In Memoriam: A Look Back at the Year’s Game Reviews

NATHAN WETROSKY | Photo Courtesy

Hello to everyone who is reading this or just skimming the pages of the Spectrum newspaper. I just wanted to say thanks for reading my articles even if you only looked at the titles. Seeing as this was my first year at The Spectrum and my last article for the school year, I thought I could look back on a few of my previous articles and reflect on what I wrote about. Some of the games I reviewed or announced went well while others took a nosedive off a cliff or fell somewhere in-between.

‘Star Wars: Battlefront II’

This first game is one I am a bit embarrassed for promoting, mostly because of what happened after I gave it a great review. Yes, it is true that EA has finally fixed their botched game known as “Star Wars: Battlefront II,” albeit after six months of agony. The reason I say the game was botched is because of the loot box scandal surrounding the release.

Once “Battlefront II” was released to the public, it was made painfully clear that people who had extra cash could buy loot boxes and premium currency until they got the best equipment and heroes in the game. There were two problems with these loot boxes.

One, there was no guarantee you would even get what you wanted after you bought one. At the basic level, they were nothing more than slot machines. Second, loot boxes are something you can commonly find in free-to-play mobile games on your phone. What were loot boxes doing in a full $60 game by a AAA developer you may ask? Answer, to simply get more profit from people who have already bought the game of course.

I will stand by my initial reaction to the game and its great artwork, but I feel bad I believed EA’s promises and promoted the game.

On the bright side, EA executives took it upon themselves, very boldly I might add, to show the world the true nature of microtransactions and how bad they are for consumers. Thanks EA, for starting a movement in legislation to ban loot boxes. We could never have done it without your cooperation.

‘The Evil Within 2’

“The Evil Within 2” by developer Tango Gameworks is a game I am very glad to have gotten the word out on. They did a magnificent job with continuing the story from the first game about Detective Sebastian Castellanos and him trying to find and save his daughter. They also did a great job keeping the feel of the first game while expanding upon it. Even without the amount of barbed wire the first one included, this sequel did a good job of continuing the nightmare, and I am happy to have supported it.

‘Star Citizen’

If you have read a few of my past articles, you will know I have a huge geek crush for “Star Citizen” by Cloud Imperium Games. I have mixed feelings about “Star Citizen” after giving it some thought with regard to the game itself and the progress it is making. I realize I am indifferent on the game at the moment.

On one hand, I still think the game is a very ambitious and a worthwhile project. I want to see its completion and what it is meant to be. On the other hand, the game is now in its third development stage and is still a big buggy mess with abysmal optimization. In my experience, the game played smoother back when it was still in its second development cycle. If you are still on the edge about getting the game, I would recommend to wait and see what happens with it in the upcoming months.

‘Freeman: Guerrilla Warfare’

One of my most recent articles was about “Freeman: Guerrilla Warfare” and how the developers have worked hard to improve the game. I cannot express how proud I am of KK Game Studio and the hard work they have been putting into their game. To emphasize this, the day after the last article on this subject was released, there was a new update for the game that allowed for total customization of unit weapons, armor and clothing. The campaign map was also once again updated entirely. The team at KK Game Studio is still definitely hard at work and is continuing to perfect “Freeman: Guerrilla Warfare.” It is a very fun game with good strategy and gunplay mechanics. Plus, it looks nice.

‘SINNER: Sacrifice for Redemption’

The last game article I would like to mention is “Sinner: Sacrifice for Redemption,” and I only mention this one because in the article announcing it, I said the game would be coming out April 25. What really happened is the game’s developers at DARK STAR pushed the release date back to sometime in early July. I know I do not have any control over the studio’s decisions, but I may have missed some key data while writing the article. I only did find out about this crucial bit of information April 24 while I was waiting for the game to become available at midnight.

In the defense of DARK STAR, I applaud them for what they did. Too many developers and publishing studios tend to rush out their games with a bunch of problems. This often results in what may have been a cool idea or concept falling flat. Once a game is released, many people take that as the final product. Even if a developer says they are going to update it regularly, the game has lost most, if not all, of its momentum and ends up being cast aside. If DARK STAR needs a couple more months to finalize their game, I say more power to them.

These are the articles about games I wanted to go over. I thought of doing this article as somewhat of a responsibility of mine and make a note of any misinformation over the year and correct it with the right information. As a writer, I enjoyed writing these articles over the year to keep you informed on the happenings in the video game realm. So, my final words to you are to make it through your finals for this semester. Good luck on your exams, and have a great summer. I look forward to writing for you again.

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