Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Hearthstone Deck Tech - ZOOLOCK

     Hey guys, Samuel here.  I'm sorry for my absence, but school really has been quite crazy.  Today, I bring you the first in my Hearthstone series.  In this post, I will be showcasing a deck, known as Zoolock.  Before I begin, however, I must state that I am not a master of Hearthstone.  I only play semi-casually, my highest rank being Rank 8.  To put things into perspective, I am at 225 wins towards my first golden portrait, the Warlock portrait.  Let the Zoo begin!

     Zoolock is a quite inexpensive deck.  Costing only 940 dust to begin with, it is the perfect deck to beginners to begin with.
  • 2x Flame Imp
  • 2x Voidwalker
  • 2x Power Overwhelming
  • 2x Darkbomb
  • 2x Leper Gnome
  • 2x Clockwork Gnome
  • 2x Elven Archer
  • 2x Abusive Sargent
  • 2x Knife Juggler
  • 2x Nerubian Egg
  • 2x Haunted Creeper
  • 2x Dire Wolf Alpha
  • 2x Harvest Golem
  • 2x Shattered Sun Cleric
  • 2x Wolf Rider
  • 2x Dark Iron Dwarf
     The general strategy with this deck is to establish early board control.  To do this, mulligan heavily for your Flame Imps, Voidwalkers, and Leper and Clockwork Gnomes.  Don't be afraid to trade when it favors you.  Because this is an aggro style deck, games should be over relatively quickly.  Your ultimate finisher should be a combination of Wolf Riders, Dark Iron Dwarfs, Abusive Sargents, and Dire Wolf Alphas.
     
     After you get some more dust, I would recommend making the following card swaps:
  • 2x Elven Archers for 2x Implosions
  • 2x Mechanical Gnomes for 2x Defender of Argus
  • 2x Wolfrider for 2x Doomguard
     The following cards are simply Tech Cards that may help you out.
  • Shadowflame- This can be a very nice AoE board clear against aggro.  However, the mana cost is a little high.  This card can be very nice when used in conjunction with Dark Iron Dwarf, Abusive Sargent or Power Overwhelming + Nerubian Egg.  If at all, I would recommend running 1 of these cards.
  • Ironbeak Owl-  This card can be a good tool to help you get through tricky cards like Sludge Belchers, Twilight Drakes, and big Taunt creatures like Ironbark Protectors.  However, this card should not be used that much, as games should be over by the time big creatures hit the board.
Mulligan Guide
General Mulligan:  This being an aggro deck, always mulligan for a fast start.  Keep the following cards in your hand.  
  • Flame Imp
  • Voidwalker
  • Leper Gnome
  • Knife Juggler
  • Haunted Creeper
Mech Mage:  This matchup is relatively straightforward.  Keep Darkbomb in your hand to deal with their Mechwarper.  Knife Juggler + Implosion works wonders to clean up the board.  I have decimated boards with double Knife Juggler + Implosion

Most Control Decks:  With control decks, the trick is to rush them down fast.  Games should be over by turn 5 when you can Doomguard, before they can drop big threats such as Ironbark Protectors, Giants, Etc.

Oil Rogue:  This matchup is quite possibly the hardest matchup for this deck.  Keep lots of Taunt creatures up as much as you can, and keep Nerubian Eggs and Haunted Creepers on board to deter against AoE with Blade Flurry/Fan of Knives.  Other than that, rush them down!


Personal Additions
I have personally made a couple changes to this deck to suit my play style.  I have swapped out the two Shattered Sun Clerics for a Shadowflame and Lord Jaraxxus.  Shadowflame, as mentioned before serves as a good AoE.  I personally use this to help deal with the Mech Mage matchup.  Also, Lord Jaraxxus helps quite alot with the control matchup to get a quick heal up to 15 and to get a ridiculously OP hero power.

     Well, this concludes this Deck Tech.  I hoped this helped, and I would like to tell you guys that I have an interview with a high ranked

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Sunday, January 11, 2015

Minecraft


Platform: Xbox One, PS3-4, PS Vita, PC/Mac, Mobile
Platform Reviewed For:  PC/Mac
Release Date: November 18, 2011
Date Reviewed: January 11, 2015

        Minecraft is a sandbox based survival game.  What makes Minecraft special is the fact that there is no real end-game win scenario.  There may be the "big bosses" of Minecraft with the Ender Dragon and the Wither, but there is still other things to do even after defeating the bosses.  There are three primary modes of Minecraft:  Survival, Creative, and Adventure.  In survival, there are mobs who can kill you that spawn at night, where you must race to find shelter before night falls.  In Creative, you have unlimited resources at your disposal.  You can build freely, to your heart's content.  People have built incredible locations in Minecraft Creative, such as Minas Tirith from Lord of the Rings.  In adventure, you cannot break certain blocks, but you can still manipulate levers.

Minas Tirith- Built in Minecraft

        Minecraft has incredible potential.  As mentioned above, you can build freely, even after defeating the strongest mobs in the game.  On Multiplayer mode, you can play with other people, with game modes varying from PvP in a Hunger Games style arena to parkour, to Spleef, which is a game mode in which you try to break the blocks under other players.  After playing Minecraft for over 3 years, I still have not gotten bored with the game.

          Minecraft has very interesting graphics.  The graphics of Minecraft resemble old 16-bit arcade games.  Everything is cuboid, including the animals.  However, there is downloadable content called resource packs.  Resource packs can change how the game looks and sounds, going from mono-color blocks to hyper-realistic textures.  Also, the mobs of Minecraft all happen to be cuboid shaped.

A gallery of the mobs in Minecraft

Overal Rating:  9.5/10
Must own! This game is incredibly versatile.

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Thursday, January 8, 2015

Chariot

Platform: Nintendo Wii U, Xbox One, PS4, PC
Platform Reviewed for: Nintendo Wii U
Genre: Puzzle Plat-former
Release Date: January 8th, 2015 (Wii U), September 30th, 2014 (XB1, PS4, PC)
Date Reviewed: January 8th, 2015

       Chariot is a puzzle plat-former where the goal is to pull, push and guide a Chariot around each level collection treasure and special items. Each level get increasingly harder and longer with challenges on each level as you complete them. After your first run though a level you unlock additional modes and areas for that same level. After the completion of a level you also acquire gold from all of the treasure you have collected overall. You use this gold to purchase upgrades and new items to make your adventure a little easier but to also over come new obstacles in the later levels. Chariot is a well lengthened game that you can spend hours upon hours on unlocking everything and even just going through each level. Each level is a minimum of 15 minutes or longer if you aren't rushing through it. Collect as much treasure as possible because you will need the gold.

"Papercuts Scare me to Death!"

       Chariot is a very pleasing game with lots of humour, and adventures. The big selling point of this game is the cooperative play. Chariot makes it so that if you play with a friend you can overcome even more challenges and get more rewards for your efforts. Chariot is designed for cooperative play. You are obviously able to play solo but it is much more enjoyable with a friend. With cooperative play there are challenges that you and a friend are able to do. If you do these challenges you are able to get diamonds which gives you a lot of gold. It is well worth the frustration sometimes.

Co-op is great in Chariot!

       Chariot is a very beautiful game visually with tons of colors, unique art work, beautiful environments and even other NPC's. Each level has it's own unique look and feel to it. The character models and animations are extremely well done and really captures each of the characters personality. Chariot's soundtrack is top notch as well. Again, each zone has their own unique music and sounds which really sets the mood for each zone.

       In Conclusion Chariot is a must own indie developed game. What I love most about the Wii U version of the game is obviously the tablet feature where you are able to have one person play on the TV and the other play on the tablet anywhere in the house. The one thing I do wish they would have done is add more features with the tablet for in game. Maybe even something small such as interacting with the environment with your finger. If you are looking for a good sit down cooperative game Chariot is perfect for that.

Overall Rating:


9.0/10



Must Own!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Hi!

Hey guys, Samuel here.

You may be wondering "Hey, who's this Samuel guy, and what is he doing here?"  Well, to answer your question, I am Cody's new partner in reviews.  I mainly play Minecraft but I also play a bit of Hearthstone in my spare time.  I will be publishing content weekly hopefully, but due to my schedule being a student, content may not be released as steadily as I would like.  I play to alternate content every other episode, alternating between Minecraft content and Hearthstone content.  Thanks for reading, and I play to upload my first episode this weekend.

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Top 14 Games of 2014!



14. Gauntlet: 
Gauntlet is a remake of the original for the PC. This game got a lot of negative reviews because there wasn't enough to the game. I personally really enjoyed this version of the game. It's difficult, fast paced, great co-op, and very rewarding in the end. 


13. Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft.
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is on this list because I have always loved TCG games. I am a huge Warcraft fan, mix that with cards and we have a winner. Tons of cards, free to play, ranked mode, free in game rewards, and excellent strategy is what got me hooked on this game.


12. Smite.
Smite is also on this top 14 list because out of all of the MOBAS (next to Heroes of the Storm, it's still in alpha) Smite is the only one I enjoy playing. You play as gods in a third person view which makes the game a lot more interesting in the long run. Tons of great gods, costumes, game modes, etc.... and this makes for an excellent MOBA. Oh...and it is also free to play. It was recently announced for the Xbox One.


11. Hyrule Warriors.
Hyrule Warriors takes place in the style of the Dynasty Warriors series but set in the Zelda universe. Hyrule Warriors in on my top 14 list because it is loaded with content and fun. The story is abysmal, graphics and frame rate are fantastic, co-op is fun, story mode is fun but what made the game was the Adventure Mode. Tons to do, if you're a Zelda fan or Dynasty Warriors fan this is the game for you.


10. Bravely Default.
Bravely Default is a step back to how Final Fantasy used to be. There is so much to do and explore in this game. Tons of different jobs to choose and master from as well as a decent story. The music is to heaven to your ears and the visuals are beautiful on the 3DS! Fan of classic RPG's? Get this.


9. Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker.
Captain Toad is a character from the game Super Mario 3D World. He was given his own game due to his popularity in the game. Captain Toad takes place before the events in Super Mario 3D World and is a fun 3D puzzle platforming game. Highly recommended and very fun to play. Has a Nintendo charm that keeps making you smile.


8. Mario Kart 8.
Mario Kart is also on this list! I have been a huge fan of the Mario Kart series ever since the original one. Mario Kart 8 upped that ante again! Anti-gravity mechanics, beautiful graphics, great soundtrack and competitive online play. Mario Kart 8 also offers very well priced DLC where you can even race as Link!


7. Chariot.
Chariot is a platformer with an interesting mechanic. You need to pull, push and grapple and Chariot along the way collection as much treasure as possible and going through each level. Each time you beat a level you get to unlock additional modes for that same level adding more gameplay. Chariot is one of the most fun co-op games I have played in a long time. Give it a try!


6. Shovel Knight.
Shovel Knight is a game that a lot of people have been excited for. It is a 2D platformer set in the NES era. The gameplay is phenomenal and don't even get me started with the music. Fun, fast, and addictive gameplay. Mixes Mega Man, Castlevania and Mario all into one beautiful game.


5. Super Smash Bros. 3DS/Wii U.
Super Smash Bros. is another obvious pick for this list. A fan of the series since the beginning and now they have improved it once again in so many ways. Obviously the Wii U version is superior in graphics and smoothness but the 3DS version is still fun as ever. Great addition tot the smash family.


4. Pokemon Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire.
Pokemon ORAS is a remake of the original Ruby and Sapphire version of the game on the Gameboy Advance. My personal favorite in the series. This version offers a somewhat new story, new mega evolution's, Hoenn Remade in HD, and tons of new features. Another fantastic entry in the series.


3. Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor
Shadow of Mordor is another entry in the Lord of the Rings series. You play as Talion who is seeking revenge after seeing his family and himself slaughtered by Sauron's army. Shadow of Mordor has a familiar feeling to it. It is like Assassins Creed but a much better improvement of it. The nemesis system is an amazing system in the game as well as the huge open world you can explore.


2. Dragon Age: Inquisition.
Dragon Age: Inquisition is the best in the series so far. Takes a lot of great things from the first game and improves it drastically. The game is huge, beautiful and has a great story. Very addicting and easily can consume 100+ hours into this diverse world. Dragon Age is highly recommended even if you are just a fan of RPG's.


1. World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor
Yes, my number one goes to the flawless World of Warcraft expansion. The big reason is because Blizzard has outdone themselves with this one. This expansion alone brought back 3 million players. The telling of the lore has been greatly improved, the garrisons is one of the best features ever added to this game, the new raid Highmaul is a blast, and it brings back a lot from The Burning Crusade. This is a must buy. This is Cody's Reviews #1 game of 2014.

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Friday, January 2, 2015

Captain Toad

Platform: Nintendo Wii U
Genre: 3D Puzzle Platformer
Release Date: December 5, 2014
Date Reviewed: December 31st, 2014


       Captain Toad is a game set in the Super Mario 3D World environment and story line. In fact it takes place just before Super Mario 3D World. Captain Toad is a 3D puzzle platform game for the Nintendo Wii U. You primarily use the tablet to control the game world and move Captain Toad around the reach the goals. Captain toad is a very unique way to play. You either use the touch screen or the second control stick in order to rotate the world map around to navigate Toad though the level. You also have the option to use the Gyro controls built in the tablet itself. Some of the events take place in first person view on the tablet which appears third person on the TV. When you go into a mine cart level you control the aiming with the gyro controls or control stick while throwing object at enemies, coins and other collectibles. Captain Toad controls very well and runs extremely smooth.

 One of the early levels.

       Captain Toad is broken up in chapters. Each chapter has roughly 18 levels while the last one has 28. First chapter you play as Toad, second chapter you will play as Toadette and the chapters afterwards is a mixture of the two characters. The objective of each level is to grab coins, treasures and the star at the end of each level to complete it. Rinse and repeat. A lot of the levels are very different and offer some sort of challenge in order to grab all three diamonds. Each level also has a challenge to it in order to fully 100% complete each level. Some of these include collection a certain amount of coins or grabbing a certain item without breaking the bridge, etc... This adds a nice little challenge for the completionists out there. Each level is unique with it's own puzzles and charm. My favorite levels were the ones where you have to ride a mine cart and use the tablet to shoot coins, diamonds and enemies.

Big boss battles!

       Once you have beaten the game and cleared all the chapters you unlock a bonus mode. This is where you need as much diamonds as possible to unlock these additional modes. One of the bonus levels is playing through the first few levels of Super Mario 3D World but as Captain Toad instead which makes the gameplay very interesting and changes it up a bit. Another one is grabbing and guiding all four toads in each of the levels to the finish in order to complete it. This helps extend the game play and adds a decent amount of reply value to the game. For the low price of $40 this game is definitely worth the time and investment.

Getting the Diamonds are well worth it!

       The visuals are very beautiful in Captain Toad. Each level brings a breath of fresh air with different visuals, enemies, and scenery. Captain Toad runs at a smooth crisp 60 frames per second. The in game music is wonderful and some are remixes of the old Mario games. I wish the game was a little bit longer and some of the levels as well. The boss battles were fun but a little bit to easy. Overall Captain Toad is a great addition to the series and hope to see more from this franchise.

Overall Score:

8.5/10

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Monday, December 8, 2014

Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor.

Platform: Xbox One, Playstation 4, PC
Genre: Open World RPG
Release Date: September 30th, 2014
Date Reviewed: November 30th, 2014


       Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor is another game that takes place in the Lord of the Rings series. You play as Talion, a valiant ranger whose family is slain in front of him. This takes place the night Sauron and his army return to Mordor just moments before his own life is taken from him. Talion gets resurrected by a Spirit of Vengeance and is empowered with wraith abilities. Talion ventures into Mordor and promises to destroy those who have caused him this pain. Through the course of his vendetta. Talion uncovers the truth of the Spirit that compels him, learns the origins of the Rings of Power and confronts his true nemesis.

Huge Open World.

       Shadow of Mordor has a great story line filled with a lot of emotions which really lets you feel how the main character feels and gives him a very important motive to seek out vengeance. In fact, it makes you the player feel like you have to slaughter every orc in sight! Shadow of Mordor plays a lot like Assassins Creed II but it does the controls very well. Shadow of Mordor is for the most part an open world environment. There are only two areas you are able to explore. You unlock the second area after you complete a certain main mission. There have been times where I did so much side quests and collecting everything where I didn't even touch the story missions at all and by the time I did I had more than enough xp and resources to continue on. and even killed all of the warlords. At some point after completing all of the side stuff it forces you to go back to the main mission, which is okay because it just means there is a lot to do.

Nemesis System works well.

       The nemesis system is a fantastic new system that they have added to Shadow of Mordor. Talion is able to gather intel on certain orcs who are unknown, you can then mark those orc captains or warlords and take them out. But be careful if any orc kills you they will get a power increase as well as a promotion. You let a warlord kill you and he becomes much more powerful. So if you fail, it gets harder if you succeed it becomes easier and you get the reap the rewards. You are able to control captain and warlords making them turn on other captains or warlords which can be very interesting and is fantastic! Your goal is to take them all out. On top of this new system you are able to associate quests with it as well. For example if you control one of the warlords or captains you can unlock a mission where they attack the opposing captain or warlord of your choice and you have different objectives. One may be to keep the captain you control alive.

Crazy Action!

       Shadow of Mordor has some beautiful visuals on the next gen consoles and especially the PC version. The world is wide open which gives you some great visuals and with the recent update you care able to take in game screen shots or shorts and capture the great moments you may experience. The audio side of things sound great as well. Great sound track, great voice acting for the most part, and great sound effects. These greatly add to the open world experience in Shadow of Mordor.

       Overall Shadow of Mordor is a great fast-paced open world game that a lot of people are surely going to enjoy. If you are a fan of the Lord of the Rings series or not there is something in here for everyone to enjoy and experience. On top of that the game also offers free DLC as well as some paid ones. Both are great values and highly recommended.

Overall Score:

9.0/10

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