Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Rolling Start 2011

It's been a good long while since I've had a chance to update my progress in a blog post.  It's been really busy at work, and I tend to play games at home more than read or write about them.  I've had a very eventful gaming time these past few weeks!  I finished 3 whole games!  Quickly:

Bayonetta - I pushed hard through the second half of this game to finish it off before the end of 2010, but I really enjoyed it.  It's a must play for anyone who likes the action genre or Japanese gaming, or both!  I'm not big on either, lately, but Bayonetta was a load of fun.  This is probably one I would have played multiple times back when I was in school and had tons of time.  The combat is fun, smooth, and has a lot of depth to it if you want that.

Halo: Reach - the first game I played for my Resolution feature, as voted on by Call Of Podcast listeners.  It was good, but it doesn't stick out to me as much more than just another Halo game.  It's surely the apex of Halo multiplayer, but that's not really why I play Halo, and indeed I am not even subscribed to XBL anymore.  I thought the campaign was just kind of average, and definitely lacking in the wow factor that other missions in other series entries had.  The action all being centered on one planet and not on crazy space installations with epic landscaping is to blame for that.  I did appreciate the space flight and other vehicle sections new to the series, but those all together make up maybe 10% of the campaign.  I kind of wonder about the future of this franchise...

Fallout - probably the most unorthodox RPG playthrough I've ever had.  I kind of stumbled onto the endgame not really knowing that it was the endgame.  The whole thing ended up being shorter than I had thought it would be, and by a good margin.  The entire critical path of the game really only has two legs, though the second consists of two objectives.  First you find a water chip (by hook or by crook), then you're tasked with  destroying the leader of the super mutants, and separately destroying the source of the super mutants.  This is really all the direction you're ever given in the game; the rest is up to you.  You have to figure out how to use the resources present in the world, in the form of people you meet, the skills you gain, and the gear you're able to get your hands on, to accomplish your goals.  I hunted around until I sniffed out a trail for the water chip, and I joined the Brotherhood of Steel to get my hands on some power armor and heavy weaponry for the latter objectives.  There are other, equally valid ways of doing these things, all of which have an effect on the game's ending.  My game had a kind of bitter ending for several factions, as I'd inadvertently allowed the super mutants lay waste to the ghoul town of Necropolis and scare away all the residents of The Hub, as well.

I finished Fallout, but hadn't had enough, so the next day I jumped right into Fallout 2! I'm just a few hours in, but so far so good.  It's very similar to the first game, just with a few improvements having been made in the year between the two games' release dates.  In Fallout 2 you play The Chosen One, a descendant of The Vault Dweller, the protagonist of the first game, and you are sent out into the world in search of a Garden of Eden Construction Kit, or GECK.

It was high time that I jump into Assassin's Creed II, as well, so jump I did.  It's great so far!  Ezio Auditore da Firenze is a much more likeable player character than Altair was in the first game, and the variety of mission objectives and other things to do in the game is a tremendous improvement upon AC1.  I'll have more to talk about regarding this game at a later date.

That about wraps things up for now, aside from some light warfighting/manshooting I've been doing in Red Orchestra: Ostfront '41 -'45 and Battlefield 2, both excellent games, by the way.  More on those later, too.


Greg said...

Well I suppose there is no real reason to vote on the next resolution game since it sounds as if the decision has already been made per COP 64. However, I'll go ahead and put my vote in for Metro 2033 for next week.

That's a game I'm marginally interested in but I've never really liked mechanics that put you on a time limit.

Count Elmdor said...

then, yeah, it'll have 3 votes, since I'm carrying them forward.

Is there a time limit? I hadn't heard anything about that. Guess I'll find out! I haven't even begun Brood War yet...

Greg said...

Well, I use "time limit" loosely. For instance, any mechanic that limits you such as oxygen timers while underwater or in this game's case, the gas mask. I have heard there is some sort limit on how long you can be outside in the toxic atmosphere.

Count Elmdor said...

Oh, right. I'd imagine that is something like how some games use hunger or fatigue that you periodically have to take care of, or like armor durability, which I was kinda surprised to find in AC2.

Greg said...

Well, actually, item durability doesn't bother me so much. What I really dislike are mechanics that discourage or limit exploration. If I have to worry about toxic air or grabbing the next bubble in a mario game to keep from dying, I'm not going to look around as much. I'm just going to hustle to the next safe zone.

Eric said...

How do I vote for the next game? In comments?

I'm voting for Max Payne, how am I listening to your opinion on video games when you haven't played this? Make sure you get the Kung Fu 3.0 mod because it is so badass. It's my favorite fan mod of all time. The dojo sux but the moves it adds to Max are sublime.

Eric said...

Ok I skimmed the list of games again and I'm still sticking with Max Payne (because it's a quick play) but here are your most egregious failures:

-Baldurs Gate 1/2/Throne of Bhaal
-Knights of the Old Republic


Count Elmdor said...

yeah, just comment here or tweet me or on the podcast page, anything will do. I'll mark a vote for Max Payne, then.

I played the PS2 version briefly, and thought it was garbage, but that was long ago.

The whole Baldur's Gate saga is a big gap in there I can hopefully fill this year sometime.

In my defense, I played probably half or more into KOTOR on the 360, but the emulation is shit and I got so sick of it I quit. That and the sequel (on PC) are also definitely on the list!