Thursday, 13 August 2015

Whispering Willows Xbox One Review

Whispering Willows
Xbox One

Whispering Willows is a dark, horror-ish adventure game designed beautifully by Nightlife Interactive and published onto Xbox using the ID@Xbox program. This is another great indie game to add to the growing collection on Xbox one and I'm glad I had the opportunity to play this little gem.

In this dark story you are in control of a lost, scared but extremely determined young girl called Elena who is stranded in and around the Willows Mansion trying to find her Father while solving problems and discovering secrets of the mansions past along the way.
Elena is in possession of a family heirloom which grants her the ability to control her spirit which can be used to possess objects to help you pass  through rooms and speak to the other spirits that are trapped in time.

The game features a few chapters for you to puzzle your way through and discover the mystery of Willow mansion, However after I had finished these few chapters I was longing for more after only a few hours.

There are different objectives for you to do throughout the game and these range from finding items to help you get through rooms to ghosts mazes. There are plenty of items you can interact with and Elena will respond usually with a witty comment. Most of these lines are just for show, however some are very important and you need to pay attention to what other ghosts have to say in order to find your father. Key points in dialogue are highlighted in a different colour which I liked because I am usually a button masher when it comes to cut-scenes but this told me no Ryan you need to stop and read this its important.

There are quite a few collectibles for you to scavenge for in the form of a scroll. Finding of of these prompts you to open the menu and read its contents, usually telling you something about the area you are in. However these aren't key to finishing the game but I would recommend finding them as some of them are interesting and they make the game a while longer. Also there are few different logos for you to find that are related to the devs, some of these are tough to find but if you do them you are rewarded with a hefty amount of gamerscore.

The game was built very well and playing through the game twice I found no bugs and it ran smoothly at all times.

Some parts of the game did make me jump a little bit but generally it was quite a chill out while playing.

The games visuals are gorgeous. I am a bit of a sucker for hand drawn games because they just look so damn good and this game is no exception every scene has been beautifully drawn and I give the artist a thumbs up on drawing a dark and gloomy but beautiful piece of art.

Just like the visuals the audio cant be faulted. It helps set the scene perfectly with eerie piano playing scary notes to the clicking of spiders as they approach or the croaking of a lonely frog.

As I said earlier on I had no trouble with game and it all ran smoothly with no hiccups, shame there wasn't a few more mechanics to play around with.

The game comes with 4 chapters to puzzle through but this just isn't enough. From what I played I really enjoyed there just wasn't much content but what you do get is fun.


I did enjoy Whispering Willows and if you have some spare cash then get it on the download.
The game looks and sounds fantastic, the setting is spooky and the story is quite interesting its just shame there is only a small amount of it. I finished the game twice however the second time wasn't fun because I had remembered it step by step so there is very little replay value.
However if you are into this sort of genre then it is worth adding to your collection.

I spent approximately 3 hours playing the game getting 19/19 achievements.

- King Yatesy

A copy of the game was supplied by the developer. (Thank You!!)

Developer Website:

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Lifeless Planet Premier Edition xbox one review

Lifeless Planet: Premier Edition

Xbox one (13/05/2015)

King Yatesy


Lifeless Planet is puzzle, platformer, space, jetpack, scary monster game which was developed by an indie studio called ‘Stage 2 Studios’ and I think they did a cracking job bringing the game together and making a puzzle game which has quite an interesting story to follow.

The game is set on another planet that scientists have travelled to in the hope of finding another lifeform. However you start off by crashing onto the planet and you can’t find any other crew members or any forms of life, only derelict soviet union outposts which your fine fellow of a crew member needs to find out what happened.

The game features a fair few levels for you to jump around like a mad man on and fall to your death countless times as you over jumped a rock.
There are different objectives you are given in different areas such as turn the power back on by using alien power sources and getting oxygen quickly otherwise you die, or find your way through a pitch black forest with a torch that would barely light up a label on a tin of beans.
In each area there are a range of collectables to pick up such as rocks, documents and audio files. Each of which have their own corresponding achievements tied to them. The documents that you find explain what has happened on the planet and they are actually quite interesting and are what pave the story in this puzzle platformer. I found myself actually reading the collectibles which is something I would never normally do on a game.
The game does have a few issues like the jumping which isn’t the best and sometimes when you are climbing up a hill it will push you backwards when you jump sending you to your death which infuriates me and I did rage quite once or twice from this happening as I felt I was cheated for that life.
The game itself at times was quite difficult and at times I found myself walking around for half an hour trying to find a switch. (sounds stupid I know) It’s a very linear game but at times there can be different routes to take.
It is a very nice game to play it was a good change from other puzzlers where you were locked in a room to solve an obvious puzzle in front of you. On this game you have to find routes to things that you wouldn’t expect to be there. Such as hidden paths round the sides of rocks and using inanimate objects to reach higher areas.
The graphics aren’t the best. Sometime they can look really nice like in the picture above but on some cut scenes when it zooms in on faces its shocking it’s like they are competing with PS2 graphics. Other than that there’s not really much to see other than red rocks and sand.
The music in this game is really nice its fits the atmosphere perfectly (no pun intended). Its keeps you under suspense and makes the planet feel very mysterious and eerie and there are different tracks for different situations which all keep you on edge.
The gameplay is generally very smooth and performance is never an issue. There was however a few times when jumping would send you flying backwards instead of up which can ruin the game a bit. However flying through an alien canyon and floating from rock to rock at quick speeds is extremely fun and put a cheeky grin on my face every time I got the super jetpack.
Lifeless planet is a nice little game and my first play through took me about 4-5 hours as I had no idea where to go in places. I did however manage to do a speed run which took 2 hours and 1 minute so there isn’t much replay value. However an interesting indie game which I think people should give a chance and spend their delicious bucks on.
I spent approximately 10 hours on the game getting 15/15 achievements available and finishing the game twice.
A copy of the game was provided by the developer.
Developer website link:

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Geometry Wars 3: Dimensions Review

"You can go round a corner and then BAM, RIGHT IN THE CHIN, you're dead."

Geometry wars 3 is the new addition to the family brought to us by Lucid Games. This is a different developer than the one that made the others in the series but they definitely know what they are doing and have made a great game!

This game is a hell of a step up from the previous but still has the original geometry wars at heart and players of the series will be able to jump in and feel like a pro straight away, at least for the first few levels anyway. The game itself being such a simple idea is also very easy for newbies to get a grasp of and have you screaming at the top of you lungs and veins popping out of your head when a glowing square destroys you after surviving for 7 minutes.

The game features plenty of action and billions of shapes killed and a hijillion bullets shot within its new game mode adventure. In this mode there are 50 levels to be completed each offering you 3 stars depending on which score you get. within these levels are 6 bosses which you have to defeat to finish that section on the board.

There are different game types within the levels and these range from scoring as many points in 1 life to not having the ability to shoot your gun unless you are in a dome to not being able to shoot your gun at all.

The game sort of forces you to go back and play the previous levels over and over to try and get enough stars to unlock the next boss and get enough points to upgrade your drones and special abilities in order to survive longer and score more points.

There are several different drones that can shoot enemies, collect multipliers or even ram into them when they get too close to you. All of these can be upgraded to make the levels slightly easier. The abilities are for your drone and they can give it super powers like spawning black holes or firing a mass of missiles at enemies.

Also new on the game are the shape of the maps, as you can see in the pictures they are now 3D which changes the game completely because you can go round a corner and then BAM RIGHT IN THE CHIN, you're dead. On some maps there are walls that move and kill you as well as the shapes making it all a lot harder.

There are a few game modes on board as well as adventure which include 4 player split screen co-op to battle though as a team. There is some different playlists online which put 4 plays against 4 trying to beat a boss the quickest in order to win. The game includes classic mode which allows you to play the different game types without the help of your trusty friend David the drone.

This game is tough. To get 3 stars on every level it is going to take alot of hard work and busted veins in your head. You are either going to love it or hate it but I freaking love it because its an amazing step up from the last game and still has the same addictive game play as the very first one.

Yes obviously the game is made up of brightly coloured lines and shapes but it just looks so nice as you are shooting millions of bullets they mould around the new 3D environment and explode enemies on the other side shattering them into beautiful HD shards of even more shapes!

The music on this game is simply incredible and will make you want to carve musical notes into your walls to dedicate them to the audio in this great game. The music is very Techno/electric but it suits the game perfectly. If you are a fan of Tron then you are going to love this music. Easily the music award of the year for this game.

The game plays incredibly well its so smooth and never lags at all even when there are hundreds of enemies charging at you, which you would expect anyway with next gen. There are plenty of levels to keep you going back for more and is an easy concept to grasp even for new players of the genre.


Geometry Wars 3 is an excellent game and the developers have done the series has plenty to offer for the price tag and will keep drawing you back in even after you have died 17 times on a level and you have sworn you will never return. Believe the hype and give the beautiful piece of art a firm bashing.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Alien Isolation

"Alien Isolation is terrifying must-buy that will make you fill your pants with excrement!"

Alien isolation is the newest alien game which has been delivered to us by Sega on a big plate full of fear, nightmares and grown men screaming for their mums. Is this one of the scariest survival horrors available?
This game is based more on the first Alien film than any other because it features very little combat but plenty of horror to make you crap your pants even in the opening scenes. However Alien Isolation does have guns but these do no damage to the alien itself and other enemies are too dangerous to start fights with so stealth is usually your best option.

You play as Amanda Ripley who is the daughter of Ellen Ripley from the original Alien film. You are set the task of investigating the disappearance of your mother and the ship she is on, 'Nostromo'.

You are sent to a spacestaion called 'Sevastapol' to collect the flight recorder from your Mother's ship. However shit starts getting real as soon as you see the spacestation because the perfect organism has already began hunting.

I was terrified from the opening scenes of the game waiting to see the Alien for all of its beauty as the game is very dark and gloomy. With headphones on and sat in the dark I felt as though I was Amanda and I spent most of my time crouched and walking as slow as I could.

When you finally do see the terrifying beast and you are trying to find your way past it you find it is very difficult as the AI is extremely good and it always takes different paths. If you die and load back a checkpoint the alien will not take the same route again which makes the game very difficult.
You find a motion tracker which you can use to see anything that is moving in a proximity. With this you feel the need to hold it at all times just to keep yourself happy that nothing is going to creep up behind you without you knowing. However when you are holding the scanner everything behind it is blurred and when you focus behind it then the scanner is blurred which made me very sad knowing that I had to lower what was basically my life support.

Alien Isolation is an extremely terrifying game with little combat and pure darkness through most of the game you will definitely need to have a few pairs of pants ready just to avoid embarrassment. You will be hiding under tables and in lockers while watching the alien walk past. Running for maintenance shafts and thinking you outran the alien only for it to grab onto your legs causing you to scream like a girl when One Direction come on the radio.

The game is definitely not for the faint hearted you will die and die again as the alien tears through your body like a knife through butter about to spread all over a scrumpdidilyumptious crumpet, yummm....

Anyway the game can be very hard at times and can reduce you to tears from the terrifying setting and sounds you hear getting closer to you over the whole campaign which is at least 15 to 19 hours long.

After playing this game I was making some toast and there was a knock at the door and I found myself shaking in fear thinking the alien had come out to get me but it was just the postman.

The game looks very nice indeed. The graphics are quite realistic and have a retro feel to them, very much like being in the alien film yourself. You spend alot of your time in the dark but when you do have your light on you are usually greeted by a very terrifyingly looking Alien with its teeth shining in your torch light ready to eat you like a hungry man and a 90 second microwave burger.

The games audio just like the visuals is terrifying. In the distance you hear faint noises of things crawling around and that is then followed by scary music when you have been spotted by someone/thing and they are chasing after you. Alien Isolation sounds very nice and Creative Assembly should be very happy.

At times the game can be very annoying but that is just because you are dying lots due to the Alien being more intelligent than yourself. The AI in the game at times can be annoying and make you shout HOW DID THEY SEE ME when you are peeking over a ledge in complete darkness but generally the game plays very well.

Alien Isolation is a must buy for people that get thrills out of being terrified and want to sweat like you've been on a 10 mile run when you are just sat there. The game has a lengthy campaign and very good gameplay which keeps you wanting to try and try again even after being torn apart 17 times by the alien.