Welcome to the Twilighter Zone

Useless since Feb. '07

6.11.2012

Mass Effect 3, Love Letter

So, here's my biannual post, if anyone still reads this rotting wooden shack of a blog. Wow, the post composition window is clinically minimalist. A little unsettling. Not a joke, every time I post this interface is a little different. That's what I get.

Well, I went to the Hollywood launch party for Mass Effect 3, met Casey Hudson and the VO team, as well as Tobuscus and Harley Morenstein of EpicMealTime, who both happened to be there. It was pretty cool, I just happened to be in the right place at the right time. Probably around 200 people were there, maybe more. West Hollywood looked super sketch, and because of the smog you couldn't even see two blocks down the road.

I've been so busy I've only just recently gotten around to playing the game itself. I know, I know. But it's amazing. I'm about 22 hours in, and it just may be the best of all three. The story is grand and gives you a real sense of trying to defend an entire galaxy. The scale and stakes are large and high. The characters are written so well you really get attached to them. Your choices feel as though they really do have consequences, much more so than in previous games. Almost every single choice you make in the game has pros and cons for each side you take. I can't wait to finish it.

Well, something else that is really cool is this movie a friend of mine is writing, called "Love Letter". Here's the synopsis: "THE STORY: Garrett's got a case of writer’s block.  It turns out writing the perfect suicide note is not as easy as you might think.  And it’s even harder when you're writing it for an ex-girlfriend you’ve got tied up in your garage who, even though she totally deserves what she’s getting, unfairly refuses to sign the letter.  Things get more awkward when Garrett accidentally takes the pizza guy and the pizza guy’s sweaty girlfriend hostage after they stubbornly refuse to die from the poison he slips in their drinks. The situation goes from bad to….well...more bad as Barry, the landlord, gets put out that hostages are being held at his property.  It sucks, but Garrett may just have to kill everyone."

I would love it if anyone reading this would at least share their kickstarter page, and hopefully donate what you can to them: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1423478098/love-letter-feature-film

I have confidence that this movie will be worth it. Well, that's all I got guys! 

2.24.2012

Farcry 3

Grrg. I want to start a new blog, but every time I do, I post one post and leave the blog to die. I can't even remember some of the blogs I've started, and so I have scattered them across the great ocean of the internet, each one a ship with only one passenger, and no captain. Lost forever. So I'm here again, with some more thoughts on what has always been the vague theme of this particular blog: video game opinion.

I saw an ad for Farcry 3. I did not search it out, but in fact it came to me, rather rudely, in front of a Mass Effect 3 trailer that I did intentionally look up. But I humored it and watched the whole two and a half some minutes, as I greatly enjoyed its direct predecessor in spite of its flaws, which were occasionally quite frustrating. Seeing another sidebar ad, now, I have assembled a vibe that Ubisoft is putting out with their marketing campaign for the game; a sort of more realistic and therefore darker Borderlands vibe. I think it was the weird colors and the crazed characters and blatant disregard for human life displayed in the trailer combined with the sarcastic slogan "relax and unwind with us" on the ad. However, it somehow feels worn out. I like how Farcry 2 played it straight. No humor. And the trailer dropped one too many f-bombs, as if they were trying to be edgy. Which they most certainly will. But excessive language and violence doesn't cut it anymore, you actually have to try. Borderlands nailed the Borderlands vibe in 2008 (I think), and as an aside, I absolutely loved the Borderlands 2 trailer. Way to go, Gearbox. And having personally spoken with Randy Pitchford and co. at a couple of PAXes, I can testify that they genuinely seem like good people who care about their games, and more importantly, their gamers; this I found out when I was one of the few hundred to receive a free copy of Borderlands 2 at PAX Prime 2011.

But back to Farcry 3. Even though they are trying a bit too hard with their marketing, if the gameplay improves (that's the key word) upon FC2, then I will most likely get this game. FC2 certainly was a lot of fun, I dumped a little over 50 hours into it somehow (more than I put into Mass Effect 2 :O [which I liked better]), but there was something about the openness of the world that made me not care too much about the almost immediately respawning guard posts and the cars and guns that would break down after just a few hours' use. Do something better, Ubisoft! I don't know what, that's why I'm not a game designer.

12.07.2011

Rimming the sky

I'm tired and can't sleep so I remembered about this place and thought I'd say that Skyrim is amazing. Buy it now.

Published with Blogger-droid v1.6.8

11.11.2010

Would you like to play a game? (recommendations for new gamers)

If anyone is bored and is looking for a game to play (a.k.a. people who aren't playing Reach or Black Ops), here are some good ones, organized by platform. They are mostly old games.

PC:
Civilization, any of them (try II if you haven't)
Dawn Of War: Dark Crusade (Great RTS, especially for fans of 40k)
WarGames (doesn't have a whole lot to do with the movie, it's a pretty old game, but a good RTS)

Xbox:
Republic Commando (A solid Star Wars Squad based shooter with good in-game dialogue)
Knights of the Old Republic (If you've played it, play it again)
Crimson Skies (Probably a bit dated now, but it's got great airplane combat with upgrades)
Ultimate Alliance 1 (better than 2) is a little cheesy, a little buggy, but somehow captures the fun of putting all your favorite superheroes in a team and upgrading their many abilities far better than the second one. The in-game graphics are aging, but the cutscenes are pretty amazing for original Xbox. And you get more powers in this one, as well as items you can pick up and equip.

Gamecube:
Metriod Prime (I actually haven't played these, but I will when I get a system that can)
Jedi Knight II

360:
I can't really recommend any games here that haven't already been lathered in press. That said, Reach does live up to the hype. Haven't tried Black Ops yet. However, if you missed it, Mass Effect 1 is a must play. The graphics still hold up after 3 years. The gameplay is occasionally buggy, and the menus can get annoying, but it still earns a 9.5/10 in my book despite all that. The game is so good, you will completely forget its minor flaws. It's that great.
If you like Wolverine, and haven't played the "Origins" game yet, let me just say this: There are about 100 different ways to kill dudes, the combat is true-to-character, and it's about 12 hrs. long. It may not be for everyone, but I played through twice, once on medium, and once on hard after unlocking it for beating the game. Plus, the QTEs, for the most part (save a couple mini-bosses) are pretty cool, not too common to be annoying, and occasionally jaw-dropping.
Flaws: Story is meh, but I actually liked it better than the movie's story (both are still wrong). The occasional graphical glitch (largely forgivable, especially considering it's a movie game), as well as the rare glitch where you get stuck outside of a level. That only happened once, but it did cost me an achievement.
I think I already reviewed that game when it came out. Oh well, there it is again.

PS3:
Haven't played anything on this yet.

Wii:
Umm... anything first party, almost nothing third party. You should know that by now if you have one.

So, this is essentially a list of games you may have missed over the last 10-20 years that I didn't (mostly), and you should play.

Also, if you're new to gaming, here's a list of recommended titles to start with, depending on the genre that interests you.

Shooter: Halo 1 (combat evolved). Why: because it's not too complex, it has an easy setting, but it has controls and gameplay that will prep you for any modern shooter.

RTS: Age Of Empires (1 or 2). Why: It's got all the key components of an RTS, but not overwhelming on easy. Plus, it's great.

RPG: Um... I don't recommend jumping right into an RPG if you're new to gaming. Start with Halo, then move to Mass Effect, because the RPG element there is pretty light, but enough to prep someone for a deeper RPG after that. Or if you're eager, you could just skip straight into Mass Effect 2, but you'd miss some story from 1, and the RPG element is so light there, that you might not even get a taste of it. (traditional RPGs, of course. The story element is heavy like rain).
Alternative: play a text-based RPG, if you like reading.

That's about it for now.

10.27.2010

It's a... whatever, it's a post.

Just wanted to post. I'm still playing Super Metroid, I think I'm close to getting the final suit upgrade. That game is harder than Reach on Heroic, which is hard by 2010 standards, but it was apparently not too hard by 1994 standards. Anyway.

Umm... Check this out? It's good. I promise.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Stemage?blend=2&ob=1

Edit: the post before this one was post #123.

10.20.2010

LEGITIMATE



....I bought Super Metroid the other day. The actual cartridge, from 1994, and have been playing it on the SNES. The difficulty is such that I can no longer think of too many other things than playing the game while I'm playing it.
I suppose I should let you know I've never played this game before (!).
But it is AMAZING, I love all aspects of it. The music, art, level design, and sheer amount of upgrades are great. It is just so deep for a game of its era, especially of that genre. This game is easily the equal of Donkey Kong Country and Super Mario World, games I have spent a solid amount of time in. It is chillingly mysterious and so full of variety in the levels. The idea is that you are on one contiguous area the whole time instead of levels that you progress to and cannot go back. I have only put a couple hours into it, but I would go so far as to call it the pinnacle of side-scrolling games on the SNES.

I implore you to check it out.

Also, if you're interested you've probably heard, but The Hobbit has been greenlit, it will be directed by Peter "the man" Jackson, and will be released in two parts, Dec. 2012 and Dec. 2013, I believe. I guess pre-production actually began in '08 or '09, and they have had all the script, concept art, and sets pretty much hammered out for some time. What held it up were several lawsuits against New Line by Peter Jackson and the Tolkein Estate. I'm not sure I like the movie being split up into two parts, because they will have to make the second one "better" and the easiest way to do that is to not make the first one as good, and it seems like one continuous story to me.

That's about that.

10.15.2010

If Blogger has automatic spam detection, then I have laser eyes


But enough of that.

I saw the movie "Memento" recently, and it was crazy. And good. But not crazy good, because then we would have to put it in our mouths.

Also, I played Spider-man Shattered Dimensions. I only got about 34%, but it's pretty fun. All four Spider-mans have a slightly different play style. Ultimate has the tendrils and rage mode, Noir has to stick (no pun intended) to the shadows to survive and perform stealth takedowns, and 2099 moves really fast and has a slo-mo power that slows enemies down. And Amazing, is just classic.
The game has some pretty funny parts, too, it's never too long between chuckles or laughs. Decent third person action with a good amount of upgrades. The tactics, from what I saw, are fairly varied. One level you are fighting sand creatures, and have to throw water barrels into them before you can inflict damage. Also on the same level, Sandman turns into a huge tornado, and you have to webzip between flying debris. Pretty epic boss fight.

If you are a Spider-man fan, you have to try it. If you like third person action games, give it a shot, it's different. If you don't like these types of games, well, you may not like it.

Samus Aran

Samus Aran
Bounty Hunter from the Metroid Prime series

FEEDJIT Live Traffic Map

Do you dare...