Sunday, March 13, 2011

Monday Musings - 14th March 2011

It's been an interesting week of gaming. Let's dive right in!

World of Warcraft

This will probably be the last week I play this for a while. Level 20, played another dungeon, did some more quests. I just felt bored. It's not the quest types or the story going through (i think both have been very well handled in Cataclysm), i think ultimately is that there's not enough variation in the class i'm playing at this point. I have a few new spells yeah, but the way i'm tackling enemies is pretty much the same it was 10 levels ago. I mean i'm more efficient in using my skills, and the talents i've selected help the process, but combat already has lost its fun for me, and with 65 more levels to go, that's definitely not a good sign.

It makes me wonder what it was about hunters and rogues that allowed me to break through that barrier.

Heh, i've been talking about leaving games at hour 20 recently. This time i left it at level 20. It's a pattern!

Final Fantasy XIII

I'm up to about hour 10 on this. Snow has just returned (with an amazing re-introduction), and i got to play Fang for the first time. One thing i really enjoy is how the story keeps breaking up the parties, giving you new combinations of characters and classes to play with (which all act slightly different). I think i'm going to miss that once i reach a point in the game where i'm allowed to choose my own party (If FFXII was any indication. Once i was allowed to choose my own party, i only used the same 3 characters for the entire game).

GTA IV - The Lost and Damned

Still stuck on the same mission i was last week (you have to drop pipe bombs to blow up moving vans). I've played this for a few more hours regardless. I've been busy starting gang wars, and engaging in that old GTA staple of just being a menace and having fun with civilians and the cops. One thing that i find astonishing about the way they changed the police mechanics for GTAIV (you know, with the radius), is that i was able to lose a 4-star wanted level. How the heck does that happen?

Tiny Wings

The game that's lighting the app store on fire. I thought i'd give it a try for myself. It deserves praise. Challenging without being unfair, beautiful presentation (audio and visual), and addictive. For its price, i'd give this a definite recommend. The checklist of challenges to acquire new nests is a nice touch as well.

Tales of Monkey Island - Launch of the Screaming Narwhal

I've had this series for a while. On Thursday, i felt like giving it a go. First off, character designs, the voice acting, and the writing, all top notch. I was most impressed that Elaine sounded vaguely British again (Curse of Monkey Island is my favourite in the series, and i did not like the change in voice actor in Escape from Monkey Island).

The movement is really weird though. Holding the mouse button down opens up a circle that guides your movement with the mouse movement. Very hard to get the hang of. Luckily you can use the keyboard to move, but i would have preferred the click to walk control that most adventure games use.

I have only played about 30 mins though. I was exploring the jungle when my computer suddenly restarted and i have not been back to the game (as i did not save yet). A pity cause a couple instances had me laughing out loud.

Marvel vs Capcom 3

I visited my friend Kenneth and we played this for 90 mins or so. Tycho from Penny Arcade was right. If you have a fighting game, a couch, and 2 people, you're set. Matches consisted of us picking random teams and then just trying things. It's a pretty good game, though some characters i felt were completely useless (*cough* She-Hulk, Sentinel and MODOK), but i only too happily confess to sucking at these games.

I wonder how many characters will be added via DLC. I want Son Son dammit! My favourite character in MvC2.

Fallout 3

I have restarted my journey through the wasteland and am already level 5 again. I was following a walkthrough but in some games, a guide can disconnect you from what you're playing. F3 really does seem like as long as you aren't a complete idiot, play it your way and things will work out. I'm back in the swing of things and have already started to make my mark on the land.

At the moment, i am searching for The Family. They sound ominous.

Prince of Persia

The 2008 release. I bought the PoP pack in the Christmas Steam Sale, and decided to give this game another go. I gave it a try a couple years back on the PS3, but i was burned out on games at the time and it left a bad taste in my mouth. So far, i am enjoying things (the only negative... the first time it loads takes an eternity. Good thing i have Tiny Wings on my iphone to keep me busy).

I've recieved my first upgrade (pretty damn awesome), and there is a really nice flow to the platforming. It also helps that the game is freaking beautiful. Updates on my progress as i continue (it's not like i don't have enough on my plate at the moment).

Final Thoughts

Often i wonder if i could complete more videogames if i would only limit myself to one at a time. There are people that do that, and i have tried it in the past. I think aside from possible ADD when it comes to interactive entertainment, it's a want on my part to experience as much of the medium as i can. I mean i have the same problem with books. Many times, i have to attempt a book 2 - 3 times before i finish it. I always seem to lose interest and move onto something else. Movies don't have that problem because they're always completed in one sitting. TV shows are a little different, but i don't really have a problem with them (perhaps because TV is a passive form of entertainment while reading and videogames are active forms).

Perhaps it's also linked to artificial length and immersion. Let's face it, many games are drawn out past where they should end. I understand it's a value thing (especially for time spent on making the game and the price of new releases), but many games fail to hold me past a certain point. Either the mechanics get stale or the story has not been engaging.

A 3rd possibility is one of finance and freedom. As a kid, i was lucky to get 2 - 3 games a year for my NES or PC. I sat and played those games to completion... and then played them over and over again because there was nothing new. Nowadays my Steam and GoG accounts alone are larger than the time i have for videogames (it's the collector in me and those damn sales).

Funny story, i still remember saving up for a month or two to buy my first videogame for the NES. I already had a decent library thanks to my mum, but this was the first time i got to buy a game. I was planning on buying Double Dragon III but instead on a whim purchased Bart vs the Space Mutants. Both games in retrospect were terrible titles, but i think i came out ahead on that one.

Well till next week I wish my readers all the best. Happy Gaming

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