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Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider556
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 Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider

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Dark Lord of the Sixth
Dark Lord of the Sixth

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PostSubject: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Dishonored   Sat Jul 17, 2010 3:54 am

I've posted a lot of stuff since I got here. See? *point to post count* That's quite a bit. Among the puns and general zaniness, you'll also find a number of reviews for various games I've played. I thought I'd collect them all in one place.
I'm a narcissist and just love to look at my work. Cool
Or it might be that I often see people on the forum looking for info on a game. A lot of the time they're coming into the topic really late, and the review is buried way back there. I figure that it'd be easier if mine were all in one place.
To anyone else who does game reviews, I think it would help having other threads like this one. That way they can get multiple opinions with easy access.

This thread will be structured like this:
The second post will serve as an index. When a new review is added to the thread I'll place a link directly to it there. One touch, easy access.
Just like Liam. Nananana

Rules of the thread:
Feel free to comment on the reviews themselves, either to agree or disagree. More opinions are better. Chatter about a game should be left to the game's own thread though. If you think you can give a better description about the sound quality in Ratchet & Clank Future, then go right ahead and post it here. However, if you just want to say "MW2's ACR pwns!!1!", then please keep it in the MW2 thread (even though it does pwn).
Note that while this thread will constantly be updated, it is particularly "Under Construction" right at the moment. I've got several reviews out there right now, so it may take me a while to track them all down.

Now, then. If you're looking for that list of links, it's riiiiiiight....


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PostSubject: Re: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider   Sat Jul 17, 2010 3:54 am


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PostSubject: Re: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider   Sat Jul 17, 2010 4:29 am

Final Fantasy XIII

I've put it in the style of a GameFaqs review. As always, feel free to disagree with me and make your own opinions.

Naturally, Square's reputation for graphics is still much deserved. Everything about the game is pretty, from the cut scenes to the normal in game graphics, to the battle animations(not that you have much time to admire them). My only complaint is that playing on a nonHD tv makes some of the numbers hard to read in the menu. Other than that, it's everything we've come to expect from Square.

Story: 7
Well, they've certainly addressed my concerns about XII not having enough focus on story...
But they certainly could've done a better job. At it's base the story is good enough, we just don't spend that much time exploring it. Despite all the cinematics, only in a handful of instances do I feel genuinely pulled into the story. The biggest part of the story is missing. The definition of the world. We're always given new info to fill us in, but it comes either in the form of cutscenes that are relevant to the story, or through pages of text in the Datalog. Square's forgotten that to make you really like one of their worlds, they have to let you live in it. Of course, if they're trying to stay in line with the story they've chosen, then all the people are rather opposed to having you live there. And that's the kicker. It makes no sense within the confines of the story that you would be able to run around in a world where everyone hates you. No one's going to want your characters to help them or hire them for jobs when they have a reputation as evil incarnate. Square made a choice for the sake of the story, and while I think it limits the game overall, I have to respect it.
One other thing I will note about the story is that it seems very Japanesey to me. I could see this being made into an anime without much change.

Characters: 6
The clipped pace of the story leaves little room for true character development. For the most part the characters go from angry/sad-->epiphany-->heroic. The only character that can be said to really develop is Hope. Thing is, there isn't much room for development anyway. The stages the characters are in is fine, it's just the occasional transition that's a bit abrupt.
Example, Lightning is overprotective of the only family she has. When someone tries to take Serah away, she gets angry, becomes determined to save her. When something happens to Serah, she blames herself first, then lashes out at others. She becomes bent on revenge.
This is perfectly acceptable behavior for a character in these circumstances. It makes sense.
As for the NPCs, there's not much character to them at all. You only get to speak directly to a few of them. Most of the rest just say things you'd expect them to, but that most often has little or nothing to do with you. Again a chance for more immersion is lost.
You're only given one real villain, and I can't say that I was impressed. I won't give anything away, but I will say that I just don't feel the same drive to defeat them. They're not like some other villains who give you nightmares where they show up to cut you in half with the Masamune. (Darn Bowser. *shivers*)

Not much to say here. Nothing bad, really. All the sounds fit where they are supposed to, and while the music doesn't have a truly standout song (eg, Eyes On Me, etc.), there isn't really anything wrong with it. If I had to pick a complaint, it'd be the loss of the classic Victory Fanfare.

Ahh. Now we see the violence inherent in the system!/Monty Python
This is a tough one to score because while everything here works pretty well with only the occasional hiccup, there are things I miss, as well as some missed opportunities.
Let's start with level design. They certainly look imaginative, but as many have said before me they're pretty much just tubes. You go from the start of the level to the end with little deviation. What few things pass for puzzles involve walking to where you might conceivably have not thought to go and hitting a button to lower a bridge or walkway. Come on, Square. Even a newb DM could do better. Playing through these killing tubes gave me a -1 to Creativity that lasted until I played through Portal again. One particular flaw in the only real open world section stands out enough to bug me. There's a mission where you're required to have a chocobo to access the C'ieth stone to begin it. Ascending the point where it is and walking a couple steps causes the chocobo to throw you and leave. The mission mark is nearby, and is, imho, the best mission ever, and completeing it removes a barrier by the Stone. Unfortunately, if you want to go see what you've opened, then you've got to go get another chocobo. And it's a pretty long walk. This could easily have been fixed with the ability to call a chocobo.
Combat was a darn sight better. The greater part of the game is mostly easy if you close to max your Crystarium in each chapter. It's hard to go wrong. But after a certain point the game really picks up the pace. Boss fights, as well as some normal battles, really require planning and quick thinking. The paradigm system doesn't just work, it shines. There's not a fight before chapter 11 that can't be won through stategy instead of stats. It's not just a matter of 'grind here until you can win'. Very impressive. My only problem with it is that you can't change what you really need on the fly. If you find you're using the wrong strategy, then you have to retry and bring other characters/equipment to the table. If you had the ability to save Paradigm decks for certain character groups so you could switch in and out when needed with only a minor pause, or even just switch which character you control on the fly, then it would make a great system even better.
Sadly, once you get to the postgame is when you make up for all the lack of grinding. The C'ieth Stone missions (which are the focus of the postgame) just don't provide enough character growth. The insane costs of your secondary roles make it impossible to get anything done with them until you can handle things that give a lot of CP, which you can't do until you close to max your primary roles. This kinda makes the focus of your initial grind to make characters that can grind better stuff. Not really a lot of fun.
The Upgrade system has another new idea. You build new and better stuff by scrounging together what you can find and buy, and make what you can of what you have, actually getting real use out of the things enemies drop. Unfortunately, you won't have any use for this feature until near the endgame. You find weapon upgrades when you need them. This means that maxing your weapons is pretty well reduced to another postgame grind for parts, or rather for money to buy parts which is just far more efficient.
There are all of two minigames to be had. One is a short, but entertaining mech control minigame. The other is Chocobo treasure hunting. This, like so much else, is kind of linear. You'll basically be mounting up and patroling the areas where you think there's treasure. If it's there, then you get it. No skill needed.
Lastly, the Missions. They range from challenging to tear you hair out tough. Prepare to die a lot. Strategy is paramount here too, but now you really need the stats to back it up (hence the grinding). The comparison has been drawn to the Hunts from FFXII, of course. And while this is certainly enjoyable, I must say as a matter of personal opinion that the Hunts and rare game from FFXII are largely superior. I liked how you could engage in multiple hunts at a time, something you can't do with missions for no good reason I can see. But more than that, I liked the way you always had to flush out rare game, adding a lot to the whole 'hunting' feel. Learn your quarry, then lure it out before you strike. Again, XIII is more linear in that for these you just go from Stone A to Mark B.

Replay value: Relatively Low.

It simply isn't fair to compare a perfectly good game to games you already know and love within the same series. If you have established favorites, then it's at a severe disadvantage, and the score would suffer for it. To that end, I'm giving the game two scores. One to show how well the game has done, and one to show where it ranks among it's predecessors.
As a game on it's own merit: 7 out of 10 Almost everything they try works well, and the story is enjoyable. I had a good bit of fun playing this game.
As a Final Fantasy: 4 out of 10 This seems a bit harsh, even by my standards, I know. The game was fun, but I've come to expect much more of this series. Here's hoping Square listens to their fans' feedback for the next game. It doesn't have to be the same old formula, but they can't lose sight of what their fans want. Especially after having been kept waiting so long.

Original thread is here:


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PostSubject: Re: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider   Sat Jul 17, 2010 4:49 am

Ghostbusters: The Video Game

Single Player Section

The game is an entertaining mix of classic Ghostbusters story, comedy, and action.
10 to 12 hour game. Fairly short, I know. This isn't necessarily a bad thing. You could really tell from the writing that they're not used to making terribly long narratives. I'm not knocking the story or writing by any means. Every word and sequence fits the Ghostbusters style like a glove. (Not an OJ glove, either.) But if it had been a lot longer, I think the game might have suffered. The short length doesn't make it unworthy of purchase, in my opinion. If you've ever played the first Devil May Cry you'll know that it can be completed within 5 hours once you know it, but it has a lot to go back for.
On the other hand, 60 bones is a lotta bones for 12 hours. So if you're strapped for cash it could probably wait and it wouldn't kill you.

Multiplayer Section

The Good:
1. Variety of Challenge Modes--Protection: Has you guarding some beacon like thingys that the ghosts are trying to make explode. Destruction: Has you trying to destroy what amounts to ghost generators. Slime Dunk: You compete against other players to capture the most multicolored Slimers with different point values. Containment: Catch as many ghosts as you can while the clock runs down, but each capture puts time on the clock. Survival: Try to not die as waves of ghosts (up to 10 waves) try to make you die. Fairly challenging. Thief: Ghosts try to make out off with your four artifacts. You get more points for the more you have left. Campaign Mode: This is a set of three of the above modes with a winner determined after each round.
2. The difficulty scales with the number and level of players. This pretty much means you have to work at it to be in over your head. Though in Unranked games you can set the difficulty to whatever you want.
3. All the game modes provide you with a bunch of the fun gameplay you are used to in the Single Player, just you and some buddies bustin' ghosts. And, yes, bustin' does indeed make you feel good.
4. Unlike in Single Player your ammo is limited (excluding the proton stream) to what you start with and what you pick up. This is good as it keeps people from spamming the slime tether stun/insta-trap, giving everyone a more fair chance.
5. The ability to select any Ghostbuster or the Newb. Just for one's own amusement.
6. New ghosts not seen in the Single Player game as well as unique Most Wanted ghosts that are tougher, stronger, and involved with your trophies.

The Not So Good:
1. Simplicity. While the game modes are all pretty fun, I just can't find any real depth to the challenges.
2. What Awards?: After each match you are given one "Award". These are the ribbons (R2) of Ghostbusters. Some of them are self explanatory like Most Revived or Medic. But others like Broke or Light Show make me wonder what I did. You can guess, but nowhere have I seen an solid explanation.
3. Glitchy. I have encountered a few of these myself, and read up on others. Things like going for the trophy for catching all the Most Wanted ghosts and not having it unlock. Seeing as this would definitely take a while to do, I can see why the people it has happened to have so much anger towards Atari.
4. Questionable Support. Atari has seemingly no care for fixing the few problems that are on the game now. It isn't known whether or not any patches are in the future, or if Atari is just going to say, "Good luck." and that be the end of it.
5. Whur's 'ma Soot?: This one's kind of a personal gripe, but I wanna say it anyway. I got the Game Stop code. I downloaded and installed it. I followed the directions on the voucher. Not to be found is my blasted GB2 flight suit. It says I can activate it in the Options menu, in either the Single or Multiplayer games, but said option is not in either place. Grr.

Overall Rating for Multiplayer
I give it a 3......out of 5. (Sessler style.)

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PostSubject: Re: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider   Sat Jul 17, 2010 5:50 am


A little belated, but here's my review for the main game of Borderlands. This'll be the same style as the review of the DLC below.

Graphics: 8/10
Everything in the game looks nice, but Pandora is such a dead planet, that it's kinda boring to look at after a while. Later on the environments change up a good bit, but it never looses that Wasteland feel. Which is what they were going for, so I can't really fault them. The guns, which almost overshadow the characters as the stars of the game, are where you'll see the most diverse graphics. The characters are all well done, and you can customize their color schemes, which is a nice touch.

Sound: 8/10
The background music isn't bad, but there's nothing spectacular. Except for the main theme, Ain't No Rest for the Wicked by Cage the Elephant. It's awesome, and can be heard here. (Video is dumb, so pay it no mind.) As for the sound effects, their a sight better than the background music. The different gun types do sound different, and each effect fits it's weapon well. Voice acting is great, what there is of it. Your characters don't really talk except to spout amusing one liners when they kill enemies with a critical hit. Everyone else talks a lot though, and how it sounds goes a long way to making these characters as memorable as they are.

Game Play: 10/10
Excellent. They've certainly made good on their claim that this is a hybrid of an FPS and an RPG. There are elemental affiliations for weapons and creatures. Every type of creature has one or more 'elite' versions that are a lot tougher to bring down, really more like mini bosses. The bosses themselves are alright, but I do wish they'd put more work into them. In the DLCs that follow, they do a lot to make up for this.
Characters gain experience and levels as they progress which serves two purposes. Firstly, factors in determining how much damage you do to enemies, and how much you take from them. If an enemy is higher level, it'll take longer to kill, and kill you pretty quickly too. You're warned of tougher enemies by helpful little Skull icon appearing next to their name.
Secondly, at every level you gain a skill point to be placed into a skill up to 5, each one increasing the skill's effectiveness. There are three different trees for each character, and all are open to you. Each tree has four levels. Once five points are in the first level (total points, they need not be in one skill) you can access the second level. What results is a varied way to customize each character for your personal play style, though each character has it's own combat role to play...which brings us to the main point for the game.
The Multiplayer. The entire game can be completed alone, but it's no secret that the designers really want you to play with friends (or some random people lol). Enemies get tougher the more people you play with. The loot also gets much better. Finding a gun in single player that's good is not uncommon, but finding that same gun in multiplayer makes it far more likely to be much stronger. Plus, all Exp and Money earned is shared completely. You pick up $100, everyone gets $100. Same with Exp.
In short, the game gets more fun the more people you have.
If I have to pick a complaint, it's that more enemy variety would've been nice.

Story: 7/10
There's fairly little in the way of actual story. The game mainly serves as a vehicle with which to give you massive amounts of humor. Everything in this game is pretty hilarious. With tons of pop culture references hidden here and there...or smacking you in the face. Some are obvious only if you're pretty familiar with their target. (Such as the Ludicrous Speedway. Got to be a Space Balls fan to get that one. lol)
The game really only sets out to be funny, and thoroughly succeeds. If you can play this without laughing, it's because you have not sense of humor. Something here for everyone.

Final Score: 9/10

The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned DLC

The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned definitely adds some fun to the Borderlands experience, but is it worth the price of admission? Tough call. Everything it does is as well done as the rest of the game, but it really feels like they might've done a bit more.

Atmosphere: 9/10
Genuinely creepy everywhere you go. The humor still comes in too, as you'll often hear over your com announcements from the Jakobs corporation. Very amusing.

Enemies: 8/10
You'll be mostly fighting zombies. Undead townsfolk NPCs, undead bandits, skeletal rakk. They are much like fighting their normal counterparts, with the exception that they will almost all try to close in for melees as opposed to relying on Pandora's abundance of guns. This certainly doesn't make them less dangerous, however. Most enemies have attacks that can inflict Stun slowing you down for several seconds.
There are several different kinds of enemies, but the similarity of their attack patterns makes me feel like I'm fighting the same enemies over and over. I'll list them in a separate post. A little more variety would have been nice, but a somewhat improved quality of the AI goes a ways to making up for this. The look and feel of all the enemies is also very nice and adds to the atmosphere.

Story: 7/10
There's not a whole lot of story to be had, but what is there is funny and entertaining in the same way I've come to expect of Borderlands. If you like the rest of the game, then you'll like this.

Missions: 6/10
Not quite enough variety, nor quite enough of them in general. There are fetch quests, and kill quests. A few are what you'd expect in this setting; survive the zombie onslaught until X way out appears. A couple provide good new minibosses. One fifth (5) of the new quests are just gathering zombie brains for a certain character. This can be done by killing one with a critical hit (most often via headshot, meaning you're literally blowing their brains out, lol. And you can't help but laugh at the role reversal. I recklessly charge the zombie horde with the intent of ripping open their skulls while crying "Brains! I must have more brains!"). More missions in the next installment please, Gearbox? It's a really wonderful set of levels, and I'd much like more reason to run around in them.

Levels: 9/10
Not just the look, but the layout of these levels is really good. At any step you could be surrounded by zombies, but if you look around a bit you can often find cover or good positions from which to defend yourself making the hordes more manageable for a solo player. Some places evoke some classic creepy images, while others are reused, if altered set pieces from the rest of the game. The most obvious one is a remake of Old Haven (including zombie versions of it's inhabitants). The layout is altered with many paths blocked off, you start in a different place, and of course, everything is all undeaded up. Your foray here is fairly short, and Gearbox was honest about what it was calling the place simply "Dead Haven".

Gameplay: 8/10
This is the same as the rest of Borderlands. The slightly improved enemy AI makes you pay attention a bit more. The mob tactics, sneak attacks, stun inducing attacks, and the faster bleed outs can make for a bit of challenge.

Overall: 8/10
The only fault I can find with the game is that it leaves me wanting more. Bottom line, if you like the game, then you'll like this too. If you've got the money ($9.99 American) spare, then getting this isn't a waste of it. If you haven't yet bought Borderlands, then you may want to hold off on getting it as you might (and this is speculation on my part) see a Greatest Hits or Game of the Year edition that already has this DLC included in the future.

As stated above, here's a breakdown of the enemies and their tactics. This I'll put in a spoiler tag as it's only intended for use if you need a little help with these guys. If you find any other good ways to fight them, then post up and I'll edit them in with proper credit.


I'll also post the same warning yet again here regarding the collection of Zombie Brains.
To avoid a spoiler, I'll just say that you need to go to the southwest corner of Hallow's End. The questgiver is in a house tucked away in it's own corner, just below the Pumpkin Patch on the map. You can get all the brains you need for the first three of those missions before leaving that area. Just make sure not to pick up any brains before you get the quest. (Actually, don't pick up any period in any area until you get the quest. Any brains collected before the quest is received are wasted. Leave them where they lay. They stay on the ground where they drop until you pick them up, or until you turn the game off.) And once you're on the quest, only pick up as many as you need. Leave the rest for the next quest.

Mad Moxxi's Underdome DLC

Here are a few things to know that I've picked up so far in my one playing of the DLC's first tournament.
1. The bank is located just inside the start area. It's a claptrap with a tux theme. It can store several items default, but upgrades can be purchased from the weapons machine in the first room.
2. The first tournament is structured like this:
Five rounds.
Each Round consists of 5 Waves of enemies. Each Wave has a theme. As of yet, there has been no variation that I've noticed. They always proceed in the same order, but each gets harder the more rounds you get into the game.
Wave 1: Starter Wave- Has some bandits and skaggs of varying types in it.
Wave 2: Gun Wave- Has mostly bandits with better guns that usual. Later rounds get a few Bruisers.
Wave 3: Horde Wave- Has nothing but Psychos of various types. Learn the area and run backwards a lot while shooting a good close range weapon.
Wave 4: "Elite" Wave- This one usually has several Crimson Lance soldiers in it. Only one of which has a shield.
Wave 5: Boss Wave- Contains a random, though buffed, Boss or Mini Boss as well as a few minions. I know it's random because I died fighting Bonehead (If you hated him at level 11, imagine how much he sucks at level 50. He's the only boss I lost to so far.) in Round 4, only to repeat that round and face Baron Flynt. So far I've also fought Hans & Franz, Mad Jack (and me without my car to just run over him, dang), Sledge (who you can cheap to death), Tyler Cob, Captain McCloud, and Reaver.

After each wave Moxxie, who you can see atop the center spire, will drop several large containers of health and ammo that quickly shrink and vanish. Health restores you to full, while the ammo contains a set amount of every type of bullet. NOTE: For whatever reason, there are no health and ammo drops after a Boss wave!
After each Round, several weapons will drop in the spawn area. Grab them quick as they'll disappear once the next wave starts. Best bet is probably to just pick them all up and sort them out after you win or lose.
A few rounds in you'll start seeing a slot machine come up after each wave. This will assign one (and later up to four, though I didn't get past two) random effect on you, the enemies, or the arena.
Ones I've seen so far include:
Weapon specific strengthening effects that make one type of gun stronger while weakening all others.
Low Gravity. Very fun as it allows you make huge jumps so you can reach otherwise inaccessible areas to use for cover.
Weakened Criticals. Headshots deal normal damage.
Strengthened Criticals. Headshots deal much higher damage, but all other shots do less.
No shields for you, but you very slowly regen health.
Enemies regen shields faster.
Enemies have stronger shields.
Enemies regen health.
There may have been others, but I can't recall.
Note: Whatever effects were on in Round 4 will still be on in Round 5. They don't change.
During multiplayer, if you die and aren't revived or get a Second Wind, then you'll be sent to the penalty box, which is also located under the center spire. You'll remain there for the rest of the round, but can still contribute by shooting from above.
If everyone wipes out, then you'll be given a choice of whether or not to try again. You'll start over from a previous round. Eg. I died in round five and had to start again at the beginning of round four. It's structured like this throughout.

The Secret Armory of General Knox DLC

I'll just focus on the what's new, good or bad for this section.
This DLC picks up where the main story left off. Your characters are now being hunted specifically by legions of Crimson Lance soldiers...even more than last time. And they've all learned some new tricks. This falls into the category of Good things, surprisingly. Laughing
Most Lance now have an elemental affiliation like other critters. Shock Troopers use shock weapons, and take less damage from electric attacks, with Pyros (Fire) and Chems (Corrosive) following suit, with elite versions taking it even further.
That aside, there aren't too many new enemies. there are a few old enemies with new skins, but the same behaviors. Other notable additions are skag riding midgets, elite midgets, Drifters (huge enemies meant to be taken on in vehicles) and Destructors (huge lance Mech suits). The new variety was nice, but I'd have liked to see a little more.
Any concerns about the difficulty of boss fights have been thoroughly put to rest. The game's last story boss fight is well balanced, and can be defeated though a bit of skill and proper preparation. The game's secret final boss, however, is an absolute Nightmare. With this one they really wanted to encourage teamwork, and while he can be soloed, I really wouldn't recommend it without just the right setup of skills, guns, and mods. As well as a truckload of luck.
Another new addition are the three new available types of vehicle. The Monster is an about average speed truck with a homing rocket launcher (that works wonders against those Drifters) and higher than average armor. The Racer is a high speed car with low armor. The third vehicle is practically a tank, it has so much armor and goes fairly slow. The Lancer is a four seat vehicle with a laser gun, a mine launcher, and a Blast weapon that damages anything immediately around you. Sadly, the latter two weapons won't see much real use as thing rarely follow in a predictable pattern to hit them with the mines, and though the Blast might seem good not much really gets close to be hit by it. Would've been better served with a second turret, imho.
There are now many Crimson Lance chests scattered around Lance outposts and fortifications. These are like red chests in the main game, but contain more items per chest. This gives you a better (though still slim) chance of getting the new Pearl weapons, which are the highest rarity rating.
The increase in level cap lets you further develop your characters, but not so much that they become unstoppable killing machines. You'll still have to work to beat the enemies the game throws at you.
One of the best things about this add on is how more focus is placed on the story. Important characters now get a cut scene introduction that better defines their characters and increases immersion a bit. When giving out missions they can still be treated like bulletin boards, but if you choose to you can listen to them actually say what it is they want you to do. There's also more chatter over the Echo to further establish the characters. It's really nice and spices up the running from here to there with more of the great humor we've come to expect from this game.
Overall Rating: 4/5
Gearbox is doing a great job of listening to their players. More importantly, they're not giving them everything they want, just the stuff that works. If they keep on like this with future dlc and games, then I can see myself being a Gearbox fan for a long time to come.

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PostSubject: Re: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider   Sat Jul 17, 2010 6:38 am

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2

Single Player Section.
There's not much to be said about the single player. I honestly didn't care for this part of the game that much. It's basically just a primer to get you ready for the online. The story would probably have made more sense to me if I'd played the previous game, but I didn't. They seemed to rely on shock tactics for large sections.
The most fun in the game was the various parts when you're controlling things you otherwise wouldn't get to. For example, the sections where you control Predator drones, or the Hornet.
The actiony sequences were really nice too. The escape from the Favela in particular, and the ice climbing.

Spec Ops Section.
This was a lot more fun. It mostly takes sections from the main game and moves them around a bit.
You're given a directive, usually surviving waves of enemies or going from the start of a level to the end, as well as a variety of weapons with which to attempt it.
It's very fun to go through this with a friend. Two players can tackle the objectives more easily than one, and as long as they get to you in time, you can be revived when shot down.
My only problem with this is the few missions that REQUIRE a second person to do at all. If you don't have a buddy/online access then you're denied the platinum on this game. That might be a problem for some people.

Multiplayer Competitive Section.
The learning curve for this game is steep. You will die. A lot.
Getting kills and completing objectives earns you experience. When you obtain enough you'll level up and unlock new weapons, perks, equipment, and kill streaks. There's really too much on that to cover in a single post, so I'll just direct you here:
MW2 Wiki
That has everything you'd want to know about the weapons, perks, equipment, and such.
I will say there's a weapon type and perk combination to suit every play style, from Run & Gun to Sniping, and anything in between.
The complaints I have for this part are mostly about balance issues that have never been corrected.
There are people who constantly use broken perk/weapon combinations that are unbalanced.
The lack of dedicated servers has been a big problem for many, many players. It causes them no end of trouble when trying to play with friends who are far away.
The numerous bugs and glitches that should have been found and re-found. This stuff should've been taken care of before the game shipped. Instead, IW made all the people who had paid for a finished game into it's beta testers.

The game really is fun though. When you get your buddies and tear up the battlefield, or complete that particularly tough Challenge, it's really rewarding.

Overall, I'd give this game an 8 out of 10.

Stimulus Map Pack

Resurgence Map Pack

Works really well as a TDM, but I most often get it on Demolition. The problem I have with it there is how easily defensible B is. There are four entrances (tunnel, window right next to B, far large entrance by truck, and close large entrance. By myself, I defended it for over a minute. Then A blew, and they all started coming in, but so did my team. My teammates took up positions on stairs, in the tunnel entrance, and the others joined me on the high catwalk. It was a complete massacre. No one could get in.
Then on the flip side, the same thing happened to my team. A is a lot more attackable.

I love this one. Great for TDM. The inside places have twists and turns that make it somewhat less likely to be shotgunned to death in that they can't cover every direction. The outside places are large, but also have obstructed views. Sniping is still quite viable, but also a bit more limited. In everywhere but the UFO area the snipers have to stay fairly visible (at least the ones I've encountered so far).
The same factors make it work really well for CTF and Sabotage/Demolition.
Domination is a bit more interesting. A, B, and C are all within spitting distance of each other in a rough triangle. Every view is very obstructed though. The only problem this makes for is easy 'nade kills. Not launchers, mind, but frags and semtex. The games I played of this were really fast paced, which is odd for a Dom. Overall, I liked it though.

Trailer Park.
My least favorite. As Groovy said on the XX forums, "It's a bloodbath". It's okay for TDM, but objective matches are murder.
In Dom, I invariably get spawn trapped at A. Only four more or less straight paths to get from one side of the map to the other, and a great many murder holes. The right side exit from A is particularly bad. One sniper sitting by the side of the chain link fence between B and C can hold that whole side in check alone. You cannot walk around that mail truck and live if the sniper is any good. You can try to go the other ways, but since they only need one guy on that side, that leaves you with two little trailers/death fortresses to deal with. There will be shotgun camping (well, it is a trailer park after all), and since the trailers have multiple rooms, a 'nade can't always flush them out.
Demo and Sab are a little better since you can't get forced into a spawn trap so easily.

What little I've seen of it, I like. I've only gotten to play a couple matches on it, unfortunately. Hope to get in some more.

I'm a bit torn on this one. I've taken to carrying a shotgun as my secondary and switching when I go indoors. However, switching between a rifle and shotty takes a bit too long. I think the switch animation for handguns is faster, so I may have to go unlock some akimbo pistols again.
Camping isn't such a problem because there are multiple ways into anywhere. Sniping isn't too bad since about half the map is inside.
Good for TDM.
Passable for Dom, except that you can see B from A. If they'd shifted a wall a bit to the left, then it would be a bit better.
Very solid for Sab/Demo and CTF.
The twists and turns would give this a very Survival Horror feeling on Search and Destroy. lol


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Dark Lord of the Sixth
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PostSubject: Re: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider   Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:06 am

I'll delete this post when you need me to so as not to ruin the flow. (just let me know when you need it out.)

Well done monkey..

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PostSubject: Re: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider   Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:10 am

Thanks. I was going to track some of them down anyway just to compare them with my current views on some games. Figured I might as well make something useful out of it.
Oh, the post is fine as is, Sixer. That's why I'm putting in the links, so people can still use it for what they want. It need not be completely spam free. Very Happy= :D
Just about to add inFamous next.


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PostSubject: Re: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider   Sat Jul 17, 2010 11:20 am


The Good: The controls worked well for me, but I do have a knack for adjusting quickly. Personal preference is invert. The variety of powers was good, but could use a little expanding. The good and evil powers were distinctly defined. For example, both trees get grenades, but Blue(good) grenades upgrade into an auto restraining version designed to spare enemies/civilians, whereas the Red(evil) grenades split and scatter all over with no regard for collateral damage. Bioleech specifically was quite evil. I actually felt bad using it. The ability to perform stunts, distinctive kills or maneuvers that is, to gain extra EXP was a nice addition. There were several ways to use the environment for combat, always a plus. I haven't played many sandbox games, but of the ones I have played this is the best.

The Bad: A little too short. Rental is probably a pretty good call. One reason I bought it was for the Uncharted 2 beta. (Which is fun so far and I'm certainly keeping an eye on it. One bit of pointless gameplay, the last 30 or so shards do nothing for you (aside from trophy awarding). Because Blast Shards that are given as a quest reward count for the upgrading of the energy bar, but aren't "hidden" shards, those last few are rendered pointless by the time you can get them. No unlockables. I'm crazy for them unlockables. Even the pointless ones. Definitely needed more Boss battles.

The Meh: The story was not thaaat bad. I mean, you know its a superhero game. You have to expect a certain amount of cheese going in. The variety in the enemies was adequate, but could've used some more Conduit class enemies instead of waves of trash enemies here and there. The Golem class conduit was my favorite enemy. The territory gaining side missions were good, and the game stopped just early enough to keep them from being repetitive. Unless you played good and evil paths back to back like a dummy. Like I did. Speaking of the paths, they do change the story to a degree, but embarking on the paths themselves is as simple as following the choices laid out by Cole's internal monologue. Or healing/killing a large number of civilians.

My Verdict: 3.7/5

Original thread is here:


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PostSubject: Re: Cobalt Monkey's Game Reviews-Latest Review: Tomb Raider   Sat Jul 17, 2010 12:43 pm

Amazing thread cheers Thank you for this, Monkey! I have not played most of those only MW2... but only online and I am not fond of the lag experience Rolling Eyes I think I much prefer W@W, even though I know people would hate me for saying that lol. I just think all those ribbons and achievements on screen are candies for under-12yo, who should not be playing that game anyway, and that the lag can be so annoying that at least for me spoiles the fun I could have. Otherwise, it is a good game to play with mates but I dislike playing with randoms because is full of annoying kids with a k/d ratio obsession that would exploit the game as much as they can in order to make it look bigger... the k/d ratio, of course... Rolling Eyes


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