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Showing posts from May, 2012

Geneforging: Not Restricted To Identity Theft Alone

Being the classic example of former college/university student become the chronically unemployed, my entertainment dollar aims for the frugal.  Keep your fancy blockbusters; keep your games that require a degree in computer rocket science to create, a 3D card outfitted with a space shuttle's heat sink to render, but have all the gaming intellectual depth of an inanimate carbon rod; I'm just a purist gamer who desires quality games on the cheap.

My latest acquisition is Spiderweb's Software's Geneforge series off of Steam for a price of $20 for five games.  With about 400 hours of play between them, it's a price that's both encouraged me to try to complete all five games in a row and also encouraged a surprising number of Lets Play videos throughout the Internet.  I've spoken before about playing Geneforge 4 (you know, before it was cool).  Now, I have a chance to play them all and see what I think of how the series has progressed.  So far, one down, one be…

Civilization, The Fifth

Tired of the nitpicks I've found for Warlock: Master Of The Arcane, yet desiring more of the same kind of gameplay, I succumbed to the temptation to shell out for Civilization V.  (If only I had not succumbed until a week later: I'd have saved about quite a bit of money when the Steam sale hit this weekend!  At least I got 75% off on the DLC that matters to me...)

Having not bothered much with Civilization since Civilization II or III, it turns out that I missed one of the major innovatory backlashes of gaming, as Civilization V sought to be a bit more accessible and consequently alienated a lot of Civilization fans by being considerably less deep (in some ways) than Civilization IV.  Now, normally I hate dumbing down of games, but I have to say that there are cases in which it is justified to take a game back to the drawing board and that this is one of those cases.  Addressing some of the more popular points:
They've either eliminated the major crashes and other obvious g…

Warlocks Don't Quite Master Magic, But Are Fun

My last major game binge time has gone to Warlock: Master Of The Arcane.   72-hours worth, as it would happen - not too shabby!  I wonder if TotalBisquit has done a "WTF is" on it... oh, hey, he has!

Well, seeing how TotalBisquit has already exhaustively described the game in the above video, I suppose I'll just give a summary and mention what I find so noteworthy about this game.

The Virtual Worlds' Failing

Gawd, I am so bored of everything right now.  When that happens, I get introspective, asking myself: if a game enthralled me a week ago, and it's the same game today it was before, then what changed in me that prevents me from enjoying that game now?  Usually, it comes down to a mental impasse; there's now a number of learned premises that undermine the foundation of the original reason I liked the activity.

Minecraft, in its basic unmodded form, is a sandbox above all else.  You dig up 3D blocks and build things out of them for the sheer joy of having built something out of 3D blocks.  If you want a goal, there's survival, followed by defeating the ender dragon.  But this is all very rudimentary: Minecraft, like most virtual worlds, lacks an all-important thing we have in life: context.  Ultimately, there's no greater backdrop, no real point other than to fuss about, perhaps invent your own point for yourself.

The mods I've been experimenting with lately got me so…

Invadvertant Beta Testing In Minecraftia

Starfarer was fun.  However, it's still rather in the alpha version.  While the combat is very solid, there's not a whole lot to do in the current version other than scenarios, piracy in the open-ended mode, or try out some mods.  I've decided to put the game on hold for new versions to come out so that I don't burn out from it too early.

So it was that I promptly went back to playing my choice of single player Minecraft mods... granted, while I say "playing," I think it's more accurate to say that I was beta testing the newer versions of these mods I've been trying to use.

Hardcore Minecraft Adventure Log 5-4-12

The earlier started games today (some in the wee hours before I hit the sack) ended mostly in testing phases (to discover how to restore the spawns as discussed in the last entry).  One of them ended to a Milleniare bug: the Japanese village I was assisting failed to save properly and went inactive.  I decided (unfortunately after deleting that saved game) that if that happens again I'll just ignore it and find another settlement, trying to remove the broken one with a wand of negation if I find it.

This last game I prepared to be quite epic by taking a full two game days to survey a large continent, finding about eight Milleniare villages (four of them in the same hamlet) before claiming an abandoned fort for my own.  Things were going pretty swimmingly. I had set up a Thaumcraft crucible and infuser in a tainted area simply to get myself those nice Boots of Striding.  I had found a great tunnel leading far down.  I had found several stacks of redstone.  I spent quite a bit of ti…

Hardcore Minecraft Adventure Log 5-3-12

Two more intrepid Minecraft explorers met their fate.  The first perished to digging down through obsidian into lava and then having the water he placed form obsidian OVER him: never dig down.  The second due to being ambushed by a Mo' Creatures tiger - it seems iron armor alone is not sufficient to daunt their claws when they have the drop on you because the tigers attack very rapidly.

However, the second Minecraft game I started on 4.28.12 went rather well.  This is thanks in part to having some air pirate benefactors who neglected to post guards at their forward ram (or gun or whatever-that-was) array, resulting in ludicrously easy access to iron and a few blocks of glowstone.
Although I eventually earned functional immortality in terms of having extremely-well-enchanted armor and weaponry in this game, I decided to abandon it last night because of a few key reasons:
I initially had set up in a small house built for me by the Hindu villagers, and decided to relocate.  Realizing…