Here’s the deal: I really like Fallout 4. Regardless of what you have to say about it, Bethesda did it again: they made one of their iconic open world games that is a seemingly endless world. Bethesda has a deep understanding of the worlds they create, and the wasteland has never been more personal and interesting since your character is a big part of it. They really capture the feeling that not only does your character have a say in what happens to this world, but they themselves are a character in that world.
Sure, there are some really disappointing aspects of the game. The worst but most accurate thing you can say is this just feels like a reimagining or an expansion to Fallout 3. Really, nothing is very different here and that’s kind of a bummer. But with that, you still end up getting more Fallout 3. Not a bad equation.
The commonwealth wasteland is new, and different, and acts as something that captures a very different vibe and tone. You see a lot of that with the story that they start the lay out, entering an odd noir-offshoot feel. The characters here are far more memorable than they’ve ever been, and Bethesda is definitely trying new things, just not nearly enough of them.
Rise of the Tomb Raider
Holy crap! So I went into Rise of the Tomb Raider pretty much blind. I’ve seen some E3 trailers and a little gameplay but I just kind of didn’t have any inkling of what this game actually is other than a sequel to one of my most favorite games of 2013. Turns out it’s one of the best games of the year in a big big way. The game looks incredible, the gameplay is even better then the game, and they even improved the world you’re in general with light missions and crafting.
Probably the only thing that comes short for this game is that the story with some of the characters just serviceable at best, but is saved by Lara Croft performance and growth throughout the game. Whether you play it now or sometime next year don’t miss out of this game. Uncharted 4 is going to have a lot to live up to.
There is something special about a good curve, the right deal of a hand of powers. Those abilities that let you get around, work around, and really feel free and mobile across the world. Plus, giving them out in the right spurts at the right time is a fine balance. Rise of the Tomb Raider has it all boiled down to a science, like a Metroid or Castlevania. It takes everything that made Tomb Raider (2013) interesting, and just makes it more fun, and more better.
Rise of the Tomb Raider is just a great iteration on an already great idea, cleaning up pretty much every issue I had with the game before. No more weird Lara Croft sounds, some interesting character development, amazing performance capture, and most importantly: more tombs! Plus this features small-scale sandboxes for you to hunt, craft, and develop in, like mini Far Cry-esque worlds spaced throughout linear and driven chunks of action and set pieces.
It’s a balance of both the “open world flair” that seems big and broad, but isn’t overwhelming, with the Uncharted level of cinematic action you come to expect from a crazy action title like this. On top of that, it’s just never been more fun to play. It’s a shame that not everyone can play Rise of the Tomb Raider right now, because it is absolutely worth your time.
Bloodborne: The Old Hunters
There is something insidious to Bloodborne. Oh, I don’t just mean the way it looks and feels, that is dark and grimey in a way I think we can all understand. I think it’s more in the way its challenge gets under your skin, so much so it’s all you can think about when you’re not trying, again and again, to best its hardest boss.
I spent about a week putting down and coming back to The Old Hunter’s first and final bosses, and each drove me insane. All I could think about was the fight, what I needed to do better, and where I could improve. It made things like flying to San Francisco and playing Tomb Raider quite difficult. It stuck in the back of my mind, as the hardest challenge the game presented to me yet. Past that, the world, its secrets, and all the crazy new weapon additions to Bloodborne made it such a great and deep experience. I loved it.
Sitting and thinking about this after getting the platinum trophy in Bloodborne really does put the quality of The Old Hunters on a pedestal. It’s some of the craziest and most inventive action you’ll see in the whole game, and it gives you that extra push to come back and really fight it out, both with yourself, and the insanely challenging monsters ahead of you in the Hunter’s Nightmare.