Friday, May 15, 2009

Prelude to E3 (Another Mass Effect 2 Video)

"I'm so excited...
...and I just can't hide it...
...I'm about to lose control and I think I like it."

This is why I just broke out into song, I mean serious WTF, is Bioware trying to give me a heart attack?

[Via Joystiq]

Crackdown 2 Announcement @ E3 2009?

You would think that with all the speculating that I was doing yesterday, that I might have picked up on what I am about to say sooner.

Let me start off by saying that Crackdown, a first party game from Microsoft, was an awesome game. It really got me into playing sandbox games whereas previously, before the 360, I pretty much avoided them (Grand Theft Auto IV was the first GTA game that I played to completion). So now that I prefaced what I am about to say you can probably already deduce what all the speculation is going to be about.

I feel that at E3 Microsoft will announce Crackdown 2 and I can only hope that the original developer, Realtime Worlds, will be taking the reins. Before I talk about that I wanted to say why I think that this announcement is coming: Microsoft just released a Premium Xbox 360 Dashboard Theme for Crackdown. Now I know that is not a fool proof announcement but it could surely be an indication. Think about it, the game came out two full years ago but sure they could just be trying to eek out some money from consumers who dug Crackdown.

The theme could also be a promotion for All Points Bulletin which is Realtime Worlds next game and could also be the reason that, if it is announced, there would be a different developer attached to Crackdown 2. If you did not get that Realtime Worlds, the developer of Crackdown, is currently working on an MMO called All Points Bulletin so if Microsoft does announce Crackdown 2 at E3 it is likely that Realtime Worlds did not develop it.

Now all of this is speculation beyond speculation but it would be nice to see and moreover it would be nice to play another Crackdown game regardless of the developer (provided that they do not f' it up). How about you dear reader, what did you think of Crackdown and do you want a sequel?

Thursday, May 14, 2009

My E3 Rumor & Speculation

When it comes to games expos I honestly am only ever really looking forward to the Xbox news. It is in my nature (it just gets me giddy inside); I have attached all of my caring to that console. I know that there will probably be decent enough iPhone and Ninendo DS announcements but I will not care about them until I hear them.

So having you understand that the only expectations that you are going to see here are 360 in nature I'll just get this show on the road. Naturally I assume that we are all going to see some things from Mass Effect 2, Halo 3: ODST, Modern Warfare 2, Brutal Legend, Dead Rising 2, Bad Company 2, maybe that Mass Effect iPhone game, etc.

What I really want to talk about is what we are not expecting. Could we see a bigger hard drive for the 360? It seems the most likely of any announcement. We have the ability to copy games to our hard drive and my and I am sure most other's Rock Band song collection is growing and that requires a lot of space. Let's not forget the video marketplace. With all of these things together it seems more than likely that we will see a bigger hard drive unveiled at E3.

Rumors have also been swirling again (like in a circle, get it?) on a motion controller so that could be something (albeit something I do not care about).

And last of my speculations: Could we see a slimmer 360 since we may see a slimmer PS3 this year? Who knows?

What kind of announcments are you anticipating?

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Really Random Star Trek Update

The above picture really has nothing everything to do with this post but I loved Star Trek and I just wanted to profess that love somehow on the blog. There it is and I also might want to play Star Trek D-A-C in the future. That's all folks, Star Trek was awesome, go see it again and again.

"Let's have a go at it."

It turns out that in between going through the Pitt searching for ingots, I do have some time to read and not only post news. Todays news is pretty exciting for me, as it is something I haven't been following at all and was surprised with this morning.

Valve has been consistently updating all the character classes in Team Fortress 2 to make sure the game doesn't become stale, and the Sniper update is now upon us. With the update, you get a brand new bow and arrow set, the Huntsman. You shoot the arrow at your enemy, the arrow sticks into their body, and if they have low enough health, they will be shot and stuck against a wall, forever being a reminder to your foes what a deadly marksman you are. I love playing the sniper personally, and this is just downright exciting for me. I mean, apparently Valve has been updating the game with new stuff for characters for months (including new achievements that apparently aren't making their way to the 360?), and I have just not been paying attention for whatever reason, so this is a great way to make me excited to go home from work.

When the Orange Box I came out, I will not beat around the bush when I tell you I bought the disc JUST for Team Fortress 2. I'd been waiting for it for years, and even though it is different than the game initially promissed to be (back in.. what... the 90's?), it was still an amazingly fun experience. Valve kind of has the corner on the market when it comes to awesome multiplayer games that are on the XBOX 360, matched probably only by the popularity of Halo multiplayer. But, unlike Halo, I can spend hours wrapped up in Valve multiplayer games. Left 4 Dead is a fine example of this, and with all the new updates for Team Fortress 2 that I have missed (due to me not paying attention), I will definitely be spending more time on that. So if you have a copy of the Orange Box, look for me online either playing that or Fallout.

Edit: Apparently, in all my excitement, I looked over the glaring fact that these updates are for the PC and not the 360. Rats. There is a forthcoming patch with all the updates included, but all things considered, it should be here by now. So rats again. I am highly looking forward to this update, though. I really want to try out all the new sniper stuff. I just kind of wish I had a PC right now, because it's a free update for them and Microsoft won't let Valve give us a similar free update (although Left 4 Dead had a huge overhaul update for free recently... harumph).

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Game Diary - May 12, 2009: Pegs Part Duex

When I have been playing on the 360 I have been giving my attention primarily to COD4 on Veteran. I have most recently completed 'The Shot' achievement which for those who do not know involves waiting an extremely long period of time for a helicopter while and endless wave of hostiles would like nothing more than to shoot you to pieces try to do just that. After the helicopter actually comes you have to fight your way across the field in order to pick up your partner who got injured earlier in the mission and then carry him to the helicopter. It sucks and it was pretty hard. I am impressed with myself for completing it and today I will further my progress through another level that seems like it will never end. It is another level where you have to fight your way down a ridge in order to get to another helicopter while another boat load of guys that would love nothing more than to shoot you limb from limb, again, try to do just that. You are timed once again and you only have a limited number of "Close Air strike" that you can use. That one should take most if not all of whatever playtime I have today so I won't being playing much of anything else today or so it would seem.

Peggle for iPhone came out today and anyone in their right mind would not buy the same game for two different platforms, right? Wrong. I purchased it or Cindy's (my wife) iTunes gift card purchased it for me and I have been playing it on and off all morning. It eats my battery though so I'll have to watch myself if I plan on using my phone as a phone.

In terms of news that I have wanted to post about there has not been much other than this Modern Warfare 2 video that teases another MW2 video or this Duke Nukem Forever video that just makes me more sad that the game probably will never come out. That is all I have for you today. So sorry I know that you expect more from me.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Monday MUpdate: Wolverine entries, for fall, as well as KURONOTORIGA, there are other

God, I love Engrish! Morning, blogoverse. While I do not have anything particularly poignant to offer today, I do have some tiny bits and pieces of information, as well as pictures! I'll start with that:

My last entry had a secret picture from X-Men Origins: Wolverine in which I found the long fabled cake. While many believe this cake not to be real, I showed that not only was it real, but Chell was searching in the wrong place the whole time. But that is, of course, not all you can find in the game. I mentioned two others, without providing screenshots. Before returning the game, I got a picture of one of the other hidden places in Wolverine:

This is Desmond's fabled hatch, proving that LOST takes place in Africa, and all the Others are actually mutants.

BUT THAT'S NOT ALL! There's one more hidden place in Wolverine worth visiting for an achievement:

I bet you didn't realize that the world of Warcraft was actually Earth-616, did you? Well, now you know. Be on the lookout for the next WoW expansion as well, called World of Warcraft: Days Of The Future Past.

Anyway, I beat Wolverine over the weekend. The final fight against Weapon XI is pretty awesome. In fact, Weapon XI is much cooler in the game than he is in the movie. Don't get me wrong, I thought the end fight was well coreographed, but being able to kick ass ass myself was quite satisfying. The weird thing is, though, is that when I was fighting him on top of that nuclear power plant, my game glitched the frak out. I'm talking insane glitching. For whatever reason, my Wolverine avatar started getting flung all around the map, to the point where he was hovering in space in a place he clearly wasn't supposed to go. The game is nice to you because it recognizes you are fighting on a very flimsy surface and, unlike the fight against Gambit (which is SO much better in the game than it is the movie), it doesn't allow you to fall off. So when I started flying around defying the laws of physics yet still somehow damaging Weapon XI, I could help but let out a "WTF" while laughing my head off. I still beat him, despite that disadvantage though. The game also sets it up for a sequel outside of the movie continuity, so that's exciting, because who knows how long it will be until the next film? Either way, I'd definitely recommend the game. It's a lot of fun and, if nothing else, a lot of really easy achievements. I had it for 5 days and already have almost all of them. Oh, and the ending cutscene? Such a brutal moment. My jaw dropped. It was pretty awesome. If you wanna ruin it for yourself without playing the game, I'm sure it's on YouTube.

After beating Wolverine, I threw down some cash and got the Fallout 3 expansions: The Pitt and Broken Steel. I will not get to Broken Steel for a while as that requires me to beat the game again, and for those that don't know, I lost all my saves a while back due to an incident, so I can't just reload. I did start the Pitt, however, and it's interesting. I had to dress up in bondage gear and go do the dirtiest place on Earth, but it's all for the love of the post-apocalyptic future, right? My current character isn't that great and I'm out of bullets and caps for some reason, but I've got a sword. I've also got armor that gives me an insane amount of protection, so worst comes to worse I can throw it on, but I try and not use it so I don't have an unfair advantage so early on in the game (the armor is my prize for beating Operation: Anchorage. The Pitt looks great though, all things considered, so I'll have to play it more over the week so I can give better thoughts next Monday.

I also used left over MS points to buy the Mass Effect Premium Theme and, other than making me want to play Mass Effect again (which I keep saying I will do but never actually take the time to), it's pretty disappointing. I can't say I'm realy in love with any of the Premium Themes except for the Castle Crashers one, and a bunch of my friends already use that so I want something a bit more... original for myself. Nothing has greatly impressed me yet (although that Holiday one sure was nice!).

I have also been slowly yet surely pushing forward in Chrono Trigger. I love the game, and love the DS version of it, but there are such time gaps in between when I play that I always forget where I left off because I've played the game so many times. I need to devote more time to that because I told myself I wouldn't start my other games until that was finished. I will eventually sit myself down and force myself to do a hardcore run through of it, but I'm sometimes apathetic about gaming. I just have so much to do at all times that gaming can occasionally be put aside because it's hard to multi task while doing that.

So that's really it on all gaming fronts. Star Trek was ok. Entertaining enough. This week promises to be very busy for me, so I don't know how much gaming will be done, but I do have a very open weekend so maybe I'll sit down and devote some time exclusively to that. We'll see.

PC Gaming Diary #2 - I Remember When 60 Was Something Special

My girlfriend works weekends, so that's when I get most of my gaming in. This weekend I spent a good time guessed it! World of Warcraft! I think my appeal towards WoW on the weekends is also due to the fact that I don't have to give the game 100% of my attention to play (lets be honest, it's just a lot of right click target, 4, 6, 4, 6, 4, 6, 7 then walk to the next target and repeat) which means I also get to devote some time to watching some of my favorite TV shows. This weekend it was finishing up Firefly. Other games such as COD4, COD5, Crysis, GTA4, FO3 need a bit more of my attention. But enough about TV!

This weekend I made a relatively large achievement. I leveled to 60! Now, if this were a few years ago that might actually mean something, but with the Burning Crusade and Wrath of the Lich King expansions it really means nothing other then I was final able to purchase my epic mount giving me a 100% speed increase on the ground. Amazingly (and I honestly don't know how) I had the 700ish gold it cost to purchase the training and the actual mount. This is a new achievement for myself as I have only leveled one character to 60 thus far (and that's honestly as far as I have gotten in the game) and I never had enough gold on that toon to purchase my epic mount. So hooray on all accounts! Even though 60 doesn't really mean anything anymore, I'm pretty excited to have finally reached it and reached it significantly faster then my last toon. Seriously, Blizzard has made the grind from 1 to 60 WAY easier then it was a few years ago. Only 20 more levels to go and I have achieved my final goal!

Aside from all that WoWery this weekend, I got to playing a bit of Halo 2. See, I owe our friend Nate a replacement Halo Edition original Xbox so I found one on Craig's List and traveled down to Baltimore this weekend to pick it up. Nate won't be able to get it from me until Memorial Day weekend so I hooked it up and sat down to play a bit of Halo. Being the PC gamer I am, it's a bit awkward switching from the standard WASD and mouse one two combo of the PC gaming world to the console controller. I typically find the two joysticks confusing. I think I'm getting the hang of it, but I still have a difficult time being quick and accurate with the right hand joystick when aiming. I suppose it just takes some practice. I didn't spend too much time on it though and really didn't get very far, but I found it relatively enjoyable. There's one aspect of the console gaming world that I want in the PC gaming world and that is sitting down on a comfy couch to enjoy a game. There's something significantly more relaxed about console gaming to me then PC gaming. When I sit at my computer and play, I have to sit in my cheap computer chair and lean over my desk a bit. It's not as enjoyable or comfortable as a nice, plush couch. I have been toying with the idea of buying a 360 in the semi-near future, but it's the cost that's really keeping me from it. We shall see, maybe Halo 2 will make my urge to make that purchase even stronger.