FALLOUT 76 – My journey into West Virginia










Happy Reclamation Day everyone!

I’ve been holding off writing this review because I just wasn’t sure what to make of Bethesda studios newest Fallout game. On one hand I’m really enjoying what it has to offer with it’s survival mode and large beautiful looking landscape. But on the other it’s full of glitches and bugs, some even being game-breaking. I know that it’s “cool” at the moment to hate on Fallout 76 and call it a horrible game and a complete disaster, but it’s far from it. So let’s start off with the negatives because I want this review to end on a high note, so here it goes.

Fallout 76 is set in the post- apocalyptic West Virginia with its large mountains and hauntingly beautiful forests. But it has some problems, growing pains if you like to call it that. When the beta went live before release players were complaining of the constant bugs and glitches (one particularly bad one where the game would delete itself off of the person’s PC), Bethesda said that they were working on these issues before the games release, but still players were nervous about the quality of the product that they were going to be purchasing. Then, just before the release of the second round of the beta, Bethesda issued a “Letter to the fans” here it is here…


Now we all know Bethesda’s track record when it comes to their games. Most of them are full of bugs that the QA team just didn’t pick up. But Fallout 76 is a fully online multiplayer experience, so going into this game I knew what to expect. And I was not disappointed. I started the game by myself, during these first few hours I ran into a few frame rate drops (I’m playing on Xbox if you’re wondering) but otherwise it was a relatively smooth and fun experience. But then I stopped playing for I didn’t want to get to far ahead of my friends who I was going to be playing it with. So a few days went by and I organised with my friend to play it, so I joined his lobby and off we went to explore West Virginia, and that’s when the trouble started. As soon as we came into contact with other players the frame rate dropped tremendously to point of almost being unplayable, the night ended with my game crashing to dashboard. The next time we invited one of our other friends to join us on our adventure, I joined their lobby and my game immediately froze, so I had to quit the game and return to the dashboard. This happened twice. After that however we went on our adventure, which was filled with HEAPS of bugs, most of them hilarious, my favourite is when a random player jumped into a suit of power armour but the armour doesn’t load. During that time I started to realise how Fallout 76 was unlike any other Fallout game I had ever played.


Firstly, the combat was very confusing. Enemies would run around at crazy speeds and would be really hard to hit with the slow weapons you’re given at the start of the game. VATS (which allows you to hit the target more accurately) can no longer slow down time because of the multiplayer aspect. The only problem with this is VATS doesn’t lock onto the target quick enough, so by the the time it does the enemy is a metre away from you or their behind cover, which makes it useless. There are no NPC’s, so you are given quests either through letters or audio logs, it really makes the world around you feel empty even with the other players running around. Alright, that’s the negative stuff out of the way, now for the positive.

really like Fallout 76, the past few days I’ve been playing a lot of it and really enjoying myself. I’ve mostly been playing it solo and just enjoying where my feet take me. I’ve been doing small side quests, I traded with another random player, I even found and fought against the horrifying Grafton Monster. But mostly I’ve been travelling from location to location and simply marvelling at the world that Bethesda has created, because it sure is beautiful. Fallout 76 also uses Fallout 4’s crafting system. Except this time the player needs to have the schematics or the weapon mods to be able to customise your weapons. But unlike Fallout 4 your weapons now degrade, which means you need to be keeping an eye on their condition as you fight enemies. This system seems tedious at times, but if you pick up a lot of loot and scrap it into crafting materials you will be fine.

Another added mechanic is the CAMPS, in which players can set up a home wherever and whenever they like. That’s what makes the CAMPS so great, if you don’t like the area you’re in then you can pack the whole thing up and take it someplace else. I made a small homestead for myself up in the forests surrounding Flatwoods, it’s a quiet place and I even put a small ammo box out the front with some ammunition so if people needed some equipment they could take it. It’s a place where players can go regroup and stash there weapons and equipment, but also craft new weapons and armour and even cook meals to take out with you and boil water. For Fallout 76 is a survival game, the players character will get hungry and dehydrated, so the player needs to make sure they have an ample amount of food and water on them as they travel around West Virginia.

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Another new addition in Fallout 76 is the perk card system. Unlike other Fallout titles in which you could pick which perk you wanted from a set list, Fallout 76’s perk system uses trading cards. Every time you level up you pick which perk you would like to upgrade (Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility, and Luck) and from there you can are given a selection of perk cards you can choose from. You can then add that to your character and even upgrade them. The part of these that make it so great is that you can trade these cards with other players, so you’re not stuck with the same cards over and over again. Sometimes you are given a random pack of cards you can open (almost like a loot box) and you have a chance to get a higher ranking card in the packs.  It’s a confusing system at first, but it really feels SPECIAL (see what I did there) when you get further into the game.


Fallout 76 really is an amazing game. It has the foundations to become one of the biggest multiplayer games in the next few years, Bethesda aren’t just going to stop working on it now that it’s out, they have a plan for it, and yes we might be getting large updates over the coming months. But at least they’re trying to fix it. Yes it might not be a typical Fallout game but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be enjoyed. West Virginia is incredible to explore, sometimes it might be a bit wacky, but what Fallout game isn’t? So if you want my advice, don’t listen to the people screaming online at how awful this game is, because it’s not. And from that, I’m going to head off to my next adventure into Fallout 76, thanks for reading!!


“For when the fighting has stopped, and the fallout has settled. You must rebuild. Not just walls, not just buildings. But hearts, and minds, and ultimately America itself.” 






BATTLEFIELD V – A disappointing sequel?


Battlefield V, the brand new WW2 first person military shooter developed by DICE studios has been out for 3 days. And I’ve been playing a fair bit of it, and my opinion is….. mixed. To say the least. On one hand the developers over at DICE have made a amazing looking game graphically, while on the other it falls short on it’s choice of multiplayer game types and a campaign that tries to send a strong message but just feels weak. Let me get straight into it starting with the campaign.

Battlefield V takes the “War stories” that we got from Battlefield 1 and expands on it with bigger maps and even more personal stories. The intro to Battlefield V called “My country calling” really took my breath away, it shows the men and women who fought bravely during WW2, how heroic sacrifices were made for the greater good. But also shows the horrific experiences that they had to go through throughout the war. The rest of the campaign tries to keep this same sentiment with characters that the player is meant to care about. The only problem with this is that we only interact with these characters for a single mission, so there seems to be no real emotions if a certain character dies or is wounded in battle. The war stories are definitely dramatic and take us to interesting places all around the world, from deserts to high up in the snowy mountains of Norway, all the maps are designed with great detail and look absolutely amazing.


Now onto game play, stealth is a major mechanic during the campaign. Most of the missions will require you to sneak around enemies to make it to a checkpoint or to destroy enemy equipment. The only problem is stealth barely works, you are seen straight away by most enemies which then makes you either retreat or try and shoot your way through the onslaught of enemies. Well you would if you had ammunition, it seemed that most of the weapons that I picked up from fallen enemies or from crates had two clips of ammo and that was it, making me switch between guns continuously while being shot at. I spent at least 50% of my time looking at the ground trying to find ammunition and this usually led to me being killed…. a lot. Battlefield V’s health has been significantly reduced compared to Battlefield 1’s, this may be for the heavy reliance of medics in multiplayer in which they can throw you health kits to heal minor wounds. But this doesn’t happen in the campaign, your health regenerates instead, very slowly. Altogether the campaign’s game mechanics just don’t work, and feel clunky as hell while you’re playing through it. Not including the amount of glitches and bugs that I got while playing, it almost makes you think that DICE shouldn’t continue with Battlefield campaigns and focus more on multiplayer instead.

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Speaking of multiplayer, it takes the best parts of the single player campaign and expands on it. There are 8 different game types to choose from. The biggest one being Grand Operations, the match is set over a couple of days and across different maps. It will have you on the edge of your seat as you fight for control over different points on the map. Another new feature is being able to reinforce certain areas of the map. Players can put down sand bags, dig trenches and build barricades to help defend the point against the enemy team. Teamwork is now much more integrated into the game play then before, every squad needs to stay together to survive and running off on your own means certain death if you’re not careful. It makes matches feel like real warfare with squad mates tactically moving around corners and clearing buildings all the while watching each others backs. Another interesting new feature is the crouch-run. Players can now move at a quicker pace while crouched, making it harder for the enemy to hit you and sometimes can make sneaking around even easier.

Classes also make a return in Battlefield V, still the same classes they have been for a while: Assault, Medic, Support, and Recon. Each of these plays the same as they did in Battlefield one, except for a few minor changes such as the recon being the only class that can now spot enemies. Classes also now have “specialisations” which players can unlock. They are perks that up the performance on certain weapons such as reducing bullet spray or how quickly the player can aim down sights. There’s also a larger array of vehicles to choose from, players can now customise different tanks and planes and load them up with different weapons and even change the camouflage on them.


Battlefield V isn’t a terrible game, but it’s not an amazing game either, but I really wish it was. It has the ground works to become an amazing game, maybe with time it will improve just like Battlefront 2 has done in almost a year. We will have new content dropping next month such as the “turning tides” which is a add on to the war stories. As well as a Battle Royal mode called “Firestorm” coming in February next year. Multiplayer games these days are basically a service, we pay for a full priced game and eventually we will get the product that we paid for, we only need to wait. And maybe in a years time Battlefield V will be the best Battlefield game of all time. We can only hope.

HITMAN 2 – Does Hitman’s sequel hit the mark?

















Welcome back, Agent 47.



Hitman 2, not to be confused with Hitman 2: Silent Assassin which came out in 2002, is the new title released by IO Interactive and published by Warner Brothers Interactive Entertainment. It’s a sequel to 2016’s Hitman, which blew everyone away with it’s sandbox game play and emphasis on stealth, in fact it looked like a return to the original Hitman games. In which players could choose how they want to take down a target and were rewarded in how they did it. Hitman and Hitman 2 are both very much alike. In fact they both run off exactly the same engine and play identically, except for a few changes here and there. Some would even say that the newest instalment is just DLC for the older game, this might seem that way but IO has been working hard to make this game more impressive then the last one. With bigger levels and more stuff to interact with, it’s a Hitman’s playground.

Hitman 2 follows our protagonist Agent 47 as he tries to uncover his past all the while trying to take down the mysterious Illuminati-like organisation called Providence. That’s all we really know about the story, the narrative is mostly used to give the player a purpose to take out a target and that’s about it, which is slightly disappointing. But what can you do if your protagonist has as much character as a brick wall. 2016’s Hitman was about the same story-wise so I have come to not expect much from them when it comes to an engaging narrative. But game play wise Hitman 2 is fantastic.



Hitman 2 has 6 locations for the player to explore. The level design is amazing, each map offering unique ways to hunt down your target as well as different ways to escape after the job is done. They feel more intricate then the first Hitman’s levels with something different around every corner and inside every room, this makes the levels really come to life and feel lived in. My two favourite being Miami and Whittleton Creek, both of these being polar opposites to each other with one putting Agent 47 into the middle of a F1 racing event in which the player must navigate around large crowds of people to get to their target, and the other being set in a rich suburban neighbourhood which puts the player into a seemingly quiet street where nothing ever happens.


This is what makes Hitman 2 so enjoyable to play. They force the player to change the way they play and interact with the levels and situations. What makes these levels even better is the inclusion of “Mission Stories” in which the game gives the player a small storyline in the game to follow which usually puts you into the same room as your target. These mission stories are great for first time players of Hitman, they show how you can interact with objects to eliminate your targets and the different disguises that the player can use to fool guards and other NPC’s.


Even though the game gives you hundreds of ways to eliminate your targets, sometimes just using your trusty silverballer or a sniper rifle from a window is the best way to take them out, and sometimes even the quickest. But you have to be quick in escaping, otherwise you will get guards running to your position and start spraying bullets everywhere. And gun play is not one of Hitman 2’s strong points, you can barely hit anything even when the enemy is standing right in front of you. This may be on purpose though, Hitman is about sneaking around and taking out your targets silently and trying to avoid killing every person in sight. So don’t try it, it usually doesn’t end well.

Hitman 2’s replay-ability is fantastic, even more so with the inclusion of 2016’s Hitman game as to boot. The different challenges and level mastery make the maps different every time you play them. There’s just so much content in this game that it’s hard to cover it all in a review without dragging on about it. So here are my final thoughts, Hitman 2 is a fantastic game. It’s levels are so well detailed and the way it gives the player the reigns to do what they like keeps me wanting to come back for more. It’s one of 2018’s best releases, maybe not game of the year, but it’s definitely up there. So on that note, I say till next time!








Mission complete. Well done 47, now come home. We have another mission for you.





Star Wars Battlefront 2 – 1 Year Later


Where do I even start when talking about Battlefront 2, it’s a title shrouded in controversy. Upon it’s release on November 17th 2017, it was thrashed by both critics and users alike. You only need to scroll through the endless pages of user reviews on metacritic to know how the public felt about EA’s newest title. With it’s whopping 1.0 score it seemed that Battlefront 2 had no future, that the game was seemingly going to die before it had even started. But, to my surprise, it didn’t. In fact in 2018 EA is still pushing out content, not paid content, but free content at that.

But lets start at the beginning, after EA and DICE’s successful Star Wars Battlefront which released in 2015, which sold over 12 million copies worldwide, EA teamed up with DICE yet again to make a follow up Battlefront game that would improve on everything about the first game. And they did exactly that. When Battlefront 2 was released on November 17, players were given a brand new original story (something the first Battlefront was missing) and an absolutely beautiful looking Star Wars game. I don’t think anyone can dispute that DICE really nailed the look, sound, and feel of the Star Wars universe. From the way blasters sound and fire to the way X-Wings and Tie-Fighters dogfight around each other, I still get shivers when I hear Slave 1’s seismic charges detonate while in “Fighter Assault”. The way characters move to the way you see Darth Maul catapult himself, his double edged lightsaber spinning so fast they are just a blur into a group of clone troopers is absolutely thrilling, and of course nostalgic.


But it’s not only how the game looks and sounds, it’s the way it plays. EA and DICE have crafted an amazing first person shooter, taking all the good things from Battlefield and putting them into Battlefront. Mechanically it plays like Battlefield, the player has 4 different base classes to choose from – Assault, Heavy, Officer, and Specialist. These all have different weapons and abilities that help the player defeat their enemies. But unlike Battlefield, the player gains points by defeating enemies or completing objectives, and with these points the player can choose from a variety of Star Wars Heroes and Villains, as well as different vehicles, this is a drastic improvement on the original Battlefront in which heroes and vehicles could only be played if a specific token appeared on the map and the player picked it up. The new system allows anyone to play as their favourite characters. It’s a thoroughly engaging experience and just downright fun.

But that leads me into the controversial part of Battlefront 2. The level up system and of course…. lootboxes. When Star Wars Battlefront 2  was released players that jumped into multiplayer found that the progression to level up was slow, very slow. But even worse was the fact that some of their favourite Heroes and Villains: ie Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker, were locked until they had the correct amount of credits to unlock them. Now this wouldn’t of been a bad thing, but the price for those two character was 60,000 credits each. A user on Reddit called TheHotterPotato found out that if a player earned 1,370 credits per hour it would take 40+ hours to unlock either Vader or Luke. This of course caused outrage amongst the fans. But the anger only increased when players found that they could buy lootboxes with real-world currency that would allow them to buy both Vader and Luke quicker, but it would also help unlock abilities quicker for players, making the game pay-to-win.


Due to the chaos caused by the backlash, EA cut the high price for characters down by 75%, and even went as far to completely get rid of the option for people to buy lootboxes with real-world money. They’re still there of course, but you can only purchase them with the credits you gain through gameplay. But it was already too late, the damage was done. All hope was lost for Battlefront 2, even I stopped playing it after I completed the story mode. I played it here and there with a friend of mine (Ewok hunt was amazing as well as the inclusion of the Crait map from the Last Jedi) but never bothered to play it anymore then that. But then a month ago I heard that one of favourite characters, General Grievous, was coming to Battlefront 2. But not only that but Obi Wan Kenobi was also going to be added, alongside a whole new map, Geonosis. This spiked my interest to try and return to battlefront. And to my complete surprise I managed to get a game of Galactic Assault almost instantly with a full lobby of players. And I’ve got to say, it’s hell of a lot of fun playing it again. On Xbox not once have I struggled to find a match. I’ve heard the same for the PS4 as well. PC however, the game is dead. According to what I found online no one is playing at all, and anyone who does try and play is lucky to even find a game.

swbfii-clonewars-grevious-obiwan-body.jpg.adapt.crop16x9.1455w  Star Wars Battlefront 2 may of had a rocky release, and may of shaken the game industry as a whole when it comes to lootboxes in videogames. But EA and DICE have done their best to try and bring the game back from the dead, and they have succeeded. It looks like EA has plans to release new content all the way through 2019 as well, including Anakin Skywalker and Count Dooku, as well as a “new large-scale, non-linear game mode” according to EA’s official road-map. I would recommend anyone that is a fan of Star Wars to give Battlefront 2 a go in 2018, because from here on out it’s only going to get more and more content. So do yourself a favour, and play it.

And of course, may the force be with you…. always.

Red Dead Redemption 2. Return to the Wild West – In review



Red Dead Redemption 2, the long awaited sequel to Rockstar Games Red Dead Redemption has been out now for 6 days, and in those 6 days I’ve managed to play about 23 hours. But according to the in game stats I’ve only managed to finish about 28% of the main story missions. So yeah, it’s BIG. But I’m not only talking about how large the map is, I’m talking about every little detail that the amazing developers at Rockstar have painstakingly created to make Red Dead 2 feel unbelievably realistic.

But what is Red Dead 2 about? Red Dead Redemption is set in the year 1911, while Red Dead 2 is set in 1899, almost 11 years before the events of the first game. You play as Arthur Morgan, a member of the outlaw Van Der Linde Gang who are on the run from the law after a robbery had gone horribly wrong. Arthur and the gang are forced to rob, steal, and kill their way across the United States trying to the cling desperately to their outlaw way of life while the world around them is becoming more and more civilised.

Arthur is your typical cowboy protagonist, but Rockstar have implemented a reputation mechanic in which Arthur can interact with NPC’s in the world. And depending on the action the player picks (that being either positive or negative) will result in either a pleasant chat or explode into a gunfight.

Red dead Speech mechanic

This makes interacting with the NPC’s of Red Dead so much more interesting, they are no longer there just to make the world seem life-like, they do make the world life-like. And that isn’t just in the towns and cities, its out in the wild too. I’ve helped dozens of NPC’s with their day to day problems, from helping a man who had been bitten by a snake to helping build a NPC’s house, there is just so much to see and do.

As well as helping NPC’s the player can also collect bounties, rob houses, and collect debts. These are fun little side missions the player can do to earn a little bit of extra cash. But the really fun side missions are the random encounters that the player can come across spread throughout the entirety of Red Dead 2‘s map, you might not earn any money from these events, but they make the world really feel lived in.

But I’ve only covered a tiny amount of what Red Dead Redemption 2 has to offer. Next time I will go over the hunting side of the game. As well as locations for Elite Horses. So grab your bow and your rifle, because we’re going hunting!!!!

SPIDER-MAN PS4 review: Be greater.


As we all know, Spider-Man was released on the PS4 last week to overwhelming positive reviews from across the board form both players and critics alike. Even after fans on Twitter were furious that the game had been given a “significant downgrade” in graphics compared to it’s E3 demo a few years ago. This was of course not the case as the developers at Insomniac Games were quick to respond to the players worries and assure them that the games graphics had not been downgraded. And trust me, it definitely hasn’t.

Spider-Man looks absolutely stunning from the get go. We are introduced to Peter in a small opening cut-scene with him donning the iconic costume, then its straight into the web-slinging. And that’s where the game really shines, the web-slinging feels so fluid and realistic to control. Spider-Man swings freely through Manhattan with ease, even if the player hits a wall or misjudged a swing Spider-Man doesn’t just stop in his tracks, he runs along a wall and leaps off of it, not slowing the movement down a bit. It also helps that Insomniacs version of New York is so stunningly beautiful, swinging through Times square in the middle of the day with the sunlight bouncing off the windows is absolutely incredible, and the same goes when the game changes to night, the city lights of New York while sitting atop a tall building is transfixing.


What also is spectacular (eh, see what I did there?) is the combat. Spider-Man combat in earlier games such as Spider-Man 2 were lacklustre and clunky, but Spider-Man PS4 uses free-flow combat quite like the Batman Arkham trilogy uses. And it work damn well with Spider-Man, you take out bad guys left right and centre with a combination of kicks and punches mixed with web attacks. Just like Batman, Spider-Man has a large arsenal of gadgets that he can use on enemies such as electric webbing, or a small Spider-drone that shoots energy bolts at enemies to distract them. He can also use the environment around him by picking up trash cans or boxes with his webs and throw them at enemies. It’s a really fun take on the combat system that made the Arkham games so great.

Spiderman 2.jpg

But where I was most surprised was the story, going into the game I wasn’t expecting much. I thought it would be just another Spider-Man video game story that wasn’t really that interesting with 2-dimensional characters that didn’t do much. But I was very wrong, Spider-Man PS4 has an exceptional narrative that focuses not only on Spider-Man, but on Peter Parker and the people in his life.

We are re-introduced to characters such as Mary Jane and Miles Morales who you actually play as during the main story missions of the game, and even help Spider-Man in certain missions. The story really builds onto what we already know about existing characters but also adds it’s own spin on things. But what I really love about this story is that it isn’t an origin story (we all know how Spider-Man got his powers, we don’t need to hear it again) this is a Spider-Man in his prime who knows exactly how his powers work and knows that he has a responsibility to the people of New York to protect them.

Spider-Man PS4 shows us how amazing superhero games can be, and I think that the web head really needed a fresh new game that wasn’t a movie tie-in, but it also needed a studio dedicated to getting the character right, and Insomniac has definitely done just that.

Virtual Reality, the future of video games?


Virtual Reality has been around for a long time, the first headset being created all the way back in 1957, back than virtual reality was little more than a personal cinema. But in 2018 VR is more immersive then ever, with headsets like the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift players can now be immersed in a digital world.

That is the key part of VR, making the players believe that they are in a virtual world, almost blurring the lines between reality and the game itself. I recently purchased a HTC Vive to try it out for myself, this isn’t the first headset I’ve owned though, I have a PSVR but it’s list of VR game’s is very small and can’t really compete with the Vive’s ever-growing list of games. The first games I purchased were Beat Saber and Gorn (I will talk more about these two later in a separate review) these were recommended as great games to play for first time Vive users, and I can see why.

Gorn and Beat Saber are both made specifically for VR, these aren’t ports like Skyrim or Fallout 4 which take an existing game and make it playable in VR, these are full games that a player can’t play without a VR headset. What really makes them stand out from other games such as Skyrim or Fallout is the immersion, while playing a game like Gorn (which you play a gladiator in an arena facing off against other gladiators for the amusement of a bunch of floating heads) I became completely immersed in the world I was in. I was the hero fighting these weirdly proportioned gladiators, I was no longer in my small spare bedroom flailing my arms about like a madman, but I was the champion of Gorn, smiting down my enemies one by one, that is until I accidentally punched the wall with my controller, leaving the wall with a black mark on it.


This is the same for Beat Saber, which is a rhythm game in which a player must hit different colour boxes with (you guessed it) lightsabers, that represent the beat and lyrics of a song. Players get a different kind of immersion while playing Beat Saber, unlike Gorn in which you physically have to move around the room to fight enemies, Beat Saber requires you to stand still and hit the boxes (sometimes moving out of the way of incoming barriers) but otherwise it is straight forward, the immersive part of the game is the music, players really get into the song they are playing, especially if it is a song that they know and love, and similar to Gorn players start to forget where they are because they are concentrating solely on the game and not their surroundings.

But that is what makes VR so exciting to play, you can truly immerse yourself in virtual world. But is it the future of video games? I can see it becoming a bigger market for developers and companies to create games for. But at the moment VR is a novelty, the Vive by itself is $800 Australian dollars, so its REALLY expensive, that also isn’t counting the PC required to run it and its games. But is it worth it? I would definitely say yes just to play Beat Saber and Gorn, those two games are worth the price and hassle of setting the headset up. But if I was you, I would wait a few years, I see VR really taking off to the point where we will be getting AAA titles being made solely for the VR rather then just ports. But that may be in two years, or ten years. But in the end, VR is the future of gaming,  I just can’t wait to see what they bring out next.