Tagged "Blood Waves"

Mar 14
By Matt Gander In Reviews No Comments

This wave-based zombie shooter is so lacking in content and creativity that not only is its £8.00-£9.00 price tag unable to withstand scrutiny, but we also began to question its very existence.

That asking price – roughly double that of Sometimes You’s previous games – gets you an alarmingly bareboned tower defence shooter, featuring one playable character (a bland Lara Croft clone), a single circular arena set inside what’s presumably a tomb, and no online/MP modes to speak of.

As for presentation, there’s nothing in the way of cut-scenes or backstory. Not a deal breaker, but some explanation as to why the female lead has riled up the undead wouldn’t have gone amiss.

We may have been able to live with the lack of content if the core gameplay was fun and engaging, but it simply isn’t. It is at least structurally sound, if beyond familiar. Starting with a knife and a pistol, you take down waves of zombies – with reaching wave 30 being the ultimate goal – earning cash for each kill.

Once a wave has been completed a passageway to a concealed armoury opens, where you can purchase new weapons, barricades, turrets and zombie churning grinders, as well as upgrade health/defence stats and improve the effectiveness of your arsenal.

Defences and traps can be placed anywhere on the map. Unlike some wave/horde shooters, there’s no nagging time-limit between waves. A good thing too as the trek to the upgrade store is considerably time-consuming alone. Incidentally, the upgrade dispenser – decorated by a glowing ominous skull – is the only example of creative flair. The rest of the experience is so visually formulaic and bland that it could easily be mistaken as a Steam asset flip.

It’s the lethargic pace that outright kills the few things Blood Waves does get right. This isn’t a shooter where the enemies come thick and fast, satisfyingly exploding into a shower of gore. Quite the opposite, in fact. The shambling undead trickle out the catacombs at a rate of two or three at a time, shuffling towards your defences in hope of tearing them down.

Things don’t kick up a notch until wave five – which due to the slow pace can take a good 10-15 minutes to reach – and because there are no checkpoints or retries, you’re always forced to endure the irksomely slow waves before getting onto the good stuff. Or as good as Blood Wave gets.

More problems soon arise. It’s from wave five onwards that the ‘special’ zombies start to appear; the kind that can destroy your turrets and other contraptions in one fell swoop, putting an end to your plans and ruining all sense of progression. It’s very easy to overlook special zombies appearing on the battlefield, and so a momentary lapse of concentration can set you back to square one.

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Mar 13
By Matt Gander In This Week's Games No Comments

Here’s hoping you’ve had your fill of Anthem, Far Cry New Dawn, Metro Exodus, Crackdown 3, and Apex Legends as another colossal time-sink is upon us – Tom Clancy’s The Division 2.

The DC-set loot shooter is out now for those willing to shell out £93 for the Ultimate Edition or £85 for the Gold Edition. The standard edition is out Friday, and no doubt more sensibly priced.

Reviews are yet to go live but early impressions are positive, suggesting it’s the game the first Division should have been. “Despite my misgivings with the narrative The Division 2 is a polished shooter and that counts for a hell of a lot. Mission variety is on point, there seems to be a decent amount of progression available, and there’s a lot to do,” said Destructoid.

The Metro’s early verdict echoed this: “Unlike Anthem, we don’t think anyone’s going to be complaining about a lack of things to do or a disappointing endgame in The Division 2.”

RICO is a shooter of an altogether different variety, inspired by Time Crisis, Virtua Cop, and other arcade-like first-person shooters. It entails kicking down doors, slow-mo style, and clearing out rooms one at a time. Scores are clocking in at 8/10, with the Switch version going down well in light of the system’s shortage of FPSs.

Then there’s the JRPG remake The Caligula Effect: Overdose, out on PS4, PS Vita, and Switch. Scores are mixed so far, varying from Digitally Downloaded’s 5/5 to Pocket Gamer’s 2/5.

Scores for the PSVR spell-casting shooter The Wizards: Enhanced Edition are far more consistent, being 7/10s. We’ve rounded up a smattering of reviews below.

Blood Waves sees indie publisher Sometimes You branching out into new territory, meanwhile. It’s a wave-based (zing!) third-person zombie shooter heading to Switch, Xbox One, and PS4 this Friday. Shoot zombies, buy defences, rinse and repeat.

We’ve spent a few hours with the Xbox One version and suggest approaching with caution. It’s clunky, slow paced, and lacking on content – one arena, one playable character, and no online features to speak of. Check back soon for a full review.

New release showcase:


8/10 – PSU: “A fiendishly compelling re-imagining of the gun-toting cop shows of yore, RICO is an effortlessly playable, highly enjoyable and deceptively clever roguelike FPS that is at it’s very best when enjoyed with friends”

8/10 – Nintendo Life: “It’s great fun in single-player, but when you head into each randomised set of rooms in co-op, you’ll shoot your way into an interactive buddy cop movie right there in the palm of your hands. Loading times and the occasional bit of pop-in aside, this is another fine addition to the console’s growing list of first-person shooters”

The Wizards: Enhanced Edition

7.5 – Upload VR: “Its spell-casting system is interactive without being too cumbersome and the campaign mode packs a solid amount of content. Plenty of collectibles, a replayable Arena mode, and lots of mission augmentations add up to this being a really fun journey”

7/10 – PlayStation Country: “The Wizards offers a slight change of pace from the wave based shooters PSVR is flooded with. You’re still taking out waves of enemies as they run towards you but this time you’re using gestures to conjure spells and it works very well. It’s quite short and even then the constant battles do become repetitive but the spell upgrades do give a decent incentive to replay levels”

6.5 – PSU: “Beautiful visuals and a cool gesture-based magic system can’t save The Wizards: Enhanced Edition from an inscrutable progression system and some dire technical issues. Fantasy fans will find some enjoyment from the puzzles and the fun narrator, but some strange design decisions end up kneecapping the experience”

The Caligula Effect: Overdose

6.5 – Destructoid: “The Caligula Effect: Overdose is still definitely a flawed, frustrating work. Its shortcomings are many, and might still be too intractable for some, but the refinements and additions have,for me at least, papered over the cracks just enough to make it worth putting up with”

5.0 – PlayStation Lifestyle: “While The Caligula Effect: Overdose has some interesting ideas, none of them really work. I suspect that after some time with The Go-Home Club, players will be longing to go home to the cozy comfort of a classic JRPG. Better to avoid this simulation from the start”

2/5 – Pocket Gamer: “Interesting combat system aside, it’s a mess of mixed metaphors, dreary writing, annoying music, and worn-out graphics.Take the combat and put it in a more interesting world, and you’d have a hit on your hands. But as it stands, this is a hard pass from me”

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