Posts Tagged ‘Diary’

The Importance Of Pink, Puppies & Kim Wilde In MGSV

Continuing a diary/review-in-progress of MGSV [official site], from the perspective of someone who hasn’t really played Metal Gear Solid before. There are no plot spoilers in this one.

Metal Gear Solid V is a videogame in which I travel around on a bright pink helicopter which blares Kim Wilde’s Kids In America from a loudspeaker. Then I go home to my bright pink oil rig in the Seychelles and roll around on the floor with a one-eyed puppy for a while, before delivering a savage and unprovoked beating to the men who work for me. They thank me for my cruelty, and demand I hit them harder.

11/10
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Seven Reasons Why MGS V’s Stealth Is A Joy

Continuing a diary/review-in-progress of MGSV [official site], from the perspective of someone who hasn’t really played Metal Gear Solid before. This entry contains possible spoilers for some early in-game mechanics, but no plot stuff.

I suspect the craziness of Metal Gear Solid V’s prologue is as much the ‘true’ MGSV as are the rather more sober missions, so I don’t want to making wild proclamations about how I’m now onto the real deal. However, the missions, with their wide-open stealth sandboxes, already feel like a reason to stay in the game, rather than just hoot uproariously at it from afar. The stealth is good. Good. And the game comes up with some smart, and funny, reasons why you would always want to play it as a stealth game rather than a straight shooter. And I don’t just mean the balloon-based animal abductions pictured above.
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A Bastard In Neverwinter: Part Two – Tipping The Tables

As I replay Neverwinter Nights 2, being as horrid as possible, I’ve noticed how much my year of playing a table-top D&D game is affecting my experience.

In the last year, I’ve begun playing my first ever real-life D&D game. We’ve the mighty Jim Rossignol as our Dungeon Master (DM), and alongside me at my dining room table sits RPS’s own Graham Smith and Marsh Davies. Together we adventurers from Far Lotus explore the lands in search of signs of an old god that Marsh’s bonkers zealot cleric Tiefling worships. And as someone who’s played RPGs since the 80s, it’s been quite an interesting process to finally learn from where it all came. It certainly influences how I’m seeing Neverwinter Nights 2 this time around.

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A Bastard In Neverwinter: Part One – Bastardly Beginnings

When it comes to reeling off the great RPGs, names like Baldur’s Gate, Planescape: Torment and Dragon Age: Origins are likely among the first to come to mind. Ask again and you’ll likely hear Pillars Of Eternity, Diablo II, Knights Of The Old Republic, Mass Effect 2… For some reason it takes far too long before the name Neverwinter Nights 2 gets a mention. But is that right?

Written by Chris Avellone, and created by Obsidian, the hugely ambitious sequel to BioWare’s Neverwinter Nights decided to not only redevelop the tools for allowing players to create their own D&D stories, but to put enormous effort into creating a unique Forgotten Realms tale of their own. I remember it as being a triumph. In fact, it’s one of three games I ever gave 90% in a decade on PC Gamer. But that was 2006, and it seems so forgotten now. How does it fair in 2015? I needed to find out.

Returning to it nearly a decade on, I decided the best approach would be to experience its tale of silver shards and evil invasions from the King Of Shadows in a very different way than before. I’d be evil.

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A Witcher 3 Diary, Day 6: Bloodied

Concluding – for now, at least – a short, primarily in-character chronicle of adventures in The Witcher 3. Please be aware that this entry contains spoilers for ‘The Bloody Baron’ line of sub-quests, though does not reference the wider story. Please also be aware that it covers subjects which some readers may find upsetting.

He’s a monster. Everything I know about him, everything he’s admitted to – I should strike him down where he stands. But all I want to do is put my arm around him and say how sorry I am.
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A Witcher 3 Diary, Day 5: Stream

Continuing a (mostly) in-character diary of my adventures in The Witcher 3. No spoilers in this one.

It’s in the trees. It’s coming. I’m coming. A grizzled thunderbolt, sprinting fury and hunger, a destination in mind but a supreme willingness to be distracted by anything en route. Snatch flowers, hurdle fences, charge and charge, looking for trouble, hoping for trouble.
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A Witcher 3 Diary, Day 3: We’re Going On A Bear Hunt

fear my gardening gloves

Continuing a (mostly) in-character diary of my adventures in The Witcher 3 [official site]. Probably contains spoilers. N.B. critical opinion & technical complaints are happening elsewhere on the site.

I’m going on a bear hunt.
I’m going to catch a big one.
What a beautiful day!
I’m not scared.

I’m also wearing nothing but my underpants.
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A Cities Skylines Succession Diary: The End

Sorry for the delay on concluding this – one person got behind, then we had a domino effect where everyone else was off-schedule, then we got distracted by a bumblebee and… Here it is, though: the final part of the Cities: Skyline succession game I’ve been playing with Jonathan Shipley and Dan Corns, in which we pass our savefile onto the next person whenever our shared city levels up. In this last part: so much death, and yet not enough.
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A Witcher 3 Diary, Day 1: Beyond The End Of The World

glaring eyes

Richard is handling opinions on The Witcher 3 [official site] (including tech issues and similar fun), but as a man without 200-odd hours to spare on questing, quaffing, sexing and beard-growing, I shall instead run a (mostly) in-character diary series covering my adventures in, presumably, just the earlier stages of CDP’s saucy roleplayer. But for the record, it runs OK if I turn Fancy Hair off but it has crashed twice so far.
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A Cities Skylines Succession Diary Part 3 – Firefighting

The penultimate part of a series in which three players take it in turns to manage and build up one Cities: Skylines settlement, passing the savefile onto the next person whenever the city levels up. Joining me in this endeavour are Jonathan Shipley and Dan Corns.

This time: roads, garbage truck gridlock, smell refutation and New New Dansville.

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A Cities: Skylines Succession Diary, Part 2: Necropolis

Continuing a series in which players take it in turns to manage and build up one Cities: Skylines settlement, passing the savefile onto the next person whenever the city levels up. Joining me in this endeavour are Jonathan Shipley and Dan Corns.

When last we left you, we foretold an apocalypse. Here’s how The Brown Plague took 1,600 lives and very nearly killed the entire city.
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Breaking History: A Crusader Kings II Journal – Part One

Let’s Play Crusader Kings II [official site]. Or rather, let’s watch Crusader Kings II play itself.

Partly inspired by the ongoing Civ V AI Battle Royale and partly by my own longstanding interest in the interplay of game mechanics without player intervention, I’ve decided to run a Crusader Kings II campaign, beginning at the earliest possible start date. I’ll be running the game in observer mode – that is to say, there will be no human player – and I’ve drawn up a set of rules to govern which parts of the world I’ll be observing most closely. Empires will rise, Kingdoms will fall. The mighty will end up rotting beneath carparks in Leicester.

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A Cities: Skylines Succession Diary, Part 1: Crimewave

Batman mod needed ASAP please

Cities: Skylines is great and all, but I must confess to being hamstrung by my imagination, or lack thereof. Once I’ve unlocked everything there is to build, I kind of run out of steam, because I don’t have a designer’s mind and complicated road systems scare me. But a friend, also playing the game and experiencing similar handicaps, had an idea: a succession game in which three of us take turns to co-operate on one city, passing on the savefile to the next person every time the city levelled up, and hoping something beautiful rather than catastrophic would emerge.

Given we’ve managed to suffer two major disasters (and bear in mind that this is not a game which usually invites much disaster) within the game’s earliest stages, so far I’m leaning towards catastrophic.

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A Ranger In Far Cry 4: Part Three – Taking A Bow

This is the third and final part of my diary of playing Far Cry 4 as a bow-toting ranger. Here are parts one and two.

By rights I should sit back from my desk, blow the foam from the tops of my bubbling test tubes, and loudly declare, “MY EXPERIMENT HAS BEEN A SUCCESS!” But as is so often the case with science, it would have been failure that produced the most interesting results. Failure led to penicillin, the high five, and the satsuma. I have no satsuma.

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A Ranger In Far Cry 4 – Part Two: Elephant Fishing

I’m attempting to play Far Cry 4 without using any guns. Because maiming people with arrows is noble. It began here.

To live the ranger lifestyle, it’s essential that I forage for my own food. And by “food” I mean “animal skins”, and by “forage” I mean “slice off”. My fashionable outer garments aren’t going to make themselves. So as I continue trying to play Far Cry 4 with only a bow and arrow, it makes sense to focus on the wanton destruction of local wildlife populations. Except for elephants. Elephants are my steed. From which I can kill other animals.

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Dragon Age: The Ferelden Scrolls #6 – Pockets

Continuing a Dragon Age: Inquisition diary. Spoilers once again.

The kleptomania’s out of control. In any new location, my first activity is to raid the place. Sure, sure, I’m the Herald of Andraste, I’m here to rescue you, blah blah, but first – what’s in your cupboards? There’s also a special spell I can cast to tell me whether there’s anything of value in the nearby vicinity, and I cast it incessantly. Even in the middle of a pitched battle I’m feverishly hoovering up any loot left by the fallen or casting my spell to check whether there’s anything hidden in the corner. People die because I’m rummaging through some spook’s innards in the hope there are a few coins or a piece of cloth in there somewhere.
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