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Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Will I Rage? Auto Dealership Tycoon Review

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I am a sucker for these management simulation games. One of the games over the last few years, that I can never get away from, is Game Dev Tycoon. My girlfriend often comes in the room and finds me sitting here managing a Game Studio, Auto Dealership, Mechanic Shop, Las Vegas Casino, Lunch Truck Business, and so many more. She usually gawks at me through a blank stare and slowly backs out of the room to leave me to my seemingly mundane tasks. I'm not sure where my love for these games comes from but due to the huge success of a lot of these titles, it appears that I am not the only one. I was actually planning to tackle Lunch Truck Tycoon in my next review however after a brief altercation on the forum of Auto Dealership Tycoon during the fall sale, and quickly being put in my place by the Developer (I was totally wrong in an accusation against them) I was given a copy of this game to review. It takes both balls and faith in your product to do this to someone you were just at odds with and I respect that. I have decided to debut my new review format for this one so let's dive in and answer the question. "Will I Rage? Auto Dealership Tycoon"



Gameplay

Rating: 4.5 of 5

We'll begin with the tutorial. What I enjoy most about the tutorial in this game is that it doesn't drag on too long. A huge gripe I have with a lot of games in general is the fact that I have to play what seems like 45 minutes of tutorial, before I can actually begin doing anything remotely fun in a game. I hate that. Especially, since the majority of the time, it could be easily condensed down to 10 to 15 minutes tops. In this game, the tutorial is straight to the point, and you'll be running your own Auto Dealership in a matter of minutes. 

This game consists of two main phases. Your setup phase, and your day phase. During setup you will hire staff, restock both your stock of cars, as well as the parts needed for your service area for the day. From there you have the option to hire new employee's, manage your shops upgrades, upgrade your actual shop to a larger setup, and buy licenses to be able to deal in a larger variety of vehicles. You may also take this time to visit the finance managers office to take a look at your current financial situation. You can also visit your sales manager's office (Where you went to stock your cars) to raise, or lower the prices of your cars according to supply and demand). 


Once you do all of this, it's time to open up! The day phase consists of customers coming into your shop to buy cars and to have their cars serviced. During this time you will also be presented with random events such as a customer coming in having an issue with his car........although it is slightly passed warranty. It is your job here to decide if you should give him a break, or refuse. (I learned that at least for me, it is better to accept because it's a lot easier to take a small financial hit than a hit to your CSR rating). One of the most amusing events I've ran across is a customer claiming that someone at your shop defecated in the back of their car and they ask you to clean it up. All in a days work I suppose. Well played Diggidy, Well played. 

Another random event during the day phase is trade in's. These are by far the best deal you get in game and I'd suggest taking every trade in that you can afford. Sure, they take longer to sell but when they do it's big profit. During the game you must keep an eye on your CSR. If a customer wants a car and it's not in stock, you take a CSR hit, if you are selling that car for too much you take a CSR hit. This is your Customer Service Rating and mine is currently in the mid 20's (I'm a very sketchy car salesman). Another really interesting feature to this game is, every Monday you have the option of going to an Auction where you can bid on used cars. I've made a lot of good money here, but to do so I actually began keeping a notepad of what I've sold each model used car for, so that I can more accurately bid. 

The upgrade menu offers various item upgrades for the shop that can effect the amount of visitors you get, success in auctions, employee hire rate and more. The building upgrades is just that. It allows you more space, more employee's, more inventory space, and the ability to deal with more licenses. This leads me to the news. Randomly during your game play you will be notified of a sales event taking place. These consist of "goals". You have X amount of days to sell a certain number of a specific car (or brand of cars). Doing so will give you cash and a lot of the times a boost to your coveted CSR. These events can also increase (or decrease) the level of your employee's. The news however will also give you a heads up when a specific car becomes a hot seller. When this occurs it is wise to stock up on that car. You could possibly even up the price a little too....supply and demand you know. All in all the game play in Auto Dealership Tycoon is really fun, and really addictive. 


Graphics

Rating: 3.5 of 5
The graphics in Auto Dealership tycoon are on par with other games in this particular genre (Think Game Dev Tycoon). If you are a fan of this genre of game you know that graphics are rarely the bread and butter. Even in more graphical displays, such as Car Mechanic Simulator 2015 where the graphics are more realistic... they aren't "great". The bread and butter of this genre is always game play. With this said, the graphics are not bad, and fit the genre and style of the game perfectly. My one gripe here is that damn clown that walks back and forth along the side walk in front of my dealership striking fear into the hearts of anyone who happens to walk by (as well as myself).

Audio

Rating: 3.5 of 5
Let's talk about the music first off. I was actually surprised by this. While A LOT of indie titles (especially tycoon games like this) will have horrible MIDI tracks, this game actually has decently developed music. It sounds like it was created possibly through FL Studio with a KORG (or other keyboard) style input. While I am not a fan of the Electronic genre of music, it's a big step up from the music offered in most indie tycoon titles. The sound effects in the game are also well done. Nothing special here since these games don't rely on effects like big explosions, gunfire, talking, etc. But fits well with the game.


Value
Rating: 5 of 5
 Auto Dealership Tycoon retails on Steam for $4.99. In this game, you can easily put 10-15 hours into it before ever maxing everything out, even more if you are an achievement hunter. This game also has good replay value as most tycoon games do. Overall I feel that the $4.99 price tag on this game is a steal.

Conclusion
 If you are a fan of the tycoon business simulation style of game, this game is a lot of fun. If you are not a fan of this genre, or have never played this genre, there are no promises. However, for a very reasonable $4.99 price tag it's worth a gamble. I've been playing the game A LOT for this review and even with that time put in, I still see hours and hours of time left. As far as replay value, I feel it has a lot. However, I have made a list of a few features I feel are missing from this game that could make it even better.

1. A "Haggling" system when selling or purchasing used cars. Currently, when a customer feels you are charging too much for a used car, he says it and walks out. I think one of the most fun aspects of selling used cars for a living would be that "haggle" between yourself and the customer. If anyone has ever played the ANDROID game "Pawn Stars" you saw that haggling system. While I hated Pawn Stars overall, I think the addition of a haggling system similar to the one used there, for both selling used cars, and buying trade-in's, would add another dimension to the game.

2. Customization. This may not be important to a lot of people, but to me and my OCD nature it would be amazing. Add in decorative items as another sink to spend your cash on, as well as allowing us to place those items. Also allow the freedom to move Desks, TV's, Vending machines, etc. Allow us the option of colors for walls, floors, etc. All of these things while small and insignificant to game play, could be an amazing addition to people with a control complex, who enjoys controlling every aspect of things. Let's face it, we are playing a game that puts us in control of our own Auto Dealership. Chances are we have some level of control freak in us.

3. Financing! In real life when you see a car dealership commercial a good 60% of the pitch is about their "low financing options". Why not add financing? A financing department, and even the option to send a Repo man to get a car when someone randomly defaults on a payment. It seems that financing is one of the biggest aspects of running an auto dealership in real life, and would be a great addition to the game.

4. Marketing! The Addition of marketing options, and perhaps even a marketing department, where you can buy different levels of marketing for your shop. Newspaper Ads, TV ad's, Magazine Ad's, Billboards, Website, etc. Each increasing the # of visitors to your shop, for a certain amount of time by a certain amount based on which package purchased.

6. The shady side of the business. Running back the millage on a car to sell it for more, and the many other shady tactics that real used car salesman have used. Add the ability to do these different things to used cars, at the risk of being caught and damaging your CSR. Give the dealer the option if he wants to be honest or risk his reputation to make a quick buck. 

7. Training. One legitimate gripe I had with the game was that it always seemed like I was waiting to replace employee's for no reason but a couple additional points. A reasonable alternative to this, is the ability to send an employee through a training course to gain experience. This way your not constantly having to fire people your growing semi attached to every 1-2 levels.


I've come to my rating due to the simple yet addictive game play of Auto Dealership Tycoon, as well as the surprising audio quality, industry standard graphics for the genre, and extremely good value for the amount of hours you will put into this game. There are several elements I think could be added as I've listed above, as well as a couple things that could be improved upon. But overall, I think any tycoon fan will be happy with the purchase of this title.


Overall Rating: 4 of 5






Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Developing a new and more fair review system

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Over the last few weeks I've sat down to work on developing a new system of reviewing games on http://www.ragetrip.com. I pride myself on honest and heart felt reviews of games. While I have done just that thus far, I saw the flaws in my review system. From now on I plan to be addressing aspects of the game such as Graphics, Gameplay, Audio, Story, Voice acting, etc. HOWEVER we also have to look at other aspects like............Graphics compared to genre. You obviously cannot be fair and use the same standards when reviewing a text based simulaton game that you would when reviewing a non text based game. All of this will now be factored into the score.

Furthermore you cannot fairly compare a game that retails at $2.00 on steam to one that sells for $60.00 on steam.  One game I have grown to love for example is Don't Starve. I think this is one of the most fun indie games I have played in a very long time. HOWEVER, If "Don't Starve" retailed at $60.00 instead of $15.00 I may very well be singing a different tune right now. The same goes for a call of duty game. If it retailed for $14.99 I may actually have something nice to say about it. So value will play a part in my new review system as well.

I also want to rate the different aspects of the game compared to the genre as well. For example, compared to Assassin's Creed Syndicate , League of Legends graphics are horrible. With that said though, compared to it's genre League of Legends graphics are perfectly acceptable.

My point here is while I've always used these methods when reviewing, I plan to now do my reviews in a format that I feel will better represent exactly how I come to the rating I give a game. Again, I am far from perfect but I will always be honest and heart felt in my reviews. I just hope to make my reviews more well structured in the future.

I will be releasing a review later today in the new format. If all goes well, all new reviews will be done in the new format and I will go back and restructure all the older reviews into the same format over time.


I want to thank everyone for supporting this blog. I am very proud at the huge number of views that it has attracted. The fact I know people are visiting my blog regularly keeps me doing what I love here.


See ya in game,
Cybin

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Price gouging during steam Autumn sale?

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Since the steam Autumn sale started there have been reports on various gaming news sites as well as outrage on forums over a twitter post from Steam Spy (@Steam_Spy) accusing Wreckfest, Auto Dealership Tycoon, and Epistory of raising their prices right before the sale. This practice is generally frowned upon by most and even considered illegal in some places. This being said, things aren't always as black and white as they seem.

I will use Auto Dealership Tycoon as an example. The dev's behind this game also put out another game called Lunch Truck Tycoon. A fun little sim about owning and operating lunch truck's (commonly called a "roach coach" at construction sites). This game did not go up in price at all even though Auto Dealership Tycoon did. Why is this?

Auto Dealership Tycoon on Steam
The truth is I went onto the forum and called the game out for raising prices. I'm tired of seeing practices like this happening and admit I may have jumped the shark over it. No, not because I was quickly attacked by a fan of the game who could barely type in English and who likened what I said to a child killing himself with a loaded gun (horrible analogy btw), but because I did in fact jump into a fight without doing deeper research.

What happened was prior to the steam sale this game received a huge update on par with a DLC. With the release of 2.0 the price increased by $0.99. I'm curious to why any of these "gaming news" websites didn't do a little more research before blindly listening to Steam Spy but at the same time I read those news sites and jumped right on board myself.

In conclusion........While some games DO partake in the shady practice of increasing their game price directly before a sale I don't believe that to be the case with DiggidyNet. Was the timing of the increase a bad decision? Probably so. However I think it was an honest mistake.

I feel that the only thing this developer is guilty of is bad timing with the increase happening so close to the sale that unfortunately led to bad publicity on what appears like a fun Tycoon style game.

While I cannot comment on Steam Spy's accusations towards Wreckfest & Epistory due to what I've learned when it comes to Auto Dealership Tycoon I will be taking those accusations with a grain of salt as well.

So this is my take on Steam Spy's comments and the way the news sites just jumped on board without doing any research at all. I also apologize for jumping in and accusing DiggidyNet (The games Dev) without doing any research as well. Hopefully we all can learn something from this.

I purchased Lunch Truck Tycoon awhile ago and plan on doing a review on it in the next couple of days. I also plan on picking up Auto Dealership Tycoon soon and doing a review on that as well. So stay tuned folks!

See ya in game,
Psilocybin Rain

Friday, November 13, 2015

Ragetrip Free to play picks!

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One thing I always get asked is "Which free to play games are actually worth playing?". This is a difficult question because we all have different tastes. However I have compiled a list of Free to Play games here with a few friends to go over the best free to play games in a few of the most popular genres. Let me know in the comments if there is something you feel I left out. These games below are all fun, have large communities and don't rely on a pay to win model. Sure, you can pay to make your life easier, but it doesn't really give you a clear advantage.

Hope you enjoy the list, and as always.......


See ya in game.

MMORPG

1. Wildstar (Remember Wildstar?....The WoW Killer? Well, once that didn't pan out for them they finally decided to go free to play. This game boasted incredibly hard raid content to bring the old core raiders from WoW over. So if your into Raiding, and looking for a wow alternative that is free....this one may be for you!)

2. TERA (Another Free to Play MMORPG. I'll admit I played this game for like 2 hours and it just wasn't my thing. It's not a bad game, but I am not too into the MMORPG games anymore. However, it may be right up your alley)

3. RIFT (Probably the closest to World of Warcraft in my list. It's been out for quite awhile and is still kicking. Not the newest, or prettiest but very consistent. Has some very unique elements such as being able to scale your level down so you can play with your lower level buddies and still gain EXP. All in all a very solid choice.)

4. Star Trek Online (I'm throwing this one in exclusively for you Sci-Fi junkies out there! Star Trek Online is free, on steam, and generally known to be a really good MMORPG. I didn't play this one too much but have to say that it was better than the Star Wars MMO simply because the Star Wars MMO had the worst free to play micro-transaction model I've dealt with in some time.)

5. ArcheAge (This game may push the limited of your budget build which is why I placed it so low on the list. I played for a few days and was very impressed, but again the MMO genre fails to really keep my interest any longer. It is probably the most breathtakingly pretty MMO that I've seen though.)


F2P FPS

1. Team Fortress 2 (The king of the F2P shooter. 10 years old and still kicking. Cartoony, but great balance. The pace is good, unique character types. All in all Team Fortress 2 is as fun today as it was when it dropped in 2007.)

2. Dirty Bomb (This is probably my favorite Free to Play FPS right now. This may all change once Blizzard debuts Overwatch, or may not. However Dirty Bomb is just........fun. If your into First Person Shooters there is no reason not to give this gem a try.)

3. Planetside 2 (If you were a fan of Halo 2 this one is for you. You'll get that vibe while playing. Pretty fun free to play title!)

4. Warface (I've honestly never played this. However several friends told me to add this one in to the list because its great.)

5. Blacklight: Retribution (Good futuristic war title. Fast paced and fun!)


MOBA Games

1. League of Legends (This one is taking the number one spot for one reason. Having the best micro-transaction model in the business. I myself am not a huge fan. I hit max level and never played the game again. However it has an insanely high number of active subscribers, an amazing Micro-Transaction model, and is ontop of the moba world for sure.)

2. Smite (While I put league of legends #1 totally unbiased because I personally dislike the game. I put Smite as #2 because I love the game. League of Legends style gameplay, itemshop, etc. With 3rd person view, and WASD controls. The fact that your playing as gods from mythology only makes it that much better!)

3. DOTA 2 (Played DOTA 2 for like 30 minutes so I really can't judge the game. I've heard great things about it and that is neck and neck with League of Legends as far as popularity.)

4. Heroes of the Storm (Blizzard's shot at a MOBA title. Heroes of the Storm takes characters from blizzard games and throws them into team battle. The game plays somewhat like League and DOTA 2 however there is no item shop and it is a lot more team objective based than pushing lanes and team battles (although both do happen). All in all HOTS feels like a more casual version of a MOBA (which doesn't have to be a bad thing.)

5. There are no others really worth talking about that I know of. I would have put infinite crisis here, but it closed down (or is closing).


ARPG games

1. Marvel Heroes 2015 (I was harsh on Marvel Heroes when it first dropped. A lot of things about the game was just bad and a lot of folks (myself included) wrote the game off. However, the game steadily got better and better to the point that Marvel Heroes is light years ahead of all of the other F2P ARPG's on the market, and dare I say even better than the big bad Diablo III which costs a hefty price from blizzard. The Micro-Transaction model is very reasonable, New characters brought in very often and TONS of end game content. Cosmic Terminals, Mid Town farming, Industry City, One shot Terminals, Raiding, and much much more. Marvel Heroes has become one of the best free to play games out there in any Genre.

2. Path of Exiles  (A lot closer to the Diablo experience with many notable differences. The skill tree is very advanced, and not dumbed down like that of Diablo III. Path of Exiles is a very fun game with unique classes, and playstyles. The story is crisp, the graphics are nice, and the experience is great.)

3. The Mighty Quest for Epic Loot (Very strange game. ARPG style, where you build your castle up, set traps, place monsters, etc. Then allow others to run thru and try to rob you, while you do the same to others and the loot you get is what you use to upgrade your castle, traps, etc. Very interesting game indeed)

4. There aren't any other really big ones out there in this genre that are worth mentioning here.


Other F2P Games

1. Hearthstone (I am a HUGE fan of this game. Sure, it isn't the most balanced, or in depth collectable card game. But a game generally takes less than 5 minutes and I can access it via PC, Tablet, or Smartphone. This makes Hearthstone a great choice for downtime at work (shhhh), gaming on the go, or on the PC when you don't have the time to get into a longer game.

2. CasinoRPG (I know this one is browser based but I know there are A LOT of gambling fans out there. I cannot in good conscience suggest The Four Kings Casino and Slots due to the game being complete garbage. However in CasinoRPG you can create your own casinos, gamble in yours (and other peoples) joints as well as compete in server wide poker tournaments and much more.)





Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Will I Rage? Killing Floor 2 (Early Access) Review

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After writing my last review on  The Four Kings Casino & Slots, I wanted to follow that up with a review of a new game, still in early access that actually gets it right. Today I will be discussing Killing Floor 2 by Tripwire Interactive. I was a HUGE fan of the original Killing Floor game. My friends and I spent countless hours on that game murdering Zeds, and having a blast while doing it. When I heard that Killing Floor 2 was on it's way I was excited, and for once wasn't skeptical at all about how this one would turn out. Why? It's simple. Because Tripwire knows what the Killing Floor fan base wants out of a game, and knows how to do it right. So when I picked up the game which is still in early access, I had very high expectations for it, and I have to say that I am not at all let down by the product delivered. 

The first thing you'll notice once you load up the game and dive in, will be the updated graphics from Killing Floor, to Killing Floor 2. The Original graphics, while still "decent" today were slowly becoming dated. Killing Floor 2 on the other hand is beautiful with it's graphics. As for game play I have to say that all of the features we had grown to love in the original Killing Floor from triggered slow motion, to the intense boss fight battles are still there. While it is still early access and they are limited.....there are already a few solid custom maps out there (including a Golden Eye map!). We are sad to say that as of this post, I have yet to find a Marijuana field map......but I'm sure it's coming! On top of that the Zed's look more impressive than ever, and the boss fight is A LOT harder than it was in Killing Floor. Simply mowing him down with the AA-12 isn't quite as simple as it used to be.

I buy a whole lot of early access games and while most of them are fun for a few days but soon you find that there are game breaking bugs still I can say with happiness that Killing Floor 2 almost feels like a completed project. As far as game play goes I don't see too much that they'll need to change. The only changes I feel that need to be made is the addition of a few more stock maps, more character models and skins to play (I'm OK with these coming in DLC packs. I've always supported tripwire in this way), and giving the modding community time to create all the custom maps that we have grown to love. Also, on a side note I was asked if you still gain EXP while playing custom maps and the answer to that is Yes!

Final Thoughts: Tripwire Interactive has always been a company who listens to it's community, and knows exactly how to deliver on the game that their community wants. This is evident by the way they have delivered with the early access of Killing Floor 2. I can't wait to see how the product turns out once a lot more custom maps are released and more of the original Killing Floor community pick this game up.

Rating: 4/5. This game is still very much in early access and I will revisit it once it is in it's final release. However the only thing that keeps killing floor 2 from getting a 5/5 review is the same issue I had with the original and that is there is no story mode what so ever. Even single player just goes through wave after wave of Zed's. This is not a "knock" to the game because it is designed to be just that......however I do wish there was at least a short story mode. I'd definitely suggest picking this up and enjoy some Zed killing with all your buddies on Steam.

Until next time, see ya in game!

Monday, June 8, 2015

Will I Rage? The Four Kings Casino and Slots Review

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I love gambling and casinos. Some of my favorite times were spent on the Casino boat near where I live. So when I found out that a Casino MMO was coming to steam needless to say I was very excited. So with visions of jackpots dancing in my head I dove in to the world of "The Four Kings Casino and Slots". After days of playing this game I am now presenting to you my review. So let's dive in and answer the question. "Will I Rage? The Four Kings Casino & Slots"

Gameplay
Rating: 2.5 of 5

Currently in the game there is Texas Hold Em Poker (Tourney style tables), Blackjack tables, Roulette, Craps, War, The "Big 6" Wheel, A Bingo Hall, and Video Poker, Blackjack, Slots, and Keno as well as a nightclub for social gatherings. It's not a horrible start but I think there should be more themes for the slot machines and video slot machines that operate more like real casinos. Overall though the amount of games aren't bad.


VIP Only section there are some of those games with the addition of Baccarat and Single Deck Blackjack. All in all, there is enough gambling based games for everyone to fall in love for this virtual casino experience. Another level of depth to the game play is to become a "VIP", you do so by earning RP. Once you earn enough you gain access to the VIP section with exclusive games and benefits. There are also different levels of VIP for you hardcore players out there.

In the upstairs level of the Casino you have different stores that you can shop for clothing, and other accessories to deck out your avatar(character) with. To buy these items, you must win at games and earn "RP" (Think in a casino how you earn points towards comps). These items can be pricey and take some time to earn but it will be worth if for you people who like to have a super well dressed character. This part of the game as well as the nightclub reminds me so much of "Second Life" which I'm not sure is a good thing.

The Four Kings Casino and Slots also has plenty of achievements and special unlockable items in the game for the achievement hunters out there.

Now with all free to play games on the market we quickly get into the debate over "Pay 2 Win" elements. The only real element here is that you can purchase CHIPS for real money (not RP at this time). The prices while reasonable are still kind of pay to win. The reason I say this is you will quickly blow through your initial bankroll, and 250 chips every 15 minutes to collect isn't really enough to keep you going. Therefore if you want an enjoyable experience your going to at least want to drop the 5 bucks for 50,000 chips.

Graphics

Rating: 2 of 5



The truth is the graphics in The Four Kings Casino and Slots are not anything special. In fact they are kind of on the low end. You can compare them to a less impressive version of Second Life. The horrible movement and static standing animations of your character doesn't help this at all either. While for this type of game graphics aren't the most important element. If you are trying to break new ground and make the definitive Casino MMO experience better graphics would have been a good decision.

Dev's and Moderation

Rating: 0 of 5

This is where the game really goes downhill. Hacking is rampant, as well as toxic players screaming obscenities and racist slurs in chat with no one doing anything about it. Furthermore if you go to play a game of bingo, someone fake calls every single ball which makes it pretty much unplayable. The Dev's and moderator staff of this game are the worst that I have ever seen. There is no excuse for letting your game go down the drain like this.

Value

Rating: 4 of 5

The game is free, so you won't lose anything by taking a look. However after my experience with the toxic community inside the game who makes chatting almost impossible, and the incompetence of the mods and dev's I'd strongly suggest never spending a dime on the in game chip purchases.

Conclusion

I came into this game with big hopes. I love the whole casino thing and was hoping I'd finally find a game with decent graphics that would last. What I found was a game developed in unity and open to so much cheating that it isn't really worth it. Mix that in with people spamming obscene, racist rants, trolls calling false bingo's every number and staff and dev's who seem not to care the least bit. This hurts because I really wanted this to be a good game, but sadly it's just not. If you are looking for a fun casino experience with devs who moderate chat, and care about their game I'd suggest http://www.casinorpg.com. While not as pretty as The Four Kings, the community, and game play is years ahead.

 Overall Rating: 2 of 5




Monday, April 6, 2015

Ragetrip community website now LIVE!

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I have always thought of Ragetrip Gaming as a community. With the way things are going though it has felt like just a blog project for some time. Well I'm hoping to change that. The Ragetrip blog, as well as the personal blogs will remain of course because I love writing this stuff. But today I am introducing something brand new to go hand in hand with all of that.

Over the last week I have been planning out, and executing a new side project. When you think of enjin you think of a guild or clan website. However what I have found is that it is so much more. It is the perfect platform to build up a gaming community. With forums, events, and so much more it is an idea platform to build on. For the last couple of days I've been really working on this thing so that I could present it in today's blog post. 

My goal here is to build a community of gamers who will use the website, use the forums to connect to other like-minded gamers and to genuinely become a part of a laid back, 18+ gaming community. I know this goal will not be easy. I understand that most gamer's don't want to go through the hassle to do this. However, I have faith that there are other gamer's out there who aren't elitists, and tired of toxic communities. This is our first step towards achieving the community we have been working for. If things go good here, next up will be a ventrilo, mumble, or teamspeak server for the community, and so on. I've worked a lot on this, and I am continuing to do so. I hope you guys like it, and are willing to come in and help make this community amazing. 



If your interested. Please go to the website below and sign up, then click recruitment and fill out the short community application. I have put the application in place to weed out spammers who would ruin the forums with advertisements. It shouldn't take more than 3-4 minutes to fill out the short community application, and you will be brought in and have the entire website available to you. You will also be able to access this page from http://www.ragetrip.com by clicking the "Ragetrip Community" tab.


Community Website: Ragetrip Community Website

If this thing takes off, I will be buying a custom domain for it, and keep it premium out of my own pocket, and anyone who decides to donate time from the main page of the website. We will also work on getting a voice server if we get a nice sized community going.

I hope you guys enjoy the site, and actually use it. I am excited about this and hope to see you all there. 


See ya in Game,
Psilocybin Rain

Monday, March 30, 2015

Reign of Kings: Thoughts & First Impression

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Over the last week I have spent a good amount of time playing Reign of Kings. As much as I want to do a review of this game I find it to be bad business to do a "review" on a title in alpha or even beta stages. Therefore this article will not be a full review, but instead my first impressions and thoughts on the game in it's current state. This, along with my hopes and wishes for the future of this title. So strap in, and let me share my experiences over the last week.

When my good buddy MrHighlight offered to gift me a copy of Reign of Kings I hadn't looked too much into the game. So before agreeing to have my friend spend his hard earned money on a game I'd hate, I did as much research as possible. I'm not 100% sure why, but I have become a fan of this type of game. I love both "builder" style games as well as Open World Survival so the mixture of the two is great to me. Like Rust, H1Z1 (to a degree), 7 Days to Die, etc. This game is a survival game with aspects of building and community thrown in. Unlike the games I named before, Reign of Kings is not survival horror. Instead, this is a Medieval survival title. Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love the survival horror games despite my growing distaste for zombies (Let's face it.....Zombies are being shoved down our throats at this point) I love horror. I am super anxious for games such as Slasher Vol. 1: Summer Camp where it is survival, and we are free of hordes of slow moving, easy to defeat zombies roaming around the countryside (Why don't they have a zombie survival horror game that takes place in a major city? Why is it always the rural backwoods?). However, the change from horror survival, to Medieval survival in this case was a very good decision.



The building aspect of this game is refreshingly awesome. After playing H1Z1 (Which I do enjoy), the limitations on what you can build, and the fact every one's little "forts" look damn near identical bothered me. This is not an issue in Reign of Kings at all. You can build a small shack out of dirt and clay, to a full on castle out of wood and stone. Design is limited only by your imagination and resources. In fact on my server, there is a huge Colosseum like structure on the beach made of clay where people gather to fight in duels. Overall, the building aspect of this game shows a lot of promise, even early on in the Alpha stages of development.


Like other games in this genre, the combat system is clunky. It appears that's something we are just going to have to deal with for awhile at least. My biggest issue with that here, is when your guild goes into a big battle with another guild you will no doubt end up hitting your buddies at least a few times during a guild war. Besides the clunky combat that has become a staple of this genre (Thank you DayZ.....) I've quite enjoyed the PVP side of this game. For one, every server has a King. This is just a player who has won the crown, who can now set taxes (Taxes are taken automatically when you farm resources, a percentage of those goes to the kings stockpile). The king (and his guild if he chooses) also gets to live in a pre-built, amazing castle overlooking the kingdom. If taxes get to high, or you are just power hungry you can attempt a siege on the castle, and overthrow the king to take the crown yourself. Personally on my server, our king has been kind enough to set the taxes to 0, so I have joined up with his guild to help protect the crown. There will be alliances, peace, and war within your kingdom. Another cool PVP aspect of this game is you can rope someone, and drag them around the map, or even shackle them. Once captured, if by rope the player must have a sharp rock hidden in his orifice slot (yep.......), or a lock pick if he is shackled to escape. Once tied up, you are at the other person's mercy. They can troll you, beat you to death while you lay there begging for your life, or even drag you back to their area, where they may have hanging posts set up to hang you, a guillotine to behead you, or other forms of execution, torture, or perhaps just a nice big cage to keep you prisoner in. The only comfort you may (or may not) have is the fact that instead of respawning at a random spot on the beach (The default respawn point) is that if you happen to have a base and have placed a bed.....you can respawn there instead. All in all Reign of Kings is a fun, yet extremely dangerous place.



However, despite the fact this is not a survival horror game, it appears that even in ancient times we cannot escape the damn zombies. In Reign of Kings there is a village/town that is oozing poison. Even getting near this town you begin to take small amounts of damage. All around the borders of the town, there are weird looking.......dare I say zombie's roaming the countryside. These zombies are the absolute BEST spot in the game for farming higher gear fast. Sure, you could go around gathering materials to eventually build the necessary work bench to craft the items. But this takes a lot of time. I suggest that at the start of the game you find this town, equip yourself with 50-100 wooden javelins you can craft from chopping at tree's and kite/spear those zombies to death until you get yourself some decent armor, and a nice weapon.


Now to the bad. At this stage in development there isn't much security at all. In fact, reporting a hacker is the only thing you can really do (No detection systems at this time). With that said most servers are plagued with random players coming in and killing everyone at once, throwing you in the ocean where you have no choice but to suicide and loose everything, etc. This is problematic in a lot of early access games of this nature including H1Z1. It got so bad that I almost quit the game on my 2nd day playing. The bright side to this is there are several good community owned servers where the admins are always on top of this sort of behavior. Even better, there are "whitelist" communities, where everyone on the server has to be accepted in. If you are going to go for the early access of this game I suggest finding one of these servers. I am currently playing on Bloodlust. The server admin is always very quick to get rid of any hackers around. However, my server has plans to go strictly whitelist soon now that it's community is pretty strong in numbers. Even in these well moderated servers though you should expect frustrating restarts that roll the servers back a ways and cause you to loose gear, building and gathering progress. You should also fully expect frequent full server wipes. This is an alpha, and it will happen.



Ragetrip Conclusion
When you buy into any early access game you should be prepared for certain things. Unstable servers, rollbacks, wipes, glitches that could even cause death, and hordes of hackers out to ruin your day. This is just the price of admission for early access, especially in the alpha stages. However, there are ways to minimize exposure to such inconveniences. Playing on a non-official server with either top notch admins, or even better a whitelist only community will all but eliminate the hacks. Also, these servers tend to randomly restart and roll back less and only totaly wipe with serious client updates or serious problems. If your willing to deal with these issues and can handle all the bugs and annoyances of Alpha then I'd totally suggest this game to anyone who is a fan of the genre. The advanced building aspect alone is enough to keep you busy for hours, and even more hours later when I come along with a catapult and bash your damn walls down.

I hope you enjoyed my thoughts on this very promising title. See ya in game!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Will I Rage? NBA2k15 PC Review

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This will be my first sports related post for Ragetrip. There are 2 reasons for this. First, there just aren't that many sports games released for PC. Second, I am not very knowledgeable on the subject other than Mixed Martial Arts, and college basketball.


Hunter S. Thompson
“I am more than just a Serious basketball fan. I am a life-long Addict. I was addicted from birth, in fact, because I was born in Kentucky.” - Hunter S. Thompson

Since we are in the middle of March Madness right now, and the NCAA Tournament (Kentucky 36-0 baby!!!!) and since Steam decided to have a nice sale on NBA 2k15 I decided to pick it up. I haven't played the series since 2k13, skipping 14 because it wasn't all that impressive looking. However after playing 2015 for a couple of days I have to say that FINALLY EA! Finally you give us a real NBA 2k game instead of some horribly optimized port with dulled down features and weak online options. Instead they gave us a crisp, well developed game that we can enjoy. While I am not a fan of EA in general I have to say that they came through with this one. Of course, they will still try to make an extra buck off of you but if they didn't, they wouldn't be EA.


There are a few differences in the interface. You don't get your "hot streak" meter anymore. There is a new meter under your feet that can help you with shot timing (although I still just know when my player is at his peak). Besides that, the controlling and functionality is like reuniting with an old friend. At it's basics, the controls are very similar to 2k13 and I'm guessing 2k14 (although I refused to buy that one). There is an obvious graphics upgrade in 2k15 but to be honest it's only a little better than the 2k14 videos I've seen. As most sports games go, the voice work is awful. I am a huge DeMarcus Cousins fan (UofK baby!!!!) however talking to him in 2k15 makes me want to punch things.
DeMarcus Cousins

Another thing that is irritating is the AI in the game. I swear to god half the time it feels like my team is playing against me. Waiting just long enough to shoot so that I don't get the assist, refusing to pass to me when I'm wide open and instead making the dumbest shot possible, and having the worst timing, and spacing humanly or in this case inhumanly possible. I feel like if Stephen Hawking could play a game of NBA 2k15, his fear of AI would be gone.

Single Player Game Modes

MyCareer
As always, MyCareer is the heart of NBA2k15. You create your own player, and run him through a career long storyline. This year, you go undrafted and have to work your way from rags to riches in the league. You use your "pay" from your contracts, games, bonuses and endorsements to buy upgrades for your player. On a side note, you can use your money earned from other modes for MyCareer as well, and vice versa.

MyGM
This may be my personal favorite mode. You take the role as GM of the team. You control player contracts, staff contracts, the draft, and even down to the price of merch, parking, tickets, etc. at the arena. What I LOVE about this mode is you can set it to have a fantasy draft at the beginning and literally build whatever team you want. Currently, in the spirit of NCAA March Madness and my obsession with Kentucky basketball, I am working on putting together an all UofK team. You can also buy the team outright. I'm not 100% what this does because I have yet to make anywhere near what it costs to do so.

MyLEAGUE
MyLeague is for the extreme control freak. This mode is not for me, and I only briefly dabbled in it. In this, you control every aspect of the league including Salary Caps, Team Roster, Length of the Season, etc. Everything is in YOUR hands.


Online Game Modes

Online Leagues
This is another returning mode where you and your friends can take over your favorite teams and compete online against others. Fun mode if your buddies are into the game as well.

MyTEAM
This is NBA2k15's answer to collectible card games. I was very skeptical but this mode is A LOT of fun. You just have to be patient at earning more cards. There is also a marketplace to buy and sell cards for points. More or less you collect the cards, put together a team, and then actually play out games with those players.

MyPARK
This is as close as we get to an online MyCareer mode. I do wish that they'd have a co-op storyline version of MyCareer, but this will do. Pretty much you join a community. Riviet City, Old Town, or Sunset beach. Each one giving a different buff. Here you can compete 2v2, 3v3, or 5v5. You can also "Squad up" with your buddies in 2k15. Also, this year they have a nice rep/rank system. This is more "Street Ball" than what your used to in other modes.

Rec Hall
Rec Hall is interesting. While traveling the various parks you can stop at the Rec Hall for 5v5 4 quarter NBA style games in an indoor, Jordan brand gym. You can also "Squad up" in this one.

Stage
Wager VC (currency) in online games. This is for those who know they are good, and want to make some quick VC. Good luck, I haven't messed with this yet.


Modes not included on PC

2K Heroes
The Association
Crew

I have not written about these modes since they are not available on PC, and I have not experienced them personally.


~Ragetrip Conclusion~
While this isn't the perfect basketball experience, this game is a huge step forward for the NBA2k franchise on PC. I hope EA has learned there lesson about giving us Sub-par releases compared to their console releases. While the AI is sluggish, and the voice acting makes you want to punch babies. This game is really fun and if your a fan of basketball you can rack up more hours than you'd like to admit without even realizing it. I'd totally suggest getting this game (especially when it's on sale for $19.99!!!!) I hope this helps anyone who is considering picking this one up. Until next time, I'll see ya in game!

Rating: 4/5

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Slasher Vol. 1: Summer Camp is coming!

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I'm not sure if it's the fact that I've been an online gamer since the days of the MUD or if I've just been burnt way too many times (I'm looking at you Diablo III), but as of late I've been very skeptical about getting my hopes up for newly announced titles, especially in the horror genre. Despite the pleasantly surprising awesomeness of games like Alien: Isolation, the five nights at Freddy's games and the amazing Outlast (including the whistle blower DLC) the horror genre has grown kind of stale. Packed full of Zombie games where the zombies are about as frightening as a crackhead (I'm looking at you Day-Z), to other mediocre at best genre games. However 2015 is looking very promising for the horror genre. Why is that? Because it appears that finally, after years of hopeful horror fans waiting, complaining, and even turning to prayer.....the Slasher genre is finally getting the representation it rightfully deserves in not one, but multiple titles! Today I will be talking about the game that really stands out to me as the early favorite. With that said, I now present you with...

Slasher Vol. 1: Summer Camp

"Summer Camp is the first in a series that pays homage to 1980's splatter/slasher films, slated for Xbox One, PS4, and Steam." 

boasts the Official Site of the game. Summer Camp is set to be a third-person survival horror title where players can be either a teen counselor, or psychopathic killer. Summer Camp, the first game in the Slasher series will take place in a Camp Crystal Lake like setting, no doubt paying homage to the Friday the 13th series. While some may criticize them for copying, especially since the official "Friday the 13th" game has been announced. I see this as a logical place to start the series. You've got to remember, this is only game one. If the game takes off, as I feel it will then I have no doubt that we'll see many more in the series, taking place in many different, iconic locations. The game will support 6-8 players in an arena style map. Teamwork will be the #1 skill required as a survivor in this game. You don't want to be that one guy who goes ham and ends up all alone. One thing that I love about this title, is that the creator seems to be really in tune with the horror genre. A shining example of this is that the visuals in the game will reflect artifacts, and VHS quality imagery. This is an amazing features that really shows love to those 80's films we all remember renting at the video store.


"This is my love letter to the Friday the 13th film series." -Wes Keltner, Creator of Slasher Vol 1: Summer Camp.










I'm sure at this point I have the attention of all of the Slasher fans out there, and rightfully so. However, with the release of the Official "Friday the 13th" game planned for an October 2015 release, I'm sure your wondering why I feel this game can hold it's own against a game that will be put out by a big named company. I mean it's obvious the creator is very passionate about the genre, and his game. But to compete against a titan?

To answer that, let's examine the team working on Slasher Vol.1: Summer Camp.

The Team

First off we have the games creator & Designer Wes Keltner. Wes is the founder of Gun Media, as well as designer and creative director of the "Breach & Clear series", and assisted in directing the visual style of Speakeasy.

Second is the Co-Creator & Producer of Summer Camp Ronnie Hobbs. With 12 years industry experience Ronnie has Co-designed Breach & Clear, Breach & Clear: Deadline and was producer on Speakeasy. Hobbs also worked on Aliens: Colonial Marines at Times Gate Studios.

Next up is the horror legend Tom Savini who will be Executive Producer & Cinematography on Summer Camp. If you don't know Tom Savini, click on his name to view his website. Tom Savini is the king of special effects make-up in the horror genre. He has done the make-up in such films as Dawn of the Dead, Day of the Dead, Creepshow, and Friday the 13th (Parts 1 and IV) just to name a few. Savini has also appeared as an actor in many films such as Dawn of the Dead, From Dusk Till Dawn (my favorite), Planet Terror (Grindhouse), Zack and Miri Make a Porno, and both machete movies to name a few. In other words, Tom Savini knows what he's doing when it comes to horror projects.

On as Executive Director is Randy Greenback. Besides having an awesome last name, and a truly epic beard Randy also has 20 years experience in the gaming industry working for such companies as Red Storm/Ubisoft and Insomniac games. He has worked on the Rainbow Six franchise, Ghost Recon, America's Army, Ratchet & Clank (Yes!), and Command & Conquer to name a few. He is also the Executive Producer on Breach & Clear: Deadline.

The composer on Summer Camp is none other than Harry Manfredini, who also happened to be the film composer on 148 films, and was responsible for the original Friday the 13th score and soundtrack as well as 8 other in the series. Harry has composed the soundtrack for tons of films in the horror and slasher genres, and is an amazing choice to work on Summer Camp.

Finally..............last but not least we have the motion capture actor who will be doing the mo-cap work for this soon to be iconic killer......Kane Hodder! That's right horror fans, KANE HODDER. Who better for the job, than the BEST version of Jason that ever wore the mask? Kane is a legend not only in the horror genre, but as a stuntman. This guy has literally done it all from stunts and stunt coordinator on big budget action flicks, to his work as Jason and Victor Crowley. I am also a huge fan of his work in movies such as B.T.K., and Ed Gein where he played the title role in both. He has had an amazing 30 year career in the movie business, and will now be doing the mocap work for Summer Camp. On a side note, if you have not read Kane's book Unmasked: The True Story of the World's Most Prolific, Cinematic Killer you should. It's a great read! To sum up Kane Hodder's involvement in Summer Camp, I give you.......Kane Hodder's Summer Camp Announcement.


Ragetrip Conclusion




There is already a lot of hype for this genre, and which game will be better. There is one that is coming from KickStarter that I am extremely cautious about (Kickstarter games have bad luck, only a handful being good), and then you have the official Friday the 13th game. However from what I am seeing so far in my humble opinion Slasher Vol. 1: Summer Camp has a huge advantage over the competition. One thing I love about this games dev team isn't only their passion, but the connection they have with the fan base. For example, they are having a contest right now to find the best Slasher Kill, Winners will receive game invites, but more importantly one lucky winner will actually get to be in the game. Also, if you look at the official game site, you'll see that they are very passionate about the genre which goes a long way on making an innovating game. Top that off with a top notch mix of legitimate horror ICONS, and experienced professionals from the video game industry and you have a possible powerhouse on your hands. So take a look at the Official teaser trailer and salivate over what may very well be the best multi player survival horror experience we'll see for some time. There will be more Slasher Vol.1: Summer Camp related articles here as more information becomes available. Until then, See ya in game.

Official Website: http://summercampgame.com/



The state of Ragetrip

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What's up everybody? It's been awhile since I have posted anything here. The reason for that is because my motherboard caught fire awhile back (not smoke, not sparks, but actual flames). The good news is tax time was kind to your old pal, and I have a brand new gaming rig! For the last few days I have been mapping out exactly what I want to do with Ragetrip in 2015. Mainly setting goals for myself. With that said, I'd like to thank everyone who has been coming to http://www.ragetrip.com. As of this post, we are sitting at 83913 pageviews! This is an amazing feat to me seeing as the blog is so young.

My current plans is to develop more content for the blog. That means me running through my steam library and writing about many games that may be a little older. Some people may have an issue with this, but I write this blog for people like myself. I tend to buy a lot of older games in deals, bundles, etc. With that said, I'm hoping the older reviews, first impression posts, etc. will be helpful to those people.

I also plan on setting a schedule for my live streaming at http://www.twitch.tv/ragetrip. While I may still be on live at Noon, 3:30 AM, etc. I plan on having a dedicated schedule nightly as well so that there will be a set time people know I'm on. I'm hoping that this will help build a Twitch.tv following that will help build the community here as well.

I have many more ideas that I am not covering, because I only want to post things I'm for sure I can pull off. Just know that I am back, and there will be a lot more to come.


Your old pal,
Psilocybin


P.S. See ya in game!