The Shallows Review

Wanting to get back into reviews after a particularly hard day at the office shall we say I picked up my phone and decided to randomly stop on a movie that was on the many on demand services that I use. Recently added to NOW TV is The Shallows.

While probably not the best genre at the time for both my physical and mental state. Anyone that knows me knows I jump at everything and this was a movie that was guaranteed to make me jump. I put it on anyway NOW TV had it at 3 stars so I wasn’t expecting much from it.

I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by this movie, the way in which they used the threat of shark and the performance of Blake Lively was brilliant. The synopsis of the movie is a medical student has gone soul-searching after the death of her mother, and has found it in surfing but she gets attacked by a Shark and on a remote beach and has to fight for survival.

Now most movies like this, concentrate on the Shark and show off all its teeth, but this one was different. Yes you do see the teeth and it is an imposing figure of fear when you do see the animal leave the water but I felt that they didn’t over use it, they relied on the threat more than its physical presence. The major thing that came from this, was half way through it left me wondering whether this was a true story or not?

After the movie however I did a quick Google and found that it wasn’t based on any true story, and a long list of reasons’ why people weren’t happy about the movie from a Science perspective. As some of the movie and the way shark was acting has not scientific evidence. However that said if they movie has you wondering whether it’s based on a true story or not then it must be doing something right?

In conclusion if your stuck for something to watch over this festive period and have a NOW TV/Sky Cinema in the UK I would recommend checking this movie out. It’s a suspense jump scare type horror, but has the right balance and left me question whether it was a true story or not?

Until Dawn Review

Until Dawn is a QT based game, which is highly story driven. If you guys haven’t guessed by some of the other reviews I’ve done, I really enjoy this style of game. Telltale is one of my favourite publishers and I am quite surprised I haven’t picked up this game before.

Josh Chris and Ash with a Ouija board

Nothing more spookier than a Ouija board

Until Dawn focuses around a group of teenagers that go to a Lodge on a Ski range where something strange is going on. It is a horror based story with quite a few jump scares but the story is really well told with some good twists and turns. Other scenes can be telegraphed and you can see coming but that just adds to the suspense.

Gameplay wise it has some interesting controls, which add to the emission. There is an option to have the controller in motion mode although through the run through I went to classic. There were still places in the game you had to hold the controller dead still not to move. While adding to emission sometimes it was hard to hold it still enough not to move your character and I do want to do another playthrough to see whether I can improve on that. The other part of the gameplay that is encouraging for a replay, is that all the really important decisions you make it pops up with Butterfly Effect Updated. Such a simple addition and Telltale do say at the beginning of their games, that your decisions affect the story but after that, there doesn’t remind you.

Overall I really enjoyed this game and can highly recommend it if you’re into horror and a high story is driven games. The flaws in this game can be its graphics even though amazing in some scenes others can be blocky. It has replay value after doing some research as well because you can save everyone in the game and that butterfly effect.

MR ROBOT Season 1 Review

MR ROBOT was a random pick up when looking for a DVD pick up on Amazon.  While reading the plot I was sat there wondering why I had not picked this show up already and the answer was because it was only available on Amazon Prime in the UK which is about the only service I don’t have. What I was expecting for MR ROBOT wasn’t what I got and I am so glad it wasn’t.

I was expecting more of Hackers starring Angelina Jolie in 1995 but this was completely different.  MR ROBOT is focused around a seemingly social awkward security specialists that show autistic tendencies and seems to be one of the best people on the team at his job.  Elliot shows us how someone that is very intelligent but struggles in social interactions and interacting with the rest of the world, only finding it easy to interact with certain people in his life.

As the season develops, there are some real twists and turns that are unexpected but the speed of the show leaves the viewer enough time to think about what has just happened.  This is a change with most TV shows not giving people time to think about what is happening but this is also the only downfall because sometimes it feels a little disjointed, because a few things happened and then they jumped away from it.

The acting and characters I think are well balanced and well performed by the actors.  Everyone seemed to be in the right role and all the characters seemed to bring something to the overall plot.

Overall I would recommend picking up MR ROBOT even if you are not a technology-minded because it is a mix of conspiracy theories technology and so much more.  The only way to describe this show is a mix been The Matrix, Fight Club and Robin Hood with how the plot develops.

How did you find MR ROBOT?

Boku No Hero Academia Review

Boku No Hero Academia is focused on one child in the world where most have special abilities and he is born without one known as a Quirk. The quirks have been slowly expanding through the population but Izuku Midoriya still holds on to the dream of being a hero.

Cover Art

Cover Art

Izuku decides early on that he is a late developer or that if he tries hard enough and puts in the effort that he can one day become just like his hero the All Might. This anime does have a feeling of the western world comics in it but was a little harder to follow for me than ReLife but that was mainly to do with the speed of the dialogue. The story itself is solid and has some really good feel good moments and twists along the way.

The animation didn’t seem as high quality as ReLife that being said it could have been the quality that was watching in and that was 480p. However, you did notice the difference between ReLife and Buku No Hero Academia at the same quality.

Boku No Hero Academia gets the balance of story and action just right and shows the development of characters really well. One of the first lines of the series is no one is equal and although this is the motto all the way through it does show how you can work hard to get where you want to be against all odds.

Students ready to action

Students ready to action

The Verdict

Boku No Hero Academia is definitely worth a pick up as it gives the right amount of balance of action and story, to make you invested in the characters but at the same time, the pace of the action is fast enough for you not to get too bogged down in the story. There are plenty of twists and turns and if the studios allow there will be another season of this awesome anime. So believe in yourself pick up this anime and watch how anyone as long as they are in the right place at the right time you can achieve anything.

ReLife Anime Review

ReLife is only my third trip into the world of anime and I have to admit I really enjoyed it. The reason for choosing ReLife was it was one of the top Animes on the list I was looking at and had a synopses similar to Plastic Memories which was the last anime that I really sat down and watched.

ReLife Cover Art

ReLife Cover Art

ReLife is based around Arata Kaizaki who is unemployed 27 years old that is bouncing between jobs where possible and is approached when he is at his lowest to take part in an experiment. The experiment is to take a pill and go that alters his appearance so that he can go back to high school. This sounds quite interesting because it’s like starting over again putting someone that seemingly is struggling in life back into an environment that they have been before and stable one to boot.

There are a lot of twists and turns in ReLife as Arata comes to terms with his personal demons some were completely out of left field and was not expected others you could see coming right off the bat. The Japanese humour can be missed in western culture from my limited understanding and research but there was some real laugh out loud moments when some of the characters were put in some awkward positions.

The animation quality as I’ve come to expect is awesome, even watching in 480p the quality compared to some of the western counterparts was out of this world, but at the same time simple and not to complicated

The Gang off ReLife

The Gang off ReLife

The Verdict

ReLife is a romance anime but don’t let that put you off if your not into that type of thing, because it explores all aspects of social behaviour and has some really good character development. Along with some really interesting twists even towards the end, just as you think that you have the direction that they are going with it makes another turn. One that I would say is definitely worth catching if you’re low on anime and want a nice easy fix

Game Dev Tycoon Review

It’s probably not known that well on this channel that I really do enjoy the Tycoon games. I spent many hours playing Zoo Tycoon back in the day and much more, but this was part of a bundle that I had bought years ago but I forgot about it.

Which is a shame because the gameplay is so simple yet addictive, and the one game that has some real replay value even though it feels a little short. The problem is the story is based on the generations of the game industry and the speed of the game seems to be quite quickly.

This, however, doesn’t take away from the time that can be invested in the game because as you’re playing the game which is a simple you find little features that you didn’t know what existed. The tutorial pops do a good job of explaining the game but after a while, you start skipping some of the dialogue so you might miss some of the important things.

What I would do to improve this game is to try and add other objectives, expand it from just trying to get the best rating for your game and make the most money. I know that is the aim for Tycoon games but the truth is what the big studios did well with this type of game they gave a scenario for you to do and then they would adjust them. This game doesn’t have that a such you can go through without doing training just about without some smart decisions but having done that and getting to the end of the game, I just want to go back and improve having been given a final score.

Being a techy I constantly wanted to improve the engine every given time but now I’ve got to the end I want to go back and play it again with a different approach to unlocking other aspects of the game to see whether there is a new approach and can get a better score.

I can’t recommend this game high enough for the type of game that you can put down and pick up. It’s a casual strategy that anyone can do and you can try different ways to get success.

Elite Dangerous Review

Elite Dangerous is something different. It combines all sorts of real life jobs and roles it all into one. Stop and think for a second what if we as the human race on earth could travel from Galaxy to Galaxy without any issues? What life form would there be and different groups of people with different beliefs?

Elite brings together all these things because it has the ability to trade and it has different needs for different systems, it has pirates, combat and wars. This was all brought to my attention by playing Eve but this is so different at the same time because the game has the person playing in the first person. The ability to explore is also something that makes Eve doesn’t have, the Universe in Elite Dangerous is so big that it all hasn’t been explored yet.

A week into gameplay and although the game didn’t seem like it would be my kettle of fish I have spent 60 hours playing this game and I honestly don’t know where they have gone. It has given me some real highs and lows while playing this game. The reason for not sure whether I would like it or it wouldn’t be for me is because it has no direction no end goal and that is why Eve lost its interest for me. That said though Elite doesn’t feel at all polished, the tutorials left me wondering and having to go onto YouTube to find out more information about what I was trying to do. Which is no bad thing, the combination of keyboard and Xbox 360 controller is what I am using and for some reason I felt that the tutorials didn’t tell you all the buttons. I tip though is when you go to the tutorial menu start from the bottom and work your way up instead of the top down that you would expect.

In those 60 hours, I’ve taught myself to bounty hunt NPC’s and trade commodities. Having not tried exploration because of not sure which direction to go in and having had a very unfortunate event happen not 5 minutes ago. A fully kitted out Cobra being blown up near a station and accidently clicking on the option to get a free Sidewinder, which has lost me 3 million credits. Thankfully still have my Lakon Type 6 ready to do some more trading to get myself back up to where I was.

The graphics are good, but it is hard to comment on the graphics when you’re in space and most of the time you’re just flying in the dark. The lore or store is a little hard to comment on because I know nothing about it and the game doesn’t really throw it your face so you know exactly what is going on.

Verdict

Elite Dangerous after having my doubts about the game, and its steep learning curve I can’t in good conscious not recommend this game if you enjoy anything to do with space and shooting things. Although that isn’t all the game has to offer they are the major draws to the game and even though certain aspects of the game seems a little unfinished or unpolished once you grasp the basics you can build on that. It should, however, come with the warning that you need to be able to put time into the game to get anywhere.

Here are a few video’s of gameplay that shows Bounty Hunting and Trading tips just to get you started if you have only just picked up the game.

 

 

SOMA Game First Impressions

SOMA was a game that was gifted to me and I had no idea what it was about.  The problem I now have while trying to give my first impressions I still don’t really know what it is about.  I am torn between the type of game it is, it has given me quite a few scares and although seems very story based, it also seems quite an open world.  Which is something it has going for it, because after an hour and a half I am still trying to find my way around and what I am supposed to be doing.

This game does remind me quite a lot of Fallout New Vegas not because of the story on the genre it’s in but because of the play style.  I didn’t have much success with Fallout New Vegas much to my shame I ended up playing about 10 minutes of the game before I shelved it on my Xbox 360 and never went back to it.  SOMA, however, will be different because it has my interest, I didn’t feel as invested in Fallout New Vegas and the gaming community is probably shouting aloud at me on how can you not like Fallout?  The truth of it is, I like games that have a line to follow and for me Fallout was lacking enough direction at the time.

Overall I would say so far I am still confused about where the game is going, but the intrigue is there and the atmosphere is awesome.  I have taken to playing the game with headphones as opposed to TV Speakers just so that I can appreciate the music and atmosphere they have created and be completely submerged in the world.  As it stands SOMA sits at 7/10, not a must play but that is still just my gut feeling things could change as I get further into the game.

You can follow my Let’s Play from the playlist below if you’re interested in the development.  As always feel free to share your views in a comment below.

The Martian Movie Review

The Martian, for me Gravity but done even better.  That is quite a bold statement because of the success that Gravity saw but for me this movie just seemed to take that sort of story and then added so much more to it.

The movie starts with a team of Astronauts that have made it to Mars and then had to evacuate because of a storm and one man gets left behind.  The reality of the whole situation hits Mark that he might not get back to civilization because of the lack of resources to sustain himself until the next scheduled mission to mars.  The team that had left him behind and are not aware that he is alive and are feeling guilty for what has happened, and NSSA are holding back that they have found that he is alive.

After some back and throwing, they finally hatch a plan to send Mark supplies and allow him more time to live on Mars behind they can get another rocket up there to bring him back.  However, Mark has already worked out that he needed to be more self-sufficient because communication was nonexistent for a bit, and he has already started to grow his own potatoes.  As you can gather though there were some more complications and not everything is smooth sailing.

I hear you ask what makes this movie better than Gravity because the balance of comedy and drama was really well done.  Every adversity that Mark met it was met with a joke, and the cinema was laughing out loud, but the drama was really well put together as well because there was also tears in the screening.  I felt that acting was top notch as well not one person let the cast down.

I would give this movie a 9/10 because the humor was matched with great drama.  I really enjoyed the movie and everyone walking away from the cinema couldn’t find a bad word to say against the movie.  I would highly recommend you go to see this movie.

 

Tales from the Borderlands Episode 4 Review

Tales from the Borderlands Episode 4 for me kept the same pace as the others before it with you getting more and more engrossed in the story but other than the huge development at the end, nothing sticks out in my mind.

It could of been because I was playing this episode in some sort of a rush because work or it could, on the other hand, be down to the writing and how well these games are put together, that although I really enjoyed the episode in the series there weren’t really many standout moments for me.

I found it quite funny though the way in which they did the scene leading up to the big trip back to Helos from Pandora, it was done in such away it could of been a reference to most space movies however for me rightly or wrongly it brought to mind Armageddon.  Although there was some action in the episode it took a break from the majority of it and concentrated on the story and developing the characters relationships a little.  You really did have a wide variety of ways you could unfold the story to a certain degree and although these weren’t huge decisions and story-altering they were when it came to the character development.  You could forge greater bonds or destroy them I felt in this episode and for the most part I strengthened them but being in the rush that I was and not quite remember certain decisions in the previous episodes I may have negatively affected one relationship.

The decision that stuck out most for me and could be the one of the biggest factors in the game so far, is the one at the end of the episode and I was quite surprised at it to be honest.  It was well worked because it’s not a cliffhanger in the traditional sense because it’s a definitive answer.  The question now becomes what happens now that, that decision has been made, this character now holds all the keys by the looks of things but as your telling the story being held captive, you know that it didn’t all end well.

Overall I would give this episode a 7/10 it isn’t for me as good as the previous ones because of the lack of standout moments however I don’t believe that it worthy of anything less because the story is so well put together and the sheer amount of enjoyment I got out of following this story with very little background knowledge of the universe.

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