I’ve now played the opening few hours of Dark Souls II three times. I rented the game on PS3, played the opening area twice, decided I wanted to wait for the PC version and have now played up through all that content again on the PC. Now having a decent bit of familiarity with that opening area, I’d like to share some impressions. (more…)
This was the year where I was going to quit video games. And I did about four or five times. But every time, I’d hear about some game that I knew I had to play or get an itch to return to a title I left unfinished and I’d come back to it. That, and I had a 8 month gap between finishing school and getting a full-time job. My love/hate relationship with the medium reached its zenith this year. The volatile game culture, the rampant misogyny, and growing corporate greed continue to make me sick. I attended PAX and that made me even sicker of gaming culture.
But these titles, and a few others, remind me that with each year the medium is maturing. People are creating new experiences and refining old ones into profound and rewarding titles. They’re still a bit off the beaten track, only one of these titles came from a AAA game developer. However, these titles are becoming easier to find and becoming louder voices in the conversation.
NOTE: All of these are based on PC release date because that’s the only platform I own.
It took me four characters to get me through Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura. It’s a testament to the compelling nature of the game that I put up with several lengthy forays into the game that ended with me having to restart the entire game. It’s also a testament to the broken nature of the game that I had to build four characters until I found one that could actually get me through the content. (more…)
In anticipation of Deus Ex: Human Revolution I replayed Ion Storm’s masterpiece, Deus Ex. As I once again traversed through the web of conspiracy and explored the open levels of Deus Ex, I marveled at how, up to this point, no modern game has rivaled the smart design and complex story AI of Deus Ex. I believe Deus Ex is unmatched in the level and depth of freedom it gives the player. (more…)
Independent games have a great way of distilling game design down to its essence. They strip away the high-end graphics, production values and story elements to get at the core of a good game experience. One game I’ve played recently that got me thinking about game design is Atom Zombie Smasher. You are tasked with evacuating human survivors from cities being invaded by zombies. (more…)
Once every year, gamers from around the world huddle in front of their home/works computers eagerly awaiting the slew of announcements from the industry. It’s a time to see the most cutting edge graphics, the latest gaming experiences and largest number of titles. While E3 has always had an issue of hyping and misrepresenting titles, the thing that struck me the most this year is how overwhelmed each game was at showing some sort of spectacle. (more…)
Note: This is not a review, but simply thoughts on the story of Portal 2. This means there will be plenty of spoilers.
Portal 2 is a large step back from the original, brief, title nestled in Valve’s The Orange Box. While Portal 2 boasts two campaigns that are both twice as long as the original, a plethora of new mechanics and a multiplayer co-op mode, the actual experience of playing Portal 2 is greatly inferior to the original. This is because Portal 2 is trying to tell the player a story. (more…)