So My Ratchet & Clank “Walkthrough” Continues (Finally), But What About My @#$%ing Game Backlog? 🤔

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No I’m Not Talking About The Ratchet & Clank Reboot

Ratchet & Clank (2016); the game, based on the movie, based on a game; unfortunately will not be seen today. For those of you who don’t know, I’m referring to the Ratchet & Clank game that was released back in April for PS4. It was marketed as a re-imaging of the original Ratchet & Clank game and garnered generally favourable reviews. As a fan of the series it immediately grabbed my attention, and I added it to my must-play list of games (in my mental rolodex), but I just don’t see myself playing it any time soon. Reason being I’m still having too much fun playing Into The Nexus via PlayStation Now, but more importantly I still have yet to finish it.

So here we go again…the bane of my existence: finishing video games. As time goes by – and it’s just going by faster and faster the older I get – my gaming backlog keeps becoming more and more daunting. Even if I leave Ratchet & Clank: Into The Nexus, and the 2016 reboot out of it – not to mention all of the other must-play PS4 titles – I’m still looking at (at least) 13 PS3 games that I have yet to finish. Ay caramba!

Blasphemy (It Looks Like I forgot About My PS3)

Now when I talk about my backlog I really need to point out that it’s made up from two categories. I’ve touched on this in the past, but I really want to make it clear (even to myself). I have my original PS3 backlog. Yes, as in the PlayStation 3. Believe it or not, the foundation of this blog is built upon my PS3. The point of all of this was to not only showcase PS4 games, but to showcase my last gen console games as well. It was (is) supposed to act as a journal for me to document and finish my old games. Well it looks like I lost my way because I’ve only published four posts about my PS3 games. The majority have been about PS4 which brings me to the next backlog category: my forever-expanding PS4 backlog.

The Power Of The PS4 Consumes Me

Gaming on my PS4 is just so damn satisfying. Clearly I favour it over playing PS3, wherein lies the problem. My PS3 sits right beside my PS4 so it’s within my sights, and yet I don’t ever fell compelled to turn it on. This brings me back to the original thought I had before buying my PS4: Don’t buy it until you finish all of your PS3 games first. But I didn’t listen to my instincts. I bought my PS4 one year after launch (2014) – and even though it was easier to balance my PS3/PS4 game time back then – it’s proving to be a lot more difficult nowadays.

Every year more games are released – whether they’re new IPs (Intellectual Properties) or sequels to previous games – these new PS4 games are trumping my old PS3 ones. It’s a vicious cycle – and it’s not like I play every new game that comes out either. How could I? I couldn’t do that even if I wanted to. I don’t have the time – nobody does! Like most adult gamers, I pick and choose the new games that I want to play and let the others fall to the wayside. I have to do this because there’s just too many to play. I do this every year with the hopes of, some day, getting back to the games that I’ve missed. But it’s really a fool’s errand because that magical day never really comes. Before I know it I’m smack dab in the middle of a new year, with an even newer line-up of games that now trump the ones that I’ve missed. Like I said, it’s a vicious cycle.

Is This My Final Answer?

So what’s the fix? How do I complete my task of getting to the closing credits of all of my 13, or so, PS3 games? Well, the only way out of this hot mess (that I can see) is to, begrudgingly, ignore all of the PS4 titles for (let’s say) one year and just focus on my PS3 backlog. That would definitely be the most efficient way of getting those PS3 games out of the way…or (at this point) I could just forget my PS3 backlog altogether and just focus on the PS4. Or I can play PS3 and PS4 games in tandem – which was my original intention – but I clearly dropped that ball. There’s no real easy answer here because no matter what I do I still miss out on games.

The first option has me ignoring PS4 games for one year, which would be very hard to do when you’re as dialled into the gaming industry as much as I am. I’m always watching and listening to podcasts, and gaming news, because that’s just what I enjoy. I have to be in the know about upcoming games. So when I see, and hear, about upcoming games I get very excited which makes the impulse to buy them very hard to ignore.

The second option has me letting go of my entire PS3 backlog, which might sound ideal, but has me missing out on finishing all of that last gen greatness. I have some incredible games on PS3 that I would love to not only showcase, but also get to the end of, like The Last Of Us for example. I still have no idea how this game ends, and it’s arguably the best game on PS3. How can I deny myself of playing that, not to mention all the other great oldies that I have?

So I might just have to crank up the discipline meter and become way more aggressive with my PS3 gaming, while I continue gaming on my PS4. Like Jay-Z’s and R. Kelly’s album back in 2002: it’s the best of both worlds, but enough about old school hip hop and the ridiculous gaming goals that I’ve put on myself. Go watch my latest Ratchet & Clank let’s play above, or (if you like) you can start by watching the first part of this “walkthrough” by clicking here, and then coming back to this video post to continue the story.

Quote Walkthrough Endquote

By now you’ve probably noticed the term walkthrough scattered about this video post. If you’ve been following my progress on this blog for more than a few posts then you’re pretty familiar with how I write, and know that I haven’t used this term, ever, in my previous posts. This is the first time and there’s a very good reason for that. I don’t do them. Not in the way that the majority of YouTubers do them at least. Allow me to explain.

A walkthrough is video game footage that a gamer publishes on YouTube. The idea is that the gamer uploads the entire game’s story, but by breaking it up into parts, from start to finish. Depending on the length of the game, a walkthrough could range range anywhere from 20-40 parts – sometimes more, sometimes less. They almost always have live commentary and the most popular YouTubers can have millions of subscribers who repeatedly watch their content.

YouTubers like The Rad Brad, and Tetra Ninja, have definitely had some influence on me, even though what I do with The Gaming Worker is quite different, I owe guys like them a great deal. I originally wanted to create walkthroughs just like they do, but it didn’t take me long to realize that creating walkthrough content is, arguably, a full-time job. Now, there’s nothing wrong with that – I’ve said time and time again that I’d love to do this, in a full-time capacity – but I already have a (paying) full-time job that takes up the majority of my time. All of the recording and editing that goes into doing an entire walkthrough, and the amount of time that it takes, is more than I can contribute.

The Rad Brad (and these other guys) clearly have that time. I don’t (unfortunately). I mean, you have to be able to play a game from start to finish rather quickly, record it all in as many parts as it takes, uploading it as you go for your audience. As you know by now (if you’re a regular that is), I don’t finish my games that fast. My life is not walkthrough-friendly so I’ve decided to go the let’s play route.

Let’s plays can be more off-the-cuff and more random. It doesn’t matter if I publish two let’s plays (from the same game) or 20, because there’s no pressure to finish the game. It’s brilliant and it fits in with my drawn out, takes-a-year-to-always-finish, play-style.

So the use of the term walkthrough in this post is just for shits and giggles. It’s an inside joke that only I know – but now you know too. Even though I now have a Part 1 and (finally) a Part 2 for this particular game – you might see this as the humble beginnings of a much larger walkthrough – but I assure you it is not. So please don’t be deceived by my use of the term. This is really just a let’s play, but I hope you enjoy it all the same.

If you are looking for a Ratchet & Clank walkthrough (or any other game for that matter), YouTube has plenty of those, all done by incredible YouTubers. I encourage you to go, consume their content, and subscribe to their channel if you like what you see. But don’t forget your boy!


Marvel Battlegrounds Is Where The Disney Infinity Magic Really Begins 😁

⚠️ Don’t forget to watch the feature video        ✏️ For comments click on the headline and scroll to the bottom

I Love Marvel, Remember?!

Last year I wrote about my unwavering obsession with Marvel, as well as my appreciation for the Disney Infinity mini figures. I went on to say that I only wanted these, well-designed, pieces of plastic to add to my toy collection, and for showcasing. Their actual purpose: syncing them to another piece of flat plastic (the asymmetrical, hexagonal, Disney Infinity base), which connects via USB to my PS4 – so that I can play as that particular character in-game – was lost on me. As much as I love Marvel (and Disney) I had no intention of playing Disney Infinity. I had watched a few of the play set adventures on YouTube and I honestly wasn’t too impressed with what I saw.

Visually everything was great, but the gameplay just seemed lackluster. The environments were unpopulated, the stages and set pieces were bare, and the game mechanics were almost too simple. It looked like an entry level game for a novice – and if I was going to invest in this super hero game (version 2.0), then it would have to up the ante. So just having these tiny toys (for my toy shelf) was going to be good enough for me.

Michelle bought me a Marvel play set, and a bunch of figures, for my birthday last year to jump-start my collection. They remained in their packaging (up until last month) because the toy shelf that I speak of doesn’t actually exist yet.

It’s a plan that we have for our office on the top floor, but we’re still looking for the right pieces to furnish that space. So with our office space being a work in progress, it didn’t make sense rushing to EB Games to buy more Infinity. After all, these things weren’t cheap – especially if you wanted to collect them all – and I already received a small army of them for my birthday.

The Disney Infinity toys-to-life platform was very popular with gamers and toy collectors; new versions and play sets were being announced, which was proof enough that this thing was here to stay. There was no need to buy more in a hurry. I had time…well, I thought I had time.

Disney Infinity Shattered

As it turned out, back in May, Disney announced that they would be discontinuing their Infinity video game line, and shutting down their internal studio: Avalanche Software. The news took me completely by surprise. I believe my words were “What the f@#k?! How could this be? I thought that everything was fine. There must be – what the f@#k?!” But the toys-to-life genre had it’s winners: Amiibo, Skylanders and Lego Dimensions are still competing to be the number one, toy and video game platform of choice. Disney Infinity, on the other hand, is taking their bronze medal and going home…indefinitely.

It was a sad day…one that I didn’t see coming, but you know what? Someone had to lose. That’s just the reality of it, but it wasn’t for the lack of trying. What’s even more saddening is knowing what Infinity had looming over the horizon: a new line of 12-inch figures, the launch of Disney Infinity 4.0, and more according to the incredible article that senior reporter, Patrick Klepek, wrote on Kotaku.

It appeared that Disney Infinity was planning to be a force to be reckoned with in the toys-to-life space, but the universe had a different design. I knew immediately what I had to do, because when a disaster like this strikes you have to act fast!

Preparing For My Very Own Civil War

My knee-jerk reaction was “Shit, now I have to buy all of the figures and play set before retailers run out of stock!” And that’s what I’ve done – well, I didn’t buy all of them. I’m only aiming to collect all of the Marvel figures so that I can play copious amounts of Marvel Smash…I mean Marvel Battlegrounds (more on that in a bit).

Now that time is of the essence, I can’t just sit idly by because I probably have one year (maybe two at the most) before I won’t be able to find any of these figures, let alone the one’s that I want. After a year (or two) my only option might be buying the nearly-extinct figures from online retailers, like Amazon, or resellers on eBay. By that time it won’t be worth it. Not with the huge mark-ups that will be added (due to rarity and demand), and the ridiculous shipping rates. So the time is now.

As if gaming isn’t expensive enough…now I have this bloody toys-to-life nonsense putting a dent in my wallet. I am a true victim of circumstance, but if there’s one thing that I’m pretty good at, it’s getting the games I want at a discount! I do this by a couple of ways: one, resisting temptation and not buying the game on launch day (like everyone else), and just waiting six to eight months; and two, redeeming my credit card points for Best Buy gift cards and using that to by my games. Simple and effective – both requires time and patience!

So I chose the latter: using my newly acquired gift cards, and ending up paying a total of $26.42 for the Disney Infinity 3.0 starter pack and the Marvel Battlegrounds play set. Without the gifts cards, those two items would have cost me $101.68, so I can honestly say that I made a good decision.

Almost immediately after that, the EB Games, close to my workplace, had a bunch of Infinity figures on sale! The stars were certainly aligning so I snatched up a bunch of those bad-boys for $9.99 each; they normally cost $16.99. Again, I made a good decision.

Now We Fight!

Um, yeah…

Playing Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune Via Broadband Connection

⚠️ Don’t forget to watch the feature video        ✏️ For comments click on the headline and scroll to the bottom

Why So Serious?

One of the great things about doing a blog like this one is that I don’t have to take it too seriously. What I mean when I say this is that I can post a let’s play video (like this one), where I play like shit, and still be ok with it. I don’t work for any of the big dot coms, nor do I work for (or collaborate) with any popular Twitch and/or YouTube streamers, so I can afford to post a less-than-perfect let’s play once in a while. It doesn’t mean that I don’t take pride in what I do…I take the utmost pride in this – I wish this was my job – but I thought that I would experiment by showing my not-so-good gaming performance.

All gamers have their moment when they don’t shine. It becomes more frustrating when you’re recording because the pressure is on to create the perfect video, but you never know what can happen once that red record light is on. What if you have a terrible gaming session? For some reason it’s like you’re playing the game for the very first time and you feel like you have no idea what you’re doing. You’re aiming your gun like you’re Stevie Wonder playing paint ball, missing everything; making every mistake in the book, even though you’re 90 percent of the way to completion (and have been playing the game like a boss).

Or what if your wife comes home earlier than expected, which throws your game off even more because now you’re more distracted, on top of playing like a howler monkey? Again, anything can happen. Anything can go wrong (when you’re recording). That’s why God invented editing software: so that one can extract all of those unplanned moments and embarrassing deaths. But why should I be so serious? Why should I be so professional? I’m not a world renown YouTube personality. (Not yet). I’m the gamer that nobody knows: the underdog and this is my blog! The Gaming Worker is where you’re going to get the great let’s plays as well as the bloopers. Think of it like a special feature that you sometimes get on a DVD or Blu-ray. Content is king and I am here to serve you.

If you haven’t caught on by now, everything that I just mentioned (about shitty aiming and the old ball and chain coming home) happens to me in the video. So when I say that this video is less than perfect I only say that because of my poor performance and unexpected dialog with my wife at the end. Everything else in the video checks out fine. The video and audio is good, the internet connection (for streaming) was superb, and most importantly I still had the fun!

Forget Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection

Now I wouldn’t want to deter you from purchasing what is a very fine, remastered collection for the PS4 – I played the demo – but there is another way to enjoy the Uncharted series on PlayStation, if you have not done so already. PlayStation Now is the game streaming service that allows you to play a collection of Sony’s first, second, and third party games. Obviously this collection includes Naughty Dog’s Uncharted trilogy – three games that I have slept on for years for no other reason than not being a big gamer. I didn’t even own a PlayStation when Uncharted 1 and 2 came out. I suppose it’s PlayStation taboo: to now have a PlayStation blog (unofficially of course) and talking about the days gone when I didn’t own the console that featured two of the greatest games of last generation. But I intend to right these wrongs with the help of Sony’s, not-so-popular, answer to backwards compatibility: PlayStation Now.

PS Now Mang!

I did a PlayStation Now let’s play just over a year ago when I took the streaming service out for a little test drive. There was a seven day trial period (which is still being offered today) so I decided to play Ratchet & Clank: Into The Nexus, another Sony exclusive. In that post I wrote about how great the streaming experience was, but the pricing was just too steep. For your information the prices have not changed: it’s still $19.99 per month or $44.99 per three months. The latter is the better deal (obviously), but it’s still a whopping $180 per year. That’s nonsensical if you ask me when every other streaming service, like Netflix and Spotify, hovers in and around $10 per month ($120 per year). But what made me leap over the fence, and sign up for PlayStation Now, was the limited-time only deal that surfaced back in December. PlayStation was offering a 12 month subscription for $99.99, which works out to be less than nine dollars per month. It was exactly what I wanted to pay to stream video games so I jumped right on that shit. My only hope is that Sony decides to renew my subscription at the same price, but I’ll have to cross that bridge when I get there.

It’s 2007 And – Hey, There’s That Uncharted TV Ad Again

I have the worst memory in the world. The worst. My wife will tell me things that I need to remember like: upcoming plans with family and/or friends, important appointments, when to take my vitamins, you name it; but I almost always forget. This is the affliction that I was cursed with. Perpetual absentmindedness. But for some strange reason, deep within the confines of my cerebral cortex, is the hazy memory of the Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune TV spot that aired in 2007. Like I said, I didn’t even own a PlayStation at the time: I was an Xbox guy.

Yes, it’s true. Microsoft won my vote back in those days, but (if you ask me) I wasn’t even a true Xbox fan because I only played third party titles. I didn’t play any Xbox exclusives. So why did I even own an Xbox? But I digress. We can save that story for another post. My original point is that I remember the first TV ad for Uncharted from nine years ago because I never saw a game that looked, or played like that before. I never got into the early Tomb Raider games – just the reboot – but even if I did; this was clearly something different. I was introduced to a modern day, Indiana Jones type-of-dude – who I now know as Nathan Drake –  and he was on a wild and crazy adventure to find treasure. Danger lurked around every corner as he travelled to remote, exotic locations searching for his fortune. My eyes were glued every time this one-to-two minute ad was shown. I wanted – no, I needed to play this game. But I didn’t. Not back in those days. Stars had to align and a few more events had to take place in my life to get me to this point.

The Journey To A Thief’s End

So finally here I am…streaming Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune on Sony’s current console and loving every minute of it (except when I play like shit the odd time). I wish I didn’t wait so long to play all of the Uncharted games – seeing as how the forth and final chapter to the series (A Thief’s End) came out two and half months ago – but I guess it could not have happened any other way. My master plan is to play all of the Uncharted games via PlayStation Now before diving into the highly anticipated, and final game; which I’m dying to play. But I knew that I would be doing myself a disservice by immersing myself into the forth installment without having played the previous three. I’m not going to approach this series the same way I did the Batman colon Arkham series. No siree. I’m playing in order this time and I’m going to get Nate, Sully and Elena to El Dorado!

Transformers Devastation Gets Four Outta Five Energon Cubes ♒️♎️♈️♓️

⚠️ Don’t forget to watch the feature Let’s Play video above!

Giant, Colourful Robots From The 80’s?! Yes Please!

This is not a games review site…not by any stretch of the imagination. I don’t usually give review scores, nor do I want to get into the habit of doing so – that is a talent (and privilege) that is best left to the top video game dot coms, games journalists and influencers – but finishing a game is a once-in-a-blue-moon occurrence for me and this particular IP holds a very special place in my heart.

Transformers Devastation turned out to be a very nice, gaming surprise from last year…well it wasn’t really a surprise because I knew the game was coming, but I did not think that I would enjoy it as much as I did. There’s something very satisfying about playing as your favourite Autobot and having the ability to transform into their vehicle mode to burn rubber! It’s something that a few developers have gotten right – High Moon Studios being one of them with their War For (and Fall of) Cybertron games. Transforming and rolling out made me feel like a total bad ass, empowering me in a way that I could only dream of as a kid. Platinum Studios got this Transformers game just right, and even though there were a few tiny draw backs, this return to rare from is just what the franchise needed.

⚠️ Click on the yellow logo above to get your Bumblebee inspired T-Shirt courtesy of The Gaming Worker!

Did I Mention That I Like Giant, Colourful Robots?!

Any Transformer fanboy that has fond memories of playing with their Transformers as a kid, by smashing them into one another, will get a kick out of this game! This mayhem meshed with the super brilliant, cell shaded, art style is what makes Devastation such a joy to play. Platinum borrowed all of the equities from the popular 80’s cartoon and created an action-packed experience that’s reminiscent of the good old, toon-gazing, days. There were many cartoons that I loved to watch as a kid and Transformers was the cream of the crop. This game was strictly made for guys (and girls) like myself so thank you Platinum Studios for a job well done.

So what does Devastation get right other than the incredible art style? Well the story mode is short – which most hardcore gamers might not like – but works great for a filthy casual such as myself. The game doesn’t have too many side missions to get lost in, but there are a number of challenges to do should you want to shake things up a little. Completing these challenges is a sure-fire way to gain extra ranged and melee weapons for your inventory, and in-game currency (known as credits). At the end of each mission or challenge you get a grade, ranging from SS (Double S) to D rank. There may even be SSS (Triple S) rank, but I’m not 100% sure because the highest I got was SS. For those of you who don’t know SS and SSS ranks higher than an A. The order goes: SSS, SS, A, B, C and D. So SS is like getting an A Plus and SSS is like getting an A Plus-Plus. I have no idea where this crazy rating system comes from nor do I have any idea if it’s used outside of video games. All I know is that when I got that S ranking at the end of a difficult mission it felt like winning a gold medal in the Transformer Olympics! But I digress.

More (And Less) Than Meets The Eye

The boss battles were terrific. The stand out battles were definitely the battles where it was me versus a larger than life Combiner, such as Devastator or Menasor…or both! That epic in scale, David versus Goliath style, boss battle never gets old in video games; and even though they were pretty easy, it was still fun to play them through. Even the larger than life Insecticons (which has never been shown before in the cartoon) were impressive. There is much to admire about this game, but it also had some problem areas. One of the biggest being the semi-complex weapon synthesis system. In between missions you have the option of going into your inventory and crafting your weapons to make them more powerful. This can sometimes be a good experience and other times bad, depending on what game you’re playing. In Devastation it was bad, or (to me) it seemed like the developer made some weird decisions with this. Like only being able to craft and equip weapons if they were unequipped. It was quite the chore having to navigate to the right Autobot and unequip a weapon before making any changes to it. Also the lack of tutorial for crafting weapons was a bad call. If it wasn’t for ACG’s YouTube video about synthesizing your weapons correctly, I would have kept on upgrading like a pitiful newb and not increasing my attack power. You’ll know what I mean of you play the game. Just try not to focus on increasing the weapon level alone. You want to see some yellow in the attack power progress bar otherwise you’re just wasting credits.

The last, nit-picky, thing that took me out of the overall experience was what Platinum Studios decided to do for the last quarter of the game. Now in every episode of the cartoon there were always two sides to the story. One: the evil schemes that the Decepticons were planning, and two: what the Autobots were going to do to stop them. Before you saw each side of the story you would see the creator’s version of a fade to black to help transition between the two-sided narrative. This was the Autobot and Decepticon insignias (which were back to back) that would float toward the viewer, and flip horizontally, revealing the side of the story you were about to see. The red insignia was for the heroic Autobots and the purple for the Decepticons. It was a neat little device that worked well in the cartoon, but for some reason Platinum decided not to use it until the last quarter of the game. It made absolutely no sense because they didn‘t use it for the first three quarters of the story. Why throw it in for the last quarter? It just came out of no where and made the experience inconsistent. Not only that, but the bevel effect that they used to make the insignias look 3D looked like shite! It looked nothing like the source material. This was another really bad call, and even though this was purely esthetic, and cinematic (and had nothing to do with affecting the gameplay) it still tainted the experience for me as a Transformer fanboy and as a designer.

A Little Energon Can Go A Long Way

But these are all minute unpleasantries which is why I decided to give Devastation four (energon cubes) out of five. Again this is not a review site – even though what I do can (sort of) be considered “reviewing a game”. I just wanted this post to be a little different, have some fun with the headline and try to wear the shoes of a real games journalist. Originally I intended for this post to be really short – like a headline, sub-headline and one sentence – and let the video do all of the talking, but I just had so much to say about this game. It’s loads of fun and you can just turn your brain off, pretend that you’re a kid again, and kick Decepticon butt like you have nothing else better to do!

😁 Bonus Devastation Let’s Play Clip

Please click on the image below for additional Transformers action. Enjoy!



Battleborn Is Like Borderlands On Steroids! (Believedat!)

⚠️ Don’t forget to watch the feature Let’s Play video above!

I Had A Good Feeling About Battleborn […]

Gearbox makes good games. It’s that simple. It doesn’t matter if this game [Battleborn] starts with the same damn letter as the developer’s previous and critically acclaimed, action, RPG-style property, Borderlands 1️⃣. This was the minuscule detail that I was hung up on for quite some time when Battleborn was first announced. “They [Gearbox] already have a game that starts with the letter B. And what kind of name is Battleborn anyway?” But now none of these petty objections matter. Not even in the slightest. Battleborn is very, very good…almost great, which means my instinct was right. I had a feeling that I would like this game and that turned out to be my understatement of the year.

Shooting And Looting In Borderlands

This was most likely going to be the headline for my Borderlands 2 blog post, but I haven’t gotten around to creating that content yet. I’ve briefly played Borderlands on PS4 and it’s seriously one of the most pleasurable experiences I’ve had on the platform so far. I absolutely love that game – and I don’t want to elaborate on this too much because it’s not really the main topic – but Borderlands is an awesome shooter that feels right at home on the PS4 (I’ve played it on PS3 as well). So it comes as no surprise that I’m enjoying Battleborn as much as I am. It’s quirky and funny, I love the cartoony art style, I can’t get enough of leveling up and the loot drops, and the gun play is so, so damn good. But enough about that. Let’s get back to the game at hand.

A Battalion Like No Other; All For One Star

So what’s with these first-person games and their need to have you (as the champion) fighting to save the last of something? In Destiny you’re fighting to save the last city on earth, and in Battleborn you’re fighting to protect the very last star in the universe. It’s just something that I noticed…I guess evil doesn’t know how to stop until it gets every last one of your belongings. Whatever the case may be Battleborn has proven to be a game worth playing and talking about (in my opinion). If you take Borderlands, ramp up the number of playable characters (with dynamic weapons and abilities) and make it a MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena), you’ll have Battleborn – the most ambitious video game Gearbox has ever done.

“I’m starting to become addicted to these betas.

I participated in both Destiny betas, The Division beta, and now the Battleborn beta.
The campaign is what I was mostly interested in because I’m not a multiplayer guy.”

Campaign or Multiplayer? That Is The Question

You get to choose from 25 characters (upon release), but only a handful are unlocked for the beta. I’m starting to become addicted to these betas. I participated in both Destiny betas, The Division beta 2️⃣ (my Let’s Play for Tom Clancy’s The Division will be posted soon), and now the Battleborn beta. The campaign (or story mode) is what I was mostly interested in because I’m not a multiplayer guy. I have nothing against multiplayer modes – I like the idea of the competitive team gameplay – but I just suck (at playing) in these modes. It doesn’t matter which multiplayer game I play; my lack of speed, skill, and precision shooting in these fast-paced multiplayers make it hard for me to enjoy the game. I get my ass handed to me every time because all of my opponents are light years ahead of me in terms of skill level. They’ve been playing competitively for years so I become the sitting duck. I’ll usually give multiplayer a try – Destiny and COD have awesome multiplayer modes – but my time there is short lived. The campaign is where I dish out the most damage! But the one thing that Battleborn’s multiplayer has going for it – which makes it so much more approachable for a lone ranger like myself – is it’s sheer number of interesting characters and (more importantly) their assortment of weapons. They’re not all ranged. You can choose a character like Rath 3️⃣ or Shayne who are melee based. They don’t shoot anything; they clobber and/or hack and slash. You don’t have to be an expert marksman. You can dish out damage by punching and hitting your opponent until they’re blue in the face! So what I realized is that your crosshair accuracy doesn’t have to be spot on. The game is a little more forgiving so as long as you aim in the general direction of the enemy you’ll be ok. Speed is still a factor of course and it doesn’t necessarily mean that you won’t do fine with a ranged character. I played with Thorn and did ok – mind you the matches were private and against bots – but the point is having melee based playable characters makes the MOBA experience a little more welcoming for inexperienced players. This is where I think that MOBAs shine.

Say Multiplayer Online Battle Arena 3x Fast!

Here is where I think that MOBAs don’t shine. Their poisonous online communities. I know for a fact that the world renowned DOTA 4️⃣ and League of Legends 5️⃣ both have the kind of communities that tend to keep newbs and filthy casuals away. I’ve dabbled in both and if you’re a lone ranger (like myself), without your own friends to form a team; then you are subject to the matchmaking system which works well as a utility, but not so much in the camaraderie sense. If you lack skill your teammates can be verbally abusive, but that isn’t the case with Battleborn…well not that I can attest. Again, I only played with bots, and not with other players. Whether or not Battleborn’s online community plays nice with one another still remains to be seen…I’ll eventually see how all of that unfolds. However, what I can tell you is that the MOBA portion of the game is surprisingly fun and it doesn’t take long to figure out what your objectives are. The modes and arenas are very engaging with lots of verticality and vantage points, and I’m in love with the world.

The Verdict

There’s a good time to be had with Battleborn. If I were to play this with two or three friends on my team I’m positive that I would enjoy it even more, but the lack of friends doesn’t deter me from enjoying this game. There’s a good story mode to get lost in and you can set up private matches (with bots) if you’re a little intimidated by gaming with others on-the-line 😉

All Rise For The Notable And Notorious S.H.I.E.L.D. (Can You Dig it?)

What does SHIELD Stand for Agent Ward?

“Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division.”
“And what does that mean to you?”
“It means that someone really wanted our initials to spell out SHIELD!”
– Agents Maria Hill and Grant Ward – S01E01 – Pilot

If You Don’t Know / Now You Know / Agents of SHIELD

This is a bit of a strange comparison, but bare with me on this one. The Notorious B.I.G. (aka Biggie Smalls) was, and arguably still is, my favourite hip hop artist of all time. Life After Death, the follow up double LP to Ready To Die, was an incredible offering to the hip hop music culture in the late 90’s, and was always within reach when I wanted to get into work mode back in my college years. When I wanted to get into the zone I would pop the first disc into my Sony Discman (remember those nifty things?) and immerse myself into the musical styling of Bed-Stuy’s Biggie, bobbing my head from one track to the next. I would take disc one out, right after the last track [I Got A Story To Tell], and then insert disc two so that I could continue the experience starting with the next track [Notorious Thugs]. Biggie was boss. But guess what? In the beginning I did not really like him. The late and great B.I.G. and I were not always friends.

My affinity towards Biggie was a slow progression. Do you see where I’m going with this? When I saw his first video, Juicy, on Rap City (boy do I feel old) I wasn’t that impressed. “It was aiight.” were the under zealous words that came out of my mouth. Little did I know that Biggie was about to blow my mind with Ready To Die. I wasn’t able to love and appreciate his music until I heard the entire album in all of it’s remarkable glory. I had to get past the first song to uncover the sheer brilliance that Biggie bestowed upon us, which is a lesson that is relevant when it comes to certain prime time television shows like the show that I’m about to focus on right now. And this is where I segue.

Too Hot For TV 🔥📺

Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD is the best action, sci-fi, drama on television right now and some of you out there don’t even know it because you’re not able to get past the first half of season one. Well I’m here to tell all of you to get over yourselves! There, I said it. It had to be said and I had to be the one to say it. Sorry, but it’s true. Not only is Agents of SHIELD the best ActSciDrama [that’s my new word] on TV; it’s the best show on TV period! You’re thinking to yourself, Ok, now he’s lost it. What the hell is this guy talking about? Not only does he suck at playing video games, he has bad taste in TV as well! Think what you will, but I stand by my words. Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD is the best show on television and possibly one of the best spin-offs to air in decades.

There Is Abundant Life After Death

It was inevitable. The show was going to pick up…and voila, it did. All you had to do was wait for it. Just like those of us who desperately wanted to see how Marvel was going to bring Coulson back to life for this debut TV series, we had to wait for it. I thought that all of the questions would be answered in the series premiere, but that was asking way too much. And, to be honest, I knew better. I had to wait for those answers just like everyone else. But I knew that the answers were coming, much like I knew that the show would come back with a vengeance after it slowed down to an unfortunate crawl. Which, and let’s face it, can happen more often then not with a lot of the shows on television these days. The trick however is to not let that deter you. You have to be steadfast and have faith that the show you hold with such high regard will bounce back. And just like Jessica Rabbit’s breasts on a bright and shiny day in Toon Town, Agent’s of SHIELD bounced back. Little did I know that the events that transpired in Captain America: The Winter Soldier had to cross over first in order for the momentum to pick back up, but nevertheless it has been an epic thrill ride ever since.

🎤 Your reign on the top was short like leprechauns…

…as I crush so-called willies, thugs, and rapper-dons / Get in that ass, quick fast, like Ramadan / It’s that rap phenomenon Don Dada, fuck Poppa / You got to call me Francis M.H. White / Intake light tokes, tote iron / Was told in shootouts, stay low and keep firin’ / Keep extra clips for extra shit / Who’s next to flip on that cat with that grip on rap / The most shady, (Tell Em!) Frankie baby / Ain’t no telling where I may be / May see me in D.C. at Howard Homecoming / With my man Capone, gumming, fucking something / You should know my steelo / Went from ten G’s for blow to thirty G’s a show / To orgies with hoes I never seen before / So, Jesus, get off the Notorious / Penis before I squeeze and bust / If the beef between us, we can settle it / With the chrome and metal shit / I make it hot like a kettle get / You’re delicate, you better get – who sent ya? / You still pedal shit, I got more rides than Great Adventure / Biggie (How are you gonna do it?)
The Notorious B.I.G. – Kick In The Door 🎶

Kick In The Door Wavin’ The Four-Four

If I had to choose an album that captured all of the action, emotion and narrative of Agents of SHIELD, Biggie’s Life After Death would be it. It’s like pairing a great cabernet blend with a juicy grilled steak or in this case, pairing a .44 caliber handgun with…whatever the hell you would pair a magnum with. My point is that I think Shield took everyone by surprise. Especially after Winter Soldier. I mean – I knew it was going to be good, but not this damn good. I’ll miss church on a Sunday before I miss the opening sequence for Shield on a Tuesday. That’s how good this [show] is. It trumps religion. The last two shows that had me by the balls like this were Buffy and Angel which last aired in 2004. Two brilliant pop culture phenomenons with one thing in common to Agents of SHIELD. They are all products, and creative strokes of genius, by the amazing writing ensemble known as the Whedons: Joss, Jed and wife Maurissa.

Truth be told I always thought that Angel was the better show compared to Buffy. Not by much, but what made the Angel spin-off truly great was that it was gritty and dark. Buffy toyed with some dark episodes – well a dark season really – but over all it was Angel that depicted the darker side of the Buffy universe. There’s no denying it; it’s our attraction to the dark side that keeps us tuned in and coming back for more. When TV shows walk on that fine line of doing what’s right versus doing what’s wrong; listening to that little devil on your shoulder because you feel you have no other choice. There is so much injustice and evil in these fictional worlds and it’s very infectious to see our, once on the straight and narrow, protagonists slip and transition into much grittier versions of themselves. This is the type of storytelling that I’m a huge sucker for and Agents of SHIELD (now in it’s third season and prepping for a spin-off) has started to dive into this territory.

But there’s so much more to what makes Agents of SHIELD an incredible show. First and foremost is the great writing. It’s clever and funny – not Buffy-funny – but it’s up there and can hold it’s own. Yes, season one did start to drag, but for good reason. The writers can’t take full responsibility for this because the decision to have events from the movies cross over wasn’t theirs. So send your nasty letters to the Marvel studio executives. Next, there’s a good variety of characters (both good and evil) and a fair amount of character development. Not to mention the fact that the world is constantly expanding. Almost every episode has the team travelling to different parts of the globe (and one spooky hell dimension so far) as they try to thwart evil and eliminate the threat. Shield does follow the typical monster-of-the-week formula, but the pay off is always great at the end because the A-story is so compelling. Then you have things like special effects (which are quite phenomenal if you ask me) and fight sequences. Some of the best, if not the best, I’ve seen on prime time TV. Marvel is sparing no expense on Shield and it shows, each and every week. If you have not been tuning in then I truly believe that you owe it to yourself to take a gander at Marvel’s made-for-TV team.

Meet The Dream Team

As the old saying goes: There’s no I in team. So no matter how good the visuals and the story are, it’s the super talented actors and actresses who shine and bring life to every episode. If there is one thing that I can absolutely say for sure, it’s that the show’s creators know how to bring a perfect cast together. Joss Whedon has been doing this for years and has a handful of incredible TV shows (not to mention movies) under his belt. Buffy [The Vampire Slayer], Angel, Firefly and Dollhouse – each show has their own remarkable cast that know how to act extremely well, and jell with one another perfectly. The Whedon crew know how to create these magical dream teams so it comes as no surprise that Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD is so damn good. Are you ready to meet a few of the notables? Good, but be warned because things are about to get spoilery!

Note: Spoilers Ahead 😮

Director Phil Coulson Played By Clark Gregg 1️⃣

Pronounced dead after being impaled by Loki’s scepter (in the first Avengers movie), Agent Phil Coulson was mysteriously brought back to life and put back into the field. Only a select few knew about the measures taken to bring him back. Even Phil himself had no memory of what had happened, but he had an inkling that something wasn’t right. After some inexplicable side effects Phil had to take matters into his own hands and get some answers which ultimately leads to him facing some demons that no one should ever have to face. That’s all I’ll say about this. After events unfold [Captain America: Winter Soldier] Phil is appointed the new director of SHIELD by Nick Fury (who was also pronounced dead) and is inundated with the task to rebuild SHIELD. And that’s all I’ll say about that.

Agent Melinda May Played By Ming-Na Wen 2️⃣

She’s always very calm and collected, but don’t let that fool you because Agent Melinda May is a lethal weapon [There’s a reason she’s referred to as the Cavalry] and is deadly as they come. May and Phil have history working in the field together – she always has his back – which has earned her the privilege of becoming his right hand. When Phil needs a second opinion she’s usually his go to because May is the voice of pragmatism. Her opinion counts and when it comes time to get the job done May is always there for Phil and the rest of the team. But there’s more to her than meets the eye. May is not without her hang-ups; she’s emotionally scarred, can hold a grudge like nobody’s business, and as intelligent as she is, she doesn’t always make the right decision.

Daisy Johnson aka Quake Played By Chloe Bennet 3️⃣

Daisy, formerly known as Skye, is your typical – the truth is out there – genius-level “hacktivist” turned super hero. She’s the first SHIELD agent (so far that we know of) to possess super powers which manifested after being exposed to the Terrigen Mist. Daisy is an Inhuman – just like her mother Jiaying who she never knew growing up, and believed to be dead all of this time – and has the ability to generate powerful waves of vibration which can produce effects resembling earthquakes (hence the name Quake). She is definitely the glue that holds the team together, and wears her heart on her sleeve; which is why the team loves and values her as much as they do, especially Phil. Before Phil became the director (and before Daisy got her powers) he was very protective of Daisy and formed a father/daughter kinship with her, which was very much frowned upon by Daisy’s estranged, “Jekyll and Hyde” monster of a father, Cal. But no matter what Daisy knows how to stay focused and grows stronger every day with her new found abilities.

Agent Jemma Simmons Played By Elizabeth Henstridge 4️⃣

One of the youngest, and arguably the smartest on the team, Jemma Simmons is the British girl next door with more than two PhDs. Her best friend and SHIELD colleague, Fitz, once claimed that she’s so smart because she loves homework more than life itself. That’s Jemma in a nut shell; a super bright bio-chemist who graduated three years early from the SHIELD academy, and well on her way to becoming a rising star in SHIELD’s research division. Her close connection with Fitz has earned them both the nickname Fitz-Simmons, and rightfully so seeing how the two lab geeks are inseparable. But no matter how many specialized weapons (like the Night-Night Gun) they craft together these two star-crossed agents just can’t seem to take their relationship to the next level. After Fitz finally mustered up the courage to ask Jemma out, she was unexpectedly swallowed up into an alien dimension where she spent the next six months with two unknowns. A NASA astronaut named Will – long story – and an evil parasitic Inhuman with incredible power – an even longer story.

Agent Leo Fitz Played By Iain De Caestecker 5️⃣

SHIELD’s genius-level engineer has much in common with his brilliant lab partner, and love interest, Jemma. They both graduated from the academy early, they both dress alike, and they both were hand-picked to be on Phil Coulson’s team. But the one thing about Fitz is that he’s always eager to help, even if it means stepping into the field and into harms way. This Scottish native is not afraid to take one for the team, and when it comes to Jemma, no force on earth (or off) will keep him away from her. Next to Jemma, the only other relationship that Fitz holds dear is his friendship with Agent Grant Ward. That is until the events of Winter Soldier came to pass and the truth about Ward was uncovered. The fall of SHIELD took everyone by surprise, but none more than Fitz who found it impossible to believe that his trusted friend, and SHIELD agent, Ward could have anything to do with HYDRA’s uprising. The final nail in that coffin was when Ward trapped both Fitz and Simmons in a pod and dropped them into the Atlantic Ocean.

Honourable Mentions: Hunter And Bobbi 👏

Agent Bobbi Morse Played By Adrianne Palicki 6️⃣

One of the most elite agents by far, Barbara “Bobbi” Morse – aka Mockingbird – is an expert biologist who can take down just about any foe with her trusted battle staves. She was first introduced as HYDRA’s Chief of Security, but little did the enemy organization know that Bobbi was an undercover agent sent by SHIELD as a security measure to protect Jemma Simmons – who was on a undercover mission of her own. Bobbi’s loyalty to SHIELD is unwavering: she’s a remarkable soldier (she can take a bullet and won’t crack under pressure – even when being tortured) and a team player. But as good as her track record is, there’s one teammate [her ex-husband Hunter] who thinks of her as a “demonic hell-beast”. Certain agency secrets kept by Bobbi put the two at odds and ultimately lead to their divorce, but fate brought the two back together – this time to help SHIELD turn the tide against HYDRA – giving Hunter and Bobbi a second chance at their relationship.

Agent Lance Hunter Played By Nick Blood 7️⃣

The very brash and British – quick-to-go-rogue – Lance Hunter is a force to be reckoned with. The former British soldier, turned mercenary, joined SHIELD based on the recommendation of his ex-wife Bobbi. Things were looking pretty good for Hunter up until the moment Bobbi walked into SHIELD’s new base of operations, revealing to Hunter that she has been a part of his new-found team this whole time. This came as a huge surprise for Hunter and his knee-jerk reaction wasn’t the warmest it could have been. As awkward as the situation was Hunter and Bobbi assured Coulson and the rest of the team that working together wouldn’t be an issue – and it wasn’t…not really. Missions were never jeopardized, but the team had to suffer through countless arguments and witness the fallout of their on again/ off again love life. But for better or for worse, Hunter and Bobbi pull through [with their relationship and everything that HYDRA throws at them] proving that they still actually love each other and that they are in it for the long haul.

In fact this dynamic duo is so compelling that the studio [ABC] has ordered a pilot for their very own spin-off series titled Marvel’s Most Wanted. Actors Nick Blood and Adrianne Palicki are no longer full-time members of the Agents of SHIELD cast, but will be reprising their roles as Hunter and Bobbi in their new, anticipated spin-off. Congratulations Nick and Ade! I hope that the network puts together an amazing cast and crew for the both of you to work with, and I hope that the show runs for a TV lifetime.

Last, But Certainly Not Least…

Grant Ward Played By Brett Dalton 8️⃣

Former agent Grant Ward is easily the most villainous antagonist that SHIELD has ever encountered. He was recruited and trained by The Clairvoyant – an enemy of SHIELD who was believed to have psychic abilities, but it was later revealed that he was just a high-level SHIELD agent named John Garrett with a huge chip on his shoulder. John was like a father figure to Ward and used this to manipulate him. Under the leadership of John, Ward took up the creed of HYDRA and later infiltrated SHIELD, going deep undercover as a highly-skilled agent for several years. He eventually got assigned to Phil Coulson’s team and quickly became an incredible asset and trusted friend. But the uprising of HYDRA eventually led to the capture of John Garrett who escaped later with the help of Ward, thus revealing where his true loyalty lies. Many innocent agents died at the hands of Ward which quickly catapulted him to the top of SHIELD’s most wanted list. Coulson, Skye and Fitz took his betrayal the hardest, especially Skye since Ward was her Supervising Officer and potential love interest. After SHIELD fell Ward still had a deep admiration and fondness for Skye, but it was too late. The damage was already done and the situation escalated very quickly, making it impossible for any kind of reconciliation. After more collateral damage, and with nothing left to lose, Ward takes it upon himself to rebuild HYDRA, but is met with hostility from HYDRA’s last remaining leaders: Gideon Malick. The two eventually form an alliance which ultimately leads to an outcome for Ward that both SHIELD and HYDRA could have never predicted.


Are you still here? Go watch Agents of SHIELD already. Seriously…stop surfing the net and get going. There’s three seasons – roughly 22 episodes per – so you better get started. I haven’t given all of the juicy details away. SHIELD has lots for you to discover! 😎

So I Finally Finished Advanced Warfare – My First Call Of Duty Game 😁

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Who Knew A Call Of Duty game Could Be This Good?

How many Call of Duty games are there exactly? Too many to name that’s for sure, but over the years you’d think that I would have played at least one of the previous games. No, not in my case. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is, in fact, my first Call of Duty game and you know what? I enjoyed every minute of it.

The first person shooter genre is one of my favourite genres to play. Coded Arms 1️⃣ (on PSP) and Crysis 2️⃣ (on PS3) are the two games that got me hooked into first person shooting. There’s just something that feels good about playing from this field of view with offensively loud and destructive automatic weapons in your in-game hands. I’ve heard numerous times, from people of gaming authority and friends, that Call of Duty sets the benchmark for first person shooting; and after finishing this installment I can certainly see why. Nothing against Battlefield 3️⃣ – I’ve never played it [Battlefield] – but Call of Duty (Advanced Warfare to be specific) is fun, engaging and delivers on the Call of Duty (story mode) promise: A six to seven hour action movie type of game with lots of guns to boot…or should I say shoot?

Slow And Steady Wins The Race…Or Something […]

So this is embarrassing. This is the first game that I’ve finished on the PS4 – Transformers: Devastation 4️⃣ would have been the first, but the final boss battle is not as easy as I’d like it to be – but it should not have been. I have a few other PS4 titles that came out before Advanced Warfare which, in actuality, should have been finished beforehand. But I’m not like the average gamer nor is there any method to my madness. The Universe wanted it this way (for me to finish Call of Duty first) so who am I to argue. My goal is to get through my backlog and finish all of my PS3 and PS4 games. That is my intention no matter how long it takes.

Last year I wrote a belated piece about the late Paul Walker and why I thought he would have loved Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. If you haven’t read it you can read it here. Call of Duty: Black Ops was actually Paul Walker’s favourite game, but at the time of my post the new Black Ops had not been released. Rest assured that I will be posting a Black Ops III 5️⃣ Let’s Play in the future (when I eventually get the game) as a proper tribute to my Fast and Furious friend. But I digress. Now I’m going to tell you why The Gaming Worker loved Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare!

It’s Advanced, But It’s Not Rocket Science

As I mentioned earlier, Advanced Warfare – and probably all Call of Duty games for that matter – plays like a six to seven hour action movie. It’s a short campaign (because people really play these types of games for the multiplayer modes) but what it lacks in length, it makes up for with a solid and fun shooting experience. There’s a lot of follow-the-leader moments throughout the story mode which has you tagging along friendlies, but I feel like this helps immerse you into the story. Especially since Advanced Warfare has you playing as the new recruit Mitchell (voiced by non other than Troy Baker 6️⃣). It makes sense that you don’t always know your way around and have to play second fiddle to someone else. But this isn’t the only hook. Not by a long shot (no pun intended). The campaign is filled with enormous and breath-taking set pieces and quick-time events that absolutely mesmerize you.

Other take-aways from the game are that Advance Warfare has a pretty darn good story. It’s not The Last Of Us 7️⃣ – another Let’s Play that I have to do, I know – but it still has a decent narrative for a world-at-war, futuristic game. Not to mention the excellent graphics and amazing cutscenes. I think that Diablo III 8️⃣ has some of the most, if not the most, amazing cutscenes in the industry…Advanced Warfare could arguable be even better. I could elaborate on this further, but I don’t want this to be too long-winded and technical. There are other reviews that you can find that do that, and a lot better than I could ever do. So I think I’ve said enough and I’ll let my Let’s Plays do the rest of the talking.

There were so many missions that I loved and enjoyed – except for the, most times hard to maneuver, air combat  missions – but I decided to showcase the two that really stood out to me. The first Let’s Play starts off with me, again as Mitchell, flying in the air (like Iron Man) and trying to take down an airplane to retrieve cargo. The second (which was much more challenging because it was a stealth mission) has me trying to cross enemy lines undetected in my cloak-enabled exo suit. I know right. What’s an exo suit and where can I get one?!

Please click on the images below to watch the videos. Enjoy 😀