The Digi-Cult

A New Religion for a Digital Age

Posts Tagged ‘PC’

Go with the Flow: Mirrors Edge Preview

Posted by Shannon O'Grady on November 11, 2008

The player takes the role of Faith, who has just returned to being a Runner after being injured in a fall.

The player takes the role of Faith, who has just returned to being a Runner after being injured in a fall.

I sat down with my newly downloaded demo of Mirrors Edge (snag it if you haven’t already) and I’ve got to say that I’m impressed.

This game is hard as hell to get a hang of.  The controls are mindbendingly versatile.  Just a few buttons do a lot of different things in different situations, and the camera angles are all weird but don’t let the initial learning curve turn you off.  The strange controls and funny angles are actually there to assit you and once you’re done the training you’ll see that without them you’d never get through the game.

Mirrors Edge takes place in a modern police state that’s so shiny and clean it’s sick.  In this world the “Runners” are hired as clandestine messengers who scale the cities rooftops and hop from building to building.  If you’ve ever seen or participated in the sport of Parkour you’ll understand how these amazing feats are accomplished.  If not, imagine jumping from your roof onto the neighbors, running to their drain pipe, sliding down, jumping off and grabbing the window ledge of a third home.  That’s the madness you’re in for.

As I said before, the learning curve in this one is STEEP but the fast paced game play and political storyline are so worth the hassle.  I failed miserably at the tutorial, but did alright in the first mission itself.  I was able to utilize different (and sometimes easier) paths than what was obviously laid out.  It’s a thinking on your feet kind of game.  Too bad my sister got all that talent. The game has optional uses for the six axis controller that use it’s rotation sensing which is currently an underused (or poorly used in the case of Lair) feature.

The Police normally leave the Runners alone, but something has changed behind the scenes

The Police normally leave the Runners alone, but something has changed behind the scenes and Big Brother has decided its time to crack down.

Graphics wise this game is great.  Lots of detail and texture to everything, though I’ll admit seeing the same kind of building over and over no matter how pretty it is, does get boring.  The movements are smooth and te game handles well.  Sound-wise there isn’t much to say other than it’s appropriate.  You hear yourself puffing away, groaning and cringing as you hit the ground too hard.  There’s even ambient street noise.

The story is what’s really got me in to this game.  There’s something dark and sinister about a place so squeaky clean as this city.  The main character, Faith, seems bent on restoring the dirty culture to the streets, and take down the government in the process.

Look for a full review of this game as soon as I can rent or borrow it 😉

Mirrors Edge relases today in NA on X-BOX 360 and PS3.  Look for the game to realease in January for the PC.

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Get out your Boomstick! Here comes Left 4 Dead!

Posted by Shannon O'Grady on November 9, 2008

Choose from 4 characters and watch them change over time

Choose from 4 characters and watch them change over time. When I played all the character wee clean shaved and in summer clothing.

This weekend I had the privilege of playing the Left 4 Dead demo and dear lord, I’m in love.  Let me say first that I’m terrible at shooters.  I dislike the plots, the gameplay and the whole experience in general.  And yet, I’ll be borrowing this game from my boyfriend as soon as he can part with it.  (I may be waiting a while… he’s even more in love with the game than I am).  That’s how impressive this game is.

All of the above being true, let me explain what drew me to this game.  I’m a Zombie Survivalist, and for those not in the know that means that I think about what would happen if the world came to an end and there were a bunch of Zombies of various types running around.  I plan how I could survive in various places and discuss these, admittedly crazy, topics with like minded friends.  Now, take all the things I’ve planned and make them come true in the Left 4 Dead videogame.

A Boomer can attract hundreds of zombies with it's foul breath

A Boomer can attract hundreds of zombies with it's bile

Valve, makers of Portal, Half Life 2 and other fantastic games went in to this project to design a zombie survival shooter that would appeal to a wide audience without taking itself too seriously.  They planned on character variety as well as good team and enemy AI as well as good quality graphics.  And they delivered on everything.

I’ll do a full review of this game when I get it to play the full version (see title, hint hint) but don’t worry, I’ll give you a peak at what I saw:

– 4 charters to play
– Team AI makes the game playable by even the worst shots.  I normally HATE shooters but even I can play this, I just use my teammates as meat shields! (Yup, I’m horrible like that).
– The ability to heal your teammates after you use them as meat shields.  Or yourself should the need arise.
_ Special zombie types add depth to the game.  The Smoker explodes and destroys your vision, The Boomer can vomit on you and attract hordes of zombies, The Tank is basically a zombie version of the Hulk, The Hunter jumps on you like something out of Alien and  The Witches… well… they rip you apart if you look at them funny.  Beware what sounds like the sobbing of children, no matter how much you want to be the hero.
– Zombies can entangle characters who must be rescued by other characters, including the Team AI’s.
– References to other Zombie classics.  “Groovy”.
– Character appearance evolves overtime.
– Stellar use of audio cues.  Teammates call out when they’re reloading or when they spot a special zombie.  Zombies make noises specific to their type, alerting the player before the encounter, and drawing them closer to the fight all at once.

Though Witches appear meak don't let thier cries fool you.  These ladies are cold killers.

Though Witches appear weak don't let their cries fool you. These ladies are cold killers.

– Don’t let the screencaps fool you, this game is not as hard to see as you’d think.  Though it is dark, you have a flashlight to use as well as light from billboards and the like.  However, the light and noise attract zombies so BEWARE
– Though it wasn’t available in the demo, YOU CAN PLAY AS ZOMBIES!

This is set to be one of the most fun shooters out this season, especially for those who don’t want the time commitment of Gears of War 2 or Fallout 3.  It’s simple pick up and go game play and group based play make it the kind of game you want to play with your friends, or even enemies.  Valve proves once again that simple formula done well can create the most enthralling games.

I can’t wait to get my hands on the full version of this one!  Assuming the Zombie appocolypse doesn’t happen first…

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Fallout 3: Update 3

Posted by Shannon O'Grady on November 6, 2008

Slightly less broken

Slightly less broken

It’s out ladies and gentlemen!  The first in what will undoubtedly be a series of patches for Fallout 3 has come out.

Click here to go to Bethesda’s offical release and DL it if you need it, then come back!

Ok, now that you’re back if you ever left at all, lets do a run down of the patch!  You can find the official release notes here but the gist of it is this:

The game play isn’t fixed, and most of the bugs are untouched.  If you had issues closing and opening the game window those should be fixed, but that’s about it.

Patch seems a little useless for you?  Try the following, if you haven’t already.

  1. Defrag your hard drive.  Do a virus scan while you’re at it.
  2. Install/ Reinstall the game
  3. Turn background programs off to free up memory, try doing this from the Task Manger (ALT+CTRL+DEL) to get some of the ones that are hiding.
  4. Open the game.
  5. Map the controls to your liking.
  6. Adjust your settings, try turning everything down and off that you can.  Especially Anti-aliasing, that sucker can really slow you down.

I’ll keep you apprised of anything new I hear that might actually solve some ingame crashes for those with real issues.

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Fallout 3: Update 2

Posted by Shannon O'Grady on November 5, 2008

That smiling guy at the top, he's really screaming "PATCH ME".

That smiling guy at the top, he's really screaming "Patch Me!"

So as those that play the game may have noticed, the promised patch did not arrive yesterday.  Boo urns!  However, have hope!  The patch is in the works and according to another Bethesda staffer will be released this week.  Hurray!

The patch, according to N4G will address issues of the game crashing upon exit.  Sadly that is NOT the major issue most people are having, nor is it the issue the fans were hoping would be addressed first.

Bethesda does say that they will be realeasing another, more extensive patch at a later date and they’re monitoring complaints to make the fans happy.  So if you want this game fixed faster I’d say head over to Bethesda’s Fallout 3 forums and start annoying the heck out of the moderators in hopes of speeding up the process.

Suspiciously there are no offical notices about any of this on the main Fallout 3 website, or the developers blog, or even a real offical announcement in the formus (at least that I can find, you know how forums are).  Is Bethesda leaving things up in the air so they don’t have a solid due date to push towards?  Or are they just certain the fans will wait forever anyway.

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Fallout 3: Update

Posted by Shannon O'Grady on November 4, 2008

PC version soon to be patched

PC version soon to be patched

Well I wrote my last fall out article on Monday but delay publishing it until today.  In some ways that was good timing on my part because the annoncment has just come in that a PC patch will be available for the game today.

Eurogamer spoke with the media rep for Bethesda and got the scoop, though little was said as to what the patch would contain and what issues it’s meant to address.

Hopefully all the crashing issues will be fixed and the PC gamers can get back to enjoying thier game.

I’m glad Bethesda got thier act together and got the patch out by I still wonder why it was kept under wraps.  Seems a little… mean.

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