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Thought I’d post something a bit different, I usually use this site as a quick reference point for fixes I find in regards to my day job, but having taken part in a few beta games over the past week it’s the first time in a looooong time I’m actually excited over a number of game releases coming up – specifically multiplayer first person shooters.

A bit of background (the boring bit) – I started gaming way back in the late 80’s with classics like Pac-Man, Mario and Donkey Kong (with a lot of other Sega/Atari/NES/C64 titles in-between). When games like Wolfenstein and Doom came about, that was it – I never saw the light of day again. Then came the Quakes and Unreals that began to introduce multi-player aspects – highly competitive, fast paced, accuracy based shoot-em ups had now been born! If the game let you shoot something, I’ve played it, but Call of Duty 2 was probably the last FPS multi-player game that I really enjoyed (by enjoyed I mean spent way too many hours with friends in public’s or clan matches).

Along came World of Warcraft and…well…8 odd years later, with a level 100 in every class, I rarely touch FPS games any more. In all fairness this wasn’t purely down to my Warcraft gaming, as the majority of FPS games after Call of Duty 2 I found to be very short lived. With the exception of Counterstrike: Global Offensive, the Call of Duty ‘Franchise’ and the Battlefield titles have just turned in to yearly money spinners – with the rise of console gaming I’d say these really put FPS games in to the spotlight yet lost a lot of the core strengths from the early days. Some have had interesting concepts, game-play ideas or absolutely incredible graphics, and maybe it’s more nostalgia on my part but with the introduction of overpowered perks or various unlocks I just didn’t enjoy them enough to put the hours in to them. Not to mention an often imbalanced array of weaponry or vehicles just making it more frustrating – getting a head-shot with a high-powered sniper rifle from half way across the map that ‘tickles’ the opponent, who in turn responds with a quick assault rifle burst that kills you got a little tedious (and don’t get me started on DLC content over good old community drive content).

Anyway, I could ramble on for ages in regards to old school gaming, the point though is that after a good 5+ years of really not having much interest in FPS games at all there’s now a handful of titles I can’t wait for!

Ghost In The Shell: First Assault

This game was amazing, as a free-to-play title the closed beta was insanely smooth. As a massive Ghost in the Shell fan it was an awesome mix of battlefield ‘level up’ mechanics that didn’t feel tedious or over powered, and with smaller close quarter maps it was very fast-paced. Definitely one to watch out for.

Unreal Tournament

It’s back! Unreal Tournament in all its glory, revamped with an insanely beautiful graphics engine. Recently spent a weekend playing this Alpha with some friends and I think we were all pretty impressed with it – especially given it’s an Alpha! A reinvention of the original UT – can’t complain about that one bit. Instagib mode and it’s what FPS is all about.

Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Siege

I loved the earlier Rainbow Six titles – especially Rogue Spear. Having spent hours upon hours on Rogue Spear taking out terrorists repeatedly to get 100% perfection I can’t wait till Siege is released. I played Siege (albeit briefly) during the beta weekend and it’s tactical options are superb. I was way too tired to really get to grips with it but you really have to think tactically using all the tools at your disposal.

Star Wars: Battlefront

It’s HERE!!! With all the build up for the new Star Wars film due soon Battlefront has certainly picked the perfect time for release. The beta weekend has begun and I’ve managed to get a good few hours on it so far. Graphically this is incredible, Hoth looks fantastic and becomes so immersive that for any Star Wars fan it’s hard to describe how awesome it really is. I hadn’t kept tabs on the game before the beta as ultimately it’s an EA title from the Battlefield franchise, even after briefly playing the beta I’m still of two minds. It’s definitely got the Battlefield FPS feel – which I can’t say I personally enjoy, but with the Star Wars twist my inner geek is so so happy. Definitely some bugs as I’ve fallen through the map quite a bit but so far everything else appears to have worked well. Looking forward to spending the weekend getting some more time on this one to decide on whether it’s a pre-order or not.