Tag Archives: DLC

Fighting Video Games are still Kicking (and Punching)

Video games have become a heavily integrated part of our daily lives. It is common and in fact expected that most people have a video game system and some type of favorite game. Admittedly, this is not universally true. Poverty is something a lot of people deal with; financial situations are different for everyone, and they are ever changing on a person by person basis. Nonetheless, most of us (of the younger generation, at least) often ask about the video games others play, especially if you are getting to know someone. Who doesn’t play video games, right? But let’s save the class issues for another time.

Moving on, there are many different video game genres to pick from and an increasing number of video game systems to pick from. Most people will usually answer something like the PlayStation 4 or the Xbox One for the system of choice and then something like first person shooters or RPGs (Role Playing Games) for the genre. A genre that is not necessarily popular per se but has a steady fan base is fighting video games.

Photo from injustice.com

Fighting games are enjoyable and desired because they offer a simple premise and objective while still offering countless scenarios, changes, and options to the player. They can stay consistent without being boring. The idea itself is simple; fight and defeat your opponent by making them run out of whatever represents their health/ stamina. But the player has countless options for how to go about doing so, from stringing attacks into combos to using whatever special, and usually character specific, attack they have at their disposal. Then they also have to deal with an opponent, either controlled by the computer or by a person, who has the same amount of options available to them.

No two fights or matches are ever exactly the same. You can always expect something new and different (to a certain extent) each time you play. This is especially true nowadays with games like Mortal Combat X and Injustice 2 that have increasing rosters of new and familiar characters to choose from along with long lists of attacks and combos. More options mean greater possibilities. These days, the games even offer downloadable content (DLC), almost always consisting of at least one new character, as time goes on to keep players interested and invested in the game. There is something to be said for a form of interactive entertainment that can keep a (relatively) simple and basic format while constantly changing.

Burial At Sea makes a splash

bioshock-infinite-burial-at-sea-logo
Bioshock is making a splash. Photo from Videogamesblogger.com.

As most young gamers know, the most anticipated downloadable content package was recently released for the Bioshock series. The Burial At Sea expansion brought a sense of belonging back to the gamers it originally enchanted by setting the DLC in the underwater utopia, Rapture. Continue reading Burial At Sea makes a splash

Chasing the sunset

Photo from Creative Commons

Download Content (DLC) has been a hot button issue with gamers ever since its inception. The pivotal argument is, and always has been, value for dollar. This is a valid complaint with most DLCs because the majority of content consists of superficial add-on packs that change the color of your character’s hat from brown to black. The rest of the DLC is content that actually expands the game by offering more to play. While most concede that the knick-knack packs offer no value, gameplay add-ons are always valuable in the eye of the beholder. This is especially true with single-player games because so many single-player games have become more about the experience of the story and less about the actual game. While the core of Mass Effect 2 is an excellent game, Mass Effect 2 is no exception to this rule.

Photo from Creative Commons

The best part of Lair of the Shadow Broker is the story it has to tell. Lair of the Shadow Broker has you teaming up with your old friend Liara T’soni to chase down the past, as well as peel away the layers to find and make the Shadow Broker answer for his crimes. While I will not spoil any of it here, rest assured that it contains one exhilarating encounter after another, culminating in one of the most satisfying gaming experiences I’ve had since the final hours of the original Mass Effect. In such a choice-driven series like Mass Effect, it is very easy to alienate gamers by excluding, or perhaps more accurately unintentionally omitting a branch of the story they happened to take. Never once did I feel like LotSB disregarded any choice I previously made for the sake of simplicity.

I have two gripes about Lair of the Shadow Broker. The first is a particular boss fight at about the halfway point. Perhaps it was because the difficulty was on Insanity, but I found this particular boss to have an absurd amount of protection to the point where I had to use a particular power 20-25 times in order to bring one layer of their protection down; it felt excessive. The second is the complete lack of conversation by the squadmates I brought along with me. I could understand if I had brought characters from ME 2 that were new to the series, but Garrus, Tali and Liara all have a common past from the original Mass Effect. I was slightly disappointed by their vow of silence, but not enough to impact my overall enjoyment of LotSB.

Lair of the Shadow Broker is the first piece of DLC I have actually felt like was worth the money. BioWare has crafted a masterful piece of storytelling, as well as the best boss fight in the series into a tightly-wrapped 90-120 min package. Anyone who has played through both ME 1 and 2 needs to download Lair of the Shadow Broker, strap themselves in, and enjoy the ride.

Borderlands unlocked

Photo from Creative Commons

With the release of the Borderlands’ new downloadable content (DLC) to premier on Xbox Live Sept. 28, the new DLC is expected to have much more content, thereby opening up more areas than the previous three installments combined. While not having nearly as much content as promised in the new DLC, the others still have plenty to offer on their own account. This is a look at the past three DLC packs from Gearbox.

The Zombie Island of Dr. Ned

This is the first of the four DLCs provided by by Gearbox. Like the original game, it too is heavy on humor and looting. The new DLC adds quest specific items, as well as a few new weapons. The main draw for many gamers on this DLC is the zombie killing fun and humor heavy story line. In DLC you meet Dr. Ned who is “totally not related to Dr. Zed,” who players of Borderlands have met earlier in the game. Dr. Ned was in charge of keeping the residents of Jacob’s Cove alive instead of turning them into zombies. Players get to face a slew of different zombified enemies and also battle the dreaded were-skags. Game play for Dr. Ned’s Island is pretty much the same as the normal Borderlands. Zombies do add a bit of a different dynamic to the over all game feel with some zombies that can sneak up on players exploding at their feet or others who toss explosive barrels from long distances.

Dr. Ned’s Island is a nice addition to the overall game play extending an already fun game further, allowing players to get a new look at the Pandora and the characters they have come to love so much.

Whim Rating 4.5/5

Mad Moxxi’s Underdome Riot

Mad Moxxi’s Underdome Riot, the second DLC with a title stolen from a certain movie, follows a similar concept of a fight to the death. The main difference in the plot is Moxxi, a crazed woman who holds a tournament in search of her fourth husband. The actual game play is straightforward. You and friends can battle wave after wave of enemies as you try to gain Mad Moxxi’s affections. Many players complain that the new DLC really doesn’t add much in the way of weapons or any real game value. It is more or less the arena condensed into a more intense game play mode with added modes such as low gravity fighting, enemy health regeneration and more.

Over all, Moxxi’s Underdome is a nice addition for those players who want to have extended arena play, though the add-on doesn’t pack much for the price tag. Some patches did improve the drops, but no experience is gained in the underdome so any combat is more or less pointless.

Whim Rating: 3/5

The Secret Armory of General Knoxx

The Secret Armory is the third installment of DLC content released by GearBox. It is also the largest of the already released content, easily eclipsing the earlier two. It sports new and exciting monsters, as well as an additional secret final boss for the game. The new content also comes with new weapons and more crazy, funny characters with their own Pandora flavor that just continues to build on the game’s already fun concepts.

Whim Rating 5/5

Claptrap’s New Robot Revolution.

This be GearBox’s last and best DLC for Borderlands. The helpful, but oh so annoying, claptrap robots of Pandora rise up in this yet to be released DLC. The GearBox developers had plenty of fun with this latest addition, creating past revolutionary posters in the style of various leaders throughout the past. Old enemies will return with some minor cybernetic enhancements. The polarizing Claptraps that players either loved or hated can now be killed. New massive expansive areas meant to be explored will be added. To top it all off, to celebrate the release, everyone system-wide will get an eight level increase on the character level cap. Those who got an increase with the General Knoxx DLC will have level 69 as their level cap and the rest will be level 58 as their max achievable level.

Whim Rating: NA