Infamous Second Son Review

Once you start playing, you won’t be able to put it down.

Infamous Second Son is triple-A title that Sony Entertainment Studios has released exclusively for the PlayStation 4. Second Son was developed by Sucker Punch Studios and is the third game in the Infamous Franchise. Infamous as a whole is a story about Conduits or basically “people with special powers”. The story began with Cole MacGrath the protagonist in Infamous 1 and Infamous 2. If you are unaware of his story, he is basically the root from which the Conduits came to be. Spoilers aside, the first two Infamous games go into more detail of Cole’s journey as well as how his story has effected the world.

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Infamous Second Son tells the story of Delsin Rowe, a young man in his late twenties Delsin is thrusted into the world of Conduits by accident. This encounter will be the pinnacle of the story and will also be the driving force for most of what Delsin does for the entirety of  the game. The story in Infamous Second Son is much more dialed back then the previous Infamous titles, the games story is very simple and to the point. I feel Sucker Punch wanted players to jump in and not worry about if they had played the other titles to understand the plot in Second Son. The developers really wanted to embrace the new hardware of the PS4 and let the player explore the vast Seattle landscape and enjoy the powers you are given throughout the game.

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Gameplay is king when it comes to Second Son. During my two play throughs, once on evil karma and once on good karma. I kept coming back to one conclusion….. Damn this game is fun to play! Anytime I was a little put off by the story or maybe even one of the characters started to bother me, Delsin would gain a new power and almost instantly make the game play experience just that much better. The best example I could use, would be when you play as Mario and you obtain “Star Power” or “Fire Power” you as the player instantly feel more powerful and daring to explore new parts of the game. This is exactly what made Second Son so much fun to play, each time Delsin received a new power you felt compelled to explore Seattle in more depth.

Second Son seems to explore the new architecture of the PS4 extremely well. The graphics are stunning and show real promise for what is to come in future Sony titles. My favorite aspect of the PS4 is the new Dual-Shock 4 controller, I just love the way it feels. The new triggers and the touch-pad are so fun to use and truly feels like the next generation is here. So while playing Infamous Second Son I was curious of how they would integrate the touch-pad into the game play experience ? To my surprise, not once did the touch-pad feel forced or gimmicky. Every time Delsin would drain a new power I felt a true connection with the drain, making the experience truly immersive.

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Second Son has been by far my favorite experience on the PS4, granted there hasn’t been much to play on the new platform. Of the games that are available I truly believe anyone that owns the PS4 should give Second Son a chance. This game is downright fun and with the addition of the Karma system, this game begs to be played more than once. So whether you decide to play as Evil Delsin or Good Delsin I can guarantee that you will have a blast doing it!

 

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Captain America: Winter Soldier Review

Marvel definitely knows what they are doing with their franchises (Unlike DC). Have you seen the trailers to the new X-men or Guardians of the Galaxy? Those films look insane! I would be straight up lying if I told you, these Marvel films didn’t intrigue me.

There is no denying that Captain America: Winter Soldier looks greats and sounds great! The graphics and overall cinematography are top notch in Winter Soldier. I felt Chris Evans truly embraced the character for the first time, he made me believe that he was and is Captain America from here on out. The addition of Falcon was a nice touch that didn’t feel forced or unwarranted. Robert Redford was a great addition to the film, as well as Scarlett Johansson’s character Black Widow. Clearly the producers of this film gave it more love and time than the previous Captain America film. This film might as well have been called Avengers 1.5 with the amount of explosions and high profile stunts done throughout the film. The budget was there, the acting was there, but I still felt like Winter Soldier left me wanting more after the credits rolled.FREEZER_BURN

After Avengers came out in 2012 I felt like Marvel decided to jump the shark a tad early. I absolutely love everything about the Avengers film, it’s funny, has great action and the story seemed somewhat believable. But ever since then, I can’t help but think, what is the point of doing stand-alone Marvel superhero movies? We have established that all of these characters:Thor, Hulk, Iron Man, Captain America, Black Widow and Hawkeye are all in the same “World”. So why aren’t they just in one film all the time? Rhetorical question- (I know, I know, money of course)

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Now I understand that these stand-alone movies make boatloads of money. Let me re-iterate, these movies make so much money! Captain America: Winter Soldier is set to break all sorts of records in the month of April and will surpass the previous Captain America film in just two weeks of it’s release. In it’s first weekend alone, it made over $95 million in the U.S. and $304.1 million worldwide. So I get why Marvel continues to do this and I’m sure if I were the head of those properties I would do the exact same thing. But I can’t be the only person who thinks that once you have established that Iron Man can fly in at any moment during the Avengers and save the day, but he wouldn’t do that same thing in these other films? This idea that they are just not involved in these cataclysmic world battles post Avengers makes you scratch your head a little. Every time there was a moment in Winter Soldier where our hero was about to die, I found myself just thinking “why wouldn’t Thor or Hulk just run in and help out?” it’s not as if they are on vacation or don’t have televisions to watch the mass destruction.

Now please don’t read this review as an attack on Marvel or the movies themselves. I’m not some fanboy who wrote this review to tear down somebody else’s work. I find all of these movies to be quite enjoyable and don’t feel any remorse spending money to go see them. I just feel like there is some definite plot holes in the over-arching story that makes me a little less inclined to see each stand-alone movie that comes out in the future. So should you see Captain America: Winter Soldier? Sure, I think it warrants spending the money to go see it and if you already dig these superhero movies then I’m almost certain you will enjoy it. It has also come to the point where you need to see all the stand alone movies in order, for the Avengers movies to make sense because it is one continuous story.

 

Solid 8 out 10

Written by Trevor Cannon

 

 

The World of BioShock Infinite

One year later and this game is still on my mind!

Games must play well in order for you to enjoy them, but mainly they must be able to make a certain connection with the gamer. Now these connections can be as simple as a game having aliens or monsters. The connection can even be the length of a certain game, long experience or short experience. When you get down to it, games that resonate with people are the ones that leave a mark or strike a connection with the player. For me the game that continues to resonate long after I had beaten it, was Bioshock Infinite.

Official_cover_art_for_Bioshock_InfiniteBioShock Infinite is the third installment in the franchise and the second game in the series in which Irrational games was at the helm of the project. The first BioShock received critical acclaim for what it was able to do. Some have even said the series as a whole has re-invented story driven first person shooters as we know it. BioShock Infinite came out in March of 2013 and received glowing reviews from an array of video-game outlets.  The game has a single player campaign and has a strong narrative focus. BioShock Infinite is available for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC systems. The overall arching story of BioSchock Infinite is that you play as Booker DeWitt a gun wielding bad-ass. Booker is sent to the city of Columbia to retrieve a certain package, that certain package is a young girl named Elizabeth. Story sounds pretty simple right? Well the journey that Infinite takes you on is far from simple and at times it can be down right stressful, but in a very rewarding way. Throughout the game Booker unlocks special powers, he attains these powers through Vigors. These bottles are filled with a “magic” juice you might say. The Vigors come in a variety of shapes and sizes, all of them giving Booker a new power to use during battle.

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Each Vigor is unique and will allow the player to use them for the right circumstance. For instance “Shock Jockey” works best when enemies are near bodies of water,shock the water and it electrocutes anybody in sight. When enemies become overwhelming reach for the “Devils Kiss” Vigor. This Vigor is very similar to a grenade you might find in any war game, but the trick to “Devils Kiss” is that the fire tends to spread killing a large number of foes. Whatever your poison may be, Vigors are something you’ll be using a lot.

The next aspect in Bioshock Infinite that must be explored due to is extreme importance on game-play, is the “Sky-Hook”. The Sky-Hook is the melee weapon Booker will use in close quarters with enemies. It’s main purpose is for the sky-lines that run through-out Columbia. Using the Sky-Hook in battle will help aide Booker in getting out of large fire fights or with precise planning allow you to hop down on unexpected foes. The hook at times can be a tad cumbersome to control, but there is no doubt that it will change the way you battle your next bad guy.

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With all of the game-play elements out of the way, there is still something else about BioSchock Infinite that makes it extremely special. Columbia itself, the setting of the game is so remarkable and realized that you find yourself just standing and looking. Every time I play Infinite I find something new I didn’t see the first time, from a painting on the wall to the way the people are dressed. Like I mentioned earlier the game takes place in 1912, most if not all of the architecture in the game would be considered “Federal Architecture”. Federal Architecture or Federal Style was most prevalent from 1750 to 1850, most of these buildings were modeled to resemble buildings from ancient Greece and Rome. Columbia is very similar to Greece and Rome in the sense they wanted to create structures that resembled power and wealth. Now Columbia doesn’t beat you over the head with the power aspect, but it definitely wants to paint the picture that Columbia is some sort of utopia. Which you will come to find out, its clearly not.

Bioshock-Infinite-Screenshot-Wallpaper-Comstock-StatueSo if you get a chance to play Infinite, you will begin to notice rather quickly that Columbia is very much trying to portray a feeling of perfection in the game. From the monuments built for Profits and the statues that resemble gods. Columbia is truly something special that begs you to take notice during your play-through.

In the end Bioshock Infinite takes roughly around 13-14 hours to beat and the game-play is rather easy to get use too. The story of Infinite at times can get a little confusing if you haven’t played or heard of the previous titles, but you should be fine if you want to just hop in. If this article has persuaded you to give BioShock Infinite a chance then be sure to take your time and truly immerse yourself in the game.

 

Written by: Trevor Cannon