Hi all! Haven't blogged in a long time, so I thought I'd write one this weekend. I'm going to cover a few games today (no reviews though), namely Dragon Age: Origins, Need for Speed: Shift, and a little bit of Risen.
Let's start things off with some Dragon Age: Origins impressions:
There's something terribly wrong with RPGs. Why is it that everything must be solved through violence? And not just any sort of violence, but the 'crawl 3 hours through a frickin dungeon and kill a truckload of generic enemies' type of violence. Well, this is exactly what's wrong with Dragon Age: Origins. Some parts are purely combat-centered and mind-numbingly boring. Mind you, the combat system is quite pleasant, but they went overboard with the encounters on a few occasions (take 10-15 generic packs of darkspawn and place 'em every 50 meters on a generic dungeon map and voila! level is done!).
And what a shame that is, because the rest of the game is actually impressive. Yes, IMPRESSIVE! You have a nice combat system that actually works well and is well balanced, generally solid writing and characters, mostly interesting gameworld (with some consistency issues), choices and consequences ( !!! ), and a very polished feel overall. So it's puzzling why there's so much combat. It's like cooking a fine dish of spaghetti bolognesi, then p*ssing all over it. Makes me a sad panda just thinking about it. :(
Alright, let's move on to some Need for Speed: Shift impressions:
I bought this game right about when it came out but I wasn't able to play it much because of a crash to desktop. Well, after two patches, the game runs nicely and I am able to enjoy it. Shift builds on NFS ProStreet (check my review of that game) and takes the series further into 'racing sim' territory. It's still not quite there, arcade elements still exist, but Shift mixes them much better with race sim elements than ProStreet ever did. And the addition of the cockpit camera is pure genious. It feels incredible and the sensation of speed is superb from this perspective. Seriously, tell me this isn't cool! The career mode is a bit too generous with cash rewards, which makes it a little easy, but the actual racing is challenging. Basically, I recommend this game to anyone into racing games. ;)
Finally, a short update on that Risen review: it's in the works. But I want to play through about half of it once more because there's content you miss depending on faction choice. I want to see how the Inquisition side plays. Plus, the game is just plain fun. :)
So yeah, that's about it for today. Cheers!