Valorant Beta Is Still Fun A Week Later

about X hours ago from
Valorant Beta Is Still Fun A Week Later

Check out my previous impressions for a sense of how I felt about Valorant when we first got a chance to play Riot’s 5v5 competitive tactical shooter. 

A week later, I’m still having a blast discovering how to get the most out of abilities, barking out the names of locations on maps that I’ve now memorized to teammates, and trying to make shotguns a thing. Valorant seems to have a really great groundwork to build on, and I guess that foundation is what we’ll be watching closely when we move into the summer launch window. Sure, the stuff that’s there is fluid, fun, and “esports ready” out of the gate, but there are a number of aspects that are going to be critical to keep an eye on.

First: modes! Let’s face it. Not everyone that plays Valorant is MLG ready, and not everyone is going to want to play competitive bomb-planting wars 24/7. Asking for something like a team deathmatch is probably too much and too bizarre of a choice for a game like this that’s so heavily focused in tactical coordination, but perhaps there are other options to draw more casual players in without irritating the more hardcore base – something like co-op would do the job nicely, and let players that don’t always want a nail-biter match with twitch corner-peeking and popping have some rest and relaxation.

Game Informer’s Top Shelter-In-Place PlayStation 4 Games

about X hours ago from
Game Informer’s Top Shelter-In-Place PlayStation 4 Games

Even with a new generation of games on the horizon, PlayStation 4 has plenty of life let in it with The Last of Us Part II and Ghost of Tsushima on the way in the future. Whether you're an old fan or a new adopter, the Game Informer crew has rounded up a variety of games for you to play during this lockdown. Most of these games serve up escapism that should help keep your mind off of the real world, but not all of them. A couple of entries deal with contagions and separation. As we are learning, board games like Pandemic are selling out, and movies like Contagion are being streamed more. Some people want to live in the moment, even in their gaming.

No matter what path you take, we hope these games deliver plenty of entertainment. Stay safe, and just know we are all one day closer to getting through this. If you don’t have a PlayStation 4, we have created similar lists for Xbox One and Switch.

As always, we'd love for you to join in on the conversation with your own personal picks in the comments section below. We'll be back next week with a list of PC games to play during the lockdown.

Game Informer’s Top Shelter-In-Place PlayStation 4 Games

about X hours ago from
Game Informer’s Top Shelter-In-Place PlayStation 4 Games

Even with a new generation of games on the horizon, PlayStation 4 has plenty of life let in it with The Last of Us Part II and Ghost of Tsushima on the way in the future. Whether you're an old fan or a new adopter, the Game Informer crew has rounded up a variety of games for you to play during this lockdown. Most of these games serve up escapism that should help keep your mind off of the real world, but not all of them. A couple of entries deal with contagions and separation. As we are learning, board games like Pandemic are selling out, and movies like Contagion are being streamed more. Some people want to live in the moment, even in their gaming.

No matter what path you take, we hope these games deliver plenty of entertainment. Stay safe, and just know we are all one day closer to getting through this. If you don’t have a PlayStation 4, we have created similar lists for Xbox One and Switch.

As always, we'd love for you to join in on the conversation with your own personal picks in the comments section below. We'll be back next week with a list of PC games to play during the lockdown.

TurboGrafx-16 Mini Review

about X hours ago from
TurboGrafx-16 Mini Review

NEC’s swing at entering the console market may not have connected with Western audiences, but the TurboGrafx-16 remains an interesting relic of the late ‘80s. Despite beating the Genesis to market in Japan, being the first system with a CD-ROM attachment, and having a portable counterpart that played console software, the TurboGrafx-16 ended up an also-ran in the 16-bit battle. And that’s a shame, really. It was home to some great software, with an enviable lineup of arcade shooters and standouts like Castlevania: Rondo of Blood and the Bonk series. Players who never got a chance to play the system now have a great option with the release of the TurboGrafx-16 Mini, a downsized version of the console with a large library of retro games.

TurboGrafx-16 Mini Review

about X hours ago from
TurboGrafx-16 Mini Review

NEC’s swing at entering the console market may not have connected with Western audiences, but the TurboGrafx-16 remains an interesting relic of the late ‘80s. Despite beating the Genesis to market in Japan, being the first system with a CD-ROM attachment, and having a portable counterpart that played console software, the TurboGrafx-16 ended up an also-ran in the 16-bit battle. And that’s a shame, really. It was home to some great software, with an enviable lineup of arcade shooters and standouts like Castlevania: Rondo of Blood and the Bonk series. Players who never got a chance to play the system now have a great option with the release of the TurboGrafx-16 Mini, a downsized version of the console with a large library of retro games.

The Pandemic Is Changing My Gaming Habits And Tastes

about X hours ago from
The Pandemic Is Changing My Gaming Habits And Tastes

The pandemic is constantly on my mind. It's like a passenger that clings to almost every thought, meal I make, and interaction I have with my daughter. Outside of getting ready for bed, nearly all of our daily routines have been upended by the threat of the virus. I can't bring her to school, play with her on the playground, take her out to eat, go see a movie, or do most of the things we used to. We're stuck in the house, longing to return to the life we once had. Even from this safe place, normal doesn't necessarily feel like normal. Everything feels off. That even goes for video games. Some that I adore have lost their flavor.

Being a single dad in this uncertain time has been challenging. It makes me realize Naughty Dog didn't quite nail the dynamic between Joel and Ellie in The Last of Us. Given the tantrum my daughter had over the spaghetti I made for dinner last night instead of the requested lasagna, Last of Us needed more pointless bickering between two people who have spent way too much time together.

The Pandemic Is Changing My Gaming Habits And Tastes

about X hours ago from
The Pandemic Is Changing My Gaming Habits And Tastes

The pandemic is constantly on my mind. It's like a passenger that clings to almost every thought, meal I make, and interaction I have with my daughter. Outside of getting ready for bed, nearly all of our daily routines have been upended by the threat of the virus. I can't bring her to school, play with her on the playground, take her out to eat, go see a movie, or do most of the things we used to. We're stuck in the house, longing to return to the life we once had. Even from this safe place, normal doesn't necessarily feel like normal. Everything feels off. That even goes for video games. Some that I adore have lost their flavor.

Being a single dad in this uncertain time has been challenging. It makes me realize Naughty Dog didn't quite nail the dynamic between Joel and Ellie in The Last of Us. Given the tantrum my daughter had over the spaghetti I made for dinner last night instead of the requested lasagna, Last of Us needed more pointless bickering between two people who have spent way too much time together.

Valorant First Impressions

about X hours ago from
Valorant First Impressions

It’s important for perspective that you know I’m not a pro player or a gaming god – my take on Valorant so far may be vastly different from the high-tier analysis that you may find from those sources out there on the internet. That said, I did spend a significant amount of time playing Counter-Strike at a LAN center, which happens to be highly relevant toward my enjoyment of Valorant.

Why? Because Valorant has real roots in Counter-Strike, much of the shooting, features, mechanics, weapons, and more have incredibly similar counterparts. If Valorant and CS are cakes, the core recipe is essentially the same – but the sprinkles on top of the Valorant cake are a different color. The bright neon confectionery may set Valorant up to take over the tactical shooter space as it moves into open beta and beyond.

If you know CS guns, you know Valorant guns. If you know that you can’t run around spraying and praying like a Call of Duty shoothouse match, and that you need to stop moving to get a clean shot, you know Valorant. You have to watch those footsteps too, as that auditory clue is encounter-defining.

Valorant First Impressions

about X hours ago from
Valorant First Impressions

It’s important for perspective that you know I’m not a pro player or a gaming god – my take on Valorant so far may be vastly different from the high-tier analysis that you may find from those sources out there on the internet. That said, I did spend a significant amount of time playing Counter-Strike at a LAN center, which happens to be highly relevant toward my enjoyment of Valorant.

Why? Because Valorant has real roots in Counter-Strike, much of the shooting, features, mechanics, weapons, and more have incredibly similar counterparts. If Valorant and CS are cakes, the core recipe is essentially the same – but the sprinkles on top of the Valorant cake are a different color. The bright neon confectionery may set Valorant up to take over the tactical shooter space as it moves into open beta and beyond.

If you know CS guns, you know Valorant guns. If you know that you can’t run around spraying and praying like a Call of Duty shoothouse match, and that you need to stop moving to get a clean shot, you know Valorant. You have to watch those footsteps too, as that auditory clue is encounter-defining.

Game Informer’s Top Shelter-In-Place Xbox One Games

about X hours ago from
Game Informer’s Top Shelter-In-Place Xbox One Games

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, uncertainty hangs over the new release calendar as well as the forthcoming generation of hardware. The Last of Us Part II has been delayed indefinitely and we still don’t have dates for PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. Odds are we won’t hear when these highly anticipated gaming avenues will arrive until the world is right again. In the meantime, most of us are self-quarantining, and games are a great way to keep us indoors and entertained.

Last week, the Game Informer staff came together with nearly a dozen game suggestions for Switch, and today we have assembled a list that recommends just as many for Xbox One. Whether you have owned an Xbox One since launch or just picked one up to help pass the time during your shelter-in-place, these games are all fantastic options and stand on their own in unique ways.

As always, we want to hear what games you would recommend people should play during the pandemic in the comments section below. We hope you are all healthy and safe, and that these lists help deliver a degree of fun over the new couple of months.