For those that missed out on all the fun, we still have a couple of ways for you to rewind the tape and get the recap right from the comfort of your own home. We preserved our Halo 3: ODST Panel on YouTube and officially launched our Twitter just in time for the festivities (which Brian made busy by supplying tons of sweet tweets). Other than that, it’s a you-had-to-be-there sort of thing. If you didn’t get your tickets and missed out in the ’09, remember to pick ‘em up early when PAX rolls around next year.
If you did make it out, be warned. We’ve heard that some of you were feeling ill. Headache, fever, and the chills. We can’t do much to restore your pluck, but if you think you might have scored something sinister along with what swag you could cart out of the convention center, make sure you call your doc straight away. Swine flu’s a-circulatin'.
I'd like to stay, and taste my first Champagne. Yes? No.
Goodbye Giantbomb, although my contributions and involvement with this site and it's community have been modest, I thoroughly enjoyed being a part of the original community and experiencing it's slow but successful evolution into what it is today. I see alot of potential in Giantbomb and its community, with the guides section slowly expanding with some pretty outrageous content (no Lies, I will not link you), the ridiculous amount of trivia submissions, Bombing Run game night, and an encyclopedia of useless game knowledge, there is no limit as to what can be done. At the moment, the site is getting new features almost monthly, and they are really beginning to shine (user polls, blog posts in forum) although I'm still waiting on the Achievements section of each wiki page...
Anyway, over the next 6 months, I will be departing on a trans continental journey of epic proportions. I'm leaving tomorrow to Vancouver, and from
there it is a milk run through Seattle and Germany to get to Cape Town, South Africa, where I will be staying for 3 weeks. After that, there is very little planned, but it should go like South Africa ----> Tanzania where I will climb Mt Kilimanjaro ----> Egypt ----> India ----> Nepal trekking around Everest ----> Vietnam ----> Thailand ----> China Hong Kong most likely ----> Maybe Japan if there is enough $ left over ----> Home The way the weather is looking at the moment, I might have to drive down to Vancouver, where hopefully I will get bumped up from shitty seats to Business class seats.
At the moment I have a DS and 10 games to keep my game happy over the trip, along with entire backlog (6.7 days worth) of GFW Live to listen to. Along the way I hope to encounter some internet, allowing for the rest of my Podcast subscriptions to be downloaded, and hopefully, I'll be able to post a few blogs here telling you about the trip. I changed my Avatar for the occasion, maybe I should put the "gone fishing" one up to.
Thank you Giantbomb, I've enjoyed my time here, and should I return from my trip alive... 32 Comments
Yay! I finally went out and bought a DS today. My sister had one and i played hers a ton, but we're going on a 6 month trip (leaving in a week, I'll blog about it before I go) so I went out and bought one today. It's a shiny blue colour, and with it I bought a suprisingly well made gamestop carrying case, along with The World End With You and Professor Layton. I have like 7 other games with I bought while I used my sisters DS so my collection is now
Pheonix Wright TandT (I haven't played the first one, but whatever)
Cooking Mama 2
I'm looking forward to playing these over the course of the trip, level up them pokemons!
What colour is your DS, and what are your favorite games?
I want NXE, I'm excited for it, but, like a minimum wage payed welfare family's child on Christmas, my excitement is useless. Nearly a month ago my Xbox was hit by E74, so big whoop, I'll just send it in, pay a few bucks, and have it back in time for the fun. Several weeks later(a month infact), after goggling over Fable 2, Dead Space, Left 4 Dead, Gears of War 2, Mirrors Edge, Fallout 3, and Saints Row 2, I realized something was clearly wrong. Where was my Xbox you ask? Well after about 2 hours on and off of the phone with Microsoft Customer Support, I still have no answer, all I get it "We'll investigate and contact you later" and now " Our system is down for update, call back in 48 hours". Why the fuck is this happening you might also ask? I don't know, but I sure as fuck better get my Xbox back soon, and maybe some compensation because quite frankly I am very unhappy with the level of service I am being given. This problem sure as hell better be resolved, UPS tracker says the Xbox center place has received it, but no one at Xbox Support knows what the hell is going on.
So, here I am NXEve, knowing that tomorrow there will be nothing but stinky coal in my stocking.
On the eve of the New Xbox 360 Dashboard I have become excited. The weird thing is, I don't have my Xbox. It's like being excited for on Christmas eve, even though your Muslim. See, nearly a month ago my Xbox was hit by E74, so big whoop, I'll just send it in, pay a few bucks, and have it back in time for the fun. Several weeks later, after goggling over Fable 2, Dead Space, Left 4 Dead, Gears of War 2, Mirrors Edge, Fallout 3, and Saints Row 2, I realized something was clearly wrong. Where was my Xbox you ask? Well after about 2 hours on and off of the phone with Microsoft Customer Support, I still have no answer. Why the fuck is this happening you might also ask? I don't know, but I sure as fuck better get my Xbox back soon, and maybe some compensation, so in order to explain the absence of my Xbox, Microsoft sent me this guide.
A Step by Step guide on how to screw around with your customers
Step #1: Cleverly design a console capable of planned obsolescence*, using strategies such as faulty design, melting glue, etc. Then make sure it is released before all competitors, leaving consumers no choices.
Step #2: Upon release of the console, make sure there is a clear supply shortage, with little availability. Just enough so that consumers don't get to pissed off, but enough so that they are filled with satisfaction apon them finally getting their hands on it.
Step #3: Step #1 will become clear here, this is the step in which over 50% of the consumers who purchased your product are suddenly hit with a barrage of the faults in your product.
Step #4: Allow the chaos ensue for several months, before issuing a statement admitting your mistakes and promising a small extended warranty on all of your consoles, while claiming that this will cost you billions of dollars, and that you are actually doing your consumers a favor.
Step #5: Higher a large group of highly untrained, socially ambiguous, foreign, frustratingly useless employees to work as customer support for all the broken consoles.
Result: Should you have followed each step correctly, you will be able to maintain a healthy trust with your millions of customers regardless of the fact that your just fucking with them.
Over the next few months, your wallet, and most likely your dead body in some violent video game, will be dismembered into several pieces and then eaten in slow motion. Be it Gears of War, Fallout 3, Far Cry 2, Left 4 Dead or Dead Space, they all have exceptional amounts of dead bodies, graphic dismemberment, and an endless supply of spurting blood. But is any of it justified? Or even necessary? Let's find out.
The rating system used to rate these games will be based on a 5 point scale. 1 being justified and 5 being gratuitous. Gratuitous violence is unnecessary violence and/or the depiction of unjustified/excessive violence. Justified violence is violence there for the purpose of bettering and immersing the player into the game, without ruining the immersion by over doing it. So here's the scale otherwise known as the Welcome Mat of shame.
Far Cry 2
The sequel to the original Far Cry, Far Cry 2 ramps up the violence a degree or two. Killing foes isn't very graphic nor unnecessarily violent, however, should you be shot by another enemy and choose to heal, you will be presented through a rather graphic animation consisting of things such as ripping bullets, rhubarb, wire and teeth out of... places. Watch all the animations here.
Is this gore justified? Although the healing animations go a bit far out, they make sense, and add an extra layer of immersion into the game. And really, if you had a nail protruding from your hand, would you just leave it in there and keep fighting?
On the Welcome Mat of shame, Far Cry 2 receives 2 fingers in the arm out of 5. Because playing doctor on yourself never hurt anybody.
When you buy a game who's primary combat method is dubbed "strategic dismemberment", your going to have to come to some quick conclusions. The first being that you will have to dismember things strategically. Dead Space involves so much gore, ripping apart of appendages, and straight up weird stuff, that it quickly becomes an easy game to categorize. Guy holding own head, cutting off of limbs, enemies who birth more enemies mid-battle... I don't think I'm wrong when I say the violence is alot gratuitous, and to the games credit, the violence works in the game, makes it scary, but is still over done.
On the Welcome Mat of shame, I'll give Dead Space 4 dismembered tentacles out of 5. Because even though the violence adds some to the experience, most of it is over the top.
Left 4 Dead
Yes, I know, this game has yet to be released to the masses for a little while now, yet from the abundance of gameplay videos of it out there I believe we can come to some pretty close conclusions. To me, Left 4 Deads' violence and gore is perfectly suited for the games main theme, zombies. A bit of blood splatter here, some brains over here, just the good 'ol zombie stuff. Yes there are some weird things, like explodable fat guys and other zombies we probably haven't heard of yet, but all the flesh and guts blends perfectly with this zombie survival game, making Left 4 Dead a prime example of justified violence and gore.
On the Welcome Mat of shame, Left 4 Dead is getting 1 combustible fat zombie guy out of 5 combustible fat zombie guys. Because the violence and gore blend so well with the classic zombie theme.
Fallout 3 is plenty bloody, slimy, and appears to have individual pieces of flesh physics, which is plenty appetizing. Featuring a shooting system in which players can pick individual parts of an character and then shoot them off, Fallout 3 is mighty gory and violent. Throw in a perk that zooms onto that pefectly decapitating headshot, providing every gruesome angle, then add in the fact that you can do it to any law abiding citizen, and you've got yourself some excellent, over the top, gratuitous violence. On the Welcome Mat of shame, Fallout 3 will be honored/cursed with 5 slow motion decapitations out of 5. Because it goes through some big steps to make living things explode.
Gears of War 2
Ah yes, Gears of War 2, the sequel to one of the more graphically violent games released this generation. I'm 99.9% positive that this game will contain as many, if not more chainsaws and curb-stop-o-rama as it's predecessor. One indication that Gears of War 2 might go a bit over the top would be the GDC Gears of War 2 tech demo, which involved a large piece of meat in the shape of a cube bounce around with some fancy physics. Now imaging a couple thousand of those tiny flesh cubes flying off of some doomed locust as you cut it in half with a chainsaw equipped lancer, get the picture? Although Gears of War 2 shows many promises at being obscenely violent, it is one of the few games where I've actually heard the designer justify some of it. In some interview, Cliffy B mentions that the reason enemies spurt foot high fountains of blood when shot is so that the player knows when his/her shots are connecting. However that does not justify walking up to someone on their hands and knees and crushing their skull into the ground.
On Welcome Mat of shame, Gears of War will be rewarded/shamed with 4.5 meat cubes out of 5. Because although the violence is through the roof, a little bit of it is justified.
So is Gratuitous Violence good?
You may be asking yourself this question, contemplating and tearing yourself apart over the moral decision to make, but it's all a matter of opinion. As I see it, gratuitous violence is a lazy mans way of entertaining the easily entertained. On the other hand, when done well, gratuitous violence can improve a game, making aspects of it much better. Morally, gratuitous violence is wrong, but these are videogames, and if we avoided every game that was immoral in some form or another, we wouldn't be playing very many games.
Now it's your turn, what is your opinion on gratuitous violence in todays videogames?
Little Big Planet, the most charming, cute, colourful, pretty, innovative, thrilling, scary, immersive, compelling, phenomenal game in a long time. Few game have managed to subliminally encourage players to create interactive genitalia by providing them with a huge variety of tools and goodies to construct their own gong show of levels.
Even I, someone who doesn't consider themselves very creative, have spent 6 hours non-stop in the level creator. A place where building a character, or even a simple room, can take an eternity! Yet the reward is so great, it's worth every minute of your time. Until the servers go back up, hunker down in Story mode or build up something.
But when the servers do go up... you better watch out.
*//msg from computer// netsend: -a/user/gorillawhat/ - *play msg* "Gorillawhat ran from his computer in a hurry in order to indulge in his fatal addiction, LBP, please excuse any of this users odd behaviors over the next few weeks" - kthx - //msg - end\\
I feel dirty, guilty, ashamed. Is there something wrong with me? I sat down last week and plopped a borrowed copy of Mass Effect into my Xbox. I set up my character, who ended up being a hideous looking black dude. I spent about a half hour alone doing that. Finally I began playing, and straight away I hated the dialogue system. It fell clunky, not very smooth, and I found it simply boring. Eventually the combat started, which I also hated, being a Halo and COD4 fan, it also felt clunky and lame. I eventually got to the part right after some shit faced alien dude shoots another shit faced alien dude in the head, that's where I kept dying and gave up.