Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday Musings - 29th August, 2011

I'm musing a little later than normal today but i have tea and am ready to start talking. Let's muse!

Fallout: New Vegas (Steam)

I think my forward momentum of the game finally gave out around the time i hit level 20. I was exploring Vault 22, i put the game down, and haven't been back for the rest of the week. If i have grown weary of the gameplay, i think i'll just load up and finish the last mission. Perhaps i need a break.

Persona 4 (PS2)

I am in the middle of making my way through the Void Quest dungeon. I gotta say, i just love the music, and of course the old school RPG feel of the hallways (makes me think of 3D Dot Game Heroes). Storywise the game seems to be trying to telegraph that i'm approaching the final boss but looking at my level, the time of year it is, and how long i've been playing the game, it doesn't feel like the end. It could be a clever ruse. Years ago when i was playing Tron 2.0 (fantastic game btw), there were two points during play that i felt i was coming to the end of the game, and then it just kept going.

It would be a shame if the game were to wrap up here though. I want to max out all my social links and then fuse together everything. Ev-er-y-thing.

Final Thoughts

Hmm, it seems it's taking me a while to warm up to writing today. In the past when this has happened it's been ok since i usually played enough games that i could work myself up to discussing the later titles more in-depth. Well hopefully i'll blab on for a little while here. Destructoid has a community blog suggestion every week and this last week it was on social gaming. I thought i'd talk about that a bit.

I am not the biggest fan of online gaming. Now before you jump down my throat for that statement, let me explain myself. I actually like multiplayer gaming a great deal. I even enjoy multiplayer experiences on single player games (passing the controller around with friends for instance). To start i'll have to delve back into my multiplayer gaming history. I started gaming in the mid 80s. My neighbour and best friend at the time had an Atari 2600, we eventually both got NESs, i got a PC, and we both went to the arcades every chance we get. Now with the exception of the PC, most of the experiences on the Atari, NES, and of course in the arcades were multiplayer experiences... and even on the PC, i had Rampage and spent a lot of time playing adventure games with the aid of a friend, or my father.

The Snes was the same and when i got my N64 (the first console i saved up for myself), that 2 player fun extended to 4 players. By this time arcades were close to dying but modems and LAN PC gaming had come along. The first real experience i can remember is Duke Nukem 3D, but i do recall getting some fun out of Doom 2 with friends over a 56k as well. Then around the turn of the century and fresh out of highschool, i discovered LAN gaming as an event. There were two main ones where i live on the Gold Coast of Australia but for me Frags was the place to be. To lug your computer over to the local Youth Club and play some Counter-Strike, Quake 3, Unreal Tournament, and Worms with other gamers was a memory i'll always cherish, even if i did get my ass handed to me more often than not.

I moved to the US for a couple years and when i came back i had a Gamecube, 4 controllers, and Smash Bros Melee. My friend James would host LANs, and while PC games were played, the Gamecube stayed turned on for a couple years (eventually causing it to come up with an error message. Yes, we blue screened a Gamecube). Around this time though is when i noticed that online gaming was now the thing... and it's never really clicked with me.

I think the reason is that all my multiplayer gaming experiences have been with friends or around the people i was playing. One thing i've hated about online gaming is the conduct of many of the anonymous people you play with. There's too much mean spirited-ness and too many people are too obsessed with winning rather than having a good time. Back when i started lanning i used to play Counter-Strike and UT online as well (to keep in shape for when the monthly LAN came around). The online community at the time basically stopped me playing CS in the span of perhaps 6 months (though by then a new mod was getting popular and had only a small player base so i jumped on board. That game was Day of Defeat).

So since then i've become lukewarm on online gaming. I still prefer local multiplayer, and will enjoy Wii Tennis or Street Fighter: Third Strike more than a game of CoD against a bunch of people i don't know. I will play cooperative online multiplayer with friends and i enjoy that a lot, mainly because voice chat makes it close to being in the same room as them... but for the most part plug in a 2nd controller or leave me to the twists and turns of a single player experience.

Well that was a little rambling but be honest, that's part of the reason you read this column.

Til next week, happy gaming all!

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