Hiatus

I would like to apologize to my followers, for I will have to take a break from reviewing games. My computer is getting old, and just can’t handle the types of games I want to review. I was hoping to review Fable Anniversary, but my computer crashes every time I try to play. So, it is with heavy heart, I have to put the blog to rest until I have the time and money to rebuild my gaming system. This might take a while, with the holidays coming up, but I promise that I will be back as fast as possible!

However, if you follow Life in the Dungeon on Facebook, I will continue to post game related news there. Happy gaming, all!

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By firehawk2324 Posted in Games

Review: Redshirt

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Redshirt. I really wanted to like this game. One of my favorite books was Redshirts by John Scalzi. But this game (developed by Tiniest Shark and Positech) isn’t worthy of the name Redshirt. In fact, this game is more bland and boring than the red-shirted background actors from Star Trek. At least they DID something. This game does very little, and it doesn’t do it well. There’s a little humor in the game, but just not enough to redeem it.

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And that’s all the story you are going to get. They try, they really do. Sometimes you will get alerts that something is going to happen in X amount of days, but what actually happens isn’t really clarified. There are no real missions, no real quests, and absolutely no battles. No, this game focuses on “social media.” What does that mean? In short, you are trolling Facebook. In space.

No, seriously. It's Facebook in space.

No, seriously. It’s Facebook in space.

And there you have it. The one screen you will be staring at 95% of the game. You can do all the typical, exciting Facebook things, such as adding new friends, liking their posts, creating your own posts, and making relationships. But unlike Facebook, you don’t ACTUALLY do any of it. Clicking buttons. You click a button to add someone, click a button to like a post, and to post your own stuff? Forget about it. More button clicks. You are given a choice of 3 preset options for conversation, and those just have to do. There are also events, but again, you have absolutely no control over anything more than choosing the event, and who to invite. Needless to say, I was bored out of my mind with this game, and decided to go troll on the real Facebook. Avoid this game, unless you really love being bored, and wasting money.

I give Redshirt 1 out of 6 dice.

I give Redshirt 1 out of 6 dice.

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Review: ArcheAge

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Trion, the company behind Rift and Defiance, has a new MMO coming out called ArcheAge. The game went into open beta on September 4th, and I finally got a chance to play. While some things feel new and fresh, most of the game feels very familiar.

The game is based upon the book series Akkiage, by Korean writer Min-Hee Jeons.  2000 years ago, all races lived together in peace. Then war broke out, and the four main races were kicked out of their homelands. Now they are working to retake those homelands.

The four playable races are Nuian (who worship the Goddess Nui), the Elves (who are now a warlike race because of losing their home), the Harani (an Asian culture), and the Firran (cat people).

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Nuian

Elf

Elf

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Harani

Firran

Firran

 

The story itself feels very similar to that of Guild Wars 2. A group of adventurers go off to seek power, and end up doing something bad. And now it’s your job to set things right. Unlike Guild Wars 2, you actually feel like the hero. You aren’t standing by as the hero does things. Which is good. The player should always feel like the hero!

The classes are pretty standard. The primary skillsets are Battlerage (warrior), Sorcery, Archery, Vitalism (healing), Occultism (necromancy), and Shadowplay (rogue). The support skillsets are Songcraft (the use of musical instruments to heal and buff), Witchcraft (debuffs), Auramancy (buffs), and Defense. When you create your character, you choose from one of the standard skillsets. Then at level 3, you get to choose another. And at level 10, you choose a secondary skillset. This system feels very familiar to the Rift class system.

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The mount system is pretty unique. Your first quest to unlocking mounts has you carrying babies to the stablehands. Then you get to choose which color of your races mount you wish. You get a choice of three different colors for each baby (more mounts can be purchased afterwards).

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From left to right: Elves baby Elk, Nuian’s baby Lilyut Horse, Harani’s baby Leomorph, and Firrans baby Snow Lion.

From there, you have to grow some feed, then begin the process of “bonding” and raising your mount. This only takes a few moments, but you get to see them grow up. It’s a cute way to do the mount system, and I love it! And after you have raised them to adulthood, they not only function as a mount, but as a pet. They level up as you ride them, have them out walking, and battle with them out (they can also fight for you, but that is either unlocked at a higher level, or not currently in the game). You can put armor on them, and they have some battle skills.

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From baby, to adult, to mount.

Some of the new features this game is bringing feel fresh and done in a new way. Customization is huge in this game. Have a sword with really nice stats, but don’t want to lose the look of that really cool glowing sword you’ve used? You can transmute the sword to have the great stats, but still look pretty and glowy. The same can be done with armor and costumes. Costumes are a huge bonus, because not only do they look nice, they stack on top of your armor, and give you a stat boost.

On top of transmogrification, you can also create your own icons. These icons can be stamped on to shirts and cloaks, along with other things. Which leads me into some of the more cool features. You can build houses (only patrons can own land), castles, and ships. And those stamps I mentioned can be used to put your icons on items in your house and the sails of your ships.

Speaking of ships, there’s a lot of PvP in this game. It’s an economy based game, and if you want to knock your opponents out of the economy, what better way to do it than to kill them? And that includes naval battles.

And if there are naval battles, there must be pirates! In fact, there’s a justice system. If you kill someone from the same faction, you get criminal points. At 50 criminal points, you can be arrested. At this point, you can either go to jail for the pre-determined time, or go to trial. A judge and jury of 5 randomly selected players level 30+ will decide innocence or guilt, and jail time will be sentenced. For every criminal point, you receive an infamy point, and at 3000 infamy, you will become a pirate. You can make pirate guilds, do pirate quests, and live on a special pirate island. So, there’s actually a benefit to being bad!

While there are some downsides to the game, such as not being able to own land on a free account, the game is pretty fun. With some fun features, and good game play. it’s definitely a game to check out. The game is set for full release on September 16th.

I give ArcheAge 4 out of 6 dice.

I give ArcheAge 4 out of 6 dice.

Destiny!

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I’ve waited. Patiently? Sure, I’ll go with that. I preordered my copy of Destiny a while back, and now, finally, the game will go live on Tuesday! For those of you who are PS4 owners planning on playing the game, you will be treated to early download, starting right now. Destiny will be the first PS4 game that will use this feature. This means if you buy the game from the PSN store, the game will automatically download starting tomorrow, and will be ready to play the moment servers go live.

I’ve been super excited for this game for a while, getting a taste of it in Alpha/Beta builds, but I’m definitely ready to delve into the full game. See you there, Guardians!

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Review: Game Dev Tycoon

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Game Dev Tycoon is another simple, cut and dry game. You are a budding game developer, starting out in the 80’s, creating games for different platforms throughout gaming history. Once you figure out what kind of game you want to make, and give it a name, your character starts working on it. You start working from your garage, but as you make more games, and get more famous, you can move into bigger and better offices, and hire more people to help.

Once you create your game, critics will review the game, give it ratings, and increase its hype. Then it goes on sale. Then you get to do it all over again. Training your workers, upgrading graphics and sound, adding new features, and attending game conventions will all help you gain your goal of master game developer.

I give Game Dev Tycoon 6 out of 6 Dice.

I give Game Dev Tycoon 6 out of 6 Dice.

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Review: Knights of Pen and Paper +1

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Knights of Pen and Paper +1 Deluxe Edition is a game that brings back memories of classic Dungeons and Dragons campaigns. Not through immersive storytelling. But simply because your party is sitting around a table. And you have a Dungeon Master.

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Once you have your party figured out, you can then set out on your adventures. Each party member has different abilities that help you progress, and leveling up makes those abilities better. Killing monsters gives you gold, which you can spend on different Dungeon Masters, and items for your room, all of which gives bonuses to the game.

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It’s not a huge game. It’s not a complicated game. It doesn’t do anything new or different. But what it does, it does well. It’s one of those games that you don’t have to spend a lot of time on. Feel like playing something, but only have a few minutes? This game is pretty great for wasting small amounts of time. I really like the sense of humor this game has. My Dungeon Master is named Yoga, I have a Police Box in my room, and my pet is Johnny 6. This game is full of references to popular culture, and I delighted in finding as many as I could.

I give Knights of Pen and Paper +1 6 out of 6 Dice.

I give Knights of Pen and Paper +1 6 out of 6 Dice.

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Review: Mine Quest

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This week, I’m looking at another mobile app game, called Mine Quest. In this game, you play as Orli the dwarf, who has found himself lost, and accompanied by a fairy. It’s your job to “tap” through mines, finding upgrades, and discover what happened to the rest of the dwarves.

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You start out on a basic map, trying to find a way off the island. Soon you find the schematics to an air balloon ship, and start off on your adventure. Each map has hidden mines, with more upgrades for weapons, picks, armor, and more ships.

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The mines are pretty straight forward. You break blocks to progress. Sometimes you find monsters that you kill to get materials. The main objective is to find the upgrade scrolls. But sometimes there are artifacts hidden in the dirt blocks, and finding a whole collection will give you rewards.

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The better your weapons, the faster you kill monsters. The better your pick, the faster you can mine through blocks. The better your armor, the less damage you take. And the better your ship, the more islands you unlock.

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While there are gems you can buy with cash, you really don’t feel like it’s required. Gems are rewarded from leveling up, and sometimes found in chests hidden within the mines. You can use these gems to hurry crafting times, but the smartest way to use them is to upgrade energy regeneration rates. It doesn’t look like a huge game, but it’s a pretty fun time waster.

I give Tomodachi Life 5 out of 6 dice.

I give Mine Quest 5 out of 6 dice.

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Review: Heroes of Dragon Age

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This week, I’m taking a look at a mobile game, called Heroes of Dragon Age. I’m a fan of the Dragon Age series, so this game immediately pulled me in. While the Dragon Age series is RPG based, this mobile app game is not. It’s more like Pokemon. You start with a few heroes, you fight a few battles, and either gain new heroes from those battles, or buy them with in-game currency.

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Your squad is composed of 4 heroes, and a large creature. Heroes can be of different rarities; Common (brown), Uncommon (silver), Rare (gold), Epic (bronze), and Legendary (green). Once you have your squad, you can begin missions, challenges, or PVP. Heroes who have the same battle color gain a bonus to power, and some colors are stronger against some, and weaker against others.

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Completing missions unlocks the ability to earn gems. Basically, if you complete the same mission 3-10 more times, you get a few gems, which you can use to get a CHANCE at an Epic or Legendary hero/creature. This also unlocks the ability to do Challenges. Challenges are tougher creatures you must battle, with another chance to drop Epic and Legendary heroes.

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Then there are the PVP events. Here you battle against other players’ squads, earning banners for winning, and (depending on the event) losing banners for losing. Sometimes the events have special bonuses like “If your entire squad is blue, you get a bonus to crit.” These PVP events are where some players have an advantage over others. As you can see from the picture above, you only get a set amount of turns. You have 6 stamina, which you can never upgrade, giving you only 6 turns at a time. However, you can use gems to refill your stamina. So players who buy a lot of gems can play more often, and potentially win the events, garnering them highly sought after Legendary heroes.

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Does this seem fair. If you don’t spend money on these types of games, then no, it doesn’t. But, if you do, then you have a pretty good chance of getting really great heroes to win these events. I don’t buy gems, therefore, I don’t win events. And it gets pretty boring doing the same challenges over and over trying for a CHANCE at a great hero. For a serious gamer, this game just might not be worth the time and energy. For a casual player, who just wants to waste a few minutes, give it a try. You might like it.

However, because of the “Pay to Win” feel of the game, I can’t rate it very high.

I'm giving Heroes of Dragon Age 2 out of 6 Dice.

I’m giving Heroes of Dragon Age 2 out of 6 Dice.

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Destiny Beta: Here and Gone

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Unless you have lived under a rock for the past few months, you’ve heard of the new game by Bungie; Destiny. The Destiny Beta is over now, but they did give us a treat. Between the Alpha and the open Beta, they made a few improvements, noticeably, Peter Dinklage’s voice acting. The “wizard is from the moon” line is gone, and many of the lines that sounded flat and lifeless now sound better. But those are small gripes. Many people have complained about the story-line, and personally, I think it’s much too early to tell how good or bad it will be.

The Alpha/Beta only gave us the tutorial, Russia, and the first PVP battleground The Crucible. Within the Russia section, there were six different story locations to visit, along with an exploration mode, allowing you to go anywhere you wished. One of my favorite surprises was the hidden Golden Chests. If you were able to find all five in Russia, you were rewarded with an upgraded Sparrow (ground vehicle). What made this nice was that you didn’t have to spend all your hard-earned Glimmer to buy one, since Glimmer wasn’t dropping from mobs any more, unless you consumed an item to do so.

On the June 26th, Bungie  held a special event to close the beta. The Iron Banner PVP battleground was opened once again (they had an Iron Banner event earlier in the month), and they unlocked the first mission on the Moon. The Moon opened up a new mechanic: vehicles with weapons. While the mission was short, the map was quite large. And killing enemies, stealing their vehicles, and blasting everything in sight was a blast. I really enjoyed myself. Players were promised a permanent reward for playing, which was supposed to be a special name banner, but I, along with many others, never saw it.

As for PVP in Destiny? Well, it just doesn’t FEEL balanced. While Bungie guarantees that all gear and player levels are balanced once you enter the battlegrounds, it certainly didn’t feel that way. I will be the first to state that I’m not the best at PVP in the first place. But while the enemy teams all had shields that took what felt like forever to shoot through, I was being killed in 1 to 2 hits each time. And the kills that I did get, rewarded nothing. I’m still not certain how to gain reputation with the battlegrounds.

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While there was little content, and you could only gain level 8, it certainly felt like the game was pretty polished already. With the exception of a minor issue of being unable to get access to the game on the 26th (it certainly was a stress test), everything seems to have progressed pretty smoothly. This will definitely be a game I’ll be watching out for on September 9th. I have to admit, I’m pretty excited for this one, after getting a tiny taste of it.

 

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Tomodachi Life Update

Just wanted to make an update post on the state of my Tomodachi Life game. I’m up to 40 Mii’s, have had a total of 3 babies grow up and venture off into the world. And a lot of random awesomeness.

This is Princess Leia. She asked for an “ugly” hat. She got her wish.

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Peter Griffin, being his fabulous self.

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One of the mini games is called Quirky Questions. You get a set of 3 semi-premade questions. You can either fill in the blanks yourself, or push a button to autofill. Dexter Morgan has some creepy hobbies.

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