Posts Tagged ‘RPG’
Over the past 2 years my passion towards gaming has dwindled, as has been evident by the lack of frequent updates on this blog. I figured it was just part of getting older; my priorities were changing and my interests were evolving. Then Mass Effect 3 came along.
I think Mass Effect 3 has had the effect on me I expected Skyrim to have. To give some perspective; I put 80 odd hours into Skyrim over the course of 3 months and never completed the main quest. I’ve had Mass Effect 3 for less than 4 weeks and have already put close to 40 hours into it.
My life consists of going to the gym, taking photographs, selling insurance and looking after my dog. It may not sound much but it keeps me busy. Very busy. I was beginning to give up hope that games would play on my mind as much as they did back in my gaming heyday, circa 2008. Then Mass Effect 3 came along.
Expect some game footage soon!
It’s hard to find time for gaming these days, especially RPGs. Particularly RPGs that boast 300 hours of gameplay. I made it clear I was concerned how much of an impact Skyrim would have on my life, but I’ve been very responsible with it, prioritising real life over the fabled hunt for dragons (also, a recent obsession with Dexter has probably helped curb my time spent in Skyrim). After playing the game for 3 months, I’m only 80 hours in. In any normal game this would be considered a ridiculous length of gameplay, but with Skyrim I’ve barely made a dent in it.
So yes, I’ve definitely got my money’s worth, and it is as wonderful as all the reviews would have you believe, but there is a pressing issue here. I am no where near finished with Skyrim, yet Mass Effect 3 is out tomorrow.
But first, back to Skyrim. Like I said, I’ve put about 80 hours into it, I’m a Level 20 Breton with a flair for destructive magic. I have an annoying companion, Lydia, who always gets in my way and blocks doorways. Mostly I’ve focused on completing miscellaneous quests, but about a week ago it dawned on me that I’ll probably never finish this game, and that if I don’t turn my attention to the main quest now, there’s a solid chance I won’t ever know what the bloody game is about.
Quite simply, there isn’t a single game I’ve ever played that has as much time-sink potential as Skyrim.
Since buying Mass Effect 2, it’s been the one game to solely consume my Xbox’ disc tray, which is why there’s been a distinct lack of chatter around here to do with anything other than Mass Effect 2. Hardly surprising, though, given it’s the much awaited sequel to one of my favourite 360 games to date. Even with its lengthy story (I’m currently 40 hours in and still have quite a few missions left/planets undiscovered), there’s rarely a moment my interest wavers and it doesn’t grasp 100% of my attention. Since it’s been available for a couple of months now, you’ve probably made your mind up as to whether you’re going to play it or not (and if you haven’t, the answer is yes, you do want to play it). Because of that, I’ll summarise my likes and dislikes as opposed to a full blown review.
Commander Shepard. Bioware did good by enabling those of us who had played the original to port our character over, but they stepped it up a notch by having all choices made in the original Mass Effect stored, thus certain aspects of Mass Effect 2 changing dependent on those. Not only that, but they reward those who have ported their character over with a little boost to stats. Bringing over a Level 54 Adept set me up at Level 3.
The original cast. It was nice to see familiar faces crop up in Mass Effect 2, even if recruiting most of them isn’t an option.
Romance plots. While the romance plots seem a little shallow, the option to forge relationships with members of your crew does appear to be there (although I’ve yet to have any raunchy sex scenes). I’ve been pursuing Miranda, and the attraction seems to be reciprocated. I also got drunk with the ship’s Doctor, but that didn’t seem to get me anywhere…
As always with a game that spans many hours, I like to geek out and share my initial stats and early progress status; details such as character class, level, hours spanned, and anything else worth mentioning.
With Mass Effect and Mass Effect 2, there is only one character you can command as the story’s protagonist, and that character is Lieutenant Commander Shepard (with varying degrees of customisation available). Thanks to the efficient devs at Bioware, Mass Effect 2 easily enables you to import a previous character from Mass Effect, with all previous plot and dialogue choices having been cached. I ported my second character, Chris Shepard, which in return gave me a nice boost to my stats. Thanks, Bioware!
On to the intel…
Chris Shepard is a level 8 Adept, an apathetic bastard who, given the choice, will usually go for the Renegade option in both dialogue and action. He was level 53 in my original playthrough of Mass Effect, which rounded his stats at Level 3 when I ported him to Mass Effect 2. A nice boost for jumping in on Insanity difficulty (which, so far, hasn’t been too insane).
My name is Ashley, and I’m a Dragon Age addict. You can assume from my Tweet that not only did I finish Dragon Age: Origins, but I was absolutely blown away by it, especially the ending. Which is funny, as I had approached this game with such apprehension. Why? Given the pathetic year of gaming I had experienced in ’09, I wasn’t quite sure my attention could hack a heavy Bioware RPG. I was wrong. By about 73 hours. Heck, I’ve probably done more gaming the past couple of months than I did the entire duration of 2009. Anyway, I’ve talked in some detail about Dragon Age, so I don’t want to reiterate anything that’s already been said, yet I still want to ramble on about what a beautiful game this is (of course, not in terms of graphics…).
Very few of my readers appear to be hardcore RPG fans, so it is safe to assume this post will largely go ignored. However, if any of you are reading this and remotely curious about the wonderful world of Ferelden, continue reading, because I’m determined to highlight how amazing this game is, even if it is only to one person.
What’s An RPG Without A Good Story?
Okay, so I told y’all (I really can’t get away with saying that what with my Scottishness) that I’d be whoring Dragon Age: Origins up until Mass Effect 2′s release, which is now only a mere 8 days away. Well, work and life are doing what they do best and getting in the way of some serious gaming, so I haven’t played as much of it as I would have hoped. I’m about 30 hours in, however, which has given me a good enough feel of the game to share my initial impressions. 30 hours in and this is initial impressions? I hear you cry. Yep, it’s the crazy, nonsensical world of Role Playing Games.
The Devil Is In The Details
In my eyes, a significant portion of what accounts towards a successful RPG is the detail. The devil really is in the details, and the sheer scope of thought that goes into forming the foundations of the world you’ll be spending so much time in never ceases to amaze me. My Dragon Age: Origins adventure as a City Elf, Buddeigh (do you see what I did there? Huh? Female Buddy the Elf?), is currently sitting at the 30 hour mark, yet I still find myself often overwhelmed as I navigate through a deeply rich and scripted world.
So says Cliffy B (and you can call me Rocky D for the duration of this post), design director at Epic, the studio responsible for… Wait, what’s that game? The one with chunky men equipped with meaty artillery. Uh… Gears of War! Yeah, Gears of War. Looks like Epic could possibly be making a shift in direction in regards to future shooters. What an interesting, albeit questionable, concept.
I think I speak for everyone when I say Epic can always be trusted as far as delivering action packed, brainless, run and gun shooters go. Therefore the mantra “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” springs to mind. However, are gamers becoming complacent with the linear concept of run, cover and shoot the likes of Gears supplies?
I’m a little fond of Japanese Role Playing Games, especially of the turn based variety. I like quirky characters, immersive story lines, secrets that can only be uncovered with 40+ hours of gameplay, and hunting for hidden treasures. Yes, I’m a geek. The next rainy day (or night, rather) that comes my way will see me begin Infinite Undiscovery, a game I had listed on my wish list way back in July. Before I begin, however, I want to turn my attention to all the other great JRPGs I’ve played on the 360, and while I have missed out on a couple so far, a lot of people still ask me what I’d recommend. Oh, and I must point out I won’t be going into any of the plot details here, simply because JRPGs generally follow the same, cliched story line, OK? So, in no particular order, let’s begin.
Enchanted Arms was the first JRPG I played on the Xbox 360. Despite the awful criticism it was met with (at the time my publication of choice was X360, and they awarded it an embarrassing 4/10), I still took my chances because there weren’t a whole host of other options at the time.