Archive for the ‘Video Games’ Category

Vain Glory

September 9th, 2015 No comments

Vainglory looks like an interesting Mobile MOBA game. Watched a twitch feed for it. Features 3 vs 3 traditional lane fighting for iOs and android. Kind of interested in how the controls function for a MOBA on a touch screen

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Destiny Adds the ability to alter inventory from a phone app

March 1st, 2015 No comments

This is huge. I’ve been playing the fantastic Dragonball Xenoverse lately (must buy for dragonball fans btw) but just logged in to test this feature. Works great!

I’ve never seen an online rpg do this before. From your smart phone, you can easily swap items on your character while you’re in a mission, etc. This is even easier than Town portals in Diablo! I am going to give Bungie props for this one. Well done!

Categories: Consoles, Video Games Tags:

Happy New Year…

December 29th, 2013 No comments

Unity store has just updated with a build of UMA! Remember I just blogged on that earlier (assuming anyone cares).

Been playing a bit of Killzone 4 ShadowFall and Resogun over the break. Starting to get better at both!

Btw, I just knew this artwork was the character WAR from Darksiders but apparently it’s a different concept.

Categories: Consoles, Unity3d, Video Games Tags:

The Repopulation On Kickstarter (Round 2)

December 27th, 2013 No comments

Wow I’ve never seen this MMORPG before. It’s a SciFi Sandbox RPG apparently. I personally haven’t been playing any MMOs but if I did, I’m sure I’d play this one :)

Good Luck Repopulation team it looks very good!

Now to think of it I did checkout DC Universe Online on the Playstation 4. Seemed quite fun and very well done. Unfortunately, these days I just don’t have the time to commit to an MMORPG but if I did I’m sure I’d try to level up a few superheroes

Categories: PC Games, Video Games Tags:

Voxels Everywhere!

December 18th, 2013 No comments

Quick list of games that I know of that utilize Voxels:

Spark Rising
Cube World
Astral Terra (in development)
3d-coat (Voxel sculpting)

There are many more that you can probably find. Looking forward to seeing more voxel based games in the future.

Categories: Technology, Video Games Tags:

No Man’s Sky

December 8th, 2013 No comments

Just saw an announcement trailer for a game called ‘No Man’s Sky‘. Everything is procedurally generated. Every atom. The birds, sky, space, etc. Exciting!

Sounds crazy ambitious so let’s hope this one makes it live!

Categories: PC Games, Video Games Tags:

C.A.R.S. versus iRacing

October 17th, 2011 No comments

C.A.R.S. is looking truly amazing. SMS, the mad geniuses behind Shift 2 Unleashed, is hard at work on their next title. Utilizing the firm foundation they laid down previously, SMS is set to build a brand new racing title that will make the racing experience even more immersible. Below is a video where they compare CARS to iRacing. Keep in mind CARS is still in pre-Alpha with a long ways to go but it already looks very promising

Categories: PC Games, Video Games Tags:

Thrustmaster T500 RS

September 2nd, 2011 No comments

So I have been using this fantastic wheel for quite awhile now. I’ve posted my thoughts about this wheel already at various places but thought it also deserved it’s own blog. A few months ago when Gran Turismo 5 released I decided it was time to get a wheel. Initially, I battled between a Fanatec GT2 + CSP vs T500rs for my purchase. However, at the time, the Fanatec GT2 was out of stock and would not hit the US in full until June. So that made the decision easy to go with the T500RS which features compatibility with a few titles on the PS3 (gran turismo 5, Nascar 2011, and Dirt 3) and full compatibility with any proper PC sim that supports custom wheels.

Like many, I was immediately blown away by the incredible force feedback and rapid speed of the wheel. Gran Turismo 5 takes full advantage of this wheel and doesn’t hold back. The brakes though utilize pots instead of load cells though. However they are very stiff and great quality probably coming into 2nd place behind Fanatec’s legendary Clubsport brake pedals. The unit is pretty heavy though so I initially had to build a little muscle moving it around to my desk, etc. The clamp on this wheel works great. Even this odd desk I have the ‘claw’ fit perfectly on it and mounted the wheel to my desk. Eventually though I decided to go with a Wheelstand pro stand which works great with this wheel.

Recently, Thrustmaster has just announced the TH8 RS Shifter which is poised to be one of the best shifters on the market. Everyone already expected a top quality product but Thrustmaster still managed to surprise everyone by announcing their shifter is designed to work with any wheel as long as the game supports it.

I highly recommend this wheel for PS3/PC gamers. For xbox gamers, obviously the T500rs will not fit the bill. Microsoft xbox uses a proprietary technology, called XID which makes using wheels like the t500rs impossible. But on the bright side, there is a plethora of games on the PS3/PC to play. In an earlier article I listed several racing games which can all be played using this wheel with exception to the Forza video game series of course which are unfortunately xbox exclusive

Categories: Consoles, Video Games Tags:

CryEngine 3 SDK Free

August 23rd, 2011 No comments

CryEngine 3 SDK can now be downloaded free of charge. This is the engine that powers the legendary Crysis 2 game so this is very interesting news. This gives folks a lot of high powered options to choose from (Unreal Developer Kit or Cryengine 3)

Categories: Technology, Video Games Tags:

Racing Arcade/Sim Games Overview

August 3rd, 2011 No comments

Need For Speed: Shift 2 [Arcade style] is one racing game that has consumed a lot of my time. I purchased the PC version as soon as it was available using EA Origin. I was a bit disappointed it wasn’t on Steam immediately though but still plowed forward. Besides the obvious bizzare magnetic collision detection between cars it’s been a really great game to play here and there. Recently, a DLC 3 pack was released by the community which adds even more great beauties such as the Koenigsegg Agera and Pagani Cinque Roadster…

Back to EA Origin, hopefully they fixed the awful issue was if you launch Shift 2 using it you will lack FFB on your steering wheel altogether. Very bad form devs such an obvious bug should not exist. Funny thing is when I launch the game outside of EA Origin it works just fine

One great thing about this title though is that it looks absolutely fantastic. However, there are some downsides. I’ve had trouble trying to get 900 Steering wheel range to work. For now I just use 450 for all my racing games including this one. The campaign is one of the best arcade style you can find in a racer. Multiplayer is lacking along with lack of support for dedicated servers. The custom steering wheel options lack the ability to bind a shifter so you might be out of luck if you want to use a complex racing config. It’s basically what you’d expect from a direct console port sadly with little thought given to PC community. Beyond these downsides it’s a great game and a great deal for the current price on Steam ($29.99). Notice this is an Arcade style game lacking pits, tire wear, and fuel management completely. It also lacks long races of course since it is tuned for short, fun races. This is a shame because hotlapping in this game is very realistic and immersible as leaves blow around the track, dirt stains your car, wrecks come alive, and the sounds are very enthralling in-spite of the slightly overdone gear whine sounds.

Also like one would expect from a console port it is very hostile to mods. The wonderful community has still managed to work some wonders over there at NoGripRacing as they have found ways to inject new skins into the .bff files and so forth. Still, due to this limitation, this game has fallen short of the glory of ISI-powered titles

However, one must give a nod to their great night racing which is top notch but feels a bit out of place due to the lack of long races. No one just simply engages in a race in the middle of the night like what occurs in this game’s campaign. Still, its very impressive and well done. The deffered lighting engine is used to wonderful effect here.

The AI is a bit too much though as they tackle you off track along with them (magnetic cars FTL). Also, the difficulty settings seem to do very little as Easy can still be tough for inexperienced newcomers. Also, you might find yourself having to restart a race a lot of times within the first 10 seconds due to magnetic cars getting glued together and wrecking. It seems very bizzare!

However, overall I must say this is a great package. The car selection is incredible and the ability to works convert any car is just astounding. Autolog is insanely addictive once you populate it full of friends to compare yourself to. The sheer amount of config options is insane and in-depth, trumping dedicated sims such as iRacing, etc with ease. This game would’ve been an easy 100+ I think for most people if the magnetic collision didn’t exist and the AI was less hostile.

rFactor is an industry respected sim that gets everything right with full dedicated multiplayer servers, great physics, awesome steering wheel support, replays, and extremely mod-friendly making it a must have sim racing game. Below are some pics from just some of my favorite mods DTM, Enduracers, and V8 Factor. Getting the most out of rFactor might require extreme patience though. You have to know where the hot mods can be acquired from for new cars & tracks. For instance, Com8 is one of my favorite mappers. However, a newcomer might be overwhelmed by all the choices and content.

* Must have mods are ENB (HDR / Bloom) & RealFeel.

GTR 2 is a fabulous Simbin title that makes great use of ISI’s gMotor 2 engine. Graphics seem very crisp out-of-the-box with it’s clean shaders and shading style. It comes with a very nice tight set of licensed cars. Unfortunately, newcomers may endure great hardships to acquire this title since the publisher has refused to release a digital version. Like all ISI based titles, GTR2 is very mod friendly as well. Below are some models included with the game plus additional content from mods such as WSGT & Porche 911 race car. The only downside to this spectacular title is that it is limited to just 450 deg or so for steering wheel range.

* Must have mods are ENB (HDR / Bloom) & WGST (for high quality cars made by Arnold Wong and associates!)

GTR Evolution / Race 07 might seem a bit confusing to newcomers. Essentially what Simbin has done here was create a base racing platform called Race 07 (which released in 07). The graphics are a tad bit dated but once you play the game you’ll quickly begin to appreciate the hard work and details. What I’m more excited about though is GTR Evolution which is an expansion for Race 07 (not to be confused with GTR 2, it’s done by a different team. It’s not related!). Unlike GTR2, GTR Evo supports a wide variety of steering ranges out-of-the-box and has incredible FFB. I would dare say it holds a candle to the legendary iRacing (online racing game I’ll cover very soon hopefully). GTR Evo is reknown for it’s incredible Nürburgring tracks which I must say is top notch! Driving along this track using a T500RS racing wheel just feels absolutely breathtaking. The physics and force feedback effects are just simply 1st class.

* Must have mod is ENB if you want HDR/Bloom

iRacing is an extremely popular online racing game that shares some qualities with MMOs such as persistent stat tracking and a focus on player interaction. There is no offline modes available in iRacing. The advantages to subscribing to iRacing is that you can engage in a fully populated race once per hour as well as participate in practice sessions, etc at anytime. Like a true racing sim should do- it allows practice, time trials, qualification, and proper championship races. iRacing also sports an incredible physics model along with spectacular force feedback effects. It also has true laser scanned tracks so you can feel every bump for additional immersion. The only downside is the costs which might get expensive with each car costing $12, every track costing like $15 each, plus an additional subscription fee. You can reduce the costs by buying everything together though. Like an MMO, iRacing is regularly updated. I would say the only other racing game that sees a lot of updates like this is the Race 07 platform by Simbin.

One of iRacing’s claim to fame is the well thought Safety Rating system. Players earn SR for clean driving in official races. However, the only downside to this is that if someone intentionally wrecks you then your SR goes down along with theirs. However, SR does seem to be working decently to serve the greater good to encourage nice clean, precise racing. iRacing 2.0 now boasts driving aids for rookies and private races to help ease in noobs.

Dirt 3 [Arcade style] is the new Dirt game from Codemasters that features Rally racing, gymkhanna, RallyXCross, etc. Currently I play the console version however I am aware it suffers the obvious console port pitfalls on PC such as lack of dedicated servers and hostility to modding. Inspite of this, clever modders still found a way to inject new functionality and changes into the game such as new skins, camera changes, etc. However I believe this disables online play so these gamers might be required to maintain 2 different installs. Dirt 3 features great force feedback effects for an arcade style game. However, the lack of saving replays is a real bummer! Still, it presents a fun multiplayer package that is well thought out beyond the obvious flaw that you can’t use DLC tracks online. But you can use DLC purchased vehicles.

Gran Tursimo 5 is a clever mix of Arcade / Sim but leaning more towards sim-like feature boasting realistic tire wear, detailed pit crews, and fuel management. It also boasts a wide variety of racing wheels with full support for max rotation on the T500RS wheel. The force feedback effects, while not quite as detailed and precise as PC sims by a wide margin, is still really nice for a console title. You can feel the dedication of the creator, Kaz (TBD), to simulate racing while also retaining some arcade qualities such as the omission of Qualifying events. However, it does include lots of long endurance races. For example, I just completed the Indy 500 last night using my Red Bull X1 prototype car :D. It was a bit too lengthy for my taste so sadly I did mix in some automated controls so I could take a break (good old rubber banding controls and hug the walls) along with myself driving a bit to manage fuel and tire wear.

Multiplayer is very solid with the inclusion of 16 players. Not a full grid like the PC sims. But very nice. Also includes rain, night, etc. It’s the most comprehensive racing title to date out of the box with support for Kart racing, NASCAR, Ferrari Formula 1, Super GT, Rally, and even electric cars. It’s unmatched in this area I would say out-of-the-box. It lacks a detailed livery system like its competitor Forza 3 has though along with a comprehensive online trading system. GT5’s used dealership system seems quite broken nowadays though with the lack of being able to trade items above 950k in value (1 mil credits or more for sure). GT5’s Premium models are top notch however the Standard models look like they were directly ported from Playstation 2 (GT4)! The devs unwisely also excluded cockpit views for Standards. You would think it would be a simple matter to make a basic cockpit for the 60+ Skyline models this game boasts

The car selection is quite questionable on the lower hp end with choices such as Nissan Prius while lacking Mazda Speed 3. The LMS category feels a bit shallow with only Mazda 787B, 980i, and Audi R10 being elected to premium status while the fantastic cars like F1 GTR is reduced to Standard status along with many other attractive cars. Hopefully we will see at least 1 DLC that will address this odd situation. However I must say the Super GT cars are all here represented in kingly fashion which brings the car selection up to par especially with a nod towards a lot of nice classics from Lamborghini, Ferrari, Ford, Shelby, & Jaguar vehicles. The supercar category is very strong with only Porche missing from the mix. However, 1 criticism I have is that RUF, Porche’s replacement, did not receive any Premium model treatment whatsoever which is very disappointing. RUF vehicles share the same Porche bodyframe w/o the licensing issues so it would have seemed prudent to highlight these unique vehicles more