Saturday, March 24, 2012

Various links to read

I found a rather awesome mod project based on the Dragon Age engine on GamersNexus - have a look at their momentous task over here. Seriously Bioware, either take a page from these guy's book, or just give them a damn job working on Dragon Age III. I want more throwback to the good old Black Isle days of BG and BGII. The blog for the team is over at this link.

Pandora's Tower will most likely be the next game I buy, and I'm hoping its up to the level of the other Operation Rainfall titles. Have a look at this link here

Poh-tay-toe ~ Poh-tah-toe Square Enix, why are you trolling us remaking, no wait, remastering that game.. Link

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Some more Game news

It seems there will be major change in the future of Game chain. The spring sales that have been going on for the past week or two were in fact a bad sign for the company, who has suffered financially recently.

I have £27 on a reward card, so hopefully I can get it sent in the mail before they shut down. Pretty selfish view I suppose...but anyway, it will suck if they can't continue to trade after this. Its a massive thing to get past, it looks like. =(

Some more Baldur's Gate links

If you're like me and can't wait for the Baldur's Gate Enhanced games coming out, check out these links:

I really need to pick the digital copies of BG and BGII up from GOG and play them a bit once more =)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Baldur's Gate announcement

Have I died and gone to heaven? One of my favourite series will be getting an announcement of some kind at 12pm PST tomorrow (16th March 2012) from what I can tell. There have been various announcements and rumours going about, from BGII running on tablets suggesting an upressed version for tablets to continuation of the series in a full 3rd game. Its been so long since came out though, I'm not sure if they would sell enough copies...Then again, I'm fairly sure Dragon Age: Origins and Dragon Age II sold fairly well (I actually bought the 2nd one today) so that could bode well for another Baldur's Gate game =D

This countdown should apparantely be up on the website, but it seems to be down at the moment. At least for me. Here is where it should be anyway:

Wow. Literally as I was writing this, there has been a further development;

The technical difficulties lead to the early announcement of Baldur's Gate: Enhanced Edition for Summer 2012 release window. I'm super excited for this!! I'll try and keep ontop of this story as BGII is my favourite game of all time!

Take some of these links with a pinch of salt, but it seems the games could be seperate, with enhanced editions for each of the original PC games. DON'T confuse these for the Dark Alliance games on PS2/Gamecube.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Game rant

I was in Game during the week with some friends from uni and the company (who owns Gamestation as well) has been in the news a lot recently. They said that they wouldn't be getting a lot of games at launch (for what seems to be financial reasons.) Mass Effect 3, Mario Party 9, Street Fighter x Tekken, Asura's Wrath and some other EA titles I think..
Add to that the fact that they are having a fire sale (which they call a spring clean) on preowned stock and the future doesn't look terribly good for the company.
So anyways, I heard about all this crap online and remembered I still had a fair bit of money on a gift card from the Christmas break. I'd picked up Dodonpachi Resurrection on sale with it at Christmas for £15, and then a replacement Xbox 360 charger cable and battery pack as mine had gone missing... So that left me some for the sales.
So as I was saying I was in the shop...I was rooting through the preowned sale stuff for ages, while I finally decided on Dragon Age II on the 360.
The reason I had held off buying this game was because I had grown more and more pissed off with EA and Bioware (who I belive are being pressured into releasing tonnes of DLC and pushing games out for release prematurely) after Mass Effect 2's debacle. Ok, so way back, I picked up Mass Effect and at that point, I was really happy with it so of course was looking forward to getting the 2nd one at launch. I had my eye on the special edition pack for some DLC codes and more than that, some nice extras. Didn't think I needed to preorder though, so went into Game (fuck this store, seriously) to see if they had any. Nope. The idiot working there told me it was just preorders for the special edition. Oh well...none for me then? Nope. I had to have it, I wouldn't admit defeat, so as soon as I went home, I went on ebay and paid about 80 or 90 quid for it. I bloody regretted it and had a sour taste in my mouth from then onwards. Even moreso when the game arrived and the Cerberus network DLC wouldn't work for me. I don't know wtf was going on with it. I played the game and really enjoyed it though, I suppose thats what matters. In between that and ME1, there was Dragon Age: Origins, which I had a similar experience with...again concerning Game. I didn't preorder. Ok before you judge me, they are stupid when it comes to preorders...some of the time you'll have to pay, sometimes they won't get enough in for the preorders they have...I just don't trust them. Anyway, I went all over Edinburgh looking for the special edition of DA:O. Pretty much every store sold out of it. Did some phone calls and found that the branch at the other end of Edinburgh (past my house from town) so I went home and got a lift out there to the shopping centre. Went to pick it up (thankfully they still had a copy or two), got asked for ID as it was an 18. I was 18 at the time, but hadn't brought ID. Ok, this is bullshit. I was so frustrated after spending the entire day finding this special edition. I just walked out, went to the car and told my mum...she knew how pissed off I'd been for the day, so went in and picked it up for me thankfully. I understand why they need to restrict some games, but it always seems to happen to me when I don't have my goddamn ID with me. Plus among my friends I am usually the eldest one there. Its happened at clubs and stuff as well. I should start taking ID wherever I go I suppose...damn young looks I apparantely have...
So back to the present day.
I'm in Game and I decide on Dragon Age II. I'm guessing you can see where this story is going. I take it up there to pay with my gift card which had a tenner on it (I thought) ~ £7.99 for DAII and a 2 pound set of headphones for my psp. Pretty good prices...
The guy looks at me (in my shirt and tie from the day of clinic at uni-I'll come back to this) and says hesitantly that they have an "as 25 age policy." I shuffle in my pocket for my passport and realise its at home..I'm like "I don't have my passport with me" and just walk away. He tries to get me to pay for the headphones but I explain I didn't want them as I had a tenner on my gift card and wanted to use it up.
I leave pretty pissed off...
Like I was saying, I was pretty smart that day, with suit trousers, shirt and tie as I'd had my first paid patient in uni for an optometric refraction lab. So I was clean shaven and shit, but what pissed me off is what would the old lady that came in think of me if I looked like a kid or something...respect from the patient is something I am worrying about...I should say, I am 25, so I shouldn't worry as much as some of the others in the class who came straight from school and are 19 or so now.

I wanted to come back the next day anyway with my passport, find that fucker and show him how old I am. But I thought I'd look in a different branch and see if they had anything decent, some games like the Atelier games on PS3 always seem to be expensive but interesting...anyway, this was on the Thursday (which is normally the day when shops are open later) so we got there pretty late after half 5 when we finished uni. I had a look and found a lot of good stuff in the sale-Super Paper Mario, Epic Mickey for under a tenner, Battalion Wars 2 for 2 quid, Dragon Quest Monster: Joker 2 for 13, no Borderlands or DAII though..2 games I'd been considering. Anyway, they were closing so I went for Joker 2 and prepared to add in 2 or 3 quid ontop of my gift card. The guy said that it covered it though, so I did some calculations and realised I had more than I thought-15 beforehand.

So it kinda sucked that it shut early, but we headed along to Buchanan Galleries to the other game where I'd been the day before and got ID'd for Dragon Age 2. I was thinking of getting it, but I would have had to put in like 6 quid...and thats not a lot, but at the time I didn't have a lot of money to spare. So I picked up Trauma Center: New Blood on the Wii for £1.99 or so. I'd wanted to get into those games for a long time.
And that finished up my reward card from Christmas.
Starting off with £40 on it, I got;
Dodonpachi Resurrection (360) £15
Xbox 360 Plug and Play Charge Kit £10
Dragon Warrior Monsters: Joker 2 (DS) £12.98
Trauma Center: New Blood (Wii) £1.98

So after all that, I don't have Dragon Age II. I can get it for next to nothing that'll probably be the case when I can be bothered...

I'm gonna get a replacement reward card from Game so I can spend my points I've accrued over the years just incase they go under. To be honest, as much as I rant about them and say they suck, I don't think I'd want them and Gamestation to go that would leave us without high street game retailers in the UK.

Whoa...long rant is long.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Now Playing - "why you gotta bust my walls like that?!"

Its been a while since I posted one of these on a sunday (or regularly for that matter) so I thought I would try and fix that. I'm about halfway through my semester at uni now, and things are starting to move quite'll be a few weeks till we have exams just before summer. Scary thought, but we've had quite a few days off - we get every Tuesday off and barely any classes on Wednesdays. The thing is, I don't really like the fact that we start at 9am some of the days, and in the afternoons on other days. It makes it harder to get a  good routine going. I would actually prefer it was always at 9 or later on. Anyways, tangent aside....I've been playing quite a bit here and there of different games. Hopefully some of them seem interesting to you readers!

Realm of the Mad God (Steam) is a pretty nifty co-op bullet hell MMORPG with a fast paced action battle system. I saw some adverts on Steam for it and probably was drawn in by the sprite artstyle, which looks really good. It has servers of up to 85 at a time, and it really gets fun if you work together in a group, doing what they call an exp train, where a group of players runs along the paths in the world, with attack toggled on. This means you are a really effective weapon, killing the enemies that happen to be nearby. The cool thing is, all the nearby players receive exp whether they shot the enemies or not. This is a really quick way to get to the level cap of 20 (a bit dissapointing perhaps, but there is a lot more to do once you hit that cap.) Oh, I should mention that the game has permadeath like in roguelike RPGs. If you run out of health, you die permanently. I've only really played about 10 or 12 hours of it so far, and seemed to struggle with the bosses in the game (well, the Gods, and the endgame level) as they hit very hard and there is so much going on...I put the game down though, as I felt I wasn't getting anywhere in terms of gear, or understanding tactics for some of the more difficult fights. Somehow it seems like I only scratched the surface on this. Maybe I'll go back to it some day, but for now, I'm concentrating on other games.

I've picked up my save on Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation (DS) again, after I got around 10 or 15 hours into it initially and put it off for a while. I really enjoyed DQIV and DQV on the DS, but this one is proving a bit more difficult for me to fully get into for some reason. I think the story is really slow moving and a bit confusing...especially if you put the game down for a I don't recommend doing that lol. It has the job system of some of the other games, but its a bit easier to master jobs than in DQIX. Nonetheless, it adds a lot of interesting stuff to levelling up your party and building a good team. In fact, they didn't do a lot to actually tell you about the Alltrades Abbey. At one point it just becomes available. So for a while I was progressing through the story without even having jobs for each of my party members...Which reminds me about the way they give you minimal direction (like in many older rpgs) concerning the next story area. I'm not sure if I'm doing optional quests or actually progressing the story right now. All they said was that I had to go out into the world and travel with the aim of becoming a hero. Aside from some flaws, and very slow pacing (but its a Dragon Quest game, so hey, I suppose its expected) I'm enjoying this game and the 25 or 30 hours I've put in so far.

After pretty much a solid day of playing at uni, as well as a good few months of playing through this game  in small bits, I finished the last online urgent quest in Monster Hunter Portable 3rd (PSP), beating the Amatsumagatsuchi. After that I kind of lost interest as I was starting to find solo-ing the remaining double monster online quests difficult. Unlocking Akantor, Ukanlos and Alatreon would prove very difficult...and perhaps I was a bit burnt out after over 200 hours of this game. So I also did a little bit of multiplayer with some friends on Monster Hunter Tri (Wii) once I had finally shaken my obsession with MHP3, which I was worrying would get me re-addicted again, but it didn't thankfully. I got up to HR19 or so in Tri, and it kind of bugs me how slow and dragged out the multiplayer is. I think they just wanted to spread the content as far as they could, but more event quests could have easily done this more effectively. Grinding for HR points is never really that fun, so far at least...

There is a pretty small, but quite cool collection of roguelike RPGs on the IOS store, and I've long wanted to get into this (obscure? It definitely doesn't get much love these days) sub-genre of RPGs. One of the ones that I've kept on my Ipod for a while now has been 100 Rogues (IOS)  I really liked the balancing and quirky sense of humour (although nothing compared to the amazing detailed craziness that is Dungeons of Dredmor) and it kept me sporadically playing through the game with various different character builds. I actually got to the final boss (from what I can tell) with a Wizard before dying. They have some really unbalanced attacks. Teleport can take you anywhere (within reason) nearby and doesn't even cost a turn. If you know how these games work, that can be easily abused, as you can always be at least one step ahead of enemies, attacking from range, or backstabbing if you want. I really recommend 100 Rogues. Since I bought it, it has climbed up to £1.99, which a lot of the better RPGs seem to have done also. I miss the days when most games were less than a pound... Ash (IOS) is another one I played a tiny little bit of. Since the update (2.0 or whatever one it was that massively changed character art and rebalanced the game) I've not really wanted to continue my save, instead I want to start over completely...just to see what has changed. Not to mention the fact that I started to run into really difficult battles after a couple hours in. I just hope its got the same feel..If you are wanting to change a game, I don't see why you would release the original copy only to patch it much later down the line. Make up your mind...Its almost as bad as the DLC nonsense you get 1 DLC...

I picked up Shin Megami Tensei: Persona (PSP) after it dropped in price to £9.99 on the PSN...We don't get a physical release of this game here, and I was ideally wanting to pick up the special edition from America to go with my P2 and P3 PSP special editions, but I would have to pay a shitload more than 9.99 to import it...and it didn't really seem like it was worth it for a 2 disc soundtrack (I'm more keen on artbooks than soundtracks) So I started up a game on this, as I had an urge to get into this series recently, and liked the way it went from the opening (very high school/paranormal anime story-wise) but didn't actually play more than about 10 mins or so. The school you start in is super confusing...

Rage (360) Very nice graphics and world building from the start, but I don't think its that realistic the way they take the story in the first 10 minutes...As soon as you are rescued by an inhabitant at the start of the game, you are taken to his settlement in his car, and immediately sent back the way you came to clear out a bandit hideout. Not so much as a morsel of food, drink, or even a word of explanation concerning the post apocalyptic world you have just woken up in. Just here's a gun, go and get em is about all you get. The enemy AI, animation and gunfire is a bit...unusual I found. There are some nice ideas, so hopefully this game doesn't dissapoint me, I hopefully improve my opinion of it as I go in a bit further.

Dodonpachi Resurrection Deluxe Edition (360) I picked this one up at Christmas with a gift card from Game. It was on sale down to £15ish, and this price is pretty good. I wouldn't want to pay much more, as its a very short game. I like the SHMUP genre but I'm not one of those super crazy fans who import the games from Japan. I can't imagine how dissapointed I would be if I did that, popped it in the 360, and finished the game within a half hour or so... I'll still pick up Akai Katana if it does end up coming out in Europe =D