Tag Archive: arkham Knight

Les Jeux Nouveaus

Most of my gaming purchases in recent months have been of the board variety and as a consequence, I’ve been replaying a lot of my existing content. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, if you spent between £20 and £50 on a new Xbone game for example, you want a lot of replay out of it. Even so, I have been hankering after something new to do for a while.

It started with Animation Throwdown – I’ve seen the adverts through Star Trek Timelines and decided to download a copy to my iPad. The goal of the game: trading card battles! It features the shows Family Guy, Futurama, Bob’s Burgers and King of the Hill and each of the shows has character, item or location trading cards with which to do battle. Trading cards can be fused in-battle to produce more powerful weapons with which to fight your opponent and come in varying degrees of availability when it comes to card drops (hint – lots of DLC for purchase)

The game itself has several modes: a quest mode, an arena mode where players do battle but not in real-time (decks are pre-loaded and the computer fights on your behalf), several time-restricted events for rewards and the ability to research new card fusions. In terms of gameplay activity, there’s far less than something like Timelines but the number of cards available (about 400 at time of writing) and the combinations possible keep things novel and interesting. Plus the actual card fights are over fairly quickly so you’re not sucked into a vortex of time when playing. It’s a nice acquisition, lots of fun had and the number of adverts you can watch for rewards (as opposed to spending extortionate amounts of money) help players who don’t necessarily want to or cannot pay-to-win. Unless you’re on a strict data-plan, of course. What I will say is that Animation Throwdown is a massive battery guzzler. If I play for thirty minutes, my iPad’s power will drop by almost 15% compared with similar applications which might drop by 5%.

Game number 2: Fallout Shelter. I only downloaded (for free) this because I wanted the Fallout stickers for iMessage. But I thought I’d give the game a bash and I have been enjoying it. Premise: build your own Vault-Tec vault, stuff it full of settlers and help them deal with the trials and tribulations of the Wasteland. You start each new Vault with a number of settlers and can recruit more either by building a radio station to lure them in, by breeding male/female couples together or from Vault Tec lunch box rewards. They can be trained in each of the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stats to increase their abilities either farming resources or constructing items more quickly. And they can be sent on quests, either to collect stuff in the Wasteland or to undertake missions for rewards – and there are any number of missions that one can send settlers on.

I’ve been enjoying this for two weeks now and the missions are my favourite part. DLC is much lighter but naturally it is there (no adverts). It’s not really game-breaking DLC, you can buy pets to further enhance stats of settlers, Vault-Tec Lunchboxes for random drops and Mr Handy units who auto-collect resources when assigned to floors. And the sticker pack for iMessage is a cute addition too.

Game 3: Season Pass for Batman: the Telltale Series. So I downloaded Episode 1 for free (this is how they get you) and have to say that the story writing and different take on the Dark Knight was of high calibre. It’s an interactive story book, kinda like a choose-your-own-adventure where you play the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman and interact with a five-part story. Each decision the player makes will have an impact on the storyline and subsequent player choices lead to different results. I would say that compared with the Walking Dead Telltale Series, there’s a lot more action in this game, particularly in the combat scenes. It also helped influence me that the season pass was half price in the Xbone Easter sale.

Game 4: Season Pass for Batman: Arkham Knight. Not played yet but I’ve wanted this for a while. Unlike Fallout 4, I only wanted to buy this in a sale but I’m looking forward to the extra story modes with Robin, Batgirl and Nightwing. The skins and different Batmobiles…meh, can take or leave. I am still in early days of my second Arkham Knight playthrough, will be interesting to muck about with the skins if nowt else.

Game 5: Call of Juarez: Gunslinger. An old Xbox 360 game, I was looking for something in the same vein as Wolfenstein: The New Order a while back and thought that this might fill the gap quite nicely. Sorta puts you in the mind of a rail shooter in some ways given the way the game is animated but is more FPS. Cruder than Gun or Red Dead Redemption, it has some RPG type elements but is mostly a shooter through and through. Good voice acting, crude controls – excellent mindless fare. Totally worth playing.



All the Games

Arkham Knight released today. Gonna wait until payday next week to go out and shop recklessly cos…y’know.

Do people actually – in their first playthrough – sit with a notepad or laptop/tablet and actually go composing game guides from the first second? Because I suspect the first partially released entry on gamefaqs or similar to be ready to browse by Thursday morning (BST). And also sit there with smart phones so they can upload playthroughs to YouTube and Twitch? It seems to suck all the joy out of gaming, just to be the “first”.

I didn’t know the Steam Summer Sale was on until it was too late. My attention is either focussed on the Xbox or my Laptop with occasional nostalgia spells on the 3DS. Treated myself to Talisman purchases (all expansion packs & most characters) but went no further than that. I note that Brendan bought a season pass – cool. It’s not that the sale didn’t interest me but I can’t guarantee I’ll be playing those games any time soon. It’s just finding the time to fit it all in and I have difficulty indulging in marathons. Ah well…

More from the newsdesk of Risk Legacy et al: board games went off quite nicely on Saturday. I won one game (by spidering), Rupert won a second, then we played King of Tokyo (first one to die), Pointless (won one, lost one) and Walk the Plank (committed suicide, stupidly). We had to have two fans going at once as it was so sticky and humid on Saturday. Though the rain did cool everything down more than a little. Food was good, Claire brought an overripe Brie which had turned to mush. It was fantastic, great stuff. Too much cider and beer was consumed but this is not a bad thing, merely an observation. Also managed my first online game of Talisman with Brendan which took about two hours (I was the Warrior, he was the Valkerie). Bit slow though, particularly as the AI seemed to take forever.

Sunday – woke up early, played some GTA (failed on the three leaf clover twice – once by abandonment, second by absorbing too many bullets) before picking through the remnants of Saturday’s beige buffet. Went to the sauna for a massive sweat (the sort that eradicates all pimples and blackheads) and went home again. Must have been ultra-successful as I couldn’t stop drinking water when I got home. Then back to the buffet and the GTA’ing. Nice to sandwich the day like that. 

Summer leave is all booked, I’ve realised that I have a few Eurostar vouchers I need to spend by October so will be looking for a few days away around then rather in the next two months. Amsterdam was last year so might try Köln this year for a couple of days. Probably won’t book anything for over my four weeks off, chiefly as August Tax will be in play. If I do go anywhere, it’ll be on this island. I think it’ll be just enjoying the downtime and maybe making a few plans/developing a business case depending on the content of the Budget next month.

Should be a fairly innocuous week ahead. We have one of our quiz prizes on Thursday – London Underground Treasure Hunt. And some good news ahead, Baby Jane Hudson is leaving the office (my private nickname for a hated colleague). Will not be missed, not one iota. Can’t say I’m looking forward to the moustache parade coming up for this Saturday. More noisy idiots using it as an excuse to indulge in gross excess – usually drink over drugs but I suspect the ratio isn’t all _that_ different. Must be a dealer’s paradise.


First things first – who cast the voices for Batman vs Robin? Because they need to be fired for that blunder – just terrible, terrible voice acting, particularly Batman himself. You could feel the boredom as they read off the script. Second – the six minute video for Arkham Knight has only whetted my appetite. Though I’m not convinced by the Batmobile section (should a car be able to strafe?), the game play and the rest of what I saw appeared to have the makings of a damned fine game.

 And the rest – kind of an uneventful weekend. FP was full of the usual tourists with overly large bags who lack spatial awareness. Melissa’s bakery was not graced by my usual visit to NW1 and I’m sorry to say Marine Ices has gone the way of the dodo. Though the walk from home to Chalk Farm was pleasant enough on Saturday post-rain and many calories were expended. Sunday I forayed over to Saint Ratford, spent a few quid on some old Xbox games at Cex, bought cake, went home to play said games and eat said cake. That’s the sort of day I like.

 I have to say, I like what they’re doing with Spring Gardens in Vauxhall now it’s finally coming together. Although I remain unconvinced by the pulling down of the hills (except where the trees are – I kid you not), the rest of the landscuplting and improvements are making the place really nice. Unfortunately, it’s going to further gentrify the area, push out what made it unique and make the place another overpriced district. Have never been a fan of decentralisation but the more that is devolved to local authorities, the more they can resist the rubbish that central government come out with. The anti-squatting laws are case and point – I think that given the ongoing situation in the Ukraine, Ukrainians living in the UK should occupy property owned by Russians here, fully backed up the country at large, just to make a point. A few oligarchs whining is probably going to reach the Duma’s ears more than anything else.

 Going back to a point I wanted to make in an earlier post (the post was crap but this para was worth preserving), hard to believe that Harry Shearer is 71 years old! I found that harder to believe than him saying he’s quitting the Simpsons (which I suspect is a negotiating tactic). Though they really ought to retire the show – Bonanza’s record be damned. Or better yet, kill off Homer as a character. I mean, with each year he has gotten more and more unlikeable, more callous and just plain mean. Season 1 – he gets fired and feels that he’s failed as a father so contemplates suicide but his family rush out to stop him. Season 26, you’d think if they ran with that story a second time, his family would egg him on to throw himself off the bridge.


Gaming and stuff

Two posts in two days, clearly on the mend.


Playing Age of Mythology HD, I finally beat seven opponents last night in a massive melee.  Granted I had to rig the game to islands and use the might of a navy to stop rivals smashing my Wonder (and the wonderful Rocs to send my citizens to other islands in order to harvest resources) but victory is a victory, right?  I’d never realised there was a “Lightning” setting to the game which makes it go so much more gloriously quicker.  Still worth a play, even after all these years.  Also made my first quadrillion in AdVenture Capitalist and a flurry of Angel Investors.


The new Wolfenstein game has just been released, sadly it isn’t on the 360, it’s on the 8th Generation consoles only.  Between that and Arkham Knight, upgrading to the next console is looking more and more…imminent.  Still, I think the B-Movie theme is a brilliant way to deliver this game, even if the trailer was all BJ stabbing Nazi’s in the head.  Which reminds me to tackle the growing backlog of games I keep downloading from Games with Gold and never getting around to play.


Dark Knight Returns III.  Does the story need to be told?  DKR2 was a worthy sequel in its way although there were more than a few gaps in the overall story.  But the dialogue remains interesting, the artwork different and the odd premise tossed into the mix makes you sit up and think.  Steel rods dropped from orbit as a weapon – scary stuff once you mull it over.  I continue to enjoy the blu-ray adaptation of DKR and hope that DC will greenlight DKR2 in the same fashion.  And Red Rain.


So, I read on Sky News today the story of the Australian woman who seemed to be stung into making a grovelling apology having branded someone she thought was taking a photo of her kids “a creep”, posting it online and then getting abuse because she got it completely wrong.  She said “It was never done with the intention of splashing it all over these social media pages”.  Bullshit – if you don’t want an audience, don’t post online because 7 billion people can potentially see it.  Whilst death threats to her is a vastly disproportionate response, my sympathies for her situation are less than zero.


I’m increasingly of the mind that social media just needs a basic intelligence test before profiles are allowed to be completed.