Four Video Games That Gave Us a Positive Message

Video Games

Well, for most of use video games are fun and that’s what they are made for but some of the video games really render a powerful message. If you have bought cheap video games just to try them out but if you pay attention close to the narratives, you will get the core message of the game. The following four games have a powerful message to share with you and whoever decides to pick them up.

The Last of Us (2013)

Naughty Dog was zealous to display its greatest riding by giving us a beginning cut scene that made us cry more in 15 minutes than most games can push out of us in a few hours. As a result, a devoted father and family man undergoes a steady yet testing stream of character development hardening him into a rough and gravelly survivalist. The following 20 years after his daughter’s death, we can assume, wasn’t fun. But after a massive contagion becomes a global issue, he met new friends and allies that gave him something to fight for by conquering countries at a time.

This game tells us that it’s important to keep in mind that a person can truly move on from anything with the proper nurturing from a reliable group of friends.

Life is Strange (2015)

Taking us on an episodic journey, Life is Strange beautifully stretched its narrative across five episodes. All of which seemed to unravel the story just a little further and a little weirder than before. After a distant childhood friend makes an untimely return back into the already confusing life of Max Caulfield, the esoteric town of Arcadia Bay starts to slowly reveal its mysteries to the player. The mechanic of rewinding time though seeming to be arbitrary actually was done to reflect the common human tendency to want to rewind time to prevent taking a certain risk or putting a deep regret to rest.

An innocent story of reconciliation develops into something far bigger than anyone playing the game could have ever anticipated. Even despite the seamless pacing and overwhelming streams of supernatural events, the game still makes room for plenty of nostalgic moments that force you to remember your own childhood partner in crime.

inFAMOUS (2009)

Cole MacGrath’s trip to Empire City, as a bike courier, takes a disastrous turn. Things get heated pretty quickly as he is blamed for terroristic acts against the city. Everywhere from Ground Zero to 50 miles out, the great metropolis deteriorates into a massive post-apocalyptic wasteland. People are faced with daily moral dilemmas on how to survive even if that means jeopardizing the survival of others. Your decisions raise your karmic level in two different directions and the player unlocks access to new powers and abilities depending on which courses of action they choose.

As one of the first recent games to teach us the implications of our decisions do indeed have consequences. A lot of players were met with the tension in which they have never experienced resulting in a pretty immersive plotline in which the player gets to control.

Kingdom Hearts (2002)

Kingdom Hearts introduced so many gamers to the notion that games or just these toys you played on a screen by pressing buttons. These games could tell stories and build characters. Kingdom Hearts taught people the power of teamwork and friendship in the face of overpowering adversity and to simply remain hopeful in yourself. Confessing your fears and worries to your friends is what makes them lose their power over you. Because inside of us all there’s a tiny little flare of light that cannot be extinguished.

So, these are the 4 video games that we consider they give a positive message. If you know more video games and want to share with us, please feel free to use the comments box below.

5 Star-Crossed Lovers in Video Games

Zack and Aerith

Star-Crossed

Video Games – some of them have great and immersive stories and more often than not, there are lovers in these video games that we envy or love; and they earn a special place in our hearts. Not to sound cheesy but, one way or the other, they remind us that love is such a powerful force. Unfortunately, not all love stories have happy endings filled with flowers and dancing-in-the-rain sort of romance. As usual, there are spoilers. So if you read the characters of a game and you know you haven’t played it yet, play them first then come back. I believe that these stories will have more effect if you’ve built a strong relationship with the characters. Without further ado, Here are some of the star-crossed Romeo’s and Juliet’s in video games. Enjoy.

Max Caulfield and Chloe Price

That look : Chloe looking at Max
That look : Chloe looking at Max

Probably one of the most memorable games I’ve played in recent years, Life is Strange. It tells the story of Maxine Caulfield, who discovered that she has the ability to turn back time after seeing her childhood friend, Chloe Price, killed by her annoying spoiled classmate, Nathan from the influential Prescott family. After saving Chloe – through Max’s newly discovered ability – Max opened her powers to Chloe and the pair decided to use it for good. Starting there, the player is brought to a series of breaking in various areas, solving puzzles, and of course, time-reversing moments. All to solve the mystery of the disappearance of Chloe’s friend, Rachel Amber. I won’t reveal who the perpetrator is and jump right to the ending.

Because of Max’s playing around with time, she brought a huge tornado closing in to Arcadia Bay, a fictional coastal city in Oregon. And the only way to save the town is to reverse time to when it all started. At the bathroom where Max saved Chloe using her new ability. It is then the player’s choice to save Arcadia Bay by letting Chloe die or to sacrifice the town to allow Chloe to live.

Life is Strange Max and Chloe
Whichever you path you choose, the pain will still be there…

Remember that philosophical question about which train track would you pass a train: a track with the one you love tied on the path or the other track with multiple people tied on the path? That was how I felt making that decision.

Master Chief and Cortana

Master Chief and Cortana
Master Chief and Cortana

Imagine yourself as a super space soldier, so powerful that even alien species know your name; then, imagine yourself accompanied by a caring, intelligent, and gorgeous woman who is slowly dying. What would you feel? Would the feeling be the same if I told you she’s an Artificial Intelligence?

Meet John-117 aka Master Chief, a Spartan-class commando of the United Nations Space Command, and Cortana, an AI tasked with assisting the Chief through his missions. Playing Halo for all these years, we develop a bond between the two and the player. Which made the events of Halo 4 devastating for the players out there. We can feel Cortana’s feelings for the Chief during the intro and ending of the live-action film, Forward Unto Dawn, which also acted as an introduction to Halo 4. What hurt more was when Cortana, despite ‘decaying’, harnessed all her remaining power to appear as a human-sized version of herself just to feel and kiss Master Chief. Also that part where Cortana sacrificed herself to save the Chief; I don’t know about you but, that hurt like hell.

Cortana confesses
I’ve waited so long to do that…

Ellie and Riley

Ellie and Riley
Ellie and Riley

Oh, Last of Us, we are going to talk about you again. But this time, we will talk about the DLC, Left Behind. It tells the story about Ellie’s flashbacks as she was looking after Joel after he fell on a piece of metal that pierced his flesh during the course of the main game.

Ellie’s flashbacks showed us the story of how she and her best friend, Riley, worked together and survived the harsh world filled with hordes of infected. Along the course of the DLC, we become attached to the pair. They laughed together, helped each other when in danger, but it all reached the climax when Ellie suddenly kissed Riley – Out. Of. Nowhere. Even I was shocked despite anticipating such a reveal. Despite, their sweetness and joy together, the universe didn’t agree. During their struggles in the mall, both of them were bitten and we all know what happens when you’re bitten by an infected. You turn. You become infected yourself. That just what happened.

That's the look when you know it's all going to end...
That’s the look when you know it’s all going to end…

Then, they just decided to just wait it out Instead of committing suicide – enjoy the little time they had together. But, things can get worse. Only Riley turned. Yes, Ellie discovered that she was immune and now she is – incoming pun – left behind. Without Riley…what an ending. Thank you Naughty Dog. Neil Druckman, you…you’re awesome.

Squall Leonhart and Rinoa Heartilly

The graduation ball. Isn't she cute?
The graduation ball. Isn’t she cute?

You must be like, “Final Fantasy…Why am I not surprised?”. Well, unsurprisingly for us, Final Fantasy have some favorable couples in their series. But, we are only going to talk about one pair in particular. If you want to add Ramza and Delita here, be my guest. I was considering them when I was writing this article. *Hysterical laugh* Oh, Ramza. Seriously now, we are going to talk about Squall Leonhart and Rinoa Heartilly from Final Fantasy VIII.

This is probably one of the entries in the franchise that has quite a complicated story that only Whovians can understand right then and there during their first playthrough. Still, we all remember that sweet dance they had during their graduation ball which reminded us of our own Junior Senior Promenades, right? Plus the soundtrack; who didn’t feel something move in their chest every time they hear Eyes on Me play?

Squall and Rinoa
Squall and Rinoa

Even though the couple didn’t exchange I Love You’s, their love for each other is obvious. They even talked in private on where to meet if they lose their way during their last mission against Ultimecia during the big wibbly wobbly, timey wimey stuff that is the Time Compression Spell. Rinoa also brought out the “sweet and caring” side of Squall who is very serious, introverted, and cold prior to falling for Rinoa.

Wander and Mono

Wander with Mono on the altar
Wander with Mono on the altar

When I first saw the cover and the gameplay video for the Shadow of the Colossus, I prepared myself for the action and the challenge that was waiting for me. What I didn’t expect was the plot twist that was lurking at the end of the game. I did have mixed feelings when confronting the giant creature guardians dwelling in the world; a mixture of “Do I really need to kill these guys?” and “Meh, let the challenge begin, down you go, big fella!”. Little did I know – honestly, I didn’t really know, no idea at all – that I was releasing a demon with each colossus that I defeat. All I knew when I was playing through the game is that, I was reviving my love that I left on the altar at the beginning of the game.

Then, down goes the last colossus. I just released a demon and I acted as a conduit for the big guy. Yes, I did revive my love but, I fell into the depths of darkness.

Wander struggling
Wander struggling

Consumed by what I have been slowly releasing through the course of the game. Unable to at least touch a strand of my love’s hair, hold just a shadow of her now-alive beauty, or hear her angelic soothing voice once more. What struck me then was that the game broke my anticipated happy ending and caught me off-guard with a dramatic ending. You can feel Wander’s desire to be by the sides of her love at the ending when you’re controlling him as he struggle against the darkness that was pulling him away from Mono. And then you’ll feel it was all for naught and a same time feel good for the guy. Whether he knew what he was doing or not, it doesn’t really matter. What we all know is that Wander was willing to do everything to bring Mono back.

There are other star-crossed lovers in a lot of video games out there and these are just some of them. How about you? What video game broke your heart after falling for the couple in the game? Which video game couple made you feel what it’s like to love and be loved? Share with us in the comment section below and let’s talk about love and pain.

Video Games That Tackle Social Issues

Ellie and Riley

Video Games – we all enjoy it. Whether you’re young or old, a student or an employee looking to pass the time with a little fun; we all enjoy video games. It is a means for us, an outlet, to do the things we can not do in real life; to experience the things that is not readily accessible to the most of us. Video games also help us understand different types of people by having diverse and – for some games – very realistic characters. But, not a lot of us see the underlying meanings behind the video games we play and enjoy. The implications hidden behind the realistic graphics, the heart-warming soundtrack, and the innovative gameplay. Here is a list of some of the video games that tackle different social issues. Sit back and let us dwell deeper into the meaning of these well-known video games.

War“This War of Mine” 

Video Games: This War of Mine is a video game about civilians surviving in a war-torn city.
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Let’s start with a very well-known topic – war. We’ve all heard of different stories about war. And war has been a choice of topic or genre by a lot of video games. But, the creators of This War Of Mine, 11 Bit Studios, approached this genre in an innovative and immersive way. In this game, you don’t play as a well-trained-muscle-torn super soldier equipped with a planetary cannon. Here, you play as a civilian caught very deep in the war-devastated fictional city of Pogoren, Graznavia. You will struggle, because ‘gather’ is putting it lightly, for food. Scavenge for medicines or supplies and try your very best not to bump into soldiers or other hungry survivors.

The day and night cycle plays a significant role in the game mechanics. During the day, you’ll be managing your hideout in a very detailed manner; while keeping an eye on that sniper whose not letting you out. When darkness falls, you’ll be sneaking into buildings and areas for supplies; while avoiding being killed by other people seeking means for survival. You will also be making a lot of moral decisions; whether you’ll kill that one annoying person to save the whole group or watch as everyone slowly suffer. Add to that, the beautifully-made charcoal-style aesthetics; and you have a game that will leave you thinking and reflecting about war and its effect on the human soul.

 

Privacy“Watch Dogs 1 and  2″ 

Video Games: Marcus Holloway and the gang
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Have you ever felt like being watched? Like Big Brother is always around you, lurking in the dark, studying and recording your every move? We are living in the age and time of information and the improvement in technology is far from slowing down. Also, the number of people uploading all of their information in the internet is increasing. Which is why black hats are more eager to steal any sensitive information they can get their hands on.

Watch Dogs, is a video game about hackers waging war on the government for manipulating information and invading the privacy of their people. This video game does not really tackle or explain ‘hacking’ in detail; but it shows what hackers can do with the information that the people, themselves, gave out there in the internet. This game is a sweet reminder that internet privacy is sometimes just an illusion to make us feel safe. It also reminds us that the internet is a very dangerous place to be placing all of our information.

 

Social Difference – Multiple Video Games (Witcher SeriesLife is Strange, The Last of Us, other video games)

Video Games: The Witcher
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So what if you have white hair, feline eyes, sterile, and has high resistance, if not immune, to diseases? So what if you have pointy ears and lives longer than humans? We are all living things and we can co-exist if given the chance and consideration.

The Witcher series, which is set in the world of Temeria, is flooded with racism and discrimination. Elves and Dwarves are discriminated for not being human, despite the humans being the invaders of the land. Basically, humans are the foreigners and, yet, they are pushing away and abusing the original inhabitants of the land. Luckily, Geralt, despite being discriminated himself, acts as the median between the two worlds. That of humans and of ‘non-humans’. Geralt does not make any rush decisions when doing a job. He investigates first and looks for a way for both parties to work together. With an exception, there is no consideration to be given for evil-tainted individuals, human or non-human.

Video Games: Life is Strange
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Life is Strange is a video game that takes place in a small town called Arcadia Bay. A place where a lot of things happen. Including alcoholism, bullying, and child abuse. Child abuse being a social issue that’s very rampant nowadays; this video game shows the whole issue in a different perspective. You play the game and see the world through the eyes of a teenager with the ability to control time, Max Caulfield. The game also includes other issues like teenage pregnancy, social anxiety, and brats who think like they are on top of everyone. Max’s story is also a depiction of how it feels like to be bullied for being “not among the famous”. This is a game definitely worth checking out if you want a relaxing soundtrack and a story that is full of twists.

Video Games: Riley and Ellie
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The Last of Us: Left Behind, sparked a controversy when Ellie and Riley hinted quite a number of times about their feelings with each other. We all remember that photobooth scene, right? How about that scene where they dance to a tune and then unknowingly attracted a horde of infected? All of these hints led to one conclusion and a lot of people were shocked. Some related and found themselves in the position of the protagonists in terms of personal identity; some accepted the fact and were happy for the pair; but, for some…they just do not approve of the whole charade. The relationship they have and the characters themselves doesn’t actually raise an issue; but the different ways people responded to the writing of the game, present an issue on sexual discrimination.

There you go. Here are just some of the games that tackle some of the issues we are facing up to this day. There are still a lot of games that depicts issues not mentioned here. If you have played a game with an interesting theme, comment them down below and let’s have a talk. Looking forward to hearing from you!

Top 5 Non-traditional Games for Halloween

Do you enjoy been scared out of your wits? Do you want to struggle to sleep? Do you want to jump out of your skin at every flickering shadow? Nope, me neither. That’s why for this Halloween I’ve created a list of video games that are not full on horror but have sprinkles of terror throughout. These titles can literally be anything that have alarming moments, but are not seen as horror games.

There’s nothing wrong with liking horror but if your a big o’l scaredy-cat  like me, you want to play something that has elements of dread but not so much that you start barricading your windows. Enjoy!

 

Luigi’s Mansion 

Starting with the king of the scaredy-cats we have this GameCube classic. Luigi’s Mansion is still a cracking outing for the youngest Mario brother. A short entry on this list with the game easily beatable in under 8 hours, yet those few hours are spent well. A more lighter take on ghosts see’s Luigi investigate a mysterious mansion that he won in a contest he never entered. Inside we scour the building looking for his older brother coming across colorful ghoulish residents as they try to capture him. Whether it’s the humorous personalities of the mansions inhabitants or simply hearing Luigi humming to the background music. There is plenty here that brings a smile.

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Bioshock 

Rapture is a place no one ever thought they wound visit, but what a visit it was. After barely escaping a plane crash unscathed, you find yourself on a journey to the bottom of the ocean to find a dystopia; Rapture. Unknown as to why you have been brought here, you wander the city with only a voice from a radio called Atlas. This game has the right balance of pacing, action and tension that tells a terrific story over its 20 hour or so length. A defining game for the Playstation 3, the city of Rapture not only has a creepy, eerie presence but to look at it’s a marvel.

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Metroid Prime 

Samus Aran’s leap into the third dimension is a stunning, atmospheric adventure that breathed new life into the Metroid series. The first entry in the trilogy still stands out as its strongest because never have you felt more cut-off from the universe. Exploring a desolate planet, Samus squares off against some formidable foes as she pursuits Space Pirates in an attempt to stop their biological experiments. One of the most highly rated games of all time, This first person-adventure is seen by some as perfection. Now available on the Wii U eShop as part of the trilogy bundle, If you haven’t delved into this franchise this is the essential starter.

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The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask

Sequel to one of the greatest video games of all time. Majora’s Mask takes on a more frightening and sinister tone. Mask’s as per the title play a huge part of what makes this game both so special and so freaky. Taking Link into the darker world of Terminia, you meet a vast array of wonderfully weird characters that constantly keep you on your toes. Facing off against the mischievous Skull Kid you try to save the world in a mere 3 days before the impending moon destroys all life. With a recent release on the 3DS, there is no better time to jump into this great. Just don’t look up.

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The Last of Us  

Naughty Dog’s masterpiece has had every praise thrown its way. With numerous game of the year awards, the story of Joel and Ellie is a unique encounter that is worth revisiting time and time again. The relationship between the pair is at the heart of this story, however to form this they have endevour through some treacherous times. These scares comes mainly from try to avoid spore infected humans at every corner. Just make sure you don’t run into a bloater. Yuck.

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So there you have five nontraditional horror games to keep you going over the Halloween. What do you think are the the best nontraditional games to play this season? Leave us a comment below to tell us why and Happy Halloween.

Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture Review

In the 5-6 hours it took me to unravel the mysteries within Chinese Room’s Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture, I found myself experiencing an abundance of feelings. Confusion, wonder, despair and pity all overwhelmed me as despite it’s seemingly simple premise, Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture’s story turned out to be deceivingly intricate.

Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture is set in an abandoned, post-apocalyptic rendition of fictional Yaughton Valley in Shropshire (England). The player must explore the valley, interacting with phones and radios in the area in order to uncover the nitty-gritty details of the apocalyptic event. Alongside the various means of telecommunications the player may interact with for guidance and information, there are also fascinating orbs of light that accompany and loosely lead the player throughout the game. Occasionally, these orbs trigger various visions of once residents of the valley. Although some visions are initiated naturally, others must be activated. This is done by tilting the controller in order to tune the frequency of the orb, in a sense. When done correctly, surroundings will darken as if night has fallen and the the recollection of past events will play out. Using a combination of the past events visualized and the information from radios and phones, the player must piece together a timeline of events, in order to try to unveil the primary cause of the disappearance of an entire valley.

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Unsettling Setting

Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture’s setting is a key aspect to maintaining interest and intensity throughout a evidently slow-paced playthrough. The peaceful and tranquil setting can become almost uncomfortable at times in contrast with the dark and sinister plot of the game. I mean, come on, the 1980’s village setting is eerie enough in itself, let alone with no trace of life anywhere. The setting is equally brilliant for toying with the players ideas of what could have happened. Everything seems untouched, cigarettes sit in ashtrays as if left mid smoke, picnics left prepped upon hilltops, there is no real trail of destruction. This consequently will truly lead the player into questioning the reasoning behind the apocalyptic occurrence.

Finally, there is the matter of how aesthetically pleasing the setting is generally speaking, With lack of human existence, Yaughton Valley appears so pure and naturally rich. Accompanied by an outstanding and extremely haunting soundtrack by composer Jessica Curry, the ambiance of the setting is almost melancholy despite it’s apparent beauty.  The setting as a whole is so well developed by Chinese Room and just adds an important level of depth and emotion to Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture.

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Getting In On The Gossip

Throughout playing Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture, the player will encounter apparitions of light – as mentioned prior, in the form of a select few former residents of the valley. These characters include a parishioner at war with himself, a couple – both of which being scientists, an owner of a holiday camp on the valley outskirts, a farmer and also a pushy mother that is renowned for almost watching over the Valley residents. Not only will the player indulge in these stories for their significance in ultimately piecing together what happened, but also for investigating how each story intertwines with the next, gradually developing a more vivid idea of the timeline of events leading up the apocalypse and the many personal questions looming over the residents. The fun in this is derived from the lack of structure to the assortment of information provided. The structure must be the players own. I’d have a notebook ready if I were you.

The characters within Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture are well developed and casted and in being so are easy to revel in. As mentioned briefly before, the complex and riveting stories of the characters within the game are vitally important due to the generally slow-paced style in which the game plays out. There is no combat or particularly fast movement within the gameplay. However, the intensity of the story compensates wonderfully. As you rush between visions and feeds of information, it becomes easy to forget the whole ideal of finding answers as you almost become lost in the soap opera unfolding between the characters you meet.

Towards the end of the game, the player will feel inclined to a great feeling of satisfaction. Their theories on what could have happened are revealed to be correct or not alongside the many loose ends of the stories throughout are tied. They can finally breathe a sigh of relief.

Emotionally Ensnared 

Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture is a game orientated around making the player ‘feel’. To say it accomplishes just that is an understatement. To compare a game that had me feeling how this game made me feel, I could only use Naughty Dog’s The Last Of Us. This is mainly because it is the only game that has left me feeling so empty upon it concluding. Despite Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture’s finale, as I watched the credits roll to the hymnal music, I felt uncertain despite having all my questions answered, feeling the only way I could fill the void the game had left within me would be by playing a second time.

Alongside the ending there is the span of emotions the residents’ stories and radio installments will make the player feel. As they come to terms with the relationships between the characters, they will be overcome with feelings ranging from pity to anger to happiness. It is all really overwhelming to be quite honest.

Overall, throughout the player’s journey through Yaughton Valley, it is apparent there is a prominent feeling of fear as the player will no doubt question how they play and proceed throughout the game as if they were living the events occurring within the game for themselves.

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All In All  

Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture does well to exhibit that a game does not require intense, hands-on combat, a dangerous and unpredictable setting or even ‘living’ characters in order to be a wonderfully emotional and memorable game. Developers masterfully ensure players have guidance if required via the orbs of light, but can also explore the post-apocalyptic setting to their own leisure if they wish. With its primary focus being enlightenment of the unknown, Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture is quite a frightening and uncomfortable game. The setting, Yaughton Valley in which most residents live in each others pockets, aware of one another’s business is perfect for making the game more believable and all the more creepy in being so.

Despite the profound sense of emptiness I felt upon finishing this game, I would still recommend it to anyone that loves a game with the ability to not only test you mentally, but to also truly make you feel.

Gaming Is Good For Me

A ‘hobby’ is defined as ‘An activity done regularly in one’s leisure time for pleasure’. Common hobbies include an ensemble of varying sport activities, the reading of books, even trainspotting is considered a hobby. However, it has come to my attention that for a noticeable number of those outside of the gaming community that playing video games is highly disregarded as a hobby. That being said, what I aim to do here is try to defend this hobby that I personally partake in and try to bring into light it’s positive aspects as I believe it has many.

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The Lazy Hobby 

One of the primary reasons that indulging in a game is frowned upon is due to the fact that it isn’t a particularly physically demanding hobby. Strictly speaking, most gaming consoles and handhelds require the player to sit and focus on a screen. A successful game developer will aim to keep the player seated and engrossed for an extended duration of time. Does this then ultimately mean that gaming should be classed as any less of a brilliant hobby? I think that is quite unfair actually.

The Comeback

Firstly, let’s begin with the fact that although gaming as a hobby in most cases is not physical or evident in any means of activeness, mentally, games possess the ability to exercise a players mind. Games of today offer the players opportunities to gain knowledge of circumstances and eras that prior to playing would not have comprehended or taken any interest in. They allow players to put themselves into situations and ways of thinking that they would not consider themselves ever to be in. A fine example of a game that captures this ability so well is Heavy Rain (Quantic Dream). Heavy Rain falls under the genre of interactive-drama. Throughout the proceedings of the game the player plays as four vastly differing characters that are all collectively involved in the case of a serial killer known as the Origami Killer. The player is put in the position of a Father, a former police officer, a FBI profiler and a photojournalist. The game requires the player to make quick and vital decisions that have the potential to kill of main characters. Complete with interactive gameplay in the form of fast-paced action sequences and motion related actions with the controller, Heavy Rain is perfect for involving the player as if they were living out the games events for themselves. By bringing the more underrated moments of gaming in to light, we could even consider the fact that perhaps gaming ultimately becomes a more exciting way to learn.

Furthermore, in regards to the physical side to the argument, game consoles such as the Nintendo Wii, have answered such issues allowing players to use their physical being to play games. For example, Wii Sports provides players the chance to bring sporting activities to their home. Despite the odd, 40 inch television taking a battering from a Wii remote in tennis or the insatiable level of embarrassment derived from playing Just Dance at a family gathering, Nintendo Wii, Playstation Move and Xbox Kinect have answered the demand for more physical means of gaming.

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Living The Story Of Many Differing Characters

Admittedly, one of the most enjoyable aspects of playing video games is the sheer span of genres, gameplay styles, settings, story lines and characters. The profound versatility video games provide is what allows it to be such a widely appreciated hobby. It offers players of all types a chance to escape from their everyday troubles, whether it be a bad day at work or a little bit of leisure to unwind. Let’s take The Last Of Us as an example. A hard day at the office followed by even a short amount of time with protagonists of The Last Of Us, Joel and Ellie is enough to A. mentally teleport you elsewhere even if only for a short while and B. Proceed to make you then realise that things could be worse, you could be surviving against an increasing population of infected on a day to day basis. The requirement for a general escape from reality is something every good hobby should offer and gaming offers just that. In addition thanks to the indefinite amount of genres it is fair to say gaming can cater for every type of player. There is no reason why is should be regarded unpleasantly.

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Educational

As mentioned briefly before, gaming is actually relatively educational when considering games such as the Assassins Creed franchise for instance. The Assassins Creed game series orientates itself around various historic events and is based within historic settings. It reconciles a number of radically different religious faiths and beliefs and ties them in with the story lines of the games within the series. Games such as Assassins Creed are great for bringing to the attention of the player, things they may not have known before. This enlightenment to players as a whole is just another pro to gaming.

Gaming- Associated badly?

It is possible that the more negative views and opinions aimed at gaming as a hobby may actually be derived from popular game franchises almost posing as the face of the hobby. For instance, first-person shooter franchise, Call Of Duty is at the heart of many gaming addictions. The installments within the series consist of taking part in war, mass shootings and a number of other violent activities. Although, the events within some of the series installments are of historic significance, it is apparent that the overriding feature of the series is the widely played multiplayer which results in a lot of anger and arguing among players the vast majority of the time.  This being said there is a strong possibility that the negativity posed towards gaming as a hobby could originate from associating gaming primarily with such franchises. Whether or not it is the narrow-mindedness of outsiders to the gaming community or poor means of presenting gaming is to blame, both fail to acknowledge the beauty in games such as The Last Of Us, Tomb Raider, Journey and even more recent titles such as Everybody’s Gone To The Rapture. These memorable video games not only fulfill the basic needs and requirements of a hobby, but that also allow the player to lose themselves in jaw-dropping stories that give the player the chance to explore an entire spectrum of emotions they were not accustom to prior to playing.

gaming is good for me 4

All In Favor

Gaming is an utterly fantastic hobby that can take a player of any age or sort and give them their rope ladder to escaping the harshness of reality for just a few hours when seemingly needed most. No, generally speaking gaming isn’t as physical as other more kindly regarded hobbies but in terms of exercising the mind and imagination, I believe that gaming should be regarded in much higher spirit than it is by so many. Here, I aimed to open discussion over the issue, not point fingers.

That said, feel free to comment your views below.

 

The Last of Us Is Overrated

The Last of Us undoubtedly has an amazing story, but is it a good game? Well, according to just about everyone the answer to that question is yes. Judging from the title of this article, you might think I would disagree with that answer, but you would be wrong. The Last of Us falls under this very specific category of game for me, the type of game where I fully understand all the love it gets and how great the game is, but it just isn’t for me. Other games that fall under this category for me are the Metroid games, the Grand Theft Auto games, and the Fire Emblem series. All of those are fantastic games, but something about them rubs me the wrong way. Specifically, The Last of Us really makes me question if it deserves all of the praise it gets with so little criticism.

For me, where the game both simultaneously thrives and falters is with its story.The story of the game is fantastic, and has one of the strongest openings of any form of entertainment  of the last 10 years. The story also maintains momentum and quality throughout the entirety of the game. The reason why this is also the downfall of the game is because it’s too cinematic. The story would be much better if it were put into a film, or a trilogy of films.

I have played many other cinematic games before that I love, an example being the Uncharted games which are also done by the people who made The Last of Us, Naughty Dog. I’m also a big fan of the recent Telltale games, which have almost no gameplay and are more like interactive cutscenes. So what works about those games that doesn’t in The Last of Us? To me, it’s the tone and type of gameplay. Uncharted is extremely cinematic but the gameplay so perfectly matches the pulpy action of the story of the game that it works and keeps the pace of the game smooth while keeping a consistent tone. For Telltale games, the minimal gameplay is used in perfect amounts because the investment in the game is choosing the dialogue the playable character says in each scene. In The Last of Us, the gameplay is too “meh” for me to hold my interest in the game. It feels like a lesser and not as fun version of Uncharted. It does have good aspects, the lack of bullets and crafting system really make Joel feel like a scrapper who does what he can to survive.

Another downfall of the game honestly isn’t it’s fault, it’s the fault of the time the game was released. Currently, in entertainment and pop culture there is an over-saturation of post-apocalyptic stories. It seems like every month a new movie or book or video game is announced or released that is about the end of the world. Very few things can twist this concept in such a way that makes it feel fresh. If you ask me, The Last of Us is a bit more of a by-the-numbers post apocalyptic story. This concept will most likely make the game feel more dated in the future. There is a very real possibility that in 20 years people will look back at this game and say, “Oh yeah, this came out when Walking Dead was popular.”

I’m not saying the game’s bad, far from it. It’s a very good game, I would even argue that it’s one of the most important AAA releases of the past few years. I just feel like people overlook some bad qualities that the game has because the story is so good. Personally, I think Bioshock Infinite told a story with similar ideas and themes and did it much better. All I ask is for people to not praise a game because everyone says it’s great. Form your own opinions, and look at games with a critical eye to recognize that no game is perfect, and The Last of Us is no exception.

 

What Makes The Perfect Post-Apocalyptic Game?

Apocalyptic

Games orientated around a post-apocalyptic story are becoming a superior genre of game. With next-generation capabilities, we see these games brought to life in development that makes the game feel so realistic that it almost makes the player feel as if they themselves are being bombarded by infected, or scavenging for goods in what remains of civilization. The demand for such games has become increasingly potent since the release of The Last Of Us especially, the post-apocalyptic wonder that snapped up at least 200 Game Of The Year Awards. With a mass of games slotting into this genre it is hard to determine what exactly are the key elements in making them so enjoyable and memorable. Well let’s look into that.

Frightening Foes 

Obvious, I agree but it is a fact that the success of a post apocalyptic game is partially derived from an array of terrifying enemies to war with. It wouldn’t be as thrilling or exciting being thrown up against a score of infected bunny rabbits. Over the years we’ve seen the opposition come in all shapes and sizes, whether it be a mutated mole rat or an infected human splattered in blood. Alarming enemies generate an initial and fundamental line of fear within post-apocalyptic games and a good enemy will make your blood-curdle and your spine tingle as you consider confronting them.

Dying Light (Techland) is plentiful in a span of such enemies. Although, sluggish zombies linger in the streets throughout the day, after sunset, players are left to deal with the agile terrors of the night, Hostiles.

What Makes A Perfect Post-Apocalyptic Game Dying Light 1

These terrifying goons are brilliant for upping the fear factor within the game. As you flee before them you can hear them huffing and puffing behind you as they close in. It’s really effective for generating the intensity that makes a great foe.

Furthermore, enemies can possess the scare-factor for an array of reasons. Taking the Fallout series as an accurate example, the games are set after the occurrence of a nuclear apocalypse, causing various creatures and humans to become mutated due to being consumed by high levels of radiation. Subsequently, enemies are larger and more frightening in terms of their alarming and unusual appearance. I mean, I’m not particularly fond of being harassed by a mob of Giant Scorpions or the misfortune of bumping into a Deathclaw. The enemies are out of character and creatures who’d usually not bat an eyelid at your presence become enemies. This unpredictability generates fear as a result.

What Makes A Perfect Post-Apocalyptic Game Fallout 2

 Scrounging

Nothing says ‘post-apocalypse’ like a lack of resources. Having to search every nook and cranny in the remains of what once a thriving civilisation, really provokes a sense of desperation, amplifying the whole ”survival” feel to a post-apocalyptic game. In resources being scarce players must use their noggin to tackle specific situations within such games as wisely as possible in order to conserve resources and to keep pushing forward. An admirable example of such a game is none other than Naughty Dogs own, The Last Of Us. The vast majority of situations throughout the duration of this absolutely fantastic game, can be tackled with stealth and a little patience, allowing the player to save resources for more hands on encounters. As the difficultly levels of the game increases ammo and food become increasingly rare to come by, having the player then assess each situation so thoroughly as not to draw attention, or a gun. Although a subtle aspect of the game, this style of gameplay is effective for deriving a sense of realism from The Last Of Us and it’s level of effectiveness is all to evident in it’s overall, mind-blowing success.

The Last of Us™ Remastered_20140802185633

Urgency And Desperation 

Post-apocalyptic related games are commonly orientated around survival of the fittest, the desperation of fending for yourself in order to stay alive above all others. Post-apocalyptic wonders to date would not be nearly as successful had we been handed the key to survival on a silver platter, relieving us of all means of urgency and panic. Instead, these games are successful as we have to fight for the gift of life.

A very underrated example of such attention to detail is indie game, Lone Survivor (Superflat Games/ Curve Studios). Although the 2D- retro styled graphics may not exactly cause you to jump or scare easy, this game compensates with every other post-apocalyptic aspect being no less than perfectly-executed, complete with and eerie original soundtrack and the most effect sense of urgency and desperation. Throughout the game players must consume food and drink regularly in order to avoid falling unconscious and then awaking in your bedroom situated in the first initial area of the game. This may not sound like any particular reason to worry but with save points or in this case mirrors being so far apart, it is vital to avoid starvation.

Another post-apocalyptic game that has a very effective way of making the player remain on their toes is The Walking Dead Game (Telltale Games), but this is however for a very different reason. The Walking Dead Game is an interactive drama featuring various button sequences and decisions the player should make. The beauty in this game is it generates the post-apocalyptic panic by limiting times in which players can make decisions. In a matter of seconds a player must decide who to save between two people on the basis of who will benefit them most, what way a team of survivors should tackle a specific situation, all the while bearing in mind every decision has a consequent effect on the rest of the game, meaning a bad decision could have a detrimental outcome.

What Makes A Perfect Post-Apocalyptic Game The Walking Dead Game

Superb Settings 

Post-apocalyptic games thrive in success thanks to finely developed settings. Not only are these hypothetical post-apocalyptic settings great for allowing the mind of the player to indulge in how the aftermath of an apocalypse could look on some realistic level, but it is also ups gameplay standards by giving the player so much to explore and do. Well-developed settings can also be very effective in adding pressure on the story of the game itself, reeling in players emotions by making the characters within the game look extremely hard done by. Again, Naughty Dog’s The Last Of Us is a very prominent example of this. Set in a post-apocalyptic USA, we see the only means of safety being the scattered quarantine zones. As soon as the protagonists leave the safety of these areas, then having to navigate unstable skyscrapers and office buildings, flooded underpasses and booby-trapped places of refuge, we see a lot of pressure piled onto the story. Ultimately all of this makes the story unpredictable and as vaguely mentioned prior, it draws in players emotions, all of which is obviously effective in reflection to the outstanding success of The Last Of Us.

The Last of Us™ Remastered_20140804214552

Sensational Stories

A jaw-dropping story is such a key aspect to driving post-apocalyptic games to their success. Although it seems an obvious aspect it truly is vital. An enthralling story will give a hypothetical game a sense of realism, making it seem much less far fetched. Post-apocalyptic games are much more enjoyable when they are believable. The Walking Dead Game (Telltale Games) is driven by it’s story telling, giving the player total control, almost making it as though they are the one surviving. The game is realistic and ditches the traditional idea of taking refuge in a shopping center with the rest of the survivors in your town and city. The Last Of Us (Naughty Dog) is hands down one of the best post-apocalyptic tales to date, purely because it is realistic and everything that happens within the game could happen given an infectious outbreak. It is always a winner to give the player the chance to feel like they themselves are within the game, especially within post-apocalyptic based games.

Even A Bit Of Originality 

Living happily, outbreak of zombies occurs, survive. This is a traditional timeline of the chain of events within post-apocalyptic games. This being the case, it is a breath of fresh-air when a game of the same genre is released that is a little different. In this case we are going to refer to Tokyo Jungle (Sony Computer Entertainment/ Japan Studio) a game based on survival of the fittest, but in regards to the animal kingdom as mankind has strangely disappeared. In a post-apocalyptic setting you play as animals, fighting to survive long enough for the player to discover the reasoning behind the disappearance to humans. Initially this game is just hilarious, playing as animals such as Pomeranians (cute fluffy dogs), Lions and even some prehistoric creatures. However, the games success as a downloadable game was due to it’s originality and the fact it was developed from a totally different perspective on a post-apocalyptic world.

What Makes A Perfect Post-Apocalyptic Game Tokyo Jungle

Games based on the aftermath of an apocalypse are becoming a particularly popular genre of game. With some great games already taking the gaming market by storm and with player demand for more of the genre I think it is only fair to say we can expect even greater releases from developers in this genre in time to come, all of which harnessing these very vital ingredients to the perfect post-apocalyptic game.

The Greatest Video Game Characters

Video Game

Nothing makes a game more enthralling than a blessing of a character stealing the spotlight. A game could have mesmerizing visuals, flawless gameplay but without a the appearance of a captivating character a game will never truly get the attention it aspires to have. Over the years, developers have presented us with countless fictitious wonders which leaves us wondering, which are the greatest.  Well, here I will try to narrow down that mass of heroes, heroines and villains into a top 10.

10. Spyro The Dragon – Spyro Series (Insomniac Games, Vicarious Visions, Traveller’s Tales etc.)

Spyro The Dragon Top 10 Video Game Characters

”Yeah, whatever. You’re not so much of a challenge, I’m sure I can do it again.” – A Hero’s Tail (2004)

Spyro has been a long-loved video game character. Over a number of series there has been significant changes to his personality, none of which causing him to be any less of a lovable character. Spyro initially adopted a more cocky and hard-headed personality, winning players over with his witty and sarcastic sense of humour. However, in the reboot that took to the screens in 2006 , Spyro being portrayed as an orphan revealed a more sensitive side to his character, all the while still possessing his fine sense of humour. All of this made this purple dragon that much more of a great character.

Spyro’s relationship with Sparx, his dragonfly companion has always been a significant factor to the series, even more so in The Legend of Spyro in which the two become brothers upon Spyro’s adoption. The witty relationship between the pair evolved into a more brotherly one in The Legend of Spyro series, making the previous banter between the pair become more like bickering between siblings. This reflects exceptionally well on Spyro, making him appear more down to earth and allowing the players with annoying siblings to at least empathise in some respect – as far as relating to purple dragons go. The Legend of Spyro series really placed considerable focus on Spyro’s relationship with other characters aside from his dragonfly buddy and in doing so, Spyro has won over audiences further by taunting their heart strings.

Spyro has been a diverse character over generations. Whether you’re enjoying his endearing sense of humour in his more retro installments or brimming with sympathy as you play The Legend of Spyro series, the simple fact remains that this 4-legged bundle of joy will never cease to put at least a smirk on the players face and that is why he slots so easily into this top 10.

9. Sly Cooper – Sly Cooper Series (Suckerpunch Productions, Sanzaru Games)

Sly Cooper Thieves In Time

”The name’s Sly. Sly Cooper. And I’m a thief, from a whole line of thieves. In fact, thieving is the family business, and business was good.” – Thieves In Time (2013)

Sly Cooper is what can only be described as the better of two evils throughout this series of games. Technically speaking, Sly is a bad guy, a thief, stealing an array of expensive goodies to profit himself and his gang. However, within the series, his initially selfish intentions always turn to defeating competing thieves with more sinister intentions and in becoming an unlikely – and unintentional hero, Sly manages to attain the love of players and also sneak his way into this top 10.

Straight off the mark players are enlightened as to Sly’s sad past of having his also thieving parents murdered and becoming orphaned as a result. This imposes a fundamental line of sympathy which proceeds to make every crime Sly commits acceptable to the player. Further love for this character is then derived from his loyalty to his two orphaned buddies, Bentley (a brainy tortoise) and Murray (a brawny, pink hippo). The trio began their thieving fellowship at the orphanage in which they all met. From then they had considered themselves family and Sly protects them like they are so. Sly has a killer sense of humour. This usually becomes more prominent to his personality when he is trying his luck with opposing cop Carmelita fox. Despite the obivous attraction between the two, Sly gets a kick out of tormenting her and well just generally making her work-driven lifestyle difficult to say the least. It really shines light on Sly’s winsome and charming personality.

Sly Cooper is a fine example of great development. He is sly as his name states, funny, loyal and truly captivating as a lead character, so much so that we forget in some respects he is actually the bad guy.

8. Vass – Far Cry Series (Ubisoft Montreal)

Vaas Top 10 Video Game Characters

”Did I ever tell you what the definition of insanity is?” – Far Cry 3 (2012)

This savage nutter of a villain would be out of place if not in this top 10. Vaas Montenegro dominates the tropical setting (Rook Islands) of Far Cry 3 with his pirate troops. He is a mindless lunatic who doesn’t show the slightest bit of remorse for getting blood on his hands.

Within the first few minutes of gameplay, Vaas brutally murders the brother of protagonist, Jason Brody and in doing so sets the tone for the game, quite gruesomely displaying how barbaric this pirate lord truly is. This lack of guilt or regret for such evil acts makes Vaas a genuinely frightening villain as the reality is he will stop at nothing to get what he wants and as Far Cry 3’s proceedings play out, this becomes increasingly evident. Far Cry’s 3’s setting also contributes in a way which is not immediately noticeable. The Rook Islands are unpredictable and overwhelmed with danger and it really acts as a representation of Vaas’s personality. All in all the player will learn that despite the initial beauty of the vibrant tropical island, that they shouldn’t underestimate it, nor Vaas’s villainy.

Vaas is such a well developed character on Ubisoft’s part. Players will find themselves completely hooked on his sheer nastiness and no matter how many innocent people he slaughters, or shockingly horrid offences he commands, the player will remain just as disturbed each time.

7. Dr Nefarious – Ratchet And Clank Series (Insomniac Games)

Dr Nefarious Top 10 Video Game Characters

When I’m finished killing you, I think I’ll rewind time so I can do it again, and again, and again!” – Ratchet And Clank: A Crack In Time (2009)

Dr. Nefarious is the most renowned antagonist of the Ratchet And Clank series, he is power-hungry, dastardly and well, pretty comical. Nefarious’s intentions to rid the galaxy of organic life, leaving it to all robots always fall light-years short and leave him looking like a right royal nincompoop.

Dr. Nefarious isn’t a great character because of his evil acts, he is so because he’s absolutely hilarious. On top of all the drastic failure to his poorly planned atrocities, he has nasty habit of freezing and playing particular parts from his favourite films (Holovids). On many occasions he will lock up mid-scream, laugh or sentence and recite ”Oh, Janice”. Furthermore, Nefarious’s right hand man Lawrence is a complete moron and Nefarious rarely tolerates it. The witty master-slave insults are so well written and it truly makes Dr. Nefarious a great character to watch. He is just a lovable moron and the player will almost feel sorry for him despite his evilness.

Dr. Nefarious is a terrible villain. He can’t pull off anything remotely evil but it doesn’t deprive him of of place in this top 10.

6. GLaDOS- Portal Series (Valve Corporation)

Glados Top 10 Video Game Characters

”Here we are. The Incinerator Room. Be careful not to trip over any parts of me that didn’t get completely burned when you threw them down here.” – Portal 2 (2011)

GLaDOS is a great robotic video game character with a wickedly sinister sense of humour. She is one of the reasons the Portal series is so thoroughly indulgent.

Portal is driven by what can only be described as a very dark yet humorous story line, this is relfected on GLaDOS’s personality considering she spends the series more or less torturing Chell, the protagonist. As GLaDOS tests, Chell throughout the game within the puzzling chambers it is evident that her sick sense of humour has no boundaries. Within the second installment to the series she pretends to reunite Chell with her family, finding her own misleading lie hilarious. Although funny, her menacing behavior can be disconcerting and uncomfortable. Her ability to generate such feelings with ease is what makes her such a great character. Throughout GLaDOS’s endeavors, it is apparent she is a bit of a nut job and can at times be very scary. Her evil is seemingly unconfined to any boundaries and she has no trace of humanity. Her bad ways have no limits and it is very effective in making her a character to be feared.

Artificial intelligence can be frightening in respect to it possesses most human capabilities, lacking only the key element of emotion and empathy. GLaDOS is an ample example of this and you’ll be grateful it is you being tested as opposed to testing her and her patience.

5. Ratchet – Ratchet And Clank Series (Insomniac Games)

Ratchet And Clank Top 5 Video Game Characters

 “So, you need me to go on a dangerous mission in another galaxy?” – Ratchet And Clank 2 (2003)

This furry cutie pie without a doubt earns his way into this top 10. Since 2002, this loyal Lombax has been stealing our hearts with his courage, sass and his truly touching friendship with his metal companion, Clank. Initially Ratchet didn’t have much of a back-story, he was simply a galactic citizen eager for a little action and adventure. However, as gaming generations progressed, Insomniac Games began to provide more insight into Ratchet’s origins, mainly in The Future Ratchet And Clank installments. This made Ratchet all the more lovable as it brought his headstrong persona back down to earth and pretty much gave him feelings. He was no longer just reckless, resilient and determined to get the bad guys, he had a purpose, something to fight for.

Ratchet’s relationship with Clank is incredibly significant to what makes him such a lovable protagonist. Not only is the back and forth banter between the pair thoroughly amusing, but the two were truly developed to bounce off of one another, compliment one another and ultimately it puts Ratchet in such a heart-warming light. He is portrayed as such a loyal and protective friend and it makes him such an endearing character that is impossible not to adore. Ratchet simply grows on you.

Heroes don’t have to be overwhelmingly muscular or almost superhuman, they can win us over in any shape, size or form and Ratchet is a fine display of just that.

4. Lightning Farron – Final Fantasy Series (Square Enix)

Lightning Farron Top 5 Video Game Characters

”You became a l’Cie, so now you’re gonna marry this idiot? And you think I’m gonna buy that. Full points for originality. But, don’t forget. If you really are a l’Cie, it’s my job to deal with you.” – Final Fantasy XIII (2009)

Lightning is a very complex character and she makes the top 10 on account of it. Initially, Lightning appears to be the hardy type and due to a rough childhood and having to raise her sister by herself, she has every reason to be so. However, the beauty in Lightning isn’t just her striking appearance but the fact she is so much more than just a hard-nut and when Final Fantasy’s proceedings pick apart that tough exterior, inside hides a young girl mourning the loss of her parents, just wanting to be loved.

A key element to Lightning’s character is her relationship with her sister, Serah. Due to the death of their parents, Lightning took it upon herself to raise Serah from a young age, a burden no one would wish upon a child so young. This being the case, Lightning often forgets she is her sister and more or less mothers her. This does subsequently affect their relationship a lot of the time, for instance when Snow (another playable character within Final Fantasy) proposes to Serah who agrees, Lightning treats the situation as mother would by forbidding it and deeming it preposterous whereas a sister would be more excited and encourage the relationship between the pair. Lightning is incredibly over protective and it makes her such a lovable character not only because she’d do anything for her little sister but also because the player will grow to pity her on account of the childhood she has missed.

Lightning’s sturdy and emotionless facade deteriorates as the game progresses and the player will grow to love Lightning increasingly as her more sentimental side is revealed.

3. Elizabeth Comstock – Bioshock series (2K Games)

Elizabeth Comstock Top 10 Video Game Characters

”Time… time rots everything; even hope.” – Bioshock Infinite (2013)

Elizabeth Comstock, one of the leading roles in Bioshock Infinite is a character that will win over players within moments of meeting her. She possesses innocence, power and the player will no doubt be incredibly sympathetic for this very confused young girl.

Elizabeth has spent the entirety of her days confined to a tower, learning only of humanity and civilisation through a means of books. When Booker (protagonist also known as the False Shepard) finally rescues Elizabeth from her solitude in order to wipe away his debt, Elizabeth is introduced to the world for real. Her shock as she’s people dancing to music she hasn’t heard before, citizens of Columbia conversing with one another and the apparent beauty of the world in which she lives, it all contributes into putting into perspective her innocence and how she truly knows so little of the world. Elizabeth is vulnerable and depends on Booker, the player will no doubt grow protective over her and love her character accordingly. In the downloadable content for Bioshock Infinite (Burial At Sea) in which the protagonists revisit the setting of the previous installments to the series, Rapture, we see a different side to Elizabeth altogether. Over the duration of the proceedings of Bioshock Infinite, Elizabeth became stronger, more aware, however, in Burial at see she has developed even further becoming driven, confident and not nearly comparable to the fragile young lady that was rescued at the near beginning of Bioshock Infinite. She is still an amazing character nonetheless and the player will still strive to love her as they did before.

Elizabeth is a wonderful addition to Bioshock Infinite. She is so strong and confident yet oblivious and vulnerable all the same. She is a thoroughly lovely character not only throughout the game itself but also throughout it’s outstanding downloadable content.

2. Joel – The Last Of Us (Naughty Dog)

The Last of Us™ Remastered_20140805140939

”I struggled for a long time with survivin’. And you- No matter what, you keep finding something to fight for. Now, I know that’s not what you want to hear right now, but it’s…” – The Last Of Us (2013)

Joel is one of the best male protagonists to date and the player will adore his every action and hand on his every word from the start right to the end of The Last Of Us.

Joel seizes admirers from the very start of the game in which his touching relationship with his daughter Sarah will tug ever so gently at the players heart strings. As events unfold, although at the expense of a few potential tears, Joel gets further admiration in his clutches which only continues to grow as the game plays out. Joel is a great character as it is exceptionally evident throughout that Joel is a gentle giant concealing a mass of emotion with a hard exterior he has had to develop. Joel will earn sympathy as the harshness of the post-apocalyptic setting takes it’s toll on him and even more so as he has to make some tough decisions. The Last Of Us is renowned for it’s focus on the relationship between the two main protagonists, the other being teenager, Ellie. Joel initially looks after Ellie for his own benefit, however as the game continues you watch him grow to care about Ellie and is this transition of feelings is no less than wonderful to witness.

Joel is a fantastically developed character. With Ellie complimenting his every part in the game he will no doubt become every players desired companion given the occurrence of an apocalypse.

1. Lara Croft – Tomb Raider Series (Square Enix) 

Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition

 ”A famous explorer once said, that the extraordinary is in what we do, not who we are.” – Tomb Raider (2013)

This top spot is stolen by archaeological wonder, Miss Croft. Over a series consisting of over 10 games our world renowned  Tomb Raider has secured a crazy fan base.

Lara Croft has transformed over the series from a sassy, invulnerable treasure hunter in the earlier installments to a young archaeologist attempting to put her name out there in the series reboot of 2013. Lara Croft is such an appealing character in her first installments due to her pure badassitude. Every guy wants to be with her and every girl would love to be her. She is simply incredibly awesome. In the reboot to the series we saw an exceedingly different side to Lara. Set before her prior encounters we saw how she came to be the tomb raiding legend she is to date. From start to near finish she is vulnerable and fragile, the absolute opposite from how we’ve learned to see her. Players then have the pleasure of watching her endure what few could, sculpting her slowly but surely into the hard-headed, driven archaeologist we know her as to date. Having to endure her suffering with her allows players to become emotionally intertwined with Lara. Tomb Raider defies every prejudice against female capabilities and in being so she is almost iconic for women. The reboot has made her character that much more believable and in being so players are captivated by her that bit more.

Tomb Raider possesses everything that is great about a character, she is strong, sassy and thanks to the new reboot she is realistic. Her journeys for ancient artifacts will be ones fans will engross in for time to come.

The Best PS4 Games

PS4

Since PS4 was released in November 2013, it has completely thrown us head first into the next generation of gaming. With greater graphics and smoother gameplay, the many capabilities of PS4 have allowed us gamers to indulge in some of the most memorable titles to date. Question is, of the many games available on PS4 spanning over a indefinite amount of genres, which are the must haves, which games would you be a complete loon not to play. Well, here I will provide a top 10 of PS4 games that have made the next generation of gaming so darn fantastic, games you simply have to get your hands on.

10. Lara Croft And The Temple Of Osiris 

Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris

Do you have an online crew? A group of friends you just love playing every game imaginable with? Well, for you guys, this 4 player co-op adventure is no less than perfection. In this sequel to Square Enix’s Lara Croft And The Guardian Of Light, Crofty travels to Egypt in which she must team up with rival raider, Carter Bell and two imprisoned God’s, Isis and Horus in order to defeat the exceptionally evil God, Set.

From traps of all shapes and sizes, to hungry crocs, to putting your trust in a team mate not to release you as you hang helplessly from a grapple, this game is enjoyable on almost every level. The Temple Of Osiris is solely orientated around team work. Scattered throughout the Egyptian setting are temples in which players must come together into order to complete puzzles and in turn be rewarded with an array of different items.  Even to progress further in the game and unlock new areas compulsory to the story, players must bash their bonces together and complete other puzzling tasks. To top it all off, the game offers well, a darn right good laugh! I mean, it’s rather amusing having your friend beg you not to drop them from a ledge and tormenting them by repeatedly doing so!

Square Enix really exploit the social aspect PS4 has to offer  in The Temple Of Osiris and in doing so, they have created one of the most enjoyable co-op games to date.

9. Child Of Light 

Child Of Light

Ubisoft’s poetic story of Aurora as she tries to reunite with her father is thoroughly indulgent to say the least. Child Of Light is set in the fictional wonderland of Lemuria, beautifully portrayed with stunning visuals. After Aurora initially wakes in the mystical land after being stolen from her home, she encounters a firefly and the pair proceed to find the Lady Of The Forest who may the only one capable of sending her home. Upon rescuing her, The Lady Of The Forest enlightens Aurora that Queen of Darkness, Umbra has Lemuria consumed with evil and that Aurora’s only hope of seeing her father again is to free Lemuria from Umbra’s clutches. Intent to be united with her father, Aurora complies and so begins one of the most alluring games available on PS4.

Child Of Light is a platforming role-playing game, featuring more turn-based combat and parties. Interchangeable party members make encounters with enemies really quite addictive as players can chooses specific members to play to their strengths and weaknesses. Also, as mentioned prior,  Child Of Light possesses captivating visuals. Ubisoft’s imaginative setting really engrosses the player, it is almost impossible not to become lost in the dark and sinister atmosphere that is portrayed so effectively. Even from a more 2D-platforming perspective the game has the power to engulf you in what is so aesthetically pleasing, I mean even the enemies look great. To top everything off, Child Of Light presents us with a protagonist that is easy to fall in love with, which we all know is a key aspect to maintaining a player’s interest. Aurora’s innocence is endearing, she is lovable and oblivious initially and it is incredibly interesting watching her character develop as the game progresses. Her sweet, child-like exterior doesn’t contain her sassy and courageous personality for much of your play-time, I assure you.

Child Of Light gives us more nostalgic players a chance to revisit what makes more simple platforming games so additive. Much like legendary platformers – Crash Bandicoot or Ubisoft’s own Rayman, Child Of Light is another game that is just impossible to leave alone. You’ll be tearing you hair out before tearing your hands off your controller, trust me.

8. Destiny 

Destiny

With beautiful cinematic story-telling, vast and vibrant planets to explore and  a dynamic selection of enemies to take on, Bungie’s wonderful first person shooter is a game that will maintain your interest for a prolonged period. The story picks up after an event known as The Collapse, in which many established colonies of humans, living on planets throughout the solar system, were mysteriously terminated. The remains of the human race congregated on earth, protected by a celestial body known as The Traveler, which levitates above the planet. The player occupies their own guardian and must battle their way through an army of alien races, in order to revive The Traveler and ultimately maintain mankind.

Destiny allows the player to choose from 3 different classes of Guardian: Titan, Hunter and Warlock, each wielding different abilities and special moves. Players may also pick a race, altering the physical appearance of their guardian: Human, Awoken or Exo. Even initially this game has the ability to reel in a players interest, as I think we all know too well how enjoyable it is tinkering with a players appearance, it is almost an art form for gamers. In addition to this, the surroundings of Destiny are magnificently enticing as although not entirely open-world, the vast lands a player may explore are beautifully presented, each well-suited to the enemy race occupying the planet. On the topic of the enemy races, Destiny throws us up against a total of 4 different alien races known as: Fallen, Hive, Vex and Cabal. Each race vary hugely in appearance and possessing different abilities and ways of tackling a player. It is worth noting also, that each race is not only hostile to the player but to each other as well and it is common to see the differing aliens warring among themselves. It’s great if you want to kick back, relax and watch the numbers of enemies dwindle away before storming in to finish them off. To top it all off, Destiny has an intriguing story. Bungie have limited the knowledge the game hands the player, encouraging them to tie up lose ends by checking out the Grimoire Cards on the allocated website (Grimoire Cards are earned naturally through story progression). This lack of insight can coax a player into looking further into Destiny, to fill in the gaps essentially. Destiny is also an exceedingly social game. The main hub (The Tower – Earth) is a place where players flock alongside other guardians, performing actions and messing around. From here, players can proceed to different planets together, head to online game modes (The Crucible) or just take a break from rescuing mankind.

You can never have too many games orientated around space and the extraterrestrial, as consciously or sub-consciously we all have an underlying interest in the unknown. Destiny is another gem in this genre of game and it does well to feed our insatiable interest in what lies beyond Earth.

7. LittleBigPlanet 3 

LittleBigPlanet 3

This Playstation exclusive is quite the treat for a players more imaginative side. LBP 3 is set in the wondrous fictional world of Bunker. Under false pretenses our protagonist, Sackboy releases 3 evil titans and then must stop them and our evil antagonist, Newton from destroying the creative and blissful place in which they live. A simple premise I agree, however this game will not constrain your imagination with any boundaries. Furthermore, featuring full voice acting unlike LPB’s previous installments (including the narrator of the tale – Stephen Fry and Hugh Laurie portraying extraordinarily evil Newton), this game will hurl the player into an incredibly awesome adventure.

Much like it’s predecessors, LittleBigPlanet 3 is a platform-puzzler, featuring layers in which players can hop back and forth from as they let their imagination run wild (LBP 3 has 16 layers unlike the first two games which only provided 3). The game also has 3 new playable characters known as Toggle, Oddsock and Swoop, each harnessing different abilities key for tackling certain obstacles throughout the game.  LittleBigPlanet offers players a vast variety of  things to do. Players can either lose themselves in the intricate and well-created levels of the story, gaining item rewards and allowing those more competitive players to try and beat scores. The story also allows players to play with their friends or randomers playing the same level. It is rewarding doing so as some parts of levels require more than 1 player to access certain items. For those a LittleBig more social, there is the LittleBigPlanet community. This online orientated aspect of the game allows players to play levels created by other players. Whether you play them alone or with friends it is exciting exploring the imaginations of others. Also, if you feel up to the task, here you can make your own levels for other players to play, like, heart and review. However, despite the overwhelming amount of ventures LBP offers us, I can almost guarantee that you will spend hours in your Pod dressing up your Sack character with the enormous amount of clothing items you can either earn or purchase, but don’t feel like a moron, all LBP players do it.

LittleBigPlanet 3, a game that would initially appeal to a younger age group is so much more than a ‘child’s game’. The game offers ample opportunity to do or create well, pretty much anything you can think of. It is another game that allows players to enjoy the social side to PS4 and alongside a brilliant story, this game has everything to keep a player hooked for hours. Join the LittleBigPlanet community if you haven’t already, share your imagination on one of PS4’s most wonderful games.

6. Wolfenstein: The New Order

wolfenstein the new order

Bethesda’s Nazi-slaughtering first person shooter, Wolfenstein: The New Order is hands down one of the best first-person shooters out there for PS4. The hypothetical story of Nazi’s winning the war and dominating the world is sinister and gripping as it allows players to ponder what could have been had the war concluded differently. Playing as B.J Blazkowicz, the player must murder Nazi’s and overcome their array of robotic weapons in order to reunite with the rebels and conquer Nazi forces, ultimately retrieving their world from the German lunatics.

One of the most enjoyable aspects of  Wolfenstein: The New Order is unquestionably the weaponry. From dual-welded pistols to being armed with two hefty assault rifles, from blowing heads of with an enormous laser gun to shredding through enemies with a shrapnel shotty, the onslaught of weapons you can attain are insane, you certainly wouldn’t want to be a Nazi on the receiving end. The New Order may as well feed the player to the lions, well specifically to big robotic dogs. Yes, we aren’t only taking on an army of Nazi’s, but also giant robotic dogs that have a tendency to snap at you when you least expect it and massive mechanical men that would gladly rip you limb from limb. Bethesda have introduced a rather riveting leveling system. In order to make weapons more agile, accurate or powerful, or to gain access to new abilities players must complete a challenge in order to reach the next segment of each designated section. This is great for allowing the player to utilize all aspects of combat within the game, offering suffice opportunities to try out new and effective ways of taking on the Nazi’s. The New Order may lack online aspects but the challenging campaign is more than enough to keep you occupied for quite some time. You’ll have to at least play it twice to give both of the alternate story-lines a whirl.

Wolfenstein: The New Order is savagely sinister. The game is absolutely hands-on hectic and you will discover so quite shortly into the game as you begin dismantling Nazi after Nazi.

5. GTA 5 

GTA V

Grand Theft Auto has dominated the gaming world for generations. For years we’ve been stealing cars, running over innocent pedestrians in ridiculously over-modified vehicles, overwhelming our inventories with anything from hammers to rocket launchers and GTA 5 not only maintains those standards but exceeds them. With an exceptionally larger amount of criminal activities to partake in, Rockstar’s GTA 5 really succeeds in raising the bar for this series. The player is able to play as 3 characters who join forces to reignite the thieves within them and ultimately pull off one of the biggest bank heists imaginable.

GTA 5 is difficult to compare to any game purely on account of the sheer scale of things you can do. You can make money by doing missions or selling vehicles over a spread of 3 highly differing characters. You can slaughter tons of random people and then try to escape the police. Modify vehicles to a preposterous extent to then go smash it up doing some extravagant stunt jump. Or you can do what admittedly every GTA player has done at some point and simply play nice! Go get a haircut, drive within the speed limit, take a stroll by the sea or purchase some properties. There’s honestly a mind-blowing amount of things you can do. GTA 5 has also a very enhanced multiplayer that Rockstar’s free DLC continues to make more enjoyable. Online you can play missions, races or deathmatches with other players, you may possess several properties, having each of which brimming with millions of pounds worth of high-end vehicles or you can just go all out, guns blazing, mowing down every online player you can within your lobby. Also, recently introduced by Rockstar, GTA 5 now has heists that players may take part in with up to 3 other players in which you can organise a bank robbery and earn big cash rewards.

Whether you are caught up in the story or the madness of online, GTA 5 is a game with just oodles of entertainment. It caters for so many types of players and as mentioned prior it is a game incomparable to any other.

4. Infamous Second Son

Infamous Second Son

Much like earlier games in the series, Infamous Second son basically entails parading around a fictional Seattle with a range of super powers. The game follows, Delsin a delinquent who seems to enjoy attracting the attention of his cop brother, Reggie. During an argument stemming from Delsin’s bad behavior, a military truck carrying conduits (technical term for someone with superpowers) crashes and as Delsins pulls one of the 3 conduits out of the wreckage he absorbs his power. In confusion and fear Delsin hunts down the conduit for answers. After catching up with Hank, leader of the D.U.P (Department of Unified Protection), Augustine Brooke confronts the pair for questioning. Using her concrete power she engulfs Hank with rock and then proceeds to question Delsin who remains silent about his recently attained powers. Augustine then begins torturing Delsin’s tribe for answers, hospitalising most. Upon waking a week later, Delsin learns from his brother who was spared, that the only way to save the remaining tribe members is use Augustine’s power. In light of this, the pair set out to nab her power.

Infamous is a diamond in this generation of gaming. For starters players are presented with a protagonist that can win you over within the first cut-scene. Delsin is a brilliant main character, he’s witty, sarcastic, troublesome but so lovable and loyal all the same. Second Son is to put it simply, easy. With all superpowers and combat upgrades being so easily accessible with just putting some time into the game, the player themselves will likely feel as if they’re super hero. The upgrade system is too very simple. The player must collect shards from drones, scanning stations or from story missions and in turn may upgrade branches of their powers. There are in total 4 powers Delsin may attain and upgrade. Much like the past Infamous games, Infamous SS is also offers some diversity. You can either play the game with good or bad karma, each of which will allow you to branch off in different ways when upgrading your powers. Another really enjoyable aspect of this game is the supporting characters. Around Delsin are the conduits he saves, his strict older brother his tribe he is trying to liberate and all these characters ultimately put Delsin in a more appealing light. His interaction with these characters gives players all the more reason to shed some sympathy towards him and the other conduits.

All in all, Infamous Second Son is a light-hearted and very enjoyable game. In an indescribable way you will finish the game and want to play it again and with the two types of karma each allowing you to perform different moves, partake in certain missions or even twist the story, you will have every reason to.

3. Dying Light 

Dying Light_20150303001100

Techland’s Dying Light is zombie-killing at it’s finest. With a million of zombies to kill and limitless ways and weapons to do it with, this game is brilliant if you want to get a little bit of virtual blood on your hands. The player takes the role of Kyle Crane, who after being hired by the GRE (Global Relief Effort), must venture into Harran, a city quarantined after a viral outbreak resulting in zombies here, there and everywhere.  The purpose of his endeavor is to recover a stolen file being used to blackmail the GRE. Upon landing in Harran, bandits attack Crane and infected are alerted and begin to swarm. Thankfully, he is saved by two survivors and then taken to the Tower (survivors HQ) and proceeds to work alongside the survivors to progress in his mission. All the while he learns how to free run and ultimately survive in the hostile environment in which he must complete the job.

Dying Light grabs itself a gold star on how completely barbaric the game is. Scrounging for something to use to whack off a zombie head or two or a mod to set the infected alight. It really puts into perspective how surviving would be in such an environment, scouring every inch of every abandoned home for resources, constructing completely absurd weapons out of scavenged goods – indeed, Techland do well to illustrate a post-apocalyptic setting. Combat is brutal in Dying Light and easy to enhance as by leveling up your power stat (one of the 3 skill sections), you are able to discover new ways of slicing up zombie guts. A very predominantly useful and almost iconic aspect within the game is free-running. Leaping from building to building as you escape hordes of infected is noticeably smooth and well developed. This is significant considering how vital the aspect is whilst playing. Another addition to Dying Light that makes it such an amazing game is the dynamic day-night cycle. Although it sounds like an trivial detail, after surviving your first night in Harran, you will begin to cherish every second of daylight as when the sun sets the screams of hungry infected fill the air and they will begin actively hunting you. Believe me, after dark you don’t want to be mashing zombies on ground level, you want to be either indoors or on rooftops avoiding the many frightening surprises Dying Light’s nighttime holds.

Dying Light can become a very frantic game however, traversing through zombie mobs as you explore the open-world setting of Harran is something you will relish in. Countless side-quests give the player plenty to do even after the story reaches it’s pinnacle and regardless, you will bask in finding new ways to take down the undead.

2. Dragon Age: Inquisition 

Dragon Age™: Inquisition_20141229115710

Another wondrous role-playing game developed by Bioware. In this third installment to the Dragon Age series, players take on the open-world as the only survivor of an explosion that takes place during a conference between mages and templars. The explosion takes the life of the Chantry’s leader, The Divine and also opens the breach alongside some smaller rifts. From these rifts come demons from the Fade. The player not only survived the ordeal but also obtained a marking on their hand allowing them to close these rifts. Witnessing the closing of a rift, assistants to the deceased Divine, Cassandra and Leliana ask the player in some shape or form to close the rifts. After helping, the player and various others form the Inquisition as order of the recently passed Divine and set out to tend to the matter, hoping to ultimately close the breach and deal with the one who was at the bottom of it’s occurrence.

Dragon Age: Inquisition is easily the best role-playing game of this generation of gaming. Right from the beginning upon customising your character and altering them to what suits the player best, we can establish how many differing ways this game can pan out. With every decision the player makes, there is a subsequent effect on conversational options or the story itself. Inquisition is an open-world game. There is prodigious land for the player to explore and enjoy. It is remarkable. Dragon Age: Inquisition is also substantially praised for the amount there is to do. Throughout the mass of landscape a player may explore are endless quests, rifts they must close or strange artifacts to collect, all of which being somewhat rewarding to the player. Moving onto combat, as a role-playing game, Inquisition features interchangeable party members which you may recruit and customise. The brilliance of this game continues as dependent on your selected party, the team will talk among themselves as you journey through the game. Whether it be insightful or just humorous banter, the player will feel obliged to continue switching up their party in an attempt to induce more conversational options. Players may also craft armour and weapons for themselves and their party members.

Dragon Age: Inquisition is such an ingenious game. With next-gen capabilities allowing the endless landscape in which you can explore to be so thoroughly vibrant and beautiful and with so much to do, it isn’t a game you can dedicate a mere hour or so to. With such an emotional and compulsive story, even when you finally conclude the many hours spent playing the game, you’ll dive straight back in, make yourself another inquisitor and take the game via a different route.

1. The Last Of Us: Remastered 

The Last of Us™ Remastered_20140810193636

Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us has rightfully earned well over 200 Game Of The Year awards. This post-apocalyptic survival-horror is set briefly before and then after the occurrence of the outbreak of a mutant fungi. The game follows our male protagonist, Joel who after surviving the initial outbreak, takes shelter in a quarantine zone with his companion, Tess. As supplies are short, the pair make a deal to transport a girl, Ellie (our female protagonist) out of the city in exchange for weapons. Despite the lack of information as to why she needs transporting, the pair comply and so begins the story.

Now, I will admit I feel rather cliche allowing this game to steal the top spot, but I feel no means of regret doing so as it is quite easily one of the most memorable and emotional games to date altogether, let alone on this platform. Naughty Dog’s entire focus with The Last Of Us was to orientate the game solely around the two protagonists and their relationship and in doing so, managed to amplify the harshness of the post-apocalyptic surroundings. In correctly assigning this games center of attention, Naughty Dog have made what the player is yet to experience or even comprehend, so real. You can almost feel the pressure of scarce resources, surviving among the infected and how it would really challenge the companionship. Naughty Dog developed such a well established hierarchy for the infected. At the bottom are Runners, recently infected folk still possessing human qualities, but highly aggressive. A step up are stalkers, these infected actively hunt the player. The most troublesome of the infected are the Clickers. Their faces have been dominated by fungus and although unable to see, are immensely sensitive to sound, using echolocation to seek out the player. Sitting atop this hierarchy are Bloaters, completely devoured by the infection, they have fungal armor and take a vast amount of ammo to take down. Although much bulkier, Bloaters are uncommon and the player will not encounter these much throughout a play-through. The Last Of Us has plenty of collectibles, some of which are further insight to the apocalypse and rather interesting to read. The Last Of Us: Remastered also contains the Left Behind DLC. This is a blessing for any player who has indulged in the game and craves more. Left Behind takes it’s focus to Ellie and enlightens the player in essence of how she came to be in Joel’s company.

The Last Of Us is almost like watching a film, or living it’s happenings for yourself. With such a deep story, swamped with all means of emotion, as a player, you will become completely engrossed and intertwined in this journey. From start to finish a player will seek satisfaction from the story they most likely wont find purely due to the how real the game appears. The Last Of Us is a game that will linger within you for an endless amount of indescribable reasons and you will long to play it again and again. It is well-deserving of this top spot.