My favorite games of 2017!

Ah 2017, what a great year for gaming it was, since 2011 this year is literally my favorite gaming year for gaming and the following titles are the best ones, in my opinion, keep in mind they are all in no particular order except for the number one.

We begin with a round of mentions of games that I haven’t got the chance to play but if I did they will most likely be on the list :

  • Xenoblade Chronicles 2
  • Mario + Rabbits Kingdom battle
  • Dishonored Death of the Outsider
  • Assassin’s Creed Origins
  • Nier Automata
  • Divinity Orignal Sin 2

I will play all of those titles at some point but I didn’t have time for them yet, secondly I want to mention couple of games that I did play but didn’t make the cut, either because I didn’t enjoy them as much as I thought I did, I am not saying those games are bad I just didn’t enjoy them

  • Super Mario Odyssey
  • Destiny 2

Next up games that I continued playing throughout 2017

  • Animal Crossing New Leaf
  • Overwatch
  • Diablo 3
  • Monster Hunter Generations
  • Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS

Now for the main event, my favorite 2017 Games are:

Resident Evil 7 Biohazard
Resident Evil 7 brought the amazing title back from the dead and it delivered a scary and chilling game that I enjoyed a lot and makes me look forward to the coming games from this series which is something I haven’t felt toward Resident Evil since RE4.

Metroid Samus Returns
While not breaking any new grounds I really enjoyed Samus Returns and it is a game that I have looked forward to for a decade, I hope Nintendo continues with Metroid 2D games.

Mario Kart 8 Delux 
Mario Kart is a landmark title for Nintendo and the 8th offering is absolutely the best one in the series, with a large roster of characters and customizable vehicles and battle mode you have a game that can be enjoyed for years!

Splatoon 2
Nintendo’s online shooter is fun and weird and wacky, it is a game with no Nintendo callbacks but has Nintendo’s DNA in its core, I am so glad this title is very successful and it is a new and exciting entry to Nintendo’s excellent library titles.

Horizon Zero Dawn
Horizon Zero Dawn borrows a lot from open world games like Elder Scrolls and Assassin’s Creed but adds a beautiful and shiny code of pain and an engagingly interesting world, It is beautiful it is fun and after 100 hours I still want to go back to it.

Persona 5
Persona is my favorite JRPG series and I loved the 5th entry, the characters are fun and the story was good for the most part, but what kept me interested in it was the engaging gameplay and beautiful and stylish artistic vision of the game, now please give me Persona 6.

Middle-Earth Shadow of War
I really loved Shadow of War and I am very aware of its problems, the story is very forgettable and the characters are nothing, but it is very fun to play and build your army and dominate your enemies.

And the game of the year is :

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild
Nintendo’s reinvention of their landmark series is without a doubt amazing, it is very fun to play and leaves at awe most of the time, I really loved and it is the first game that knocked down Skyrim as my all time favorite game since 2011!



Middle-Earth : Shadow of War (Review)


Shadow of War was developed by Monolith Productions it is a follow up to 2014’s Shadow of Mordor which was met with a lot of praise for its interesting take on open-world action game with the Nemesis system and interesting interactions with the enemy Orcs.

Shadow of War is an Action RPG with a loot system and leveling and gear rank and that was one of the things that really excited me about the game but it is ultimately done poorly, you only have Sword, Dagger and ranged weapon for weapon class and the more powerful gear is only more powerful by few points, then there is the Legendary gear which adds interesting perks but still nothing that interesting, the enemy Orcs also have that ranging from Normal to Epic and Legendary orcs with their uniqite and interesting perks which I found to be better than the gears, adding a legendary orc to your ranks was one of the things that I enjoyed about the game.

Mobility is another matter, the game the same feeling I got from playing Saint’s Row 4, a lot of powers to play with and at the same time a little Batman Arkham movement too with the stealth movements, it is all good and gets the job done but I just wish it wasn’t so overpowering, furthermore the locations are varied from region to region from the snowy mountains to swamps and jungles and urban areas which I really liked more than Shadow of Mordor’s locations, the open map is huge and it is well-designed alowing you to move around however you want.

Combat is very fun while feeling a bit worn off, the whole Assassin’s Creed/Batman Arkham combat is not that fun anymore despite the later fight providing a bit of challenge which makes countering and using some of your skills fun and satisfying, but it doesn’t help that the auto-targeting system sometimes targets your allies and you end up beating them up too, I really hope this is the last we see of this combat style and we move toward the Souls like combat which is proving to be much more fun and rewarding with games like Assassin’s Creed Origins embracing it, Stealth is fun and skills like chain takedowns is useful and makes attacking a pack of Orcs rewarding and fun, The Nemisis system has elevated the combat and the gameplay significantly, you actually care about your enemies and the Orcs you are fighting or when they are fighting beside you it is a very smart system and very well designed.

The worst part  in my opinion is the story, I couldn’t care less about any of the characters or what was happening or anything for that matter, Talion is a character that I couldn’t care less about, he might as well be a nameless mute that you make at the beginning of the game seriously it is really terrible and I think that is the worst part of Shadow of War and Shadow of Mordor, the fact that they are set in the Lord of the Rings universe I wish it was based in an original fantasy universe that was made from ground up for these games.

Verdict : I spend over a 100 hours playing Shadow of War and I really enjoyed it, while the uninspired loot and god awful story didn’t make me fall in love with it as much as I thought I would I still had a really good time with it and I always look forward to the next game from Monolith. (8.5/10.0)

Blade Runner 2049 (Review)


Blade Runner 2049 is directed by Denis Villeneuve starring Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford, Jared Leto and Ana de Armas, the film is a sequel to the 1982 Ridley Scott film that was based on the Philip K. Dick novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?

I have to start off with acknowledging that I have seen every version of the original film, I have read the book and I have also spend a lot of time reading theories and fanfictions about the original movie so needless to say I was very hyped for this film and before you continue reading if you are hyped for it know that I will not talk about any plot points here because going to the film without knowing anything is the best way to go.

Ryan Gosling is the main protagonist of the film, his name is K. and he is a Blade Runner just like Deckard was in the first film and he stumbles upon a bunch of secrets and events that could change the way the world looks at the line that separates humans and replicas, and he did a fantastic job in this film, as a matter of fact all the actors involved did a fantastic job here, who would have thought a day will come that I will say “Dave Bautista is a great actor with some dramatic chops?” well today is that day.

The friend I went to watch the film with was new to the Blade Runner world and the first thing that they noticed was the authentic of the film, it is beyond beautiful Roger Deakins once again comes up with a film that you can freeze every frame of the film and have it hanged on your walls it is absolutely fantastic, which compliments the soundtrack that takes you to the world of 2049 and leaves you there.

what makes this film so special is in a world of franchise building and cinematic universes 2049 stands on its own as a sequel to one of the most impressive films of all time and surpasses it, it doesn’t hurt the original film and it doesn’t also needs it to stand on its own, it finishes the story that starts it and also leaves room for sequels even if they don’t necessarily need to be made, it is a remarkable Sci-Fi film that I will be watching again and again for the years to come.

Verdict: Denis Villeneuve is the new golden boy of cinema, he is one of the most accomplished directors working today alongside giants like Christopher Nolan, and he delivered one of the best Sequels ever made. (10/10)

Dunkirk (Review)


Dunkirk is written and directed by Christopher Nolan and stars Mark Rylance and Tom Hardy as well as a group of young actors. It is the story of the evacuation of the British army that was stuck on the shores of France surrounded by Nazi forces.

Before even watching the movie, you might notice that none of the posters mention any actors. This is deliberate: most of them don’t get to say more than a few words. The film is practically a silent movie and which allows Christopher Nolan to tell a story using visuals and mad directing skills. This movie might not be for everyone and a lot of people might even walk away being bored and frustrated but almost everyone that has seen this movie agrees that Nolan is the true star of the film as the masterful director. If you watch Dunkirk and didn’t know anything about the story, you will be confused and quite frankly bored because a majority of people watch a movie to understand its story and enjoy character development and you are not getting any of that here. Instead you will get a film that shows you war and how scary it is, how frightening it is to be stuck on a beach with no hope and being shot at like a fish in a barrel. You get a sense of the scale and the massive nothingness of the sea that they want to cross but can’t, Dunkirk owes a great debt to Terrance Malik movies because it does feel like there is a great deal of him in the film. Nolan takes Malik’s calm approach to storytelling and turns the volume up high with the sounds of airplanes, bombs and gunfire that effectively transport you to Dunkirk. The music and sounds of the film play a great role.

Hans Zimmer’s score elevates the tension that Nolan creates with the scale of the film. The sounds of the planes before they attack the beach will hurt your ears and that is what makes this film an experience and not just a film. The experience will stay with you long after the credits roll.

Verdict: Christopher Nolan has a vast number of haters simply because he exists and Dunkirk is not going to make them stop hating him and his work. As for the rest of us, whether you are a fan of him or just cinema in general, Dunkirk is going to be a film that will stay with you and change the way you think of how visual story telling is done. (10.0/10.0)

How I reignited my first love in gaming


back in the mid-90s when I was barely 9 years old I remember walking by a store that used to sell Sega Genesis games and they were playing Mortal Kombat II, I could never get it out of my head two Ninjas fighting one of them was freezing the other and the other was using a rope to pull the other toward him, at least I thought it was a rope, I think from that moment my whole life was about perusing that amazement and feeling of pure awe.

I kept on playing fighting games on any console or handheld I got my hands on for the years after that like:

  • Mortal Kombat on Gameboy
    I didn’t know this game existed but when I did I was hooked, me and my brother spend hundreds of hours playing this game and we burned through a lot of AAA batteries, despite the fact that we just played the tower over and over somehow we really did have a good time and didn’t mind the repetitiveness that came with it.
  • Mortal Kombat 3
    I am well aware of the far superior Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 version but back in the 90s I wasn’t, I played this game for a long time and for some reason the worst MK character (stryker) was my main, maybe because I learned to do his fatality by accident?
  • Street Fighter II
    Street Fighter II is a household name, some even call it the greatest fighting game of all time, but coming from all the blood and violence of Mortal Kombat for some reason Street Fighter felt like a step-down but never the less it was very fun and learning most of the combos that were written in the manual that came with the game was really good for its time.
  • Mortal Kombat II
    Definitely, the one I played the most, to this day MK2 has one of the best 2D fighting game plays and it is hard to replicate, I think I played this game every day for at least 3 years.

There were other fighting games like Bloody Roar and Tekken 3 that I played but those were my absolute favorites, but after I started playing other kinds of games like RPGs my interest in fighting games slowly withered, by the time Tekken 5 and Mortal Kombat Armageddon I started to care little for fighting games, and since my siblings started developed other interests and stopped playing with me I barely cared to boot those games, as a matter of fact, I think Tekken 5 was the last fighting game I played on PS2, during the same time I was playing another fighting game on DS and it was a Japanese ROM of Jump Superstars , but I did quickly give it up in favor of whatever RPGs came my way back then.

and that was it, for years I didn’t care about fighting games while I saw my old favorite series like MK evolve into something great with the last two entry and also Never Real’s other title Injustice being set in the DC universe which is a favorite of mine, but I never got interested in it, I always knew even if I buy a fighting game I will end up quitting on it after a day and that wasn’t something I wanted to do, until this year.

During March I decided to play something along side Breath of the Wild, I knew I will spend a lot of time in that game and I knew sometimes it might get a bit boring when you play massive games like that, so I bought MKXL and I played a few matches a day and I was having a lot of fun, and this created something in me like a nostalgia feeling for the genre, so I started playing more fighting games, but I decided to play those that I find different and interesting like:

  • ARMS
    When it comes to it Nintendo holds the keys to my gaming heart, I don’t know what is up with their games but I could never get enough of them, and ARMS is one of those new concepts, the game is 3D fighter and uses fighters with arms stretch and boxing each other…..I know it sounds weird you just have to try for yourself, I spend around 50 hours in the game so far and I still play it daily.
  • Mortal Kombat XL
    With Fantastic graphics and controls, MKXL really rains supreme as one of the best health based 2D fighters, it is absolutely fantastic, I have spent somewhere around 50-60 hours in it so far and I have played various modes of it, it is very fun and I am looking into taking my experience to Ranked mode.
  • Super Smash Bros. for 3DS

    Now this was a treat, I bought the 3DS version and during my first match I thought to myself that this will probably end up in my drawer never to be played again and boy I was wrong, as soon as I understood the basic controls which are very different from every other fighting game I fell head over heels in love with this game, I have been playing it for a month and so far I have put over 60 hours in it, one weekend I played it for literally for 10 hours straight and I had to recharge my 3DS twice, I honestly can’t wait for the game to come to Switch so I can play more of it.

So I will keep playing these and I already preordered Pokken Tournament DX on Switch and I look forward to that as well, it is quite amazing how Smash Bros. and MKXL literally took me back to a time when I was 9 years old and I couldn’t wait to try a new move or combo, it is the kind of experience that most people miss out on by presuing just Stories in video games even though they are meant for more than that.

Destiny 2 Beta impressions


it is not secret that is was hyped to the moon and back for Destiny back in 2014, problems aside I did put in over 400 hours and I really liked my experience with the game despite many issues that plagued the game for almost 2 years, but sooner or later Bungie fixed some of those issues and the game grew up into a household name, with D2 coming out this year and the beta just rolled out couple of days ago I wanted to talk briefly about the game and highlight what makes it different from Destiny 1 while not feeling like a different game:

  • Technical aspect: Destiny always looked good, the game has a marvelous art style that makes it seriously stand out, with D2 Bungie took what made the first one great and amped it up with so much detail and effects and little things here and there, truly it shines as an example of Bungie’s capability and creative art vision.
  • Gameplay: if there is one thing Bungie did nail with the first game it will be the gameplay, Destiny takes what made Halo great as a shooter and makes it way better by adding skills, variety of guns and vertical movement to make it really fun to play and Destiny 2 is more of the same and that is a really good thing.
  • The Red Legion: We fought Vex, Crota’s army, Oryx’s taken and so many other cool enemies, the Cabal always felt like the left out faction from the bunch because they never got their own storyline, well things have changed and these basically Tanks who “Shoot first and Ask Questions Never” are here to kick your right in the nuts, they are scary and fearless and they will make your life a living hell!
  • Dominus Ghaul: Remember Tom Hardy’s Bane from The Dark Knight Rises, Ghaul reminds me a lot of him, from his monologue and his theatrical actions to his voice and mask he is like Bane on a ton of Venom, he is scary and intimidating and takes your world by storm.
  • PvP: The available mode in the crucible is a bit more tactical and slower paced mode which is fun and can provide some intense battles, I didn’t have any of that because you don’t get to pick your weapons in the Beta so you can’t strategize as much as you could later when the full game comes out.

While I am sure I will have an issue with the loot drop and the general end game progression of the game I am just glad that Destiny is back and I will sink in a lot of time before moving on to another game eventually.

Biggest contenders to Game of the Year in 2017


I know it is weird to talk about Game of the Year in July but 2017 is a very weird year for gaming in its own right, we usually get the biggest titles during the last few months of the year but it seems like a drastic change has happened in the gaming landscape by releasing the critical darlings early on the year and the blockbusters later on, the following games is what I think are the biggest contenders to GOTY 2017.

Note: I am talking about the Overall GOTY and not just The Game Awards or a specific site, Overall GOTY like 2016’s Overwatch and 2015’s The Witcher 3

  • Horizon Zero Dawn
    Guerrilla Game’s action RPG was a big hit this year, with a Metascore rating of 89 and selling a crapton of copies it is safe to say we will see a lot of Horizon in the coming years, but is it GOTY worthy?  well, I don’t see why not, the game doesn’t necessarily do anything extraordinary outside of its magnificent graphics but it does everything well enough to earn it a spot.
  • Persona 5
    Persona started as a cult game with many people loving it for what it does and some people not even willing to give it a chance for the amount of time it requires to play it, but with Persona 5 things has changed the game sold almost 2 million copies and has a score of 93 on Metacritic and with its really stylish graphics and music and the underline society reform message it might be the hit Atlus needed to go from a midrange developer to the big boys table
  • Middle-Earth: Shadow of War
    Shadow of Mordor was a surprise hit in 2014 and it was a major contender for GOTY of that year, the sequel seems to be even bigger and better, taking the same concepts from the original game and dialing them up to 11, the game is scheduled to come out on October 3rd but early impressions are very very positive.
  • Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice
    This might be a long shot but I like to root for an underdog, Ninja Theory’s latest game is a psychological action hack and slash game set in a world invaded by Vikings, it is a very dark and grim looking world and our character is suffering from severe mental illness which will make our journey a lot more interesting!
  • Assassin’s Creed Origins
    Ubisoft is bringing back their juggernaut open world action game back after taking a year off in 2016 to reinvent the franchise and it looks like they did a fantastic job with it, the developer calls it an Action RPG the game adopts the Soulslike combat with what it looks like to be a Tenchu looking stealth gameplay, it looks gorgeous and it looks massive, what could go wrong? oh Ubisoft.
  • Star Wars Battlefront II 
    Dice’s first dance with Star Wars wasn’t their best effort bit it looks like they learned from their mistakes, the result is a major online FPS that is going head to head with Activision’s Call of Duty this November, the game might not win overall game of the year but I do believe it has reserved a spot on the best FPS of the year.
  • Splatoon 2
    Just like Battlefront II I don’t think Splatoon 2 is going to win GOTY but it will be a contender for best online shooter, Nintendo’s take on the shooter genre is definitely a different one and they won a lot of hearts with it, the game is currently expected to be one of the best-selling games of the year and definitely a major title in Japan.
  • The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild 
    Arguably the biggest contender and let’s face it it is probably gonna win everything this year, Breath of the Wild is one of the best games ever made and it is one of the best-received games ever in history and it is a game that I have put over 160 hours in so far and I am still aching to play more.
  • Super Mario Odyssey 
    it is really funny that Nintendo’s biggest competitor is Nintendo its sell this year, after the fact that the game was the on the top of the biggest games at this year’s E3 means the game is on its way to review glore.