It’s time for another installment of Now Gaming, where we let you know what we’re playing this week. Yes, we know we need to do a better job of making sure a new edition of this actually gets posted every week. We’re going to work on it. This week we ask you to give a warm welcome to a newcomer joining us, GamingJess. In addition to Jess, I’ll be letting you know which free-to-play title I’ve returned to, Jules is with us as well, and Brian returns to the series.
So without further ado, here’s what we’re playing this week:
When I got my PS4 about a year ago, Warframe is a game I played a lot of. And of course the primary reason for that was that the game is free-to-play. As I began buying games and getting review copies for PS4, my library began to grow. There was Watch_Dogs, a bit of a lull, and then Destiny (which has occupied most of playing since its release). However, this week I have returned to Warframe, and it’s almost like a different game now. Developers Digital Extremes have done a tremendous job of supporting this game and showing the entire industry how free to play should be done.
The UI has changed and a lot of new systems and mechanics have been added, and I have found myself almost at a loss. I’m currently trying to play catch up one some of the new quest-lines (currently trying to get the parts to begin crafting an Archwing, which I’m excited to eventually try). I find myself struggling a little trying to do it solo. I was pretty decent at one time, but now my aim sucks big time. I think I need to do the early missions a lot more to farm those early materials to get back into the swing of things rather than jumping into the deep end.
I am beyond impressed with the work Digital Extremes has done with this game though. It has grown so much, and continues to do so. The PS4 version (and I assume Xbox One as well) just got the latest update last night. I can’t help but play this now and almost marvel at the amount of things that just make so much sense and would work so well to make a game like Destiny even better. I’ve even started watching the Warframe Devstreams again to get insight to the content that has already released as well as what is coming down the road.
It’s going to take me awhile to fully get back into the groove of the game and the controls down again, but I’m already rediscovering why I enjoyed this game so much last May and June when I played so much of it.
Also Playing: Destiny, Dragon Age Inquisition
Dying Light (PS4)
When I first heard about this game I was not impressed. I was expecting an average run of the mill zombie game with a cool day and night cycle. Boy was I wrong! I’ve had a great time playing Dying Light, even though I am at a standstill as far as story progression goes. The only reason being that I have a night mission to accomplish and quite frankly I am terrified! Going out at night is risky business, but it forces the player to focus on survival and tact. However, if you’ve got a bag-full of courage and a game plan, the double experience points gained for exploring outside of safe zones makes it totally worth it. Utilizing daytime hours to loot for supplies and complete side missions becomes just as important for surviving in Harran, a city somewhere in India I’m guessing based on the accent most character have, where Kyle Crane has been sent to retrieve a top secret file. He basically ends up as the town bitch, completing side missions that usually include (free)running from place to place to collect supplies or powering up stations to improve communication and safety.
Luckily, the combat and ridiculous amount of weapons allows the side missions to be so much fun. Looting and completing missions reward the player with blueprints used for creating the ultimate zombie killing machine, and experience points used for improving agility, power, and survival skills. Killing the zombies in this game gives me so much satisfaction. Between the head stomping and the massive amounts of blood and gore, seriously what could be more fun!? Learning how to make the most of your environment also makes for some pretty creative and brutal kills. Whether it’s setting up traps to electrocute or burn them, or pushing them into spikes set up everywhere throughout the city. The sheer amount of awesome zombie killing options carries this game a long way.
Unfortunately no game is perfect and there are some minor issues I have noticed. First off, the characters blow. The dialogue is tacky and the main character seems to lack the capability to show conviction or emotion. I haven’t gotten into the story far enough to make a decision on whether or not I like it, but as of now I am curious to find out what happens in the future. Another thing that bothers me about the game is how easy it is to rig getting tons of experience points for being out at night. Leaving a designated safe zone is as easy as jumping over the fence; from there you can climb buildings around the perimeter and not even have to encounter any zombies. This allows the player to rack up thousands of points with the safe zone close by.
Despite a few minor issues, Dying Light is just plain fun. Between the smooth and responsive free running, the expansive selection of weapons intended to be improved with upgrades used for the most ruthless zombie killing I’ve ever experienced, and the beautiful and detailed world; this game is hard not to love. I approve!
Also Playing: So many other games it’s not even funny!
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed (PS3) (2012)
This game was a Christmas present stocking stuffer kind of deal for my wife. She’s a huge fan of old school Sega games, Sonic being her favorite character. Her favorite form of game however has always been racing games, so when I saw this, good hubby poo that I am, I figured it was a can’t miss and I was right. What’s that? I know this series isn’t called “What is your wife playing?” She fell in love with this game pretty quickly and I started joining her almost daily for two player races. The controls are easy to pick up although it does get pretty challenging on advanced levels. There’s a ton of different tracks and characters to choose from. I always play as Shadow myself, while the wife is of course, Sonic. Wreck it Ralph is my back up, followed by Danica Patrick who was an odd choice to shoe-horn into this game character wise.
One thing I hate doing in this game though is flying, which many tracks require. Your character’s vehicle auto transforms into a boat, plane, or race car depending on what part of the track you’re on. The graphics here are straight out of those 1990s arcade games that we all used to love so much. One thing I would like to see in future editions if there any is personalized boosts instead of just everyone getting the same four or five boosts (which you collect by driving into them). Like I said before in other entries, I’m probably the most casual gamer of the bunch here (I mainly stick to a half dozen or so games for a good long while), and my wife plays even less than I do, so for a game to earn a spot in that rotation consistently it really has to be A: fun, and B: easy enough that a novice newb like me can still compete. This game isn’t gonna light the world on fire by any means, it’s just a fun time waster if you’re into that sort of thing.
Also Playing: WWE 2k14, Tetris N-Blox, AC III
Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Vegas (PS3)
My time is pretty limited this week because of work(If you know anyone that works at a florist on Valentine’s week, take pity and shoot them. Double that for the lead in to Mother’s Day), so I may be a bit more brief than usual. After knocking off Fallout, I decided to come forward a few years and get into Rainbow Six: Vegas. Basically, you play as the leader of a small military assault team that ends up on the trail of a terrorist that leads you to, as you can probably guess, Las Vegas. Obviously, you’ll goal is to track them down and stop them, killing many bad guys in the process. Like most Tom Clancy/Rainbow Six games, the graphics are lacking a bit, but the story and game play are pretty solid, so once you get used to the step back in looks, it balances out. I think I’ve passed halfway, and possibly am 2/3rds of the way through at this point, so I’m hoping if I can survive my day job through Saturday, I may finish this off sometime next week.
Also Playing: Got in a couple games of Madden 25 over the weekend. I miss football already.
Now we want to know what YOU are playing. Are you playing a new game, or an older one? Let us know in the comments below, and tell us why you’re playing it and what you think of it. Until next time, game on!