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MarkedByAshes Blog

Uncharted 3

After some serious debate (and aconvienent 50% bonus trade special at a local GameStop), I managed to part with a few titles that have sat on my shelf in favor of Uncharted 3...and fully paid it off! (Of course there is a gaping hole in my game shelf now, but whatever...) So far I'm very happy with the game. I don't care what all these forum whiners are complaining about. I enjoy a cinematic game and that's exactly what I got.

HOWEVER, I do wonder how I started up the game this evening, less than 24 hours from release, and find that there are people with level 40+ characters in the multiplayer already. How is that even possible? Do they sleep? Do they have no life? And where is the fun in that? I like to take my time and enjoy the story before getting too deep in the online content. I know not everyone plays that way, but I can't understand the joy in grinding through multiplayer as fast as possible, maxing out your level, and having nothing left to do later. Eh, but that's just me. Perhaps I'm not a "hardcore gamer" anymore...

Oh, and what gives with DC Universe going Free-to-Play and requiring an 18GB download? After 4 minutes of downloading (after having to download a 122MB file for installand then a 125MB update???) I got severely impatient. It sat mocking me at 0%. Not going to happen.Thanks DC, butI'll stick with Arkham City...which I've already finished (see previous blog entry).

All the best everyone!

Batman: Arkham City and more... SPOILER-FREE

So lately I've had time to actually sit down and play a few games. But, those who know me, will realize that I usually only post here when I've got a serious gripe. Yep, it's time to gripe again. And it's serious. Let's start with the latest game I've finished...

Batman: Arkham City -Fantastic game! Loved (almost) every minute of it...all 360 - 420 minutes of it (there were a few trying to pilot the remote batarang). Now, I may be exaggerating a little, but it really seemed like I only spent 6 or 7 hours on the main story. Of course I was constantly being distracted by side quests, but I really tried to stick to the main plot for my first play-through. By the end of the game, I really felt like I hadn't been playing for very long at all. I'll go back and play it again just to see exactly how long the story mode is, but I shouldn't be done in just overa week! I picked it up the Thursday after the release and I finished it a week and 3 days later. Mind you I did have a death in the family during that time as well as children to work around, so it's not like I could play for hours on end like I used to. What bugs me the most is that Ihad to trade A LOT of stuff just to pick it up. Had I paid $60 out of pocket, I think I would have been irritated. Otherwise, a GREAT follow-up to Arkham Asylum. It's the side missions that will add so many hours of replay to it, so those of you who loved combing the island looking for the trophies and riddles in the last game, this one has almosttwice as many.

Transformers: War For Cybertron - Uhm...damn. What went wrong? Sure, I played through the entire story, but by the end of the Decepticon campaign, I was ready for it to be over. In fact, I think it took me twice as long to finish as Arkham City. There was so much potential but they took so many liberties with the story and history...they really disappointed a long-time Generation 1 fan. Really, did you have to mention the "spark"? Of all the stupidity in the first live-action movie, you had to carry that one over. Thanks. (BTW, I haven't seen the last two Transformers movies...)

Phineas And Ferb: Across The 2nd Dimension - I would say this is "inspired by" the movie instead of "based on" it. I got about half way through the game before I stopped and watched the film. (I love Phineas and Ferb. So what?) It has almost NOTHING in common with the movie except the characters and a few locations. I was actually confused as to how they went together. But I had fun and that's all that matters. My kids are going to love playing it when they get just a little bit bigger. Just wish some of the voice-actors had put a little more into their performances.

Sly Cooper Collection - I had the Sly Cooper games on the PS2 but I never got to play them, so I was very excited to get my hands on the HD collection. First of all, LEARN TO SWIM COOPER! The same could be said to Batman, but I digress. It seemed like every bug from the PS2 version was ported over to the collection and made "HD"? Not really seeing much of a graphical improvement with your HD collections, Sony. I really appreciate them, and I have the Ico/Shadow Of The Collosus collection on my shelf and Silent Hill on pre-order. But could you put a little more effort into these? Graphics aside, these had to be the absolute EASIEST platinum trophies (and I've only got 3 so far) I have ever seen! And that looks like the only redeeming factor after playing through the stories. They were fun, but not something I'll be playing again, so Ihot-footed through the levels and grabbed all the trophies then that bad boy was trade fodder.

James Bond 007: Blood Stone - I don't care what the reviews say, I LOVED this game. The pacing for the story was really good, I didn't have to curse too often while in larger firefights (unlike Transformers and my constant streaming of colorful verbage), but there were a few tiny issues. First of all, the trophies. One you can get in the opening tutorial of the game. So very easy...once you know what to do. Shoot across the water from the back of the boat at another boat. BUT WHY WOULD YOU EVER DO THAT??? It made no sense! How about finding 5 fruit baskets scattered around the game and shooting them all within a real-time 24 hours? SERIOUSLY? Were they just making this $#!& up at the end of the development cycle? I mean, really...there aren't a whole lot of breakable items in the game to begin with, so I don't know why anyone would be looking to shoot these items in the first place. Oh, and if you're a company known for making great racing games, how about, oh here's an idea...make sure your driving mechanics work! It's going to be quite some time before I'm able to get the trophy for finishing those driving sections. I do love the Bond games, so this one has a permanant place on my shelf.

So what's next? I've got a couple on the shelf that I haven't really worked on and a few others I've sacrificed many of my old games to trade up for. Topping the list are Alice (both the first one and Madness Returns), L.A. Noire,Enslaved, and Red Dead Redemtion. Yes, I'm WAY behind...I can't afford these $60 titles anymore and I'm out of things to trade after getting Batman. On the horizon, I'd love to get Uncharted 3 and Silent Hill: Downpour on release day, but I think I'll have to make some headway on these others before I can even consider trading for them. Until later, thanks for stopping by and all the best!

All I can stand...

During the Sony PSN outtage, I kept my opinions to myself, but now, I've kept quiet for as long as I possibly could. I am so irritated by the consumer backlash at Sony. I watch the Playstation blog page from time to time to keep track of what's going on and I have to say that most people are supportive, but there are tons that are just greedy. Oh, and they're stupid to boot.

I've been following the issue since the system was first taken off-line. The first thing people start crying about is that it's down. Ok, I understand you want to play your COD:MW or the new MK, but it's a GAME people. Your life will not end without online capabilities. I promise. It's now back up, and I'm more than certain that you're still alive. If not, well, I guess you won't be able to read this and complain. Think back to about 9 years ago...before the Xbox Live launched...what were you doing? Playing online with a PS2? I doubt it. Even with the original Xbox, were you really playing online all that much? Quit your b****ing. It's back up.

For those who sold their PS3s for Xbox 360s because the service was down, I hope you appreciate how much you'll have to pay for what I'm getting for free. You're also losing out on your blu-ray capabilities. Fine. Your money. Throw it away on whatever you want. I don't really give a s***. Just don't go posting it all over the Sony blog about hating the company just because the service was shut down to protect YOU. Idiots.

And while I'm on that subject, what's the point of blaming Sony? They did what had to be done in order to protect the consumers. They issued a statement about the problem and said they were sorry for the inconvienence. It's not like they WANTED to shut off the network. This could cause a HUGE financial issue for Sony. And all you care about is how you don't get to play online for a little while. Did you stop for a moment and think that it's the HACKERS you should be upset with? Morons.

Last but not least, the greedy b******s that want free stuff. Hey, guess what...the network access IS FREE! Shut up! The only people that should be entitled to anything free are the people who paid for PSN Plus and lost almost a month of their service. Give them a replacement month. That's all ANYONE deserves. Those who haven't paid for anything haven't lost anything. I saw just today that someone posted, and I quote, "I hope the welcome back content doesn't suck! I hope the PS3/PSP games are actual games, not lame games that are only available on their network. I want games that were originally $59.99, not a bunch of $10.00 games on the network." WHAT A F***ING A**H***! What gives you the right? What makes you so special? I'll tell you what...ABSO-F***ING-LUTELY NOTHING!

For those sympathetic to the issue Sony has had to deal with, thank you. There are many out there smearing the name of gamers everywhere. For those who think Sony owes you some form of freebie...screw you. Be thankful for what you don't have to pay for. Enjoy what you have. You never know when the day will come when the entire world's internet may come crashing down. What will you do then? Commit suicide because you can't Tweet? Rape and pillage because your Farmville crops may wither and die? Some people just need to get a life.


Mori-Dog Movies

New Year, New Stuff (everyone likes stuff!)

So I haven't been on again since I had a proper day off in December/January. However, since then, I've managed to grab a couple of cheap games and gotten a few minutes to play 'em. Having a PSP Go, it's been in my best interest to grab up minis and PSOne titles. Cheap and quite enjoyable. I was really hesitant to try minis but if you get the right ones, they really balance out to be a better option than some of the full-size games, especially on my schedule and only able to play a few minutesto an hour at the most. As for my PS3 gaming, I've been spending a lot of time watching Netflix with my daughter and playing Pac-Man DX...probably the best game for the dollar out there right now.

Outside gaming, we're about to get started on our next film. Follow our progress and check out the Kickstarter page...

Thanks for stopping by everyone...gotta run. Hopefully I won't wait so long to post again.

Tis The Season...

Well, it's been forever and a day since I last posted. I hope everyone is having a good holiday season. I, for one, have actually not had much time to play games lately. It's sad because I picked upa couple ofawesome titlesrecently and haven't touched any of them. With a new job and working 7 days a week to get caught up on bills and stuff, I just can't seem to find time to do anything more than a few minutes on the PSP or DS. That is, until I got2 days off for Christmas...oh how wonderful it was to sit down for a couple of hours and finish Bioshock 2, play the Dead Space 2 and Little Big Planet 2 demos, andbegin the latest Professor Layton adventure. It was a nice break from worrk, but now it's time to be a responsible adult again...

Hope you all had a wonderful holiday and have a safe New Year!

Multiplayer Anyone?

I've actually been busy with work! Can you believe it? Well, if you want to call what I do "work". But lately, I've taken a little time at night to play Uncharted 2. Problem is, I'm usually stuck playing with a bunch of idiots. Idiots with headsets. It's not that they can't play the game or act like total turds while they play...they just won't shut up! Sometimes I'm amused by the banter, but just the other night, it got down-right stupid. In fact, I now play with my wife's laptop sitting at hand ready to report anyone being a complete prat. Now don't think I'm prude or anything...I'll cuss out anyone in a heartbeat. But I do it all from the comfort of my couch without a headset because let's face's JUST A GAME PEOPLE! Yeah, it's irritating when someone seems to keep getting the drop on you, but that's part of playing the game. You'll have your good games and sometimes you'll be a little off. It's when they're being extremely vulgar and verbally abusive to me or other players just because you got killed off once or twice, that's when I get fed up. Last night, for example, I was matched with a group of 60+ level players. I'm only level 46 and they were absolutely destroying me. That's part of the game. Frustrating, but so be it. They never once trash-talked any of their opponents. In a prior game, however, there was a player on his headset "f-this", "f-that", "I'm gonna skull-f* you for that b*s*!". He even started in on someone because of their gamer tag. Sure, there's a mute button for this reason, but it gets to a point where someone has got to put them in their place. I don't want to play against someone who's going psycho because he's been bested. Again, it takes a lot for me to actually report anyone, but damn, should I really have to? Can't you kids keep your mouths under control? Do you ever just listen to yourselves? You sound like absolute morons! I'd love to be given powers of in-game moderation for a week...

All that said, I could use some intelligent people to party up with and enjoy a friendly game of deathmatch or even co-op on Uncharted 2. Anyone want to join? Hit me up on the PSN...ID - Mori-DogMovies (just drop me a note that you're a Gamespot friend) Until later, cheers!

Summer slowdown

I probably shouldn't complain much since I don't have money for new games, but what's with the lack of new releases? This is absolutelyridiculous that there haven't been any decent updates to the Playstation Network Store lately. You'd think they would release more PSone titles if nothing else. I would love to see Parasite Eve 1 & 2 and Dino Crisis 2 hit the store. And looking at the new release list for the PS3 and PSP for the coming weeks, there's absolutely nothing coming out. I'd love to grab up Dragon Quest 9, but not for $35. Maybe I'm just cheap, but I'm having just as much fun playing PSone games for $6-10 each as opposed to spending $30+for a PSP title or $60 on a PS3 game.

And what is the purpose of PS Plus??? Seriously? A yearly (or monthly) membership to get free avatars and games that I have to continue paying every year (or month) to be able to use the content? I'm not impressed. Especially since I don't care anything about avatars and backgrounds. And I really don't buy enough from the store for the discounts to be worth anything. I guess it's good for the hardcore gamers, but me...I'll just pay full price and save a few dollars by not subscribing.

Oh, and I had to take a trip down to Florida to pick up my step-daughter. I'm VERY pleased to have my PSP Go now. We stayed with my in-laws and every night I would sneak off to the bedroom and play quietly while they did whatever it is they do. It also helped to not have to take a case of UMDs that could have gotten lost or broken...especially since we had to pack light so we would have room for my step-daughter's belongings that she was bringing back from her dad's house. So, just another reason I'm glad to have my Go.

Hope everyone is having a great summer. If you're traveling, be safe. All the best!

Update from a PSP Go owner.

First of all, does anyone actually read these posts I put up every once in a while? If you do, just drop me a little note in the comments...I'd appreciate it. :D

So, I was extremely vocal about the PSP Go when it was first announced/released. I couldn't imagine ever wanting a system that had no UMD slot when I had about 80 titles for my PSP 1000 that was still in pristine condition. Here I am, months later, humbled. I admit, I was wrong about the Go. I traded up to one about a month ago, and I must say, I'm extremely satisfied. In fact, I've already filled up the entire 16 GB storage and I'm looking for a cheap M2 card to add to it.

This sudden change of heart all came about due to necessity. Times are tough, there's a recession on, and money is EXTREMELY scarce. It became my duty as a good father to make the hard decision to quit being a video game collector and take care of my family. After checking the PSN store and finding a good number of decent titles available, I started looking into options. Gamestop had a decent trade deal going on (well, better than most of their deals) with 50% bonus trade credit for all games and $25 additional trade credit for systems. So, with PSP 1000 and about a dozen games, I set out to find a used PSP Go in acceptable condition. I managed to find one that looked to be barely used and still had 5 games on the harddrive (someone forgot to wipe the memory! booyah!). That was enough to get me by until I could get the money to buy a few titles off the network. The rest of my games I sold at a much better loocation that actually gives you a decent amount of cash for your stuff. The games I didn't use to pay the rent, I used towards Network cards to fill up my harddrive. Rent was paid for another month, I have games to play, and all is right with the world again. Now, here's my thoughts on the Go (if anyone actually cares):

Positive - I've managed to stuff 15 PSP games, 5 PSone games, and 5 minis on the 16 GB drive. Not a shabby collection considering 3 of the PSone games are Final Fantasy 7, 8, & 9 atabout 1.5 GB each. I absolutely love being able to keep my collection of titles with me and not have to pack tons of cases. That said, it takes up so much less room and mykids don't have tonsof UMD cases to pull off the shelf anymore. The screen is slightly smaller than the standard PSPs, so the image is a bit more compressed and looks a bit better. It's quite small, and with the lack of UMDgame cases, ittakes up so much less room when traveling. Now being a former collector, I don't have to worry about finding cases, artwork, UMDs, and instructions all in perfect much easier when all I really want to do is play the game. Also fantastic considering we have 2 PSPs in the house and only need to buy 1 copy for the both of us...I'd much rather spend $30 for both myself and my wife to be able to play ModNation Racers than to try to find 2 used copies.

Negative - Sony has not updated the store with enough of the back catalog. I had so many great games that just aren't available in the States yet off the network. I can't trade games anymore...if I don't like a game I buy, I'm stuck (much like when I bought all 12 episodes of Siren: Blood Curse). The system is small...I have a Motorola Droid and they are almost identical in size, except the Droid feels more stable and a LOT heavier. Definately not a system for children that don't now how to take care of things. It is quite expensive (unless you find a used one) and most of the titles on the Network store are more expensive than the UMD would be new or used.

Overall, I guess the system has it's audience and I'm part of it. Well, now that I've got my life re-prioritized, that is. And besides, having Final Fantasy 9, Silent Hill, Pixel Junk Monsters, and Ratchet & Clank: Size Matters without having to switch discs is kinda cool.

PS3 Bricked AGAIN!

Welcome PS3 update 3.30! Farewell PS3!

Yup, my system is now bricked. Of course I can't "prove" that it was because of the new firmware update, but really, let's look at the chain of events...

1.) Update system.

2.) Watch a blu-ray movie.

3.) Put in a video game.

4.) System dies.

All this within 6 hours (all times are approximate). Update around Noon, movie from 3-5pm, video game 20 minutes later. System dead 5 minutes after that. Thank goodness the system died a couple of months ago and I had to pay to get it repaired...otherwise I wouldn't have a 90 day warranty to fall back on! *Sarcasim*

Ok, so I'm irritated. I'm off to play my PSP, unless the new update kills that too!

Be well everyone! Oh, and come over to Facebook and check out the fan pages for my movies!



Feature film now in production and a shocking loss

Let me start by saying that I have lost use of my PS3. No, I wasn't playing too much and my wife took it away; the damn thing is fried! I was playing RE5 online with my cousin and all of a sudden, I'm kicked from the game. My system locked up and wouldn't do anything. I reset it and it wouldn't read any discs. I tried updating the firmware, it wouldn't read discs. I can only play games off the hard drive. Now I'm stuck with aconsole version of a PSP Go (maybe I'll call it the PS3 No) until I can come up with $150 to get it fixed. Trouble is, I can't afford $150. I heard there's a lawsuit against Sony claiming a firmware update can cause this. I hope it goes through soon and they have to fix it for free...otherwise I'm just going to have to sit here and stare at a brand new copy of Uncharted 2 that I can't even play. And play Pixel Junk Monsters...which I hate but is so damn addictive!

On a brighter note, we (Mori-Dog Movies) have begun production on our first feature-length film. We shot our first couple of scenes January 9th and had some fantastic local talent in front of and behind the camera. I ask all my friends, visit our fan page on FaceBook at you can find more information, photos, and behind the scenes clips. We're working very hard to have this finished by April 1st for inclusion into the Cape Fear Independent Film Festival at the end of April. Please, stop by and drop a note...I'd love to hear from you.

That's all for now...Cheers!