• Category Archives PS4
  • Game Overview: Assassin’s Creed 4 Black Flag

    So I’ve been a bit quiet recently.  This is largely due to Assassin’s Creed 4: Black Flag.  Yes, I’m addicted.

    The game itself is, supposedly, in the same vein as the other Assassin’s Creed games. I don’t know because I haven’t played, or even seen, them yet.

    Generally the game is open-world, allowing you to explore the world, perform side-quests, or just live a piratical lifestyle until you decide to continue with the main quest.  The main quest varies in style (on-foot or on the ship, various types of sub-mission such as follow, eavesdrop, locate, assassinate, etc) although it’s usually quite linear within a given environment.  If you stray too far from the quest area or if you fail a primary quest objective it resets the quest.  There are usually secondary objectives as well.

    The world is quite beautifully rendered.  The humans less so – especially in some cut-scenes.  IMHO they suffer from the Uncanny Valley effect with wooden movements and unrealistic white glaring eyes being especially noticeable.  During game action this is not really noticeable though, and the main character is quite nicely animated as he performs a wide range of actions.

    Gameplay wise it’s quite varied – from parkour-style running exploration, captaining a sailing ship across the seas, pick-pocketing, sword-fighting, and even underwater diving exploration of shipwrecks.  The main character performs all actions with aplomb and the controls are reasonably simple with the character choosing the correct action depending on environment.  Unfortunately this means that sometimes he’ll try to climb a pole which is in the way rather than running around it…

    But niggles are so far few and far between, the only other one of note is that occasionally the camera won’t rotate properly.  This is most annoying when sailing as the camera controls are instrumental in selecting the ships’ weaponry during a naval battle.

    There’s also an odd “future-day” style sub-game, which pops up occasionally. Without spoiling it for others, I’d just like to mention that I personally did not find it particularly intrusive or annoying and it does add a twist, which, again, may be present in the earlier Assassin’s Creed games as well so may not be anything new for fans of the series.

    All up I think this is a great game.



    • Nice graphics and animation.
    • Open-world gameplay (when not in a main-mission) with lots of variety.
    • Interesting main storyline.
    • Uses plenty of historical data to make world seem believable.


    • Cannot choose style of character (ie, “nice” or “evil”).
    • In-game actions do not influence the storyline (story is “on rails”).
    • Some cut-scenes are constantly repeated and get “old”.
    • Character sometimes chooses poor actions, especially in complicated situations.


    • Camera-control sometimes buggy.
    • Occasional “frozen” enemies which can’t be interacted with.


    • Easy – Medium

    Personal Score:

    • 9/10

  • UPlay Rubbish

    Hey and welcome to my first blogged rant!
    So I’ve been playing Assassins Creed 4 for the last 2 days (great game so far, I’ll do a separate  writeup another time) but what is really starting to annoy me is UPlay. It’s a Ubisoft thing and in AC4 it prompts you to sign in. Twice. EVERY TIME YOU START THE GAME! Just bleep off and let me enjoy the game. Nobody wants it so just take the hint and stop bothering me.

    UPDATE: So I finally caved in and registered a UPlay account and Passport.  To Ubisoft’s credit, this is now free (despite the text still saying to purchase it), but frankly, I shouldn’t have to just to avoid 2 annoying prompts.

  • Game Overview – Need for Speed : Rivals

    The only vehicle game available on the PS4 at launch due to the delay of Driveclub, but a good one! Certainly not regretting buying it and I’ve enjoyed it a lot although it does have a few tiny bugs.

    Overall the game strongly reminded me of Burnout Paradise although with the theme of Cops vs Racers.  The game world is open with various activities and missions dotted throughout.  Unlike Burnout Paradise though you’re never quite free to just enjoy the world, especially when playing as a Racer as cops will almost always try to take you down.

    Presentation is great with lovely graphics and constantly changing weather effects including day and night.  Night-time, while very nice visually, can be frustrating when trying to complete a mission as visibility is hugely reduced.  It would be nice to have this as a setting. The world has all basic terrain types, from city to desert to alpine mountains and even redwood forests which ensures good variety.

    The online component is great fun and works well, either working together as Cops to take down Racers, or racing each other.  The matchmaking facilities are quite limited though and there’s no good way to play with friends while also allowing strangers to join in.  Game sessions allow people to join and leave anytime, and the single-player missions can be played even while in multi-player mode.


    • Great racing game in the vein of Burnout Paradise, but with a theme and better graphics.
    • Open-world gameplay.
    • Good online play.


    • A few bugs.
    • Limited matchmaking.
    • Cannot turn off Cops vs Racers theme to just enjoy the world.
    • Weather effects can get in the way of missions.


    • Jumps sometimes not registered.
    • After being taken down, car is not always oriented properly on road.
    • Very occasional crashes.

    Personal Score: 8 / 10

  • Game Overview – Resogun

    One of the launch-titles available for PlayStation 4, Resogun is a fun, fast, sideways-scrolling retro-shooter effectively based on the classic Defender.  It was also free for PlayStation Plus subscribers during the launch period.

    On “Rookie” it’s an enjoyable blast, but on the higher difficulty levels it will leave you frustrated while you master the effective use of all the capabilities.