No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle. A Wii Review by Velius

27 02 2010

Another new author introductions.  This is Velius’s work, he is a master of all things Japanese and one of the most industry savvy people I know.  Formerly the best the World of Warcraft player in the world(of warcraft), and generally one of the best RPG players you’ll ever meet.  Currently, however, he is my only friend that owns a Wii so here is his review of probably one of the only Wii games I would consider being worth it to buy.  Enjoy everybody, oh yeah by the way please email any questions or requests for articles to zackysmack@hotmail.com or hit me up on Twitter at Zackysmack, thanks everybody.

No More Heroes 2 is about the farthest thing from a commercial success a game can get. The reason being not the game content or time of delivery, but a group of unique qualifiers that when put together spell doom for any game.

  1. Its Mature Rated
  2. Its Third Party
  3. It’s on the Wii

See, the first two items might spell financial success for any platform that is not Nintendo Wii honestly, most of the big hitters in Playstation 3 and Xbox360 are Mature third party titles, but somehow, beyond any logic, the Wii has the highest install base of either the PS3 or Xbox360 and yet games sell the goddamn least on it, except if you’re a sequel to a game from 1993 of course.

New Mario Brothers

10.5 Million sold. What the fuck?

What was going on? Oh yeah, No More Heroes 2, most likely scenario is that you have never played No More Heroes 1, more likely scenario is that you didn’t even know No More Heroes existed. Well I suppose I should get to the review, or talk about No More Heroes 1 and allow some context….

Box Art

Shit, looks like option 2

No More Heroes 1 follows the misadventures of a young man Travis Touchdown as he gets a Beam Katana, and then proceeds to Murder other assassins in the interest of becoming the Number 1 Ranked Assassin. Generally reviewers liked this game, mostly because it looked cool and it had a very ‘fresh’ take on storytelling. The only real complaint that as far as game play is concerned… it was um… not as good. So, we have a cool looking game with lots of witty commentary that fails on being a fun game because of graphics and game play idiocies. Some of these problems were saved in the second one, some weren’t. Unfortunately the some that were not happen to be a big drag on the whole experience.

Wallpaper

No More Heroes 2 is a flawed game, but it has more than a few gems that in the end make the game something that is worth playing through, be that the story, side missions, of the off the wall crazy fighting style the game presents, it sure does have some hook.

The game play of this is an action game that in general is just a button masher, find enemy, lock on enemy, hit the slash button until the Quick Time Event appear, do a vicious finisher and then move on. This is about the entire fighting basic mob process. Of course for the added flair there is the Ecstasy Gauge, which when filled has a variety of different affects. These affects range from the Beam Katana shooting laser beams, faster slash attacks, a massive AOE kill all, and turning into a Tiger.

Tiger

The boss fights on the other hand offer some differences, there are 50 ranked Assassins in the battle, and while there isn’t a boss fight for each of them there still is quite a few unique fun fights, Range it from an insane little girl riding operating a full on laser beam suit, to a Ghost that users a flamethrower, the bosses are where No More Heroes 2 shines.

In general the combat was pretty lifeless, compared to other Action Games of the type, such as God of War, Devil May Cry and such it just doesn’t have the depth and mechanics those games bring to the table. I mean really, the first 2-3 times where I had to kill 10+ enemies to move on was cool but eventually it become a nuisance that stood in the way of me and the next boss fight.

Ironically, the 8 bit side missions of the game offer some of the best punch, to put it out there right now, if you like old 8 bit games with less than stellar controls then this game is perfect to you. The side missions are available throughout the entire game, and while they offer nothing as far as story progression they will provide either money or strength and stamina. The side missions don’t fucking joke around either, their hard. I only got to 2/7 strength because the strength training is so damn hard, seriously I’d have to spend 3 hours perfecting that alone.

Training

There are entire websites dedicated to the difficulty of these.

Story? What story? Basically, the team behind No More Heroes 2 are not a bunch of idiots, in fact the lead designers name is Suda51, and you don’t get wicked cool names in Japan for being stupid. Sense Suda51 isn’t stupid he realized no one gives a damn about continuality or story, thus this game doesn’t take itself seriously at all, little explanation is given for actions taken and coming in with no knowledge of the events in No More Heroes 2 and being basically told nothing, and I found it didn’t hinder me at all.

But what the story and presentation does well is making the story and game fun to watch and entertain yourself with, unlike a lot of other games, this one doesn’t take itself seriously at all. Sex jokes are made every cut scene, violent acts, incomprehensible actions, silly dialog, etc, etc…..  It’s like the B-Movie of games really, and it knows it, and I love it for that.

Lightning Blood

JESUS CHRIST!

The characters are a high and low, the characters really have no back story or any explanation for the actions they take, which isn’t too bad considering the rest of the presentation. What the characters do have is entertainment, Travis Touchdown in particular is a remarkably interesting individual, being based completely off American Stereotypes for being a badass, and he really delivers to the generalization, be it from honoring a worthy fighter, to absolutely killing tons of people because they pissed him off, to having a soft spot for the ladies.

Ladies

Betcha it's not soft anymore. Hey-O!

Ill wrap this really damn long review with a few notes about the game, its music is nothing special, its visuals are cool and have a style to them, but I was still thinking the whole time that this would look great on the PS3. I would have loved for there to be trophies… but that’s more a stab at Nintendo so has very little bearing other than me being bitchy.

Really what it comes down to is that this game will never see high success, it has a lot of fun moments, but its choice of platform really hinders its experience. Add on that the game play has a lot of stumbling blocks, well it just ends up being a above average game that will only appeal to select people, but I’m fairly sure the good people at Grasshopper studio is fine with that.

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White Knight Chronicles, Review by EttenCo

25 02 2010

Hey everybody, this is a review of White Knight Chronicles and as much as I would love to take credit for it, the man who wrote it can knock out horses with a single punch so I don’t want to piss him off.  Also you may notice a lack of penis jokes and swearing so that’s another tip off that I didn’t have a hand in it.  I still think its a great article and very much in the theme and feel of this blog, plus it helps get more content to you, so please be kind to my newest site contributor EttenCo, the only man who can conceivably beat me at a simulation racing game.  From here on out its all EttenCo, enjoy.

Before I really get into this, I want to point out that game reviews are NOT meant to appeal to everybody.  If you don’t like the review, read others.  If you didn’t like the game, that’s fine too.  Unless you’re a striving social dictator who requires the utmost abundance of compliance, or a nine year-old girl, I like to think that you, the reader, can handle a little discrepancy when it comes to our opinions.  That Said, let’s get started.

Are you any of these individuals?  If so, stop reading NOW!

Different RPG’s have their drawing points. Some have story or mechanics, some have graphics, and some have ridiculous customization.  WKC dabbles in all three but doesn’t do well enough in one to make it stand above other games before it.  But it does bring enough of all of them together to make a reasonably above average game.

The game begins with a character customization that either has you making what looks like a freakishly large toddler, or a life size garden gnome.  The customization options are many, but don’t differentiate enough to make you feel uniquely different.  But you find out later that it only really matters in Online play since your created character is only a step above a silent spectator throughout the entire story of WKC.  Your character’s entire introduction is, “Hey I found this new guy to help you out, take him with you.”  BAM! Backstory, relationships, personality, all supposedly summed up in that statement, and that’s who you are, some schmuck who’s just working for the man.

Luckily, there are a range of other characters to keep you distracted from your boring created gnome.  The main characters differ enough from each other to make them memorable but share similar traits that make them believable as well.  The main character you’re introduced to right away is Leonard.  The ponytail-sporting, loyal, young-adult who finds out later that he was destined to become a “Pact-maker” or one who can control the White Knight, known in the game as an “Incoruptus”.  Yes the aspect of the game that has created so much draw.  Your main character can change into a hulking armor-clad knight that would have Iron Man gushing poo into his drawers.

Giant Knight + Giant Weapons = Fun for everyone

The downside to the giant-knight-mode is that the damage you do to enemies doesn’t scale well with the damage you could do as plain old Leonard.  I found myself not transforming hardly at all because doing so requires Leonard to use up AC(Action Chips), which is this games version of Action Points.  Most skills and combos require the use of AC but transforming into a knight uses all of them, and stockpiling them again requires another 10 minutes of hacking through smaller enemies.  Another downside to the giant-knight-mode is that it is limited to select characters in the story, one of which is NOT your created gnome/toddler character.  This is a downer because I anticipated being able to go into online matches with other people and engage in massive battles where we all have our own unique “White Knights” and being able to change out equipment and customize the look of these knights.  Sadly, this is not the case.

The battle system is very similar to that of FFXII.  Real-time turn-based, as I would describe it, where your party is free to roam around while your “action bar” fills and then allows you to select an attack or action from a menu of sorts.  What differs in White Knight Chronicles is the customization of the battle menu mostly.  You’re allowed to fill it with whichever commands you like and in whatever order, and even are allowed to create your own combos from unlocked attack maneuvers by stringing them together in almost any particular order.  The combinations keep the players involved in the battles before them because they require that you time your button presses in concert with the actions on screen.  A very simplified quick-time event, if you will.

The customization is where this game flowers the most.  Offline customization is focused on your weapon and magic proficiency’s and your equipment as well as your characters attack combinations.  Online customization goes a couple steps beyond that and allows you to create your own town full of houses, functioning shops, bustling people and all the little nuances that makes a town feel real.  Getting to that point though is anything but easy.  Parts of your town require the collecting of items from the main story and in somewhat ridiculous amounts.  People, which you recruit into your town, have player level or guild level requirements placed on them before they can be recruited, some are low or nonexistent while others are stringent and require a bit more work.  It’s all very similar to one of Level 5’s latest games, Dark Cloud 2 except this time you are free to place town parts as you wish.  What does a developed town get you?  Town parts have stats which can raise your overall town stats which then allow the shops in your town to sell better items that you can then buy to get upgraded weapons, armor, or better town parts.

It can be yours for 5,000,000 Golem Testicles

The other portion of the online experience in White Knight Chronicles is the coop.  I have mixed emotions about this one.  They dumbed it down so instead of having an entire online world which players interact in, they are limited to only doing quests and visiting each other’s towns.  This can be nice because instead of waiting around for nine hours to get a party together to go on a quest you simply are joined up with people who have selected to do the same quest as you.  This speeds things up significantly and gets straight to the point but it doesn’t guarantee you’ll get placed with people who know what they’re doing or who are sympathetic to newbies.  It does also take a while to unlock all 50 online quests in the game.  I’m sitting at 45 hours and I’ve only got around 15 of them.  Some are more fun than others and range from escort quests to “kill the bad monster” type jobs.  The rewards are generally the same every time and so far, no equipment is ever dropped or collected from quests or monsters (sorry to all those Diablo fans).  Voice chat is optional but I like to stick to text-talk since some quests can go as long as 45 minutes which is a long time if you have to sit and listen to some idiot whistling the game music off key.

Apart from tone-deaf headset spammers, the other downside to online play is that you’re basically forced to do quests in parties, which is awesome for people who have the patience of a saint or three close friends that also own the game.  Doing things solo requires time, resources, and the careful planning and luck of a six hour game of risk.  Unless you’re vastly overpowered, you’d be lucky to make it to the boss battle, let alone survive it on your own.

The last few things I want to make note of are the environment and music.  I thought that the environments suited the game very well.  The caves looked as I expected caves to look.  The wilderness areas were littered with green shades and decent scenery, and the towns had people and buildings that looked like the real thing.  Music had its ups and downs.  Some tunes are relaxing and make passing the time trudging through forests or dungeons, or even taking time building a town, a little bit easier while others do get old after only a few plays through. (BATTLE MUSIC……if any tune in any RPG had to be liked above the rest, it’s the music you hear most frequently, AKA: BATTLE MUSIC)

So there you go, take from that what you will.  Again, if you can’t handle criticism, well, have fun with the rest of your very sad existence.





Confessions of a Trophy Collector(Not a whore!)

23 02 2010

Gold

Trophy Whore.....get it?

A few days back I wrote a piece that was a trophy guide for the PS3 version of Saboteur, although it is with some confidence that I say anyone can use it and figure out to sub in the ‘Y’ button for the ‘X’ button or whatever the equivalent is on the 360 controller.  Regardless, at the beginning of the article I wrote a short little paragraph that outlined my standpoint as a trophy whore.  That is, after all, the generally accepted term for someone that actively tries to get a lot of PSN trophies.  A few hours later though, as I was finishing up Dragon Age, I kind of thought about it a little bit, and resolved to find out exactly what the term means; this search inevitably lead me to Urban Dictionary.  Sense Urban Dictionary is probably the only source of information on terms such as this.  What I found was that universally Trophy Whores as classified as people that play games simply to get more trophies, and will play shitty games to get easy trophies.  If I had the time of the will I would post a list of all the games I own for PS3 on here, and if you looked through it I don’t think you would find one game on there that I own that is just a shitty game with easy trophies.  Okay yes I own Matt Hazard but I didn’t even know that game had trophies tell I played it, I was honestly just curious about it, in much the same reason I own Kane and Lynch, or LAIR.

Kane and Lynch

Not exactly on most peoples must own list.

The point I am making here is that even though I have a pretty fair amount of trophies, I don’t think I actually classify as a ‘Trophy Whore’.  So let’s take a look at the logic behind that, and then at the end I am going to make some recommendations to games companies to try and make the trophy system work better.  Okay so first off there is a common trophy in most games that has multiple difficulty levels, which is to beat it on every difficulty level.  Every time I get a new game I beat it on normal first, no not because I am a big giant pussy or anything like that, I go back and beat it on hard afterwards, but for me I want to be able to play and have fun and experience a new game without having to worry about getting crushed by the enemies over and over again.  Even Matt Hazard which a 1 armed man could beat while sleeping on hard, I still played it through twice.  I could give two shits about getting trophies in exchange for jeopardizing the fun of a game for me, this strategy has caused me to do crazy things like beat Uncharted 2, 3 fucking times, but for that game it was totally worth it.  In the end I am into gaming for the feel of it, the experience, and the general majesty of playing something really great.  It’s not about getting it, playing it as fast as I can and only for trophies and then moving on to the next, which is the same logic behind why I will never rent a goddamn game.  Personally I feel that people who play games for the sort of reason are a tad on the pathetic side, I mean my E-Peen is roughly the size of Ron Jeremy, so why would all those people want something bigger than that?  It’s just unruly at that point.

Censored

You were expected Ron Jermey's penis weren't you? Sick bastard.

I would venture a guess that most people out there who are called Trophy Whores really aren’t whores by any stretch of the imagination.  The idea is of course that a whore does anything for money, while a trophy whore will do anything to get trophies.  I have a rather strong collection of trophies, 14 Platinum’s is I am not mistaken, which I am not, if I had more time the number would be around 20 right now(also if Arkham Asylum wasn’t such a fucking bastard pants).  So yeah it’s hard for me to argue that trophies aren’t important to me, so I won’t, because they are.  I really like being able to show 14 Platinum’s and various other trophies, i.e. I am more proud of my Killzone 2 top 1% trophy then my Matt Hazard Platinum.

Percent

Yeah I took a picture of it, thats how proud I was of that moment.

In order to understand this I am going to do something pretty dangerous, I am going to turn my Hannibal Lecter talent for analysis on myself.  Right, so I am a early 20’s college graduate living in the great state of Wisconsin, known for its wild and crazy people who generally spend all their time outside during the constant summers, meeting and talking to all the neighbors they have.  That’s a lie of course, it’s fucking cold up here 9 months out of the year and no one in the right mind wants to be outside most of that time, more than likely you will stay inside and get fat.  Which is what I did for most of my life, however I am still a very competitive person, so all throughout my time in middle and high school I tried out for various teams, even had a knack for some of them.  I wrestled and played football with some distinction, I also tried out for Basketball and Track, but for me I always came home at night and played games.  Now the kicker here is that for a lot of the games I owned the bulk of them were harder to master then wrestling and Football, which I thought was kind of odd sense conventional wisdom says it, should be the other way around.  Try telling that to a master of Tekken, or someone, like yours truly, who is an absolutely deadly FPS player, we will laugh at your ball tossing.  You see, game to game, football is the same fucking thing all the time, game to game with video games though it’s a different story.  You play Killzone 2 slow and methodical, going for headshots mostly, where as Resistance 2 is all about explosives and learning to get good grenade tosses and under barrel grenades, more often than not just holding down fire from the second you spawn will yield at least 2 kills.

Resistance 2

See, hold down Fire and get two kills, told ya.

See I like being competitive but if there is one thing I hate more than anything else its being uncompetitive in a group setting or even really competing in a group setting.  I used to box a lot, like fight with my fists, and when it was just me doing it I went every night for 2 hours and worked myself to exhaustion because I knew I could do better.   But as soon as others started showing up I just hated it and couldn’t do it anymore; don’t know why that’s just how I am wired.  Anyways the point is that the only person I really feel the need to be competitive with is I, and that’s what trophies let me do.  They let me challenge myself, I didn’t get 10,000 ranked online kills in R2 because I wanted a Platinum, I did it because everyone else said that’s nuts.  I didn’t get in the top 1% of Killzone 2 players because I wanted a Platinum for that game either, it was because that was just such a daunting task, it required me to play 8 hours a day minimum for 7 days, with 14 hour days on the weekend.  That’s just sheer insanity if you think about it, and all that does is let you master 1 game out of millions.  I mean think about it, what professional athlete can boast something like that?  Don’t get me wrong, I am not some disillusioned freak that thinks I am better then Charles Woodson at defending passes, but I am putting forward for your consideration that Charles Woodson would stand literally no chance against me in a R2 Deathmatch.  Just because his particular craft brings more recognition with it, does not me that as a master of my craft I am not as skilled and should be looked down upon by others.

Woodson

Yeah thats right Woodson, you got nothing, bow down bitch.

So overall in my opinion I am no more of a trophy whore then Tom Brady is a football whore, or Quentin Jackson is a UFC whore.  True I don’t get the money and women that they do (for that matter I don’t get any money or women)  but I am happy to be what I am, I am happy when I enter a R2 pregame lobby and people say ‘Oh shit, TheShape is here’ and then leave.  I doubt I could do what Brady does, but I doubt he could do what I do either.  I don’t actively seek out Platinum’s and trophies in order to prove I am better than anyone else, EttenCo on my PSN list could beat me at Fight Night while be skull fucked by a polar bear.  Vellius could beat me at a PVP RPG match while having his balls massaged by a barbed-wire glove, much like I assume both of those people understand that I could drive circles around them in Gran Turismo.  I have a healthy respect for others masters of the craft we call gaming, just like athletes in any other sport respect those they play with.  So in the end Trophies don’t happen because I go out and try to get them, they more happen as a byproduct of skill, I want to go out and get the odd ones and the Platinum because I want to prove to myself that I can do it, that I can do something the Dev’s felt was hard enough to give me an award for it.  A trophy whore?  I think not.

Trophy

Way classier then that ho with the golf trophy.

Okay that was my required once per month somewhat serious article, so let’s cap it off with some swearing and general insanity.

I have at this point something like 1400 trophies collected so its safe to say I have seen a lot of the tricks games have to offer up.  This has given me perspective of what is good and bad about the trophy system so here is some advice to developers.

  1. Stop putting multiplayer grinding trophies into your games:  I know you want people to play your game online, it keeps them interested, increases the likely hood their friends will buy it, and that they’ll buy DLC packs for the game.  But I had to spend a total of 175 hours in Resistance 2 to get a silver fucking trophy, that’s just ridiculous.  A lot of the time now a day’s your multiplayer is tagged on at best, and as dev’s you know it’s not very good yet you force everyone to play it endlessly.  Quantum of Solace actually has less single player trophies then multiplayer trophies, and the killer is that the single player is not that bad, while the multiplayer barely functions, I have never had more than 1 sustained hour of play without the servers shitting all over themselves.
Craig

I don't care if you are the coolest man on earth, your game was still shit.

  1. Better balance to your in game trophies levels:  So you want a good balance of trophies, some bronze, some silver and some gold.  But when you set trophy requirements I would ask that you at least try them.  Killzone 2 has a silver trophy for completely all the missions on any difficulty level, now not to downplay it here, but an epileptic could beat that game on easy while someone flashed strobe lights into his eyes.  While there is a bronze trophy for getting 3 headshot kills in a row with one clip from the revolver, or for that matter a bronze for killing 5 Helghast in 15 seconds while on foot and maintaining 85% health.  WHAT THE FUCK?  Those are way too specific and difficult to be bronze trophies.  But then you have say Fallout 3 which every trophy consists of either doing something a certain number or times or beating a mission, no problem.  But then you have Ferrari Challenge where you have to beat all the arcade modes in order in one play through getting first on every track on the hardest of 8 difficulty levels for a silver trophy.  I am not implying that all game makers get together and decide to make some sort of standard difficulty curve, one of the things I like, is knowing there are easier games and harder games out there.  I never want a standard game level curve.  I just want developers to look at their own trophies in their own game and see if they are really being honest with the distribution of trophies.
Salvation

Pictured Above: Not an even distribution of trophies, seriously look it up.

  1. Hidden trophies:  Okay this is by far my biggest pet peeve with the trophy system so far.  So when you hide the names of story trophies I think you’re doing a great thing.  I don’t want to accidentally find out who the final boss is when glancing through trophy requirements.  That’s not the issue here; the issue is when you hide trophy requirements to non-story trophies.  Let me beat you with the stick of knowledge here; Matt Hazard has a hidden bronze that requires you to kill three level 4 programs with one grenade shot during the final boss battle.  Okay let’s set this up for you, you can equip 2 weapons at once in Matt Hazard, in order to get to the final boss fight you have to go through about 20 minutes of pretty intense shootouts, and the only grenade launcher spawns really early in the level.  So to even have a shot at this one you would have to sacrifice 1 weapon slot that you can’t use because you need to save the ammo for it, for the entire level.  Then you would get to the final boss fight you would have to wait for the last of 3 enemy spawn sequences, and then manage to kill 3 with one hit.  In what fucking world is anyone going to accidentally do that?  When you make a trophy hidden its assumed that you will either be forced to do it, or most likely accidentally do it.  When your hidden trophy meets none of those guidelines then why the fuck is it hidden?  It just forces you to go to a trophy guide in order to find out how to do it.  Almost every game is guilty of this at some point in time.  It’s just completely unnecessary, and only serves to irritate the users of the game.
Heavy Rain

54 trophies, all hidden...can't wait.

  1. Trophies that require you to own 4 copies of the game and other tactics like that:  Motorstorm is the biggest offender I know here, one trophy is to win a split screen match against 4 people, which means you have to have 4 controllers and 4 friends who want to play that game.  After that you get the best of the bunch, win a match online with 4 people from your friends list.  Excuse me?  That’s a bronze?  I have to have 3 other people that own this game and then get all of them together to play one match?  What if I am my only friend that really likes Motorstorm?  It’s just bullshit to try and get you to buy the game more than once, or friend everyone you play the game with in the hopes of getting it.  Burnout has a couple in there that require you to own a Playstation Eye in order to get, wow so I have to own a 40 dollar add on camera to get a shitty bronze, and then it’s not even creative like ‘send 5 straight smugshots’(Which would mean 5 straight kills) no its something like ‘turn on the Playstation Eye’.  Basically all that means is do you own the camera?  Yes?  Have a trophy.  What’s next, M.A.G. gives you gold for talking to someone using the official Sony headset?
Playstation Headset

Would I buy it for a Gold? No probably not. Do I own it? Yeah....

So there you have it, my suggestions to make trophies better.

Peace.





Weekly News Roundup Volume 2!

20 02 2010

Good news, more content and games reviews are coming, I got friends of mine to write up reviews for Wii and PS3 games that I don’t own or don’t have time to play.  Sense I won’t pay them in anything except love, I can’t guarantee when those articles will be available to me to publish, or when I will get around to uploading them.  For that matter, when WordPress will not glitch up long enough for me to upload something, I swear when I get a job I am going to buy some cheap web hosting for this site.  So yeah if anything is reading this that isn’t the two friends I have writing now, you have a reason to be excited.

Fox News

As fair and balanced as Fox News.

Right-o time for another installment of my weekly news rundown, that isn’t weekly at all.  I have got 6 subjects on the line for today and some of them are pretty good, others are things only I care about.  But sense I wrote it and could give two shits about what you want, so here you go.

Is the 360’s decision to use DVD’s starting to hurt them?  Verdict:  Uh, pretty sure it has been for a while.

FF13 Dvds

What the current 360 situation is.

Okay so everyone needs to dust their brains off here for a second because I am going to ask you to think, ready?  Think back 3 years ago to a time when shiny new HD consoles were just starting to compete with one another.  The Wii was in its only little world of sunshine, daisies, and happiness, blissfully unaware that its only good games for the next 4 years had just come out, and the rest of us were unaware that this wouldn’t matter for some reason.  The 360 was enjoying a healthy dose of ‘hardcore’ dominance with hits like Halo 3 and the surprising dose of excellent that was Gears of War.  The PS3 was just out and attempting the almost impossible task of crawling up the massive hole that Sony and Microsoft had collectively dug for the PS3.  Sony had one big weapon it was using to get customers, the Blu-ray disc, capable of 40GB of data storage, it was supposed to usher in this wonderful new world of gaming where everything would look like a Pixar movie and play as good as Shadow of the Colossus.

Heavy Rain

The affore mentioned Pixar/SotC mix.

So Microsoft did something that was so incredibly brilliant, I am shocked to admit it happened, they went out and paid money so all those developers who were strapped for cash because of the massive cost of building new game engines, would release their games on both consoles.  This was good for devs for a couple of reasons, first they got big checks from Microsoft, second developing for the 360 was like developing for the original Xbox or a PC you just had more power on tap so the costs were relatively low, and third it made them all pretty much hate the PS3 for being overly complicated, overly expensive, and there was almost no advantages to it all.  So here you have this massive block of power that is the 360, and next to it you have the PS3 which is undoubtedly more powerful but that power is broken up into a bunch of smaller pieces you have to make worth together, which is hard, and devs are lazy lazy lazy folks, work is like the plague to them.  So Microsoft effectively neutralized the advantage that the PS3 had in hardware, because it was cheaper and easier to make it for the 360, so they did, and then ported it to the PS3.  So basically every game was only as powerful as the 360 could be, not as powerful as the PS3 could be, but see things designed to work on 360 hardware with DVD’s don’t work so well with PS3 hardware and Blu-ray discs.  So we entered into this wonderful world of subpar ports and massive hard drive installs, because a Blu-ray reader is half as fast as a DVD reader so you have to install all the data to the hard drive to make up for it.  So after owning say 10 games in the first year, your entire hard drive has already been eaten up.  I think my best example of this would be DMC4, everyone cried out for Sony’s metaphorical head when they found out DMC4 had a 5GB install on the PS3, when they should have been asking for Capcom’s head.  What the fuck?  Sony didn’t program the damn game, if Capcom can’t figure out how to mask load times that’s their problem, I criticize because Uncharted had already come out and was eyepoppingly good looking with no hard drive install, if they could do it so could you Capcom, but that would have required work.  Orange Box is another one to look at, let’s be clear here, Half-Life 2 is a great game, probably one of the best ever, but Source has never really been a graphics powerhouse.  So when Orange Box got ported to the PS3 it would stand to reason it would look pretty good, christ my 5 year old laptop can play Half-Life 2 pretty flawlessly.  But if you played Orange Box for PS3 you would know that it looks like Half-Life 2 running on the Commodore 64, because all EA did was take the PC code and dump it on a Blu-ray disc, that game had memory leaks you could drive an Aircraft carrier through.

Nimitz

Relativly speaking thats a small Aircraft Carrier.

Sony stood their ground and said ‘In 3 years you’re going to rue the day you decided to make the 360 your lead platform!’ and everyone laughed.  Now 3 years later guess what?  Actually it’s not what you think; about a year ago most studios switched over and made the PS3 the lead platform.  Rockstar started the murmurings when they spent the vast majority of the last year of development complaining about having to cut a lot of shit out of GTAIV because it just wouldn’t fit.  It’s funny because EA D.I.C.E. is one of my favorite targets in the world, they just make it too damn easy, but they were the ones that made the switch.  Mirror’s Edge was lead dev’d on the PS3, and something really remarkable happened as a result, D.I.C.E. came out and said that making PS3 lead was struggle at first but after growing pains it was really fast and allowed them to push the game well beyond what it would have been.  Then people saw MGS4, and Resistance 2, and Killzone 2, they saw the tech demo’s for Heavy Rain, the first shots of God Of War III running.  They found out that Sucker Punch made infamous on an optimized PS2 engine and it looked better then a lot of their lead 360 games that got ported.  It dawned on everyone, Sony was telling the truth.  There system was expensive and cumbersome at launch but it was future proofed for years to come, the 360 was easy at launch but now basic games require 2 discs just to run on the fucking thing.  If you think I am just blowing smoke, think about this, would Microsoft be touting Natal as a relaunch of the system if they had years of power yet to be unlocked?  There games are maxed out so there shifting the focus to something else instead.

Natal

Thank god, it had been a year sense I bought Halo again! RE-FUCKING-JOYCE!

All of this is building up to the rather simple point that the decision to use DVD’s instead of a new media standard was a move Microsoft made to capture the eye of studios struggling with spiraling development costs, and to keep their system cheap to capture new gamers.  But all that was stuff for launch and the 2 years that followed, they had no real concrete plan after that, and now everyone who is willing to admit it, is seeing the cracks in the mighty Microsoft juggernaut.  The DVD’s were always a problem, they were always going to be a bigger and bigger problem with each passing year, id Software was the first major player to say it.  There new title ‘Rage’ was going to have to be severely compressed to fit on 2 Xbox DVD’s, while the PS3 one was 1 disc that ran faster, with less load times and looked better.  The Lost Planet 2 team is lamenting that 30% of their game is going to have to be released as day-1 DLC packs because they can’t fit it on the discs.  Oh yeah in case you weren’t aware that’s why day-1 DLC for Multi-console titles has become big because they can’t fit it on the fucking discs and have to give it back to you right away.  700mb of content is roughly 1/10 of a DVD, so bonus quests and characters and maps and modes have to be sold back to you later.  Sony loves it because developers pay by the mb on the PSN, so now all the sudden the 360 is costing them more money than the PS3, how do you like that?  Payback, as they say, is a bitch.

Payback

Payback, personified.

Sony America’s new PSPgo promotion from an early adopter’s standpoint.  Verdict: My balls hurt from being busted so much.

PSP Go

That is Sony's metaphorical cock, slapping me in the face.

Okay so admittedly that first one was a bit of an anti-360 rant as well as piece about why Microsoft knowingly fucked there users from day 1.  Sense I am nothing if not a fair and balanced individual, lets balance the scales out by talking about how Sony fucked there users from day 1, and then 6 months later decided to slap them in the face for letting themselves get fucked.  I want to make a point clear first, I bought a PSPgo day 1, drove 40 minutes to get it too, so I could use Best Buy coupons to make its price a little easier to swallow.  I really like it, its light, it looks cool, and the idea of a handheld that is digital only is really cool; it opens the door for Sony to do some neat things with it.  Just look at Steam, everybody loves it, hell my 60 year old Dad loves it because it’s easy and intuitive and most importantly it understands that as a digital only delivery platform it can do deals and promotions and still make gobs of money.  You can tell that Sony looked long and hard at the iPhone as a games platform, and how its distribution works, and then they looked at Steam and how it delivers content, and then proceeded to take all those wonderful things they learned and throw them into a fire, and then take the ashes and piss on them, and then launch them into space.

Launch

Bye bye solid advice! We barely knew you!

For me the whole go of online distribution is that you can get things to people cheaper and faster than disc based, which would imply that things for the PSPgo would be cheaper then say the regular PSP, that implication however is dead wrong.  It isn’t cheaper, not even 1 cent cheaper, in fact when you factor in powering the device and paying for the internet connection to download it, it’s probably more expensive.  Let’s start from the beginning though, when the Go launched in America I got a voucher for Rockband Unplugged, it was a completely free game, and could not have cared less about it.  No instead I went and got Patapon 2 and God of War, you know games that people care about and buy systems to play.  Europe got Gran Turismo PSP for free, and got to trade in three PSP UMD discs for download vouches, essentially getting 4 free games for buying the fucking thing.  Weeks later they were giving codes to download LittleBIGPlanet PSP, Assassins Creed Bloodlines, or Motorstorm.  In case you’re wondering that tally is now up to 5 free 40 dollar games, which math teaches me is roughly 200 dollars, which  means European owners paid around 50 bucks for their Go’s.  Japan got similar deals with different games, and months later here in the U.S. the best I have gotten is still Rockband Unplugged.  I think I qualify as a fairly loyal Sony consumer; I am one of maybe 250,000 U.S. PSPgo owners, basically the early adopters that are even allowing Sony to continue with this games Platform.  I have maintained the entire time that eventually Sony will wise up and start giving discounts to Go owners via the PSN, and maybe some game vouches.

Steam

Like another really popular content delivery platform does.

So imagine my joy last week when I found out that they were finally bringing the AC:B and LBP deal to the U.S. all you had to do was register your device on the PSN and you would be sent a voucher…..wait, what the fuck?  What if I already registered my device on the PSN months ago when I bought the fucker and couldn’t use it for 3 days until I got a goddamn wireless signal to do a firmware update sense you can’t do that over a corded connection for some arbitrary reason?  If that’s the case then congratulations you have been completely fucked over by Sony, the deal is only valid for brand new PSN users, therefore only good for brand new Go owners.  The rest of us that spent our hard earned money to support you in your fledgling days are getting nothing out of this whole deal except a big middle finger.  Maybe someday if the whole thing works will get to say we were there, we were good men who would not roll over in the face of a tyrant, we fought for what we believed in, that a world could exist where digital distribution would not cost the same as disc based content, and hardware manufactures would appreciate there consumers a little more, and shortly after that me and my magical unicorn dragon will ride into space and find the kingdom of infinite cake.

Art

This will happen before Sony does something smart with the GO.

Non-littleBIGplanet Avatar pictures were released.  Verdict?  2-7!

Whenever the hell it was that I wrote my last news rundown thing I mentioned first off that Deadspace Extraction should release as a PSN and XBL download for 15 bucks and it would probably sell better then the Wii version.  Well were about to find out if that’s true or not because EA is going to do just that, now that reaffirmed the undying love I have for myself, and stroked my ego into a giant ascending whirlwind of flame.  So you can imagine how happy I was when found out that Sony once again read my blog and did exactly what I told them to do by releasing premium avatars that weren’t lBp.  So last week they put out ones based on M.A.G. and I am pretty sure I am going to get the team Raven one, sense Raven is my team and I will admit that despite it being so far in last place in game statistics its frankly embarrassing, I still like them to a punch of hoodie wearing psychos over at S.E.V.R.  Besides I get ball tons of bonus for finishing first all the time.

Raven

See, in context thats worth 50 cents.

This comes down to that same old impression as Home, which is, is it pathetic to buy stuff for an Avatar in a game, even if it is only 50 cents?  Well no I don’t really think it is, weird as this sounds.  See my PSN Avatar is seen by nearly 65 friends on there now.  I buy a new shirt because I don’t want to look like a slob or the same as everyone else and that’s only for about 4-5 real life people that I care enough about to spend money on clothes.  I spend a fuck load more money on games and care about my persona in online gaming a whole fuck load more too, so 50 cents to set myself apart in that world is really pretty worth it to me.  In the end I just wanted to toot my own horn for being right again, much like Michael Pachter does for his industry best 1 out of 10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000 predictions.

Pachter

He got his own fucking TV show :*(

Yakuza 3 is coming!  Verdict:  Hell yeah it is!

Yakuza 3

This is what popped up when I googled Yakuza 3

So this week a demo for Yakuza 3 was released on the PSN, later that night I was inundated with literally 2 emails asking me how excited I was for that game.  Well the answer I would give is that I don’t think I know anybody that has played any of the other previous Yakuza games or knows anything about them that wasn’t really really really excited when they heard it was coming to the U.S. after a lot of speculations.  For those of you that don’t know, the Yakuza series is probably the best example of the ‘Like GTA but’ genre of games.  However unlike its bastard inbred cousins (Just Cause, Saints Row, etc) Yakuza has never been able to build any sort of U.S. fanbase.  Well not one big enough to justify releasing the games over here.  I mean they have, but every time they do they sell like a 9-year old boy in a chur….uh like a….Starship Enterprise replica at a Star Wars convention i.e. not good.  After which Sega swears up and down that they will never release the next installment over here stateside, but then the next installment makes enough money in Japan that they can and do release it everywhere else.

Yakuza Tatoo

That tatoo ain't cheap folks.

The focus of Yakuza is less on gunplay and general mayhem and more on good cohesive storytelling and good old fashion beat-em-up games.  Like Double Dragon or River City Rampage(or, if you accidentally download a batch of nes games with porn mods, Pussy City Rampage), this game has you fighting with fists of fury.  There’s an interesting notion, why did those kinds of games die off over here?  Japan still loves beat-em-ups, so does Europe, but America just fell out with them, like Healthbars in FPS’s.  Anyways, think Godhand with more than one background, and GTAIV without a brown/grey filter on it and you pretty much have the notion of Yakuza.  The demo was a good start, and I think that Yakuza could really become one of those rare transitional franchises, where something really popular in Japan actually translates well to the U.S. market and sells well here too.  The sort of game that people in the U.S. actually wait for to come out of Japan, if they market it right it could be a success story, here is hoping it is because there a fantastic series of games that really deserve some recognition.  More than likely it’s going to get lost in the March shuffle though, sense that fucking month has become the new November for some reason.

God of War 3

Pictured Above: The likely result of the Yakuza 3 vs. God of War match.

Bobby Kotick says he is not a ‘Dick’.  Verdict:  But he is.

I mean really, the guy is a tremendous dick; this guy releases like 20 Guitar Hero games a year and then fires his employees when they don’t sell well.  He approves making Tony Hawk Ride which is a shitty game with a shitty over priced skate board you have to plug in to use, and then tells console makers there shit is too expensive.  He wants to make MW a pay to play service, you know because it offers you so many awesome features that other online shooters don’t to justify that cost.  In short he is a very short man, with an even shorter amount of integrity, and will gladly hang you and everyone else out to die if it means getting his stock options up 1/10 of a point.  Which makes him the enemy of any gamer that likes originality or new and interesting concepts, and for those of you that think what we think doesn’t matter, remember EA.

Kotick

How Bobby Kotick see's the world.

Remember 10 years ago when they would release Madden 09, Head Coach 09, Player Trainer 09 at the same time and for every mother fucking system on earth?  When they would hold their employees inside at gunpoint and force them to program crap before they would feed them.  Well now they take risks with new and interesting ideas like Mirrors Edge, and shake up established franchises like giving Battlefield a single player aspect/campaign.  That’s because we stopped buying there shit and sent them hate mail up the ass; remember consumers still hold the power here.  The very fact that Kotick is making statements like this shows that he is starting to be slightly concerned about his image with gamers, maybe there dwindling returns on games this year, even MW2 really, is already having an effect on him.

Valve is sure they’ll make games for PS3 in the future.  Verdict: Oh well thank you Valve.

Valve

Valve, cool logo, uncool company.

Well get ready because I think Valve has consistently pissed me off the most of anybody in the world over the past 5 years, and I spent 2 years dating a bi-polar girl.  I really want to know when Valve got this inflated view of themselves as some sort of messiahs of gaming, who could actively ignore, no, who could actively antagonize an entire section of the gaming world for years and then just wake up one day and say ‘Yeah we’ll make some games for you I guess’ and were all supposed to just melt and thank them and throw roses at their feet.  Yes ladies and gentlemen, be thankful because you too can now wait for the rest of time for Half-Life 2 Episode 3 to come out, in the mean time enjoying a completely underwhelming, yet inexplicably popular, dose of mediocrity known as Left 4 Dead.  Seriously I have tried to play L4D no less than 6 times now, and every time I just haven’t gotten why people like it so much.  You run around the exact same environment and fight zombies, the zombies change up now and then but that’s really all the game brings to the table.  It’s graphically unimpressive and the Havok physics are once again laughable at best, with zombies frequently falling onto a board and then launching into the upper atmosphere.

Unleashed

Proper use of Havok Physics.

Source is just freaking old now, and Valve won’t make a new one for anything; they refuse to make HL2:E3, often saying they don’t even know how to end it yet; Left 4 Dead 2 was released recently and couldn’t have impressed me less.  In fact the only thing they made in the last 7 years that has been at all worth it to even play was Portal, and they didn’t even make that, a local college that licensed there engine did.  The last time Valve released a game for a Sony console was the original Half Life for the PS2, 10 fucking years ago.  I would like to think that Sony gamers have gotten along just fine without them for this long, so I don’t really know what Valve expects to happen here.  A Left 4 Dead port will sell like shit, they know that, which means that they would have to make Portal 2 for PS3 or HL2:E3 for PS3 neither of which I would think they would want to do based on some of the stuff they have said over the past 5 years.

Headcrabs

Pic unrelated.

I really wouldn’t have cared that much, I mean there are plenty of people that don’t make PS3 games and I still like them.  Epic Games are great fun; they have Cliffy B who is the logical opposite of Bobby K.  The reason I don’t hate Epic is that every fucking time Cliffy B has opened his mouth for the previous 5 years he has not gone out of his way to insult Sony, the Playstation brand, and anyone that owns one.  This, in case you didn’t know, is exactly what Gabe Newell has done.  Gabe Newell is the fattest man on earth, and it seems he has let all that fat go directly to his head.  I mean some friendly ribbing now and then is okay, but in over the last 5 years he has said, the PS3 is useless, that no sane person would own one or make games for it, Valve would never waste the money to make PS3 games, Left 4 Dead won’t be on PS3 because the community is awful, they didn’t care that Orange Box was awful on PS3 and that none of the patches were released for it.  I mean it’s just classless, you get the impression Kaz Hirai must asked him how far along he was the first time he met him.  He seems to have a completely un-rational hatred for all things Sony; he had neither PS3 development going on, nor any plan for it, so why the hell did he sit there and say it was expensive and complicated all those years?  How did he know it was?  Randy Pitchford the CEO over at Gearbox basically said Gabe was full of shit and should shut up, which, trust me, is what a lot of people out there are thinking.  For that matter the CEO of Insomniac called him a dick on their Podcast, followed by Sucker Punch’s CEO saying Newell needed to lay off Sony and get some work done.  Even their own quotes show an unnecessary level of hate, they didn’t even care that their own game sucked on the PS3, and how can you not care that something you made isn’t any good?

Orange Box

Pictured Above: Something that was not well done.

If you don’t want to make PS3 games, then fine don’t, no one is forcing you too.  But you can’t expect to do and say the things he has said for the previous few years and then all the sudden realize that there is money to be made, and then change your entire attitude toward something.  Maybe if they apologized or something it would be better, but when they come out and say ‘Yeah I guess we can’ there still acting like some emo-child you asked to go into the sunlight.  It’s the most backhanded compliment I have heard in a while, I would tell you to boycott there shit to teach them a lesson but that would just give Newell more ammunition in his quest.  No I would ask that you look at the simple merits of what you’re being presented with, with all the great stuff available for you to get on PS3, are you really missing the Valve stuff that much?  Don’t be a crying baby like Newell, approach this intelligently and with dignity, leave the crying and dick jokes to yours truly.

Arnold

Hey Gabe, Arnold has some words for you.

Peace.





Trophy Guide for The Sabotuer

19 02 2010

Right, so I am a trophy whore in case you weren’t aware, I love the completive aspect of it.  Yes I am aware this competition is pretty much solely with myself and no one else really cares but still it’s important to me.  I was one of those weird people that got 100% complete in games before they got rewarded for it, so now it’s even better to do it.  So while the vast majority of people are out having sex with ladies I am trying to figure out how to have gay sex with an elf for a bronze.

So I bought and got a Platinum on Saboteur completely on my own, which is how I pretty much always do it, and figured if anyone else was going to pick it up they might want a guide.  So here you go a comprehensive guide on how to get 100% complete on The Saboteur, this will also be published on PS3Trophies.org.  Thanks to PS3Trophies.org for the trophy descriptions.

There are 46 Trophies that can be earned in this title.

Time to Platinum: 35-40 hours

Tourist Bronze Trophy You collected all monument postcards.

So the monument postcards are just a type of ambient freeplay, which means when you buy the map for a particular area there going to show up as white dots on your map.  Basically as you run around getting; northern, southern and western command trophies you will get this one as well, if you want to speed up the process for some reason than simply go to the named locations on your map, postcards will generally be around them.

Hell on Wheels Bronze Trophy You achieved victory in all freeplay races.

There are 3 freeplay races and you don’t really get access to the first one tell you about halfway through the game, which will unlock the second one, and then the third one about ¾ of the way in.  Basically go there with a fast car and race, there pretty beatable on normal, but sense you can swap the difficulty level at any time if you want to get them quick, set it to casual and you can win blindfolded.

Saint Honoré Bronze Trophy You spent 75,000 contraband.

This one actually kind of sucks, because after getting 100% complete in the game; blowing up and buying everything, I had still only spend around 50,000 contraband.  So I picked the two guns that were most expensive and just stood in front of a weapons vendor and shot into the sky repeatedly and then filled back up.  It was about 600 per refill so it took an extra hour to spend the 25,000.

Demolition Derby Bronze Trophy You destroyed 50 vehicles.

As you do freeplay events you will blow up tons of cars, also over the course of missions you will too, if you want to do it faster just run around with Dynamite or RDX and blow up cars, you’ll get there in no time.

Top o’ the World Bronze Trophy You climbed to the top of the Eiffel Tower.

When you get access to Paris zone 3 head to the tower and take the elevators to the top then climb a few ladders and you are there.

Silent Death Bronze Trophy You stealth killed 50 or more Nazis.

If you see Nazi’s walking around the street alone just run up and break their necks from behind.  Once you get the Touch of Death perk this one becomes painfully simple, you’ll probably just naturally get it as you play the game, you can also use this one to get the ‘Not on My Watch’ trophy by stealth killing Nazi’s who are intimidating the people of Paris.

Northern Command Bronze Trophy You inspired the people of Paris Area 1.

This is a little odd, but you start in this area and it’s actually the second one you are going to inspire.  But as you complete missions you bring color back to areas, once all the color is back you get the trophy.  So if you get Western one first don’t worry, that’s how it’s supposed to happen.

Western Command Bronze Trophy You inspired the people of Paris Area 2.

This is the first one you’re going to unlock of the three, but yeah just play the main story and do all side quests an you’ll have it in no time.

Southern Command Bronze Trophy You inspired the people of Paris Area 3.

Same story as the other 2, do the missions and side quests and you’ll have this one unlocked no problem.

Chain Smoker Bronze Trophy You smoked way too much.

Every time you come back from pausing the game or load up a save Sean is smoking, this adds to your total, otherwise just click R3 and he’ll light up.  You have to let him take a drag before it counts though.  You need 100 for the trophy to unlock, check you progress in the stats menu.

Casanova Bronze Trophy You kissed 50 women.

I did this one after I had beaten the main story, sense then all of Paris is inspired and the Nazi resistance is light.  Shoot a Nazi to raise a level 1 alarm then look around for a green dot on street level, because that’s a girl to kiss, run up to her and kiss her.  This will stop the alarm, and then run back to the street and fire you gun into the air raising another alarm and run back and kiss the girl again.  Rinse and repeat and you’ll have it, girls don’t appear in areas that are Nazi controlled so make sure you stay in liberated neighborhoods.

Silver Streak Bronze Trophy You obtained your first silver perk.

I got my first Silver in the Brawling track; the Silver perk is to Stealth kill 10 Nazi’s which is really easy to do as you run around the street.  I also advise this because the bonuses from the Brawling track really help get the rest of them unlocked quicker.

Gold Medalist Bronze Trophy You obtained your first gold perk.

For the final Brawling Perk you have to Stealth kill 5 Nazi Generals.  So go and get the silenced pistol and stand on a building behind where a general is standing, use the pistol to headshot the two guards that flank him, then wait for the alert to die down and the general will turn his back to you.  Then jump down and break the bastard’s neck, do it with a uniform on for the ‘Trick or Treat’ trophy.

First Blood Bronze Trophy You completed your first ambient freeplay event.

As soon as you get access to the black market, buy some Dynamite and a map and start blowing stuff up, as soon as you take out a white dot on your map you get this trophy.

Commando Bronze Trophy You completed each type of ambient freeplay.

This one might take a while if you are doing everthing in order because it require you to blow up or kill one of everything in the game, i.e. you have to blow up all the kinds of armored divisions no just a single one.  I had to wait a while to find massive artillery cannon and blow that up in order for it to unlock.  But again if you are getting the ambient free play complete trophies this will unlock naturally.

Wrecking Crew Bronze Trophy You completed 333 ambient freeplay in Paris Area 1.

Get some RDX, or Dynamite (PanzerShrek) helps out too, and just start knocking off those white dots.  It’s tedious and it takes forever to do but, you’ll get there.  I would advise doing this before the missions because it makes escaping from Nazi’s so easy and gives you chances to unlock tons of perks.  You have to get access to an area before you can buy the map for it, so just clear out one Paris Zone at a time and then take care of the Country Side, La Havre, and Saarbrucken.

Unnatural Disaster Bronze Trophy You completed 212 ambient freeplay in Paris Area 2.

See: ‘Wrecking Crew’

Walking WMD Bronze Trophy You completed 239 ambient freeplay in Paris Area 3.

See: ‘Wrecking Crew’

Fatherland Fighter Bronze Trophy You completed 53 ambient freeplay in Saarbrucken.

See: ‘Wrecking Crew’

Coast Guard Bronze Trophy You completed 76 ambient freeplay in La Havre.

See: ‘Wrecking Crew’

Guerilla Warfare Bronze Trophy You completed 425 ambient freeplay in the countryside.

See: ‘Wrecking Crew’

Pigeon Parfait Bronze Trophy You played ‘Bird Blast.’

It’s located just to the southwest of the two train bridges by Champagne and Ardenre, look for a small river on your map.  When you get around the area of it, it will show up on your mini map.  After you play it just go ahead and play a round and bang trophy unlocked.

No Witnesses Bronze Trophy You completed a mission without raising alarm.

Any mission that involves driving someone somewhere and then leaving is a good way to get this one, just disguise yourself before the mission starts and complete it.  If you really want to nail this one easily put on a disguise before you do a Country Race mission, they count for the trophy, and have no chance of raising the alarm.

Master of Disguise Bronze Trophy You made it through a story mission with your disguise intact.

See: ‘No Witness’

Trick or Treat Bronze Trophy You stealth killed a Nazi General while disguised.

See: ‘Gold Medalist’

High Diver Bronze Trophy You jumped from the Eiffel Tower and survived.

When you get to the top of the Eiffel tower run straight forward from the ladder and jump off then hold forward on the stick.  Sean will go forward as he falls and land in a small pond to the side of the tower, thereby defying physics and not dying, thereby giving you a trophy

Weapon Master Silver Trophy You purchased all weapons available in the shops.

As you unlock new areas, new weapons unlock, just go buy them.  It helps with the Saint Honore trophy, and if you are doing the freeplay stuff money will never be an issue.  The one thing to know is that you can’t get it until after you beat the game.  After the final mission is over one last gun will unlock for 1 Contraband, go get it and the trophy is yours.

Solid Gold Silver Trophy You completed all gold level perks.

Okay get ready for a long one; first off the Bronze perks are so pointlessly easy I am not going to waste time telling you how to do them.  Usually it’s like ‘Kill 5 Nazi’s’ and things like that which you will do normally.  So, starting with the first set of perks and moving on down the line.

Brawler: see: Gold and Silver Medalist

Hardware: Silver Kill 5 Terror Squad Nazi’s, Terror squad appear when you get alarm level 3 and 4, usually 1 per APC, just gun them down.  Try to find an AA tower and just rain fire on the street, you’ll get it in no time, or wait for the end of the game when you’re fighting 20 at once.

Gold: Destroy a Zeppelin and Wulf tank during the same alarm.  In the Countryside you will find Wulf tanks sitting around being guarded just plant 3 RDX bricks on them and then kill a guard to raise an alarm, once the alarm is up blow up the tank.  Because it’s the Countryside no one will come to check it out for a while, so you have time to wait for a Zeppelin to show up, and then just blow up the Zeppelin with a PanzerKreg and you’re done.

Marksman: Silver: Get 15 Headshots with a Scoped Sniper Rifle, once you have access to scoped rifles then just either run around street level and snipe Nazi’s from across the street or wait for an alarm and pick them off in the crowd that forms around wherever your hiding.

Gold:   Double kill 10 times (kill 2 Nazi’s with one bullet), same as before look for groups of two Nazi’s at street level then just line them up and fire, as long as there in a line the bullet will kill both of them.

Explosives: Silver:  Kill 5 Nazi’s with 1 explosion.  Plant some RDX bricks in the street and then start an alarm from the roof next to it, wait for Nazi’s to start unloading APC’s full of troops, then blow the bricks.

Gold:  Kill 10 Nazi’s in 10 Seconds using RDX or Dynamite.  For this one I recommend getting the Blockbuster Perk and the Urban Renewal Perk.  Otherwise it’s, same strategy as before, plant some RDX as street level and just wait for the Calvary to show up.

Demolitions: Silver: Blow up 5 Nazi vehicles in 300 seconds, easy just steal a Sturmwagon and put it in your garage, then spawn it, blow it up, respawn it blow it up, rinse and repeat.

Gold:  Destroy 3 Wulf tanks with RDX or Dynamite, as you do Freeplay objectives you will find Wulf tanks around the country as Armored Divisions, just blow them up with RDX or Dynamite and you’re good to go.

Sabotage: Silver:  Blow up 10 Nazi towers, as you take out Freeplay targets this one should come naturally, just target the big tall things with Nazi flags on them, no problem.

Gold:  Blow up 4 Nazi Train Bridges, this kind of sucks, it’s a long ways in before you can even do this one, after a certain mission you will get access to bridge kits, after that just go blow up 4 of the 5 in the game.

Mayhem: Silver:  Drive over 20 Nazi’s, grab a car and look for red dots on the mini map, hit them to kill them, should have it in no time.

Gold:  Destroy 20 Nazi vehicles with 1 Vehicle, okay so there are places in Paris where you will find Tanks available for use, I recommend the Panther Mk III, north of the Belle is a weapons vendor, if you go Northwest of that, just over the line into Champagne you will find it in some ruins.  Get in and just start blowing up Nazi’s as you see them, basically like GTAIII if something touches you it blows up, so really take advantage of all the Sturmwagons and Motorcycles they send after you first.

Racing: Silver:  Win the 1st Country Race, once the race is available to you go win it, see ‘Hell on Wheels’ for details.

Gold:   Win the 2nd Country Race, once its available go win it.

Mechanics: Silver:  Collect all Nazi vehicles, I highly recommend just buying this one from the vendor.  You can find all the vehicles in the game, I did but it took a long time and I honestly don’t remember where they all are, you also have to win one from the Belle if you installed the Midnight Show content.

Gold:  Collect all Race, Military and Civilian vehicles, I also highly recommend buying this one from the vendor.  The armed Bauer, is only available in one spot on the map and only until a certain point so I really cannot stress how much easier it will make your life to just buy this perk.

Evasion: Silver: Escape from a level 3 alarm, this one will just come naturally as over the course of the game you’re going to have to do this more than a few times.  Basically just start a level 3 alarm when you’re close to a rooftop hatch or brothel and then go in.

Gold:  Escape from a Level 5 alarm, actually a ton easier then you might think.  Once you hit level 5 there are only two locations on the map that you can escape with, either the Eiffel tower, or a well in the Northern area of Lorraine.  So get your biggest and best guns and start raising hell, do it around that area, once level 5 starts run to whichever one you’re standing close to, do not get in a car under any circumstances!

Not On My Watch Silver Trophy You have saved the French people from a cruel fate.

As you drive around town you should see Nazi’s intimidating or hurting random people around the city, just walk up to and kill those Nazi’s, you should get a contraband bonus.  After 40 of these the trophy will unlock.

Liberator of France Gold Trophy You inspired the people of France.

Basically finish ever story mission, and side quest available, and you will have this one unlocked.

Complete all other trophies Platinum Trophy Complete all other trophies

Do what it says.

Secret Trophies:  All Secret trophies are mission trophies and need no tricks to accomplish, just beat the game to unlock them.

KnockwurstBronze TrophyYou bested your opponents in the bar fight.

FenderbenderBronze TrophyYou crashed Dierker’s car.

Buried SecretsBronze TrophyThe Resistance was born.

Road TripBronze TrophyYou’ve arrived in Germany with Jules.

Pint and a ShagBronze TrophyYou got lucky with Skylar.

Viva La ResistanceBronze TrophyYou inspired your first area of Paris.

Out of the Frying PanSilver TrophyYou escaped from Germany.

CrashlanderSilver TrophyYou sent the Nazi zeppelin down in flames.

Bridge BusterSilver TrophyYou destroyed the train.

Repo ManSilver TrophyYou recovered the Aurora.

RescueSilver TrophyYou rescued Veronique.

Pole PositionSilver TrophyYou beat Dierker in the Parisian race.

PaybackSilver TrophyYou blew up “Doppelsieg.”

Into the FireSilver TrophyYou reached Paris.

The Legend BeginsGold TrophyYou completed The Saboteur.





An Editorial on stuff that pisses me off

9 02 2010
Grind my Gears

My gears are sufficently grinded

Okay so of everything I have written on here, the one that generated the most positive feedback was my run down of the news.  So this week my goal is to do something similar; a few smaller articles packed into one post.  The hook this time is that it’s mostly things that have been bugging me for a while now, so enjoy my rants on things that piss me off.

Side note here, for those that think I am just a blowhard that has no clue what he is talking about, you should look at this.  http://www.psu.com/EA-considering-Dead-Space-Extraction-for-PSNXBLA-News–a008608-p0.php I fucking called that shit last time out, even guess the price, also note that there doing an HD update of a Wii game and only charging $15 bucks for it, that should give you a notion of how much your being price jacked on the Wii.  Everyone else I am begging you, please buy Heavy Rain, I can’t express how important it is that this game sells as good as or better than expected.  Don’t let it be like Watchmen; a failed experiment.

Stop with the Multiplayer Demos!

Resistance 2

Pictured Above: Something you don't get in mulitplayer.

Hey you know what’s really fun?  You’re single player experience, at least it should be, and if it isn’t you got a serious problem.  I tend to be scared of a game that doesn’t want to show me its single player, like it’s got confidence issues or something.  I realize that the majority of people that bought MW2 immediately went online and starting using the Javelin to ruin it for everyone else, but that game is a pretty rare exception I think.  Only a few games in history have been lucky enough to get such a loyal Multiplayer following that they can get away with having a short and pretty uninspired single player campaign (Halo comes to mind).  For all intents and purposes I think most developers would be conscious of the fact that they are not Infinity Ward, nor are they Bungie and therefore don’t have a built in multiplayer fan base of the population of China.  You wouldn’t know it lately though, every week demo’s get released for me on Thursday; I was particularly excited last week because AvP and Bad Company 2 demo’s were coming out.  I ended up playing the Dynasty Warriors Strikeforce demo and am seriously considering buying that game, because of the 3 it’s the only one that I know anything about.

Dynasty Warriors

They drove me to the most confusing box art ever.

So what happened there?  Well voice in my head, simply put AvP was multiplayer only, which was inexcusable because A. it’s a new franchise and you want to get people excited to play it, and B. the online was really…..boring, and that was on the offset chance you actually got to play it when the servers  weren’t crashing every 25 seconds.  To me, I still buy games for the Single Player, if the multiplayer is good or at least competent then I will give it a shot, but I have never and will never go into a store a buy a game solely for the multiplayer experience, and no, M.A.G. and Warhawk don’t count.  This game should have been really trying to draw me in with promises of intense Marine vs. Alien fights, and stealthily sneaking around as the Predator, or dropping from the ceiling and impaling a Marine as an Alien.  It should have wanted to make me think of the classic movies and the intense moments that resulted, instead I got hum drum deathmatches that I would hardly call inspired.  So for all intents and purposes this demo killed my desire to buy the game, unless they bring out a single player to change my mind then at best AvP will become a 20 dollar bin purchase for me during the summer months.

Bargain Bin

It's like a mass grave for video games.

The flip side of that coin was the Battlefield 2 demo; now that is a game that will probably fit into the category of the multiplayer being the selling point and the single player being icing on the cake.  So I can get why they would release a multiplayer demo, but this just then fits into the other argument that I have against these things.  If people are fans of Battlefield games or anything D.I.C.E has made then you don’t really need to sell them on the Multiplayer because there already fans and they already know it’s going to be good.  Okay yeah D.I.C.E. made Mirror’s Edge which didn’t even have multiplayer but shut up I am trying to make a point here.  The point of the demo should be to bring in new fans by convincing them that this is something they will want to own, and letting them mess around with one multiplayer map and game mode doesn’t seem like the best way to do that.  The first Bad Company demo had me getting chased around a small town by a tank, running for my life as it blew holes through buildings, and desperately searching for a way to get rid of it.  That worked, it sold me and I bought the game, BC2 just has me playing as a nameless faceless guy in nameless faceless village against nameless faceless team to blow up something or stop someone else from blowing up something.  They already released a damn Beta for BC2 and then they closed the Beta and two weeks later I get the same fucking Beta again except any idiot can play, thanks D.I.C.E.

Leroy Jenkins

Oh thank god anyone can play now.

I just don’t get the point of it all, I was in on the Halo 3 beta, I played for 15 minutes got called a Faggot 2 million billions times in those 15 minutes, won the match, and was overall completely unimpressed with it all.  All they really proved to me is that nothing changed, save like 2 new guns and another vehicle for me to die on.  Resistance 2 let me play Deathmatch on 1 map with one weapon loadout, wow how fucking awesome is that?  BC2 is exactly the same as BC1 or take your pick of any other Battlefield game; you can even unlock a Thompson Sub Machine Gun, just in case you were missing World War II.  All of these held my attention for 15 minutes tops because I played it, said ‘Yeah that was pretty much exactly what I expected.’  It in no way influenced my decision to buy them, however a rocking single player demo could influence my decision.  Someday I would love to sit down with a developer and have them explain the benefit of showing all your fans what they already know.  Who the fuck is so lonely or bored that they would willing play a demo to level up and unlock guns knowing full well that in 2 weeks they will have to start all over again.  Besides if you pre-order any EA game you will just get everything unlocked for you from the onset because people who pre-order are bitches.

Pre-Order Bonuses

RE5 Globe

An acceptible pre-order bonus.

Fuck them; I hate those so goddamn much, why the hell does someone get literally game changing advantages at launch just because they decided to plop down 5 bucks.  I am not going to commit to buying a game 5 months before it comes out just so that Gamestop can make more money than they already do.  D.I.C.E. cannot say they want a fair and balanced experience online and then tell you that if you give them 5 bucks they give you a weapon set that does 20% more damage than everyone else, at least give me bonus points for killing those rich little pricks.  I don’t want game changing advantages; to me there is no difference between using those bonus guns and using the Javelin exploit.  It’s cheap ways to win matches for people who lack the skills to do it themselves.  I sucked at Resistance 2 when I first started, I was lucky to get 5 kills in a match, after 2 weeks everyone else was lucky to get 5 kills in a match.  If you have to buy wins in an online game maybe you should just look into other games, I hear Hannah Montana the movie the game is a pretty easy platinum trophy.

The movie the game

2 hours and a Platinum.

Most of the time its useless shit like bonus skins and I don’t really care then, but more and more companies are starting to offer more ridiculous incentives for pre-ordering, and it’s starting to get irritating.  Slightly off topic here but Dirt 2 had DLC packs that unlocked all cars and liveries; basically for $10 you could beat the game without ever having to race, I worked my balls off to beat that game.  Its stuff like this that is really starting to sour the whole process for me.   Game’s should be skill based, not based on people’s willingness to spend more money than everyone else, that’s what professional sports are for.

Labonte

Case and point.

PSN Avatars

PS3 Avatars

As technologically advanced as the PSN gets.

So, on the PSN you have these little pictures next to your name that is basically your Avatar that identifies you, now this kind of sucks really because it’s been the same ones sense launch.  So literally 8 people on PSN list have my Avatar, this is one of those instances where I am jealous of XBOX Live and its Avatar system or…godforbid, the Wii with its Mii system (I said it).  See with Live Avatars and Mii’s you get enough customization that it’s unique to you, or at least a little more identifiable, with the PSN…well you don’t really get anything unique unless you take one that is really ugly, but even then some idiot will have already thought of that.  So a while ago Sony announced ‘Premium’ Avatars, ones you could pay for that might be a little less saturated, sounds pretty good, sad as it is I would probably pay $.99 for a unique picture.  Now in the last 2 months sense this was announced about 20 of these have comes out.  Except there all from LittleBIGPlanet, what the fuck, is Media Molecule the only company that takes advantage of have this shit?  Sony shouldn’t encourage them to slack off anymore than they already have.   It’s one of Sony’s biggest problems, they never force developers to do anything, they have great features like in game soundtracks, youtube capture, cross game invites, PSN Avatars, Home integration, etc. fucking etc.  Microsoft for all its totalitarian problems does have the right idea, developers are typically lazy folks and don’t like to do more than just make games, so from the onset they told everyone that they had to use all the features in every game or it wouldn’t be released.  Christ it took Sony a fucking year to make trophies mandatory, such that you had new games without trophy support 4 months after the service was announced.  I know they are Japanese and therefore nice non-confrontational people, so make Sir Howard Stringer do it, he is British and quite a tremendous asshole.

Howard Stringer

God, look at him, what a dick.

Cross Game Voice Chat

Cross Game Chat

Something you can't do on PSN.

So yeah that is actually M.A.G.’s fault really, let me explain.  Once upon a time Sony’s little PS2 wanted to be an online console like the monolithic XBOX, they probably figured ‘In the future Online might be important so we should try and catch up with that’.  So what happened was Zipper Interactive came around and made SOCOM, and what was born was the most diehard and proficient community in the history of games, bar none.  Everything thinks there tough, tell they try and play SOCOM online, and then they sit in the corner and rock back and forth while crying.  For a good period of time I was in the top 100 players in Resistance 2 and top 1000 for Killzone 2, so I thought I was pretty good, then I played SOCOM online and in 5 hours hadn’t yet got a kill, nor lived for more than 30 seconds into a match.  There brutal games and the average player have the skills of a Navy Seal in urban combat.  This community scares off more people then joins it, but its loyalty to Zipper is fierce, they will buy the next in the series without question and they will kick some serious ass.  Now all this console generation Sony has been taking criticism for not having Cross Game Voice chat, or the ability to chat via headset with a friend who isn’t playing the same game as you.  I personally never really cared, nor did I care that headsets didn’t come standard with the console, because after all giving everyone the ability to speak is at best dangerous and at worse an invitation for annoyance and failure.  Case an point, Xbox Live currently has a 30 on my FPM scale, while PSN has a 2.  The FPM scale is my patten pending scale of how many times in a standard 25 kill deathmatch I get called a Fagott for doing things like; winning, and getting kills.

Crying Gamer

Pictured Above: Typical Xbox Live User.

But look at this paragraph in and I haven’t even gotten to the point yet; the point is that despite people complaining about not having Sony encourage gamers to communicate, it was never really a game breaking issue before.  Before what?  Christ of course, and by that I mean M.A.G.

Before I get into that, let’s clarify something; I own Sony’s official Bluetooth headset, and I still hold that it was a wise investment, but it has opened my eyes to how pointless the headset becomes when you don’t have Cross Game Voice chat.  If a friend is playing the same game I am, and that game has multiplayer, and we want to be in a party together playing the same matches then I can use the headset, if anyone of those conditions is not met then the headset is totally fucking useless.  You know what would be fun?  Me playing Saboteur and EttenCo(PSN friend) playing whatever game I bought him for his last birthday and chatting back and forth about whatever comes up, doesn’t that sound like fun?  Right now Sony is talking about making it part of PSN Premium, and I would gladly pay for that feature, although I would still hold that it shouldn’t be a pay to use feature because I know it doesn’t cost really anything to do.  The point I am trying to make is Sony never bundled a headset with the console because without Cross Game Chat there was no point, it was better to bundle with individual games so people could use it, which is what they did.

Warhawk

Will forget that the Warhawk headset was barely functional.

Now back to the second coming of Christ…I mean M.A.G.  Which is a game that for some reason wasn’t bundled with a headset, no clue why but it just wasn’t.  I think it was pretty clear that Warhawk wasn’t a 60 dollar game so you could afford to throw a headset in there, and at launch it was pretty clear that SOCOM: Confrontation also wasn’t a 60 dollar game.  M.A.G. is a 60 dollar game; there really isn’t any debate about that, so I can understand why Sony didn’t want to put a 40 dollar headset in with it.  But it there was a game that ever needed it, it was M.A.G.  The reason goes back to the PS2 and that incredibly diehard fanbase, see like I said that fanbase just moves to the next SOCOM or Zipper game, so there is no learning curve for those people.  It was never a problem because it was just SOCOM people moving to a new SOCOM game, but see this time Zipper made a SOCOM game that wasn’t called SOCOM so normally terrified people decided to venture into it.  Then in the best decision ever Zipper made the game almost entirely dependent on communication and teamwork, the cornerstone of, you guess it, a good SOCOM team, but these words and concepts are completely lost on the average player.

Chuck Norris

What the typical FPS player thinks of themselves.

So what this all boils down to is that within the first couple of weeks of M.A.G. play the faction known as S.E.V.R. has essentially dominated the game, no one can beat them.  Because all the old SOCOM players decided to play for that faction, so they work together like a team and dominate the play, Raven and Valor are getting blown out of the water which could potentially kill the game.  So now Sony’s decision to not push voice chat and headsets may actually hurt them here, Zipper is going to be forced to faction balance the game which is really going to piss everyone off and they will probably leave.  SOCOM players don’t want to play with us normal retard people, so they won’t.  So essentially the reason that now people are in more uproar then ever and Zipper is talking about making Headsets mandatory is because M.A.G. broke Sony’s  careful house of cards regarding voice chat.

House of Cards

I just wanted to show you a really awesome house of cards.

Right so all of that was completely necessary for me to make my point of why this all just pisses me right off, and that is simple.  Sony fucked up from day one, this feature should have been in place at launch, there is no excuse for it really.  They have done their best to compensate for it and their best to gloss it over, but the simple fact is that if Sony ever wants the PSN to truly be comparable to XBOX Live they need this feature in place, until then it just won’t be the overall community that Live is.  This is proven by the fact that the entire player community is being lambasted by a single game community because they have headsets.

Socom

Zipper tests there games with real Navy Seals, no seriously I'm not kidding.

Peace





Weekly news rundown!

1 02 2010
Logo

As fair and balanced as Fox News

Okay been a while once again sense I posted anything, so I came up with a new idea to maybe cover a lot of what I have been missing for the last week or so.  This is a list of current news and topics that I find interesting, I’ll give a verdict on whether or not I think it’s true or useful or something like that.  Then I’ll make some quick comments afterwards; enjoy my rundown of what interests me.

BattleFront III is real and it’s being developed by Slant Six, and its online.  Verdict?  Great.

Logo

A theoretical logo for a theoretical game

Yeah okay so I got a serious soft spot for Battlefront games, and I have basically been waiting for Lucasarts to get its shit together and get this game made, for about 4 years now.  Its bounced around to 3 development houses that we know about, and every last one of them either was closed or purchased by someone else.  Lucasarts wants to be a publisher but they don’t want to support any 3rd party studios, so I think they have been having a hard time finding a free studio to make the game for them so they can still have publishing rights.  I would assume the rest of Lucasarts is working on trying to explain to me how the fuck there can be a second Force Unleashed when the main character either dies or becomes Darth Vader in the end.

Evil

Evil gets some badass armor though.

I digress however, Battlefront III is a sure seller even if it sucks and Lucasarts knows this.  Slant Six is a pretty competent development house and surprisingly they aren’t owned by Sony, they basically made SOCOM: Confrontation on the PS3 and all the online stuff to go with it.  Granted the launch of that game was as messy as a dog when it finds Geese shit, but actually after the initial trouble the game smoothed out tremendously and became what is still one of the most played online games on PS3 (MW2 and MAG not withstanding).  Taking the game and making it online that I am a little weary of, I mean it will keep the game going forever but there has to be a single player aspect to it, or at least some local multiplayer options.  I am talking of course about Bots, a concept that everything thinks is beneath them for some reason now.  Look I get you don’t want people boosting levels against bots (Here’s looking at your Team Fortress), so do like Warhawk and make it so that only matches with set rules count for leveling, that seems like a pretty easy thing to do.  In the end if they announce it tomorrow I will pre-order it tomorrow to get some bonus Boba Fett armor or something like that.

Natal, is it the future of gaming or just fallout from the Wii?  Verdict? I hate it.(Wii fallout)

Sensor

About 100 bucks a camera.

So two points to make before this starts; 1 this is a personal opinion about how I feel about Natal, and 2 this is not a fanboy rant, I feel the same way about the Wii and about Sony’s motion controller.  But sense no one on earth could give two shits about Sony’s motion controller I will go with the option that Microsoft is going to ram down my throat tell I shit it out so hard I break the floor, and that option is Natal.  What is Natal?  Well Natal is basically the motion sensing tech that Nintendo passed on 7 years ago when it was new, and then it’s the stuff Sony passed on 4 years ago when they had their own better system in development.  Microsoft excepted it because it meant no work for them, and they could sell it to you at an insanely overpriced price point, also they could talk about how innovative and cool they were because they could sign a check as good as anyone else.  Okay so why do I hate it so much?  Simple it’s all just pandering to the casual gaming crowd that is starting to directly affect my good games with their shitty games.  I spent the first 2 years with my PS3 living with the goddamn sixaxis crap until everyone just gave up on that and I didn’t have to deal with it anymore, and games like Lair weren’t ruined by it.  Now it’s just coming back with a vengeance as a completely separate controller that is going to cost more money.  Okay so that was a side rant; Natal is a giant camera you plug into your Xbox then it takes you doing stuff and puts it into the game, kinda like the Eyetoy did 10 years ago, but this time it’s bigger and blacker and its going to cost roughly 3 times as much, because that’s how Microsoft usually prices technology. (Hey harddrives there still like 2 bucks a GB right?)

Harddrive

So about 30 bucks for the device and 150 for the packaging.

Look in the end its pretty simple really; remember when ‘The Departed’ won a bunch of Oscar’s and everyone loved it?  Remember how every month for the next year an exponentially shittier dirty cop movie came out?  This is the same concept, the Wii came out and accidentally hit a massive market of old people and young people who had shit loads of money to spend on games that sucked and over priced attachments because they didn’t know any better.  Immediately Sony and Microsoft said ‘Oh we have motion sensing stuff too!?!’   Now it’s coming to fruition and probably won’t really tap into new markets or make a bunch of money, because A. all those gamers then went from Wii’s to Xbox’s and PS3’s did so because they got sick of the Wii’s bullshit all the time, why would they buy it again for their new systems?  B.  All those that own Wii’s are never going to see benefits to buying another new console.  Remember what I said earlier?  ‘Old people and young people’ do you really want to play with them all the time?  No you don’t you want to play with people you’re age who are good and cool.  In the end, the Wii is still the best at selling it, Sony has the most impressive Tech because it’s a wand like the Wii that can do full 3D 1:1 motion, but no one is going to buy it, and Microsoft has the least impressive piece of hardware that costs the most by far.  On the principle of it I would hope people would finally boycott this so that hardware makers get the message that they can’t get away with this shit anymore.  Course it’s probably going to sell millions so that bros can stand in their rooms and pretend there football players, and fat people can pretend there Marcus Fenix(because you can’t do that with a controller and your brain anymore apparently)

Natal

Now I am a NINJA!


iTablet, another brilliant piece of technology from Apple?  Verdict?  ……you gotta be shitting me.

iTablet

So the future is a giant iPod Touch?

Alright I own an iPod, and iHome, I think iPhones are pretty cool, and I even own a PSP go, so trust me when I say that the iTablet is my winner for most useless and unnecessary invention of the last 5 years.  Please someone explain to me one benefit of this thing, just one reason why it needs to exist?  Someone should come up with something, because Apple’s reveal of it showed that they have absolutely no idea why they made it either.  Other then the fact that Steve Jobs is a living personification of ‘Self Serving’ and feels the need to live out his messiah complex every year by unveiling something that all those Mac Cult people will go out and buy regardless of any technical merits.  That’s just it isn’t it?  They have such a feverish and rabid fanbase that they could release an iShoe at $700 and people would murder each other for it.  Celebrities always use them because they think it makes them relevant and cool to normal people, and basically the whole cycle makes me kinda sick really.

Maria

If you buy an iPhone you'll be sexy and exciting too!

It’s the same as that Natal crap, every marketing add says the same thing; ‘People who stand to profit from this say you should buy it.’  ‘Why?’  ‘Because you should.’  ‘Okay!’  And that works, how?  If I go to people and tell them to buy my poop because they should, they would call the cops.  The iTablet to me is a bigger iPod Touch, it’s worse than a tablet PC in what it can do and it will undoubtedly cost several billion dollars at launch.  The presentation/reveal told you how could sync it with other Apple devices, do Word Processing, Surf the Web, use the full range of Apple and Microsoft products, use the Apple store to download Music and Movies.  Okay so does that sound familiar to you?  You know kinda like every other fucking device they or anyone else makes.  That’s my whole point, is it bad?  No not really it’s a slick package that does neat things, but does it do anything new to justify its existence?  No not at all, nothing it brings to the table at all improves or enhances the user experience; except it increases the chances that people who see you will think you’re a dick.

Jobs

The biggest Apple Dick of them all.


Bioware, are there games getting stale?  Verdict?  Not really.

bioware

My CEO has a PHD in something!

I read some articles last week bouncing around after Mass Effect 2 launched that said Bioware just keeps making the same game over and over in different settings with different storylines.  Well then it’s not really the same game is it folks?  I get the argument; most Bioware games in the last 10 years have the same relative combat system and the same branching dialogue system.  But that’s really about where it all stops for me as a player, everything else about them is different, and the rest is the important stuff.  God of War is the same game but no one complains about that, same with MW, Final Fantasy reinvents itself all the time and all it really does is divide the fans (FF8 is the best by the way, but a lot will argue that point, which is my point).  If you give me new characters in a new setting with new stories and motivations and dialogue then there giving me enough of a new game that I am going to pay for it and probably enjoy it.  I played KotOR 1 and 2 to death and I loved Dragon Age, so basically to me if you have a base engine that works and is fun then by all means keep using it.

Duke Nukem

Pictured Above: Bioware CEO Ray Muzyka

Homage vs. Copy, what/is there a difference?  Verdict?  No.


Is a crazy person just eccentric if there rich?  Was Howard Hughes not a total basket case just because he had billions?  No he wasn’t, he was fucking bonkers.  The word used to describe something shouldn’t change the meaning of it based on some arbitrary metric that has nothing to do with it.

eccentric

This man is worth $750 million, therefore he is eccentric.

So let me explain, Dante’s Inferno is a God of War clone and everyone hates it for that, calling it unoriginal and unfun and all kinds of other nasty things.  Darksiders is a Legend of Zelda clone, sure it’s a different setting and story, but it has the goddamn hookshot in it.  The difference between that and what Bioware is doing, is that Darksiders wasn’t made by the Zelda team, it was made by someone else who really liked to make games but didn’t want to do all that pesky ‘trying’ stuff.  Yet everyone loved Darksiders for being a good ‘homage’ to Zelda.  This whole situation left me somewhat confused, because it’s the same thing then isn’t it?  I was in a Gamestop and the two guys working there said ‘Dante’s Inferno is just such a cheap knockoff isn’t it?’  ‘Yeah man that’s lame; oh hey I just got Darksiders’  ‘Oh is that any good?’  ‘Yeah its really fun, I hate how everyone makes fun of it for copying everyone else, like you have to copy or you don’t really have anything new anymore.’  I wanted to punch a Gamestop employee more than usual after listening to that.  Look just because someone did a better job of copying someone else doesn’t mean they should get critical acclaim for copying someone else really well.  Don’t misunderstand me, Darksiders looks really fun, it’s on my shortlist of games to buy,  but don’t piss on me and tell me it’s raining.  Don’t tell me a game is not a copy because it’s a good copy and a game is bad because it’s a bad copy.

darksiders

Something about him is more awesome then Link though.


GTA Episodes from liberty city on PS3.  Verdict?  Who cares?

2 Complete 3 hours stories in one box!

No seriously who cares?  Did anyone see that news and get excited about buying DLC packs to a game that was released 2 years ago?  The DLC for GTAIV was a cluster from the get go, Rockstar sat there and told everyone over and over and over again that it would never release on PC or PS3.  Of course everyone on earth new it would, exactly 6 months after the release of the final batch of content on 360 when their exclusive contract with Microsoft was up.  Which is exactly what happened, 6 months after ‘Gay Tony; they fooled nobody and just looked like idiots all the time, and didn’t do much to help relations with the folks in camp PC, and camp Sony.  Okay first off Microsoft paid insane amounts of money to get the DLC packs, and then Rockstar took a goddamn year to get the first one out the door, and it was good but flawed in that none of the cars or weapons from the DLC pack could be taken back to the normal game.  So it was already a waste of money, then another year passed for another DLC pack with the same problem.  $15 bucks for a fun 4 hours?  Did Rockstar go to the Valve school of episodic content?

Parachutes

We have parachutes now! INNOVATION!

So now Rockstar is bringing them to the rest of us because why not right?  Microsoft paid for the whole thing, any copy they sell is pure profit at this point.  If anything all this really seeks to prove to me is that all the major console makers should stop paying for exclusive DLC packs, no one is going to buy a console so that they can get a game with ‘exclusive’ DLC for it.  Especially sense again this whole exercise proved that nothing is ever ‘exclusive’.  Spend your millions on games and game makers, that’s what swings things.  The 360 has its boot on the throat of Sony, but they backed off on games and just bragged about exclusive DLC for the multiplatform games, and now Sony is catching up because they pumped their money into the games.  DLC is great and it’s a good way to keep people interested in your game during the 2 year cycle of development before the next one comes out, but that’s it, it’s just icing on the cake, it’s not a selling point.  In its worst form its flame for Fanboy wars, and Christ none of them need more of that.  The GTAIV DLC fit none of these requirements, it took too long to release, Rockstars next 3 games are Red Dead Redemtion, L.A. Noire, and The Agent.  Not a GTA game, of course more GTA is coming but were talking a year maybe more before it hits, nothing to do with GTAIV is going to keep people interested.  Focus on making games not DLC packs, which goes for Publishers, Developers, and Console makers.

Dr. Ned

Unless its Borderlands Content, then keep pumping it out!


Medal of Honor, Modern Warfare Killer?  Verdict?  Good possibility.

Medal of Honor

I am so awesome the ground explodes where I walk.

Okay so the next Medal of Honor game was shown off at the Spike VGA’s *Shudder*, and well it looked exactly like Modern Warfare 2.  Which is a bad start when you’re trying to relaunch a franchise, but actually when you look at how EA is handling this, then man you get the idea that this game could really be what they (and me) want it to be.   First off E.A. Los Angeles is handling the single player, which immediately gets me excited.  For those that don’t know EA:LA is the old Dreamworks Interactive combined with what used to be Westwood studios.  All in all they have been making games for nearly 20 years, primarily focused on Command and Conquer games and Medal of Honor, but after Airborne sold like shit and was basically shit, EA let them have the last 4 years to make other games and get a break from WWII shooters.  They come back with a renewed focus and hopefully some cool ideas to use.  The muti-player is being developed by EA D.I.C.E. which means its going to be a hell of a lot like a Battlefield game, which is also good I think.  So wait did I just say that EA is using multiple studios to help develop a game, playing on the strengths of their many in house studios and *gasp* coordinating efforts?  Holy shit I think I just did say that, somewhere down in hell Satan just got a chill folks.  So over all this makes me think that EA actually cares, they want this to be good, so they can make more obviously; but the intentions are there.

Cold day in hell

Shit, EA must have done something smart!

Can it kill Modern Warfare, or at least unseat it, well funny thing is that Modern Warfare actually unseated Medal of Honor 5 years ago when it burst onto the scene.  This is EA trying to take it back, and the plan is far more complicated then you might think.  It starts with Battlefield Bad Company 2, which is going to weaken the stranglehold MW has on online play; taking back the PC fans, by giving them everything that MW took away.  Sounds strange but it’s true, it’s like a multi wave attack on Infinity Ward, once Battlefield weakens MW, Medal of Honor supposedly will come in and deal a killing blow, retaking the Military Shooter crown.  In the end its all hearsay because aside from a short trailer and a guy with a rocken beard on the cover, we really have no idea what this game is or what to except.  If I had to put my money on it, I know Bad Company will do its part, that’s a must buy for me, I know D.I.C.E can do the multiplayer just fine in MoH, the weak link or where it could all go wrong is if EA:LA drops the ball.  Time will tell, but boy I am excited for it already.

EA Sports Logo

Drop the ball, get it? Cuz they make sports games? Anybody?

White Knight Chronicles where are you?  Verdict?  Inexcusable

Boxart

Hey 2007 called, they want there game back.

So history lesson here, when the consoles launched and everyone was fighting with everything one fan bases, Microsoft did something rather bold, they attacked the Japanese market.  Often viewed as suicide, they went at it with money and bravado, buying up big name JRPG exclusive after another.  Moral of story is that all these games that Microsoft help make sold like crap in Japan and were quickly ported to PS3 where they sold much better.  However there was a big of time where Sony was nervous about having no JRPG’s to talk about; it was during this time, 2ish year ago, that they showed off a game called White Knight Chronicles.  I was actually pretty excited for it, it looked good and I knew that if Sony was putting might behind the game then I would get to play it pretty soon.  Now I suspect that when all those games they were scared off didn’t do well in Japan or the U.S., Sony changed their turn and didn’t put the rush on localization that they would have.  Sense you know 2 years later I am reading about WKC 2 in Japan and I still don’t have the first one.  Okay so the obvious point here is that this is the largest software company in the world and have shown there very willing to just throw money at Developers to get the job done (a literal Blank Check was written to Naughty Dog for Uncharted 2).  So to me it’s pretty goddamn inexcusable when the localization process for the U.S. has taken damn near a year and half, Europe will probably be waiting longer.

Map of Europe

Pictured Above: The nation Sony hates

I know its dialogue heavy and you have to translate and re-record and all that nonsense but Christ 2 fucking years is just too long, especially when the sequel is coming out soon.  I can count 3 new RPG IP’s that launched after WKC and are bringing out there sequels before WKC makes it to the U.S. shores.  None of those new IP’s have the money and resources behind them that WKC does, so what the fuck Sony?  This is just so typical of them, promising so much so early before the know how long it’s going to take to actually do, so they just look dumb when its delayed over and over again(Playstation@HOME anyone?).  The really lesson here is that WKC was shown off during a JRPG draught and every would have bought it just on merit, but sense they dicked around for so long with it that market advantage has been lost.  There is still a hungry JRPG crowd here in the U.S. that’s for sure, but sense Valkyria Chronicles, and Demon’s Souls hit that audience has been placated for the time being.  So now what?  Well in there infinite wisdom Sony has decided to get as close as they can to releasing WKC in the U.S. around the same time FF13 does, and I think the rest of that story will just write itself.

FF13 Box Art

It sold more copies then there are people in Japan.

No More Heroes 2 was just released?  Verdict?  Waste of money.

No more heroes

More like the struggle to sell copies, ha ha!

Okay here is the deal, I think the Wii has some good games and can be a good games platform when Nintendo releases a game.  Madworld, House of the Dead, Deadspace Extraction, The Conduit, No More Heroes, etc. etc.  There are pretty decent games, some even moved up into great territory.  So whats the correlation between those games?  Well, there all mature titles on the Wii made by people other than Nintendo, and every last one of them sold about as good as a hooker with AIDs sores on her face, which is not good in case you were wondering.  Deadspace famously sold 9,000 copies in its first week, on a console that has an install base around 60,000,000 and a fanbase that spends 6 hours a day minimum wining on forums about not having enough good games and being ignored by Nintendo.  Only selling 9,000 copies with all those advantages is just awful really, they could have made the same game and released it on PSN and Xbox live for $15 and sold 100,000 on the first day.

Bass Fishing

This sold more copies on the PSN then Deadspace sold on the Wii.

The kicker is that Deadspace is a really good game, it got exceptional marks.  Of course you can argue that the pool of games to compare on the Wii is so lack luster that it’s easy to give slightly good games very good scores.  I.E. on the Wii you’re comparing MadWorld to Nintendogs, while on 360 and PS3 you’re comparing MadWorld to Uncharted 2 and Gears of War 2.  But I digress this is a Wii article goddamn it, so the point I am trying to make is that developers see the Wii as having a massive install base and cheaper development costs so we should make games for it that appeal to the core gamer.  Okay listen to me very carefully, THERE AREN’T ANY FUCKING CORE GAMERS ON THE WII ANYMORE!  They all went out and bought 360’s and PS3’s years ago when they realized that they hadn’t bought a new game for the Wii in 6 months.  People that own and buy Wii games are family’s, and kids, not the sort that want games about men with Chainsaw arms killing other men with Chainsaw arms.  Nintendo isn’t going to help you either, they told EA to fuck off when they asked for help with Deadspace, and then blamed EA for the game selling like crap saying ‘It wasn’t up to the standard of Wii titles’  What fucking standard?  I remember at E3 this year when Nintendo showed off the Wii Motion Plus thing, they had games for it, all made by Nintendo.  The non-Nintendo Wii developers in the audience were cursing under their breath because they realized that Nintendo had had this thing for at least 6 months and they were just finding out about it now.  Nintendo pulls this shit all the time; they intentionally handicap Devs other than their own because they hate to have someone else make money on their console.  The Wii has been stagnant for months now, living on the promise of Mario and Zelda sometime next year, as it has sense launch.  The really scary part is that it works; starving there gamers for months at a time and then releasing one Mario game, which is mediocre at best, that game then sells millions of copies.  Honestly tell me how much you think it cost to make New Super Mario Brothers Wii, and it’s selling like hotcakes, it’s ridiculous to think that anyone would put up with this shit.  But we’re talking about an audience that willfully purchased a Gamecube with a waggle controller a few years back.

WiiCube.

See even the Gamecube knows it.

Look here 2 paragraphs in here and I haven’t even mentioned what this was about, No More Heroes 2 was released this week.  Once again it’s getting great reviews, and once again it’s selling like shit.  I was shocked when I found out it was even coming out, no one is advertising it, and outside of the Nintendo Power community no one even knows it existed.  I would wager the PS3 version that’s coming out is going to sell better than the original did.  It’s embarrassing, I think, that the once great Nintendo is now the laughing stock of the gamer community, because Iwata and Reggie are more than happy to sell out everything there company stood for during the last 100 years for a truck load of money.  So great games like No More Heroes are sent into the world to die, at some point I hope developers will get sick of this and just boycott the damn thing all together.  Nintendo tricked a lot of people into buying it at launch but if they think these numbers will carry over into the next generation then they are going to have a really rude awakening.

Rude Awakening

Pictured Above: A Rude Awakening, also Megadeath.

Peace!