Egad

I know this wonderful world of gaming is multifaceted and appeals to tastes beyond my own, but sometimes I find myself unable to do anything except marvel at some of the games we are so blessed with.

The Amazon Video Game Deal of the Day:

My, my, my...how lucky are we?

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A Used Game Sale Does Not A Problem Make

As someone who has a large collection of used games, I don't think that I'm hurting the gaming industry in doing so (and that's not just to avoid feeling guilty). Paying $50 to $60 for every game in one's collection adds up very quickly, and since I have other unnecessary stuff to irresponsibly spend my money on, another cheaper inlet for games is always welcome. The source of these games matters, however.

I get all my used games almost exclusively from eBay and Half.com. I do this because it's the cheapest place to buy I've found and I get them directly from other people without having to deal with GameStop's schtick. This question wouldn't exist if GameStop didn't have their ludicrous used game sales policy. There's nothing wrong with one dude selling a game to another dude. There is certainly something wrong with buying a game from someone for far less than it's worth and then turning around and selling it for far more than it's worth. Buy low, sell high is the textbook way to make money...but it's pretty freakin' dirty in this case.

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General Musings and the 2's

Giant Bomb really is awesome, no? I mean seriously! Ok, now that I got that out of the way...

Relevant? Yup.
I've been busy with a couple of sequels in my gaming time as of late. One new, one slightly old. The first is Dawn of War 2. The original game represented an extremely accessible, not to mention visceral satisfying, refinement of the RTS genre. While all the expansions were great, I really wanted this game to finally make its way out. Relic certainly took the series in a very different direction, but it's for the best...or at least not for the worst. The level of personal attachment you'll get with your wildly fanatic marines is quite surprising. But besides that, the scaled down nature of the game offers a play experience unlike most stuff out on the market. It's refreshing.

The other sequel is Far Cry 2. It took a while to get around to, but I'm glad I did. That is one dirty, gritty, grimy, but (most importantly) fun game. Enjoying my time with it so far.

And in a moment of shameless self-promotion, I put up my first review in a while. While EndWar isn't the newest of releases, the mood struck me with that game. Give it a look if you care to and maybe even leave a comment! (*gasp*) I'll give ya a cookie!
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Class People, Class

The QotW video got posted. Somehow I got put into it. Kinda cool. Reading the comment thread? Not cool.

This is the internet. People will be jerks about anything. It's a fact of life. One needs look no further than /b/.  I also understand where people are coming from--Jeff, Ryan, Brad, and Vinny are the reason many come to this fine site.

However, to be so negative, so angry, so violent, and so personal in opposition of an attempt by them to include the community to a greater degree? It's straight depressing and kind of unsettling. C'mon people, we're better than this.

28 Comments

Unnecessary

If the VGAs are going to stay around like they are, everyone's just wasting their time. It's not a good representation of gaming. Maybe it's because Spike puts it on, but usually it's just painful to watch.

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Ch-Ch-Ch-Change Out of My Pocket

Black Friday sure is a double-edged sword. But, if money's going to be leaving my bank account, games aren't a bad substitute. Here's what I got coming in:

  • Saints Row (yes, the first one)
  • The BIGS
  • Brothers in Arms: Hell's Highway
  • Too Human
  • Infinite Undiscovery

Did the price have anything to do with me picking some of these up? Nah, not at all....yeah, yeah it did. Looks like I got some games to play.

Side Note

Anyone play Infinite Undiscovery? Been a while since my last JRPG so it seemed like time. While it got some middling reviews, it does seem like it's relatively enjoyable, especially for $20. Am I wrong in thinking that?
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Avatars...

...stupid, huh? I wish they'd spent their time on something less rip-offy and more not stupid-y. That'd be good.

Oh well, hard drive installs are cool.
8 Comments

Heart the Horde

I was originally thinking about writing a review for Gears 2. Then I came to my senses, realized I wouldn't have anything particularly novel to say on the subject, and decided the short version was the better idea. It's one damn fine video game. The action is tighter than ever, the visuals are crisper than ever (minus the occasional texture pop-in), and the story is more...existent than ever. If you have even an inkling of interest in the game, pick it up. You'll be doing yourself a favor. If you already bought it (and you probably already did), then I'm just wasting my time.

Not an uncommon sight
But more than any other part of it, Horde is what makes the game for me. I'm always attracted to any kind of cooperative modes in games, instead of the competitive variety. Maybe I'm more attracted to helping my fellow man than putting a chainsaw to his face....wait, no, that ain't it. I guess what really draws me to playing with others is that I find success much more fulfilling. Sure, I like to see my name on top of the leaderboard as much as the next guy, but it just can't compare to the feeling of sprinting across the map to save your buddy while you're under fire from a couple snipers, a boomer, and a dude with a minigun. Horde offers up plenty of these situations, and then some. The co-op campaign in Gears has been one of the best around since the first iteration and Horde cleverly builds on it. Teamwork goes from being helpful to essential, which honestly sounds like a bad idea initially given Xbox Live's player population, but it works out remarkably well. If there's no chance to do well without working together, people tend to get the point quickly.

Horde also focuses on one of Gears' primary gameplay facets by accuentuating the need to dig in and take cover. It's reminiscent of missions in RTS games that require the player to quickly build up a defense and prepare for the onslaught that is about to be all up in your ass. It really gives the feeling that you're a part of a squad under siege, often fighting just to squeak by, especially on the higher waves. Combine that with the overall atmosphere of a firefight that Gears normally creates, and you got yourself one freakin' intense shootathon.

You know, done typing, I'm just going to go play some more of it. Hit me up if you feel like shooting some computer dudes.

Or we could shoot human dudes too. Either way, I'm shooting something.
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Counter-Clockwise

I've been bad about doing these thingamajigs...that needs to change.

Faith must be a Michael Jackson fan
When Mirror's Edge was first shown, the game immediately caught my attention. I mean, why wouldn't it? It's a first-person parkour game. It earned my attention for sheer originality and craziness of concept. Add on top that it was coming from EA and DICE, I was even more interested. It was another new original IP from EA and it was an entirely new style of game for DICE. Battlefield this was not. The game also sported a very striking asthetic. The world had a very manufactured, clean, and ultra-modern look to it. It appeared to take place in some sort of pinnacle of corporate society, where everything is made of steel and glass. It looked like a city designed entirely by Apple.

Following the initial announcement, I've made special effort to pay attention to coverage about Mirror's Edge. This has had a strange effect, though. The more I see of the game, the less excited I become. Honestly, I can't say that's never happened before. Take the animated shorts - I don't understand the point. Not that they aren't interesting to look at, but from my point of view, I'd rather just see those same sequences done as cinematics. The game looks great, why not show it off? More importantly, though, is the demo. I don't know if this kind of gameplay can last for 8-10 hours. This thought popped into my mind mid-way through my time playing. The action itself is enjoyable, that is not what I'm talking about. Variety is the problem I'm seeing. Running around on the rooftops is fun, but that won't get me through the game. Combat doesn't seem like it will be either; the gunplay especially struck me as thrown together. (I know it's not a core feature of the gameplay, but if you're going to put something in a game, give me a meal, not the scraps.)

So, on the eve of the release date, I sit here and wonder. I certainly don't hope for the game to confirm my suspicions and run out of steam in the middle. I never hope for a game to be bad or even middling, and I don't understand why anyone ever would. But I normally don't go from excitement to apathy. Please blow my mind DICE.
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