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Squids-Ahoy Blog

Throwing in the towel

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I never liked the long good bye, but after 4 years of watching self serving retards on the GS boards putter about why Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter 2 super scrabble edition is better than 82 sonic games released for the Wii, I'm putting my hat up. I'm too damn busy and too damn tired to care about crotch tards arguing over crappy games when our past time is being raped before our very eyes by corporate warriors. Hopefully the people who stay will make a difference. Thanks for all the good times. Squids-Ahoy

Next Gen in all the wrong places

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Having finally purchased a new computer and assembling it, I've come to a few conclusions. The first is that d-link wireless usb devices suck so badly that I even wrote them a letter. It started with dear @ssfaces, and went downhill from there. The second is that next gen games look great, and play roughly the same as current gen games. I've been slugging my way through Stalker, and enjoying that when it works, but there are a number of extremely curious defects. Aside from the usual AI problems and getting stuck in walls, for whatever reason, when I stand still for any amount of time, I recieve lethal doses of radiation. Never mind the fact that the guys in town around me are yucking it up while I'm apparently being bombarded with millions of free radicals, God has decreed that it's cancer town for me, and I just got a way one ticket first class on the die and reload express. There are a few niggling extras that irritate, but it's the radiation that really pisses me off. I restarted twice to make sure I hadn't done anything grievous, only to find that punishment is not limited to a single play arch. Rainbow Six Vegas found its way on to my hard drive, and has been an enjoyable choice for the most part, but I'm really starting to notice how bad the AI is, and just how limited in scope the campaign is. I'd alter my review from before, but really its the fact that somehow I've managed to find a few places where I still get stuck in walls. It would appear that most games are still repeating the same mistakes that their predecessors did, only now we're paying full price for the privilege of greater aesthetic. Maybe its time for gaming companies to take stock of what is important and focus on things that matter rather than addressing the simple. But enough of me being whiny. Starcraft 2 info was released a bit ago, and after taking stock of the videos, pictures, and info that was released, I'm convinced that it was originally supposed to be an expansion for starcraft that just kept growing in scope until it became a sequel. Very familiar to say the least, but if so then that just means it'll be more popular than God...again. My bro made a snap purchase of Earth Defense Force 2017, and I thought him an idiot until I started playing it. The game is a bit of retarded fun, and you could definitely do worse at 20 bucks. Arguably the coop is what makes the game, because the AI is just to stupid to be of much help in single player. Also lasers, pyew pyew. May a bounty of combo breakers be bestowed upon you and yours.

Use pumice on your tender nipple buds.

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First off, apologies once more, real life has significantly reduced my contributions on gamespot, including catching up with friends. Send me a shout about how you're doing, I care. Also, whoever knows where the topic title quote is from gets a special prize, and no, it's not something gay. I've spent a great deal of time with Vegas, Ghost Recon, and Oblivion on both the PC and Xbox360, and the pattern has been the same with all of them; I play them on the PC, become disgusted, try them on the Xbox360, and then become enamoured. My impressions have largely been similar with all my friends, as we've all spent time with previous iterations in those series on the computer, and the quality we've come to expect is diminished, though that may be a misnomer per say (die in a fire funky crap). Either way, in what I observe as a move to market to a wider audience, has essentially diluted it's appeal to PC Gamers. Sales say otherwise, of course, but gamers who were hooked on previous hard core iterations of terrorist hunts have to look beyond Tom Clancy now. Same for Ghost Recon. As for Oblivion, scaling the difficulty is retarded. There, I said it, I'll say it again. Either way, I'm sure it evens out, as some people like it, and others don't. I tried the Armored Core 4 demo, and I was incredibly impressed. It's finally done away with the down syndrome control system, and given people what they want; fast action, simplified mech stats, and lots of shooting action. I'm planning on picking up the game shortly. For those of you not in the know, Jack Thompson is facing some legal trouble from the Florida State bar for disparaging comments against the Judge made infamous for his inspection of bully. Either way, some of the comments he made were utterly hilarious. Definitely a thread worth reading. I'm going to be purchasing a new computer at the end of May. Everything is as you would expect, 320 gig hd, geforce 8800 gtx, 2 gigs corsair 1066, asus 680 i mobo, intel dual core 2.4 ghz, and yada yada. That may be subject to change based on tech progress and suggestions, but for the mo, this seems good. All of it together is about 2000, and I can get a copy of windows vista for pretty cheap. There you have it, spankings all around. Space Cowboys is working well for me in my latest MMO splurge. I have a lvl 48 I-gear on Joymus server BCU side, and I'm working on a 30 A-gear, same server/side. I joined a really good brig, and we've been fighting the good fight for a while together. If you're interested, we're looking for more people, so take a look see at our webby. http://ssbrigade.proboards61.com/ Anyway, have a good week, blessings of extra lives unto you.

Rest in Peace PS2: 2002-2007

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On the morning of February 17th at 10:17, it was with extreme sadness that I declared my PS2 a casualty of long nights of nerding it up with cheato stained hands. Arguably the best console ever made, it saw the highest highs imaginable with titles like Final Fantasy XII and Tekken V, and also the lowest lows with Monster Hunter and Unlimited Saga. It was the first console I ever truly connected with, and it was with a heavy heart that I passed it on to gaming oblivion. You may be gone but not forgotten.
On a brighter note, I welcomed a new PS2 slimline into the console family, along with a very foolish purchase of Star Ocean to try it out. The game was the special edition on sale for 20 dollars, but that was a really poor choice. I've decided my punishment shall be to finish the title. I'm not the biggest fan of anime due to the numerous amounts of clichets, innapropriate cleavage shots, and the theory that high school children can solve the worlds problems for whatever reason. Either way, I'm about five hours into it, and already I'm pining for the vast pretentiousness of Xenosaga ep I. Go figure....
I'm not sure why GS didn't really cover it, but among MMO fanatics, the EvE Online crisis involving a software dev providing his alliance with high end loot and money is dissapointing to say the least. It had apparently been going on for 6 months, and with the prior knowledge of the higher ups who should have fired him, and apparently still haven't. Shame on them.
Crackdown is going to be released shortly, with promises of free roaming and halo 3 mp beta entry. Personally I have no interest in the mp beta other than to see the weapons. I'm waiting for the game to be released so I can play the single player campaign. To hell with gamers so foul that Bungie feels the need to bind a button to mute other players, I say cooperative with a friend is the only method to enjoy the game with multiple parties.
Also slated for release this week is Supreme Commander, a game so rife with strategy that I say it may be the penultimate strategy game for people who also suffer attention deficit disorder. Definitely worth a look for TA afficienados.
Have a good week.

Fox to Nintendo: Stop mollesting youths

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It's too good to be made up. As if Fox News, the self proclaimed fair and balanced hegemony of old white angry people afraid of change hadn't open the floodgates of journalistic integrity with their articles about white girls being abducted in podunk nowhere or the next chapter in why democrats hate America, a local Fox affiliate decided that the Nintendo DS is being used to seduce children into giving up private information about their whereabouts. To quote Kotaku, pictochat is the backdoor to your childs backdoor. The article is obviously felatious with numerous half truths to outright lies, so ds owners should enjoy. After you've watched it, read Penny-Arcade for more enjoyment.

Gaming on the cheap: Part I

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As a student working through med school and trying to satiate his gaming binge, I've come to the conclusion that commercial releases simply can't do the job that others have done and released for free. With the release of World of Warcraft and the inevitable exposure last week to the new content therein, I'm convinced that free titles exist all over the internet and are doing an equally good job, if not better, of delivering a similar experience at virtually no cost. The only investment you need is time, so let me help you gents with that.
Action:Action games are a dime a dozen, and extremely popular in case you never looked at the charts. Battlefield games still dominate, counter-strike still rox0rz, and Gears of War is good. Woo. So if you're trying to get your action fix on the cheap, here are some heavy hitting titles that won't cost you a pittence.
Warrock: An independent title with a free beta (which will apparently remain free after official launch) this game boasts all the amenities of Battlefield 2. Fast cars, choppers, planes, angry 12 years olds using rocket launchers, the works. Give it a go if you're looking for that forbidden taste.
Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory: Boasting a pseudo rpg system, Wolfenstein has a great team play system based on a WWII setting. Flame throwers, shotguns, more nazis than you can shake a stick at, they have them all.
Nexuiz: Faster than a US led invasion for oil, Nexuiz is the cousin of quake, featuring levels that only work in multiplayer as well as a number of familiar weapons (who wants that rocket launcher>). There are plenty of people playing, so hop on.
Try those out and check back next time for some more gaming goodness.

Love and hate

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As new World of Warcraft content dawns in the form of a moderately priced expansion pack, I contemplate what factors the industry thrives on and which factors are tossed overboard. Obviously quests are extremely popular, as well as raiding, but those are really ornamental in perspective. Rather, the fundamental instrument in generating the appeal of massively multiplayer games is the grind, and the variable amount of times needed to conquer it. Obviously the previous statement is a juxtaposition of what so many online players complain about, but in reality it’s how the games thrive. Brilliant in its simplicity, the grind requires you to spend increasingly large amounts of time to achieve the next level of power for your character. Expletive ridden roadblocks such as xp loss due to death or xp debt constantly hinder the journey, but the destination lures the most dedicated with its siren song of glory. It’s a benchmark that defines the best players in MMO’s, and the first thing anybody will ask you about your character is if you’re maxed. The grind is inherently important, though how acute its presence is becomes more a matter of finesse than a sandwich spread approach. Guild Wars represents a rather meek grind, with the end level the product of a weeks worth of grinding. Though it’s touted by NCSoft that over a million accounts were logged, many of those lie dormant as players pursue more challenging fare, uninterested by the promise of unparalleled PVP options. In contrast, Lineage II represents the polar opposite, offering possibly the harshest grind ever to be visited upon the gaming masses. The vast majority falls in between, with WoW representing what is the penultimate commercial powerhouse of grinding. Without too harsh a grind, the game still feels rewarding for achieving the max level, and has helped the game achieved unparalleled popularity. The grind is, of course, nothing without the surrounding elements that give meaning to the grind, but without the grind these elements are a shadow of their potential. Having a system of play that rewards persistence is a boon to a persistent world where players are constantly driven by a need to compete with their neighbors. Though perceived as a detriment, the grind is nothing but for the massively multiplayer genre that thrives on it.

shameless, they name is squids-ahoy

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This blog is completely about unbridled self promotion and has little in the way of actual value to you, unless you're seeking an independent journal of opinion on video games. To cut to the chase, pcslack3r.net is seeking interested audience, as well as talented writeres. Since it's new, and also indie, we're struggling at the moment, but we've got hearts and guts, and in this business you need both, so take a look, and give a hoot and a holler.

Outsourcing in the game industry

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I frequent 1up as much as gamespot, and consider it a reliable journal of opinion regarding gaming, so when I read this bombshell regarding large developers outsourcing projects and then not crediting the work, I was amazed, and the games aren't small ones either.
According to the article, companies like Nintendo, Sony, Square Enix, THQ, EA, and more have been coming to Tose, a company based in Kyoto with over 1000 employees to work on titles such as Resident Evil 0, The Princess Peach DS game, Virtua Quest, Final Fantasy III (VI) and many hundreds of titles more. I was shocked not that this was happening, outsourcing is a very common business tool, but because the method of accreditation was either a small part of the credits in the special thanks section, or the use of pseudonyms for whomever worked on the title in question. Read the article, you will be amazed.