This week’s PlayTime features the usual mix of video games, including Bloodborne, Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn and Mortal Kombat X, as well as upcoming racers F1 2015 and Project Cars.
Although I played the following games over a week ago, I couldn’t speak about them thanks to news embargoes. Does that mean I’m cheating this week, by talking about games from two weeks ago? Maybe, but I always was a rule-breaker.
Of everything I got hands-on with at Bandai Namco’s LevelUp event, the one I enjoyed most was F1 2015. Naturally, I compare all Formula 1 games against the glory that was Geoff Crammond’s Grand Prix series. With a steering wheel and pedals, and the ability to mod the game to reflect the latest liveries, that game was the pinnacle of F1 simulation. And to give you some extra colour, you ought to know that in my youth, I did actually do some motor racing. So how does F1 2015 compare? Visually, of course, it is stunning – easily the best looking F1 game I’ve ever seen, with incredible visual effects and weather.
That’s fine if it doesn’t race well, but you needn’t worry. With a few of the assistance options switched on, anyone can get into F1 2015 and enjoy it. With them switched off, real drivers will love it too. I played it using a full racing rig, so I can’t say whether it is as playable on a DualShock 4, but I can’t think they’ll have got that wrong, given the attention to detail shown elsewhere. I’m going to enjoy a full race and being able to talk with my engineer as I thrash around my favourite tracks. Just don’t talk to me in the corners…
Other than F1, I got to play Project Cars, which finally went gold and is on its way soon. In comparison with F1, Project Cars felt difficult to control. I’ve seen this problem before with racers where the physics get in the way of a good driving experience. On the DS4, I found it hard to control the throttle properly and, as a result, ended up skating around as if the track was made of ice. I’m sure that if I had the time to go through all the options to tweak the sensitivity I’d find a sweet spot, but this build and settings combination didn’t enamour me to the game. I’ll reserve judgement until I see the final build.
Other games played during the session included One Piece Pirate Warriors 3, Godzilla, and J-Stars Victory VS+. To find out what I thought of these, and more musings on the other titles at the event, you’ll just have to hang on for my next article. I’m such a tease…
My experience with Bloodborne reached infuriating levels this week. While I managed to breeze through four bosses in little time last week, it’s presently a vastly different experience, as my progress slowed to a crawl while I attempt to level up my character and fortify my weapons.
It’s a slow process, especially when you have around 40K blood echoes and then die, only to be sent to some location you’ve never seen before, with no way to recover your fallen blood money. Yeah, it took every ounce of control I had to NOT break my controller in half.
What I’ve learned from Bloodborne, and what I really like about its design, is that everything has the potential to kill you no matter how strong you are. Sure, you might be able to kill a monster in a few less hits, but it can still kill you as well if you miscalculate your attacks. Leveling up might make things easier, but there’s always the possibility that you could still die at any moment. I can sense that I’m coming close to the end of the game; maybe this will be the week I finally finish it.
As promised, most of my week has been spent on Mortal Kombat X, so I almost have the platinum trophy already. I absolutely love it; as with 9, my main is still Sonya Blade.
Now that I own Hatsune Miku: Project Diva F 2nd on Vita, I’ve been playing that a lot too, for a change of pace from all the violence of MKX. I’ve neglected Kingdom Hearts II HD this week, though I plan to get back to it soon, but otherwise I’ve not played much else this week! Omega Quintet releases soon though, and I’m sure I’ll spend many hours playing that; because who doesn’t love turn-based combat with idols?
It’s been a huge week for me on Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. Not only did I reach level 50 with my primary combat class (Paladin – tanks TFW!), but I also finally completed the main scenario; almost a year after originally starting it! I’m currently working my way through the end-game content, most of which requires much better gear than I currently possess. It looks like I have some serious grinding ahead of me, so expect to see FFXIV in my weekly PlayTime for a long time to come (especially with the Heavensward expansion releasing in June!).
It’s been a while since a PS+ game truly grabbed my attention, but I have to say I really enjoyed my time with roguelike first-person shooter, Tower of Guns. Single-screen platformer Woah Dave! is fun too, although I’m afraid I lack the skill and patience necessary to achieve a respectable high score. I also picked up Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams – Director’s Cut while it was on sale. I really have no idea how this game passed me by on PS3, as it’s right up my street. It’s probably best described as a bit like Trine, only much harder and not quite as pretty.