Video Games

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Re: Video Games

Post  xyzzy on Thu Jun 28, 2012 2:20 am

So, lately:

Legends of Grimrock -- awesomely old school, more heart-pounding than you'd think, given the grid based combat.

Minecraft -- extremely fun in survival mode, but once you give into using console cheats it's hard to not do it.

TERA Online -- love, love, love this MMORPG so far. The quests are grindy, as almost all games originally destined for the Asian market are, but the combat is superior to World of Warcraft in all ways. You have to like, aim and stuff. Shocking, I know.

Diablo III -- yawn. The drops suck and I'm sure it's a result of Blizzard attempting to manipulate their 5% on the real money auction house. Plus character "development" is a joke and the story "twists" can be predicted from Act I by anyone who has ever seen a genre show.

Torchlight II beta -- the opposite of yawn. I've pre-ordered with great anticipation.

Duels of the Planeswalkers 2012 -- Magic the Gathering on training wheels, which is perfect for me. I completely sucked the one and only time I played the analog version. The cards are still impossible to decipher, though. I have to play with one window open to the MTG wiki and occasionally make embarrassing phone calls to a tournament player I know. Someday I might get through an analog game (losing spectacularly but not completely confused by combat phases).
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Re: Video Games

Post  Instant Monkeys on Thu Jun 28, 2012 11:46 am

I'm obsessed lately with this little game called Pickers. It's a hidden-object game mostly. You own an antique shop, and every day you get a list of hot categories (Automotive, Clothing/Accessories, Signs & Signals, etc.) and you go visit any of a number of sites (a salvage yard, a nerd's apartment, a warehouse, a lady's garage) and choose from the objects there, haggle for them, take them back to your shop, and try to sell them at a profit. I've played it through like three times. Every once in a while you get a real treasure, like a soda fountain piece you barely saw and it turns out to be worth $2,000. And also you can "consult an expert" for $75 and sometimes you hit the jackpot when the expert tells you something is worth much more. (Or you waste the $75 when it tells you the thing you have is a piece of crap. The highs! The lows!)

It's interesting to me how DRAMATICALLY hidden-object games have improved since I first started to play them a couple years ago. It must be hard to make a good hidden-object screen. I have another game by these folks and they do really well with it. I played this one a long while back called Escape the Museum, and it was just unrelenting screen after screen of VERY difficult hidden objects, and if you clicked anywhere else you got a penalty, and you couldn't really tell what half the stuff was. It was a grind. In this one, they don't care if you click around, you can click on the name of the object and get an outline of it without a penalty (I didn't know what an electroshock therapy machine or a ham radio looked like), if you're really stuck there's a hint, and the objects are just MUCH better integrated into the environment. That's what's fun about hidden object; you think you're just looking at the background, and suddenly: old popcorn machine from a carnival! that's worth $500! Woo-hoo!

It's a fun little game. I ran into a problem with it though -- after a while of playing, it kept crashing after startup. I got it from this place called Macgamestore.com, which is like a clearinghouse for these little PC games that they port to Mac. Their support pages suggested deleting the game and reinstalling. I did that, and it was the same, and it greeted me by my username (it would get to the menu screen but not go beyond), so I was like "clearly there's a preferences file still on my computer that I need to delete, and that must be the corrupted file, because reinstalling the entire rest of the game didn't do anything." It wasn't in Preferences (though the two other games I have by the same company were there) and it wasn't in Caches, and Spotlight sucks and I couldn't find it by searching. So I e-mailed their support and was like "Hey, the game works fine -- I've played it through twice -- but now it's crashing, I tried deleting and reinstalling; can you just tell me where the preferences file for this game lives and what its name is so I can delete it?"

They finally wrote back and were like "Sorry your game isn't working! We don't really develop the games [fine, but they do port them, or I assume they do because the Macgamestore logo comes up in the opening screen of the game, and someone in Mac-development-land should know about the user data stuff since by definition it's Mac-specific], but we suggest deleting the game and reinstalling! Also you can see if the game works on your computer by trying it first in demo mode. And if none of that works we will give you a refund."

Luckily, I had already managed to find the file, which was in Application Support (why isn't there a standard place for these files to live? We've had OSX a long time now, guys), and deleted it, and everything was fine, except my data was gone but whatever. I was about to e-mail them back and tell them I found the file and what it was called, but then it occurred to me that you can probably delete these files so you can start the 60-minute demo over again so you can keep playing the game for free. So I decided not to in case they thought I was trying to hack their game or whatever. I'm still not sure if they just don't know how their games work at all (and didn't read my e-mail) or didn't want to initiate me into the secret world of deleting preferences files (which is not really very secret -- as a longtime Sims player, you don't even get through the front door of any support forums without having first deleted a bunch of game cache files; they are the CLEAR first suspect in things being corrupted).

But I can keep obsessively playing Pickers forever now, so that's all I care about. It's like a wonderful combo of Antiques Roadshow and Hoarders!
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Re: Video Games

Post  Red Wolf on Sat Jul 14, 2012 5:27 am

Anyone played Borderlands? Is it a good one-player game? Because it's on sale on Steam for $15 right now. Also, will editing the .ini to enable the cheats work in the Steam version?

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Re: Video Games

Post  xyzzy on Sat Jul 14, 2012 9:47 am

I haven't played Borderlands, but I watched a Let's Play on YouTube. It's a quirky game with awesome aesthetics and a good sense of humor. The only reason I didn't buy it was because I was already deep into like three other games. Then, like a dummy, I bought DiabloIII. I would have been better off spending my $60 at Steam. :(
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Re: Video Games

Post  Red Wolf on Sat Jul 14, 2012 11:08 am

Yeah. I was interested in D3 up until they announced it was going to be online only. That's not my sort of thing, so I saved my money. $60 is two books and a takeway meal to me.

Oh, and I'm sure I read somewhere that the character of Claptrap is really annoying. But is he a dealbreaker?

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Re: Video Games

Post  punzy on Sat Jul 14, 2012 11:26 am

My husband says Borderlands is fun and definitely worth $15. The steam sale is tempting me to get Civ 5 and a few other games. But then my productivity will really go down the drain.

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Re: Video Games

Post  choubetcha on Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:09 pm

The Steam sale is going to break me for sure. To pass on some good advice I got, unless it's a video game emergency, only buy if it's a daily deal or the last day of the sale. Daily deals are always cheaper, and if the game you want doesn't become one, you can always grab it the last day.

I'm not sure if this is incredibly obvious advice, but I know that it talked me off the ledge I was standing on with my credit card.

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Re: Video Games

Post  xyzzy on Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:35 pm

He didn't bother me (at least, not during the 3 or so hours I spent watching Necroscope's Let's Play). This is how I spend my free time. Watching other people play video games that I was too dumb to not buy in the first place. :)
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Re: Video Games

Post  Rhilin on Sat Jul 14, 2012 12:43 pm

xyzzy wrote:He didn't bother me (at least, not during the 3 or so hours I spent watching Necroscope's Let's Play). This is how I spend my free time. Watching other people play video games that I was too dumb to not buy in the first place. :)

Change "too dumb" to, "too poor" and that's me.

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Re: Video Games

Post  punzy on Sat Jul 14, 2012 2:37 pm

Borderlands is only $7.49 today, so I say go for it!

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Re: Video Games

Post  Rhilin on Sat Jul 14, 2012 4:48 pm

And Botanicula is only $7.00! (The entirety of the Indie Bundle 2 is going for 10.) It looks like From Dust is only $4, and Knights of the Old Republic (which I strongly recommend if you like any combination of A) RPG's, B) Star Wars or C) plot) is only $3. Dammit Steam, this is why I never look at your sale page.

(I did by the game of the year version of Borderlands, too.)

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Re: Video Games

Post  Fiammetta on Sat Jul 14, 2012 10:07 pm

I've bought the PopCap pack, the Bethesda pack, and Borderlands:GOTY. I have no excuse, either; my computer is badly in need of upgrading, and I'm deep in The Witcher 2 for XBox 360 at the moment. I don't know. Damn you, Steam.

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Re: Video Games

Post  punzy on Sun Jul 15, 2012 1:39 am

I got Scared, Ys: the Oath in Felghana, and a sega pack containing the Shining Force games. Because I needed more ways to waste time. Sigh.

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Re: Video Games

Post  Red Wolf on Sun Jul 15, 2012 10:14 am

So I bought it. Next time I buy software of any kind, I'm leaving the it until either I go to bed or out for the day, so I have several hours AF internet to download it uninterrupted.

Still, apart from running out of ammo a couple of times and having to beat baddies to death, it's proving quite fun. Also, I get the feeling it's somewhat open-world. Like, the maps are large enough to roam around in, plus there are teleporters to other areas. I'm mostly following the story, so I haven't ventured too far as yet.

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Re: Video Games

Post  Rhilin on Sun Jul 15, 2012 12:22 pm

My one complaint so far is respawns. I don't mind if enemies respawn, but every time I enter or exit the starting town I have to beat down a pack of low level bandits and skags, and it's totally a waste of bullets at this point.

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Re: Video Games

Post  Red Wolf on Sun Jul 15, 2012 7:26 pm

Yes, there's that. Took me a a bit to work out what was happening. "Didn't I clear this area out five minutes ago?" Still, they drop cash, ammo, xp, and sometimes a new weapon.

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Re: Video Games

Post  xyzzy on Fri Aug 31, 2012 2:01 am

So, Guild Wars 2.

The Good: I'm a collector/completionist by nature, so the achievements and collections really appeal to me. The questing system is pretty good, with a fairly decent variety of quests and approaches to advancement. I like the random events that anyone can join and the fact that you get full experience/credit for the so-called "Heart Quests" even if other people are on the mob you're on. Plus no subscription fee.

The Overhyped: The action combat has NOTHING on TERA. I mean, nothing. This is basically just tab targeting, WoW style, with a little flavor in terms of which weapons and skills you equip. Mostly yawn inducing. And the graphics are not very awesome. Again, TERA is a much, much prettier game. It's too bad the quest system isn't better in TERA, because I would definitely keep paying for a sub for much longer than I plan to now. In ArenaNet's favor, though, they don't dress their female characters like strippers. So there's that.

The Bad: The auction house has been down since launch. Mail has down a lot, too. This plus tiny bank space makes it bad for players who need money. My bank is completely full, and I'm gonna have to start using my alts as mules until the AH is back up and I can sell all the green crap sitting around in my bank.
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Re: Video Games

Post  Red Wolf on Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:28 pm

Anyone out there playing Torchlight 2? Because, how do I install mods? I downloaded one containing two .pak files and a .bin file. Where do these go? There seems to be no instructions on the forums, nor on Google.

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Re: Video Games

Post  xyzzy on Fri Nov 02, 2012 7:45 pm

For the PAKs:
Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Torchlight II\PAKS

For the bin:
My Documents\My Games\Runic Games\Torchlight 2\save\SomeStringofNumbers

Back up your save folder before putting a new .bin in it!
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Re: Video Games

Post  Red Wolf on Fri Nov 02, 2012 8:09 pm

17 minutes. I'm pretty sure I spent longer than that hunting around for an answer. Thank you very much!

Edit: oh my god, the minigun is an absolute beast. Awesome!

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Re: Video Games

Post  xyzzy on Sat Nov 03, 2012 12:31 am

Hah, that thing is a beast. I just finished a runthrough with a friend of mine and now we're debating whether to do an NG+ or play around in mapworks for awhile.
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Re: Video Games

Post  Red Wolf on Sat Jan 19, 2013 8:22 pm

So, Too Human was just killed. Check the link if you want the details why, but I want to talk about the game itself. It was two thirds the reason I bought a 360, the other third being Mass Effect. I loved the premise of Norse mythology meets Cyberpunk before the beginning of recorded human history. I loved the look of the thing (poke on through, there's some good stuff), even started writing a story that incorporated some of the pictures. I'm still working on that story several years later.

On the other hand, I was less than impressed by much of the game itself. It was... all right, I suppose. Maybe I'm just crap, but I found it incredibly difficult. The ice forest, second level in the game. You're almost immediately set upon by a spider that, with its shield up, completely immune to melee. But don't worry, it can melee you right back! Then the arena with two trolls... That every boss was both an arena boss and a spawning boss. So not only can you not run away, you're constantly being attacked by hordes of mooks. I do hate that. (I also get annoyed that Torchlight 2 does the exact same thing.)

One area especially it didn't live up to its premise. At a certain point, you get to choose if Baldur gets himself cybernetically enhanced. This was pitched as a serious choice. Apparently he's the more approachable one, because he's less enhanced than the other Aesir. So I thought that if he got an upgrade, people might react to him differently. There may be changes in the story. No. There are no changes in the story, no matter what you do. It's just another skill tree. The game itself is just another ARPG. Interesting premise, lots of creatures to slay, fixed and unalterable story.

But again, the premise was great. Everything looked great. Especially the ice forest. Vast technological trees with ringed platforms, accessable by bridges or jump pads. Running around Asgard, listening to all the random chatter. Those few moments when I'd get on a roll against a horde of mooks, batting them all over the place. Jumping on a troll's back to finish it off. If the sequels had ever been made, I would have bought them day one, if only to explore the premise some more.

All in all, I found the frustration outweighed fun, and I got bored with playing it. While I'm sad that it's not going to get those sequels. I'm sad that Dennis Dyack let his ego overwhelm his good sense, and especially sad that it will be destroyed so others can't explore it.

However, I'm not so sad that I actually intend to play it again.

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Re: Video Games

Post  laddical on Sat Jan 19, 2013 11:31 pm

I'm less concerned about the death of the game than I am about the implications. Say this had been an UbiSoft game during the time when UbiSoft had that draconian DRM in place that required an "Always On" internet connection while playing the game even for off-line content. If UbiSoft had to take one of those DRM'd games off the market, it stands to reason that they would also have to take down the servers that run the game on their side - including any DRM proofing. So while no one's going to come knocking to ask for your copy of the game back, the copy you bought is useless because it was only a license, not ownership, and now you can't exercise that license. I know that UbiSoft has backed off that DRM, but not because they suddenly decided that DRM itself is a bad thing.

I just see this sort of thing screwing a lot of legal, non-pirate customers in the future. Which DRM already does enough on its own without judges ordering the destruction of all existing unsold copies of a game and its removal from all online marketplaces.
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Re: Video Games

Post  Red Wolf on Sun Jan 20, 2013 4:29 am

I wouldn't be surprised if that happens sooner or later. I know the common response is that an offline patch will be released, but I think I remember Shamus Young talking about that. His gist was that no, the programmers may have moved onto other development tools or other jobs or one of several other reasons. They aren't really going to go back and create a patch for these old games.

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Re: Video Games

Post  Red Wolf on Sat Feb 09, 2013 8:10 pm

For those who play more games than me, I'm after a recommendation. I've recently tried out Chivalry Medieval Warfare, in solo, run round an empty map mode. I like the idea of getting all these medieval weapons and killing things, but I'm not a multiplayer sort of person. Are there any good FPS or 3PS SP games that let me do that? I hear Skyrim does that sort of thing, but it's still $60 on Steam with no demo. Any other suggestions?

Oh, and I'm not specifically interested in the latest and greatest. A couple of generations old is fine.

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Re: Video Games

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