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1161  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / What are you buying this week? (4/10) on: April 10, 2006, 05:40:22 PM
Well, I was going to buy MLB for the 360, but it looks like hardware problems (dead CPU fan) to fix might kill that for me.
1162  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / XB360 BC - What's Up? on: March 31, 2006, 11:43:47 PM
Quote from: "Destructor"
Quote from: "Clanwolfer"
Are Ninja Gaiden and Forza playable now?

I have the same question. Well, just Ninja Gaiden, but my point still stands.

If I could only drag myself away from Oblivion to check... biggrin


Well, I checked... original Ninja Gaiden works okay.  Didn't notice any terrible slowdown, and had no trouble beating boss #1 on the first run through the level, so it seems to be working now.

Haven't checked Forza though, which is a bigger concern to me.
1163  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / XB360 BC - What's Up? on: March 30, 2006, 03:42:15 AM
Are Ninja Gaiden and Forza playable now?
1164  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / What are you buying this week? (3/27) on: March 28, 2006, 06:55:01 PM
Quote from: "-Lord Ebonstone-"
Nothing, though I will keep an eye on Call of Cthulhu to see if they managed to fix it up for the PC.


Wouldn't count on it.  It's a straight port, done by a single project engineer as a labor of love.  Apparently the publisher wanted to straight-out pull the plug on it.
1165  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / What are you buying this week? (3/20) on: March 20, 2006, 05:45:28 AM
Oblivion: CE for the 360, assuming Gamestop/EB is still running the 'trade 2 360 games for 1' deal.
1166  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Stuck in GRAW. Help on: March 19, 2006, 04:16:04 PM
It's the one mission-killing bug I found.  Remember that roadblock at the start of the level?  You have to blow up (or have the tanks blow up) that troop transport before you clear the first AT position out, or else the map doesn't expand after you take out the AT position.
1167  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Feeding Frenzy - Up on Live Arcade on: March 15, 2006, 10:26:12 PM
It's fun.  I'm still going to buy Zuma and probably Bejeweled first.
1168  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Feeding Frenzy - Up on Live Arcade on: March 15, 2006, 07:44:56 PM
Nice!

Downloading... I always look forward to these little trials, even though I've only bought Geometry Wars, Gauntlet, and SmashTV.
1169  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [PSP] MLB - The Show on: March 15, 2006, 01:52:16 AM
I went to BB today to pick this up... it was sold out there, which is something I hadn't expected.  I guess it's a good omen for the success of the game, though.

So basically, this feels like there's very little cut out for the PSP?  With the exception of Franchise mode, is there anything missing?

Oh, also, does the Career/Season mode allow for fantasy drafting or for trading of players?  How are the options for those things (salary cap on/off, etc. etc.)
1170  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter Impressions Thread on: March 12, 2006, 05:11:38 AM
Finished it today.  With the exception of one level-killing bug where I had to restart the mission to trigger an event, I loved the whole ride (stats page showed 8.5 hours total).  The credits, especially when 'All Along the Watchtower' starts blaring for that last helo ride over Mexico City, are worth a watch, and I envy those of you who get to see it in HD.

Best game ever?  Not by a long shot.  Best 360 game so far?  Definitely, and I hold by my statement that if this and Oblivion aren't #1 and #2 for GOTY, it means a lot of developers will have shown a lot of love to us gamers.
1171  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter Impressions Thread on: March 12, 2006, 04:26:17 AM
Quote from: "Destructor"
Quote from: "Clanwolfer"
I think once you pick which squadmates you want, you don't have to worry about their ammo situation.  I've never seen them run out.  Although it would be nice to know a little more about which gun each member carries...

Rifleman: Machine gun thingy.
Grenadier: Machine gun thingy and some sort of bazooka.
Assault Person: Heavy machine gun thingy.
Sniper: Sniper rifle thingy.

What more is there to know? biggrin

And yeah, I've never had one of my teammates run out of ammo. They'll spout off when they're reloading, but other than that, they have unlimited ammo.


I meant more the individual models.  There are about 2-3 of each one... for example, when I switched the grenadier team members out, I got a guy with the rocket launcher, where before I think he had a rifle with the underslung 40mm (could be wrong).  I'd love to know exactly which model each team member carries.
1172  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter Impressions Thread on: March 11, 2006, 06:01:38 PM
I'm pretty sure they explicitly refer to the vision mode as thermal several times rather than NV.

If you have less than a full mag, pretty sure reloading gets you out of scoped mode, and still lets you move around freely.

I think once you pick which squadmates you want, you don't have to worry about their ammo situation.  I've never seen them run out.  Although it would be nice to know a little more about which gun each member carries...
1173  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter Impressions Thread on: March 09, 2006, 06:45:46 AM
I must have told myself that Oblivion is coming out a dozen times tonight, just to keep myself from prematurely locking in my GOTY candidate (in March, no less!).  Jumped into the multiplayer tonight, and played mostly the Defense mode.  Exhilarating stuff, especially when we started to figure out the one map we were playing and manage to start pushing back the enemy to the spawn point.  Just the sight of six Ghosts blasting away with LMGs at a single staircaseas enemies rushed down it was amazing.  Hopefully I'll get into some of the more varied modes tomorrow and over the weekend.

It's not quite perfect; there's the disconnects, which hit me when I tried to join the big OO/GT game going on.  There's also the one spawn point on Defense mode, which let us mass enough firepower to push them back, even on inifinite respawns; hopefully a patch could add multiple/random respawn points, or maybe different maps have them.  A couple hours into the multiplayer, I barely feel like I've scratched the surface, and I have yet to find anything even remotely disappointing.

Seriously, I'm in for any map packs they release on the Marketplace unless they're ridiculously priced.  But I could easily see myself spending $15-$20 to double the number of maps, and this is before even trying the co-op campaign mode.
1174  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter Impressions Thread on: March 09, 2006, 12:24:06 AM
If I recall correctly, the green triangles are friendlies, the yellow ones are objectives, and the red ones are hostiles.  You shouldn't have more than one yellow at a time (at least I haven't yet), so just aim for the yellow arrow and keep your head down.  smile
1175  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Now I've read it...OXM is retarded... on: March 09, 2006, 12:10:23 AM
Not saying it's okay in the ethically okay sense, but it's certainly good in the maximizing stockholder profit sense.  They think this will move systems better than anything they have coming down the pipe, I'm not inclined to disagree, and now that there seem to be more systems moving into the wild, they probably felt like they needed a good, compelling system-mover.  So, out of the launch titles plus the Jan/Feb/March releases, they picked this one as the best one for the casual/party gamers they're trying to hit now, since they know that our segment probably won't respect an OXM review anyway.
1176  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Now I've read it...OXM is retarded... on: March 08, 2006, 11:47:45 PM
As good as FN3 objectively is, and as many flaws as we can find in this objectively good (but not perfect) game, it's pretty obvious that it was the first real 'next-gen' feeling game out there.  MS is counting on this to sell some systems, perhaps even more than GR:AW and Oblivion, and OXM is doing their part to make this game the one people show off to their friends.  They seem to have settled on this as a system seller for now, which might not be a bad idea on their part, as it is very casually-accessible and gorgeous.
1177  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter Impressions Thread on: March 08, 2006, 11:42:46 PM
One piece of advice I can give: use the left trigger.  Being a naturally mouse-inclined gamer, I initially dropped to the scope at every opportunity (click down right thumbstick).  While this is great for taking out snipers or specific targets at long range, in most firefights, you're only going to want to zoom in with the left trigger, both to keep situational awareness and to suppress/eliminate mutliple targets quickly.  The scope is just too slow to engage multiple hostiles, which is great for precision, not great for medium-range survivability.

Also, don't discount those smoke grenades!  While you're never in a gimmick puzzle like FSW, smoke grenades can help you maneuver unseen for a better shot.  When you have both short/medium and long range hostiles engaging, tossing one behind the closer group to confine things to one firefight does wonders.

Also, don't underestimate the effectiveness of forcing your men to attack specific targets.  While I found the teammate AI to be a little lacking at first, when I started using the up arrow to force them to attack targets during firefights, they smartened up much more and were far more effective.
1178  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter Impressions Thread on: March 08, 2006, 11:11:56 PM
Cross-post from OO:

Yes, we're bucking the trend with impressions in the first post!

After playing a couple of missions of the campaign mode, my thoughts can be summed up as such: Killer app.

The training portion is lackluster, but lasts about five minutes, if that. After that, it's like you're thrust into the beginning of a Jerry Bruckheimer movie. The control is tight, though I'm still reacquainting myself with gamepad aiming; however, it's clear at this point that I'm the weak link, not the controls. Everything is easy to access, though on a non-HD TV, I had to squint a little to make out a few of the controls in the training. If you don't have a sharp TV, keep the manual handy just for quick reference. However, I don't need to stop and think what's what during a firefight. Team controls are well-done despite only having three actual command buttons, which for your team correspond to move/engage, retreat/regroup, and engagement mode (attack vs. defense).

The plot is very Tom Clancy, but so far seems to err on the realistic side of outrageous. It's fast-paced, and even in the first couple of missions keeps the plot points coming, though it's never overwhelming and you don't quite feel railroaded.

The visuals are spectacular, even on standard... I'm drooling to see this on an HDTV now, it must be truly spectacular. No pop-in, no visual glitches that I've seen so far, and every scene is realistic and well-done. Character models are amazing, and they managed to avoid the plasticy look of Riddick/PDZ while still doing great lighting. I think the 360 GPU is finally to the point where a really spectacular scene can be created without relying too much on visual tricks that fall apart on close inspection. Lighting has been top-notch on every scene; sunrise and daytime create different, distinct effects, and I'm about to start my first night mission. Movement is smooth, and there's nary a hitch in framerate, even with a cutscene in the top right Cross-Com window, your team's viewpoint in the top left, your own character/screen moving around, and a firefight going on. The lack of a visible 'loading' screen (there are fade-ins and fade-outs, which take all of 3 seconds) means you're essentially never pulled out of the immersion.

Audio is great, though my TV doesn't have great speakers. Positional audio is quite apparent and well-done, and I'm sure if you have a 5.1 system, you'll get way more out of this section than I am. Music is appropriate most of the times, from rock songs playing while you're in a helicopter orbiting the city, to an amazing Jerry Bruckheimer-esque orchestral moment while your soldiers are making a desperate stand.

Gameplay seems top-notch. It's much, much more cinematic than the only other GR game I've played, the PC original, but despite concessions made for console, it seems like they kept the intent of it intact. I've been gunned down quickly while not watching myself, and the game is not shy about killing you if you mess up (though I have yet to run into an arbitrary-feeling death), and if you're fast and quick on the trigger, you can survive most desperate situations. Save points are maybe a tiny bit too far apart for my liking, though I've really only had a problem with one section, and that was my own fault for getting my entire squad killed before that section started, and I have yet to get frustrated.

I'm hoping to try the multiplayer action out a bit tonight, the co-op looks like a lot of fun. I took a quick look at the Instant Action screen, but didn't see any options for bots or AI teammates in those modes. We'll see how that shakes out.

To wrap up: This is the most complete feeling next-gen game I've played. FN Round 3 is great for what it is, and has an edge in ultra-detailed player models, but GR:AW creates whole scenarios that feel like they wouldn't have been possible on an older console, in both scope and complexity. I guarantee you PD:Z gets traded in next time I want to buy a game, because right now, there's absolutely no way I can see going back to playing that, even to finish up the SP campaign, and I suspect even the MP will pale in comparison. GR:AW is the complete next-gen package, and hopefully will be the killer app for about two weeks until Oblivion launches (although I can see GR:AW holding the MP crown for a long, long time).
1179  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / GRAW - Out Tomorrow in Many Stores on: March 08, 2006, 08:55:17 PM
Caught the BB floor monkeys unpacking, by the time I had mine in hand there was a cluster of people lined up for the rest.  I think they sold out post haste, so I'm lucky I got mine.
1180  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] New content on Live : PGR3 Demo, BF2 video and more! on: March 08, 2006, 04:55:28 PM
The CoD demo is new.  It was on kiosks/demo disks for ages, but just hit Live a few weeks ago (if that).
1181  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] College Hoops 2k6 - Gold on: March 08, 2006, 03:57:35 PM
How's my Red Storm in the game, and where do they play their home games?  If it's Carnasecca Arena and not MSG, I might need to pick it up.  Doubly so if they practice in Taffner Field House.  smile
1182  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] Ghost Recon - Co Op Interest on: March 08, 2006, 03:40:57 AM
In, if I can get myself a copy.
1183  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / FNR3: Official Lockdown Knockdown Tourney (Sign up here) on: March 08, 2006, 03:04:28 AM
I'll fight KnucklesWhite soon as I see him on again.
1184  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / GRAW - Out Tomorrow in Many Stores on: March 08, 2006, 03:02:38 AM
Damn.  I want this bad now.  I'm tempted to do the unthinkable and head out to Ye Olde EBGames on 34th street, on the off chance that they actually have any copies that weren't preordered.
1185  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / GRAW - Out Tomorrow in Many Stores on: March 07, 2006, 05:58:37 PM
Best Buy here in Manhattan says they won't be in until Friday.  I may check EB/Gamestop if I feel like walking after work, but I'd much rather spend quality time during my spring break relaxing rather than walking around looking for a game that may or may not be out.
1186  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / GRAW - Out Tomorrow in Many Stores on: March 07, 2006, 03:24:15 PM
I'll be swinging by Best Buy at lunch, hopefully it'll be shelved there.
1187  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / The Outfit Demo on Marketplace... on: March 06, 2006, 09:37:42 PM
Quote from: "Scott"
Single player too, or just a multiplayer demo?


Multi only.

Got in a quick round, and it pretty much bargain-binned the game for me (before, I had slight interest, but much more in GR).  It's okay fun, but the weapons aren't very visceral, the sound is meh, and the text is extraordinarily blurry on my non-HD set (I'd blame my TV, but I have no problem with any other game being this unreadable).  I'll probably get in a few more rounds, but my initial feeling is that if I pick up GR:AW tomorrow, this is indefinitely on hold.
1188  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / The Outfit Demo on Marketplace... on: March 04, 2006, 05:25:48 PM
My money is on Monday morning.
1189  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] Battlefield 2 Multi Demo - Mid March on: March 03, 2006, 04:29:24 AM
Well, we all know how demo rumors are turning out lately.  smile
1190  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] Ghost Recon Demo - Sometime in the next year on: March 03, 2006, 01:31:06 AM
Signs start to be pointing towards fake, it seems like.
1191  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] Ghost Recon Demo - Sometime in the next year on: March 03, 2006, 01:11:37 AM
I think since the day shift is out, we can pretty much assume we won't see the demo until tomorrow at the earliest.  Just because they gave MS the demo today doesn't mean they'll be in any rush to get it on the Marketplace today.
1192  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / FNR3: Official Lockdown Knockdown Tourney (Sign up here) on: February 28, 2006, 07:49:29 PM
Definitely all for a Config 1 contest.  We could set up a seperate, lesser belt for all the Facebutton McGee's out there.
1193  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / FNR3: Official Lockdown Knockdown Tourney (Sign up here) on: February 27, 2006, 07:17:54 PM
Put my boxer up as Hagler, I suppose.
1194  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / FNR3: Official Lockdown Knockdown Tourney (Sign up here) on: February 27, 2006, 12:10:18 AM
GamertaG:  KeySJU
Middleweight Fighter: TBD
Availability: Everything but Wednesday night
1195  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] Fight Night 3 impressions on: February 24, 2006, 09:34:27 PM
As soon as evening hits and my campus connection calms down enough to get rid of the lag... you're all on.
1196  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] Fight Night 3 impressions on: February 22, 2006, 07:02:53 PM
Absolutely pick it up if you don't like the twitch-based games, DiscoJason.  This game is far, far more focused on the strategic elements of boxing (single rounds are 3 minutes, and most fights go at least 4 rounds) rather than landing the first combo and dominating from there.  Well-timed punches can turn a fight around, but you don't have to land something in the .0002 seconds that a twitch game gives you to counter.

Besides, because the fights last so long, I'm guessing this will be a really great social game among the OO and GT crowds.
1197  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Tha Con$pirator ft. $paniel is coming... on: February 22, 2006, 02:28:06 PM
This is now on my last.fm profile for all to see.

I'm not really sure how that makes me feel.
1198  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] Fight Night 3 impressions on: February 22, 2006, 06:32:26 AM
Played through the rest of the ESPN Classics mode tonight, and one multiplayer match.

I highly recommend doing the Classics (at least half) before starting a career; it both unlocks various styles and kits for you and allows you to try out a bunch of styles so you can know what you like better before you start a career.  Plus, they're just plain fun.  It probably took me and my roomie about 6 hours total to burn through the whole list (doing part of it on hard), but I've picked up a much better understanding of the various fight styles and an appreciation of how much they affect the gameplay.  The fights are all very well-done, and any of the matches can go either way; which ones are easy seems to depend on your preferred style, as my roomie can breeze through my tough fights and vice versa.  This Classics mode will definitely be a nice one to duck back to once in a while, especially when I have friends over; since all the matches are more or less balanced, this should cut down on whining about which boxer is unbalanced.  smile

On a whim, I tried out a quick game on Live before stopping for the night.  It was a little laggy, but it didn't effect gameplay too terribly much.  It took me about half a round to adjust to the pace, and then I was fine.  Knocked out some random guy playing Jones Jr., with me playing Holyfield.  I'm sure it will be more fun to play against you guys than random people, but I'm also looking forward to some ranked fights, too.

Seeing as I haven't even touched the career or Hard Hits modes, and I've barely even begun to scratch the surface of multiplayer, I think this game might have some legs to it.  The difficulty in SP is fine; I put it up to Hard for a while, but dropped it to Medium while fighting with a few fighters whose styles I just couldn't adapt to very well in Classics mode; Medium is providing a satisfying but not frustrating challenge, but Hard wasn't such a step up that I'll never put the difficulty there.

Also, for people who played the demo: still not sold on the commentary entirely (more on that later, when my impressions solidify), but replays are much better overall in the retail box.
1199  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] Fight Night 3 impressions on: February 21, 2006, 08:17:49 PM
Quote from: "tru1cy"
Rate the difficulty?  Also buy or rental?


Bought it.  Not sure if it has legs in career mode, but I tend to play FN games to death, so I'm pretty sure I'll get my money's worth.

Difficulty, it's hard to say.  The one fight at medium wasn't difficult at all for me, but I prefer speed-style fighters, and I put in a LOT of time on the demo.  Hard felt about right for my level; I fell once, and clinched out quite a few times.  We'll see how I do at the lower tiers of the career mode before I make a judgement.

Good things about the difficulty: it never felt, even on Medium, like a completely foregone conclusion.  There were a few moments when Frazier could have put me down and forced me to clinch out, and capitalizing on a few of those could have swung the fight hugely.  It really does come down to countering a fighting style; against Frazier, I had to parry the big shots for the win, and against Ali, I had to ride out the wave of fast, light punches, and press the advantage to get in big body shots when I could, without leaving myself open for any huge flurries.  It seems like, at least between these two fighters, it's balanced enough that you can't just power through every time, or rely simply on landing more shots.
1200  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [360] Fight Night 3 impressions on: February 21, 2006, 07:38:06 PM
Impressions!

Quick ones, though, managed to grab a quick fight before a phone meeting.

First of all, the interface is kind of 'meh'.  The menu system is alright, but the way it always asks which memory unit (I only have the hard drive) is kind of annoying.  Totally different, much better interface within the Live portion, there are about 150 people playing right now online.  Jumped back offline to start an ESPN Classics fight (Ali vs. Frazier, of course).  There's a nice little intro in which they give a bit of advice on each fighter's style.

In-game, things are about as the demo would indicate.  Didn't play long enough to get too much of a feel for the commentary; they weren't too far off most of the time, though.  Hoping it's an improvement over the demo long-term.  The graphics are gorgeous; they manage to keep that quality from the demo gym all the way up to the scale of the stadium environment, and the fighters look as good as the two in the demo.  Ali and Frazier have pretty well-done styles, and fighting as each one definitely felt like a different fight.  Wrecked Frazier in 4 as Ali with lightning speed, but taking control of Frazier then felt like driving a truck.  Took me six rounds to finish Ali (although I upped the difficulty to Hard in between), whose speed gave me trouble.  I just had to keep concentrating on the body and wearing him down with isolated big hooks to the midsection.

Haven't tried the cutman, listened to the between-round trainer dialogue, or done a host of other things yet.  Beating each fighter unlocked the style of the defeated fighter (i.e., when you beat Frazier, you get the 'Bully' style), and Ali also yielded a fight package, which means I'll probably be playing through the Classics mode a lot more before creating a fighter so I can mess around with more styles.  Not sure if this is for every Classic fight or just the Ali-Frazier one.

Hit me with questions: should be able to hop on and answer later today.
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