Monday, January 5, 2009

Weekend Gaming Wrapup

And so we say goodbye to Deadspace, hello to the Darkness and discussion of the future of our gaming trends in the house all take up this weeks wrap..

Deadspace became the obsession over the weekend, finishing the game in a Marathon run between Saturday and Sunday. This title proved difficult to put down, as the feel of combat, the overall RPG fun and the story became quite compelling.
I wish more games exhibited such polish and fun. It seems a lot are just dropped on the player, and they expect you to do a lot to figure things out, or is just overall shoddy in some way.
An example of this is the Infinite Undiscovery title. I was really enjoying this game, but directions of where to go, what you are doing becomes an issue. The only objectives you ever get is a simple "I did this" or "I plan to do this" comments on a pause screen. If someone wishes a sandbox title with a lot of running around blindly and figuring out what to do next, this game is for you.
The combat has become very "MMO", and a lot of times you feel like you have no major control of the action.
The issue lies with your party. Their AI is SO good that you have no need to worry about death. A lot of times when you finally get to a mob to attack it yourself, it dies from the other party members already taking their shots. The game seems to run itself, and that is not so fun.
Back to Deadspace. A killer boss fight at the end, had us all excited.

So, at this point, I looked through my games, and decided on one I have had sitting around since I bought the new 360 (so I could give my son the old 360).
The Darkness distributed by 2k Games. The game is based on a best selling comic by Top Cow productions. The developers, Starbreeze Studios, is also known for developing a killer movie to game product, The Chronicles of Riddick, which is being remade for the 360 (and that other console...uh...PS something), along with some new content as well. It was considered the first movie to video game title that did not suck...hard.
Seems this game was well received, and follows the vein of our gaming mantra..."Story is important".

More on this as we progress.

So, this weekend also had my wife up in arms over something, which was the issue of playing a game again. She said she missed being in control of the game, and it may be that she may be the one who will play an MMO soon. The issue is what game will work best for her.
She is quite picky, and as such, it proves to be difficult to find a specific game for her.
Story of course is foremost. Visuals are important (no cartoony characters so games like Domo or Wizard 101 will not work), strategy is important...
Fantasy is also number one, and she hates Sci-Fi.
I debate about maybe some type of card based battle game, as she loves those types of systems.
Has anyone played Magic online recently? Is it any good? Any other card style game? (besides LoN, which has an issue with font sizing like LOTRO on big screens...)

...Taking suggestions..

Anyways, a new week, and I plan to start debating about some games (Infinite is on the short list now), and of course, I wonder how 2009 is going to start shaping up...

Have a good week folks...


brenda said...

Disliking the art style seems a poor reason to miss out on an engaging strategy card game like Wizard 101 :P

Spellborn is strategic in that everyone's skills like a clockwork. You can do fairly well on your own, but with one other person, the whole is more than the sum of its parts. A full four person group gets a little chaotic. Basically you set mechanisms, such as healing or damage reflection, in place through your skill deck, and so when it really gets going all healing, buffing and debuffing is going on all the time from everyone.

Almost nothing works like a standard MMO in a group.

As a Runemage, for instance, I can draw a rune on the ground that people stand in, which then heals the group whenever someone casts a magical damage spell. I also have explosive runes drawn on my body (which show in game) that add a proc to melee hits. Bunches of other ones. Stuff to reduce opponent stats if their stats are lower than ours, etc (which is why it's good to have high PeP).

Very strategic. Very not the holy trinity.

brenda said...

I haven't really written much in my blog about how Spellborn is actually played, just because it is kinda complicated.

You get used to it. It's just different. Have to jump out of enemy AEs and such.

Oakstout said...

LEFT 4 DEAD must be on your play list my will scare the crap out of you.

brenda said...

I watched my son play that all the time he was home on vacation. Just a bunch of people running around, shooting zombies? Wow. Yup. Some groundbreaking game work there.

I find shooters incredibly dull. My son likes them, though.

Kill kill kill. All day and all night I heard him shooting stuff. Then he went to CoD4 and shot more stuff. Then he played Lost Planet and shot more stuff. Wheee.

Absolutely nothing to all these games, you find weapons and try and kill your friends. Playing as a zombie in L4D was kind of cool in a way.

Openedge1 said...

hehe...I am with Brenda on the Left 4 Dead. My son played it, and at first it was cool...then it got tiresome.
While in Deadspace, I had puzzles to solve and the RPG mechanics for upgrades added to the overall feel of "more than a shooter".
I am an FPS person though (somewhat), and I am hoping the Darkness with it's various ways to kill and solving the story could prove more fascinating than pick up SMG, kill, pick up Shotgun, kill.

As to graphics, it is the issue of the "childrens" look. This detracts from the enjoyment. This has made titles like Tales of Vesperia on the 360 a no go as the big head anime look takes away the overall fun.
There is probably no doubt the mechanics may be cool, and Culdecept was close to the big head anime look (but the cards had great paintings on them, so that helped...the whole collect the beautiful cards made you not think of the silly character visuals.) and she liked that maybe W101 may work.
I will load it up and see.

Spellborn is definitely on my list...Acclaim is not, and until I see that they plan to really release this game, I try not to think about how big an idiot Acclaim as a whole is.

Thanks for the comments

Tesh said...

Atlantica Online? Fantasy, cool tactical combat, about as "cartoony" as Guild Wars. It's also free, so you lose nothing by trying it out.

Dreamlords? Part tactical, part strategic, part RTS. Part browser control, part client based. I've heard good about it, but haven't tried it yet, so I can't speak from experience.

MTGO... I played 2.0, but not version 3.0 or whatever they are on now. I did play the card game up until Shadowmoor, and it was still a well designed, fun game. The online client can get in the way, but the game itself is still good.

Danshir said...

Ahhh..The Darkness. I swear Edge we have almost identical taste in gaming. The Story is nicely done, and offers one of the most shocking moments in video game history. *You'll know it when you see it*

To give you some nice suggestions for future game loving. I've sad it plenty of times, but FEAR 2 is coming out soon*Feb 14th I THINK, positive about it being Feb though*. I wish you had a PS3, I would recommend Metal Gear Solid 4. It's fantastic.

Oakstout said...

Left 4 dead isn't just a shooter. Apparently I didn't explain the best part of L4D. The game "Is" pretty boring if you don't play it in co op mod or versus mod on line. The game really has a different feel when 4 people are playing together, working together to achieve total victory, which is to make it to the end of the game together.

The trick is to find a good strategy when the hordes of zombies are raining down on your position right when your getting ready to evac a map. The game is down right scary at times, and very dangerous especially with Friendly fire turned on.

Trust me, online play is the only way to enjoy this game and it's more than just a shooter. I should know, I hate console shooters as a general rule. lol