Friday, 10 February 2012

I am glad that isn't a trophy!!!

Having just slipped in a game from way back when... Oh wait sorry not that far back but before every game had trophy support.

Anyway... The Darkness includes an optional scenario where you can opt to sit down with your beloved and enjoy a movie... However if you do not get up before she kisses you are sat watching the ENTIRE film from start to finish... of To Kill a Mocking Bird.

I am all for immersion but that takes the biscuit. Thankfully this game being pre-trophy support means that no one in their right mind is going to sit watching a tv on their tv for 2 hours just for the satisfaction of hearing "pling".

sent from iPhone

Friday, 23 December 2011

2011 - the final month

Has it really been a month since I last blogged... And has it really been a month since I was last separated from my PS3. I am starting to see a pattern here.

So... 2011. It seems as though it all went a bit London bus in the end. Nothing turning up for months over the summer and then many massive releases all happening at once.

Of all the big releases this year Battlefield 3 has to have been my favourite. If it weren't for Assassins Creed Revelations having been released within 2 weeks of it I could have happily still been playing EA's latest military shooter.

I had been looking forward to Assassins Creed, preparing myself for the end of the Ezio era and readying my mind for the 2012 requirement to the series (seeing as Desmond needs to save the world by 2012 we can't have a 2013 release date). Something however felt a bit lacklustre and missing in the latest instalment. It was hard to pinpoint but the easiest way to describe the lacking was in Ezio's role of mentor feeling all too prominent. Where previously the mini games felt useful, this time about it felt as though Ezio should "have a guy for that" yet due to financial constraints could not afford the local temp agency rates. Oh well.

This Xmas will see a multitude of games being unwrapped for my enjoyment that have seen praise this year. Whilst too early for New Years resolutions it makes sense to pledge to make more of my play time and comment here more regularly.

So... If you have read this far it only leaves me to say...

Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year!!!

sent from iPhone

Monday, 21 November 2011

Books again...

Having completed Battlefield 3 last Monday, and having had to stop reading the Andy McNab book because I had reached a place of story cross over, I have now finished that off as well.

And it brings me back to comment on the adding to and variance of canon in such tie-ins.

For the most part the story is a useful supplement to the recent EA success story that is Battlefield 3. It helps to weave a narrative as to how the games main protagonist gets onto US soil in custody of Homeland Security, provides back story to the character of Dima, and helps to characterise some side lining characters in both story lines.

However in some key areas of the games narrative the book deviates and writes its own set of occurrences or settings. One reason I didn't stop reading sooner was that the Villa described in the book that is the level "Kaffarov" is hugely different to that in the game both in appearance (style of the house) and the events that play out in this setting.

Whilst McNab has clearly written from a more plausible and realistic point of view (as is his trademark) and the games set pieces are more in the vain of action movies and Hollywood, the glaring disparity causes a blip in continuity within the same overall story. Without giving too much away the ending is also wildly different from the events of the level "Comrades" which sets about locating and disarming a nuclear weapon in Paris.

I enjoyed both versions equally, and would like to see the Dima story as DLC perhaps as there is such a blank slate within the game in relation to this character. There were times where I would have preferred McNabs version and times I preferred the EA version.

Battlefield 3: The Russian provides a useful filler to Battlefield 3's campaign story. I would definitely play the game first before tackling the book as it is easy to run over the lines that separate where story lines merge.

sent from iPhone

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Dedication and Wikia's

Whilst I may be PS3-less I am certainly not without access to game based material.

As such I have taken the time to read 3 game based books over the last 3 weeks. Each book has taken a differing approach to its place in canon and dealing with the universe in which it exists.

Having played all Assassins Creed games to date my first port of call was Assassins Creed: The Secret Crusade. The style of which took the events of Assassins Creed and Assassins Creed: Bloodlines and sandwiched them in a preclusion to the upcoming 2011 release Assassins Creed: Revelations. Whilst an enjoying read to bring readers up to date on the full Altier story (if not a PSP owner) only the framing device and final few pages added any depth to the canon and, if anything highlighted how repetitive the first game of the series was - thankfully your actions are not verbatim in the book!

My next read was Deus Ex: Icarus Effect, a prelude to the events of Deus Ex: Human Revolution. This fact allows for more creativity and as the story is not focused on DX:HR protagonist Adam Jensen (though he gets a mention) it provides an interesting look at the events alluded to in the game. Unfortunately it has a bit of the Star Trek "Red Shirts" about it as it deals with the Tyrant group who serve as boss fights in DX:HR and through process of elimination (quite literally) you can tell who is going to get taken out.

Finally - and still reading - is Resistance: The Gathering Storm. This book is what Wikipedia referred to as an interquel?!?

In order to make sure that I did not read this out of synch with my games in the series I had to check the fan driven Wikia timeline to ensure I read the game at the correct point... As such I have completed Resistance Fall of Man and done level one of Resistance 2, after which a jump in time occurs... In which the book covers.

Now... I am thankful to the fans for this effort, however I cannot help but think that there must be better things to do than create a timeline of events for a fictional universe.

Just saying.

sent from iPhone

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Battlefield 3... Calm before the storm

It is becoming a pattern that my ps3 is not in my possession during October. This month it will be in Caroline's custody as she enjoys Zumba.

Fear not however, I shall have it back I time for the release of Battlefield 3. The beta will have ended by this time tomorrow, but for the experience I feel that the crown may well have been contended by EA. I am not usually one to take sides but Battlefield has a lot of immersive elements that I did not see from Modern Warfare 3 in recent demos.

Only time will tell but personally... I cannot wait for Battlefield 3 to be out!

sent from iPhone

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Eurogamer Expo 2011 - My Experience & Top Tips

This weekend was the Eurogamer Expo 2011 at London's Earls Court. The event ran from Thursday to Sunday and I made my visit yesterday between 2pm and 7pm. It was the first time that I have been to such an event and for the experience I am a little the wiser and more prepared for next year (to which I am definitely going to attend). So sit back, grab a beer and listen to my top tips to making the most out of one of these events.

Tip #1 - Go Early
Whilst this may seem obvious it is something not to be underestimated. On arriving at 1:20pm to Earls Court the queue for the afternoon attendees was already pretty long. Doors open dead on the hour of admittance and getting through the registration is a breeze, so the sooner you arrive to queue, the sooner you can peg it to the game of your choice. The most popular games all had queue systems in place and some of these were in excess of an hour long to wait in. Getting in line and inside as early as possible will give you the best chance to get hands on with your highest priority AAA title.

Tip #2 - Go Prepared
Always know what is on as best you can. All the biggest games are announced ahead of these events, and a floor plan prepared. You can guarantee that if you don't decide what is your Alpha target ahead of entry, and know where it is roughly located you will end up looking around to decide what is worthy of your time whilst that one queue you decide on continues to grow exponentially.
It also helps to see if any competitions are being run by the Expo. This year there was an option to go in cosplay in order to win a PSVita with judging done by Nathan Drake himself, Mr Nolan North. Whilst not the overall winner I had fun making my costume (YouTube link to follow in later blog) and was given an exclusive note book, personalised and signed by Nolan. He also signed my action shots from the costume creation (again - later blog to follow). Knowing what is on ahead of time will make your day so much better.

Tip #3 - Go More Than Once (Where Possible)
8 hours seems like a long time (and can be when it is spent in tedium at work), however with interesting developer sessions, long queues and the need to have sustenance (geeks don't get fat by not eating) those hours can fly by if you decide to do a lot of top class activities. I attended an Uncharted 3 developer session and was lucky enough to be ushered in... Because I was competing in cos-play. Had I not been ushered, the session and queue would have eaten 1.5 hours of my time. I didn't do a lot of queuing and still managed to enjoy RAGE, Battlefield 3, Uncharted 3, Resistance 3 and OnLive... However in 5 hours of visiting that doesn't equate to a lot of hands on time when etiquette dictates that 10 minutes is acceptable, 15 is ample, and 20 is pushing it... Be mindful of this and even if mid game be prepared to offer up your controller. Be prepared to watch a lot and not play everything unless going more than once.

Tip #4 - Go Socially Connected
Expos can be all about the swag. The best way to get this is to follow the event feed on Twitter or any Community Managers on the scene (@kleaneasy, @shade360, @EA_ActionMan & @Actonpies were my best discoveries). Anything that is Tweet worthy coming out from these feeds will be retweeted by the Expo and having mobile notifications will make things very easy. Exits are also a good place to be given parting gifts... This event provided me with 10 packets of Chili Heatwave Dorritos
As well as swag there are some useful feeds that come out from the Expo feed itself and getting questions answered is almost instant from their feed administrator. The world is becoming better connected through these services and they are incredibly useful. Also a good QR scanner is good for collecting links throughout the day to exclusive offers and trailers.

Tip #5 - Enjoy Yourself
Games are about having fun. Don't go and expect to be given any special treatment, be prepared to feel like a sheep and find blank expressions if asking complex questions from those at the stands. A lot of these people with STAFF on their shirts are volunteers. As for feeling like sheep, the main idea behind these events is to get as many people to play the game as possible in order to draw in extra interest in the product - so you will be herded through areas and expected to move when the shepherds tell you. Big games will be time limited or have restrictions on options and many of the highly anticipated will be run like well oiled machines with sessions run to the second and reset after each sitting. Skyrim was the latter, whilst Modern Warfare 3 offered up Multiplayer only. Thankfully Battlefield 3 had both Single and Multiplayer on offer, even if it was limited with regard to inversion.

That finishes my tips for attending Expos, and how to enjoy it from personal experience. I was looking forward to many games on display already, and Eurogamer Expo 2011 has done nothing to change those views... games that I got hands on time with were excellent and I am anticipating my pre-orders all the more.

It was disappointing that I didn't get to play everything I would have liked, and that it was only multiplayer on offer from Modern Warfare 3. In all however I certainly got the bug and will be a repeat attendee.

sent from iPhone

Thursday, 8 September 2011

My next platinum trophies... I am determined


Sorry... that is being screamed at a mirror, "You filthy trophy whore!!".

I've taken a fresh look at what is outstanding on my trophy list and despite my current immersion into the world of Deus Ex: Human Revolution, my whoring tendency is taking hold and making me want this and other Platinum's SO BAD!

So, I do declare that this winter (it might as well be with the bloody weather at the moment) I will be focusing my efforts on Plat-ing the following games;

  • Fallout 3 (come on - just a few more levels to get karma at)
  • Uncharted (JUST Crushing to do)
  • Medal of Honor (support actions & Tier 1)
  • Prince of Persia: The Forgotten Sands (JUST Final Boos taking no damage)
The problem games that I will probably never Plat are;
  • Assassins Creed: Brotherhood (bloody online trophies)
  • Skate 2 (bloody online players using the board throw glitch)
  • Tony Hawk Ride (why did I buy this again... it was £5 but still... WHY!!)
So... there we have my whore confession. Alongside the list of "to do's" I will be tackling Battlefield 3 and Assassins Creed: Revelations, so hopefully by the New Year by "to do" list will have shrunk rather than stagnated as that is just two games to disrupt my mindset.

Playstation 3 Trophies