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    Brothers: A Tale of Two Sons (PC)    by   bwatter8       (Jan 21st, 2017 at 02:48:33)

    It all comes to an end. Even though the game was a mere 3 hours long it packs an emotional punch. You come to see the two brothers dependence on one another. Then when they have finally reached the end of their trials, tragedy. I should have expected as much from a game that begins by showing a young boy struggling, and failing to save his mother from drowning. I didn't expect to care about the two brothers nearly as much as I did, and certainly not over the course of 3 hours. Ultimately they succeeded, but the cost may have been too high.

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    A Wolf Among Us (PC)    by   Tasch       (Jan 21st, 2017 at 01:04:22)

    Delving into this game a little deeper for my second play, I noticed a few things gameplay-wise that allows the narrative to take more precedence in the game and impact the player more effectually.
    Something that struck me with the gameplay is the fact that the cameras are always fixed and only shift when cutting between angles or scenes – the only movement the cameras typically exhibit is during an action scene, and maybe an establishing pan to show the cityscape. This is very much a trait of films and filmmaking rather than games as we traditionally know them (although many of the classics such as the original Silent Hill, Resident Evil, interior shots in Zelda: Ocarina of Time, etc. also did this because they were still treading the new ground of 3D, so it's almost paying homage to that as well). This subtly reinforces to the players that there's a story here and that it carries the most weight, just as it would in a film. It also allows the developers to carefully design and frame the compositions so you see what they WANT you to see -- which is fantastic because then you can keep going back and picking up on subtle symbolisms and other imagery - it certainly encouraged me to pay more attention.
    I also wanted to talk about the choice system briefly. I think it's great that not only are there three speech options of varying intentions, but there is also a silent option. That is powerful and a good reminder that sometimes good answers are none at all. I haven't progressed very far in this game because I sometimes reload and try other options. The replayability and duality of events and the subtle changes (especially people's changing perceptions of you, I LOVE that aspect) is incredibly addicting and I can see why these series hold such appeal. It's really hitting home for me as a player that I need to more seriously think through things and look at the more nuanced consequences of my actions.

    This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on Jan 21st, 2017 at 01:08:58.


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    The Last of Us Remastered (PS4)    by   UltraVioletLlama       (Jan 21st, 2017 at 00:44:56)

    The Last Of Us, PS4, Game Log January 20th, 10:50-11:22 (32 minutes)

    This session of game had myself and the woman attempt to find this “Robert” to “deal with him”. We took a bit of a shortcut through secret tunnels to find a market like area, where I eventually killed a few infected and some men working for Robert on the way. A few things had me questioning the ethical implications that the developers were trying to instill on the player. The first thing that could be seen as unethical is the premise of the mission, them using a shortcut that the government has most-likely seen as illegal. Using the principle of legality, the player is forced into doing something bad, even if it is good if they are using it as self-defense. The player also takes the self-defense to another level by killing infected and men along the way to get even with just one person. The men were not being threatening, they were just following orders. If it wasn’t even just to go on this journey, the character’s decision to find Robert through a shortcut could be seen as unethical. In my journey to where Robert supposedly is, I came upon a “spore room”. One man had become infected, and he pleaded me to shoot him. This was quite literally “assisted suicide” in an apocalyptic world. I really didn’t want to be the one to pull the trigger, but the struggling was quite traumatic. The game never taught me how to shoot a gun until this point, so the game was basically treating this infected person as a tutorial, instead of a grave decision. I attempted to see what would happen if I let the man live, but the game made it clear that I was the one to kill him in order to progress. I shot him in the head in the end, and I wasn’t sure if his blood was on my hands or not, because he might’ve not been infected yet. After shooting him, I was thrust into a room full of infected people. I had about a magazine in my gun, so I had enough to finish them all. The game is very careful in not giving the player very much ammo, so the woman I was with encouraged me to sneak up behind the person and strangle them to death. Can these infected still feel, and if they can, should I be taking that into consideration? Is there life worthless because of who they are that their pain is negligent to the situation? Should I opt for shooting them in the head for instant death, slowly strangling them, or should I attempt to avoid them and let them live as they were?

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    The Wolf Among Us (iPd)    by   JordanLindorff       (Jan 20th, 2017 at 22:44:07)

    Today I continued Episode 5 of “The Wolf Among Us” and I had to fight bloody Mary. There wasn’t much choice before the fight and the fight ended her life. After the battle I was able to continue on with my plan of not following any moral frameworks and just playing super selfishly. I selected every choice that was self-serving. I also chose any negative actions such as killing the Crooked Man. It was interesting to note that even though I murdered him rather than bringing him in for trial most of the people were ok with it or agree that it was ok this once. With the exception of a few most seemed fine with my actions even though they were brazenly immoral. I thought it was interesting that they reacted this way and I am curious about how they would have reacted if I hadn’t killed him. Overall I enjoyed this session, and although it was going against my natural tendencies it was interesting how thrilling it was to be renegade.

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    Life is Strange (PC)    by   Mafumofu       (Jan 20th, 2017 at 22:29:38)

    Life is Strange has got me seriously thinking about all of my actions within the game. I assumed that important, story-altering events would be few and far between but they occur frequently. In the realm of morality and ethics, it's a great lesson that important decisions are not just made at the most important or obvious moments, but with everything we do. During this session, I watered a plant in my dorm which changed the future somehow, but I've got no idea how. And at the same time I had to make decisions I didn't want to which I knew would impact the future, but in which matter I had no apparent other choice. Primarily, this is evidenced when I chose to be nice to Victoria after she was soaked in both water and paint, but immediately after was forced to snoop in her room and betray her, even if she may have deserved it. These decisions are tough, and being forced to take one path doesn't make it any easier.

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    Fable: The Lost Chapters (XBX)    by   Akai_Tenshi

    Please review this log
    most recent entry:   Monday 14 January, 2008
    Game Log #1

    Summary:

    Fable: The Lost Chapters is a third person action RPG that takes typical RPG play to a new level. The game unfolds as you play through the life of a boy who is stripped from his family and home due to a devastating bandit raid. In vengeance of the boy’s ravaged childhood, you focus on training the boy into a hero. Like a typical action RPG, Fable plays like a “hack and slash,” but maintains complexity and excitement throughout the gameplay. Also like many other RPGs, Fable is item-based and relies on you leveling up to choose attributes and skills. However, Fable takes a new approach to all these concepts and concocts a very interesting, intricate, and largely replayable game.

    Personal Gameplay Critique:

    I thought Fable was overall an incredible game within the two hours in, which I played it. Unfortunately I am critiquing a game that I was unable to complete, but I could tell that the game was definitely heading in the right direction.

    The objective of the game is solely to become stronger, achieve good deeds or bad deeds, and become a known “hero” within all of the land. Fable brings back the classic item-based concept of finding better items/equipment and leveling up to strengthen your character. Similar to such games as “God of War,” Fable also brings back the third person perspective, which I believe is the best perspective for any action RPG.

    Immediately after playing the game for just a few minutes, I was able to tackle the main controls and get a feel of the game mechanics. I was impressed by Fable’s introduction, which revealed the gameplay and storyline. Fable kept me content by awarding my fulfillment of deeds and quests, which were requested by the townsfolk. Despite the introduction’s complexity it did not overwhelm me with things to do and I was quickly drawn into the game.


    Game Log #2

    Personal Gameplay critique:

    As for the “action”, Fable takes a typical “hack and slash” approach, but introduces new forms and features of combat that keep the mouse mashing fun and exciting. As for the player, deciding and timing your actions are vital in Fable’s combat system. Fable did a good job at keeping me on the edge of my seat as I decided the right times to attack, block and evade during combat. Along with other great action RPGs, Fable brings back the forms of melee combat, ranged combat and a magical skill set. Switching between weapons and skills is a breeze with Fable’s hotkey selection and I learned the key configurations in a synch.

    Development and customization of your character is what I believe Fable scores high on. As the player you are able to fully customize your appearance, by attributing stat points, getting new gear, and even by playing the open storyline. Probably Fable’s biggest triumph is the way in which the story is solely based upon the player’s boundless actions and interactions. As the player, everything you accomplish within the game directly affects the outcome of the story as well as the appearance and stature of your character within the world of Fable.

    Finally, I believe Fable scores high on the overall game design. Primarily speaking, the voice actors and actresses for each character are voiced with perfect amounts of effort and emotion. The world of Fable is really brought to life, through the conversing of each personality found within Fable. On top of that, the sound effects throughout the game serve their purpose and never miss. Despite its release date in 2004, the graphics don’t fall short even to today’s standard of role-playing games. The story and environment was quite astounding and fits perfectly with its exciting gameplay.

    Overall, Fable is an amazing game, which is the top of its class. I believe it is a “must play game” for all of the action RPG fans out there. Fable’s story and action kept me excited, intrigued and busy throughout my gameplay experience. The game mechanics were easy to learn and the voice acting brought this game to life. Fable is instantly a timeless classic that brings many hours of replayability due to its large amount of outcomes. Other than the few features that Peter Molyneux promised, I don’t believe anything falls short in Fable. It is a definite is a milestone in gaming and I highly recommend it.



    Design:

    Unlike other action RPGs Fable brings a “hack and slash” interactive game and brings it to a new level. Fable is a great game due to its pace, interactivity, combat style and its large replayability.
    Fable innovatively takes the action RPG genre and adds depth and perspective. While many action RPGs are focused on a fixed birds eye third person view, Fable brings a totally three-dimensional third person perspective which players are able to adjust for viewing different situations.

    Focusing on the actual gameplay itself, Fable unfolds itself nicely with the many conflicting quests which the player may choose to accomplish. Quests lack repetitiveness and each quest brings new challenges and has an award structure based upon player performance in the game. The award system is also well-met, making in-game items such as weapons and gold plenty of an incentive to perform your best throughout the game.

    During these quests Fable fulfills its role as an action RPG by introducing uses of melee combat, bow combat and separate magical spells. What separates Fable from other games is the use of a blocking and evading technique achieved by the player’s maneuvers. Another innovation within the combat of Fable is its use of a zoom-able first person view which is able to “snipe” enemies while wielding a ranged weapon.

    As far as level design, Fable is split into perfectly sized and beautifully detailed areas. Each area is created so that the player is more or less able to run through it typically within a minute. Graphics are nowhere near the capability of today’s technology, but it doesn’t fall short of other action RPGs of its time. Some of the shadows and plant growth textures are rather two-dimensional and pixilated.

    Fable is good at unfolding new features to enhance gameplay experience by introducing game mechanics in small increments and explaining in depth descriptions both vocally and within text. The game first starts by introducing movement and interaction with your environment, while unveiling the story and purpose of the game. As the protagonist grows older, Fable introduces its intricate combat system along with the item-based side of the game. Finally, fable introduces its leveling up system and broad character customization. Probably the most important gameplay feature that Fable features is its player based outcome. Since players are able to choose a good or bad path, the world of Fable reacts accordingly to the way in which the player develops the protagonist. Fable ensures large replay-ability because of this and will have gamers playing Fable over and over again.

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