Dude, where's my truck? (The Blog Initiative #1)

Recently while playing Dead Island I happened to notice something that was fairly frustrating and that was the amount of time it took me to get from where I was to the objective. Open world games usually have some form of transport but the problem is that you can't just always have a truck or a flaming horse (who should really see a vet about him being on fire, that can't be good for him) right besides but that doesn't take away from the fact of how dull it can be. In games like World of Warcraft or the before mentioned Dead Island I sometimes after completing an objective look at my map to where I need to go next and just say fuck it and close the game. I wont take a very big break, maybe 5 or 10 minutes but the time it takes to travel without any transport is draining!

That is something Fallout 3 did fairly well by letting you fast travel from any point in the game to a location you have already visited but than it sometimes feels like you are missing out on seeing interesting parts of the world and may miss various side quests. There must be some entertaining way to travel in games, right? Well, both Infamous and Prototype did fairly well with this be allowing you to move very quickly and the movement was fluid and fun to use. I understand that something like that can't make much sense in some games, after all both games I mentioned have to do with super humans in which in a game like Dead Island you are not (besides being immune to zombies). Maybe something as simple as having lots of vehicles accessible will do the job? In a lot of open world games like Grand Theft Auto and Mafia 2 travelling isn't so boring as it is in other games.

Are there any other games you guys think do travelling fairly well or do you have any ideas on how the games I mentioned, and others, can do better in this area? Leave your comments below and tell me what you think!

If you liked the blog feel free to either follow me on Giant Bomb or my newly set up Twitter account here. Thanks for reading, I look forward to hearing what you guys think!

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To the top.

From the very pit of pit bottom to the top on the economy, most of you haven't done what I have done. The triumph feels great, being someone like YOU with your Ghastly Gibus and Ellis caps, to being someone like ME, with a large amount of the most finest hats in-game (Regular AND Unusuals) made from 100% Mann-Co Materials, handmade by the man, Saxton Hale, himself. I don't hold it against you though, you may still be in your barbaric ways with your pointless little guns shooting at each other to resolve fights, whilst the gentlemen of the world use what is truly the power that you have yet to experience - hats. The things I have done may be frowned upon, but I did what I had to do to be where I am today. People like you, the ''inexperienced'' type want to give me your item that is equivalent to 3 keys for mine that is equal to 1? Fine, but I refuse to be frowned upon for taking such a deal. Is it bad that I bought myself a hat for a messily 1 weapon? Some may say so, but I say this - If you don't understand hats and I give you something you want for your hat, is it really that bad? Enough about what is good and what is bad however, I have made it clear that it is not my fault that you don't know the value of an item, it is yours and all I can do is give you what you want. However, the journey to the top wasn't easy, it took time, patience and.. profit. Yes, I have my hats now but at what cost? I remember the times of this game in which I use to enjoy my time in the battlefield playing Payload to become the highest ranked on the leaderboard, I don't even play the classes I like anymore.. Only them of which have the nicest hat. Recently, this game has been my main focus and I haven't been playing much else, and even though this isn't bad (I'm sure many of you have only played 1 particular game for a while) I must ask, why? What do these hats do? Nothing. But why am I so compelled to ''catch them all''. It's not as if I am upset I like hats, I just don't understand. Why don't you like hats? Why does your giraffe want that Hound Dog so much? Today while playing someone said ''this team sucks'' what did I reply? ''oh, I'm sorry, how many unusuals do YOU have'' Yes, hats do infact effect gameplay and alter the tide of battle. I have a hat and you don't, does this make you jealous? Don't be, get your own hat.

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Guild Wars 2, the best MMO... ever?

Now I for one wasn't convinced Guild Wars 2 would be anything special at all when I first heard it announced, to me it was just another generic MMO trying to beat down World of Warcraft (ie - Rift, Aion, pretty much every single other MMO) but after playing the first Guild Wars recently and being fairly impressed (though it might not be the best MMO it is certainly good) I decided to do some research on Guild Wars 2 and I couldn't believe what I saw. Of course, I'll back up what I'm going to say with various sources and I can't say for sure that it's going to be the best MMO ever I can't see why I wont be. Let's get started.

Personalized Story

You know games like Dragon Age: Origins, Mass Effect, Fallout, Oblivion etc have in depth story lines in which your choices effect the game? Imagine that in an MMO. Not only from the get go do you fill in a biography (similar to what Mount and Blade Single Player has you do) but choices in the various quests in the game will change the story and your world. For example, if you run into a choice of either helping a friend or letting them die then whatever you choose will be shown. If you saved him he will be in your home instance and if not... not. Of course this expands into greater things but that is only a small example. Rescue a town? They will acknowledge you. Having a faceless character in an MMO is pretty crappy so Guild Wars 2 is going to change that.

Dynamic Quests.

Let us sum up a normal MMO quest, talk to an NPC, he gives you a wall of text, you get a message telling you to kill 5 bears, attempt to kill the 5 bears only to realize that another player keeps coming and killing the bears stopping you from doing it, finally kill the bears, travel back to the NPC, get a reward. Rinse and repeat about 5,000,000 times and you have your bread and butter MMO, but not so in Guild Wars 2. Instead of doing all this normal, boring routine Guild wars 2 offers dynamic and original questing. You never have to right click on an NPCs head to get a boring generic quest. How the system works is that while you are randomly exploring in the world you will bump into various events that happen. Let's say a town is being attack, a villager will run up to you yelling at you for help and pointing in the way of the event. However, you don't just go there and see 15 mobs just sitting there you will see them actually fighting and progressing in battle. Also, the outcome of the quests heavily directs the quest chain. If you fail to save the village then they have taken over. They will try and reinforce the town to help their forces against you and that town will be held by them. Every quest in the game aren't just quests, they are events in which you interact with and effect the world in different ways. Oh, and did I mention the scaling difficulty? well, the more people actively (I want to express this because people think that people can grief just be attacking once to increase the difficulty, they can't) the harder the quest gets. More enemy reinforcements will come to attack the village. Also, there is a rating system that determines how much exp and gold you get. Say is you only participated a bit, you would get a bronze rank, a good amount you will get a silver and doing a lot in the event will give you gold! But Neku, how do I turn in my quests? You don't. Come in and slay a few monsters and the game will rank you and give you the reward, it's is a bit hard to explain fully buy you can see more below in the video section. Not only that buy you can't steal other peoples kills because if two people hit it you will both get gold. You can find more about the questing system below. (see: Videos)

Combat.

Combat is the main part of any MMO and up to this day (even with the release of Star Wars The old republic) all you do is stand still while maybe running in circles pressing 1, 1, 1, 2, 5, 6, 9, etc and the games challenge is trying to remember which skills are bound to which keys. In guild wars 2 the game has no auto attack, you can dodge projectiles and the game becomes a lot more interactive. This is a right step in combat as the ''press button, see what happens'' combat is getting tiresome and guild wars 2 throws it out the window. Oh, did I mention that weapons have skills? yeah, that's right, 5 slots are in the hotbar are weapon bound and the other are depended on what you choose them to be. Also, there is no traditional Tank, heal and dps system in place here meaning that you can play the class the way you want. If all your friends want to play warrior, why not? They can heal, tank and dps with the right gear etc. The videos go much more into detail.

There is much more I could go on about to from the various mini games to keep you busy, how nice the game looks or how there is NO MONTHLY FEE but why not let the devs show you? Here are a bunch of videos to help you get ready for the best MMO... of all time.

Videos.

Well, enjoy the content and there is plenty more on Youtube to find!

I hope I have made some of you guys hyped for Guild Wars 2, and I hope to see you in game!

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Microsoft E3 Press Conference Review.

So in case you guys didn't know I was constantly updating my first reactions in each of the conference discussion threads. I however thought they were very brief and didn't sum up what I personally thought of each press conference. I will also be posting a blog about Sony's and Nintendo's but for now, here we go -

Microsoft first started out fairly good with Modern Warfare 3, while I'm not a fan of Call of Duty (besides maybe 2 and 4) it was still a strong title to start with. Then we got even better with the new Tomb Raider game which takes the franchise into a much darker and grittier place. Not only did the demo impress (besides the noises this chick made, seriously.) but it surprised me a whole lot. Then we had various other impressive titles like Mass Effect 3 and Tom clany's Ghost Recon however I was personally disappointed that what Microsoft's main focus was the Kinect something which I, and probably a lot of you are not interested in. Then they showed us what we saw last year, various voice command things and Live TV with Youtube. The rest of the show was filled with a lot of Kinect related games from a new Crytek game, sports game to a new Fable game. Also, they showed off some Halo: Anniversary and Forza 4. Then the show really took off with great games like Sesame street and Disneyland! (/sarcasm) I obviously wasn't the target audience for the rest of the conference so I can't comment on it. Then came Halo 4. And 5... And 6. Personally I would have been fine with Halo 4 being announced but 5 and 6 really is what ruined it all. Do Microsoft want to milk the franchise that much? They should of stopped at Halo 3.

Overall the press conference was...alright I guess.. They showed too much kinect stuff and not enough controller based games.Thanks for reading, be sure to check out on what I think of Sony's and Nintendo's.

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Games, games, games.

Games, what are games? Are games simply just games we play because games are games or are games the games we play when we play games when playing gaming games. Games.

So what was that all about? Games. Okay, enough joking guys. I am here because I need help with the amount of games I currently have and need to finish playing. I have started most of them and am currently playing them but it's hard getting through so many games. I need help from you guys who have had experiences like this, how do I get through these current and back catalog games without going insane? Here are some of them

LA Noire
De Blob 2
Mortal Kombat
Marvel vs Capcom 3
BRINK
Fallout 3 DLC
Fallout: New Vegas (Must finish above game)
Persona 3 FES
Persona 4 (Must finish above game)
All Phenoix Wright games
Pokemon: Black
Mass Effect (finished it before but my save got deleted so I have to replay it)
Mass Effect 2 (Must finish above game)
Dragon Age: Origins complete pack
Assassins Creed 2
Portal 2 Co-Op
I also play Heroes of Newerth regularly.

What the fuck do I do? Some I haven't played at all some I've nearly finished but I need to get them all done. Help me.

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You're getting Chased, and in a war on everything.

Australian television, eh? Not much I can say about it. But I can say something about The Chasers War On Everything, which I love. I was reminded of them when looking at Youtube and seeing their commentary on the Royal Wedding. Prior to this I knew who they were and loved their stuff however I sort of lost track of watching it since I don't usually watch TV at a set time and just buy the DVDs since it more convenient. These guys are the trolls of real life, going over the top in the most funny and hilarious of ways. From booking people for having shitty ringtones to pretending to be Osama Bin Laden. While this causes controversy because so many people have sticks up their asses it's still funny as hell. Here are some clips for those few who have not seen their stuff -


  
    
  So what are some clips you guys like? If you can find them, post them!

On a related note, where can you watch them now? they were on the Comedy Channel for a while but haven't heard from them since.
Thanks.
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Dog names.

So I am getting a Cavoodle, here are some photos -











But I need some dog names, but instead of something generic I want something badass and original. So any help would be great, thanks!
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What I think of DC Universe Online. (Part 1).

So about every 10 hours of gameplay I will write a new blog telling you guys what I think about the game and see how it holds up the longer I play it. Let's get started. 
 
The combat of DC Universe is fantastic for an MMO, instead of giving it that World of Warcraft type gameplay where you would simply right click to auto-attack and have a chance to evade in DC those mechanics give you much more control over your character. The game feels more like an action game than an MMO and gives a really nice hack and slash feel to it. In MMOs the gameplay has always been only ''okay'' and most of them would be poor if not an MMO but it's getting closer to single player games quality. The powers are also pretty awesome, giving you a wide range of toys to play with. Dropping a meteor from the sky to pick up and smash guys with, mixing your movement type skills with your weapon of choice, it's all great fun.  
 
Character creation is nice also, although not as good as Champions Online. The menus are a bit cluttered but I found the style I wanted fairly easy and everything was good. You wouldn't have much trouble finding the certain stuff you wanted. The graphics are great for an MMO, standing of top of a building and looks over the city looks great. There are also some pretty bad ass armor and weapon sets found both in game and in the character creator. The city is fairly big from what I could tell and when just walking on the streets instead of flying etc, it looks pretty big.  
 
Legends PVP is also great fun, choosing from a range of super heroes and super villains to play is awesome and it is basically classes based PVP. It is fun and you get to unlock new legends (or ''classes'') as you play. As for traditional PVP I have only played a bit but from what I have it seems like fun. I'm on a PVP server and it gives that really awesome Heroes vs Villains feel. Villains were attacking low level characters at a certain location so the Heroes grouped together to fight the Villains and send them back home.   

The missions in the game seem fairly standard from what I can tell, kill these, smash these, disable these, but I have seen some higher level quests and they seem to get better as the game goes along. The games combat feels great and fun as I said so I don't mind beating stuff up because it's fun. Fighting along the DC guys is also pretty awesome, I'm not that into DC but it was still cool to beat up dudes with Superman and Flash. 
 
Well, that's all for now. I will keep you guys updated as I play! Thanks for reading.

12 Comments

Casual Gaming.

Casual gaming. eh? A lot of people seem to be talking about this lately so I thought I would give you guys my opinion on what I think of these games. I for one, am against casual gaming because I feel it will just do damage to us (the ''core'' gamers) in the long run. You can deny it but no matter what it will end up hurting us and do us no good. Here are some facts, what is the one thing gaming companies want? yeah, that's right, money. What console is currently making the most money right now? The wii, which appeals to casual gamers with it's motion controls and mini-game collections. Some may (and will) argue that this will generate an interest in more lesser-none games, we all started out like them right? well yes we did start out on them but we are looking at a very different market to when we were casual. Now that casual games tend to focus more on family games do you really see these people playing Persona 4, Demon's Soul's or Pheonix Wright? 
 
Let's get away from motion controls and the market for a while and let's talk about the ''hardcore'' causal market. You guys know, people who only play Halo and Call of Duty and think they know everything about games? Well, they can potentially help damage us also. How? Well let's take Halo: Reach for example, a great game that was fun and Bungie stepped it up and made it more tactical, the response? ''This game sucks, It's not even fun anymore'' and just have a guess what most likely made them not like it. Developers want to sell copies and if they want to make money, they will make sure to satisfy people. I remember a day when Call of Duty 2 took pure team work and now it is just random kills from bad respawns. 
 
Summary, they will give people what they want and with people wanting casual games they will get them. Look at Nintendo, sure they were never focused on us but they still cared now they are making a huge sum of money with the casual's, do you think they will care for us? Nope, same goes with the path Microsoft and Sony are going, they will probably focus on motion controls and we suffer. 
 
Thanks for reading.

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