All posts by Jerome Weiswasser

Jerome has been writing for UGR Gaming for 2 years now. He is the head writer and is also co-host on the Gamer Chat Weekly Podcast. When not working for UGR, or playing videos games, Jerome most of his down time being a wrestling fanatic.
acunity

Assassin’s Creed Unity Review (Xbox One, PS4)

When Ubisoft first revealed that there would be two Assassin’s Creed games coming out on the same day, I was worried that focus of the developers was going to be split and hurt both games. While Assassin’s Creed Rouge was somewhat of a let down, Ubisoft is getting a second chance to please fans that did not enjoy Rogue. Assassin’s Creed Unity is Ubisoft’s current generation offering in the Assassin’s Creed series. Unlike last years Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, Unity is developed exclusively for the Xbox One, PS4 and PC. How does the next generation of Assassin’s Creed fare? Keep reading to find out.

Story

Assassin’s Creed Unity tells the story of Arno Dorian, an Assassin during the French Revolution in the heart of Paris. As a young boy, Arno’s father is murdered. Arno is taken in by a Templar and years later, the Templar who took Arno in, is murdered. Arno must navigate the French Revolution in a tale of revenge.

images (20)

While the Revenge story is fairly basic, I found the story and it’s plot twists to be very enjoyable. The story of Unity feels like a return to older games in the franchise, like Assassin’s Creed II, while it still feels fresh.

Gameplay

Assassin’s Creed Unity’s gameplay comes down to three major mechanics. Players will use Combat, Stealth and parkour to experience the world that Unity puts in front of the player.

Assassins-Creed-Unity-Gameplay-3

In terms of Combat, Ubisoft has stripped the combat down. Arno cannot disarm, or more importantly break through an enemies defensive stance. Arno can parry and dodge. The combat in Assassin’s Creed Unity can be incredibly difficult at times. Sometimes, enemies can kill you in one hit, so perfection is vital. At times, the combat was quite frustrating and was my least favorite part of Unity.

The stealth mechanic is new to the Assassin’s Creed series, which is odd considering how integral stealth has always been to the series. The stealth mechanic utilizes a new snap-to-cover mechanic which is a nice addition. however, the lack of the whistle ability from previous games makes stealth more slow paced than it should be, as you will have to wait for enemies to pass your hiding spot.

132756f16f2b768091b08658d752a08b5f185069

Ubisoft has attempted to improve the parkour aspect of the game by giving Arno the ability to climb downwards quickly. When it works, it is smooth and looks great. But there lies the problem, sometimes I just couldn’t get Arno to go where I wanted him to go, as things that should be simple like climbing through windows just didn’t work sometimes.

Players will be able to upgrade Arno’s abilities and even customize Arno’s appearance, using both in game and real currency (yes, sadly there are microtransactions in Unity.) Players can also use Creed Points which are gained by getting kills and more.

14024790527c160-original-1

The mission design of Unity is phenomenal. The types of missions are more diverse and what is there, is much more exciting and epic than any previous Assassin’s Creed games. Even Assassination missions offer more of a “choose your path” style which makes you feel like an Assassin who is planning and hunting his target.

Multiplayer

Assassin’s Creed Unity has done away with competitive multiplayer. However, they now offer a co-op mode. The mode has 2-4 assassin’s team up to complete very well designed missions that were incredibly fun to play through. The co-op mode was a lot of fun, and I deeply enjoyed the co-op. It was a great move to get rid of multiplayer in favor of this epic co-op mode.

2657669-trailer_acu_coopgameplay_20140916

I also really enjoyed how your Arno is the same across single layer and co-op, as no matter what I’m doing, I am making my Arno better.

Presentation

Assassin’s Creed Unity is undoubtedly the best looking game in the series. In fact the game looks amazing by any standard. There were a few times where the frame rate dropped a bit, but Ubisoft has assured us a patch is on the way. Despite that, it very rarely for me happened, and when it did, it was probably due to how much is going on around Arno.

download (1)

Speaking of which, Paris is an amazing city to go through. Unity does a fantastic job bringing Paris to life. The amount of people simply in the streets was impressive, which can be useful, but can also get in your way. Paris is a massive city and I had a blast navigating through it, especially with the fact that most houses can be traveled through and makes the game even more impressive.

Sound design was also really well done. I constantly heard the bustling city around me, with near conversations and distant rumbling making feel immersed in the world of Unity.

Overall

For the new generation of Assassin’s Creed, it feels like Ubisoft hit the reset button on the franchise. While I do miss some past gameplay mechanics, I was able to adapt and enjoy the game anyway. The game looks amazing and was a lot of fun to play, except for the combat which at times felt way too difficult and frustrating. That being said, a great story, awesome city to experience and a phenomenal co-op mode, makes this a great first attempt at a real next-gen Assassin’s Creed game.
{rating}

assassins-creed-rogue-logo

Assassin’s Creed Rogue Review (Xbox 360, PS3)

With the passing of what is now the previous generation of consoles, Xbox 360 and PS3 users are left with a problem. 360 and PS3 users are facing the fact that most of the new games being released exclusively on the Xbox One and PS4. With very few games coming exclusively coming to the previous generation, Assassin’s Creed Rogue is basically the swan song of the previous generation. Does it end the generation strongly, or does it disappoint? Let’s find out.

Story

Assassin’s Creed Rogue follows an Abstergo Entertainment employee living through the memories of Shay Patrick Cormac. Shay, an assassin in the colonies in the 1750s, is in the middle of the ongoing war between the Assassins and the Templars. While on a mission for the Assassins, Shay witness the deaths of many innocent lives and blames the Templars. Shay abandons the Brotherhood and vows to destroy the order that he once fought for.

images (18)

As the game goes on, Shay will run into quite a few familiar faces, both friend and foe alike. The story was very well done, as it feels fresh, but still gives returning fans that warm fuzzy feeling when you see a returning character, or the setup to an event that you know has happened or will happen in the future.

Although, I want to avoid spoilers, I will say that Assassin’s Creed fans that are going to play Unity should go through the story of Rogue.

Gameplay

Assassin’s Creed Rogue borrows gameplay mechanics from previous installments in the Assassin’s Creed series. Despite leaving the order Shay plays like all of the previous Assassin’s in past games. The gameplay works generally well, and still features the fun action that the series is known for.

Assassins_Creed_Rogue_TemplarVSAssassinCaptain_1407252871

Sailing makes it’s return in Assassin’s Creed Rogue. Sadly, sailing feels like a tired mechanic that just wasn’t fun for me. It is especially frustrating in Rogue, when instead of sailing through the open seas of Black Flag, players will navigate areas that are tight corridors of water and a cluster of land. One wrong turn can send you way off course and had me pausing the game and pulling up my map more times that I would have liked.

A problem that I encountered was that at times Shay just wouldn’t quite do what I wanted him to do. Things like climbing and jumping would sometimes go awry, and I found myself failing missions at times because of this. This has always been an understandable problem in the series, but it has never quite been this bad.

Assassin’s-Creed-Rogue-New-gameplay-video-demonstrates-improved-naval-combat-2-1024x576

Assassin’s Creed Rogue is actually fairly short, compared to other Assassin’s Creed games. But much like Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag there are plenty of collectibles to keep gamers playing.

It is worth noting that Assassin’s Creed Rogue is probably the most difficult Assassin’s Creed game to date (not counting Unity, as I have not played as of this writing). Enemies can hide in stalking zone and on buildings in an attempt to ambush and defeat you, Assassin-style. While Shay is supposed to be a predator, I would have liked to have seen a chase mission where Shay has to run from a pursuing Assassin. This would have strongly went with his predator like character. Sadly, this was not utilized in Rogue. However, there are a few really cool missions where Assassin’s will ambush you. You can hear the signature eagle squawk, and catch a glimpse of a spying Assassin. These were really cool moments.

1407255526-screenshot-ny-watermark-grey

Presentation

Assassin’s Creed Rogue is a pretty ugly game. It isn’t the worst looking game out there, but it does look worse than Assassin’s Creed III, which was released two years ago. This is a huge turnoff for Rogue as an interesting story kept struggling with the unimpressive graphics.
Rogue is also a pretty buggy game. NPCs would sometime walkthrough each other, even during cutscenes. They would even phase through my ship and be stuck in the water. I even ran into a bug that had an enemy ship get partially on top of my ship.

images (19)

On the bright side, the sound design was pretty well done. The soundtrack was pretty awesome to listen to throughout my time spent playing Rogue.

Overall

Assassin’s Creed Rogue was a disappointment. The game just felt like a bunch of reused assets from the the past two Assassin’s Creed games, except they weren’t as good. Rogue offers some cool moments and an awesome story that Assassin’s Creed diehard fans really need to experience. However, poor presentation, and some poor gameplay features really hurt this game. Fans of the series should be able to get enjoyment out of Assassin’s Creed Rogue, but new players should just give this a pass.
{rating}

call-of-duty-advanced-warfare-logo

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare Review (Xbox One, PS4, Xbox 360, PS3)

Note: This review is based off of the Xbox One version and may not reflect its previous generation counterparts.

Back when Call of Duty first broke out onto the scene, fans of the series would find it hard to believe that Call of Duty would reach its eleventh installment in such a small amount of time. As hard as it is to believe, it is indeed true, as many fans have grown tired of Call of Duty and have abandoned the franchise. Interest has declined in recent years. Developer, Sledgehammer Games have inherited this very real problem with their first full Call of Duty game, Advanced Warfare. Can Sledgehammer Games live up to the task in reviving the stagnating Call of Duty Franchise? Keep reading to find out.

Story
Call of Duty Advanced Warfare follows Jack Mitchell, a U.S. marine in the year 2054 who is honorably discharged after losing his arm in combat. Mitchell joins Atlas, a PMC corporation. Mitchell will try to hunt down a terror group and make the world a better place.
COD2-670x376
The story is arguably the best Call of Duty story to date. It is well told and paced out with some awesome scenarios and situations. However, that being said, I felt like character development and the relationships between some characters felt a bit weak at times.
There is plenty of variety in Advanced Warfare’s campaign. Missions differ from controlling a flying sniper drone, to infiltrating an estate in a level straight out of Splinter Cell .
Screen-Shot-2014-05-03-at-7.10.09-PM
The campaign only lasts about 6 hours on the normal difficulty, but it suits the pacing and is an awesome 6 hours to have.
Gameplay
The tight gameplay that Call of duty is known for is just as tight as ever. It is the same awesome gameplay that revolutionized the modern day shooter. This time around, players can use the new exo-suit mechanic. In the campaign players can use a variety of abilities like a stimpak or a jump enhancement.  Players can upgrade their exo-suit in the single player by completing challenges. The exo-suit is cool but isn’t a necessity to get through the story on the normal difficulty.
Call-of-Duty-Advanced-Warfare-6
Multiplayer
Call of Duty is best, or sometimes worst known for its multiplayer. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare offers a robust multiplayer with plenty of depth and choices in terms of class creation. Players can also edit their physical appearance, but I felt like the options were scarce.
The exo-suit will help players traverse the new vertical map design. Players will have a double jump and can do a small boost through the air in any direction. Players can also use exo-suit abilities that include faster health regeneration and silenced movement.
Call-of-Duty-Advanced-Warfare-Multiplayer-Screenshots-2
Thanks to the exo-suit abilities, the level design has taken a more vertical approach. The levels in Advanced Warfare felt fresh and exciting and perfectly fit Advanced Warfare’s fast pace action.
Advanced Warfare utilizes Black Ops II’s Pick 10 system. Using the Pick 13 system players can customize their loadouts based off of their play styles. Players can use two primary weapons, carry more perks, no perks and much more. This helps every player enjoy Call of Duty the way they want to enjoy it.
Advanced Warfare has two new game modes. Uplink has players grabbing a satellite drone and trying to take it to the Uplink Station that is guarded by the enemy team. This game mode is fast paced and extremely chaotic. Momentum is actually the same as Call of Duty: World at War’s War mode. Players will fight for checkpoints and will attempt to push back the enemy team. I actually loved playing this mode, as it led to some truly epic games.
images (17)
Sadly, bullet lag is still a problem in Call of Duty Advanced Warfare. Players who connect more hits and connect first won’t always be the ones to get the kill in a fire fight. There were plenty of times where I was on both ends of a shootout that should of seen different outcomes.
There is also a survival mode similar to the survival mode in Modern Warfare 3. Players will use the exo-suit to customize their loadouts. The mode was fun for a while and offered a few hours into an already complete package.
Presentation
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is the best looking and sounding Call of Duty to date. The campaign looks spectacular and the multiplayer looks great. Getting established actors like Kevin Spacey and Troy Baker really help to nail the voice acting of Advanced Warfare. Sound design in general was also well done.
Exoskeleton-Desktop
Overall
Sledgehammer Games has hit a home run. They have taken a dying brand in Call of Duty and have made it something truly special again. The game may not be perfect and may be compared to Titanfall, but Call of Duty Advanced Warfare has used it’s tweaks to the Call of Duty formula to rejuvenate the series. A near perfect campaign with an exciting multiplayer make this a game that old Call of Duty fans should give the old series a second chance.
{rating}
Sunset_Overdrive_KeyArt_Horiz_RGB_Final

Sunset Overdrive Review (Xbox One)

As the 2014 holiday season rolls on, console exclusive titles are vital to the console manufacturers. Games that are exclusive, help consumers figure out what consoles they want to buy or put more focus on. One of Microsoft’s Xbox One exclusive titles, Sunset Overdrive is now out and looks to be a new IP in an ocean of sequels and remakes. Can it stand up to the competition? Keep reading to find out.
Story
Sunset Overdrive places players in Sunset City. An Energy drink has turned the populace into Zombie like Mutants. Players will have to try survive the “Awesomepocalypse” while killing the mutants, and defending against other survivors and Fizzco., the company who inadvertently created the apocalypse who is now trying to cover up the whole situation.

Sunset_Overdrive_Herker_2.0_cinema_1920.0
The story is hilarious and awesome. Sunset Overdrive is a self-aware game that constantly breaks the fourth wall and mocks several video game tropes. Characters in the game reference using Gamefaqs and also say they will mysteriously disappear by the time a cutscene is over. The story is so great because it doesn’t take itself too seriously, even mocking its own plot, I loved every second of it.
Gameplay
Sunset Overdrive is a third person shooter running at mach speed. Players will traverse Sunset City by grinding on rails and wires, running walls and bouncing on cars and rooftop exhaust fans. Players will use awesome unique guns to survive against the three enemy factions.

download
Despite its fast paced style, Sunset Overdrive controls very well. It takes a few minutes to get accustomed to the fact that standing still will get you killed, but once you do, your time in Sunset City will be much more enjoyable.
Players will start out by creating their own characters by using an awesome creation suite. It is not as complex as some games offer, but it offers enough choices and styles for there to be plenty of options.

sunset-overdrive-e3-amusement-jpg
In Sunset Overdrive, players can collect amps and badges. These work in the form of perks that can be gained in many ways. From finishing a round based survival mode to just playing campaign missions, there are plenty ways to pick up amps, which add a great layer of depth and choice to the player. Players can also level up their weapons.
Sunset Overdrive is an incredibly fast paced game. In fact, it’s one of the most fast paced games I have ever played. This is mostly awesome and exhilarating. However, I did feel like the games pacing felt a little off at times. By constantly moving fast and not really having any points for slow down, I occasionally lost sight of the appeal by grinding around Sunset City, although this didn’t last too long when it happened.

images (16)
There are plenty of collectibles to keep players travelling across Sunset City in an attempt and completing the game. Players can also replay missions and level up their guns to get as much out of the game as they can.

 
Multiplayer
Sunset Overdrive provides Chaos mode, an 8 player online game mode that has players completing missions together, leading up to a final mission. Chaos mode is a lot of fun, and can be seen as cooperative or competitive. While players are working together for bonuses and to finish the game, players are also ranked on how well they are doing and even get points for being the first person to each objective, which eve makes traveling a fun part of the game.

Sunset-Overdrive
Presentation
Sunset Overdrive is a gorgeous game. The game is just so vibrant and it just pops. Sunset City is just so well designed, that I felt like I was missing out on the experience that was Sunset City, by speeding through it, without admiring my surroundings.
I loved the Punk Rock Soundtrack that was used in Sunset Overdrive. It was a perfect match for the game and I wish more games would use this music genre in the future.

Screen_shot_2014-07-17_at_12.37.31_AM
Overall
Sunset Overdrive is an amazing game. It has a memorable story, accompanied with fast paced gameplay and an awesome soundtrack. However, Sunset Overdrive’s biggest flaw is that it is always moving so fast that I felt like the pacing was off and that I didn’t really get to admire the vast and awesome city that Sunset City really is. That being said, Sunset Overdrive is a must have game to any Xbox One owners.

{rating}

gaming_bayonetta_2_logo

Bayonetta 2 (Wii U) Review

Bayonetta was a cult classic that was released back in 2009 on Xbox 360 and PS3. As beloved as it is among its fans, there weren’t really any plans for a sequel. However, thanks to some assistance from Nintendo, Platinum Games have developed Bayonetta 2 exclusively for the Wii U. While some fans are angered that Bayonetta 2 is exclusive to the Wii U, the question is, are those fans missing out on the a great game? Keep reading to find out.

Story

Bayonetta 2, once again follows Bayonetta on a new quest to save her friend Jeanne who has been dragged down to hell. Along the way, Bayonetta will run into some familiar faces, as well as mysterious boy named Loki. The story is truly entertaining and has the charm that the original Bayonetta has. WiiU_Bayonetta2_scrn08_E3

Gameplay

Bayonetta 2 is a “hack n’ slash” style game. Players will go through the game fighting both angels and demons that get in your way. The controls feel tighter and smoother on the Wii U and it was truly enjoyable to play on the Gamepad. Speaking of the Gamepad, Bayonetta 2 offers the ability to play using the stylus and the Gamepad touchpad. I rarely used this option, but it was nice to see that Platinum utilized the Wii U’s features, such as the Gamepad and stamps for the miiverse. This time around, Bayonetta has new weapons and power-ups to spice up the gameplay and add some replay ability to the game. Players can also use a crafting system to make items that restore health, boost attack power and even more. Bayonetta-2-31 Along with the panther transformation, Bayonetta can now travel through flooded areas by transforming into a sea snake. These flooded areas are kept to a minimum so it ends up being pretty forgetful. Bayonetta 2 even comes with the original Bayonetta, in case Nintendo fans have not played the original. The original Bayonetta plays just as well, if not better then it did on the Xbox 360 and PS3. Players are also treated to alternate costumes that pay homages to Nintendo Icons Link, Peach, Samus and Fox McCloud. wiiubayonetta2scrn01e3 Bayonetta 2 has an in-game achievement system, called Bewitchments that add a lot of replay ability to an already amazing package in Bayonetta 2.

Multiplayer

Bayonetta 2 offers an online only multiplayer mode, called “Tag Climax”. The mode is fun and has players working together to fight enemies. The mode is fun and adds some extra value to the package, without feeling like something that was shoehorned in at the expense of the single player portion of the game.

article_post_width_tagclimaxmain

Presentation Bayonetta 2 looks amazing, especially compared to the orignal Bayonetta on the 360 and ps3. The colors just seem more vibrant and it just ran more smoothly than the original Bayonetta on the older consoles. The soundtrack and voice acting are also well done. The presentation just shows off the charm that I have come to love from Bayonetta. bayonetta-2-wallpaper

Overall

Bayonetta 2 is a great addition to the Wii U’s lineup. It is an awesome and charming game that plays perfectly, and has the looks to match. Bayonetta 2 offers two amazing games in one, along with an online co-op and achievements, making this the perfect package, in terms of enjoyment and replay ability.

{rating}

20823568_2502031-trailer_borderlandspresequel_developeroverview_20140409-1410483356215

Borderlands: The Pre-sequel Review (Xbox 360, PS3, PC)

The 2014 holiday season is heating up, and Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel is the latest game to be released. Borderlands is the beloved series from Gearbox Studios. However, this time around 2K Austrailia has taken the reigns of the series, with Gearbox taking on more of a support role. How does Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel compare, not just it’s holiday season competition, but previous games in the series as well? Keep reading to find out.

Story

Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel takes place before Borderlands 1, but after Borderlands 2. A Hyperion employee, Jack has hired 4 Vault Hunters to aid him in saving one of Pandora’s moons from bandits. The story features some familiar faces and tells the story of how Handsome Jack becomes the insane man that he is. The story is very well told and still contained the same humor and charm that Borderlands is known for.

2K_Borderlands_ThePre-Sequel_InGameArt_AthenaToss_1stPerson

Gameplay

The Gameplay of the Pre-Sequel is mostly the same as previous installments of the Borderlands series. The game is tight and plays very well. There is a large variety of guns and other customization options (like shields and grenade mods) that have a profound amount of depth.

The Pre-Sequel continues the high standard that Borderlands has set for the first person shooter RPG. The skill trees among the 4 characters are a lot of fun to tweak and play around with, especially with the option to reset your skill tree, for a small in-game fee.

AthenaDeepDive-610

New to the Pre-Sequel, is the oxygen system. Since the Pre-Sequel takes place on one of Pandora’s moons, not all areas have an atmosphere. There are some positives and some negatives to this new gameplay mechanic.

The new oxygen mechanic provides a new type of oxygen shield that adds even more depth to The Pre-Sequel. However, the new oxygen system also has given Borderlands a tweaked pull on gravity. While it is fun to jump around in near-zero gravity, enemy movement has become something that can be truly frustrating. At times, enemies will just jump and lunge at you from decently far distances, which can be tough when fighting the hordes of frequently respawning enemies.

handsome-jack

Borderlands: The Pre-sequel can be quite buggy at times. I ran into a few issues where my game froze or I got stuck on lockers I was looting that forced me to quit out and restart the game.

Another big issue that I came across was that my moonstones, a rare type of currency would disappear and I would never get them back. Hopefully this can get fixed in an update, because it is a very disheartening thing. One other player I came across in my time with The Pre-sequel confirmed to also have the same problem with his moonstones.

2502036-2k_borderlands_pre-sequel_moonmechs_1stperson

Presentation

Borderlands: The Pre-sequel looks is the best looking Borderlands to date. Between an amazing skyline, to interesting enemy design, I enjoyed traveling through the cel-shaded moon of Pandora. As usual the voice acting is simply top notch and there is some good parts of the soundtrack, although sometimes the game felt a little too quiet.
Overall

Borderlands: The Pre-sequel gets a lot of things right. The story and gameplay are awesome. But the new oxygen mechanic can feel a bit pointless at times. Plus, the game has a decent amount of bugs. That being said, it is a great game that Borderlands fans will love and was a great attempt by 2K Australia to capture the magic that Gearbox creates.
{rating}