Sunday, April 15, 2012

Monday Musings - 16th April, 2012

It's a Monday, and there was gaming. Let us muse!

Catherine (PS3)

Man what is with Atlus and their end games? I thought starting off the week being at stage 7, it'd take an hour or so to complete the game. Ha! Nope, after a marathon session of 3-4 hours, the credits rolled and Catherine was over (as evidenced by my review last week). The ending i received was quite satisfactory and i'm happy overall with my experience.

One thing i'm a little disappointed with is that around stage 7 i finally got stuck and succumbed to a video walkthrough on youtube. Those who use hints when stuck will know that once you break that barrier, the urge to go to the walkthrough again when you get stuck is so much stronger, and sadly that did happen. Funnily enough though the game kind of weaned me off the walkthrough. It was all due to the monster blocks.

Monster blocks are blocks that move of their own accord, and can lick you off the front of them. Due to their random nature, the video walkthroughs became kind of useless. I mean you could kind of see how you were supposed to get up, but all it took was one block to move, and the whole thing fell apart (and often enough, more than one block would move). Thus i fell back on my old ways of climbing and experimentation and that led me all the way to the final boss.

The final boss appears in two forms. The first form was actually kind of easy. No problem at all. I cleared it in one go if i recall. It was the second form that drove me up the wall. It was close to controller throwing. I had thought those rage days behind me, but it is amazing how some sequences can bring it all flooding back. The problem was with the randomness of it all. The boss is able to randomly change blocks as you climb so suddenly a stairway starts to crumble or becomes a bomb, destroying your tower work. Suddenly ice appears and whisks you into a portal block. Oh and the fire that rained down can pick you off if you happen to be pulling a block out at an inopportune time. After wasting about 30 retries i finally scaled to the top and was treated to my ending. Phew!

My review can be found here - >

Portal 2 (PC)

Another game session with my friend Em as we made our way through the aperture science labs. We completed Lab 2 easily enough, got through all of Lab 3, and started our way through Lab 4 before the lack of food started to affect my brain power and we called it quits.

Lab 3 was nuts because of the bridges. Our teamwork really shined and that final level gave me the most awesome dawning of realisation when i worked out what we had to do. Am i the only one that uses the high five gesture once a fiendish puzzle has been solved?

Lab 4 is full of... i guess i'll call them gravity wells. We're only on room 2 but already i wish we were back with the bridges. I don't like these wells at all. Hopefully this week we get another chance to play and can put the wells behind us. I can't wait till we get to the gels!

Fallout: New Vegas - Old World Blues (PC)

Like Borderlands and The Secret Armoury of General Knoxx, i had heard many good things about the DLC Old World Blues for Fallout: New Vegas. I didn't like my time with Dead Money (i didn't return after all), but within the first 15 minutes of Old World Blues, i knew this was gonna be a blast. It was.

Yup, i started on Wednesday and completed it yesterday. Well i completed the main quest. There's so much more to explore and so many more functions of the house to activate. One of the main focuses of this expansion was giving you your own house. One of the things that was kind of missing from the main game that was a highlight of my time in Fallout 3. Oh sure i had the hotel rooms in Novac and the Casino, but they didn't feel like home. At least not to the extent The Sink does in Old World Blues. Every part of the house talks and has personality too (and they get their own epilogues when the game ends). I have quite a few left to obtain (my thought is that following this quest chain takes you to every research facility in Big Mountain so it's a good way to explore).

The story itself is just pure science fiction cheese. Experimental surgery, mad scientists, experimental technology, robo-scorpions, giant robo-scorpions... it has it all! The final showdown between yourself and Dr. Möbius is one of the more enjoyable parts of the entire Fallout universe. I think it's because this whole expansion is completely tongue in cheek yet so much is dangerous and there is a sense of foreboding and danger as you make your way through this scientific dystopia that time forgot.

I say to myself i need to finish off my house and explore the rest of Big Mountain, but i do have so many other games to play. It's definitely a reason to return to the Mojave in the future though.

Final Thoughts

You probably know all about The Minibosses, and their rock medleys of famous nintendo tunes. If not, check out their site because they're offering their album 'Brass 1' for free!

It's a damn good listen. For example, here is their Megaman 2 medley (some of my favourite videogame music ever).

Till next week, happy gaming all!

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