The Sims invade FIFA

•09/17/2010 • Leave a Comment

That’s the first thing I thought when I tried the demo for FIFA 11.

First thing I did was choose my team (and since I’m following my man David Villa, I chose Barcelona).

By the by, they are now probably the most unstoppable team in the Spanish League, let alone league football. Villa, Messi, Iniesta, Puyol, Pique, players at their prime and at their peak, all playing together.

But I digress.

Every year, we’re treated to a new FIFA game, a new Madden game, new NHL, a new sports game. And every year, gamers complain because it’s the same game again, just for that year.

And honestly, with FIFA 11, I thought this would happen. How could you possibly improve on what FIFA 9 and FIFA 10 had already improved on without just adding a bunch of fluff?

I decided to really look into what they changed, and so as I said, I went straight into the squad line-up to take a look at Barcelona’s new set up. First thing’s first, Mr. Villa was dead center (and I squeed like a school girl, because alas FIFA 10 had not been updating and I had to play with Valencia to play with Villa). Interestingly enough, I grew to like Valencia thanks to this, so I try to follow them as well, but once again I digress.

The point was, as I looked at Villa’s name, I noticed icons next to it, and I assumed this was the new personality traits EA had been going on and on about.

I looked into them, and although I can’t remember exact names off the top of my head, I noticed stuff like Villa being a able to score from distance, and being good with the ball, etc.

Some of the defenders, like Puyol, had traits that were about how they were tacticians, or had good vision, or where fast.

These seemed like arbitrary traits, but then I actually got into the game.

It makes a difference.

Actually, quite a difference.

Compared to the other defenders, I felt Puyol had power, and was able to make plays and get the ball rolling into the offense much better than normal.

Although Messi is amazing, I felt that Villa provided more opportunities to score just from his positioning and his traits. He handled the ball closer to his feet, and thus I was able to squeeze through and pull off shots I normally couldn’t with greater ease.

It wasn’t just that he was a forward, and thus could make these shots, I felt that he specifically had he ability to be a playmaker just because he had the traits to do it.

The other forward, Pedro, just felt like he could move the ball forward, and maybe make some shots.

It was just little things that made it feel like each player was different. Villa and Messi, without me even doing tricks, would do small tricks with their feet, getting the ball into open areas and firing off shots.

It was actually quite enjoyable. I felt that Villa was now able to get shots off easier because he was given the tools to do so.

I made my first goal from a header, and it looked oddly similar to the header Villa got off in the match against Racing. It’s possible that reality is slowing seeping into a soccer sim. Which is awesome.

Another “realism” bit they threw into this game was the full, 360 fight for the ball. Now, instead of just being a lateral fight for possession, you actually fight at any angle to get the ball. This made for a lot of pushing, falling and quick recoveries if you were tackled. One thing that always frustrated me in FIFA 10 was the tackling was NEVER a guarantee of keeping the ball in possession. If you tackled away from the lateral fight for the ball, you ended up with a stray ball that normally was picked up by the opposing team, even though you just fought for 20 minutes to get it back.

Now, if you tackled, 9 times out of 10 you can gain possession and start your attack. Now if you slide tackled, you’ll actually get up to get it, unlike FIFA 10 where you would lay their and enjoy the sunshine.

The game, overall, does feel a lot more realistic, and it’s to the point where they should stop.

I love realism as much as the next guy, but I have been noticing that this game is a little harder than FIFA 10 just because of how real it really feels. Scoring is a little more difficult, and the 360 fight for the ball makes it so that possession stays about 50-50… then again, I was playing against Chelsea, and then Real Madrid, which are not push over teams and have plenty of traits of their own.

I liked it though, and I actually can’t wait for it to come out, but where will they go from here? This seems like a pretty good stopping point for realism, so what comes next?

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Anonymity.

•09/13/2010 • Leave a Comment

Here at TBB, I like to think that I don’t just talk about gaming, but also issues relating to gaming.

I had met and hung out for a while with a good chunk of gamers, and we’re really not a talky bunch. As a matter of fact, I could never imagine being gay and a gamer, as that would just explode into a fireball of ignorance.

This occurs, I guess, because of our dreaded internet spawn, anonymity.

Funny word, serious consequences.

With anonymity, I see a lot of things in gaming that just out right disgust me. It caused me to become frustrated with WoW, and quit, way back in the day.

It’s why I can’t believe I even touched Modern Warfare 2 let alone played it for 2 prestige levels.

It’s why I try to avoid, like the plague, most games with some kind of focused, objective based multi-player.

Mostly.

I can’t help that certain games are just amazing, and must be played multi-player.

For example, I love WoW, and I actually enjoy most of the battlegrounds…

But then… well, then we get the so-and-so who decides that “well, clearly it’s not me who failed, since this is a group game, but everyone else individually!”

And things like that rub me the wrong way.

See, I’m one of those honor and integrity guys, or at least I try to be, in real life and in games.

I mean, granted, I fail, A LOT. I’m actually more of an asshole now then ever, but for some stupid reason, I still try to be a somewhat decent human being, even in games.

But just like in real life, decent human beings get shit on as much as possible.

I was running around trying to get my Ironforge reputation up by doing the low level quests near Ironforge (for those of you who had that all go over thier head, just bear with me for a bit, it’ll make sense.)

There was a low level running around, and I was trying to stay out of his way, as I was just there for a specific reason. But Mr. Gnome decided to run around and get in trouble, and then yell at me to help him.

So I did.

No biggie, even when he did it like 3 times. I helped him, and started to move on. Then I got a whisper (edited for exact wording and to protect the innocent):

Gnomey McGnomster: You should really work on your gearscore (in case you don’t feel like clicking that, gearscore is basically a numerical representation of how good your gear is).

Allux (that’s me): No thanks, I’m good!

Gnomey McGnomster: I’m just saying, I have a shaman who has more than 5.5k gearscore.

Allux: Good for you!

Gnomey McGnomster: w.e

What does this have to do with anything, you ask?

Well, first of all, this gnome had no real reason to talk to me as if he was my teacher and confidant. I helped him when he didn’t need it, and I even tried to leave him alone so he could enjoy this game in peace. He decided, in his anonymity, to try and tell me what’s what, and how this game should be played.

Did he know a thing about me? Did he know my reason for being there? For having a low gearscore? The fact that I haven’t run raids because I’m playing with two friends, and I don’t WANT to raid because if the very frustration that was pissing me off with him?

Nope, because of anonymity.

Because he was well hidden away on his little character, he could say whatever he wanted, not knowing my background or what my history was.

It’s WORSE than when we see someone walking on the street. In most cases, you can tell when someone is having a bad day even when you’ve never seen that person in your life. You can excuse lapses in memory, stupid decisions, and just general human flaws.

Or can we? Although I like to think that this is exclusive to gaming, it seems that the world in general runs this way now… “Oh, I don’t know them? Fuck them!”

“Oh, that waiter gave me extremely shitty service? They must fail at life! They couldn’t possibly be an amazing singer, an amazing dancer, a humanitarian, a trivia nut who knows every song written by Toto and their lyrics, a hardworking mom, a hardworking dad, someone who just broke up with their significant other and or the love of their life. No way!”

And again, I’m trying not to be hypocritical, I find myself doing the same thing.

“Man, so and so sucks, why do they even play this game?!”

But at the end of the game, I realize that it really could just be their bad day, it really could just be a lonely human being on the other side of a computer screen who’s only comfort is WoW, and doesn’t necessarily WANT to be good at it.

Even with all the idiots like Mr. Gnomey up there that I’ve met, I have honestly met a few people in WoW, and other games, who honestly loved the game for the game. And it’s something I forget, something I lose when I get wrapped up in being “good” at whatever I’m playing.

Can this translate in to real life? Can you honestly run through life being happy for what you can do, even if it’s not the best? Is it possible to find someone who honestly understands that you are trying your best, and are playing the game for the sake of it being a game?

Am I still talking about gaming?

Exclusivity.

•09/01/2010 • Leave a Comment

Joy of joys yesterday, as I was finally, FINALLY able to purchase and begin playing Castle Crashers.

Two years later.

The above line should not be read as sarcastic, or angry, or with any other negative emotion in your face.

I am totally okay with being able to play Castle Crashers two years after its release date without having to drop money on an Xbox.

No, this is not a flame war, I am also totally okay with the Xbox. I like the Xbox. If I were rich man (do do do do do do… hmmm, doesn’t work in text) I would have all three consoles, and every game known to man for each.

But I am not. And I don’t. So the ability to finally play Castle Crashers made me fairly excited, and got me thinking about exclusivity.

Oooh, I shiver when I say that word. Exclusivity… there it is again!

Exclusivity made it so that long, long ago, I couldn’t play the original Bioshock because, GASP, it was a Xbox exclusive.

Anyone else remember those days?

It seems that developers are finally starting to realize that gamers, as rabid as we are, are also real people without Yachts.

Well, mine’s in the shop.

Anyway, the rest of ya’s don’t have Yachts, and having to continually drop money on consoles, plus games, plus a little bit of our sanity, makes for a lot of broke, tired and Yachtless gamers.

Okay, I’ll stop with the Yacht.

The point is, lately I’ve had the ability to play many things I wouldn’t have been able to had it not been for these developers finally realizing that gaming has entered a new age.

The age of cross platforms.

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game did this. It was a timed exclusive, meaning that us PS3ers got it first, and then Xbox got it later.

I’m pretty sure that Xbox users didn’t wait two years though.

Many other games just seem to be following suit, although interestingly enough, it seems to only go from Xbox to PS3, and not the other way around.

I have heard nothing about stuff like inFamous, Little Big Planet, ModNation, or any other PS3 exclusive going to Xbox.

Maybe our games suck?

Or maybe they’re just that good.

Whatever the case, it looks like PS3 users will be getting Mass Effect 2 in the first months of 2011.

Awesome.

I even heard that they’re going to set up the PS3 version of Mass Effect so that you never even have to have touched Mass Effect to understand what’s going on.

Whoa.

What is the future of gaming? I’m quite sure that no company wants to give up their selling point for their system.

PS3 doesn’t want to lose LittleBigPlanet… Xbox doesn’t want to lose Gears of War. It just makes sense… but maybe, just maybe, we’ll get a bunch of other great games without having to buy another console just to do it. Because $15 is much better than $215 (or so).

I need that money for my Yacht anyway.

Epic Mickey looks epically epic… EPIC!

•08/25/2010 • Leave a Comment

EPIIIIIC!

But no really, this game is looking… killer.

Gamescom trailer!

I’ve never been one for Disney, as a matter of fact, I love reading about the dark side of a lot of the stuff in Disney, but damn does this look good.

This is the REAL Mickey Mouse, back in the day when PC (political correctness) did not exist.

Watch some of those cartoons from back in the day… basically, Mickey was looking for some ass, and picking fights with what appears to be a bulldog.

Or something.

Clicky example.

Classic clicky!

Now, the wonderful world of  “gritty” and “mature” has entered what was already kind of “gritty” and “mature” back in the 20’s.

Man, the 20’s were awesome.

Anyway, the trailer looks like it’s taking a very normal approach to Mickey. No cutesy stuff, but at the same time it isn’t trying to pull away from the Mickey Mouse we know and has been skewed.

I’ve never been a fan of the Wii. Besides like… Super Smash Brothers Brawl, I don’t play it because it just seems like a glorified gameboy to me.

There hasn’t been a game that has just attracted me to the system. I mean, I might be wrong, there might be some fun stuff, but every time I’ve played the Wii, my attention span lasts for about 2 minutes, and then I kind of want something heavier.

Well, unless Epic Mickey is ported to the PS3, it looks like I’m going to be a proud Wii owner soon!

WOOHOO!

I have one qualm though… so far it’s looking pretty awesome but what about gameplay?

From this video I feel that there isn’t any freedom on what you paint. Then again, that might just be because it’s the opening level, or near the opening level. Also, it only appears like you have one kind of paint and thinner. I assume that you’ll get more later, so I’m holding out for some more interesting game play.

I did like the Steamboat Willie section, as it was a nice nostalgia, as well as an interesting sidescroller (which will never get old to me).

But do I really want to play 200$ something or more just to play a sidescroller when I have Scott Pilgrim, or Castle Crashers (sooooon)?

Not really.

I might have to give this a try on a Wii somewhere before I actually go out and buy a Wii, since there is also the Playstation Move coming soon, and well, honestly I’d rather have that than a Wii.

Let’s hope someone decides to port this to the PS3, then it’ll be TRULLY epic.

More good stuff later, I have a bunch of WoW videos I hope to be posting soon, since I got my Netherdrake (I know, 3 years late) and some other interesting three manning of low level Northrend instances.

Yay fun!

It’s just a game… or srs biz.

•08/18/2010 • Leave a Comment

Now that I’ve started WoW back up, I’ve also been following along with all the new stuff Cataclysm will be adding to the fray.

I think one of the biggest changes that Blizzard is making to the series is the talent points system… and let me tell ya, there are people screaming bloody murder because of it.

You can read the full deal here, but the long story short version is that Blizzard is trying to streamline talent trees so that people can feel like the type of specification they are trying to be, such as Arms Warrior, or Feral Druid, or Best Master Hunter, right off the bat… without having to slog through worthless points, or 50 something levels.

There is a lot of good I can see that comes of this, but at the same time, I worry for the customization thing that we gamers love to death… bro.

Let’s start with the bad, since negativity is a fine way to lead into anything.

I think one of the big problems with this system is that they quite literally shove you into a tree, and keep you there. If you decide you want to be a BM Hunter, that’s IT. You are a BM Hunter until you hit 70.

Although that’s fine and wonderful for new people (maybe), people who play games a lot like to have a choice on whether they stick with a set talent tree, or switch to something to try out a new strategy.

Granted, on my Hunter, I went full 51 points into BM before I switched over to Survival, so something like this doesn’t phase me in the slightest.

But I can definitely see how some people will be shitting bricks because of this change. Someone mentioned in the comments in the above page that some of the 51 points in different trees are just worthless. And I definitely saw this back in the day with my Feral Druid. They fixed that later, but damn was the 51 point talent for Druids horrendous.

Also, I’m not sure how Blizzard is going to deal with carbon copies. Literally, every BM, Survival, Marksmanship Hunter will be EXACTLY THE SAME, until the much higher levels.

I think Blizzard is trying to get new people out of the lower levels faster, but still, I see this being a problem as the game progresses.

I think being locked into your tree is a problem, but maybe this isn’t the end all beat all. There is a definite possibility that they will change this as the testing rolls on.

I also agree with one comment on the forum that mentioned Feral druids and their talent trees. I know that Howler, my Feral drood had MANY points in Restoration, as I used things like Omen of Clarity and whatnot. How is a Feral druid going to survive in just one tree? I find that ridiculous.

But what about the good of this system? Well, I can see this definitely removing some of the monotony of leveling. Almost every level will give you something interesting now, and you don’t have to wait as long to use interesting moves.

I think if I could Bestial Rage at level 10 with my Hunter, I would enjoy that highly… even if that seems kind of ridiculous (word of the day I suppose) to me.

I think one of the BIGGEST positive of this change is that now, you no longer have to shove points into filler talents just to get to a talent you want. Once I hit 70 on my hunter (click that), I wanted to go into a few of the areas in Survival… I mostly just wanted Hawkeye and some of the trap talents.

Well, I ended up having to put points in Improved Tracking, which is utterly useless in my opinion. It’s nice for instances (but not that nice), but as a whole, I would have loved to have used those points in something else.

I will say, however, that Blizzard hasn’t really let me down yet. I wouldn’t be playing this game again if they sucked at what they did *coughModernWarfarecough.*

Back, maybe for good.

•08/16/2010 • Leave a Comment

Classes started today.

I’m still in school?!

This blog almost died. Almost.

But with school starting (see above), and boredom in my class inevitably sinking in, I’ve decided to try this little deal again.

I have missed, a LOT of talking, ranting, praising, and crying about games. And trust me, since my last post, there have been a SHIT ton of games that have come out. And not only that, but controversies, drama, excitement and disappointments that come along with them.

Will I be talking about those?

You bet your ass I am!

Well, maybe.

I really don’t know where to start, so I suppose I could start with what I’m currently playing:

WoW.

I know right? Soooo 2005.

But yes, I’ve started playing WoW again. Started from scratch with a friend (Twiiiiiins) and we’re now… well, see for yourself:

Click it!

We even got a second friend (you might know them, they’ve written on this thing before) to get sucked into the Recruit-A-Friend deal, so I’m rockin’ a rocket.

Pictures later, maybe?

The main reason for this sudden re-entry into the World… of Warcraft?

Star Wars: Old Republic.

Since that won’t come out until at least next year, this is a nice substitute. Although, I find myself enjoying the game much more than I did back in my raiding days, so exciting eh?

So yeah, what next?

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Game.

Gloooriuos game, especially if you are a fan… of well, anything fun. Gaming, movies, 8-biting, side-scrolling, fighting, midi music… love… you name it, the game hits on it. There is something very satisfying about the K.O. when you beat a boss, that same satisfaction I get when I make those same two letters pop up in Super Street Fighter IV.

I still play that?!

It’s a really good game when you’re too lazy to pop in a Blu-Ray, don’t have enough time to pop in said Blu-Ray, or you feel that Ramona’s ex-boyfriends  (exes, excuse me)  haven’t gotten enough of a beating.

Or you like blond, half-ninja chicks (Roxxxiiiiiieee!)

I’ve also been dabbling in some Starcraft II, but my computer won’t stop gasping and wheezing when I try to play this thing, so I’ve limited it to… well, not much. Besides, I’m already Blizzard’s bitch, I think playing two Blizzard games at one time is a bit much.

So yep, I’m back.

Crap…

The interwebz is serious business…

•03/30/2010 • 1 Comment

People online suck.

I know, it’s rare.

For the past… forever… in Modern Warfare 2, there have been a mass deluge of idiots. And when I say idiots, I mean, bold, italic, underlined, different color IDIOTS.

Yeah.

I guess that one of my issues with this is that the arguments are standard (and unimaginative) and no matter what the outcome, there is always someone complaining.

Always.

ALWAYS.

Mainly, when playing something like Modern Warfare 2, it’s a complaint of the game mechanic. In this example, it’s “camping.” I actually had a player on the opposite team complain that I was camping, even when they won, because he happened to find me and kill me from behind, while I was prone.

Oh, so I can’t go prone now?

Camping is one of those issues that is just a moot point to me. I sometimes find myself complaining about it, but I find a way to kill said camper. And if I really have a problem with the camper, I camp myself!

It’s GENIUS!

And honestly, unless you’re playing a map like Wasteland or Derail, camping is a dangerous game. You run the risk of getting barely any kills, or getting killed in the process.

To start nerd raging because I “camped,” even when you WON? Nah, I’m good, go to hell.

My next big pet peeve is those who complain about in game mechanics, related to weaponry or anything like that.

When someone complains about Th3MisterX using the heartbeat sensor, on a hardcore match… I then facepalm and shake my head.

Please, learn to Ninja.

The conversation with this idiot then proceeded something like this (paraphrased for comedic effect.)

Me: Are you seriously complaining about the heartbeat sensor?!

Idiot: I’m not complaining, I’m just saying you should play Call of Duty 4, the greatest game in Call of Duty history, I would show you what’s what there, durpa, durpa, duuuuuurrrr…

Me: Dude, I went 20 and 13 with the Mini-Uzis, and most of those kills were you, please shut the hell up.

Idiot: That’s cuz you were using the noob screen [Ed note: I believe that’s what he was calling the heartbeat sensor].

Me: You [lots ‘o expletives here], I was the guy with the MINI UZIS, who shot you repeatedly in the face, please learn to not suck.

You could say I was fanning the flames, but really, it was more like fanning the knowledge.

See what I did there?

“Hey Machombie!” you say to me, gleefully looking for a way to make me look stupid, “They’re just trolls, and obviously it worked because you’re complaining about it now!”

Oh no, no sir, I honestly do not believe that these guys are trolls. I believe, that they honestly believe, this game is LIFE, and that if you don’t play the way their fractured mind plays, that you should be thrown into a pit filled with Barbie Fashion Show and Bratz: Rock Angelz (look those up, they’re real games).

Honestly, I’ve dealt with enough stuff throughout the day, with school, work, people, hobos, news programs with dumb people and whatnot, that I just want to sit down, pull out my RPG, and create virtual havoc.

Instead, I have to listen to what is clearly an opinionated (more so than me apparently), angry child complaining because he won’t stop RUNNING AT A GUY WITH A GUN.

Balls.