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#251282 What Are You Currently Playing?

Posted by Ocelot on 30 July 2010 - 05:13 PM

Man, how did I manage to forget how awesome Just Cause 2 is? The half-price sale on everything Just Cause on Steam reminded me of it, so I bought the stuff I didn't get with the Collector's Edish and then redeemed the code that I'd completely forgotten about to get that stuff, too. The DLC's nothing life-changing, but the jet's pretty neat and there's a Monster Truck with such giant wheels that it actually floats on water. There's a set of Parachute Thrusters which you strap onto your back and rocket around with which are enormously useful. I've always felt that Just Cause 2 wasn't trying to compete with other video games, it's just trying to capture the memory of those glorious '80s action movies where Arnold Schwarzenegger would slaughter hundreds of highly trained soldiers by standing in the middle of a field and firing his infinite-ammo assault rifle one-handed from the hip while never ever getting hit. Just Cause 2 is Commando: The Video Game, and it is absolutely glorious.

The only things I really don't like about it is that the developers didn't go all the way. It is very possible to die in the game from being hit with too many bullets, and at certain points it happens quite easily. This simply won't do. How many times did John Matrix or Rambo die just because their bodies reached the critical lead percentage? Luckily there's BOLOpatch, a PC trainer named after the most memorable NPC in recent video game history, one BOH-lo San-TOH-zee. Infinite health: check, infinite ammo: check; now you're ready to play Just Cause 2. Unfortunately a recent patch on Steam broke BOLOpatch, but I'm sure it's probably been fixed by now. In any other game I'd feel guilty about cheating but here I feel like I'm just playing the game how it was originally intended. Do you remember the uproar over the 2008 Prince of Persia game when the slavering masses found out there was no Game Over screen? Never mind that it was just replaced with an animation of Elika saving you, this was an absolute deal-breaker for moronic forum-dwellers everywhere. I like to imagine that Just Cause 2's developers added the ability to die just to appease these folks who don't really understand the point of the game.

There are some other minor issues I have, though. There's no yaw control in planes, and the camera is stuck to your plane quite tightly. It takes some getting used to; the camera rolls as you roll, so I find myself unconsciously moving my head to keep my perspective level as I'm flying. The lack of rudder makes tight turns harder than they need to be, because you have to roll all the way perpendicular if you underestimate your banking radius while you're flying rather than just rudderin' that sucker. I did a lot of flying in San Andreas back in the day, and rudder control is immensely helpful when you're going supersonic between buildings in the city. Helicopters in JC2 aren't perfect, either. Far from the nimble birds in GTA IV, JC2's choppers give rudder control to the right analogue stick. To yaw left you move the camera to the left. It's alright, but it means you can't look around you when you're flying a chopper because the camera control also moves the chopper. I guess it's necessary here, though, because you do an awful lot of helicopter based ground attack with missiles and machine guns and the right stick controls your crosshairs. Firing from a chopper in GTA IV was a pain because the guns would only fire straight out from the chopper so you had to keep the nose of the chopper pointed at whatever you wanted dead. Here your weapons pivot and swivel, which makes attacking targets so much easier.

The biggest problem with the game, though, is that your Merchant friend who sells you things that go vroom and boom doesn't understand the concept of a shopping cart. You call him over because you want to gear up for a mission, but if you want more than one weapon you'd better have some time on your hands. You buy one thing and he drops it for you and flies away, so you call him again and buy something else and he'll drop it and fly away. It's really kind of ridiculous that the game shipped that way. I would have thought it'd be patched within a few days of release, but four months later it's still there. What's worse is that all the DLC needs to be purchased through the Merchant, so if you want your new guns and Parachute and Thrusters and a Monster Truck to go with them you have to call the Merchant half a dozen times. Every time you die. It sucks a bunch.

But try remembering all that while you're waging a one-man-war on your next Military Base. The basic gameplay elements of this game are so endlessly fun that I find it almost impossible to be upset about any of its shortcomings. The things you do off the cuff in Just Cause 2 are what game developers ten years ago could scarcely dream about. The tutorial mission alone has more action movie spectacle than most full games do. The capacity for making your own fun is endless, but when you run out of imagination you've got a good forty hours worth of actual missions to get lost in. I spent a good couple of hours today just pretending to be Batman in the city at night. Grappling Hook and Parachute is a worthy substitute for Grappling Hook and Cape, and leaping off buildings with reckless abandon has never been more fun. This year is only half over and I've already played three Game of the Years.

#250432 moving Wicktures that you are watching: John Wick 3 Edition

Posted by Ocelot on 27 July 2010 - 09:11 AM

I've never seen The Matrix. Should I?

Dude. How? How could you possibly have avoided it for eleven years? Yes you should absolutely see it, it's amazing. I don't know what it'd be like to see it for the first time now, having lived through the years of parodies it has generated, but I'd like to think it would still be brilliant.

Have you even seen it? It is quite a fun movie. And yes, everyone that I've talked to considers it the first sci fi movie, even though it was filmed in 2004 (in 23 days, mind you) it was set in the 1930s, so they actually scaled back their effects and such to make you beleive that it was filmed in the 1930s. Plus, there are loads of cameos and easter eggs in it.

So go ahead, bite me.

I will. Repeatedly. Are you telling me you don't think there is any other sci-fi set before the 1930s? Because I think H.G. Wells and Jules Verne might have a problem with that. The Time Machine, War of the Worlds, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea? A Journey to the Centre of the Earth? To think of Sky Captain - Sky Captain - as the first sci fi movie? That's just... that's lunacy. And practically blasphemy.

Yes, I've seen the movie, and I don't necessarily dislike it. Well, that's a little inaccurate; I do dislike it. Because it isn't very good. But I like the idea of it. I love pulp adventure like The Rocketeer and Indiana Jones, and I was expecting Sky Captain to be more of the same goodness but it wasn't. It was poorly written and acted, nobody in the movie seemed to get the hang of the period speech and attire, the CGI wasn't crappy in the right way. It was a great idea but poorly executed.

Found him to be annoying, along with Kevin the bird and fatty-fats. I didn't laugh at all with them.

I loved every Pixar movie. Toy Story, Ratatouille, Monster's Inc, etc. I loved the premise of Up, and it was good, I just hate the others.

OK, I can sorta understand not liking Russell, and I can conceive a possible alternate universe in which a small minority of people might not like Kevin, but Dug? Dug the dog? Dug "I have just met you, and I love you" the dog? YOU DON'T HAVE A SOUL, MAN! The space where your soul should be is filled with soot and gravel!

#249313 Inception

Posted by Ocelot on 23 July 2010 - 07:37 PM


Ariadne's Totem was a Pawn because in the real world that's what she is. She's just a teeny tiny student with no power over her own life. But when she discovers the dream world, when she reaches the other side of the Chess board, she becomes a Queen. She can shape the world as she sees fit. Man I love this movie. Any other director would have shot a scene with Cobb asking Ariadne "Hey, wut's wit da Pawn?" but Christopher Nolan knows you're smarter than that. It's not an elitist intelligentsia type of complicated-for-the-sake-of-complication arthouse piece, it's just a really clever movie that makes you feel really clever because it treats you like you're really clever. I can't wait to see it again.

#248855 James Cameron's Avatar to be re-released!

Posted by Ocelot on 21 July 2010 - 11:53 PM

I've typed about three different rans here and deleted them all because they all sound more insultful and jerky than I want them to, and it's late at night and I really don't want to start again. Can we just pretend that I posted something clever and insightful and seven paragraphs long about why this Avatar hatin' is so old and tired and overdone and petty and malicious and unpleasant and really just boring now. In my Year 12 English class we had to write a lot of literary deconstruction-ish sort of essays and eventually every single one of the students in my year could rattle off the definition of an 'issue' at a moment's notice. A teacher would say, "What is an issue?' and the entire class would singsong:

An issue is a matter or subject over which there is some contention or debate.

It got to the point where the words stopped meaning anything. We'd sit down at essay time and be asked to write about an issue and we'd think "Oh, you mean one of those matters or subjects over which there is some contention or debate?" but then when it came to turning it into a great big chain of words we'd be stuck. That definition was so well imprinted on our minds that it was no longer a definition, it was just one long sound. It's like the Alphabet. You know the Alphabet, it's that song that goes "Aybeeseedy Eeyeffjee..." You have to sit down and break it up again to think of it as an actual list of all the letters used in the English language.

That's what this Avatar malarkey has become. Avatar isn't even a movie anymore, it's that thing that hasthesameplotasPocahontasferngullydanceswithwolves and Idon'tseewhatallthefussisaboutDistrict9wasbetter and OmigodIhateJamesCamerondon'tyouhateJamesCameron?

What I'm saying is that this can all be over now. You've gone above and beyond the call of duty in hating Avatar. You haven't just made your thoughts clear. You haven't just done your darndest to convince the world at large never to ever see it. You haven't just done anything, you've done it all. You've succeeded so completely that you have stripped Avatar of its very being. It was conceived, created and released to the public at large as a movie, but it is no longer a movie. Precisely what it has become is hard to gauge, but a movie it ain't. So coudja stop? There's running something into the ground, there's beating a dead horse, and then there's what you've all done to Avatar. The difference is that people will usually stop once they hit dirt, or when they break the skin; I am under no illusions that the Avatar nonsense will ever end.

#248752 Inception

Posted by Ocelot on 21 July 2010 - 12:33 PM

I've been sitting here trying out new introductions for the wall of text that is welling up inside me, but I don't seem to have the words. I just came home from seeing Inception and I think I left my power of speech back in the theatre. I think I can choke out a simple sentence, though:

Inception is one of the best movies I've ever seen.

And I want to make it clear that I'm quantifying it as 'one of' solely because I don't think you'll take me seriously if I say it was the very best but, honestly, I think it might have been. I know I'm still reeling in the post-movie afterglow, but I'm coming down from my high and I still can't fully comprehend how amazing it was. I think that wall of text is slowly working its way free, but I'm going to restrain it for a while just to make sure.

What I can say for sure is that this needs to win all the Oscars and Golden Globes and Palme d'Ors and whatever else there is. Best director, best special effects, best soundtrack, best film, best actors and actresses, all of them. Christopher Nolan is untouchable, and I want to be Joseph Gordon-Levitt when I grow up, and the gravity fight is the most amazing thing I've ever seen, and I'm a little bit in love with Juno, and I have to hold this all in because I'm just going to burst into paragraph after paragraph of froth-mouthed raving if I don't.

Inception. Go see it.

EDIT - OK, just one thing I'd like to add to the discussion. You know the bit in Mombasa where Cobb goes to recruit Eames? He finds him in a casino, and when Eames gets up to cash in his chips Cobb looks at one of them and says something like, "I see your spelling hasn't improved." And then, a little later when they're talking at a restaurant table overlooking the city I looked in the background of the scene and saw a building with a sign saying 'Foren Bureau'. So was the whole Mombasa sequence a dream? Eames' dream, maybe? I guessed that Eames had misspelt the name of the casino on the Poker chips he was cashing in and then when I saw that sign it became clear.

I also wondered whether that crazy narrow alleyway was supposed to be another example of freaky dream architecture or just crappy, low cost African build quality. Oh man I just... I just adore this movie. I am absolutely smitten with every single thing about it. There isn't one moment where the film slows down and lets you catch up; it doesn't make any concessions for inattentive viewers. It is so snappily edited and it moves so fast it makes you work hard to keep up and I just love it so much.

This is one of those movies that you can see once and have your mind blown completely, but then get home and think about it and realise that every single bit of it flew clean over your head. It's like Bladerunner. You can see that movie a dozen times and then one day you'll watch it again and then think... wait, could Deckard be a Replicant? WHAT? I just heard this idea that maybe Cobb was in Limbo all along and Michael Caine sent Ariadne in there to get him out and the whole Fischer thing was a fabrication. I mean, dude. I'm going to see this again tomorrow, only because I felt it'd be kind of obscene to walk right back up to the ticket counter the moment I walk out of the theatre.

EDIT AGAIN - One more thing: Marion Cotillard? TERRIFYING. I mean, gorgeous and luminous and she steals all of her scenes but Oh GOD every time she was on screen I was just filled with dread.

#248111 How we think Star Wars should be like

Posted by Ocelot on 19 July 2010 - 01:20 PM

I propose to you, citizens of SSLF, that there has never, nor will there ever be, anyone who so completely embodies the idea of a Sith as Darth Maul. A Force sensitive individual who has given in to his anger, fear and hate; what better example is there?

No, he has no character development. He has no story arc. He could have written all of his lines in the movie on the back of his hand. He had nothing to characterize himself and that is perfect because he wasn't a character. He was a weapon, an idea. A symbol, if you will. And if this sounds familiar it's because, yes, he is exactly like Batman. Bruce Wayne doesn't wear the bat suit for fun, he wears it to become more than a man, to strike fear into the hearts of his enemies simply by being there. Similarly, Palpatine doesn't need a Scrabble partner, he needs to send the Jedi a message. He has no use for a compassionate and kindly apprentice, he wants only the strength and terror that the Dark Side has to offer.

So what does he do? He moseys over to the planet with the scariest looking humanoids available and he finds the ideal subject. He has him tattooed to look like any sane person's worst nightmare. He teaches him only anger and hatred, because he has a plan. He wants to show the Jedi that they aren't the biggest kids on the block anymore, and he does so by fashioning himself the most terrible weapon possible. He builds himself a Sith Apprentice who is the very epitome of everything the Jedi fear. The feirce anger, the bristling hatred, but most of all the sheer power. The Jedi had been happily ruling the galaxy for centuries, never having to worry about that thing that happens when a person uses the Force for evil. But now their dirty little secret has caught up with them, and he's riding a motorcycle, brandishing a red lightsabre and wiping the floor with their best Jedi on Tatooine.

First impressions are important, and they don't come much better than the shock and awe campaign that Darth Maul was.

The three way duel (truel) in Episode I is still the best fight scene in the entire saga. It's one of the best sword fights of any movie ever. The way Maul can handle two Jedi at once without effort not only shows how powerful the character is, but how brilliant the choreography of the scene is and the dedication of the actors involved. The swordery is fast, and there are no obvious stunt doubles used. Ray Park is obviously awesomesauce personified, but Ewan McGregor and Liam Neeson more than pulled their weight. Qui Gon's death is so perfectly done. Darth Maul does it blind, he stabs him backwards with the other end of his lightsabre. He isn't looking at Qui Gon when he does it, he's glaring right at Obi Wan. He wants to see the look on Obi Wan when he murders the only father he's ever known. And then, while they're still separated by those energy walls, Maul starts pacing back and forth and fidgeting, like he hasn't got his fill of brutality yet. It is so deliciously evil.

When Obi Wan and Darth Maul finally meet in the bottomless pit room they make the last twenty minutes of fighting look like it was done in slow motion. I could watch that scene over and over (and I absolutely have). There's a tangible difference in choreography between Episodes 1 and 2. The later Prequels' fights are far more graceful, balletic and... let's go with showy. Unfortunately, not a single one can match the intensity of the end of Episode 1. Obi Wan and Darth Maul look like they genuinely want to kill eachother. They don't have time to fit in three twirls in between every swing, they're too busy viciously hacking at eachother. There's more emotion in those few seconds of fighting than there are in the entirety of Episodes 2 and 3.

Of course, it all ends poorly. Obi Wan kills Darth Maul in a way that suggests that they couldn't be bothered thinking up a real end to the fight and just wanted to go home for the night. The Sith Lord who, not five minutes ago, was so unperturbed by having his lightsabre cut in half that he spun around and kicked Obi Wan in the face before you could blink and went on fighting with half a 'sabre, is undone by being slowly somersaulted over and sliced in half. It was a move that couldn't have been telegraphed more if Obi Wan had actually sent Darth Maul a telegraph. "Darth Maul stop going to flip over and slice you in half stop please don't block or dodge or slice me up while I'm in the air like I will go on to do to Anakin in a few years when we're in this exact position stop".

If Palpatine had simply called Darth Maul off at that point it could have been so much better. Firstly it would end the fight in a non-stupid manner and leave Darth Maul alive for future fights. It'd show that, no matter how dangerous Maul is, there's someone out there bad enough to be holding his leash. More importantly, it'd keep Palpatine in control of the situation. The way it stands now Palpatine isn't so much the evil mastermind as a bumbling old coot who eventually lucks into victory. He pits Darth Maul against the Jedi, but then Darth Maul gets killed. "OK," he says, "well try this old guy with a bent lightsabre! No? What about this stupid robot guy with four arms! Oh, you shot him. Boy, it sure is convenient Anakin was so easy to corrupt!"

It's dumb, is what I'm getting at.

If, for example, Palpatine had kept Maul alive in Episode 1 he could have pitted him against Anakin in Episode 2 in place of Dooku. Maybe Anakin could have defeated him there, but to do so he would have had to surrender to his anger a little to gain the necessary advantage. It would killed two birds with one stone: the first step in Anakin's fall, and taking out the need for Yoda to fight an old man. If Anakin had been even halfway Dark Sidey by the end of Episode 2 it would have gone a long way toward solving the problem of him suddenly turning evil, killing children and getting suited-up all in the last fifteen minutes of Episode 3.

Anyway, I'm getting away from my original goal here, which was to rave about the awesomeness of Darth Maul. He's pretty awesome.

#247787 How we think Star Wars should be like

Posted by Ocelot on 18 July 2010 - 05:36 PM

Admiral Motti (this guy) doesn't believe in The Force. This guy is at least in his 30s, and he is so ill-acquainted with Jedi and Sith that he doesn't believe they exist. This makes the entire Prequel Trilogy, where the Jedi are pretty much the rulers of the galaxy up until 18 years before Star Wars, stupid.

And I know the idea is supposed to be that Palpatine somehow convinced the entire galaxy that the whole Jedi business was all a dream or some other nonsense, but that's dumb. If, say, Ralph Nader one day ordered his private army to kill every Policeman on the planet, do you think you would have forgotten that Police ever existed in 18 years' time?

The simple solution is just to set the Prequels much earlier. Wookieepaedia tells me that Darth Vader is supposed to be 42 during Star Wars, and Obi Wan 57. Eff that noise. Vader's a cyborg, he can be any age, and Obi Wan could easily have passed for 80 and over; that gives you an extra 25 years to work with. An extra 25 years during which to explain how the galaxy went from Jedi rule to not knowing what a Jedi is. To show how Anakin slowly fell under the thrall of the Dark Side, rather than the 30 on-screen seconds it ended up being.

Of course, that would require a complete do-over, so let's just try to fix the mess we already have. First things first, a small cast of characters would be nice. None of this 'new bad guy every movie' business. Darth Maul is the very best thing to have come out of the Prequels, and having him around for all three of them would have been enormously helpful. We could have seen Palpatine moving from the idea of training an apprentice to be a blunt weapon to the more manipulative monster he is in the real Star Wars, pitting Maul against Anakin under carefully controlled circumstances to get him ready for his future turning.

Smaller cast goes for everything, by the way. The Trade Federation, Separatists, Clones, Jedi; they're all just there to sell more action figures. How much do they really add to the story? All you need is the Republic and the Jedi, who could start off on the same side and then become enemies when Palpatine takes hold. I mean, when you first heard Obi Wan talking about the Clone Wars on Tatooine did you imagine that the Clones would be fighting alongside the Jedi against some bug people and robots with silly voices? And can you imagine the logistics of building fleets of entirely new spaceships and different armour for your billions of clone soldiers every three years? Is there even one ship that appears in more than one Prequel movie? I know it sounds cynical to say that the Prequels are one six hour long toy commercial, but I can't think of a better way to put it.

Finally, Yoda should never ever have come anywhere near a lightsabre. The things the CGI animators did to his likeness in Episode 2 are beyond reprehensible. You take the most dignified and respected character in the entire Star Wars universe and give him a little toy lightsabre that he can spin around like he's trying out for the lead spot in the high school marching band? You sicken me, good sir. His fight in Episode 2 is bad enough - at least you know that Christopher Lee didn't stoop to pretending to fight a tennis ball on a stick (they CGI'd his face onto another actor's body) - but that ridiculous spectacle in Episode 3? Yoda and Palpatine scurry about the Galactic Senate whooping and cackling and hooting and fruitily twirling their lightsabres while they slowly throw hovering platforms toward eachother. Yoda catches Palpatine unaware by gently spinning his platform a little bit which apparently makes in the most deadly projectile ever. And then for some reason Yoda falls off something and then slinks off to hitch a ride with Jimmy Smitts and sulk a little. Just... who could have thought up something so awful?

Yoda is above lightsabres. Yoda is above fighting. Yoda is above using The Force. He's been a Jedi for 900 years, there is absolutely no reason he should ever stoop to using a stupid glowy sword and a hokey religion to solving his problems. Yoda is the epitome of every Kung Fu master, every Chess mastermind, every tactical genius ever. He should be 42 steps ahead of whoever is silly enough to pit themselves against him. The entire Prequel Trilogy hinges on the idea that Palpatine was able to pull off his daring ruse by somehow hiding his Dark Sideyness from all the Jedi by making the Force 'cloudy' or some nonsense. Somehow we're meant to believe that Yoda could stand in the chambers of a guy with Sith paintings all over his walls, who'd taken a special interest in the most powerful and unstable young Jedi in history, who literally had a lightsabre up his sleeve and couldn't put it all together.

I'd better stop now because I'm beginning to choke on my own rage here. The Prequels are just so painfully stupid in every single respect and I could rant about it for days if I didn't have that last shred of self-respect holding me beck.

#247210 Dragon Age II

Posted by Ocelot on 16 July 2010 - 05:13 PM

They're just trying to appeal to as many people as possible... no offense, Ocelot, I can see your point, it's just that you and I really want two different kinds of games.

Oh, absolutely. I'm fully aware and duly ashamed that I'm playing the part of that guy here. While I would like to see more Mass Effect influence in the RPG genre, I agree that it sucks to take an existing series and change it midway through to appease my kind of slack-jawed, action-obsessed vidjergame fan. If Bioware, or any other developer really, were to start up another fantasy series of this kind of flavour I think we could all be happy, but taking Dragon Age and abandoning its entire reason for being is just a jerk move.

Even I'm kind of apprehensive about this, though. I feel that a big part of my love for Mass Effect is that I think Shepard is really awesome. I've been playing a bit of Alpha Protocol, which is pretty much the same sort of deal, but Mike Thornton really doesn't jibe with me and it's definitely hampering my enjoyment of the game. I suppose the Mass Effect-style of RPG needs a delicate touch when it comes to the playable character. He (or she) needs to be pretty much a voice only, not an established character. A name and a voice and, I suppose, some sort of mild backstory (as in Shepard is always a soldier, he can't be a shopkeeper or something). In Alpha Protocol you feel like you're playing as Mike Thornton, while in Mass Effect you feel like you're playing as Shepard except you are Shepard. I don't know, I'm finding it hard to explain. I'm throwing lots of words at it but the clarity isn't coming.

Anyway, while this certainly makes me more excited for Dragon Age 2 (a game I wouldn't have been interested in otherwise), it can definitely see why people are upset about it. It's sort of the way I feel about GTA IV; I can appreciate the idea of a more realistic Grand Theft Auto game but I wish someone else had done it rather than Rockstar themselves because I loved the old GTA games precisely because of their lack of realism. So while I can sort of enjoy GTA IV, I'll always be bitter that it stole my beloved GTA series away from me.

#246885 LSW 3- The Clone Wars

Posted by Ocelot on 15 July 2010 - 01:39 PM

The Prequels would of been better if it ignored the story of the Jedi entirely and instead followed the ARC troopers crashing gunships into temples and lighting Sith on fire.

As long as they can fit in the Qui Gon, Obi Wan and Darth Maul fight in there somewhere. Episode 1 could just be a ninety minute fight scene and then Palpatine Order 66es immediately afterwards, and Episodes 2 and 3 are just a series of rad ARC Trooper hunting down Jedi vignettes. I want to see much more non-Jedi-duders going toe to toe with Jedi, because that's where the awesomeness lies. Just the adventures of some really awesome Bounty Hunters and the very best ARC Troopers fighting Jedi using only their wits and smarts and crazy skillz, like when Batman fights Superman.

#246499 Dragon Age II

Posted by Ocelot on 14 July 2010 - 12:43 PM

I doubt that, they have a backstory for him, and artwork, which shows a male, so I suppose it's going to be limited.

Posted Image

Every last shred of Mass Effect marketing shows this guy, but nobody actually plays as him. And he can just as easily be a lady, too.

If Dragon Age 2 goes down the Mass Effect route then, you'll have to forgive me RPG purists, but I will be all over it. I adore Mass Effect's approach to RPGing, I just never thought it would catch on in other games because of the massive work involved in recording six lines of dialogue for every branch of every dialogue tree in the game for two different voice actors. I can appreciate the need for regular, silent-protagonist RPGs, but I just can't get into them after Mass Effect. I own Dragon Age and I've played maaaaybe a couple of hours of it, and it doesn't grab me at all. Having my character stand there and communicate in text only while all the other characters react as if I've spoken aloud is something I can't seem to get past anymore. I guess it's meant to make me feel like I am that character, and I can sort of roll with that until I remember that when people talk to me I tend to talk back to them. Also, I don't want to be myself in games. I suck.

Mass Effect gives me the opportunity to react how I would react to things, only instead of being me I'm a super awesome Space Commando with an alien girlfriend and a rad spaceship. And I can talk, too. I get more immersed in Mass Effect than any other RPG I've ever played.

I know some of you are frothing at the mouth right now, so perhaps I should pre-emptively counter my own argument. I luuurve Fallout 3 and that's as silent-protagonist as you can get, so perhaps my problem isn't with the practice in general but just Dragon Age in particular. Playing DA I never feel like I'm really controlling my character. I'm picking lines of text for him to not say during conversations, and I'm clicking on things I want him to hit with things during fights, but I never really get the feeling that I am that gentleman in the game. Fallout 3 is, at least, much better at giving you the illusion of control. The lack of direct involvement is probably what sours me on Dragon Age. I am absofruitly on board with Mass Effecting the series up.

#245676 moving Wicktures that you are watching: John Wick 3 Edition

Posted by Ocelot on 11 July 2010 - 12:18 PM

lol Avatar haters hatin' :lol:

You know you folks are the reason Avatar is so popular, right? The people you go on about who idolize James Cameron and think the movie is the greatest thing ever don't actually exist; the most voiced opinion about the movie is that it sucks. And as long as these rants keep happening the movie's going to stay popular because nobody ever shuts up about it. If anyone even mentions it in passing you can guarantee at least half a dozen people are going to leap from the shadows with their carefully prepared and 100% identical treatises on the ways the film is exactly like Dances With Wolves/Ferngully/Pocahontas, and how the CGI was terrible and District 9 was so much better, and that Sam Worthington isn't all he's cracked up to be (once again, I don't believe anyone ever thought he was that great).

You ladies and gentlemen have invented an opposition to fuel the fires of your nerdrage, is what I'm getting at. I've never seen something so widely despised for so little reason. I mean, it's perfectly reasonable to dislike the movie, but what is there that deserves such vehement hatred? Did James Cameron personally come to your house and punch your dog? I don't get it at all.

#243573 The Steam Topic

Posted by Ocelot on 01 July 2010 - 05:43 PM

I would like to address a message to everyone who hasn't bought The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom: buy The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom. It's like someone took World 4 of Braid and made a full game out of it, only with a completely different gorgeous art style and deliciously clever writing. And it's kind of brain-hurty. P.B. Winterbottom is a gentleman with a predilection for Pies and Time Travel-related shenanigans. Y'know that bit in Back to the Future 2 where Marty has to sneak around to stop Biff's gang from dropping sandbags on past-Marty while he plays Johnny B. Goode? This is that in videogame form, only you're Marty and Biff's gang. Essentially, it is a game of whimsical time-travelling suicide, and you should all buy it.

Also? It's $2.49.

#239124 E3 2010! What is on your watchlist?

Posted by Ocelot on 15 June 2010 - 07:37 AM

But anyways, let us stop are fighting, and come together under the realization that lol ps3 stil has no gaemz

I'll drink to that. I sat through two whole hours of that interminable Sony conference and saw one interesting thing: Infamous 2. This great big 3D push, the stupid Move nonsense, and their insistence on schilling the PSP which is a horrible system that needs to die. I can't believe they didn't show The Last Guardian. I cannot believe it. My internet connection dropped out right near the end, when the Ice Cream Truck music from Twisted Metal started to play, but I wasn't too upset. Twisted Metal was your big closer, Sony? Twisted Metal? What happened to you, Sony? You murdered E3 last year, and this year the only reason you didn't completely fail was that Microsoft did it for you.

Ten minutes of a guy playing Golf on stage. Speech after speech after speech. The biggest game of the night gets a crappy live demo that everyone in the audience has to put on 3D Goggles to watch, and Infamous 2 gets a two minute trailer. Those PS2 Collections weren't even brought up (Sly Collection got mentioned in passing by Kaz Hirai), and NO LAST GUARDIAN. Playstation Plus? You want me to pay money for your free online service? Special Editions of multiplatform games by EA? I mean...

Is it too late to become a Nintendo fanboy? Because I think I just jumped ship. There's a black Wii out there with my name written all over it.

#238971 E3 2010! What is on your watchlist?

Posted by Ocelot on 15 June 2010 - 12:33 AM

Here you go

SOOO GOOD. With some time to tighten things up Skyward Sword could be heavenly. I can't get over that swordfighting where you actually have to swordfight folks. Between this and MGS Rising videogame swords are back in action.

Nintendo's website is getting hammered, but apparently all kinds of new 3DS screenshots are being posted. There's a bunch of 3DS Snake Eater ones here. It looks like a complete remake with Peace Walker-style gameplay (or at least a 3D camera like Subsistence), new character models, 3D snake attacks!

EDIT - Konami's E3 website. Looks like the official title is Metal Gear Solid 3D: Snake Eater. And Nintendo's website seems to be going again with all the trailers from the conference. I've seen 3DSes in red, blue and black now. I WANT THEM ALL.

EDIT AGAIN - I'm still recovering from this. Iwata pretty much just sauntered on out there and said "Here's the coolest thing you've ever seen, and here are all your favourite games to play on it. Peace out, bros".

#238851 Metal Gear Solid: Rising

Posted by Ocelot on 14 June 2010 - 09:08 AM

So, I don't know about you fine young ladies and gentlemen, but I've played a videogame or two in my time. Specifically, I've played a lot of videogames that revolved around swords; sword-wielding characters hacking their way through hoards of assorted evil. But they never really hack, do they? The accepted behaviour for a videogame sword is for it to simply clip through another character while making a slicing noise and maybe leaving behind a coloured trail in the air. This is presumably because of hardware and coding limitations, but it's been this way for many years now with no sign of change.

I've always dreamed of a game where a sword would actually, y'know, cut things. I thought this generation might be the turning point, but it never really happened. Devil May Cry 4 was just a graphically upgraded Devil May Cry 3. Ninja Gaiden 2 had some dismemberment, but it was canned; there was no direct relation between your sword slices and the enemies' limbs falling off. And The Force Unleashed, a game that pretty much rode on a campaign of realistic material behaviour (remember all those Euphoria engine trailers with the plywood and junk?) did absolutely nothing with the lightsabre. God of War, Bayonetta; you name it. So I had pretty much given up on the idea of ever seeing my dream come true.

And then I went and slept through the Microsoft conference at E3 this year because I'm a moron who doesn't understand that really late tonight is actually tomorrow morning (who'd'a thunk?)

Ladles. Jellyspoons. Feast your eyes:
Posted Image

That right there is a great moment in videogame history. Not only are we finally getting the Cyborg Ninja MGS spinoff we've always wanted, but it comes with some crazy future technology that lets us cut some dudes UP. And watermelons too! The full trailer is here, for now. I haven't been able to find any HD versions yet but I'll update this when I do.

But now the most important part of any Metal Gear Solid thread: BASELESS SPECULATION! I'll go first!

This game is multiplatform: PS3, 360 and PC. So I wonder what that means for the controls. The idea I get from the trailer is that it'll control much like MGS4 does, i.e. a third person shooter. Raiden has a sword at his hip and a Fortune-esque railgun on his back, and I haven't looked too closely but I imagine he probably has a knife at his ankle like he did in MGS4. And his scabbard is pretty big so it might hold both Katana and Wakizashi for some dual-swordin' action. Anyway, the trailer clearly shows both normal DMC-style sword combos in third person. I would imagine this would control much like the CQC in MGS4; when you have the sword equipped you tap R1 for slicing. I'm sure there'll be some face buttons involved for different types of attacks, too (he does a sweeping kick in that gif). But there's also a kind of Precision mode, and I would say it's the equivalent of over-the-shoulder view with Snake. It looks like you control the arc of the sword with an analogue stick, probably right, and then tap R1 to slice.

But I would not be surprised at all if the game came with Kinect/Move control. The basic combos could be gesture-based, and the precision slices could be 1:1 like Red Steel 2. I guess with Kinect you'd have to do Karate Chops instead of miming holding a sword because that seems like it would be awkward, but Move would work just as well as a Wiimote ('cos that's what it is lol). Of course there's the motion-control-less PC version to worry about, but developers don't care about PC versions anyway.

And the story! Is it after MGS4? Between 2 and 4? Is it the story of how Raiden rescued Sunny and got all Robot'd? IS IT EVEN RAIDEN AT ALL? The MGS Database on the PSN tells us that Sunny was being held in Area 51, and this would make for something terribly awesome. And the presence of PMC troops in the trailer sort of points towards a pre-MGS4 setting, since they were mostly disbanded and/or corpsified during MGS4. And there's Raiden's suit, which isn't at all like his MGS4 getup. But is it newer or older? The vibe I get from it is, dare I say it, rather Solidus-esque, but that doesn't really give it a time frame. Raiden seemed happy at the end of MGS4, so I can't really imagine him donning the Ninja gear again, but you never know. The FROG monster at the beginning of the trailer could point towards the future, but it could also be a specialised Area 51 guard we've never seen before. I guess the biggest thing is that Raiden seems to be missing an eye and has a bandanna (possibly Snake's) wrapped over the socket, but even that could be fixed with the MGS Universe's technology.

So, it's a big ol' mystery. I should mention that all this is from the Microsoft conference. Konami has their own conference later in the week, and there's every chance that more information and maybe a longer trailer will be released then.