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CoolKid006 Blog

Help with The Last of Us (NO Spoilers) *Updated

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Hello all! I was going to write a new blog post about The Last of Us and how it's one of the best games I've ever played, but I've come across a problem that's preventing me from finishing a second playthrough. I played through the game once on normal without any problems. Then I decided to try new game plus. Everything was going fine until I got 7 hours in. Here's what happened: I'm at a part where Ellie is supposed to bring a ladder down (and I know she's supposed to do it since I've already played through the game). However, when I hit triangle to boost her up, she doesn't walk over. I go to restart the checkpoint, but I see that it's still autosaving. I give it a few minutes before giving up and ejecting the disc. After loading the game back up, I try to continue but it doesn't load. The percentage stays at either 0.00% or somewhere around 97%. I've tried other ways to get it to load, but nothing works. I've tried going offline and loading the manual saves. I've also tried loading a previous section in the chapter, but it still glitches out in the same place. I managed to get Ellie to get the ladder once, but once we got over to the next area, the ground environment failed to load and I ended up just standing on black space. I tried to proceed but the game ended up freezing.

Eventually I gave up and decided to start a new game on the hard difficulty. Unfortunately, 7 hours in and the game glitches on me in the EXACT same area. Has anyone else had a similar problem where the game doesn't load or just glitches out? Could my game disc be scratched? Could it be something wrong with my PS3?

I'd really appreciate it if anyone could help. Thanks!

Update: I went to exchange the game for a new copy. So far it's been working fine. I guess the disc must have been scratched. Hopefully I don't run into anymore problems.

How Non-Gamers See Gamers

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Video games. The phrase makes me beam and cringe at the same time. For me, video games are a form of escapism. They present entire new worlds that I can visit to avoid boredom and relieve the stress of reality. However, I can't help but think that the phrase "video games" is just... misleading. When I hear those words, I initially think of one category - bro games. These are the games that the typical testosterone-fueled teenage boy would play. They're the Call of Duty's, the Battlefield's, and the Halo's. This is what makes me cringe. By no means are these bad games (I've actually played and enjoyed quite a few of the Battlefield and Halo games), but they cause non-gamers to view gamers as juvenile and delinquent.

I bring this up because recently I was talking with one of my non-gaming friends, and she had asked me what I did over my week-end. Knowing that she wouldn't be very interested to hear about my pixelated adventures, I answered with the vague phrase "video games," to which she replied, "How can you enjoy something thats all about killing people?" I was taken aback when she said this. She never asked what video games I played or what those games were about, just about how I could possibly get a kick out of killing people. I had been playing Bioshock Infinite, which albeit does involve a lot of guns and killing, but that was not my main reason for playing it. I was offended that she assumed that all video games showcase murder as a form of entertainment. Of course, I could have explained that not all video games are about shooting, mass murder, and death, but instead I started thinking about how the non-gaming world sees the gaming world. In the non-gaming world there thrives the idea that video games are just a pointless form of entertainment that advocates blood, gore, and violence. Though there is good reason to believe this, especially since the Call of Duty franchise is among the best-selling and most popular franchises of all time, there is also good reason to see video games in a different light. Take Bioshock Infinite. The driving force of Infinite is not its gameplay, but its narrative. When I turned on my PS3 to enter the world of Columbia, I did so to experience Booker and Elizabeth's story. Although its gameplay focused on the guns and shooting that this generation has become so familiar with, Infinite's main attraction is its story, characters, and setting. It breaks my heart to think of all the people who would take one look at Infinite and automatically assume that this narrative masterpiece was just Call of Duty in another form.

Why is it that video games can't be taken as seriously as other forms of entertainment like movies and books? In my opinion, video games are better. They allow people more control of their experiences. Increasingly, video games are giving people the chance to mold their character how they want. Games like Mass Effect, The Walking Dead, and Dishonored present choices that impact the story and the player's character. Being given the opportunity to mold my own experience gives me more enjoyment than the linear stories of movies and books. However, even linear games provide more enjoyment than movies and books since linear games still give people control of the protagonist. So even if a video game has a linear story like a movie or book, it still gives people more satisfaction by allowing them to control the character that drives the story forward. When I watch a movie or read a book, I feel like I'm a passenger. But when I play a video game, I feel like the driver. Even with this opportunity for a more involving experience, video games are still viewed as childish by the non-gaming community.

Perhaps if more people played video games the industry would join the ranks of films. But getting non-gamers to actually play a game is a challenge itself. Video games are unfamiliar to non-gamers. And this unfamiliarity might actually be why non-gamers view video games as mostly violent and juvenile. Instead of seeing the multifarious worlds that are offered through video games, such as Rapture, Hyrule, Dunwall, Columbia, the Citadel, and countless others, people choose to ignore them. They can only see video games as variations of Call of Duty because that is what is familiar to them through coverage by the media and what is heard by the "bros" of the world. Obviously Call of Duty isn't the only household name for video games. There are games like Mario, Pac-man, and Zelda, but the increasing market for shooters is drowning those names out. The massive financial success of yearly Call of Duty's has not gone unnoticed. Because of the popularity of first-person shooters, developers have been flooding the market with Call of Duty "clones" to try and mimic its success. This market saturation of FPS's has affected not just the gaming world, but also the non-gaming world. The most vocal members of the gaming community also happen to be the biggest fans of these FPS's. Also, recent events have caused some media to put the blame on violent video games, which increases the amount of negative exposure of video games that non-gamers get. As a result, most of what non-gamers hear about video games is about violence, shooting, guns, etc.

I don't mean to put the blame for how non-gamers see gamers solely on Call of Duty, but more on the bro genre as a whole. I think video games need to be taken more seriously as the industry continues to grow. Developers are creating experiences unique to video games and for their work to be properly recognized, the non-gaming community needs to forget its current generalization of games. When the connotation of the phrase "video games" shifts from being juvenile to being unique, then I believe the industry will have reached its goal.

Questions, comments, concerns (maybe even compliments)? Show me some feedback/other opinions in the comments!

It's been a while

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What's up everybody? I'm back after a four-month blog break. I just didn't really feel any motivation to write about what was happening. It's been so long that I'm not sure what I should talk about first. I guess I'll start by saying I'm finally a certified lifeguard. It feels pretty cool knowing that I'm capable of saving a person's life. :P Now all I need is to get a job so I can finally buy all the games I want.

I attended PAX East with a few of my friends. It was a lot of fun getting to see so many games at the exhibition hall. I played some Battlefield 3, Blacklight: Retribution, Mass Effect 3, The Secret World, and more. I also saw some games like Assassin's Creed III and Lollipop Chainsaw.

My gaming activity has been somewhat minimal since my last blog. I haven't felt any urge to start up new games. The only game I've really sunken my teeth into is Mass Effect 3. I'm not saying that's a bad thing since ME3 is a magnificent game, but I used to play several games at any one time.

Speaking of Mass Effect 3, I'm kind of torn on the issue with the game's ending. Don't worry, I'm not going to spoil anything. On one hand I think that Bioware has the right to keep the ending the way it is, the game is their work of art after all. However, on the other hand I think that gamers are also right about Bioware not fulfilling their promise of giving us multiple different endings that are based on all the choices we made throughout the three games. Hopefully Bioware will shed a little more light on the issue sometime this month.

I guess that's all I have to share with you guys right now. With any luck it won't take me another four months to get a blog up. Thanks for reading! CoolKid006 out!

It's GOTY time!

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What's up everybody! I'm back once again to enlighten you with the magnificance that permeates this blog. This time I'm here with my choices for the best games of 2011 (that I played, of course). I'll try to keep this brief to save you guys the trouble of skimming through the blog. :P I'll present the nominees first, then reveal the winners.

Best Mobile Game

Jetpack Joyride

Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP

Tiny Wings

Best Downloadable Game

Bastion

Ms. Splosion Man

Outland

Best PS3 Game

Batman: Arkham City

InFamous 2

Portal 2

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception

Best Xbox 360 Game

Battlefield 3

Crysis 2

Deus Ex: Human Revolution

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

2011 Game of the Year

Batman: Arkham City

Deus Ex: Human Revolution

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

InFamous 2

Portal 2

And now… the winners!

Best Mobile Game – Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP

Best Downloadable Game – Bastion

Best PS3 Game – Batman: Arkham City

Best Xbox 360 Game – The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

2011 Game of the Year – The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim

Was that last one a surprise? I know it's all been said before by countless numbers of sites, but I'm going to say it again. Skyrim is incredible. It's not just a game, it's an experience. There is an astonishing amount to see and do in the world. At the time of this writing I'm about 56 hours in and I've barely touched the main quest. I'll start up the game and go wandering off in the direction opposite to the main quest and the game rewards me for it. That is what's so awesome about Skyrim.

And there we have it. It's been a great year for gaming with so many fantastic titles. I hope 2012 will be just as terrific. I leave you with a list of my most anticipated games for 2012. Thanks for reading!

Most Anticipated of 2012

Bioshock Infinite

Escape Plan

Far Cry 3

Halo 4

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning

Mass Effect 3

Resistance: Burning Skies

Ruin

Syndicate

Uncharted: Golden Abyss

A Problem with Difficulty

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I just need to get this off my chest. In my last blog entry I mentioned that there were plenty of infuriating moments in Uncharted 3's campaign. I was playing the game on Normal mode for about 90% of the game (I gave up and moved the difficulty down to Easy on the last 2 chapters). After the credits finished rolling, I went back, changed the difficulty to Easy, and replayed several of the sections that almost had me rage-quit the game, and I found that they weren't quite as frustrating as I initially found them to be.

Now here is where the problem comes in. Do I judge the game based on my experience on Normal or Easy? I know many of you are probably still asking yourselves, "How could this guy have thought Uncharted 3 was too hard on Normal?", but pushing that thought aside, I'd like to hear your thoughts on this. Different difficulty settings have never been a big problem for me in games, since most of the time there was never a huge spike in difficulty from a game's Easy setting to its Normal setting. Uncharted 3 is an exception in this case, at least for me anyway.

Have any of you had similar experiences with multiple difficulty settings?

Sorry for such a short blog not long after my previous blog entry. Thanks for reading. CoolKid006 out!

Sic Parvis Magna

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What's up everyone! It's been a good few weeks since my last blog entry, even though I've still been visiting the site often. Not much has really happened during my small hiatus, save for a few notable things.

I picked up my pre-order for the collector's edition of Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception, and at the same time I also picked up the collector's edition for Batman: Arkham City. I've played a pretty decent amount of both games, and I can confidently say that, as of now, Batman is better than Uncharted. So far, I'm pretty disappointed with Uncharted :shock:. I know many of you are probably screaming "Blasphemy!" at your computer screen, but there are just far too many frustrating moments in the campaign for me to have much fun playing it. Maybe once I'm through playing it on Normal I'll go back and play it again on Easy just to see if it helps me enjoy it more. I haven't played enough of the multiplayer to give an official opinion of it yet (unless you consider one match of Team Deathmatch enough). Maybe the multiplayer will raise my opinion of the game a little.

I completed Deus Ex: Human Revolution. It's one of my favorite games this year and possibly of all time. I really enjoyed the amount of freedom the game gives the player in how you play and what you can explore. Hopefully I'll be able to get through another playthrough of the game before the end of the year.

After I finished Deus Ex: HR, I was really excited to play more Deus Ex. Because of this desire, I bought the original Deus Ex for PC. It holds up surprisingly well for a 10-year-old game. There are plenty of weapons, upgrades, and things to explore within the game, which will probably keep me occupied for a while. Another old PC game I picked up was the original Fallout. From what I've played, it's okay. The game feels kind of clunky, which is a big problem for me.

That's it for this update. I don't know when I'll be posting another blog, so just stay tuned! Thanks for reading. CoolKid006 out!

All work and no play...

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I'm guessing you know the rest. :P

What's up, everybody! It's nice to talk to you guys after a while. I got a little held up with school work these past few weeks, and it's been quite cumbersome. Don't worry, I'm not going to bore you again with another one of my 'complaint' blogs. :P

There was hardly any time to play games since the start of the new school year, but there were a few things I got done.

  • I pre-ordered the Collector's Edition for Uncharted 3, which marks the first time I've ordered a Collector's Edition and the first time I've pre-ordered a game since Batman: Arkham Asylum (I think :?). Deus Ex: Human Revolution for Xbox 360 was also ordered, and now I'm just waiting (anxiously) for its arrival.
  • I bought The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess for the Wii and the DSi version of Cave Story. Twilight Princess remains untouched, but I have played some of Cave Story. It's a fun little platformer, of which I hope to experience more soon.
  • Jetpack Joyride is the newest addition to my mobile collection, and I have to say that it's very addictive. It's easy to notice that the folks over at Half Brick really enjoy making these nice little games. Other games I downloaded from the App Store are Asphalt 6, Guardian Saga, Harbor Master, Hard Lines, and Pixel Ninja. I couldn't resist downloading these because they were all free. :P
  • I downloaded Crimson Alliance on XBL the other day since it claimed to be free. You could imagine my disappointment when I discovered that it was essentially just a demo and that you have to pay 800 points for each character class, or 1200 points to unlock them all. :(
  • I played around 2-3 hours of Oblivion and during that time I managed to close my first Oblivion gate. I think I'm finally starting to get into this game, but it's unfortunate that I have too much work to hinder my playtime though. :(

There have been quite a few complaints these past few months from gamers everywhere about the crowded release season later this year. Luckily for me, I accumulated enough cash so that I'm able to buy a few of the big games being released. To give you an idea, here is a list of all the games I plan on buying this year with said cash:

  • Gears of War 3
  • Batman: Arkham City
  • Battlefield 3
  • Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception Collector's Edition
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
  • Assassin's Creed: Revelations
  • The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword

Simply looking at that list makes me scream with joy on the inside (and a bit on the outside, too :P).

Now here's a question for you, my friends. What is your favorite video game soundtrack of all time? I'm afraid I don't have one, at least not yet. I pretty much just started listening to some really cool soundtracks, like Uncharted 2 and God of War.

Leave your answer in the comments. Thanks for reading. CoolKid006 out!

Wish you could stay...

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Of course I'm talking about summer. Yes, you guessed right. Today was my final day of summer vacation and I make a return to school tomorrow. I always end up being disappointed with what feels like such a short break from the tremendous amounts of work. Just as I find myself comfortable with a daily gaming routine, I need to head back to school for 7.5 hours a day carrying 3-4 hours of homework. :cry: For another 9 and a half months I'll be scrounging for any spare time to play games like Uncharted 3, Arkham City, Assassin's Creed: Revelations, and more. Not to mention the PSVita that will (hopefully) be releasing sometime during Q1 of 2012. :?

Well enough of my many complaints. Time to get you guys acquainted with what I've been doing these past few days.

I finally got L.A. Noire in the mail and have been playing the heck out of that. I also got Demon's Souls after all this time, but I haven't gone around to starting it yet. I played about 1 hour of GTA IV. It's good, but it isn't drawing me in like other open world games like inFamous or Assassin's Creed. Something has also sparked my interest in Halo: Reach again, as I'm now playing a lot of that game.

In other nostalgic news, I found my old Game Boy Color handhelds in the basement the other day, along with the 3 games Pokemon Blue, Super Mario Land, and Super Mario Bros. Deluxe. I know what I'm doing between classes! :P

In non-gaming related news, my older brother moved away to Texas today. While dropping him off at the airport I almost felt like shedding a tear. Almost. :P

That's it for this week. Tune in next time for more awesomeness! :roll:

Thanks for reading! CoolKid006 out!

GameSpot 2nd Anniversary!

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What's up, everybody! As the title says, it's my 2nd anniversary being here on GameSpot! Woohoo! :D I'm actually not too excited about it, but it is pretty cool just to look back at how far I've come in those 2 years. Time has really just flown right by. Makes me a little sad to think about that, but also a little joyous. :)

To celebrate I'm going to list my top 10 games and then share my GS stats with everyone. I'll add how much I've progressed since my last anniversary in parenthesis.

Top 10 Games

10. Red Dead Redemption (PS3)

9. The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (GBA)

8. Halo: Reach (Xbox 360)

7. Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (PSP)

6. Metroid Prime Trilogy (Wii)

5. Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood (PS3)

4. InFamous 2 (PS3)

3. Portal 2 (PS3)

2. Mass Effect 2 (Xbox 360)

1. Uncharted 2: Among Thieves (PS3)

GameSpot Stats

Friends: 284 (+79)

Forum Posts: 3,824 (+2352)

Comments: 60 (+7)

Blog Posts: 102 (+38 )

Games in Collection: 163 (+59)

Estimated Collection Value: $3,258.37 (+$1,179.41)

Rated Games: 233 (+112)

I forgot to mention that last week I also had my Xbox 360 1st Anniversary. So I'll just list my top 5 games for that.

Top 5 Xbox 360 Games

5. Shadow Complex

4. Mass Effect

3. Splinter Cell: Conviction

2. Halo: Reach

1. Mass Effect 2

I guess that's enough for this list-heavy blog. But I'd like to thank everyone here on the site for being so awesome and friendly! You guys are the reason I visit this place daily. :D I hope everyone will stick with me for another year.

Thanks you all for reading! CoolKid006 out!

Birthday

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What's up, everybody? I've returned from my trip in China. I've actually been back for about 2 weeks now, but I just wasn't in the mood for writing any blog posts. To be honest, I'm still not in the mood to post. :P But I knew I had to post today since it is my birthday. Nothing exciting or grand occurred, it was pretty much just a normal day. Well, normal except for the small online shopping spree I went on with all the money I was given as gifts. :) What made it even better was that it was tax-free weekend here in good ol' Massachusetts, so I managed to save a few bucks. Go ahead and call me cheap, but I try to save as much money as possible when I purchase games.

The games I bought were (*takes a deep breath*) L.A. Noire, Assassin's Creed II: Discovery, Fable II, Grand Theft Auto IV, Metroid: Zero Mission, Burnout Legends, Outland, Bastion, and Soldner-X 2: Final Prototype. Unfortunately, most of those games I don't yet have since I still need to wait for them to arrive in the mail. The games I was able to play were Outland and Bastion, both of which are absolutely phenomenal downloadable games. If you were thinking about getting either of these titles, know that your money will be well spent.

In addition to Outland and Bastion I've also played Assassin's Creed, Assassin's Creed: Brotherhood, Crackdown, Resistance: Retribution, and Assassin's Creed: Bloodlines. I don't exactly know why I've started playing AC: Bloodlines again, but it may be because I wanted to update my review of the game. I've added quite a bit more information into the review, so if anyone wanted to, you could take a look (though I'm not sure why anyone would want to).

Oh, I just remembered that while I was in China I bought an ocarina so that I could learn how to play Lost Woods from Ocarina of Time. As of now it isn't going very well. :P Sorry for getting side-tracked, I just had to say that before I forgot to tell you guys.

I guess that's it for this pretty random blog. Thanks for reading. CoolKid006 out!