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1441  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: June 03, 2010, 03:09:44 AM
Got through another long mission which completed the Saudi Arabia area missions. The last one was very long, well over an hour. It was not always possible to maintain stealth in it either for the entire time, but using stealth did help quite a bit. I'm playing on Normal difficulty and started my career as a Veteran (as opposed to Recruit) and while I have had to reload checkpoint saves a couple of times, I've never had to restart a mission from scratch. 

If you are having trouble with an objective that involves a Striker on a bridge...
Spoiler for Hiden:
It's not immediately obvious, but down on the level of the roadway there are several anti-tank missiles. It drove me crazy trying to figure out how to kill the tank till I found all of them.

Again, no real problems with the game regarding bugs or glitches. It really is a game of figuring out the best way to get to or achieve an objective, meanwhile you look for items to pick up and use or keep. I will change my opinion that the missions are rather linear. My latest mission did provide several objectives that could be approached via different directions and different styles.

The tumbler minigame is a bear. On the 360 controller, it involves squeezing one trigger just enough to line up tumbler pins, and it's damn sensitive. However, if my stumbling old hands can do it, you youngsters shouldn't have too many problems.

Regarding re-playability... while you can change your specialization, your dialog responses and your style of play, I'm thinking that because you would be executing the same missions it might not be that appealing a second time. However, at one to two hours just for one mission and at least what would appear to be nine more missions coming up (and having just completed three) I can see twenty hours plus of gameplay on one run-through, including the tutorials. That would make it worth it to me even if I don't replay the entire game again.
1442  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: June 02, 2010, 03:37:47 PM
Link to Kotaku review. I agree with the pluses and minuses, except that I'm not really that concerned about whether there's a whizbang finish or not. Frankly I don't think Red Dead Redemption had that good an ending, but it really didn't mattered to me as to whether I liked the game.

I read the manual, but you don't need to, there's nothing in there you don't hear or see in the tutorial.
1443  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: June 02, 2010, 03:19:37 AM
I finished my second mission. This one was a bit less linear once you had gone through a tight outside approach. By the way, the order of missions isn't fixed and so you may not see the same missions I saw. Once inside the [spoiler!] you could approach the next objective in a couple of different overall ways, with various subtleties within them. I choose to go stealth throughout and managed it almost entirely; a couple of guards did spot me a moment before I knifed them, but they didn't trigger any alarms.

It is a bit of a pain that the only map you have requires three button pushes to access, but the map isn't that much help at times anyway (on purpose) and you can find your way around by looking.

Combat is still bizarre to me coming off RDR and MW2. If you take time to aim you can get one shot kills with your assault rifle, but you can empty a clip at a couple of guys twenty feet away and not take them down; think North Hollywood Shootout.

So far I'm really enjoying it. I'm not really up on the proper RPG lingo, but this is game where you shouldn't look for too much realism. Think Jack Bauer and "24". You just have to take things on faith. There are duffel bags with money laying around, isn't that always happening? And you can become invisible for a few seconds. Actually that might be rationalized by some sort of neurological pulse device that cause someone to become fixated on what they actually saw several second before. Yeah, that's it, that's what I'm going to assume it is  icon_biggrin
1444  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: June 02, 2010, 01:13:34 AM
I got through my first mission. The comparisons to Mass Effect are on the mark. The path presented to me on the mission was fairly linear with some side paths for bonuses and secondary objectives. You can pick up ammo but not weapons. There are medicine cabinets to restore health. You have to make decisions on whether to go active or stealth, to run past or fight it out, and to spend time unlocking locks or hacking terminals while the bad guys wander around.

This game is NOT A SHOOTER. You cannot take fancy shots with a pistol and hope for a single bullet kill. It's all dice rolling like calculations. That's not a bad thing, just a different thing.

Before I started the mission I opted to spend money for a friendly PMC (private military company) to distract the good guards, leaving only second class guards (this isn't a spoiler, it's appears to be a standard option for many missions). Alternatively I could have purchases upgraded armor or some cool grenades instead. You get to make some interesting and influential decisions before the mission. And after this mission you have to make a couple of decisions that will effect the following missions, but you don't know just how.

Reviews have mentioned bad AI for guards, but I just got through playing Red Dead Redemption and the AI in Alpha Protocol is about the same. The AP guards *will* throw grenades as well.

The storyline is part Jason Borne, part "24", but a lot Funeral in Berlin and other spy novels of that ilk. There are a LOT of cutscenes, but they aren't gratuitous, indeed many are setups for dialog decision points.

Mind you, I've only played about two hours, so there's a lot more to evaluate. But so far I am enjoying it. You can't approach it as a game to be played fast. You have to be willing to sit through cutscenes, read a lot of dossiers, and poke through a lot of menus. And as I say, so far it's worth the investment in time.
1445  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: June 01, 2010, 09:53:46 PM
I've gotten through all the tutorials. As you might have seen in the previews, you can tailor your attributes to a preferred play style. On this first play through, I'm going stealth as much as possible. Also I'm being nice and professional, not being a smart ass in my answers.

So far, the game does provide layer upon layer of choices. I'm getting set to go on my first mission and I have $15,000 to spend. I can get weapon and armor upgrades. Or I can get new gadgets. Or I can buy more intel. Or I can spend money to have local operatives do extra things for me. I can even spend money to get an extra objective. It's a bit overwhelming, but it does provide a lot of flexibility.
1446  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: June 01, 2010, 07:41:33 PM
I picked up my copy today and am part way through the tutorials. I agree with the above, the graphics aren't bleeding edge, but they are serviceable, there's no problem seeing what you need to see. Nothing yet that's making me panic.
1447  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: June 01, 2010, 12:23:02 AM
Got the call from Gamestop, my copy for the 360 will be available tomorrow morning.

In the meantime there is a thread about this game over at OO-PC. Some folks have already gotten the game via Steam, those comments start about half way down the first page.
1448  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 31, 2010, 02:58:21 PM

Quote from: JayDee on May 31, 2010, 02:46:39 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on May 31, 2010, 03:32:06 AM

Quote from: msduncan on May 31, 2010, 02:11:51 AM

Jack returns East to become a chemist.    The setting will be an open world research facility trying to come up with chemical weapons for the battlefield of WWI.     One wrong move and he could blow the facility sky high.

Red Dead Reaction.

who is Jack?

No idea. I fear we've been spoiled.

1449  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 31, 2010, 01:05:28 AM

Quote from: Teggy on May 31, 2010, 12:50:41 AM

The sequel will be

The story of an editor who is fired by a newspaper owner for trying to write the truth. He goes on a series of missions to find original stories to back up his theories. He combines them all into one big article and then blackmails the owner into publishing it...

Red Dead Redaction
1450  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 30, 2010, 07:44:41 PM
OK, finished the game, through the credits... discussion below contains post-final, final, final mission discussion.

Spoiler for Hiden:
First of all, I was really thrown off by the whole Ranchville series of missions. Scaring off crows, herding cows, not exactly the ending I was expecting after gunning down a zillion Indians followed by Dutch. And then the Army comes to get me, I must be a pretty dangerous dude. OK, after John Marston dies, I'm thinking, what a downer kind of ending. And then we do the whole Jack Marston thing. Now I see what was intended.

 Still, the end missions were kind of a letdown. I expected we'd find out why the government was employing John Marston to do all the hunting and killing. Oh well, I guess Jack getting revenge for his father will have to do.
1451  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 30, 2010, 03:13:33 PM

Quote from: Razgon on May 30, 2010, 12:10:29 PM

Quote from: TiLT on May 30, 2010, 10:38:37 AM

What other part? With the way posts are being edited I can't check any more.

Well, I'm not going to write it again ;-)

I wasn't even half way through the game when I posted, so I certainly didn't give away anything from the end, which btw I still haven't gotten to. I based my comment on what was written in the manual and what Marston says in the first couple of missions. I've finally gotten to Blackwater and I still haven't figured out what the hell the government is up to.
1452  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 30, 2010, 02:21:22 AM

Quote from: naednek on May 30, 2010, 02:15:21 AM


haven't even cracked open the manual.  Opened up the fold out map once.

That's a map? I only looked at soft-core porn picture on the other side.
1453  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 30, 2010, 02:02:16 AM

Quote from: naednek on May 30, 2010, 12:15:27 AM

WTF jztemple.

That wasn't the ending of the game. There are some missions with the character Reyes. Some of the last missions with him involve a lot of riding, just like missions with other characters, and he rambles on quite a long time. Sheesh, I know not to post spoilers.

Regarding the other thing, I thought that was common knowledge in the game. It's in the intro to the manual for heaven's sake.
1454  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 29, 2010, 09:56:34 PM

Quote from: Harkonis on May 29, 2010, 07:04:20 PM

beat it, didn't like most of the story missions and hated most of the characters.  Liked the end though and the main guy.  Many of the characters are a bit too outlandish and annoying.

Spoiler for Hiden:
Very much how I'm feeling about the game. I simply can't care about most of the characters, except maybe Bonnie. And the whole "secret government agency who's behind all of it" shows something of a lack of imagination in the story design. The last half of my time in Mexico I got so tired of the dialog during the rides from the start point of missions to the actual action that I skipped the ones I could. I wish I could have skipped the ride-along with Reyes on the last missions, the dialog got really predictable and frustrating.
1455  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: May 29, 2010, 09:50:20 PM

Quote from: Autistic Angel on May 29, 2010, 08:08:15 PM

Giant Bomb put up a Quick Look of the game yesterday.  I'd never heard of this game before about a week ago, and based on the feedback I've seen so far, I think I'll focus on some of the other RPGs in my backlog....

-Autistic Angel

That Giant Bomb video (30 minutes of gameplay!! Thanks Angel for the link) was actually somewhat encouraging. Sure the game is rough, but there does seem some promise to it. I liked what they said towards the end of the video, how while most spy games didn't get it right, Alpha Protocol does have a Burn Notice, Jason Bourne feel to it. OK, that's it, I'm going to pick it up this week when it comes out.
1456  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 29, 2010, 06:52:58 PM
Well, this is not good. About thirty hours in and I've just had two lockups in the past two hours. Not a happy camper.
1457  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 29, 2010, 03:07:50 PM

Quote from: marcusjm on May 29, 2010, 02:13:30 PM

Except for the co-op thing, what other DLC is planned for this game? I wan't more single player featuers, like the ability to sell horses and why not even own and run businesses smile.

If it wasn't Rockstar I'd be afraid we be subjected to endless DLC of new guns and horses. I suspect we'll see something like GTA IV's two mini-campaigns. Not a bad idea. I do like that owning businesses idea. Maybe sell horses you catch and break?

I'm assuming I'm approaching the end of the Mexico missions. I won't be sad. I'm burned out on cynical soldiers, pompous rebels and endless cheesey parodies of mexicans in general. The characters seem to be much more 2-dimensional than in New Austin. I think I even miss West Dickens  icon_eek.

I have my second complete lockup last night. Thankfully the save games weren't corrupted. That the second one in 24 hours of play. Not great, but I guess not too bad.
 
1458  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Test Drive Unlimited 2 on: May 29, 2010, 04:09:15 AM
I'll be getting this as well.
1459  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: May 28, 2010, 10:01:07 PM
Mmm.... I might have to transfer my $5 pre-order to something else if it's this bad...  eek
1460  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: May 28, 2010, 03:51:40 PM

Quote from: semiconscious on May 28, 2010, 03:45:44 PM

Quote from: Dante Rising on May 28, 2010, 02:57:43 PM

For example, on another forum someone mentioned that they found the game significantly more satisfying when they dumped pistols and moved to assault weapons. Another mentioned that by relaxing his urge to focus solely on stealth and H2H combat, he came to appreciate the game much more.

when i read this, i couldn't help but be reminded of a certain game that comes out a week after this. & i can wait smile ...

Green Day: Rock Band?
1461  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 28, 2010, 03:49:42 PM

Quote from: naednek on May 28, 2010, 03:44:57 PM

the planet scanning along takes ME2 out of the running for GOTY

True that. So far in RDR I haven't found anything that feels like the "girlfriend" missions in GTAIV, so it's got my vote.
1462  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: May 28, 2010, 03:42:00 PM

Quote from: Dante Rising on May 28, 2010, 03:27:36 PM


Quote
At the eight-hour mark, if you've persevered, you may well have had time to come to terms with all that. If you accept Alpha Protocol as a project made by a plucky team working to a faintly cruel budget, it's surprisingly hard not to get behind it.
Sheesh, not exactly encouraging.

Quote
Like Worcester Sauce, Alpha Protocol's separate ingredients might be slightly unappetising, but they come together in a quietly effective manner. Unlike Worcester Sauce, it will certainly frustrate you more than it should, and in between the deathlike character models and bizarre misapplications of things like depth of field effects, it will struggle to convince you the team had enough time to finish it up.

But, if you're willing to put in the effort, it can steadily win you over. Obsidian can't really compete with the bigger boys in the RPG field, then, but it's carved out a little space to call its own. With ambition instead of budget, and integrity instead of polish, in the end the choice of whether to persevere or not is pretty easy to make.
Well, I did pre-order, so I guess I might as well pick it up. The rest of you can hold off if you wish.

1463  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Alpha Protocol on: May 28, 2010, 02:46:57 PM
I pre-ordered it on a whim last fall, when it was supposed to be released, so I'll be picking it up for a break from RDR. I'm hoping it's better than that review indicates. I can accept less than bleeding edge graphics if the gameplay is worthwhile.
1464  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 28, 2010, 02:44:29 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on May 28, 2010, 02:35:42 PM

I'm hoping to open that soon, it's funny (and annoying) how Rockstar games almost always seem to have bridges closed to limit you at the beginning.  I know it happened in Vice City and GTA IV, can't remember if it happened in San Andreas or GTA 3.

They were closed in both San Andreas and GTA 3. Were they closed in GTA IV?
1465  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 27, 2010, 05:51:36 PM
I had a weird problem last night. I was riding shotgun with Dickens in his wagon and we were assaulted by waves of bad guys on horses and also wagons. On one wagon I killed the driver and shotgun and as I did so their wagon slewed across our path and our horses t-boned the enemy wagon. And stopped icon_eek.

Our horses pawed the ground, it's horses pawed the ground, and slowly our wagon pushed the enemy wagon sideways, but we were at the exact middle of the enemy wagon and so it wasn't tipping out of the way one direction or the other. And every few seconds an enemy rode up who had to be killed. I got frantic, hopped off and tried to climb into the enemy wagon, but no luck. I even tried to push the damn thing, but that didn't work either. This went out for two or three minutes. Finally I shot the two enemy horses and the enemy wagon slowly started to tilt out of the way.

Oddly enough, Dickens was totally nonplussed about the whole episode. Nothing rattles that man!  icon_biggrin
1466  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 27, 2010, 03:12:35 AM

Quote from: Caine on May 27, 2010, 02:33:22 AM

had my second glitch and it was a game-ender.  at a duel, it failed to load up the duel after i walked to the spot.  screen went black and that was it.  had to hard reset the xbox. 

I've had that happen once at my first duel but so far not again. Weird.
1467  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 26, 2010, 11:53:21 PM
I'm 18 hours in, 38% complete and just unlocked access to Mexico. I'd be further in but I just can't pass up helping a damsel in distress... or lassoing a runaway horse... or catching a robber... or shooting a bunny rabbit  icon_biggrin

For some associated reading I just picked up High Noon in Lincoln: Violence on the Western Frontier about the Lincoln County wars.
1468  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 26, 2010, 08:15:01 PM
I have topped out in Honor and have oodles of money. Wow, sometimes money can't buy you happiness  icon_frown
1469  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 26, 2010, 07:50:50 PM

Quote from: MaxSteele on May 26, 2010, 07:22:54 PM

Quote from: jztemple2 on May 26, 2010, 07:21:47 PM

Any reason to not to wear the bandana all the time except when being chased by the law?

If you don't want any more fame and honor points, wear it all the time if you want.  It won't be on in cut scenes though.

Crap, it prevents you from getting them? I thought it was only for not losing them. Well, off it goes then (except when I want to do something bad  slywink)
1470  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 26, 2010, 07:21:47 PM
Any reason to not to wear the bandana all the time except when being chased by the law?
1471  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 25, 2010, 08:40:58 PM
I'm sitting here posting while my John Marsten is riding the railroad toward Thief's Landing. All very surreal.

UPDATE: Standing in the tender I wait till the locomotive's bell is ringing, then spin with the right stick. Sort of strange Doppler effect.
1472  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 25, 2010, 05:46:24 PM

Quote from: wonderpug on May 25, 2010, 01:40:24 PM

You can also save at will using horse deeds since it autosaves when you summon a store-bought horse, and you can reuse deeds as often as you like.

In other news, if you're working toward the Deadly Assassin outfit be sure to do plenty of bounty missions early on. Apparently it's possible to outlevel a necessary step in the to-do list and not have a required bounty target appear anymore.   retard

Thanks for the info on the horse deed, good stuff. I wonder, did Rockstar intend that, or was it an unintended benefit?

And darn, I think went pass the required bounty mission.
1473  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 25, 2010, 01:17:06 PM

Quote from: jersoc on May 25, 2010, 06:28:25 AM

i warned everyone to keep all 3 files full! this almost happened to me, but rpgs taught me to use all and any save files you can.

I do that and I'm also neurotic about saving constantly. Thank goodness they got away from saving only at safe houses and gave me the option to save at camps.
1474  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 25, 2010, 02:37:34 AM

Quote from: Destructor on May 25, 2010, 02:22:15 AM

Wild animals are where all the money is. Just don't get killed by a wandering cougar or two.

Cougars scare the crap out of me. I've yet to see one before it hit me or my horse from behind and unless I can immediately hit the BACK button to bolster my health I'm a goner.
1475  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 24, 2010, 11:17:02 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on May 24, 2010, 10:17:09 PM

Too bad there isn't a horse chop shop....

I'm following the suggestion someone posted previously to whack every horse and harvest them for meat and skin. It's a small but steady income stream. That and looting every dead body and scarfing up every loose weapon.
1476  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 24, 2010, 10:01:05 PM
Thanks for the answers. One other question. I have one treasure map and I don't have a clue (hah!) what I'm supposed to be looking at. Does the one map provide enough info to find something, or do I need to find other maps?

Damn, who knew shooting hats off of heads would be so damn lethal? I'm assuming I'm NOT suppose to kill the person when I do it....
1477  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 24, 2010, 09:35:19 PM
Once I lasso and ride a wild horse out on the plains, exactly what do I do with him? Is there some place I can take him for cash?
1478  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 24, 2010, 08:56:01 PM
Cheating at poker is fun! Not the mickey mouse LS action, but deciding when to play that lap card makes for an interesting game.
1479  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 24, 2010, 08:27:52 PM
I just did my first Free Roam session. Only one other person there so I just did my own thing. I killed a deputy and got chased, attacked a gang hideout and finally seized it. Lots of fun  icon_biggrin
1480  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: Saddle up! The Red Dead Redemption impressions thread. on: May 24, 2010, 07:47:08 PM

Quote from: farley2k on May 24, 2010, 07:38:54 PM

I can't decide if it is a testament to how great the game is or how low our standards are as gamers that a game with this many huge bugs is praised so much. 

I'd say the former. If this was not a great game the bugs would be a death knell to sales. I've had only one lockup in eleven hours of gameplay (cross fingers) and no real glitches I've noticed.

I was emailing a friend who is familiar with the GTA games and he asked me "what kind of things can you do in the game" and I realized I had written paragraph after paragraph. There really is a lot to do, and that's all been in single player.
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