Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward Review

It’s been almost two years since I wrote my review of Square Enix’s MMO, Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. I was a big fan of what they’d created, especially compared to the mess that was v1.0. I even wrote a column about the game for over a year. Since that initial release, numerous patches came out, bringing with them new instances, Hard mode dungeons and Hard/Extreme trials, side-story quest chains like the Hildibrand saga, and of course the continuation of FFXIV’s excellent main story questline. Fast forward to a month ago when FFXIV releases their first expansion, Heavensward. This expansion brought with it an expanded level cap of 60, three new jobs, new zones, new instances/trials, and the continuation of that epic main story. For the last month I’ve been put in hours upon hours into the world of Eorzea and now I’m finally ready to give my opinion.

A Weekend With The Weaponographist

The Weaponographist, a fast-paced hack-and-slash dungeon crawler, released earlier this summer to positive acclaim on Steam. With summer convention mania behind us, we spent the weekend diving deeper into the game to see whether or not demon hunter Doug McGrave could redeem himself.

Will Fight for Food: Super Mega Review


Will Fight for Food: Super Actual Sellout Game of the Hour is an eclectic bag of mixed feelings. On one hand the game lacks any sort of meaningful depth, but on the other hand it is that lack of depth that makes the game fun to pick up and put down again. The brevity of the experience serves to only bolster this point. The experience feels incomplete, yet somehow through its incomplete nature, it beats the odds and becomes whole.

El Presidente on the PS4: Tropico 5 Review

Tropico 5 released on the PC in May 2014 and since then has been slowly rolling out onto consoles, with the latest being Tuesday's upcoming PlayStation 4 launch. Here's a quick summary of the game for those that haven't tried their hand at it yet.

You play as a dictator leading the island nation of Tropico, expanding your Dynasty and taking both a political and economic foothold, all while trying to keep the stronger world powers from becoming angry and decimating your lands. Build up your town, explore the island, claim resources, engage in sea trade, and attract voters to keep your reign. Research new technologies, establish a constitution to setup how you wish to rule and perform missions to earn rewards or prestige. Multiplayer breathed new life into the Tropico franchise as you compete head-to-head or go co-op while striving to make El Presidente's dynasty the greatest.

Dungeons 2: Evil Gets a Review

Realmforge Studios' Dungeons 2 will be releasing on Steam tomorrow, April 24th. We took an early look at the game last month and returned to give its campaign a new look, as well as dipping into the skirmish and multiplayer features.

The campaign mode has been optimized since our earlier playthrough, taking care of the extra polish we were concerned that the game needed. Once you pass the tutorial mission, the in-dungeon gameplay is quite similar to the Dungeon Keeper series. You play as the Ultimate Evil's hand, build your dungeon, gather creatures, mine gold and thwart attacks on your dungeon.

Dragon Age: Inquisition - Jaws of Hakkon Review

Dragon Age: Inquisition's first single-player DLC, Jaws of Hakkon, was released a few weeks ago, introducing a new region and storyline to the game. The new area, Frostback Basin, both beautiful and challenging, is recommended for level 20+ characters and can be reached before or after the completion of the main story. Avvar—friendly and not—are the primary inhabitants of the region and are whom most of the quests end up involving.

In the DLC you'll embark on a new main story adventure to discover what exactly happened to the last Inquisitior, Ameridan, who had disappeared 800 years before you took the post. Numerous side-quests will involve gaining the trust of the friendly Avvar at Stone-Bear Hold, pushing back the threat from the unfriendly Avvar calling themselves the Jaws of Hakkon, and furthering the inquisition's discovery and foothold in the region.

Pillars of Eternity Review

Over the last few years we’ve seen plenty of game companies go the Kickstarter route: Double Fine Productions with Broken Age, inXile Entertainment with Wasteland 2 and Torment: Tides of Numenera, Harebrained Schemes with Shadowrun Returns, Larian Studios with Divinity Original Sin and many more. There’s been a great deal of success from these early Kickstarter projects, but also some failures along the way. Broken Age had to be split into two halves because there was too much to put into one game and meet their release window. Peter Molyneux’s Godus is pretty much an all-around mess.

That brings us to now with yet another high profile Kickstarter project finally releasing. Obsidian Entertainment’s Pillars of Eternity started as Project Eternity back on September 14, 2012. They were one of the most successful game Kickstarters ever, blowing past their $1.1 million goal in just over 24 hours, passing stretch goal after stretch goal until they finished ahead of Double Fine Adventure’s Kickstarter at $3,986,929 ($4,163,208 with the PayPal pledges). With all of those stretch goals adding to the scope of the game though, plus your typical schedule slips, the game went from an estimated delivery of April 2014 to coming out March 26, 2015, nearly a year later.

So was all that time and money the fans put in worth it? Did Obsidian make a great RPG in the vein of Baldur’s Gate and Icewind Dale? After 42 hours, the first two acts’ worth of story and a whole lot of sidequesting, I can safely say that I’m absolutely satisfied with my Kickstarter pledge.

ZAM Reviews: The Escapists

The Escapists fully released on both Steam and Xbox One earlier this month, already having earned much praise from Steam users during its Early Access phase. A strategy game at its core, The Escapists will keep you busy as you gradually work your way toward a prison break, with varying difficulty depending on the starting map you select.

The game only has a brief tutorial before you move on to the action. While this tutorial emphasizes breaking out, most of your time in the actual game is spent gathering everything you need for that breakout. You'll find yourself performing favors to curry money and respect from other inmates, pillaging those same inmates' unconscious bodies and desks for items, craft supplies and more.

Sid Meier's Civilization: Beyond Earth Review

Beyond Earth — A Review From TotalNoob, aka Lindsay Geektron

Allow me to preface everything I say below with an admission: I’ve never played any Civilization games prior to Beyond Earth. None. In fact, the last “strategy” game I played was SimCity 2000. In 1998.

Beyond Earth is a turn-based strategy game built on the Civilization V engine and formula, but unlike previous Civilization games, it abandons the historical context which made earlier iterations so popular, and instead tosses you onto a new planet in the future, which you must then colonize. Folks have been comparing this game to Civ V and Alpha Centauri, which I find ironic, given that Firaxis cannot seem to escape its past even when dealing with the future.

Dragon Age: Inquisition - Full Review

Dragon Age: Inquisition — ZAM's Complete Review

I'm sure most of us have a favorite genre or series that we currently or at one point devoted hundreds of hours of our life to. It takes a special game to grab our attention and keep us entertained for hours, and with the number of games that are released every month, there's a lot tugging our attentions every which-way.

As I mentioned in my impressions article of Dragon Age: Inquisition, the game showed a lot of promise from an early first look. Since then I've devoted a lot of time into the story, and still have some more to go, but Inquisition definitely has that "wow" factor. The world of Thedas has captivated me with its deep story, cast of characters and expansive world.

If you're looking for a tl;dr, then here it is: you should be playing Dragon Age: Inquisition the moment it releases on Tuesday, November 18th (November 21st in the EU). Now let's get into what gives this RPG the legs to stand above many others.