What we’re playing: February 14, 2014
Another week, another full catalog of games that we’re trying out, or…indulging in. This week, we’re playing Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, Shadow Warrior, Theme Hospital, Attack on Titan: Howl of Freedom, Dota 2, and Hotline Miami. Find out what we think of these games!
Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate (3DS)
Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate (MH3) was never on my to-play list. To my female mind it was such a quintessentially male game where you ran around beating up monsters and upgrading weapons to beat up more monsters. Then I bought my boyfriend a physical pre-owned copy the weekend the game also went on digital sale on the eShop and finally ended up with a digital copy so we could play together. Aww, couple time!
If you asked me, MH3 is to dudes what Harvest Moon is to girls. There is the gathering game, and then there’s the hunting game. That simple monster hunting game is so much more than just beating monsters up; there’s a storyline, a quest system, personable NPCs who flirt with you, some pretty stunning presentations of monsters, and there’s even a pig that you can dress up, name, and cuddle when you feel like it. What’s up with this game? Now I never want to put it down.
Shadow Warrior (PC)
by Flying Wild Hog
Recently, I’ve been feeling a little bit of nostalgia for the old days of first-person shooters. And while I’ve got a copy of Dark Forces on my Mac (thank you, DOS emulator!), sometimes it’s fun to play something with the feel of an old game but the look of a new one. The 2013 re-imagining of Shadow Warrior is exactly that; an old-school FPS in a shiny new coat of paint. Sure it’s full of dumb wang jokes and an intentionally-cliche-looking Asian setting, but you can run around at the speed of light cutting demons apart with a katana or blasting them with a variety of guns. It’s basically the video-game version of a summer action flick. Yeah, it’s not going win any awards for having a deep, thought-provoking story. But it’s a flashy, fast-paced, and gloriously violent game that spends refreshingly little time on the big set pieces of modern-day shooters so you can focus on what’s important: cutting monsters in half with an awesome sword.
Theme Hospital (PC)
by Bullfrog Productions
Since EA released Dungeon Keeper I’ve had the hankering to go all nostalgic and replay one of the titles I’ve loved when I was younger. Surprisingly enough, the game hasn’t lost it’s charm after all these years. Getting to play the quintessential hospital owner is still fun. Hearing your receptionist ushering doctors and being smart with the mike still carries a few entertaining moments. The combination of quirkiness, black comedy and solid gameplay makes Theme Hospital one of those titles that I would never really stop playing even if a few years have passed. The game’s just that good.
Attack on Titan: Howl of Freedom (iOS)
By DeNA Mobage
I’m not usually a fan of Clash of Clans-styled strategy games, but Attack on Titan: Howl of Freedom is just too good to put down. I started playing it for my love of the anime series, and will keep on playing until I unlock every last one of those titans. The game has you building up your settlement’s defenses while pillaging nearby villages for their resources. Who knew raising an army of titans to destroy everything and everyone around you could be this much fun.
Dota 2 (PC)
The New Bloom Festival is here and with it comes the Year Beast! When Dota 2 has new game modes, it usually means in-game items such as cosmetics and couriers. And I’m a sucker for in-game items especially couriers. I was only able to practice against the Year Beast during the first day because I didn’t have enough Flamesalt Ingots. If I want the Redhoof or Jade Hoof courier, I need to be part of the at least top 10% damage dealers during the Year Beast event. Now how am I going to do that if I don’t have enough Flamesalt Ingots?
But if I’m going to be honest, there’s a really slim to no chance for me to get that courier by waging war against the Year Beast. At the end of the whole ordeal, I might just end up buying it from the market, but who’s to say I can’t try, eh?
Hotline Miami (PSVita)
by Dennation Games and Abstraction Games, published by Devolver Digital
Everyone’s getting all lovey-dovey this week but I’m stuck alone with no company but that of my rabbit, and he only loves me because I give him vegetables.
Being of sound mind, I decided it was time to play the ultra-violent, crazy tough, sadist’s wet dream that is Hotline Miami, as a way of preventing massacre of overly cute couples in my vicinity. What can I say, it’s working!
Hotline Miami is one of the most uniquely disturbing games I have played in a long, long time. It’s got a story I can’t follow, it forces me to do terrible things for reasons I don’t understand and then chastises me for doing them. Hotline Miami is open to a huge amount on analysis and I am sure that by the end of the game I will have formed some opinions of my own. Until then all I have to say is: happy throat-slitting, neck-stomping, katana-through-the-throat Valentine’s Day!