So what’s been going on this week? For things that stand out; mostly the previous posts about play.com here, here and here.
I’ve also been watching a lot of videos by Jefmajor, the guy’s just seriously funny in a derp-y way. Some other things have been going on such as me getting a Playstation Move and the release of Stacking on playstation network.
Playstation Move first impression
So first things first, I ordered a Move mostly out of curiosity, but there also are some good/decent games using it, mostly downloadable though. Sad to say though is that I’ve only played roughly an hour of Heavy Rain with mostly positive things to say about it. Other than that I’ve only played 30-some minutes of Tumble and haven’t touched Echochrome yet. But I sure hope I can find some time to do so as all of those are fun. What I can say from my initial impression though is that the tech is there, there’s not as much delay on the action and once you get the camera set up right, it’s quite comfy to just sit there.
If you follow the general gaming news you’ve no doubtedly heard of Stacking, a game by Double Fine which is set in a world full of matryoshka dolls, or commonly called russian stacking dolls. The game itself tells the story of the Blackmore family who’s father doesn’t return from work and since the family has no income, the evil Baron takes the kids into slave labor and it is up to the smallest doll in the world to save his family. The way he actually does this is by stacking into other people who are 1 size bigger than him(or the outermost-doll he’s stacked in). This way he can use the outer-doll’s ability or stack further or unstack out of them. Later puzzles will require 2 or 3 abilities from different dolls to solve the puzzle at hand, but never unfairly so.
The thing about this game though is that it first of all looks really sharp and it’s simply fun to play. This may seem like a null-statement but this was one of those games that just put a smile on my face at the situations, abilities and puzzle-solutions. All the dialog is well-written and has that certain kind of humor that just works. There is something so dear about this game that you really ought to experience it for yourself.
It took me roughly 5 hours to complete the story-line and find all solutions to the puzzles and I feel like I’m done with it, I’ve missed 6 or 7 unique dolls that I didn’t stack into over the 5 levels and I’m okay with that. But the collectible-hunt is there for those who seek it.
When I posted a bunch of games that were releasing in the coming months I wanted to play, I managed to forget several, one of which is Shank.
Shank’s a 2d sidescrolling brawler, it’s incredibly fluid and stylish and it looks great. It’s cinematics are very enjoyable to watch though Shank’s voice isn’t perfect. But actually every gripe is very minor, I actually played through it upto the endboss in one sitting, which took me… 2-3hours on Normal? The game is actually very hard, though not unfairly so. Either you control all the enemies coming for you or if you mess up you’ll definitely lose a lot of health. But even so, there’s usually enough health bottles to fill you back up. However towards the end the levels get very hectic and health is very rare.
The actual story is told only through cutscenes and you get filled in, usually at the bosses, on what happened at the beginning of the game. You set off just looking for your girlfriend but afterwards you learn more about Shank and the people who kidnapped her and why they do so. One thing that surprised me is that these story cutscenes will even happen during a bossfight which can actually quite interrupt the flow of the game. Speaking of the bossfights, every fight is unique and definitely requires a specific strategy, though I managed to kind of cheap out one boss without using the “normal strategy” as I kept failing trying to do that.
You start off with your chainsaw, shanks and dual pistols. Along the way you’ll get several other cool weapons, both melee and ranged. The nice thing is that every weapon has it’s time and place, which makes all the fighting feel very varied. Overall I can simply just recommend playing Shank.
To give you a little background information I previously had to plug in my pc’s ethernet cable in my ps3 to get updates and grab downloadable titles from the store. Now this wasn’t at all a problem really as I had to plug over my toslink and dvi cables anyways. Some days ago I decided that it would just be easier to add a switch and it’d be worth the price of admission. Imagine the laziness there…
So I had a quick look around on my favorite tech comparison sites and quickly found the cheap and well-rated Netgear GS605. It’s only a 5port switch but that’s absolutely fine for me, even for future use. And the important thing was that it seemed reliable and supports 1Gbp/s, but that’s no shock in the year 2010.
So this now means that I’ll always have the updates for games I’m playing and I’ll be signed in to the PSN much more frequently. Speaking of… I had to have a look at the psn with the recent release of Scott Pilgrim of which I had watched some footage which seemed like a bunch of fun. So I bought that and I’ve only played a little of it but it seems very enjoyable, you just have to love the homage to all the parts of classic games.
So just yesterday DeathSpank released, a game I anticipated quite a bit. So I decided I’d grab that from the playstation network and while I was on there I remembered Flower, Pixeljunk Shooter and megaman 10.
I decided I’d buy them all at once as I’d get an extra charge on my mastercard anyhow. So to give you a very brief summary of my experience with said games so far:
DeathSpank is great fun, seriously. It’s a very non-serious action-rpg and man, it’s not an easy game. But the humor’s quite enjoyable and the weapons and armor you get are great. An example is a quest reward: “Helm of Pointyness” or the Chicken Gun. If you have xbox live or a ps3, you should probably check it out.
Pixeljunk Shooter is not a new game at all anymore but I remember seeing it being played and it looked like a lot of fun with the fluid dynamics.. and guess what? It is fun to play.
I’m not too far in, just started the 2nd Episode and got the introduction to the magma suit which lets you melt away ice by shooting lava, while trying to not burn alive the people you’re trying to save.
Flower, a weird one. It’s either a love-it or hate-it kind of game and I frankly don’t know where I stand. I bought it purely out of curiosity and it’s certainly an interesting ‘game’.
Megaman 10 — it’s… megaman. It looks fine, even on a big monitor and it plays alright, but I quite realised how bloody awful I am at these games. I’ll definitely have to come back to it later to see if I can struggle my way through it. It’s not a high priority game for me but a good one to have around for that moment I do feel like playing it.
Furthermore I’ve been playing quite some Dragon Quest 9, which is just out for the DS. It especially helped last night while we had a 3.5hour long power outage. But I’m about 15hours into the game and I’ve had 3 boss encounters so far which are actually getting kind of tough. The game itself is a really solid jrpg, it doesn’t seem to do anything radically different from other rpg’s, it’s extremely traditional. Saying that though I’ve just arrived at the town where I’m going to be able to switch classes so that’ll be interesting especially considering I’ve invested a bunch of skillpoints into the “Minstrel” class which is what you start out as. I’m assuming though that it’ll just refund you those points, which would be neat.
So as a final point I’ve actually started to watch the Harry Potter movies as you hear so many good things about them. I got reminded of them due to that new lego harry potter game being released which apparently plays through the first 4 movies. So right now I’ve only watched the first movie, the philosophers stone, and I can say that I felt a bit awkward watching little kids at times but the movie’s definitely well made. Though it seemed to just rush from major event to major event, not much small talk or character building. Perhaps they didn’t think it was necessary because so many people have read the books?
That Guy with the glasses –> The Room.