Updates from August, 2012 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Pete Davison 3:40 pm on August 7, 2012 Permalink  

    @zegolf The difference there is that Zynga’s just PUBLISHING that, not developing it. It’s their in-house development stuff that is the real problem.

     
  • beige 5:58 pm on July 19, 2012 Permalink  

    @zegolf F:NV is one of the only RPGs I’ve quit in mid-stream and never picked up again. I can’t explain why (we were mostly done, past level 30)… I suspect Dark Souls was involved.

    That said, you can easily buy more expensive coffees. It’s a deal if you ever have a thought about going back in there — I’m not going to stay your hand.

     
  • bowlisimo 4:23 pm on July 16, 2012 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf Go ahead and jump on that $15 Walking Dead deal, unless you want to play all the episodes at once later (and for cheaper).

    I played the first episode last night and as someone who has read the comic, I was pleasantly surprised. The writing is great and the human drama is right where it needs to be, the dialogue especially. Characters feel three dimensional. Do I console this little girl like I’m her father, just lie to her to make her feel better, or tell her the cold hard truth? Do I trust this guy I just met? Should I be honest with him, tell him half-truths, or lie altogether, just in case? Will I remember my lies? Will that bite me in the ass later if I need his help? Responses are timed and it has a very genuine feel to it. Of course, there are some fucked up snap decisions you need to make, and then consequences you need to live with.

    Even the adventure gamey “what order do I need to do stuff in to solve problem X” sections are handled well enough so that they work with the story, and you know, the ever present threat of walkers crashing the party. That said, it’s not perfect either. Some of the voicework for less important characters and animation can be subpar or weird at times, and why the hell does this reporter, who can use a gun like she’s in special forces, not know that appliances sometimes need batteries, or how to put them in correctly…

    Anyway, so far I like the main character, Lee. He’s a man with some serious baggage. I want to see where he ends up in this mess. Five episodes doesn’t seem like enough. Movin’ on to episode 2 tonight.

     
  • RedSwirl 6:32 pm on June 12, 2012 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf I still don’t quite get it. So it doesn’t take that long to reach the year 4,000 and theoretically the same state his game is in? I guess what’s most amazing is that he’s moved the save file through multiple computers and now people want him to put it on Dropbox so they can all have a crack at ending the Seventeen Hundred Years War.

     
  • Pete Davison 10:26 am on May 11, 2012 Permalink |
    Tags:   

    Diablo III

    The official Squad crew of elite skeleton clickers

    So it seems a few of us are picking up Skeleton Click III shortly. Post your Battle.net details/character names etc in the comments below, along with any thoughts on the experience.

    BattleTags
    zegolf#1213
    AngryJedi#2260
    CptCarnage#1483
    MrN1CKERS#1922
    Bowlisimo#1728
    Beige#1834
    mjpilon#1415
    KonradBeezo#1109

     
    • Pete Davison 10:38 am on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      If you’re on the front page, click the “Reply” link at the top right of the post to comment.

    • zegolf 1:47 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      Very much looking forward to this! I nearly failed out of my freshman year of college due, in part, to LoD. I’ll be on, pretty sure I’m zegolf on battle.net, too.

    • Pete Davison 2:48 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      My BattleTag (which is how Diablo III is handling friends lists) is AngryJedi, or AngryJedi#2260 if you need the full thing, which I think you might as they’re non-unique.

    • RedSwirl 3:02 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      I’ll download the trail whenever I have time. That’s all I can promise at this point.

    • Pete Davison 3:15 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      I don’t think there is a trial, Red — it’s not an MMO. You buy it or you don’t.

      If you played and enjoyed any of the following, you will dig the game. If you didn’t, you probably won’t.

      • Torchlight (PC)
      • Titan Quest (PC)
      • Baldur’s Gate Dark Alliance (Gen6 consoles)
      • Dungeons and Dragons Heroes (Xbox)
      • Dungeon Hunter I and II (not III) (iOS)
      • Drakensang Online
      • Everquest: Champions of Norrath
    • zegolf 3:16 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      Also, if you’ve played Diablo or Diablo II, you may enjoy Diablo III.

    • Pete Davison 3:17 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      I figured that probably went without saying. 😉

    • cptcarnage 7:00 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      Preorder hasnt been placed yet and I’m on the fence.

      I loved Torchlight but never gave Diablo the benefit of the doubt, whats the similarities/differences?

    • beige 8:42 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      I’m 100% in for Skeleton Click. Waterkanji on Steam, send a friend request.
      Haven’t played Torchlight, but as I understand they’re basically the same game. Diablo invented the skeleton clicking genre, and the DIII marketplace looks to take lewt whoring into the stratosphere with its insane real-money market for items and equipment.

    • zegolf 8:49 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      Updating with my Battle.net account name. zegolf#1213

      See you all in Sanctuary.

    • Pete Davison 9:23 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      Torchlight was, in fact, developed by a bunch of ex-Blizzard bods who worked on Diablo, hence the similarities (particularly in the distinctive ambient music, which was the work of Matt Uelmen). If you loved Torchlight, you’ll love Diablo. The only major difference in Diablo III is the revamp they’ve done to the ability system — I read an interesting post on the subject here.

      I saw a TV advert for it tonight. I know it’s going to be huge, but I never figured Diablo for a game that would fit in with the TV advertising demographic.

    • Pete Davison 9:52 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      This is Wal-Mart’s actual description for the game from their website, reproduced here verbatim. Their copywriter wants firing.

      The Diablo III PC/Mac Game revolves around an interesting plot which will keep you spell bound. while you are playing. This Strategy Video Game also has some similar setting as the Diablo II like Tristram. The Witch Doctor is a new character in this game, is reminiscent of the Diablo II Necromancer, The Barbarians in this strategy video game have a variety of revamped skills at their disposal on the basis of the use of their incredible physical prowess. Bring home the PC video game to solve the mysteries of the mighty Barbarians.

      Diablo III PC/Mac Game:

      • The Witch Doctor is a new character reminiscent of the Diablo II Necromancer
      • The Barbarians will have a variety of revamped skills at their disposal based on the use of their incredible physical prowess.
      • 1-on-1′ dueling system coming into play.
    • impynickers 9:57 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      @Pete lol! I do want to solve the mysteries of mighty barbarians in a strategy video game.

      Really looking forward to this game. BattleNET name I believe is ImpyNickers, at least it was for Starcraft 2 months ago.

    • Pete Davison 9:59 pm on May 11, 2012 Permalink

      @impynickers You’ll need to make sure it’s a “BattleTag” (you can reserve it now on the Account page on Battle.net) and I think you need the “#number” bit after it too. I think it’s to distinguish you from all the other ImpyNickerses out there.

    • cptcarnage 12:48 am on May 12, 2012 Permalink

      Done and preordered. In the meantime i’ll dust off my copy of Diablo 2 that i never played LOL.

      Battletag: CptCarnage#1483

    • bowlisimo 1:29 am on May 13, 2012 Permalink

      Wow, Walmart. They should have just written, “I think diablo is a pretty cool guy. eh brethes fire and doesnt afraid of anything.”

      Bought this on Newegg, paid $10 less, but have to wait to ship. Can’t remember the last PC box I bought.

      Bowlisimo#1728

    • RedSwirl 1:51 am on May 13, 2012 Permalink

      @angryjedi I kinda assumed there would be, I think I heard confirmation somewhere, I dunno. StarCraft 2 has a demo (which I still haven’t booted up because I insisted on finally buying the original StarCraft on the day SC2 came out, and have barely done anything in THAT game). This is all kinda hard for someone who hasn’t touched a Blizzard game since 2000.

      The only things slightly resembling Diablo that I’ve played are Torchlight and Phantasy Star Online. Torchlight’s nice but for some reason I can’t do a whole dungeon in one sitting. It’s almost like an iOS game to me – for short bursts only. It doesn’t even feel right playing the game on a desktop. Looks at Torchlight II and Path of Exile have me interested though if I deem them more important than my backlog. I don’t think I’ve seen any DIII footage at all.

      I really just want Sega to release an English version of Phantasy Star Online 2.

      And lastly, in this area I need to get in as much Demon’s Souls as I can before the servers shut down. I’ve already made peace with the fact that I won’t be beating the game before then (Stuck at the Penetrator and Old Hero). Once that does happen I’m thinking of re-rolling in Dark Souls, or just shelving that until Prepare to Die Edition comes out. I’ve made it through a lot of hardship in that game so far, but I keep hearing talk of areas that I’m still nowhere near (I’m stuck at the Gaping Dragon).

      Oh, and I’m finally about to finish Final Fantasy IV, I think.

      Basically, I am behind-as-fuck in dungeon crawlers.

    • feenwager 2:47 am on May 13, 2012 Permalink

      I’m so torn as to whether to purchase DIII. On one hand, I know I’ll love it. On another, there’s the whole ‘sitting in front of the computer’ thing all over again. I really want to play it though, so…

    • Pete Davison 10:23 am on May 13, 2012 Permalink

      Do it. DO IT. Surely some hack and slash clicky combat will be ideal for those times when the little ‘un wakes up in the middle of the night and you’re waiting for peace once again. Or whatever it is you child-bearing people do in the middle of the night. 🙂

      Also, Squad multiplayer.

    • Pete Davison 10:44 am on May 13, 2012 Permalink

      Anyone going to be having a go on Hardcore? My love of roguelikes makes me want to at least try. I’m going to have a character reserved exclusively for playing regularly with my buds in this time zone, but outside of that I’m going to experiment a bit and see how long I can survive. That sounds like fun. Or possibly infuriating. I won’t quite know until I try it.

    • cptcarnage 3:11 pm on May 13, 2012 Permalink

      Probably not until I get the feel for it.

      Any class preferences? Huntress sounds cool I like ranged combat but I may roll a wizard or a barbarian.

    • bowlisimo 3:32 pm on May 13, 2012 Permalink

      You’re going to do hardcore mode? In Diablo?

    • RedSwirl 5:28 pm on May 13, 2012 Permalink

      I don’t even think I’d survive in Diablo multiplayer since Torchlight had none for me to practice with. Closest thing I know is PSO co-op.

    • mjpilon 9:54 pm on May 13, 2012 Permalink

      Admission time: I never played Diablo II. I actually bought a copy years ago but my old family PC couldn’t handle it and I forgot about it.

      I’m still not sure I’ll buy Diablo III but I am very intrigued. In case I do take the plunge (which won’t occur until June anyway since I’ll be on vacation), I signed up: mjpilon#1415

    • zegolf 10:29 am on May 14, 2012 Permalink

      I’m pretty excited that my physical copy (due to ship this afternoon, here by tomorrow) is actually Mac-compatible. When Blizz basically abandoned Mac users with Diablo II, I was worried I would have to boot camp this game. As much as it’s nice to have the ability to bootcamp, it’s still a pain in the ass to have to reboot every time I want to play.

      Looking forward to tomorrow!

    • zegolf 1:11 pm on May 14, 2012 Permalink

      @RedSwirl Rumor has it (the early copies that have already shipped) that the game is shipping with a “Guest Pass” that will allow you to get on Diablo III “Starter”. I’ve got a physical copy coming tomorrow that has a guest pass with your name on it, if you want it.

      If Red doesn’t take it, anyone else is welcome to it.

    • RedSwirl 1:36 pm on May 14, 2012 Permalink

      @zegolf Sure, but I’m not sure when I’d use it.

    • impynickers 7:33 pm on May 14, 2012 Permalink

      Turns out I did have a battletag already
      MrN1CKERS#1922

    • cptcarnage 4:32 am on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      To bed, is it me or am I the only one who always gets tricked into thinking a midnight launch is midnight EST only to find out that its actually 3am EST.

      Too much bias for PST imho.

    • impynickers 4:56 am on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      @cptcarnage Yeah…….. … Yeah. I swear I was able to play Starcraft II around midnight EST at launch. I don’t know why this is a thing. Oh well.

    • RedSwirl 4:36 pm on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      Heard about the server problems which reminds me of the always-online DRM. The system that I’d be running DIII on happens to be going through some internet trouble so I’m not even sure I’d be able to play the game.

    • cptcarnage 6:23 pm on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      That Sums it up quite nicely.

    • bowlisimo 6:44 pm on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      More reasons not to buy games on release, although that problem used to be solely an MMO problem.

      Hopefully this stuff is ironed out by the time I get home and install.

    • beige 6:45 pm on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      Yo skeleton clickers, don’t forget to add Beige#1834
      I won’t be online for a day or two but I’m in there!

    • zegolf 7:21 pm on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      So it looks like the game actually shipped with THREE guest passes. At least mine did. And one for WoW…because Lord knows I need to start playing that game again.

      If anyone is interested, feel free to email me. It’s just my screen name [at] gmail!

    • Pete Davison 9:08 pm on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      Pro-Tip to anyone getting a physical copy of the game: If you have the bandwidth, activate your key on Battle.net and download the client rather than installing from disc, otherwise you will quite literally be there all day.

      I have two Guest Passes, too. If anyone wants one, Squad gets first dibs.

    • bowlisimo 9:14 pm on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      Too late, already installing off the disk.

      Yeah, I have D3 guest passes coming out the wazoo over here (3 total) if anyone wants one.

    • bowlisimo 9:44 pm on May 15, 2012 Permalink

      That wasn’t that bad, install off the disk, make a sandwich, read the lore. It’s fine.

    • Shingro 1:24 am on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      I’d love to get a guest pass =) my nick at Yahoo.com would much enjoy the chance to give D3 a whirl, there’s so many amazing games coming out that I’ve no shortage of distractions, but I’d love to take a spin in the zeitgeist of it for a bit =)

    • cptcarnage 3:34 am on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      Got a few hours in this evening before battlenet decided to kick me off for no particular reason.

      Running a Demon Hunter. Clicking skele’s like mad, got together with a party of 4 (all different classes) and its interesting to see the different dynamics that start appearing.

    • bowlisimo 3:43 am on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      Wow… All I needed to do was hit the boss literally 2 more times and I would have beat him “You have been disconnected”. !!! WHY? WHY IS SINGLEPLAYER TIED TO SERVERS….ughhhh. Welcome to the future.

    • feenwager 3:46 am on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      Clearly there is money to be made in server stress testing. It seems that no matter how open a beta anything runs, whether it’s a game or service, it immediately breaks the minute it goes live to the general public.

      Someone get on that so we can all be rich, mmmkay?

    • Pete Davison 11:17 am on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      @bowlisimo I blogged about this yesterday. Blizzard would have had a much easier time of it if they had actually set expectations for Diablo III correctly and said up-front that it was an online-only game, which it is.

      By “online-only” I don’t mean “has DRM”, I mean “MMO-style”, like Guild Wars or even World of Warcraft. No-one complains about games like that requiring you to always be online — even if you’re soloing — and Diablo III is structured in exactly the same way, albeit without the massively-multiplayer areas in which to congregate. The trouble is, past Diablo titles had a discrete “single player” option, so those who wanted to solo stuck with that and perhaps never ventured onto Battle.net, which is where a healthy degree of fun lies. In the previous games, you had separate characters for online and offline, too, which was a pain. People were expecting the old game’s clearly demarcated “single player” and “multiplayer” options, and those simply aren’t present here. When you’re playing solo in D3, you’re not really playing “single player”, you’re soloing online.

      Perhaps I’m putting too much of a positive spin on it, but that’s how I see it. I understand why people are angry, though — Blizzard haven’t done a great job of communicating about this. BLUE PLZ

      Personally, I can live with a few day-one server issues — I’ve come to expect them, in fact. I know it shouldn’t be like that, and they should stress-test their servers, but it’s the way it is with online titles at the moment.

    • zegolf 11:26 am on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      @angryjedi @bowlisimo I think it’s also important to remember the history of the series, as well as look toward the future for Blizzard. WoW was a cash cow for Blizzard, and now they’re staring down both diminishing numbers and the release of a game which has no real source of income for them. History dictates that this game could require support for upwards of 10 years, which is an eternity in the “gaming world”.

      Enter: The Auction House

      I mention the history of Diablo because, as someone who spent an inordinate amount of time on the old series, it was plagued with duping, hacking and other issues. If Blizzard hopes to make any money off of the Auction House, they’re going to have to ensure people continue to use it. In order to maintain that usage, they’re going to have to guarantee that it’s safe and that the economy won’t be disrupted by hackers and dupers. The easiest way to do that? Control every aspect of the game that is relevant to the Auction House on the server side. Want to hack your character on the client side? Go for it! But it’s not going to affect the server side aspect, which means that people can feel safe knowing their rare drops are going to continue to be rare, and Blizzard continues to make money.

      Pete’s right, Diablo has NEVER been a try single player game and I don’t think Blizz had any plans to change that. If anything, they’ve made the game easier to drop-in/drop-out for multiplayer. But it’s my belief that the real reason you’re seeing “Single Player DRM” is to protect the economy of the game, and to give Blizzard a viable business plan for running Diablo III servers well into the next decade.

    • Pete Davison 4:17 pm on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      Chaps,

      In Blizzard’s infinite wisdom they decided that while they were absolutely fine with people being able to switch regions to play with international friends, they decided that The Right Thing To Do would be to keep friends lists, achievements and characters separate on each region’s servers.

      As such, if you see me playing Diablo III on Steam but I’m not showing up on the in-game friends list, it means I’m playing on the European servers. Feel free to shoot me a Steam chat, iMessage or whatever if you want to play and I’ll switch over.

    • impynickers 6:15 pm on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      Been enjoying what I played so far, though there are many changes to the game that really seem to go further than I would have liked. The inability to actually use weapons is one thing that shouldnt bother me as much as it does. I mean… you have them right there. Why cant I see what this ultra awesome new weapon I picked up actually does? I dont care if it boosts my stats. I have no tangible feedback. Also, the game as far as I have played is really easy. Health is in great quantity, and damage is something that doesnt seem to come in great quantities. Other than that, things feel pretty good. But those are some major issues. That and the whole online requirement.

    • bowlisimo 6:36 pm on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      I disagree with you guys. Diablo has always been a single player experience for me. Single player first, maybe some multi second, I doubt I’m alone on that. I think it’s fundamentally stupid, but I don’t have any fight in me on this one, and I’m sure we’ll never hear about D3 server problems ever again, so…whatever. I just don’t like it. *crosses arms*

      My $50 dollars is already spent, I would have spent it anyway, so my opinion doesn’t much matter.

      The game was fun otherwise, right up until it disconnected me one second before beating the first boss.

      The monk is cool. I don’t get why he holds weapons if his animation is a punch though. Kind of weird. Do my weapons even matter statswise? Howabout a monk with a shield? Questions to be answered.

    • zegolf 8:27 pm on May 16, 2012 Permalink

      @impynickers So you CAN fight with just your weapons, it’s just a bit kludgy and takes away your primary attack slot. If you go into Options -> Gameplay and enable “Elective Mode”, you can then drag and drop your attacks to the various slots. You can also drag your primary attack OFF of the bar (but not to a slot) which will then enable weapon attacks.

    • mjpilon 2:45 am on May 17, 2012 Permalink

      Game has been officially purchased! Decided to start with a monk but I’m leaving for France for 10 days on Friday so hopefully you all haven’t burnt out on the game by the time I get back 😛

      Battletag : mjpilon#1415

    • impynickers 3:53 am on May 17, 2012 Permalink

      @zegold Oh hey! Look at that! I mean the game seems to have been designed around the skills, but I appreciate that it is possible to go back to traditional hack and slash. Even if it is a little out of the way.
      Maybe in patches they will make it easier, for now I am enjoying the game my way and that makes me happy enough.

    • Pete Davison 10:10 am on May 17, 2012 Permalink

      I consider it my divine mission to bring at least one of you through the secret level, which is a magnificently epic troll on those who were complaining about D3 being “too colourful”.

      In order to get there, you have to craft a Staff of Herding, which requires the following items:

      • Black Mushroom (Cathedral, floor 1 — Act I)
      • Leoric’s Shinbone (Leoric’s manor — Act I)
      • Liquid Rainbow (Mysterious Chest, Mysterious Cave, Dahlgur Oasis — Act II)
      • Wirt’s Bell (Squirt the Peddler , Caldeum — costs 100,000 gold)
      • Gibbering Gemstone (random drop from mobs in the caves in the battlefield in front of the bridge — Act III
      • Plans (random drop from Izual — Act IV)

      Nowhere near accomplishing that yet, but it’s something to aim for. 🙂

    • feenwager 1:11 pm on May 17, 2012 Permalink

      I added it up top, but in case you missed it: KonradBeezo#1109

      Go nuts.

    • RedSwirl 1:43 am on May 18, 2012 Permalink

      Got the trial client. Might be on tomorrow night. Managed to grab RedSwirl#1337 as a BattleTag.

    • RedSwirl 1:44 am on May 18, 2012 Permalink

      My internet still sucks though so I don’t know if I’m really gonna be able to play it.

    • impynickers 4:12 am on May 20, 2012 Permalink

      So I beat the game. It was epic.

    • Pete Davison 12:53 pm on May 20, 2012 Permalink

      Don’t spoil anything, but is the final battle better than in previous instalments? Fighting Diablo was always a big letdown in past experience, but Blizzard seem to have got wise to how to make a more “dramatic” encounter now — not least by actually adding some music for once.

      I have to say, I’m loving the game so far (about halfway through Act II with my furthest character), and the drop-in co-op, cloud saving and online profile gubbins is great.

    • impynickers 3:40 pm on May 21, 2012 Permalink

      @Pete Final battle was a lot of fun. Came slightly before I was expecting it. I mean the game is long and satisfying, but the final act has a lot of stuff going on. You knew it was coming, but I wasnt expecting it to happen quite when it did. It was a great battle though.

    • beige 7:42 pm on May 22, 2012 Permalink

      Started playing the skeleton clicks after podcasting on Saturday. Only played for maybe 2 hours total over the weekend, if that, but have many thoughts.

      a) The witch doctor seems unususally polite and generally nice for a guy who communes with loa and dark spirits all the time. Not that I was expecting anything in particular, mind — he just seems like a decent sort. Sort of empathic, generally calm and understanding when dealing with NPCs. To me, there’s a pleasing dissonance there especially since dude throws jars of spiders all over the place at everything. I want to imagine this dinner party where the witch doctor is politely discussing TED talks with his brother-in-law or something and then, just after asking if someone could pass the cranberries, he stands up and blasts everything in the room with flaming bats before sitting down to spoon a mouthfull of mashed potatoes.

      b) I missed that little fwufffwuff sound that the books make when they fall to the ground.

      c) Blizzard has come a long way when it comes to presenting their stories in a coherent way. That said, the multiplayer “narrative-based experience” is like trying to read a novel in the middle of that group of guinea pigs up there. I was trying — really TRYING — to stay with the nice girl who was telling me a sad story of her crazy uncle Cain — but at the same time there were three other people running cheerfully around the map waving their hands in the air like kids at a birthday party or selling loot while waiting on me to finish up already. Over here: gravelly voiced Scott telling me how he had to put old King Leoric down. Over here: Pishu, making up hilariously crazy names for randomly summoned Blizzard monsters. It’s like being fed a novel in the form of tweets. My brain was tired from trying to stitch it together.

      d) It’s hella fun to click skeletons together though, innit!. I felt bad for Zegolf who stepped into our kiddie pool around level 30 or so. “Hey guys! How’s it… eerr….. yeah.” To a level 30 character, our level 5 asses just look like high school kids slow dancing 2 feet apart.

      e) Disjointed or not, I still appreciate how they’re portraying the game as sort of a “Tale of Five Dudes” thing. It’s less about the quest to defeat Diablo big caps and more about the Witch Doctor and his SPECIFIC perspective on the whole affair. It makes the “pick up and play” part make sense in a sort of Team Fortress way. You can adventure around with your character of choice, hop over to a friend’s game and go down 10 levels and still feel like you’re having a good, novel experience. Do the male and female voice actors have the same dialogue? Is it the same monk’s story regardless of gender?

    • feenwager 3:11 pm on May 23, 2012 Permalink

      It’s a small thing, but something Diablo 3 does better than many recent game is keep my attention on the main action. I find myself looking at the mini map much less often that usual. Kudos.

    • bowlisimo 6:28 pm on May 24, 2012 Permalink

      Completed normal a few days ago. Had a lot of fun, but I kind feel bad for the narrative in that game. They really try to make it serious and dire, but the on the ground action feels even more divorced from the whole good vs evil plot than I remember. I sat and talked to everyone, listened to all the lore,and paid attention. It’s jut not engaging on an intellectual level. Then there’s semi-beloved characters dying in isometric in-game cutscenes? Surely they deserved better?

      No, it’s totally fine, especially when everything else is so good. I said briefly to Beige last night (as he was summoning walking exploding zombie torsos) that I’m glad the game is pretty ridiculous and not serious in how it plays. This barbarian I started can swipe dudes clean off the map. The monk can punch monsters in half. Bad guys might as well be saying “Muahahaha” after all their dialogue when you get there too late to stop them for the 80th time. Practically everything on the map is attackable and blows up into splinters (that also go flying off the map) when you do, leaving money and presents behind. It’s satisfying.

      No idea how long I’ll stay on the treadmill, but as of now I’m still enjoying discovering new skills, finding new items, and in stark contrast to what I said earlier, running around with you guys in multi, so who knows?

    • zegolf 3:16 pm on May 25, 2012 Permalink

      Some potentially spoilery stuff here, so just a warning.

      Still spoilers….

      Ok, ready?

      http://www.reddit.com/r/Diablo/comments/u3w0z/diablo_3_potentially_has_an_arg_alternate_reality/

      Looks like there might be more to the D3 Secret level than people first thought. I love conspiracy theories in games.

    • scribl 2:04 am on May 27, 2012 Permalink

      Kroan#1518

    • zegolf 3:28 pm on May 29, 2012 Permalink

      Been trying to think of a way we can store information about items we might have that could help anyone else. I know I’ve picked up a few drops that have helped out @angryjedi, but it would be great if we all could share the love. Anyone have any thoughts?

    • cptcarnage 2:23 am on May 30, 2012 Permalink

      Well my account got hacked, all my gold, items and stash is gone.

      Talking with 2 other people that I play with they got nailed too. Anyone here?

    • zegolf 2:36 am on May 30, 2012 Permalink

      My account is unscathed. Change your password, get the authenticator and contact Blizzard. They’re able to roll back your account to semi-recent times and get your stuff back. For the most part.

      Did you notice anyone added to your friends list that you don’t recognize? Make note if you do.

    • cptcarnage 2:38 am on May 30, 2012 Permalink

      Already done, authenticator’s on my phone and one new user on my recents with a bunch of level 1 characters with dwadwadwa names.

      Don’t know how long ago it was, haven’t played for at least 5 days.

    • Pete Davison 10:15 am on May 30, 2012 Permalink

      @cptcarnage Crap, that sucks. Sorry, dude! Like Zach says, do all the usual security measures, ensure you have the Authenticator and contact Blizzard, they should be able to help. Unfortunately, they’re used to this sort of thing. People are scum.

      The account-hacking thing was supposedly due to some sort of exploit with public games. I believe it’s been fixed now, but be careful, all.

    • bowlisimo 2:48 pm on May 30, 2012 Permalink

      Damn, well that got me to order an authenticator. Crossing my fingers until I get this thing in the mail (no I don’t have a smart phone).

      Diablo 3 has become a chillout with itunes on shuffle timesink for me. Haven’t really played anything else since it came out. Feel like I can ride this wave to hell difficulty, maybe the beginning of Inferno, hit the level cap and then probably stop. Grinding for late game gear without any level progression is what will finally end this game for me, I think. Although there’s always the Barbarian I’ve been leveling up with Beige…

    • zegolf 1:57 am on May 31, 2012 Permalink

      I’ve taken the first steps in acquiring the items to enter Whimsyshire. I’ve found the Black Mushroom and I’m currently seeking out the remaining items. I’ll keep everyone updated!

    • Pete Davison 10:15 pm on June 1, 2012 Permalink

      Good work, sir. I successfully made it there the other night, and I believe Bowley has too. Be prepared for LOTS of farming.

  • mjpilon 2:25 am on April 24, 2012 Permalink
    Tags: , , ,   

    Hey all! A few quick thoughts as I finally recover from a crazy 6 day long strep which torn me to shreds:

    • Only positive of being bedridden on Wednesday and Thursday? Having the chance to play probably around 8 hours of Fez. Got through the first 32 cubes without FAQs and actually figured out some of the game’s “language”. I have started my second playthrough and I’ll admit it…. I gave up on the alphabet after a few hours of trying and I looked up where to find the hint(s) for it. I completely MISSED it/them the 1st time so I would been running around for hours (which I don’t have) aimlessly. Figured it out and I am now working through everything without any more assistance. Just a wonderful experience and completely not what I expected in the end – Jeff Gerstmann ‘s “rant” about it on the last Bombcast sums up the whole thing nicely I think. Don’t think I will get as far as @bluesforbuddha or @gkokoris have but I will try as much as I can handle.
    • @zegolf Welcome back! Regarding the board games, I have also started to delve into the area mostly through iOS versions but I have played some in actual board form. I would highly recommend Ticket to Ride and Catan. Great starter games that should peak your interest nicely. I wish I had more to recommend but none of my friends really my interest past Catan and I haven’t really found a board game group in the area to join with to try games like Pandemic or Arkham Horror :p Either way, enjoy the plunge!
    • My fitocracy activity for our group will commence soon – my regular running up and down Mont Royal here in MTL will begin as soon as I am 100% from this damn sickness
    • Also, any free-ish Asynch multiplayer iOS to recommend? Hero Academy is satisfying me nicely right now but I’m always open to trying other experience. Which reminds me: what happened to our Carsassone group? I’m looking at you @angryjedi @ajguy @rocgaude 😉
     
  • unmanneddrone 12:27 am on April 24, 2012 Permalink
    Tags:   

    Ravenmark on iOS is a great original TBS in the vein of RotKXII, combat-wise. Can be a little ball buster at times, too. Deep lore/codex if you want a lot of flavour with your TBS.

    I’d also add Legion of the Damned to the list, but your mileage may vary with a sci-fi Cyberstorm-esque experience based around the single mission objective of capturing nodes. Has asynchronous multiplayer, too.

    And I’ll just do my usual lonely pimping of Starbase Orion. Portable MoO2, async multi, cures what ails you.

    EDIT: @zegolf I think a few of us know that feeling of rapidly decreased gaming time and, frankly, the yearning to commit so much time to it.

     
  • rampantbicycle 9:22 pm on April 23, 2012 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf Another for the board game pile – our gaming group has recently experimented with A Touch of Evil, which we find to be a good alternative for those times when we are in the mood to gang up on some supernatural board game horrors without needing either the great whacking chunks of time OR the great whacking table you would need to play Arkham Horror.

    The gist:

    You are one of a number of potential heroes living in Vaguely Colonial New England, which may be threatened by any number of supernatural whozits – from werewolves to the Headless Horseman (natch.) Your task is to roam the countryside, fighting monsters, collecting useful items, and investigating the Terrible Thing That Stalks In The Night until at last you are ready to raise a posse consisting of yourself, some village elders, and possibly your friends and go terminate the TTTSITN with extreme prejudice.

    Of course, all the village elders have useful powers they can bring to your final showdown. And they also have secrets. Some of them may even be working for the villain – or BE the villain – in which case, you are quite thoroughly hosed.

    It’s actually quite a lot of fun with the right group (for best results I recommend people who enjoy making up little narratives to go along with the dice rolling and whatnot. In our first game my straitlaced spinsterly librarian type not only helped to slay the evil, but redeemed a town elder from the tragic evils of alcohol. ;))

    Word of advice, though: the cooperative version of A Touch of Evil is superior. Don’t bother with the competitive rules, IMO.

    I also recommend, for a completely different flavor, Space Alert. Totally different flavor and setting – science fiction, in what often ends up being a comedy of errors as your hapless crew of misfits embarks on a mission in what must surely be one of the least functional spacecraft ever designed by man. Lifts fail, communications go out, and there never seems to be enough power for anything. And that’s before the giant space octopus shows up.

    Word of advice on this one: you’ll need a device capable of playing CDs. And play the tutorial, whether or not you feel like you need it – you will thank yourself later.

    We’ve also recently experimented with Fortune and Glory, which is basically the board game where you get to be Indiana Jones. No, really. Right down to the hunting artifacts in ancient temples and infiltrating Nazi bases. Having only tried this once, all I can really add is that while it’s fun, that airship is a pain in the ass, and you really, really need to keep those bases under control.

    …Why, yes, I do prefer cooperative games. Why do you ask?

     
  • Pete Davison 6:41 pm on April 23, 2012 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf What don’t you like about the tracking? I find it pretty intuitive — though finding the right name for things can be a pain at times. The iPhone app’s pretty neat.

    I love Geek and Sundry. Glad someone else is digging it. Also, Felicia Day. Rawr.

    Re: board games. Plenty to suggest.

    If you’re a newbie to it all, Ticket to Ride, Carcassonne and Catan are your basic “gateway games”.

    Ticket to Ride is largely luck-based, though there’s a healthy dose of strategy that increases exponentially the more people you’re playing with. The concept — claiming train routes across America for great pointage — sounds like it should be pretty dull, but it’s a simple to understand, easy to pick up and very competitive game. Highly recommended. There are lots of different variants on it, too, each providing their own twist. I have the original version with the “1910” expansion.

    Carcassonne is a tile-laying game where you collectively build a map. You get points by claiming territories. Once you get a feel for it, there’s plenty of screwing each other over in subtle ways in this one.

    Catan is a trading and building game. There’s a healthy dose of luck again, but the highlight of the game is the wheeling and dealing in trading with other players. You have to actually negotiate with one another, and that makes it a constantly interesting title to play. You need at least 3 people to play, though.

    Elsewhere, Pandemic is a great game — it’s cooperative, so it’s a nice change of pace, and its mechanics are straightforward to understand but provide a lot of depth. I recommend getting the “On The Brink” expansion with this if you want to try it as it makes the game a whole lot better.

    If you have time to burn, Arkham Horror is great fun. It’s another co-op title set in the world of HP Lovecraft’s horrors. It’s a game that encourages you to think about theme and story as much as mechanics. It’s also monstrously difficult, as a lot of co-op games tend to be.

    There are lots of great card games worth looking into, too. Ascension and Dominion are both cool games that involve building a deck then using it to your advantage — there’s no Magic-style purchasing booster packs and collecting rare cards, though — everything you need to play is in the box. San Juan is a neat take on a trading and building game using only cards. Bohnanza has lots of interesting negotiating and interacting with each other.

    Check out http://boardgamegeek.com/ or http://cautionsmallparts.com/ for some further ideas — or keep watching Table Top as it seems like it’s going to be a great show.

     
  • bowlisimo 9:06 pm on November 11, 2011 Permalink  

    So should I mail @zegolf back his copies of MGS and MGS2 and buy that collection, or what?

     
  • bowlisimo 3:55 pm on August 31, 2011 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @beige There is a revolver that I’m pretty sure is available in Detroit in several places, though I’m not sure what upgrades it takes. I’ve been running around like James Bond with the beefed up “silly initial starting pistol” which has been more than enough for regular bad guys, especially with a silencer, armor piercing rounds and a laser sight. It’s underpowered for the bosses in a stand up fight (on normal difficulty), so you need to break out the bag of tricks in those instances. EMP grenades are pretty damn useful, but they aren’t exactly copious. I don’t have any of the aiming augs, so I don’t know if those help. For actual guns that maim and kill, as far as I have gotten, it has pretty much been pistol, revolver, sub-machine gun, combat rifle, heavy rifle, and sniper rifle. Oh and rocket lawnchair if you have the room. Turret domination + heavy lifting = portable killing machine.

    I have lived a life sans Hideo Kojima so far, but I was generously sent Metal Gear 1+2 from @zegolf last year, and 3 came with the PS2 I ebayed, I just need extra hours in the day to actually get to them!

     
  • Pete Davison 3:53 pm on June 17, 2011 Permalink
    Tags:   

    On a lighter note, @zegolf and I are playing Champions Online on Steam. It’s free and actually quite fun, especially if you liked City of Heroes, as it’s pretty much the same game with better comic-book style graphics. Who wants to join us?

     
  • Pete Davison 12:09 am on June 15, 2011 Permalink  

    @zegolf Impending Squad Game Night on Spiral Nights? I do hope so. It looks as if the servers might be unified, too, so it may even be a (quasi-)MMO that we can all play together for once.

     
  • sinfony 4:10 pm on June 13, 2011 Permalink  

    @zegolf A new game with the characteristics that made Earthbound great would be excellent. Problem with making it an “Earthbound” game is that its constrained by the earlier games.

     
  • sinfony 2:00 pm on June 13, 2011 Permalink  

    @zegolf Have to say, I disagree 100% on that comic. Something that I find frustrating personally, and that I imagine would drive any developer completely up the wall, is the tendency of the hardcore to demand constant remakes and updates of existing games and series. Earthbound was a pretty cool game. It’s still out there if you want to play it. It never would have existed if everybody just demanded another Kid Icarus.

    While there’s not a 1:1 relationship, every remake comes at the expense of new IP or at least new takes on existing IP. I’m as guilty as anybody for buying sequels and HD updates, but I don’t understand the “I don’t want a new console for new technology, I only want it if you release a sequel to my favorite game from childhood” mentality. There’s no need to buy a new console to play a game that already exists. I bought an Xbox for Knights of the Old Republic. I bought a 360 for Skate. If I buy a PS3, it’s not going to be for Twisted Metal. I’m not going to buy a Wii U, or any other system, if it’s just a repository for do-overs.

     
  • Shingro 1:46 pm on June 13, 2011 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf Earthbound is nearly solely responsible for my sister being into gaming. She even named one of her cats Ms Saturn. I myself had my tiny mind blown when I got to the ending playing it on my SNES. Very very clever game for its time and a great example of a game that almost can’t be made by large publishers for modern systems now unfortunately. It’s very hard to make a game that whimsical with a very hard to describe feel all the way through. It’s nearly impossible to make that game via committee, I barely understand how they did it the first time.

    But oh yes, wonderful game. You could almost use it as a test for Replicants because the emotions it generates are just so odd and…. subtle? childlike? I dunno something like that.

     
  • feenwager 12:32 pm on June 13, 2011 Permalink  

    @zegolf great comic. I personally played probably about 50% of Earthbound back when it came out for the SNES, but I’ve seen someone complete it (long story). Granted, my memory of it is pretty fuzzy, but I remember it being pretty cool. I’m not honestly sure why it gets quite the love it does, though.

     
  • RocGaude 3:31 pm on June 8, 2011 Permalink
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    @zegolf The first 40 minutes of that show was golden and a great example of why I gave Whiskey Media my $50. Then JB starts complaining about how he can’t make the game he wants to make for XBL because he HAS to put in 12 achievements and the conversation gets awkward. He’s become one of the handful of industry peeps who needs to stay away from podcasts and limit their debates to QT3 threads.

     
  • mjpilon 11:01 pm on June 6, 2011 Permalink
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    Thoughts on UbiSoft:

    Rayman : Awesome. Confession time: I have never played a Rayman game but I think this one will be the first – always up for a 3rd person platformer.

    Driver: SF : The series never did anything for me. Nothing changed that here.

    Far Cry 2: I liked the first one but never felt like trying the second one… looks great like all Far Cry games. We’ll see as we approach

    Furious 4: Okay…. I like the trailer and the Inglorious Basterds approach it seems to be taking. Guess we’ll have to see but that’s enough to get me interested.

    Tintin: As someone who grew up reading Tintin (I still have all the comics at my parents’ house), I’m very interested in this game although I am always leery of movie tie-in games.

    Ghost recon: Have never really cared for the series and the demo did nothing to change that.

    Trackmania 2: very nice although I should probably finally play Trackmania :p

    Rayman Rabbids: Always enjoyed the minigames of the Rabbids series. Looks like a lot of fun.

    Just Dance 3: Having experienced my family enjoying the second one at xmas this year in a way that mimics the videos that they showed, I fully understand the appeal of this series…

    Rocksmith: I’m always leery of the “you’re actually learning this instrument for real” argument re: music games so I will need to see more evidence of this as we approach release. As someone who is trying to learn guitar as we speak, I would be interested if it actually “works”

    Your Shape: the addition of online friend support is logical for a game like this

    Assassin’s Creed: HELL YEAH!!!

    I liked the videos of “old school” version of the games UbiSoft was presented – a nice and creative touch to the festivities. The host, Mr. Caffeine, was god awful – all his jokes bombed and he almost killed the show. Otherwise, UbiSoft did a pretty good job with their games.

    @zegolf Believe me… I’ll all for dumb fun. I don’t take myself so seriously as to require every game I place to be a thoughtful and moving piece of entertainment. I love simple, good fun as much as the next guy – my game library is pretty good indication of that. I guess with regards to the press conference, to me, these pressers should be about highlighting the creative and amazing new things that you have to show us. You can show us dumb fun anytime you want. I’m all for MS showing us Disneyland and Sesame Street because yes, those are the types of Kinect products they should be highlighted to promote this hardware. I love that they are going in those directions and those are two of the first games that actually have me wanting to buy Kinect…. things like the gun stuff in Ghost Recon don’t strike me as fun… just over the point and un-necessary.

    At the same time, while I appreciated the creativity of things like Kinect fun labs, you need to show me actual game applications to get me hyped for things. Things like object scanning and finger tracking are cool but if you can’t show me a game application during an E3 press conference, why should I believe these things work as well as you portray? I guess I’ve been burned by tech demos too much over the years to jump in automatically. I will give these things their chance as I do with everything but I was just left wanting more from Microsoft today…..

     
  • RocGaude 7:48 pm on June 6, 2011 Permalink
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    @zegolf Hey, I thought that was MY role? 😉

    As for your rant, consider me the dude in the back of the room yelling “yeah!” or, for your inner redneck, hollerin’ “amen!”. 😉

     
  • Pete Davison 12:58 pm on May 26, 2011 Permalink
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    @zegolf — Good man. Think I added you to in-game buddies.

    Anyone else playing, let me know your usernames and I’ll see if I can remember how the “Group” system works.

     
  • unmanneddrone 10:45 am on March 24, 2011 Permalink
    Tags: ARC Squadron, ,   

    @angryjedi Good heavens, yes. Those smug ad nauseam quoters of Python. My main issue with this new iOS game is that people aren’t afraid to tweet like its going out of fashion, and to have a game sequentially spoiled via wanton abuse of social media is a reprehensible act. Rift has really taken the cake recently. High scores, I’m okay with…but if someone digs a hole in an MMO, we probably don’t need to know.

    @zegolf From what I understand, Sword & Sworcery was originally for the iPhone, so they’ve got similar assets for the pocket version. Should be okay! You paint a very nice picture, too. Looking forward to it.

    EDIT: Forgot to add this little multiplayer gem, now in pre-alpha state for PC, free to try out. May I present…

    A.R.C. Squadron. Think good ol’ Starfox meets Crimson Skies with a slight aesthetic of the MMO Space Cowboy/Ace Online. The developers behind are the guys who made Supersonic Aerobatic Rocket-powered Battle Cars on PSN. They’re doing something of a Minecraft by allowing folks to nab their alpha, taking feedback and implementing new features and overhauls as production progresses. As it stands, I’ve spent an hour in the game and played a nice number of rounds – it’s TDM only at the moment. Has huge potential.

    300MB – http://bit.ly/gw3jzW

    Plug in those gamepads, because it’s pure arcade madness with them. R1/L1 allows for one to “DO A BARREL ROLL” in either direction, R2/L2 zoom and fire respectively, analog sticks control pitch, roll and yaw, X (or whatever the 360 controller’s equivalent is) controls boost and Triangle swaps weaponry.

     
  • feenwager 12:32 am on January 5, 2011 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @allofyous It’ll probably take most of the night to install and patch, so maybe tomorrow? Anyone else getting on board say so now.

    @zegolf Elune it is.

     
  • bowlisimo 12:04 am on January 5, 2011 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf Good to know.

    @feenwager Just say when. I’ll pull the trigger and we’ll Fung Wah bus it around Azeroth like Chinese tourists.

     
  • scribl 6:05 am on January 2, 2011 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf If you ask me, you can really just skip AC1 all together. I mean, I guess now that you’re at the very end, you might as well finish it, but I would’ve just looked up the Wikipedia plot synopsis.

     
  • bowlisimo 4:47 am on January 2, 2011 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf Feen’s right, I really liked the original Assassin’s Creed, but I’ve been playing AC2 all week and it’s an order of magnitude better. Instead of going to a city, gathering intel forever with the same five missions, and then assassinating, there’s a coherent, linear, and much better paced set of missions that lead to the same goal without all the “faffing about”. Of course, you can do those side missions if you want, they’re there, but they aren’t mandatory, in fact I think I’ve only done two of them. Someone must have filled them in on the progression and reward part of video games too.

    Edit: Also, Leonardo Da Vinci is Q and no stupid pointless hub world.

     
  • feenwager 3:28 am on January 2, 2011 Permalink  

    @zegolf stay the course. I can’t tell you how much better AC2 is.

     
  • RocGaude 4:32 am on December 23, 2010 Permalink  

    @redswirl Thanks, man. Awfully considerate of ya.

    @zegolf Oh yes, please. 🙂

     
  • bowlisimo 11:02 pm on December 21, 2010 Permalink  

    @zegolf Hey, just returning the favor.

    @angryjedi Grats man, you fit right in with the heavyweights (also I’d rather listen to your voice than Shoe’s raspy dying man voice)

     
  • RedSwirl 2:24 am on December 13, 2010 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @angryjedi @zegolf There are always new games that come out. Plus Direct2Drive has already started their sale.

    How long did the last couple Holiday sales last anyway? I’m pretty sure it was just a week.

     
  • RocGaude 2:22 am on December 13, 2010 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf To be fair, who hasn’t gobbled up everything they’ve been meaning to play from their past sales? I’m all out except for Dawn of War 2.

     
  • cptcarnage 5:40 pm on November 30, 2010 Permalink
    Tags: ,   

    I’d be game for a book club.

    Also @zegolf pretty much forget Vanishing Point, @angryjedi has it pinned. I haven’t given up hope yet though.

     
  • RocGaude 5:10 pm on November 26, 2010 Permalink
    Tags: ,   

    @zegolf Jesus, what a blast from the past. Technically, a “pile of shame” game is considered a game worth playing but hasn’t received the attention it deserves. I’m not so sure ET qualifies. 😉

    @cptcarnage For the record, I grabbed AC: Brodeo yesterday but told the Mrs. to wrap it up for me for Christmas since I still have AC2 to play through. You won’t be alone.

     
  • mjpilon 5:44 pm on November 23, 2010 Permalink
    Tags: ,   

    Wow, this discussion has made me feel less guilty about never finishing Half-Life 2. Like @Rocgaude and @zegolf , I’ve started it a number of times without ever finishing it. The further I’ve ever gotten is the prison and needing to defend myself using the turrets. While I do wish to get through it to “see what the fuss is about”, it seems more and more unlikely as time goes on.

    Also, I am now 6 hours into Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood and yeah, it’s just more Assassin’s Creed 2 but with improvements. I am totally sucked back in and have spent the past 3 hours of my playtime ignoring the story missions and simply finding all the glyphs, killing all the Borgia generals, destroying the Borgia towers and unlocking all the stores. This will likely continue for sometime. I spent 25 hours with AC2 and I get the impression I may top that with this game. I simply love this game. I haven’t played any multiplayer yet and will do so eventually. The next Squad night can’t come soon enough.

     
  • RedSwirl 4:10 pm on November 23, 2010 Permalink  

    @zegolf @RocGaude @beige I still firmly believe Half-Life 2 to be the best game of the 2000 – 2010 decade (with the possible exception of Phantasy Star Online). It is my favorite singleplayer first person shooter ever. It’s one of those games that I have to restrain myself from playing all the way through AGAIN. So no, I don’t think it’s that overrated.

    Why? Well first of all, I still firmly believe Valve to be head-and-shoulders above most of the rest of the pack when it comes to storytelling techniques in games. It’s not just the fact that they use no cut scenes or breakaways, but that they use that perspective with great skill, even planting clues to the story in the environment itself (like what the aliens have done to Earth). Even if what is actually being told isn’t that interesting (I mean Jesus, the entire first half of the game happens directly because of Lamar), how Valve is telling it is pretty damn progressive and skillful compared to the rest of the gaming landscape.

    Secondly, Valve are some damn good level designers. They know how to take the tools they have at their disposal and use them with maximum ingenuity. What amazes me playing through HL2 and the episodes is the sheer variety of gameplay hooks and shticks they employ to keep things interesting while keeping you in the same control interface 100 percent of the way through. You start out shooting guys in a train yard, then you ride a hovercraft through a canal, then you slice up zombies, then you go on a road trip in a buggie, then you command an army of insects, and it all transitions with amazing fluidity.

    Half-Life 2 is just a finely-crafted motherfucking game with exquisite pacing and level design.

     
  • RocGaude 2:54 pm on November 23, 2010 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf Holy shit, man…I was thinking the exact same thing. Had I a Twitter account, I would’ve posted “can we as a diverse collective of gaming enthusiasts agree to refrain from sucking Half Life 2’s dick every time the discussion of ‘narrative and/or pacing in gaming’ comes up?” Seriously, it’s not worth the genital attention it’s been getting.

     
  • RedSwirl 5:10 pm on November 18, 2010 Permalink
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    When it comes to reviews these days, @zegolf nailed it “Most of the time it’s twitter, you guys, and word of mouth.” That’s IF I can’t rent a game first.

    If there is absolutely no way I can play a game before paying full price for it I might run up to GameStats and pull up reviews from GamePro or GameSpy, but I’ve found fellow gamer opinion to be more valuable. This is coming from someone who used to write mainline reviews to pass the time. Even today when I do a “writeup” on my 1up page it comes off more like a column than anything else.

     
  • Pete Davison 11:40 pm on November 12, 2010 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf: Good idea. Only potential problem with that is those of us who are greedy bastards and have all the systems available may be spread a bit thin. I’m sure we can think of a way round that, though, especially if we play “small-group” games like L4D, Alien Swarm and the like.

    I would typically gravitate towards 360 as well, since my gaming computer isn’t up to that much. It’ll run Source stuff reasonably-ish, but that’s about it.

    Throw some game names (and systems) out there. We’ll go with the popular vote(s).

    My proposals:

    PC: L4D2
    PS3: Fat Princess
    360: Monday Night Combat

     
  • Pete Davison 11:45 pm on November 4, 2010 Permalink
    Tags: ,   

    @zegolf All for a Pinball FX 2 challenge. That game is super-sweet. Expensive if you want to buy all the tables but you can get a decent experience for 800 points.

    In fact, I said much the same thing in my awesome review of the game for The Big Pixels this week. Which you should all go and read and share.

    Who here has a copy of PBFX2… or is willing to grab one for the sake of a bit of friendly competition? Top tip: I’m not very good at pinball, so this won’t be another Geometry Wars 2. Probably.

     
  • cptcarnage 7:56 pm on October 14, 2010 Permalink
    Tags:   

    I added a no-ip address to the Squad’s Minecraft server, you can now connect to it using:

    sosminecraft.no-ip.org

     
  • RedSwirl 7:41 pm on October 2, 2010 Permalink  

    GOG Weekend Sale: http://www.gog.com/en/promo/community_favourites

    Myst, Jagged Alliance 2, are they necessary?

    I don’t even know what kind of game JA2 is. It’s some kind of turn-based strategy right? Is it in any way similar to Fire Emblem, Final Fantasy Tactics, or any sort of Japanese turn-based tactical game?

     
  • Jeff Grubb 5:44 am on October 2, 2010 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @Scribl @RedSwirl No, it isn’t a debug, it is a Gold release copy. I literally just got the UPS package today. They sent it to me for reviewing on Kombo, obviously before they knew Kombo was kaput. I’ll have to do something with it though.

     
  • scribl 7:18 pm on October 1, 2010 Permalink
    Tags:   

    I gotta side with the masses on this one. Playing as the Taliban in MoH multiplayer had no artistic value. It wasn’t meant to provoke thought or show you a different perspective. There’s nothing to defend, and no reason to stand up for it. It’s just kids playing with army toys.

    @zegolf Schindler’s List? Let’s be honest with ourselves here. MoH and CoD aren’t mature art. They’re mindless Michael-Bay blockbusters.

    Don’t blame the masses—they’re right to be offended. Blame EA and Activision for pumping out mindless bullshit when they have the power and money to do something far more interesting.

     
  • RocGaude 4:12 pm on October 1, 2010 Permalink  

    @zegolf I just saw that. It’s no problem, then.

     
  • RocGaude 4:08 pm on October 1, 2010 Permalink  

    @zegolf I found the culprit. It’s a domain called alphainventions.com and it has “referred us” over 130 times. I tried to go there but it doesn’t look like a real site. Not sure if we should block it or how. Thoughts?

     
  • RocGaude 3:55 pm on October 1, 2010 Permalink
    Tags: ,   

    @zegolf I don’t know how it happened but your posting of Game Informer’s BioShock Infinite cover brought over a thousand hits to the Squawkbox. Crazy.

    @beige That Enslaved review has me kind of excited. It just went straight to the top of my GameFly queue.

    I was originally thinking about doing a different theme for the next show but after reading your rage about the Medal of Honor thing, maybe we should hit the “violence in games” topic instead. I feel pretty qualified about this topic and think that I can shed some light as to why EA did what they did.

     
  • impynickers 3:34 pm on October 1, 2010 Permalink  

    @zegolf I guess I understand why EA did what they did, but I still feel that playing and fighting against the Taliban was a necessary context for the game. Its that old double standard, just because we are able to ‘play’ as them seems to make everything morally wrong. We can shoot the crap out of them, but we aren’t allowed to see the world from their perspective.

     
  • RedSwirl 12:42 am on October 1, 2010 Permalink
    Tags:   

    @zegolf: http://portforward.com/

     
  • Jeff Grubb 12:33 am on October 1, 2010 Permalink
    Tags: Jeff Grubb's Stream of Thoughtlessness,   

    @Zegolf I’ll probably be available for testing tomorrow!

    @angryjedi I can’t wait to hear the details of your potential job. Excited for you.

     
  • RocGaude 7:34 pm on September 30, 2010 Permalink  

    @impynickers Shoot me a message with the email address associated with your WordPress account and I’ll fix it.

     
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