November Cat Adoption Campaign at K’s PATH

Post by Patrick


Ever since I was a kid, I loved having a pet. I’ve had a turtle, rabbits, birds and a dog (not all at once thankfully). Ever since getting married my wife and I have been debating whether or not we should bring a pet into our family. Problem was, my wife loves cats and I was never a cat person, I love dogs. My opinions of cats were pretty generalized. They’re independent, have an attitude and just aren’t really affectionate (at least not as much as dogs). But, owning a dog would have been challenging because of our work schedule among other annoyances (like walking a dog in the heat). So I decided to research different cat breeds and discovered that even though cats can’t be as affectionate as dogs, they can still be loving and they can still be great companions, but only if you pick the right breed for you.


Last week, as chance would have it, K’s PATH posted a picture on Instagram of a lovely Balinese kitten. Balinese cats are related to the Siamese and they’re similar in temperament and in looks. They’re also Hypoallergenic which means they’re good cats to own if you have allergies to them (like both my wife and I do). The Balinese are also very vocal and love to communicate with their owners, they’re friendly and don’t mind having anyone petting them or playing with them. And even though they are independent to a certain degree, Balinese enjoy chilling on the couch with their owners.


So the next day after seeing the Instagram post I called K’s Path. The process for adopting a cat from them is pretty extensive, but simple. You book an appointment for an interview at their facilities in the morning from 10AM to 1PM either on Wednesday, Friday or Saturdays. The entire family (or whoever is going to interact with the cat extensively) has to go. So I made an appointment and my wife and I drove up there Friday morning. The drive was pretty long, about an hour or so from where we live in Salwa. Once we got there we were met by friendly staff and their offices are pretty laid back with cats relaxing or playing out in the open. We were interviewed for about 30 minutes and asked various questions from our history with pets, what kind of environment our house is like, if we have any knowledge on raising cats and so on. Once we were done with the interview, we were taken to a room with the Balinese kitten. They do this to make sure that the kitten would interact well with us and to make sure that it’s the kitten we actually wanted. The Balinese was sharing a room with a couple of other kittens and we got the chance to play around with all of them and even though I nearly picked a different kitten, we were certain we wanted the Balinese.

Once we were done with that room we went back to the interview room to finish up the process. Normally the charge to adopt a cat is KD35, which includes vaccinations, neutering, and a microchip. But if you adopt a cat in November, the fee is just KD10 and if you don’t bring an animal carrier, K’s PATH would supply you with a used one for an extra charge of KD5.

So if you were ever on the fence about owning a cat, pay them a visit this month. I’m absolutely in love with the kitten we got (named him Link, duh) and couldn’t be happier.

Visit the K’s PATH website or instagram account for more information.

Posted by Patrick

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Call of Duty: Black Ops III Review

Post by Patrick


What can be said about the Call of Duty franchise that hasn’t been said before? For better or for worse, the games don’t really evolve much. I enjoyed last year’s Advanced Warfare, I thought the campaign mode was fun and I enjoyed maneuvering with the EXO suits. It gave the game a sense of verticality that it was missing. Going into a Call of Duty game you already know what you’re going to get. So I expected a short, but fun, adrenaline filled campaign mode, great multiplayer and a decent zombie mode. Sadly, what I got out of the game was something much less. It’s disappointing how far the campaign mode strayed from what they created in Black Ops II which had had branching paths and multiple endings, and had a narrative that was captivating and intense. There’s a lot of content in Black Ops III, but it’s a case of quantity over quality.


I primarily enjoy playing single player games. So the first thing I did going into this new Call of Duty was just that. You start off by creating a character, choosing the gender and then a face. The problem is the majority of the faces all look the same. Not sure why they didn’t include a simple feature that allows you to pick a face and then a hairstyle or something along those lines. Being able to choose to play as a badass woman was cool though. But then I got referred to as “him” within the first few minutes of the game and that should give you an idea of how much attention went into campaign mode. It’s pretty lazy all around. The Call of Duty games aren’t known for their writing, but they have a reputation for being enjoyable. The campaign in Black Ops III was paced weirdly, the tutorial levels were too long and when major things happened, the game didn’t really do a good job at building any suspense or any sort of climax. Things just sort of happen. On top of that the narrative seems to be pieced together by borrowing basic themes and ideas from other games, like Deus Ex Human Revolution. Your character has a set of special abilities, some of them are cool like being able to control enemy robots or making enemies explode, but some of them are lame, like sending a swarm of cybernetic flies to distract human enemies. If you’ve played Bioshock, these should feel familiar, because they work kind of like Plasmids. When you finish a mission you’re sent back to your base where you’ll be able to walk around and interact with computers to upgrade your abilities, customize your character, look at the collectibles you’ve found or read more about the narrative, which is cool but I didn’t really care enough for the story to really spend my time there.

So what are some things that I liked in campaign mode? There were some fun firefights, some of the abilities you get are cool to use and the game ran incredibly smoothly. One other thing I really appreciated was the fact that you can play campaign mode in split-screen with a friend. It’s nice to see developers still include this especially when you have 343 Industries removing split screen from Halo 5, which I personally thought was a really dumb move since split-screen was such an important part of the Halo games. But I digress, that’s a different post for a different time. Finally, it was cool seeing Katee Sackhoff (Starbuck from Battlestar Galactica) in the game, I hope she does more work related to this industry.


So it’s pretty known fact that most players will spend most of their time in multiplayer. Unlike the campaign mode, I enjoyed my time playing against other people. Multiplayer mode in Black Ops III is slightly different than its predecessors. The biggest change in multiplayer is that you now have to choose from a set of characters called “Specialists”. You start off with four to choose from and you unlock more as you level up (there’s 9 in total). Each Specialist has their own personality, look, their own set of abilities and a unique special weapon. It’s a shame that you can’t customize them much. You unlock different kinds of cosmetic equipment as you play with them, but it just takes too long to unlock anything. There also isn’t a large variety of armor either. Another slight change in multiplayer is that the game doesn’t automatically unlock weapons for you as you level up. Instead “unlock tokens” make a comeback. You gain experience and level up, and you’re awarded with unlock tokens that you can use to unlock new weapons. You still get rewarded for using a weapon consistently with attachments, like scopes or paint jobs. There’s also a good variety of maps (12 to be exact) and most importantly most of them are fun. Like I mentioned earlier, I enjoyed Advanced Warfare and I enjoyed the way you were able to move through the maps. I think they’ve improved on that in Black Ops III, but instead of Exo suits you’ll be using thrusters, which is a momentum based system, allowing you to jump more than once, wall run and slide across the ground. All in all, multiplayer is pretty solid.


Zombie mode is now fully fleshed out and has its own campaign mode called Shadows of Evil. You take control of one of four characters who are voiced by Hollywood celebrities like Jeff Goldblum and Ron Perlman. You’ll be navigating through the fictional Morg City slaughtering zombies while you try to stay alive. This mode is only cool if you’re playing it with other people, it’s not worth investing your time in if you don’t have friends to experience it with. You can go online and play with random players but it’s not as fun, especially if you can’t properly communicate with them.

At the end of the day it’s unlikely Black Ops III will win over any new fans. On the other hand, if you’re a fan of the franchise then chances are you’re going to enjoy this and you’re going to welcome the new (albeit slight) changes to multiplayer. The question remains if the game has the longevity that the previous games had, especially since customization is extremely limited. Specialists are a cool addition, but I don’t believe they really change multiplayer enough. There’s a ton of content here, but there’s no real reason to go back to the campaign mode once it’s over and the zombie mode can be frustrating if you have no one to play with. I’m personally sticking with Destiny for my first-person needs because that game just has more things I enjoy. It’ll be curious to see what direction Call of Duty goes from here now that they’re futuristic. How far will they go? Or will they go back in time and bring back their World War II games? Or maybe they’ll play around with a time travel mechanic and develop a game that features World War II and futuristic stuff? Time will tell.

Call of Duty: Black Ops III was supplied by X-Cite. The game is available on PS3 (online only), Xbox 360 (online only), PS4, Xbox One and PC.


Post by Patrick

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Guitar Hero Live Review

Post by Patrick


For those of you who don’t know, I was in charge of posting video game related posts in the now defunct Entertainment section of the blog. Since Mark merged that section with the rest of the blog, I’ll now be writing about video games in the B-Sides section while posting reviews of major game releases here on the main page. Last week Mark was able to hook me up with his contact at X-Cite who will now be sending me games to review on the blog every now and then, first up is Guitar Hero Live.

Guitar Hero became a massive phenomenon when it was first introduced back in 2005. Six games were released, 12 if you include the specialized versions of the series like Guitar Hero: Aerosmith and Guitar Hero Smash Hits. All those games were released within the span of seven years between 2005 to 2011. That’s nearly two games a year, which is a crazy number for such a short period of time. So when Activision announced Guitar Hero Live, it wasn’t a surprise that most people felt skeptical about it.

My only real experience with Guitar Hero prior to this was Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock at a friends house. And all I remember of that game was playing Muse’s Knights of Cydonia over and over again, trying to get a perfect score. It was a lot of fun and I could see why people obsessed over it and why Activision milked it for all its worth.

Guitar Hero Live is meant to be a fresh new take on the whole franchise. A reinvention. There are two main aspects to the game. Guitar Hero Live and Guitar Hero TV. Guitar Hero Live is the single player “campaign” mode where you play as a guitarist for different bands that Activision created for this mode. Each band plays a specific genre of rock, so the folk-indie band for example plays songs from real bands like The Lumineers and Of Monsters and Men.

Like the name suggests, you’ll be playing live shows with these bands. Activision filmed a lot of footage to flesh out this part of the game. If you’re doing well in the song crowds will cheer, bop their heads to the song and your bandmates will be rocking out. If you start screwing up, crowds will start booing and yelling things at you while your band mates look on at you in disappointment or just insult you in some way.

I enjoyed this mode, it’s fun, it’s silly. The presentation is great, it feels fantastic when you’re playing a really challenging part of a song and the crowd erupts in joyful glee when you nail it. I just wish there were more songs and that it lasted longer. I’m also confused to why Rihanna and Skrillex would be in this guitar focused game, but they are.


After you’re done with Guitar Hero Live, you’ll be spending a chunk of your time in Guitar Hero TV. Guitar Hero TV is an online only mode and is equivalent to old school MTV. You’ll find two channels that play music videos non-stop throughout the day. Each channel has their own set of programs. So there’s a program that just plays heavy metal songs while another just plays indie hits. These channels play music videos all day and you can jump in and play whenever you feel like it. Since this mode is online you’ll be competing simultaneously with other players who are playing that same song. At the end of each song you gain experience points and coins. Every time you level up you unlock various things like special abilities and player card designs. You’ll be able to spend coins in various ways, for example you can spend coins to increase specific stats like how often your special ability recharges. You can also spend coins to buy more play tokens (which I’ll discuss in a little bit).

Guitar Hero TV also includes the song catalogue which includes over 100 tracks. To play any of these songs you need to use a play token. The biggest point of focus in this mode are the play tokens. Every time you play a song, you use a play token. They’re limited. There are three ways to get play tokens. Every time you level up, the game gives you a bunch of tokens. If you save up enough coins you can buy them. Or you can use real money and buy tokens. The game also offers 24 hour unlimited play for the entire song catalogue for $6. One word to describe play tokens would be “controversial”. Some people hate it, some people get it. I’m in the latter. The reasoning behind Activisions micro-transactions in Guitar Hero Live is that they want to avoid what they did in the last generation. They don’t want to keep releasing Guitar Hero games or release a ton of paid DLC like Rock Band. Instead they want to build Guitar Hero Live as a platform. New songs that will be added to the game will be added for free. This direction doesn’t seem so bad compared to Rock Band where each song costs $2. We’ll see how it works out in the long-term but so far I’m optimistic.


Putting all that aside, the game is fun. If you weren’t a fan before, I doubt this will change your opinion of it. But if you did enjoy the previous games, this game feels like a step up and a step in the right direction. I had a blast playing on my own and I also had fun playing the game in a group (Mark really sucks at it btw). If you attach a mic to the console, lyrics will pop up on screen and the game will keep score on vocals. You don’t actually have to own a proper mic either. A Playstation Camera or headphones/earphones (like the iPhone ones) with mics work. There’s also an official Guitar Hero Live iPhone app you can download on your phone that will connect to the game and turn your phone into a mic. You can also get a second guitar to add a second player and compete against one another. The game also does well for people who don’t normally play video games. I had guests over on the weekend and one of my guests doesn’t normally play any video games, but they were hooked on Guitar Hero the moment they grabbed the guitar.


My biggest concern isn’t with the actual game but with the plastic guitar. The guitar itself looks good and it feels good to hold. But after playing the game over the weekend, one of the buttons was already giving me problems. Thankfully it was an easy fix. I had to open up the fret board (11 screws) and I found that there was some dirt on the inside of the button. Once I put it back together, the guitar was working like new.

Overall the game is a ton of fun and it’s something I’ll be playing for quite some time, especially when I have guests over. Hopefully they’ll add some Queens of the Stone Age or Foo Fighters, because this game could definitely use more of that. There’s a bit of an imbalance when it comes to the song selection in the game, there are too many recent hits and not enough grunge and alternative songs.

You can find Guitar Hero Live at X-Cite for KD31.9 which is a pretty great deal since it’s being sold for $99 in the U.S. My review copy of Guitar Hero Live was also provided by X-Cite.


Post by Patrick

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Buying Digital Cards in Kuwait

Post by Patrick


Buying digital games is becoming a more realistic option with this recent generation of consoles. This is mainly due to the fact that the consoles all have big enough storage, support external hard drives and because our internet speeds are pretty decent so buying a physical copy of a game isn’t necessary anymore. This is positive, especially in Kuwait where games are expensive and since not every game is sometimes even available. On top of that Nintendo, Sony and Microsoft discount a bunch of games for their consoles throughout the year. The problem for us in this region is that our gaming consoles only accept credit cards from the region you have your location set, which will always either be the U.S. or the U.K. So it’s good to know what websites offer digital codes that could be sent directly to your email.

Keep in mind that the only websites that support KNET are local. So if you’re planning on purchasing a digital code from Amazon, be prepared to use your credit card. So what’s the advantage of buying a digital code off Amazon? Well if you’re buying the $10 PSN card, it costs $9.99 which is equivalent to about KD3. $10 PSN cards in Kuwait go for KD3.750 to KD4 depending on the site you choose. If you have a credit card then there aren’t many disadvantages to getting a digital code from Amazon, the only one I can think of is that if you’re an owner of a Nintendo console, you’re out of luck since Amazon doesn’t sell digital codes for the Nintendo consoles.

For those who want to use Knet, we’re not short on options when it comes to local websites. Currently the websites that offer digital codes (to my knowledge) are Blink, X-Cite and GamesQ8. Digumz sells cards, but it’s unclear if they email the digital codes or not. The website that seems to have the best deals when it comes to PSN and Nintendo cards is X-Cite, but their Microsoft cards are more expensive than the others. GamesQ8 is generally pricier than the other websites and will only send you the digital codes through email only during their working hours.

It’s also important to note that if you’re looking for iTunes cards, both Blink and GamesQ8 currently sell digital codes.

Posted by Patrick

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Mohammed Taher, Brave Wave and the Generation Series

Post by Patrick


I previously interviewed Mohammed Taher, the Kuwaiti creative director and founder of the Brave Wave record label. Since then he’s been busy helping in the releases of various projects like Keiji Yamagishi’s (Ninja Gaiden’s composer) first solo album, Shovel Knight’s soundtrack and an album by duo composers Saori Kobayashi (Panzer Dragoon) and Yumiko Takahashi (Suikoden) under the name of AKANE.

It doesn’t seem like he or Brave Wave take any breaks because they recently started a new label called the Generation Series. Under the Generation Series name they’ll be releasing definitive, remastered soundtracks of classic games. The first game they’re working on is Street Fighter II. The Verge recently interviewed him and sound engineer Marco Guardia about the challenges they faced working on such a huge project.

The project is interesting for various reasons. First of all, convenience. Video game soundtracks are hard to come by and when you do find them they usually cost more than they should because of rarity. The reason I personally think the Generation Series is interesting is the idea of preservation. Other forms of media (like film) have people restoring and preserving them. Preservation is a new concept when it comes to gaming, especially video game music, so I really appreciate Brave Wave taking the initiative.

It’s great to see Kuwait being represented by someone like Mohammed Taher, so be sure to visit Brave Wave’s releases page to support them.

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Halo 5: Guardians Out in Kuwait

Post by Patrick


Markaz Al-Kuwait has started selling the collectors edition of Halo 5: Guardians seven days before the world wide release date and for KD150. Amazon in comparison is selling the collectors edition for $250 which is around KD75, so it’s obviously a lot more expensive here.

No word on if the regular version of Halo 5 is out yet, chances are shops will try to sell as many as these collector editions before making the regular, more affordable version available!

UPDATE: As Yousef points out in the comments, the Collectors Edition doesn’t even include a CD of the game, but a code to download it. So even if you buy this version of the game you won’t be able to play it until the release date.

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Review: Urban Cafe

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Post by Patrick

I’ve been wanting to try out Urban Cafe ever since I found their Instagram account which has a lot of good looking photos of the food they serve. I finally passed by earlier in the week to try it out and had a fairly pleasant experience. I went in the evening with a friend and the place was fairly packed. The weather was pleasant so there weren’t any places to sit outside and so we ended up inside. Sitting inside wasn’t a bad thing because the place is bright and seating is comfortable although I did find the music to be a bit too loud.

Urban Food

We ended up ordering the Baked Portobello and the Quinoa Salad for starters and the Wild Mushroom & Truffle Pizza and Basil Pesto Fusilli for our main course. What I found disappointing about the menu itself was that there aren’t many choices if you don’t want a sandwich. The Quinoa Salad arrived first and I thought it was okay. I found it weird that they mixed in large pieces of lettuce since this made the salad slightly awkward to eat but I did think the addition of rocca leaves was a nice touch. The Baked Portobello which comes stuffed with mozzarella cheese and mushroom was pretty good and flavorful and once we were done with the starters the pizza and pasta both arrived around the same time. The pizza looked and smelled really good and it tasted similar to the mushroom pizza at OFK which I also like. On the other-hand the pesto fusilli was a bit too creamy and a little boring. There was an option to add grilled chicken to it, so maybe that would have made some difference.

Bread Pudding

After we were done with our main course we decided to try out the bread pudding with Nutella for dessert. It took long for the bread pudding to come out and when I finally asked for it, it was obvious they had forgotten that we ordered any dessert. The waiters were pretty apologetic about it and the bread pudding got to our table pretty quick after that. I didn’t think the bread pudding was that good, and I’m a big fan of Nutella. There was just too much Nutella and it ended up feeling too heavy on the stomach. On the other hand, my friend really enjoyed it and said they would order it again. Urban Cafe isn’t short on desserts though and they had quite a few cakes on display besides the various dessert items available in the menu.

Even though I wasn’t a big fan of the pasta or the dessert I would be interested in trying the other items on the menu like the Barbequed Beef Brisket and their breakfast which they serve until 2PM. I found their prices to be pretty reasonable, the mushroom & truffle pizza was KD3 while the pesto fusilli was KD2.500. One thing that might be an issue is parking. When I went in the evening I was able to find a spot behind the cafe in a small sandlot, but I would imagine that during the day time it might be difficult to find parking in the area. If you’re interested in Urban Cafe they’re located in Sharq, you can find their location on Google Maps.

Post by Patrick

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Best Video Games 2013

Post by Patrick

2013 was a pretty good year for gaming consoles since there was a pretty large variety of AAA and indie games to enjoy. I’m generally not very picky when it comes to video games and I enjoy a wide range of genre’s but when one genre is over-saturated (like first person shooters), I tend to choose something that tries to offer something unique. My time was evenly spent between four consoles, the Wii U, the PS3, the 360 and the 3DS and picking my favorite game was not as challenging as I originally thought it would be. But, two games in particular stood out from the whole range of games that got released this year and both these games deserve more awards than any of the other games.

1 – The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds

What’s not to love about this game? It’s Challenging, beautiful to look at and features a captivating world filled with secrets and dungeons.

2 – The Last of Us

A brutal, intense and emotional roller coaster. There really hasn’t been a game (in a long time, or really just ever) that has affected some of us like The Last of Us has. I used to just play it two or three times a week because I knew there was always something bad around the corner. You would find and pick up a journal entry or a note you to either read a great story of survival or a really sad story about death or loss. The amount of detail that went into the environments to support these stories were also impressive. This is one game I loved, but would probably never play it a second time.

3 – Super Mario 3D World

When the E3 trailer was revealed, most of us had written this off as a quick-cash in before Nintendo released the true successor to the Galaxy franchise, but since its release its been getting rave reviews. 3D World includes some of the most unique and entertaining level designs while pushing the series forward making it one of the most enjoyable gaming experiences of the year.

Read the rest of this entry »

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The Playstation 4 Review

Post by Patrick

The Playstation 4 was released in North America on the 15th of November and sold a million units in 24 hours. We’ve had to wait until earlier this week to see the PS4 officially released in Kuwait and the Gulf and as of this post, it’s pretty much sold out with supposedly no new shipments arriving until early January. So what’s the noise all about? Do you need to own the PS4 now? Are the launch games worth it? These are some of the questions I’m going to be answering in this post.

The PS4 itself is designed nicely, it’s as small as the slim Playstation 3 (maybe even a bit smaller) and it’s pretty light. Complete opposite of the first iteration of the Playstation 3 which was huge, bulky and ugly.

The second thing I’m going to talk about is the new controller, the Dualshock 4. I wasn’t a big fan of the Dualshock 3 and preferred the 360 and Wii U controllers over it. The Dualshock 3 felt light, cheap and didn’t fit well in my hands. I also wasn’t a big fan of the design as it was difficult to clean due to the dirt getting caught on all the edges. The Dualshock 4 changes all of that – the design is nice, sleek and clean, it fits comfortably in my hands and it doesn’t feel cheap. The small touchpad on the face of the controller works well and isn’t overly sensitive to touch (unlike the Sony Vita’s rear touchpad). The controller also features a mono speaker that plays some sounds as you’re playing games. It takes a few minutes to get used to the fact that the controller doesn’t feature a “START” and “SELECT” button like the majority of controllers have had throughout the years, those buttons have been merged into one “Options” button. One of the new additions that’s been making some headlines is the “SHARE” button. When you press it, the PS4 will create a screenshot of the moment and a video clip of the last 15 minutes of gameplay. You then decide where you want to upload them to Facebook or Twitter. If you also feel like broadcasting what you’re playing to the rest of the world, you can also do that through the services of Twitch or USTREAM. All this is done seamlessly and I was surprised to see how Sony have simplified the process.

One thing I dislike about the controller is the light bar which is located on the back of the controller. The light bar displays different colors to alert you on things like low health (it’ll glow red), but it’s kind of a useless feature unless you’re looking at your controller as you’re playing. If you sit directly in front of your television as you’re playing, the controller creates an annoying reflection on your TV when the games you play feature dark levels or segments – it just breaks the immersion. Hopefully there’ll be an update in the future that’ll allow us to choose whether we want to keep the light on or not.

The next thing I want to bring up is the Playstation 4’s user interface. This is another feature that I think could be improved. I’ve never been a huge fan of Sony’s user interfaces, whether it’s the Playstation 3’s menu or the Vita’s terrible use of bubble icons. The Playstation 4’s user interface has three sections. The first is the main menu; icons for your games, the browser, music, video, etc are all accessed from there. The second section (when you press down on your D-pad) is specific to the application or game you’ve selected. So for example, if you press down when Killzone: Shadow Fall is selected, a menu will appear that shows your recent activity, a shortcut to the community, multiplayer modes, and the game manual. If you press up on the main menu, the third section of the menu system appears and this is where you can access the Playstation Store, Friends List, Trophies, Settings and a few other options. I just don’t find this system to be intuitive at all. Why is the Playstation Store icon not located in the main menu and instead hidden in the upper section? Why aren’t the menus customizable? Nintendo and Microsoft both offer menus that are somewhat customizable, so why can’t Sony?

Moving on to launch games. I was given two games to try out by Sony that were launched exclusively for the Playstation 4, Knack (a 3D platformer adventure game) and Killzone: Shadow Fall (a first person shooter). Knack was developed and designed by SCE Japan Studio and Mark Cerny, both have an impressive repertoire of games and so I was surprised to see the below average reviews for this game. An hour into the game and you could see why it’s been getting poor review scores. First off, all the characters (especially Knack) are bland. Think of all the great characters in 3D platformers that we’ve seen in the past; Super Mario, Sonic the Hedgehog, Crash Bandicoot, Banjo-Kazooie, Ratchet & Clank, Jak and Daxter, These games featured a whole cast of colorful, interesting characters and most importantly, the main characters were memorable. Knack’s design is forgetful and pretty ugly. He’s made up of all these tiny pieces and shapes and as you progress through the levels you start to grow as you gain more of these pieces until you’re huge and you’re able to do massive amounts of damage. The combat in this game is just “X, X, X” repeated, until you fill up your special power gauge and then you can perform a special move. The level designs are incredibly linear and lack any sort of inspiration. How linear are they? Well, there’s only one path through the level – no little deviations, no hidden paths, no shortcuts. There are “secrets” behind walls that have very large cracks to visually tell you that the wall can be smashed. Those are placed along the paths so they’re not even really hidden. There’s literally no sense of exploration and the platforming segments aren’t even challenging. Very young kids (younger than 10) might enjoy it, but I recommend most of you to skip this game if possible.

Onto Killzone: Shadow Fall. Before playing this game I had only ever played and beaten Killzone 2 which I thought was fun with very intense firefight, but also had a forgettable story with forgettable characters. The characters were beautiful and had fluid animation but the level layouts (which were well designed) were visually boring to look at. Everything seemed to be just a variation of grey with some brown tacked on. Shadow Fall seems to continue the trend of having forgettable characters and horrid writing but has much more beautiful and varied level layouts. The first level you play is vivid and colorful (there’s a bit too much lens flare for my taste though), the second level is the opposite, it’s dark, gloomy and kind of freaky. The shooting and firefights are really fun. Graphics? Not a massive leap from the PS3 but for a launch game it looks really good. You’ll enjoy this game if you go in expecting a straight up first-person shooter with a fun single player experience and multiplayer modes. But, you’ll be disappointed if you’re looking for a FPS that has an interesting plot with memorable characters.

Now the important question, is it worth buying the Playstation 4 now, or should you wait? The controller has been improved, the console is designed nicely, it isn’t heavy, it isn’t bulky and it has a promising line-up of upcoming new games. There’s no doubting the potential of the console, just one look at Killzone: Shadow Fall will tell you that. 2014 will be a good year for gaming with titles like Tom Clancy’s The Division, Witcher 3 and Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes coming out. My issues with the PS4 are minor. The light bar on the controller, the menu system and the lack of a media server wont affect my enjoyment that I’ll get from playing games on the machine. Still though, I’ll wait a few months before purchasing one. None of the exclusive launch games interest me and the ones that aren’t exclusive I’ve already played on my 360/PS3/Wii U. If you can’t wait and want to pick one up now, the games I recommend are Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag, Killzone: Shadow Fall, FIFA 14, Battlefield 4, and Lego Marvel Superheroes.

Posted by Patrick

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Gravity, it’s cut but it’s ok

Post by Patrick

Gravity was finally released in Kuwait on the 17th of October, but for some odd reason it wasn’t released in IMAX (instead they chose to show some Metallica documentary in IMAX, how are they even still relevant?). Gravity can be seen in the majority of theaters in Kuwait and I highly recommend to watch it in 3D since I haven’t seen any movie make use of 3D as well as Gravity has.

Gravity has a beautifully simple premise. Two astronauts have to fight for survival after a catastrophe strikes their space shuttle mission. Alfonso Cuarón directs this brilliant movie and does a spectacular job at creating one of the most realistic space movies and possibly the best space movie ever made.

Now the problem with watching Gravity in Kuwait (besides it not being in IMAX) is the fact that two scenes were censored. One scene was briefly cut due to dialogue (which wasn’t important to the narrative) and the other scene that was cut was at the very end, the last scene to be exact. The movie was already done and the story resolved by the time that scene came about but it was still an annoyance. Would I still have watched the movie knowing about these two details? Yes. Definitely.

If you enjoy a good movie experience then you should definitely not miss this even though there are two scenes cut. Watching this movie at home wouldn’t do it any justice.

Posted by Patrick

Note: The comments below might contain spoilers so don’t read them if you haven’t watched the movie

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