Archive for May, 2010

Splinter Cell Conviction, finished story

31 May, 2010 Leave a comment

I just finished the story part of Splinter Cell Conviction and I must say, it was very satisfying. This was the best yet in terms of story in the series. I loved the narrative and how seamless it’s integrated with the rest of the game. The whole game is seamless, really. At the end I thought that there was a bit too much emphasis on shooting, but what are you going to do in the White House? I’m played it through on normal difficulty, so I’ll tackle realistic difficulty some other time. I’m still not done playing through the co-op prequel storyline with Kristian yet and then we have a bunch of Deniable Ops to take on and they seem really fun. So there’s still lots of fun time left to be had with this one.

This game is a must-play. The action is great and the sneaking is also great while still being pretty fast. You feel like a badass agent in the Jack Bauer mold and there were times when I took out eight or nine guys in the span of two seconds by using explosives, mark and execute and melee attacks like death from above. Very satisfying.

The next game I take on will probably be Ico for the PS2. It’s one of the classics that I’ve missed out on and it’s time for me to experience it, since everyone seems to love it.

Dakkster’s Top 300 Games, 200-176

31 May, 2010 4 comments

Getting into the one hundreds with this post and I’m one away from getting to the half-way point. As usual, check out all the other posts here. Let’s go!

200: Star Wars: Dark Forces (PC) – In this game, we first get to meet Kyle Katarn. It was released pretty early and it was really cool to shoot stormtroopers. The darktroopers that you ended up fighting against was interesting as enemies, but they didn’t really come close to being as exciting as fighting someone wielding the force.

199: NBA Street (GameCube) – I really like couch multiplayer, a lot more than internet multiplayer. Playing two on two at home in the couch has always been a lot of fun and especially so in NBA Street. It’s basketball on steroids and you can do these insane finishing moves when you’ve built up the energy bar or something like that.

198: V-Rally 3 (GameCube) – V-Rally 3 was a lot of fun even though I didn’t give it enough credit at first. I kind of had this “I will play you out of spite” attitude towards V-Rally 3 from the outset, because one of the first tracks that you played was really annoying. When I got into it a bit, it was actually a lot of fun and a really good rally game.

197: Warcraft 2: Tides of Darkness (PC) – I was never very good at real time strategy games, but this was still a lot of fun. I don’t remember if I made it through all of the story myself, but I played it through to the end together with a friend and we also took on the expansion called Beyond the Dark Portal. The most fun we had with this was in multiplayer, though, and it was a lot of fun. We also made a lot of our own levels to try out skirmishes on.

196: Metal Storm (NES) – I don’t think this was released in Europe, but I got it on one of those pirated Japanese multi-cartridges. It’s a pity it wasn’t released over here, because it’s one of the most fun shooters I’ve ever played. You can shoot, jump AND reverse gravity at will. Plus you’re a badass robot and the backgrounds look really freaky.

195: Far Cry (PC) – This is an awesome game as long as you’re fighting humans. As soon as the game introduces the mutants, I think the fun factor takes a huge dive. But up until that happens, it’s a beautiful game that’s got some great action to it. The first game to really get jungle action just right, even though it’s kind of ridiculous that Jack Carver runs around in the jungle with a bright red hawaii shirt.

194: Unreal Tournament 2004 (PC) – This was the game that almost got me back into spending a lot of time on online multiplayer. The reason was that I liked the variety of the weapons and the maps were varied and beautiful, but most of all, it was fast-paced and if you knew what you were doing in terms of different jumping tricks and shortcuts, you had a definite edge over your opponents. Think about it, if you can get from point A to point B 30 to 60 percent faster than other guys, you dictate the flow of the game and that’s always been what I like. If I had gotten 100% into this and spent lots of time on it, I have no doubt that I would put it in my top 20 or somewhere around there. But for some reason I can’t put my finger on, it didn’t stick entirely. What a pity.

193: Pitfall (SNES) – Really fun platforming here that just had a great feel of movement and kinetics. I loved the jungle setting and the jumping puzzles.

192: Terminator: Future Shock (PC) – If it weren’t for bugs, this game would be a lot higher up on this list. Still, it is to this day one of the most impressive postapocalyptic game worlds I’ve come across. The driving sections were awkward, but the rest of the game was so tight and full of tension that it makes up for it. Hunter-Killer drones have never been more scary.

191: Donkey Konga (GameCube) – One of the most fun and frantic gaming experiences out there, except for maybe Dance Dance Revolution, is Donkey Konga on the more difficult songs. You go nuts trying to get all of it right and it’s a good feeling when you hit every “note”.

190: Puzzle Bobble (PC) – A classic LAN game for me and my friends, Puzzle Bobble worked perfectly when you had five minutes to spare if you’d been eliminated in another multiplayer game and you wanted to do somehitng. I have a bunch of old videos recorded from a few LANs and in most of them, you can hear the plopping of bubbles in the background.

189: Outlaws (PC) – I think this was the first cowboy FPS I played and to this day, I think it’s still the only one that’s been really satisfying for me. It was hyped for a long time before it was released and when it came, it was a slight letdown, but on the whole, it was a lot of fun.

188: Hitman: Codename 47 (PC) – The Hitman series is interesting because it was one of the first games that tried to move away from the standard shoot-everything-you-see mentality. Instead, it focused on thinking and being intelligent in terms of planning the hit and then executing it. The problem was that in most cases, the game wasn’t very obvious about what needed to be done and there were also a lot of bugs that meant that you had to finish a mission in a very particular way. It was still very fun though.

187: Dead Rising (Xbox 360) – Zombies are awesome and this game is too. It’s just too bad that the game has a damn time limit. It’s ridiculous, really. If it weren’t for the stress factor, this game would be one of the best on the 360 in my book. I’d like to have time to explore and have fun, but there’s always this pressure to go on and on and on and I just don’t like that. I know that you can unlock it, but I want it to be available from the start. Hammy “acting” and interesting characters. Jessie’s cleavage is just ridiculous and the different psychos that you need to take down are disturbing, but all in all, it’s the zombies that are the stars of the game. They’re not special at all, just shambling along slowly, moaning. But it’s the sheer amount of them that really makes the game. That and the ability to go through them with a lawnmower. That helps too.

186: Command & Conquer: Red Alert (PC) – Another smash hit multiplayer RTS that was a lot of fun for me and my friends. I really liked the single player too, especially the FMV sequences between the missions. The highlight is the one at the start when they kill Hitler. That “Ja, ja… Ich verstehe” comes right out of the blue.

185: Elite Beat Agents (Nintendo DS) – What makes this DS game so much fun isn’t really the gameplay, even though it is interesting, pushing the screen at the right moments and in the right way. No, what makes this game is the presentation. You’re introduced with a set of different people that have different problems. So what do you do? You send out three guys in suits who make the problems go away using dance. Yes, dance is the solution to everything. Then the way the stories are presented is just fantastic and incredibly campy in a good way.

184: Tetris DS (Nintendo DS) – I don’t think Tetris needs to be introduced. Tetris DS has Tetris and a bunch of variations on it. I really like the puzzle part and I’m a good way through all of the 200 puzzles in the game.

183: Kane & Lynch: Dead Men (Xbox 360) – Apparently this game is being made into a movie with Bruce Willis and Jamie Foxx. Foxx will play the guy in the picture. A psychotic white guy with a beard and a receeding hairline. Meh. Oh well, it’s actually pretty cinematic and that’s probably the best part of it. It has a fairly good storyline and that’s what keeps the game afloat, because the gameplay has a bunch of annoyances to it. Still, I like it okay, it was fun to play in co-op.

182: Far Cry 2 (Xbox 360) – Far Cry 2 is not a sequel to Far Cry that was mentioned earlier in this entry. Why it’s called Far Cry is beyond me. It just doesn’t make sense. But what the hell, it’s a good game, so fuck it. It has atmosphere coming out its ears and it’s one of the most beautiful games I’ve played. The problem is that it is too annoying. The time spent traveling is really annoying and the never-ending road patrols and guard points take you off your objective all the goddamn time. Fairly fun multiplayer.

181: Aquanox (PC) – I got this game with a graphics card that I bought, although I can’t remember which one. Anyway, the story is that the world has become toxic, so people have moved under water to survive. The point of this game is to “fly” around under the water in your ship, taking out other ships and bases. It had good control with a joystick and it was just beautiful. I could sit there staring at the rays of light streaming down from above, hitting the sand banks, for long periods of time. The action was pretty good too.

180: The Lost Vikings (SNES) – Classic puzzle game featuring the time traveling vikings Erik, Baleog and Loaf. They each had different abilities and attributes that forced you to use them in certain ways, switching between them to move forward in the level. My favorite thing about this game was the dialogue between the vikings at the start and end of every level.

179: Return to Castle Wolfenstein (PC) – Released back in the heyday at the end of the 90s, RtCW was a fairly good game that mixed awesome levels with really “meh” ones. I played it mostly because I had played Wolfenstein 3D so I didn’t really know what to expect. The whole occult thing was pretty ridiculous and a lot of the levels were just bland, boring WW2 stuff. However, there were some castle levels that were really exciting.

178: StarSiege (PC) – I’ve always had a soft spot for mech games and StarSiege is one of them. I was visiting a friend and he showed me a game called EarthSiege and it didn’t really register with me. Then when StarSiege was released (along with Tribes, which I never really got into), I remembered EarthSiege and bought the package. It’s a lot of fun, you can customize the mechs to some degree, but I never got into it as heavily as I did with the MechWarrior series. It was my friend who got me into that too, but more on that later on in the list.

177: Ghost Recon Advanced Warfighter (Xbox 360) – The ClancyVerse has this thing with Mexico in recent years, making games where Mexico is attacking the US and stuff like that. GRAW was a lot of fun when you got into controlling your squadmates, but a lot of it was awkward too. I didn’t like it nearly as much as some of the other Clancy games, but it was still nice. It has a really fun skirmish mode.

176: Star Wars: Dark Forces 2: Jedi Knight (PC) – Kyle Katarn returns and this time, he gets to use the force! The first part of the game was just so-so because you didn’t really have force powers and then when they were introduced, the game got more drive, because you wanted them all. The thing is, you could only get one side. You got to pick between light and dark side force powers. There were some neutral as well. The expansion, Mysteries of the Sith, was also a lot of fun to play.

Almost done with the first half of the list. One more part and then I’m there.

Israel oversteps its bounds, part 4645718134

31 May, 2010 4 comments

Picture not related to the incidentThis morning, Israel attacked an aid convoy on international waters. They boarded the convoy using helicopters and warships and when they met resistance, they killed 19 civilian people and injured upwards to 60 others. On international waters. The way I see it, in this case Israel is no better than the modern day pirates on the coast of Africa. They have once again stepped over the line and decided that they are above international laws, regulations and human rights. For the umpteenth time. It’s tiresome to see them get away with it over and over just because they have the United States of America at their heel at each and every turn. As an American, I would feel ashamed that my government is aiding a terrorist nation. Pathetic.

I’ve read through the reports in the Swedish press as well as the ones from CNN and Al-Jazeera. It’s interesting and a bit scary to see the differences in reporting. On CNN, it’s 10 people dead. On Al-Jazeera and in Sweden, it’s 19 dead, 60 injured. Go figure. Count on the US media to give a “nuanced” account. Pathetic.

I’m just tired that Israel keeps getting away with abominable acts like these. All the time, over and over. And then at the end of the day, they still have that wall that’s one of the biggest jokes on human rights in history. Especially in light of history. We’re supposed to learn from it. Israel clearly doesn’t learn from history, yet they keep playing the Holocaust Sympathy Card (that’s trademarked by the Jews, I believe) all the time. Pathetic.

What the US government does in this situation will be interesting, but I don’t expect anything groundbreaking. Obama, Biden or Clinton will say that it’s an unfortunate situation, bla bla bla yada yada yada. The usual. No repercussions. Israel will be able to keep taking a huge dump on the whole Middle-East and the international community as a whole and they will keep getting away with it. Pathetic.

I’ve never liked Israel, the state, and I probably never will. They break so many international laws over and over, yet continue to be coddled with. It’s goddamn pathetic.

Tone Matrix

29 May, 2010 2 comments

You need to check this out! It’s called the Tone Matrix and it’s great fun to fiddle around with. I have a loop going in the background right now that I created with a few clicks with this thing.

Tone Matrix

I ended up second in the tournament last night, again. Annoying, I should’ve won that game too. The only games I lose are the finals ๐Ÿ™‚ But fuck it, it was a lot of fun and that’s what’s important. Lots of good banter.

NHL 10 tournament tonight

28 May, 2010 3 comments

Quickie post. Tonight I will be playing in an NHL 10 tournament. Some friends of mine will be among the other contestants and there will apparently be six or seven guys I don’t know who will also participate. We did thisย  a few weeks ago and I ended up finishing second that time, losing a game I feel I should’ve won, but I hit a whole bunch of posts and the bounces just didn’t go my way. Trying again tonight! The setup is that we play on two PS3s next to each other at a store owned by a guy I know. It was a lot of fun the last time, so we’ll see what happens this time. The guy arranging it was talking about doing some sort of mini world championship, but if we’re 10-12 players, then a matchup of Canada against Belarus isn’t really fair. I also don’t like playing on the big ice in those games.

I expect it to be a whole bunch of fun and I’m usually pretty upbeat regardless of how it goes. It was a bit weird getting used to playing it on the PS3 the last time, but that transition should go smoother tonight. Wish me luck! ๐Ÿ™‚