Haven Editorial: GTA5 Tows In for the PC

When Grand Theft Auto V (GTA5) spun in for game consoles in 2013, PC players were patient. After all, their version would offer enhanced graphics, smoother gameplay and the all-important first-person view so absent in earlier releases. These improvements did in fact debut fairly quickly…just not for the PC! The heralded “next-gen” consoles took the wheel, resulting in a significant boost in GTA5’s replay value.
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The PC version suffered one delay, and then two, and is now scheduled to release on April 14, 2015 to a throng of beleaguered, yet hopeful fans. The developer, Rockstar Games, has offered some in-game goodies to players as a reward for their patience, but many PC players have simply been unable to wait, and have either sprung for the next-gen version or watched live streams and recorded play sessions.

As with any new product release: “You sell on the sizzle; not on the steak.” With the sizzle all but fizzled, we’ll have to see if the game’s added perks will provide enough sauce to flavor the rapidly cooling steak.

Haven Editorial: Thoughts on 2014

So now that multiple people can write things on the site, I want to get some of my thoughts off my chest about last year.

So last year it’s no surprise about how strange and weird everything was with big companies and indie companies both releasing incomplete games and having endless comment sections about journalism ethics. And tons of disappointments have been made, tons of the kick started games were finally released and a bunch of games flew under the radar that really didn’t get that much appreciation. So I mostly just want to talk about some of the games that I really liked of last year that deserve to be noticed along with some of the games that I never really heard much of even though I enjoyed my time with. Now keep in mind that everything on this article will be games that I played this year.

Shovel Knight
One of the many games that got my attention was Shovel Knight. This was one of the kickstarter projects that released after a few years in development, and it was a huge success. And many people agree, including me. Now because most people already know about this game I won’t talk much about it, but I honestly think it was one of the best games that I have played last year. And in my opinion, it’s a game that I think everyone should play.

Dark Souls II
Another game that was pretty high on people’s radar’s was Dark Souls 2, and when it came out I played the hell out of this game, I loved it so much… and then after a couple hundred hours of playing, I went back to play the first game… and that’s when I became extremely disappointed in DS2. So for a bit of background, I played around 200 hours of the first game and played completely blind and started with the Wanderer class and eventually did the other classes once I finished the game. And then I did the same with DS2, the only difference is that I saw gameplay up until the Last Giant (first boss fight), and I also started as the Deprived class instead of the Wanderer. But for both games I have done 100% of the content and I would always recommend Dark Souls 1 over Dark Souls 2, but I still think that Dark Souls 2 is an extremely great game, just doesn’t live up to the feeling of the first game, too many things that just don’t make it the better game. For those of you that want a better idea of it, and if you haven’t seen it, Matthewmatosis made an extremely well done critique that I agree 100% on: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UScsme8didI
If you’re interested and haven’t seen it, it’s a great thing to watch.

The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth
This was another game that was high on people’s radars and lived up to most of all the hype that it got. I’ve played many many of hundreds of hours of the original Isaac and I have been very excited for this game to come out. And I’ve got to say that it is probably my favorite game of last year, including DS2, and Shovel Knight, I’ve got to say that this was my favorite. The amount of new content and fixes and synergies and just…. Aah, just so much good stuff. For those that don’t know, this is a top-down Rogue-lite wearing the original Zelda inspiration on its sleeve. If you’re fine with Rogue-like/Rogue-lites, this is one of the best.

 

HuniePop
This game is both known and not known. It is one of the animoo games. Basically it is a parody of other Dating Sim games and this is shown extremely well in it’s writing. Some people might not be to attracted to the writing or the voice acting, but for me they really make the game quite a spectacle. But the game also has this Match-3 game in it that does a nice twist to the normal formula. Not quite on Puzzle Quest level, but it’s certainly a change that is nice.

Mercenary Kings
This game is made my the same guys that made the Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World game, and it has similar controls and art style but the type of game is very different. This is a loot game, so if you’re not into loot games, then unfortunately this is not for you. Basically all this game is, is Monster Hunter + Metal Slug. Why? Well the whole game is going to the same couple of maps and do the objective(s) and sometimes you’ll fight a boss. There is loot that you’ll get for finishing mission and get loot from bosses or enemies that you’ll use to create weapons or cosmetic stuff, pretty much exactly like Monster Hunter. And the game play feels very much like the Metal Slug games. So definitely a game to look to play with friends but a good couple of hours of fun.

Lethal League
This is a fantastic game. Imagine Smash Bros + Pong. And that’s pretty much Lethal League. It has a very small cast of characters and limited about of stages, but the game itself is extremely tight and well done that I can’t complain a whole bunch. This is a great game to get a bunch of friends and play an hour or 2 a night or week.

Now, I would have so much more to say on each of of these amazing games, but the ones here will be games that most of everyone knows about or not enough to say on:
Shadow of Mordor
Wolfenstein: The New Order (Highly recommend)
Mount Your Friends
Bayonetta 2 (Highly recommend)
Transistor (Highly recommend)
Magicite
Nidhogg
Hexcells (Highly recommend)
Probably Archery
Super Time Force Ultra

And I also played a bunch of games this year that didn’t come out in 2014, but instead in previous years. And I’ve got to say that I would highly recommend these games and give them the attention they also deserve.
Played this year:
Wolf Among Us
Guild Wars 2 (Highly recommend)
Metro: Last Light
Deadly Premonition
Need for Speed: Most Wanted (Highly recommend)
Hammerwatch
Call of Juarez: Gunslinger
Shadow Warrior (Highly recommend)
Long Live The Queen

Along with older games and the newer games, I’ve also played a few early access games. Now I don’t recommend buying early access but there are always a few exceptions. Now don’t go and buy them right now unless you 100% want it, but I would say that you should keep a close eye on them.
Early Access:
Prison Architect (Highly recommend)
Invisible Inc.
Broforce
Delver
Darkest Dungeon (Highly recommend)

Tech News: Direct X12 – Power Up!

Alright for those Tech junkies out there such as myself you have heard that Windows 10 will change things up a bit. More important in the graphics card area of things avoiding all the mumbo jumbo for the none tech people out there and what this could mean.

Currently those who have used Nvidia and or AMD based graphics cards in their gaming PC’s
could never use both at the same time as the two companies tend not to get along that well.
However with the new Explicit Asynchronous Multi-GPU Capabilities the graphics cards can now at long last get along.
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Essentially its like the Imperials and the Nords in Skyrim both going you know? Why fight!
We got beer and beer is good so lets go drink a beer. The Operating system with Direct X12 being the beer. AMD being the imperials and Nvidia being the Nords regardless of whatever side they are on they can now get along thanks to advancements in modern technology.

What does this mean for the gamers? It means increased frame rates, it means better visuals
and most of all it means the PC master race can keep doing what its doing all along innovating so the consoles can do something better when they aim for their next gen.

I for one am very much looking forward to the new DirectX although I believe I will need to change out my graphics cards again in the future and without a job I guess I’ll be waiting a while.

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-Daniel Clatworthy-

A safe haven for anyone and everyone.