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E3 – Microsoft Conference – The things I liked

Hello everyone and welcome back to the old me that actually watch E3 news and blog about it! Just watched the whole Microsoft Conference live, and that means XBOX 360 and Kinect. Following is the list of things that gets the thumb up from me.

1. Tomb Raider
I just love the look of this. Me and my brother was watching it and we bought nodded to his comment: This feels like Resident Evil 4 did when it came out at first. He hit the nail on the head, it really does feel like a new beginning for Tomb Raider, and in a great way! The in game presentation we just saw started with Lara being captured and trapped in a cave. Plenty of action, new look and feel and a style that will redefine how see Tomb Raider. I love you new Lara, if the game is as good as your new style, this will be a huge hit.

2. Minecraft On xbox 360!
It’s true! Notch you little bugger! Getting deals with huge companies like Microsoft without telling us before hand. You sneaky man. I love Minecraft, don’t play it much but I love it, and the fact that this will make the game even bigger. I don’t mind it, don’t mind it at all. As it is now, Minecraft on console will be exclusive for Xbox 360. Oh and also, you will be able to control the game with kinect… don’t know why that would matter…

3. Modern Warfare 3
I love the game series so I have to mention it, but really, honestly? It was one of the less exciting Call Of Duty game presentations. Still want the game though.

Let us continue with the less interesting moments and parts…

1. RYSE
Have you heard of it before? You know what it is? Didn’t think so. Go go games about Rome!

2. Kinect
So much Kinect!? It feelt like any movie trailer right now ending with the words NOW IN 3D! Either they’re having problem selling the damn thing or they are just very happy about having it. Don’t know what it is. But most games showed was about the whole Kinect business. Don’t care for it.

3. Halo 4
This is the start of a trilogy apparently that will keep the Halo series going. I’m sorry, great looking trailer. But… I’m just not interested

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New Tomb Radier Trailer + Comment

How can we not love you now Lara Croft? They have taken us back in time to see the start of a marvelous traveler. I must say they’ve also made one of the best trailers I’ve ever seen. To show of what they’ve created, the thoughts of a new Lara and the world she will be thrown in to. Tomb Raider will finally be redefined and reworked, the game really needed it. I loved the first few games, but lately it’s been a bit too much of the good stuff. To see a new setting, a new feel and a new main character is lovely. Thank you!

Alice: Madness Returns – Thoughts on Madness

How can you not love it! I’ve always been a huge fan of the subject madness and insanity, when it comes to games or any kind of entertainment like books or movies. Not only because of the weird things that can happen or take place, but also because of how they portrait the human mind. The latest call of duty even touched on the subject of brainwashing and how this showed up to the main character as visions and planted memories.

Silent Hill 2 is also game that intrigues me. “Everything” in that world was based on the main character James, memories, thoughts, feelings and even his own subconscious. It’s one of the games that I still return to forums from time to time to see what kinds of discussions are going on, or just read up on old ones. How the nuns is about his sexuality, pyramidhead being a creature he summons upon himself to punish him for what he done. IT IS AWESOME.

Alice: Madness Returns seems to have a lot of these hidden meanings as well, or at the very least I hope so. I hope they will let the community find small bits and pieces in the game that explains Alice and her state of mind without revealing it all in the story. It may be that, or it will just be a insane world where Alice uses her knife (and other weapons) to pass through obstacles. Either will be fine, in a way, I guess..

So why did I post all this? Becuase I’ve just seen the latest trailer ofcourse! Enjoy!

BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger Review (xbox 360)


If you don’t understand it by now, I love this game. BlazBlue is what I always wanted in a fighting game. It got a great and vast story, good character design (visually and unique when it comes to abilities and basic attack), 2D and well pretty much everything.
I was one to miss out on what guilty gear was, mostly cause I was never really in to Beat Em’ Up games back in the day and once I tried it, BlazBlue was also there and caught my eye and attention a lot more. My love for BlazBlue started when me and a couple of friends had an all out gaming night, of course a lot of Vs. was being played and this was one of them. I’ve never been great at these kinds of games but seeing the colorful design work and the fact that it’s 2D really dragged me in. At the time the game hadn’t been released in Europe yet and as soon as I found it was coming, I pre-ordered.

Okay enough of my short but very (not so) interesting story, and let’s get to the game itself.

THE STORY
What really drags me in to the BlazBlue universe is how they created a great story and a story mode to play it out. Every character got a storyline that adds up to a great big picture that will be revealed piece by piece. You can even decide to go different paths throughout the story and it will change the outcome of it, and every character got one “real” ending that you’re supposed to find. Finding every possible path and dialog in the story will also reward you in the end.

It doesn’t end there though, every character have about 110 different dialog pieces each, that is used within battles, this is huge, and it changes depending on who they fight, so it’s always interesting to see what they will say, and it’s most often connected to the story and the characters relation within it.

For people that enjoy the more classis type of game play (arcade) where you battle your way through different opponents, that’s always available, and even here you will be given short story related talks between characters. They are not as detailed and deep, but it will give you a basic understanding of the story (if you play it through with all characters).

Why I decided to talk so much about the story and depth around it, is because it is something that is lacking in so many other games like it. When I play this game I don’t understand why other game creators don’t work as much on the story and character design around it, it’s something that should be done more often, cause it’s not only more of the game, but it’s also very rewarding for players that sit down with a beat em up just to play it for fun. I can honestly say I’ve never spent as much time in front of a fighting game that I have with BlazBlue.

THE FIGHTING
When it comes to the fighting, I’m honestly going to admit that I’m not the best fitting person to review it. I’m not very skilled (working on it though), and I can only tell you how it is from a more casual view, which isn’t bad in itself I guess.

The characters all have different play styles, and as a new player you will quickly realize which of them needs a bit more combo work and which of them which simply needs button mashing (Noel being a great example). Even the characters that are considered beginner heroes have a lot of combos and abilities that can be worked with for more experienced players.

It’s a real joy to learn about each character in the game and trying to master them is not only rewarding but fun! For more on the battle system, I’m going to give IGN some credit for a quick and easy review on it:

ONLINE
The network mode that’s put into this game is great. The ranked matchmaking sadly won’t match you against players your own level (not what I’ve noticed anyway), but you can easily host game rooms where up to six people can join in the fun. The room can have several different settings such as number or rounds, round time, rotation set up etc. The way it works is that two players fight each other while the whole room can still chat with each other discussing the action. After the current battle new players will be picked to battle depending on the room set up.
You as a player can also level up, by winning games and completing different requirements like not being damaged and such.

GOOD
+ Great Story
+ Character Design
+ Much to find and unlock
+ 2D

BAD
– Few playable characters
– 2D

/Nurgle
@Start And Select
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Lord of the Rings: War in the North

Some games just tend to sneak up on you over night, all of a sudden there is a trailer, a rumor, a release date, and you didn’t even notice when the company started working on the title in the first place. Lord of The Rings: War in the north, is that kind of title. All of a sudden I sat with a trailer in front of me and was unsure if this was going to be the new LOTR: Conquest, or Real Time Strategy game, what was going on here?

I bet some of you didn’t know about this either so here goes, after some digging:

“Electronic Arts released The Lord of the Rings: Conquest in January and as it turns out, it was their last crack at the franchise. Their rights to produce Lord of the Rings video games have expired.”
(http://www.cinemablend.com/games/EA-Loses-Lord-Of-The-Rings-16125.html)

“The Saul Zaentz Company owns the worldwide exclusive rights to The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. They have a standing agreement with Warner Bros. over the video game rights so Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment is probably going to be the publisher on whatever this game is.”
(http://www.cinemablend.com/games/Lord-Of-The-Rings-War-In-The-North-Revealed-18358.html)

“Warner Bros. has just announced Lord of the Rings: War in the North, an action RPG due on PC, Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 in 2011.

Developed in association with Middle-earth Enterprises, War in the North is said to explore both original and familiar narrative elements based on both the literary and motion picture content from The Lord of the Rings.”
(http://www.computerandvideogames.com/article.php?id=239603)

It seems as though I’ve missed out on a game. Maybe it’s my lack of interest when it comes to the LOTR games in general, who knows. Will be interesting to see where this leads to at least, sadly it’s not a new RTS. It’s gonna be created by Snowblind Studios (Baldurs gate), and the game will stay true to moments and stories from the books, interesting.

/Nurgle
@Start And Select

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Vanquish Trailer

From the creator Shinji Mikami that also created the Resident Evil series, comes a new game action packed game. Atleast that’s what we’ve been told, a near future conflict between USA and Russia and robots, and weapons and action and… let the trailer sell you the game hm?

/Nurgle
@Start And Select
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World At War – Map Pack 2

So the new Map Pack has been released for World At War. Guess what? Im not gonna get, after beeing dissapointed about the first map pack I dont feel the need for this one.

Sad on the new Zombie map tho, and all the new achievements. Well I’ll live, may as well get a new arcade game on the 360. Also tho; Its double XP at the moment so for all that just wants to reach higher lvls. Time to get on and work on that, may do it myself.

/Alex
@Start And Select
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Shellshock 2 – Big NO.

My brother just bought this game. We got it cheap and we wanted a new shooter to try out. Simply to have something new to play. What can I say. This game, has been a horrible experience.

When you see ingame photage from the game you think: It looks descent it seems to have a good feel to it. Tho… once you get your hands on the controller and you start to move around and shoot thoese damn enemies. You realize… this is a mistake.

It’s a slow control and it seems as tho nomatter how good you think you can aim it just seems to slip to the side (its much like the aim mood for sniperrifles in other games, but constantly active). It get you pissed and anoyed when you’ve just lined up a headshot.

All guns in the game seem to use the same ammo (wtf?), except ofcourse for all the pistols have their own ammo. So pretty much two types of ammo’s in the game for several different weapons. You also have a machette ofcourse, but it seems to make less damage then just punching the enemies in the face with your fists, how is that? Did you enter a megaman game and you’re now able to shoot out your fists at incredible speed to fight the zombies in vietnaw?

Yes the game takes place in Nam’. During the war. And you fight zombies, or alot of people having a really bad flu and they’re all pissed at you for some reason… maybe becuase your brother was the start of the infection. Dont worry, its not much of a spoiler… and there is not much to spoil.

The last thing that I can think of at the moment that just annoyed the hell out of me: The grenades. You can have six of them, and at certain times, picking up one, means that you just picked up one. At other times one grenade on the ground means two. And sometimes one grenade will give you the lucky number six! It’s like a RPG where you open boxes and keep hoping for the best item… sadly the best item is not grenades in this game.

If you ever thought of getting this game just to have something to play. Get Halo 3… get Modern Warfare… get Gear Of War 2. Hell you may as well even get Katamari!

/Alex
@Start And Select
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E3 News 2 – EA conference.

So lets get togehter and look at what EA had to show us this year. I must say that I wish that DICE had been there to tell us about Bad Company 2. No such luck im afraid, no showing of Army Of two: 40 days either. Sad, would have been a good showing.

The games that really stood out this evening were:
Need For Speed – Shift
The cockpit vision for this game was insane, the graphics as well. Im not much for motorsports game (or sports games for that matter), but this looks intresting and I will look into it.

Mass Effect 2 (Tho it was a bit short).
Not much to add to this really. Mass Effect 2 continues the saga!

The Saboteur
This game just keeps on growing on me, the trailer still looks awesome, and the ingame photage impressed me. A gta4 meets assassins creed in world war II… cant be less than perfect.

Crysis 2 (announcment)
Announced for 360, ps3 and PC. Awesome for all console gamers out there. Not much was revealed about this title except for… well… the title.

APB – All Points Bulletin
It started by looking so good with everything that you could customize, a open world like gta, but it kinda made me lose intrest half through the trailer. To repetetive… but it looked great and may be worth looking into in the coming months.

Star Wars – Old Republic.
The trailer that kicked your ass! Literally. Even tho im not a big mmo fan this trailer… wow let me tell ya… well acctualy. Let me post it once I find it shall I? You will have to make it out for yourself.

Brutal Legends
Ozzy and Lemmy!? And Jack Black! Humour assured… the game itself… well who cares did I mention Jack Black and Lemmy?

Other titles mentioned:
Dantes Infero
Sims 3
Littlest Pet Shop
Charm Girls
Dragon Age
Fight Night Round 4
EA Active Expansion
EA Sports – Mixed Martial Arts
EA Sports online
EA Team Builder (to customize your teams in EA sports games)
Grand Slam Tennis

So overall… im not impressed really. APB looks intresting but wasent making me go: omg omg omg! The Saboteur was the best part for me personally. Good game looking good and I want to see more!

/Alex
@Start And Select
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Project Natal – The Future Now?

Project Natal was just announced by microsoft on E3. Its a mix of motion capture, voice recognition and … well insane ideas and capabilites. No need for a controler. I believe tha Microsoft has managed to take it that extra step. Finaly! Inovation!

But… really is it? I think Nintendo tried to nibble on this idea with Wii, I believe that becuase of their step forward with a motion controller. The gameindustry is finally ready and brave enough to take the next step. Not only may this change the way we play games, but also change how we see interaction with other things in our normal day lives.

The porn industry has been moving the film buisness forward, taperecorders, video, dvd, blueray and so on. Has been becuase of that industry, but ofcourse that has also changed how we take part of new family entertainment. In the same way, this may change how companies look at interaction with computers and even televisionsets. Ofcourse new things are always under development and tested but will this be a kickstart? Ofcourse Project Natal is created by Microsoft, and maybe they are looking for more possibilities with this new baby?

Please dont make this another bluescreen!

/Alex
@Start And Select
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