Archive for the ‘XBox 360’ Category

Game Thoughts

Thursday, February 19th, 2009

I have been playing a few games lately:

World of Warcraft

I got the Wrath of the Lich King expansion. I liked it quite a bit, but have not played in a while due to raids requiring lots of time and the fact that my guild starts raiding around midnight my time. This is not good for the job.

  • I never did much reputation grinding, but the curve seems to be much lower.
  • The new vehicle/mount system is neat, but I find it very confusing because the mount’s name is shown instead of the person riding it.
  • The story line, quests, and cinematics were nice. I really enjoyed playing some of the quests and learning more about the story.

Dead Space

This is basically a survival horror type game on a space ship. (Read: Resident Evil 4 in Spaaaace) I finished this recently, and, while I don’t really understand the ending or some character motivations, it was a lot of fun.

  • One of the big features is limb dismemberment. I thought it would become silly and old quickly, but it turned out to be surprisingly entertaining and even satisfying.
  • I purchased a suit off of the xbox live market place for a modest fee, not knowing that it was a fully-upgraded suit. I am slightly disappointed that I did not experience the suit upgrade path.
  • I really like the weapons. They are different enough from the standard game weapons to be interesting but familiar enough to be comfortable.
  • The answer the question “Could things possibly get any worse?” is always “Yes!”

Windows Solitaire

Yes, Windows Solitaire.

  • Vista’s Solitaire is superior previous Windows’ versions of solitaire. Multiple levels of undo is very nice, but not the only improvement.
  • I don’t win very many games of solitaire.

Gears of War 2

My brother and I played through the campaign together on regular difficulty, and I have been playing Horde mode with my friend. (Coop multiplayr against increasingly difficult waves of computer-controlled enemies)

  • The game’s plot is once again a mess and unsatisfying.
  • Fortunately, the gameplay (once again) makes up for its shortcomings in other areas. (Seriously, coop is really good)
  • The Hammerburst was changed from a 3-burst firing mode to straight semi-automatic. (I guess… it’s single fire, though holding the trigger down will fire continuously) I really preferred the burst fire from the first game better.
  • Bloodmounts in Horde mode are ridiculous. Perhaps they were tuned with more players in mind? I found them really really difficult.
  • The new mortar weapon is fantastic.

Is this what it feels like to be insane?

Friday, August 8th, 2008

I recently bought Geometry Wars Retro Evolved 2 on Xbox Live. I like it well enough, and I like how the achievements are done more this time around.

But wow, am I ever bad at this game. I can’t hit enemies, can’t avoid running into them, often head straight for them even though I know that they are there, and randomly suddenly turn around to run into enemies.

And here’s what bothers me: I keep saying (or yelling, depending) things like “What??” or “I wasn’t there!” or “There’s no possible way that I went that direction!”

As I see it, there are only a couple of options here:

  1. The games has collision detection or control issues
  2. What I am seeing or interpreting is not what is actually happening

There is something wrong when I see that I have plenty of room between my character and the enemy and then I suddenly die from running into the enemy that I know wasn’t close enough to touch me. Either there is something wrong with the game, or there is something wrong with me, and it’s more likely that there’s something wrong with me.

I can live with this when playing online games. I can chalk things like obviously shooting someone in the head (there’s even blood on his face!) or being killed after I duck around a corner up to network lag, but in a single player game that isn’t played online, I have no other excuse. If it were a skill issue and I was just being overwhelmed with enemies or was bad at aiming (which may be a factor) I would be fine, but I will do things like run directly into the very first enemy I see, even though I know it’s there and I am trying not to do it.

And this is frustrating.

I’m not quite sure what my point is with all of this, but this is something that is frustrating and reduces my enjoyment of the game. Perhaps other people experience similar things? Maybe this really all can be chalked up to my being bad at the game?