Lone Warrior's Blog
11Jun 11Another year means another E3. I haven't seen any announcements that left my jaw on the floor but there were some great games at the show. I managed to catch all the press conferences; I guess I liked EA's best if only for all the games they showed. Wii U looks like an interesting new platform, Nintendo games generally aren't my thing but I can imagine the potential with the Wii U. Here are my top 3 games at this year's E3:
#1 Mass Effect 3
As most of you know I am a major Mass Effect fan so I am obviously looking forward to this game. We got a fair amount of info on the 3th part of this trilogy during E3 and it looks like the game is shaping up nicely. Combat seems a lot more diverse with Shepard having more abilities to use and a new melee attack in the form of the omniblade. I am glad they decided to push back the release date to give the game all the attention it needs. I'd hate to see them rush this game just for a favorable release date.
The Elder Scrolls is another RPG series that I really enjoy and it looks like Skyrim is about to become the best chapter yet. Dualwielding weapons and spells, better combat and another huge world to explore. I love how the Elders Scrolls series allows you to mold your own hero and always leaves some stuff open to your imagination to really make each game your own adventure.
#3 Tomb Raider
I am slightly skeptical about the next Tomb Raider game. The trailer and gameplay we've seen at E3 look really great but the game does seem totally different from the previous games in the series. I know they're going for a reboot but they do seem to throw a lot of "canon" out of the window. Nevertheless I am really looking forward to see how the game turns out.
An honorable mention goes out to Far Cry 3, I really enjoyed the first game (didn't like the 2nd) and FC3 definitely looks promising.
Come September I'll start at the university of Nijmegen to study English language and culture. School will take some getting used to after working full-time for the past year but I am quite excited to go. Since it's a 50 kilometer drive to the university and I can't really be bothered with public transportation anymore I decided to buy my first car. After looking around for a while I bought this Peugot 206, needless to say I am quite happy
7Apr 11I've been getting back into Photoshop lately, I really love making graphics although I usually lack the creativity to be really good at it. I've tried my hand at some union banners again and I am quite happy with the way they turned out.
The Battlefield Union:
The Dragon Age Universe:
I still need quite a bit of practise so I'll be taking requests for union/profile banners on a first come first serve basis. If you'd like one let me know via a comment or pm.
22Dec 10I've done it again, I couldn't resist...
Yes I bought Cataclysm. I had not played World of Warcraft for 1,5 years, a fact that I was actually quite proud off. After Wrath of the lich king I figured I was quite done with the game and moved on. When Cataclysm was announced I wasn't really interested either. I figured I was done with World of Warcraft, a grand total of 4 years well spend but in the past now.
When Cataclysm was released two weeks ago some form of curiosity started bubbling up inside me again. I ended up checking out some of the websites, reading some of the reviews and slowly a twitch of longing returned. It wasn't until one of my best friends announced he had bought the game that I really started considering the option. Most of my friends aren't really interested in computer games so when it comes to gaming with friends he's the only one I turn to. I think I've spend the past two days considering my options to finally arrive at the conclusion that with no other interesting games being released in the too-near future, playing Cataclysm with my buddy would actually be a great deal of fun. I doubt I'll be going all out with it but perhaps it will keep me entertained until Dragon Age 2 arrives in march next year.
So here I am again, I caught the WoW bug. Damn you Blizzard, damn you!
11Nov 10Hey Everyone!
It's been a while since you last saw me around here. I've been so busy with school and work that I haven't had the time to interact with the various GS communities I've joined in the past year.
My apologies go out to the people over at the ME:U whom I've kinda left without saying a word, glad to see you guys are still chatting away .
Fortunately things have cooled down a bit and I've got enough spare time again to hang around on gamespot again, hope to see you all around!
20May 10It took me ages to get this blog posted. I usually work out my message in word first and then copy it to the GS website. Unfortunately it keeps giving me errors saying my HTML is formatted incorrectly. Yes yes I looked it up on google already but none of the solutions I found there worked. Anyways here know a solution to this problem?
On to the main course:
I finally found myself lucky enough to obtain a Starcraft 2 beta key and I've been playing the beta for close to three weeks now. Now I'll be honest with you, despite being a huge RTS fan I've never played the original Starcraft. At the time I was playing other RTS games and when I first learned about SC the game seemed way too old to still be enjoyable.
With that said, I am no major Starcraft fan. I know the original game was (and for some people still is) extremely popular. With one of the most dedicated fan bases ready to barbeque people alive for talking trash about their favorite game .
The fact is that I have been enjoying the beta so far. With limited prior knowledge the game has been quite a surprise for me. Although the game is still in a beta stage the amount of polish that went into it is jaw-dropping. Blizzards philosophy: "It's done when it's done", still serves them well and has really allowed them to produce games with a level of quality that is hard to find anywhere else in the industry. From the game menu to music and even the tiniest user interface detail, the game looks slick and runs smooth.
The graphics for Starcraft 2 are great and Blizzard once again manages to produce their signature style of cartoony yet serious graphics. The way graphics scale is even more impressive. Whether I run the game on maximum settings on my home pc, or minimum ones on my 2 year old laptop it's smooth sailing all the way.
Even on an older gpu SC2 looks good.
Gameplay-wise the game is also solid. Blizzard stuck with the tried and true method, which is honestly understandable albeit maybe a bit disappointing. A lot of units and building where taken from the original game to such an extent that even their stats are identical. Nothing in the formula is really revitalizing either, and even though it still works fine the whole idea does feel somewhat dated. Besides the incredible polish I guess you'd just expect a bit more from a game that has been in production for 8 years.
Blizzard's Battle.net system deserves a special mention. With stats tracking, matchmaking, automated ladders and much more it's really an amazing system. However it's probably also the only thing in the beta that currently isn't working correctly yet.
Depending on their skill level players are put in either copper, bronze, silver, gold or platinum leagues. As a player in the silver league 9 out 10 fight are against players from higher league's whom are obviously more skilled. It's annoying while it would seem there are enough similarly skilled opponents in your own league. Of course it's a beta and I am confident Blizzard will be tying up these loose ends.
The Zerg are also back, make sure you bring your bug repellant.
Starcraft 2 is shaping up to be a great RTS game. Solid and highly competitive, it's doesn't have the epic flair some fans use to describe it but I am sure it will be a huge hit nonetheless.
Starcraft 2 will be released on July the 27th and is already available for pre-order.
15Apr 10I've been thinking about a topic for a new editorial for a while but I can't seem to find the time to sit down and start writing. While researching some topics I came across this youtube channel which has some really interesting lectures about game related topics. Now I hear you thinking but don't worry, these aren't your average boring school lectures. Each of them lasts about 10 minutes and presents a really interesting view on the topic at hand.
Video games and Female Audience
Video games and Learning
Video games and Sex
Be sure to check them out and share your thoughts
29Mar 10As most of you know Bioware has had a countdown on their websites for the past several days. The entire community has been waiting on the edge of their seats, what could it be? A new IP, Dragon Age 2, a Mass Effect 2 expansion?
The countdown expired well over an hour ago revealing the "Bioware Bazaar". "Ok so wth is it?", you might wonder just as I did. Reading a bit further it turned out to be contest to, and I quote: "show our appreciation of fan support and to celebrate the 15th anniversary of BioWare".
The competition has fans gather tokens to use in an auction with all kinds of Bioware prizes. Pretty neat I though, the whole countdown may have been a bit too much but well can't blame them for smart marketing. Reading a few lines however we find out the the whole contest is open to only the US, excluding two states.
Asia? Never heard of it...
Europe? I though we had dissmissed that claim...
Australia? what's that...
Canada? No since EA took over we /careface the country we're based in...
I am normally not one for ranting around but the riculousity of the situation pretty much asks for it. Bioware managed to get their entire community on the edge of their seats to slap them into the face with some half arsed contest that's open to a few American states. 0_o.
One batch of community chaos coming right up.
28Mar 10Guess what! I just got level 30 here on Gamespot. I've had this account since 2004 already, but I've only been actively using it since a year or so.
No serious stuff today, just random ramblings . Sitting here at the moment sipping some coffee, went out with a friend last night and got home way too late. Now I am stuck with a headache and it's not even the hangover kind :S.
Any of you guys listen to Evanescence? Amy posted a video on Twitter of her playing part of a new song for the next album. It sounds really amazing, can't wait to hear the entire song.
The mysterious countdown on the Bioware websites should expire tomorrow. I am curious as to what they'll be announcing. My best guess is still that it will have something to do with the rumors about a new IP.
Yesterday I finally bought all my motorbike clothing. It looks awesome and I get wait to finish lessons in April and finally get on my Bike. I'll probably post some pictures just to be showing off .
So now that i've got that off my chest it's time to do some prep for work and get some much needed gaming done after that
12Mar 10It's been a while since I blogged anything. There are some rumors going around about the possible announcement of Dragon Age 2. Gamespot already posted a news item depicting a small flyer that came with the Awakening review box.
I wouldn't be surprised if they would indeed be announcing Dragon Age 2 shortly after the release of the Awakening expansion. With EA calling the shots and the huge success Dragon Age has had they wouldn't say no to a sequel.
I personally think it's a bit fast releasing a sequel less then 1,5 year after the original. Then again knowing Bioware they wouldn't start any project unless they were really up to the challenge.
What about you guys, excited for the Awakening release next week? And do you think we'll indeed be seeing a Dragon Age 2 early 2011?
18Feb 10Spellforce is one of those games not a lot of people know. It's a bit underrated and often overlooked. I bought the game at its original release date in 2004 but somehow lost my copy. I downloaded the Platinum edition (original game + 2 expansions) last week which was available quite cheap at gog.com.
(The cover of Spellforce, epic sideboob anyone? )
Spellforce is an blend of RTS and RPG. Back in 2004 it was heavily advertised as "revolutionary". These days quite a few RTS games have minor RPG influences. Spellforce never received any critical acclaim which was somewhat understandable. In fact the game was loaded with bugs, glitches and rough edges on its release date. Developer Phenomic never patched out any major flaws and today the game still has numerous flaws and rough edges.
The thing is, I really love Spellforce despite all its bugs and flaws it has an undeniable charm. Both the RTS and RPG aspects work moderately well but combined with the story end up being amazing. In the premise of the story you are a Rune Warrior, an immortal hero bound to a runestone called forth to serve as protector of the world of Eo. The game's story unfolds as fairly typical high fantasy with a jaw dropping conclusion. The amount of content in Spellforce and both of its expansions is quite staggering combined you'd be able to spend around a 100 hours into it.
If you like RTS and RPG games you should definitely give it a try. Additionally gog.com has quite a few amazing classics available for download if you have a few spare bucks lying around.
6Feb 10So I just put up my review of Mass Effect 2. An great game by all means but it proved difficult to write a review that summed up everything. I've been in doubt for quite a while whether to give it a 9 or 8,5 and finally ended up with the latter. There's so much to be said about ME2 that I decided to write this more in-depth review besides my short review.
Warning: This review contains spoilers to both Mass Effect 1 and 2.
I remember when I completed my first playtrough of ME1, I had trouble sleeping that night and my mind was racing. I remember thinking "whoa what an amazing adventure I've just been trough". When I reviewed the original Mass Effect I described it as a "short but thrilling action packed ride" looking back I still think it's accurate. In my first playtrough I only completed a few side quest and went through the main quest line like a hungry Vorcha. Just like any other fan I had high expectations of ME2 and while playing found out that besides being an awesome game ME2 does have a few disappointments.
The story continues
The first think I want to touch on is the game's story. So Sherpard is back, Cerberus employed state of the art technology to revive Shepard so he/she can lead a team to find out why human colonists are disappearing. The major part of the game has you searching the galaxy for team members, recruiting them and gaining their loyalty trough their personal quests. It works and most of the recruitment and loyalty stories are pretty good. For some reason however when you put them together they don't feel all that awesome. In the end everything boils down to going through the omega 4 relay and kicking some Collector behind. But that impending treat of the Collectors abducting humans simply doesn't seem present enough to have any effect on the player. It doesn't bind these recruitment mission together to make them more than just picking up person A and solving his problem to make him like you. Because recruiting members is the main order of business in ME2 there also aren't as many big choices to be made. Hell the only choice where I really felt weight on my shoulders was deciding whether or not to destroy the Collector's base in the end. Unlike ME1 where every main mission held one of more important decision (Save or kill the Rachi queen, destroy or save the Feros colony, save Ashley or Kaiden etc etc).
Additionally ME2 seems to lack some of the truly epic moments. It's hard to describe but I am talking about those moments in the game when the main theme kicks in and something awesome happens, your skins gets ghost bumps and you feel totally immersed. ME1 had so many of these moments in comparison, Shepard becoming a Specter, the first speech on the Normandy, detonating the nuke on Virmire, just to name a few.
ME2 really lacks these moments and the only two I could mention are the revelation of the Normandy SR2 and the battle in the collector base.
Commander Shepard emerges from the wreckage, another example of an epic moment that defined ME1.
Looks and sounds
Graphics wise I have nothing but praise for ME2. The graphics look great and run solid even on lower end machines. Textures pops are gone and the game's overall art design is more defined now. Most notably are the impressive views that can be found throughout the game, Illium, Tu'Chanka and the Citadel are just a few examples of locations with jaw dropping views. More praise obviously goes out to the voice cast. I think that ME2 is currently the best voiced game in existence with so many great voice actors. Bioware really did a great job in casting, finding actors with voices that match each characters personality truely making them come to life. A minor downside is the fact that not every main character has a lot of conversation dialog especially comparing ME2 to Bioware's recent other RPG: Dragon Age.
ME2's soundtrack is excellent as well. Jack Wall did a great job giving every area in the game its own sound, making them distinctive and alive. The main theme is only slightly altered but that only helps in giving a feeling of recognition.
The Asari world of Illium doesn't just look beautiful but has its own excellent soundtrack as well.
Stripped down but amped up
As an ME1 fan one of the first things you notice in ME2 is the fact that the inventory system is gone. Instead you now have terminals available throughout the game that allow you to manage your weapons and armor. At first this feels like something of a loss since part of the joy in RPG's is finding new cool weapons and armor and having your inventory filled with all these valuable items. After playing a while you'll find that the new system works for the better. When you find a new gun in ME2 it's actually a "new gun" instead of the same weapon with a different skin like in ME1. The same goes for the armor, the difference between light, medium and heavy armor in ME1 was maybe a knee protector or shoulder guard. Getting a new piece of armor then only meant a chance in color. The system in ME2 allows for a lot more diversity in both looks and stats. The only mentionable downside is that the system only works for the N7 armor and not the DLC armors.
A linear world
A feeling I just couldn't shake while playing ME2 was the linear path each mission follows. On the mission where you recruit Grunt, I remember being anxious to see this "junk world" described in the dossier. And even though you get to see some incredible vista's the mission is linear as hell. It felt more like going down the military training course taking one obstacle after another. The sense of place is also a really important aspect. Truth be told the missions in ME1 where quite linear as well. But because they gave you a better sense of place it felt more complete. For example on Feros, it feels like an entire colony build in this half destroyed skyscraper because of the overall layout of the map, side rooms and maybe even the landing cinematic. Most of the missions in ME2 feel to "set up" a simple example being the fact that you can guess when enemies are going to pop up because the cover has already been neatly laid out for you.
How many times do we gamers hear developers say: "we listen to our community" and "fan input is really important for us". A lot of times these seem like empty promises, Bioware however is one of the few developers who is actually true to their word. Improving many minor flaws that ME1 had in the sequel. From combat to graphics it's obvious that Bioware did listen to the fans and implemented their suggestions into the game. That fact alone is worth a lot if you ask me, but it also makes me wonder. While Bioware did incorporate so many fan suggestions into the game they also removed some key features. Most notably the "hide helmet" function which made sure helmets weren't shown during conversations with NPC's. Other than that the use of biotic and tech powers is now also somewhat restricted as they can't be used against shielded or armored targets. It's hard to imagine Bioware overlooking these minor loose ends and yet they did.
Didn't your momma ever teach you to take off your helmet when talking to other people?
So it's about time I wrap this baby up before it becomes the size of your average novel . Despite several noticeable disappointments Mass Effect 2 is an excellent game. It's engaging and just plain enjoyment for the sci fi/RPG fan. Hopefully Bioware will be able to combine the great improvement made for ME2 with the more epic story telling of ME1 into one game when making the final chapter. That would make Mass Effect 3 the true pinnacle of modern day entertainment.
Thanks for reading this expanded review! Please share your own thoughts on the game in the comments .
30Jan 10So after three days loaded with anticipation and dissapointment my ME2 copy finally arrived this morning
Fortunately... it was worth the wait! I am having a blast so far, love the better graphics, improved combat system and the new Normandy and her crew. So far the only con I've come across are the loading screens which are quite lengthy, my PC isn't the best of the best anymore but it's still well within recommened system requirements.
Anyways, just figured I'd post this quick update, I'll be reviewing the game once I've completed my first playtrough.
Commander Shepard is back baby! .
The "Avatar Blues"Unless you've been living under rock for the past two months you have undoubtly heard of the movie "Avatar". Directed by James Cameron, this fantasy action-adventure is well on its way to becoming on of the biggest box-office hits ever. Hitting well over 1.4 billion in worldwide revenue to date.
How the next evolution in entertainment leads to worldwide cases of depression.
Using state of the art technology Avatar brings the wondrous world of Pandora alive including its inhabitants the Na'vi. Blue skinned aliens that come across lifelike thanks to that same technology capturing actor performance and tranfering it to digitally created characters. Combined with the use of cinema 3D features, Avatar is frequently described as a revolution in cinema entertainment. Because of the use of all this new tech the hype leading up to Avatar has been quite sizeable aswell.
I honesty have to admit that I missed most of the commotion and went to a 3D screening of the movie without knowing to much about the premise of the movie. This only added to the feeling of being "blown away" after spending well over 2,5 hours in a big cinema seat with oversized 3D glasses. As my Gamespot profile page painfully makes obvious, I've caught the Avatar bug. In fact it's the only movie to date that I bothered going back to the cinema for, to view it a second time. As is custom for allot of people in this day and age I found myself on several forums the next day discussing the movie I just saw. Reviews started appearing all over the internet and, with the exception of an occasional hater, Avatar received glorious feedback across the board. With some people even calling the experience "Life Changing". Big words since we are still talking about a movie... aren't we?
Following several forums in the past few weeks I found similar reactions all over the internet. And, Truth be told, Avatar hadn't exactly left my mind either since the first time viewing it. Hence the fact that my surprise was only limited when CNN published an article about the "Avatar Blues" today. The article describes how viewers all over the world have been experiencing minor signs of depression after seeing the movie. Worst cases even having suicidal thoughts after seeing the movie. Many viewers where amazed by the beauty of Pandora by which our good Earth pales in comparison. The technology behind Avatar coupled with a 3D screening almost makes Avatar "to real" or so some fans say.
Avatar takes place on the world of Pandora, where mountains fly and a beautiful forests that glow at night cover the planet.
One might ask how this is all possible? Movies have always been a medium for entertainment and in some cases they do leave a deep impression on their viewers. But for a mainstream Hollywood blockbuster to cause worldwide cases of depression is previously unheard of. What is it that Avatar does that makes people look outside their window the next day and feel sad or depressed. CNN's article quotes New York psychiatrist Dr. Stephan Quentzel who believes that Avatar as "The pinnacle of virtual presentation" creates a utopia so perfect that real life could never really compare. For 2,5 hours viewers truly get to feeling of "being" on Pandora thanks to the 3D technology. Waking up the next day to find the confines of a city greeting you, is by all means a major contrast. One that a lot of viewers have a hard time coping with.
In many ways I guess it's understandable. We humans haven't exactly been kind to the planet we live on. Issue's like global warming and care for the environment have become more prominent in the news since the last decade or so. And although the facts surrounding matters like global warming aren't always rock solid, there not a soul on the planet who could honestly say he or she thinks the situation for the environment is improving. In a way Avatar presents the perfect alternative to our busy day to day lives on a planet where nature fights a losing battle against us. Maybe those cases of depression aren't such a bad thing. Maybe they help people realize once more how beautiful nature on our own planet can be. Does that means that Cameron's Avatar succeeds where Gore's Inconvenient Truth failed? ...Unlikely, but even if a few of those depressed viewers decide to take a walk in the park the next day instead of playing their Xbox. Then maybe Cameron's movie woke them up, if even the tiniest bit, even though that was probably never his intention.
10Jan 10So I've been playing Dragon Age for quite a few weeks now. I just started my 4th playthrough and I am still discovering new things in the game that I haven't seen in previous playthroughs. The amount of content in the game is truly amazing.
I've never really been into modding with the exception of Warcraft 3. Bioware however has provided some awesome and easy to use mod support for Dragon Age. Mind you I not planning on creating any mods myself, I simply don't have the time for that. There is however an active modding community on the web with loads of great mods out there. For my 4th playthrough I decided to check out some of these mods in order to bring some new life to the game. Bioware created a simple override folder used for mods, any file you place in there replaces the default. No tampering with the original game files is needed and deletion is simple. Obviously there's quite a few mods out there, one of my favorites transforms the appearance of Morrigan and Leliana to match the "http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TEtYPIcswAY" target="blank">Scared Ashes" CGI trailer.
(Images and mod © Endeavour1934)
Or how about a mod to finally get those Ancient Elven boots which have been missing in the pc version of the game? Or the ability to get your hands on Duncan's armor. Enough reasons to check uit Dragonagenexus.com for these and other mods.
1Jan 10What surprises me the most sometimes is how fast time goes by. 2010 already while I still recall events that happened a year ago as if it were yesterday. Maybe it has something to do with getting older and being more aware of the time that passes by. Days, weeks and even years, you'd almost start to think life is to short after all. But enough with the philosophical stuff.
Suffice to say 2009 was a great year for gaming, allot of major releases and popular new IP's. 2009 being the year I finally decided to quit playing WoW, a decision I fortunately still don't regret . My favorite release in 2009 was definitely Dragonage Origins. I am currently working on my 4th play trough and I am still discovering new things in the game. I am pretty sure this one will keep me entertained until the release of Mass Effect 2 on January the 26th.
Another big surprise this year was Avatar the movie. I already mentioned it in my previous blog post but holy smokes it's an amazing movie. In fact it's officially the first movie I was saw twice in a cinema. While there were other great movies this year, Star Trek for example, Avatar really stood out. I've seen other reactions on sites like IMDB.com and it's good to see I am not the only person blown away by this movie. It's already rumored that Director James Cameron has two sequels in mind which, looking at the box-office success, wouldn't be a surprise.
My favorite music album for 2009 was Brand New Eyes from Paramore. I saw them live for the first time early December, amazing show, they really rock. It's too bad that big artists like that only come by once a year, I'd love to go to concerts like that more often.
(Paramore on stage, 013 Tilburg)
So all in all 2009 was short but sweet .
2010 should be quite an interesting year as well. Most prominently if all goes well I'll finish my study human resource management this year. It's been a study that I picked somewhat out of necessity and after 4 years I am sure that HRM isn't a field I'd like to work in, still those 4 years haven't been wasted. Looking back I think I really needed those years to mature a bit more. I am not sure what I'll be doing once I am done. I am considering to go and study English, maybe even abroad.
It's also going to be quite a spectacular year for gaming, maybe even better then 2009. Mass Effect 2, Starcraft 2 and maybe even Diablo 3, just to name a few.
I'll finish by wishing everyone an amazing 2010! And ask; what are you looking forward to the most for 2010?
22Dec 09So I just got back from watching Avatar in the cinema.
This was one of those totally hyped up movies with commercials everywhere you look. Usually that means the actually movie isn't worth jack. This time around however.... whoa... I mean whoa!
What an amazing movie Avatar is. In fact it might just be the best movie I've seen in a very, very long time. An awesome engaging story, the CGI in this movie just tops everything. Seeing real life actors and the interaction with CGI characters and CGI environment is amazing.
It's hard to be original in Sci Fi or Fantasy these days, believe it or not everything easily get derived back to "another Lord of The Rings" or "Another Star Wars". Avatar tells a story that isn't akin to any previous movies in its genre(s). The only thing I found rather stereotypical was that bad guy Colonel, who seemed the typical high ranked jarhead that does everything to complete his mission.
I went to a 3D showing which I have to admit seems more like a gimmick. The depth it adds is somewhat impressive but the colors are much less vivid with the 3D glasses on. I'd love to see the movie again without that. If you haven't seen this movie yet...go! Even if you're not a fan of typical sci fi or fantasy I guarantee you this one is awesome!
4Nov 09It's been a while since I contributed anything to the Gamespot community. Of course that doesn't mean that I stopped gaming but let's just say I've been keeping busy . With several great games on the horizon I feel the sudden spur to actively participate in all the fun again. One of the first games that should be arriving on my doormat tomorrow is Dragon Age Origins (DA:O).
The media and community hype around this game has been huge the last couple of months. At a certain point it seemed the game could only be a letdown because it had already been praised so high before it had even been released. Judging from most of the reviews I've read it turns out that DA:O does manage to live up to the gigantic expectations the community and media has had.
Needless to say this only makes me more excited for tomorrow afternoon when I'll finally be able to get my hands on the game. I'll be writing my review Sunday evening provided that I managed to put enough hours in the game to write a solid one. At this moment that seems quite likely .
It seems 2010 is going to be an awesome year gaming wise. If one major RPG release wasn't enough Bioware is hitting us with a double dose releasing Mass Effect 2 on January the 26th. The first Mass Effect was one of those games I picked up a while after its release without too much prior knowledge and ended up really blowing me away at how awesome it was. Even though Bioware seems to be making it the mandatory "darker" second chapter the games seems to be shaping up quite nicely.
Another game being released early next year is Assassins Creed II. I never paid much attention to the first game figuring I wouldn't like it anyway. When a friend persuaded me to play at least the first 10 minutes of it during a LAN party I got hooked. I am not sure whether I like the setting for the second game in Italy but the new game play additions like double hidden blades and the ability to use your enemies weapons sure looks great.
Last but not least Blizzards RTS legend Starcraft will also be releasing its second chapter early 2010. My gaming roots lie in the RTS genre so a game like Starcraft 2 is definitely high on my wish list. With a bit of luck we might even see the release of Diablo 3 in 2010 but of course that's just speculation. However the amount of detail and polish Blizzard puts into their games always makes them worth the wait.
With all these awesome games on the horizon I am once again glad to call myself a gamer .
So this will be my first attempt at posting an actual blog item so bear with me .
Sex sells, that's something every advertising agency knows all too well. The idea of "Sex sells" has made its way in TV commercials and such since years but more recently the games industry also seems to have taken notice of it.
You might wonder how I got to this topic and the reason is actually quite simple. Recently EA announced the next cast member starring in the cut scenes for Red Alert 3. None other than British model and actress Gemma Atkinson will be playing Lt. Eva McKenna. The announcement was accompanied by two wallpapers.
I mean I am guy like any other so of course I was like "whoa that's hot". But it got me thinking, years back Red Alert 2 was one of the first pc games I started playing online competitively. Back then we already had Tanya and Lt. Eva but it was allot more silly and felt really innocent. On the sovier side Red Alert 2 also had a hero character; Boris, whom EA now replaced with... yeah you guessed it, another incredibly beautiful woman. Natasha played by American martial artist Gina Carano pretty much seems to be the female version of Boris with a sniper rifle and the ability to call in airstrikes. Not that I have anything against it of course but it does really seem like EA is emphasizing on it. "I also kind of have a crush on the commander! And I have a rival called Tanya who also has a crush on the same guy." - Gemma Atkinson, Zoo Magazine 2008. So the real question might be, is EA deliberately sexing up a game to improve sales and attract more (male) gamers? Or is it just a coincidence that they managed to cast all these beautiful woman for their game? The answer probably lies somewhere in between.
With that said, of course Red Alert isn't the only game that seems to be spiced up with some extra female skin (hence the reason for this blog post). So does sex really sell more? And does the formula also work for video games? I don't have the answer to those question but with the success the average "sexy" tv commercial we could expect to see more and more video games following the same concept.
Whether that's a good development, well... I'll leave that up to you to decide for yourself
Thanks for reading my first blog post, feel free to share your opinion or any other comments.