Games Video

Thoughts on Quake Champions

I have always appreciated the multiplayer Quake Games such as Quake 3. I just appreciated them from afar. At the time I was too busy playing Starsiege: Tribes to really get into it. It wasn’t until years later when Quake Live came out did a put maybe 20-30 hours into it.

To me, the Quake series was one of those multiplayer shooters that people played to prove themselves. It was an arena where aim and general skill mattered above all else. Guns were accurate, maps were balanced, and even movement had a lot of depth. The strategy seemed to boil down to controlling power weapons on the map and knowing when to push an opponent or when to retreat. I grew up watching eSports become a thing with tournaments such as Quakecon and players like Fatal1ty. I remember watching frag videos like Get Quaked 3. So I can certainly appreciate what Quake as a series represents and the history behind it.

So I think I understand why so many people got concerned when they announced that the next Quake game was going to have “Champions”. The idea of each character having a unique ability, movement mechanics, and health/armor stack certainly seems to dilute that simplicity and purity Quake has always had in the past. Sure its true that some of that is gone now, but I think the trade off for added depth is worth it. I also suspect that adding champions to the game should help it appeal to a larger audience and bring in some new players, which is something the series has needed for a long time. The good news is that each champion only has one unique ability, and they are not win buttons like the ultimate abilities in Overwatch. They also seem to be pretty balanced based on what I have experienced playing and what I watched in this year’s Quakecon Duel Championship matches. The game still very much plays like an arena shooter where map control and item spawn timing are important. The core of the game still feels very much like Quake to me, and I think long time Quake players that have not tried it out yet should give it a chance.

I think the biggest concern for the success of this game is not that it has Champions, but that the game is going to be free to play. Being able to switch Champions out on the fly in TDM, or have access to the full roster when picking your three in duels seems pretty important. If they are not easily earned in game it is going to be a problem. Of course there is always the option to buy Champion Pack outright for $30, which seems like a fair price to me. Honestly, I think they really should just release the game at $30 and skip the whole free to play thing. I would hate to see the game get overlooked by newer players due to there being a perception of it being “pay to win”.

Anyway, here is a few minutes of gameplay footage I took of the game once it was released to Early Access. I have less then 5 hours of time in the game so far, but don’t worry because I removed the parts where I died over and over and over again. Nobody should have to see that.

Games Video

H1Z1 Combat Zone Update

The November game update for H1Z1 has been released. There is a lot of content in this update, but as a new player I am very excited for the Combat Zone. Combat Zone is a deathmatch style game mode that takes place on a smaller and more intimate map. You spawn in with weapons, and can respawn when you die. This is great for us new folks, as it gives us a good opportunity to practice using the guns.

The shooting in H1Z1 is pretty unique, and with high damage guns you can die before you know what hit you. The number one thing I need to work on is my aim with the AR, and to practice those headshots. Playing solos was just not getting enough combat practice in, as I was spending more time waiting for rounds to start then actually fighting. I played Combat Zone this afternoon for about half an hour, and I can tell that this will help me improve as a player much faster. My only suggestion is that they need to lower the player count for this mode. It was hard to get into a 1 on 1 fight with someone without being 3rd partied.

Games Reviews

Arizona Sunshine

There are a lot of Virtual Reality shooting games out right now. Most of those games can be best described as tech demos. It would be a little unfair to label Arizona Sunshine the same way, but I also wouldn’t go so far as to call it a “full game” either. The game features a campaign, which can be played solo or co-op, as well as a multiplayer waved based survival mode. The campaign itself is somewhat short. Most people will probably be able to finish it in around four to five hours, but it is the shooting mechanics and the variety of scenarios presented that make this game worthwhile.

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