XBF Daily: November releases
November is shaping up to be one of the biggest months in gaming History with 4 massive titles launching for Xbox One. I can’t recall another month like this one and what is more surprising is the sheer quality & diversity of the line-up. Christmas is traditionally a strong period but here we have Call of Duty, Tomb Raider, Star Wars and Fallout titles all dropping within a few weeks of each other and just a month after Halo 5 Guardians domination of the entertainment charts.
First up is the annual Call of Duty release for Black Ops III which is looking exactly like the last game but with more stuff, more explosions and more nonsense. As a long term detractor of the franchise i can’t even sum up the usual bile so I’ll just call it crap and put the trailer here for all the 12 year old racists to dribble over.
Next up is the massive Fallout 4 which is top of many peoples wish lists this year. This time around Fallout is set in post-apocalyptic Boston and follows the series well defined open world gameplay where your character emerges from a Vault and has to survive in the harsh environment. The key combat mechanic VATS system returns and this time you can play in either 3rd or 1st person perspective. Fallout has always given you an almost unrivalled sense of freedom to go and play the game your way. Characters you meet on the way will be fully voiced and offer branching dialogue that can help progress the Fallout story but as with the other Fallout games you can choose what you want to do and when you want to do it.
Another new feature to Fallout 4 is base building which as you would expect enables you to build a base and over time invest and upgrade it and even have NPC’s inhabit it. The crafting system has massively been upgraded to include every item of loot in the game and the base of 50 guns can all be upgraded along with the traditional RPG skill tree system. The Fallout character progression system is called called SPECIAL which represents the key seven statistics which are strength, perception, endurance, charisma, intelligence, agility and luck. The various actions you carry out in game award XP points which you can use to level up those abilities. Nothing earth shattering but a deep sounding system that RPG fans will appreciate.
Rise of the Tomb Raider is my most wanted title for the year even over Halo 5 and everything i’ve seen so far has backed that up. The series reboot was perhaps my favourite game of the last generation or at least equal to The Last of us in my opinion. I really enjoyed exploring the stunning game world and the excellent combat mechanics led to a brilliantly balanced game that was a real joy to play. Rise of the Tomb Raider looks set to take all that made Tomb Raider brilliant and expand on it by adding more Tombs and deeper combat but so long as it keeps that sense of mystery and discovery it will be my game of the year by some distance.
Lastly is the super bland Star Wars Battlefront that takes the well defiled Star Wars series and stuffs it into the tepid waters of the equally defiled Battlefield series. The beta was probably the least fun i’ve had playing a shooter since the time i accidentally played the last COD game. It was dull, ugly and totally uninspired just like the last Battlefield game and whilst i appreciate millions of people will buy it, play 10 games and trade it i just refuse to fall into that trap. There is no campaign, no story modes just yet another generic blast fest but this time with Lasers and stormtroopers. YEY.
Sales of Halo 5 Guardians have surprised virtually nobody and seen the game sitting pretty at the top of the worldwide charts despite the fact that it’s a platform exclusive. Equally impressive is the fact it earned Microsoft more $$$ than the frankly awesome James Bond: Spectre at the box office. Sure it’s way more expensive than a cinema ticket but £7.7m on day one in the UK alone is fucking mega but when you take into account that only includes retail copies and not digital downloads you can see just how massive the Halo launch was. If nothing else it kept Assassins creed off the top spot.
That’s it for today I’m putting together some words on the Xbox New Experience and maybe a bit about story telling in video games. As always if you would like to write for us let me know and I’ll make it happen.