Wednesday, March 29, 2006

If It Bleeds, I Can Kill It

I played a little bit of Far Cry Instincts: Predator on my lunch break today. Not bad at all. Thank the Lord they have a "Rookie" difficulty level! Overall, this is a pretty game. Some of the foliage looked flat to me but other than that, it's the prettiest island I've been stranded on yet. Character models are ok, I've only seen one scene so far where I got a close up of a character talking to me and she did not look good. Not as bad as PDZ, but not great either.

For someone that isn't exactly stellar at FPS, the Rookie difficulty has pity on me. I think I am a good way through the first mission (hopefully) and I can't wait to get/try out the "predator" powers I've been hearing so much about.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Valley of the Frag Dolls

Lots going on in the world of the Frag Dolls. They have the final eight in which one will be named the next American Idol...wait, that's not right...the next Frag Doll. There we go. The UK Dolls are having a "Battle of the Dolls" and there's also a new team of Dolls in France. My thought is that they're going for global domination. I'm a little surprised that there's no Frag Doll team in Canada yet.

The Calm Before the Storm

Last night was one of those (unfortunately) rare nights where we put down guns, swords and health packs in favor of a deck of virtual cards. After raising my ranks in Burnout Revenge, I joined a couple of friends for some Hardwood Hearts in the Xbox Live Arcade. It was nice to "sit around" chatting with friends and playing cards without having to keep track of health and ammunition. Once we said good night, I reflected on what great friends I have, friends that can go from shooting baddies to shooting the moon and seem to like variety in online games as much as I do. Then it hit me...This is just the calm before the:

Far Cry Instincts: Predator

Ah....Now I see. This wasn't some random night of relaxing play. This was deliberate. My friends are resting...rejuvinating...regrouping. They know that I've gotten better at shooters but still have far to go. They know that I'm vunerable and unsure of myself. They know that I've never played a Far Cry game. They can smell my fear and are waiting in breathless anticipation to pounce!

Or they were just tired and didn't feel like starting up a room in G.R.A.W., whatever.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Diamonds Are A Girl's Best Friend

Finally! We embarked on some co-op missions in Ghost Recon 2 last night. It was...well I had a lot of...Hmmm...

OK, total honesty here: The 360 has spoiled me. More specifically, G.R.A.W has spoiled me. I had fun with Ghost Recon 2 last night but I now wished I had played this before playing multiplayer in Advanced Warfighter. Where are my red diamonds to help locate enemies??? Last night I could barely see any bad guys until they were right on top of me. At one point I started shooting just so it would look like I was shooting at something. Night vision wasn't much help either. *laughs*

Another thing I've noticed: Whenever I play a BC Live game on the 360, I can barely hear my friends at all. That can be frustrating when someone's telling you there's a baddie right behind you and you can't hear them. I'm not sure if that has anything to do with it being a BC game or not.

In Oblivion news, I started a new game, this time as a Nord. I also created my own custom class with I named, "Amazon". Here's the rub: I am a heavily combat character but all I've done so far is hang out in towns and finish quests that don't have combat in them. *sigh* I think I messed up again. D'oh! Ah well, the game is still great and I'll get around to killing more than just wolves at some point...

Speaking of which, check out a great new blog by "Berian", a fellow Nord journaling his adventures through the Oblivion gates. The link is under "Groovy Blogs". Enjoy!

Friday, March 24, 2006

March Is The Cruelest Month

I am living in a gaming haze at the moment. March has officially broken me. Too many great games have dropped (pricey games I might add) and there's just too many calling for me to play them. They've started to gang up on me, taunting me if you will. "Play me!" "No me!" "I got achievements...Muwahahaha" What's a girl to do?

1. Oblivion: I broke down and got the guide yesterday. I have discovered that I need to start all over again. My character that I had created is crap with no specialization in anything important. The guide basically said that "these skills are worthless and you should focus on others" and then proceeded to list every skill I had chosen. Crud!

2. Burnout Revenge: I'm almost done with the World Tour mode. I don't know if anyone else has experience this, but it seems like it was fairly easy and then all of a sudden I couldn't get through an elimination race! Sheesh...

3. G.R.A.W.: I did the training mission and that's all folks.

4. Me and My Katamari: Unfortunately I have been derailed in my quest to finally bite the bullet and buy a PSP. (Freaking escrow shortage) This is probably for the best however since it's not like I'm short on gaming equipment or games to play. But I still hate the thought of a Katamari game out there that I'm not playing...

5. Ghost Recon 2 and Ghost Recon 2: Summit Strike: Older games I'm just now discovering. Past the training and part way through the first missions on each. I haven't seen any multiplayer action in either of these yet *fingers crosses*

6. Far Cry Instincts: This one is on preorder...Any chance this will be delayed until I get caught up? Argh!

7. Blazing Angels: Ahhhh...finally a new game I take a pass on. I played the demo the other night. Meh. This game just isn't for me. (so that's one game out of about thousand released this month I'm not getting...I've bought or preordered the other 999.)

In conclusion, I already suffer from gaming ADD but this month has just made it worse than ever. My Animal Crossing DS town has gone the way of the dodo and I'm afraid to go back there (roaches, weeds, mad townspeople, etc). And the above list doesn't even include Tetris DS and Metroid Prime Hunters which I haven't even gotten yet. Not to mention Unreal Championship 2 that I picked up for $10 that is now collecting dust instead of my love.

Is it time to weed out and trade in? Just thinking of trading in certain games and/or systems makes me see stars. I don't wanna! But it's gotten to the point where I'm so lost on what to play that I end up playing Hexic while all of my newest games give me dirty looks and design plots to lose saves and drop framerates the next time I play them in retaliation.

Thanks a lot Game Publishers! Way to release great games all at once! Heart of March, I stab at thee!

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Where's My Invitation to the Pants Party?

**I posted this today at and thought I'd add it here for all to enjoy my noobishness and humilation in regards to my first time in Oblivion:

I wanted to give my first impressions as a little bit of a RPG Noob. I've played Jade Empire and Fable but it seems like Oblivion is geared slightly towards a more tradtional RPG. (Aside from the turn based combat which I've never tried and frankly scares the crap out of me.)

Here we go:

I basically wandered around in circles in the Dungeon for a good 15 minutes. I had no idea what I was doing or how anything worked. I couldn't figure out how to get the key/lockpick I needed and it was just way too dark in there. (Yes, I know...Ambience and all of that but still...) Anyhoo, my light at the end of the tunnel was a friend of mine wanted to chat. Thank God! He basically listened patiently as I whined and occasionally screamed as rats kept attacking me from behind. He led me right through, teaching me the mechanics and whatnot and how to pick up objects upon which I started picking up everything I found. Soon after I became "too encumbered" and had to drop some stuff which included my original "prison garb" which I didn't need anymore because I had found and equipped a heavier armor of this leather getup, a shield and a rusty iron helmet.

So far, so good...I head off to meet the Emperor, hitting way too dark hallways along the way and not being able to see squat (not even my character). Sheesh. So I'm chatting with my friend, who is so graciously helping me figure out what I need to be doing when I finally come into the light. (literally) Woo hoo! Unfortunately, I finally get a good look at my character and notice something odd.

Here's the conversation that led up to and followed (Read: Me talking partly to myself and partly to my friend):

"Hey, where the heck is the bridge?" "How do I get out of here?" "Where the hell am I?" "RAT!!!" "Bastards snuck up on me again!" "What am I suppose to be doing?" "Aaaaiiiiieeeeee! GOBLINS!" "Why can't I go this way?" "Whew, finally some light!"

"Wait...what the...I'm not wearing any pants!!!!" "Where the hell are my pants?" "Crap, I threw away my other pants!" "I can't walk around like this, it's so unsanitary!" "Eeewwwwww!"

(I later found out I could use a torch to see better...Duh! And yes, I finally found some pants in the next town over. ) All in all, I am a little overwhelmed by the game but I'm hoping to pick up speed soon!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Hi, My Name Is ICandee and I am a Reconoholic

How in the world I missed playing Ghost Recon games when I first started gaming is beyond me. I am hooked on this series. I just added Ghost Recon 2 and Ghost Recon 2: Summit Strike to my game collection. Being a person that is chronically bad at first person shooters, these games haven't been giving me too much trouble at all. I think that it's because the fixed third person tricks me into thinking the controls are easier. Hey, whatever works, right? I've been having a blast with AW and can't wait to get into some GR2 and SS multiplayer.

In other news, Me and My Katamari (PSP) has been getting smacked around a little bit due to repetitive levels and nasty loading leeches. I'm woman enough to admit that this game is what's going to give me incentive to finally buy a PSP (once the price drops later this week) so I'm hoping my undying affection for the series will overcome any shortcomings of the game. This is especially important because apparently there won't be any more Katamari games. *pause to wipe away tears* Daxter has been getting great reviews and that may just make two PSP games I'm actually interested in.

In other 360 news, I have been working my butt off to get the 300k point achievement in Feeding Frenzy. I'm not usually an achievement whore unless I know it's something I can accomplish, then it takes over my brain until I do it. Unfortunately, Feeding Frenzy resets your score after every game so unless you get 300k the first run through, you have to start the game completely over to try and hit 300,000 points. Bastards! Yesterday, I made it to 296k before it was game over. Freakin' fish for jerks! I will get that achievement if it's the last thing I do!

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Know When to Walk Away, Know When to Run

Last night we had decided to play through the Wharf mission for those that hadn't already completed it. Picture this: From 9 people, we're down to just three of us left. I am one of those three. We're on the wharf itself and one guy breaks off to complete the intel part of the mission while me and another guy head off to destroy the two caches that are left. Order of the day, to stay as far back as possible, sniping the path clear for us to get close enough to the boxes. We're all doing great until I see something hurtling towards us. Grenade! Which is exactly what I yell to warn my friend while I'm trying to run away. Turns out I didn't run fast enough and that frickin' grenade took us both out, leaving one person to finish off the mission. Eight of us are watching him, screaming various things at the screen (which of course he can't hear): "Run!" "To your left!" and so on...

Miracles of miracles, he pulls it off and it's mission complete. Amazing! He was totally surrounded at one point and he survived! It was awesome!

In conclusion, I heart G.R.A.W.

Friday, March 17, 2006

That's What Friends Are For...

OK, I've been debating with myself over whether or not to post a blog about friend requests. Mainly because I wanted to make sure I didn't come across as mean or rude or whatever. So here's the issue and hopefully I've come up with a good solution:

I have gotten a few friends requests recently and I'm always happy to get them. Unfortunately, unless I recognize the gamertag or one of my friends knows the person, I won't accept the request. The reasoning behind this is not that I'm a snob or anything, it's simply a matter of priority. I've never played any game publicly on XBL, choosing to stay with the people that I already know I love playing with. I'm always happy to add to that list, but again, I really need to know that person. I've tried sending messages first such as, "Thanks for the invite, do I know you?" but I feel like that comes across bitchy. I'm not trying to fill up my list and I really only like to have people on it that I play with on a regular basis.

So to anyone that has sent me a friend request and I've declined it: Nothing personal, I'm sure you're a great person! If anyone would like to send me a friend request, please feel free to stop by and introduce yourself. It's a great place to get to know (half-way) mature gamers and from that you're sure to meet a lot of great people.

In conclusion, I hate turning down friends requests. It makes me feel bad and I don't like that feeling. How do you handle this?

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Another One Bites The Dust

This day will go down in history as the day I beat Hexic HD. I know that years from now children will hear of my victory in school. Monuments will be raised, the post office and banks will have an extra holiday, old people can walk the streets in safety...

OK, maybe not but in your face Hexic! Woo hoo!!!!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Burnout, Ghost Recon and Katamari Oh My!

I am a huge fan of the Katamari series and have been searching endlessly for any possible soundtracks. Well my wait is over, today I got the soundtracks for both Katamari Damacy and We Love Katamari. The music from the game is so infectious and is going directly on my 360 to enjoy while blowing up vehicles in Ghost Recon.

In other news, Burnout Revenge has been aquired and I am loving it! BR may be PGR3's less attractive brother, but he's a lot more fun IMHO. Crash on!

This just in: I have completed all of the co-op missions in Ghost Recon. Ahhh...sweet victory!

Thursday, March 9, 2006

ICandee + G.R.A.W.=BFF

When I try to think of how to describe mulitplayer in Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter, a few choice words/phases come to mind:

Freakin' Awesome
Sleep Deprivation
Incredibly Fun
Beautiful Graphics
Great Sound
Where's The Beef?

OK, that last one was a joke (and I just dated myself horribly there) but you get the picture. G.R.A.W. online is amazingly fun. I logged on about 7pm last night and logged off around 1am this morning. We tried out as many of the different modes as we could get in and they were all a blast to play. I personally didn't experience any lag although I was dropped from the game a couple of times when 16 of us tried to play a mission. (Which totally f*&!$ed my try at the 8 hours straight online achievement!)

Various times during the night we had anywhere from 3 to 16 people playing. The maps are freakin' huge and it was great fun getting lost or running right up on someone and getting shot in the face. Not all was roses however when, right at the end of a mission with three of us left, I threw a grenade which promptly bounced off a tree, landed right in front of me and wasted us all. Whoops! Luckily I play with some very cool guys and I was quickly forgiven. (But I did lose all grenade privileges)

Other than that slight setback, I did pretty well for myself. I think that first person controls with a third person perspective somehow tricks me into thinking the controls are easier which is fine by me! Everyone was in a great mood, we all worked together and had one of the best times online ever in my opinion. I can't wait for tonight, all is right with the world!

Wednesday, March 8, 2006

And So It Begins...

Happy G.R.A.W. Day! I picked up my pre-ordered copy and paid a whole $0.23 on it thanks to trade-ins. Woo hoo! I completed the training mission on my lunch break and began my first official journey into the world of Ghost Recon. Every button on the controller is used for something and there's probably some kind of phantom button presses I don't even know about. Coming from the viewpoint of a GR noob, I played through the training mission in a delicious fog of confusion. No worries, I had fun anyway and got the opportunity to chat with a friend that called out of work sick today to celebrate the release of G.R.A.W. Unfortunately I do not have that luxury considering my boss is a bigger gaming freak than I am and he would have seen right through my fake coughs and sneezes. Darn it...

So here I am, ready to forgo sunlight and family in favor of 16 player online co-op and headshottie goodness. (My head being the one shot) My squad needs me so see you in Hell diet and exercise!

Monday, March 6, 2006

Does The Outfit Make My Butt Look Big?

I just tried The Outfit demo tonight. Never having played a strategy type game before I was totally lost to say the least. But thanks to yet another TehBias darling who patiently explained everything to me, I ended up winning a round. Yay for me!

It took me a while to understand that once you bought a machine gun, for instance, red smoke billows and then the plane drops it and an extra guy to man it. Not knowing this got me killed when I was crushed by the dropping crate...sheesh...Note for next time: Stay away from all smoke...I also didn't realize that if the other side took over my radio tower that they could wire tap me and hear everything I said. Needless to say, he got an earful of me saying, "What the crap is going on?" "Where am I?" "Oh hell, what am I suppose to be doing???"

All in all, it was pretty fun. I can't wait to try it out with a full room. I don't think I'll be throwing down $60 for the full game, but the demo is a nice snack before Ghost Recon drops in a few days...

Gooooooo Allies!

Saturday, March 4, 2006

Perfect Dark Earns a Merit Badge

One of my lovely TehBias friends invited me to play a little PDZ co-op last night. This being my very first online co-op experience, I was a little concerned that I would die in the first 5 seconds and leave him to fend for himself. Imagine my surprise when it turned out that I wasn't half bad! PDZ co-op is actually fun. Now that doesn't solve the myriad of issues that I continue to have with the game, but it's definitely more fun to play through the "story" with another person. It's also a lot more fun when you're packing two guns at once. In your face futuristic mega corporation that's doing something nefarious that I don't care about because I'm too busy wincing at bad character models!

In conclusion, it was fun. I'm sure I'll get the "finished co-op" achievement way before the "finished single agent". And that's just fine with me...

Friday, March 3, 2006

Dead Or Alive=Dead On Arrival

How else could you describe Electonic Gaming Monthly's review of Dead or Alive 4? I just picked up this month's issue and was quite surprised at the review. It got a 7.0, 6.5 and another 6.5 from three different reviewers (out of a possible 10). Now I'm not saying that DOA4 is the best 360 game out there (or best game period across the board), but it does stun me a little that a game that has gotten consistent reviews of 8.0 or higher from other reviewers would do so badly in the eyes of EGM. Here are some other review scores:

IGN: 9/10
Gamespot: 8.8/10
Gamespy: 4/5
Gamepro: 5/5

Etc. and so forth...(Although Eurogamer gave it a 6/10) From the review it seemed that their biggest issues were with the lag during online play and too much boob action. Um...Have they never played a DOA game before? Quite frankly, I don't really even notice all the boob juggling (there's plenty to be had) and that doesn't bother me so much anyway (I have some of my own, so maybe I'm just used to seeing them). There have been a couple of "laggies" during online matches but, at least in my case, it's over in a couple of seconds and I hardly notice it. Plus, any lags I have encountered have not stopped was just in slow motion for a few seconds.

Here are some of their points:

Shane: "Whether or not you'll go gaga over DOA4 depends largely opon how serious you are about the fighting genre (and partially on how much you enjoy boobs). If you're someone who simply wants to boot up a game, mash some buttons, and watch the wickedly painful moves flow out with minimal effort, you'll have a rollicking good time here. But if, like me, you're the dedicated sort who enjoys the intense, strategic depth of defensively minded games like Virtua Fighter and Soul Calibur, you'll probably tire of this sugar-sweet dalliance in a few days."

Interesting...From what I've heard from hardcore fighting gamers, this version of DOA is based largely on how strategic you are and though button mashers (a la me) can have fun with the game and progress, they find their virtual butts being kicked before long (Damn you Alpha 152!!!). Many have said that the cut in time to counter makes this game more fitted for gamers that like to use skill to beat their opponents rather than "mash some buttons".

Demian: "This game is a beautiful mess...But, like Shane, I expect a deep fighter that rewards strategy and skill. DOA4 is definitely not that kind of game."

Since each character has between 70-100 different combos available, this confuses me.

Che: "Yet DOA4 is undeniably fun, and you'd almost overlook these quirks if the game didn't suffer from some serious bugs, be it the hopelessly lag-laden Xbox Live play or the glitch that erases your saved game at random."

I guess I'm one of the lucky ones...My online matches haven't been "hopelessly lag-laden" and I've never had my game saves erased. *knock 360 wood* I think all of these are valid issues, but I don't know that it's to the extreme extent as this review would lead someone thinking of trying DOA4 to believe.

I guess this is why I am not a professional game reviewer. Although they had some good things to say, being a DOA4 player myself, I didn't see or experience what they apparently did....Oh well, live and learn I suppose...

Thursday, March 2, 2006

Ah...March Is The Sweetest Month...

Hello March! Watcha knowin'? Good to see your new games growin'...

March is finally here! Burnout Revenge...GRAW...Oblivion...God of War for 20 bucks! Can it get it any sweeter? Kameo who? Perfect Dark what? Zuma which? Ahhh...Breathe in the fresh air of the newest hotness coming soon. I've already warned family and friends to not expect to see me for the next month. (Unless they're playing with me online of course.) How many times can you call in sick before you're fired?

By the way, can anyone please tell me add a url to link a site in a blog entry? I've tried the help menu, using html tags as well as the standard forum [url] tag to no avail. I'm sure this is a situation where the answer is right in front of my face, but darned if I can find it. The answer itself or a site with the answer would make me eternally grateful...
Related Posts with Thumbnails