| Hayley Tsukayama |
A LOOK at video games for the older gamer in your life:
(PlayStation 4 and Xbox One)
Get it: For something you can play for hours – or just a few minutes
Skip it: If your Internet connection isn’t so good
Whether you’re interested in a marathon session or just a short one to detox after a long day, “Destiny” has got the mission for you.
This online multiplayer game is designed for all kinds of play, whether you want to wander lonely or storm Mars with your best buds.
The game, set in a post-apocalyptic world where you fight the forces of darkness, offers essentially free rein to explore and enjoy.
No matter how you play, you’ll be able to engage with other players from around the world, giving the game a nice community feel.
Still, there is a flip side: All the online play means that “Destiny” is frustrating if you don’t have a reliable Internet connection.
Get it: If you like games with a little quirk
Skip it: If frenetic isn’t your preferred pace
“Sunset Overdrive” is a game with style – and a lot of it.
If you had to describe this game in two words, they might be “neon” and “explosions”.
But since we have more room, we can go on to describe how this new title from Insomniac Games offers a big ol’ dose of crazy fun.
Set in a world where an energy drink has turned much of the world into monsters, the game is infused with a sort of goofy joy that makes just exploring the world an adventure.
It’s not a perfect hit.
The fighting can get a little repetitive, and, yes, occasionally the in-your-face humour wears thin. Overall, it’s a nice new world you’ll be happy to revisit.
Civilization: Beyond Earth (PC)
Get it: If you like the long game
Skip it: If you don’t have a lot of time to devote to playing
If we found out tomorrow that we’d have to leave planet Earth, how would you choose to remake humanity?
That’s the driving question behind “Civilization: Beyond Earth”, which puts players in the shoes of human settlers on a far-off planet.
The game, an evolution of the long-running historical strategy “Civilization” series, asks players not only to build a colony but also to make tough philosophical decisions about how to organise a society.
The game lets you do that in any number of ways, including choosing how to deal with native species, making tough research decisions and playing diplomat with other settlers.
The game is complex and occasionally slow, but it should appeal to the control freak in us all. Just make sure you’ve got lots of time to play.
Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare
(Xbox One and PlayStation 4)
Get it: For a serious, well-paced and thoughtful shooter
Skip it: If you prefer lighter fare
The “Call of Duty” mega-franchise had started to show its age a bit.
Even devoted fans were worrying that it was out of new tricks.
With “Advanced Warfare”, however, Activision showed that it still has some spark, offering a game that’s fun to play and interesting to think about, too.
The game drops players in a not-too-distant future where warfare is the province of powerful private companies in control of high-tech soldiers in exoskeletons.
As for the game itself, this is probably the fastest-paced instalment we’ve seen in years, with an interactive environment full of pleasant surprises.
Kevin Spacey – yes, that Kevin Spacey – caps it off with a great performance as a bad guy that you secretly love, all amid well-paced, exciting gameplay.
Grand Theft Auto V
(Rerelease for new consoles Xbox One and PlayStation 4)
Get it: If you’ve loved the previous GTA games
Skip it: If you’re squeamish about digital violence
Grand Theft Auto V arrived in 2013, but an update for the latest consoles has hit – in a big way – just in time for the holiday season.
It offers a first-person view that changes the game, bringing players even closer to the carjacking, shooting and entirely scandalous action.
Rockstar Games has made a good-looking game even better on the new consoles, a particular plus for the expansive world the studio created for this title.
Grand Theft Auto V is still a GTA game, though, and there’s a reason it earned its “Mature” rating (for players 17 and up).
Without spoiling anything, there’s a lot here that’s in no way suitable for children – and may make adults squeamish, too.