The Lone Gamer Reviews: Zombie Gunship Survival

Posted in Action Adventure, Android, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Gaming, iGaming, iPad, iPhone, Mobile Games, My Stuff, Zombie Games on May 18th, 2017 by thelonegamer

Take on the Zombie Apocalypse from the best seat around.

A few years ago, Flaregames released a fairly unique zombie fighting game on mobile/iOS, Zombie Gunship. It put you in the gunner’s seat of an AC130 flying gunship (you know- that large plane that ‘brought the rain’ in the first Bayformers flick), fighting zombie hordes from the air. The original game had a nice concept, eerily atmospheric if monochrome visuals and very tense gameplay. Ultimately though, it was a matter of being accurate with your alloted guns- usually an automatic machine gun and a couple of one-shot cannons- and waiting for them to reload/cool down even as the hordes converged on the vulnerable shelters you were tasked to defend. Things soon became repetitive, with progression mostly being your earning enough coins to upgrade your ship and armaments.

The sequel, Zombie Gunship Survival, was soft-released some months ago here in The Philippines, but it will see a wider release soon. For all the faults, the original game was a favorite of mine, so when I saw this on the AppStore I jumped in.

Unfortuantely there was a red flag- the dreaded GET in the app’s store entry. Yep, ZGS is a Free-to-Play title (whereas the original was a premium game for the most part, with iAP being mostly unnecessary). Despite that, I installed and dove in. Pleasantly there are quite a few changes to mix things up, more goals and building elements, even if you may find yourself spending a bit to get into the meat of this zombie title.

Zombie Gunship Survival once again puts you as the commander/gunner of the last AC-130 Gunship around. The introductory mission sets up the story as your plane intercepts an out-of-control cruise ship headed for the mainland. A ground team boards the ship as you provide fire support, but no matter your skills, you can’t stop the coming of the apocalypse. The ship eventually crashes onto shore and all hell breaks loose. Lucky for you, you’re up in the air with a bunch of guns and ammo. Lucky bastard!

So the story picks up months after- you and your crew have survived, and have decided to continue your duty to fight the good fight, even as other military units have become self-serving hostiles. Fortunately, you are able to link up with some soldiers who team up with you to provide ground support. Securing an old air base as your headquarters, you continue your fight against the zombie hordes, who are a continual threat as the hours tick by.

Aside from the flying missions where you provide air support to your ground team, there is a base building element to ZGS, where you set up your facilities for storing resources and work towards upgrading them. As mentioned, zombie hordes will regularly attack your base, so you’ll also have to fly your gunship to defend your home turf. To help, you can set up walls and barriers around your valuable facilities, and have actual defense towers with machine guns and mortars to help in the defense. Thankfully, buildings that are ‘destroyed’ in these zombie attacks don’t remain permanently ruined when you return to normal status (otherwise I’d call foul for this game), and you won’t lose any of your hard-earned upgrades.
The bread-and-butter gameplay, where you fly missions and air support for your ground teams, gets some more variety with elements such as buildings to enter and loot, barriers and obstacles like derelict buses to destroy and break through. This is a change from the previous game which lacked any such features. Zombies spawn from ‘nests’ which are basically groves of irradiated trees. Some times there are small bands, sometimes there are huge crowds. You’ll have to manage your guns, avoid them overheating (and thus temporarily unusable) and keep a cool head. Your ground team is also armed though, and you can upgrade their armaments so they won’t be helpless when walkers come too close. Zombies themselves come in several varieties- the usual human walkers or shamblers, hellhounds or zombie dogs, and the giant-sized Titans. The kind of zombie may require specific weapons, so you’ll have to work at getting new gear by winning and opening crates which provide you these new resources.

As a F2P game though, Zombie Gunship Survival has the usual tropes- upgrades are bought with resources that are doled out in small amounts with every accomplished mission. Crates, which are often earned in gameplay, take time to open- time that can be ‘rushed’ with gold (that is bought with real-world money). So either you are patient or you’ll spend a few real dollars or whatever to get your team the gear you want. Still, there is stuff that can’t be bought readily- your Headquarters or main building, which is key to all upgrades, can only be upgraded as your character ranks up, so you WILL need to play the game a lot.

Myself, I will admit to have spent about ten dollars to get my base HQ to Level 4 and my Hangar to Level 5, which basically unlocks three gun slots for my gunship. At this point, further upgrades look absurdly far away, so I think this is where I can quit spending and just play and grind. Which is fine, as despite everything- building a base, gearing up a team and riding on an airborne angel of fiery zombie death is pretty awesome and worth a look at if you have an iPad or iPhone.

Tags: , , , ,

The Lone Gamer’s Must-Have iPad Games

Posted in DLC, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, iGaming, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Mobile Games, My Stuff on July 9th, 2015 by thelonegamer

The just-released Don’t Starve is just one of the many Must-Have games on the appstore.

I LOVE my iPad. I own an iPad Air, by the way, and I have no plans of upgrading or getting another tablet. This lovely slate is my constant companion (aside from my Galaxy Note 2), and it is my portable media center. I usually have tons of movies and vids loaded into the media player, but the best part of Apple’s tablet are the GAMES. Emulators not included, I think that the appstore probably has the most and best selection of games you can take with you everywhere. Here are the select few I will never delete from my tablet.

Puzzle Quest. This is the ORIGINAL Puzzle Quest, not the sequel or any of the countless wannabees. Puzzle Quest: Challenge of the Warlords is an awesome blend of Match-3 Puzzle and fantasy roleplaying, with you leading an intrepid adventurer through his or her rise to power, from an apprentice wizard or fledgeling knight struggling to survive against a sewer rat to a master conqueror controlling multiple cities. Everything is fought by matching gems, but the compelling story and addictive gameplay make this a cut above the rest. You can just pick it up and play for short bursts or long campaigns as you will, and the variety of character classes make replayability pretty high.
The one problem with this is, well, it seems to be unavailable on the appstore at present (at least from my appstore), but I managed to re-download it from my purchases list. Unfortunately, it seems to play without any SFX now(only music), but the gameplay is still intact (you can still get this classic on Steam for PC) so I’ll still be playing this probably till doomsday.

Infinity Blade III. Every iPad owner should have this installed, not only to have one single game to make onlookers go ‘OOH’ and ‘AAH’ at your device’s impressive capabilities, but also because it’s an awesome game. IB3 does swiping combat like no other game on the platform. Of course, you have the earlier two games, but I think this finale is the best if only for having a second playable (female) heroine to kill behemoths with.

Dead Trigger. Sometimes you just want to kill zombies with high-powered firearms, and this is the game to scratch that itch. The original DT has some of the best graphics and shooting gameplay on the iPad, with chunky zombies that are just begging to be riddled with hot lead. Yes, Dead Trigger 2 came out years ago, but the original is still a notch better due to the simple fact that you can play it OFFLINE.

Civilization Revolution. Yet another huge strategy title that is perfect to play on the iPad’s large touchscreen, CivRev is your portal to countless hours of empire-building-or-destroying obsessiveness.

Plants VS Zombies HD. The original PvZ is still awesome to this day, again a perfect standalone set compared to the constantly-being-updated iAP-rich sequel. Again, the iPad touchscreen is perfect for this classic, particularly for those marathon Endless sessions.

And these are just the classic oldies I love- I haven’t even gotten to the many fighting/action games and several new treats that I am having so much fun with lately. And with games like Don’t Starve: Pocket Edition and This War of Mine coming soon to the appstore, the iPad is truly one of the best Boredom-Beaters you can have with you.

Fallout Shelter: Unleashing my Inner Overseer

Posted in DLC, Fallout Shelter, Fan Service, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, iGaming, iPad, Mobile Games on June 30th, 2015 by thelonegamer

Vault 13. My own personal Utopia.

Immediately after Bethesda’s magnificent day at E3, when Fallout 4 was announced and the world was cheering the impending arrival of Life After the Apocalypse, I was also excited… but it wasn’t for F4.

Nay, though I was a Bethesda fan, I’m more of an Elder Scrolls guy. I am mad for Skyrim and Oblivion, yet Fallout- well, let’s just say I love the idea, and I did install Fallout 3 on my PC last year- but I never really got into it. The world was just as detailed, so incredibly textured with tons of things to do, interactivity and multiple paths (blow up the city or not?)… arguably it was far better than Skyrim. But then again, the animations- the stiffness of the characters, the unwieldy combat (I still don’t know if it’s really a shooter or a turn-based thing with the VATs) kept me from getting invested. Perhaps Fallout 4, which they say is basically Skyrim with guns (hah) will finally succeed in roping me in (it probably will). But till then- FALLOUT SHELTER (iOS, coming to Android).

From the get-go, I loved the idea. You are an Overseer… the Boss. You’re in charge of the upkeep, the security and the survival of a Vault- which can be as small as a little network of rooms or as large as a virtual city of 200 souls. Your job is to plot the city out, build it, assign jobs to your people, and keep things in order. Sim Colony? Sim Ant Colony? Kinda like that. But its all done with Bethesda’s official Fallout Pip Boy cartoon art style which is incredibly endearing, and just makes it all look, sound and feel official. This isn’t just some knockoff mobile throwaway- this is a bonafide, first party product- this is about as Fallout as Fallout can get.

And it’s FREE. Well, there is the one very unnecessary bit of in-app purchase, where you are given the choice to purchase ‘Lunchboxes’ which contain cards that will give you anything from a few bottlecaps to a suit of Powered Armor (got one of those… SWEET). You earn Lunchboxes in the course of the game, by achieving goals, so its never really needed to actually buy them with real money.
Otherwise- the gameplay is all free and it’s all good. Though this may seem like a simple mobile game, its really not- and after a while you just have to appreciate the detail that goes into this game. Every single person in your care has a name, has stats. You assign them to rooms- from working on Power Plants or Water Purification Stations or just chilling in Living Quarters or taking stock in Storage Rooms. Rooms are run by power, people run on food and water, so you have to build the adequate number of rooms to supply these resources to you, and you have to manually tap a room to gather these resources- it may be a bit tedious but it is what you do (ah, the toils of an Overseer…) and keeps things running in more or less real-time.

Send out dwellers to explore, find stuff and get some sun.

As you go along and grow your Vault’s population, either by attracting newcomers from outside or having a baby born (by coupling a man and a woman together in a Living Space), you eventually open up more rooms with different functions- mostly to train your dwellers’ stats, and eventually to produce even more power/food/water. Along the way you’ll have to handle things like the occasional fire, rad-roach infestations (DAMN those things are dangerous) and the inevitable Raider Attack.
You’ll need to have your dwellers armed, and weapons can only be acquired from Lunch Boxes or by foraging outdoors- you can send out one of your dwellers to explore the outside world, and he or she will be able to find stuff like weapons and clothing (which gives stat bonuses). Having your people suited up and packing heat is the best way to keep your Vault secure and safe.

And well, with all that- it’s up to you. This game has proven to be maddeningly addictive, and ever since I installed this on my iPad, I’ve been constantly keeping tabs on my Personal Vault. At first times were hard, and my dwellers were demoralized, starving, parched and under-equipped.

Fast forward to today- I’ve got over a hundred dwellers in a veritable underground metropolis, all of them happy and armed to the teeth. Raiders regularly attack but they’re mincemeat to my militia (a single family of warriors I’ve trained myself). I have a nuclear reactor and a Nuka Cola plant newly built, and I’ve decide to tear down the original Old Vault in the upper reaches to make way for a more organized, aesthetic layout. It’s all bliss for my Obsessive-Compulsive Dictator side.

That all said, I can probably consider Fallout Shelter as a truly exceptional mobile game- it’s absolutely perfect for tablets like the iPad in terms of controls, interface, the large screen, and the ease of which you can just pull it out of your bag to quickly check on your Vault’s progress at anytime. It’s charming, compelling and wonderfully entertaining… well, depending mostly on how you like these sorts of games. If you love building, are a bit OC, and are more about watching and admiring than actively shooting or controlling a central main character- this should be something you may want to pick up. Heck, if you own an iPad, there’s no reason to NOT get this game.

I do hope that Bethesda continues to support this game with more content and updates- it’s certainly not without flaws and could do with a tweak or two. Maybe a Hardcore mode, where when a dweller dies, you cannot resurrect them (with caps)? I dunno. For now though, everything’s as blissful as can be. WHO NEEDS FALLOUT 4? Just kidding.

Dead Fantasy’s Monty Oum Passes Away

Posted in Action Adventure, Dead or Alive, Fan Service, Fantasy, Fighting Games, Final Fantasy, Gadgets, Game to Movies, Game-related Events, Gaming, Movies on February 3rd, 2015 by thelonegamer

A Preview of Monty’s Dead Fantasy 8 at AKon22.

You may or may not have heard of the name Monty Oum, but if you surf the web a lot and watch anime, you may have seen some of the earlier work of this late web animator. He became known mostly for his cross-over Machinima videos, featuring characters from different franchises clashing together in battles you’d probably only see otherwise in fan fics or fanboy wet dreams- such as his first work, Haloid (bringing together Halo and Metroid) in 2007.

The Released episodes of the Dead Fantasy Series.

His most popular work is arguably the Dead Fantasy series, which threw together characters from the fighting game Dead or Alive against the heroes of Final Fantasy. It was all done using the actual models from the games, but with fight scenes and an eye for angles and dramatic effect that would do Hong Kong fight choreographers and anime directors proud. The Dead Fantasy series would go on for six episodes in the next few years, until Monty went into a prolonged hiatus, showing only brief previews of upcoming parts afterwards.
When Oum announced his employment with Rooster Teeth as a web series animator, his indie works were put on hold. Ten days ago, he was hospitalized and in a coma following a severe allergic reaction to a routine medical procedure. Despite all efforts including crowd-sourced funding to support him, Monty Oum passed away on Feb. 1, 2015. He was 33.

I don’t really know if the cool videos Monty created were art, but they were definitely entertainment and brought many a fanboy dreams to eye-opening reality. One can only imagine now if only he was given a chance to, at what he could have accomplished with his wonderful eye and imagination for action-fantasy. Thanks for the awesomeness, Monty.

New iMac is in the House!

Posted in Gadgets, Game-related Events, Gaming, My Stuff on August 26th, 2014 by thelonegamer

I’m back! Well, I never left- I was just incommunicado thanks to my home workstation- a 20-inch iMac- went KAPUT. It took me a while (about three or so days), but I finally got a replacement in a brand-spankin’ new 21-inch iMac with Retina Display.
The important stuff is that it goes up to 2.7 GHz speed with its Quad Core processors, 8 GB RAM and 1 Terabyte of HD space. This means that editing videos for my Skyrim Let’s Play series will be faster- IF I can get iMovie HD to work with the incumbent OS (Mavericks).

Anyways, what else is on my plate? I got a copy of Diablo III Ultimate Evil Edition for Xboz One- nope, it’s still not the game that will make me buy a PS4. Hope to get into that soon- I may even post vids for it as a blind Let’s Play series. Maybe.

Hoping that more updates for Tekken 7, Mortal Kombat X and Killer Instinct 2 come along soon in the next few weeks. Admittedly, another reason why I haven’t updated is that most of my fave upcoming games aren’t releasing too much information as of late. Hopefully that will change soon. We’ll see. Till then, I’ll be playing with my new workstation (by installing Steam on it, natch. WAHAHAH).

Infinity Blade III Updated with ‘Blademasters’!

Posted in DLC, Extra Costumes, Fan Service, Fantasy, Fighting Games, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, iGaming, Infinity Blade III, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch on May 23rd, 2014 by thelonegamer

Chair takes us through the newest additions to their awesome iOS slasher.

If you’re like me, Infinity Blade III is one of the titles you’ll never take off your iOS device, and if so, this is going to pay off HUGE today when you update the game. Chair has added gobs of new content yet again, upgrading your game to a new chapter- Blademasters!

The update sees the return of an old rival- Ryth from Infinity Blade II. He’s gotten a lot stronger and is aching for a rematch, along with cool new Solar Trans weapons (AKA Lightsabers!!!) to use in the duels. Aside from that, there’s also a totally new foe to encounter- The Collector, who is pretty scary since if you lose to him, he takes your freakin’ weapon (you gotta face him again and win to get it back).

Aside from that, there are quite a few new options to make the game a lot more streamlined and accessible, such as the option to use your in-game credits (Which I now have THOUSANDS of somehow) to hurry up upgrading and such. There’s also a silly but pretty cool new Customization mode where you can color Siris or Isa with a new coat of paint, or give them some cool/funny animations. Not quite a Create-a-Deathless mode, but it’s very cute and much appreciated for a game that has been out for months and months.

Not sure if there’s an Infinity Blade IV coming (there should be!), but hey, there’s still tons more fun in Infinity Blade III. If by some reason you still don’t have the game, it’s currently on sale at just $2.99 on the AppStore. Go get it now and start slashing!

Fighter Within Review (XBox One): The Bad Fighter that’s Actually Good (For You)

Posted in DLC, Fighting Games, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Kinect, My Stuff, Xbox One on March 4th, 2014 by thelonegamer

Fighter Within certainly looks and moves great- at least, on the screen.

My Xbox One is about a couple of months old. I have two games on it, both downloaded from online. One is Killer Instinct, which I feel as of right now is an incomplete game so I won’t be reviewing it (although I do agree it’s pretty cool). The other title in my XBOne’s HD is Fighter Within.

Many have already given their say on this ‘fighter’, and a lot of it isn’t very good. In fact, it’s perhaps one of the most panned games on the XB1 Lineup. But still, I got the game for my next-gen console wholeheartedly, and without regret. For starters, since my console comes with a Kinect2 out of the box, it gives me a reason to use the motion control device. Then there’s the other reason, which I will get into later. Anyway, let’s move on.

Fighter Within is ostensibly a mainstream fighting game, but with a BIG caveat- it’s a KINECT fighting game, and that should pretty much be a big flaming sign to beat ‘em up fans that reads, ‘ABANDON ALL HPE, ALL WHO ENTER’. Also, this is from Ubisoft, whose first foray into Kinect-based fighting was the similarly-named Fighter Uncaged (heck, FW is probably the spiritual sequel) which was, to put it nicely, a piece of shit.
ANYWAY, at least Fighter Within is a mainstream fighter-esque title, whereas Fighter Uncaged was a sausage fest MMA sports thingie, which made it about as sexy as, well, real-life all-male MMA. Ugh. That means at least FW has female fighters, more exciting moves than just punches, kicks and man-hugs, plus it has license to have a chopsocky story aside from the generic rise to the championship plot. Streetfighter this ain’t- it’s a martial arts title more into melee, close-in combat with no fireballs or super combos, putting it more in line with Virtua Fighter. That being said, comparing this to VF is like comparing a deep dish pizza to a piece of toast with some ketchup and bit of Cheez Wiz.

You get thirteen fighters (one you unlock after finishing Story mode) to use, all of which LOOK unique, and can play through either Single Player modes or multiplayer with a friend. Like all fighters, the object is to beat your opponents until they don’t get up no more, with whatever way you can involving your chosen fighter’s body parts, the odd stick lying on the floor, random poles to swing off of, and the arena borders- outside of which are apparently rigged to render anyone stepping outside them unconscious.

Who will prevail, blonde or brunette? Only their iron will (and your flapping arms) will decide!

Giving the game credit where it is due, the game looks quite good. The graphical highlights of the game are of course the fighters themselves with large and very detailed character models. Costumes are well-done with realistic textures and nice flappy parts, even if design-wise a lot are on the generic side (bought that from the Lin Kuei Ninja Shoppe, eh?).

Fighters boast of realistic skin, and they get sweaty or bruised depending on hits they get (this is no MK so it never gets too bloody). I particularly like the way the characters have a bit of an edge to them- such as Van, the cute Chun-Li female who is pretty but still looks like she can kick your ass.

On the other hand, some characters are a bit too over the top, particularly the kilted Faergas who looks so brutish I think he came from Mordor instead of Scotland. The stages in the game are also very well-detailed with tons of clutter to smash into, adding once more to the gritty feel of the fighting.

Animation-wise, characters move well and smoothly, and the special techniques and attacks are well-animated and pretty much the highlights of the game’s action. Regular attacks, specifically kicks, look kinda awkward though as they follow the movements of the player- who is most probably flailing about like crazy. So in short, the game looks quite good- a bit on the generic and derivative side, but good.

Every stage has a musical score that more or less fits the environment or sets the mood. Character voices are decent, I guess, as well as the yelps and grunts. Most of the voice work in the game is in the story scenes during the Story or Initiation mode, which is fully-voiced. What can I say? The VOs are decent. Not amazing, not too over the top, but decent. Sound effects of hits and punches are also properly hard-hitting.
The worst part of the sound part of this game? The Announcer. Yeah, he’s not really BAD, but since the characters don’t shout out their attacks, the announcer does it for them. Ad he does it a lot. Couple that with the fact that there aren’t so many attacks anyway, you’ll be sick of the phrase ‘HIGH STRAIGHT COMBO’ very quickly. No, he cannot be toggled off.

Did I say that this game was kinda like Virtua Fighter? I lied. It’s more like the original Mortal Kombat in that about 80 percent of moves are shared by EVERY SINGLE FIGHTER. This means that everyone punches and kicks the same, whether they’re a kung-fu chick from Vietnam, an American MMA fighter or an Haitian Voodoo priestess. They all fight like kickboxers. The difference is in that every fighter has their own unique ‘Power Slam’ or ‘Power Attack’(more on that in a bit) and some attacks are accessible to only a few. So females can do agile, female-type attacks like swing off poles and flip kicks, while the hard men can do headbutts. Not many moves means the fighting is actually pretty basic and you’ll see everything everyone can do in a while. A bit more moves really could have helped this game’s depth or replay a lot.

To KO an opponent, you use punches and kicks, but the most powerful moves in the game- such as the Power Slams and special techniques- can only be done by charging up your Ki Meter (done Dragonball Z-style by striking a charging-up pose IRL). The funny thing here is that the meter doesn’t charge up in any other manner- unlike in more quality fighters like Streetfighter or Soul Calibur. So really- there is no reason for any fighter with a brain to NOT charge up as soon and as often as you can to finish the fight quickly and interestingly.
Yes, Charging up leaves you ‘open’, but there’s really not much an opponent can do save punch or kick you, while the attacks you can do with Ki are far more devastating. So a fight between human players invariably turns into who charges up first, does their attack, they the other guy retaliates, until one is KO’ed- rendering fights into cutscene slap-matches (and that’s basically what special Ki techniques are- cutscenes).

This basically means that Fighter Within really isn’t a serious fighter since it lacks depth, technique and a good system that you can learn and master. It’s all pretty dumb, system-wise.

Single Player content is more pronounced in this game, with an Initiation mode (Story) where you play through a lengthy plotline as Matt AKA Mr. Generic. The story is told through fully-voiced talking head screens with static character art- man, it could have been tons better with at least real-time animated cutscenes, but nope. The story isn’t bad, but it’s a bit silly and a bit too long. Once you play it once, you’ll never need to play it again.

Then there’s Duel Mode, where you can set up a fight between your chosen fighter and any other character in the roster. Arcade Mode lets you play through a string of fights as any of the characters, but no endings await at the end.
So what replay is there? Not much, just the kinda-cool animations of the attacks and finishing moves, which actually are pretty well-done and worth seeing. That’s about it.

So, with all that, IS there any value to this Ubisoft-made Kinect fighter? Well, at least- it actually controls well. Get used to the Kinect and pressing buttons on the screen (just leave it to muscle memory) and you’ll at least get this game to do what you want. Fighters will indeed respond relatively well to your gestures, from punches to kicks and special techniques.
I’ve heard or read some talk online that this game would have been salvageable IF it had an option to be played WITH a regular Xbox One controller instead of the Kinect2. I say, NOPE. As it is, playing this with a controller would be pretty boring and basic, and would negate the game’s best aspect- that playing it makes you SWEAT.

What ultimately saves this game for me- no actually what makes me happy that I got this game is that it gives me my money’s worth from the Kinect2 attached to my XBox One… and in doing so, it gives me a really good workout.

If you’re a gamer like me who doesn’t get to regularly do outdoor sports or go to the gym, this is probably a great way to work up a sweat. Play through the Arcade mode or do some Duel Matches and you’ll be sweating up in a while. Do that regularly and you’ll probably shed some pounds while pounding on the CPU enemies’ faces.
It’s perfect for me since I hate Rhythm games and can never be caught dancing if my life depended on it. But beating in someone’s face? I’m game.

So this game may be a crappy fighting game mainstream-wise, but it can be something that gets out of shape gamers the exercise outlet they need. With that considered, I say that if you get an Xbox One (which has Kinect2 included anyway), Fighter Within should be a MUST GET. The only hurdle there is that instead of it being packaged in the box, it’s a separate title you have to buy (and admittedly the full price of 59.99 is pretty steep). But look at it this way- you get healthy and the investment in the pounds shed playing this game is worth that little amount.

So that’s why I say, while Fighter Within will never be a serious beat ‘em up, it’s also probably the single fighting game around that can get you healthy! Play this regularly and you’ll get live AND play more games longer- great deal if you ask me!

Autumn Dynasty: Warlords Begins its Conquest on iOS

Posted in DLC, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, iGaming, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Mobile Games on February 26th, 2014 by thelonegamer

Pocket warfare at its finest.

I am always looking for a good, long and persistent strategy title for my portable devices- something you can play over long periods of time, look at what you’ve accomplished so far and just sucks you in for more. And no, anything like Little Deathstar is not what I am wanting.
Wargaming and conquest strategy games would surely be a good fit on the iOS platform, given the tablet format. But really, truly awesome strategy titles outside of Tower Defense are few; real RTS games on the appstore are rare, or aren’t really all that.

Well, look no further, it seems- Autumn Dynasty: Warlords has hit the appstore and it seems to strike all the right notes for all you aspiring Empire-Builders out there. This is actually a sequel title, with the original putting you in charge of Oriental armies you controlled with intuitive (though a bit iffy) brush stroke commands.
This sequel seems tons bigger and more ambitious than the first game, turning into a full-blown war of conquest of all the warring states in the game’s rather large theater of operations. You play as one of the feuding warlords, determined to unite all under your iron-fisted rule. The game boasts the same eye-friendly art style and direction of the first game, a LONG campaign boasting of over 40 hours(!) of gameplay, real-time battles, persistent unit and officer upgrades/development and tons of tactics and options to employ like espionage and inciting rebellions. This looks to be one of those titles you will install on your iDevice and never remove ever.

Best of all, the game is a non-F2P premium release with no (so far) IAP which is reason enough for me to call it freakin’ awesome. I definitely recommend this to fans of Romance of the Three Kingdoms, Age of Empires and any RTS or 4X Strategy titles. Games like this don’t come every season after all.

The Lone Gamer Goes NEXT-GEN with XBox One!

Posted in DLC, Fan Service, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, Kinect, My Stuff, Xbox One on February 3rd, 2014 by thelonegamer

How easy is it to get into XBOne in Manila? The Lone Gamer tells all!

I’ve been holding off going into Next-Gen for quite a while, but for some reason over the weekend I finally got it into my head to upgrade. To prepare, I disassembled my old Xbox360, packed it up along with the accompanying game library (which consisted of quite a few awesome games, btw) and moved it lock, stock and barrel out of my room. A couple of hours later, after a trip to Data Blitz, I had my new XBox One, or simply XBOne as some online have come to calling it.

FYI, I am in the Philippines, so that affects conditions for buying and using game consoles.
The XBOne cost me about Php27,000 pesos, which is about 600 US dollars. This is a fairly good price, considering it adds in whatever taxes or such already. The package includes one controller and the Kinect 2 bundled in whether you like it or not. No games, albeit there are available games to be bought separately for about 2.5K pesos each. I bought none- I already had a copy of Assassin’s Creed IV for my PS3, BF4 is supposedly a buggy mess and I’m not really a COD fan. I have no interest whatsoever in Injustice and if I’m ever buying Tomb Raider Definitive Edition, it will be on PS4 (which runs 60FPS supposedly compared to the XB1′s 30).

I went home and proceeded on assembling my new console. This was a US model, so it ran only on 110 Volts (BAH) instead of the autovolt Asian model that is yet to come someday. Luckily, I already had a Transformer for converting voltage, and it was simplicity itself to plug everything in, including an internet cable. The Kinect went on top, alone on a shelf space which had previously housed the now-absent XBox360′s game library. I turned it on and VOILA, the bright green of the XBox One screen greeted me. I logged in with an existing Games for Windows account I had, and I was in. Of course, the first thing that popped up was a 580MB update. Glorious!

Adam Sessler’s long review of MS’s next-gen box.

After about an hour or so, the XBOne was mine to command once again. Since my cable connection didn’t have an HDMI connector, I could not use my XBOne to control my TV- not an issue anyway. I proceeded to try out the Kinect 2 gestures, swiping past the menus and selecting stuff to try. It was simple enough and the Kinect responsive, but I’ll use my controller as opposed to using gestures for the most part.
Ah, the controller. The XBOne controller is sleeker, more ‘professional’ looking than the previous Xbox360 controller, or even the black GFW wireless controller. The Home button in the center lights up with that wondrously bright white light you only see on cellphones or SUV foglights. It’s a nice controller, and playing with it a bit proved that the stick is more than adequate for fighting game motions (more on that in a bit).

Dead Rising 3 is one of the few disc games already available locally I plan to buy soon for my XBOne.

A Issue that Needs Addressing…
Here’s a big caveat for other Filipino gamers looking to go into Next-Gen on the XBOne. Currently, the Philippines is NOT among the supported territories for XBOne (although other XBox Live or Windows services are). So you cannot purchase anything on the XBOne store with your local credit card. This is pretty important- You will need a US Billing Address to input into your settings before you can actually buy. So take that for what it is- get past this step and you’re good to go.

Once you get past the Billing Address hurdle, you can put currency into your XBOne wallet via prepaid cards for XBox Live currency. This is, IMO, far safer and more convenient than actually using a credit card. These currency cards may be purchased at local game stores such as Data Blitz as physical cards or from online as digital codes. My recommendation is getting them from Play-Asia, since Amazon (which also sells codes) only sells them to residents within the US.

Anyway, my first games for my XBOne were both digital downloads- Double Helix’s Killer Instinct (I bought the $39.99 Ultra Edition) and the apparently much-panned Kinect game, Fighter Within.

I’ll probably go into each game more in detail as I play them but this early I can say that Killer Instinct is FREAKIN’ awesome. The game looks great on the HD screen in 1080p, moves like butter, and controls even using the controller are razor sharp. Even this early I was able to go through the training mode and do combo strings with just a few tries. The controls after all are simple enough with nothing more complex than the standard, classic ‘Dragon Punch’ Z-motion. It was fun to play through the tutorial, though I haven’t tried the single player game yet- this game is, of course, still hamstringed by the lack of Single Player content and the tiny, basic roster but I expect that eventually this game will pay off if and when Double Helix fills in the large gaping holes with more fighters, a Story Mode and more and cooler customizations and costumes.

As for Fighter Within, I’ll take that up in a separate review.

All Set for the Future of Gaming!
All in all, my purchase of my new XBOne came off with only a slight temporary hitch (the US address was a bit tricky), but otherwise installing it and getting it working was mostly easy and trouble-free. The console is a slick, lovely (if freakishly HEAVY) piece of kit, and I am very happy with it.

I do have to say that other less-adventurous gamers here in the Philippines are better off getting the Sony Playstation 4, which WAS officially released and I expect supported locally by Sony (the PS4 is also cheaper by a bit). The only reason why I haven’t gotten a PS4 myself though is- well, there are currently no games I want available yet. So for now, I’m an XBOne gamer and currently aglow with delight. Score one for Microsoft then- now, MS, why don’t you make the Philippines a supported territory already, dammit.

Skyrim Redone: Turning Skyrim into a Whole New Ball Game

Posted in DLC, Fan Service, Fantasy, Gadgets, Game Advertising, Game-related Events, Gaming, mods, Open World Games, PC Gaming on December 31st, 2013 by thelonegamer

Gopher takes players through installing SkyRE step-by-step.

The Elder Scrolls V Skyrim truly is The Ultimate Single Player game (or RPG). The PC version, at least- more than two years in, it’s STILL being played by countless armchair warriors and sorcerers. Thanks to thousands (and counting) awesome mods that keep the game refreshed, new and ever-growing, ever-changing… guys like me are still enjoying it to this day. Now, in my case, this was even before I discovered this GEM of a mod called SkyRE- or Skyrim Redone.

SkyRE basically changes up the core gameplay of Skyrim- specifically Perks and combat. Perks are more detailed, more specific and there are TONS of them, which means you can specialize in particular weapons, skills or magic- something the Vanilla game didn’t really go deep enough into. With SkyRE, you can become a master fencer who specializes in light swords and avoiding hits, or an unyielding crusader who charges into combat like a juggernaut, blows bouncing off him like raindrops. Or you could be a steampunk mage who can conjure up dwemer robots to fight for him, or mix up explosives. In other words- this game is now deeper and far more enjoyable for the stat-crazy OC like me- and thus has become pretty much a totally different game.

Brodual’s series of vids on SkyRE is quite nice to watch.

The trouble (or coolness) with SkyRE’s perks is that- there are so freakin’ many. It’s like a huge menu where everything sounds delicious, and you there with just so much cash. But that just makes it all the more awesome in terms of replay value. Also, using a mod called the Skyrim Community Uncapper, skills aren’t limited to the 100 cap, which allows you to keep learning, keep earning perk points, and keep yourself ever-growing.

Then there’s the Combat. Even without any separate combat mods, SkyRE makes Stamina your fuel for fighting. You have to keep on your toes, and fight intelligently or you will DIE pretty fast, and often. More mods can enhance the fighting even more, but this all just makes it all the more challenging, and satisfying.

Aside from now playing a SkyRE game, it’s also cool for me that the Skyrim Let’s Play series that I enjoy are all SkyRE-based games: Gophervids, SorcererDave and recently, AinOnline. Now I can identify more with my fave LPs.

Man, discovering SkyRE means another year of playing Skyrim. Really. Boggles the mind!