3/23 to 3/29
Relevant games this week: Assassin’s Creed: Revelations (single and multi), Game Dev Story, Skyrim (mods and main quest), Tomb Raider: Underworld, Misc. games
Old Business: No old business
Starting it off with Assassin’s Creed this week, I have been playing more of that over the week. I probably spent equal amounts of time in both sections of the game. Ubisoft’s servers were kind of screwy again, but I was able to get a few games in before I got distracted with something else. Put a few more hours into the single player campaign as well which isn’t too bad. Either they have changed the combat a bit more or I just really suck at it now. I find myself often running away from combat or being entirely grateful that I accidentally hit the button to call my assassin dudes in to help me. It seems like that more so than any of the previous entries in the game, fights you pick on the street can spiral wildly out of control much faster and to much greater extremes than before. Perhaps I am just so used to being so powerful from the endgame of the other games and I have forgotten what the beginning is like. I look forward to unlocking more weapons and gear and have been working toward boosting my income in the same ways as the second game and Brotherhood with shop renovation. Attracting the attention of the Templars is frustrating but thus far not a game breaker for me since at least it makes sense in the logic of the game. If you were raising an army in secret the more active you were, the more likely they would take notice, which also lines up with much of the plot of the first Mistborn book by Brandon Sanderson which I am almost finished reading. The plot of the game hasn’t hooked me, but loot lust and the desire to train up my assassin dudes will likely push me to continue the game. There is also the multiplayer with its alternating satisfying and frustrating game play to keep me going. I will enjoy returning to this game to pick away at it I think.
I broke down last week during the last day of Steam’s Square-Enix sale and bought a couple of Tomb Raider games, Legend and Underworld. I bought legend because it was the highest rated of the three available and Underworld because it showed Lara Croft in a wet suit bikini thing. Yes, I caved for digital ass, but for five bucks why the hell not? She wears that suit during the first area (first couple hours) of the game so I got what I wanted immediately. My other reason for buying any of the Tomb Raider games at all is that I haven’t played one since the first one when I was in my early teens. I later told my girlfriend I bought them because they cost less than ten bucks for the pair and I hadn’t played one since I was 12 and then, “So, over a decade ago.” Saying that made me stop and do a double take at how easy it is to refer to something in my gaming past as a decade ago. I suppose I could continue on that line of thought but, I am going to move on to the game itself. I am really enjoying the platforming and the puzzling aspects of the game. Combat is utter crap and apparently the plot is a direct continuation of Tomb Raider: Legend’s plot, which is currently sitting, yet to be installed, in my Steam folder. Something about Atlantis, vikings, Lara’s parents and a woman with bat wings. I don’t know, it has viking mythology in it and that is interesting and I will be interested to see how Legend connects into this game, it will probably make the introduction of Underworld where you escape from a burning Croft manner make a bit more sense.
I have also spent more time with Game Dev Story. I have mostly been playing it during work while I wait for my computer to save big files. Last I checked I was somewhere in the middle of my 15th year producing sequels for my 32bit CD-Rom console. I am looking forward to playing through it again, trying to focus on spreading my research points more evenly through my team and being more choosey with my team member picks. Rushing through the game trying to get a hardware engineer as soon as possible turned out to be a poor choice since by the time I got him trained his salary was about 80% of my budget and I couldn’t afford to produce a console yet anyways. All in all, its a fun game and works really well in the mobile environment since its so easy to put it down if something pops up (literally in the case of phone calls and text messages) but you can still play for long periods without getting too bored. I have also spent some time with some emulator programs for ROMs. You have to pay for the full version in order to load save states but five bucks is pretty tempting to be able to play SNES games on my phone. I was never able to get all the way through my legitimate copy of The Secret of Mana and I picked up a ROM of it at some point, which only adds to my temptation. More on this at a later date.
I played another few hours of Skyrim this week as well. Well, I played a few of hours and screwed with mods for that much time plus some. On my girlfriends urging and then my own curiosity I have downloaded a bunch of mods to fix a bunch of dumb little things like Lydia’s smart mouth when you are trading with her or having fast travel points to your homes. I have also played around with some weapon mods and I downloaded something that takes all the restrictions off the enchanting system. That last one, I have not delved into yet, but I was immediately frustrated with the strange restrictions when I had done what little enchanting before I modded the game so this is a relief even if I don’t take advantage of it with this character. I am still working my way through the main quest… still in Blackreach looking for crimson Nirnroot, “that noisy weed” as a journal declares it. I have about half of what I need for the quest and am discovering that the Blackreach region is absolutely massive. I do find myself getting bored with the whole Easter egg hunt they have down there. 30 of those damn weeds is a bit too much unless they really just wanted players to explore that region. It is actually really cool, but just seems way too large and unnecessary with lots of little rooms and little things to find here and there. There are many impressive view points and sweet things to look at down in the Blackreach but I feel that my interest is short because of the amount of time I have already put into the game. When I am playing I take the time to wander around and check stuff out while I am searching for the Nirnroots, but I find my interest wanes after about an hour and I need to be in a particular mood to even start it. Anyways, I am over half way through it so another session or two tops and I will be done with it and on to other interesting things. Hopefully, no more time spent underground for awhile.
Week four, all finished for now. The gaming continues.