So last week was quiet around these parts – as expected – and I figure this week will be more of the same. Personally, I’ve been so sick. So, so sick. So sick that I couldn’t even play games – that’s pretty sick.

We’ll take this week to continue our holiday break and get ourselves ready to share a couple bigger posts over the coming weeks: Our games of the year and the 2013 Backlog Challenge wrap-up.

Enjoy your New Year!

Friday, 10:36 am – matt

im sure this will get buried with the weekend coming and the site becoming a dormant divorced woman living alone in her 70’s, I still thought it was post worthy. had a cool new years playing some ‘cards against humanity’, and followed up with some FIFA 14 on the PS4. we had my girlfriends brother over tried playing some multiplayer, but with only two controllers and three people, what could we do?

well, we hooked up the VITA to my PS4, and assigned the two controllers as guest players and boom: 3 people playing FIFA 14 with two PS4 remotes and one VITA, which also worked as a second screen throughout. imagine not only can you now play with buddies from around the world, but you don’t even need to be at home to do it anymore! if my girlfriend was at home on a day off and wanted to play Marvel, she could play on the tv and I can connect through wifi on the VITA and play as well. pretty awesome.

Thursday, 8:29 am – Ricky

I’m finally starting to feel like a person again, so 2014 is off to a good start in my books. I took yesterday and made it mine, as I’ve always done on New Year’s day.

I purchased (!) and played through the first episode of Season 2 of The Walking Dead. Telltale did a good job with the 400 Days DLC, but I didn’t see how it was supposed to bridge the two seasons. Then again, there are still 4 episodes left, so they could still introduce those characters.

Regardless, they did a great job with what they had: No spoilers here, but if you haven’t seen a trailer and are keeping yourself in the dark, maybe it’s best for you to move on to the next paragraph. Playing as Clementine actually didn’t feel as weird as I thought it would. The story was tight, well put together, and impactful. The gameplay fit with the character – lots of dodging, ducking and diving out of the way, and any “combat” took a bit longer than the first game, where you played as a large adult male. It makes sense that it would take a few extra hits to crumble a zombie’s head, and it all felt well put together.

After The Walking Dead, I threw in this early alpha game called Insurgency. It was gifted to me shortly before the holidays, and was described to me as a cross between Call of Duty and Counter Strike. It’s built using the source engine, so the shooting controls are all tight. I tried a couple different game modes, including a “Rush”-type mode from Battlefield, where one team attacks capture points in order, and the other team tries to defend them. I also tried a general “domination”-type mode, where each team starts with 1 of 3 capture points, and the first time to hold all 3 capture points wins. All the games were quick and easy to get into. There was no ranking or progression – instead, you pick a class and squad, and you unlock “supply” at the end of each round, which is used as a currency to upgrade your guns and armor (similar to Counter Strike). I definitely want to sink some more time into the game before recommending it to anyone, but it’s scratching an interesting first person shooter itch at the moment.

Finally, I went back and played a couple more hours of Assassin’s Creed 4. This game world is vast, beautiful (on PC) and just an incredible joy to play… as long as I’m not playing a standard “Assassin’s Creed” tailing mission. Following people, eavesdropping, sneaking and hiding are all fine objectives, but in these games, their combination often feels like an exercise in frustration, passed only due to pure, dumb luck. I tolerate them because the rest of the game is often so good.

Other games I played over the holidays:

  • Payday 2: Can’t wait to dive into this one a bit more with the crew. I’ve only played one heist, but it was a load of fun.
  • Sonic All-Stars Racing Transformed: Or something, who cares what the title is. It was free with PS+ for the Vita so I gave it a try. I nearly immediately turned it off in favour of…
  • Mario Kart: Although Gavin lent me his Wii so I could play Mario Galaxy (I still plan to), I’ve used it almost exclusively to play Mario Kart up to this point. My wife and I played a few cups worth of races together and had a blast. I’m really thinking that Mario Kart 8 on the Wii U will be the system seller for me this year.

This year. 2014. Oh man, it’s here. THE FUTURE! Where’s my hoverboard!?

Monday, 8:45 am – Ricky

I’ll be sharing some possible GOTY options and plans with the crew this week, and we’ll have something put together for you – in written and audio formats, no doubt – in the coming weeks. As for the Backlog Challenge, Bert has gifted me PAYDAY 2 as part of his end of the deal, so I’m really looking forward to diving into that one with the crew. Since I like to treat New Year’s day as a “me” day, that generally means video games will be played. And since January 1, 2014 is in 2014, I plan to pick-up and play through the first episode of season 2 of the Walking Dead.

Sorry if this all seems like a stream of mental diarrhea. I’ve been really sick, if you hadn’t heard.