Roundup number cube root of 27. I realise these are long so I'm adding sub headings so basically if you don't wanna read the entire length of this post, feel free to just read the sections you might care about ^_^ I just prefer one uber roundup as to making a ton of smaller game posts. That said, onto the games..In todays roundup we have Shadow Complex, Fallout 3 WET, Shaiya and a paragraph for the other things I've done that I don't feel deserve a paragraph of their own. As a sidenote, welcome to the epic numbers of new followers that just signed up to the site, and I encourage you to comment and discuss on whatever you want, or mail me if you'd like help with something. This site prides itself in it's community.
SHADOW COMPLEX (again..)
I know I already talked about Shadow Complex but I've played it even more since then. I completed it with 100% of the items without using a guide, which at no point felt like a grind to me, literally shocking. Generally I find collecting the most mundane task of all games, especially when the items don't reward you at all. Best example, GTA4, shooting pigeons. It took me several hours and a guide to shoot 200 pigeons, at no point was that fun and the only thing I got out of it was 20 achievement points and a step closer to 100% in that game. Thankfully Shadow Complex is different. I was really expecting it to be me running around blindly, getting increasingly frustrated as I search for a few obscurely hid items that nobody in their right mind could find, but the game was designed too well for that. Don't get me wrong, the items still weren't always easy to get to, but at the same time it didn't expect me to scour the large map over and over again til I happened to stumble upon a secret vent whilst randomly shooting everything to see if anything was hidden. I see now that levelling your character isn't just pointless, the things it unlocks really do help, and reward you for playing the game. Slight spoiler I guess, so, forewarned, but at a certain experience level the map will actually fully unlock so you can see rooms you've been in that have items you missed, and also rooms you just missed completely which you will have to go explore before the map tells you if there's an item in it. Speaking of helpful rewards, the items you get are all upgrades to your players equipment, so there's obvious rewards for collecting them as well as a few achievement points and a feeling of relief for all us OCD gamers.
I'm currently replaying the game on insane so I can level up some more,and so it adds a new level of challenge to the game. Combat is much harder this time around, having to retry certain bits a couple of times, but this is insane difficulty so I can hardly complain at that. For the first time in a while I really want more content for a game I just beat, but I don't want overpriced DLC, I want a proper sequel, or even just the same story with a different map. Exploring is actually fun, and if I had any kind of Nintendo system in my house I'd be tempted to try the Metroid series, from what I've seen the similarities between the two games are neither subtle or infrequent :P
Not a new game for me, but I really missed the appeal of it when I played it, but there's so much love for this game on this I felt obliged to give it a second chance. Honestly, when I first played this game, my official review was 'meh'. As people read this I can actually feel the hate. I'm sorry okay? I really tried to love it as much as you, HOWEVER, all hope is not lost. I understood the game a lot more as I was playing it again recently, and I'm officially blaming Microsoft for ruining the game for me. All the achievements for it are pretty much do so and so a quest, so I was approaching it like you would approach a FPS. I would drop in, do what I'm told as quickly as I can, win the game, marinate in the juicy applause until the feeling of success fully absorbed, and then place myself in the oven until I'm tender yet crispy. This good Sir (or Madam, I know there's a few of you out there) is wrong, incorrect, the official opposite of the right way to play this game. Do.Not.Do.This. Achievements will ruin this game for you. It's not meant to be a race from start to finish, it's meant to be a role playing game, where the idea is, surprisingly, you play the role of someone..in the game. I know you're not dumb, and that you're capable of reading the genre off the back of the box and interpreting the term RPG, but I really mean it. I've played other RPGs and the race from start to finish approach seemed to work fine, but Fallout 3 is so not that game. It's about you wandering around in a vast world, having random encounters with enemies, discovering new places for the thrill of exploring, and when you actually do quests, it's still not a race. Don't just go for the objectives, look around more, read everything, pretty much every place has it's own story, sometimes it's obviously wrote down on a computer and other times the clues are all there in visual form, you just have to take the time to piece things together. Even if you're not at a quest location, I bet if you look hard enough there is a story here too. The game has it's own story, but don't let it stop you from going out and making it your own. I realise now the error of my ways, and wonder what I would have thought if I had played it through like this from the start, but now it's too late.... or is it?
The game plays differently depending on your character, so, I think I might go back to the start and forget my morals, and be eeeeeevil. Not retardedly evil, I'll just die all the time and all the NPC's will be dead. I'm gonna be behind the scenes evil, silver tongue, say you're going to help someone and kill the bad guys, then when you win a speech challenge and they give you a gun to aid you, shoot them with it, go back to the bad guys, and rejoice that you've done a truly terrible thing. I also look forward to what the radio will have to say about my less than angelic ways. So I guess this isn't so much a review as a preview. Fallout 3, I was doing it wrong. Time to try again. Oh, and if any of you have the option, I suggest getting it for PC. The mods you can get really look like they add to the game, assuming you play it right, and there's no gamerscore to worry about. There may be Games For Windows achievements actually, I don't remember, but I heard that died anyway. Something about PC gamers refusing to pay for something dumb like that when so much is available for free on pc (we love you valve) anyway.
Oh but people, don't get me wrong, I still don't see this game through rose tinted sunglasses. I maintain that combat doesn't feel quite right sometimes, and that after a while the post apocalyptic map really does get tiresome. Especially the train-stations, obviously all train-stations look alike but please don't force me to walk through them to get to places. Also there's too much dialogue I think, a lot of characters just don't have a personality, and talking to them is kind of like eating bread. It's filling, and it's undoubtedly nice for a while, but after a while you think no, no more bread please, won't somebody please buy me some condiments or meat to put in the empty space that lies in the middle of my sammich. Some characters are awesome though to be fair, I don't wanna put in spoilers but my favourite character was incapable of movement and worshipped by certain people. If you haven't met him you should be like, huh, but hopefully some of you who have played might get the reference.
I know it was a demo, and I know I said last time I don't like to comment too much on demos, because they are as the name implies, just a demonstration of the game, but WET however really got my interest. I know it's early, but from playing the demo I would suggest forgetting any kind of in-depth story, in fact I have no memory as to why I was killing people, just that they were shooting at me so I thought I would return the favour. The first thing that came to mind when playing this demo was, this is awesome. The best way I can describe it is if Prince of Persia and Stranglehold were both put into a paper bag and shaken vigorously, 9 months later this would be the outcome of that action. That is how you make cats breed to get kittens right? Anyway, I should try and validate my point I guess. Stranglehold was basically focused on cinematic action, with your kills getting star ratings, shooting people whilst swinging from chandeliers, and dodgy Asian one liners before commencing on an unbelievable killing spree. Prince of Persia was all about running around and jumping through the environment, with some occasional button mashing and timed button presses. Combine the two, exaggerate both of them even more, and you have WET.
The first room was basically a tutorial in which you jump and shoot enemies, in slow motion of course, slide and shoot enemies, this also being in slow motion, and running along walls whilst shooting enemies, I won't refer to the motion speed at which I was doing this, but you may have seen a pattern here. I also discovered that I could run up and back flip off a wall whilst shooting someone, in slow motion. You know what, from here on let's just assume that unless I'm standing still shooting an enemy, it's in slow motion mode. Continuing the demo I learnt how to slash people with a giant sword, shoot two people at the same time in the air, swing from poles, run up walls, jump from one obstacle to the next, and how to use zip wires. There was also an interesting area with respawn points so I'll jump to that. I should say at this point that you have a combo meter style thing that grows if you keep killing enemies in these exciting ways and that the higher that meter is the quicker you heal (I think). So nack on track, this area had 3 enemy respawn points, but to move on you don't keep blasting fools who get all up in your face and whatnot til they tell their brothers from another mother to back down and stop respawning, you just have to get to a certain point and effectively destroy the respawn point. I believe I was smashing electrical boxes that stopped doors from opening but I must admit I was pretty focused on doing slow motion 360 spins in the air whilst killing enough people to populate one of the smaller European countries. Only once I'd destroyed all the spawn points did the game allow me to move on, either I've missed an important set of games in the past, or this is a fairly unique way of dealing with infinite enemies.
Two more parts to this demo left, the next being a Tarantino style movie sequence. Gameplay sequence I mean, not movie. In a rather disturbing way you're face gets covered in blood and everything turns to black, red and white. This is basically a bloodbath, your metre goes up with every kill, and you're particularly lethal in this psycho mode. The sequence must have been maybe a minute long, and at the end of it my combo metre was implying it was nearly a kill per second. Crazy.
Final part of the demo is your familiar friend, the interactive cutscene. In this case it's an intense car chase except that, you don't have a car.
You're jumping from car to car, pressing A when prompted to initiate the epic jump, and X when prompted to slashy slash people hanging out of car windows as you land. Between each jump animation you will be shooting people hanging out of car windows whilst riding atop a swerving car though, so it's not a "take one hand off the controller and relax" interactive cutscene, you have to actually aim throughout too. And there the demo ends abruptly. I'm actually excited for it, but my major worry is the actual game will either ramp up in difficulty til I hate my own futile existence, or will be fun for an hour but then come boringly repetitive. Only time will tell I guess, if you are able to, I suggest you download this demo and give it a whirl. Personally, any game where I can do a backflip off an enemy, enter slow motion, then get extra points for shooting him in the groin before I land grabs my interest.
As a change of pace I've been playing Shaiya recently, a free to play PC MMO for all those who don't recognise the name. I must admit the first time I played it I didn't really care for it, it's basically two quests. Random conversation, then go to person x in destination x and speak/give-an-item to them. The other quest being random conversation, go kill x numbers of enemy x. Combat was also click to kill. I decided to give it another chance though, and played it again recently, I know it's persistent and 2 plays isn't enough but I literally played it all day so nyeh, I feel I can have an opinion. After I levelled a few times I actually started using my special attacks and buffs, so combat was a little more varied but to be honest I was just doing the same few attacks over and over again. If I kept going I'd imagine that tactics would come into it more and more, but, playing as an assassin I'm pretty much limited as to what tactics I have. I guess I could lay some traps or something, but during normal combat it's pretty much slash them. I just stopped reading the quests in the end and started skimming through it to find what they wanted me to do. The back stories were okay but, I really didn't care because they had no impact on me at all.
I also got my first taste of PvP, which was awful as at first I got pwned systematically, but I picked up a few kills later on and got a little bar next to my in-game name. I was like yeah that's right, I've killed non NPC characters, you better watch out! I get the feeling a couple of people had purchased, as in real life money purchased, some special items though. The level cap was 15, I was level 15, and some people were killing me in one hit. I'm certain my stat ratios won't be perfect, and my armour wasn't the best, but some ranged attacks were killing me before I could even choose whether to fight or flight. At one point in said PvP there was a large party of us against a large party of them, but, I'm not sure against is the right word... There was like 15 of us in each side with parties on opposite sides of the river. One side would run forward, then retreat as the other side started closing in on them, and vice versa, that was about it. Occasionally one person would pass the point of no return and they'd be brutally savaged by everyone, or some ranged attacker would get just close enough to destroy someone, but mostly we just sat and looked at each other. Until they implement XP for glaring and casting the same buffs on your party every other minute I don't think that's gonna achieve much. On the plus side the continual sound of people casting was awesome. With some phat beatz from a drum machine and a techno backing track I could have just sat there raving it up whilst everyone else looked at the other team in a violent way. Alas that didn't happen though, so instead I sat on the bank wondering where I could find a virtual drum machine and a synthesizer to make my dreams a reality.
Despite the overall tone of the previous paragraphs, I get the appeal of persistent gaming more now. I took great joy in destroying NPC's that caused me so much trouble during my first few hours. As well as that, partying with random strangers was quite enjoyable when the aim of the game wasn't sitting on the grass looking aggressive. I probably will keep playing from time to time, but although I get the appeal of MMO's a lot more than a week or two ago, I'm just not sure Shaiya is for me. Maybe I'm too new to the genre to appreciate Shaiya, or maybe it is just a matter of opinion but, I think I might try in other places to try and finally headbutt my way into the realms of MMO gaming.
STUFF THAT DOESN'T WARRANT MORE THAN A BRIEF PARAGRAPH
Played Tony Hawks Proving Ground, it's another extremely hard to fully complete Tony Hawks game, enough said as far as I'm concerned. Blacksite is sat infront of me but I've yet to play it. Completely blind I'm going to say it's an average FPS that gets boring towards the end :P We'll see next time if I'm a clairvoyant, I'm saying yes, I am. That's about it for my adventures in gaming of late, rate, subscribe and comment people! No wait, that's youtube isn't it...erm, read, follow and comment? But then if you've got this far it's pretty likely you did read and you're already following, and I don't want you to comment on something if you have nothing to say. You know what, make your own choices, I'm not here to live your life, I'm here to live the lives of several non existant characters in a variety of games. If you read this entire thing then you've won a car by the way, but not really. Thanks for reading though. You can't have a voice without other people to hear it.