Monday, September 26, 2011

I'm not dead!

Contrary to popular belief, I am not still lost in the wilderness of rural Kentucky. Nor have I given up on this blog, not have I stopped playing games altogether. The time normally wasted at work by posting has been taken up by *gasp* work. A terrible thing, to be sure. I do find it interesting, on a personal level at least, that when a choice must be made to play more games or talk about the games that have already been played I will always chose to former. This is probably why I have never made it very long writing reviews for anyone and that rambling on a blog suits me better. No one complains when I miss a few days or that I am playing terrible games that are months old. Someone has to play them, right?

Since walking away from No More Heroes I have found piece in three wonderfully average games in a row. I talked about Call of Juarez: The Cartel briefly last week, and everything bad that I said about it holds true. It is just a shooter that is suffering from the same 'me too' mechanic as ever other shooter that isn't Call of Duty or Battlefield. The idea that all three of the main characters are out to get each other would have been more interesting if it actually affected game play. If I had played with actual people it might have, but I never even bothered to see if anyone else was playing it. It's a shame, there aren't enough western games, and the previous two Call of Juarez games were reasonable shooters that benefited from a sparsely used setting. Moving the third game to modern day Mexico was its first and biggest mistake.

At least at the end I got to betray my partners and murder them in cold blood. If I could have shot them earlier I would have. I can take bad AI, but constant, repeated catch phrases is not something I can forgive.

Earth Defense Force: Insect Armageddon is video game cotton candy. You know it is bad for you and there is no way to not look like as ass eating it, but damn if it isn't enjoyable while it lasts. There is more variety here than the first game; a few different suits to try out and more weapons that you can actually use are dropped. The game is shorter, though, designed to be played through multiple times with the same characters that you slowly build up. The ending of normal mode screams 'the good guy died, come back on a harder difficulty level to see what really happens!' I have neither the time nor the patience to wade through it again, but I must admit that it pulled off the single player portion of an intended four player experience better than much bigger budget titles (I'm looking at your, Lost Planet 2).

Finally in the week and half recap there is the guiltiest pleasure: The First Templar. This one is a below average action RPG, a genre that by my own admission has a much more difficult time dealing with shittiness than others. The selection of moves was rather small, new weapons and armor are hidden a little too well in levels and don't actually affect anything, it has the stick of launch title all over it, and I still liked it. Why? At least partly because of the setting. You are a templar who by the time the game is done has been betrayed by his brethren, hunted by the inquisition, declared heretics by the church proper and had a price put on your head by the king of France. What's your response?

'I must finish my quest to find the holy grail. That will make everything better. And I will kill as many french persons as I possibly can along the way.'

It's ridiculous to an almost Python degree and played just well enough to hold my interest.


After much deliberation a new graphics card has been ordered for my aging computer. An actual release window being announced for Diablo 3 certainly didn't help. Along with the new card will come free copies of Dirt 3 and Deus Ex: Human Revolution, both games that gave been languishing on the list since they came out. Playing them without adding to my gigantic meaningless gamerscore will be difficult, but who am I to not take advantage of good, free games.

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