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GreggD Blog

I'll be going on a little trip...

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To insanity! That's right, if you're reading this, you probably know my compy crashed.

What you don't know, however, is how it happened. Well, I was modifying my banner to include the name of my new union venture, and guess what? The damn thing CRASHED! I can't even get DOS to boot up now, and I am sad.

But, being the true geek I am, I will continue to play my favorite games: GTA, CV, and everything in between. However, this also means my itunes library has been deleted, as well. But, rest assured, as soon as my compy is fixed, I will be back!

Farewell, for now...

-Gregg

I'm an OFFICER!

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Well, today I have good news, I just saved-I'll stop right there, or else I'll get smacked again. Anyway, I joined this new union.

It's called the Grand Theft Auto PSP Union. It's dedicated to all things GTA-portable. Here's the address: 

http://www.gamespot.com/pages/unions/home.php?union_id=GTAPSPUnion

Go there if you want to join. We need all the help we can get. Man I love shameless plugs, don't you? BTW...I became an officer my first day! I'm really excited about this union's potential. We will have updates all the time from various reliable sources, as well as general banter.

Oh, and I can't forget my first union, Castlevania Ultima Union. check it out here:

http://www.gamespot.com/pages/unions/home.php?union_id=CastlevaniaUltima

Browse if you like, although at the moment I believe we are invitation only. Sorry.

Seacrest, ou-*mach-punched in the gut*:shock: okay, I deserved that...  

I found something interesting...

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Just now, I was surfing around www.alternativetentacles.com, and I found this exerpt from Jello Biafra's "Punk Politics" page:

"I don't think either the Offspring or Green Day started their bands with the intention of becoming so enormously popular; that sort of fell in their laps-especially the Offspring. My attitude is if somebody blunders into the level of popularity, at least remember the human factor. These guys are still human beings and hopefully still have hearts and if you keep in touch with them rather than vilify them you may be able to encourage them to go in the right direction. What I'm hoping will eventually happen is that they will grasp the amount of power and financial clout that is now at their fingertips and use those as tools to help real people with real things the way punk politics was always designed to do before, but nobody had any money."

For those of you who do not know who Biafra is, I suggest you check out the website above, and click on the "Bands" tab at the top of the page. Then look for his name in the drop-down bar. The man was a punk-rock crusader, and tried to expose many things in the government for what they truly are. Although I don't agree with all of his views, I still think the man's a genius. Oh, and he was the lead singer of the Dead Kennedys, one of my favorite bands of all time.

How do they do that?

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These game creators seem to be getting better every year! I gotta say, these guys are churning out sequels like nothing. And each iteration seems to be better than the last. Take GTA. It just keeps getting better! That's really all I have to say, for now...

...So I'll leave you with a quote from the band Less Than Jake: "Would both of you please forgive me tonight, that's why they call it a union". For those of you who don't get it, you're not supposed to.

             

Oops...

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Well I have to apologize to Syrinx61, as I have not even posted an entry pertaining to my union. The Castlevania Ultima Union. The other members have treated me well, so far, even though I've only been a member for 5 days. Also, I joined before it became(I think) invitation only. So I feel extremely lucky. Now, I have been playing the series since 1993, at age 6. That year I also beat the 1st game(which I know sounds unlikely, but I attribute that to luck, as well). And all these years later, I still have yet to beat it again. Okay, enough about me. The union has all kinds of good stuff, like resources, and the like. And everyone is really nice, we help each other out with whatever we need(I shouldn't say we, as I have yet to contribute anything aside from this blog). Anyway, I suggest anyone with even a passing interest in the Castlevania universe should check it out, as you may find out that you really love the series. Closet CV fans, that's funny, HAHAH*THWACK*. Dammit, not again! Sorry about that, folks, but I gotta keep myself in check, y'know?

Later.

I found this great mod...

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For the PC version of Max Payne 2. It's called Elements of Style, or E.O.S. It has enhanced gun effects(louder shots, new weapons/skins, kung fu.). And, there is a move I have perfected where Max slams the ground with his right fist, and it sends everything nearby flying into the air. To do it, equip pistol/s or magnum/s, hold strafe(it doesn't matter which direction), then jump, you should do a barrel roll, then hold back+left, and it should go into slow-mo. Oh, and Kaufman(boss that emerges from the elevator at the end of the level with the high-rise apartments), while he may seem invincible, he just needs to be shot alot of times with the shotgun IN THE HEAD. Yes, this may be over the top, but it's WAY better than the un-modded battle with him.

Well, that's it. Just thought I'd share that with whoever decides to read this. 

THP8: Features

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Well, it's been a slow day, so here's the list of new features for Tony Hawk's Project 8, as confirmed by Neversoft.

1 )New graphics engine for 360 and PS3. (duh)

2 )Less linear story mode( now called Project 8 ). This will be very involved, having you work your way from rank 200 to the top 8 amateur skaters. And, hopefully, to the coveted #1 spot.

3 )The create-a-skater. A lot of fans complained about last years limited story character creation options. Well, this year you start off by selecting your own "style", you can choose from things like punk and hip-hop, as well as female and kid options.

4 )Expanded world. This year, the game world will consist of about 12 areas, which will flow seamlessly together(no more tunnels, alright!). This will hopefully make the world feel more San Andreas-esque. The city/town will be blocked off with some sort of physical or translucent barrier, until you gain higher ranks, which in turn causes said barrier to disappear.

5 )Goal system. THP8 will have new goal types, as well as a whole new structure, to accommodate the new premise. No longer will you have to do particular goals to progress. You just need to do things to increase your rank. These include trick matching on certain objects, besting a high score, etc. New to the series, though, are the photographer goals, in which a photographer will skate in front of you, and you must stay in range whilst performing certain tricks. The puzzle goals, where you need to move objects in a designated area, al-a park creation. This, in turn, will allow you to skate the line to get a preset score. Oh yeah, did I mention the new bail goals? You can now initiate a ragdoll bail mode, in which the goal is to break as many bones as possible. Also, these new goals will have their own individual three tiers of difficulty, instead of picking one type  at the beginning of the game.

6 )Stokens. Yeah, it's kind of cheesy sounding, but these forms of currency are vital to the Project 8 experience. When you do huge tricks and combos in front of pedestrians, you earn some stokens(diehard fans of the series will immediately think back to "ped props" from Pro Skater 3). These will allow you to purchase various items from the local skate shop, including tricks, decks with stat boosts, and special videos. The more stokens you have, of course, the better stuff you can buy.

7 )Historical stat tracking. In the past 3 games, you did tricks so many times in a combo, scored so many points in one shot, etc. to up your stats. well, this time around, you have a system that keeps track of how many feet you grind, manual, get air, total throughout the game. So when you grind 5,000 feet, for example, you earn a stat point. Of course, it will be easier than that at the beginning, like 500 feet for a point, but you get the idea. This, to me, sounds like one of the best additions this year.

8 )Classic mode. For this, I am going to quote Gamespot entirely, and I take no credit for this one:                       

"Classic mode is a concept that has appeared in the past couple of Tony Hawk games, and it's designed to take things back to the old days, when you had a two-minute run timer and a slew of goals to complete. Classic mode returns in Project 8, but in an entirely different way. Now, you'll skate up to a pedestrian, trigger the classic mode goal, and all of a sudden, nine or 10 goals will be rattled off. A segment of the world will be walled off with cool-looking force fields, and you're essentially playing a new-style take on the old Tony Hawk goal system. What's more, if you want to truly master these classic mode goals, you'll have to accomplish every single task in one two-minute run."

Sounds good to me.

9 )Ped behavior. This time around, the pedestrians have their own AI system. What does this mean? Well, for starters, they give you the afore-mentioned stokens. In addition to that, they will get angry if you run into/hit them. They will chase you until a )they knock you down and steal your stokens, or b )you evade them i.e. get on a rooftop, or into a building(I've heard of interiors like malls, etc.).

10 )Dynamic speed system. The hills and ramps with steep inclines will finally be put to good use. Now, when you go down a hill you will gain more speed, and we all know what that helps with. And, in contrast, when you hit a ramp, you will slow down depending on the type of ramp, as well as its incline.

11 )Mo-cap. Each skater has come to Neversoft to lend their own style to the motion capture of their tricks. So, a Rodney Mullen darkslide should, in theory, look differently than a Stevie Williams darkslide.

12 )Nail-the-trick. Okay, this is the obligatory "new feature" that is the highlight of this years game. It works as follows:

You ollie, click in both sticks on the controller, and it goes into slow motion. You can then maneuver the two sticks to manipulate the on-screen tricks, each stick controlling an individual foot. So, in essence, you can create new tricks with this feature.

No news on the soundtrack yet, but I'll bet there will be something in it for everyone.

I can't wait for this game to come out. Come this fall/winter, I will be the first in my town to pick up a copy. Oh, and be sure to check out the Tony Hawk Retrospective video:  

http://www.gamespot.com/xbox360/sports/tonyhawksproject8/news.html?mode=all

Later!

(Insert random argumentative topic here)

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Warning: This is my first blog entry, so please, be aware that you may disagree with my views. And please, keep an open mind. Oh, and also, no rude comments. Thank you in advance.

Now that I've got a disclaimer, I feel as though I can start. First, I would like to say that I love all kinds of video games, except for Madden Football. I'm not a football fan. What I also don't like is when people gang up on one or two members and put them down just because their opinions differ, or if the topic creator is new to that game/out of the loop. Other members pick on them for no reason, other than to get their point across in a rather crude fashion.

One example of this is Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas' forums. Yes, many people are "noobs" when it comes to most popular games, but then shouldn't we give them the benefit of being that guy? I'm sure that if the message boards were that congested and/or taking up too much space, wouldn't the administrators do something about it? Just because someone doesn't know how to navigate the site very well does not make it okay to insult their spelling, sig, or most importantly, their knowledge of the topic.

Second, these topics I keep finding on the Saints Row forums. "Better  than GTA?", "Cheap San Andreas rip-off", or my favorite, "Saints Row sucks". They never give up. Yes, San Andreas is probably better than Saints Row will be. But, having played the demo myself(by preordering, not on XBL), I can safely say that the game shows heaps of promise. And yes, I am a GTA fan. Have been since the original trilogy. But, unlike most fans, I don't care either way. I will play both series endlessly. Now, having said that, I will stick by Rockstar Games until a)they release a truly awful game that offsets the balance of the cosmos, b)they go bankrupt, or c)I die some God forsaken death. Of course, I hope that none of these things happen, and Rockstar continues to make quality games for years to come. However, I also hope that Volition continues to do so, as well. It would be beneficial to both companies to have competition in their genre. Trying to outdo each other each year, that sounds like a good thing to me.

Now, in the realm of action sports, way at the other end of the spectrum, Tony Hawk's Project 8. I have been playing these games since the first one on the PS1. Now, I'm no expert on physics, but I can tell you that this franchise threw them out the window before it even began. However, people are still complaining that the series has got to be realistic, or they won't buy, or even play it. Even worse is when they say that it used to be a realistic game. Those people should go back and play it on their old systems. It never was to begin with. They also often overlook the positive additions to this iteration. I won't list them here, but you can find them in previews and dev. interviews. Maybe I will make a list in my future entries. But it's getting late, and I am getting rather tired.

So there is my first blog entry. It feels good to know I can put my opinions somewhere that people can see them(even if they hate me for doing so). Anyway, good evening, and good night.