Gears 5 – Review

Image via news.xbox.com

It was a lot like Gears of War but it also wasn’t.

The follow up to Gears of War 4, Gears 5 picks back up with the same crew. This time they are trying to find answers about Kait’s past. Their quest takes them to many places many places but also leads to many more questions. The story takes Kait and the rest of the Gears to a battle that none of them were prepared for.

As a long time fan of the series I was looking forward to this game but tried to keep my expectations tempered. I expected the game to be much more like Gears of War 4 and much less like the original trilogy but not nearly as bad as Judgement. At least it accomplished that.

Things I Liked…

I played this game primarily on PC but my console heathen background meant I was playing with a controller and not keyboard and mouse. Even with that it was a beautiful game with rich looking environments. Even the Gears’ suit had an insane amount of detail. The game-play felt as good as ever. I had forgotten how satisfying it was to chainsaw an enemy in half. The guns still felt good and hit like you would expect them. There were many times I grabbed and used the boomshot just because it feels so satisfying when you can take out multiple enemies in one shot.

Things I Disliked…

For a chapter or two I switched to playing on my launch Xbox One there was a stark difference. On the PC version were there were intricate details there were now just muddy blurs. I didn’t expect near the same level of graphics but the drop off was far more dramatic than I thought it would be. Also, as lush and intricate as the environment was it was a brilliant back drop to a dull story. Not only did it  not feel like it did much, there were times when I felt like I was doing bust work. The skif was a neat idea and fun at first but then it became boring and over-used. As pretty as the scenes were you were just passing through them for the most part. I did some of the side stuff but it just felt like I was spending time spending time going from place to place to shoot bad guys for little or no reward.

When It’s All Said and Done…

I want to recommend the game but… I’m not sure I can. Since I have Game Pass Ultimate I had access to it, early even, so it felt like a zero cost. If I had not had Game Pass I was planning on buying it and when I think about that I think I might have been let down just a bit. There were times when I was having fun and truly enjoying it. That is balanced against the times were I felt like it was making me drive the skif all over hell’s creation for no good reason. The Horde mode was ok but didn’t pull me in like in the past. The Escape mode is a hot mess of three people going in three different directions, don’t recommend if you do not have a squad of three.

When the game had you doing Gears of War stuff like plowing through enemies it felt good. When it was trying to give you an open world experience like side missions and driving the skif it felt bad.

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Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

Dude’s Chronicles 10-17-2019: I’m Very Flu-id

Image via sharecare.com

They say you can’t get the flu from the flu shot. I won’t argue but I will say you can get sick from it. I’ve been living proof of this for years.

Entertainment

  • Big Mouth: Season 3 – It seemed like a lot more of the same humor as in the first two seasons but it didn’t keep me watching. Not that I don’t want to go back and watch it but just not right away.
  • El Camino: A Breaking Bad Movie – It was good but the show set such a high standard I just wanted more from it. Perhaps if they would have done a season rather than a movie they could have explored it more. It was a nice little trip down memory lane while still adding some more depth to the overall Breaking Bad story and characters. For not breaking Breaking Bad… 4.8/5

Games

  • Destiny 2 – Not a fan. The rehash of content is supposed to be a fan service of ‘hey, remember when we were first here? yeah, that was great.’ but it comes off to me as ‘hey, remember when we were first here and my ghost still sounded like Peter Dinklage?’. The new story isn’t doing much for me either but maybe the reuse of assets is outweighing everything else.

News

  • Destiny 2 Boost Pack – For $20 you can instantly gear up your guardians to 900 Light. Since they start out at $750 this doesn’t make a lot of sense. It makes even less sense to people like me that just paid $60 for the Shadowkeep expansion.
  • Blizzard vs well… everybody – People deleting accounts. People refusing to stream their games. More people getting fired or suspended. Boy things are really going great with all of this free press. Seriously, what a mess this has become. I almost think Blizzard would be better off just being quiet for awhile but coming up in two weeks they really can’t. Good luck PR people!

Closing Arguments

The flu shot came through for me again. I was sick all weekend and missed a day of work. I can always count on the flu shot to make me sick. Seriously considering not getting one next year and dealing with having to wear a respirator mask.

Thanks for stopping by, please come again.

dudewantshisrug-profile
Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

Dude’s Chronicles 10-10-2019: I Survived!

I made it through unscathed. Now I should be safe until next year.

Entertainment

  • Dave Chappelle: Sticks and Stones – As edgy as ever, Chappelle delivers yet another thought provoking show. He may offend a lot of people with his humor but I think he tells it in such a way as to make people think about it. Not that he is anything like Mel Brooks, this is the same way I think about Blazing Saddles. Make people laugh at something that is not right but make them think about it too. For still putting on a great show… 4.89/5.
  • Stomptown – After watching the first two episodes, I’m curious what they need to fix in this show. Other than having a female lead it seems like I’ve seen this character before. Army vet with PTSD and an alcohol problem that turns into a private investigator. Maybe it’s too early to tell but it just seems like the show is trying to do a bunch of stuff and just not landing any off it. I understand it is early on, however, I may not stick with it for long.

Games

  • Destiny 2 – Since it went “free-to-play” I decided to check it out again. I had played through the pre-expansion game on PS4 but for some unknown reason I wanted to see how a new player would experience the game so I started anew on Xbox One. It still plays a lot like the Destiny 2 I remember but it also feels different in a way that I can’t quite explain yet. One thing that unfortunately has remained us the terrible quest tracking system. At any given time I’m not sure what I should be doing much less how to go about it. I’ve finished the original and about

News

  • PS5 announcement – The holiday 2020 timeframe was pretty much the go to guess for the launch but Sony confirming makes it more solid since it probably now puts it into budget projections. I’m on the border of what I’m doing when the new consoles launch. I bought both Xbox and PS at launch last time but for how little I’m using my PS lately I’m not sure I’ll be doing the same next-gen. At least I have some time to see how things sort out.
  • PC release of Red Dead Redemption 2 – I would play this game again. I don’t want to buy it again but the idea of it on PC does intrigue me. It also crosses my mind, does this mean they may finally release the Red Dead Redemption on PC? I know Rockstar likes money, as do we all, and I bet this would sell a ton of copies.
  • Activision vs China vs Gamers vs Politics – I won’t deny that Activision is in a tough spot. I also won’t deny that they did not help themselves out any. In trying not to upset China, a very large gaming market, they have upset… well, just about everybody else it seems. The thing is though, we as gamers are still an under-culture. Proof to point, when it comes to the discussion of games and China, in the limited news reports I only see coverage about the NBA’s issues with China. Not that our opinion doesn’t matter and that we should not take action but be tempered in that we likely will not change the situation, though perhaps we can help it speak. It’s hard to accept that people anywhere are not free to express themselves, be it politically, personally, sexually, socially, or any in other way but the truth of the matter is that as much as we deny it censorship and suppression are still very real things in many parts of our world. Be good to each other. Slowly, but surely, the world can be a better place.

Closing Arguments

On a positive note, Chuck has gotten some of the material for The Unlikely Herocast uploaded. He did a special you should take a listen to here. If you’ve still got some time, he also uploaded two other episodes from some time back and can be found here.

As for myself, I’m looking forward to the sickness. That is… every year for the last 5-6 years I’ve been getting the flu shot and within a few days I am ill enough that I have to take time off of work. I won’t say it is the flu but I will say that I am ill after getting the shot. Why get the shot then? Well… I work in a healthcare environment and for patient safety reasons it has been mandated that employees, all of us, get the flu shot or wear a respirator mask(the paper cup over your mouth kind) for the entire flu season. I choose to get the flu shot and get sick. I could use the time off anyway.

Thanks for stopping by, please come again.

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Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

Dude’s Chronicles 10-3-2019: The Great Homecoming

Image via iup.edu

It’s that time again. The local college’s homecoming. Fuck I hate this weekend.

Entertainment

  • Football – Other than my general Giant Bomb shows I’ve seen nothing but football and I’m still ok with this. My watching was limited but I made the most of it.

Games

  • Shadow Runner 2 – I’m near the end of the game thankfully. Once I finish it off I’ll give some more thoughts.
  • Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Breakpoint – Well, I reached my breaking point with the game. The beta was supposed to be from 9/27 through 9/29(?) but I never got to play. The start go delayed so I could get in on the first day when I had some time. Then on 9/29 when I had additional opportunity the beta was already closed and I could not play. Having not liked the first game this sold me on not buying this game. This is nothing against the publisher or developer but I just won’t be supporting this game. My hopes are that it is good and other people enjoy it.

News

  • Shawn Layden leave Sony – Who the fuck is even left at PlayStation then? This really concerns me that so many higher ups have left. Makes me question how the upcoming console launch will go. Furthermore, what is the state of Sony to have this exodus over the last few years?
  • The Last of Us: Part 2 sans multi-player – Unpopular opinion, I didn’t like the multi-player in the first game(Unpopular opinion, didn’t like the first game much overall). I’m of the mind that not every game needs to or should have multi-player. If it is good, then include it. If it is just a bolt-on, then don’t bother.
  • The Borderlands 3 thing with Troy Baker – So Baker is not in the game, Gearbox says he ‘declined’, he says Gearbox would go union, Gearbox say it couldn’t oblige Baker because of Texas law, SAG-AGTRA says Gearbox still could have entered an agreement, but Gearbox says it meets or exceeds union benefits? Wait… what doesn’t fit together? This just feels like yet another bullshit situation from Gearbox. I feel like at this point, in any instance, they should say as little as possible because everything they seem to say is more infuriating.
  • PS Now price drop – $10/month is a much better price point but still doesn’t feel right. I’ve done some math… Xbox Game Pass Ultimate $15/month x 12 months = $180/year. (PS Now $10/month x 12 months) + PS Plus $60/year = $180/year. Hmmm…. coincidence? I’m already Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscriber and this price change doesn’t get me on board with PS’s offering. I have looked at the PS Now catalog in a while but I’ve gotten so much from Ultimate that I just don’t feel the need to add another service. When I see ‘rotating’ titles and no mention of new first party or indie games at launch I become even less interested.

Closing Arguments

Homecoming weekend is one of two times a year that the town is just so terrible and annoying that I try not to go outside. The amount of people and their level of stupidity is too intolerable to make it entertaining.

Thanks for stopping by, please come again.

dudewantshisrug-profile
Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

Dude’s Chronicles 9-26-2019: Not As Much Football

Image via theatlantic.com

I got to watch a LOOOOOOOOOOT of football last weekend, which was great. This weekend… not so much.

Entertainment

  • Spider-Man: Far From Home – By all accounts, this is a good movie. It never got boring and the story was engaging. My only irk about it is that it seemed somewhat predictable from very early on. Spidey-sense is telling me… 4.8/5
  • Football – Yep, more and more. The only thing about it I’m not enjoying is the Antonio Brown situation just because it is so stupid and getting too much attention for it.

Games

  • Shadow Runner 2 – Having never played the original I know nothing about this game and I don’t think I need to. The hack and slash shooter is fun but the idiocy of the main character gets old.
  • LEGO Marvel Super Heroes – I never finished this game four years ago and picking it up again I see why. It is not even good by the standards of LEGO games. Not sure what it is about the game but I just don’t want to play it.

News

  • French high court rules against Valve – As much as it sounds like this ruling could completely change Valve’s business the first thought through my head is ‘lawyers, they’ll keep this in court for years’.
  • The Last of Us: Part 2 release date – Coming on 2/21/2020 and I still don’t care. Never having liked the original has not changed with this sequel. Good for the people that want it but I’ll likely pass.
  • Five days, five million copies of Borderlands 3 sold – I’m impressed that this game sold anywhere near that much. I had completely forgotten it was releasing until a week before release but nice to see people supporting and hopefully enjoying it.
  • Star Wars: Fallen Order – Watching the latest trailer still hasn’t sold me on the game, although I’ll probably end up buying it. It looks so much like the Force Unleashed games and I can’t help but remember how badly those were panned. Will this game get the same treatment? How much of what things will they have to improve so that it doesn’t? I don’t know.

Closing Arguments

Due to some personal obligations, I won’t get to watch nearly as much football this weekend. I’ll just have to enjoy what I do get to watch.

Thanks for stopping by, please come again.

dudewantshisrug-profile
Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

Dude’s Chronicles 9-19-2019: Breaking QB’s

Image via si.com

What a week for the football.

Entertainment

  • Football – Man, this is my favorite time of year. More and more though I am enjoying the college game over the professional game. In the professional football, it is not a good year to be a QB. Luck retires before week one. Foles breaks his collar bone week one. Week two, Rothlisberger has season ending elbow injury and Brees is out 6-8 weeks with a broken thumb. Ouch. The last two injuries really turn over the apple cart in those respective divisions. Throughout all of your rankings. It’s the wild west now and everybody has a shot. Except Oakland, what a shit show.
  • Arrow: Season 7 – It got to a point where I felt they could have ended the series but I know season eight is out there or coming. I’m interested to see how they close this out.
  • The Men Who Stare At Goats – I saw this was back on Netflix and I just had to watch it again. Honestly one of my favorite movies.

Games

  • Vanquish – Finished. I remembered that this game was short but I didn’t remember exactly how short. Finishing it in under four hours was a bit surprising. I still enjoyed the game but I wish it were longer and had a sequel.
  • Gears 5 – I’ve finished the campaign and have some thoughts on that. Horde and multi-player still haven’t been played and before I give a final verdict I want to hit those modes. Stay tuned.

News

  • Death Stranding is a metaphor for… – You know what? I think Kojima doesn’t even know what his game is about. This game looks like a mess of weirdness with no thread holding it together. Sincerely, I hope I’m wrong but until the game comes out we just won’t know. Personally, I will not be purchasing this game at launch but I will be keeping an eye on it.
  • Ghost Recon Breakpoint open beta – It will run 9/25-29 and I’m curious to play it. I didn’t think Wildlands was bad but I also did think it was worth buying. After playing the beta and open sessions I felt that it just wasn’t for me. However, I am willing to give this game a shot though. I want to see what they have changed and hopefully improved.

Closing Arguments

Football. Football. Football. That is the entire plan for the weekend. Since I’m not on-call I can sit back and enjoy it all.

Thanks for stopping by, please come again.

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Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

Dude’s Chronicles 9-12-2019: Back to Work

Image via facebook.com

I went back to work this week…. and it feels horrible.

Entertainment

  • Football – This was my entire weekend with professional football coming back. The only other thing I watched was Giant Bomb shows. Football was it otherwise

Games

  • Vanquish – I made a lot of progress but failed to finish the game because…
  • Gears 5 – I wasn’t aware that Game Pass Ultimate gave me early access to this game but once I knew I was in and played as much as I could. Act III is where I’m at at this point but I have no idea how far in I am. So far it is good but there are things I’m not digging to say the least.

News

  • No more monthly SNES and NES games for Nintendo Switch Live – To be non-committal about it they say that more titles will come but will not adhere to a monthly schedule. I thought this was a big selling point of the on-line service but now it seems it is more for on-line game play which makes $20/year less attractive.
  • Project Atlas – Not to be outdone by Google’s Stadia, EA is running a trial for their cloud stream service names Project Atlas. This quote, though, is what made me chuckle… because I don’t think he understands how bad the Internet is in the US and other places like Australia. They may learn a hard lesson with this trial.

“Over the last decade, latency and jitter have made cloud gaming a non-starter for any serious gamer,” wrote EA CTO Ken Moss. “But now that the global cloud infrastructure is finally reaching ubiquity, this player test will help us to better understand how our games perform across real-life scenarios.”

  • Borderlands 3 release date – It’s releasing September 13th, which is tomorrow as of the day I post this. I had forgotten this game until I say a commercial for it much less when it was releasing. With that said… I’m not buying it. Not that I think it looks bad or have anything negative to say about it but the fact that I completely forgot about says I just don’t have an interest in it.
  • APEX Physical Release – I didn’t understand this until Jeff Gertsmann gave a plausible explanation. He stated that what it does is put the game in front of those that don’t primarily get game news or look on-line about games but buy physical copies and this put APEX beside the AAA and other major releases that people would buy. Personally, getting an exclusive legendary skin that I only see in the lobby isn’t worth $20 but that’s just me.
  • KFC Colonel Sanders Dating Game – Can you buy it at the drive-thru? If you can’t then f*&# this game!

Closing Arguments

Going back to work wasn’t dreaded as much as it was inevitable. It hasn’t been terrible and more business as usual. I guess somethings never do change.

Thanks for stopping by, please come again.

dudewantshisrug-profile
Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

Dude’s Chronicles 9-5-2019: Vacation?

Image via eonline.com

I’m not working this week…. and it feels phenomenal.

Entertainment

  • Arrow Seasons 7 – To say this show gets weird is an understatement. It’s not a bad weird but just a weird weird if that makes sense. I’m curious to see how they cap this off.
  • Dark Phoenix – The reviews of this movie panned it pretty bad but I thought it was ok. It was not great but it also wasn’t bad. It makes me question why people are so hot against it.  I’d watch it again.
  • Football – Ah man, it feels good to see college football again. I’m still more excited for that than professional football. Especially when I see the news of a certain idiot contracted to a California based team that I root for acting like a jack ass. The local Pittsburgh based team was lucky to be rid of that clown. Now he can be a cancer elsewhere. Physically and athletically  talented but not a lick of brains or common sense, just my opinion.

Games

  • The Wolf Among Us – I had held off playing this game for quite some time but with the announcement of Tell Tale’s property being bought I wanted to give the game a shot. This is a very good game and as soon as I finished it I was hoping for a sequel. Please let this happen.
  • Vanquish – Previously I’ve played the game on the PS3 but wanted to revisit it on the Xbox One via the backwards compatibility. The more I play it the more it feels like a damn shame there was never a sequel. It also reminds me of Bulletstorm and I wish that game had a sequel as well.

News

  • I don’t know, I’m not paying attention.

Closing Arguments

I would like to say that my time off has been productive but it has not. Basically I’ve done nothing and I am 100% OK with that. Any challengers to the idea can bugger off.

Thanks for stopping by, please come again.

dudewantshisrug-profile
Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

Dude’s Chronicles 8-29-2019: Vacation

In the protest of all things stupid I’m boycotting work.

Entertainment

  • Arrow Seasons 6 and 7 – Just trying to catch on this series since it sounds like it is going to end with season eight. I never thought it was great but it was good enough to watch.

Games

  • Recore – I gave this game an honest shot for several hours but I eventually gave up on it. Getting to a point where you can’t progress in the story until you go and grind getting prismatic cores kind of did it in for me. Combing that with the less than stellar combat it just wasn’t worth it anymore. I’m left feeling that the game was incomplete in a sense that it had a lot of stuff to do but it wasn’t fine tuned and felt rough on many fronts.
  • LEGO Batman 2 – Just for somewhat of a palate cleanser.

News

  • Gears 5 Pre-loads! – You pre-load the game on everything but Steam(or maybe that is up by the time you read this). Be ready to play the new game on 9/5. This the game I’m most excited for as I am hoping it both closes up and continues the story of Gears 4.
  • Telltale Games revival – Not a total revival but LCG Entertainment has purchased some of the properties from the former games studio and is making plans to use them. Good to see that at least some these properties will live on.

Closing Arguments

It won’t be a boycott of work next week but rather a vacation. Not sure if I’ll be doing a post or not next week. It will depend on my frame of mind and level of ambition.

Thanks for stopping by, please come again.

dudewantshisrug-profile
Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.

Dude’s Chronicles 8-22-2019: It’s That Time

Image via iup.edu

The official return of the local college students is this weekend. However some of people in private housing have already return. With them they brought stupidity.

Entertainment

  • Nothing? Oh wait… Deadwood – HBO was free last weekend so I watched the Deadwood movie a few times. Definitely recommend. Other than the Utter situation… 9/5

Games

  • The Turing Test – The game came to a satisfying finish. It felt like the story was good where they left it and didn’t draw it out. I was happy to be done with the puzzles, they were starting to unnerve me just because that is all the game really is. If you like Portal… 4.75/5
  • Star Wars: Battlefront II – Hear me out before you roll your eyes at me. I wanted a game that I could just play and not be invested in. Having EA Access gives me access to this game so it’s not like I bought it again or anything like that. It’s about as good as I remember in that it is not terrible but it just should have been so much more. I’m only playing the campaign and not touching the on-line stuff.

News

  • Game Informer layoffs – Hope the very best for the people affected by this. The cut was pretty deep talking about half of the editing staff. Things haven’t been good for the parent company GameStop and this is clear sign that things have not gotten better.
  • Spelunky 2 delayed – No longer coming out this year but still no firm date. The original is still popular to this day and likely the fan base will be ok with the delay if they can plan on getting the same quality. I’ve never played this game but I’m fairly certain I own a copy on at least one platform. Maybe I should take this opportunity to try it.
  • Nintendo Switch replacements – If you bought one after July 17th that is. It boggles my mind that Nintendo is doing this even though there is absolutely no reason to other than a service to it fans. It’s almost impossible to imagine Microsoft or Sony doing this. The accountants would never let them.
  • PUBG console cross-play – Yet one more game that Sony is giving in to. It’s a small victory but I’ll take it. Makes me want to get back into the game but I’ll probably end up not.
  • Final Fantasy VIII release date – It’s crazy to me that it even has a date much less so soon. This was a game that has been taking so long when I saw it back in the new I assumed it was to announce a delay.
  • Insomniac Games acquired by Sony – The only part of this I’m not excited about is the studio only developing for Sony hardware. That seems to limit the scope too much and shows that Sony still resolves to have exclusives.

Closing Arguments

The college kids haven’t gotten any smarter over the summer. I was driving the correct direction on a one-way street when two college aged girls turn down the street in the other direction. If there had not been a turning lane they would have hit me head-on. As I wake this I see the driver isn’t even looking at the road but rather at her phone. She never even realized what she did!!!

Thanks for stopping by, please come again.

dudewantshisrug-profile
Paul Novak

Owner, Proprietor, Typer of Words, Gamer, Jester

A self described Polish ninja toiling away as an IT professional but more into gaming and writing. Physically existing on the western side of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania yet existentially flowing with the ether of the Internet.