Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Dead Space 3!

Okay... I think it's starting.

The official Dead Space site has put up a video. It's a short teaser that looks like a motion comic. Now even though the clip is titled "A graphic novel short", it's not clear if this is a teaser for an up coming Dead Space graphic novel, or if it's a quick teaser for Dead Space 3 made to look like a motion comic.

Either way - it's got me pretty excited because even it is a teaser for a graphic novel, I'm sure it will lead to the events of Dead Space 3.

There has been some info out on DS3 for a while now, but nothing substantial. We know that it is going to be set on a frozen planet, and it's also been mentioned that it will have co-op.

The video on the site, which you can find below, features a new character named John Carver. Will this be Isaac's co-op buddy? If so he looks pretty bad ass, especially with the mad design for his rig. According to the description of the vid John is some kind of security officer, it would be a nice change of pace to play a trained combatant with actual military weapons as opposed to Isaac and his improvised weapons. Though in part 2 Isaac was pretty bad ass himself. In clip John does have some kind of high powered firearm.

The video gives us a glimpse at some crazy looking Necromorphs too, and the frozen setting I'm sure will be a welcome change from the closed halls ways and such of the previous two games.

There's also marker glyphs on the top of the site page, and some have concluded that it might be a timer counting down to something.

 It's all pretty exciting stuff. For all the great games I play and all else any other title may offer - Nothing beats Dead Space for me.

Can't wait to find out more.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Red Dead Redeption: Pure Awesome

There are great games and then there are truly amazing games.

Rock Star have published some great games done by its various dev teams, but their Red Dead Redemption, developed by Rock Star San Diego is truly a thing of awesomeness.

When I first heard of "Red Dead" I didn't look into it much because on paper it read like a western themed Grand Theft Auto. Though I own GTA 4, it's not the coolest thing I've played, as it just didn't live up to the greatness of GTA: San Andreas, which to me is the best game in the series.

Over the weekend a friend of mine lent me Red Dead in exchange for God of War. Reading up on the game had me somewhat interested, but once I poped that disk in; I was glued to my PS3 for like 12 hours straight. At one point I seriously thought my PS was gona melt or something because I just couldn't bring myself to turning this game off.

Even my girlfriend who is usually telling me to get of my games and do something, else was hooked right there next to me, as Red Dead is simply one of the coolest farkin games ever.

This shouldn't be surprising as apparently it has won over 160 "game of the year" awards and holds a Metacritic rating of 95% making it one of the highest rated console exclusives of all time.

The first awesome thing about the game is the setting. I haven't seen too many Western themed games, and to be honest I'm not a massive fan of the genre (my favorite western would probably be Back to the Future 3)

Rolling hills and endless country is spread out ahead of you as a massive open world , said to be so many times bigger than Fortune city from GTA 4, waits to be explored.

The game looks great. The environment would be the star here as it shifts from amazing sun sets to stormy nights. I spent hours and hours simply exploring the world of Red Dead. Traveling this world would be the second best thing about the game, as Rock Star has done an amazing job with the main mode of transportation: Horses. Riding a horse is almost a mini game as you have to manage the horses stamina, so instead of just pressing one button to make it go, you need to press the button according to a certain rhythm. This is not complicated though and soon you're galloping at great speeds across the vast land. Different horses have different timing, and the land is scattered with various breeds of horses to tame and collect. I'm waiting for this one rare Black Horse which sometimes travels the south lands - but is know to live up in the north. that area hasn't opened up for me yet :(

You do have a fast travel system too but I enjoy riding so much that I never use it.

The world is also populated with random encounters and events. Bank robbers, cannibal gangs, marauders, thieves, kidnappers and so much more. As you ride you come across these events that you can either intervene or join in on.

Unlike GTA4 which put away with a lot of the extra stuff your hero can get up to in game, Red Dead is just like GTA: San Andreas, in the way that there is so much more to do aside from the main story. With loads of side quests, mini games and even "jobs" like hunting, botany, tracking missions and heaps more, this is a world that truly feels alive and makes you become a part of it.

All of these are the bonuses to an awesome story that plays out like a movie. I know a lot of games claim to have a cinematic experience, but Red Dead is truly a game that you could just sit back and watch someone play.

You are John Marston, a former outlaw now working for the government. You have been tasked with capturing your former comrades, and somewhere in there your family is somehow in danger. Where this danger is coming from hasn't been reveled to me yet, but it's all enough motivation to get things going.

The supporting cast is nothing short of greatness, with all the characters beautifully brought to life through stunning animation and the best voice work I've heard in a video game. The personalities of everyone you come across stay with you long after you've met them and you can't help but care about the friends you make. There's one particular grave robber that I couldn't help feeling sorry for and liked having him around as a friend - even though he creeped me out at times.

In fact, morally this game is very interesting in how it effects you. For example, at one point I was without a horse, and I just couldn't bring myself to steal another mans horse >_<

I actually walked all the way back into town and then used one of the stable horses until I caught and tamed another horse to my liking.

Combat in the game is mad awesome too, with great responsive controls that let you do exactly what you want to do, and the guns man... they rock so hard. There is nothing more bad ass then walking into enemies while staring down the barrel of your Riffle, poping heads and taking names. To spice things up is the addition of this thing called "Dead Eye" which allows the hero to slow down time and either fire a one off shot at an otherwise hard target, or you can mark and execute the bad guys similar to the mechanic in Splinter Cell: Conviction.

The Dead Eye fills with every normal shot you fire. This all makes for some truly epic gun fights in the game.

I actually started the game on Hardcore (this ability to chose difficulty setting was apparently the first for Rock Star) and yes the game was very unforgiving at first - but once I got the hang of it, it made combat very satisfy. All the weapons in game are awesome and which gun works best depends on your play style. I like to take guys out from a distant with my riffle before finishing things up with my sawed-off :D There are some named weapons to collect too which add more damage and other perks.

Money for me is a bit scarce but so far this hasn't hindered me in anyway. All you really need to buy is things like medicine for wounds and maybe ammo now and then. Otherwise most of what you need is acquired through the game - including weapons.

The Story is very extensive and after two whole days of playing I only just finished the 1st act.With out giving away too much, let me just say that it goes places. What started off as bringing in some outlaws is currently at a revolution starting up in Mexico.

This should give you some scope as to how vast the world is, as the big story comes with the huge setting. It really reminds me of Fallout 3 without the sci fi stuff. Sort of like Desperado meets Fallout would be the best description.There is just so much to do and find in this game, with events and things unlocking perks and other goodies as you progress, that you could spend hours in it without even touching the story. The plot is very interesting though, played out through cut scenes and the various conversations you have with people as you ride. These conversations are cool because it subs the lack of the radio from GTA. When you're out and about by yourself you get to explore to an awesome music score that really sets the mood. It's sort of old school western themed music with a modern twist.

What's interesting also is how creepy the world can get at night, which is awesome because after I finish the main story I can not wait to dive into the DLC of the game called "Undead Nightmare" which adds a zombie invasion campaign to the game, along with other content such as the four horses of the apocalypse to collect, as well as creepy shizz like the Chupacabra and other old west mythical beasts. (Moth man?)

At a glance I didn't know how this zombie thing would work with Red Dead, but after playing it I think this addition will work great. A lot of times I've ridden through a woody hillside or a ghost-town expecting something to jump out and scare me.

Speaking of Ghost towns - Tumbleweed - man that place is creepy.

All in all Red Dead Redemption is one of the best games I've ever played, those who don't have access to it should be farking sad cause they are missing out on something amazing. I would love to own this thing on PC though as I know it would look even better with higher res textures.

Which brings us to the one thing I hate about the game; I don't own it! Like I said I borrowed this off a friend and it breaks my heart knowing I have to give it back, but I fully intend to buy my own next pay.

This baby is currently contending to make it to my top 5 games of all time. Will it make it? "After thoughts" to come.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Diablo 3: After After thoughts

Man I regret buying Diablo 3 >_<

About a week ago I got a friend of mine in Aus to drop $129 Fijian dollars to get Diablo 3 for me, and now after playing the game through once and about halfway on a harder difficulty - I have absolutely no compulsion to play it.

What sucks even harder is that I still have to pay my friend back for it. It's one thing to buy a game and then get sick of it, but it's another to get sick of it and then have to pay for it.

Diablo 3 was short, under whelming and did nothing to push gameplay to any place new. It did have kick ass FMVs and made for a good pass time - but it didn't get any where close to being as engrossing as it's predecessors.

It was fun until I stopped playing it and then I just didn't want to go back.

If anything, Diablo 3 has taught me a very important lesson. Don't give in to video game hype and fan boy reviews. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Diablo 3: After Thoughts

 No Spoilers

Last night Diablo the Lord of Terror was defeated by Isaac the level 31 Demon Hunter!

In the end it was a quit a journey that seemed to have ended very abruptly, but it wasn't without its awesomeness.

My after thoughts on Diablo 3 are pretty much in line with my first impressions, except I found the story really picks up as the game progresses. Though a lot it is very predictable, it is still very interesting watching it play out.

 Maybe it was the class I played, but as the game progressed on Normal, combat didn't get any harder. If anything it got more hectic, but very manageable... if that makes sense?

The inclusion of runes and passive abilities added to the choices being made in terms of combat spells and such, but none of this got very extensive or complicated. Once you've sort of figured out your playstyle it is only a matter of picking the abilities which suit it.

My guy was balls to the wall offensive, dropping a few abilities in favor of more DPS moves. I did suffer a bit through the 3rd act as the number of baddies picked up - but this was mainly because my guy was all dex and crit with only 89 vitality by the end of Act 3. I sorted this out by the time I started Act 4 though, finding items in the AH that had the same Dex and crit values but with the added vitality.

As far as boss fights went none of them were really that hard, but they did need you to move around a lot, but once the Demon Hunter gets homing missiles and the turret - combat becomes a push over.

My build - Click to enlarge
My guy was all about the explosions, which comes in very handy in the later parts of the game where AOE damage becomes very important.

If anything once you get your toons stats inline and work out a fitting gameplay style, Diablo 3 never losses its casualness, at least not on normal. But this is alright because the game is still fun, especially when the item whore in you gets started and you're after that next best weapon or armor.

The AH however diminishes the joy of armor drops a little, as I had simply bought all the best gear I could get for a certain price range with the stats I was after. Gold is not a problem either as in the end I had more than enough to buy all the bag slots and tonight I'll even buy a new tab because I need a place to keep all my Rare gear before I sell them in the AH.

That would be one cool part of Diablo 3 for me, the fact that once you level past a set of items, you can then take it off and sell it in the the AH.
Spoilers - but no major story elements.

As far as later gameplay goes - up until the 3rd act the game does a very good job of pacing, but from there on it seemed a little rushed. Though I made it a point to explore the shit out of every area I was in, soon the side quests and side dungeons were all but gone, with only the story missions leading the way. This made the last two acts very short.

Sadly the great environments you come across early in the game aren't explored too much in terms of story either, the great settings serve nothing more than a back drop for you to click on things. I was hoping for more background and story on these areas - or even more side quests.

I also hated how combat difficulty boiled down to the number of baddies on screen and not because of any extra added tactics. Between my grenades, homing missiles and turret nothing ever poised a real threat. Most enemies, including bosses, just walked into my rapid fire and explosions often dying before they got half way >_<

I remember spending so many deaths on Diablo back in the day - this time he was taken down on the first try.


The moments after Diablos death were a major let down for me as the game doesn't give any form of solid outcome or conclusion. Everything is sort of left hanging, or is supposdely wrapped up with a few lame lines of dialogue, most probably as a setup for DLC.

Probably the best thing after Act 3 is the FMV - which to me was the coolest one in the game. The setting for Act 4 was an awesome treat as well, as this time you took the fight into the high Heavens. So instead of dark cellars and burning steeps, the last few moments of the game are spent amongst the crumbling halls of Heaven, as Diablo lays waste to all that is good and pure.

This is very short lived though as Act 4 is the quickest chapter to get through.

Aside from a handful of awesome moments, sadly I thought Diablo 3 was a little underwhelming. In the end it really is just a more polished version of Torch Light. Some how the clicking does get addictive, and it's a lot of fun mowing down hordes of baddies, but I wonder how this will play out with a different Toon. My first run was awesome because I thought the Demon Hunter had a very awesome back story and character, even though it doesn't develop much past the description in the characters introduction video.

The main draw for me now is the challenge of pwning Diablo on Nightmare, if anything just to see if it gets any harder. So far it's been a breeze - but I'll hold on a full judgment until I meet the Skeleton King again. If he can be taken down on the first try - then I'll be very disappointed.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Neil Nitin Mukesh on Horror movies

So yesterday I got to visit the set of 3G, a Bollywood horror/ thriller that's currently filming in Fiji. While there I had the pleasure of meeting up with the stars of the movie Neil Nitin Mukesh and Sonal Chauhan.

Neil Happens to be a huge horror movie fan and I got to hear about some of the horror films he likes, as well as his views on what makes a good horror movie.

Check out this snippet from the interview.

The full interview airs this Saturday on Movie Tok at 7:30pm on FBC TV

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Diablo 3: First Impressions

So last night I got my hands on Diablo 3.

I told myself that there was no rush - that I can wait till I have some money to spare, or at the very least I could wait till my next pay. But then like the damn Hell spawn that plagues the game, Diablo 3 crept in and possessed every corner of the internet that I frequent.

So I gave in. I couldn't resist it - Damn you Blizzard and your awesome games!

I was lucky though. By the time I had installed and started on Diablo 3, the host of issues and bugs that littered the news feeds regarding the game were pretty much sorted. In fact I installed the game with no problems and managed to log on on the first try, so my first moments of Diablo 3 were not tainted like so many other eager players.

To be honest I never followed much of Diablo 3s development process. Aside from a few gameplay vids I watched closer to release, and a few class introduction videos from earlier this year, my knowledge of Diablo 3 going in was very limited. Everything I knew about Diablo dated back to Diablo 2 and its expansion. So as I watched the intro video at 11pm last night - I thought to myself "Blizzard you bastards - you've done it again."

First off this game oozes quality. Everything from the amazing FMVs that Blizz is known for, to the interface and presentation of the game is something else. But what struck a cord with me the most is that Diablo 3 felt so familiar.

And that would pretty much sum up my entire first impression - you like Diablo? Here's more Diablo.

Yes I'm sure there are lots of tweaks and differences from Diablo 3s predecessors, but in the sorry 3 hours I spent on it last night I didn't notice too much of it.

In fact I went into gameplay feeling a little under whelmed at first. If there were any innovations to the formula, I didn't feel it last night. But then I noticed that it was 2am, so whatever it was that I was doing was certainly additive. I guess why fix something that isn't broken right?

Before I get into the good stuff I'll tell you a few things that I didn't care for.

First up (and I'm sure I'm a minority in this) is the story. I really didn't give a shit about the story. It all just picks up and starts and there's a rescue mission, but i didn't care. I just clicked on stuff and stuff died.

Another thing was the skill division - or lack there of. Gone are the trees of skills you go through to sort out your toon. Instead as you level up, one skill at a time opens up in a few different areas of your characters stats. It's not like you can focus all your skill points into making your toon offensive, the game sort of tells you "ok here's a new offensive spell" and then "ok now here's a new defensive spell" So it sort of just chooses which spell it wants to give you as you level up - a little like in World of Warcraft. But minus the talent trees.

 It is up to you which spells you actually use. So you might have like 2 primary spells - and then you pick the one you want to equip. Plus you have these runes that spice up your attacks by adding buffs and such. So there is a little cusomization - but as with most RPGs, once you find a winning combo for a particular class, I'm sure the majority of players will be using the same cookie cutter build. So it's no Dark Souls in terms of customizations (but then very few games take the risks that Dark Souls takes)

Combat gets a little messy at times when you have to click on a dozen or so enemies standing at on spot, and lets face it, there is only so much you can do with a game where you click to do EVERYTHING. You can pretty much just sit there and play the game with one hand if you wanted. Aside from the left and right click, you have 4 other assigned buttons, so maybe it gets more complicated as to how you use these buttons later, but at the moment it's very simple.

The loot whore in me didn't kick in last night either - but it is still early. I did do the normal upgrades and such, but that thirst for the next best weapon hasn't set on yet. 

With the streamed line stats system and easy to pick up gameplay, Diablo 3 feels like something perfect for the casual gamer and I think that's a good thing, because at the heart of it, Diablo 3 offers something that a lot of games seem to be scared of these days. It offers a lot of fun. It's not striving to be super cool or hardcore (though it does have a hardcore mode) Diablo 3 is just a really fun game in the most primal sense of the word.

I did loose 3 hours in what felt like 20mins last night, so despite all of the above personal short comings Diablo 3 had, it is doing something right.

What drove me most in the game was the sense of exploration. Diablo 3s world is rich and very detailed and though I'm very early into the game, what little I've seen is truly awesome. From decaying forests, to creepy crypts, Diablo 3 is a pleasure to explore. So I just wanted to see where I would end up next.

I went into Diablo 3 fully expecting to be either a Barbarian or Monk, but these characters got pretty boring pretty fast for me. Maybe you have to be in the mood for that certain play style. When I tried the Demon Hunter though, everything felt awesome.

Pretty much the Demon hunter is the assassin from Diablo 2 but with a more range focus, and for some reason pointing and clicking his moves out are a lot of fun. It just felt like a little more effort was involved compared to the "fist to face" strategy of the Barbarian and Monk that I had tried earlier. And plus he has the whole Salem Witch hunter vibe going, which is farkin cool...

The Baddies in Diablo 3 are pretty cool too. But even though the place is littered with things like "Ravenous Corpses" or giant bloated ghouls, I haven't met a baddie yet that felt creepy.

That doesn't mean I didn't have fun clicking the shit out of the.

In the end I guess the biggest question would be: was all this worth the wait? Well I wasn't really waiting for Diablo 3, and yes a lot of what I was doing last night didn't seem new to me at all. Some might even argue that the Diablo 3 formula that Blizz delivered has been improved on by other games in recent times, but too me it was more a question of "Was Diablo 3 worth the hefty sum of cash that I dropped on it" and to be honest - it was.

There's no denying the quality that oozes out of this game. The issues that were faced by many upon lunch  was a sad thing, but it should not take away from something that just feels like it was put together with a lot of care. I still have a lot to play and it is early stages, but so far it's been engaging.

I even logged on this morning to play, and had to wait in a que >_< But I can't remember the last time I tried to squeeze a bit of game time out of something before rushing off to work.

And right now I'm really looking forward to going home and playing some more.

Monday, May 14, 2012

And Then?

And then I was sick for most of last week.

Nothing too serious, just a bit of the flu, but it was enough to keep me in bed for most of the weekend and two working days.

The week before this however was good fun. My best bud Dane (A high school buddy of mine) had come to visit from Australia and for the five or so days that he was here we pretty much just drank beers and had a great time hanging out.

Dane's first night in was enough to burn out a lot of my gang here, but I managed to stick with it. We spent his last night in Suva smashing beers and chilling to a live band before heading off to the West.

It was kinda hard getting time off from work, but I managed to convince my boss to give me a few days.

The West was good fun.

Dane had booked us in to this very nice beach resort which was a massive pain in the ass to find, only because we had to drive pretty far off the main road. Once we got there we found that it was amazingly beautiful but also very dull.

 The Beach at Club Fiji resort. That pool to my right is waist deep

So after spending a moment to admire the place, we decided to scout around for some place else. This was despite my buddy already having paid for the rooms and such. Instead of asking for a refund we decided that we would come back early in the morning and make full use of the complementary breakfast that came with the accommodation.

While looking for this place we had grown bored of, we had seen another resort not too far off that looked like it had a lot of people closer to our age having fun, so we decided to pay this place a visit.

When we got there the place was alive with music and there were all these people just dancing on the beach, so Dane decided to book us in there so we could take part in whatever was going on.

After we checked in and bought some beers we noticed that the place had a camera crew mucking around. One of them was my Buddy Damien, who was the cameraman on our last short film. We asked him what was going on and he said that they were shooting some British movie about a rock band and that they would be gone by 8pm.


Then I guess the only people there would be us?

Ah well...

So we downed our beers and went for a nice swim, chilling in the water with the sun setting behind us. At some point we had some tourists doing some sort of Yoga stuff on the beach, which was interesting.

The rest of the night was spent drinking beers and chatting about all the stuff we used to get up to back in high school, which was nice. Aside from Kaos Kongo there are very few people from my high school days that I get to chat with, which really sucks because sometimes its nice to hang with people who really know you, or have seen you grow over the years.

The next day we headed back to the other resort and had this complementary breakfast, followed by an awesome full body massage. It was my first time getting one of those and it was a little uncomfortable at first, especially when I had to take my pants off, but after awhile it was pure bliss.

Mucking around Nadi town was interesting, especially since the place was still sort of recovering from recent flooding. It was sad to see a lot of the familiar shops closed and even sadder seeing others having "Closing Down" sales.

At some point we ended up in a shop where the girls thought they recognized me from my TV show, I heard one of them say "That's not him, his a lot skinnier on the show"


It was sad seeing my friend off at the air port. Even though he comes in and out of Fiji more than a few times a year, it's still always sad. He was my best bud back in high school and people will just never get you like the friends you grew up with.

That week ended with a party at the office to celebrate the launch of our live NEWS broadcast, which was a lot of fun too. There was a nice spread of food and drinks, and I got to watch a few of my work mates get drunk and disorderly.

The next day I woke up with grim death clutching at my throat, and spent the next four days being sick in bed.

In the middle of this I did pick up a game (of course)

I got my self Resistance 3, which is a very cool shooter. It sort of felt like a cross between Killzone and Half Life 2. not as awesome as Half Life mind you, but still with more story than your average FPS. Plus I really dig the horror elements to it. I also picked up Portal 2 last week, which was on a Steam Special, so I'm looking forward to mucking around in that. 

The last weekend was spent with my lovely Girl Friend. Just hanging out in town, grabbing lunches and dinners out and just pretty much enjoying each others company, which has been a nice change of pace lately.

Aside from that it's been a slow start to the week, with my mind and body just not wanting to do anything constructive just yet.

This blog post is the most I've focused my mind all day.

Now ima go have a smoke.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...