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Micro units, E3 post-op and "Holy crap, it's Gordon Freeman!"

Howdy randoms!

Borrowed "Halo Wars" and clocked it in due time, and I have to say, it was decidedly meh. There are some good missions but nothing really flows like you'd want it to. Even though I've grown up with classic RTS's on the PC, I just don't think it works on the same level on consoles. Once yu get used to the hotkeys, it's mildly enjoyable, but still just meh.

In terms of E3, Project Natal looks promising but to be honest, I'm not really interested in motion controls untill it evolves fully into the epicness that will be virtual reality. Mass Effect 2 continues to look polished and gritty,the new Halo was announced and Modern Warfare 2 showed us a good time. It's always worth remembering that the majority of these games will turn out to be bargain bin fodder.

Finally, I may have picked up the mother of alldeals the other day. After a few trades, I managed to nab "The Orange Box" for $10!!!!!!! I've already completed the trippily sublime "Portal" and am now on "Half-Life 2". It has some of the most natural scripting and greatest level design I've ever seen, I can'twait to see it all. Looks like this batch'll keep me going for a while!


Pinatas, Peleliu, Achievement Hunting and The Hype Machine Cometh!!!

Hey folks

Have recently finished a killer month of gaming. My old man managed to nab "COD:WAW" for a steal and I've already finished the campaign and playedNazi Zombies to death.

CALL OF DUTY: WORLD AT WAR- Treyarch's best entry in the series, looks amazing, the weapons are satisfyingand the multiplayerpromises to be amazing. Doesn't quite reach the heights of COD 4 becauseI felt that it was simply building onthat game'ssuccess and wasn't a complete overhaul. Still, far better than COD 3 ever was.

Went to the city recently and managed to get my hands on a cheap copy of "Viva Pinata". Once my friends stopped bagging me about playing a "Pokemon" game,I found it to be equally relaxing and frustrating. Maybe I'm just not used to micro, but the interface and AI could be much better. And here's another thing. I constantly find myself compulsively hunting for Achievements. Instead of just enjoying a game for what it's worth, I find myself seeking shortcuts to achievements and hence, ruining part of the experience for myself. Does anyone else find this?

Anyways, I usually try to keep out of the hype machine but I can tell you that I am seriously pumped about:

Bioshock 2, Modern Warfare 2, Mass Effect 2 and Assassin's Creed 2. I must admit, I was disappointed with AC (even though it was my first 360 game) but the sequel is looking much more substantial. I'm glad that Infinity Ward are heading in a new direction. Bioshock 2 is just epic and MassEffect 2 wil be EPIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sorry. Like I said, I don't like to get too caught up.


Musings- Mass Effect and Xbox Live Demos

Don't quite know how to start this, maybe with a snippet?

CALL OF DUTY 3- Solid shooter with familiar mechanics that nevertheless frustrate with it's poor hit detection, horrid checkpoint system and sheer bugginess and lack of polish. Worth a rental,but a dire ink blot on theseries.

Well, I've finally started "Mass Effect" and now that I'm in it, I can't seem to get out. I have no idea why I waited so long to play it. It's amazing, the sheer epicness of the story and the universe, wow! Been doing a lot of demoing as well, and I've got to say that I've been disappointed with most of them. "Lost Planet", "Wanted:WOF", "Devil May Cry 4", "Ninja's Blade", "COD:WAW", "Riddick:AODA" etc."Resident Evil 5" was a huge exception, with awesome co-op that left me begging to get my hands on the full game. Currently pumped for Bioshock 2 and Modern Warfare 2 (Got 1000/1000 on COD 4 Woo!) Can't think of anything else.

R.I.P Ensemble Studios, the Age of Empires has fallen:cry:


Holidays End (Sad) - COD 4, Bioshock and more!

That's right folks, the glorious times of relaxing known as the holidays are over, and it's back to the grind:cry:

It's been a great summer of gaming for me. First of all, I'm now on Live with my Gamertag as RogueFire92 and it's opened up whole new possibilities to me. I must admit, I was disappointed to find that no one plays Perfect Dark Zero online anymore and that I completely suck at Gears of War (although the latency doesn't help). However, when the chips are down and you're facing General RAAM on Insane it's nice to be able to call up the help of some random to give you a hand.

Secondly, something very strange happened in my family, my Dad is hooked on Call of Duty games! It's a bit of a double edge sword though. To be honest, he kind of sucks so he never wants to play against me for obvious reasons. Also, he probably spends equal if not more time on it than I do, so I kinda work around him. He also doesn't like Gears of War's control scheme.

Anywho, the Christmas break has given me time to play two of 2007's finest games, Bioshock and Call of Duty 4 (generously bought by my dad!), and I must admit, it was close, but the latter has come up the victor in terms of most fun, as well as in longevity. For all Bioshock's incredibly spooky atmosphere (there were times when I almost couldn't go on) and fantastic story (which I unfortunately ruined for myself by googling it), it simply couldn't hold out against the fantastically frenetic campaign and addictive multiplayer of COD 4. And here's my snippets:

BIOSHOCK- Incredible atmosphere and graphics with a gripping story and cool plasmids. However, I felt that I might have been taking things a bit too slow because it started to stretch towards the end. Also, the difficulty jumps around a bit, it's quite challenging at the start, the middle can get ridiculously easy just before it starts getting hard again. Still, a truly amazing game.

CALL OF DUTY 4: MODERN WARFARE- What a turnaround! WWII is out, night-vision goggles in! A brief but incredibly memorable campaign coupled with a fantastic multiplayer system puts this one as my favourite game. Ever. This is such a cinematic, intense experience that I think everyone should see.

I'm currently slogging through COD 3 at the moment. It's too generic and buggy to be anything too special but it's okay. I'm ashamed to admit this, but I've had Mass Effect in my games rack for four weeks and haven't played more than an hour of it. I think I just need time to let my trigger finger cool down and my attention span widen before I attempt this much-praised intergalactic RPG.

Just as a side note, I'm probably not going to be realeasing reviews anymore so don't expect any.

Happy gaming everybody!


THE BOX: My first month

It was a surreal experience, walking up to purchase my first games console, and not just because I had the mother of all fevers at the time. For me, someone who has wanted a console my whole life and would often go to friend's places just to play their SNES, there was no other choice but the Xbox 360. Ever since I played "Gears of War" at a mates place, I was hooked. And the $100 price-cut the day before I got it didn't hurt either. We're not gonna have the rig to show off Blu-Ray anytime soon, so the PS3 was out, and the Wii is fun but probably isn't gonna service a hardcore player like me. The thing is fantastic, a little bit noisy, but perfectly funtional. Unfortunately, I haven't rigged it up to the net yet, so Xbox Live is out of the question for a couple of weeks, but still YIPPEE!!! Here's some of the games I've been playing:

ASSASIN'S CREED-First game I played, makes a good first impression with an interesting story, but things got EXTREMELY repetitive very quickly and if you're a completionist like me, the game works against that and you have to do the same things hundreds of times. The game looks great but the assassinations are too hard to pull off like a genuine assassin. I'm afraid to say the whole thing was overhyped, here's hoping for a better sequel.

KAMEO:ELEMENTS OF POWER-A short game with great art design and cool creatures but it feels very finnicky at times, and the first hour is awfully disjointed. The controls aren't as responsive as they should be and it lacks a sense of direction (I mean this literally). Boss fights and creature abilities are definite highlights.

LEGO INDIANA JONES-Charming and simple game with an occasionally feral camera and dodgy friendly AI. Haven't tried co-op yet. Vehicles control dodgily too.

KUNG FU PANDA- It came with the bundle, I swear! Short and nice-looking beat 'em up with simple controls. Achievements are not well designed though and it's very hard to chain up combos.

PERFECT DARK ZERO- Good shooter which feels a little clunky and slow-paced for my liking. The visuals are stylised, but almost too much so, making it look "greasy" and yuck. That said, the guns look and feel awesome and the multiplayer is incredibly additive, up there with Halo's stuff! Can't wait to take it online, provided there's still people there.

GEARS OF WAR- Had to get it, a killer-app if ever I saw one. Fantastic audio-visual presentation, grunt-worthy, bloody, satisfying combat. Great sense of scale and risk. Not much in the way of a story, but who cares! Can't wait for multiplayer!

CALL OF DUTY 2- Great shooter with great sense of authenticity. Amazing audio, everything sounds like it should. Re-spawning enemies can get a bit tiring, but still a solid experience.

Well, with the holidays upon us, I'll be free to game. A lot. Right now I'm aiming to buy the older, cheaper games rather than the high end stuff which I'll get around too eventually. Despite all this gamage, I haven't really found THE game, the one that's really hooked me in. "Gears of War" came close, but I have a feeling it'll come in the form of an RPG like "Oblivion" or something. I'm getting "Bioshock" for Christmas too, a game I've had my eye on for a while. Can't wait! I should have my review for "Assassin's Creed" up soon. MERRY CHRISTMAS