Tagged "Tropico 5"

May 25
By Matt Gander In This Week's Games No Comments

It’s fair to say people held off buying DOOM on launch day due to the lack of reviews. The open beta didn’t entirely fill gamers with confidence either. Overwatch is another that didn’t receive pre-launch reviews, yet that seemingly didn’t stop gamers from coughing up cash beforehand.

The difference? Overwatch’s open beta was met with overwhelming positivity, leaving the vast majority that played it gasping for more. It also helps that Blizzard has a sterling track record, of course. We wouldn’t be surprised to learn that it’s a million seller already.

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Review scores for the heavily stylised team-based shooter are starting to trickle through now, including a perfect 10/10s from both GameInformer and Destructoid and 5/5 from The Escapist.

“It’s very clear that Blizzard has put in a herculean effort into polishing Overwatch, making sure that it feels great to play, has basically no bugs or glitches, and has a solid amount of content” said the The Escapist. “If you yearn for the days of old-school Team Fortress 2, where the game was tight, lightweight, and balanced, then Overwatch is for you” they continued.

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While Overwatch arrives to much fanfare and celebration, TMNT: Mutants in Manhattan is slipping out on the sly. Out of the shadows, if you will. All signs point to Activision pushing this one out the door pronto to cash-in with the imminent TMNT movie. Oddly, it hit the digital services on Tuesday; the retail release isn’t due until Friday. This strikes us as a cheeky way to squeeze a bit of cash out of hardcore TMNT fans before reviews go live.

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Apr 27
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

With just one new game out last week, it’s no surprise to find that this week’s UK chart lies dormant.

That new release was Tropico 5 on PS4, which managed to enter at #18 in the top 40 and #7 in the PS4 chart.

Mortal Kombat X is still king of the castle, making it two weeks running. The bloody brawler is then followed by GTA V, Battlefield: Hardline, Minecraft: PlayStation Edition and FIFA 15 to form the top five.

The bottom half of the top ten has seen a slight shuffle. Far Cry 4 and Bloodborne both depart – now sitting at #11 and #12 – while Borderlands: The Handsome Collection and WWE 2K15 re-enter at #9 and #10 respectively.

Despite price drops Dark Souls II: Scholar of the First Sin continues to fall. That’s now at #19. Fellow newcomer Ride is on the descent too falling from #19 to #27. Final Fantasy Type 0-HD however is back on the rise, up from #33 to #21 this week.

Apr 22
By Matt Gander In This Week's Games No Comments

It’s another quiet week for retail releases.

Ignoring a ‘Xbox Classics’ re-release of LEGO Lord of the Rings on Xbox 360, there’s just one new physical release – city building sim Tropico 5 on PS4. It originally due out months ago but you can rest assured that it’s finally out on Friday.

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We expected big things from Tropico 5 when it launched on Xbox 360 late last year, but aside the addition of online play it simply offered more of the same. This doesn’t make this belated PS4 version a write-off though, as this marks the first time Tropico has been available on a Sony system.

It’s a series worth playing – the controls were always well implemented on the Xbox 360 versions, making it surprisingly accessible, and it has a very warped sense of humour. It’s not like consoles are treated to city buildings sims often, either.

Unsurprisingly, then, the download services see the bulk of new arrivals this week. The apparently underwhelming LA Cops (£11.49) – which had a bunch of problems when it launched on Steam Greenlight, all of which were seemingly never fixed – makes a belated PS4 appearance while Aaru’s Awakening sneaks onto Xbox One.

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A 2D platformer with hand drawn visuals, we were initially intrigued by Aaru’s Awakening, but after spending some time with the PS4 version we were left disheartened. The controls are mapped out on the shoulder buttons, thus incredibly unwieldy, and while the backdrops are reasonably fetching they aren’t animated in the slightest. This gives the game a horrid, dull and lifeless, look. The animation on Aaru is poor too, and it’s almost impossible to bond with the titular lead – resembling an orange blob, they have no noteworthy or redeeming features whatsoever. So, yeah, we can’t exactly recommend this one.

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Jan 01
By Matt Gander In Blog No Comments

After the barrage of new releases that October and November routinely bring, the release schedules tend not to clutter again until around Easter. That’s not to say that the first few months of a new year are always void of major releases though – this January alone has three titles worth investigating.

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One of these is already available. For reasons unclear, UK retailers started selling Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker ahead of the 2nd January release date. We spotted copies in our local Tesco almost two weeks ago. HMV too. Quite why Nintendo didn’t plan the original release date for mid-December is a mystery. A pre-Christmas launch would have bolstered sales, surely?

All mysteries aside, Treasure Tracker has proven itself to be another Wii U hit. Not quite as essential as Bayonetta 2 and Mario Kart 8, but still a strong enough addition to the console’s library. It may have been better suited to the eShop, being a mere spin-off of a Super Mario 3D World mini-game and all, but the £30 (approx) asking price helps to forgive this. We rounded-up a bunch of reviews back in December.

Nintendo fans will no doubt enjoy tracking down the third wave of amiibo figures too, including Toon Link, Bowser, Rosalina and a handful of others. They’re due 23rd January.

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Also hitting the Nintendo formats this month: retail releases of Mario & Donkey Kong and Nintendo Pocket Football Club, in the form of download codes in a box. There’s also movie tie-in Disney Big Hero 6: Battle in the Bay. Based on a relatively unknown Marvel comic book, the movie went down well when it was released in US cinemas in November. This tie-in though looks like another tedious 2D platformer, like Avanquest’s own Frozen: Olaf’s Quest before it.

Saints Row IV Re-elected & Saints Row: Gat Out of Hell is the second major release of the month after Treasure Tracker, launching 23rd January on PS4 and Xbox One. Unlike Deep Silver’s Metro Redux, this HD revamp includes brand new content. Playing as Johnny Gat or Kinzie Kensington – either solo or in co-op – the Gat Out of Hell expansion sees the Saints travelling to a crimson-coated underworld to save the leader of the Saints’ soul. Along the way they meet historic figures, old friends and even older adversaries. A musical number is promised too. It’s GTA’s comical cousin, don’t forget.

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Chances are though that Dying Light will be the highlight of the month for many. Techland ditched the last-gen versions last October as they felt they couldn’t cope with the carnage. An admirable description, albeit one that does seem a little last minute.

Techland are, of course, the guys behind the first two Dead Island games. We don’t hold either in high regard, but nevertheless the developer proved with Call of Juarez: Gunslinger that they can make excellent games when they put their mind to it. We imagine that Warner Bros. have put the pressure on Techland to deliver a similar well-crafted experience.

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Nov 27
By Matt Gander In Reviews No Comments

The Tropico series can easily be compared to EA’s FIFA. Each update adds a handful of new features and has a spot of fine tuning under the hood, but these improvements alone aren’t enough to prevent more than a passing resemblance to its predecessor. Sim City went leaps and bounds from one iteration to the next. In comparison, Tropico has progressed in baby steps.

But here’s the thing. And it’s a pretty major “thing” – the foundations Tropico 5 is built upon are rock solid. Visually it’s starting to look a little dated, but as series veterans will already be aware the engine for the Xbox 360 versions of Tropico always favoured performance over beauty. You’ll find none of the restrictions that plagued last year’s Zoo Tycoon here – it’s possible to plan, build and tinker to your heart’s content.

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Developer Haemimont knows their city building sim well, refining Tropico 5 to the point where the campaign mode is easily the best and most accessible yet. The majority of campaign missions take well over an hour to complete and the objectives that they feature are pleasingly varied. The first few quests simply involve setting up your own ‘banana republic’ so that it can survive without handouts from other countries. Once stood on your own two feet, you’re soon faced with such challenges as building an army to fend off enemy invasions and becoming a shipping mogul by exporting luxury goods all over the world.

While Tropico 5 may not to be much to look at, there’s plenty going on behind the scenes

While Tropico 5 may not to be much to look at, there’s plenty going on behind the scenes. For starters, the humble townsfolk don’t materialise out of thin air. It’s entirely possible to observe their arrival on your sun drenched island – either via ship or airplane – before finding a place to live and seeking employment. Stalkers, if nobody else, will be in their element. If no accommodation is available shanty towns will start to appear, ruining the serenity of the island in the process. A lack of jobs meanwhile leads to anger and poverty. If quality of life continues to deteriorate then the population swiftly turns against the government, torching buildings and hurling petrol bombs at the palace belonging to El Presidente – your customisable persona.

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One of the few new features is the ability to raise an heir. New additions to the family tree can then be sent overseas on missions or forced to manage a business of your choosing. Managers can boost job satisfaction for all employees, reduce the amount of pollution in the vicinity and also help to sneak cash into your Swiss bank account. This ill-gained money can then be spent increasing El Presidente’s perk-bestowing skills.

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Nov 10
By Matt Gander In UK Charts No Comments

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is, unsurprisingly, the UK’s new number one. It had a better first week than Call of Duty: Ghosts, but still has to settle for becoming the 5th biggest launch in the series.

We should bear in mind here though that Advanced Warfare launched on a Monday, giving it an extra day’s worth of sales over Ghosts. The PS4 and Xbox One versions of Ghosts also had different release dates to one another, with the former arriving before the console itself.

Activision’s army men knock FIFA 15 down to #2. Football Manager 2015 enters at #3, Alien Isolation moves all the way up from #14 to #4 due to retailer discounts, while Destiny slides up to #5.

During its second week on sale Sunset Overdrive falls from #2 to #8. Forza Horizon 2, WWE 2K15 and Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor meanwhile depart the top ten altogether. Also spare a thought for the aptly named Lords of the Fallen, which plunges all the way from #11 to #32.

With current-gen versions of WWE 2K15 and the last-gen versions of Shadow of Mordor out at the end of the month we may see both return to the top ten in the coming weeks.

There are no other new arrivals in the top 40, but LEGO The Hobbit does make a re-appearance at #18 while Titanfall and New Super Mario Bros. U re-enter at #35 and #37 respectively.

Then over in the single-format charts Tropico 5 enters at #23 in the Xbox 360 chart while NES Ultimate Remix arrives at a lowly #31 in the 3DS chart.

Nov 06
By Matt Gander In This Week's Games No Comments

Very few publishers are willing to go up against the juggernaut that is Call of Duty, and as such this week’s new release line-up is filled with a bunch of odds and sods. If you’ll excuse that expression.

Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is in fact the only game out this week on PS4 and Xbox One. As our review round-up shows, Activision’s latest entry in the long-running series is a return to form that bodes very well for the future of the franchise.

It received 9/10s from Polygon, EGM and GameInformer, as well as 91% from IGN and half-a-dozen 8/10s from other renowned outlets.

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The PlayStation 3 only Tears to Tiara II: Heir of the Overlord might be of interest to fans of strategic JRPGs. “At the end of the day I was pleasantly surprised by this little gem of an SRPG, and while the poor graphics and pacing holds it back from true greatness, it certainly has the heart of what could be a cult classic” said ZTGD.

Providing it doesn’t slip yet again, Tropico 5 should sailing onto Xbox 360 right about now. The banana-republic building sim has received several delays in the past with the PS4 version now pushed into 2015. Regular readers will know that we have a soft spot for the Tropico series, which is partly due to the dry sense of humour and jaunty musical score. The controls usually work surprisingly well in these console iterations too.

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Would you believe there’s a new Wii-exclusive out this week? That game is PSA World Tour Squash from Alternative Software. The studio has worked on numerous sport sims over the years, so we’re confident in saying that this’ll be ‘good’ at the very least. A squash game for the Wii – could it be any more niche if it tried?

Over on the handhelds there’s Muppets Movie Adventures on PS Vita and Ultimate NES Remix on 3DS. Featuring touch-screen based puzzles, Muppets Movie Adventures looks like it’ll offer slightly more than your typical side-scrolling platformer.

As for Ultimate NES Remix, chances are you’ll already know what to expect – the NES Remix series has been around on the Wii U for a while. This handheld rendition takes the best bits from both games, adding online leaderboards and a few other new elements. GamesRadar gave it 4/5 earlier this week.

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