Tag Archives: Witcher

Currently playing : August edition

Diablo 3 : Ultimate Evil Edition, the version for consoles, was scheduled to be out this week, so I was mostly trying to finish games currently in progress. I also started Witcher 2, this month, on a free weekend, and hope that I don’t shelve it again this time around. Otherwise that will be my 4th play through Act 1 again :).

Dishonored:

I started playing the game in July and finally finished it in the first week of August. As mentioned in my previous post, the game left a lot to be desired as far as story was concerned. But the gameplay was fantastic. The multiple approaches to each mission, and the morality of the choice to kill enemies or leave them unharmed was the highlight of the whole game. The game measures the amount of chaos your actions cause throughout the game, which affects the rate at which the plague spreads throughout Dunwall. The more enemies you kill, the chaos goes up, which results in more rat swarms and more plague victims, and making it harder to navigate through certain rat infested areas. The chaos level will also determine the story ending at the end of the game.

I chose to play the game on lower chaos, which meant I had to kill minimal number of enemies. I tried to maintain a zero kill and non-detected status, but the game becomes very difficult and except for a few missions, I wasn’t able to remain undetected. The game has a very few skills to choose from, and the most useful one I found was the Blink ability which allowed me to teleport across the map, horizontally or vertically. Dark vision was another ability which I found extremely useful throughout the game. Another ability which seemed very useful for high chaos characters was the shadow kill ability which would make all corpses disappear when the ability is maxed out. All in all, Dishonored was a lot of fun and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who hasn’t played it yet, to pick it up on the next steam sale.

Serious Sam 3:

I had been playing Serious Sam 3, chapter by chapter for a long time now (probably started it sometime last year during one of the Steam sales). The game is quite difficult even at the easier difficulty levels in single player, but comparatively easy in co-op, since you re-spawn immediately on death, while your teammates can continue to kill monsters. Just like its predecessors, the game sends hordes of enemies of different types and skills at you from all directions in large open maps, and soon your life is in danger.  The game also equips you with a multitude of weapons, while you can use any weapon any against enemy, there are certain weapons which will be the most efficient choice to survive the horde with the amount of ammo you have. This game is very challenging in single player, but definitely a blast when played in co-op.  It’s a Serious Sam franchise, so the story is not even worth mentioning, but there are moments when you really blurt out “Really ? Are you serious?” at the ridiculous statements and actions of our hero Sam.

Witcher 2 : Assassins of Kings

I started Witcher 2 last year, after picking it up in the summer steam sale, but had stopped towards the end of Act I just before going on a long hiatus from gaming in general. I thought of resuming it again, but since a lot of time had passed and I couldn’t remember some of the choices I had made during Act I, I decided to restart it. While replaying through the game, I made a few mistakes in certain quests which caused unwanted outcomes towards the act end, and having played it the first time around last year the right way, I knew what the desired outcomes were. So I ended up restarting the game and playing through the Prologue twice before I kind of got to a likable state.

This time around, I also installed the Combat Rebalance mod, mainly due to the input lag reduction that is quite prevalent in the game, but I am now realizing it that it has removed a few armor and weapon diagrams from the early part of the game as a part of the rebalance. Oh well! I can’t really remove the mod now, since it changed the skill points assignments significantly, so I will just have to continue as is.

I love the Witcher game mainly for the tough decision choices that they put in front of you to make. I haven’t reached far into the story yet to have made any significant choices, but some of the side quests already had tough decisions to make.

Diablo 3 : Ultimate Evil Edition

I was playing Diablo very often, almost on a daily basis ever since Reaper of Souls had come out in March, and then put it away after the Greater Rifts appeared in patch 2.1 on PTR. I joined PTR just to see what the Greater Rifts were about, but the rifts mechanics was so much fun, that I started finding the regular game somewhat bland.

The console version for Diablo 3 came out this Tuesday, and I’ve been playing it in free time all week. I started a Demon Hunter this time, a class I hadn’t played on PC before, just for a change. I had played Diablo 3 on Xbox 360 before, and the process to transfer your character saves to the Xbox One version was very straightforward and took only a couple of minutes to get the account up and running. The console version seems to have some issues, which I may elaborate in a separate post, and I have had the game crash on me at least once so far.

Blizzard has added a new mechanic to the game, called Nemesis, where once you are killed by a certain monster, it has a chance to spawn later in one of your friend’s games as a Nemesis (the name of the monster would Nemesis and it would also say “Killer of <characterName>” to identify whose Nemesis is being killed). Once the Nemesis has been killed, it will drop a gift for you, which your friends can send to you via mail. The gift is usually a rare or a  legendary item, and so far I have gotten 3 legendaries and 1 rare from the gifts I have received – Yes, I’ve died quite a bunch, since Demon Hunters feel like a very squishy class, especially in torment mode, which I’m leveling in, and also targeting monsters on the console takes a little getting used to.

I suspect, I will continue to spend more time on Diablo 3 over the next few weeks. I’m always amazed at how Blizzard makes such addictive games. I got out of WoW a couple of years back, but they still keep looping me in with every new release they come out.

Witcher 3 : Wild Hunt

Last week at E3, CD Projekt Red revealed the game play trailer for the final installment in the Witcher series, Witcher 3 : Wild Hunt and I was completely stoked. The following video gives a sneak peek of the massive world of Witcher 3 and dynamic combat against various monsters that we can encounter during the game.

The game boasts of a vast completely open world, one much bigger than the previous game Witcher 2 : Assassin’s of Kings, with no loading screens for a smooth experience.  The game also promises a great non-linear RPG experience with over 100 hours of game play, half of which are devoted to the main quest, which is supposed to be a continuation from Witcher 2.

Geralt still uses his twin blades, along with his alchemy potions, oil and other armor and blade enhancements, which players of previous games would be familiar with. There are some revisions in combat skills trees, and magic signs will also have two modes, one for single target and another for continuous casting to create an area of effect spell.

One major change is that, potions can now be consumed and then later activated during combat. This is a vast improvement over Witcher 2, where you had to consume potions before combat, and then hope that you will encounter enemies before the potion effects run out.

The screenshots of the game look absolutely fantastic and the environment feels alive and immersive.

With a massive open world and the improvements to the game from the previous two games, Witcher 3 boasts to trump Skyrim, and if you have played Skyrim you know what a feat that would be to accomplish. With its immersive open world world that is supposed to be 20% larger than Skyrim, beautiful sweeping landscapes and over 100 hours of game play, the game promises to deliver a fantastic solo adventure.

The game doesn’t come out for another year, but it is definitely a game to watch for.

 

Images sourced from: http://www.pcgamer.com and http://www.edge-online.com

Witcher : Enchanced Edition Initial Review

I bought Witcher : Enhanced Edition during the summer steam sale and even though the story line is intriguing enough to keep you going, the clunky combat made me quit soon after chapter 1 ended. Last weekend, I was looking for a “new” game to play on the side with wow, since I’m done with grinding faction rep, and raid only twice a week, and decided to give Witcher another try. So after re-acquainting myself with the story line and the combat, I was surprised that I no longer despised combat like I did 6 months ago.

When I gave it some thought, it seems that the  reason I was put off by the combat the first time I played it in June was because it moves away from the traditional RPG and D&D combat style and strategy. While innovating is not a bad thing and often encouraged, what the game is lacking is a proper introduction to the combat style and strategy. Very early into the game you are dropped in to combat with a few unhelpful tips to beat your opponents. Even after getting used to it, I still find that the combat feels a bit repetitive after you find the same 3 monsters in the swamp in chapter 2, a hundred times, however, it also feels challenging when you find yourself up against a trophy monster you need to figure out how to prepare before engaging it.

The talent tree seems to be completely passive talents. I wish that the game had some active talents – like parry and dodge, instead of making parry completely passive. Even thought we can double tap a directional key (W,S,A,D) to dodge attacks, I seldom use it, since my group style attacks knockdown enemies and dodge also breaks the attack chain, making the dodge useful only at the start of the fight when I am surrounded by enemies and want to get them all in front of me. While I love the alchemy and prepare-for-combat part of the game, I still hate the fact that the most time spent during combat is in waiting for the right time to click for the next combo move. That being said, I am still only in chapter 2, and probably not very far in, so may be as the story proceeds, and monsters become more difficult, I will hopefully find myself doing more than casting one Igni spell, and then waiting for my sword icon to turn into a flaming sword icon, so that I can click for my next chain attack.

Being used to Baldur’s Gate and Neverwinter Night’s style inventory, it took me a while to get used to the inventory management, especially weapons, since you can’t carry more than the number of slots provided in the leather armor. which seems to be limited to 4-5 weapons, of which two will be your primary weapons.  I liked that innkeeper’s allow you to store weapons and items which can be accessed from any other innkeeper in the game. I also found some free storage – non-innkeeper storage in chapter 2, namely in the jail. Unlike Morrowind, things left on the ground vanish after leaving the area, so I couldn’t sell the items in multiple rounds, unless a vendor in the same area. Which brings us to another aspect of the game – Dice Poker. A fun game, easy to learn, possibly difficult to master, which can be used to make money besides fistfighting and brawling in inns. So far, I’m still a novice in dice poker, and haven’t earned a lot of money, but as I defeat more and more opponents, I am finding it hard to believe that the dice rolls are truly random. In one instance, I had a 3 of  kind and the opponent had nothing, however, when I raised the bet, the opponent rolled 4 of  a kind and won the round. If this was a rare occurrence, I would be okay with accepting the loss, however, as I play more and more dice poker, I find such rolls happening more frequently.

Despite all the complaints, the game has a good story line, which according to other reviewers, is very solid until the end. It is possibly the strongest reason or continuing right now, beside the good graphics, awesome attack moves.

The Good:

Intriguing story line, graphics in the enhanced edition, and amazing attack moves during combat. Dice poker provides a fun way to make money. Experimentation in alchemy and its use in preparing for combat, makes combat satisfying when facing challenging opponents.

The Bad:

Poor introduction to new combat style, somewhat cheesy dialogue and NPC interactions, and clunky inventory management.