lowbeyonder: (Default)
MtG Online: Meh. Interface was manageable, but it's not so much fun I'm going to pay actual dollars for virtual cards so I can play against strangers I can't even make fun of in person.

Magic Workstation: Benefit is that it's free, until it gets C&D'd out of existence. But most of the games I saw online had comments that amounted to either "Srs T2 practice, no noobs" or "No blue, no land destruction, no decks I don't like." Also, again, strangers + online = not fun.

WoW CCG: I wish the heroes with alternate deckbuilding rules were more tournament viable. They definitely add some flavor and options to the game, but mostly they're strictly casual. Apparently MtG is going to release an Archenemy rules variant for 1 vs many multiplayer, which is slightly similar to the raid decks WoW has. I still think the WOW raid decks got more support, they're the most interesting element of the game.

Goals for Sunday: Donate the rest of the books I'm getting rid of (that I couldn't pawn off on friends), dump my heavily damaged old table, dump or donate the TV console, bug the friend who wants it into picking up the spare bed, and throw out another few garbage bags full of crap.

Goals for Tuesday: Charge the emergency car-jumper pack. Get a spare gasoline container, fill it, and trunk it. Get the TV and computer cabling taken down and packed, pack the fragile/expensive/irreplaceable stuff into the car, then fill the car with as many books as it will hold.

Goals for Wednesday: Leave.
lowbeyonder: (Default)
Better Than Expected: Starcraft 2. Many of the cripplingly stupid UI elements have been fixed. There is much howling that some of the micro is gone, but most of it is from people who want/expect it to behave exactly like SC1 in every way, except better, but not so much better that they have to learn anything new. And fuck those guys.

Pretty Okay I Guess: BattleTech. Kind of annoyed with the scenario book we're using right now. There's a game-in-progress on my table at home where I'm stuck trying to come up with stupid ways to destroy one mech without actually damaging it, because the withdrawal rules in this particular scenario let it flee the board once it's taken a certain amount of damage. If I kill it, I get roughly ALL THE POINTS, and if it successfully flees the board, I get NO POINTS. This, despite fairly well obliterating the rest of the opposing force. Stupid objectives are stupid.

Gone: My television. One fewer thing to move.

Games I Am Not Playing For A Few Weeks: Anything that requires a television.

Moving Update: May 25th is my last day in Cleveland. On that day, carnies will put everything I own into a truck and drive it straight into Lake Erie. The computer, the liquor, and the firesafe with all the proof that I am not a number, I am a human being will be in my trunk.

People Whose Fault It Is That I Still Want To Play Magic: The Gathering: [livejournal.com profile] montoya and Kenneth of Cleveland (not to be confused with any other Kenneths).
lowbeyonder: (Default)
I hadn't planned to buy it, at least not until it was on discount, but I am a weak and foolish person who habitually spends money on poor lifestyle decisions.

So:

Final Fantasy XIII had better get balls-out brilliant sometime in the next 4-6 play hours to justify the reviews and impressions of it I've read.

The first two hours are literally and I am not inventing this: run forward, watch cutscene, press A until everything's dead, repeat. After that it starts adding actual things to do in combat (with laborious tutorials) and left and right turns (thankfully, no tutorials for those).

I should note this was not unexpected. I am not surprised. I am disappointed, but I knew what I was getting into. I'm just warning anyone who hasn't bought it yet and may be thinking that it was just game reviewer hyperbole: it is not.

I have read reviews from people I trust that the combat system eventually becomes an awesome thing, and I will admit, in the following 3 hours, fights got significantly more engaging as more options opened up. We shall see. As FFs go, right now it is not leading any races. Though, and I will give them this, there is the scene where the Squall hauls off and punches Zell in the face. I guess they have different names in this one? The point is, I think everyone who ever played FF8 wanted to do that and at last it has happened.

Seriously, though, whatever story they're telling, the first two hours are borderline unforgivable from a gameplay perspective.

PS: I guess there is a plot and some characters? It seems to be playing with the standard FF tropes a bit, but I'm too much of a pessimist to believe that they're actually going to do any real subversion of them. If the combat system continues to get better, I won't care that much.
lowbeyonder: (Boston)
Today's Shadowrun game featured:
  • Cutting the hardline.

  • Bob Marley's "Jammin'".

  • Shooting a dude so hard he flew down an elevator shaft.

  • "Armed people are interesting. Unarmed people are boring. Be boring."

  • Needless taunting of aerial surveillance.

  • The Read or Die theme song.

I love it when a plan comes together.
lowbeyonder: (Default)
Finished Legend of Zelda (first quest only, I'm feeling nostalgic, not masochistic).

Final thoughts. )

Next: The Adventure of Link, a game far ahead of its time.

Okay, actually next, probably some Mass Effect 2. But tomorrow, more Zelda.
lowbeyonder: (Default)
I have now successfully convinced Buzz to input my LJ and Die Pointy Hat blogs to my feed. Now if I can get it to output to Facebook, I will have achieved... something.

I have decided to upgrade my current Legend of Zelda game into a whole-series playthrough, or at least until I get bored. Things I will be skipping: the "second quest" of Legend of Zelda; Oracle of Ages/Seasons; Minish Cap. And if I manage to stay interested long enough to get to Twilight Princess, no guarantees I'll be finishing that one either.

Prediction: I will not like Majora's Mask any more than I did last time.

Have ordered Gears of War 2. If it does not rock my world, I will be severely disappointed.

A subset of things Mass Effect 2 does better than Dragonage: ME2 doesn't have mages who trivialize all of its fights even on the highest difficulty level. ME2 on Insanity is serious business.

I cannot explain why I spent three hours playing Monster Hunter last night. It is essentially a game where you go kill a lizard and dismember it for parts with which to build more efficient lizard-slaying swords with which to hunt bigger lizards. My only defense is that the actual process of stabbing is a hell of a lot of fun, in much the same way that playing (for example) Super Mario Bros. 3 is a lot of fun: it does what it does really, really well, with rock-solid controls and plenty of room for tactics and options. Sometimes, it really doesn't take anything more than a clean, functional, non-bullshit experience to make a game entertaining.

Anyway, that's why I haven't gotten back into Assassin's Creed 2.
lowbeyonder: (Default)
I want to hate Capcom for releasing Super Street Fighter 4 so soon after SF4. First, because the Adjectives = Sequels contest of fighting game iteration has already been won. Sorry, Capcom, you cannot top Guilty Gear XX Accent Core +. Second, because I've been playing other games since SF4 came out and am hideously out of practice.

But competent 2D fighters are slim enough on the ground that I'll pick it up. Seriously, though, Capcom, if you want to make people play fighters, somewhere on your agenda should be eliminating bullshit execution hurdles. Focus Attack Dash Cancel, my ass.

I want to like Google Buzz, but unless I can successfully get it to inter-operate with other things such that it increases my personal convenience without salting anyone's respective cocoa, it is not that useful. That's a work in progress.
lowbeyonder: (Default)
I don't care about Bioshock 2. I thought the first one was fun, I didn't regret playing it, I don't feel the need to play it again, and I just can't get that excited about the sequel.

I also have no desire to return to Dragonage just yet, though I will at some point.

This is in stark contrast to Mass Effect 2, which despite having beaten once already, I only refrain from playing every evening because I am deliberately trying to clear out my backlog of unfinished games. Also because on Insanity, I die a lot, and it turns out my tolerance for sitting through a loading screen after dying in a zone before I respawn in the same zone is about three times per evening. Dear game developers: fucking stop that shit. Lrn2cache, nubs.

I'm moving away from MMOs: dropped my Eve sub, and am backing my WoW time down. They're just not hooking me anymore.

Re-played Braid last night. Still brilliant, and very entertaining on a gameplay level even when you already know the puzzle "solutions".

New Super Mario Bros. Wii has a stupid name, but is fun. It is not un-flawed. The power-ups are slightly too good, and the controls just feel the tiniest bit soggy; in particular, Mario has too much momentum. Still, the level design is good. Also, stop making me shake a controller to do shit. Controllers have buttons. Buttons are good.

The unfinished game I really want to get back to and finish is Prototype, which had some very solid gameplay, but the way it spaces out new abilities is annoying. Also Assassin's Creed 2, which had the unfortunate timing of being interrupted by ME2.

The unfinished game I don't care about is Zelda: Twilight Princess, because honestly, I've been playing the original Legend of Zelda and the SNES LoZ: Link to the Past lately and both are superior in every articulable way.

Should I buy Gears of War 2?

Bought a PSP and a half-dozen games for that, because (a) I have a trip to Japan coming up at the end of March and will need portable entertainment, if only for the flight; and (b) I'm out of DS games about which I give a crap (at least until they release another Castlevania on par with Order of Ecclesia). Also because the PSP has not only Final Fantasy Tactics (a genuine classic that is vanishingly hard to find in its original form), but also both Castlevania: Rondo of Blood and Symphony of the Night in the same box. That box is $11 retail.

That is all. Return to your lives, citizens.
lowbeyonder: (Optimus Prime)
My old 360: Busted! Replaced it.

My new 360: Totally working! Until I tried using this hard drive backup restore device I picked up (to transfer my saves from Busted 360 to New 360), which caused it to stop recognizing the hard drive.

CodeJunkies X-Port device: Totally fucking stupid and breaks hard drives! Don't buy one.

My new 360 with a new hard drive: Working once again! Since I don't play the 360 very often, I'll eat the loss of saves (or try swapping them in later via a memory card, which said X-Port thing also plugs into and maybe won't eat). Is irritating losing the mechs I'd assembled in Chromehounds, though.

Gears of War: Fun! Shockingly entertaining for a shooter, and very hard. Or, for anyone who doesn't know how I roll: As shooters go, pretty much the Second Coming of Jesus With Donuts, because I hate most shooters, and probably easy for anyone who actually, y'know, plays a lot of shooters.

My Spare Time: Gone! A friend has convinced me to temporarily re-up my World of Warcraft subscription, since there's apparently some sort of expansion-y thing coming out tomorrow that all the internets are talking about. We'll see how that goes...

New LJ icons: Exist! Again with the bored.

Re: NWN2

Nov. 5th, 2006 11:15 pm
lowbeyonder: (Ulkesh)
It looks like a lot of the issues with NWN2 are related to it being shoved out the door, a problem somewhat endemic to the computer game industry. Looking through the forums, a lot of fixes will be coming down the pipe, and community mod support should pick up the slack.

Which doesn't by any means excuse Obsidian from the issues with the game, but it does at least assure me that it will be playable at some point.

Interesting: Been playing lots of Final Fantasy 12, with its wacky Gambit system. For those not in the know, it's basically a procedural list of actions in combat, of the form "For targets that meet condition X, do Y", where X can be anything from "Self: Status Effect Poison" or "Ally: HP < 50%" to "Enemy: Type Undead" or "Enemy: Weakness Fire" or whatever. After enough time with it, not only does the crappy, unconfigurable companion AI in NWN2 drive me nuts, but playing FF12, I'm starting to resent anytime I have to manually override a gambit in combat, because it indicates poor planning on my part.

It also happens to be a really neat system in action, though I was skeptical when I first heard about it.

Now if only it had, say, an Uematsu soundtrack. I'm satisfied with the non-Amano character designs, but the music is just kind of dull.
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