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strategyfn Blog

Watched Taken 2 today

I am left to wonder how Taken 2 has been screwed at the movie review site rottentomatoes with the movie averaging 21% among professional movie critics. I have disagreed with their reviews before. At least the common people got it more right with a 55% rating. I would give the movie an 80%. I liked Liam Neeson's fight scenes, and I felt the plot moved along nicely. Maggie Grace who plays his daughter also makes for good eye candy. I liked how the movie was not over-the-top, and the action scenes seemed believable. I had low expections going into watching this movie, and I wound up having a good time watching it. I enjoyed it more than my recently watched Looper--although I would rate Looper higher--and I enjoyed it more than Neeson's other 2012 movie The Grey.

Is Taken 2 worth a $4.99 rental? I would say barely, but my video store has a deal where I get rentals for under $1 on certain days.

My thoughts on Hearts of Iron III

The trick to enjoy this game is to put the difficulty on very hard. The first time I played it I played it on normal difficulty, and I never fully realized the potential of the game: I pretty much steam-rolled every other country. It also helps when you learn the tricks of the trade. For example, in the military unit icon it is listed what region a unit is supplied from; you will want to send transport planes (air supply) to that region, or atleast I think that is how it works. The Statistics list screen is also not as useless as I first thought by clicking on next, and previous on the bottom of the page you can get to semi-usefull city statistics. It also helps to google how many tanks a brigade has in Hearts of Iron 3. Some people say around 140-200 tanks in a brigade. You can also google other unit numbers.

Even on my first play through I played the game for hours on end, but I got bored eventually. I put the game away for 6 or more months, and now I'm enjoying it again due to trying the game on very difficult for the first time. I'm Germany and I decided to help out Japan against Nationalistic China (after reloading many saves due to failure) I'm totally having a Vietnam like vibe where my troops are getting their butts handed to them by the numerically superior Chinese; the battle is taking place in Korea. I also plan to do the usual Hitler stuff, and invade Poland, so I can't send everything to Asia. I figured I would steam-roll the Chinese in a few battles, but it has turned into a couple of years, full scale war. The game is quite the time sink: I had some free time today and I must've played it for 6.5 hours.

Having a lot of fun with Empire Total War

If played properly, Empire Totat War can be a lot of fun. The first time I played it as Prussia I made an alliance with Poland and they conquered all the minor German nations. I was only left with a couple of regions in Europe, and a few North American colonies, this was not a fun game. My second play through, I first decided to unite the German regions under Prussia, and that has been a lot of fun throughout the whole playing process. I now have all German regions united under Prussia: I have several huge armies, I have several fleets that contain 1st rate ships, and I still make 12,000 Net income a turn. My first failed play through I would've given the game a 6.5/10, but now I give it a 10/10. It's a fun game if played properly.