I, too, can shamelessly rip off Kotaku

The Art of Destiny

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I BET YOU DIDN’T KNOW THAT I LOVED THE FIRST DESTINY BUT I AM HERE TODAY TO TELL YOU THAT I DID AND IT SHOULD COME AS NO SURPRISE THAT I AM JUST AS INFATUATED WITH THE RECENTLY RELEASED SEQUEL. ONE OF THE ABSOLUTE BEST PARTS OF THE WHOLE FRANCHISE IS THE AMAZING LORE THAT SUPPORTS THE ENTIRE EXPERIENCE. ONE OF THE OTHER BEST PARTS? THE AAAAARRRRTTTT BECAUSE IT IS AMAZER.

Kotaku has collected some of the best examples in this VERY expansive post – check it out! I also grabbed a bunch of examples and chucked ’em below the belt fold.

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What is HYPE May Never Die

What sort of alchemists do Bungie employ? How did they turn a game that was straight basura from tip to tail when it was released into a completely unputdownable gem that I’ve been playing almost daily for the past year? Much as I credit Untappd for pushing me further into the craft beer rabbit hole, all credit/blame must go to the Destiny subreddit for deepening the obsession/mania. Thanks?

WHERE IS MY FLAMING ARMOR I NEED IT

The VPH Review: Rockpockalypse & Tekken Card Tournament

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-Why is this game free? Usually Vince McMahon and the WWE, owing to their carnie roots,  will do anything in their power to make a dollar. This weekend’s Wrestlemania XXIX is making fans shell out 55 clams for what’s almost assuredly going to be bad wrestling and awful cameos. So the fact that the app equivalent of that is free is suspicious.

-Why would the Rock allow this game to be free? It’s using his likeness and his voice. Dwayne’s as much of a naked capitalist as Vince is, I’m shocked he isn’t trying to capitalize on every single WWE promo out there.

-The story is….well….. there is no story. You walk out of a trailer and you learn how to fight.  And how do you fight? By swiping your finger in one direction or another. Very similar to (i.e. a complete & total rip-off of) Infinity Blade but not nearly as fun or challenging.  Each foe you vanquish is a level.  I made it to level 3. And then the game froze on me.  How do you fix the frozen game problem? Why, you delete the game and reinstall it.  Well…..that was fun.

-I’m back. I decided to reinstall the game and give it another go.  After passing the 4th level I realized every level was going to be exactly the same.  This is the kind of game you’d give to a 6 year old at a restaurant to keep him busy while his parents are eating dinner.

Final thoughts: Gawd Awful

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Let me start by saying I love Tekken.  Am I good at it? Hell no, but I really really do like the game.  The characters are all unique and interesting, the move sets are diverse, and if you’re playing by yourself it really can be enjoyable. My problem with these games, and this game specifically, is that that learning curve to play multiplayer is just ridiculously steep. You’re playing against people who have been playing this game for the last 10 years nonstop and it makes the whole experience 0% fun.  Just ask ImperviousRex about the latest Street Fighter game  I’ve witnessed first hand controllers being thrown across the room (ImperviousRex: What? I can’t hear you over the sound of all these broken controllers). .  AND HE IS NO NEWBIE!!!!!! When I saw the trailer for this I said “Wow, maybe a Tekken game I won’t completely suck at.”  Here are my reactions to the new Tekken Card Tournament:

-Great, I have to sign in using Facebook. Can’t wait to impress everyone with my mighty Tekken accomplishments.

-OK, so far it’spretty interesting. Your deck of cards and how you decide to play them (focus cards, attack cards, and block cards) determines your course of  action.

-So to be good at this game or even to enjoy it doesn’t require any prior knowledge of Tekken or any fighting game in general.  It’s a basic card game where choosing the right card action at the right time grants you victory.  It feels like a fresh take on the card game genre.

-Final thoughts: An entertaining and unique game, but one that I feel will wear out its welcome after an hour or so of gameplay (IE: Family Fued & Draw Something)

Treyarch & Activision: Proven to Be Filthy Liars as Nuketown 2025 is Removed from Black Ops 2

“Pre-Order Call of DUty: Black Ops 2 and get exclusive access to the Nuketown 2025 map!”

Yeah, but what they conveniently forgot to mention was that the map was available LAUNCH WEEKEND ONLY. Yeah. Go log into BLOPS 2 now and try to find Nuketown. Oh that’s right, you can’t, because Activision PULLED IT.

From the Examiner:

A remake of the popular Nuketown map from the original Black Ops was offered as a pre-order bonus for Call of Duty: Black Ops II on the Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and PC. The map didn’t even last a week in the multiplayer rotation though as Treyarch pulled it Monday. “Double XP weekend is official over,” game director David Vonderhaar wrote on Twitter. “That means Nuketown 2025 / 24-7 is as well. I know. RIGHT? Don’t kill the messenger.”

This means that the only way to play the Nuketown 2025 map now is in custom games until Treyarch decides to bring it back. Will they bring it back though and is so, when?
“Nuketown 2025 / 24-7 will be back for special events,” Vonderhaar continued.

When asked if the map will ever show up in the regular playlists, Vonderhaar said, “Yeah. Probably eventually. We are talking that over internally.”

Taking Nuketown 2025 out of the playlist rotation less than a week after Black Ops II has understandably upset a large number of players already. It’s certainly a strange move and one that will be remembered as one of the great pre-order negative experiences.

I think this is the dictionary definition of the sin of omission.

This Black Ops Chart Is Amazing And Thorough, Still Won’t Make Me Any Good

Are you obsessed with knowing which weapons will yield a three-shot kill at ranges of 100+ meters in Black Ops 2? Not as obsessed as these guys. SHAME ON YOU.

A couple of super heroes/insane persons spent days exhaustively testing every weapon in the game to determine which had the best accuracy, damage, reload speed, and much more. None of this information will keep me from dying 30 times a minute.

(via PC Gamer, Kotaku, and like a zillion other places.)

FIFA 13 Career Mode, Episode 2

Back from a wedding and resurrected from the depths of Hurricane Sandy’s wrath, Napoleon Bonaparte gets back on the pitch and continues his own path of destruction towards to the Ligue 1 Championship and a place in the Champions League.

ACA 1 – Valenciennes FC 2

After starting out with a 1-0 lead 6 minutes into the game, Valenciennes scores two unlikely goals 4 minutes apart right before the half.  The first goal a header off of free kick that just went over the goalkeeper’s head. The second one more of a headscratcher really on the defense.  The right back trying to clear the ball out of his zone kicks it right into the 18 yard box where Aboubakar, the striker for Valenciennes, gets a head on it before the goalie can make a play and it goes right into the net.  Valenciennes would play a tough defense the rest of the game and unfortunately ACA go home with zero points for this first time this season.

ACA 2 – Toulouse 0

With Murgu away on International duty, the young striker Delort comes in and takes his place hoping to make his mark on Ligue 1.  Two powerful strikes by Eduardo and newcomer Delort were all that were needed as Ajaccio took the first game of the Coupe de Ligue against Toulouse.  The victory in the first round gives my team additional funds.  How much you ask. A whopping 75,000.  Oh what can I buy. A Xavi, an Iniesta, a Messi.  More like a nice big bag of Hersheys kisses.

Not going under the radar is the stellar play of Carl Medjani and Sajamary Diarra.  Their play has been stellar and they have been the men who are probably the first names on Bonaparte’s team sheet.  The manager has been ebullient in his praise for both of these players recently.

TRANSFER DEADLINE DAY

The biggest tranfers of the season so far have been Mario Balotelli to FC Barcelona for 34 million Euros.  Kaiseke Honda has taken his talents out of Russia and signed a 15 million euro transfer to play in La Liga with Athletico Madrid.

ACA – OL

Before the match with Olympique Lyon Bonaparte took the time to praise midfielder Michel Bastos. He considers the 29 year old from Brazil a dangerous weapon.  “We always study the good players, even if it’s just to admire them.  Michel Bastos is definitely worth studying.”  Well Napoleon did something right in this game because Bastos, along with what seemed to be the rest of OL, were held in check.  A pretty lackluster where the only scoring came through on a rebound shot by Cavlli in the 54th minute.  Damien Tiberi after the game says, “I’ve got to get more playing time boss, I’m frustrated when I’m not picked.”

The VPH (early) Review: Assassins Creed 3……Is Bigger Better?

Ubisoft gave audiences such high hopes for Assassins Creed 3.  They promised they would take the series in a new direction with all new characters, story arcs, settings, and side missions and in my opinion, they certainly delivered.  It’s refreshing to see a different story in a different location. For the last three it seemed like the series was stuck in Limbo while Ubisoft kept releasing new games that were essentially content cut from previous installments.  This time though, we have a fresh face and fresh take on the Assassin/Templar legend alongside new side quests that are large enough that they could each be their own game.  The game is set during the American Revolution, where a half English/half Mohawk named Conner is thrown into the middle of the Assassin/Templar war.  Wonderful improvements, but is it better?

To begin with, the story is much more comprehensible than the previous three installments.  As a history teacher the games that I most enjoy playing are those that involve historical fiction.  Even though it takes some time to get off the ground, by and large I’m pretty invested in the game. Hell for the first part of the story you’re not even playing as the main character.  I’m six hours in and the Revolution isn’t close to starting yet.  Nice to see that plot was actually thought about and the well populated with strong, interesting characters.

On the other hand,  it just feels like it drags a bit.  Certain points during the first few hours were a bit silly. SPOILER:  The owl flying across the screen. Come on, REALLY? Now we’re playing as owls?  END SPOILER. Assassins Creed 2 is still my favorite and as a stand-alone story it was top notch. It was the first game on the PS3 where I really felt the impact of an open world type game with an amazing assortment of side quests. Plus, being a fanatic about all things Italy, the time period that the game was set in really spoke to me.

The mission layout is exactly like the previous installments.  Complete the mission but follow a strict set of guidelines to get 100% credit for the missionwhich means nothing to the actual story.  I can see if there were trophies involved but there aren’t, so what’s the point aside from a completionist perspective?  It seems solely like a specific way that the developers want you to play the game.  Not necessarily a bad thing, but provide us with some kind of incentive to do so.  If most of the world surrounding Conner is free roam why aren’t the missions? I love trying to follow the guidelines that are established before the mission begins, but make it worth our while.  The same can be said about the weapons system.  Whats the point of acquiring new weapons if it does not change the outcome of anything other than the animation.  This was perhaps my only gripe with Assassins Creed 2.  How about some kind of leveling system or a type of point system that rewards you for using different weapons?  But maybe I’m contradicting myself since I’m focusing on the “Is Bigger Better” theme here.  DAMN IT NOW I’M CONFUSED!

To me, Assassins Creed games are comparable to the Matrix movies.  The Matrix and Assassins Creed 2 were Bad Ass. (I’m leaving out AC1 one because EVERYONE knew that it was shit and not polished yet).  The Matrix Reloaded and Assassins Creed: Brotherhood were both good with some excellent scenes but in all likelihood unnecessary.  The Matrix Revolutions and Assassins Creed: Revelations were completely unnecessary cash grabs.  I cant even being to tell you what the hell went on the third Matrix film and as for AC:R, the city of Constantinople really didn’t do it for me.

Back to one of the aspects of the game that I am really enjoying, and that’s the side quests.  It’s very similar to Red Dead Revolver in terms of open world side missions.  Naval warfare, hunting, picking fights with the British and challenging fort defenses.  I’m sure most gamers out there have said to themselves while playing a game “How cool would it be if you could go hunting? How awesome would it be if you could free roam in the woods and trade?”  Well, it turns out that it’s much better in theory than in practice. So, careful what you wish (or quasi-hope) for!

Stay tuned in the coming weeks for another, more in-depth review once I’ve sank some serious hours into the game in addition to my multiplayer review.  With most of the games that I play I like to knock out the single player campaign before I dive into the MP aspect.  Since I was the first person in Blockbuster to rent the game post Hurricane Sandy I got the Online Pass for free.  Yay me.  Remember to add me to your friends list (our gamer-tags are in the right hand column)  Ill be seeing you online…but you won’t be seeing me.  Get it? ‘ cause I’m, like,  an assassin and you cant see me….NEVERMIND.