people will find this to be a more focused and streamlined level system, I for one was mostly impartial but it did feel to me like my character was vastly under powered or unable to do certain things by the time I had reached a character level 20.

Weapon/Armor crafting and modification also makes it’s debut in Fallout 4. Gone are the days of weapon/armor degradation (Except for the Power Armor). Now by using specific work shops, Weapons can also be modified and created using parts found across the wasteland or the parts and pieces from scavenging. You can also find legendary items during gun fights with Raiders, super mutants etc. This is a fun and extremely welcome addition to the franchise and I would really like to see Bethesda expand on this feature going forward. Perhaps some sort of system to combine items to create highly specialized weapons and armor.

A major issue I have with the game comes from the dialogue system and Karma system. Let’s start with dialogue. It’s too basic. In previous games, your relationship with townsfolk and other NPCs could directly be affected by the choices made within the dialogue system. It could also affect your karma as being a good guy or a bad guy. Which brings me to the Karma system. There is none. It’s gone the way of the Do-Do Bird. At least it appears to me that it’s long gone. When I act like a jerk, my NPC might hate that or they might love it. None of that matters though because you can always have a romantic relationship with your followers (not all of them thankfully).Why they would make the decision to scrap one of the most fun little pieces of the franchise. I can only speculate that it was omitted to allow for simpler decision making by the new generation of Fallout players. I feel these 2 changes were huge missteps by the team.

Graphically I think the game looks outstanding. I know the engine is a little old and even a little tired but I’m not understanding the chatter on the internet about how people think the games graphics are terrible. They’re not. Granted they aren’t up to spec with some of the other titles out there on Xbox One/PS4/PC but I’ve never expected that from Bethesda. In over 60 hours of gameplay, I’ve noticed some framerate dips and a few hilarious graphical glitches but I don’t feel that is something that deserves much time on.

When Fallout 4 was announced I was hoping for a big, engaging game that was worthy of $70(the standard going rate for games here in Canada now). I wanted long game play, a massive world to do some serious exploration in, more guns, explosions with an engaging story and side quests. I wanted the new title to be something I fell asleep and had dreams about. What I got was exactly what I had hoped for. If there’s one game you play this year, make it Fallout 4. I’ve yet to get a game that packs so much punch for such a small price compared with other games out there today. Hats off to the team at Bethesda once again. Now… Please sir – May I have another?

Feed Your Console gives Fallout 4 an enthusiastic 9 out of 10

Review – Assassins Creed Rogue

maxresdefault

I’ve been called names before. Many names, but never before have I been called a name so frequently by a jerkface in a videogame. I’m looking at you Jerkface security chick from Abstergo. Anyway, I digress. Assassin’s Creed Rogue is 1 of 2 new games in the long running series. Rogue is available on last Gen systems Xbox 360 and PS3 while Unity is out on PS4 and Xbox One.

This time, instead of playing an Assassin, we get to see the other side of the coin and play as Shay Patrick Cormac. A young Assassin turned Templar who hell bent on hunting down the people he once called brothers. The setting of Rogue takes place after the events of Black Flag but previous to the events of Assassin’s Creed 3. During this time, players will take Shay to from New York, to Portugal and up to the great white north us Canadians like to call home. Along with the new locales, Shay’s adventure will cross paths with some very familiar characters from previous games which is amazing because it actually puts some backstory into context of some of these people. Personally, I would LOVE to see a certain someone from AC3 featured in his own game because I need to see who he was and how he became the character we know. Without giving away too much, I found the ending to be particularly satisfying. Also – stay tuned during the credits.

The gameplay itself is exactly the same as the previous games and mostly feels like a redressing of Black Flag which is by no means a bad thing. You will spend a lot amount of time on dry land exploring looking for Native totems as well as a few other secrets which I won’t go into, but like Black Flag, a vast majority of your time will be spent travelling the North Atlantic finding settlements, hunting grounds and supply caches. One notable mission type that I noticed Ubisoft had dialed back(not sure if that was by design or accident) on are the follow while staying hidden missions. I didn’t miss them in the least bit. Here’s hoping that trend continues. Another type of mission that’s actually new to the this title is the Assassin Interception missions. Naval battles are plentiful though early in the game some they felt extremely mismatched often resulting in some massive warships joining the foray sending me with my tail tucked firmly between my legs. The map is quite large and broken up into smaller sections. Not sure if it’s the same size as Black Flag but it sure felt like it was pretty damn close.

When major plot points are complete, the player takes on the role of a faceless nameless Abstergo employee who gets called names by the jerkface chick back in the Abstergo offices. If I’m right, these moments take place directly after the events of Black Flag and begin with the whole system in a locked down state with a majority of the staff having been ushered out of the building except for a select few. During these moments, as in other games, you’ll be tasked with switching on servers and unlocking systems by participating in a mini game with a sphere and some rings with light. During these moments, you will also learn of other details key to the story of Abstergo Industries/Entertainment.

Along with the standard Assassin gear we’ve all become accustomed to, Shay brings along some new weapons and accessories. The Air gun can shoot berserk/sleep darts and firecrackers, as well, he gets a new grenade launcher that can take out multiple enemies at once turning them berserk, putting them to sleep or just plain blow them to smithereens with the frag grenades. The new toys don’t just stop there though. While navigating the dangerous oceans of the North, Shay’s boat, the Morrigan is also equipped with an icebreaker to help break though the ice during your time spent there. Further to that The Morrigan is also equipped with a puckle gun – which is similar to the cannon that Edward Kenway used in Black Flag but this is more like a gatling gun and now instead of dropping barrels of explosives behind you when being chased, now we get to light the oceans on fire. Just like previous games, you can raid boats for supplies and use them to help upgrade things like you armor, the number of cannons the ship is equipped with as well as the power to up your various attacks.

All in all I would rank this in the top 3 for the Assassin’s Creed series. It took me about 20ish hours to complete the campaign during which I rarely stepped away from the main story. It was the first game in the series where I actually said “Holy Sh!t!!!” out loud multiple times during one game shaping scene in particular that happens rather early in the game and another that happens later. I was literally blown away by this moment.  Big props to whoever came up with that moment because wow. Another year another entry in what I deem to be one of my absolute favorite franchises of all time. Tomorrow can’t come soon enough so I can sink my teeth into Unity.

Feed Your Console gives Assassin’s Creed Rogue an 8.5 out of 10

Pros:
More naval exploration and battles
Great story – Finally we see from the Templar point of view
New weapons and gadgets

Cons:
With Unity looming, it’s hard to not look at the graphics with a critical eye.
Some Naval battles felt extremely mismatched with much more powerful boats joining in.

Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition Review – Xbox One

Here we are folks – September.

I had a truly awesome(and busy) summer. The long drought is finally over and the busy season of game launches is finally upon us.

This year’s game launches practically has 1 game a week that I’m interested in right until December and that started with the release of Diablo 3 – Ultimate Evil Edition. Basically it’s the same game that was released for the PC and Xbox 360/PS3 last year but that’s just on the surface. This version of Diablo III is a far more robust and rewarding experience this time around.

For starters, we have the obvious expansion “Reaper of Souls” which continues the story right after your hero dispatches Diablo and must now fight Malthael who is hell bent on absorbing the 7 Prime Evils souls contained within the Black Soulstone. Basically – he wants to rule the world and cause all kinds of grief for all mankind.

The next improvement comes from the Loot 2.0 system which was introduced to the PC version of Diablo 3 last year with the expansion pack. It GREATLY improves on the frequency of Rare/Set/Unique item drops making the constant hunt for new and improved weapons/armor all the more exciting.

A higher level cap has also been introduced bringing it up to 70 from 60, some revamped skills, a graphical upgrade in the form of 1080p 60FPS (Gorgeous) and my personal favorite – Adventure Mode (which is only unlocked after completing the campaign). Adventure mode allows you to take your Nephalem on bounty hunts across all the various acts in the game for reward, Cash and Nephalem Rifts which for all intents and purposes are nothing more than loot runs but you have a much higher chance at earning the really good stuff.

One last thing – Did you buy Diablo 3 for your PS3 or Xbox 360? Remember all the time and effort you spent building your character to becoming the absolute beast he/she was? Too bad you can’t use them in this version eh? Wrong – Thankfully Blizzard has heard the cries and it is 100% possible to transfer your character to the next gen system. You can even move it cross platform should you so desire.

In the end – there’s ample enough changes and features to make this a full price purchase. This is a damn fine game worthy of your time and money.

I give Diablo 3: Ultimate Evil Edition an enthusiastic 9.5 out of 10

Pros:
Higher Level Cap
Loot 2.0
Character Imports
Adventure Mode

Cons
Reaper of Souls is too Short

Infamous Second Son Review

You play as Deslin Rowe who’s a young lost soul who’s caught painting graffiti on billboards by his brother the town Sheriff in some little town outside if Seattle, Washington. After you get busted by your brother you hear a large explosion, a truck has crashed and unknown passenger escapes (a conduit). You go to help the people but end up chasing a conduit and after a brief fight you get your first powers and then get interviewed by Augustine the games protagonist.

This sets Deslin off on his quest to acquire more powers and to take on Augustune. Delsin Rowe finds out he is also a conduit, which means he has the ability to channel superhuman powers to do really cool things the game. Throughout the course of the game you’re searching for other conduits in order to take their abilities away from them in order to help him complete the mission he started out to do. These powers include; smoke, neon, video (digital materialization), and concrete.

Throughout the course of the game, like the previous Infamous game, you will have a choice to make on when whether you want to play as a good character or evil character.The choices you make to kill or subdue affect your karma level in the game. Your karma level also helps determine some of the powers you unlock with different shards. Given the cheer size of Seattle you would expect that there would be lots of side missions to do and lots to see. However for me the side missions were the weakest portion of Infamous Second Son. 

Your overall goal with the side missions is to clear each district to remove the DUP and drive them out of town. In order to do this you need to track each drone and collect each shard. You’ll need to find and listen to each audio log. In order to find an audio log you’ll need to use your cell phone and track the signal, find it and listen to it. To trigger the DUP location events you’ll need to spray paint a karma design on the walls by shaking and titling the controller to complete the stencil painting. After you spot the DUP agent hiding the crowds of people you will need to chase them down and kill them. By reducing the DUP controlled percentage of an area to be less than 30 you can trigger the district showdown. Defeating the various regional DUP agents and bosses in the showdown will result in unlocking the district for fast travel and give you control of the district.

There was no side story, no interesting details or anything of substance in these side missions. Besides wanting to get the districts to 0% controlled which will net you several achievements there isn’t much to do here. When it comes down to deciding if you should put your credit card down to buy Imfamous Second Son, I would say yes you should for several reasons.

      1 – It’s gorgeous and it’s the first next gen game I’ve played that demonstrates what these new consoles can do.
      2 – A solid game to play on PS4.
      3 – A decent story with some really good mechanics and powers.

FeedYourConsole gives Infamous Second Son 7.5 out of 10

Kinect Sports Rivals Review

If you’re like me and acquired an Xbox One on launch day, you’ve probably spent the last 4 months yelling at our Xbox using the Kinect since that’s all we could use it for. Sure games like Ryse: Son of Rome have voice commands but they seemed tacked on as an after thought. However, we finally have our first Kinect game for Xbox One Kinect Sports Rivals, this is the next generation sequel to the Xbox 360 Kinect Sports games.

Navigating around the menus wasn’t designed for a controller, but you can use it if you desire too, it’s designed for hand gestures and voice. The issue I have with the voice controls is I have to say “listen” and than a keyword that’s on screen. After I do something like Listen, quick play, it will make me say listen again to perform another action. I disagree with this sequence, since the Kinect knows I just used my voice to do an action, so why make me do that again?

If you’re like me and live in a apartment or condo, you may have a hard time finding enough space to play this game. I have just about 4 feet from my TV to my sofa and don’t have the space to move my sofa in order to play and Kinect Sports Rivals is constantly telling me to move back because it can’t see my feet.

Like the previous Kinect Sports game the soundtrack features artists like Avicii, Daft Punk and Franz Ferdinand. The good music adds to the atmosphere. I really enjoyed hearing some good tunes while playing various sports.

Kinect Sports Rivals Hub is a companion app that I had to download separately (why it wasn’t included in the main game or just on smart glass I don’t know) but it’s the source for news, updates and global competition. The more you play the various sports and challenges, the more fans you’ll earn, allowing you to move from the bronze league (beginner league) to the silver, gold, platinum, diamond or master league (rivals league consists of six different leagues each containing six star divisions).

Rivals offers six different sports for you to play which include; wake racing, climbing, target shooting, soccer, tennis and bowling. The latter 3 on this list are returning from Kinect Sports and have been updated for Rivals.

Let’s start with wake racing which has the player reach out with their right hand, close it in which engages the throttle. Players than move either their right or left hand in and out depending if you need to turn right or left. If it’s a sharp turn you’ll be required to use your body to lean. Want to perform a trick? You’ll need to bend forward. This will allow you to unlock power-ups in the game like force field, speed boost or mine drop.

Rock Climbing has a player use an open hand to peg, close your fist and than repeat with the other hand which will allow you to move up the wall. You maybe required to perform the same actions to go sideways before you can go up. Can’t reach a peg? you’ll need to jump and than grab a peg to continue your climb.

Target shooting is basically move your hand and point at the target as fast as you can to hit it. If your quick enough and you can see your opponents targets shoot ’em and steal their points. Your competitor can activate a power-up that will have you dodging incoming fire but if you get hit you’ll lose points.

Soccer (it’s really called football but that’s ok), my favourite sport is back, and as you expect it’s quite simple to play. Side kick to pass, kick it with your toes to get some air under it or even try heading it into the net. It’s sounds simple but you’ve only got 20 seconds to score before the shot clock runs out. They’ve removed defending completely and I’m not sure why exactly. It kind of feels a little half ass in my opinion. Now it’s time to defend and by that I mean play goal and simply move your body to where the ball appears on screen trying to stop it.

Bowling feels the same like it did in previous Kinect Sports games. Put your hand over your head to start the game, grab a ball from either the left or right side and throw the ball like you would if you really bowling. You’ll need to move your body slightly to align with the arrows on the lane and if your feeling brave after releasing the ball move your wrist to the left or right to add spin to the ball.

Roadshow-Bowling-png (1)

Last up is Tennis. Reach out to either side and grab a racquet, throw the ball in the  air and swing, it’s really that simple. You could also put in some back spin or top spin if you can pull it off successfully (it’s quite easy).

Roadshow-Tennis-png

Besides the issues I experienced in getting the voice commands working properly in order to navigate around the island and the issues with my feet not being seen while playing soccer, I really enjoyed Kinect Sports Rivals. Yes, my Kinect is barely 4 feet away from where I was playing but when you live in a apartment or condo you really can’t change that. Microsoft and Rare need to do a better job of that aspect. The gameplay was fun and I was constantly checking out the Rivals Hub to see how my friends were performing.

Besides the issues I experienced in getting the voice commands working properly in order to navigate around the island and the issues with my feet not being seen while playing soccer, I really enjoyed Kinect Sports Rivals. Microsoft and Rare need to do a better job of that aspect. The gameplay was fun and I was constantly checking out the Rivals Hub to see how my friends were performing.

Feed Your Console Gives Kinect Sports Rivals a 7 out of 10.

Titanfall A Month Later

TF-Panoramic-Overwatchofficially released on March 11th 2014 for Xbox One and PC with the Xbox 360 version coming in April. Here we are, 19 days later and the words “prepare for Titanfall” still put a smile on my face. To me, Titanfall is Call of Duty plus Rock-em Sock-em Robots or some could say it’s Pacific Rim the movie, that came out in 2013. Whatever way you slice it and dice it, it’s a new game on the Xbox One, we all wanted and needed it and it’s been a hell of a lot of fun.

Let me start of by saying I just hit level 50 and did the regeneration thing and I’ve had a ton of fun, some great moments but now I feel like now that I’ve done all that, what’s the point of going back to doing it all again? I’ve played over 50+ campaign missions and I’ve won 24 attrition matches and lost a quiet a few, but I don’t have an interest to go check out the other modes like HardPoint Domination, Capture the Flag and Pilot Hunter. I’ve played a few rounds of Last Titan Standing which is exactly as it says Titan Vs Titan and let me tell you trying to play this mode with random 12 years olds on Xbox Live wasn’t fun.

Introducing the wall running and jetpacks add’s a whole new element and strategy to the game. As a player navigating it’s way through the battlefield you need to be cautious of the high ground when getting killed. I often found my self navigating between running and jumping over the buildings as I found it allowed me to survey the battlefield to get a sense of what I was about to get myself into. I never found myself using the same route to game back into battle. Being able to use a jet pack, wall run, double jump and using the environments opens up so many different routes to get back into battle it was one of my favorite elements.

Don’t worry if you die. You will die lots, spawn very quickly and be back into the action running into pilots, grunts and spectres within seconds. Since most of this game relies on the Xbox Cloud service I was underwhelmed with how unintelligent and easy to kill the sepctres and grunts where in this game. Often, they didn’t pose much of a challenge and more often than not, found myself wondering why they were even in the level as they didn’t seem to help but where more of a hindrance to each team.

As you start playing you will unlock X, gain levels and unlock different weapons and customization options to build out your load. This encourages variety and keeps things interesting as each weapon has it’s own set of challenge levels (5 in general) that allow each player to earn additional XP to level faster. This ability also extends to the Titans themselves where you pick a base chassis of either an Atlas, Ogre or Stryder and build on your load outs from there. Do you want a canon, a railgun or a rocket launcher? These are all decisions you need to pick and experiment with in order to figure out what works best for you. Do you want an agile titan? if the answer is yes your going to go with a Stryder as it places an emphasis on speed and movement to win battles. Are you like me and like to walk into a Titan fight and just start shooting and expect to take a lot of damage in the process of downing another Titan? if that sounds like you, your most likely going to take an Orge into battle.

Once you press to initiate Tianfall and watch your Titan drop in from the sky it does nothing but put a smile on your face as it now it’s time to hop in and kill enemies. Alternatively you can set it to guard mode and have it follow you around and protect you, assist in battle and kill enemies even on it’s own in a reliable fashion. The Titans are not invincible and will die they do poses a shield that recharges like Halo but the overall armor won’t. Once your Titan dies you will have to wait upwards of two minutes unless you start killing pilots or Titans or play a burn card that accelerates the countdown timer for you. Pilot’s are equipped with anti Titan weapons and it makes for a truly interesting player vs Titan battle. Yes, pilots can beat the Titan but you will have to rely on cloaking, hiding in buildings or performing a rodeo on the Titan. What’s a Rodeo you ask? It’s when a pilot jumps on an enemy Titan, rips off a hatch and starts killing it. There are anti rodeo options available for Titan’s as well.

I wanted to share this clip which I titled ‘Run Forest Run’.

Just a reminder that Titanfall is an online only game on the Xbox One so if Xbox Live or your internet go down, so does Titanfall. I understand for some that paying $60 dollars for an online only game maybe a tough pill to swallow, but given the current lack of games to play, I would suggest doing it even if you only play 20 hours or so like I did. It was worth it. Another item to note is that when I’ve had a lot of action going on my screen the frame rate drops badly, leaving me wondering how this managed to happen.

Review – Max: The Curse of Brotherhood

max-the-curse-of-brotherhood
Max: The Curse of Brotherhood hit the Xbox One store on Friday. For some reason I thought I had read somewhere that it wouldn’t be out until early 2014 so I was pleasantly surprised to see the launch announcement Friday morning. After work was done, I was anxious to get home and sink my teeth into this quirky little title.

Max has a little brother named Felix and as far as little brothers go, he’s rather annoying. One this particular day, Max sought out a way to get rid of Felix on the internet by way of a spell. Felix is promptly whisked away to another world and Max jumps to his rescue armed with nothing more than a Magic Marker….No really, it’s just a plain old Magic Marker. When he meets an old woman who says she can help him, she imbues his Magic Marker with actual magical abilities.

The game itself is a 2.5D puzzle platformer with some unique gameplay elements. As Max runs through the various levels, he runs into a variety of obstacles which require the user to engage the Magic Marker to raise platforms, create vines or branches to climb or swing across, fire to blow up walls or water spouts to catapult Max to new areas. The puzzles are fun and rather clever. A few times I found myself pondering and trying solutions with no love. As it turns out, sometimes the most simple of solutions is in fact the right one and other times, it’s all about how precise you draw with that magic marker. A few times, it became apparent to me that my solution was correct, but my ability to draw the path with the thumbstick was the issue. The use of a stylus or maybe even a tablet would have made this exercise much less frustrating. Still, it wasn’t often I had these issues. I also had some extreme moments of frustration towards the end of the game when the drawing required both speed and precision to complete the task resulting in 10 or sometimes more deaths and re-attempts.

Graphically, Max:TCB is gorgeous. It feels like an interactive cartoon as you take Max on his adventure and it immediately drew me into the world. The colors are vibrant and worked perfectly with the feel and art direction. 

All in all, Max: The Curse of Brotherhood is a fantastic title despite the frustrations I had at moments they certainly don’t handicap the game to any real degree. If you’re wondering what to get with some of your XboxOne points that Santa leaves in your stocking, this is a game that’s more than deserving of your time and money.

Feed Your Console gives Max: The Curse of Brotherhood an enthusiastic 8.5 out of 10.

Review – Ryse: Son of Rome

ryse-epic-view
As one of the premiere exclusives announced for the Xbox One earlier this year, Ryse was met with some considerable push back and scathing comments from gamers and journalists alike for it’s gameplay demo. Crytek took those criticisms and ran with them looking to fix as much as they could in a relatively short amount of time.

Ryse puts players in the control of Marius Titus, who witnesses his family get brutally murdered by a band of Barbarians. In an act of rage and vengeance, he seeks out a role in the Roman Army. Marius’ story unfolds as he quickly rises through the ranks during the bloody conflict with the Barbarian masses. I liked the story. It was a little cliche…OK a lot cliche at times but who cares? If it’s entertaining and makes you want to keep moving on to see what happens next, then it’s effective.

As a premiere launch title for Xbox One, it was important to show off why we need to spend $500 on a new console and Crytek handily proved the Xbox One’s graphical prowess. It’s absolutely GORGEOUS. The environments, lighting and character models are top notch. Every little detail from the water, to the fire to the cracks in the marble columns and floors. Every little detail was painstakingly addressed and it did not go unnoticed by me. I must admit that it didn’t take long for me to notice that there are really just 5 or 6 enemy models which was a little disappointing but forgivable.

The game itself is very much on the rails in that there really is no way you can go from point a to b in one direction. At times, the player is also given command of his army, using voice commands, Marius can call in the archers for support or take a stance with other troops and in a phalanx formation. When fighting the masses, Marius can initiate a bloody and visceral execution to dispatch his enemy once and for all (children need not apply here). This is really where much of the early criticism stemmed from. In early demos, a big colored button popped up on screen in the form of a QTE. These can be rather distracting and really take away from the game – Crytek has righted that wrong by subtly outlining the enemy in a color that directly corresponds to the colors of the controllers face buttons. So really, the QTEs are still there they’re just a little less in your face and it works well.

The saying “K-I-S-S” or “Keep It Simple Stupid” is the mantra of the day when referring to the 2 player cooperative battles in Ryse. It is nothing more than putting the 2 players into an arena or Colosseum to fight out a scenario in front of thousands of blood thirsty Romans. Play through the scenarios, with the love of the crowd and you earn money which can be used to buy “Booster Packs” to outfit your gladiator with. It’s simple, fast and fun. Exactly what the doctor ordered.

I quite enjoyed Ryse: Son of Rome. I liked the single player story enough to play through it twice in short order and have had copious amounts of fun with the multiplayer. Looking forward to going home tonight to sink my teeth into the free DLC that was just released earlier today. This is another must buy title for your Xbox One.

Feed Your Console gives Ryse: Son of Rome an 8.5  out of 10

Review – Dead Rising 3

468px-Dead-rising-3-banner
The Next Generation of gaming is finally upon us and shambling in at the front of the line is the 3rd installment of Capcom’s highly successful and popular franchise, Dead Rising 3.

As a lover of all things Zombies, DR3 is a natural fit for me and was a day one pickup for my Xbox One. I was sold the very second I laid eyes on in-game footage – The sheer number of zombies on screen easily eclipses previous installments and I knew Capcom was on to something special here.

Dead Rising 3 gives us a new protagonist in Nick Ramos, a mechanic with a penchant for creating vehicles and weapons of mayhem at a moments notice as he runs around the fictional city of Los Perdidos in an effort to rescue survivors and perform tasks all with the final goal of escaping the city alive.

The gameplay is pretty well cookie cutter to the series with very little refinements done to to overall control scheme or the typical errand boy type missions. That’s not particularly a bad thing though – Dead Rising has never been about being serious or innovative new gameplay mechanics. It’s also not about incredible story telling (though they have been fun stories)..Dead Rising 3 is about the adventure of getting to your destination. Ducking, dodging and smashing your way from point A to point B as endless hordes of zombies threaten to stop you. And that is where the game’s true brilliance is. A new addition that should be note is the ability to make some truly visceral vehicles to help add to the carnage and flying body parts. We’re talking steamrollers + motorcycles destruction. It’s fantastic. You can also ask a buddy to join the frackus cooperatively as “Dick”. I found the cooperative game made DR3 considerably easier especially when fighting the deranged bosses where one can attract their attention while the other attacks from the side.

My favorite addition to the game comes in the form of Kinect interaction. When a zombie grabs you for a snack, you can push towards the screen and Nick will shove the zombie off him. It’s a natural motion that just works really well. Also with Kinect, when you say “over here” your voice can be heard by zombies in the immediate area will hear you and begin shambling their way to your direction. This can be helpful when facing the masses – Just climb up on a truck call out to them and then jump over them…orrrr…..toss down some form or explosive and BLOW THOSE EFFERS UP! (My personal favorite).

Similar to DR1 and 2, throughout the overall story are some interesting “boss” missions. The bosses are just as over the top and insane as you’d come to expect from Dead Rising. From the roided out female body builder Cherii to the Dom with a flame thrower that resembles an over-sized erection(hilarious all the way).

Graphically DR3 is a massive step up on it’s predecessor. The zombies are more varied in their appearance and their movements. Did I mention just how many of these bloody things can be on screen at any given time? My god it feels as though there are times where there has to be 1000 zombies on screen at any given time. It’s especially impressive when you come up over a hill on the highway and there’s just a sea of zombies shambling around as far as the eye can see.

If there’s any one title you bring home for your Newly minted Xbox One, this is it.

Feed Your Console Gives Dead Rising a solid 8.5 out of 10