Game of the Year 2015 Day 1 of 3

Game of the Year 2015 Day 1 of 3

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2015 will go down as one of the better years in video games. I actually struggled to trim down my top 10 and nominees across all my categories.

Today’s categories feature two Nintendo titles that I didn’t spend enough time with despite the fact they’re in my wheelhouse.

The 2015 Game I Wish I Bought & Played In 2015

Winner: Splatoon

Splatoon Box Art

Nintendo’s third person shooter made waves with its unique and innovative approach to the genre. It looked interesting every time I laid eyes on it but as soon as I glanced at the price of $69.99, I was immediately turned off. The early criticisms concerning the lack of content fell by the wayside thanks to Nintendo’s continued support with free maps, weapons and modes.

I should have pre-ordered it with Amazon.ca’s E3 promotional discount but hindsight is 20/20.

Runner ups: Rise of the Tomb Raider, Until Dawn

 

The 2015 Game I Wish I Spent More Time With

Winner: Super Mario Maker

Super Mario Maker Box Art

Super Mario Maker should be an endless supply of platforming fun and I should have been tackling course after course but I haven’t. I played several of the pre-made levels and sampled a number of user created ones. I even made and uploaded a level but I haven’t played nearly enough to even give it a an honest review. As silly as it may sound, I think I would have played it more if I bought it digitally.

As for the other nominees? I spent a solid month or so playing Rocket League but it fizzled away as soon as the third quarter approached. Psyonix continued to support it with paid cosmetic items and free gameplay content but I never found the opportunity to revisit it despite my intentions.

It may seem a little silly to nominate The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt in this category but I really wanted to play the expansion DLC.

Runner ups: Rocket League, The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt

Wolfenstein: The Old Blood PS4 Review

Wolfenstein: The Old Blood PS4 Review

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Wolfenstein: The Old Blood was billed as a standalone expansion to MachineGames’ Wolfenstein: The New Order. With that in mind, I expected more of the same with a few little twists and additions to the core gameplay and story. They delivered exactly what I expected with glimpses to the events leading up to The New Order and introduction of the Nazi’s occult obsessions.

Where The New Order featured the science fiction angle that Wolfenstein, The Old Blood gave a nod to the occult angle. In this expansion, B.J was tasked to find a folder which detailed the whereabouts of The New Order’s antagonist, Deathshead. His mission lead him to Helga who was in Wulfburg trying to unearth a supernatural super weapon. Seeing how this was before the Nazi victory in The New Order, it was interesting to see the methodical and scientific minds approach something uncertain like unearthing an undead super monster.

A few new weapons like the bolt action rifle, pistol grenade launcher and a sawed off shotgun were amongst the additions to weaponry. The bolt action rifle was the highlight for me. I fell in love with it as a hip firing headshot magnet which proved itself extremely useful in the newly added score attack Challenge mode. Every major encounter in each of the game’s nine chapters were turned into a challenge mode where headshots and quick actions were rewarded. Like all score attack challenges, it wasn’t necessarily about stringing kills as quickly as possible. There was clearly a puzzling element where I had to pick my battles and not only rack up the points but find the best position to hole up and rack up said points.

The beats and pace of Wolfenstein: The Old Blood was like a collection of The New Order’s most memorable moments. There was a tense face to face meeting where B.J played a waiter to a Nazi commanding officer, there was a torture scene where B.J was impaled with a broken lead pipe and of course, stuff fell on top of our hero’s noggin numerous times. I’m tempted to say that if you The Old Blood was a short and sweet version of Wolfenstein: The New Order but that would be selling The New Order short.

I will say that if you were looking for more of MachineGames’ excellent shooter then I recommend picking up Wolfenstein: The Old Blood. It’s more of what made Wolfenstein: The New Order great. If you weren’t a fan of The New Order, then I don’t know what to say. It’s one of the best first person shooters in recent memory and in an age of open world or corridor shooters, having a superb blend like this not only uncommon but down right impossible.

Verdict:
I love it

Ratings Guide

 

Checkpoint: Premier League 2015-16 Edition

Checkpoint: Premier League 2015-16 Edition

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This is my second season with soccer and it’s weird. Unlike American football or any other sport, there was essentially only a two month gap where there was no club soccer was played. La Liga and Bundesliga start later this month but the Premier League kicked off the new club soccer season. It’s weird because I got into soccer after the World Cup which delayed the start of the 2014-15 season until late August and early September which I associate with “getting back to work” for everyone.

It’s been a rather lukewarm start for the big clubs with Manchester United being the big winner thus far by way of an own goal by a Tottenham Hotspurs’ defender. Chelsea tied and Arsenal lost. Liverpool are playing their opener at the time of writing and Manchester City will start their match tomorrow.

The bottom feeders have had more promising starts with the likes of Leicester City and newly promoted Watford making splashes against more established clubs. It’s inspiring to watch smaller teams rise up and take on bigger clubs and holding their own.

I don’t know who’s going to win this year’s Premier League championship. The pundits have pegged Chelsea to repeat with Arsenal in striking distance. If I were forced to choose, I’d pick the Blues as well but in the end the Premier League is second fiddle to the likes of La Liga for me. Big boys like Barcelona, Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid are ultimately more talented.

The opening weekend wasn’t the high flying start that I was expecting but I’m sure things will start clicking for some clubs by the end of the month.

I wrapped up Wolfenstein: The Old Blood with a neat bow in the form of a Platinum Trophy. I loved it as someone who loved Wolfenstein: The New Order so if you’re in the same boat as me, you should have picked it up for $12 a couple of weeks ago.

My love for Rocket League continues to grow by the day. The more I improve, the more I enjoy it and that’s a mark of a great game.

I feel the same with Galak-Z which is one of the more demoralizing games in recent memory. Bloodborne and the Souls games result in tough losses but they pale in comparison to losing great upgrades and items and starting at the beginning of a season. I suppose I should count my lucky stars that this isn’t a true rogue-like and I’m not starting at the beginning of the game.

Lastly, with the release of patch 1.08 and some performance improvements over patch 1.07, I decided to head back into world of The Witcher 3. I was immediately greeted with a gruesome murder attempt. This game is grim and it got its claws back into me because of it.

Checkpoint: Listless Summer 2015 Edition

Checkpoint: Listless Summer 2015 Edition

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Two years in a row now where my summers turned into listless purgatory where the days seemingly go on forever and I feel like I’m wasting away.

And on that bombshell let’s move onto what I’ve been up to this week!

I Need Unlimited Bandwidth

All these betas, free PlayStation Plus titles, multi-gigabyte patches, Netflix, YouTube and GiantBomb videos busted my monthly 400GB allotment by 64GB. I have no idea how much that will cost me but I’m going to have to enable TekSavvy’s “Zap the Cap” option from now on. Dealing with monthly bandwidth caps is a terrible way to live.

Windows 10

I upgraded to Windows 10 on my desktop yesterday. Kicking off the upgrade process took a bit of elbow grease after I encountered the 80240020 error. I had to employ the following fix to force the update to download and install properly.

  1. Delete contents of C:\Windows\Software Distribution\Download
  2. Open RegEdit and navigate to [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\WindowsUpdate\OSUpgrade] Create a new DWORD (32-bit) Value with Name = “AllowOSUpgrade” and set the Value = 0x00000001
  3. Run wuauclt /updatenow

Eventually everything installed without a fuss. Then I tweaked some privacy and Windows Update distribution settings and I was off to the races.

The next big question mark is how Windows 10 will function with my WSUS server because at the moment, it’s not hooked into it whatsoever.

Contradicting Rockets & Nazi Zombies

I finished Contradiction: Spot the Liar on my iPad earlier last week. I wanted to write something about it but it completely slipped my mind. Maybe I’ll cobble something together for this Wednesday.

I’m making my Wolfenstein: The Old Blood and while I’m enjoying in spurts, I cannot play it more than an hour. I used to feel that way about Rocket League but the more I play, the longer subsequent sessions are. Now a couple of hours slips away as I’m playing through Ranked and Standard matches.

GiantBomb Content

Thank goodness for GiantBomb and its fans for providing me hours of content to consume. So much laughter.

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