Wednesday, 11 November 2009

MW2 - a turning point?

I have not really bought into the Call of Duty: MW2 hype, don't get me wrong the first Modern warfare was a enjoyable game. The campaign was solid and multiplayer was really impressive plus it dragged the CoD franchise out of the same old World War 2 setting for a little while. My problem is Activision has built this up into a game which will define video gaming, since this is a pretty well told and solid FPS it has been hailed as a great game but I doubt it will redefine video gaming like Doom/Command and Conquer/Halo did. What it could very well do though is change the perception of video games amongst non-gamers.

Activision doe seem hellbent on exploiting this licence and the Guitar/DJ Hero games along with Blizzards usual Midas touch with WoW continuing to dominate the MMO space alongside the new IP they are cooking up and Starcraft II/Diablo 3 selling millions of unit each. I blogged a while back about the £55 price tag for the game, thankfully before Christmas market forces kicked in and retailers have been cutting the price. The PC version of the game is roughly £30 on amazon.

Yet the game itself has garnered huge attention, gaming websites and magazines have been falling over themselves at every teaser trailer and announcement. It has already reached the mainstream press, something only the launch of a Warcraft expansion usually does and even the negatives have gathered responses which have not been totally hysterical.

The UK's leading critic of video games, Keith Vaz MP, has raised his head above the parapet to lob his opinion into the mix. Vaz is a staunch opponent of violence in video games, but he is also a media hungry MP who sees these controversies as a great way to get himself in the Daily Mail and other newspapers which make a living off peddling fear, this is very reminiscent of the "Video Nasties" of the 1980's which griped the UK.

Thankfully there are MP's (via facebook) and newspapers who realise that games have come a long way and now are on the cusp of breaking into the mainstream, while MW2 may not be the greatest game of the decade it certainly maybe the one which alongside the Wii and guitar based games (rock band/guitar hero) could bring the games industry into the mainstream with people realising they are on a par with the movie and music industry in terms of what they produce and its popularity.

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Modern Warfare 2's going Nuclear

While doing my morning read up of news I came across news that apparently a Kill streak of 25 in MW2 will allow for a Nuclear Strike upon the map. While unconfirmed this does seem over the top, yet I would imagine the widespread appeal of it. I remember it was difficult enough getting 7 kills for the gunship in MW so getting 25 will be almost impossible so to do it would be a pretty impressive achievement.

Hat tip GamePex

Bioshock 2 also seems to be coming along nicely, in the last few months it has disappeared from my radar but several recently released trailers along side news on the storyline mean this is now firmly back in my top 5 most wanted PC games.

Certainly the new weapons and plasmids look good and combining them is something that should really have been done in the original Bioshock as they seemed a really cool idea which instead became just another set of weapons. The architecture builds upon the unique look of Rapture and adds in some great sounding areas. Adopting little sisters to harvest Adam for you is another good idea tying in with you as a Prototype Big Daddy.

However I hope there is more beyond a few new areas and weapons, the storyline of bioshock was centered around the "WTF!" moment 2/3 of the way through - this time I would like to see some more characters beyond some clones of Ryan/Tenerbaun/Atlas from the original. The main protagonist this time around is called Dr. Sophia Lamb who is the head of a cult rejecting Ryan's ideas - I hope she is elaborated more than this and other characters are brought in.

Hat tip Gamespy

Finally again on Gamespy Metro 2033 looks quite promising, a cross between STALKERs survivalist game play and the underground&urban ruins that remind me of Hellgate London or Fallout 3. This will hit in early 2010 and could be impressive, I have included the preview trailer which doesn't give to much away but does look impresive.

The more I see games within this Genre the more I want to play an MMO based around this, I may have to give Fallen Earth a try.

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Space Marine List (2000 pts)

So after checking I had the right models (I believe in WYSIWYG) this is the list I plan to have finished by the end of the year. Hopefully then I can start gaming with it and make tweaks as by then I also plan to have a Auto-Cannon dread in the works as well as some custom SternGuard and VanGuard veterans. I will put a 1500/1750 point list up soon so I can cover any requirements when I finally get down to GW Bromley.

At the moment I am unsure of what to do with Vulcan, the Librarian+terminators will be hammering into an opponents line via the LandRaider which will also deal with any infantry with its flamestorm cannons. The pred gives me some roving firepower as the scouts + combat squaded tactical 3 (plasma cannon) secure my back field. I just don't know what to do with him.

Tactical Squad 1&2 as well as the other combat squad (flamer) will follow behind the LandRaider in their Rhino's to exploit the gap and secure objectives. The Landspeeder and Attack Bike will be tank hunting and moving around the flanks.



HQLibrarian (100)190

Epistolary (50)

Terminator Armour

Storm Shield (40)

TroopTactical Squad 1 x9 (170)250

Sgt with Power fist (25)

Melta (5)

Multi-Melta (0)

Rhino - extra armour (50)

TroopTactical Squad 2 x9 (170)245

Sgt with Power fist (25)

Flamer (0)

Multi-Melta (0)

Rhino - extra armour (50)

TroopTactical Squad 3 x9 (170)250

Sgt with Power fist (25)

Flamer (0)

Plasma Cannon (5)

Rhino - extra armour (50)

TroopScouts x9214

Sniper Rifles

Tellion (50)

Missile Launcher (10)

Camo Cloaks (27)

EliteTerminator Assault Squad x5 (200)200

Thunder Hammers x 3

Lightning Claws x2

HeavyLand Raider Redeemer (240)250

Multi Melta (10)

Heavy Predadtor85

Auto Cannon (60)

Heavy Bolters (25)

Fast AttackAttack Bike (40)50

Multi Melta (10)

Fast AttackLand Speeder (50)70

Heavy Flamer (20)

Multi Melta (0)



World of Goo promotion - Pay-What-You-Want viable?

On (recommended site - great for mature game new info) the results of 2D-boys "Pay what you want" promotion seemed to be a success.

PR wise the move gathered only praise and pushed a year old game back into the main news streams of most big game websites. Apparently 57,000 people purchased the game and a 40% increase in purchases over Steam.

Where this falls down a little is the price - the average was $2.03 paid and 17,000 paid $0.01. Personally I thought it would be around the $5 mark as I had hoped gamers would react in a more positive way. This is after all a company giving them a choice of what to pay for a game and not putting any shitty DRM in it, something many people in favour of file sharing have argued for.

I guess those people who paid a cent would probably not have ever bought the game so $170 for thos downloads is something and if even a few thousand enjoy it enough they may buy any follow up games from the studio. The main response on the survey for people buying World of Goo was "I Like the Pay-What-You-Want Model and Wanted to Support It" with 24% so it got a postive response.

I hope that gamers would rally around developers like 2D-Boy and support them when they act in such a way, similar to the way Stardock has acted with its game. Who knows maybe people will not pirate their games because all the arguements in support of file sharing can;t argue with the way they have acted....

Whats that, this is the internet....oh well!

Monday, 19 October 2009

World of Goo

World of Goo is on special offer until the end of today.

The publishers 2D-Boy are allowing people to make donations for whatever you feel the game is is worth. There will have been people paying $0.01 for the game but with DRM i assume those same people will have pirated it anyway, for me i paid $15 as i felt that was a fair price for a few hours of fun. It also makes a great deal of sense, creating interest in a game that has been out for a year. Steams special offer weekends seems to use the same idea as it normally propels games into the top 10 downloads when thee is 50% off such as with left4dead which I purchased recently (more on that in another post).

My girlfriend certainly agrees that it was a good deal and has been happily directing those cute balls of goo around all day. What makes her happy makes me happy so thanks 2D-boy!

Monday, 12 October 2009

Sons of Orar

Well my painting is going really slow at the moment as I am lacking motivation. It seems to easy to blob out in front of the PC than get stuck in. However I am determined to get moving again and have a squad of Sniper Scouts, Assualt Terminators and another squad of Tactical Marines assembled and ready for undercoating.

I was torn about using a new Marine Chapter of my own but have decided to stick with my Sons of Orar rather than start again as I like the Fluff around them.

“Orar is a mythical figure in the histories of the Space Marines, an Ultramarines Captain who won great reknown during the Horus Heresy. Details of the Sons of Orar's founding are lost to Imperial records. The legends of the Chapter claim Orar as spiritual patriarch."

My Marines will now be part of the 4th Company and I will also be fielding lots more Multi Meltas and Flamers to go with a scratch built Vulkan proxy. I know it is ultra cheese to use him but he seems like a great chance to scratch build an HQ and also scratch build some Sternguard/Vanguard venterans which I call "Shield guard" and "Spear guard".

I also have ideas for my custom chapter, the Emperors Shieldbearers. Shown here using B&C space marine painter I am still not 100% sure I should not start again so who knows I may about turn and start something new entirely.

Hopefully have pictures of my progress coming soon.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Behind the scenes at Blizzard

Gamasutra had a really interesting article Blizzard and how they structure their different teams. It's funny to think of how many people who never get a mention or even thought about by the masses of Blizzard fans, such as 37 people designing everything from classes to encounters and loot and 123 staff for cinematics which are something Blizzard always does well.

It doesn't even stop there as Blizzard even have "two full-time lore historians, keepers of blizzard's past"

So I guess this post is to recognise all the hard work members of games companies put in without ever really getting recoginition from gamers.

Monday, 28 September 2009

Viva Cuba

Sorry for a lack of posts - I was away for 3 weeks in Cuba sipping Mojitos and Smoking cigars.

Did write some stuff while i was away so will be posting shortly