Video Game Review: Grand Theft Auto Online: Diamond Casino DLC

Details: More information can be found at https://www.rockstargames.com/

Score: 6/10

Rockstar has released the latest free downloadable content for their massively profitable Grand Theft Auto Online and it’s mostly fun. Most noteworthy is that there is a new line of story missions associated with the free content (as long as you own Grand Theft Auto V and have an internet connection).

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Video Game Review: Grand Theft Auto Online: After Hours

Details: Released in July 2018. Played for about an hour. Official site is https://www.rockstargames.com/newswire/article/60501/GTA-Online-After-Hours-Out-Now

Score: 5/10

GTA Online has released another free update and it is a short one. I found it to be a welcome update, though it doesn’t really add much. It is free though, so there’s that.

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Video Game Review: Bully: Scholarship Edition

Details: Was originally released in 2006. I played it on PC with an Xbox 360 controller. I bought it off Steam for about $5. Played for about twenty hours. Made by Rockstar Games.

Most of the time, playing this game felt like a chore. This is a really old game.

Firstly, the visuals are actually not bad. This game originally came out for the PS2, which was a freaking long time ago. Luckily they up resolution-ed the game and gave it a 1080p resolution, so it looked fine on my screen. It is definitely dated though.

Gameplay was the most painful part of this game. It is essentially a combination of mini-games. In general, you run around like in a Grand Theft Auto game, more like Grand Theft Auto III and less like Grand Theft Auto V. Some of the mini games involve timed button presses, like in rhythm games. There’s also trivia and some other tracing varieties. There’s a lot of mini-games, but they aren’t very deep or substantial. The difficulty is also pretty easy, easier than a Grand Theft Auto game at least.

My biggest annoyances were that the game broke two cardinal rules of video games. The game operates on a timer that goes in real-time. At certain times you need to do certain things and there is generally a time limit on a lot of missions. The other violation is the inclusion of missions where you need protect someone controlled by shitty artificial intelligence. That means that the computer controlled character will run off and get killed regardless of what you do sometimes. There are a lot of other shitty things about this game. You should just keep in mind that this game is old and a lot of the gameplay used in this game has been removed from most modern games because developers realized how not fun they were.

The music for this game was fantastic. I was surprised how many good, original tracks there were.

The voice acting and performances were as good as any other Rockstar game, which is to say they were great. I was surprised to see that motion capture was used in this game despite how old it is. That motion capture really comes through and adds to the performances surprisingly, even though the character models are old looking.

There are some bugs. The game crashed on me lots of times throughout my play through.

The story was okay. The premise is this: Jimmy Hopkins is sent to one of the craziest boarding schools and must do his best to survive in this strange new environment. I did feel a sense of satisfaction after seeing the ending. However, there were lots of times where I wanted to quit the game. I mainly pushed on because I like finishing games. The story was not strong enough to compel me to keep playing.

While not a bad game, I would not recommend it to most people. The game is so old and outdated that I’d rather recommend something more recent. I can see how some people might enjoy it though. If it looks interesting to you, then you should probably go on YouTube and watch some gameplay videos before making the purchase.

Score: 4/10

Video Game Review: Sleeping Dogs (2012)

Details: Played on PC for approximately twenty hours. A mature rated open world, action-adventure game.

To my surprise, I greatly enjoyed Sleeping Dogs. Though not as long as a Grand Theft Auto game, this works in favor towards creating a digestible length game that’s a lot of fun and accomplishes what it sets out to do.

To summarize the game in one line, Sleeping Dogs is a homage to Cantonese, crime, film making merged together with Grand Theft Auto’s gameplay.

As a homage to Cantonese film making, the game succeeds wonderfully. The set up of the story, though predictable, heavily refers to movies like Infernal Affairs. Considering how much I loved Infernal Affairs and the Departed (which is based on Infernal Affairs), this is not a bad thing.

I also enjoyed the constant insults and cursing in Cantonese being used. Hilarious and convincing, it adds authenticity and helps set the tone to the overall game. It was actually surprising to hear so much Cantonese being used since this was a very Western game using Cantonese films as source material.

Overall, it was a fun game that didn’t waste my time and had an engaging enough story to motivate me through the missions. By the end I was sufficiently motivated to beat the crap out of the bad guys and dispose of them in gruesome ways that may or may not have involved an ice chipper.

Score: 7/10 Would play again.