GregHorrorShow’s Guide To Gaming – Part 3: Titles To Start With (Single Player)

Everybody has to start somewhere and gaming can be one of the tougher pastimes to get started with.

Of course you’ll want to hit up the latest and greatest games. No doubt your buddies will be quick to shower you with games you ‘have to play.’

Often people recommend you games that they love forgetting that you might not have quite the knowledge of the genre or know your way that well around a gamepad.

Below are some titles that I’d say are worth a shot for new players – if you’re completely new to gaming it might be worth sticking them on Easy as well until you find your feet.

.

MAFIA II

Mafia II is a well produced, easy to get into, gangster story set in the 1940’s and beyond. It’s a third person action adventure game in the same vein as Grand Theft Auto. However the main reason I suggest this as a starter title is that it is extremely linear. You can just stick to the story without getting bogged down in side quests/open world stuff.

.

JOE DANGER

Joe Danger is simple, unadulterated fun. Taking on the role of motorcycle stuntman Joe Danger, you’re tasked with revving your way through various stunts, tricks and races. You go from the left of the screen to the right rather than the world being three dimensional but this is a great game to get yourself familiar with the pad.

.

CALL OF DUTY: MODERN WARFARE 3

The Modern Warfare franchise has been taken to task over the last few years for providing a rip roaring rollercoaster of a ride in it’s single player campaign. The issue most people have with that is that a lot of the game is ‘on-rails’ and linear. Perfect for folks looking to get to grips with their new console.

.

MOTORSTORM: PACIFIC RIFT

For me Pacific Rift has been the pinnacle of the Motorstorm series. This is pick up and race at it’s very best. Choosing from a whole host of vehicles: Trucks, Bikes, Jeeps and more, you’ll be landing massive jumps and outpacing the opposition in no time.

.

UNCHARTED 2: AMONG THIEVES

Nathan Drake is the poster child of the PS3 – all three of his games have been a blast from start to finish. The original game ‘Drake’s Fortune’ suffered from a few issues in terms of difficulty spikes and shooting mechanics. So I’d recommend starting with ‘Among Thieves’ instead. While there can be a lot going on with different buttons etc, the developers do a great job of guiding you through it.

.

LITTLEBIGPLANET 2

Another of Sony’s marketing stars is Sackboy, whose adorable little face can be found plastered all over the place. At it’s core this is a sandbox of fun in which you can create levels or whatever you want. Luckily the game also comes with a story mode in which you can make your way through plenty of pre-created levels. Simple but addictive, this is great fun on your own or with a friend as the game supports local co-op.

.

HEAVY RAIN

David Cage’s Tour De Force does have the odd hole here and there but overall this is a fantastic gaming experience. Taking control of four characters within the story, you will be doing your best to nail the Origami Killer, who has kidnapped another victim. Not played in the orthodox style of gaming, Heavy Rain will get you used to where the buttons are on the pad in no time.

.

DIRT 3

One for the more serious racers out there, Dirt 3 has a touch more realism than the Motorstorm series but is a lot more forgiving than something like Gran Turismo. With a mix of rally racing and some more stunt based stuff, this is a great game to get started with if you’re interested in driving/racing games.

.

So there we go, a few suggestions of titles that are worth checking out if you’re new to the world of Playstation or just looking to start playing beyond FIFA and Call Of Duty online.

Will be interested to see what you guys think and what games you would recommend to get people started?

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

Advertisements

Dead Space 2 – Review (PS3)

As someone who thoroughly enjoyed the first Dead Space, despite not being a fan of jumpy horror stuff, I was really looking forward to the follow up.

Continuing the story of Isaac Clarke it picks up three years after the first game was set, with Clarke now finding himself as a citizen on the Sprawl – a huge space station development on one of Saturn’s moons.

Sadly for Clarke he has no knowledge of the last three years and discovers a situation has arisen that only someone with his expertise can deal with.

The game itself plays similarly to the original but Visceral have upped the pace slightly, which make sense because not all of the Sprawl is as narrow as the Ishimura was.

Dead Space 2 starts with one of the most impressive openings I’ve seen in a while – I remember feeling the same way about the first game.

As you get to grips with everything that is going on around you there will be twists (some I saw coming and a few I didn’t) and plenty of scares.

Visceral continue their great job of creeping you out by NOT throwing stuff at you – I would’ve liked to have seen slightly more of the insanity that featured in NPC’s during the original game but on the whole the Sprawl is definitely somewhere you wouldn’t want to find yourself.

The combat remains the same, with a few new weapons thrown in. Essentially the aim is to dismember as opposed to going for headshots on enemies.

Playing through the first half to two thirds of this game I was certain Visceral had topped the original, such was the craftsmanship on display. A strong story, coupled with superb graphics and atmosphere had me immersed completely.

Unfortunately it seems the developers threw everything into that part of the game as Dead Space 2 loses steam in a big way – resorting to cheap design in the shape of large open areas where you face off against a much bigger number of enemies. While this is called for on one or two occasions due to the plot, it really does become tiresome and frustrating at other times.

Thankfully it picks up again in the final few chapters and finishes with a flourish.

One of the questions when they announced Dead Space 2 would have multiplayer was ‘does it need it?’

The answer is no.

We’ve seen predominantly single player games include multiplayer in impressive and interesting ways (Uncharted 2 and Assassins Creed: Brotherhood to name two) but Dead Space 2 tries to moves the single player to multiplayer – giving one team the human experience and the other team the necromorph experience. It doesn’t really recreate the feel of the single player.

Let me just clarify – it’s not that this is a bad multiplayer, it just feels unnecessary and I suspect the free 48 hour trial will be more than enough for most people.

As a package Dead Space 2 is a slightly lopsided beast – on the one hand you have a bloated but generally excellent single player and on the other an average multiplayer experience.

Despite the fact the single player loses its way for a spell, with a better implementation of online this could’ve been a 10/10 game.

Rating 9/10

Add to FacebookAdd to DiggAdd to Del.icio.usAdd to StumbleuponAdd to RedditAdd to BlinklistAdd to TwitterAdd to TechnoratiAdd to Yahoo BuzzAdd to Newsvine

Going Solo?

pad

As gaming technology has advanced it’s given us a chance to experience a whole host of features and developments I could only have dreamt of as a child.

One of the biggest has to be the advent of online multi-player, which graced the PC a long while ago but is being realised for most non-PC gamers in the latest generation of consoles.

Firstly one of the things that amazes me about online gaming is that once you are set up it’s free.

My internet costs are the same as a non gamer’s costs… there is no extra fee for the bigger use.

The console itself is internet ready out of the box and no games charge to use the online part of their product.

online

More and more game developers are taking advantage of this by focusing their efforts onto the multiplayer part of the game and a lot of people have suggested that eventually single player games will die out and be replaced by games that have a persistent online world.

I’m all for change but I find this idea slightly disconcerting.

Don’t get me wrong I love online gaming – being able to play against your mates when it’s impractical/impossible to meet up is awesome and I have lost days (yes literally, if you tot the combined hours up) to Killzone 2 online.

KZOnline

But that was after I’d played (and thoroughly enjoyed – see here: Killzone 2 Review ) the solo player campaign mode.

I find now that some of the best stories I’m being told are by games rather than film.

Killzone 2, Bioshock, Assassin’s Creed, Metal Gear Solid 4 and Dead Space are just a few of the stories I’ve thought were excellent over the last 6 months.

assassin

Stuff like Bioshock and Metal Gear just couldn’t be told in an online environment, although I guess that wouldn’t be the aim of online versions of those titles.

I suppose persistant online worlds would lead to you creating your own stories within whatever overarching context was created but I feel I would miss the genuine story-telling.

Sometimes it’s nice not to login to PSN, to just slip a disc in the PS3 and enjoy a story on your own for a few hours.

For me single player modes of games are like reading a book, ultimately it’s something that you do by yourself and is a completely immersive experience.

I suspect it’ll be a long long time (if ever) before single-player games are completely eradicated and for that I’m glad.

Because for all the time I’ve spent enjoying online with friends I’ve spent more investing in some truly great storytelling.