Hey guys, it's been over two years, TWO FUCKING YEARS since I've done a blog and probably a good year or so since I've been on the site. I've missed a lot, trying to catch up. Sadly the passing of Ryan is what got me to come back. Seeing all of the Twitter posts and love he got made me remember not only how awesome he was but the site and community as a whole was. So here I am, writing this blog.
Quick rundown of what I've been up to the past two years. I graduated from college with a BA in Business with a Management major. I don't play games as much as I used to. Something that has bothered me and a main reason I haven't been on the site but with work, and at the time college, other things seemed more important. I'm trying to catch up, I'm currently playing Bioshock Infinite, Borderlands 2 (here and there), Ni-No Kuni among others. I can't stop playing MLB The Show mainly cause it's my ultimate relaxing game. I come home from work, open up a beer, put on a MLB game on my MLB.TV app and play some baseball. It's like the ultimate baseballception and I love it. Also, I'm still bowling. That shit will never stop.
I'm absolutely in love in Bioshock Infinite. It has been the spark in hopefully getting me back into video games.
So I'll be posting more regularly here and making a lot more blog posts. If any of you guys remember me, awesome, can't wait to catch up with you guys.
Also feel free to follow me on twitter and instagram where I post very often. Oh and feel free to add me on PSN: taswell
I started playing Brink about a week ago. A guy came into my work and wanted to sell it. We don't do cash trades, right now anyway, so I bought it from him out of my own pocket. I got it for like $40 bucks so I got a pretty nice deal on a game that was pretty much three days old. Let me just say that Brink is a great game.... to play in short bursts. I played Brink for the most part an hour at a time if that really. It was like last Saturday, that I was like "alright, let's play this FOREVER!" and yeah.... I didn't care for it too much after that. I played it for about four hours, and after doing the same missions over and over again gets so repetitive that I just didn't want to go on. I hardly got into matches with real people, most of them were bots. And I've repeatably been kicked out of matches or had them migrate. On multiple occasions I migrated hosts three times a match. I'm sure these are all fixable issues, and it sounds like Splash Damage is working hard to fix that, but shipping a game like that is not really acceptable. And I'm sure there are people who haven't experienced these kind of problems but it kind of ruined my experience with the game. To counter all the negative comments, the game is fun when you're playing with some friends. While I was playing my four hour or so session, I played with a few friends and it helped make it bearable. And the upgrading and customizing your dude is great. I can honestly say that I had a badass looking dude at the end of my playing.
Brink is full of fantastic ideas. Full of ambition but not a lot of follow-through, and that's disappointing. While there are ideas like choosing if you want to be healed by a medic or not are cool ideas but with every good idea there is a bad one. Well, I shouldn't say bad idea, just bad execution. To give an example, the story. I like what it was trying to do. I liked how it gave you the two sides, but making it a bot fest ruined it. I would have loved them to make the story completely different, like making it 100% offline, and take everything that was in the single player and make it online modes and maps. It would have made the single player better and making joining random matches online and not worry about getting put into random story events. Maybe in a few months once Splash Damage work things out and gets DLC and new maps out Brink could be awesome. And that's a big could.
Moving on to a game that I think is pretty good, let me ramble on about Tiger Woods PGA Tour 12: The Masters. I've sucked a lot of hours into this game so far and I'm starting to think it's the best golf game since 2005. It's not better than the 2005 game but that's a completely different conversation. I'm by no means the best golfer even though I've put so many hours into it. I played some online tournaments, before and after PSN went down, and there were people posting -28 on a 18 hole course. Which to me blows my mind. If you're not familiar with how the online stuff works. You enter tournaments, which are sorted by difficulty or if you're playing with Move, and you play either a one day tournament or a full four day tournament. You are restricted to certain courses on whether or not you have the DLC downloaded, but I usually found rounds being played on the standard courses: Augusta, Sawgrass etc. One major problem I have with the game is something I just mentioned. The DLC. I really don't understand what made EA want to hold out the best courses for DLC. From a business stand point it makes sense, but to satisfy its customers it doesn't. I was borderline furious when you're holding out the my favorite courses, Oakmont CC and Torrey Pines are the first to come to mind, you are ruining my experience. While I might buy them once PSN Store comes back up, keeping your best courses off the main line up is unacceptable. 2010 had all the courses your keeping out. You obviously have the assets to put them in 2012, so why don't you? Not like you have to redesign all of these. I can see why Oakmont was left off since no tournament is being held there this year, but Torrey Pines had one. I'm sure I'm the only one really complaining about this. As an avid golf fan, this just isn't acceptable. And having console specific courses is ludicrous and dumb.
BUT, I did say I like this game and went on a unplanned rant. The Master's Moments are great and add a nice change in the regular career stuff. They are hard, but not so hard you want to give up and never play it again. They each have a very nice voice over on what went on down on that particular shot. Also, they have Tiger moments where you basically play a full four rounds as Tiger and relive his memorable moments at the Masters. I didn't really care too much for this mode. Maybe it's because I don't like the way Tiger moves in 2012, but I never felt I like was doing anything other than playing at Augusta in a standard mode. But I still think the career mode is the shining thing in the game. It has a nice World Ranking progression system. Even though Tiger Woods is still waaaaay up at #1. Where I've won every tournament that wasn't DLC only and I'm at #2 a good 300 points behind him, who hasn't won a tournament all year in the game. Alright.
Wrapping it up
I got into some Uncharted 2 multiplayer. Mostly thanks to GB's TNT. I went and rebought it from work and started playing it again, story mode and multiplayer. When it originally came out I didn't care for Uncharted 2 at all. I thought it was a good game, not a great game. Not sure what happened, but I played it this week and for some reason was blown away at how good it was. Not sure what happened. I don't see why I didn't like it, everything is clicking. But not to go back on a two year old game too much, I was impressed with the multiplayer. I haven't played all the modes, mostly just Team Deathmatch. One problem I am having with the game is my teammates keep killing me, and I'm pretty sure it's intentional. Not sure what the fuck they are doing but I almost quit due to it happening so much. Other than that, it was a positive experience and I look forward to replaying the single player to get ready for Uncharted 3.
Lastly, I picked up Darkness from work also. I never played it when it originally came around. I'm liking it so far, I'm trying to get use to mechanics it has. I keep using guns all the time forgetting I have giant monsters that eat hearts. That seems more effective than guns. I'm liking where the story is going. I haven't made it too far into the game so I can't talk about it too much. Just got down with watching the movie with your girlfriend. So, I'm guessing I have much more to do. Check back for a blog later on about what I think.
That's what I've been doing lately with games. Not too much activity on my part, I blame work. But feel free to drop a comment on anything I wrote, I'd love to hear your opinions on what I played and how you feel about them. (Also this is like my first forum topic post in months. You're reading history.)
While it is only in late May, with so many games coming out soon and later this year it seems like an insane idea to write a blog about my Game of the Year so far. In May.... So lets begin (smacks hands and cracks neck).
To be fully honest, I have a completely different taste in games then most of you. I have never played a Call of Duty game, not into any game with the word "craft" in it, but I've always seemed to be really into and praise game that are just good by everyone's standards. Case in point. My favorite game, ever, is Fallout 3. Hands down, I will stand by that through and through. But I know tons of people who hate it, yet, I would pick that as my Game of the Year every year if Bethesda would return my e-mails on re-releasing it every year (you can only ignore my e-mails for so long). This is the internet and not everyone will agree with me anyway. To get back on track though, here's what I think my Game of the Year so far is.... Dead Space 2.
What I love about Dead Space 2 is that you start off knowing absolutely nothing about what the fuck is going on. While the first one had that sense of "what the fuck" when you first arrived on USG Ishimura, it really pushes that even further cause there really isn't a back story on why you're there or how you got there for a good course of the game. But where I really want to spend time on is the story. The story of Dead Space 2 is a phenomenal, it nicely builds up to a fantastic finale. But what really helps, and I'm sure lots of people disagree, is that Isaac talks in this one. In the first one, all Isaac did was moan and breathe deeply. You never got a sense of fear or questioning. Now, you get to at least hear the tension in his voice, the terror he is in, and the continued moaning and out of breathe running. But Isaac is more of a person, he questions, and asks, he reacts. It all helps the story play out in a whole different way then the first game did. And there's a scene where you keep expecting something to happen in a familiar area, and nothing does. Isaac is terrified, and it shows. He keeps waiting. Nothing. Best moment of the year, hands down.
While the main combat of the game stays the same as the first one, that's not a bad thing. The first game had amazing combat and the basic upgrading system is still there. But I felt this one was a little easier then the first Dead Space. And it wasn't as terrifying as the first one atmosphere wise. While the atmosphere of Dead Space 2 is still great, don't get me wrong, it just has a different one then the first. It's more open, I never got attacked and didn't know where to go and got pushed against a wall like in the first one. I always had plenty of room to move around, aside from a few places. It's not without it's moments of horror though, it is still a creepy as hell game, but it all feels like they subbed horror for action. While that's a little disappointing, it's a small blemish in what I think is otherwise a fantastic setting.
While I'm sure you all are playing L.A. Noire, DiRT 3, Witcher 2 and any game that is hot right now. If you haven't played Dead Space 2 yet, you must. I truly can't see me playing a game this year that will match this one in terms of a quality experience. Visceral Games has continued to make fantastic games, and I can't wait to see what they have in store for the Dead Space franchise.
Shooters, shooters, shooters. That seems like all I have been playing for the longest time recently. It started about Monday night, my friend who just got a PS3 and got Killzone 3 wanted to play online. I played a fair amount of it when it first came out and I do rather enjoy it, but never REALLY got into it all that much. That all kind of changed this week, I played the hell out of it. I played it three hours straight on Wednesday, including about two more after bowling. While my friend struggled, mightily, I found that I don't actually suck at Killzone 3. This week I've bumped my K/D up .3 to .8. Like most others I play as the Infiltrator, which I think is the best class. When you max out its gun you get a very nice three burst assault rifle, which normally took dudes out in about three shots. I beat the story a few weeks ago so I played none of that, but I thought the story of K3 was good. But the multiplayer is the way to go in that game, and really there isn't a more beautiful online game out there.
I rented Homefront from my local game store (and soon to be place of employment, well externship) and pretty much expected the worst. What I got was nothing what everyone was saying. I really enjoyed the single player. It set up a fantastic setting, with a rather interesting story that got my attention. While it didn't do anything new with shooting, it set up a nice "what if" scenario that carries the game a pretty long way. I enjoyed the guns, especially the look and feel of the aiming. The nice change of scenery near the end does a nice job at mixing the gray and dark colors of the city with a nice, bright fall scenery. While I didn't care too much for the online, I got ripped apart the moment I spawned. I don't fully agree with the hate that I have been reading about Homefront. I liked the style, story and controls, just wish the online clicked a little bit more with me.
I've wanted to play Vanquish for the loooooooooooooooooongest time. I heard it was a short game, so I didn't feel like dropping $60 on it, so I kept waiting and waiting for Gamefly to ship it to me. On Monday, I TOTALLY GOT IT!!! Man I was stoked. I wasn't the biggest fan of the ultra crazy Bayonetta but I'm finding myself really liking Vanquish. While I really have no damn idea what is going on story wise, the shooting is fantastic and it all looks great. Graphically that game moves, real fast, and I haven't had one framerate drop. It is rather short, I'm almost done with it in a day, but it feels like the right length. Any more and I feel I would be burned out on it and the concept couldn't support a 12hr or so game. I'll post more when I actually finish the game.
I've been looking at what I want to do when I finish up my degree in October. I want to go back and learn something new, something I've never learned before. I've been looking into a lot of things like Journalism, web development, and bowling stuff. And the overlying thing I keep coming back to is web development. I've always wanted to learn anything with computers, and this seems like the one that is best for me. I'm looking into some programs to help me teach myself before I start school so I don't look like a total incompetent idiot who knows nothing about it when I start class. I've been using w3schools to learn some basic stuff and I'm understanding the basic stuff so far. Basically what I've learned so far: <html> <body>
<h1>Blah Blah</h1> <p>Text Text</p>
<a href="http://www.giantbomb.com"> What a great site!</a>
I know that all seems laughable that I only know that much, but I'm really excited about that. I'm struggling with links. I'm still trying to learn exactly what to write when typing in a link. If you guys can give me any help, I'd greatly appreciate it. Any software I should download or books I should get that may help or any tips at all would be awesome. I'm fully invested in this. I'm thinking about going to Indiana Tech for my degree. It's close to home, but far enough that I may be able to move out. Plus it'll accept all my credit from the college I go to now. And I'll try to post more blogs on my current process.
I will hold my ground when I say that Zack Snyder is the most unique director out there at this very moment. He get's a vision and rolls with it. While I didn't like 300 all that much, the style and direction was fantastic. Jump a few years later and Watchman continued with that style and became one of my favorite movies. Now in 2011 he is writing, producing and directing Sucker Punch. While most critics are panning it and throwing it to the way-side, I found this movie to be oddly enjoyable, if not totally unique.
To try and explain the story would be a acid trip in and of itself. So, I'll try anyway. Babydoll's mother dies and she leaves everything to her and her sister. Her step-father is enraged and takes his anger out on the girls. As Babydoll gets away from her step-father, he goes after her little sister. Trying to save her little sister, Babydoll tries to shoot at him, only to kill her little sister instead. This brings her step-dad to send her to an insane asylum and have a lobotomy done on her so she forgets everything by paying off a orderly. Just as she's about to get the lobotomy, we are thrust into a different world, where everyone is basically a erotic dance or something. At this point I was fucking confused. But for her to get out she needs to find five things: A map, fire, knife, a key and the last one is a mystery. Every object is something that is in someone's possession. In order to get the objects, Babydoll distracts the person through dancing. The dancing is important cause it sends her into a fantasy. Yes, a fantasy within a fantasy, this is Inception worthy. But in this world, she controls everything. The fantasies serve as a way to make it entertaining while they are getting the objects. As my friend Braxton put it "who would want to see them going into a room and stealing something". The fantasies are what she is thinking when they are doing the retrieving process. It's pretty cool once you get it.
The fantasies are also where the movie shines. The CG is breathtaking, so well done and realized. It spans a samurai fight, WWII battle with zombies, mid evil castle and futuristic city.This kind of diversity keeps things fresh and though you never really feel that they are in any danger since they are just laying waste to everything. The action scenes are crazy and great to watch. The samurai one, which is the first, is by far the coolest of the bunch. It's unfortunate that these scenes aren't long enough, more time is spent out of them then in them. I never wanted the fight scenes to end, only because everything outside of it was so weak. I only felt it was weak because I had no idea what was going on. There was a scene near the end that helped me realized everything, but they really shouldn't have made it that hard to follow.
Along with the action and CG the music also helps the movie shine. They picked the right stuff for the right moments. With an opening remake of Sweet Dreams , it's all pretty good.
The very definition of sucker punch is, "blow made without warning, allowing no time for preparation or defense on the part of the recipient". While it might be cliched to say it, but that's exactly what I felt when I watched this movie. It kind of just throws things at you, mostly without warning. It's kind of a you'll either love it or hate it. I've stopped reading film critics reviews, and it's also the reason I don't ever go to Screened, because they overanalyze and go "it's terrible don't ever go see this movie". There's people out there that really enjoy this type of stuff and I'm included. I go to movies to be straight up entertained, and for the most part Sucker Punch delivers on that very well. Like any movie it drags a bit, but Snyder continues to make movies with a style unlike anything out there.
So, I've been playing a ton of Raging Blast 2. I'm still quite terrible at the fighting game part, as with any fighting game I touch, so I'm still working on it and trying to get better. But I am liking it so far. I've been playing a lot with Videl, if not 100% with her, to some good success. Played one online match and got rapped but I blame my "suckness" if you will.
I miss the saga stuff they did with the first game, while I do welcome that they left it out to focus on the action. Which is really what any DBZ fan wants. I HATE the new recovery system. Mash buttons till you get up, weaker you are the more you have to mash. I much preferred the "shake left stick like crazy" to get back up. Character models look great, but the fighting arenas are straight out of Raging Blast, maybe with a few new ones.
Overall, I'm really in love with the HUUUUUGE amount of content they have. Only bad thing is, I keep training with Videl that I don't really play any of the other characters. I've had some good success with Krillin (Krillin is my boy) and Vegito so I'll post later more on that stuff. I like the melee part of the game the best, which is why I think I'm liking Videl's style the most.
If you have the game and want to do some online rounds, just add me. I'll be more than welcome to play and fucking looooooooooooooooose :)
Man. Guys, gals. I haven't "blogged" it what has seemed like forever. Just haven't been in the mood for it at all. Going back and looking through my abundant number of blogs I realized I use to do it like every..... fucking.... day. So here we go, let's get this train rolling. Buckle up motherfuckers, this text is on fire.
I won't go in to extreme depth on everything that I've been playing, cause frankly, if I tried to catch you guys up on all of that, this blog would run on just like this run on sentence. So I'll start you guys up on the most recent, and by most recent I mean the game I just put down to write this. Dead Space 2. I was a very big fan of the original Dead Space. I often found myself defending it against my gamer friends who think COD and Halo are the only shooters that exist. It mixed an fantastic horror/suspense with a deep at sometimes great story with good third person shooting. This all falls back into Dead Space 2 for the most part. I'm only Chapter 5 right now, but I'm liking were the story is heading so far and Isaac as a talking character is pretty great. It would have been horrid if the voice actor was lackluster or he talked like Batman. Story and voice acting aside, the action is great. The game relies on jump scares more than I'd like but it's fine. And I find myself using the Plasma Cutter so much more than I did in the first game. I use it so much, I sold my other weapons. As a sequel, I feel this is the best one I've played in a while. I've been thinking a lot, and I really starting to think I haven't liked a game this much since a little game that came out in 2008 called Fallout 3... which I'm still playing to this very day. I'll write more up as I play Dead Space 2. But so far, it's the best game I've played this year.
Also, and since I'm a grown man, I got Dragon Ball: Raging Blast 2. I really liked parts of Raging Blast, the way they mixed up the sagas was great. It was the fighting itself that I found myself hating the most, but I'm also a terrible fighting player anyway. I haven't played a whole lot of it, since I got it from Amazon at about 4pm yesterday. Liking the character models in this game, they look super sharp like in Raging Blast. Again, I'll have more on this as I play it. I do feel like I'm hitting combos and specials more in this game then Raging Blast, not sure if that's my mashing actually working or they made the overall combat a little easier. Also, the fan service seems great as well. Full episodes in Japanese?? Thank you Spike.
Alright. There's my rundown. Hopefully once I start writing more, I'll get back into it and actually right more. But I just wanted to get my opinion out on those two games. So, if I don't forget, look for a blog next week.
The best golf game I've ever played is hands down Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2005. It had some damn good heart. It had Tiger congratulating you on every big achievement you had, winning majors, career earnings etc. The introduction of each golfer when you golfed against them in challenge modes was awesome as well. It was also, what I feel, the last golf game that didn't shoot for SUPER realism in the Tiger Woods franchise. Jump to 2011 and EA has yet another new entry in the Tiger Woods franchise. Which seems to shoot even more towards that super realism, but with a nice snag for golf fans.
The last golf game I played was Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2010. I didn't play 2011 since playing sports games every year can kill it for you. I liked 2010. Spent easily 25+hrs on it. Though, it lacked in any type of creative edge. It was as if EA just said "make another golf game fuck making it original". After waiting for the 1700+MBs to download onto my PS3, I finally got to jump into a game that frankly, I've been super excited for. To start it off I want to talk about how it "starts". EA wants you to know YOU ARE PLAYING AT THE MASTERS! Cause every thing is nothing but a shots of Augusta National. If you just start hitting X like I did, you'll find yourself in a video. Voiced by Jim Nantz about the History and prestige of The Masters, Green Jackets etc. Then it jumps you into a story about how Zach Johnson, Anthony Kim and Jim Furyk are battling it out on top. And Tiger makes his charge. You get to win The Masters. This is where the caddy is introduced. Which I love. While the voice is always the same and he animates the same way, it's a straight up innovative feature. He'll give you about one, two, or three different shots to pick from. When chosen he'll explain his reasoning for that shot. I love this. It takes away from the player just saying "fuck it" and swinging blind. You also have the option of ignoring all of this and making your own shot as well. But in the "win as Tiger" part you can't. So I'm not sure if this will be the case for all challenges or not. And as a side part. Anthony Kim finishes second in this mode which is weird cause he's never finished second at The Masters (that fucking scenario was made up!!!)
Once you finish that mode, you get the chance to try out some of the improvement to the career mode. Basically, if you've played MLB: The Show you'll be familiar with the career mode. You start as a average weekend warrior and work your way up to the AM (amateur) Tour, Nationwide Tour, Q (qualifying) School then your ultimate goal is to finish Q-School, go to the PGA Tour and win The Masters. They don't spend a lot of time with this in the demo which sucked. Since this is the feature I'm much looking forward to.
Overall, I'm very impressed with this demo. Yeah I know it's a demo, but when a demo can 100% sell you on a game, that's got to mean something. Other than the caddy and new career mode, it plays a lot like 2011 (from what I've read and seen, since I've not actually played it. A lot of the same concepts are reused). The game looks fantastic, and Augusta National shines. You can tell they put so much work into that course. The other course in the demo, TPC (The Player's Choice) San Antonio, looks good, but you can tell the same level of detail was not put into that course.
The list of characters along with: Zach Johnson (one of my favorite golfers), Rickie Fowler, Bubba Watson as new characters. With Edoardo and Francesco Molinari, Rhys Davis and Henrik Stenson representing new European characters, the depth of golfers seems to be great.