Zonrith1's Blog - Oct to Dec 10 (6 followers)

PermalinkAll's Quiet on the Western Front
The war to complete games has, like a world war, two fronts. The "Western" front consists of retail games, and the "Eastern" front is arcade titles.

Since late October, against almost insurmountable odds, I have finally conquered the Western front. The final battle concluded last night against Just Cause 2. I smote its ruin upon the mountainside, alongside New Vegas, Bioshock 2, Conviction, Saints Row 2, and Dead Rising 2. "Conclusion" of a game, and victory for me, being defined as finishing the story mode. Achievements are another matter...

My thoughts on the recent retail games I've played:
1) Fallout: New Vegas: Fun but frustrating. Glitches really detract, and the engine is showing its age. Overall, though, I think there's more to do than there was in Fallout 3. I'm leaning towards getting the DLC for it, but only when on sale, unlike what I did for Fallout 3.

2) Just Cause 2: I didn't play this much until I finished my other games. The control scheme was pretty unique compared to other titles and I was having trouble transitioning to and from it. Once I stuck with it I found it worked well. The game is a huge grind, though. Quests don't vary much, and there are a lot. It sort of reminded me of Assassin's Creed 1 in its lack of mission diversity. The main story was pretty funny, and there was a lot of humor overall. Sandbox elements were extensive, but again there was a lack of diversity when compared to other sandbox titles. I invested about 24 hours winning all the main missions, faction missions, strongholds, and doing a number of the skill-based achievements (but not all).

3) Bioshock 2: This felt a lot like the first Bioshock. I was getting concerned that it wouldn't, since it was done by a different developer, but it was atmospheric and dark and a good mimic of the first's spirit. I only tried the multiplayer once; it was okay but compared to something like Reach it just didn't seem worth my time.

4) Saint's Row 2: This was a lot of fun, though a lot of the achievements are quite frustrating. The missions are just ridiculous, and the whole thing was almost like a spoof on Grand Theft Auto. I'm tempted now to look into trying the first one.

5) Splinter Cell: Conviction: The only other SC game I've played is Double Agent. Conviction has quite a different feel. DA felt, in a way, like Hitman. Conviction seems more action than stealth oriented, which I knew going in, but it did rely on stealth more than the impression I got from reviews. As someone who has struggled with my patience in playing traditional stealth games, overall I liked the changes. Overall, though, this isn't my preferred genre, and I'm not particularly motivated at this time to replay on a harder difficulty.

6) Dead Rising 2: Far more enjoyable than the first game. The co-op is frustrating though, particularly for achievements, since many things (psychos killed, zombies killed, number of survivors rescued) reset for me, as non-host, each time I played. As such, I really need to play through at least one more time. Overall, though, I think this will have a low completion percentage for me like the first did; I'm just not inclined to grind the collectable-based achievements in these games. I swear Capcom gets off on making people suffer for achievements. RE5 is the only game of theirs I thought wasn't out-of-whack in demands on time invested.

So, what happens on the Western front now? One option is to borrow some new games (I don't buy new games this close to Christmas) to play. Some options I've considered: FFXIII, Call of Duty: WaW or Modern Warfare 2, Mirror's Edge, or perhaps some older titles. Maybe revisit Ace Combat 6, which I didn't finish.

The other option is to work on achievements in existing titles, namely recently played ones. The only recent retail I full-cleared was New Vegas. I'm relatively close in Godfather 2, so I might try to clean that one up. Just Cause 2 is missing a few but most of those are brutal in terms of time consumption. Saint's Row, Conviction, and Dead Rising 2 are almost shamefully low, and pulling those up from their low percentages would definitely look better to me.

Of course, there's the Eastern front to remember as well. Monkey Island 2 I'm only 1/3 through, and need to finish. There's more I might be able to do in Trails HD (I suck at those type of games, but I've only got one hard track left and I'd like to clear it), and some more in Turtles to do. Also, I really need to get moving on Puzzle Chronicles and win that, and probably work on the two Sonics I have left to hit (though I doubt I'll do that before 2011). Really, the only arcade game I've won recently is Gyromancer, which I ended up enjoying more than I thought I would (though the dialogue borders on Two Worlds lame).
Posted by Zonrith1 on 01 December 10 at 17:40 | Last edited on 01 December 10 at 17:41 | There are no comments on this blog - Please log in to comment on this blog.
PermalinkNew Vegas, Reach, & Revenge of the 2s
I started up Fallout: New Vegas last night. The good news is, the look/feel is in the same spirit as Fallout 3, and thus in the same spirit of the Fallout franchise. The bad news is that the game is riddled with graphical glitches. I honestly don't understand how this many slipped through. I saw people clipping through doors, two enemies floating up in the air, two giant ants "stuck" in a stone pillar so that they couldn't be killed (till my creative use of fire), and a few other, more moderate errors. Really though, what's up with all this? I am not surprised at a game having bugs, especially a very large game. But this many, this obvious... it just reeks of laziness. I don't know if I should blame shoddy testing or chalk this up to the culture of "oh, we can just patch it later." I suppose it doesn't matter much, but it definitely detracts. Didn't help my mood that the in-game instructions for the card game Caravan were so shallow that I had to go online to better understand just how the game worked. warning

On a brighter note, I've full-cleared Halo: Reach, the first Halo game I've obtained all the achievements in (while I've come close in a couple others, I've always fallen short). Overall, it was an enjoyable experience, but I'm pretty saturated on it now. I don't get how people can play something like that for months and months, even with the multiplayer options it has. I guess I just get bored too easily. My Halo goals aren't quite finished yet, however. I'm very close to having a Waypoint career level of 50, and I want the avatar award for that. This means I need more achievements, and this means Halo 3, the one game that counts in Waypoint that I don't own. I started up a co-op campaign on Legendary last week, and if I execute this right that should let me reach my goal. It's been so long since I played the Halo 3 campaign that I've pretty much forgotten the story, so it's interesting to re-experience it post-Reach.

Bad Company 2's Onslaught being on sale got me to spend points on DLC for the first time in I don't know how many months. I've probably played more BC2 multiplayer than anything, and with Reach out of the way I imagine I'll get going on this within the next couple of weeks.

Of course, I've got such a game backlog now that's just speculation. I've cleared the story modes of Godfather 2 and Quantum of Solace, but I still need to finish Splinter Cell Conviction, Dead Rising 2, Saint's Row 2, Bioshock 2, and Just Cause 2. The latter two I've not even opened. Obviously, I'm drowning in sequels. DR2 I've been working on alone and via co-op, and I'm not too concerned about clearing that story mode in relatively short order (though my achievement totals will probably be as pathetic as they were in DR1). Saints Row 2 is going to be tedious, though, as sandbox games tend to be. I probably should have started Bioshock 2 first, on second thought. Splinter Cell should be fast completion, but that was before New Vegas, and as everyone knows, I am beholden to Fallout.

This says nothing of Gyromancer and Puzzle Chronicles, which I'm somewhere in (how far I cannot say), and Sonic & Knuckles and Sonic 2, both of which I've essentially barely started. Oh yeah, and on the Windows front I still need to finish Waldo and Dawn of War 2.

I suppose the silver lining is, New Vegas was the last release-date game I planned to obtain in 2010. As such, until Christmas I don't anticipate getting any new games (barring good arcade sales). So, I should be able to dedicate some good focus to The Pile. Some of these games are very long, however, and just how much progress I'll make remains to be seen, especially if I continue to rotate my games rather than applying a single-minded focus on some. Keeping games in shrink wrap is hard for me, and JC2 & Bioshock 2 are screaming to be released from their cellophane prisons and installed to my HDD.
Posted by Zonrith1 on 21 October 10 at 18:42 | Last edited on 21 October 10 at 18:45 | There are no comments on this blog - Please log in to comment on this blog.