Let’s Play: Rise of the Tomb Raider

I finally got to play this game since it’d been an Xbox One exclusive for almost a year.

I think it mainly lived up to expectations. The gameplay is great and robust, while Lara further progresses into the bad-ass we all know her to be. But the story and antagonists were largely bland and forgettable.

It’ll always draw comparisons to Uncharted 4, and I think each were strong where the other was weak. Uncharted 4 might not have been as wild and crazy as the previous entries but its memorable characters and their interactions were the backbone of that story.

I will say that I loved the Challenge Tombs and solving those puzzles gave me such a giddy pleasure. My gun-battle skills were the normal levels of mediocre though. Enjoy!

My Best Games of 2016 List

2016 comes to an end. (Thankfully! It was a pretty brutal year… death of Bowie and Prince, and the election.) It’s that time of the year to jump on the bandwagon and start making Best Of lists!

So here goes (in no particular order):

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This has to be the most obvious contender. While I don’t think it’s the best Naughty Dog game, or even the best Uncharted game, it’s still a remarkable achievement, graphically and storywise. No game looks better than Uncharted 4 and they really tug on the heartstrings through all the relationships built up through the course of the series.

Overwatch

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This caught me by surprise because I’m not usually a fan of PvP shooters. But the wide variety of colorful characters and simple setup makes for an unexpectedly robust experience. Playing with a friend definitely ups the enjoyment factor significantly.

Battlefield 1

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Another surprise for me. I never thought I’d play one of these types of games, let alone consider it one of my favorites for the year. But the World War I setting was so unique and special and the story vignettes in single player really captured the horrors and sacrifice of war so well. If only there was more to the single player mode.

Rise of the Tomb Raider

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A game that was on many’s Best Of list a year ago, and the long wait to PlayStation was worth it. I don’t think it beats out Uncharted 4 overall but it does a lot of things well. The story wasn’t as compelling as the previous game simply because Lara’s rise to bad-assery was better there. But I think the gameplay system and fighting mechanics outshone NaughtyDog’s game.

Batman: Arkham VR

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What could’ve been a half-hearted attempt at VR was actually a gripping return back into this world. This could’ve made my list simply by virtue of being such a different experience. But Rocksteady again managed to really screw with our heads with a very visceral and mind-bending ending.

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Notes:
I have yet to play Dishonored 2 but I have a feeling that this would be on my final tally. I’ve liked what I’ve seen and heard good things. I think Final Fantasy XV could be a winner as well but I’ve been a bit more wary of jumping onto that ship until I hear more reviews from actual players. Mafia 3 was under consideration but the flaws in that game were just too deep to make my list.

Let’s Play: The Nathan Drake Collection (The Uncharted Trilogy Remastered)

Here’s my collection of Let’s Play videos for the first three Uncharted games!

I finally (eventually) figure out my microphone issues so hopefully it’s a bit easier on your ears. And I definitely feel like I hit a comfort zone of commentary while playing.

This was also my first time playing these games so I enjoyed the sense of sharing the experience with people watching.

Hope you enjoy it!