Posted on May 18th 2021 at 08:00:00 AM by (GrayGhost81)
Posted under gaming, review

Tomb Raider: Legend - The Legend Trilogy is a bit of a blind spot for me, and by that I mean I never played the original CORE developed series and skipped right to Crystal Dynamics' second reboot of the series known as Tomb Raider 2013. The team's first reboot of the franchise was actually in 2006 with Legend, which is the only Tomb Raider game on the original XBOX. This is one of my favorite games that I have played in a long time. Crystal Dynamics took what was great about the original series but made it more accessible to more casual players such as myself. The game is somewhat linear but there are many opportunities to explore and find collectibles. The graphics look great, even though I wouldn't necessarily recommend playing this particular version as it is available on more modern consoles. Oddly enough one of my favorite things about this game were its ease of use features. For example the time from booting up the game to jumping back into your game is mere seconds. Also, the game checkpoints constantly, which is a strong contrast to the next game I'm going to talk about.

007: Agent Under Fire - It was quite strange to play this game in 2021 because it has been a while since I played a first-person shooter from this long ago. You play as the legendary spy in a goofy story original to this game. The default controls are very disorienting, with the right stick controlling strafe and looking up and down. Believe it or not, I got about halfway through the game before I realized I could change the controls to a more modern layout. The game is broken up into missions and not all of them are in first-person. There are a few driving levels and the second one of these was where one of the game's most frustrating traits reared its head; there are very few mid-mission checkpoints in the game, and where there are, you only have three lives which is lost will force you to start the mission from the beginning. Straight playthroughs of this game can take just about four hours but a lot of time was spent redoing missions where I got killed by the last enemy. Very frustrating but in the end I'm glad I played the game anyway. It only took me a few days to get through and it was cool to go back to what cutting edge, triple-A games were like in 2001.

25 to Life - Apparently in the wake of Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas there followed a spate of 'gangsta' themed games, and this was one of them. It is more focused on XBOX live multiplayer but contains a very short single-player campaign. Gameplay is third-person shooting very similar toe Max Payne. If this game is not in your collection, I would not recommend seeking it out. With XBOX live on the system being long gone, the single player campaign is not worth whatever the price of admission is. Probably the best thing about the game is the licensed soundtrack, which is presented in game blaring out of boomboxes in the environment which get louder when you get closer. That is a cool touch, but again does not make the game worth playing. 

AirForce Delta Storm - There are no Ace Combat games on the original XBOX, but this is a great imitation. In fact, given a quick glance of a screenshot of this game, you would be forgiven if at first you thought you were looking at an Ace Combat title. If you love that feeling of locking on to an enemy and firing off homing missiles over and over again, this is the game for you on this console. One of the things that makes it unique is the mission structure. In between main missions there are sub-missions that must be completed to clear the map and progress. The sub-missions may reset after a certain number of moves depending on what type they are. The good thing is they usually consist of taking out a single target so doing them repeatedly doesn't get too tedious. I thoroughly enjoyed this game and it is clearly the next best thing to an Ace Combat game on the XBOX.

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Aside from getting a Game Boy Advance as my next platform. I'm also considering getting another Xbox, I had some fun on there back in the day.

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