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  1. I was looking at my purchase history on Steam earlier and noticed that basically everything I've bought in the last several months has been discounted to some degree, which is no surprise - we all know Steam does constant deals, what with weeklong sales, daily deals, midweek, and weekenders. Then of course there's the numerous other sites that sell Steam keys, which of course have their own discounts and deals going on all the time too. And with so many games having launch discounts and going on sale regularly within months, you almost have to TRY to pay the MSRP for a Steam game. So with that in mind, I thought I'd ask - how often do you pay full price for Steam games? And I mean full full price, because even a paltry 10% off is still a discount. For me, it's almost never. As I said I was looking at my recent-ish purchase history, and the only ones I paid full price for were Tales of Zestiria and Mighty Switch Force! Hose it Down (which is like $3 anyway). Both of them were worth it I think (even if the Tales of Symphonia port I got for pre-ordering Zestiria was a disaster) though I still need to finish Zesty Tales, haha. Literally everything else I went through was discounted to some degree, even if it was just a little 10-20% launch discount. There have been several games I've jumped on at launch, but always found some way to get them cheaper, since it's really not that hard to find some kind of sale/coupon/whatever I can use on various sites. Anyway, how about you all? Remember any games you paid the full price for? Was it worth it, or did you regret it later?
  2. What, didn't I just make one of these!? Well, this one holds a slightly different purpose. Since we're a gaming community, it's only natural some of us accumulate collection of not only games, but gaming books. However, I noticed that other than in the Video Game Inspired Books thread, there really isn't much talk about them. So, in tangent with The Book Mini-Review Thread, I've created this thread, to bring more attention to gaming books and everyone's thoughts. There are a couple rules I have to set up, though. This covers all gaming related books. Novels, art books, manga, publications... even magazines if you really, really want to. Everything made of paper (or is available on an eReader) is up for grabs! Please don't write something like 'this book's the coolest go buy it' and be done. It doesn't have to be long, but do try to write a review. If you just want to recommend something willy-nilly, go ahead and go to The Book Recommendation Thread. This is only about gaming books. Any other book reviews go in The Book Mini-Review Thread. You don't have to follow any specific guidelines, or put up scores or anything--write however you'd like! All I ask is that you put the correct book name, the author, and a picture of the book (if you can find it). No spoilers, please! If someone already reviewed your book... don't worry, just review it! More opinions are always welcome. There we go! I'll be posting an example of a mini-review in just a bit. Again, you don't have to follow anything I might write, it's all up to you... but I know some people feel more comfortable with a template or guideline in hand, so they'll have that too. So, get on your reading glasses, pull out your favorite gaming books, and read and write about them!
  3. With E3 coming nearing under a month, we all wonder what to expect and what surprises will come to us. Who's going to have a good conference, average, worst, best. etc. Anything can happen. What are your predictions of what you like to see and what rumors you've heard that might show up at this year's biggest gaming event. _________________________________________________________________________________ Here are some of my thoughts/predictions: I think Square-Enix will show plenty of development footage of Kingdom Hearts and FFVII Remake and I don't expect a release date this year and possibly release late next year or 2018. Sony will definitely show more of the VR stuff, PSNeo, Price Drop, and more gameplay footage from the developed games that will be released this year. If they want to wow us they'd have to make an awesome announcement like getting the Crash Bandicoot rights back and announcing a PS4. I expect a Shenmue III trailer at the end of Sony's conference as surprise or somehwere along the show. Another surprise is teaser to Last of Us 2 I heard that Nintendo isn't doing a conference? Not sure though, but NX isn't showing up this year and the new Zelda game is their main focus. Other than that most of their showing is at their digital event Microsoft doesn't feel like they have much to show, but I think their biggest game to reveal is Gears of War 4. They did show their VR stuff last year and I guess they could show more and possibly a release date. I am definitely looking forward to Kojima's next game since he has his own studio working with Sony and with Norman Reedus I think. There's a lot more to say, but I don't want hog all the info lol. So what are you guys thoughts and predictions?
  4. We currently live in an age where Video Games have become a transcendent form of multimedia. From the days of Home Pong back in 1975 to the Playstation 4, Video Games have become integrated into the entertainment industry. The reason for this is because of the amount of creativity game designers have exhibited with their vast worlds and wonderful landscapes. But even more so, it is because of the stories being told by video games evolving beyond anything most motion pictures could ever tell. But if this is the case, why does it seem we like we are living in an era of remasters and re-releases? Allow me to digress for a moment by saying that there is nothing wrong with remasters and re-releases. A lot of the games that have recently received the Next Gen treatment look absolutely stunning in comparison to their original versions. Also, reliving the wonders of games like Shadow Complex (which recently received a remastered version) reminds you of just how amazing they were during your first play through. I would never knock the prospect of replaying so many stories and reliving memories from gaming's past via a new piece of hardware. Still, it seems as if these practices are becoming a creative crutch. Shadow Complex Remastered (Screenshot Courtesy of videogamer.com) Let's take a moment to look back to the seventh generation of gaming consoles. Original stories were vast ocean of possibilities despite if they were coming from new IPs or already existing ones. We saw the Master Chief end his campaign against the Covenant. We dove deep into the reaches of insanity by exploring the mind of Alan Wake. We became morally conflicted as we traveled across the galaxy in the universe of Mass Effect. There was so much originality oozing from game studios! Now, we are receiving an influx of remasters and stereotypical military shooters. After E3 2014, Shigeru Miyamoto (the creator of Nintendo's mascot, Mario) spoke out about the mind-numbing amount of bloody shooters which dominated the press conferences that year. "To some, it might have seemed as though there wasn't a wide variety of software at E3, and as though many people followed the same direction to make their video games. I believe this is a revelation of creative immaturity on our part as creators in the video game industry." Mario Creator, Shigeru Miyamoto (Courtesy of wiiudaily.com) Was Miyamoto correct? Is the lack of creativity attributed to creative immaturity? It is true that despite the home console market being eight generations in, video games is still a very young industry as a whole. But given some of the strong showings of 2015, one could argue that this couldn't possibly be the case. The Witcher 3: WIld Hunt, which received several Game of the Year awards, had one of the most compelling stories of this current console generation. Clearly, developers are capable of giving us new and engaging plots to sink our teeth into. So, what's stopping them? In an article from theguardian.com, Holly Nielson said something that rings true to the current state of the industry from my personal opinion. "Creativity begins with how we feel and how we see and present ourselves as people. This industry isn“t just dressing identically, it draws its inspiration from the same music, movies and books. This homogeneity leads to staid ideas." This begs me to ask the question, has the gaming industry stopped feeling as a whole? What happened to games which made you invoke a certain emotion? What happened to worlds and plots which prompted you to become emotionally invested in the characters? Has the industry stopped caring about the creative aspects of the industry? I don't think that's the case. I feel like this might be a horrible case of writer's block. Besides, there are plenty of games coming this year that will test the limits of the imagination. The gaming industry as a whole must, in lamens terms, get their sugar together. We are soon to enter the four year of the current console generation. It's time to give us the glorious worlds and plots that engulfed us during the previous generation. It can be done. They just need,..a little imagination.
  5. This is kind of a weird question coming from me since I sort of oversee a video game website and community, ha. Don't worry, though, this isn't indicative of any big shift on my own part. So lemme explain what I mean by this. As we get older, we get more responsibilities; it's inevitable. You move out, have to pay your own bills, taxes, student loans, and so forth. You also find yourself having to cook in order to eat (if you want to save money and eat well, that is) and take care of other activities on your own as well. All of this is doubly true if you're married or living with a significant other as well. Point is, with all of this, have you noticed a shift on your own behalf (even in the slightest) of a gradual move away from gaming? Is your enthusiasm for this as a hobby still as strong as it was when you had more time at your disposal? Or do you find other things competing for your time now? Over the last two years, I personally am finding it hard to balance between playing games and watching TV since there are so many good shows on now and that's becoming a bigger thing for me. I don't think Netflix/Hulu will ever replace gaming for me, but they sure do make it harder to play. That, along with other responsibilities this year is why I think I have yet to dip into games like Kirby and the Rainbow Curse, Splatoon, Yoshi's Woolly World, and even The Uncharted and Batman Arkham games, despite owning all of those for a while now. So I dunno, I guess I do recognize that as a priority, it does move down the latter the older you get due to responsibilities, but my fervor for the industry is still as strong as ever since I enjoy keeping up with news about new games and such. What do you guys think?
  6. Every year a lot of gaming developers or companies give the gamers a great laugh and jokes on their games or anything in general. It is a fun way to be creative having to add on to the game, commercials, ideas, etc. I have a lot of favorites and here are some of them. Assassin's Creed Kinect Pokemon Kart There are plenty of other cool pranks. Remember when FarCry: Blood Dragon was thought to be a joke? Well everyone assumed it was until they officially released the gamer later at the end of April. What is your favorite April Fool Gaming Moment? Feel free to be fooled by the posts lol.
  7. Blazeknyt

    Racism in Gaming

    Hi everyone. Was spread news about this article talking about racism and video games. In this case, when starting the game Rust, you don't get to set the skin tone of your character. Apparently, people were throwing a fit about this. The game is in first person, so you never see your character anyway. Racism aside, I also think it's an interesting reflection on real life. You don't get to choose who your parents are, so you don't get to choose your skin tone, nationality, physical features, etc. Also, in the majority of games you don't get to choose your own character. While it's true that the game may be a specific character's story, I don't get why people would throw so much hate at a game that doesn't allow you to create your own character, when being unable to do so is the NORM. I will also admit that it does take away some freedom of choice, but when that loss is the norm, you really didn't lose much did you? https://www.polygon.com/2015/6/3/8719389/colorblind-on-witcher-3-rust-and-gamings-race-problem Thoughts?
  8. Recently, I had a chance to sit down and pick the brain of up-and-coming YouTuber Rumandapples of the Rumandapples Show. You can follow him on Twitter (@everythingisrum) and on YouTube. I first met Rum when I worked at Gamestop; he was an honest customer who wanted to speak to an honest employee. I stepped-up and the rest is history, and ever since I have been tuning into his shows. He probably doesn't remember this, but it happened—I promise. "Back in the day being a gamer meant you were a social outcast and gamers came together to avoid judgment, to enjoy something collectively with others. Now it seems that gamers are the ones casting judgment over others." Ciel: So let's begin by having you tell me who Rum is, that is to say what motivates the Rumandapples Show? What is it all about? Rum: The Rumandapples Show was originally a one time deal. Due to people becoming interested in the show I realized I should press forward with it. It continues to evolve as I do along with it. My motivation is basic and unexciting, to be quite honest; I enjoy talking about video games and giving my honest opinion. I give my honest outlook on the gaming industry, community and the games we play. I never wanted to be the guy with a million subscribers or fans with nothing to say. I only want to be myself. It is very boring, I know. Ciel: Your honesty is something I have always liked about your show; its why I listen to it in the first place. It never comes off as whining or entitled. A lot of broadcasters have this problem. How do you manage to stay objective and level-headed despite the general disappointment you may feel toward a particular product, company, and so forth? Now I say listen because unlike a lot of broadcasters you refuse to "show" yourself—which we will get into later, I promise. Rum: How I stay objective is that I try to look at things from multiple perspectives not just mine. Not sounding whiny or entitled is pretty easy. I do not put all my stock into video games it is a very small part of my life that I have been very blessed with being able to reach people who enjoy my thoughts and opinions. Yes it is not easy to covey disappointment without sounding like a cry-baby, but it really comes down to having a good reason why you do not like something. Ciel: And I think that's it. Your videos, that is to say your opinions, seem less driven by impulse. You do not rush to make a video, get hits, and move on. So I'm wondering what the process is like for you then in regards to writing and preforming for your show. Rum: I refuse to show myself simply because my personal life is no one's business. That is not said in malice. Besides, does what I look like have any actual impact on what I say? No, it does not. My videos are not made on impulsive decisions. I take lots of time to look over a new game or something happening in the industry, it really comes down to what I have to say and do. I think this provides validity and substance not just for me, but for others as well. Ciel: Now I know you have an opinion on those that do show their face. And I have to ask, what is it? Putting you on the spot here. In other words, how do you feel about people who show themselves? I am under the impression that they rely more on their 'presence' as stars or whatever rather than the content they present. To me, showing yourself allows you to be lazy. Rum: I think for some people the way they convey themselves is from a more visual presentation standpoint, others will use their so called "silly" or the tired-ass 'random' aspect to draw in people. This way of doing things does not contain substance; it is all just flash-in-the-pan nonsense that people lose interest in over time. I try to keep my focus on what I am doing and where I can go next in the years to come. Ciel: Before I touch on a question raised there, I want to address an issue you're always talking about as I think in some way, it ties into this whole YouTube, media phenomenon. In Episode 48 (look at me, doing my research) you briefly talked about your love/hate relationship with gaming. And I'm right there with you. So I have two questions. What is by your lights a bigger issue: games or those who play them? It seems like a happy Rum is a sort of rare thing and you are always somewhat disappointed in either a company for ethical reasons or disappointed in a game for a variety of reasons. So what is it that keeps you coming back—that gives you hope that gaming can get better? Certainly neither of us would complain about something if we did not care about it. I guess the bigger question I'm asking is: why do you care? Other than of course, it being an interest of yours (because ultimately you stand to lose only a hobby). "Hah! Nintendo most likely would hate my show and me. I think any company would hate someone like me..." Rum: The issue is both inside the games that companies are putting out these days and the gamers who play them. When it comes to the games we get, you can just look at the laundry list of remasters, remakes, constant franchising where it is not needed. Additionally companies give us games that look great but lack anything worth replaying a second time. With gamers I think we just need to readjust our attitude towards others in general. Back in the day, being a gamer meant you were a social outcast and gamers came together to avoid judgment, to enjoy something collectively with others. Now it seems that gamers are the ones casting judgment over others. There is no simple solution to the problems in gaming. We as consumers need to remain critical in order to get the best possible game that $60 can buy. Anyone who has a job or has real bills to pay understands my feelings. Gaming companies need to stop treating gamers like wallets with legs but that cannot happen unless we respond to companies and not buy into their horses**t they call advertisement. What keeps me coming back to gaming is hope. I hope that gaming gets better. I do not think what I say or my opinion is going to change anyone“s mind, but at the least it might help them see a different side of the sphere and maybe look into it for themselves To answer your other question on whether me being happy about a game is rare, you're right—it is rare when I am satisfied with a product. Maybe I am getting old or maybe I just look at the bigger picture differently. Gaming could make me happy if people stopped buying into hype. If people and companies stopped this day 1 DLC nonsense. The overblown amount of money companies spend to promote a game is notworth half that much, etc.. Ciel: On that note, do you care to join me in a moment of complaint over the new and 'free' Battlefront DLC? I am not sure if you have heard but players will be getting 'free' DLC a month after Battlefront launches. This DLC is the planet from the new film... which... also comes out a month after the game. Meaning this 'free' DLC that they are using to help promote the game and themselves is already made—and probably already on the disc— and is only being given to gamers a month later as to avoid spoilers for the film. I am sure "space battles" will be paid DLC as part of the premium package battlepack-ghost protocol-grabbag that you can only get if you pre-order the game and the season pass. "Gaming companies need to stop treating gamers like wallets with legs, but that cannot happen unless we respond to companies and not buy into their horses**t..." Rum: The free DLC is nothing more than lackluster way to promote the movie that most people who buy Battlefront are likely to see anyways. The game is not going to drive people to theaters at least it won't for me. It would not surprise me one bit to see a paid DLC option to gain access to full fledged space battles that used to be free in previous installments. Ciel: Speaking of potentially stupid company moves. Where do you stand on the whole YouTube/Nintendo debate? I made a blog post about it that ended rather inconclusively, and my primary concern was the hypocrisy of the whole "greed argument" and YouTubers calling out "greedy Nintendo" when in fact them not being able to post Nintendo videos results in less hits, less views, and ultimately less money. So the greedy guy is calling out the greedy guy and the whole thing confuses me to no end. Rum: I can understand the “greed argument†to a degree, and while Nintendo should of at the least adjusted their stance on YouTubers using their games to make their own content, I think that it is kind of sad Nintendo does not see the obvious assistance that free promotion, via YouTubers, can provide. This could make sales for their products go up considering all the money issues and commercial failures Nintendo has been having. Nintendo is an odd one to say the least. Ciel: I mean, I am sure you can talk about Nintendo; you just cannot show Nintendo products. YouTubers assume that the only way to 'advertise' a product or talking about it is to 'show it.' See what I mean? Lazy. But hey, I will digress so we do not linger here. I am pretty sure Nintendo would have no problem with your show. Rum: Hah! Nintendo most likely would hate my show and me. I think any company would hate someone like me due to the fact that I am a very hard apple to please when it comes to video games. But I talk about Nintendo all the time on my show and I do not require Nintendo footage to do so. A lot of people tend to follow trends or look at what they know is successful and that“s not the way to go. You have to be yourself and enjoy what you do; people pick up on bulls**t they can sense it. Ciel: What is Rum's favorite game? Do you prefer to talk about products you like or things you dislike? There always seems to be this undertone to your videos that is trying to steer gamers away from their habits. Habits of which have made me cringe when people call me a 'gamer.' Habits that make me say, "I play video games—a lot, probably more than a 'gamer.' But, I am not a gamer." Your show advocates for a sort of image change if you will, but nothing that is too overbearing to the point of being paternal. Do you feel like it is more effective to discuss what is wrong with gaming or what is good about it? Rum: To pick one game as my favorite is unfair to some great games out there. I enjoy retro titles like Flight of The Amazon Queen, Full Throttle, Contra and the like. When it comes to current games today? The picking is very slim but I can say that Sunset Overdrive is something I can manage to enjoy because it is pretty much human pinball with guns. Oh, and Payday 2. I do not intentionally try to talk about all the negatives in gaming but they are very apparent and I feel many of the topics I talk about are ones others do not care to discuss. The last thing I want to come off as is paternal. I think the audience I have enjoys me picking at the things gamers do that make us all look like jackasses. When it comes to effectiveness it is a mix bag really. All in all, I always go by the formula of my honest opinion because whether someone agrees or not they will appreciate and respect the honesty you put into it. Ciel: Do you feel that the reason people do not discuss the topics you do (or even in the way that you do) is because they have a larger audience to lose? Most people start on a gimmick and fail to deviate. The apple cores of the world—the apple nation if you will—is no doubt growing and I think that is because you have a human presence that most 'educated' gamers are able to relate to, are able to have meaningful discussion with. You certainly provide some type of insight and your videos generate a decent amount of thought. Understanding this, what does the future of the show look like? Do you envision a large Rum and Apples website where apple-cores can get together or are you more inclined to leave their discussions to YouTube, Twitter, etc.? Rum: I am sure with some very successful YouTubers that have cultivated a certain gimmick they cannot deviate from because they will lose subscribers but that is their own fault. They decided to convey themselves with an on-screen persona that does not allow them to touch on certain topics. My thought was always f**k a gimmick, why bother? It is just a character; it is not really yourself. If people like or dislike me, let them do it because of my real thoughts and opinions not something I doctor up because it will get me views. I love my apple cores; they are not only vocal and opinionated, but they are very intelligent to boot and I don't say that to make myself feel good; it is just a fact like the sky on Earth is blue. They tell me when they disagree, when they agree, and what they feel. It is good to inspire discussion and debate about the things we love in a neutral forum where you can get your point across and the discussion does not turn into adults arguing like five-year olds. When it comes to a website of my own, it is not time just yet. I get featured on GTN Gaming Tech News, Blackout Media, and now this lovely interview piece with Game Podunk. When enough people start asking me about it, I can then seriously consider making one. Ciel: I mean I could easily keep you here, but I think with that we will kind of wrap it up. Is there any sort of final thing you want to sign off with? What's up next for you? What topics in the gaming world are currently of interest. Rum: Thank you for the interview first and foremost; I am actually surprised anyone would want to. Secondly I want to thank the applecores who believe in me and continue to be a source of inspiration. What is next for Rumandapples? I will continue to do the Rumandapples Show every Monday and “Across The Pond†with @Roshu666 every Friday and of course I still host the Hour of Blackout Podcast. Other than that I have been asked to play some games lately so I will be tossing that on my channel as well. Gaming topics in general: I want to see what happens to Nintendo in the long run, Konami and their strange idea to continue the Metal Gear Solid series even with the original people responsible for it gone by next year, how cyber-crime will continue to be handled in the future (i.e. swatting and ddosing). I could go on forever... Ciel: Awesome. Thanks. I appreciate you taking the time. Rum: No problem brotha man.
  9. Greetings again, one and all, and welcome to the madly misguided musings of me, the man of many misadventures, Venom! (I had to stop alliterating at SOME point.) As you probably don't know, I sometimes decide to rant about gaming-related things that bug me, and this is where I do it, so hold on tight and get ready for an all-out self-entitled assault of gamer rage at your eyeballs! Today's topic: Why does playing games that were designed for co-op in single player always have to suck? Let's take a trip back to a mythical time of ripped jean shorts and grunge music, a time known as the 1990's. Back in those glorious Cheeto-dusted days, many a game came standard with the option to have a friend, or sibling, or random hobo who came in through your window sit down next to you and play a game in a co-operative mode. You didn't have to - the game would be exactly the same whether you were playing alone or with your brother who knew all the cheats but wouldn't tell you what they were. It was just a holdover from the arcades where you could stand next to another (or three more, or five more if you were playing X-Men) random stranger to make your way to the end of a game, and it certainly helped out those who had trouble playing the game alone. Fast-forward to today, and co-op is all the rage...only now, you're generally forced to experience the game with people you don't know over an internet connection, because that's obviously more fun. "are you even trying, or are you just as brain-dead as these zombies!?" But what if you don't want to play with random strangers? That's why online gaming services let you have a friends list, keeping up with the people you like to associate with and (more or less) not forcing you to interact with Sk8erBoiTHPS6969 if you'd prefer not to. Playing only with those on your friends list may be preferable to some people, like me...but what do you do if your friends don't have a game you want to play? Suck it up and play with randoms? Avoid playing the game until someone else buys it? Plead with the gaming gods to bless your best bud with today's hot new titles? You could do those...or you could choose Option D - the D is for dumb - and forge through a game alone, despite the fact that it couldn't be more obviously made to play with others without the game simply refusing to play without a full party. Why is that dumb? Don't worry, it's not you, the player, that's dumb, it's the game that's dumb for forcing you to play the same experience that would be manageable for four people but a nightmare for one. Unless you're Batman. Batman can manage any situation alone. A recent example would be the Gauntlet reboot that was released last year. It's actually a pretty good game, and each character is unique in their own way to make them all valuable as part of a team of monster slayers making their way through hordes of skeletons, zombies, and other assorted creeps. My point is, the game makes it pretty clear that you'll want to grab a full party before descending into the crypts...because if you don't, you're going to die. And die again. And die some more. And then you'll die one more time, thinking surely, you'd make it this time. This time, you wouldn't need food badly. This time, you'd take out the enemy spawn points before they overwhelm you. This time, you wouldn't shoot the food like a doofus. Yes, if you decide to enter The Gauntlet alone, you're going to be up against such overwhelming odds that the 300 Spartans would probably call you crazy for trying. You'll be drowned in a sea of enemies, struck down by traps, face bosses with ridiculous amounts of health, and sometimes just get straight up killed to death by Death himself, and all because you didn't bring some buddies along, dummy. Blue Valkyrie has never needed friends so badly. Then again, Blue Valkyrie does have a bit of an ego. Another problematic game, indeed, the one that caused me to write this, is Fuse. Fuse is a third-person co-op shooter for up to four players, but if you're playing alone, the other characters are controlled by AI because the way the game and cutscenes are set up, all the characters need to be present. Granted, plenty of games have characters simply appear in and out of cutscenes if they're not being controlled by a player, but they couldn't do that because, shut up, Fuse is talking. Anyway, the problems with playing this one alone are pretty simple - there is way too much going on in every single drawn-out firefight and boss battle, and the AI is pretty much useless. On that first topic, pretty much every room is a new battle against waves upon waves of enemies, to the point where sometimes you might wonder if they'll ever stop coming. With a team of four players, you'd headshot them all in 5 seconds and move along, but with one human and a bunch of drooling babies in the same situation, the fights become an exercise in patience and frustration. Worse is the fact that the enemies tend to focus on human players, and if there's only one, well, you're going to go down a lot and just hope the AI bothers to revive you this time. When not completely ignoring you or objectives directly in front of them, the AI can most often be found standing in front of an enemy's gun as it goes off in their face, or occasionally directly in front of your gun just for a change of pace in the direction the bullets are coming from. The one actually using cover is the only human player here. "But Venom," you say, knowing full well I can't hear you, "you're complaining about things that could easily be fixed by just not being an idiot and playing the game with other people!" Which is true, but not my main issue here, so you're probably now cursing me for taking this long to get to the point. The real problem is...why is the game set up to be the exact same experience regardless of the number of actual players? Look, I'm not a programmer, because programming is hard, y'all, so maybe I don't know enough about it to see why it can't be fixed. However, it can't be that difficult because there are some games, older games even, that scale the amount of enemies or even completely reconfigure sections of the levels (the Lara Croft and the Something Else series is a good example) to suit the number of players. Why doesn't every game do this? Why should I have to wade through 67 enemies that could easily be dispatched by four players when I'm playing by myself? Couldn't it be like, 37 enemies instead? And this isn't a difficulty modifier thing - most games these days, changing the difficulty only changes how easy it is for the player to die, not how many enemies show up or anything sensible like that. It's just baffling and, even more, annoying that developers look at their finished games and say "yes, no one will ever play this alone, because there will always be active players or all their friends will have it" and ship it off without checking to see if maybe they should tone it down for those who power through alone. If a game is made to be enjoyed with others, that's fine, but developers really need to find a way to, you know, make it enjoyable if you're by yourself as well. Maybe it's just me, maybe I'm the crazy one, but it's that constantly getting overwhelmed by enemies when playing these games that's made me that way. Anyway, guess I'll go finish Fuse now. So what do you guys think? If you're playing a game that's absolutely meant for co-op, do you just find someone to play with and have a ball, or do you not really care and take it on by yourself? When you play through certain games alone, do you wish you had a co-op partner, or wish the developers had made the game a little more kind to a lone wolf like yourself? However you feel about co-op gaming in general, sound off in the comments!
  10. Too many games.....too little time..... My plans could always change but for now, my goals are to finish up with the following games in the next few weeks. Madden 15 - I'm mostly playing in an online franchise with my high school buddy. We're getting close to the end of our second regular season. We were both eliminated in the first round of the playoffs our first year. I'm coaching the Buffalo Bills with John Madden using Carr as my QB. Dungeons & Dragons: Chronicles of Mystara - Played about an hour and a half last night with TK & company. The game is outdated but I like it enpugh to keep going. Lol Natural Doctrine - I've played a couple hours of it and enjoy the game so far. Hoping I can get pretty deep into it soon. Mass Effect 2 - Doing my second playthrough but on the PS3 this time. I'm probably going to do my 3rd playthrough of the first game as well. Those four are definitely enough to gouge into my precious free time in the next month or so. If anyone is interested in playing some Madden, ND or D&D, definitely HMU. I haven't played enough Natural Doctrine to have a solid opinion but I do like it so far. The washed out colors and funky camera angles are my main complaint at the moment. Some people have complained about too much information being on the screen at once but I actually love that aspect.
  11. http://nintendoenthusiast.com/article/10-misconceptions-dad-nintendo-gaming/ This is a pretty interesting article from Nintendo Enthusiast and I definitely suggest checking it out. In it, the author discusses misconceptions that his father has (and by extension, a lot of parents have) about gaming in general, and I have to say that I can relate to a lot of those points with my own family, haha. One thing that drives me crazy is when someone unfamiliar with gaming calls every console a "Nintendo," even if it's a PlayStation or Xbox. I mean, I get that most people did call the NES that (because really, who is going to call it a Nintendo Entertainment System), but it does call to mind this- But, anyhow.... I digress. Do any of you have any stories of misconceptions or things that your parents say about video games?
  12. Came across a thread that I thought was quite interesting. It was a line up of game releases in the US for the Fall of 2001. That also happened to be the year the Gamecube and Xbox launch, with PS2 having launched the year before. The Dreamcast had been discontinued that year but still had a few releases. The Gameboy Advance had been released that year and had a steady stream of games as well. Below are the most noteworthy titles from that short period, and what may easily have been the best Fall release schedule EVER. While this list is not my own, I've added a few notes here and there summarizing my own thoughts on each game. Feel free to add your own thoughts and memories in the comments! September 24 Ah Silent Hill 2, forever ingrained in our hearts as one of the best in the series. There are some pretty diehard fans out there, including our very own Marcus September 30 Another modern classic, Ico was very much a cult hit for a while, receiving great reviews, but not a lot of sales. However, it eventually became a game any gamer worth their salt has played and even garnered an HD version on PS3 many years later. October 17 This marked the start of one of Capcom's most popular franchises, although the series has gone through quite a few chances since it's inception. October 22 The one that started it all. Sure, the previous GTA games were good, but no game had set the bar quite like GTA3 did. It was lauded and criticized by millions and while later games may have been better (looking at you San Andreas) this one got the ball rolling on the popularity of open world games. October 28 Personally I've never been hugely into the Tony Hawk series, but back in it's hey day most everyone was. Series has gone quite downhill since then though. October 31 It's been a while since the last Legacy of Kain game but the series is not forgotten. Soul Reaver 2 was a great entry into a great series. November 1 Never much been an Ace Combat fan unfortunately. Still a notable release however. November 5 SSX was always a fun game to play even if you yourself never had much interest in the actual sport. November 11 A classic, never played it personally but I know many of you have. November 14 One the biggest releases of that year (and that generation), at least for me. Having been a big fan of the original Metal Gear Solid I was insanely hyped for this game. Having bought Z.O.E previously just for a chance to play the demo I was a bit surprised at Raiden but unlike many other's not upset. November 15 The Xbox launch had a pretty rad line up as far as launch games go. Halo needs no explanation, though I was never a fan I can appreciate it's importance for sure. PGR and DOA were the token fighting and racing games for the launch, but weren't terrible as many launch games are usually fated to be. November 18 The Gamecube launch followed the fantastic Xbox launch with several titles of its own. Luigi's Mansion obviously being the cream of the crop and leaving a rabbit fanbase hanging for many years (until the 3DS sequel). Rogue Squadron and Monkey Ball were both solid titles on their own accord, and left launch owners with plenty to play. November 20 The beginning of Harmonix, this cult hit would spawn the more popular "Amplitude" a year later. Harmonix as you may know singlehandedly created the music genre fad with Guitar Hero and Rock Band later down the road. November 23 Although the Dreamcast was officially dead in the water, Shenmue II was that diamond in the rough, an instant classic that many still adore to this day. December 3 Launch gamers, finished with their launch line ups for the Gamecube did not have long to wait with a STELLAR set of games just in time for the holidays. Smash and Pikmin were smash hits and are forever loved. The PS2 also received some love with two more classic titles, a Jak and Daxter title from Naughty Dog which has gone on to continue to create hugely popular games for the PlayStation platform and Baldurs Gate another popular title coming over from the PC side of things. December 11 One of the best RPGs on the PS2, though many argue that it's sequel was even better. (Fight amongst yourselves guys ) December 17 Oh yeah, and this thing. So how many of you remember that year at all, and what were some of your favorite titles? Has any other season even come close to this swath of incredible games over such a short period or time?
  13. sookielioncourt

    Review: HonorBound

    Developer: JuiceBox Games Publisher: JuiceBox Games Platform: iOS and Android Release Date: February 2014 Rated: 4+ HonorBound boasts elements that a role-playing game (RPG) must exhibit: a turn-based gameplay, character modification, progressive levels, and orchestral visuals, and scoring. Players are tasked to choose their heroes to send in the battlefield, to bring stability to a land of chaos. Similar to Monster Legacy that we“ve previously featured, HonorBound employs a Pokemon-style mechanism, as you beat monsters and turn them into playable heroes. Below is our comprehensive review of this mobile game. Gameplay The goal is to create and lead a squadron of warriors to save a fantasy world dominated by witches and zombies. You will need to choose one character from five elemental heroes. As the game progresses, you need to bank on your strategy to form the rest of your squad. In completing your team, there“s an option for summoning the forces of good, including a wizard or an archer, which can be done using your initial allotment of treasure. Starting the game becomes a breeze, with the ability to collect player points and potions to use in battles later on. But, if you“re saving these for more important actions, you can recruit your party from the battlefield, by weakening your enemies and slowly recruiting them to your team. You can buy new gears, educate them on spell casting, and even combine two heroes to conjure a superior one. Upgrading player ranks Away to level up your characters is to battle them out -- the more difficult the battle is, the higher the chance of getting experience points. Write Party said you can earn more points from a player VS player (PVP) battle, as opposed to a player VS enemy (PVE) one. If you recruited a new hero, the best way to increase their statistics is to take them into an easier level, before proceeding to a more challenging one. In the commander“s case, there“s no need to battle to increase stats. There“s a plus sign located next to the rank category, which spends embers to upgrade when tapped. Ritual 2 and Ritual 3 You can evolve your cards upon reaching Ritual 2. There“s a star ranking, indicating if your cards have fully increased its stats, which can be anywhere between 1-4. If your Warrior Rank has one gold star and three gray ones, it means it can still evolve three times more. Meanwhile, reaching Ritual 3 allows you to fortify your gaming cards. In the middle of a battle, you can pick one gaining card and some sacrifice cards. Take note that the gaining card will yield large amounts of experience. This comes in handy when dealing with tougher enemies and battles. Graphics and sounds In terms of graphics, JNM Tech gives it an 8/10, saying it boasts of flash animations and cartoon-styled worlds and characters. “Menu items look smooth with no glaringly obvious blocky textures,†the article said. These graphics are best exhibited by an iDevice such as the iPhone 5S, which comes with a Retina display that takes care of loading periods and response time. Meanwhile, the graphics are complimented by an overlay of orchestral musical scoring, reminiscent of an old school RPG game. This is best experienced with a handset with a cutting-edge sound technology and graphic prowess like the HTC One M8. It“s one of the latest HTC smartphones that has a revamped BoomSound, as confirmed by O2, which delivers a powerful sound experience without causing distortion. Inside the battles PocketGamer said that the pitfalls are found in the game“s design choices. If you“re not in a battle, you basically just wander in search for treasure. The environments have a claustrophobic element, wherein a battle can be triggered by just a simple interaction with your opponent. Lastly, each step costs energy. When you ran out of them, you either wait for it to be recharged or purchase for energy. PocketGamer said there are certain areas you need to traverse, which are over your maximum number of energy. Conclusion: Overall, HonorBound is an addicting RPG game, appropriate for all players with varied skill sets. The combat provides enough room for players to exercise their freedom in creating their own tactics. What do you like about this four-month-old RPG game?
  14. We're in the process of redoing the upstairs of our house and one priority of mine is getting the computer gaming setup in order. I have most of it setup at this point other than a few minor additions. My next step will be picking up some longer cables so I can get the router, cable modem and DirecTV hookups way out of the way. I'm also going to hookup my Harmon Kardon speaker to the setup soon. Right now it's the iMac, LG TV and laptop hooked up. I switch the settings over to two screens for photo editing etc. I'll update the blog as I am able to improve the situation. I can't change the layout much until I get longer cables for some of the devices. The only device that will be added in the future is possibly a PS4. I'll likely keep the PS3 hooked up in the family room area for quite a long time. Suggestions HIGHLY appreciated!
  15. Blazeknyt

    The Greatest Generation of Gaming?

    With the newest consoles having been released by November of 2013, the latest generation of gaming is now in full swing. There is a lot of talk about how each system does not have standout games, but rest assured, those games are being made. But the new generation has just started, and while the last one is still going, it“s a good time to look back and see what it accomplished. There was a lot that happened in this generation of gaming. And in order to bring the whole thing into perspective, we have to go back to 2005… Microsoft, during a conference, had introduced HD TVs. The point of those HD TVs was that the next gaming console, the Xbox 360, was to be compatible with HD picture quality, in order to bring a whole new experience. In order to do that, you had to buy a TV that had the capability to do so. The Xbox 360 eventually came in a slim model. During E3 of that year, Sony“s and Nintendo“s hands were forced and they unveiled their respective new machines. While Sony showed a more traditional mock-up, Nintendo, being Nintendo, had their president pull out their mock up out of his jacket pocket. The machine, codenamed the Nintendo Revolution, had been revealed. However, everything presented had been just promises, and dreams. No one had made any of the dreams a reality…yet. Microsoft released the Xbox 360 in November of 2005. It was the first of the three new consoles to be released. With a year head start it was allowed to set up some industry standards: HD graphics, which was promised earlier. Eventually it would bring the advent of streaming media to and from a video game console as Youtube grew in popularity. It sold very well, and was a bit more stable compared to Sony“s Playstation 3 during the beginning of its life. While it was plagued with the infamous “red ring of deathâ€, Microsoft“s bad customer service regarding fixing the console, and only a 20GB hard drive when it was first released, it was a working system beyond the fear of the red ring of death. Come 2006, Sony and Nintendo were ready to place their respective machines on the market. Sony“s Playstation 3 was incredibly powerful. It was not just a gaming console, but also a Blu-Ray player, and it was backward compatible! (At first) Sony had catered to various markets, (some people bought it solely for blu-ray) but it was one expensive box for most consumers. Released at a whopping $600, the Playstation 3 struggled. It was hard to develop for, and the PS2 emulation was causing glitches, which caused Sony to re-develop the PS3 and take out the backward compatibility. Remember the original "fat" model? Nintendo on the other hand, TOOK THE WORLD BY STORM. Nintendo managed to create yet another new control scheme: Motion control! This controller allowed people to play by actually moving the controller, and was a lot more intuitive to those who were not gamers. Nintendo combined the new control scheme with an easy to play game, Wii Sports. Everything you needed to do in that game was swing the wii remote. It was easy to play and easy to get into. Combine the other two elements with a marketing scheme that showed the entire family playing video games, and the end result was exactly as advertised! Wiis were flying off the shelves, and everyone was playing Wii Sports. The Wii was the cheapest system as well, at $250. (Compared to the Xbox 360 at $300 or $400 depending on the model, and the PS3 for $500 or $600 depending on the model) I specifically remember going to a store and hearing that since Wiis were so popular, the store could only sell 1 per customer. One last thing the Wii did to destroy the other two was to bring the past to the present, with the Virtual Console. Gaming was entering its seventh generation, and there were people who had fond memories of games and systems of old. Now you could play your old games on a new system, and not go through the hassle of buying said old system, a compatible tv, controllers, etc. That“s right, games from Sega Genesis, NES, SNES, Sega Saturn, N64, and more could all be on that sweet little Wii. Oh, and it was backwards compatible with the Gamecube too. You still needed a Gamecube controller and memory card, but the controller would work with those N64, or SNES games too. The game changers And so, the seventh generation of gaming had begun. But the grass was not necessarily greener on the other side. The Red Ring of Death for Xbox 360, the glitchy compatibility and hefty price for the PS3, and the breaking of numerous TVs because of weak Wii straps, all caused the respective companies to release new models very early on in the lifespan of the consoles. Microsoft soon released an “elite†model, which contained a 120GB hard drive and an HDMI cable, in 2007. The Playstation 3 did away with PS2 compatibility in favor for more hard drive space. (came in 20GB, 60GB, and a few 80GB models) The Wii didn“t change at all, and in fact just reinforced the strength of the Wii remote straps. Then everything slowed down and stabilized a little. Streaming media such as Netflix came (Xbox 360 got it first in 2008). People got more comfortable with the technology, and the expected newer models came out. Xbox 360 had the Xbox Live Arcade, and the Playstation 3 got the Playstation store, both online stores to buy games digitally.(basically the respective systems“ versions of the Wii“s Virtual Console). Micro transactions soon became popular, and so did downloadable content. Was this the greatest generation of gaming? That question is a matter of opinion. It was however, the most impactful generation of gaming. There are too many milestones to count. There were many early faults, and then fan anger against the changing marketplace as everything went digital. There was the copying of the Wii motion controls by Microsoft and Sony, only for those to flop. Despite all of that, this gaming generation was a fun ride.
  16. The end of 2013 is here and we had a long great year with great games, worst games, developments, awards, gaming nights, breaking news, surprises, previews, reviews, journalism, E3, Conventions, etc. A lot has happened throughout the year and how it impacts the gaming industry and hobby today. This thread discuss whatever you like to share about who, how, or what ways did gaming affect you this year. These are my personal thoughts about the past year. You don't have to follow this format and I'm just discussing what I like to share. Feel free to say whatever you want about the past year and such. Best Game? Worst Game? Beat a lot of games? Enjoyed the most? This doesn't have to be the games for this year or anything, but what games you really enjoyed playing this past year. For me this past summer was one of the best summer of gaming I ever had mostly on the PS3. I managed to beat 20+ games and that was a pretty exhausting way to kill time. It was amazing how in end of June and early July I was able to beat Bioshock Infinite and the Infamous series in a short time. Infamous games were so amazing that I was surprised I beat them quickly with no problems. Anyways July was my favorite month and of course it was my Birthday month. My favorite game to play during the time is none other than Ni no Kuni. It has been a while since I've played a JRPG game and my body was ready for time spent. It took me 9 gaming days with 2 days off to beat Ni no Kuni. I remember that time went by so fast that I forgot about the real world and Game Podunk lol. Heck gaia was wondering where I was and thought I was sick (lol appreciated for worrying me). Well I was almost sick from gaming exhaustion. Felt like I was playing the game forever. I was sucked into the world of Ni no Kuni and could not put my controller down. It was time well spent. Ni no Kuni is probably my favorite game during the summer and possibly my game of the year. Hard to pick between Infinite and Last of Us. Anyways I think the best game for me this year I've played is Ni no Kuni because how it kept me playing and hooked to the storyline and such. I enjoyed this masterpiece a lot! Worst game I've played this year is Operation Raccoon CIty. I did not have a good time playing the game in single player and multiplayer. I almost didn't want to finish, but did so I can get over it. I know I'll get bashed by Luds for saying this since he liked the game. Maybe If I had the PS3 version my view would be different and it's always better with friends and co-op. E3 Discussions/Gaming News Oh man remember all those E3 discussions earlier this year? We would be bashing on Microsoft, claiming Sony wins, Nintendo just idling, etc. Man looking back at it, we had a lot of fun posting those memes and funny pics poking fun at Microsoft. So many threads on Microsoft's problems about how they will have always online, drm issues, etc. Sony had us all won their hearts. So much has changed since E3 and today. Fanboys battling it out, console wars, etc. Back then and today things sure got different in perspective. Sony still has my vote of confidence and Microsoft started to rebuild and fix things the best they can. Even though not a huge Xbox fan, I applaud them for being motivated to overcome the negativity. Nintendo did what they did and still became awesome. I know there were a lot of crazy gaming news the past year too. Sad one being THQ going bankrupt and having their games looking for a new home. They were a great gaming company in my view and hope those who worked there found jobs later in life. They worked pretty hard with the games that needed a new home. Another one would be the past year with EA. Remember when everyone was mad about the SimCity? Man that was total disaster on their end and a mess. EA has had a bad year with bad commuincations. What other news you remembered that stood the most? Winning the Prize Vault It took forever to win one, but finally did. It wasn't easy as I would always lose to Ludo and almost lost the 3rd time. Kekeke 3rd time's the charm huh. Anyways I remember during that time we had great results and personally I thought Kiky would win because of the super hero threads like Wonder Woman vs Superman and Why Don't Heroes Kill Villains threads she posted and had great posts. I did made a lot of contributions to the community, but honestly it surprised me that it was enough to take the win. I learned I won when I was sick during the semester. I had a horrible day in bed so I lay there sleeping most of the day until Jason tweeted me a surprise. I really tried to celebrate and jump, but man that sick was keeping down. Winning the Prize Vault really brightened up my day. To tell the truth, I was going to give Kiky my prize vault because I felt she deserved it more, but refused and said I deserve it more. Thanks Kiiky. After the semester ended, I eventually got the Vault and liked it. It was fun posting the power rangers pictures. Gaming Nights/Co-Op It's always fun to play with friends no matter what. There is more enjoyment and excitement when we play together as a team. I never played much of co-op these days until I met you guys. It was a good idea to create the gaming night thread, but then again it's hard to schedule at times lol. Super Smash Brawl on the Wii was the first gaming night I tried to set up during the summer and had a lot of fun playing. I know I wasn't that great, but it's all about having fun. Man John, Venom, and Jordan are like the best Brawlers in the game. John is just too good. Congrats to Venom for winning our first fun tournament lol. After that then started to come up with other games to have gaming nights. Most of the time these days we just asked our buddies hey lets get a gaming night going without using the thread. Also Kiky bringing up Uncharted 3 Multi is a lot of fun as well. We got a bunch of people to participate and it was successful. Ludo would be sending Last of Us invitations during the time too. Another time I enjoyed was Killing Floor with Kiwi. Really had fun in the game and Kiwi was a pretty good leader! So many hilarious moments too. Of course there is the regular co-op games. I had the bestest times playing MW3 with Kiky doing the survival waves, hilarious adventures in DR:OTR, GTAIV, etc. So many great moments. I know I annoy you a lot in co-op games and fail most of the time, but I do the best I can lol. I'll remember to give you money in MW3 too. Also Venom we had awesome times as well with Dead Nation, LBP, Shoot Many Robots, etc. I've lost count on how co-op games we've beaten. We still have a lot of games to go though lol. Man I still need to play some co-op games with most of you guys I haven't played with yet. For some reason playing co-op with Jason is like a big goal lol. _______________________________________________________________________________ Anyways I could talk about a lot of things about the past year, but I'd like to hear stories from you guys.
  17. I was wondering if you guys are setting any gaming goals for winter. I just purchased a new iMac so I probably will not be buying too many games for the next few months. This gives me time to hit the backlog and complete some goals I have for myself. My first goal is to beat Demon's Souls. I played the game a long time ago, beat the first boss and put the game into the backlog for what seems like forever. I'm not intimidated by the game, but just didn't feel like being frustrated at the time. I think it's time for me to approach the game with some seriousness. I don't think I'll feel good about my gaming if I end up never beating the game. My second goal is to knock Yakuza 3 out of the way so I can move on to Yakuza 4 and Yakuza - Dead Souls. I hear they are releasing Yakuza 5 and Yakuza HD Collection next year, so I really can't put off finishing 3 for much longer. I guess my final goal is to save up enough money to purchase a Vita. I'd really like to have one by February.
  18. Most of my gaming life, apart from a few games, has been dedicated to the console experience. Yes, I have enjoyed some great PC games, but I never got the full experience of being a PC gamer due to never taking the time or spending the money on a nice computer. Having just finished college, and with some time to spare, I thought now was the best time to finally build my own PC from scratch. Originally, I was really intimidated by the idea of building my own computer, but I found the internet to be a very helpful place for building noobs like myself. Here are some of my thoughts during the different processes I went through when building my first computer. The first step to building any PC of course is finding the right parts. This can be really intimidating if you are not sure what you are doing. There are so many different parts and choices to be made that if you are not sure of yourself you can find yourself buying parts that are not completely compatible. The first thing you need to do that I have learned from this process is figure out your overall budget for this project. For me, I set my budget at 600-700$ and thankfully made it around $640 after shipping and taxes. If you are having trouble picking out the right parts for your build do not be afraid to ask for help on forums or from friends. Another key I found to finding the right parts is research. This may sound intimidating, but its really not. In fact, I rather enjoyed reading up on different video cards and processors to help me find the parts that I really wanted. I knew that with the budget I set I was not going to be able to build a super computer, but that was never my intention. My goal was to simply run new games on high settings, and I felt that with the parts that I have purchased this would easily be accomplished. Before you buy any part I would recommend you read up professional and non professional reviews to get a better understanding on how exactly it performs in action. So by now you are probably dying to know what parts I have spent my precious hard earned money on. I wont bore you with some of the parts, so I will share the processor and video card that I chose. SAPPHIRE Radeon HD 6850 1GB 256-bit GDDR5 PCI Express This is the piece that really has me excited! I know this is not the highest end video card out there, in fact its no where near it, but from what I had read professionally, and from user reviews, this card should run the newest games at high settings. My only gaming experiences have come from laptops, so I was really excited to finally have a nice video card that I can actually turn shadows on with. For my processor I chose: Intel Core i3-2120 Sandy Bridge 3.3GHz LGA 1155 65W I was a little concerned at first with only getting a dual core processor but after reading a lot about this dual core I learned that this will work great for what I need it to. Ideally I would have gotten a quad core processor but I was aiming for more of a budget build that I could upgrade later than the highest end build possible. So now the hard part. Waiting. All of the parts were supposed to arrive in 3 days but those three days felt like much longer. I was a little nervous about messing something up while building this computer as I had no experience at all apart from adding ram and a wireless card to a desktop. Thank fully, there was lots of help on the internet, and i had been watching videos online that demonstrate how to add parts and connect wires. The first part to building my first computer required choosing the right parts for my budget. While I waited for my parts to come in I spent a lot of time reading build advice and watching videos. While nothing looked to be overwhelmingly difficult from watching videos, I was still nervous. I was worried I would short circuit an important part or have a faulty component. When my computer finally arrived, I was mentally prepared to spend all day and night working on my soon to be gaming computer. Everything came a day earlier then anticipated so the anti static wristband I ordered from amazon would have to wait until my next build. I set up shop and unpacked all the pieces. After unpacking everything I needed, it was time to get started. I set up my laptop on the table next to me so I could easily access the YouTube video that demonstrated specific building instructions. After I set out my case, I began planning everything out. The first thing I did was plug in the power supply unit, or what I now refer to as the PSU (see, I have built my own computer now so I know about and can use more computer lingo!). The PSU was easy to install and was very self explanatory. The part I was most nervous about was the processor. This little square is expensive and any static charge from my body could ruin it. I carefully placed it where it belonged and breathed a sigh of relief. Now that I got that out of the way I was able to relax a little more and put the ram into the motherboard. This was very easy. After that I had no trouble mounting the DVD and hard drive. Now came the confusing part, mounting the motherboard. The case I had was completely different from the one used in the video demonstration so I had to figure things out a little bit. I won“t bore you with the details, but I eventually mounted it with ease and was ready to move on. I think after all was said and done this was probably the most stressful part for me. The second hardest part for me was the connections. There were so many different wires that needed to be plugged in that if you are not sure what you are doing you can get a little overwhelmed. Thankfully, I had a good reference point, and if I ever was unsure of myself I could look it up. When I finally got everything hooked up it was time for the moment of truth! I hooked up an HDMI cable to my screen and hit the power switch. With my computer parts exposed, I stared at the guts of the computer, waiting for it to come to life. I was beyond excited as my case fan began to spin rapidly and my motherboard fan began to power on. The happiness stopped there as the motherboard fan stopped while the case fan continued to spin. Disappointment would be a complete understatement. What could I have possible done wrong? I made sure everything was plugged in, and the only plug that was loose did not fit anywhere. I felt my heart drop to the bottom of my chest. I thought to myself, did I realy just set this whole thing up just to have a faulty motherboard? I tried not panic. Thankfully I knew of a local computer store where the guys working there know a lot about building computers. I explained to them what was happening, and they asked if I had both of the connections from the PSU to the motherboard. Long story short, turns out the extra plug was supposed to plug into the motherboard. The darn plug had eight parts but the slot that needed to be penetrated had only 4 pin holes. The plug actually separated, and there it was, the final step to building my computer. “The wiring setup. A complete mess at first. Do not panic it looks much better now†I started up the computer again, and this time there was complete life! The rest of the process was really easy. I simple had to insert the windows 7 CD and the rest was a cakewalk. So there it is. If I could tell someone one thing looking to build their own computer for the first time it would be do not get too overwhelmed. When all was said and done it was not that difficult. That it not to say it was easy. A lot of time and patience goes into a project like this, but trust me when I say it was well worth it! Now that there has been some time between when I finished my build and finally installing some new games to play I can happily say I am completely satisfied with the results. While my computer is not an extreme gaming computer I am maxing out Skyrim at max resolution with HD mods at 60 frames per second and can play demanding games like The Witcher 2 at a steady 50fps at very high settings. Now that I have finally built my own computer (something I have always wanted to do but never thought I could), I feel very confident in my abilities, and honestly, I feel pretty "bad ass".
  19. So don't know if you guys are familiar with this convention, but Quakecon will be in Dallas, Texas this weekend (August 2nd - 5th). Haven't been involved in the BYOC (computer/LAN) area in a couple of years but plan to hit it hard next year probably. I'll be there though this weekend (at least tentative plans are for that to happen). Just wondering if anyone else was planning on attending, and if you've never heard of it before, maybe you should consider going next year! It's a good time, with some good discussions/talks of upcoming releases and some good vendor areas as well. And then the BYOC is always rocking.