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The Old Republic - Thoughts from a Bounty Hunter.

So a couple of days ago I got an invite to the TOR beta. I wasn't all that excited about playing it since it hasn't exactly had the best feedback so far. From my brief time playing my first impressions are that it's nothing special or different when compared to other MMOs. In terms of gameplay it plays very much the same as an traditional MMO (WoW, LotRO etc). having played WoW for several years and having quit a few months ago I felt right at home with the structure and fundamentals of the game. Which is just as well because there doesn't seem to be any tutorial at the moment. 
As you'd expect, Bounty Hunters are a ranged based class, from the start you have a rapid blaster skill and a missile skill. Playing as a BH was pretty enjoyable, I liked starting off with a missile blast to knock over enemies and then running in close to use my flamethrower and blaster. I haven't really got much to else to say about the Bounty Hunter at the moments as I haven't gotten very far. I'm hoping there will be more features that make the BH more exciting. Oh can I'm still waiting to get a bad ass helmet.
However, whilst the gameplay is the same old stuff MMO players have been experiencing for many years, the dedication to story and characters is a step above most other MMOs. There are a lot of fully voiced cutscenes right from the start which gets you interested in your character's journey right from the start. There are also dialogue choices as well as good/evil choices to make as well. 
Overall, the story and presentation are way ore engaging than a lot of other MMOs the gameplay is ripped straight out of hundreds of other MMOs. It's hard to see Bioware/EA making a profit on this game when they've spent hundreds of millions and several years just to come out with another 'WoW clone'. I am curious to see if the gameplay will evolve in any meaning full way as I progress.


My Final Thoughts

So yesterday I finished The Witcher 2 and I felt like typing out some of my feelings about the game.
The combat has come under quite a bit of discussion since the game came out last week. The main problems seem to be that the game doesn't do a good job of explaining all of the mechanics and you are thrown in at the deep end. I, like many other people, died quite a lot on the very first battle but once I learned how to use the Signs and evade moves effectively I started to enjoy the game a lot more. However, the main problem comes from the fact that when you face multiple enemies. Geralt isn't all that fast when it comes to going from one move to the next, meaning it is hard to move around and attack enemies without taking considerable damage. This results in the player having to run around while occasionally turning around and getting a few hits in before running off again. This isn't really how you'd imagine a bad ass, genetically mutated bounty hunter to fight. 
After levelling up and getting better armour the combat becomes a lot easier, in fact it becomes too easy. From about half way through the game I didn't really need to block or dodge anymore due to my large health pool so I would just go up to enemies and swing away at them. Don't get me wrong, this was a lot of fun but I feel they needed to tweak the combat more so that players don't become too overpowered.  But to be fair, I was playing on normal difficulty so perhaps I should try the harder difficulties.
My only other main problem with that game is the last Chapter. It is very short and the last boss is terrible, all you do is run in, get a couple of hits in, get knocked down, repeat. It's incredibly boring compared to some of the other boss fights in the game. 
Also, towards the end of the game I found myself not really caring about the story or characters anymore. I don't really know why this is as I really like Geralt and the world he inhabits.
It may look like I fucking hate this game. Far from it. I think it is a great RPG, there are just a few things that keep me from loving it. 
In summary, the game looks beautiful, the characters and world are interesting and unique and the RPG elements are well implemented. However, the game has a poor tutorial and the combat system doesn't work so well when faced with a large group of enemies.


The Witcher 2 - First Impressions

The Witcher 2 was releases ths mornign and I've played only a small portion of the game so far but i wanted to get my thoughts out there and see what other people think of the game so far.

From a presentation stand point, the game is a massive step up from the original. the graphics are beautiful and the voice acting is miles ahead of anything seen in the first game. I think I am technically still in the tutorial section of the game but I don't think the game does a great job of explaining everything. i died quite a few times on the first battle as the game doesn't really help much with combat. Sure, it gives the basics but it doesn't encourage you to use our Signs much (which I have since found out are essential to success) and the game didn't bother to tell me I could lock on to specific enemies until about 5 battles in.

Also, I am a bit unsure of the combat at this point. it is better than the first game for sure but at the moment all i am doing is running at enemies, getting a few hits in and then running off again. This just gets worse when the number of enemies increases aand you end up having to 'kite' enemies around the area, gradually whittling down their health bars. I've heard it gets better once Geralt levels up so that's ok. Also, the problem may just be that I suck at this game, but i think I am getting better now.

Other than that i am enjoying it so far, what do you guys think of it so far?

I've played for a few hours now and I'm getting to grips with the combat and I'm really starting to enjoy it, it just takes a while to get used to (well it did for me anyway). So far this game is far superior to the original.


Blog 2: The sequel to the award winning blog

Hello all this is my second blog and everyone knows that sequels are meant to be darker and grittier. So to kick things off...


No Caption Provided

But anyway, this week I've been playing quite a few old games like The Witcher, Half Life 2 and Oblivion. Oblivion and Half Life are great and all but I wanted to talk about was The Witcher.

The Witcher

For those who don't know The Witcher is an RPG that was released on PC in late 2007. It is based on a series of books by Polish writer Andrzej Sapkowski. As I understand the books are quite popular in Poland but at the time of the game's release, the books had not even been translated into English. Despite this, the game was a success for first time developer, CD Projekt RED. The books and the game focus on Geralt of Rivia who is a Witcher (basically a genetically mutated bad ass bounty hunter).

Since the sequel is almost upon us I thought I'd playthrough the game again. The first time I played through was when the game first came out and as anyone who played it during that time knows, the voice acting was pretty bad. The actors would say lines that were meant to be humorous in a monotone voices and a lot of the dialogue just didn't make sense. However, the developers released an enhanced edition of the game in September 2008 which featured re-recorded and expanded dialogue for the translated versions of the game, added new animations, increased the speed of the load time and many other improvements. Best of all, this was all included in a free patch for those who already had the game. After playing the game again I can say it is definitely improved but the game is starting to look dated. The graphics are pretty poor and the animation is really stiff. It especially looks bad when compared to the stunning sequel due out in a couple of weeks.

No Caption Provided

Despite the dated look the the game, it is still a great traditional RPG and is worth seeking out for those hardcore RPG fans out there.

Red Faction Demo

Finally I wanted to talk about the demo for Red Faction Armageddon. I was a huge fan of Guerilla when it came out in 2009, being able to destroy all the building in a variety of ways was so much fan (personally, I liked to get a big truck and just ram it through the entrance). The amazing destruction engine seemed to go hand in hand with the open world, even though the world itself was qutie boring.

 Who the fuck is gonna pay for this!?
 Who the fuck is gonna pay for this!?

After playing the demo for the new game I'm a little disappointed. It seems the developers have completely misunderstood why people liked Guerilla so much. The open world is gone replaced by smaller, linear enviroments and most of the game is set underground. The destruction is still there but it's not as fun when I can't go anywhere I want and fuck up everything in site. Also, seeing as the game is linear, it is easy to accidently destroy the path ahead, forcing you to repair bridges and walkways. Whats the point of having amazing destruction tech when all I can destroy is some crappy shacks and grated floors? And then I just have to repair most of it to proceed anyway. MEH. To top it all off, I hear that they have replaced the great multiplayer with a horde more. A HORDE MODE. How original.

Despite my disappointment I'll wait to see what the rest of the game is like before I judge it completely. Heltom92 OUT.

My first blog - Outland, Portal Kombat

Hello all you Giantbombers out there, I only just joined the site recently and today I felt the need to write some things on the internets that no one will care about.

So after the super awesome week where Portal 2 and Mortal Kombat came out on the same day things have been pretty quiet in the world of video games. Oh, apart from that thing about PSN going down. But that's no big deal right? I mean, it's not like it will stay down for long. Oh wait... It's been down for over a week. Well, it's only a video game console, it's not like people are in danger of anything serious like identity theft right? Oh...

I'm not actually sure what this image is, I just typed in Jack Tretton on google and this came up... Seems some what appropriate.

So after completing Portal 2 twice and coming to the sad realisation that I suck at fighting games, I wasn't sure what game to turn to next. Then, I heard about a game called Outland. After seeing images of the game I was immediately interested in it and went to check out some reviews. Turns out a lot of people think this game is rather good and I'm one of them. The game is a platformer with puzzles and some sword swinging thrown in. It has some similarities to games like Metroid and Shadow Complex because your character gets upgrades that allow him to perfrom new abilities which can be used to get more upgrades by backtracking to earlier parts of the game and entering previously unaccesible areas. The game also looks and plays great, the art style is similar to Limbo in some aspeects and navigating your character around is a joy to watch due to the fluid animations. I've played for about an hour so far and I'm loviing it, shame on me for only just hearing about this game. I'd highly recommend people to go buy this or at least download the trial, you won't be disappointed. 

If you don't think this looks awesome please call 0800 GTFOSTFU 900.

Finally, I started a new playthrough of Half Life 2 for the first time in a few years. I forgot how awesome this game is. To me it's the perfect FPS, it's a good length with great pacing and set pieces that rival anything seen in CoD or Halo and has a story that far surpasses pretty much any other FPS game out there. The game also still looks pretty good considering it's nearly 7 years old.

 Looking good...

So that's it for my first blog, hope you enjoyed it and maybe I'll write another one at some point. BYEEEEE.