Delayed Responsibility

I Shouldn't Be Gaming Right Now… But I Am!

Archive for July, 2008

Don’t Play Soul Calibur

Posted by deckard47 on July 31, 2008

I was wrong. I should have known. I lasted about an hour, and then I had to stop (it was 3am, and I’d just gotten back from a four hour car trip, so that might have helped). Still, this game is dumb. I mean, you probably knew that, but it’s worse in motion, somehow. Offensive, annoying, incomprehensible, childish, all of these words apply to this game, all of them apply to the game’s portrayal of women. I’d say something about how people are so dumb, but I think in this case it’s dumb plus asshole. Great combination for a game developer. Time to send it back and get whatever is next on the list. I hope it’s ICO.

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More Caliburs, More Something

Posted by deckard47 on July 30, 2008

I write this to you as my PS3 slowly updates to 2.42 (I think?). Of course, I turned it on to play my newly Gameflied copy of Soul Calibur IV, and when it told me it “had” to be updated, I was too much of a loser to argue with it. So, I sit here, watching that little bar crawl across the screen (51% now). This reminds me of all those techno-thrillers that started coming out in the nineties and are still coming out. There had/have to be at least 2 shots of a download/delete/upload/decrypt/whatever bar moving, while the hero of our story stares at the screen with laser eyes. It must be tough, knowing that you’re going to have to make a little computer animation into something tense and heavy. I bet the composer and director look forward to those days.

Lucky I write about games on this blog. Obviously, I shall soon be Caliburating my soul, or something. Me, I’m interested in the pirate captain (Cervantes?) and the new armored woman who uses a sword and a spear. I suspect that Owen and Guillaume will refuse to play with me, because they have better things to do (like Boom Blox, with me!). Regardless, I’ll brave its sexism and bad plot to bring you fresh, juicy reports, every day.

It tuns out that EB Games sells the Arcanum strategy guide for 10 bucks. Words cannot describe how betrayed I feel. Now I have to back to looking at the crappy copies on Amazon, pining uselessly. I can never justify buying used copies, you can’t get free shipping! Why am I crazy. Tonight I drive down into Hell, or LA, for the last (please) time. I shall arrive at LAX, bearing an In n Out milkshake. Cause that’s how I roll.

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Arcanum, and Heavenly Sword

Posted by deckard47 on July 28, 2008

First of all, why is LA so hot? I was there for two days, and my body still remembers that oppressive, constant heat. Never, never will I live in that sweltering dust bowl (unless somebody there hires me!).

Enough of that, there are two things from Comic-Con that bear mentioning. First, we have the Tron 2 (or Tr2n… really?) trailer, which features a badass, bearded Jeff Bridges, and some new and possibly improved Light Cycle action. Exciting, yes? I love old Jeff Bridges, I must say. I wonder how he’ll have changed since the last movie. Probably a bit more jaded, from the look of the beardie.

Second, there is the trailer (in two parts) of the Wolverine movie. I was really skeptical about this when I first heard about it. I think everyone remembers how bad the third movie was. It was amazingly bad. Sadly, I’m still pretty skeptical about it. Some of it looks cool, but the mutton chops on Laertes are a bit silly. I guess it’s canonical, or some shit. Still, could be fun, and it would have to work hard to be as bad as X3.

Now, for the title of this post. I am now dead set on downloading Arcanum. I dream of crafting pistols and rifles, and then questing for more parts with my kickass dwarf inventor. Soon.

Finally, Heavenly Sword. There were a lot of mean things said about this game before and after it came out, there were a lot of people who were quick to point out how darn mediocre the game was, and all because a small group of nutso Sony fans (and a larger, more vocal group of Sony PR people) kept on telling this game would rule everybody. In the end, I was actually kind of happy with my experience. Yes, it is absolutely a short game. It makes Drake’s Fortune look long by comparison. I think it is about 5 hours long if that. I must admit, it felt a bit short. Didn’t they have any more story to throw in there? Guess not. The combat was fun, and despite the fact that people found it boring, I loved how ludicrous the combos (and resulting ragdoll effects) got. Everyone was talking about how this game could never be compared to God of War, and they were right. This game might have slightly repetitive combat, small scope, and unambitious design, but it had a few things that God of War sadly lacks.

God of War has a boring story. BORING. I don’t care if you can kill a lost God while riding a sexy demon woman horse bareback while she exhorts you to murder her evil incubus father on a giant, beautifully rendered heaving ship, all while the entire map is being eaten by a mutant armadillo. Yes, I get it, your shit is epic. Luckily, we have a great story to back up that gameplay, right? No, we have a stupid, monosyllabic, pale “Greek” troglodyte who makes his Penny Arcade incarnation look downright Falknerian (is that a word? It might be, I suppose, if I spelled it differently… maybe I should say Jamesian? I think we all know that the most complicated characters of all are written by Terry Goodkind) in his level of character depth.

Yes, the actors in Heavenly Sword do ham it up, and the plot and setting are pretty unimaginative (look, white people with “Asian” culture… why, dunno?). Still, I found myself enjoying the overwrought melodrama and the bizarrely comedic interludes equally. Plus, Nariko and Kai rock the shit, each in their different way. Was I the only one who was reminded of the BBC television series’ Sheriff of Nottingham, every time Bohan/Andy Serkis opened his mouth? I kind a dug it, to tell the truth. He was spitting and laughing and talking in the same fashion, and I forgave him his faults, in the same fashion. Despite all this, there were problems. I could bearly stop myself from laughing at the various bad guys henchmen (especially snake lady and weird flying sword guy), and it was not good laughter. Plus, let’s not forget Nariko’s clothes… Really guys, really? Was your game in that much need of bare legs?

I think that I’m sad that they aren’t planning on a sequel. It was a nice alternative to God of War’s Xtreme Rock n’ Roll take on ancient Greece, and now we may never see it again. I especially will miss the dynamic between Nariko and Kai, which was better than most character relationships in almost any game I’ve ever played. I can’t honestly say that most people will like this game. You can go read a review, and you’ll probably figure out that this game is only worth renting (which is true!). BUT, you’d be making a mistake if you wrote it off as just an IGN 7. It’s an interesting entry in the field of heavily motion-captured games, one that I think more people should experience.

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Ne Le Dis A Personne – Or, I’m too lazy to add the accent to the “a”

Posted by deckard47 on July 26, 2008

Just got back from seeing the movie named (“Tell No One,” in English) above, and let me tell you, shit, that was good. Fuck Batman, the X-Files, Wall-E, all of it. Go see this movie. It rocks. It’s a thriller (I guess… what does that mean?), that reminds me of North by Northwest, a bit, but I guess it’s supposed to a bit of film noir too? Dunno. Basically, there’s this married couple, and one day the wife is murdered. Ten years later, the police bring the case back up, trying to convict the husband of murder. Simultaneously, someone claiming to be the dead woman contacts our hero (Alex), and someone else is trying to find this supposedly dead woman, killing people as they go. It’s amazingly good. All of the acting is great, the music is great, it’s ridiculously tense, and it puts any “comparable” (plotwise) American movies to shame. Seriously, I haven’t cared this much about a movie in a while. Strangely, it’s based on an American novel, I think, and it uses almost all American music. Damn Frenchies, taking our books, and showing us how actual movies are made.

So, maybe I should talk about games a bit? I honestly can’t think of anything interesting. Lately, I’ve been a rather boring gamer, going back and playing old RPGs that tickle my fancy (which I love to tickle, let me tell you). Oh wait, check this out. Yes, there is an all CG (like that bad Final Fantasy movie, or Advent Children) Resident Evil movie is coming out. Did I just blow your mind? Probably not. Look at the trailer, it looks ludicrous and hammy and silly, everything you could ever want from this kind of movie. Plus it isn’t racist (for now! I can always trust these guys), and the fact that they have the same actors voicing Leon and Claire is just about the most fantastic thing that I’ve experienced today (besides Tell No One).

Aside from that, I just got a badass new set of speakers, I’m just 2 weeks shy of driving across the country (aaaah!), and Starburst makes gummy candy filled with fruit juice (like Gushers). It’s a good time to be alive.

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Too Human Demo

Posted by deckard47 on July 24, 2008

I just finished the demo, and, as has been pointed out, it has some issues (and this is still just the demo). I understand why so many people are freaking out about the camera. It feels funny to me too, and after finishing Heavenly Sword (review, soon), I really had trouble controlling my urge to move the camera with the right stick. Still, it isn’t the big deal that people have been saying it is. More troubling is the kind of silly dialogue, the oddly weightless objects (when that APC hits the snow, it looks like paper, not like a tank), and the teenage characterization of certain NPCs. I’m thinking of the three oracle types: the hot sultry one, the old wise one, and the middling business one. That whole scene was just ludicrous. And yet, I liked what I played. The RPG aspects seem cool, although the skill tree seems mighty short. In the demo, I used up a lot of the skill points allotted, and had almost maxed out two skills. The combat is fun (I can’t juggle though), and co-op sounds cool. Gamefly, definitely.

In almost Gamefly related news, there is a new site up, run by the guys at CD Projeky (they have some pretty good marketing savy, you gotta give them that). It’s called Good Old Games, and it’s basically a cool, fun collection of digital download PC games. I’m talking good games, not all of the Barbie Pet Rescue games. There’s Fallout Tactics (YES), Sacrifice, MDK, etc. I love this idea, and I have already signed up for the beta. Steam is great, but this site just looks like it has better taste. Plus, it’s DRM free, so you can download them again and again, as many times as is necessary (no bullshit about a maximum number of downloads, in case your computer crashes). So, yeah, check it out.

Next up, I just found out that EB Games (online) allows you to download games. You know what you can download? Arcanum for 10 dollars. Shit. Do it. In a slightly less amazing deal moment, I saw Disciples 2 at a Target for 10 dollars, in Santa Rosa. I’ve played almost all of the factions, and it’s interesting to compare this game to past and present iterations of the HOMM franchise. I like the style a lot, and I have to say, I wouldn’t be sad if they released another game in the same series. It’s less about amassing large armies, and more about carefully leveling up your weak early characters. I like the idea that my lowly apprentice can be a deadly sorcerer by the end of the game, if I take care of him. Plus, their take on elves is kinda cool. Instead of being regular Tolkein elves, they’re more feral and animalistic, kind of like Underworld’s (awful) take on werewolves. Cross your fingers, I guess.

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Once More

Posted by deckard47 on July 15, 2008

I just finished watching Wierdsville and Vantage Point. Wierdsville = amusing, Vantage Point = How did this thing ever get made. Wierdsville can best be described as a “stoner” (not really) comedy with Scott Speedman, who, by the way, I have a newfound respect for. Vantage Point… It’s badly written, plotted, edited, and acted. It goes nowhere, has nothing to say, and spends way to long telegraphing these failures to you. I realized, at the end, as Dennis Quaid and the President looked at each other, that this movie was mismarketed, and misunderstood. This is actually the story of a long-suffering secret service agent, and his deep love for the President, love that can never be acted upon, only hinted at. In the final scenes, they understand each other, and that love. What a romantic scene (no seriously, check it out, just skip the rest of the movie). I told Will this is what should have happened, to which he responded “in a perfect world.” No fucking shit.

But, in more important news: new Prince of Persia trailer up at Gametrailers. Shit hot, one might say. I want this so bad. Look at how pretty it is! Look at he platforming. Look at the co-op type stuff with your partner. I really am very excited about this. It might wash away the sting of not liking the character in Assassin’s Creed that much.

I have to say (sudden transition!), Infamous looks kinda cool. This new video is promising, with lots of cool effects and running around the city. Like Grand Theft Auto without the shit, plus some awesome superpowers. Could be fun.

And look, here’s a Fable 2 video. I must say, it looks like an interesting continuation of the ideas set out in the first game. I only hope it’s easier to be evil. So trick for me! Oh, and your hero guy looks like a smug tool. Because I’m strangely interested in this game, here’s a bunch of new screens. Even if this is just a more polished version of he first game with women PCs, I’ll still be interested. The character creation is just so deep, in certain ways, I can’t help but be ensnared.

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New Trailers: Mirror’s Edge, Sim Animals

Posted by deckard47 on July 15, 2008

I just checked Joystiq, and, lucky me, they have a new Mirror’s Edge trailer. Very cool, I like the fact that they keep on emphasizing that you don’t have to shoot a single person throughout the whole game. Unless the first person parcour makes me sick, or is hard to control, I don’t see how this game could suck (unless the writing is awful, I suppose).

On a less important note (to me), the 360 will have a new interface, enhanced live capabilities, and Netflix compatibility (for movie downloads). Scratch what I jsut said, the Netflix thing is pretty cool. I like the idea of renting movies on my Xbox for some reason. Not to be outdone, Sony is murmuring about their own TV/video updates to PSN. Interesting…

Finally (for now) there is a game coming out for the DS and Wii, called “Sim Animals.” It sounds like a mix between the Sims and… something else. It looks pretty, and I like these kinds of games (don’t tell anyone, but I loved “Sim Park.” I know, sad. I know that I still need to write that Oblivion/Fable post, but I’m hungry, so its off to make dinner. More, later.

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Hype/Screens: FF XIII and Dragon Age

Posted by deckard47 on July 14, 2008

I took a break from trying to create an evil character in Fable (so hard! I kill so many townspeople, and I’m barely disliked… I might be good just because I can’t be evil) to check out E3 news, and I’m glad I did. It looks like Final Fantasy XIII is coming to the 360, which is nice for people who only have a 360, and is also nice for those of us who might not want to do a 15 GB install or whatever the game comes with on the PS3.

Now on to what really matters. Dragon Age screens!:

Take a look at that last screen. This is where I get really excited, and really worried. This could be Mass Effect meets Baldur’s Gate! Look at it! Then I think about what the graphics (close up) and the HUD remind me of… NWN 2. I know that was an Obsidion release, but Bioware did make the original NWN. I need to stop this before I say something too dumb. From now on, only thoughtful, positive comments will be made regarding Dragon Age. Really

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Mini-E3 Update

Posted by deckard47 on July 14, 2008

AH! Portal Sequel! On XBLA? Strange. More later.

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Sorry, But, Have you Seen that Dragon Age Trailer?

Posted by deckard47 on July 14, 2008

There’s a second one up, and it’s just a big difference. Its dogs this time, not arrows. Now, forgetting the fact that I think its strangely cool that this in-game cutscene (let’s assume?) includes the use of dogs as a way to break charging enemy lines (well, you knew I was a dork, right?), I’m suddenly worried about this game. What if, as is darkly suggested by people over on the Dragon Age forums, this game is leaning a bit toward NWN, as opposed to Baldur’s Gate. Do you remember the NWN characters? I remember Aribeth, because she had a silly storyline, and nobody else, because there was nobody worth remembering. It was like a bad, watered down version of what rocks about Bioware. People are saying the graphics in this trailer look stiff (especially the faces). I kinda agree (although I thought Mass Effect looked dumb, initially). It is a trailer, it’s 10 seconds long or something, so I should probably just shut it, and let Bioware rock my world, again.

To be honest, my fear is that the game won’t have the conversation system used in Mass Effect, or the facial detail and emotional depth. That would kill me. Whatever, they’ll show something at E3 (which I will be following closely, so that I can write to you about the two things I care about, whatever they may be), so I think the gaming public can wait a few days. It better be good though.

Finally, The Rainmaker is a silly movie, and overlong, and it has many problems. The biggest problem? That music. The guy who composed that music should be put on trial himself. Oh, and Matt Damon scares me even when he’s young. He doesn’t fool me with that diminutive blond, young guy (think Rounders too) look. I know he’ll grow up into a humongous killing machine who could crush me like a bug. John Voight never had a chance.

I think it’s time to admit that I’ve started playing Fable. Lots of issues there. Gameplay, design and (really?) no female avatar. I hope they bring the good stuff (ludicrous character customization, reputation spreading, etc.) to the new game, and add some fun combat and good writing into the mix. Because what’s on display in the first game is sad. Oh, and I’d be willing to bet dollars to doughnuts that they handle pregnancy in a startling and innovatively offensive way. Keep your fingers crossed, I guess. One thing in Fable’s favor is the fact that they’ve stolen a march on Bethesda. Hey, Oblivion guys, you want to see how to make a game where you level up heavily used skills more, but that still lets you have fun playing and leveling your character? Check this game out. More on that tomorrow, after I’ve slept way too late. Adios.

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Assassin’s Creed: A Few Thoughts

Posted by deckard47 on July 13, 2008

I just finished the game for the first time. It took me this long for several reasons: it isn’t exactly a short game, other games kept on getting in the way, I would get fed up with dying (or being spotted by evil deadeye guards) and quit, and in the end, I had the same problems that many people had. To be honest though, my issues with repetitive combat and quest structure (what most people seemed to be annoyed by) were always fleeting. I liked the combat (one understood, difficult to perfect, like The Witcher’s combat, but a bit trickier), I thought that the different story and character of the (mechanically identical) quests was cool, and I liked the story, for all of its silliness. The most annoying thing (well, two things) are these: first, Altair/Desmond. The guy who voiced him? Annoying, more annoying than any other annoying video game voice. Why is he white again? Is the Assassin’s Cult multicultural (last time I checked all other members are Middle Eastern)? Maybe I misunderstood, but it seems weird to have this whiny white boy as the lead… Couldn’t they have gotten a whiny pretend ethnic boy (to have a voice actor who was actually middle eastern, and thus, even more so than a hero of the same descent, would have been highly unpalatable to many gamers, I bet) to play Altair? Whatever, they can be that way. Next problem: Final Assassinations. I think I murdered one guy in a stealthy way. The amount of effort and time it would have taken to stealthily assassinate all of them would have been astronomical if not impossible (here I’m thinking of ***SPOILER*** Robert’s body double). What exactly is this game called again?

Aside from those two complaints, I’m excited for the next game, although I suspect it might descend into even further silliness and camp. I’m willing to give them a chance though. Oh, and could we get rid of the people who assault you in the street randomly next time? Aside from painting an offensive portrait of poor and differently abled people (it basically presents all such people as dangerous, violent, and annoying), that was annoying. If you want to include annoying moving roadbloacks next game, make it a cult full of people who hate those who dress in white! It would be about as believable.

Now I should go do some Flash stuff for class. You have no idea how little I want to do that. What’s next on the game slate? Probably BG2 (loser, loser, loser!), with a bit of Oblivion (need to write a bit about that later) thrown in. Wait, one more thing. Dragon Age teaser… Good, bad, alright? Yes, it looks a bit like the Lord of the Rings, but I’ve seen Bioware take a familiar franchise and make it look and sound different (and fun, as opposed to Meow Skywalker’s latest outings). I don’t doubt their ability to take a familiar look and feel (and remember cats and kittens, that wasn’t gameplay, or all of the races, that was the pasty faux-Englsh dudes) and make a fantastic fucking game out of it.

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Mirror’s Edge

Posted by deckard47 on July 11, 2008

Ah! I almost forgot… new Mirror’s Edge trailer/story video up at GT. I like the look of this game a lot, its story is written by the same woman who wrote Heavenly Sword, which I heard had an interesting story, even though it fell short in other areas. Other than that? It looks badass, the heroine seems excellent, the gameplay looks cool. It looks surprisingly mature. I might have to go sit down for a bit.

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Dragon Age, Again

Posted by deckard47 on July 11, 2008

Well, in case you didn’t know, the Dragon Age site got a bit of an addition recently. It is now called “Dragon Age: Origins.” I guess some people don’t like the name. Fuck them. It looks a bit more hardcore (xtreme, almost) now, with a bloody map, some bloody-ish letters, and some woman’s reflection in the blood. Apparently tonight, Friday at 1am (errr, when?) there will be a teaser shown on GTTV. Now, I think that old Geoff Keighley is kind of a sleaze (I’m thinking of this one episode where he asked a Valve employee if the female character in Left for Dead would be “hot,” maybe “like Alyx Vance’s hot younger sister”), but I’ll tune in for this one. How could I not? They best have a showing at E3, otherwise I’ll have to travel to the frosty north and kill them. I want this game so bad.

Quick, lets talk about something else. Um, Baldur’s Gate 2! I totally started a new character (Conjurer, first BG2 mage ever). Exciting, I know… I need to play something else. I’m going to see Hellboy 2 tonight, I think, which I expect to be very fun, especially because I just sat through Renaissance, a bizarre French animated take on Blade Runner meets Paris. Not satisfactory, sadly, although it was pretty.

Finally, in the land of the one the blind the one eyed man is king, so take this ring. Yes!

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Back in the saddle, or something – also, Dragon Age!

Posted by deckard47 on July 7, 2008

Well, I’ve been busy (and by that I mean lazy) recently, so there haven’t been any posts. But now, what a post you shall have! Maybe.

To kick things off, check out these cool new PoP screens.

Look, a fight! Plus, your amusingly (why, always with the seksy clothings?) clad companion? I must admit, I still expect this to be good. They did me wrong with Warrior Within, but I think they can pull this one off.

Now, a quick movie update (since this is a movie blog).

Wanted: dumb, offensive, badly acted, directed, and written. Much too faithful to the (offensive, stupid, stupid) source material. Only good thing about it was Angelina Jolie. She actually appeared to want to be playing the role she was playing. As opposed to Morgan Freeman, who is cashing in and getting out. Good for him.

Hancock: interesting plot and characters hidden in there somewhere, but any time these elements surfaced, they were quickly forced back down by hideously stupid and offensive jokes (a hint: racism, homophobia, misogyny and prison rape are hi-larious).

Definitely Maybe: super good. Like totally. It’s funny, well acted, it’ll make you cry, or something, maybe. Go rent it, before you see fucking Wanted or Hancock. Please?

Time for games again, I guess. I’ve been playing a lot of games lately, but I haven’t completed any, so here goes: Devil May Cry 4 is as stupid as it looks, and tough, and only kind of fun. I don’t think I can stick with this one for long. Boom Blox is fantastic, it really is a great combination of Jenga, explosions, and other exciting things. Be warned: after my first night of intensive play, I awoke with an incredibly sore arm. My brothers suffered from the same ailment. Pathetic, I know. This game will rock your arm.

Dead Space is looking more and more like boring shit. There are these comic/video prequel things up on Gametrailers. Notice how the way game developers telegraph how “serious” their plot is is by saying fuck a lot. Like a ton. Also, remember (the guys who made this game really like to point this out), this game will be scary, because it has outer space, and dark, and blood guys. Plus, the cover of the game has a severed hand!. Shit be crazy. I don’t know if I can handle that level of terror.

I downloaded the demo for Ninja Gaiden 2, and it still retains its made-by-5-year olds feel (just watch the cutscene). BUT, it also includes crazy combat that is actually fun (as this game’s opposite, check out DMC 4’s combat). Gamefly it is. Sadly, I cannot give the same praise to Indiana Jones Lego edition. Its just as clumsy as the Star Wars games, and the Lego gimmick doesn’t make up for shitty gameplay.

Looking forward, several things excite me. Fable 2 is still looking cool to me (although it could be a load of bullshit, all of it, including that silly dog), I’ll be checking it out when it hits. I long for Penny Arcade Episode 2, especially because we have the tantalizing hat spider to look at. Oh, and S.T.A.L.K.E.R. Clear Sky? Makes me want a good computer, so much. I might have to rent Too Human, just because it might not suck . Although I am amused and disappointed by the seksy Norse cyberpunk strip club featured in the new trailer. Is this what we’ve come to? Strangely, I’ve been playing Oblivion again, and almost as a strangely, I am looking forward to Fallout 3. I shouldn’t. I should crush my hope like a spider, and throw it in the trash. Poor hope.

In the “not cool” box, we can file Civilization IV: Colonization. Doesn’t the entire premise of this game make you uncomfortable/disgusted? I mean, at least in Civ., lots of civilizations from all over get to rock out. Here, you’re colonizing the New World. Oh boy! Oh wait…

Halo Wars slouches toward its release date, spewing forth a vile batch of screens. Am I the only one puzzled by this game? Halo and its sequels have many good qualities. Please tell me we can all agree that you would not number plot, writing or acting among those good qualities. Seriously? It’s as unoriginal as the newest “Scary Movie” movie, I can think of a billion games with more interesting universes than Halo. Why not make an RTS out of those worlds? I would rather see Force Commander 2 than Halo Wars. I mean that.

Dragon Wars might show up at E3 this year. Please, please please, let this happen. I need something to keep me sane. I want so badly to create an evil female dwarf, have her fight her way up from the slums of the dwarf kingdom (as opposed to a dwarf character with a rich background, who would start in a different and more opulent part of the kingdom, thanks to Bioware’s backstory/gameplay integration. Did I just blow your mind…?), and choose whether to cast a dark pall over the land, or rescue everybody from (some kind of) evil shadow bad guys. I suspect she might have to be evil. Just maybe.

Finally, I’m back into Baldur’s Gate 2. I’m hopeless. Here’s to my Chaotic Neutral Swashbuckler, may she defeat that dirty Irenicus.

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