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6761  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Can MS topple Sony in the next generation? on: November 16, 2004, 07:43:45 PM
"I highly doubt there will be a Fable 2. It sold well but the setting is just not compelling enough to warrant a sequel IMO."
Fable may have disappointed a lot of people, but it sold really well.  When BC was cancelled, the speculation was that they wanted to focus on Fable 2.  I wouldn't be surprised to see it next year even.
6762  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Greg Hastings Paintball on: November 16, 2004, 11:04:21 AM

6763  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Can MS topple Sony in the next generation? on: November 16, 2004, 10:58:48 AM
Unless Sony makes some big mistake (like Nintendo did with using cartridges for the N64), Sony will win the next round of console wars by a big margin.  They have the edge in exclusives, amount of games, variety of games, supportive fans, and they're fast becoming the "Nintendo" of this generation, where their name is almost synonymous with video games.  Microsoft did a great job getting the XBox to where it is in only one generation, but they have no hope of toppling Sony any time soon.

The thing that will help XBox 2 the most is a strong launch.  Right now, it looks like Oblivion will probably be a launch title, and I'd bet either Bioware's unannounced console project or their presumed FPS/RPG using the Unreal 3.0 engine will be as well.  Also, I think they need to just forget about Japan and concentrate on the American market and developers.  Japan is pretty much a lost cause as far as XBox is concerned.  Their only chance would be getting FF13 or Dragon Quest 9 exclusive to the XBox, and I can't see any way that would ever happen.
6764  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Console keyboard and mouse? on: November 15, 2004, 07:38:50 PM
Adrenaline Vault just posted a review for the SmartJoy Frag.
6765  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Ratchet and Clank UYA on: November 15, 2004, 05:06:13 AM
I haven't played UYA yet, but my favorite from the first two games is the Plasma Storm.   I love how it mows down herds of Protopets with one shot.  Also, it's fun to toss out a bouncer bomb and a Plasma Storm when there are lots of enemies on-screen and try to get the frame rate to drop slywink
6766  Non-Gaming / Steals and Deals / All "Greatest Hits" $14.77 at Target on: November 14, 2004, 08:45:57 AM
In Target's sales circular, they have all XBox, PS2, and GCN "Greatest/Platinum/MegaSuper Hits" for $14.77 this week.
6767  Non-Gaming / Steals and Deals / Black Friday ads. on: November 13, 2004, 10:20:57 AM
It's the day when all the crazy people go shopping slywink
6768  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Baten Kaitos review at IGN on: November 13, 2004, 07:00:09 AM
IGN has reviewed Baten Kaitos, giving it 8.8/10.  Also, Game Informer gave it 8.75/10.
6769  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Phantom Brave sequel announced on: November 12, 2004, 07:50:51 PM
Did Phantom Brave not sell well in the US?  The IGN article made it sound like they wanted to distance themselves from Phantom Brave and play up the similarity to Disgaea, while the name and RPGamer article made it sound like a sequel to PB.
6770  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / LotR: The Third Age...anyone played it? on: November 12, 2004, 07:47:59 PM
I haven't tried it, but the way it works is that each player controls 3 of the 6 player characters while walking around and in battle.

As for the game, I'm really enjoying it.  It's a traditional console-style RPG, and very similar to Final Fantasy X, but the production values are very high, and they made great use of the license.
6771  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Phantom Brave sequel announced on: November 12, 2004, 01:48:04 AM
According to RPGamer, Nippon Ichi has announced their next game, a sequel to Phantom Brave called Phantom Kingdom.  They also have some scans of the Famitsu article announcing the game.
6772  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Ratchet and Clank UYA on: November 10, 2004, 05:26:31 PM
"I am too poor to afford the 250,000 maximum armor upgrade."
Not to discourage you or anything, but that's not the maximum armor upgrade - that costs a million bolts slywink

Also, have you gotten the Shield "weapon" yet.  It is extremely helpful, especially once it's upgraded.  It almost makes the game too easy, but if you're having trouble, it's the cheapest way to go.
6773  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Another freakin Star Wars RTS on: November 10, 2004, 05:20:55 PM
The other 3 Star Wars RTS games were made before Lucasarts started getting good developers to do their licensed games.  They got Bioware to do KoTOR, and the group doing this new game is made up of ex-Westwood employees who worked on the Command & Conquer games.  I think the era of bad license games is ending.  Companies are starting to realize that, although bad games with a popular license will sell, good games with a popular license will sell even better.
6774  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Edit: Make me want an Xbox - and tell me what I should know on: November 10, 2004, 10:31:19 AM

If I didn't already have one, that would be enough for me slywink

Also, multiplatform releases are best on the XBox, not only because of the graphics, but also the hard drive, which is very handy, especially for games that take up a lot of memory to save.  The only bad thing is the lack of 4 shoulder buttons, which makes games with complicated control schemes, such as SSX or Tony Hawk, better on the PS2.
6775  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Smart Games help needed on: November 08, 2004, 07:44:54 PM
Almost - the 3 main Smart Games games came out in 1996, 1997, and 1998.  AFAIK, Pandora's Box and the Hoyle Puzzle Games series are the only thing like it that anyone's made since.  There are lots of shareware puzzle games, but I can't bring myself to spend $20 on a single game.
6776  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Smart Games help needed on: November 08, 2004, 08:06:20 AM
It was "take".  I remembered that they actually have the solutions on the Smart Games site, so I looked it up there.  Thanks for the help.
6777  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / wow?! yes! on: November 08, 2004, 08:01:29 AM
"Whats a panderan?"
It's one of the neutral heroes from Warcraft 3 - a panda brewmaster.
6778  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Smart Games help needed on: November 08, 2004, 03:01:04 AM
Thanks for the replies.  Broker was right.  "Hit Me", although it fit, isn't what they're looking for.
6779  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Smart Games help needed on: November 07, 2004, 12:28:11 PM
I've been playing the old Smart Games PC games lately, and am stuck on a couple word puzzles.  Hopefully, someone can help.

1. The clue is "Blackjack decision".  The only thing I know is that it ends with "E".  I've tried double and insurance, and it's not either of those.

2. The clue is "stock character".  The answer is 6 letters, rhymes with a color (other than gold, brown, yellow, and blue), contains an O, but not a T.

Please help!
6780  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Return of the Sith videogame trailer up now on: November 07, 2004, 10:18:04 AM
Spoilers (speculative ones, anyway)

What I was talking about was the part of the game trailer that appears to show Obi-Wan knocking Anakin into the fire, necessitating the Darth Vader suit.  The movie trailer shows what appears to be Anakin and Obi-Wan fighting over a fire pit, or volcano, or whatever it is.
6781  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Return of the Sith videogame trailer up now on: November 07, 2004, 04:46:14 AM
Presuming I know what everyone's talking about slywink, it's also hinted at (although the final act itself is not shown) in the teaser trailer for Episode 3.
6782  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / LOTR: TTA (More impressions please!) on: November 05, 2004, 07:35:46 PM
I'm really enjoying it too.  I can see the faults the reviews mention, but they don't bother me.  I'm usually willing to forgive a game's problems if it has a license I like, and FFX is my favorite game of all time, so it doesn't bother me that they borrowed so much from it.  
I really like the attention to detail in the game.  Your character changing appearance with the different equipment is great, and a feature I wish more console RPGs would adopt.  Also, on Hard mode, the game has had a nice level of challenge so far.  I haven't died yet, but I came very close in one fight, even with my party members expending all of their AP on special moves.  I'm glad that save points heal your party, or I wouldn't have made it.  What I'm most impressed about is that they managed to capture the grandeur and majesty of the films.  From the music, the detailed, expansive environments, and the voice-overs by Ian McKellan, it all fits perfectly into the world of the movies.
6783  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Worst title ever? on: November 05, 2004, 10:37:45 AM
I hear it was the same guy who wrote the song "John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt" slywink
6784  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Scrapland review on: November 04, 2004, 09:40:35 AM
IGN has posted their review for Scrapland, giving the game 8.3/10.  The review also says "If you liked Beyond Good & Evil, you'll like Scrapland."  I hadn't heard the two games compared before, but I know BG&E was a favorite around here.
6785  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Sonic Mega Collection Plus on: November 04, 2004, 09:36:59 AM
I picked up Sonic Mega Collection Plus for the XBox today while getting my preordered copy of The Third Age.  I almost bought the Gamecube version several times, but I'm glad I waited.  The Plus version adds 6 Sonic Game Gear games and some non-Sonic Genesis games (Comix Zone and The Ooze).  It also allows you to save the games and resume them from any point.  It's great to be able to play for just a few minutes and quit, rather than knowing I'll be tied down for a few hours if I want to play through the whole game.  For $20, it's a great bargain.  I just wish there were more collections like this.
6786  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Great new Dragon Warrior 8 Trailer on: November 03, 2004, 10:22:02 PM
Wow, I thought I was the only one who can't wait for this game.  Level 5 did such an amazing job with Dark Cloud 2, I'm sure this will be even better.  Hopefully, they'll also reveal Dark Cloud 3 once DQ8 ships.
6787  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Great new Dragon Warrior 8 Trailer on: November 03, 2004, 08:56:20 AM
Worthplaying has posted what is likely the final trailer for Dragon Quest/Warrior 8 before its Japanese release later this month.  The game looks better every time I see it.
6788  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / LOTR: Third Age Review!! on: November 03, 2004, 06:33:55 AM
I've seen some movies where there is some NPC interaction, so that apparently comes later in the game.

TeamXBox has also posted their review, giving it 8.4/10.
6789  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / The CG Finish the Most Games 2004 thread on: November 02, 2004, 10:39:10 PM
I've been on a game-finishing tear (for me at least) this year.  I've finished -
Ape Escape 2
BG Dark Alliance 2
Champions of Norrath
Dark Cloud 2
Golden Sun
Shadow Hearts
Sly Cooper & The TR
6790  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / LOTR: Third Age Review!! on: November 02, 2004, 08:47:02 PM
I don't really get the "rpg lite" comment.  Console RPGs have gotten more story-based lately, but there are plenty of RPGs that are more focused on combat than story, and most RPGs these days are easy enough that you never have to "power-level" and I've never seen them called "lite".  As for difficulty, the "hard" difficulty level is supposed to be suitably challenging.
6791  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / LOTR: The Third Age RPG: Going to be good? on: October 29, 2004, 05:10:16 AM
"It's actually a remake of an old Super Faicom RPG, so its roots are firmly in the 'hardcore, high-difficulty' vein"

AFAIK Nocturne is a sequel to the SNES SMT games (it's SMT3), not a remake.

As for KoTOR, it did a great job of blending PC and console RPGs, but leaned more heavily toward the console side.  Story and characters were paramount, which is what I would consider the hallmark of console RPGs.

LoTR : T3A seems to fall heavily on the console side as well, but it looks like you'll have more control over your characters' developments.
6792  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / LOTR: The Third Age RPG: Going to be good? on: October 27, 2004, 10:28:21 PM
There will be two stories going on in the game - the basic story of the movie and the story of your characters.  You don't play the characters from the movies (except in select battles).  You have a group of 6 new characters who are following the actual fellowship.  It seems like an interesting way to stay within the movie license, while still providing some new narrative.  Also, rather than the set pieces of the earlier action games, you'll be able to travel all over the world, exploring many of the locations of the films, some of which were only glimpsed in the movies.

The designers have made no attempts to hide the fact that the game is heavily based on the mechanics of Final Fantasy X.  The battles (both random and set) will be very similar, although there will be options to move your characters around in different tactical formations.  As for skills, the game uses a skill tree for each character, presumably like Diablo 2.  There will be things to collect, but these will be sidequests, such as getting ultimate weapons/armor, etc.  There will also be story "spheres" to collect that play reedited footage from the movies (including some from the EE of RoTK) with new voiceovers by Ian McKellan.

Overall, if you're a fan of FFX-style RPGs, this is like a match made in heaven.  If not, the game probably won't change your mind, unless you're a huge LoTR fan.  There's a great site with lots of information on the game here.
6793  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Stoked for Star Ocean on: October 27, 2004, 06:54:13 PM
"The absolutely dreadful voice acting, lame story, weak combat system, and bland, boring graphics really killed SO3 for me"

For me, it's just the opposite.  The voice acting (other than 2 overly-high-pitched characters) is great, the story is interesting and the Star Trek-like Prime Directive stuff makes it unique, I love the combat system, and the graphics, while not technically that great, are artistically some of the best I've seen.  The wide open outdoor areas make the world seem more vast than most RPGs with true world maps, and each location is unique and wonderfully realized.  Each house in a town is unique, with tons of details, many unique to just that house.  

The beginning is a bit weak, as the sci-fi stuff isn't done nearly as well graphically as the on-planet stuff, and Sophia's voice can be grating.  Other than that, I've been incredibly impressed with everything about the game, and (so far) it's my game of the year.
6794  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / PSP = $185 on: October 27, 2004, 06:39:20 PM
Level 5 (makers of the Dark Cloud series and Dragon Quest/Warrior 8 ) also announced they are working on an original RPG for the PSP.  Now if they'd just release details on Dark Cloud 3, I'd be happy.
6795  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Bioware Launches 'NWN Premium Content' Store on: October 26, 2004, 11:55:32 PM
The boxed expansions were 20-25 hours and cost $30, so the price is in line with those.  If these are the same quality, I wouldn't mind buying them.  I doubt I'll ever get to them, though, as I'm still playing SoU.
6796  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Lord of the Rings: Third Age Gold on: October 26, 2004, 06:55:31 PM
The game's coming out next Wednesday, and I can't wait.  Combining the LoTR setting with the gameplay of Final Fantasy X sounds great to me.  Plus, the production values seem to surpass even the previous LoTR games.
6797  Non-Gaming / Steals and Deals / Tron 2.0 and The Hobbit $5 at CC on: October 26, 2004, 08:35:51 AM
My Circuit City had both Tron 2.0 and The Hobbit (PC version) on sale for $5.  The tags were marked "Sale" although they usually only use those to designate items that were in their circular.
6798  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Now THAT's a cool controller on: October 26, 2004, 07:46:51 AM

It looks horribly uncomfortable to use, but I'd still love to have one.
6799  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Arc the Lad: Twilight of the Spirits -- Worth playing? on: October 26, 2004, 07:44:35 AM
I think I'm about halfway through, and it's good so far.  Not great, but good.  The two-perspective storyline is interesting, and the combat is fun, although I wish there were a greater variety of special attacks.  The combat system is pretty standard turn-based fare, except played out on a larger map more akin to tactical RPGs.
6800  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Katamari Damacy controls on: October 23, 2004, 05:50:12 AM
Fortunately, the replacement I got from Best Buy works fine.

I'm really glad I didn't miss this game.  It's absurdly addicting.  There's so many ways to play - either going for time, trying to get the biggest katamari, or trying to pick up rare objects.  It seems more like a big sandbox than a game.  Every time I finish a level, I can't wait to play it again to get a faster time, or pick up an object that's just a little too big to pick up.
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