All About Strike_Zer0
So with E3 craziness in full swing I felt the urge to have a bit of a ramble about my impressions and thoughts over what we've seen from the conferences.
So I have to admit the Microsoft conference was a bit of a disappointment.
Gears of War 2 looks good but I was never the biggest Gears of War fan to begin with (I've only gone though single player twice and multiplayer doesn't interest me). I'll pick it up eventually but it's not something I'm super pumped for. It seems to be coming along well with more of the same action and the odd new feature here and there.
The new dashboard. Colour me disappointed. I don't like being so pessimistic but bluntly put: I hate it! The avatars are a horrible rip off of the Wii and the way they tried to pretend it was such an original idea was just cringe worthy. It just doesn't fulfil what I want from the 360 at all. I'm happy with the current state of gamercards, are they gonna throw all that away? Guess we'll see come winter.
Resident Evil 5 is looking great. Hella similar to 4 but at this point I don't think many of us were very surprised by that. The old RE formula is dead it seems which I feel a bit mixed about. I loved the old RE games but they are very dated now compared to 4. So I think this is a good direction to go in, even if there isn't really anything terribly new here.
Fable II was looking good. Not really anything shockingly new was shown but it's nice to see it so finished. It certainly looks like it's gonna be much more of a solid and complete game compared to the first one. Probably the exclusive I'm most looking forward to this year.
The FFXIII announcement wasn't too much of a shock after Yoichi Wada got up on stage. It felt like they were building up to it when talking about the other RPGs on the way. Seems damn good news and seriously puts a dent in my PS3 plans. Metal Gear is looking like the only big reason I have left to go for it. But what wasn't mentioned was Versus, I guess we can assume that's still gonna be exclusive to the PS3.
I was looking forward to Nintendo's the most but the lack of new announcements was very disappointing. Although it was entertaining to watch and there were a couple things I thought were interesting.
The MotionPlus add-on was pretty intriguing. I have no idea how it works but it seemingly improves the motion control effectiveness by quite a bit as we could see. I've played a lot of Wii Sports so with a new one on the way that's actually pretty cool. It's nice to see stuff like sword fighting as boxing was my favourite last time around so it's safe to say sword fighting is gonna be a blast. We only got to see three of the games in it so I'm hoping there's gonna be a good amount when we finally get our hands on it.
We finally saw the lightsaber game we've been waiting for in the form of Clone Wars. I think its way too early for us to start making judgements on it but from the little we saw it looked fairly good, the thing is though this is gonna all be about how it handles. If it all comes together it should be pretty fun.
Wii Music looks fun. It's the Wii Sports kind of fun that looks like anyone can have a go and get some fun outta it. The drum demonstration was great to watch and was certainly impressive. They said there would be some other game types within it where you match up notes so it sounds like it's not all gonna be letting loose. Although the big play off at the end started out great there were parts that sounded pretty ear splittingly awkward though that seemed to be because not everyone looked familiar with the tune they were playing to.
My sister is a big Animal Crossing fan and the online mic support on the way for the sequel seems to be a very good move for the series. The game looks mainly more of the same, for better or worse depending on if you were into the first. It's never really been my thing but I can see the pull of it.
I thought the Sony conference was still quite underwhelming but I think they nailed it more than the other two did.
I thought it was a good movie pointing out how the big memorable titles in the PS1 and PS2's life span took a few years to come in. Effectively saying the best is yet to come with the PS3 and we all shouldn't discard it just yet. Though it was a bit odd how lines like "as many of you have wrote" kept getting said like he wanted to say "Hey don't take my word for it! Other people think it too!"
The Little Big Planet demonstration used to show the statistics was a brilliant idea and the highlight for me of the whole conference. The statistics is always the dullest part of every conference but by showing off the stats within a Little Big Planet level they made it very entertaining to watch as well as showing off what the game can do. If anyone hasn't seen the game before then this would definitely be a memorable way to see it.
Home, it's still coming!...does anyone care anymore? I'll admit I liked seeing the rooms themed to specific games but Home as a whole has just worn off on me.
We also got our first look at the DC MMO. This was another highlight as I've been looking forward to this and having Jim Lee give the presentation was a great idea (he's recognisable among DC fans and he seemed very relaxed talking which was nice to see). The game itself looked cool, it was very reminiscent of City of Heroes but that was unavoidable. It was nice to hear we can make both heroes and villians. It's still very early days with this so we'll have to see where it goes. Unfortunately I couldn't help letting out a sigh and wishing the Marvel MMO wasn't canned. I like a bit of DC (mainly Supergirl and Batman) but when it comes to comics: make mine Marvel.
Mirror's Edge made me one hell of a happy bunny. I've been following the game since it first got shown off and I'm loving what we've see. I'm dying to get my hands on it as just simply put it looks fun as hell. I love the art direction it looks very clean and the use of colour to show us where to go is a brilliant idea and is very immersive, it beats the hell outta some ugly arrows stuck on the HUD. I'm also quite curious about the story, the gameplay is obviously the main pull but I hope we get some answers from the plot as the game goes on too. It's also refreshing to see a female protagonist and also one that doesn't look like a bimbo or is some stereotypical 'hard ass'. I also like how they said you can play the entire game without firing a single bullet, that sounds like a fun challenge that I'll certainly give a crack once it's released. Outta the whole show this is the game that stood out the most to me. I'm dying to play it.
Shaun White Snowboarding actually looked quite fun. From the Nintendo conference it didn't really make much of a splash for me but at the Ubisoft conference I was eating it up. Now I haven't played a snow boarding game since Snowboard Kids but the breathtaking environment and the idea of you just starting on a mountainside and going wherever you like had me pretty damn interested.
I'm a huge Prince of Persia fan and with the beautiful new trailer I was just getting even more excited. I love the look of the new game and Elika, the partner character, seems like a great addition. I never liked Farah in Sands of Time as she always seemed too whiny and helpless but Elika seems like a great partner for our new Prince and I like how they work together rather than her just depending on the Prince. In fact the way Elika saves the Prince when he's screwed up a platforming session means in a way the Prince now depends on her. The new less linear gameplay looks pretty good and is a little reminiscent of Warrior Within which was the most open of the last trilogy (and my favourite despite how unpopular it usually is amongst fans). The new combat focus of one on one has me with mixed feelings. I loved taking on four enemies at once last time but the one on one fights we've seen so far look spectacular and a lot of fun.
Missing in Action
There was no sign of Beyond Good and Evil 2. I was hoping for a new trailer despite how recently it was announced. I guess that was a tad unrealistic to hope for but I was a huge fan of the first and couldn't help getting my hopes up a little. Ah well.
No Bungie! Now this is an interesting one. Bungie had been teasing us and seemingly leading up to a big reveal but there was nothing. The plot thickened with the release of a note on their site claiming at the last minute their publisher had stopped them from showing it. Interesting no? I'm wondering if Microsoft is still their publisher as that was the impression they gave us before. I've seen people speculate it was to let Gears take centre stage and not get overshadowed and with the FFXIII announcement Microsoft was already set for having their big shock so perhaps they're saving it. Looks like that's indeed the case by the sound of it.
So all in all not too bad but not exactly the best E3. How about you guys? Impressed? Disappointed? See anything you're excited for?
So I've been a pretty big Aerosmith fan for many a year. Unsurprisingly with the release of Guitar Hero Aerosmith I found it hard to pass up. I've been trying to save what little money I currently have (you can see my last blog post for why) but I just couldn't resist the lure of playing a collection of songs from my favourite artist so me and my girlfriend ended up heading down to the shops and picking it up on the day of release.
We blasted through the game fairly quick which wasn't too surprising considering it is of course a Guitar Hero game. In case you're not aware the song selection in the game is actually a mix of Aerosmith songs and songs by artists that are tied to Aerosmith in some way (a group who were a supporting act at some point for example). As an Aerosmith fan I would have just preferred this game was all 100% Aerosmith and I actually found it a bit puzzling to find the balance of Aerosmith to non-Aerosmith songs much more even than I expected. I'd avoided the full track list like the plague beforehand as I'd wanted to play the game fresh without any expectations or without having myself holding out for some specific songs that I particularly like.
All members of the band are re-created within the game. They all look quite good but oddly enough the ratio of realistic to exaggerated cartoon appearance seems to differ depending on the band member. The graphics do look a little nicer than 3's though, everything just seems to be a little cleaner which became most notable when playing as the characters from the third game.
One nice addition I didn't expect is the video content. After each set in career you get a short video with the band talking about that stage in their career. There's also additional videos to be purchased using the money from career mode. Although the clips aren't very long it was still nice to see that extra bit of effort gone in to include them.
But despite all this I'm left thinking the name Guitar Hero: Aerosmith is perhaps a bit off. It almost feels like this should be called Guitar Hero 3.1 (Featuring Aerosmith). Though obviously we all know why: Sales.
A game featuring only Aerosmith would only get people like me buying it. When you consider the sales potential of a new Guitar Hero game limiting the audience seems like a dumb idea. A game featuring Aerosmith as the main act with many surrounding acts loosely tied to Aerosmith will bring in a lot more sales especially with artists like The Kinks listed as supporting acts. As even if said person isn't much of an Aerosmith fan the supporting songs might provide enough to pull them aboard.
So am I disappointed or pleased with Guitar Hero Aerosmith? I don't quite know. I feel split. On one hand I didn't get what I was hoping for which was a large percentage of Aerosmith songs with the odd extra song here and there but at the same time I know that was an unrealistic hope to begin with. I also found some of the song selections a bit off (although overall it could certainly be much worse).
One downside of this game is that it's effectively an exclusivity deal meaning no downloadable content for Rock Band which is a bit of a bummer as the addition of singing would have added another large layer of fun considering how much I adore their music.
On another note it inevitably got me thinking what other artists would I like to see get this treatment. Guns N' Roses leapt to mind but I know that's highly unlikely. Can you imagine getting Axl in to do mo-cap and interviews beside Slash? Another that came to mind was Thin Lizzy but I'm not sure on the state of the master tracks and obviously re-recordings are out of the question with the tragic loss of Phil Lynott.
How about you guys? Any other artists you'd like to see get a Guitar Hero of their own?
(Note 1: I played the game under my girlfriend's gamertag so if you glance at my tag to see I've barely played Aerosmith yet it's because I'm now replaying it on my own console.)
(Note 2: As a follow-up to my last blog I did indeed spend the month with my girlfriend and am now poor thanks to the gifts I bought her and the odd gift for myself. The wait for Metal Gear goes on!)
(Note 3: Yes this blog is a bit poor in quality but I just got back in town and am very tired but my desire to continue my one blog post per month schedule forced me to get this out tonight.)
So Metal Gear Solid 4 is almost here and for the first time it's a worldwide release meaning us Europeans won't have to wait months to get our hands on some sneaking action. I'm a big fan of the Metal Gear Solid series ever since the PS1 original. Both two and three I bought on day of release and spent the entire day playing them 'till the wee hours of the morning. The third game in the series is actually quite possibly my most beloved game of the last decade. I of course also bought the re-release versions of two and three also along with the various spin-off titles and the odd additional peice of merchandise. So just like many others I've been eagerly awaiting the fourth game for a long time now.
All along the idea's been to pick up the game on day one and play 'till I'm on the verge of collapse. But there's a problem. The date they chose to release four on is quite possibly one of the absolute worst in the entire year for me. If it was a college day then no problem, I'm willing to let my grades take a hit for the sake of Metal Gear. But the date has much more meaning, it is in fact: my girlfriend's birthday.
Now I've skipped out on certain things before for the sake of playing games I'd been eagerly awaiting. Halo 3 and WoW: The Burning Crusade are just two examples of games that caused a couple days off from college. As a kid I even faked illness a few times over the years to stay and play my beloved games rather than go to school. But this is different. We are approaching our three year anniversary this year and I'm sure my girlfriend would be quite devastated if I told her I couldn't spend the day with her because I'd be shooting virtual terrorists.
There's also another hitch in my plan: I don't own a PS3. I'd been planning on getting one literally right before Metal Gear Solid 4 came out. But with my girlfriend's birthday on the same day my money will be focusing on her gift instead.
Thanks to a few recent purchases I won't have enough money to get both a PS3 and a present for my girlfriend. As much as I adore the Metal Gear series I love my girlfriend and she comes first. Well, either that or I fake a broken leg, buy her a cheap gift and spend the day sneaking to my heart's content? Alas, dreams of lies and betrayal aside, it's safe to say my day will be spent with her.
I'm sorry Snake but you'll have to wait.
So I'm also curious if any of you guys have ever skipped out on school, college, work or any other event for the sake of a computer game?
Strike_Zer0 does not have any recent activity. What a slacker! Maybe you should send Strike_Zer0 a private message and ask, "Where are you hiding?"