Saturday, December 20, 2008

I Will Quit Gaming For One Week...

...when my streak ends.

While this may not be that big of a deal to some, for me it will be like taking a part of my life away for a week. It is true that I recently went without my Xbox for roughly a month but I still managed to play something at least once every day. Alas, allow me to explain how I came to this decision.

My inspiration for doing this is Matthew Shafeek, the guy who quit gaming for a year. My rational is that if someone who is a least half as obsessed with gaming (probably more) as I am can quit for an entire year, I can do myself some sort of service by quitting for one week.

The conditions of this period are:

1. Quit playing my 360 for a week
2. No DS or iPhone gaming or gaming of any kind
3. No Television at all unless it is with the wife (this has to be the condition because this is our "together" time and it is what we do in our evenings
4. Finish one book in that week span
5. My streak cannot be lost to error or error (if I played, it counts (this is an honesty system after all)
6. ...though it must be a retail or a paid arcade title

I think that I can do this and not only that, I think it will be easy for some reason, after all, it is only one week. Do you think that I can do it or more importantly, do you think that you could?

This here is something that I did not feel merited its own post but something I wanted to put out there nonetheless. Does anyone feel that Scribblenauts is somehow infringing on Psychonauts territory. The main character even looks like he can be mistaken for Raz.

Alas, that is all I have for you today, check back soon.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

New Genre Open Mindedness

Today was the day that we found out if Stephen Totilo bested Soulja Boy or not. Two days ago we saw some pictures and today we found the results. Soulja Boy brought his skills in 'Gears' and beat Totilo nine out of ten rounds. I feel like Totilo needs to not rush into combat and actually come up with a strategy but more on the later.

The reason I am bringing this up is because how it made Stephen feel about multiplayer gaming. Otherwise it is not relevant other than the fact that it is funny as hell.

Before this challenge was brought about and SB picked Gears of War 2 as his title Totilo did not care for multiplayer gaming. This would be the reason he was 'rushing' Soulja Boy in a game that discourages 'rushing'. In order to beat Soulja Boy, Stephen had to practice his Gears 2 skills in order to have a hope at beating SB. As a surprising effect (at least to him) he found that he was enjoying himself.

He went on to write in his blog, "Multiplayer gaming might be for me, after all."

This had me thinking about people who are closed off to playing certain parts of games or different genres altogether. When it comes to fighting games, I am that person (and I did give it a shot with SSF2THDR but open mindedness has not helped me in the fun department there. I think I could be persuaded to play God of War and Metal Gear games if the opportunity arose (and I did not have a long list of other things that I wanted to play). I have also recently wanted to play the new PoP.

But to get back on topic, there was never any point in my owning 'Gears' without a possibility for multiplayer. I do not know how much effect Totilo's recent discovery had on my open mindedness but for some it could probably persuade them to play something new. I think for me it was that he is a games journalist and had not yet experienced something as simple as multiplayer gaming.

Are you finding that as the years of you being a gamer are going by, your interest in other genres are increasing? Oh and better luck next time Stephen. If your new found interest in muliplayer is any indication of things to come, you will be better in no time.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Brutal Legend Hype

Truly awesome games look to make me ecstatic and Brutal Legend is looking to be one of those truly awesome games. I would say that Tim Schafer has always impressed me with his work but I would be lying seeing as I have only played through Psychonauts (sacrilege, I know).

But to my credit, it was probably in my top three original Xbox titles (the others being; Halo: Combat Evolved and Fable). Since then we have seen sequels to two of these games but nothing still from Double Fine. Alas we will have BRUTAL LEGEND which will quite possibly melt off all of our faces.

So now there is face melting news in the Eddie Riggs camp: EA has secured the publishing rights to Brutal Legend and thus secured for me their (EA) state of forever awesomeness.

I would assume that this means awesome things for Brutal Legend in the way of promotion and advertising. A quick and good example of this is the exclusive trailer that appeared at the Spike VGA's. It was a... ahem... rad trailer that got me more hyped about this game.

Brutal Legend has always had my vote and let's just hope that it does not go the way of Psychonauts (amazing critical reception and a sales flop).

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Xbox LIVE Groups

We already have Xbox LIVE Parties but now in order to complete the social networking circle we need Xbox LIVE Groups.

I am a regular listener/reader of the Joystiq Network. I listen to both the X3F Fancast and the Joystiq Podcast and I read their respective blogs. Recently on the Joystiq Podcast the subject of Xbox LIVE grouping came up once again as it often does (Chris Grant will always tell you what is needed by your service or game).

While this is Chris' only, and biggest complaint, for both services (the other one being PSN), it is one that he makes sure to clearly express.

For myself I had not thought about the grouping possibility until I had heard about it from them but now, like the Joystiq staff, I am finding that I cannot go without it more and more.

I would imagine that the system would be built sometime like a Facebook social networking system (we have friends of friends but now we need groups). You could have a Left 4 Dead group, a vegetarian gamers group (my little joke), etc. If you could name the group it would most probably exist. Events could be scheduled by the gamers and once and for all you could be playing with the gamers that wanted to play the game like you wanted to play it (or how it was meant to be played). It would also be a clever idea to be able to set one's preferences to only matchmake within that group (though I am sure that would not be possible by Microsoft's standards because of all of their wacky rules about TruSkill).

The system would probably have a more in depth version based on where the moderator could admin events (Best.GamePad.Ever group FTW) and members.

It has come to the point where this is how I want to play all of my games. I have not yet thrown myself to the wolves of matchmaking (in L4D) because I think that I am too horrified of what I might find. Perhaps I would find a preteen zombie hunter that might scream as he hops onto my unwilling corpse. Shudders. That alone might be worse than the Zombie Apocalypse.

I really think that the folks at Joystiq are onto something here and I feel that for this idea to not come to fruition would be a missed opportunity. I think that it will happen because though I have not heard about it before, I am sure that it must be an oft-requested feature. What do you think?