Friday, 8 November 2013

Kerbal Space Program

Have you ever wanted to travel to the stars, put your feet on alien worlds or even just experience zero gravity? Then the Kerbal Space Program is the game for you.

Recently I have been bitten by the space bug, almost going mad with rocket fever and sporting a mad scientist laugh. Building my very own rockets that will carry either; live Kerbal's or drones to orbit and beyond. You'll be able to build anything that you can imagine with the available parts. I must stress, this IS a game that is being currently built and constantly updated. Having said that, this is one of the best space building simulators on the market, based on real physics, which means if it wouldn't fly in reality, it just won't cut the mustard here either.

Featuring multiple staging, so you can go higher and faster, eventually reaching a stable orbit after decoupling stacks and booster rockets, that run dry on fuel. Weight plays a huge part in breaking free of the gravity of the Kerbal home world. However, you should be warned, running the engines above 90% long enough will overheat the engines and you will have barbequed Kebal's falling back down on to the launch pad.

This is not just a game of reaching space, it's about building an entire space program, from building rovers to take to other worlds, to docking craft in orbit to make space stations. It's all within your grasp. Everyone has at least heard the audio from Neil Armstrong's first step onto the surface of, what was at the time, an alien world, our very own Moon. "That's one small step for a man, One giant leap for Mankind", which is true even for the Kerbal's. This would be a giant leap for anybody who managers to achieve this accomplishment, trust me it is every bit as hard for you as it was for NASA and the Soviet Union.

Once having achieved landing on the Kerbal moon (the Mun,) you may want to start to explore the solar system you inhabit. Naturally, there are scientific devices that you can fit to any craft to further the Kebal's understanding of how their universe works, some of these devices are gravity detectors, communication arrays, thermometers and much more. This will be a massive part of the campaign. At this stage, you have the sandbox option to build and do what you desire, with disregard for budgets and mission perimeters. But the campaign offers a learning curve for even advanced players and I highly recommend starting at this point.

This may look like a space only simulator, well this is not the case as you can build space planes also to return your Kerbalnaughts back from your shiny new space station. In the event of catastrophic failure, you can fit parachutes to the command capsule to return them safely to the planet.

The graphics tie in well with it's main concept of space flight, as can be witnessed in any setting within the solar system. The developer Squad employed a procedural graphics engine, that delivers stunning graphics up close or from orbit. You'll see the tiny blue pearl increase in detail, and even see some mountain ranges from orbit as your craft returns home.

I personally like the feature that allows you to apply and modify, to perform slingshot and gravity braking maneuvers which have been used by NASA, the Soviet Union and the European Space Agency. This WILL make or break mission objectives, being able to set the ship to burn the rockets for the required time to complete the change in orbit.

Overall Squad delivered a FUN and exciting game, which you will teach a thing or two you may not have known before about physics or space. Playing around with ideas and finding the rocket setup that is best suited to you is a good experience, and being able to rectify these small issues at an early time in your space agency, will pay off many dividends as you progress to alien planetary exploration.

Squad delivered a great overall game, even though it's still in heavy development. They are allowing the use of, and encourage the sharing of community made mods, be it space planes or rockets and even part packs to expand, the available catalog to create rocket monstrosities of your own to unleash upon the waiting stars.... Will you achieve the Kerbal's ultimate goal, To colonize the solar system and beyond?

Kid safe and great real world physics, I could not ask for any more out of a good space simulator

I RATE THIS GAME 8.5 / 10 


Saturday, 24 August 2013


I love picking.

Not in the vulgar sense in which men do, but finding a bargain, a diamond in the rough, bagging a bargain, and other various motivational one liners that depict my love for shopping. What better way to combine shopping, looking through junk and making a quick faux buck? Pickers is right up your shopping aisle.

If you're a lover of American Pickers, Canadian Pickers, Aussie Pickers or the Antiques Roadshow, you'll simply love Pickers. The aim of the game is to visit various sites such as basements, small country traders, even junkyards, and find hidden gems to sell. You have thirty days to turn over your items via sale or auction within your virtual store. Your goal? To have the biggest turnover at the end of the month.

You'll visit sites such as Ray Akins bus, and simply click on items that catch your eye. You'll be tipped off at the start of each new day of picking, to which items are currently trending. If you're able to find seven items that come under that category, you'll receive a bonus that will add onto your turnover. You don't need to grab all seven items at the one location, you can visit any of the unlocked locations in one day. The day coming to a close when you've purchased your seven items, and head back to your store, Rusted Gold.

Once you've picked your items, it's time to haggle. Most inhabitants of each location will want top dollar for their wares, but the savvy picker will need to use common sense of what each item is worth. The more purchased at the one location, the more you can haggle for a lower price. You also have an expert on hand, and can ask what the item's possible worth is and how much potential profit it may provide. Some items will be in poor or unrestored condition, but can be restored back at Rusted Gold for a small fee. Incomplete items are popular with the market, but you will need to find both pieces before selling, in order to make a healthy profit.

At each location, you'll find mini treasure hunts, such as the one above. Clicking and marking off items on the list provided, and receiving a small finders fee for each piece. Often the end reward is far greater, obtaining a free and often rare item for your store. 

Pickers is a simple game that you can save at any point, making it great for those who can't spend hours playing. It's certainly addictive and provides various levels from the amateur or casual picker, right up to the professional level. There is nothing quite like finding a bargain... Even virtually. Even click happy kids will find this entertaining.

7 / 10 Divalicious stars.

Monday, 19 August 2013



Stranded on an island at the edge of the world, your friends are taken captive, and psychotic warlords are on your trail. Fighting to escape this beautiful but dangerous paradise, you'll have to confront who you really are....

A tropical Island holiday with friends and family went horribly wrong, in a world of beauty a hidden darkness lies waiting like a coiled snake to strike.

You'll be at the mercy of the most feared and deadly creatures known to humanity and then there's the islands inhabitants, who are just insane. Some of these creatures are what I have faced, after leisurely strolling through the jungle they are as follows;

Snakes, Saltwater Crocodiles, Bull Sharks, Leopards, Samaritan Tigers, Komodo Dragons, Cassowarys, Goats, Boars, Pigs and Rabid Dogs. What makes this interesting, is that not only are you hunting, you're also the hunted. You will have to stalk your prey, be it a Goat or Boar. But be on guard, because in an instant and from nowhere, you may be attacked by a pack of Komodo Dragons or even a ferocious Tiger. So this is fair warning, you are NOT king of the jungle, so play it safe out there, stay frosty and you might survive.

You'll have to craft wallets, ammunition pouches and weapon holsters. This is achieved by the above... Hunting animals and skinning them to get the materials you need to create, for example, an arrow quiver to hold your arrows. If you have an excess of skinned hides, you can sell the items you don't want at the local village store.

The locals are mostly people of Islander origin, some of which are Rakyat tribal warriors, fighting off the pirates that threaten their way of life. They are terrorized with a multitude of horrible crimes, including drug manufacturing and trafficking, slave trading and mass murder, just to name a few.

The story starts with the hero Jason Brody, who is a young man feeling directionless in his life and unsure of what essence eludes him. The fearless, and athletically apt Jason is perfect for the jungle warfare that awaits him on Rook Island. On holiday with friends and his brothers, Jason quickly finds himself and his brother captive by pirates, you struggle and manage to escape, but at a massive cost to Jason Brody. The most insane member of the pirate faction is Vass, who clearly struggles with multiple drug addictions and is on a dangerous downward spiral into complete and utter madness. Because of this, he makes one fatal mistake.. He lets you live. Make him regret that decision and make him pay. 

As the storyline progresses, you'll find your self tripping out more than a hippie at Woodstock. This has to be the most psychedelic tripped out game that I have played on a long, long time, caused by the Rakyat ceremonies that are initiated by Citra the warrior Goddess of the Rakyat. Drinking the poison will induce the ceremony and some really weird stuff will unfold before your eyes, but I'm not about to spoil the surprises that await the hardy naturalist adventurer, who dares for confrontation in the wild.

The heavily modified Dunia graphics engine, which uses Cry-Engine as a base, performs flawlessly to bring Rook Island to life in all its beauty. From dizzying the heights in hang gliders, or swimming in the crystal clear waters, the graphics details are incredible. However, this game is not just all polish and no substance. You can, and probably will, loose yourself within the jungles of Rook Island for many hours on end hunting and gathering, as this is a major part of the upgrade system.

Multiplayer is fun, and simple enough to navigate for gamers familiar with FPS (First Person Shooter) platforms. Finding a match here in Australia can be difficult at the best of times, but each time I connect, I manage to find a decent session with little to no lag whatsoever. Included with Far Cry 3 is a map editor, so you can create endless maps to challenge your mates.

The overall realism of the latest game in the Far Cry series, cements it's spot in the rankings of my all time favorite games. The best thing, in my opinion, about this game, is the sheer immersion that it can make you feel. This is by no small part, achieved by using stunning graphics and sound. A deep storyline that in time, may lead you to care about the characters and the fate of the inhabitants of Rook Island.

Did I ever tell you the definition of Insanity? 
No, I just told you where to look...
Far Cry 3


Thursday, 25 July 2013

Endless Space

 The Galaxy is yours for the taking

In this fantastic 4 x game, which basically means explore, expand, exploit and exterminate, you will have the enormous task of conquering the known galaxy which is randomly generated every single time you load a new galaxy. Which I think is a really great feature.

With a massive choice of eight standard empires to enforce your brutal iron will upon, the unsuspecting xeno-morph life form's out there in the big bad dark galaxy, or build your very own civilization. Winning the game is long and hard and makes any marathon look like a trip to the local shops by comparison. This can be achieved by employing one of many tactics, bruit force and unrelenting blood thirst which will win the supremacy victory. Next, there is the hardest kind of victory, achieving the mastery of technologies to awe your opponents into submission, which requires the "Pan Galactic Society" technology that will get you the scientific victory. Next is the most interesting, in my opinion, is the expansion victory. This is achieved by conquering the vast majority of known space and settling every type of planet or surface your empire can inhabit. But you must be able to hold the ground your empire claims against foes and pirates, because if you slip beneath 75% control, this victory will not be able to be achieved, there are more victory types, but lets move on.

In the image above, you can  see the different spheres of influence from the many races systems. When you populate a system, it will start off as an outpost and can be invaded without a declaration of war by anybody. After the set amount of turns has passed, it will change from an outpost to a colony, which is what you see in most of the systems above. The key visual difference is the colonies have a solid color border and a tinted transparent backdrop. On the other hand, the outpost only has an almost transparent ring around the system, see above image to the right hand side. The best defense in this option, is to set a fleet in orbit with the "guard system" option, which will automatically attack any fleet other than your own, entering the system. Until such a time the outpost reaches a colony status.     

The graphics in the Unity engine are some of the most stunning visuals I have seen in a space 4x in a long time. The battle sequence is also different to most space games out there, it features 3 phases of battle. First is the long range battle, followed by medium range combat and last is melee combat. The way in which this works, is by selecting 3 different abilities to employ. Each one of which has a counter, for example, weapon jamming throwing your enemy's firing solutions out the window, which is a defensive tactic. This can be countered by a really super sneaky ninja style sabotage, such as an electromagnetic pulse to electrify the enemy's defenses. Many options will open up to you, depending on the race of your empire and technology level at any given time. Certain technologies can unlock further battle tactics which will be a necessary part of your expansion into a hostile galaxy. Also you can choose your fleet layout and if one is available, admirals. You will be prompted to choose from in the battle selection screen before the battle begins.

The eight empires available to you to choose from are as follows;
  • United Empire the humans empire fairly balanced in all respects. 
  • The Sophons seek knowledge over power. If you're looking for a science nerd culture, you have found Dr Sheldon Cooper's wet dream. (The Big Bang Theory). 
  • The Hissho are decedents of birds, that have evolved to a hominid form that represents humans. They are masters of flight and seek dominance over all others. 
  • The Amoeba are a highly evolved form of a lower oceanic species that exceed at exploration, whist being militarily weak but good at diplomacy and trade. 
  • The Cravers are a race of ever hungry entities, that can consume entire worlds. They have one and only one purpose, to feed. Concepts like peace, trade or even treaty do not compute with these zombie space nuts. 
  • The Horatio are a race of clones, who were created by a mega rich brat that left his imperial home world for the stars. When he came across a planet with ancient cloning facilities, he got to work repopulating the planet with copies of himself, then came the stars. This fast paced, expanding race will be good to new comers to the game. 
  • Another race is the Sowers, the true Skynet of the stars. A machine race built by the Endless, at the dawn of the universe and time itself. They are simply following programing and making worlds habitable, then moving onto the next one. These entities are harmless, unless you get in the way of their mission, then they turn all T-800 on you and make you listen to "I'll be back", over and over and over. However, they are slow and effect a penalty on any planets they inhabit, without the required tech. 
  • Finally, the Pilgrims. A bunch of explorers and egg head scientists hijacked a United Empire mission, finally cracking the shits and throwing their toys out of the pram. They decided to set up a breakaway civilization, free of the monarch rule of the united empire. Aided by the Sophons, they view the Endless as a religious, God like statue, and hope to one day set foot on the exact place that the Endless were born into existence. 

Upgrading ships is an intriguing part of empire defense, and should be among your top priorities. You can modify current builds with more amour, shields, beam weapons and so forth, but these upgrades require certain minerals, which also have to be unlocked by technology. The sheer size of the technology tree is immense, and non-lineal. My current game is around 110-120 turns and I've only completed 30% of the total technology tree. But the best part, is you can research any connecting tech or if you need to, switch from science to trade based tech at a whim.

Diplomacy is easy to use. Although, some treaties must be unlocked again and I'm hoping that I don't sound like a broken record, but it has to be done by researching technology. You'll face difficult negotiations with the other inhabitants over resources, or systems that you may have blockaded to colonize, then the sneaky buggers fly under the radar and colonize right under the fleet's nose. 

To sum up, a kick ass game that hits all the high notes, and none of the low ones that fans expect of big multinational developers. I'm betting your jaw will drop when you find out this is an Indie game, and to boot, the best Indie game I have ever played in my life.  

Endless Space is the one and only true answer to a space version of Sid Meier's Civilization series, for space nuts like pinky and the brain who, like me, dream of galactic domination

Just a quick free plug for the developer and publisher:
Developer: Amplitude Studios 
Publisher: Iceberg Interactive 

Please support the unbelievable talent that this developer has by getting a copy of this fantastic game. Parents take note, this game is indeed child safe for preteens and teens. The violence is restricted to the odd ship being blown up every so often.


Saturday, 22 June 2013



You are our last hope, as the commander of an elite paramilitary organization known as XCOM, you control Earth's defenses against a terrifying alien invasion.
I think most people have heard at one point or another in there life time, about the "UFO" crash in Roswell New Mexico in 1947. Well if you have... This may be what's really going on.

An ultra top secret program to defend the planet from alien invasion, consisting of a council of nations to operate and conceal from the public the existence of the XCOM project, it's technologies, missions and the existence of the threat that looms over our very skies.

Recovery of alien artifacts is paramount to the success of the XCOM operation, and backwards engineering of recovered technologies to advance humanity's chances of surviving a rising wave of terror, from the dark, coldness of space.

Choice will be the most potent weapon you can use against insurmountable odds from a smarter, more powerful and unrelenting enemy. You'll have to create items in your manufacturing lines that are hot off the research labs press. From advanced body armor, to more advanced weapons to take the fight to the enemy, such as; hyper advanced aircraft, heavy armor for your troops in the field and advanced laser weaponry.

Careful management of your monthly income from the council of nations is needed, as the more money you receive each month, will impact your ability to fight the enemy and whether or not you will be fit for command. This is judged by your successes and failures. Be warned, nations can and do leave the XCOM project, and no longer fund your resistance effort if you neglect them.

Your base is subterranean, and to expand to accommodate more facilities, you need to build down. This takes time, money and costs maintenance every month. Basically, the further down you tunnel, the more it costs. As you progress through the battle, you will be able to hire new units, able to deploy from your arsenal at any given time. Some units will be wounded and whilst they are in recovery, it's best to obtain some experience for the newbies, in the event of the death of one or more top level soldiers. It wont hurt the war effort as much in this event.

Obviously, this is not ideal, as it leaves you vulnerable financially. The best and easiest way to combat this, is to get as many satellites above each region as possible, because if you loose one nation in that region, the bonus from that region goes with it. Unless your base is in that region.

The enemies could be considered as a near copy of the grey aliens people are said to have encountered, they appear in the game as the Sectoid and the Muton. The Sectoid is the front line soldier of the invasion force. They are relativity smart, and can out-flank you if you don't cover your sectors properly. The Muton however, is typically as dumb as a flaming paper bag full of dog crap on your doorstep, but is tough, and will take out your entire squad unless you rain a hailstorm of lead down upon the raging behemoth. As your weapons and attachments progress to higher levels, it will become easier to kill these mountains of flesh. However, I always prioritise this particular enemy upon contact. A combination of flanking and suppression maneuvers will aid you in defeating them.

Autopsies and interrogations also play a pivotal role, as very valuable intel can be learned this way. These are performed as a part of the research branch of your facility.

The turn base strategy, gives you time to calculate the best path of action to take to kill the enemy with as little damage to the alien craft or technology possible. Overwatch will always slow down the advance of your squad, but wont put them at undue risk. Being able to react to the enemies movement by opening fire upon them, or reactive shots, is a massive advantage to your forces. But beware, the enemy can employ the same tactics against you.

There will be ways of making money on the side on the "Grey Market", selling excessive stocked items like dead Sectoid corpses, weapon fragments and navigation computers, just to name a few resources. 

Graphics are what is expected from a famed developer such as FIRAXIS and 2K Games. Flawless, whilst functional, it leaves an impression on you, wanting just one more turn without fail every time. Gameplay is easy to grasp, you will be picking up expert battle tactics in no time. 

This game is very addictive and will provide almost endless entertainment, as the enemies spawn randomly each time. Their tactics vary, and if you're not careful, your men will die and the fate of the Earth will be sealed forever. Now is the time to stand together and unite against a common foe, for united we stand... Divided we will fall. Rise up and fight to your last breath Commander, this may be the last fight of our civilization. 

I Rate This Game 9.5 / 10

Remember, Commander We Will Be Watching

All Images and video Courtesy of FIRAXIS and 2K Games all rights reserved

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Medal Of Honor

Tier 1 Operations 

Lead a new breed of warrior in an adrenaline fueled single player campaign developed with elite tier 1 operatives and inspired by real events.
Fight today's war, battle your way through Afghanistan using the overwhelming force of a large, mobilized military and the surgical precision of Tier 1 operators.

Developed by EA, Dangerclose and Dice, this modern Medal of Honor breaks the typical, and let's face it, old mold set in world war 2. You're part of the elite of the elite, the best and bravest the US military juggernaut has to offer, battling Al-Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan.

You play as Rabbit, an elite Tier 1 operative. The game begins shortly after the 911 attacks on The United States of America. You will have to take and hold Bagram airfield located north of Kabul, sniping from afar to support friendly troops, take control of the gunner in an AH-64D Apache gunship helicopter.

Genuine Tier 1 operatives helped to develop certain parts of this title, obviously they couldn't release classified details or operational details of missions, but mission activities such as the clearing of building tactics, camouflage, where pouches are located, attachments of weapons and their genuine, real to life ranging, and so forth. There were some missions that are inspired by actual events that went into the game, but everything was approved by the Tier 1 guys before it was put in the final game. 

This enhances the story, characters and depth of the games emotions they are attempting to portray. The graphics were not sacrificed at all, squeezing every ounce of graphics power out from the Frostbite engine. Explosions look real, shooting debris, rocks, shrapnel and dust everywhere, this is most prevalent during fire support from the AC-130, to take out embedded Al-Qaeda camps.


There's also a Tier 1 mode for the game, meaning there will be no respawning, once your soldier dies, you'll need to restart. Each mission, you have only a certain amount of ammo, you do not heal between missions either, which makes gameplay especially hard. You can compare your score against friends, or see how you stack up against the rest of the world.

The music within the game is climatic and the developer makes great use of it in the critical moments of the story. This game will have you playing it over and over again, with a great representation of the current war in Afghanistan, and the fact that most of the missions are based on real events makes it much more enjoyable for the audience.     

I enjoyed playing the multiplayer, but online players are too few and far between, and you'll find yourself with a lengthy wait. However for me, it's all about the story and this one is very powerful and relevant to our time. It's good to see there's no World War 2 setting, which I believe has been done to death.

This is a great game to buy, I know it's a bit older now, but trust me, it's one you will play over and over again and you'll likely get Medal of Honor at a bargain price.


Saturday, 18 May 2013

Operation Flashpoint: Red River

Stand Together

Tajikistan 2013, between Afghanistan and China, insurgent guerrilla fighters, the PLA (Peoples Liberation Army) and US expeditionary force face off in a deadly military flashpoint.

You and your fireteam can make a difference. How much is up to you, it's not the guy with the most expensive gun or the biggest heart who wins on the battlefield. It's the smartest SEMPER FI, MARINE.
In this edition of the acclaimed Flashpoint series, we take a short road trip from FOB Copperhead in the north of Afghanistan, into Tajikistan. The scenery looks much the same as most of the middle east, desert... Rocks... Towering mountains with snow caps. The graphics are awesome, and almost cinematic in appearance. I personally love playing the Flashpoint series as it's an extremely hardcore shooter, where there is no being pumped full of lead and walking away. Yeah, that's right, twelve year old C.O.D addicts wont like this one, it'll be too hard. Well, it's actually realistic in terms of how you can be killed and tactics employed by modern day forces. There's no indicator from where your being shot, so basically it's nothing like C.O.D or Battlefield. That alone is worth the purchase, the realism is refreshing from the crappy outputting of the same old crap that COD and Battlefield are renowned for. I especially enjoy this game because one bullet can kill you, and usually does.

From calling in JDAM strikes, Howitzer scatter pattern strikes or to call in the Wings of Death to unleash a deadly torrent of fire and brimstone upon the PLA or insurgents, you'll find these weapons at your disposal throughout the campaign. Weapons fire as they should, with bullet drop, jamming even employing damage effects and range effects for attachments, as well as environmental conditions. These can also affect how far your kill range will be. 

As the fireteam leader, it will be your orders that make or break the mission, and consequences lie in your hands. You'll be able to order your team to flank, rush, suppress and take control of mounted weapons, even to protect a certain target, just to name a few of the combat orders. You wont have access to combat support in every mission, but when you do have access to it, unleash a living hell on your enemy. If you're ever in doubt, pop smoke, retreat and re-group, then flank and attack.    

Sargent Knox is the Platoon Sargent of Outlaw 2 One, and is your direct commanding officer. You will find out about Sgt. Knox's 10 rules for survival within the game. He does display colorful language, so this game isn't for the kiddies, it only adds to the realism. The Sgt. also cracks a few funny jokes throughout the campaign. You will receive your orders from him directly, then it will be up to you to work out how you will achieve the goals of the mission. 

Gameplay is excellent with good replay ability. With firing mechanics that would leave most people awe struck, and some complaining its too hard, but if you're in the market for something more real, then this is a game for you. Also. it boasts kick ass graphics throughout the entire vista. Whether up close, or off in the distance, the graphics hold up to the havok engines beefy abilities, this includes the star filled night sky. 

My personal favorite part of this game is that it is more realistic than anything else on consoles. The ability to call in combat supports is a great advantage, being able to get access to theses isn't based on how many kills you get in a row either, which is good because the last time I checked, this isn't how the real military's around the world operate. It's a breath of fresh air into a stale genre, especially for someone who gets bored with multiplayer trash talking about darn K/D ratios.

In summary, this game is great value for money, with a high chance of being played over and over and over. There is a great campaign, extra missions in the following modes; CSAR, Rolling Thunder, Combat Sweep and Last stand missions. You can also download extra maps in "The Valley of Death" map pack. Being one of very few Operation Flashpoint games available on consoles, it's worth buying, just for a break from the mindless close quarters battles that feature in the dominating FPS games on consoles.

I Rate This Game 9 / 10

Saturday, 11 May 2013

The Elder Scrolls V SKYRIM

Epic Fantasy Reborn

The next chapter in The Elder Scrolls saga arrives from Bethesda Game Studios, the makers of the 2006 and 2008 Games of the year. Skyrim re imagines and revolutionizes the open world fantasy epic, bringing to life a complete virtual world open for you to explore any way you choose. The legendary freedom of choice, storytelling, and adventure of The Elder Scrolls is realized like never before.
Dragons, long lost to the passages of The Elder Scrolls, have returned to Tamriel and the future of the Empire hangs in the balance. As Dragonborn, the prophesied hero born with the power of The Voice, you are the only one who can stand amongst them.

This has to be the best RPG I have ever played. The graphics are simply amazing and makes you feel like you're inside an epic world of monsters and magic. Weather your way through the snowy regions or the volcanic planes in the south east, the visuals are flawless. You'll never tire of taking a stroll through the country side in Skyrim, but be warned, many dangers await around every corner, from vampires, werewolves, dragons and even trolls. The landscape is abundant with life in every form, from physical creatures to supernatural and magic creatures.

The game may have you feeling overwhelmed at times, with more side quest's than I've had hot dinners. You'll never be bored here in snowy Skyrim, you get to choose you character's race, gender and abilities. You'll be able to build upon your skills and attributes, as you gain experience through completing tasks. Some of these include Blacksmithing, Alchemy, Lock picking or any of the many more skills and attributes. Best of all, the more you practice, the better the skills get and the higher grade of weapons you can create and sell at a profit. This is how to make easy, quick money in Skyrim without pickpocketing or stealing.

Featured in the image above is one of the 'Stones'. There are 20 or so throughout Skyrim and each helps certain abilities, but you can only have one active at a time. Combat is brutal and bloody, from blocking strikes to being able to decapitate your enemies with one massive blow or pummeling them into submission. Whether you're wielding an over sized battleaxe, shot swords, or even a wizards staff, ranged combat is also a breeze with weapons ranging from bows, fireballs, lightning (Emperor Palpatine style) and other magical means at your disposal. 

The kill cams are a true masterpiece to behold if you're lucky enough to get a one shot kill. An automatic kill cam will be enacted, this is awesome for arrow shots. Whether you're taking down goblins, orc's, vampires or just wild deer, the kill cam will give you pleasure in knowing you are a true master of the ability you're using to decimate the enemy.

Again, the famous Dark Brotherhood returns but in a very creepy setting. You fall asleep, when you wake you find yourself bound to a chair, hooded and wondering, is it the end? Let's just say, it's a creepy ordeal. You can also if you choose to join the Empire of the rebel Stormcloaks, this is if you choose to, it's optional, like most other things in Skyrim. The best part of this game is that you can choose your adventure and write the history of Tamriel as you see fit, this will have pros and cons with every decision, but its your adventure to live.

The Daedric Gods will try to tempt you into helping them in exchange for your service, there are MASSIVE advantages to helping them as you will usually get rewarded with powerful items, whether they are weapons, clothing or even rings. The ring of Hircine for example, will allow a player who has become a werewolf to turn for longer. This is a great addition to the Elder Scrolls series by Bethesda studios. Finally we have the natural enemy for the vampire, but on the flip side, the vampire abilities have been taken down to a realistic level, people know what you are just by looking at you. If you're unfortunate enough to contract the vampire virus. 

You'll have to fight dragons. There are ways to kill them easily, but be warned, as your level increases, so do the enemies, to keep a balance of power within the game. After you kill a dragon, you will absorb it's soul and spend that awarded point on unlocking shouts, which is an ability you have to learn from the Grey Beards. They all have different abilities, and this is they main quest line to eliminate the dragon threat from Skyrim

Re-playability is massive in this game, whether you want to play as any of the following High Elves; Argonian, Wood Elves, Breton's, Dark Elves, Imperial, Khajiit, Nord, Orc or Red Guard. There are many ways to play the game over, and you don't have to do any quests, you can just roam the countryside, picking plants and practicing alchemy, or kill anyone you cross. This game is a true shining jewel and would be a great asset to any avid gamer, no matter their skill level.