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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Typing Is Not So Fun as Click-Shooting

Sega's release of The Typing of the Dead: Overkill for Steam on Tuesday was an evil and delicious surprise. I can still remember the fun of typing words to destroy zombies with The Typing of the Dead on the Dreamcast and this latest release is based on the grindhouse-infused The House of the Dead: Overkill entry for the series. As if seeing another Typing game for this series was not exciting enough, the game actually comes with the original shooting game of Overkill: Director's Cut! Of course, there is no light gun peripheral support here so I have been playing the typing portion of the game because I am not sure if playing the shooting game would be fun with the mouse. Oh how wrong I was. I finally tried playing the shooting mode last night and it was extremely fun. The mouse control was smooth and so accurate that it made me wish that all those light gun games on my consoles have mouse support. That Steam Controller will not be able accomplish this same result, yes I still think that thing is such an irresponsible, nonsensical, and desperate design. I suppose it's a question of authenticity - holding a gun-like device and pointing it at the screen versus accuracy - and after playing the game with the mouse, I would definitely prefer accuracy! I sure hope that Sega's bold release of The Typing of the Dead: Overkill will bring all those plethora of console light gun games to Steam. Namco Bandai, come make more money by releasing your Time Crisis games on Steam.

Overkill is easier with the mouse but only because the mouse is a lot faster and more accurate!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Mario Envy Can Lead to Good Things

If you have seen the gameplay videos for Sonic: Lost World by Sonic Team prior to today's exclusive Wii U release, you should be able to see that the game blatantly copies from the genius world design found in Nintendo's Super Mario Galaxy series. It's not surprising however. Sega has made a pact with Nintendo to provide them with exclusive Sonic titles so you know that they could just get away with such obvious plagiarism. The good thing here however, things seem to work really well for our blue hedgehog when you place him on top of floating chunks of lands and spherical stages. I have only played the game for about an hour and a half and Lost World is shaping up to be a pretty good experience. So perhaps we can consider the borrowed elements - even the world map - to be an homage instead of something more sinister and deadly? One thing for sure, the villains in this game, known as the "Deadly Six" so far have provided the best boss encounters since Sonic & Knuckles on the Genesis. Sure, we don't get Dr. Eggman's contraptions but these bosses have that simple and easy yet brilliant and fascinating feel to them. I am definitely excited to keep playing this game and that is something that doesn't happen too often with modern Sonic games.

It's a me... Sonic?!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Games Played 10/21/2013 - 10/27/2013

- 10/21/2013 -

- 10/22/2013 -
Lost Odyssey - X-Box 360

- 10/23/2013 -
Animal Crossing: new Leaf - 3DS
Gone Home - PC
League of Legends - PC
Lost Odyssey - X-Box 360

- 10/24/2013 -
Gone Home - PC
League of Legends - PC

- 10/25/2013 -
League of Legends - PC
Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst - PC

- 10/26/2013 -
League of Legends - PC

- 10/27/2013 -
Drakensang: The River of Time - PC
Hearthstone: Heroes of  Warcraft Beta - PC
League of Legends - PC
Pokémon Y - 3DS
Saints Row: The Third - PC


Screenshot of the Week:

Comic relief characters... They are never necessary. Ever.
Lost Odyssey (X-Box 360)

A League of Legends Vacation

I have been playing too much League of Legends by Riot Games on the Personal Computer. That is a fact. If you check the monthly gaming analysis, you will see it securing the most played game spot with a violent consistency. As you can see from the screenshot below, ever since I started to use Origin to track my LoL gameplay hour from around March of this year - and I believe there is a period of time when I actually removed it from Origin because of technical issues - I have clocked in around 841 hours playing this game.

That's a lot.

Now this is not a bad thing. I think it's great that I have found a game that is so addictive and manages never to get boring. It does become a problem for the other games in my library though. So I have decided to take some time away from LoL, just for a little bit. I am going to not play it for a week or two and focus my attention on other games. Don't worry LoL, I will be back soon enough!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Naruto Shippuden: Is It a Full Burst on PC?

I was surprised to find out yesterday that Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 3 Full Burst by CyberConnect2 got an early release on Steam. With me being alone in the house at the moment - the spouse has been out of the country since last weekend - I can easily cherish and appreciate little things like this. I was so tempted to get the original, non "Full Burst" release for the PlayStation 3 but I am so glad that Namco Bandai made that early revelation that the enhanced version of the game would also find its way to the Personal Computer. Many doubt it, but I have a feeling that we will see a lot more NB games showing up on Steam pretty soon, yes, and that may include the Tales series. With Enslaved: Odyssey to the West getting the Premium Edition release on Steam out of the blue yesterday, there will be more surprises ahead for PC gamers. There is a lot of money to be made here and NB is realizing that fact it seems.

I absolutely love the game's main menu, it's vibrant and stylish.

But let's get back to Full Burst. Purists may be disappointed to find out that the game is limited to 30 frames per second but everything runs very smoothly. The lack of detailed graphics options is also a bit suspect but the game does allow me to play at native 1920 x 1080 and at least there is a supersampling option that should be enabled if you don't want the game to look extra jaggy. I did find some odd slowdowns while running around the town map in the game's Ultimate Adventure mode but thankfully, the action sequences are immune to these and that is a great thing since Full Burst is mainly a fighting game. Full Burst still hasn't lost that wow factor when it comes to its stunning presentation - it looks like an anime. The animation is smooth as butter and it is always fascinating to see all the strange characters with their crazy fighting styles. Let me be clear: I actually don't follow the Naruto anime/manga series but I have always enjoyed the multiple fighting games released for the brand since the Nintendo GameCube and PlayStation 2 era, so it has always been about the fun gameplay and slick visuals instead of the storyline for me when I approach these games.

I didn't expect to see bikinis in this game...

I tried to find online matches yesterday and today but I couldn't find one. It's either people are just playing locally or they are still working on unlocking characters from the adventure mode. You can still fight the computer locally if you just want to have some quick action. Full Burst may not have taken full advantage of the PC hardware though it is clearly the best version of the game but it's still a significant release for the PC platform. You don't get to see games like this being released on Steam or the PC generally and it certainly deserves some attention and notice. Not all games will be a technical benchmark of what can be accomplished on the PC, this being especially true for multi-platform games, and we as PC gamers need to be able see the bigger picture when a game like Full Burst shows up on our radar. Surely a lot of people want to see JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: All-Star Battle getting a Steam release? I certainly do.

FIRST IMPRESSION: 4 out of 5

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Shen Flashing Them Yen

You see what happens when Shen gets a bit of extra cash? He goes out to spend it on a samurai armor! At a discount of course. I don't know when Riot Games will do something about the splash art of the default Shen in League of Legends for the Personal Computer, it looks incredibly horrendous, but at least now I don't have to ever see it again whenever I get to play him. I am so happy to be a new owner of the Warlord Shen skin.

Shen doesn't have to be embarrassed anymore when I summon him to the Field of Justice.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

X-Box 360 Controller's Hidden Trick?

I only have one wireless X-Box 360 controller. Like usual however, I always make sure that I have two controllers for all the console I have, mostly as a back-up since finding a local co-op buddy is next to impossible. The second controller I have for the 360 is a wired one. I have been having a bit of a dilemma recently however with having only one wireless controller. I mostly use it for playing controller-supported Personal Computer games but I have also been revisiting my 360 quite often. Reassigning the controller between the two devices is easy enough but the annoyance comes when I forgot to reassign the controller back to the PC prior to shutting down the console so when I hit the X-Box button to play a PC game, my 360 would start up and I have to turn it off. Yes, I get annoyed by the littlest things, so much so that I was considering getting another wireless controller. I tried playing with the wired controller but since I am just so spoiled by the lack of tethering, it just felt awkward. I thought to myself, "There must be a way to turn on the controller without turning on the console, right?" So I did a little research and found out that it is indeed possible. I didn't know about this until today! By holding the start button, the controller will be turned on without having the console affected - perfect when I forgot to reassign the controller to my PC! Is this common knowledge to everyone else?

This just saved me $40, that's for sure.


Update Note: 2:00pm - Finding the instruction above was certainly thrilling but as I have just discovered  it just doesn't work. Once the 360 controller is turned on using the Start button method, it immediately reaches out to whatever device that it was registered to last and in the case of the 360 console, it would then immediately turn on the console. What a glorious lie...

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Human Revolution vs. Human Greed

I had a discussion with a friend last night about today's multi-platform release of Deus Ex: Human Revolution Director's Cut. I thought that the original release was fun but I didn't play it to the end. There were some complaints about an unfair boss battle for those who chose to build a stealth character but based on my understanding from the experiences shared by those who completed the game, it wasn't a situation where the game is left completely broken. I think that if that was the case, the game should have been patched for that particular encounter but that of course never happened and despite the complaints, those who noticed that particular problem generally could still complete the game. I think it makes sense that if you are heavily invested into one skill, you are going to have a challenging time in other areas but I suppose it all has something to do with individual expectations. I remember playing The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion with my very first character and finding the combat system punishing because I was heavily invested in healing and tanking... Still, I feel that for the amount that this Director's Cut is asking for with the additional contents it provides - Newgame+ is always a great addition to any game - which is $5 for Steam owners of the original game plus the downloadable content, is actually not bad at all.

The only losers in this situation are those who choose to pay $49.99 for that Wii U version.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Games Played 10/14/2013 - 10/20/2013

- 10/14/2013 -
Foul Play - PC
Papers, Please - PC

 - 10/15/2013 -
Child of Eden - X-Box 360
Dynasty Warriors 7: Empires - PlayStation 3
Lost Odyssey - X-Box 360
Foul Play - PC
Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F - PlayStation 3
League of Legends - PC
Papers, Please - PC

- 10/16/2013 -
DmC: Devil May Cry - PC
League of Legends - PC

- 10/17/2013 -
League of Legends - PC
Solstice Arena - PC

- 10/18/2013 -
League of Legends - PC
Solstice Arena - PC

- 10/19/2013 -
Dirt 2 - PC
Joe Danger - PC
League of Legends - PC

- 10/20/2013 -
Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F - PlayStation 3
League of Legends - PC


Screenshot of the Week:

Still visually stunning after all these years.
Lost Odyssey (X-Box 360)

Sunday, October 20, 2013

A Bit Late to the 8.1 Update

Since I don't actually keep up with popular news media, something that has always been looked down upon with a frown by the spouse, I wasn't surprised when I found out this morning that Microsoft had released the Windows 8.1 update several days ago. I didn't know until I launched OBS to start streaming and that software prompted an update that included better performance for Windows 8.1. I do want to say that some kind of notification should have popped up via Windows Update or even the animated tiles of the Windows Store but no, those things didn't happen. The one thing I am excited about with this update is just the supposedly more robust customization feature of the "Metro" screen. I understand that the start button is coming back to in some fashion but that had never been a cause for concern for me to begin with.

Though I am on the desktop 99.9% of the time, I still want the other screen to look pretty.


Update Note: 1:26pm - That 8.1 update took a long time to finish and in regards to the customization option, it was thoroughly disappointing. So yeah, you can now experiment with different color combinations of the selection of backgrounds available or even use the wallpaper of your desktop but you still cannot do anything about the non Windows 8 app tile colors. Granted, Windows 8.1 now tries to give each application its own background color but as you can see from the screenshot below, it just doesn't work all that great. I still got a lot of grey tiles and look at the one for Origin that I pointed out using the big black arrow. It was almost swallowed whole by that ugly orange. Ugh.

What's so difficult about allowing users to set individual tile colors?

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Not When You Play LoL All the Time...

I used to post a lot of interesting summoner names I encountered while playing League of Legends for the Personal Computer but I haven't done so in a while, probably because I got so desensitized by the sheer assault of uh, creativity they posses. I couldn't help but to report in this one though because it made me laugh and I couldn't help myself from smiling whenever the name pops back into my head. I will have to be on a lookout again for these gems.

Ah, such freedom or do I sense a tinge of loneliness there?

Thursday, October 17, 2013

September 2013 Gaming Analysis

The results shown below are of course based on the combined data from the Daily Game Log which should provide a clear indication of a game's usage frequency. Bear in mind that even if a game is played twice or more during a particular day, it would still register as 1 in the Day Count column below. In a sense, "merits" are given based on how often a particular game can make me play it again throughout the entire period of the  month on a daily basis. A game that makes a gamer play it over and over again or at least spend a lot of time with it... Isn't that what we mostly want from a great game? I don't think it's really fair to count all the way down to the number of hours played since some games only require a short amount of time to properly serve their purposes.

OVERALL BREAKDOWN:


Total Games Played: 29


This Month's Inductees:


Total Inductions: 23

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The One Time I Actually RT...

So you know those kind of annoying "RT" contests on Twitter? Well, I don't actually participate in such nonsense because you know, with a billion people retweeting, what are the chances that I would get picked right? Well, I should really rethink that life philosophy because I saw that the hard working people at Twitch Support were doing a "Name Change" contest today and I was like, what the heck, I'll RT it and then this happened:

WothTheAlex... Hey, that is me!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Solstice Arena: Now on Steam!

Steam gets so many releases on a daily basis, which seemingly been accelerated with the recent announcement of the Steam Machine, and my Steam wishlist has grown to a whopping 278 items. One game definitely stood out in today's releases and it's Solstice Arena by Zynga. Yeah, the same game that I downloaded for my iPad not too long ago that ended up being a great multiplayer online battle arena for the iOS. Based on the game description, it looks like they offer cross-platform multiplayer for this free-to-play title, which is rather intriguing if you really think about it. I downloaded the game immediately and started playing it. I haven't visited the game in a while for I have been focusing too much on my big screen gaming but both the fun and charm of the iOS game got translated well into this Personal Computer version. You can read my detailed first impression of the game by clicking here.

Thanks for bringing this to Steam!

Zynga has updated the graphics nicely for the PC and even added a couple of cool looking effects here and there but don't expect anything too special. The one thing that has now become a problem for the game is the inability to freely move the camera around the battlefield so your view is stuck with your character. The game doesn't use the fog of war concept so it makes sense since the map is so small anyway yet it still feels a bit weird. Thankfully, the mouse control for this game is deliciously smooth, unlike the horrid, laggy mess found in the recent PC version of Guardians of Middle-earth. If you like MOBA, you may love this game. It's more action and less strategy but it doesn't make the game any less fun. Besides, since there is no in-game chat, you will never experience raging and any other sort of nastiness found in the genre so that is certainly a plus! Now that it's on the PC, it is going to be hard to play the game on the iPad again.

The game feels more epic on my big screen.

FIRST IMPRESSION: 4 out of 5

Monday, October 14, 2013

Games Played 10/07/2013 - 10/13/2013

- 10/07/2013 -

- 10/08/2013 -
Eschatos - X-Box 360
Ginga Force - X-Box 360
League of Legends - PC
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword - Wii
Lost Odyssey - X-Box 360
Puppeteer - PlayStation 3

- 10/09/2013 -
League of Legends - PC
Lost Odyssey - X-Box 360

- 10/10/2013 -
League of Legends - PC
Lost Odyssey - X-Box 360

- 10/11/2013 -
DmC: Devil May Cry - PC
League of Legends - PC

- 10/12/2013 -
DmC: Devil May Cry - PC
League of Legends - PC

- 10/13/2013 -
Dynasty Warriors 7: Empires - PlayStation 3
Foul Play - PC
League of Legends - PC
Papers, Please - PC


Screenshot of the Week:

Please join our cult!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Ugly Men of Gaming: Phony Playboys

Case File: 001
Name: Jansen
Origin: Lost Odyssey (X-Box 360)

The long lashes. The generous application of red lipstick. The soft scarf wrapped around the neck. Am I supposed to believe that this guy loves women, that he is a pure womanizer who is actually being pursued mercilessly by women? I know the depiction of men in Japanese role playing games are mostly dominated by girly boys but this is just plain ridiculous.


Case File: 002
Name: Dante
Origin: DmC-Devil May Cry (Personal Computer)

So, the old Dante is not realistic enough so let's completely change his look in this series revival effort. Let's make him look like he had severe brain injury since he was a little boy. Let's give him a questionable haircut. Despite looking like there is no one really home, attach that monster face to a perfect body and voila! You got yourself a creature that will send chills down your spine whenever he looks directly at you and not in that good way!

Sith Sense: Jedi's Extramarital Activities

I normally don't mess with the spouse's Personal Computer but I saw something peculiar when I was near its vicinity a couple of days ago. There was a familiar looking icon on the desktop so I decided to investigate further. I was quite shocked with what I found:

Wow. Have you been cheating on our co-op time?

Later on, I approached the spouse in regards to this very troubling but potentially delicious development. The spouse simply told me that it was free and it was Star Wars - while I dabble more into horror, the spouse is a sci-fi fanatic - but it hasn't been played yet. I explained that I have the game installed too and invited the spouse to watch me play it or better yet, play together with me. I was so excited that finally, the spouse and I would be playing Star Wars: The Old Republic together before I was given a quick answer of "No". I was a bit annoyed by that so I didn't pursue the conversation further. The spouse has been spending the time at home watching television shows like usual these days so the game has yet to be touched. I will share more if this ever develop into something else.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

A Family Halloween?

The spouse and I will be attempting to dress up as a couple for Halloween this year, which is something that we have never ever done before. The spouse doesn't have that Halloween spirit and had never dress up even once for work or personal Halloween events as an adult so when it was suggested to me last night, I was quite surprised. Of course this also means that Yoshi, our lovable little girl, may have to look extra adorable at the end of this month - we are thinking of turning her into a great white shark! I think it will be easy enough to find something cute costume for Yoshi but not so much for the spouse and I. Dressing up as video game characters would probably be a little too much for the spouse to bear so it's probably going to be something more... traditional.

I could become Disturbeau from my Baby Baby video but that's not very fun.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Games Played 09/30/2013 - 10/06/2013

- 09/30/2013 -

- 10/01/2013 -
Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F - PlayStation 3
League of Legends - PC

- 10/02/2013 -
Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F - PlayStation 3
League of Legends - PC

- 10/03/2013 -
Agarest: Generations of War - PC
Dungeon Hunter: Alliance - PlayStation 3
Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F - PlayStation 3
League of Legends - PC
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword - Wii

- 10/04/2013 -
Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F - PlayStation 3
League of Legends - PC
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword - Wii

- 10/05/2013 -
Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F - PlayStation 3
League of Legends - PC
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword - Wii

- 10/06/2013 -
Hatsune Miku: Project DIVA F - PlayStation 3
League of Legends - PC


Screenshot of the Week:

With all the 1:1 slashing madness, I'll have big, strong arms by the end of the game.
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword (Nintendo Wii)

Friday, October 4, 2013

Warts on the Skin, Starcall Skin on the Wards

Warding in League of Legends for the Personal Computer will never be the same again now that Riot Games have introduced... champion-inspired ward skins! There are three of them to choose from and unlock at this time, one of them being the Starcall ward skin. You know what that means right? I love my Soraka and you know that I love playing her so it would be crazy for someone like me not to get that particular ward skin so... I did just that today!

Aatrox loves wards. Especially Starcall wards.

Extramarital Affairs Require Time Concentration

About two years ago, I found myself being involved in an affair. It didn't last very long though and I thoroughly enjoyed myself during that time but for some reason, I stopped it from continuing. Why did I do that? What was wrong with me to deny such beauty and perfection? It was an almost otherworldly opportunity and I was very happy with how it was going. I didn't get caught and there was no risk. So it's time... Time to renew it and see where it would take me.

I am sorry I left you behind without explanation. Let's do this again!

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Because It Is Only Worth $19.99

Nintendo has released a really interesting pricing detail in regards to their upcoming Wii Fit U and it really made me want to get the "game". As you may know, things haven't been that successful when it comes to me and the first as well as the second Wii Fit iterations on the original Wii. I really can't fault the second game however because I was injured while using it and that made me stop working out for a bit until that laziness became a habit again. With Nintendo denying us any good games for the system, a free download for Wii Fit U is definitely welcomed. The physical game would cost $49.99 but those who choose to download it will be able to keep the game temporarily for free. If they proceed to buy the Fit Meter which looks like a pedometer of sorts at $19.99 during the November 1, 2013 to January 31, 2014 promotion period, the game can then be officially tied to their accounts forever. What I am really in love with in regards to this setup is Nintendo's tenacity in pushing their digital download service. They should keep releasing games from the eShop first before retail and eventually, everyone will get the message but I also urge them to ensure that the price of digital offerings should be noticeably cheaper than the retail versions.

Keep pushing that digital download agenda, Nintendo. Bravo!

So why would anyone buy Wii Fit U at a more expensive price? Well, I shouldn't ask that question. There really are crazy people out there who would pay $60 and more for a retail disc with no manual as long as they have something they can touch, lick, and rub on their crotches. Maybe Nintendo should just cancel out the retail version of Wii Fit U completely and just make the pedometer and the Wii Balance Board available for purchase.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Point to Pathos: Chapter 3, Part 2

     Clac turned the greeting monitor next to the apartment door on and waited for a video feed. It didn't take long before he saw Molly on the monitor.
     "So, we went to school together, right?" She said as she looked at the camera.
     "Are you going to let me in or should I just leave?"
     The door slid open and Clac could see into the apartment's brightly lit living room. The space was lightly accessorized. There were several small racks of varying heights on the walls with electronic flowers blooming lights and animating blossom cycles. Molly was sitting on a large, comfortable looking floor poly and was in the process of pushing the communicator back into the ceiling.
     "Come on in Clac," Molly beckoned Clac to sit on the poly to her right. "And how are you?"
     "I am doing fine," he said and sat on the poly. "Thanks, and you?"
     "Doing better now, would you like anything to drink? You look like you've had a rough day."
     "This is how I look like every day after work. There's always so much to do."
     "You sure you don't want to clean yourself up?"
     It was at that point that Clac realized that he had transferred the oil stain on his pants to the poly he just sat on. He started to move himself off but Molly grabbed him by the shoulder and pulled him gently back down.
     "If you are worried about the poly, don't," she said.
     "Sorry, I normally don't stop by people's places straight after work," he responded and sat himself back down. "Sorry about the mess."
     "Nothing that can't be cleaned. Unless that's bio-petro, you know that stuff takes forever to... Wait, it is bio-petro, isn't it?"
     "Uh, it is, sorry about that."
     "Don't worry about it silly," Molly said and laughed. "I am just happy that you're here."

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Random Browsing Yields Random Rewards

Though I have certainly abandoned the X-Box LIVE Marketplace completely, I have missed out on some good deals and even several free downloads from the PlayStation Store. That is why I have made it a habit to check it out every so often but perhaps I don't do it often enough. I am sure glad that I did so tonight however because I saw that Sony is offering an old PlayStation Portable game for free without having to subscribe to that nasty Plus program:

Shouldn't that be $5.99 for non-Plus member?

If you don't have the game already, make sure to claim it before the promotion expires. The third game in the series is coming out later this month for the PlayStation Vita so I suppose this is a promotional stunt by XSEED Games. It is a generous offering however. I don't see this game or its sequel gracing my future induction list so let's hope that it is actually worth the download.