Welcome to the third edition of The Monthly Upshot. Wow, August was quite a month of promise and failure to deliver with No Man’s Sky being received poorly and Deus Ex Mankind Divided bringing in some mixed reviews. As the Summer is gradually coming to an end, the AAA+ titles are now looming on the horizon. September will see the release of World of Warcraft: Legion, and the eagerly anticipated Battlefield 1 Closed Beta.
What We’ve Been Playing
No Man’s Sky
Well…where do we begin? I have to admit I didn’t really buy into the hype where this game is concerned. When viewing the trailers that were released prior to the games’ release, I noticed there wasn’t any clear definition to what the game was about. Yes, it was an exploration game but what were the objectives? I knew if the only objective was to collect resources and to explore the galaxy one system at a time, my interest would wane. Fast forward to the release day and all of a sudden, millions of players started to experience what it was like to be on the hype train whilst it derails into a lake of shit. Maybe I’m being too unfair on the developers? As I understand the game was rushed and although it looks pretty amazing visually, the universe feels empty and the immersion isn’t as great as everyone hoped it to be. Quite interestingly over 26,000 players have now requested a refund from Steam with probably more on the way.
I had the sudden urge to play Tropico after my recent holidays abroad. Lucky for me, Kalypso had a weekend sale on all their games including DLC so managed to pick up all the addons for around £5. The game is still really fun to play with the humour that has been prevalent through the Tropico series, but can be really challenging at points. One of the annoyances of the game is that some of the GUI within the game isn’t as helpful as it used to be in previous games. It becomes very difficult to pin-point certain trouble makers in your regime and some mission critical objectives are tied to arresting or banishing these people. You can pick up the complete edition for less than £10 which I think is a bargain for people who enjoy city building games with a mix of rum & communism.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution
This game had totally slipped past me back in 2011 and after I had seen so much of the hype with Mankind Divided being released, I decided to take the plunge. The game has now got a Director’s Cut edition which is supposed to clean the game up a bit and improve the graphics slightly. With nothing to compare it to I thought the graphics hold up pretty well running on maximum settings. The gameplay itself is good, and can be really challenging in parts. I found it quite complex in terms of navigating some of the maps and found myself getting lost on a few occasions. Overall the storyline and aesthetics are really good, and I look forward to hopefully continuing the series.
Watch Hinks’s Deus Ex: Human Revolution – Director’s Cut video: Boom – multi kill! – Plays.tv
It wouldn’t be a monthly update without mentioning Overwatch. Shortly after the last Monthly Upshot, Blizzard dropped the Summer Games patch for Overwatch introducing Lucio Ball & a tonne of cosmetic unlocks. Lucio ball takes a lot of inspiration from Rocket League’s successes and I think people are genuinely liking it – some even suggesting that it becomes a deciding round for draw results.
It had been a while since I had recorded myself in-game as I usually let Plays.TV record my highlights automatically. However, the need arose to record a video in full 1080p at 60fps – so I revisited Action! by Mirillis. The software is simple, yet really effective. It offers live streaming to platforms such as Twitch but also local recordings as well which can later be edited. One of the biggest advantages this offers is the hardware capturing/encoding putting your graphics card to work when recording.Download here.
You may have seen a Facebook post or the earlier post I made about our switch to Discord. Discord is a VOIP service that allows people to set up their own server in the cloud for free. It’s marketed as a killer to using Skype and Teamspeak whilst gaming. Whilst I can understand Skype isn’t built for gaming, Teamspeak was a bit harder to let go of. We had managed the HinksHOF teamspeak server for a number of years, and had built it up to contain multiple channels with amusing GIFs in each one. The voice quality and speed was good and it was hosted on AWS servers for practically next to nothing. However, when being introduced to Discord which again, is a free service, I noticed the abundance of features was great. Chat which allows you to embed images and videos, a built-in BOT friendly service, social lists, and chat commands. I was sold straight away and we migrated. Now a couple of weeks later, we have our own DJ system which allows you to request songs from YouTube videos, and a chat bot with loads of other cool features. If you haven’t seen the link already, head over to our Discord Server now!