Saturday, January 21, 2012

Cleaving Skulls in Two Part Two

I few posts ago I wrote about my latest session with Dungeons and Dragons Tactics.  You can read about it here if you are so inclined.  Part of what I wrote dealt with my creation of a character based on Robert E. Howard's Conan.

Conan is dead.

It was bound to happen.  I got over zealous fighting some trolls.  Before I could get healed, I bled out all over the ground.  It happens to the best of us.  It happened to Conan. 

I'm strange when it comes to these types of role playing games.  If my character dies, I don't usually bring him back.  I won't go to the last saved game and start anew.  And while Conan was only at fifth level, I had grown quite fond of him, but I still wasn't bringing him back.  So the game has ended ... for now.

I'll go back to it at some point.  I'll make a new character and start all over again.  Maybe I'll make it past the fifth level.  Maybe I won't make it past the first.  Either way, I will never be playing Conan again.  I won't remake him.  I will be deleting the saved file.  He is, like my assassin character in the original paper and pencil game, gone to the Happy Hunting Grounds never to see the windswept plains again. 

As I watched the Game Over screen come up, only one thing really came to mind.  A troll?  Really?  Yeah.  Definitely not an ending fit for the greatest barbarian of all time.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Thoughts on Gamefly

I know a lot of people who use Netflix, myself being one of them.  I don't, however, know of anyone who uses Gamefly.  Correction: I may know one person, but I don't recall ever really hearing them talk about it.

On the surface, Gamefly seems like a really good idea.  It's the same principle as Netflix, but with videogames.  Using the service lets you try before you buy.  Most video stores have a game section, as well, and I don't really utilize that either.  And I have a pretty valid reason why.

I don't like renting games.

It's a little more complicated than that really.  Renting a game already puts pressure on the idea of getting it back to the rental agency in a timely manner.  Gamefly doesn't have late fees (that I know of), but there is still that pressure that you want to get your money's worth.  To do that, you have to rent a set number of games.  I don't want to be pressured to get a game back at a certain time.  I want to take my time with it, enjoy it at a leisurely pace.  Renting doesn't let me do that, and that's why I shy away from it.  Of course, that means I have to buy them, and that leaves me vulnerable to spending hard-earned money on a subpar game.

That has happened from time to time, though I know my tastes well enough to know whether or not I will enjoy a game, and reviews help work out issues that have nothing to do with tastes like bugs or poor controls and camera.  Because of this, I end up with games I enjoy more often than not, and if I don't or if I tire of them, I can sell them on eBay or some place like that dungeon Gamestop.

I think Gamefly works fine for plenty of people, but it isn't for me or anyone else who wants to take their time with a game.  For those who don't have the time to dig into every games reviews or the money to take a chance on a game they may not enjoy, it is actually fairly idea.  It shouldn't take too long to realize whether or not you like a game enough to want to buy it, and in that sense the company is a godsend. 

If anyone has any thoughts on the company, I'd love to hear them because my daughter has asked me about it, and I think it may be worth getting for her if only because her desire to play games is less so than mine, and she is far more fickle.  Let me know if you think it is worth it, what you pay, what problems you've had and so on. 

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Shoot 'Em Dead Link-Style

Link's Crossbow Training was the first Wii game to use the Wii Zapper.  Was it a good game to showcase this "technology"?  Yes, though it is a little too short as far as a game goes.

This, of course, isn't your traditional Zelda game, as it is first person shooter with you as Link armed with a ... wait for it ... crossbow.  The bolts can be fired in a rapid motion and you can even set some to explode, so realism is kind of tossed to the wind.  Of course, how real can a game be that features the undead shambling around?  Exactly. 

When this first came out, the Zapper was a foreign object.  It looked kind of like a gun and handled like one, but it was really nothing more than a device for keeping the Wii Remote held steady while you shot death across the screen.  Other companies have, of course, copied this, but the original device still holds up quite well when compared to the newer models.

I will admit that I was never a big fan of Link and crew.  This game, however, has kind of made me interested in going back and giving the games (all 800 of them) another chance.  I understand this game is nothing like the others, but I think I have a newfound respect for the characters.  I'm sure the storylines will be dismal, but I am also willing to bet I may get some newfound enjoyment out of them now that I've spent some time taking down hordes of evil and blowing up  things. 
Mandatory FTC Disclaimer: I did not get this game for free. Clicking on a link may earn me a commission, too.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Cleaving Skulls in Two

Back in the day I played Dungeons and Dragons.  Yep, I admit it.  Played it a lot.  Eventually I stopped.  This was before the new rules came out.  Back when it used about 800 different die.  Then, one day while shopping for PSP games, I came across Dungeons and Dragons Tactics.  I bought it.

I was hesitant to buy it, as I thought it was a bit expensive, and then when I saw the manual was quite a few pages, I really wondered what the hell I had gotten into.  After playing it a few times I put it away for about a year.  Just recently I've picked it up again, however, and I have to say that I'm taking the game much more seriously and having a really good time with it.

Usually I enjoy making up my own characters.  This time was no exception, though I made Conan.  I just thought it would be fun to do.  A barbarian based off Robert E. Howard's mastermind creation.  What could go wrong?  Absolutely nothing.  I'm enjoying the hell out of this critically panned game this time around.

Granted, the game has issues.  The camera is annoying, there are a lot of steps one must take to do simple things.  That's okay, though.  This is not meant for people whose attention spans are non-existent.  It's more zen-like, and while you may be carving zombies limb from limb, it is actually quite peaceful.

I'm not sure why the game is called Dungeons and Dragons Tactics as it could have been called just about anything else with a Dungeons and Dragons name and made more sense.  This is not some real-time strategy game, though there is that.  It is a role-playing video game through and through and those looking for something different probably felt a bit ripped off.  It does, however, remind me quite a bit of the old D&D games ... minus pizza and a lot of cursing.
Mandatory FTC Disclaimer: I paid for this game, and if you click on a link, I may earn a commission.