I once again have to blow the dust off my dtoid blog in order to give you the latest and greatest in pointless guff. Here is how it went down, I signed up for a gig that I would start in this month(Sep 2016) and found myself running around for paper work. It ended up all going to shit however my spare time had been taken over by a scary amount of multiplayer and I eventually got the bright idea to give you some quick status updates on the MP scene.
Disclaimer: Most of the entries here took place during sumemr time.there are some games that were played before summer, I would like to include some that I feel are worth mentioning.
Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City (PC Version)
What a way to start things off, the last time I had played this was in 2012 and I had no intention of returning to it. Capcom decided to discount the complete edition of ORC on steam to close to about $ 7 , my guess is that this was an attempt to generate hype for Umbrella Corps. At the very least this got a small community going but came at the cost of having to exhume the rotting corpse of Games For Windows Live. Playing this game again on a stronger PC with a 360 controller made it alot better , the player base still exploits the hell out of the melle system and weapon balance is all over the place but its a nice way of recalling retro resident evil before bioweapons went global. I would say the player base hung on leading upto the release of Umbrella corps , I don't know if anyone wanted to keep playing beyond that.
This is actually what lead me to dig up some older games out of pure curiosity in regards to if anyone is still playing online.
Tomb Raider (2013)(PC Version)
Steam sales can kick a few days of life back into alot games with multiplayer and that was the case here. For those who have not played the MP , it is basically a poor man's Uncharted with awful spawn trapping. Fun but rather unbalanced, I am guessing anybody who loves Uncharted multiplayer has already grabbed Uncharted 4 for the PS4.
Brink (PC Version)
Not even a steam sale could save this one , it is very dead. You could try your luck with virtual LAN rooms or just try out Dirty Bomb(Free to play, assuming it is available in your region).
Medal of Honor (2010) (PC Version)
I have no idea as to why or how people are still playing the online portion of this game , I do know that I am not very good at it. It is still rather difficult to leave your spawn after the other team gets to a good spot to shoot you from.
Umbrella Corps (PC Version)
From this game's reveal alot of people had already decided they absolutly hated it. Personally I don't have any issues with more action oriented Resident Evil games and I liked the fast paced action approach here. The bad is that the spawn spots are too close , I lagged in many matches , the brainer(close quarter pick axe weapon) is overpowered and respawn deathmatch does not have it's own playlist. The good is that this is a very impressive game once you realise it is running on the Unity engine , the fast paced action approach is refreshing and there has been post launch support( patches , 2 new maps , 1 new mode).
If you have not bought this and have not been scared away by the sea of negative reviews , wait for a steam sale or the next time they decide to have a free weekend. I enjoyed most of my time with Umbrella Corps but I was well aware that it would have an expiration date. (Gameplay footage was captured by starwars7 aka videogrames , 4 survivors was a blast and Ben Afferleck was the bomb in Phantoms).
Doom (2016) (Xbox One Version)-Played before and during summer
I will share my thoughts on this game's single player in "Most of the stuff..2016" , once again many decided the MP mode of Doom was bad. I played this during the Alpha and Beta before I had bought the game. It was not a good idea to release this with no deathmatch mode or custom matches. ID software has shifted their attention to patching in extra content and improvements for the multiplayer for free but at this point I think thats too late.
I must say that I think the arena shooter approach is a great idea , a while back you would not think this sort of game would work on a console.
Battlefield: Hardline (Xbox One Version)
I had moved on from this one last year , I intended to come back to finish the single player(I did). What I did not expect was the 3 of the 4 DLC packs would go totally free for Xbox live gold members. New guns and maps means more strategies and more playtime but I am not sure many people grabbed the dlc even when it went free.
Battlefield: Bad Company 2 (PC Version)
For all those who don't like managing boosts , attachments , gun camos etc.. bad company 2 is a retrun to basics. I found myself enjoying this game alot more than when I first played , this is mostly due to understanding the mechanics better after playing battlefield 3 and 4. You should be able to find people playing and it is not too demanding on your computer when compared against games today. Just keep in mind that there is no prone and maps don't feel as vast as later battlefield games. Additionally the Vietnam DLC adds some good conuquest maps but I am not sure you can find people playing that all the time.
Evolve: Stage 2
I had played the original Evolve about a week after it launched in 2015 , I had decided I did not like it at the time. Right at the time I decided to get back into the game on Xbox one during the ultimate sale and maybe grab all the dlc for $ 20 , turtle rock made the game free2play. With this being not too long after the game was in a Steam sale people were naturally pissed. I also just wanted to get the DLC for the xbox one version because I thought there would be a grind to get charecters in the F2P version.
I am happy to say that Evolve: Stage 2 is more or less an improvement , the changes to the maps and charecter abilities made the game faster and perhaps more tactical. This may or may not have come at the cost of sacrificing the thrill of the hunt for some people. Being a monster player I have burnt out after 30 hours of play time , I like the direction they are going in but if the new content is just variations of existing content I guess I have had enough for now. Very worth it if you have never played Evolve or if you are curious about how the DLC charecters play.
Red Cruicible: Firestorm
A F2P title on Steam that I tried out of pure curiosity , this right now is the closest you will get to seeing battlefield running on the Unity engine. I would say it is a good way to kill a few hours , vehicles are fun to pilot and the matches don't seem to have awful lag. If the game does not run well for you , try disabling the Steam overlay.
Duke Nukem Forever (PC Version)
I am normally not concerned with Humble Bundles , the humble 2K bundle was an exception because it included Battleborn(I will get to that). The bundle meant a bunch of new folks would get their hands on DNF or people who already had it would probably just give it away. So how did the multiplayer age? Not well , not all the levels are well designed and not all the guns are fun to use. Also infinite ammo can be enabled which is like a wet dream for cheaters(if there are cheaters in the PC version that is). To keep it simple I will just say that I don't think you should reinstall this game.
Battleborn (PC Version)
There are many negatives you can bring up about battleborn , but you will have less when the price you paid to play it is $ 15. Also the sale happened at the time of a patch for the game which added additional maps. There are many things not going for this game such as gearbox's spotty reputation and perhaps upappealing artstyle or dialogue.
I would think the majority would agree that they should not have released this at the same time as overwatch. If I were to compare the two(I played overwatch during the beta) I would say that battleborn held my attention alot better because of the unlock system , that is also a negative because it can be quite grindy. Additionally battleborn has a story mode that can be played solo or coop. Regardless of how you feel about it, battleborn still has content on the way. If you happen to be a new player you may want to level up quick because level 100 players are brutal and when combined with DLC charecters.....it just does not feel very balanced. If your interest is pure PVE just keep an eye out for discounts or free weekends.
Rainbow Six: Siege (PC Version)
My initial opinion on this (Most of the stuff..2015) was positive and that has not changed. R6S still feels balanced even with the newly added charecters , that is refreshing since I feel DLC charecters usually unbalance MP games. If you don't feel like paying for the season pass(I think you should when it is discounted) you will at the very least get new maps that will perhaps open up new tactical options. I am also pleased with the BattleEye anti-cheat , I can only hope that Ubisoft extends this kind of post-launch support to all their games regardless of the platform.
Dying light: Be the zombie mode (Xbox One Version)
I returned to dying light to play the following DLC(will talk about it in Most of the stuff..2016) , when I finished the story bit of the DLC I inteded to just uninstall. I tried out "be the zombie" and it is basically an evil spider man game combined with the closest you will get to a new L4D. There are unlocks for your zombie and different maps(depending on what player you join on) . I would say give it a try if you still have dying light installed , keep in mind you may not be able to join some players if you don't have the right DLC.
Lead and gold (PC Version)
I think it was the time when Red dead redemption as added to Xbox one backwards compatability , I was in the mood for westerns. I ended up watching the dollars trilogy and redownloading lead and gold. Fat shark decided to give away free keys for this game and for about a week there were bunch of players. The issue here is that there are not enough maps or classes. The game still looks good but I think it will be dead again soon , if not already.
Just pure fun , I did play this game locally (shout out to Wormio) but this year GB got an online beta. An 8 player fight where only 1 player can be left standing , in the beta there were less maps than what could be played locally in the full release.From my experience online lag is handeled well and I was laughing throughout nearly every match. I am uncertain if online has been added to the final game(need to check patch notes) but gang beasts is fun locally eitherway , buy in a sale and play with friends.
The survival crafting genre is now a thing , I would say that the culling is one of the more appealing games within the genre. I haven't played much of this but it runs alright for a UE4 game on my older machine , I shall try it out on my newer machine and decide on performance. On the gameplay side it seems rather accessable with crafting recipies shown in the ESC menu and clear descriptions on what perks do. Melee combat is not the easiest especially with lag. In retrospect I don't think I should have bought this but the whole game show idea is neat. Perhaps wait for more content or a discount before you try it.
Dead by daylight
I played this on Steam during a free weekend , I think that this is what evolve would be like if the hunters had no weapons and needed to hide from the monster. I feel the issue is that there is just not much to do here , you power up generators (for the exit door) and hide as the survivor. You hunt down survivors as the killer. It all sounds good on paper but the execution is sloppy due to bad matchmaking and maybe unbalanced killer abilities. I can't say much on this because I did not play much , check steam reviews from people who played hundereds of hours then maybe wait for a discount or the next free weekend.
The CO-OP Corner
Earth Defense Force 4.1: Shadow of the new despair (PS4 Version)
I don't think EDF needs much introduction , it's you vs. aliens, robots , motherships , dragons and giant insects and more can hop into the meat grinder for online co-op or splitscreen. What you will find here is basically a re-release of Earth Defense Force 2025 with much needed improvements and new content. This game is more impressive due to the amount of things happening at the same time in the game rather than how everything looks. Gear unlocks accross 4 distinct classes and multiple difficulity modes should give you tons of replay value , just don't expect much gameplay variety outside of shooting at things. I don't own a PS4 right now and I would not have been able to play this game if not for Wormio(if you're reading this I'm sorry for my time wasting vegalta strategies and finishing all the toilet paper). This game was already cheap at launch on PS4 and should be even cheaper now , it has also been ported to the PC.
Resident Evil 6 (PC Version)
The essential dumb action movie experience but in video game form. With RE6 I think people either love it or hate it , Capcom went all out with this entry and threw everything at the wall. I would not say that this is the best resident evil game out there especially if you don't like the more action oriented RE games but it is much more fun(tolerable) in co-op . Finally on PC the 60 frames go a long way.(Another shout out to starwars7 for his l33t co-op skills and lag powers)
Syndicate (2012) (PC Version)
I truely wish this game was released on steam rather than Origin , steamworks would have probably kept the co-op mode of this game alive much longer. In 2016 this game still looks very good and blends in well since sci-fi shooters are the thing. There are a bunch of co-op missions and you can unlock upgrades as you play them. I would say do not buy this for co-op unless you know someone who can play it with you. On the plus side I think the co-op missions can be played solo but ofcourse that is not ideal.
Killing Floor 2
This is yet another game I have spoke of in the past(Most of the stuff....2015) , last year it definatly was a new experience but many were waiting on missing content to be added. I am pleased to say Tripwire (this game's developers) have added the missing content and more , they also allowed the community to add maps. KF2 offers up a truley metal action experience with a focus on thrilling combat and an appealing art style and it just got better this year thanks to the free updates.
Speculation/ Impressions(Unreleased games / skip in the interest of time)
I think the above covers most of the summer , this last bit is just for my thoughts on the multiplayer modes of the games coming in the later part of this year.
Dice has done a great job this year of making a game and having people actually want to play it. They spent more time last year telling you what you would not get in Star Wars: Battlefront , it was for that reason that I just did not want to play that game. I get the impression that some people think this is an entirely new game , I would say this is still the same deal of old assets being reskinned. The difference is that the coat of paint is world war 1 , its a refreshing approach. It is a similar case back when all FPS games were doom clones offering the weapon set of pistol,shotgun,automatic weapon,explosive weapon etc... the 007 games stood out because they gave you more realistic weapons like silenced pistols or assualt rifles. Now that people are bored enough of sci-fi weapons and modern weapons , I guess low tech gear with satisfying crunchy metal sounds looks appealing.
Gears of war 4
A game I have not seen much of but I have no problem buying day 1 , if there is a Xbox One title worth being excited for this year I would say it's GOW4. I like the unique controls and competativeness of the multiplayer (also nice that MP is 60 fps on console). Additionally splitscreen in every mode is very welcome (if only Halo 5 did not remove that feature). While there is a PC version of this game I have no idea what it will be like in terms of port quality and I really don't like the MS store.
All I have to go on here is my impressions of the game during the tech test , I feel something has been modified when it comes to the games color. I would agree with others who say it does not look as good as titanfall 1 in some ways. I do like the new gear but I can only hope that there are more maps with verticality , theres no use of a parkour system if the maps are on flat land. Finally the promise of free post-launch content has me very optimistic , theres always a single player campaign if the MP ends up bad.
Call of duty: Infinite warfare
I was able to play beta/tech test versions of the above 3 games without having to preorder the actual games , that is not the case for COD:IW. I was under the impression that a beta is used to improve the game by gathering data from players. I could write alot about why I don't think this game's MP will be good but I would rather just ask a series of questions:-
- Is there campaign co-op?
- Are there underwater sections in multiplayer maps?
- Are there custom emblems in MP?
- Is there still gore in the game?
- Why is there no beta for the PC version?
- Are paid supply drops still a thing?
- Why do you have to buy the COD: IW Legacy Edition in order to get a digital code for COD: Modern Warfare Remastered , if it is just a digital code can't you just sell it seperatley?
- Why was extiction mode abandoned , was there no way to improve it or reintroduce it?
I think you see where I am going with this , I waited until COD XP 2016 and all I saw was just a big step back only this time they want more money for it. If I am to get COD:IW it will be a used copy somewhere down then line if(when) COD:MWR is sold seperatly otherwise a cheaper legacy edition or just skip it all together. If they want to use the same engine the least they can do is perserve the worth while features from year to year , otherwise maybe its time to skip a year and go back to the drawing board like ubisoft did with assassin's creed.
I am quite surprised how much this year has drawn me towards multiplayer , I usually go for more single player experiences. I am not quite sure about the quality of the single player games this year as well but thats not to say their bad , I just feel some games could be better(topic for another blog). I feel quite fortunate to have known about alot of free weekends and betas this year but in some cases thats time I am never gonna get back.
If you made it this far thanks for your time , feel free to share your thoughts in comments if you like.