Gears of War 2 is made of Win, lots of blood, and just a hint of cheese.
Picture this, if you will. You’ve just plugged a man in the chest with your shotgun, but he’s not quite dead, he’s crawling around on the ground, desperately pleading for a friend to rescue him. You then casually walk up to him, hold your trusty shotgun by the barrel, and take a swing at his head. Just like Tiger Woods would do.
Plus, there is just something both visceral and gratifying about sawing a man in half from his crotch to his face with a chainsaw/gun thing.
[Instert 16bit lightning strike and explosion here]
So I’m back from the MMO dead. Luckily, only a couple months of my life lost on this one.
As is customary, my website tends to suffer the most from these distractions, because why would I want to waste time here when I could be grinding for phat loots?! Unfortunately for Warhammer Online, the loots were lacking phat and the grinding kicked in way too soon. Back to farming my Xbox for achievements…
Maybe a post or two thrown in here just to keep the place on it’s toes. Speaking of toes, if this place has them, would they be webbed? [Badoom-cha] Thank you, I’ll be here all week, try the veal.
So today is the big day. Madden ’09 arrives. Incorrect cover and all. Yay.
It should be noted, that I despise the Madden football games.
Madden hasn’t been good since Madden ’92 on the Sega Genesis. When number 35 for the Bears (Neil Anderson) was unstoppable and number 84 for Kansas City (Willie Davis) was the fastest receiver in the game. My friend Joe and I played ridiculous amounts of that game. Then the ’93 version came out, and while it wasn’t horrible, it wasn’t as good as it’s predecessor.
I hadn’t played a Madden game again until the ’03 release on the original Xbox. Unfortunately, at that time I already had a taste of the football glory that was the 2K series. The 2K3 game blew Madden (and Microsoft’s own football attempt) out of the water. The animation was better, the gameplay was better, and the presentation was better. Madden was simply living off it’s reputation.
The 2K series would later become the ESPN series, but continued to be the superior game despite the fact that Madden continued to be the most popular. With ESPN 2K5 however, they decided to price the game to a point that even the die hard Madden fanboy’s couldn’t resist, $19.95 vs the standard game cost of $49.99. That game would be the last great football game ever made. Following that season, EA signed an exclusive contract with the NFL which allowed Madden to be the only game with actual NFL players and teams.
Since then, Madden has been putting out what equates to Madden ’03 with newer rosters. As opposed to the new rosters the games could update to anyway. Awesome.
Yeah, I’m an Achievement whore. I guess it’s the RPG geek in me. Achievements are like quests or gear or gold and they can be just as addictive to obtain as any other phat lewtz. The competitive side of me is a sucker for em as well. What better way of determining whom is better than whom than with arbitrary numbers?
Despite the brilliance of the Achievement concept, some developers appear to put as much thought into their implementation as someone who’s trying to write their name on the ground with their own feces. Here is my attempt at enlightening those responsible for these fecal accidents:
- Time spent != challenging. I’m all for Achievements that are so frustrating to complete that you end up despising every moment you are working for them. *cough* Little Rocket Man. *cough* Mile High Club. At least once you finally earn them, you feel you actually accomplished something few others could. However, Achievements that are “difficult” only because they require some ridiculous amount time to “achieve” only serve to quantify how sad our gaming lives really are. We don’t need that.
- Single player achievements should be possible to complete in one play through. Multiple playthrough’s to find some odd, hidden item in a level is one thing. Multiple playthrough’s because you have to complete the game on each difficulty level, independently, is another. Yes, Devil May Cry, you may lick my balls.
- Take it easy on multiplayer Achievements. If you have the remote inkling that your game is teh suck, don’t penalize the random person who picks up the game a year or two down the road only to find he’s the only one playing it online. The time spent complaint also applies here to a number of online Achievements. Gears of War + 10,000 online kills = seriously?
- Don’t outsmart your own game. If you’re gonna hide shit throughout a level, don’t allow a player to accidentally progress to the next area while at the same time locking them out of the previous area. Punishing people for a lack of clairvoyance only serves to grant them the clairvoyance to avoid your future games. Kung Fu Panda, you’re kung fu is weak.
I could probably go on forever here, but then I might convince myself that these Achievements are even more pointless than I already know they are, so I’ll just leave it at these last few thoughts. Well implimented Achievements can add value to the worst of games just as bad Achievements can add frustration to the best of games. If you are going to err, err on the side of less suck. No one will hate your game because the Achievements were too easy.
Due to artistic differences, me and my Rock Band band have been forced to part ways. I wanted to take the Rock Band band into strange new directions while they just wanted to play Rock Band. Since they were just dragging me down anyway, I’ve started my solo career. I think there may have been a little bit of shenanigans going on anyway as they have now replaced me with my supervisor.
Or…the less amusing, reality based version of the story…
It just so happens that the Rock Band competition my department is holding has been scheduled right in the middle of my upcoming trip to Florida. Not only am I now out of the running for the prizes, which we surely would have won. I suppose I’m gonna have to break down, give Dave back his stuff, and buy my own copy of the game and equipment.