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Diablo III

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Now, I know this post is gonna be like thousands already out there on the tinterweb, but I don't care! It's finally official:



I hope other Diablo fans are excited as I am about this. I have been wanting this game for years. Eagerly awaiting the announcement that its in development. Seeing the release of Warcraft 3, Warcraft 3 expansions, World of Warcraft, World of Warcraft expansions and even Starcraft 2, just made the wait that little bit more unbearable. I think deep down I always knew it would come one day, its just too popular and too lucrative not too. However from all the preview coverage I've seen, the decision to create a new addition to the series appears to have been the result of love for the series and creative desire as least as much as monetary rewards for big-wigs in suits. Which brings me too my next point, and arguably the most exciting. This looks (so far, still early doors, lets not get carried away here) to have been implemented and executed brilliantly. From the drop-in, drop-out co-op to the destructible/interactive environments, its like Diablo 2.0....or is that Diablo 2 2.0........or Diablo 3.0 :D HaHa

From what I've seen, this is shaping up to be the new Diablo, that personally, I always wanted. For one I didn't want this to be some MMORPG type effort akin to WoW. Now don't get me wrong, I enjoyed playing WoW and millions of people around the world can't be wrong, but it just wasn't the experience I was wanting from my next Diablo installment. Now inevitably, there will be detractors. Those who were maybe hoping for the aforementioned MMORPG experience or those who think this is a 8-Year Old Rehash with little innovation here and there....but all being said, you can't please everyone. I'm just happy that I'm one of those who seems to have gotten what they wanted. Hmm, its like Christmas come early!

Alone in the Dark - First Review

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Well its the first review I've seen and I've checked on Metacritic and GameTrailers and theres nothing on there yet either! :D

Now Alone in the Dark has been a title I have kept my eye on for quite some time. I don't believe this to be because I'm a fan of the series or even the genre, although both statements would be true. I think it simply comes down to the fact that this game intrigues me in so many different ways. Let me explain.....

First off this is a game which ticks alot of boxes for me. It looks like it has some cool new mechanics (the fire mainly), it is set in New York (who doesn't like a game set in the Big Apple, just look at the sales figures for GTAIV) and it is a survival horror title (something to tide my horror fix over until Silent Hill 5 and Resident Evil 5).

Next up the game is from Eden studios. Now this is one studio which I have history with over the years for various reasons. One such example is their title from the early 00's for the PS2 and PC which had you controlling a team of 4 agents each with varying abilities, requiring you to change between them on the fly to get the job done (quite a unique concept for its time). This was the first game I ever bought for my first ever PC (am sure everyone has games like this they remember for similar reasons, regardless of their quality). Now Eden studios over the numerous games they have now worked on, have always seemed a bit of an enigma to me. They seemed blessed with the ability to come up with great ideas and game mechanics, but always come up short when its comes to implementing them into a top of the range title. Great game mechanics seem to be in abundance here again, from the unique inventory system, the way the environment can become engulfed in flames and the episodic story approach. However, once again from the previews I have seen the "open-ended" central-park approach leaves me with a sense of great reservation.

Finally this game comes from Atari. The great company itself. Now that "Big-Phil" himself is in charge over there, they have already announced that the games currently in development, Alone in the Dark included, are to be the companies final forays into the world of "hardcore gaming". Their future exploits are firmly fixed with the casual gamers in their sights. Am sure I am not the only one who would like to go out with a bit of a bang!

So this game carries alot of weight behind it for a number of reasons. The time has come and the first verdict is in. It has come from the adolescent male focused pubication known as FHM UK and they have awarded it a rather impressive, and may I say, higher than I was expecting, 4/5.

God of Disappointment: Chains of Pre-Order

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Hello Everyone,

This is a blog post consisting of good news and bad news! :(

Am going to write this in a negative attitude and start with the bad news, so here goes.

I have owned a PSP from release day in the UK. Its gone through periods of ups and downs, from being constantly used to gathering dust for months, however one thing has been consistent for some time now: I couldn't wait to get my hands on the God of War prequel exclusive to the platform. This is the kind of thing I bought the PSP for!

There were many hurdles along the way, the main one being whether or not the game would live up to my expectations and deliver the kind of experience I was hoping for, but thankfully it leaped over that obstacle without much of a problem.

Well the day has arrived....and past, but I still do not own a copy. WHY? You ask! Well I have order a copy, I did so over 5 weeks ago now. I pre-ordered the game from Play.com thinking in my moment of madness that I would get the game on release day at the latest hopefully maybe a day or two earlier if the post was running well....but no.

They didn't process my payment until midday thursday (with the game due out the next day). They e-mailed me on release day saying the game had been dispatched and was on its way to me within 3-5 working days!! So here's a lesson for me:
Order a game weeks before its release and you won't get it until potentially a week AFTER its on store shelves (due to a lot of releases being on a Friday and no post being delivered over the weekend).

Lets just say that this is the last time I will pre-order. I can simply call into the local supermarket on my way to work and pick up a copy and have it ON THE DAY OF RELEASE!!!

Now moving on, the good news.

GamerScore has surpassed the 18k mark.

GamerScore now stands at a total of: 18,720

The majority of the points came from LOST: Via Domus. The girlfriend is a huge fan of the show and this was a great opportunity for us to spend some time together via the power of Xbox. :D HaHa

We both really enjoyed the game and I have to say that it was better than I was expecting, when she first suggested we rent it. I think movie/tv tie-in games have made such a bad impression over the years, that my expectations are so low, when I actually play them they don't play as badly as the impression in my mind. I think this whole poor tie-in rubbish over the years was just some long-winded reverse psychology experiment!! :D

Apart from that there have been the odd achievement here and there, but nowhere near the level you would expect and theres a good reason for that. I'm currently spending 90% of my game time playing Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare multiplayer - which carries no achievement points....but I can't stop playing it, it's just so good!! :D

Summary of Gaming Goodness

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OK, so its been a while since my last blog post and quite a bit has happened on the gaming front for me. For this reason, am going to have to just summarise everything, to keep the blog as short and sweet as possible. So here goes!

  • Completed CoD4 campaign on Veteran and all 1000gp unlocked. Still enjoying the multiplayer alot. :D
  • Gamerscore has surpassed the 17k mark. This happened a few weeks back and am not too far away from 18k.
  • Completed Silent Hill: Origins on the PSP. Was very impressed by it. I'm a fan of the series and it gave me just what I was looking for - same old silent hill experience on my handheld.
  • Very pleased that God of War: Chains of Olympus has lived up to my expectations. I have pre-ordered it pending its release on the 28th March in the UK. Hopefully will receive it 1 or 2 days prior to release date, as has happened in the past. CANT WAIT! :D
  • Got the Xbox 360 Aficionado emblem on my GS profile. Chuffed about it, but not that bothered. I used to have the PC Aficionado emblem, but when I sold alot of my games and updated my GS profile to reflect this, they took that emblem from me!!

Finally, I saw Rambo IV a few weeks back.....still quoting memorable lines from it to this day!! HaHa

"Live for nothing, or Die for something"

Happy Birthday To Me!

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Yes this past weekend was the annual event known worldwide as "My Birthday". The festival enjoyed its 23rd year this year with many in attendance. :D HaHa

Enough messing around, as you've probably already gathered it was my 23rd birthday this week and the importance of this from a gaming prespective is two-fold.

Firstly, Birthday + Gifts = Games (Usually)....and fortunately this year was no exception. I received Devil May Cry 4 as a gift this year and although I have only played it for around 1 hour 30 mins I can honestly say that I am loving it. SO far, I've completed mission 3 and I have to say my fears about the introduction of a new character to the series (Nero) have been quashed as the guy is awesome. Not quite up there with Dante, but the amazing cutscene at the beginning of the game were the two of them go at it, is stylishly OTT!! Am a fan of the series since the original and I'm more than impressed with this latest offering.

Secondly, I took a week's paid leave from work, meaning that there should be extra time for gaming. Now if am being honest, I probably haven't quite had as much time as I wud have liked, I have still managed to get some good time on CoD 4 (Veteran Campaign + Multiplayer), Fifa 08 (Multiplayer), DMC 4 (as mentioned above) and a selection of XBLA titles.

So all in all good news from me. The only bit of disappointment has come from Guitar Hero 3. Me and the g/f completed our Co-Op career with me as Lead and her as Bass, but we didn't receive the Lead and Bass achievements for this. I have looked around online in the forums etc. but no-one else has reported any problems unlocking these achievements, so am not so sure were exactly we have gone wrong. I have checked on xbox360achievements.org aswell and we have done everything the guide describes! :(

Ah-well never mind. Till next time...

GamerScore breaks 16K - DMC4 - Fifa Street 3

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Hi Everyone,

Another GamerScore focused blog from me (which I can understand might be getting a little tedious if ure not into the whole "points" game. I apologise for this, but I seem to be racking up the points recently (not quite sure why? :D) but current GamerScore now surpasses the 16K mark.

In other news, I was directed by a friend to this interesting article on PC World.com about MS. It claims that MS were well aware about the faults with the X360 prior to launch, but took the decision to go "LIVE" anyway, based on the numbers (which from a purely business perspective, makes total sense, sucks for us consumers tho, who have to go thru all the heart-ache).


This past week, I also tried the new Fifa Street 3 demo and Devil May Cry 4 demo. I'll actually start by talking about DMC4 as this has got me really excited. I have to be honest and say that I was looking forward to this title anyway, but having played the 2 demo levels a few times, I am even more excited. I was really impressed with the little bit of content you get with the demo and now its fingers crossed the finished article matches the quality of the demo content. The graphics were superb and altho some peeps are disheartened by the focus on the new character Nero rather than old-favourite Dante, he seems more than able to hold his own. He also appears to have some of the same dry-wit and dark humour of his brother.

The Fifa Street 3 demo, I was not so impressed with. I played around 5 or 6 times, and altho it was great fun and I enjoyed it, by the end of my last go, I was already starting to think I'd seen most of what it had to offer. Now this is a major concern, as the biggest problem with the previous two outings was a lack of depth and variation. I'm getting the inclination that this issue still haunts the franchise. :(

Anyways, I'll sign off now by wishing everyone well and till next time......

R.I.P. Heath Ledger

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So another update to the blog from me.

I would like to begin by saying I was deeply saddened to hear about the death of Heath Ledger. I have seen almost all of his movies and was shocked to hear about his death earlier today. I was really looking forward to seeing his performance as The Joker in Batman: The Dark Knight, which is due for release later this year.

In other more pleasant news, I traded-in BioShock and Assassins Creed on the 360 as I had finished both of them (BioShock twice) and I used the store credit to purchase Call of Duty 4 (X360).

I have only played the game for around 3 hours single-player and 1.5 hours multiplayer, but so far I have been very, very impressed by it. I don't think a multiplayer shooter has caught my attention so much since I first played Counter-Strike: Source. I can definately see me pumping the hours into it. :D

Current GamerScore is close to the 16K, as always I will update the blog once the milestone has been reached.

Moving away from the Xbox360, yesterday I started Silent Hill: Origins. I'm a big fan of the series (Silent Hill being the first game I bought for my PSOne all those years ago), and I checked out the review on GameSpot and they criticised it a little for being too much like what had gone before and not being very original. That actually made me wanna play it more, as more of the same was exactly what I was looking for. I get the same Silent Hill gameplay I have enjoyed for years, but with the added bonus of plenty of back-story to the franchise!!

Anyways, until next time.

GamerScore beats the 15k mark - Completed Assassins Creed - First HD Experience

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I know this is quite short after my last update - but my GamerScore has passed the 15,000 mark!

Pretty much a continuation of my last blog post as the majority of the points have come from the same few games.

First off; Viva Pinata: Party Animals - Ok so we had to return it on the Sunday Evening b4 9pm, but we still managed to get 875 points out of it total, which aint bad for around 7 hours play time.

Next up; Assassins Creed. I have now finished this with all 1000 points from it. Overall I thought the game was very good. I did agree with some of the criticisms that were levelled at it, but all in all it was an enjoyable experience. I think the fact that i'm not one to get caught up in all the Marketing/PR hype about games and take them at face value definately help the game appear to me in a positive light. I know a few people who had built it up to be the next eveloutionary step in free-form gaming, which quite frankly it wasn't.

I also managed 2 get an extra 15 points from Guitar Hero 3 for managing to hit 500 notes without missing one and another 20 points from Puzzle Quest for reaching a milestone in the main quest line.

Final points allocation came from Geometry Wars! Yes that's rite. After my confession in my previous post that I was suprised 2 have got any more points from it, I managed to get a further 30 points from it by beating the 1million high-score mark. This was again due to the fact that my mates girlfriend had beaten my top score. So in time honoured tradition, I couldn't let the stand and I had to go out there and set a new target for her to aim for!! :D
I will say however, I doubt there will be any further points gained from Geometry Wars as the last 3 achievements are really hard to get.

On another topic, I had my first HD experience the other day. I have had an HD-TV for a while. I went out and purchased 1 not long after getting my 360, but upto this point I had never watched any television or movies in HD resolution. Until now!

I decided that why Microsoft had reduced the cost of 300 in HD to 100 points on Marketplace I would pay for it and give the service a try and I don't regret it. Even tho I had seen the movie in the cinema on its original release, it was still great to watch it again on the HD-TV.

I wouldn't say that I was as impressed with the quality as I was when I first watched a DVD all those years back, as I think that the leap from VHS to DVD was far more easy to appreciate, but with that being said I really did enjoy it and I think I will be using the service again. There's a few films on MP (like Zodiac) that I haven't seen and am interested in, so I think from now on I will shell out a few more coins and plump for the HD version (and on a note about downloading HD quality downloads, I was suprised that I downloaded 300 from MP over the Christmas period, during the infamous "Xbox LIVE downtime" and it downloaded really, really fast, so no complaints there from me)!

Current GamerScore stands at: 15,565

GamerScore Beats The 14K Mark!!!

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Hi Everyone,

I said I would update my blog when my GamerScore surpassed the 14,000 mark. Well now it has....by quite some margin.

Due to the girlfriend renting a "children's game" and me managing to make some progress on Assassin's Creed and a suprising revisit to XBLA, the milestone has been made and then some.

Current GamerScore stands at: 14,615

Breakdown of points collected:

Assassins Creed - 130 Points
Viva Pinata: Party Animals - 440 Points
Geometry Wars - 20 Points

Basically what has happened is that, I had a session on Assassins Creed today and managed to get a lot of points out of it. The girlfriend rented Viva Pinata: Party Animals from Blockbuster and has been spending alot of time on that (and the achievements are really easy - but don't tell her I said that!!) HaHa.

The BIG SURPRISE tho has got to be......20 Points from Geometry Wars! This was the first game I bought from XBLA like 18 months ago when I first got a 360. I will admit I played a lot of it then, but I thought I peaked from a Top Score & AChievement point of view. Well that wasn't the case. What happened is that, I have been top of the leaderboard for my friends list on this for like forever. Until last week. Turns out my mates girlfriend loves the game and wasn't too impressed to find me dislodging her from the top of the leaderboard when my mate added me to his friends list. So after many hours and muliple attempts, she finally beat my score....THE CHEEK OF IT!! :D

So I had no option than to spend some time on it and beat my previous best and her current best. It didn't quite take me as long as I expected. It took 3 attempts to set a new top score for the leaderboard and as an added bonus....an extra achievement (worth 20 points)!! :D GET IN THERE!!

Well, I'll leave this for now. Till next time!

GS Level 25 - GHIII Progress Update

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Hi Everyone,

I hope you all had a great Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Not all that much of an update this time. I'm currently just working through Assassins Creed and Guitar Hero 3, the 2 games I got for Christmas.

Currently about 50% of the way through Assassins Creed (on the verge of getting a lot of points out that me thinks)! :D

Guitar Hero 3 is going well. I'd never played a GH game until I got this one for Christmas day, so the skill of playing the game was all new to me. I have since completed the Career Mode on Easy and Medium and have managed to 100% a few songs on the Easy difficulty setting. One thing I was pleased about was getting the 250,000 point achievement. I managed to get this by finishing "Through The Fire & Flames" via Quick Play on the Easy Setting.

On another happy note I have reached Level 25 here on GameSpot, so I'm happy about that. Altho I do look back and wonder were the past 4 years have gone since I became a member of the site. Its making me feel old! :D HaHa

Gamerscore currently stands at: 13,950 (So close to 14k....will update blog when milestone reached).

Till Next Time!!