Tuesday, 4 November 2008

A few mini reviews

Just a small collection of one line reviews of recentish games, so that you can a feel of what I like and don't.

Portal - a new concept in puzzle gaming, brave and brilliant - Fun.

Team Fortress 2 - A fun update of an old classic - Hopeful.

Mass Effect - Cinematicly amazing, but medicore mechanics - Hopeful.

Witcher - Bad translation, but defiantly the right direction - Hopeful.

NWN2 - A bit buggy and repetitive, but a modder's dream - Hopeful.

STALKER - Buggy and badly translated but best mix of FPS and RPG since Deux Ex - Hopeful.

Half Life 2 Episodes - Fun mechanics, but too derivitive nowdays - Nostalgic.

GTA 4 - Slightly better than GTA:SA in all ways, but not much new - Nostalgic.

World of Warcraft - an updated version of Everquest more suited to casual gamers - Nostalgic.

Oblivion - Bland in all ways - Pants.

Warhammer online


There, I have admitted it. Back in my university days I played Everquest; the progenitor of most modern efforts almost religiously and was in a high end 'guild'. Although I never did return to that fevor, I have occasionally re-entered the genre. The most recent outings being with World of Warcraft and now Warhammer online.

So what has changed in this latest offering?

The most prominent of the new additions is the emphasis placed on Realm verses Realm combat. These largely mimic the battlegrounds of Warcraft, but does it better. In addition there is the ability to control various public areas. This holds a lot of promise, but as of yet these are almost always empty.

On the leveling side Player vs Enemy starts off promising, with another genre addition being 'public quests' . These encourage solo players to group up and defeat multi-stage events. However, the rewards for completing them are underpowered to an extent that most prefer to solo for faster experience gain. The same goes for the various deserted dungeons. In addition, the creature AI is pathetically bad. Overall Player verses Enemy is just not as fun as Warcraft.

Thankfully, it is entirely possible to progress both gear-wise and levelling via the Realm vs Realm scenarios. The mechanics of each class are both interesting and well balanced for tactical play with other group members. The downside is that most random players have no idea, so many of the subtleties are lost unless playing with friends. Also, it seems that each level bracket has one scenario is a lot more popular than the others, meaning you repeat the same map over and over and over and .....

Play this game if:

  • You have a good gaming PC (it will eat lower end PCs).
  • You have lots of free time and don't mind repetition and boring Player vs Computer.
  • You like Player vs Player combat and have online friends or a guild to play with.
Overall mark: Nostalgic

About this blog...

I doubt that there are many under twenty now whom have never played a computer game, and indeed from its roots of a very few enthusiasts the industry has grown into a behemoth to rival Hollywood. But since the days of Pong, Pac-Man and Space Invaders shot the idea of computer gaming into the public consciousness not only have games been maturing. so have gamers.

If you buy games based on the graphics, or get excited by a new vehicle or gun then just read gamespot or something 'cause this blog is not for you. This blog will provide mini reviews for mature gamers looking for fun mechanics and a deep story.

Each review ends with a singular remark:
Fun - Oh my word!
Hopeful - Not quite there, but worth watching
Nostalgic - Fond memories, but nothing new.
Pants - Don't bother, this one is a yawn fest.