Video Game Tuesday: Warmind

This week for Video Game Tuesday I’m covering what we know about Destiny 2’s latest expansion. It’s all about Warmind!

Warmind?: Yeah that’s the title of the next expansion, and frankly the only sure thing we know about this. However there are reports and possible leaks by retailers like GameStop that gives us a look at what it’ll actually contain.

New Enemies: Yay? Frankly I could give less of a shit at this point about new enemies in Destiny 2. They weren’t significantly different from Destiny 1 with only a few additions to the already limited types of enemies. Supposedly the new enemies are called Crypt Exos, which may mean we face things that are roughly “Guardian” shaped and sized and have to fight more traditional humanoid enemies. Again this isn’t really a big change and if anything only more boring.

New Area?: We’re headed back to Mars, whether it’ll include areas from the first game is unknown but highly likely given what we know about the backstory of this expansion which is supposed to deal with the Clovis Bray facilities we last raided during the Dust Palace strike in Vanilla Destiny (If you played on the PlayStation at least). Again I don’t particularly care at this point, but even if just is the same map, which wouldn’t surprise me and I wouldn’t put past Bungie to just copy paste into Destiny 2. Frankly while Mars was an interesting location, like all of Destiny’s various locales it was fairly with sparse enemies. At least if they copy paste the map from Destiny into Destiny 2 we should be able to use our damn Sparrows.

Raid?: Nope, we are supposedly getting another “Raid Lair” activity. This is highly disappointing. At least the Dark Below gave us the Crota raid even if it was ,and still is to the best of my knowledge, a buggy mess.

Horde Mode?: Another thing we are supposed to be getting, and frankly again really disappointing. Firefight hasn’t changed all that much since the Halo ODST days and Prison of Elders wasn’t all that different from that mode Bungie first made in 2009. I’m expecting nothing more, and just more disappointing stuff.

Story?: Supposedly we’ll be getting a story, but again I find that I just don’t give a fuck anymore. None of my friends regularly plays Destiny 2 anymore and I’m not suprised in the least, because it’s a freaking terrible game.

That’s it for this week’s Video Game Tuesday.

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Retro Game Friday: Vigilante 8

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering a game I had a real hard time remembering the name of. It’s Vigilante 8!

Plot Synopsis: The game is set in an alternate 1975, where a global oil crisis occurs and the United States is on the verge of an economic breakdown. A rampant crime wave in the cities prompts the deployment of more security forces, leaving the hinterlands with little or no law and order. A multinational oil consortium, the Oil Monopoly Alliance Regime (OMAR), is determined to control the global petroleum market and wants the destruction of the US to ensure the success of their plan. The Vigilantes, a group of residents from various southwestern US states band together to preserve law and order in light of the chaos gripping the country.

Plot: The plot was pretty dang good, it’s not super amazing and the liberties taken as “artistic liscense” are more hilarious than serious. However it was a good time, frankly I’ve been trying to remember this game’s name for almost as long as I’ve been writing this blog. Give that a thought.

Gameplay: The gameplay has aged poorly, vehicle handling is iffy at best, with the various characters and their different vehicles handling incredibly differently from each other. That said at the time I had a blast playing the game, even with the quirks.

Art: The art also has aged incredibly poorly. But given that it is a game from 1999, that shouldn’t be a surprise.

Music: I don’t remember it, sorry.

Overall: Probably worth skipping, but I do think I remember there was a sequel.

For those who like: Vehicular Combat, Comedy, Drama, Action, Adventure, Alternative Histories, Cars.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Video Game Tuesday: Graphical Mods

This week for Video Game Tuesday I’m covering a topic that get’s overlooked by most console gamers, myself included. It’s all about Graphical Mods!

PC MASTER RACE!: Yeah, yeah, we’ve all heard that before. It’s an old and tired shtick, and console gamers are pretty sick of it. There are downsides to being a console gamer, but there are also upsides. That being said, that’s a topic for another day. However there is one thing that warrants special mentioning. Graphical Improvement Mods.

Graphical Improvement Mods?: Yeah, so there are of course custom 3D model mods out there for all sorts of games, like Skryim or Grand Theft Auto. However this isn’t what I’m talking about, not exactly. I’m talking about mods that completely improve your entire visual experience of the whole game. Stuff like NaturalVision Remastered. Go check out the video I’ve linked. I’ll be waiting, and it’s definitely worth a view.

Done?: Great, so these sorts of mods are huge projects and I have immense respect and admiration for anyone who does this sort of work. It’s incredibly difficult and you rarely see something of such high quality like NaturalVision Remastered. Honestly the person behind the mod deserves to be hired like immediately into the industry. They are an amazing artist and coder who understands gaming engines and graphics to a degree that I can only wish I had even a tenth of their skill and knowledge. Of particular note is that the original NaturalVision mod aims to be as intensive as the base Grand Theft Auto V game. That’s an incredibly difficult goal, but they did it for the most part.

What goes into such a mod?: Well for a big part of it, it’s all about improving the textures to a much higher resolution and detail. That’s not an easy goal, not at all. You have to literally work on every single texture used in the entire game and improve them. That’s a massive undertaking by itself. However that’s not all, mods like NVR also tweak the physics and lighting systems and those are not any easier to deal with. The fact that the mod is attempting to do all of that and still be only as intensive as the base game is nothing short of a masterwork. Like seriously Rockstar, or any company with a decent reputation, you need to be trying to hire this modder.

That’s it for this week’s Video Game Tuesday. Are there any favorite graphical mods you like and I didn’t mention? Leave a comment below!

Video Game Tuesday: Mods and Achievements

This week for Video Game Tuesday I’m covering a topic I’ve been thinking about recently. It’s all about Mods and Achievements!

What?: So I’ve been thinking about how most PC games when you install a mod automatically disable any achievements so you can’t earn them when you use mods. I personally think that it really depends on the mods used because some mods are not at all impacting gameplay at all. Some are just for fun, like replacing Skyrim’s Dragon’s 3D Model with Macho Man Randy Savage, which is both disturbing and hilarious. Others are game breaking mods that make you a god, literally in some cases, and completely break all game balance. That’s just how it is with most games.  But should installing a mod at all automatically disable achievements? I tend to think no, firstly because most achievements in games are pretty easy to get, and just require you to perform certain actions in a given scenario. World of Warcraft allows for tons of mods, like Deadly Boss Mods and they don’t disable achievements upon installation. Of course mods for World of Warcraft are much more restricted compared to a single player game like Skyrim, because it’s a multiplayer game and you can’t make a mod that automatically plays the game for you. That would be outright cheating and everyone knows that.

But mods are cheating!: Are they really though? I mean just changing the 3D Model of a Skyrim Dragon to look like some WWE star isn’t really impacting your game. If anything it’s a hindrance because you’re laughing too much and get roasted by the Dragon. There are also plenty of difficulty mods that up the difficulty of the game in question and allow for players to really have to work for progress.

They’re still cheating!: I mean we could go over this all day, and I’m too lazy to do so. But think about this, is a mod that improves texture resolution or heightens the difficulty really cheating? It’s not in my book, and even developers would be hard pressed to say that they are in my experience.

Mod’s can enable Aachievements!: Yep there are mods out there to do just that for many games that disable achievements upon mod installation. Skyrim and Fallout are key examples of that.

That’s it for this week’s Video Game Tuesday. What are your thoughts? Leave a comment below!

 

Retro Game Friday: Indiana Jones The Infernal Machine

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering a game that I can barely remember playing. It’s Indiana Jones and the Infernal Machine!

Plot Synopsis: The story of the game is set in 1947 and depicts archaeologist and adventurer Indiana Jones returning to his digging career after his involvement in World War II. Sophia Hapgood, an old friend of Indiana and now a member of the Central Intelligence Agency, visits him at his dig site in the Canyonlands, and informs him that the Russians are excavating the ruins of Babylon.

Plot: I’ll be frank I don’t remember much of this game. I remember having fun, but that’s about it.

Gameplay: I played the 2D version of this that was made for the GameBoy Color, so despite it being a port it was actually the full game. It was however really frustrating to die and have to restart a level, and I’ll be honest puzzle clues were pretty non-existent. These are pretty much the only things I remember, probably because I got so annoyed at the game.

Art: It was purely 2D so it’s aged alright, but it’s also not that amazing.

Music: I don’t remember it at all, sorry.

Overall: Probably worth skipping playing, but if you want the story you can probably watch a Let’s Play on YouTube or something.

For those who like: Puzzles, Frustration, Indiana Jones.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Video Game Tuesday: Most Hated Mission Type

This week for Video Game Tuesday I’m covering my most disliked quest genre in all of gaming. It’s my Most Hated Mission Type!

What is it?: Escort Missions, or Quests. I freaking hate doing these missions because I almost always feel like I have to babysit the NPC I’m escorting, who will do nothing but get into trouble and cause me grief.

Really?: Yeah, so I guess my hatred of the mission first really appeared with my time playing Vanilla WoW as an Alliance player in the Westfall zone. As anyone who played during that time will probably remember, that is the first zone most Alliance players will be in that allowed PvP on PvP servers. There’s one specific quest chain that was in the zone that dealt with the first dungeon many Alliance players would ever encounter, The Deadmines. The very last quest before the one that led to you being instructed to actually venture into the dungeon required you to escort an NPC to the entrance of the building that led into the dungeon. You were required to defeat many spawned enemies, in an area that was full of annoying rogue and mage type enemies as well.

In addition if you were unlucky enough to do it when a Horde player was skulking around they could easily just kill your NPC causing you to fail the quest instantly. This would mark them for PvP, but as most of these people were Rogues who could use the skill Vanish it was rather pointless trying to deal with them even if you were of the same level, which you often weren’t.

But they can’t all be bad!: Well that’s true, Bioshock Infinite for example actually had a great escort mechanic, in that not only did your companion Elizabeth not constantly draw fire onto her (she couldn’t die thank god) she also used her powers to change the battlefield to your advantage. She also threw you ammo occasionally during a firefight which would instantly refill your currently equipped weapon. But she is one of the few exceptions. Most of the time, Escort Quests are still a pain in the ass.

That’s it for this week’s Video Game Tuesday. What are some of your least favorite mission types? Leave your answers in the comments below!

Retro Game Friday: Crazy Taxi

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This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering a game I swore I had already covered, but apparently I never have. It’s Crazy Taxi!

Gameplay: The gameplay is quite fun with you controlling your taxi through a busy and hilly city as you ferry customers to and from their destinations. It could really get hectic, especially if you played on the lower time limitation settings. The main goal of the game was to be as fast as you could getting to the destination while performing “tricks” like barely missing cars by going on the wrong side of the street to earn you even more points. Honestly if this happened in real life, no one would ever take a cab, which might not be a bad thing? The only problem I had with the game was the time limitations seeming to be too short, but that’s just me.

Art: The art is very dated, but was awesome for the time.

Music: It was just as frenetic as the gameplay, which was kind of the point.

Overall: if you’ve never played or at least watched someone play Crazy Taxi you ought to give a shot.

For those who like: Driving Games, Crazy Drivers, Time Limitations.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.