Cinema Corner: Exodus: Gods and Kings

It’s been a while since I last wrote a review, with my exam period over I had some time to visit the cinema and catch up with some movies that I had initially missed out on. Last week I had the opportunity to see the latest Ridley Scott biblical epic and the new Disney Marvel animation Big Hero 6. This review, as stated in the title, is going to be about the former. I was originally surprised at the quiet release of this movie, well around my area that is, I was skeptical of this movie as well based on the reports about the ‘whitewashing’ of the movie; i.e. the majority of the main cast being Caucasian. I would address that later in this review. But I have to say I enjoyed the movie overall, the acting and the visual effects both worked perfectly. It took some time but I was finally able to see Christian Bale and Joel Edgerton as Moses and Ramses. This is my personal review, you may not totally agree with me, but please remember subjectivity is key. There are a couple of minor spoilers.

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“A game of biblical thrones”

xxxMINOR SPOILERS AHEADxxx

The movie is mostly adapted from the Bible, particularly the chapter of Exodus. It follows the life of Moses as he grows up in the family of the Egyptian royalty and eventually follows his exile and his quest to liberate his Hebrew brethren who have been subject to slavery under the Egyptian regime, through the help of God. The movie deals with themes of spirituality, oppression, liberation and more. Moses was able to carry out his mission to free his people through the help of God. This was another interesting dynamic to me cause I was curious to see how Ridley Scott was going to portray the image of God. The childish representation used in the movie actually resonated with me as I could see how truly frustrated God would be to see his people be continually oppressed for so long. It also made me think of the jealousy of God, which in my opinion made sense, as I could imagine the annoyance to see one’s own creation behave in such bizarre and uncouth manner like the Egyptian did. Another thing I really loved about the movie was the portrayal of the 10 plagues, which were captured beautifully and albeit realistically with some really good and practical display of the plagues which were hilariously explained scientifically by a character from the movie adding some plausible logic behind the plague. The effects jumped right out of the screen and felt really captivating. I saw the movie in 3D and the plague with the flies did make me a bit queasy as I felt like the flies were in the cinema.

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“Who let the toilet overflow again”

Now that I have spoken about some of my pros about the movie, I would like to talk about some cons, firstly I did not really like the pacing of the movie, as it felt like a drag at times particularly after Moses’ exile. The movie slowed down to quite a halt during Moses’ shepard years. There was also some lacking character development in some characters namely Joshua( who was played by Aaron Paul) and Aaron, the latter being Moses’ blood brother. agreed the story wasn’t mainly about them, but it would have been nice to see more fleshed out personalities from them. As a Christian myself, I have read the book of Exodus a couple of times and I know how much personality that both Joshua and Aaron have. These were my major cons with the movie. Concerning the ‘whitewashing’I must say I was also very peeved initially with the casting choices for the movie, but after some while I was able to see Christian Bale as Moses, a man conflicted by his beliefs and desire for justice and sanctity and Joel Edgerton as Ramses,  a brat of a king with the personality of a man child. Although most of the slaves in the movie were portrayed by Egyptian actors, I could see why Ridley Scott would cast the popular actors like Bale and Edgerton, given the fact that this was a very expensive movie to produce with a budget nearing 150 million dollars, it stands to logic that one would use the faces of popular actors in order to sell the movie and besides Charleton Heston(a Caucasian) also portrayed Moses previously in the Ten Commandments. Although I would have preferred Egyptian actors to play the parts of Moses and Rameses, I quite understand why they were played by these A-list actors. With all this been said, principally found the movie to be entertaining and I would like to see other biblical stories and chapters done on this epic scale like the book of Joshua and Judges. Overall I give this movie a 7 out of 10. Have you see the movie? Let me know what you thought about the movie in the comment section?

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“Where is my bat suit when I need it”

PROS

  • Epic scenery:- The movie truly felt epic and grande, the battle scenes were well done and perfectly shot and the plagues were well represented and showcased.
  • Gorgeous landscapes:- The Egyptian empire was shown with awesome flamboyance and beauty.
  • Strong lead cast:- Despite my initial cynicism, the lead actors really held their own and showcased their characters well.
  • Accurately portrayed plagues:- The plagues did feel very real and devastating just as they were described in the bible.

CONS

  • Slow second act:- The movie crawled a bit for me during some moments in its second act
  • Poorly developed secondary characters:- Other characters like Joshua and Aaron were not given enough personalities.
  • Little whitewashing effect:- Despite the lead actors delivering amazing performances, some of the actors were unconvincing as Egyptians like John Turturro and Sigourney Weaver.

What are your thoughts? What were your opinions on the ‘whitewashing’ in the film? I have also been working on developing my own YouTube channel were I would be reviewing movies and videogames and talking about other things. Once my channel is completely set up, I would let you know where to find me and follow me. Stay tuned for my Big Hero 6 review. Till next time. Szia.

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“Well tell Moses to stop hiding my mascara”
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Cinema Corner: The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1

Despite the long title, the latest entry into the Hunger Games franchise did not fail to entertain and inform the audience. The movie was darker than its predecessors and it delved deeper into that effect that a single person can have on a group of people. The movie follows Katniss Everdeen as she recovers in the underground District 13 and her ongoing battle to bring down President Snow and the Capitol. I would be giving my review of the movie and laying out my pros and cons as well. Be wary of minor spoilers as I would try not to reveal as much details as possible. Let’s get it on.

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May the odds be in her favour

Like previously mentioned the movie opens with a recovering Katniss has she is still visibly shaken by the events of the previous movie. Her actions at the Quarter Quell were a powder keg that sparked a fire of rebellion in other people across the districts. Katniss is then approached by Plutchard Heavensbee(with the amazing late Philip Seymour Hoffman reprising his role) and the new addition to the cast, President Alma Coin played Gunther gorgeous Julianne Moore. They notice the beacon of hope that she has become to the people due to her various selfless acts and intend to use her as a spark to led the revolution by making her the titular Mockingjay. The movie really shows the amount of facade that both sides of a war a willing to play in order to prove their points. Katniss was been used by the District 13 folks while Peeta was been used as the weapon by President Snow to placate Katniss from leading the rebellion. Most of the supporting characters return as Effie Trinket(Elizabeth Banks) and Haymitch Abeynatch(Woody Harrelson) reprise their roles in gearing Katniss up for the responsibility as the icon of the people. The movie felt more like a war movie than a young adult movie which was really impressive as this allowed the themes to be taken more seriously and not all young adult movies are romantic fests.

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"Pfff I wanted a red rose to go with my mockingjay outfit"

The propaganda videos made by the guys at District 13 with Katniss leading the rebellion were also a nice reference to how actual wars in our times now are fought. Through the use of videos and pictures, most countries win wars psychologically before the physical altercation even begin. Never underestimate the power of the masses as a political weapon in winning a war, as it was shown in various districts that started rebelling against the guards and destroying important sources of power to the Capitol. Another really powerful moment in the movie was the scene that showed Katniss visiting the now demolished District 12, which was intended to ignite her rage towards the Capitol as she was feeling reluctant to lead the rebellion. The scenes were particularly well shot as you could see the destruction and desolation of the district. The tension rose more towards the end of the movie with a particularly interesting scene after a huge rescue that really came as a surprise. Overall this was a strong improvement over Catching Fire, which was a movie I quite enjoyed as well. Although as a two part finale, I couldn’t help but notice how much of a filler this movie was as it is setting itself up for the second part.

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"My beanie makes me look artistic"

PROS
-Mature tone: The movie did it’s best to highlight pivotal points in a more mature way
-War empathy: Through the propaganda videos, we were shown how a rebellion can be perpetuated just like in our real world.
-Solid performances: Strong acting from lead characters like Jennifer Lawrence, Julianne Moore and Philip Seymour Hoffman and the other returning cast.
-Engaging plot: We were never really aware of what was coming as the movie hooked the audience on a thrilling ride.

CONS
-Excessive focus on Katniss: Even though she was the lead actress, the entire movie didn’t really show enough of the other characters or districts.
-Filler scenes: This is a minor con, but as a first part, some scenes were noticeably dragged on in order to extend the movie.
-Cat scene: A particularly annoying scene involving Katniss and her sister.

Altogether this was an interesting movie and a good first part to the upcoming sequel next year. The war themes were well done and were reflective of our current society. I would give this movie a 7.5 out of 10. A stellar cast and engaging story only hampered by a couple of filler scenes. I look forward to the last part next year and hope it can bring the series to a well concluded end. Let me know what you think of the movie if you have seen it. Feel free to comment below. Which other young adult novel would like to see adapted for the big screen? Till next time. Szia.

Cinema Corner: Gone Girl

Still recovering from the epicness of the Video Games Live concert, I decided to treat myself to David Fincher’s new psychological drama title Gone Girl, which stars Ben Affleck as a young husband who searches for his recently missing wife. The movie looks plain at first, like a regular mystery but then the movie delves deeper and gets more twisted and brilliant, this has to be one of my favorite movies of this year. Today I would be giving my review of the movie, I would highlight my pros and cons and try as much to be spoiler free.

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The movie’s atmosphere brimmed with Fincher’s signature all over it. The foreboding unrest in the characters were present from the very beginning. Ben Affleck plays a nonchalant husband who doesn’t seem to affected with the disappearance of his wife as much as the media would expect him to be. Rosamund Pike delivers a riveting performance worthy of an Oscar nomination as I would originally hesitant on her casting, I was not a big fan of her from her previous works in movies like Wrath of the Titans and The World’s End. Another really strong aspect of this movie where the supporting cast, Carrie Coon who is known for her tremendous work on The Leftovers plays the sister to Ben Affleck’s character. Neil Patrick Harris unhooks his Dougie Howser persona to reveal a creepy character which he played to the teeth. A pleasant surprise for me was Tyler Perry, his role as a sharp talking lawyer caught me by surprise and really left me jaw dropped as I had never seen him portray such a character before. The movie was also able to tap into the moral streams of the audience as most of the issues that were addressed are very relatable to issues in the real world like marriage problems, media coverage and manipulation.

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Like I said previously, this was a David Fincher movie, so he was never hesitant in showcasing some really graphic and dark scenes which helped in conveying the message more to the screen, like a particularly gruesome box cutter scene which I won’t spoil. The movie also delves deep into media perception and how the media can be used as a weapon for and against an individual just like we are experiencing on a daily basis. It shows how easily swayed the media can be simply based on the appearance of a story. It also reflects on the beauty as well as the frailty of a marriage if it’s not properly tended to by both partners. The movie also shows the psychological toll that high expectations can cause on a young child as shown with the children books that were written based on Rosamund Pike’s character by her parents, setting an unrealistic bar for one’s kids can be very dangerous as it could push the kid to extreme mental stress. The movie paints a very detailed mental picture of the things we go through normally in our lives. It was very relatable and parallels most of the common issues around, that’s what makes this movie one of my best movies this year. I just had a little problem with the ending which was pretty abrupt in my opinion. But that’s just me, some others liked it, that’s the beauty of movies, it’s very subjective.

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PROS
-Strong leading actors: Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike delivered one of the best performances this year.
-Impressive supporting cast: Carrie Coon, Tyler Perry and Neil Patrick Harris provided well appreciated supporting roles.
-Moral themes: The movie dealt well with everyday activities that happen in the real world without beating you over the head with it.
-Justifiable dark scenes: The violent scenes were well executed and not gratuitous.

CONS
-Abrupt ending: A rather sharp and ambiguous ending that left me wanting

Overall I would give this movie a solid 9 out of 10, I was engaged from the beginning to the end, and it left me thinking about the parallel ordeals in the movie that mirror current events in our world. I strongly recommend this movie to any one who hasn’t seen it. For those worried about Ben Affleck as the new Batman, he looked buff as hell in this movie, combined with his acting, I have no doubt that he would portray a very convincing Batman. Let me know your thoughts for those who have seen it. Feel free to air your thoughts on the comments section below. Please don’t forget to like and subscribe for more entertaining news. Till next time. Szia.

Cinema Corner: Fury

Right after seeing Interstellar last week, I opted to see the new WWII war action drama Fury. I was initially skeptical because I didn’t know what to expect from this movie. I was cynical cause I was afraid that it was gonna be a Hail Murica movie, where the Americans just kill tons of Nazis without any character depth or sentimental values. Boy was I wrong, Fury was a pleasant surprise for me. The director David Ayer has already proven himself in the past with amazing movies like Training Day and End of Watch. Fury was dark and gritty and not in the gratuitous way, the movie really showed the ugliness and reality of war, which I much appreciated cause war is never a good thing as there are always casualties on both sides. I would be reviewing the Brad Pitt lead war movie and please feel free to air your thoughts in the comment section below. I would try to be as spoiler free as possible.

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“Damn we still look good with all this dirt around”

The first thing that I would like to applaud about this movie is the performances by the major actors. Brad Pitt led the ragtag band of war torn soldiers. The story follows the adventure of their war tank named Fury, which was used to hold down a large number of Nazi opposition. The movie does a great job in establishing the characters of the main actors namely Brad Pitt, Jon Bernthal(of The Walking Dead fame), Michael Péna, Shia LaBeouf and Logan Lerman. The chemistry and interaction between the characters inside the tank was well acted and never hindered the progress of the movie at any point. Many people, including me were actually worried that Brad Pitt was simply reprising his role from the Inglorious Basterds, but that was definitely not the case, whereas Brad Pitt was more aloof and lighthearted in the aforementioned movie, he presented a darker and more serious army officer in Fury. Jon Bernthal played a somewhat similar character to his Shane character in The Walking Dead but the difference was still clear. Michael Péna, an actor that I personally think is underrated shines has the lovable driver of the group. Contrary to whatever was going on in his real life, Shia LaBeouf still delivered an excellent performance as the pious albeit restless soldier and last but not least Logan Lerman excelled as the fresh newbie who gradually evolved into a hardened fighter.

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“We want you to join us in fighting the Nazis”

As I had mentioned before, the movie was dark and gritty, but artistic at the same time showing the viewers how actually scary and ugly war can be. I personally could feel for the main characters as they did a couple of crazy and uncouth actions due to the effect of the war. However as good as this movie was, it was never fully able to shy away from the classic Hollywood trope of cliches and predictability. They were various scenes where it was pretty obvious what was going to transpire next. Albeit this did not pull me out of the movie. Another awesome aspect of the movie were the heart pumping tank battles that kept me glued to my seat and desperately hoping for the main characters survival. The sound design was perfect as the roaring thumps of the tanks firing at each other filled the cinema. However the shots been fired by the tanks had green or red colors, probably for highlighting the path of the shots, but this bothered me a bit as it suddenly felt like I was watching a scene from the Star Wars movies. I don’t know if the weapons actually fired like that during the World War 2 saga, but it was a little bit distracting. Nevertheless this did not stop me from enjoying this movie, there was a claustrophobic feeling whenever the camera was in the tank and the characters were talking to each other, one could feel their paranoia and restlessness. Overall I would give this movie a 7 out of 10 Hybrids(yes that’s what I call my rating system) just because aside from some minor issues with the excessive cliches and lightsaber-esque battle shots, this movie delivered at the right place, interesting personalities, excellent chemistry, engaging tank battles, gritty artwork and an awesome foreboding feeling of dread through out.

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“I thought I could adopt some German kids here”

PROS
-Interesting personalities: Each of the main characters were able to stand out in their own way.
-Gritty atmosphere: The movie was never afraid to show the true horrific nature of war, and did not go Murica on us.
-Excellent onscreen chemistry: The chemistry among the main actors was very believable and it kept the audience engaged
-Awesome Tank battles: The vehicular fights were amazing and jaw dropping, enough to make Tom Clancy proud.

CONS
-Predictability: Particular plot points and character motives were easily telegraphed and quite obvious.
-Lightsaberlike battle scenes: The flashing colors of the whizzing bullets were a bit distracting.

The movie was great and has strengthened my faith in David Ayer, who is also set to direct the upcoming superhero movie Suicide Squad, which could also use some gritty visuals and perfect group chemistry. My next review will be on David Fincher’s psychological drama, Gone Girl. What did you think about the movie? Let me know in the comment section below. Don’t forget to like and subscribe for more entertaining news. Till next time. Szia.

Cinema Corner: Interstellar

Ah hoi my trustee crew mates aboard the SS hybridzone blog ship, this weekend had been a very interesting and awesome one. I got the pleasure of seeing three fantastic movies from Friday to Sunday, one for each day, my sheer excitement from the theaters have prompted my friends to coax me into writing movie reviews. To be honest, the reason I deliberately do not do reviews of movies is because I find it hard to blur the lines between spoilers or non-spoilers. It’s a very delicate subject when it comes to spoilers for me, and because of that I am not sure how to review a movie without giving away too much. Is saying that the movie is fantastic a spoiler? Is stating the amazing performance of an actor a spoiler? I never truly know, but recently I’ve been watching other movie reviews and reading some others and I think it’s about time that I practice it on my own. Today I would be reviewing Christopher Nolan’s latest sci-fi drama epic, Interstellar. I saw this movie on the Friday that just passed and my first impressions were mind blowing, eventually I got back home and went over the scenes in my head once and of course found one or two issues with it. We all know that no movie is perfect, and everyone is entitled to their opinion, so without much further delay, here is my brief review of Interstellar.

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“Alright, alright, alright we heading to space”

Basically the movie is about a group of astronauts that are sent into space in order to find another habitable planet for the human race cause Earth was slowly dying. Matthew McCougnaughey does a really good job as the lead along with Anne Hathaway and Jessica Chastain delivering amazing supporting roles. The performances were really superb, even the young girl that played the role of Matthew’s daughter was phenomenal. The movie kicks off with Matthew and the other astronauts being shot to space and initially follows their journey has they look for a perfect substitute planet for humanity. There were a couple of twists and turns along the way and an overarching theme about love as well, which at times was beaten over my head(a similar problem that I had with Elysium). As for the visuals, this is a movie definitely worth seeing in the cinema, the gorgeous expanse of space has never been as captivating as this, ever since Gravity. The theory of relativity was expertly carried out in my opinion, of course there were times when the dialogue got a bit confusing, but ultimately this movie wasn’t as confusing as Inception or Memento to me. It is also a very deep and thought provoking movie that makes you debate a lot of things with friends after the movie. I was in a three hour discussion with my friends immediately after the movie. Another aspect that I would like to applaud was the score of the movie, it was absolutely rhythmic and perfectly encapsulated the feeling of dread and claustrophobia for the astronauts on board. This has to be Christopher Nolan’s most emotional movie, as he did spend a lot of time establishing the main characters and showcasing the emotional depth of them(something not really common in his other movies). I am now going to highlight my pros and cons of this movie.

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“Space is like a long white line of cosmic cocaine”

PROS
-Mind blowing visuals: Even though Gravity was released last year, Interstellar still managed to leave me awestruck by the grandiose nature of the space travel scenes
-Brilliant Performances: We all know by now that a Christopher Nolan movie is bound to have strong performances has he brings out the best out of the actors and actresses he works with
-Convincing story: The movie explored the themes of fear, redundancy and a drive to explore more beyond our perceived capabilities
-Tense Atmosphere: The film never failed to induce a claustrophobic feeling whenever the onscreen characters were in any form of predicament

CONS
-Excessive runtime: I felt like the movie was about 15 to 30 minutes too long, there were a couple of scenes that dragged on for the sake of exposition.
-Lack of Global scale empathy: For a movie that deals with a dying earth, not much repercussions were shown worldwide to convince me that the whole world needed evacuation apart from Matthew McConaughey and his daughter.

There were a couple other little gripes I had with the movie, but for the sake of spoilers, I’m gonna leave it here. Overall Interstellar was a brilliant and highly ambitious movie done on an epic scale that did not disappoint but could have been grander than it was. This has to be Christopher Nolan’s most emotionally driven movie, as he really brought out the raw talent of the actors which I must applaud as he is taking new risks. I would give the movie a score of 7.5 out of 10, as much as I loved the movie I do not see it surpassing Nolan’s other works like Inception or Insomnia. I may have missed a few things, please let me know what your personal thoughts are about the movie. Everyone is entitled to their opinions. Subjectivity is bliss. I would also be putting up reviews for Fury and Gone Girl soon. Please don’t forget to like and subscribe for more entertaining news. Till next time. Szia.

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“Oops I think I just passed gas in my suit”

Watchdogs: Impressions

As an avid video gamer, I have played tons of exciting and mind blowing games ever since my conception. Although I’m a picky casual gamer, as there are a lot of genres that I don’t really play. 2014 saw the release of various games and also saw the popularity boost of the next gen consoles like the PlayStation 4 and Xbox one. A particular game that I had been anticipating ever since the initial announcement in the E3 2013 was the Ubisoft sandbox shooter Watchdogs. A third person shooter that introduces a new aspect of gameplay in a form of hacking. The game follows a linear mission gameplay style but it also has an open world exploration in which the player can roam freely and trigger side missions and engage in side activities. Players can roam the entire landscape of Chicago, although story progress is required to unlock certain aspects of the game. I have played the game for quite some time now and I would like to point out my own pros and cons of the game. As for the matter on the game being overrated, that’s all subjective. I would try to avoid major spoilers and give detailed points. In light of the widow that recently acquired $23bn in a lawsuit against a cigarette company, let’s get it on.

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"I'm watching you"

STORY
The story follows that of Aiden Pearce, a hacker and vigilante whose most recent job puts his life at risk and causes the death of his niece. Aiden then results to finding out the person responsible for ordering a hit on him, just to discover that he is part of a larger network of murders, vices and conspiracies that he slowly drags himself into. The story itself is pretty basic, not as complex as other triple A titles, but it was engaging enough to interest me. I found the main protagonist, Aiden Pearce to be a bit boring in comparison to other main protagonists of other free roam games. His motive seems to be to find justice for his niece’s murder, but his demeanor is cold and one dimensional. Although some of the supporting characters were really interesting like T-Bone, a hacking mechanic and Jordi Chin a fixer that helps Aiden from time to time with problems.

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"You killed my niece, now I'm gonna go Batman on your ass"

GAMEPLAY
The overall gameplay was very decent, the game utilizes a cover based shooting mechanic much similar to games like GTA and Gears of War. Stealth is another impressive feat that works really well, I found it very reliable and fluid, once the player is in a restricted zone, Aiden automatically assumes a crouching position and can take out multiple enemies with close quarters takedowns. Although the lack of an actual crouch or jump button is pretty frustrating, it causes issues like having to walk around an entire mountain side simply because the player could not jump over a ridge. Enemy AI is very responsive as well, during a shootout, enemies will constantly flank the player and even lob grenades to flush the player out of cover. Enemies will also respond to fallen bodies that they see lying around making them very alert of their surroundings. The heat system is also pretty convenient, whenever the player commits a felony, a nearby pedestrian can call for the cops, the player has a limited time to interfere with the call and prevent the cops by either taking them down or jamming their comms( which I will elaborate on in the next topic). The police are pretty aggressive and will try to ram the player’s car continuously, but the cops can be impeded by hacking various interactive objects like road blockers and steam pipes. The enemy class is not so diverse, the major enemies are the enforcers which cannot be taken out with a regular gun, only with explosives. Driving in the game is pretty arcade, as the different classes of cars basically function similarly in the sense that all heavy cars basically function the same way but differently from all sports or high performance cars, which also function in the same way. The driving mechanics can be very light at first, especially for hardcore racing fans, but after some time it gets better. Unfortunately players cannot use their weapons while driving which is a real bummer especially when trying to evade the cops.

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"Why does it have to be so cold?"

HACKING
Hacking plays a very crucial aspect in the game, the player’s in game smart phone is his most powerful tool, his phone can be used to hack blockers and steam pipes in order to cripple enemy vehicles and can also cause blackouts that can be helpful at night times to evade pursuers on foot. Hacking is also crucial in opening up gates to shortcuts, accessing databases and many more. There are this side activities called intrusions where players have to hack an access panel that leads to an NPC’s webcam and can monitor what the person or persons are doing. This provides some really hilarious moments. Hacking panels at times require the player to play a mini game that involves the direction of currents(similar to pipe turning games) to unlock the final lock. They are not too hard and tasking, and are very enjoyable to play through. Hacking also enables the player to be able to profile civilians revealing their personal information, some of which are hilarious like an HIV positive person that happens to be a blood donor. Profiling civilians also helps the player to hack their bank accounts, siphoning hundreds of dollars from the unsuspecting victims(an aspect of the game I wish I could have on my real phone). Although hacking and siphoning cash from civilians ensures that the player can never go broke which takes away some of the excitement and hustle other games like GTA provide. There are these random occurring events that happen and requires the player to intervene with local crimes like mugging, the player can either hack civilians for potential mugging locations or can come across them while exploring the city. Hacking is by far the best aspect of this game.

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"To hack or not to hack"

ACTIVITIES
There are tons of activities to keep the player engaged even after completing the main story. There are intrusion boxes as earlier stated, criminal convoys that can be intercepted and taking down before they reach their destination, gang hideouts to wipe out. There are other benign activities like chess, an awesome drinking game segment that tests the player’s button mashing skills and a shell game that tests the player’s eye coordination. My best side activity would have to be the digital trips, which are like cybernetic psychedelic trips that place the player in bizarre worlds with awesome gameplay, one of which is the Spider Tank, the player assumes the role of a giant mechanical spider armed with weapons and is tasked with completing objectives and causing mayhem. Another is Madness, which requires the player to run over demons while driving around in a rugged muscle car while completing objectives, the last two are Alone and Psychedelic, which are stealth and image inducing games respectively. Other side activities include ctos breach and QR codes which primarily involve speed hacking and image alignment respectively. Overall the side activities were very engaging and they kept me entertained long after I had finished the main story.

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Say hello to my massive arachnid inspired friend

ONLINE
As for the online aspect, there are six main game modes, Online Roam, which puts up to eight online players in a free roam Chicago to wreck havoc and have unlimited fun, Online Tailing, which involves a player following and silently monitoring another player while avoiding detection, Online Hacking is also similar to Tailing, the difference being that the player has to hack the other player to a 100% in order to install a backdoor virus in secrecy whilst avoiding detection as well. Online Mobile Challenge, this mode requires a player using a tablet or smartphone who gains access to the entire grid of Chicago and access to the police force as well, they hack and disrupt objects around another player in a car whose goal is to get to the finish line under a time limit. Online Decryption, which is one of my favorites, in which two teams consisting of a maximum of four players must battle each other in order to decrypt a file and Online Racing, which is my favorite so far, is your typical racing match with a maximum of eight players with an added twist of hacking obstacles to impede one’s opponents. The online modes are engaging enough although there are bugs that frustrate the experience like in the Online Racing, traffic spawns cars randomly that can appear out of nowhere and obstruct the driver or lagging in the game can lead to a messy game session. Overall it’s a nice experience, just the annoying bugs that need tweaking. The online modes also has a notoriety system that grades the player based on performance, but it is very confusing as I find myself winning some races and getting less points than the runner ups.

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Stevochy is my online ID, the points don't make any sense

CONCLUSION
Overall I must say that Watchdogs is an interesting game with tons of activities to keep the player engaged for at least 30 to 40 hours. I do like the fact that the game utilizes the concept of surveillance and privacy invasion, which are the most controversial topics in our modern society. A couple of minor issues prevent the game from achieving greater heights, but it is worth a purchase at full price. Many people have compared it to GTA V which is normal but GTA V is still superior in my opinion, both games do have different playstyles overall and the major similarity is the fact that they are both third person shooters. I enjoyed my time with Watchdogs and I look forward to more contents. As for the graphics on different consoles, I don’t really know, as my version was on the PlayStation 4. If you have played the game, please feel free to comment on your favorite and least favorite aspects of the game in the comment section and list out some points that I may have missed out. I recommend the game to those who haven’t acquired it yet. This has been my experience with Watchdogs. Till next time. Szia.

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They are watching

PROS
-Good stealth gameplay
-Superb hacking abilities
-Dynamic and interactive environment
-Engaging side activities
-Satisfying enemy A.I.

CONS
-Lack of jump or crouch button
-Lack of vehicular combat
-Too easy access to cash
-Frustrating online resolution bugs
-Confusing notoriety points system