spydersvenom7 / Member

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spydersvenom7 Blog

To Do List: Have Fun Playing Games Again

I think these days too many people don't follow the golden rule of gaming: to have fun. I am an addict just like everyone else, if I'm not playing games, I'm thinking about playing games or on the forums talking about playing games. Hell, I even have a podcast about video games.

When you are this avid, however, I think you get to a point where you are in media influx so much so that you forget why you began gaming in the first place. If you find yourself doing mindless tasks, bored, but just because you want that special achievement or trophy, just stop. If you're not a masochistic gamer and Ninja Gaiden or Metal Gear Solid (insert any number) are too tough for you, just quit. Don't worry about it, it's not fun to keep trying over and over again (unless it is for you, whatever). Video games aren't intended and shouldn't be played like they are tasks and no one should concern themselves with playtime prior to playing the game.

For those of you who are "cramming" through games, just take some time off and play a game you love. If you are not eagerly awaiting the ending to just be done with the game, then you're on the right track.

In preparation for Labor Day Weekend, no real blog but tons of reviews

Well, I have wrapped the week and now it's review time! I have finally completed Too Human for the 3rd time and experienced all 5 types and I'm feeling confident that I can review it now. Additionally, I've got reviews for:

-Too Human (360) (redundant, I know)
-Assassin's Creed (DS)
-Ninja Gaiden Sigma (PS3) (haven't completed it, but feel confident for the review)
-Bionic Commando: Rearmed (PSN)
-Space Invaders Extreme (DS)

Check em out!

Episode 15 of The Video Game Purists is LIVE!

Huge episode, but not too huge running time! This episode we discuss the Too Human and Dennis Dyack controversy, the response, and what we thought of Too Human. We discuss a ton of Leipzig news. Also, tons of reviews including Too Human, Battlefield: Bad Company, New Super Mario Bros., Braid, Fable II Pub Games, Bionic Commando: Rearmed, and more!


Check it out today!

The Importance Of A Backlog (or Queue)

Last gen had a big issue as it came to a close: the next gen was invading the space and depending on where you stood, you could have ended up missing out on some great titles. Some titles were lucky enough to get critical praise and consumer avoidance on both gens (ie: Okami, which was a disappointment on PS2 and Wii), while others were great games that were re-pushed on next gen (Psychonauts), and yet still others are lost in the last gen shuffle and unless you have a BC console you may not touch them (God of War). In any event, I refuse to believe that everyone out there has played these games. In fact, I will mark this moment, here and now, that no current gen gamer has experienced all the games they wanted to in the last gen. I recommend everyone create a backlog where you take a last gen game and agree to play it at least 3-5 hours (calibrate based on how hardcore a gamer you are) a week. I know, I know, this is an idea on the 1up FM podcast, but they are doing it for you, i think people should do it.

I have my queue set up and here's how it looks (in order of when I'll play, top to bottom):
-God of War (PS2)
-Prince of Persia: Sands of Time (xbox)
-Castlevania: Curse of Darkness (PS2)
-Psychonauts (xbox)
-Killzone (PS2)
-Manhunt (xbox)
-God of War II (PS2)

Any you think I haven't thought of? Please note, I've already played:
-Okami (PS2)
-MGS 3 (PS2)
-Shadow of the Colossus (PS2)
-Resident Evil 4 (GC and PS2)

So many of the other critically haled last gen games are covered, but I always love more ideas. It's so tough to mix these in as I'm grinding through Ninja Gaiden Sigma, Too Human, and even GTA IV!

Double Blog Day: Reviews, Reviewers, and the Industry of Video Games

Too Human has come and, in all truth, gone. Now that it's out and everyone's had the opportunity to play it everything is slowly returning back to normal. The reviews have been written, Dennis Dyack is no longer going crazy on message boards, and all the haters/lovers are just waiting to see the August NPD numbers and figure out just how Too Human did with sales.

It leads me back to thinking about our (that is, video games) culture has developed and how quickly I am reminded that too few have the responsibility to write true game reviews. In today's world, like it or leave it, there are going to be great games you hate and horrible games you love. Unfortunately, to the best of their abilities, critics have to do their best to not allow those biased views to creep into their reviews. I have Too Human, and I love it, but the more I play the more I'm learning that what reviewers are saying is quite true. You look at the various reviews out there and you wonder just how long each reviewer spent with the game (why does it make user reviews tell that but the editor's review doesn't?). This is imperative. I noticed that in G4's 4/5 (which can loosely be anywhere within 8-9/10) admits that they've beaten the game once and went for a second round (which they never confirmed they finished). They also admitted to playing most of if in co-op. I find it hard to believe that they can honestly give a game with just a few too many glitches/bugs such a high score. It pains me to write the review that I'm about to write on Too Human (and I'm prepared to hear negative feedback from fanboys, but then again I feel it's pretentious to assume anyone will ever read my review). I love this game, but I can't allow that to blind me from the flaws that the "traditional" user may experience.

I agree with what the hotspot was also saying about the criticism of one journalist to another. I am a journalist, I have a journalist degree (even though I am currnetly selling out in the world of advertising), and I would NEVER publicly criticize the work of a peer, especially if their work is published. It puts these journalists on the same level as these fanboys that are attacking reviews, it justifies them! In an industry where a snot-nosed 13-year-old with a big mouth and tons of free time can spend 3 hours a day flaming a game they've never played, there needs to be order. How many times have you been on a forum that reads: "Too Human sucks" and you ask them why and they tell you to "f*** off" or call you a "n00b". It offends me, but if I write "boy, I was beating Mario when you were just a sparkle in your mother's eye" or "I pwn n00bs like you all day" (and who really still talks like this in forums, can it people), then I'm no better than they are. If you ask for a reason and get a dumb answer, hopefully you've brought enough attention that people will understand it's not well thought out. Additionally, there comes a time where you just need to throw your hands in the air and admit defeat. Too Human lovers, this is directed at you. You'll never convince the haters, it's a simple marketing rule that a smart man like Dennis Dyack should definitely take to heart: a happy person tells 10 people whereas an unhappy person tells 100 people. With a snowball effect and a 10x head start, there's no way you can overcome this; also, they care more about hating on it than you do about defending it.

In the end, this journalist vs. journalist world needs to stop and if ever a day comes where I can proudly view my name next to a video game web site or publication as "reviewer" or "editor" I will never turn on my own. Video Game Journalists are such a criticized and coveted few people that they need not concern themselves with the other members of their team (no matter if its the same or a rival publication). As for haters and lovers, I recommend the lovers (like with Too Human) get off the forums and back onto their 360s and grind through the ice forest yet again.

Wii Issues: Not the System, Just in Selling It (Wii)

First of all, I posted a bunch of reviews lately: New Super Mario Bros (DS), Battlefield: Bad Company (360), Fable II Pub Games (XBLA), and Lego Indiana Jones (360). If interested, check it out!

So, yeah, lately I have made the decision that I no longer want my Wii due to the lack of hardcore games. Now, mind you, I do understand why the Wii is popular, why people like it, and I discourage anyone who got their hands on this difficult-to-find system from selling it unless you are as sure as me. The only thing I'm looking forward to is MadWorld and it's not worth keeping this system for that when I can apply the money I make selling it to buying other games.

I tried selling it for $300 (system, 2 full controllers with retro add-on, and about 10 VC games that everyone wants across various systems) on craigslist and it didn't work out. I also tried on ebay (first bid $249.99) and it sold for over $350 but that person backed out and the other bidders went on to a different auction.

In the end, this has been a super frustrating situation and I'm sorry I ever thought to sell my Wii. It's the video game gods reminding me that I need to keep this Wii for some reason. Oh well, anyone looking to buy a Wii?

And Let The "Too Human" Controversy Continue

Most people probably don't have as many news feeds and consistent updates from gaming sites that I do, but for the many who visit 1up.com, you've probably noticed that the Too Human review is live. Unfortunately, it didn't get the greatest marks (eeking by with a C-, or low 70s for most 0-10 rankers) and appears to have many of the problems earlier builds faced. I don't know why this review was allowed to go up early, perhaps it's because Silicon Knights head Dennis Dyack was really entrusting of 1up, one of the only group of journalists not ready to jump on the "Too Human" sucks bandwagon. Regardless of why the review is live, I'm certain that it was permitted by Dyack and that 1up was within embargoed and legal right to post the review. The reason why it's live isn't the concern that Dyack should have right now, but rather the...disappointment seems to be the only word to appropriately use, with the fact that Too Human just may not be that good.

Still, this is the 8-year+ pet project of the team and it's way too far along (with Silicon Knights creating their own engine for the game) to even glance back. They need this game to sell, and they're hoping it will sell well. Just because the review is, well, lackluster, doesn't mean that the game won't do well (initial sales figures report 1 million preorders at least) either. The problem is that the 1up network was the biggest promoter that players should wait until the final build and release to pass judgement and this review is just that. It isn't the end all, be all, but it builds the question in gamer's heads as to whether or not this is a purchase or a rental.

The first thing you will see are the haters jumping all over Dyack (for those who don't know, there has been many attacks against "Too Human" by many forum posters that, by their own admission, have never seen the game). 1up is a reputable company, in fact probably one of the most reputable, and a decent calibration of how the game will actually be. At the same time, many people eager for the game (like my buddy Heffe, from our podcast) couldn't care less about the reviews, people on the fence, like myself, begin to wonder if this is a smart way to spend $60 (especially with so many heavy hitters around the corner). Then again, 1up hated Assassin's Creed (giving it the same score) and loved Condemned 2 (giving it an A-, and I hated that game, even as a strong fan of the first) and I did not remotely share their sentiment. If you are basing the critic's review of a game to decide if you are going to experience it or not, you may be doing yourself a disservice.

The point is that Silicon Knights need this game to be a purchase, not a rental, and only time can calibrate how this will do, but I wouldn't be surprised if this game takes a delay on store shelves. Still, this also means that outlets like Gamefly and Blockbuster will be flooded with rentals of those worried about losing money on a simple purchase. As for me, I'm just going to buy it, citing my precious time as more important than $60 vs. $25 for nearly a month's play. The lack of games on rental shelves may also pump the purchase of the game. I guess we'll see in the August NPDs what sales will be like, but I'm going to guess that this game is loved by a few, liked by many, and hated by few as well. Unfortuantely, as is always the case on the internet, the haters will scream much louder than everyone else and create the perception that they are the many.