Halo Reach's Final Mission = What The Actual Fuck.

Dear person or people responsible for putting together the final mission of Halo: Reach, 
 
I want to find you. I want to find you and punch you in the fucking balls repeatedly for at least an hour. 
 
I am exactly one twitchy nerve away from smashing my face through my television. 
 
I was really enjoying this game up until this point.  This whole section is a giant pile of shitty bullshit. 
 
- Some dude on the internet. 

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Punks fly up to get shot down

I am LOVING the Halo: Reach beta. The abilities add so much craziness to the game. I've been using the jetpack non stop. It's very hard to not instantly get shot down when using it, but I am getting into the groove and flying into all kinds of tiny nooks and crannies in all the levels. The new battle rifle took some getting use to as it only shoots one bullet at a time now. The covenant weapons are a lot more substantial this time around and kind of overpowered, I wonder if they are going to fix that during/after the beta. I was expecting to not have a lot of fun playing as an elite but they are actually really awesome and fast.   
 
Well enough incoherent babble, time to play more Reach.

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Time to Finish Some Games: part 2

After a few months of gamestop bin hunting and game borrowing from friends, I found myself with a pretty sizeable stack of videogames that I haven't finished. I mentioned in my first post that my list was as follows:

1.) Beyond Good and Evil (a few hours in)
2.) Okami (maybe 1/4 done)
3.) Ico (a few hours in)
4.) Bioshock (about an hour and a half in)
5.) Re: Chain of memories (45 minute in)
6.) Rogue Galaxy (about 3/4ths done)

Since then i have progressed in several games and my list has expanded, due to me being an absent minded fellow who can't remember what games he has.  The list is now:

1.) Beyond Good and Evil (a few hours in)
2.) Okami (maybe 1/4 done)
3.) Ico (a few hours in)
4.) Bioshock (about an hour and a half in)
5.) Re: Chain of memories (and hour and a half in)
6.) Rogue Galaxy (about 3/5ths done)
7.) Bully (completed a few days ago)
8.) Final Fantasy XII (30 hours in, but mostly due to level grinding)

Beyond good and evil and a few other ps2 games of mine have been experiencing errors on my ps2. It's a launch system that's been on it's last legs for a long time so that is to be expected. I won't be able to get through beyond good and evil, ico or okami until I get a new system. The others, fortunately work and I was able to complete bully (which had been sitting around at "almost done" status for about a year) a few days ago.

Bully is an extremely excellent game that I would recommend a thousand times over. I'm even contemplating buying the xbox version just for the extra missions. It also has one of the best soundtracks to a videogame in the last decade or so. I highly recommend tracking down Shawn Lee's awesome bully OST work, it's very worth it.

Rogue Galaxy is chugging along nicely, though it's kind of becoming the The Game That Never Ends. I've been though nothing short of 3 super crazy climactic battles that pay off with 25 minutes of cutscenes that always fool me into thinking the game is over, but there is always a BUT WAIT THEEEERES MORE moment that tacks on another dungeon and 10 more hours of gameplay. Which I guess isn't all that bad because it hasn't put me off the game quite yet.

Final Fantasy XII is something Im trying to work my way through slowly. I'm playing the game really conservatively and grinding my way through every area to the point where I can buy at least everything in every shop (which is something I typically never ever ever do). It seems to be paying off well at least so far, I haven't encountered any show stopping boss battles that would normally send me crying back to three savepoints ago to grind my way up to a better level. So far I love the characters and the story and the fact that the art style is very much Vagrant story and Tactics instead of the typical Nomura stuff (which I actually like a whole lot btw). The battle system Is also something that really sucks me in due to it's heavy reliance on planning. Nothing feels better than putting together a genius combination of gambits and watching my party lay waste to everything exactly the way I planned it. I really enjoy this battle system more than most traditional JRPG's.

Kingdom Hearts: Re: Chain of Memories is just like the gba game (duh). I'm gonna beat it just like I did the original. It's fun. Not much else to say really.

Bioshock... Oh Bioshock. I want to like you so much, but I can't. I really don't know what it is about Bioshock, but I just can't get into it. I keep playing but it's really not sucking me in the way that I expected. There is so much to like about it, but I feel like I'm dying way too fast, and all of the splicers are like expert marksmen with 20/20 laser beam vision that can pluck me off from 50 yards away with a derringer. It also is filled to the brim with one of my hugest pet peeves in videogames: The spot light security camera system. I hate these moving camera systems in every single game that they end up in. They are right up there with escort missions and out of character car chase sequences, for me at least.  The funny thing is, I enjoy many other games with those same annoyances none the less, but I can't seem to get past it in Bioshock.  I'm gonna keep trying to push through it, mostly because the story is very intriguing, but I don't think I'm gonna keep it up for long.

Alright, time to crack the knuckles and burn through the rest of Rogue Galaxy!

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Adventures in Greyscale (a Gameboy Camera Photoblog)


Way back in 1998, Nintendo released the Gameboy Camera. At the time it was one of the most peculiar game/peripherals anyone had ever seen. A cartridge with a big fat dome on top, that took grainy pixelated pictures that you could see on your gameboy. I remember quite vividly being jealous of my friends and family for having their own gameboy cameras. I didn't have one on the account that my mother said I “already had one” and that it took “better pictures than that thing.” She didn't understand that the quality of the photos was a non issue. It was all about the extreme novelty of taking them with a gameboy.


Well, its been eleven years since the Gameboy camera was released and my fascination with it has been sparked yet again. This time in the form of Tom Gilmore's blog, “Adventures in Greyscale.



Described as an “attempt by Tom Gilmore/10k to document a life through a collection of photos,” his blog has one interesting hook that makes it different from the thousands of other photoblogs out there;


“All photos have been taken with a Game Boy Camera and converted from SRAM data into .BMP or .GIF images with the help of cheap third-party products and home-brewed software.”



While Tom, who releases 8-bit music under the name “Ten Thousand Free Men & Their Families” or 10k for short, may not be the first person to use the Gameboy Camera as a means for artistic expression, his blog is still fascinating none the less. From parties to hanging out with friends to odd things he sees while hanging out with said friends, Adventures in Greyscale is a grainy pixely treat for the eyes.



Maybe its just nostalgia, or maybe its just my natural fascination with old technologies being used in new and captivating ways above/beyond their intended call of duty, but there is something about all these grainy blocky greyscale photographs that evokes more raw discovery and human emotion than that of most “my life in photos” blogs I have come across in the blogosphere.


Check Adventures in Greyscale out at: http://adventuresingreyscale.10kfreemen.com/




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Time to finish some games

So, I am really bad at finishing games. I am the type of person who will just buy a game because it's one of those "MUST PLAY" titles, or if it's in the 5 dollar bin at a gamestop. I then take the game home, play it around halfway trough (if even that much) and promptly toss it into my game bin so I can start playing another game I've bought for the same reasons.

The quest to finish these games begins tonight. Here is the list of games that I currently need to complete before I allow myself to buy a new game in the order of my desire to return to them:

1.) Beyond Good and Evil (a few hours in)
2.) Okami (maybe 1/4 done)
3.) Ico (a few hours in)
4.) Bioshock (about an hour and a half in)
5.) Re: Chain of memories (45 minute in)
6.) Rogue Galaxy (about 3/4ths done)

First up: Beyond Good and Evil

Time to crack open the ole game bin!





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I Know This is Pretty Much Common Knowledge Now But..

The Online for Super Smash Bro's Brawl is freaking terrible.

TERRIBLE


TERRIBLE!!


3 times in a row I spend an eternity inside the practice stage, beating the tar out of the punching bag, waiting for 3 opponents. Then I finally get a game going, and a good minute into it, IT DISCONNECTS!

Yeesh! I just want to get my Marth on!

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