Friday, February 26, 2021

Death of the Graphic Card

Whether we like it or not cloud gaming seems the way of the future as it renders accessible high quality content to anyone, anywhere, with a high speed internet connection.
Obviously, Graphic card companies, such as Nvidia, knows this as they are trying to diversify their portfolio into the cloud gaming sphere. Unfortunately for the, however, they're not as successful as it as the major competitors such as Microsoft and PlayStation.

Is it that difficult to see a future without the need of high end graphic cards? I mean, what would you rather have? A 2000+ computer or a 20$/month subscription to a cloud gaming service? The choice is evident to me - the cheapest option wins.

I've mentioned this before but my prediction is that Microsoft will dominate the cloud gaming space as they seem better prepare for it than other companies.

What are you going to do? Are you going to keep buying computers/console or are you going to surrender the the cloud gaming world?

Friday, February 19, 2021

Ubisoft's Formula Works

Many will say that if you've played one Ubisoft game then you played them all. They say this because many of their games uses similar mechanics. Namely:
  • Large maps.
  • Easy to pick up and play.
  • Towers to climb to unlock new areas.
  • Items sprinkled all over the map to force exploration.
  • ...
I play Ubisoft games knowing full well that each franchise tweaks the above formula just a bit but here's the thing: I love it! I love that I know what to expect when I buy into one of their games and I love that I can usually play them for as long as I want to, take a break, and come back to it later without being totally lost by the story and/or having to re-learn complicated mechanics.

I understand that a Ubisoft game is a nightmare to completionist because of the sheer amount of grind to get things to a 100% but it's not like this needs to be done in one sitting. I've been working my way through, on/off, Assassin Creed Origin since it first came out a few years ago and I can, finally, say that I've completed 100% the base game (still a few DLCs to go through though).

Don't get me wrong, I don't love everything about these games. I personally feel that when you have too much of something then the quality starts to slip. If you look at the maps, for example, they're quite impressive in scope but really does feel the same as many of the assets are copy/pasted throughout. This still doesn't change the fact that there's some enjoyment to be had by going through everything.

Friday, February 12, 2021

What I Like About Breakpoint

Ghost Recon Breakpoint, like its predecessor Ghost Recon Wildlands, received a lot of criticism for moving away from their more traditional, strategic, route. While I greatly enjoyed previous entries I feel like the latest 2 entries benefited greatly from the changes Ubisoft made to the series. 

The change I appreciate the most is the complete freedom of how to play the game not just from a strategic point of view but also with the cheer amount of options that can potentially make my experience with the game vastly different than someone else's (even if we're playing together). 

I can:
  • Play solo or with friends (or A.I. teammates).
  • I can have "arrows" (visual queues) pointing out the enemies or play without it.
  • I can play with a mini map or without it.
  • I can play with, or without, enemy helicopter/drone patrols.
  • I can re-activate previous limited time events.
    • Want your playthrough to have terminator T-800 in it?
  • I can play loud, or stealthy, using a mix of weapons, that are customizable, and vehicles.
  • I can customize my character, weapons, HUD, difficulty, survival realism...
  • ...
Basically, Ubisoft created a world full of enemy bases and gave the player a bunch of tools, both from a gameplay and setting perspective, to create a tailored experienced that is dependent on player preferences and they did so without negatively impacting coop - even people playing together may be experiencing the game in totally different ways.
The customization isn't unique to Ghost Recon Breakpoint but it never was at the extend, or as well executed, as it is with this game.

I have hundred of hours logged in Wildlands/Breakpoint across multiple platforms and, while I do get tired of the formula every now and then, I always find myself coming back to it when I itch for some stealthy gun action.
Give these new entries to the series a chance and you may be pleasantly surprised and if you enjoyed these games then you may also want to try Metal Gear Solid V (Ghost Recon Wildlands/Breakpoint was heavily inspired by this game).