Total War: Rome 2 – Review

Big fan of the Total War series. I think what they do is rather excellent, and the tactics features is fun as hell. That being said, I’d rather start off on some sour notes of the Rome 2. I’ll be saving the good stuff last. Don’t judge the game on first comments, the good comments will roll out during the end when I’ll be sharing my verdict.

Too Many Nations 

This has created a problem that I saw within the first turn. The game introduced itself well. As soon as I finished my first turn, the game went through the motions of all of the other Nations doing their turns. I never counted how many there were. If I were to guess, there would be upwards to about thirty, maybe even forty different ones playing on the same giant map. The more you discover, the longer their turns will take because they’ll start moving on the map. This can definitely eat up a lot of time. They certainly immerse you in the fact that it’s Rome during the 250’s BC, however the take away is that there is also dozens of Nations going turn by turn by turn. Excellent immersion factor, horribly long waiting periods.

Graphic Errors

From time to time you’ll get the usual graphic area on the map. Maybe something will be missing or you’ll find a patch of land looking odd. There were the rare times that when I went down into “Movie” mode, I’d see a set of helmets floating a few inches away from where their soldier’s bodies were. That had been one of the annoying factors when I wanted to watch two armies beat the hell out of each other. I once also had a set of archers aiming directly at the ground below them. Perhaps a new tactic to delay the soldiers and prick their feet? All-in-all, small graphic based errors that they’ll eventually sort out over the next few weeks.

Simple AI

The AI seem to have a trend of not being the best sports. They’re either clumsy negotiators, or their tactics seem as if they allowed their five-year old heir to run the armada for a few days. They’ll either drive their forces into the ground with useless tactics or not enforce an obviously open area that I can have my army take advantage of. I was hoping for a larger challenge as I progressed through the game, although it seems how they went about correcting that was by making the enemy’s forces better than yours in every way each time the difficulty went up. I was hoping that the computers would become smarter, but that has yet to be addressed.

Time for the positive thoughts!

Amazing Graphics

While a few errors are minor, and rarely happen, the environment and the fight scenes are absolutely beautiful. Arrows fly fast, fire acts like fire, and soldiers trample the ground with powerful force as they run to attack one another. The mountains and vast scenery is quite a bit to take in as you explore the overly large map of Eastern Europe. If you have a rig that has the capabilities to go all the way up to Ultra, do so. It’s a beautiful scene you’re not going to want to miss.

Historical Accuracy

The Total War team really went to town when they decided to go down to the core level of the game and went into the lore of the time. The soldiers fight as they should, the forces are massive creating the choice of giving you a wide range of armies to have. It gives you, the leader, the chance to truly customize your armies as you see fit. Letting you choose from a wide array of soldiers whose stats differ from one another. If you want an army to not lack in a certain area, you can definitely have that as well.

Gameplay

The team wanted you, the player, to have quite a few choices when fighting. Having trouble in a section of the Empire that needs addressing? You can change the stance of an army and have them march over to that part in a matter of turns, quickly and effectively. Other times, you can have them block a pass that you know for certain an enemy force is about to enter. You can cut them off and have them meet with a stronger defense force that you have set up strictly to be a meat shield while you rally other armies. The stance change in this game is significant. As you learn to change them, you’ll adapt to the game so you can get the most out of each of your armies that you’re creating. You can also have sea forces supporting your land ones, becoming the ultimate commander of both Sea and Land.

Developer Support

Most fans would know that as the game had been released, some concerns rose to parts of the game feeling unfinished. To help correct that, the development team announced that they would be giving weekly updates (starting last Friday, and continuing from there) to help improve and adjust any bugs that were found or commonly reported. Their next update is scheduled for this Friday. Even through there are a few bugs in the game, they stand by what they’ve given to the fans and continue to throw their support for those who ask for it.

Verdict:

I am a fan of the game. I am a fan of the series. I found that while there minor errors, they can be overlooked by even the newest of players because of how well the other key features are presented. Although, it is warned to be careful if this is your first Total War game. There are some features that are offered that are vaguely more familiar to those who’ve played games such as Total War: Shogun 2. Because of that, it’s easier to pick up. Nonetheless, the developers introduced an excellent prologue to the game so that all newcomers may feel welcomed and are free to start off a pace of their choice.

Total War: Rome 2 – 9 / 10

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DmC: Devil May Cry Review

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If you’re looking for a newly rebooted to give a try, DmC has hit a homerun. This game has everything for those button mashers out there love to do. It has an excellent story, beautiful artwork within the game, and dozens upon dozens of dazzling combos.

Quick overview for those who are wishing to know more than only the gameplay aspects it brings. Dante, son of a Devil father and a murdered Angel mother, awakens from a horrendous hangover is suddenly under attack from a demon. The city around Dante, Limbo City, begins to configure and twist itself in a twisted reality with demons coming left and right for his hide. I won’t give away too much, but the citizens of the city attempt to fight back. You’ll have to play to figure out more of the keys.

Let’s continue onto the good stuff that all you gamers want to know.

Certain Pros:

  • Fantastic Story
  • Positive Graphics
  • Break-neck Combos
  • Wicked Weapons
  • Gameplay Ease

Fantastic Story

I don’t plan to reveal anything or go into details how the story goes. But, I will go on about how well the story is told. If you’ve played previously Devil May Cry games, you’ll remember parts of the story where you’d seem to back track the story and go over something that’s already been said. Or, feel like you’ve barely been moving at all. In this game, the story has certainly matured. Within the first hour, you feel like it’s going to be like the rest. Alas, players, if the game is continued deeper you’ll find that it indeed begins to leap forward. The maturity is like that of any teenager. Give it sometime, and you’ll know it will slowly learn and when it does, you have a fantastic time.

Positive Graphics

I’ve never been one of the people who comment extensively on the game’s graphics. I’ve typically stuck to PC games and stayed on the south side of graphics. Trying the PS3 it was extremely interesting to see how the city of Limbo spun around. It was brilliantly portrayed. Along with the artwork of the Demons that had been showing up. It was mind blowing to watch on the screen as Dante ran around and began to send them to oblivion. When something is badass like that it’s difficult to not stop for a moment and give it a tip of the hat.

Break-neck Combos

Having been mentioned previously, this game is for those button mashers that know how to handle their controller. The combos will take levels to develop. As those advanced moments become more apparent to players, you’ll be able to tell when in the middle of a combo and transition over to the next one, and then another. The combos flow out extremely well and allow for anyone to figure out which set fits their fighting style. Heavy combo, light, medium, and slow combos can all mix together for each kill that fits the particular style.

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Wicked Weapons

This can also fit into the Combos section, but these weapons are alluring in texture they deserved their own area of mention. You have Angelic weapons that can cause less damage, yet they have increased speed that can be for those players looking to have that area of effect strikes. The human weapons are you more basic of all the three types having medium attacks. The Demon weapons are, you’ve guessed it, heavy with slow speed that make up for damage. The artwork for them is beautiful, I loved using every weapon. Also, to add, the whip that Dante uses can be either Angelic or Demon depending on which button you’re holding.

Gameplay Ease

A friend of mine who had first picked it up explained to me how easy it was for him to go through the game. As in, the button mashing hadn’t been overwhelming. This was a friend who didn’t play many games, yet I recommended this to him given the hype it had. He fell into it exceptionally well. For those gamers that are not too comfortable with the button attacking, fear not. This game doesn’t force you into a corner to where you can lose half-way through that tough boss because the dexterity in your hands hasn’t developed.

Certain Cons:

  • Minor Audio Bugs
  • Short Draw Out

Minor Audio Bugs

There were times in the game where I found that the voice acting didn’t match when the characters were speaking. It was fairly obvious that it was happening. The error occurred after I had been fighting and things moved over to a cut-scene. It staggered for a moment, yet the game caught up with itself quickly. A few songs, as I heard, felt as if they could have been shortened to allow the talking to take place.

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Start Draw Out / Abrupt Ending

It was briefly mentioned in the beginning, the fantastic story, but yes, it did indeed take time to show itself. I was worried for a while if it was going to happen. That can turn off a few gamers if they feel like they wanted for the magic to happen immediately. That’s a statement that can’t be disagreed with. When you’re given a chance to reboot things, bring everything up to speed immediately. As the game did redeem itself later on, the start-up had been a slow pace. That pace can throw players off to what the game has to offer.

DmC: Devil May Cry is an extravagantly, well done reboot for the series. Those developers over at Ninja Theory attempted to trick me that it wasn’t worth it in the beginning. Given time to start running, the game provides gamers with a wonderful start up. If they’re attempting to bring the series back, the team has the ground work to do well from this point.

The stress on this word can’t be given enough. It is a reboot, people. Reboot. Meaning it will be different from the series. It’s going to be contrasting to the others that have been released. Some have not realized this fact. Having read that it is a reboot, I urge you to go and get this game.

Capcom will have respect in player’s gaze once more.