Thursday, December 18, 2008

Playing CoD 4 again a year later

Playing Call of Duty 4 (or Call of Booty as my hot girlfriend calls it) again a year later in order to get the Veteran achievements and I'm constantly reminded of things that were just maddeningly difficult the first time around.

I'm making my way up a hill checking houses as I go, I'm being chased and tackled by dogs again, I'm adjusting my shot to hit a target, and I'm setting charges and defending my position on a ferris wheel all over again, and over again and over again.

Playing GTA IV and having to repeat missions wasn't so bad because there was usually new dialogue to listen to, until finally the characters just shut up.  I didn't need to hear the orders again and again, I just needed overcome the challenge in front of me.  The problem with CoD 4 is that there are no changing dialogue tracks.  There's only one, and usually I'm trying again immediately after the check point.  So as soon as the commander finishes giving me my objectives, he's shouting them at me again because I've run right into an enemy.

Hopefully the rest of my play through won't include the trouble I had in the missile silos further toward the end of the game.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

What I played yesterday

I managed to squeeze about an hour of gaming out of my busy schedule

I had been thinking about Call of Duty 4 all weekend for one reason or
another and popped that in yesterday. Without access to XBOX Live, I
played the campaign. It successfully drew me in again. I had
forgotten how much I liked the different gameplay elements, like the
AC-130 scenario.

One thing that never left my mind was the stellar sequence after the
detonation of the nuclear bomb. Every time I see it my jaw hangs
open. The images are just so well crafted.

I think I might even return to the game again tonight. What would be
ideal is if I could make it through veteran difficulty, but the last
stage in the missile sylos is maddening (the amount of times I played
that sequence over and over again also sticks out in my mind).

Sent from my iPhone.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The challenges of multitasking...

Over the past weekend I played the copy of Mirror's Edge EA sent me for participating in one of their focus groups. I also played a little bit of Fallout 3 and had my second or third "Woah, cool" moment.

Mirror's Edge is moving very quickly, and that pace is constantly making want to return to that as opposed to Fallout 3 where I'm moving a lot slower, I'm constantly having to drop things because I'm caring too much equipment.

Despite the game play that I'm really entertained by in Mirror's Edge, I'm just not moving smoothly enough. I'm not traversing levels quickly enough. I suppose that's what the time trials are for. If I'm going to get all of those speedrun achievements, I'm going to need some practice.

That inability has left a lot of the awe I've been feeling between these two games on the Fallout side. Here's the story:

I was heading through one of the subway systems, one I thought I had already wandered through. I heard the ghouls milling about on one of the platform overpasses. I crouched down, and suddenly my display read "[Danger]" as opposed to the more friendly "[Hidden]." The ghouls were rushing me. I quickly entered VATS and selected a few shots on the head of the first ghoul and the body of the second. As soon as the animation started to play, the ghoul had already rushed up to me. As it stood over my crouched character, the head exploded with my first shot. His body fell on top of me.

As the shattered pieces of the ghouls head fell around me, I could barely appreciate the action before I had another ghoul to deal with.

That alone is what will keep me going back to Fallout 3. I'm not one for RPGs, but this set piece really impressed me. I'm hoping to head back to it tonight, despite a paper due tomorrow at 9, as well as numerous other responsibilities I have at school.

I can't wait for winter break.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Inaugural

My name is Daniel and I'm a college student at San Jose State University.  I'm looking at entering games journalism.  I have a real passion about games and with the population of games writing swelling, I've decided to entire the gaming blog wellspring, if you will.

I'm calling this blog "Wellspring of Games" because that's what I'll be about.  I won't be limiting myself to anyone specific hardware platform, but obviously my finances make it very difficult for me to review every game out there on every system.

What I'm currently working with is an XBOX 360, a Nintendo Wii, a Nintendo DS, and a dual booting MacBook Pro.  Of course I'd love to have a Playstation 3 as well, but I'm going to have to rely on the 360 version of games for now.  Of course if anyone would like to donate one to me that would be greatly appreciated.

If you happen to stumble upon this blog and have any suggestions, comments, criticisms, please I will happily accept any and all.  I would greatly appreciate any feedback because that's what writing this is all about for me.  "Honing the craft."

Welcome to the Wellspring of Games.