Video Game Review – Halo 5 (Xbox One)

Nath sometimes reviews games. This is one of those reviews.

Here it is, the latest instalment of the Halo franchise, the game that made the Xbox a success (probably) and they are still cashing in on the name. I am now starting to think it is loosely linked to Pirates of the Caribbean as they both had brilliant first instalments, followed by a trilogy that was pretty good and that’s where it should’ve stopped. However we got 2 more instalments that weren’t as good as the originals and now feel like the franchise is being cashed in on. Please note that this review contains spoiler alerts.

I’ll be honest, I did enjoy the first three games, especially the first one, Humans Vs the Covenant then suddenly the Flood intervenes and tries to mess everything up on the halo. Since Halo 4, the Flood and halos don’t seem to exist any more, in fact there are no halos in Halo 5. Instead of the Flood, we have the Prometheans, an ancient race that have their own weapons and unique fighting style. I don’t like them to be honest, the Flood had a somewhat zombie element about it, the Prometheans are just another Covenant but with better weapons (apart form the Plasma Sword and that is still in the game).

Nevertheless I started playing the game with an open mind and first things first, there is a new Spartan, Spartan Locke and he commands the team Osiris which contains Nathan Fillion so off to a brilliant start. But the storyline failed to grip me in any way. You play as Spartan Locke and the Master Chief throughout the game. Spartan Locke is brilliant leader and character, but the Master Chief seems to have changed, normally straight and to the point, does missions without being asked, however he decides to venture off and search for Cortana.

Locke

The gameplay is the standard Halo gameplay, you run around with 2 weapons battling through numerous enemies using a mixture of shooting, throwing grenades and punching aliens. Maybe stumble upon a vehicle or mounted weapon or too and utilise that to it’s full potential. The only new things about the gameplay is the ability to charge into enemies, which I saw as a bit of a copout to be honest. There are some new weapons or vehicles I think but nothing catches my eye.

There is a very good level on the Elite homeworld, but that’s about it. I found this very disappointing, only 1 decent level throughout the entire game. Plus the hint system is too easy to use, if you’re stuck, just press down and the game tells you where to go, they could’ve made it a bit more difficult to solve problems.

The only decent thing about the game is Spartan Locke, if there is a Halo 6, I hope we see more of him and less of the Chief. Looks like the baton has to be passed as 343 industries have Spartan Locke the new face of Halo.

Halo5

The multiplayer does save the game a little bit, there are the standard games modes, Team Slayer being my particular favourite, however Warzone has now been introduced. Warzone is where you have to establish a base and take over 3 markers before the enemy team does before attempting to wipe out their base. Throw in some boss fights and Covenant anarchy and it makes it very enjoyable. You also gain points when you are playing and you can purchase better weapons when you respawn. I have enjoyed playing this mode more than the actual game itself.

The rest of the multiplayer is pretty standard, however I do seem to be playing the same map over and over again, maybe a bug in the system that needs addressing. The power weapons (Sniper Rifle etc) seem to respawn at random moments but you are told when they do so you all rush in and try and obtain it. I find the Light Rifle to be a bit more useful, it is basically the Promethean Battle Rifle but with a bit more accuracy.

Halomulti

All in all, the game isn’t brilliant. I wish I hadn’t paid full price for it, definitely one to look out for in pre-owned sections. The storyline could’ve been better, I feel like it’s been banking on a great idea since the Xbox days but taking the best part out and putting a mediocre part in. In my opinion, I don’t think there has been a decent Halo storyline since Reach. I would give this game 5 annoying Promethean Dog things out of 10, needs a better storyline, but an OK game overall.

Nath

Video Game Reviews – Destiny (Xbox One)

Nath sometimes reviews games. This is one of those reviews.

So unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last year, you may have heard of Bungie’s new video game called Destiny. I managed to get my hands on a copy after a bit of trading with a stupid sales assistant, went home and began playing the game.

So first things first, I did not read the instruction manual and I’ve only seen trailers of the game so I didn’t really no what to expect. The first thing you do is pick your race and there are 3 options: Human (lame), Awoken (Human’s with blueish skin and white eyes, also lame) and Exo (not really sure, some sort of robot with a soul). With Exo being the most interesting I went for that. Next was the class and again I only had 3 choices and they all explain themselves: Titan (Warrior) Hunter (Hunter) and Warlock (Totally Wizard). I opted for Titan as I’m impatient and can’t be bothered to stalk enemies or waste my time doing spells. So I got started the game, I will try my best not to reveal any storyline, but that may be a bit difficult.

You start off wandering Earth and you’re making your way back to a city, pretty simple really. You get a gun, learn how to shoot it and then you’re back home. Easy start. There a then tutorials throughout the first few levels to get you acquainted with the weapons (3 types, primary, special and heavy) grenades, melee, powers etc. You then start running around killing enemies in the usual fashion of trying to shoot them to death or blowing them up. Very easy and simple concept to the game.

The leveling up system and the character customisation has made it a very interesting mix of FPS and RPG. Also the social aspect of the game is brilliant. You are matched with other guardians trying to do the same quests as you and providing they aren’t complete retards, you should be able to complete certain objectives together in a fun and controlled way.

The multiplayer is pretty good. The character you have in game is the character you take to the multiplayer arena. Everyone is evenly matched so it makes the game fairer. You can also use the weapons you have picked up in game so if by chance you have a badass sniper rifle on you, you can use it in the arena.

The leveling up system is also pretty good, however you can level yourself up in the arena and then go straight into the storyline and play it as a high level. People do do it but why would you want to, give yourself a challenge.

Now the problem I had as I was playing it was the similarities to the Halo franchise. You have an AI like Cortana, the Master Chief and the Guardians health bars are very similar, the enemies hierarchy and class system is also similar as are the weapons and vehicles used in the game. I did think have Bungie just been lazy and given Halo a fresh lick of paint?

The honest answer is yes, there are some big similarities but I won’t give too much away. There is one major storyline arc that is hugely similar and I imagine if you play it, you will pick up on it too. Also I am finding the weapon and armour system too easy. There isn’t really any reason to purchase any armour or weapon upgrades as you constantly pick up weapons armour in the game.

The enemies bother me as well, there’s no real fight in most of them, it’s only when you reach the end of a mission where you meet an enemy who might be a bit harder to kill. So far I’ve only met 2 or 3 enemies that are different from the rest and put up a decent fight.

In conclusion, I can safely say Destiny is living up to the hype it has generated about being the next big thing. Is it the next big thing? Well I have been playing it for about a week and I am actually struggling to put the controller down. I haven’t played a game I’ve been so engrossed with since I played Skyrim, and that came out in 2011. It truly is a brilliant game, gameplay is simple yet fun, the storyline is excellent, not too complicated and not boring. Graphically it is brilliant, certainly the first game I’ve seen on Xbox One that looks amazing and the multiplayer (social and arena) is lots of fun. In total I would give this game 9 out of 10 fists of havoc kills.

 

PS. This is for those people online that are criticising Peter Dinklage’s performance in the game. You’re saying he is very monotone and boring, he’s playing an AI. Not every freaking AI in video games has to be GLaDOS or Cortana, sometimes they are just going to be an AI.

The Lost Lighthouse: The Weekly Rapture 20 – Panhandling

Welcome back to The Weekly Rapture, brought to you by The Lost Lighthouse.

It’s been a while, hasn’t it gentle listeners? Busy lives got in the way for a bit, but now we are back with a new episode for your earballs. This week we briefly chat about a couple of things we missed, like that Deadpool Blur test footage and a few things from San Diego Comic Con, while Gary lifts all the things and Adam somehow creates a wormhole from the IMAX near Waterloo station in London right to Liverpool. Or he has a brain fart and says he saw GotG at the Liverpool IMAX even though he has never actually been to Liverpool.

We had two main talking points this week. The first was last week’s Gamescom, and we talk about (amongst other things) our annoyance over the exclusivity/temporary exclusivity of Rise of the Tomb Raider, Quantum Break gameplay, the Silent Hills playable teaser, Alien Isolation and the Bloodborne gameplay footage.

Our second talking point was to briefly chat about our (spoiler free!) reactions to Guardians of the Galaxy, now that we have both seen it. Unsurprisingly, we loved it, and if you haven’t checked it out yet you absolutely should in the cinema.

Finally, we have brought back a segment from our old podcast for your listening pleasure. ‘Gary in 60 Seconds’ returns, and will be a regular feature from now on (unless people hate it, in which case we will do it even more). Pretty simple: each episode one of us will sum up everything about a particular film, picked by the other Lighthouse Keeper the episode before, in 60 seconds or less. Obviously this does mean spoilers will be included, so we will try and avoid films that are recent! This week Gary attempts to summarise ‘Machete Kills’.

If you have any thoughts. questions or opinions anything this week you can as always get in touch through Facebook or on Twitter @lost_lighthouse, email us at thelostlighthouse@live.co.uk or sound off in the ‘leave a reply’ box at the bottom of the podcast page on the website.

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