E3 Roundup Explosive Extraveganza! Gaming Remains Pretty Exciting

Over the past couple of months, I've had to take a bit of a break from gaming. My play sessions had been reduced to starting a game, poking around for about 10 minutes then quitting again. As bad as it is to admit this on my GAMES BLOG, I didn't miss it. I reacquainted myself with books, reading all of the 'A Song of Ice and Fire' novels (great!), caught up on television (not so great) and watched the sports season wind down (SPORTS!). It barely registered that the neon-lit, bass emitting monster of E3 was just around the corner...

Well the beast appeared, offended nearly everyoneoffended everyone else, and left. The end result, I'm excited about Video Games again!

I would be dong a disservice to my loyal readers, all 11 of you, if I didn't extend a cursory nod of the head to the new consoles. One is $500 and has a camera that watches you all the time. The other is $400 and is essentially a shiner version of every single console ever made, and it has a share button! WHO ASKED FOR THAT?

Great, with that sorted, onto my picks for the games I can't wait to play over the next few years!


Assassins Creed 3 - PC Review

Steam has a somewhat disheartening feature that logs how many hours you've put into a game. Early into my time with Assassins Creed 3, it read 7 hours played. My save game told me I was 20% through. By that count this should be a fairly meaty game of roaming the Eastern seaboard assassinating things. So why was I learning how to craft furniture?

Assassins Creed 3 doesn't know what it wants to do. Like an over-stimulated child, it sees something exciting, rampages off in its general direction until it becomes distracted, chases a new object and so on. Inevitably the child becomes tired and stops playing, having accomplished very little. 

Maybe this is a tad harsh, but Assassins Creed 3 is characterized by long stretches of activity that have nothing to do with being an assassin. You can't help but feel the time and effort spent crafting these features would've been better spent elsewhere. There is a solid game in here somewhere. You just have to sift through mounds of produce, pelts and plumage to find it.


Gaming's Best Things of 2012

What a great year 2012 was for games. Think about it. When was the last time where nearly every major title didn't disappoint? Just about everything I played this year was excellent. Admittedly 'I WASNT DISAPPOINTED" is not the most stunning rubric to judge the year in gaming by, but we gamers are a cynical bunch and grow suspicious at high praise and kind words. Here are my picks for the finest five games of 2012.


Crime-on Thy Neighbor - SimCity Trailer

Now this is exciting. A new developer diary, featuring a man with a spectacularly waxed mustache, for the upcoming SimCity game has landed and it sure is splendid. It explains some of the games mechanics and the effects your city can have on your neighbors  I for one look forward to being the despot of 'Crimeville' and dispatching my lowlife citizens to terrify the surrounding area.

SimCity is allegedly going to be released March 5, 2013.


Can't Wait... for Far Cry 3

Far Cry 3's review embargo just lifted and wouldn't you know it, the game is being met with almost universal acclaim. The marketing campaign for the game left me ready to ignore it, but a review from my most trusted adviser, Rock, Paper, Shotgun, has got me opening my wallet.

Clint Hocking's Far Cry 2 - a game I wish to write about in the future - is one of my favorite games of the past decade. It had its share of problems, but I was easily able to look past these to the visually stunning, anecdote generating heart that beat underneath. It sounds like the third entry fixes the issues and keeps the goodness. This certainly earns a can't wait.

Check out the latest promotional video.

The cheapest places I've found it on there internet are here and here (UK only)


FTL: Faster Than Light Review

Explore the stars, meet interesting aliens and die repeatedly. There is nothing flashy or complicated about FTL (Faster Than Light). You have a ship, a small crew and a simple mission: deliver vital intelligence to the federation before being caught and destroyed by the pursuing rebel fleet. Don't be fooled by the simplicity of the graphics, this is the best way to exercise your inner Captain Kirk or Admiral Ackbar this year. 

FTL puts you in the captain's chair of the spaceship of your choosing. My missions saw me nearly exhaust the list of ships that fought during the Battle of Jutland - you can name your ship after something much less tough, like your cat. But come on, who wants to sacrifice their life for 'The Mittens'?


Shock to the Coin Purse: Patches Released for System Shock 2 and Thief 2

Wait what!? Out of the blue comes two user made patches for these veritable classics. Thief 2 remains one of the best games ever made, and if you've never played through either of these titles this seems like the moment you have been waiting for. The patches are available here along with the details of what they do.

 If you don’t own either of these games Thief 2 can be found on Steam, GOG, and various other reputable sources. System Shock on the other hand, isn't really available anywhere. Unless you can find yourself an old boxed copy of the game on Amazon, your best bet is to visit a site that provides something the rhymes with abhorrent.

 Get into it you taffers.