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Titanfall Review: Lovers of Shooters & Big Robots, This Game is for You

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The first-person shooter (FPS) genre remains the most popular video game genres in the world, with Call of Duty and Battlefield leading the charge. However, there has been much criticism, particularly from enthusiasts, about how little modern shooters have changed over the past decade. In a clear response to that criticism, new-kid-on-the-block Titanfall seeks to shake things up, but is it the savior many feel the genre needs or just another Call of Duty wanna be? Let’s find out.

Story

Created by Respawn, Titanfall is a multiplayer FPS that pits players into a futuristic war between two different factions wielding giant, heavily-armed robots and other spiffy technology like highly-functional and integral jetpacks. But considering multiplayer is the game’s selling point, there isn’t much in the way of story.

There is a campaign mode consisting of 9 multiplayer matches that you play through twice: once as a member of the overbearing galactic corporation known as the IMC (Interstellar Manufacturing Corporation) and a second time as a freedom fighting Militia. Respawn tries to create a coherent narrative and context for the conflict between the two factions, but fails to deliver anything innovative or compelling.

The idea of bringing narrative context into the intense gameplay of a multiplayer shooter is novel, but the execution leaves much to be desired. Most of the story is reduced to background noise in the frenetic action that is Titanfall.

Gameplay & Multiplayer

Story aside, Titanfall was developed around multiplayer first and foremost and it is in this area that it shines. Summoning a Titan for the first time and seeing its drop down from the heavens, ready to make mincemeat out of your enemies, is a truly memorable experience indeed. The matches are varied, fast-paced and intense, while all weapons have a great feel and a strategic use.

There are 15 different maps to choose from, all capable of holding up to 12 players. While that might seem little, Respawn focused its resources on delivering maps that are well-thought-out, fair and engaging, ones that strongly accommodate the core gameplay styles of the jetpack-wielding, wall-climbing soldier “pilot” and the intimidating, highly-destructive walking tanks.

Speaking of the titans, they are divided into three archetypical types, one focusing on raw destructive power, another on speed and one being a jack o all trades but a master of none. Each is truly unique, allowing you to tailor them to your own play style.

To stand up to the Titans, pilots are equipped with a myriad of tools — namely cloaking and speed-enhancing stims — that help them to safely get up close to them, climbing onto their shoulders and blasting their nerve centers. But be warned, the giants robots have “bug” zappers, among other defensive capabilities.

Titanfall is about balance — the maps are balanced, weapons and abilities are balanced, and the gameplay between soldiers and titans is balanced. Some of the best gameplay moments occur when two titans face off against each other as supporting pilots engage in battle around them. The action is so intense and the maps so well designed that sitting in a corner waiting for someone to come by will often get you killed. This is not a game for campers.

There are five game modes to choose from — Attrition, Last Titan Standing, Hardpoint Domination, Pilot Hunter and the good ol’ Capture the Flag — which is not enough for any modern-day shooter, let alone one that prides itself on multiplayer. A solid progression system allows you to level up and gain access to more powerful skills for both your pilot and Titan.

Graphics & Sound

Titanfall is an AAA title, so graphical expectations were quite high. Fortunately, it delivers the goods. Everything in the game looks gorgeous, from the vivid and dazzling maps to the pilots and titans that populate them. The character designs are superb and their animations fluid, while the weapons look and sound as how you would expect futuristic weapons to look and sound. Hearing a 12-foot tall robot engaged in combat near you is as thrilling as it is nerve-wrenching.

The soundtrack is comprised of various action-packed tracks that blend well with the intense gameplay. Though it won’t win any awards, it gets the job done.

Bottom Line

8.8

Great

Titanfall is a breath of fresh air in the first-person shooter genre. Although it lacks a compelling story and a large selection of game modes, its addictive multiplayer offers thrills unlike most other shooters, providing fast-paced gameplay that is as balanced as it is adrenaline-pumping. The maps are superbly-designed, eschewing quantity for quality. Weapons, abilities and gameplay systems all play together very nicely to deliver a grand experience.

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Classic Games

Classic NES Games Zelda 2, Blaster Master Come To Switch Online

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 Zelda 2 The Adventure of Link intro screen

Nintendo has added two additional NES games to Switch Online.

Switch Online subscribers can now download and play Zelda 2: The Adventure of Link and Blaster Master, two classics that will surely make some old school gamers feel nostalgic. They join previous NES releases Super Mario Bros. 3, Ninja Gaiden, Excitebike, and many others.

In Zelda 2: The Adventure of Link, our hero Link returns to Hyrule to search for the Triforce and to awaken Zelda from an endless sleep. You embark on a quest to find the Triforce of Courage and save Hyrule from ruin, learning magic spells, talking to people in towns to get clues, collecting items to increase your power and exploring six palaces invested with
Ganon’s underlings.

Originally released in 1988, Blaster Master is a run and gun platformer that has you blast through an endless maze of tunnels, seeking secret passages for an escape. You’re tasked with destroying the Plutonium Boss and his mutant cronies before these they destroy the earth.

You can try out Nintendo’s Switch Online seven days free. If you decide to stick with it after the trial period, you’ll have the choice of three pricing tiers for membership: $3.99 per month, $7.99 for three months, or $19.99 per year.

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PlayStation 4

God of War Won Big At The 2019 D.I.C.E. Awards

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God of War PS4

Krato’s incursion into ancient Norse mythology has been lauded the world over.

God of War walked off the big winner at the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences’ (AIAS) 22nd D.I.C.E. Awards. It led the group with 12 nominations, and walked off with nine total, including Game of the Year.

It beat other critically-acclaimed titles like Breach, Marvel’s Spider-Man, Red Dead Redemption 2, and Return of the Obra Dinn for the top title

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild won game of the year in 2018, as well as three other awards.

Celeste also received multiple nominations, and won two: best independent game, and best action game.

The full list of nominees can be found below, with the winners for each category bolded. Check them out and let us know if you think
God of War is worthy of the accolades.

2019 D.I.C.E. Awards Nominations

Game of the Year

  • God of War
  • Into the Breach
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • Red Dead Redemption 2
  • Return of the Obra Dinn

Outstanding Achievement in Animation

  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • God of War
  • GRIS
  • Moss
  • Red Dead Redemption 2

Outstanding Achievement in Art Direction

  • God of War
  • Detroit: Become Human
  • GRIS
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • Red Dead Redemption 2

Outstanding Achievement in Character

  • God of War (Atreus)
  • Assassin’s Creed Odyssey (Kassandra)
  • God of War (Kratos)
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man (Peter Parker/Spider-Man)
  • Red Dead Redemption 2 (Arthur Morgan)

Outstanding Achievement in Original Music Composition

  • God of War
  • Detroit: Become Human
  • Forgotton Anne
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • Tetris Effect

Outstanding Achievement in Sound Design

  • God of War
  • Battlefield 5
  • Detroit: Become Human
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • Moss

Outstanding Achievement in Story

  • God of War
  • Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
  • Florence
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • Return of the Obra Dinn

Outstanding Technical Achievement

  • Red Dead Redemption 2
  • ASTRO BOT Rescue Mission
  • Battlefield V
  • God of War
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man

Action Game of the Year

  • Celeste
  • Call of Duty: Black Ops 4
  • Destiny 2: Forsaken
  • Far Cry 5
  • Shadow of the Tomb Raider

Adventure Game of the Year

  • God of War
  • Detroit: Become Human
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • Red Dead Redemption 2
  • Return of the Obra Dinn

Family Game of the Year

  • Unravel Two
  • ASTRO BOT Rescue Mission
  • Kirby Star Allies
  • LEGO DC Super-Villains
  • Starlink: Battle for Atlas

Fighting Game of the Year

  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
  • BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle
  • Dragon Ball FighterZ
  • SOULCALIBUR 6

Racing Game of the Year

  • Forza Horizon 4
  • F1 2018
  • Wreckfest

Role-Playing Game of the Year

  • Monster Hunter World
  • Assassin’s Creed Odyssey
  • Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age
  • Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom
  • Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire

Sports Game of the Year

  • Mario Tennis Aces
  • FIFA 19
  • MLB The Show 18

Strategy/Simulation Game of the Year

  • Into the Breach
  • Bad North
  • Frostpunk
  • Northgard
  • RimWorld

Immersive Reality Technical Achievement

  • Tónandi
  • ASTRO BOT Rescue Mission
  • Beat Saber
  • Dr. Grordbort’s Invaders
  • Torn

Immersive Reality Game of the Year

  • Beat Saber
  • ASTRO BOT Rescue Mission
  • Moss
  • Sprint Vector
  • Transference

Outstanding Achievement for an Independent Game

  • Celeste
  • Florence
  • Into the Breach
  • Minit
  • Return of the Obra Dinn

Portable Game of the Year

  • Florence
  • Dandara
  • Donut County
  • Dragalia Lost
  • Oddmar

Online Game of the Year

  • Fortnite
  • Destiny 2: Forsaken
  • Laser League
  • Red Dead Redemption 2
  • Sea of Thieves

Outstanding Achievement in Game Design

  • God of War
  • Into the Breach
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • Return of the Obra Dinn
  • Subnautica

Outstanding Achievement in Game Direction

  • God of War
  • Florence
  • Marvel’s Spider-Man
  • Red Dead Redemption 2
  • Return of the Obra Dinn
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PlayStation 4

Switch Was The Best-Selling console in 2018, Nintendo Had The Highest Game Revenue

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Nintendo Switch with Zelda Breath of the Wild

The year 2018 came to  a close on a decent note, but Nintendo stood out as the clear overall winner.

According to market research company NPD, consumers spent $3.4 billion on games, hardware, accessories, and game cards in December 2018. Although that represented a decline in software and hardware spending, continued strong sales of game cards and accessories helped lift the overall industry by 2%.

2018 overall was a banner year for video games. Sales amounted to $16.7 billion, an increase of 13% compared 2017 and the highest ever since 2011’s $17.4 billion.

Hardware

The Nintendo Switch was the winner in December, having generated the highest dollar sales during the month. In fact, the console’s revenues  was the highest for any single platform since the Wii back in December 2009. In unit sales, December 2018 was its highest December haul since 2010.

Thanks to the strong December, the Nintendo Switch was the best-selling console in all of 2018, both in unit and dollar sales. It recorded the highest total since the PS4 in 2015.

It was a great year for video game hardware in general. Sales increased by 8% to $5.1 billion and all consoles contributed, including the mini consoles from Nintendo and Sony.

Combining all platforms, hardware and unit sales were the highest since 2009.

Software

Video game software generated $7.1 billion in 2018 across all systems, a 7% year-over-year increase. The NPD notes that this is the highest annual haul since the $7.5 billion generated in 2012.

The best-selling game was Red Dead Redemption 2, with Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 and  NBA 2K19 following behind at number two and three, respectively.

It was Nintendo, however, that generated the most money from software sales, something it hadn’t done since 2009. As the best-selling game during December and the fifth overall in 2018, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate played a big part in that success.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was so successful, in fact, that it set a new release month dollar sales record for an exclusive game, a title previously held by 2010’s Halo: Reach.

Mario Kart 8 also sold well for Nintendo, becoming the second best-selling racing game ever, just behind Mario Kart Wii.

The critically-acclaimed Spider-Man ended the year at number six, the highest ranking for a superhero game since Spider-Man: The Movie 2 took the fifth spot in 2004.

Top 10 best-selling games across all platforms in 2018:

  1. Red Dead Redemption
  2. Call of Duty: Black Ops 4
  3. NBA 2K19
  4. Madden NFL 19
  5. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
  6. Spider-Man
  7. Far Cry 5
  8. God of War
  9. Monster Hunter: World
  10. Assassin’s Creed: Odyssey

What were you fondest gaming memories of 2018? What was your game of he year? Let us know in the comments below.

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Switch

Fortnite Was The Most-Played Nintendo Switch Game Of 2018

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Fortnite characters

Fortnite is dominant on every platform its own.

Nintendo has revealed that Fortnite was the most-played Switch games of 2018.

The free-to-play title from Epic Games topped a list of the 21 most-played titles, with Nintendo’s own IPs rounding out the remainder of the top five.

This is especially impressive considering Fortnite launched six months into the year. By October, almost half of Switch users worldwide had it installed.

Here’s the full list of most-played Switch games for 2018. Are you surprised by the results?

  1. Fortnite
  2. The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
  3. Super Mario Odyssey
  4. Splatoon 2
  5. Mario Kart 8 Deluxe
  6. FIFA 19
  7. Minecraft
  8. Pokemon: Let’s Go, Pikachu
  9. Pokemon: Let’s Go, Eevee
  10. Xenoblade Chronicles 2
  11. The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim
  12. Rocket League
  13. Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle
  14. Pokemon Quest
  15. Stardew Valley
  16. Dragon Ball Xenoverse 2
  17. Octopath Traveler
  18. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
  19. Paladins
  20. Super Mario Party
  21. Mario Tennis Aces
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PC

This Is Mortal Kombat 11’s Official Cover, What Do You Think?

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Mortal Kombat 11 official Cover art with Scorpion

It’s familiar, but different; simpler, but engaging.

Mortal Kombat creator Ed Boon has revealed the official cover art for Mortal Kombat 11, and its of little surprise that it only features Scorpion.

Compared to Mortal Kombat 10, the overall design is brighter and simpler, featuring a yellow, hot background that surprisingly works well with Scorpion’s yellow outfit.

Scorpion’s pose is imposing, and its interesting that NetherRealm chose go with the more modern version of the character rather than the classic one that appeared in the reveal trailer.

Mortal Kombat 11 releases on April 23, 2019 on PC, PS4, Xbox One, and Switch.

What do you think about the cover art? Better yet, what’s you favorite Mortal Kombat cover art of all time? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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PC

Epic Games Store New Return Policy Allows Unlimited Refunds, But…

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Epic Games Store logo

Gamers get more leniency and a simplified verification process.

Epic has updated the Epic Games Store’s return policy to make it more competitive with other digital storefronts.

With the old policy, you were allowed just two refunds per year, but now everyone has unlimited refunds within 14 days of purchase and with under two hours played.

The Epic Games Store doesn’t have a “self-service” solution, at least not yet, so you will have to go through Customer Support to request a refund.

A change was also made to the verification process for receiving a refund. Customers no longer have to provide their IP address, last four digits of the card used, account creation date, and other information if the return meets the set criteria, though a contact form will still need to be used.

Epic plans to add more regional pricing options to the store. There are currently 30 different regions available, encompassing a total of 130 countries.

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