Monday, June 9, 2008

Game Log, and a Multimedia Experiment

Sooo, what've i been playing since last we spoke?

Kameo: Elements of Power
Finally beat this, after buying it with my launch 360 way back in 2005. The graphics are still gorgeous, but the controls and gameplay are just kinda meh all around. Now I know why I gave up on it all those months ago.

The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess
Very nearly finished with this. It's been fun, but the dungeons wear me out. Each one can take 3-5 hours to complete, with the climactic boss battle at the end. The battles are epic, but by the time I finally get to the boss, I just want out of the dungeon so I can either save and quite or move the plot along. Also, the contrived nature of the dungeons and how they're designed around the tools you find, along with arbitrary limits on things like the wallet tend to bring me out of the experience and remind me that, yes, I am in fact playing a game. Still, I'm glad to say that I will have finally finished a Zelda game.

The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
Ahh yes, somewhat of an old standby for me. This time I'm playing it on the 360 as opposed to the PC. I miss the mods, especially the interface and texture enhancements, but the underlying game is still as fun and addictive as ever. I did, however, forget how tough the game can be on lower levels. Cyrodil is an enchanting place to spend time in.

Grand Theft Auto IV
Like millions of others, I've been spending lots of time exploring Liberty City and doing my best to disrupt the peace there. Don't have much to add that others haven't said, but the characters are interesting, the story mostly engaging, and the city itself great fun to play in. It can be incredibly frustrating to have to redo a mission for the 4th or 5th time because of shoddy handling of vehicles, but there are so many spontaneous moments that bring a grin to the face. These weren't scripted or programmed events, but just things that randomly occur because of what the designers made available in the world. I always have great stories to exchange with one of my coworkers who's also playing.

I convinced my sister and her husband to let me try a little experiment. There are a few games out there that I think have such good stories and interesting gameplay that I think they would work well as a "movie" or other non-interactive visual entertainment medium. So I thought, why not have someone watch me play the game much like we'd watch a movie or TV show together? A couple of candidates that came to mind were Call of Duty 4, The Darkness, and Shadow of the Colossus. I ended up trying COD4, and the two of them said they enjoyed it. I played on the easiest difficulty to minimize having to replay portions. Unfortunately, there is no invincibility cheat for the game on the 360. This may prove problematic on some of the tougher, later levels. They said they were willing to continue, so hopefully the plot makes up for any rough patches in the game.

That's all for now folks! Next post in... whenever it's posted!


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