That Cody trailer (Street Fighter V)

I get that lately I have been far more about blabbering on about fighting game oriented stuff, but man Combo breaker was awesome. These tournaments never disappoint, love seeing Guilty Gear, Street Fighter, Tekken and others. The real highlight though? That Cody trailer.

Now Cody Travers is a character who was my absolute favorite especially in Street Fighter IV, so the minute I saw that they were putting him in the latest installment during their third season of character releases I was ecstatic. People were playing with estimates on how long it would take for him to come out, finally we would be met with the Street Fighter pages on Facebook and Instagram changing their profile picture to a brick wall being broken open. For those who know about Cody they will know that is his thing, breaking out of jail just to partake in his favorite past time of street fighting. Now given past experiences it was known that a trailer would be coming very soon, and with Combo Breaker coming up the stars were lining up perfectly.

After the grand finals of the Street Fighter portion of Combo Breaker, we would get that trailer. Also funny that there is a live action portion to it.

Now we can see how different he is from Street Fighter IV in so many ways, but I am truly excited for his changes. For some examples he gets the knife or pipe for V-trigger, throws the little tornadoes at people now, has some sweet looking target combos, and in conclusion just looks great. Cody has evolved as a character story wise too, from convict to mayor he is changing things up, but still has that thug alive in him as he still totes those knives claiming that “desk work just isn’t his thing”. It is all these things that make him so compelling to me as a character both in and out of game-play. Also can’t forget those upcoming costumes too, definitely need all of those, show that Capcom is putting extra care into this one after the flat release of their last character Falke. Either way I am super stoked for Cody, wish he was coming out earlier, but the more time to polish the better.

Also another bonus his theme is definitely pretty sweet sounding so far, VesperArcade has done a preview theme from what we got so check that out:

I just wanted to talk about Cody some as I am so excited for him to come out, and since I have been really getting back into Street Fighter the time is definitely right. Aside from that definitely been meaning to talk about Fortnite some as that persistently bothers me, perhaps get that battle report up that is weeks overdue, and also been playing Pillars of Eternity 2 casually so there will be something about that in the near future.

“Punishment by fist, not a bad policy ain’t it?” I dig it.

Canada Cup Masters Series

So this past weekend was the Canada Cup Master Series for fighting games (and Hearthstone… Ugh) and as it was taking place in the city I live in I was able to attend. This became something I wanted to post about because I love the fact there is a FGC (Fighting Game Community) and wanted to be able to go be a part of it.

It was an awesome time, personally I was there mostly for the Street Fighter V tourney, but it was great being able to see the Guilty Gear and Dragon Ball FighterZ stuff as well. People were so friendly with many casual games that were constantly taking place. Nice to see people meeting, making new friends, and just generally having a good time.

One thing I love is the pro players are actually really cool people, just in with and around everyone else. So you can meet these people that I wish I could play at the level at. People like Punk, Ceroblast, Justin Wong (If you know Street Fighter people) and many others are just really cool friendly people. Got to meet one of my favorite streamers and youtubers VesperArcade which was really awesome, got to see him play his games. I have learned much from seeing him play, hearing him talk it about, and from some of my personal questions he has answered. Touching with the local Canadian FGC was a great experience.

The community is a great thing and I know I will be doing my best to further link up with my local FGC.

Here are some pictures I have.

Anyway it was a fantastic experience and I recommend people get into their gaming community to experience these kind of events for themselves.

Blood Angels Progress

So got an update on the progress of my Blood Angels force, starting with the ones who have been officially based to varying degrees of awesomeness:

 

The Red Thirst-y Reivers are ready to go

 

The cheap, but effective knife Scouts.

 

Then here got the other group of Scouts sporting Mephiston Red as well.

 

My group of 10 Intercessors, to sometimes be split into squads of 5 also based and ready (other than the one backpack that fell off).

 

Then the three HQ I have so far look pretty good, other than the Librarian who I got a little too trigger happy on with the spray so for now his face is a little featureless… So that will be something I will have to fix moving forward, but is not something I am undertaking quite yet.

 

Then these steals of a deal that I found at my local hobby store. $35 CAD for what is normally $70? Such a steal I couldn’t resist, especially since I need exactly two for my planned Blood Angels list.

 

So my Blood angels army certainly has a strong start especially with those whirlwinds giving me options if I want to field a 1000 point army, which speaking of that I had a game today with them that I absolutely plan to post about once I sort through my scrawled battle report on paper, to be accompanied by pictures too. Spoiler alert Reivers and Whirlwinds are kick ass. Also in the next little bit decided to touch a bit on the toxicity that seems to plague both Overwatch/Heroes of the Storm as I experienced a good deal of it lately so that will be a fun post, then a Fortnite post at some point, and last thing I have planned is perhaps a talk about the things that made me return to Street Fighter V for my fighting game kicks.

Anyhow that is all for this post, hope everyone has a good weekend!

Expensive Cardboard (Updated)

I never originally planned on talking about this, but really? ‘Nintendo Labo’ bringing you overpriced cardboard? Now I have always thought this to be a ridiculous concept, but upon seeing everyone being blatant yes-men I knew I had to say something about it. Yes I get it is targeted to young children as a toy and is more than just the cardboard, but I can’t look past the basic variety kit starting CAD $89.99, pretty insane for pretty much just a toy.

Now for point of reference let’s look at what some people have to say about it.

Kotaku : “One of the great fallacies of children’s entertainment is that kids need things to be simple. Kids love diving deeply into complicated things, accumulating knowledge that is out of reach of the adults around them. Nintendo has always understood this, but Labo is a unique expression of this understanding, something that extends beyond the virtual world. More of a madcap engineering kit than a game, it feeds and rewards creativity and curiosity. As an adult, you’re along for the ride, but if you’ve got imaginative children in your life, seeing how they respond to this marvelous toy factory will be a great joy.”

TechRadar: “Creativity and problem solving skills are definitely engaged and developed here and, honestly, we can’t help but wonder if Nintendo is quietly creating the next generation of game designers. It’s like an early introduction to the thinking processes behind programming – while many games have us learn their mechanics to successfully play, in some ways Labo has us play to learn more about mechanics. ”

Destructoid: “The software is broken up into three sections: build, play, discover. Build is basically your construction manuals, while Play is the games you use with your Toy-Con, and Discover is instructions and other details. The coolest part for kids about discover is that it’s not just basic instructions. Through three lively characters kids can get outside-the-box ideas for how to play with their new Toy-Con, construct add-on items that expand the initial build’s abilities, and even learn the basic mechanics and programming that let their new toys do what they do. It’s far more in-depth than I thought it would be, and really opens up the educational and imaginative aspects of the game.”

Now these are just a few people as examples of the universal praise that seems to be floating around the Nintendo Labo. Now I get what people are getting at, it is a toy for children, but for that much money? Want to talk about fun learning and education? Get your kids to play with Lego, get them to read books, and all for less than the damned Labo. You can even print off replacement pieces, so it is obviously a fine product that requires nuance. I know there is more to it with the “Toy-Con” and the programs that go along with them, but still…

 

Want to talk about toys for fostering educational and engineering interest? Knex has got you covered and for much less of the cost and Lego as mentioned works as well. It just seems ridiculous to me that people are willing to spend the amount that Labo asks for just because it is Nintendo asking for it, and you know that is actually the reason for it too. It is in essence a neat concept, and without it being so damned pricey it could be worth someone looking into. As it stands however, it is hard to see it being worth it with that massive price value when there are far better alternatives to be had for toys since that is the primary argument people are going for here. Maybe it is actually as great as people claim it to be, but as a skeptic I believe it really is just the fact that it is the almighty Nintendo pushing it onto people especially for that kind of price point.

Been a busy couple of weeks.

Been busy with research papers and final exams as of late so I’ve been relatively quiet, but thankfully the semester is over so I can have more free time with everything else.

For the next little while I planned on talking about Street Fighter V and how is still going strong after releasing a couple years back. As well as some of the drawbacks I’ve been finding about Dragon Ball FighterZ.

Going to get some painting progress on my small fledgling Blood Angels force weather permitting (because spray painting in -20 doesn’t go well).

The popularity of Fortnite, which is rather puzzeling to me and how it dominates the Twitch viewer statistics as of late.

So those are just a few things I am looking at talking about over the rest of the month, but for now this is just a small update. Hope everything is going well for everyone, and I look forward to getting back into the rhythm of things starting next week!

DBFZ DLC – Done right… so far

Downloadable content is always walking a fine line, and it is everywhere nowadays. The concept on it’s own isn’t so bad, they make more stuff after the game and sell it as well. Makes sense right? But the issue is when every game has some DLC or another planned. I remember first taking notice of this kind of stuff in Mass Effect 2 where if you got a certain DLC you got that mercenary guy.

Yeah that guy, and this came out while I was in high school on the Xbox 360. I didn’t have the guy and guess what? Turns out the game was just fine without him. Now this is the kind of DLC that is somewhat harmless, it adds stuff but if you don’t have it it isn’t a big deal. Though it can get ridiculous with games like Evolve that would charge you for a slightly different coloured gun. Again still fairly harmless as you can ignore that stupidity and move on with your life.

Now it starts to become a problem when season passes get introduced, incorporating the once innocent expansions into this corporate promise of future DLC. A season pass is like saying “give me the money for this thing that may or may not come in the future,” which wouldn’t be terrible if most companies weren’t out just to exploit whatever they can to make a quick buck. I could go look at Steam right now, find any big AAA title, and it is almost guaranteed to have a season pass as well as other garbage on release.

Because people were totally clamoring for a sequel to The Crew. So look you can spend CAD$ 129.99 for some extra vehicles and three outfits for your character, seems totally worth it right? And how did The Crew go again?

I mean alright there are more good than bad reviews, but by a small margin, and of course there are people who liked it. There is nothing wrong with this, but the point being that there were enough issues that made people angry on release, and more recently too. So why in their mind did it seem to be a good idea to do the same corporate DLC crap that could have someone paying up to $130 for an alright game? And it is Ubisoft we are talking about who aren’t exactly the most reliable for this kind of thing, they have one good game as of late (Rainbow Six Siege.)

This is where DLC and Season Passes start to be an issue, so when DBFZ announced that a “Fighter Pass” was coming it had me worried. So I waited until the characters Bardock and Broly, actually came out (which you can buy separately by the way) to get the pass after I had seen some actual game-play. Man did Arc Systems nail it, not only are the characters awesome, but it actually feels like they added more into the game as a result. Each character adds to the already existing dramatic finishes, and there is actually more added dialogue for the original roster characters. Which the Bardock dramatic finish is displayed below, and if you are a Dragon Ball Z fan like me you will appreciate how awesome it is.

 

Either way the addition of new characters brings the addition of new content. Now this might sound like a no-brainer, but look at Injustice 2. Over at Netherrealm Studios they were like “Let’s add all these characters (which only some are DC characters) and not record any voice-lines for the other guys to address these newcomers,” resulting in a rather stale experience. Don’t get me wrong I love Injustice 2, but it kills the mood of a DC fan like me when you see Aquaman give Black Manta a standard generic voice line when they are each-others mortal enemies (they blame each other for the deaths of their fathers.)

So having these added characters actually feel like they fit is a big deal, not to mention how they play is actually incredible. Bardock and Broly both play differently from the other existing characters being awesome in their own rights. These two characters also have their own awesome themes adding to the collection of awesome music in the game already.

So it is very nice to see someone not exactly screwing us over with DLC right now, so I wanted to give credit where credit is due as Dragon Ball FighterZ is incredibly made. Not all games are like this, so it is important to keep our heads on a swivel and our eyes on shady companies like Ubisoft. Anyway that’s all for this post, thanks for reading!

Blood Angels Progress!

Been a little quiet as of late, but that is sadly due to it being crunch time for school. As any university student could tell you there is a period in which they get blitzed with assignments, exams, and presentations that they struggle to not get drowned in. The latter half of March is that kind of time for me, so my ability to get much done besides school and work is fairly limited, however I have made some awesome progress with my blossoming Blood Angels force that I wanted to show off so far.

HQ

As I showed off before I got my minor conversion of a Sanguinary Priest rolling with standard equipment to keep him cheap…

Then as added HQ I got my Captain in Gravis Armour who I got plans to replace with a ‘Slamguinius’ conversion of my own, but the Captain in Gravis is no joke and more than formidable.

Got a super cool looking Librarian in Terminator Armour as well, so he can hold his own in combat and hold the line as well as any other Space Marine.

 

Elites

I have quite a bit of work done in the elites section so far, though I must admit Sanguinary Guard are a pain in the ass to assemble…

Of course got a Sanguinary Ancient who will sport a relic when there is CP to spare.

Got a full squad of Reivers ready to unleash utilize the Red Thirst to get so many attacks at heightened strength against whatever is unlucky enough to be caught by them, and yes it is just the box as I have yet to get much time to assemble them. To be fair you have to do leg by leg, and arm by arm, and I absolutely HATE having a half-finished squad for assembly… gotta be all or nothing.

Troops

Got two squads of scouts ready to roll out onto the table-top at any time, one geared with Sniper Rifles and one geared with Combat Knives.

So all in all I have a good start to my force, with a good while to go until it is done, but all things come with time. As for right now I don’t have a lot of free time, but when I do I will be sure to get much more done for posts in the future. If anyone is curious as to what I plan to run I would be more than happy to talk about that or if people have some awesome suggestions on what to add that would be awesome to hear as well. Anyway that’s all for this post!

Vermintide 2: Electric Boogaloo the Review

So recently Vermintide 2 came out, and if you were wondering if it was any good I have your answer right here.

Yes it is good, very good. Why is it good though? Well for a number of reasons, but to start I will say if you like the Left 4 Dead style and like Warhammer then this is the experience for you. Without further ado, let’s get into it.

The Setting

To start I’ll set the mood, it is a time of desperation and destruction as the end of the old world nears. Now if you ask most people they will say they loved the End Times setting and book series both, as it took risks that were never before taken pushing Warhammer Fantasy to its brink (too bad Age of Sigmar can’t capture any of this.) So this is where Vermintide 1 and 2 are set as the inevitable end comes, but that doesn’t stop you from trying to prevent it as you parade through razed towns, sewers, chaos worshiper camps, etc. The desperation of the end times are visible in all the maps and they capture it beautifully. Despite usually having so many enemies and things going on at a time everything still manages to look really good, with some breath taking areas.

The Characters

So I found the five characters in the Vermintide games to be somewhat interesting and their banter is entertaining (save for the incredibly annoying elf Kerillian,) always having something to say to fit the situation. The spread of archetypes are sure to give you one that you fancy, and although it starts to feel somewhat cramped when you get a full group of people who want to play different things from time to time, all the characters bring enough variety to be enjoyable to play. They all have different weapons, three different sub-classes with their own talent trees and skills (passive and active both) that give a plentiful amount of options to play with. For example Markus Kruber the former Imperial sergeant has the three sub-classes; 1) Mercenary dedicated to chopping up groups of enemies while having a war cry that gives the whole team temporary health, 2) Huntsman with a focus on ranged weapons that has a stealth ability allowing for better positioning or just an easy way to save allies, and 3) the Foot Knight who has more durability, more blocking stamina, a damage reduction aura, and a charge ability that allows you to move through groups of enemies at a time. Then as I mentioned before those each have their own talent trees that unlock as you level up. So the characters are varied, have progression and have a variety of play-styles within the weapons/talents that almost guarantee you find something you enjoy. Also as a fun tidbit all the sub-classes have a bit of backstory that pending which you play reflects how the character changed after the first game, neat.

The Equipment

Now normally I wouldn’t call the equipment in a game a big selling point, but here I feel like it really is, because you are constantly trying to get that ideal equipment as you climb the difficulties and become stronger. To earn equipment you have the rewards system or the crafting system, the rewards system gives you chests at the end of missions and when you level up. The end of missions rewards which pending your accumulative level, what difficulty you earn them on, and fulfilling certain objectives. The crafting allows you to dismantle old equipment for scrap allowing to craft whatever you want out of blueprints that you unlock as you go along. Here we have a “power level” system which combines your level with the values of your equipment determining your  overall strength. I think it’s a good system that you don’t have to grind for the weapons that do the most damage (as your damage is determined by the power and the type of weapon,) but find the traits and qualities you want most in a weapon instead of the damage vs traits dance that often ends up happening in those scenarios.

As I mentioned before the weapons have lots of variety, and are different for each character. So for the Witch Hunter if you want something to cleave through lots of enemies you take a falchion, if you want some armour piercing go for the battle axe, or if you want something in-between you will take the rapier. The ranged weapons you take alongside the melee weapons adds more variety, want to snipe out enemies from a distance? Use a crossbow. Like the crossbow’s range but hate the reload? Take the repeater crossbow. This is just still using the Witch Hunter example, with still more weapon types and it being like this for all five characters. All in all there is lots of play-styles you can utilize with the weapons that fit all types of scenarios. There is also a risk reward system that has you collect tomes and grimoires throughout the maps that give you better items at the end of a successful game, but they will also hinder you, best example being the grimoires that reduce your maximum health making it harder to survive in the battles to come.

The drive to get newer equipment is quite enticing and keeps you coming back.

Enemy varieties

In any game ever the enemies that are featured have to be interesting, satisfying to face, and varied enough that you don’t get bored halfway through, so in other words they have to be engaging enough for you to want to engage them. In the first game it was just Skaven with their array of enemy types, Clanrats/slaves that swarm, Gutter Runners that ambush you, Packmasters that rope you up and drag you off, Ratling Gunners that shoot a warp-stone mini gun at you, and more, so the Skaven alone had a lot of variety in themselves. Adding the followers of chaos into the mix adds even greater amounts of variety the compliment the Skaven; you got the Leech who isolates allies and leeches their health, the Blightstormer who creates plague tornadoes to toss you around, Berserkers who hit hard, Chaos Warriors who are mountains of metal that inflict great amounts of damage, and those are just a few examples. The most basic chaos follower enemies are tougher than the basic Skaven so them thrown into a horde changes things up, especially if they have those pesky shields. The enemies also never attack in the same places or same ways (save for some scripted events) making each run different from the last.

The Combat

The combat in this game is so utterly and viscerally satisfying that it is hard to have a bad time playing it (unless off course chopping the limbs off enemies isn’t something you enjoy.) The mechanics are pretty good too, with being able to dodge, block, push, and chop your way to victory. As I mentioned prior there are many types of equipment to use to get the job so you can address fights in many different ways that can all get the job done. Again it is REALLY SATISFYING to fight all these enemies and come out on top after a brutal battle.

Price Point

So $33 CAD is what it costs for people in Canada, which for a game that will last you a while is a pretty big selling point especially in an era where new games cost upwards 70-80$. To get a quality game for less than half the price of something like EAfront 2 or Destiny 2 or any other crap that a AAA developer puts out is well worth it.

So in Conclusion

If you like action RPGs or Warhammer, or Left 4 Dead horde survival style, with some visceral combat involved then this is the game for you. It is very fun, has lots of replay value and again for $30ish you cannot go wrong. It is also a great co-op game if you can manage to find enough friends to fill the ranks, so a big plus with that.

Also as a bonus have some of my personal game-play from the pre-order beta here:

And then some more recent stuff:

Forgebane hot off the press! New 40K box set!

Hot off the press and just revealed, is the new box set for 40K! Adeptus Mechanicus and Necrons! Wow what a match made in heaven. This box set looks awesome, and should please any Necron or Admech player. Big things are the new Imperial knights in the box set so even if you have all the things you would want for an Admech force those are a big sell! Either way without much further ado here are the leaked photos courtesy of General Games.

Anyway just wanted to bring that hot news and do my part to spread the good word of the God Emperor!

Fire Dragons are steamy

Crappy pun work aside, I just wanted to take a moment to talk about how much I enjoy using Eldar Fire Dragons and the particular tale of a certain Exarch.

I had a game the other night with a couple of my friends, and it was a 1500 point game that had a 2 on 1 scheme to it. So the one guy with an Adeptus Mechanicus force had 1500 points, while I was teamed up with my other friend with us splitting 750/750. My teammate had a Militarum Tempestus force that was hard focused on deep striking with some snipers and a Leman Russ for support. I will spare the details of the full game, since I just wanted to call attention to the first couple rounds.

So we had decided that a building in the center was a key structure to be had both for strategic value and it was the best terrain we had (it was primed unlike other things.) On the Admech side close to the building were many Skitarii and worst of all an Onager Dunecrawler.

Yeah one of those. Scary things they are and those Neutron Lasers with S10 can be a scary proposition (not to mention other setups,) but yet we set about the task of destroying it right away. Tempestus Scions were on that middle building like gold on Custodes, and my Fire Dragons webway assaulted in as well with some Warlock support. So the combined deep strike force went straight into our favourite building, so that we could benefit from the cover and attempt to erase that Dunecrawler.

This is the purpose of Fire Dragons, this is why I brought them so when the time came I knew what I had to do. Throw Jinx on it from my Warlock and blow it up with the Dragons. Well sadly Jinx failed and so my Fire Dragons had to go at it without the psychic assistance. So it came time for them to fire, and sadly only two of them hit, the Exarch with his Fire Pike and one of the regular Dragons with a fusion gun. Saves were failed, and the damage was going out. I needed 11 damage from the two of them to erase the Onager Dunecrawler, and I got 10 damage on it. It was a little disappointing that a meltagun from my ally had to finish the job, but the best part comes next.

So when it was the Admech turn I knew the Fire Dragons (henceforth FDs) were going to get mowed down, and so it was. Now the FDs have a solid save with a 3+ and the cover taking that to an HQ level of 2+, but all hope went out the window when the shots started coming. A dragoon and another Dunecrawler made short work of the FDs accompanying the Exarch, then it came time for the two squads of Skitarii Vanguard to open fire. Now Radium Carbines are Assault 3, and with some Arc Rifles of Rapid Fire 1, spread out amongst a combined 20 Skitarii Rangers that is a lot of shots going out. Obviously if it wasn’t necessary it would never take that many shots for a single FD Exarch, but it was a different occurrence this time. So it was that the Exarch saved/dodged/survived over 30 shots of combined carbine and rifle fire, which understandably the Admech player wasn’t too thrilled about meaning one thing… He had to kill the Exarch out of principle now. Three Tech-Priest Domini, Two Dragoons, one unit of Skitarii Rangers, and a third Onager Dunecrawler later, the Exarch still stood triumphantly.

This would only last until the next Admech shooting phase, when halfway through he fell to more Skitarii Vanguard fire… So it would be that his legacy was ended and the Tempestus Scions who had stood around him would surely tell tales of the Exarch until the end of their days. After the game I had boasted that he deserved to be commemorated getting a unique name and backstory, with the potential Autarch conversion in the future… to which my friends had agreed was a neat idea. So for now until I think of a good name for him, this will be his legacy because lets face it, Fire Dragons are just awesome and none are hotter 😉 .

Also below is a picture of his stand because I wanted to honour him forever, don’t mind the table and terrain as our collective Warhammer area is a work in progress.. also don’t judge me for him (the Exarch) being unpainted still…

Here he stands after surviving a barrage of shots.

Anyhow that’s all for now, just wanted to recount the tale of the Exarch, also if anyone has any neat or interesting name ideas let me know!