Gaming

Blog 818: Dragon’s Dogma

My old WC3 modding pal Dionesiist spent a lot of time urging me to play Dragon’s Dogma, to the point that I can barely type it without auto-correcting myself to “Dragon’s Diogma”. That was years ago, though, and I am not a man to rush into anything — but nor am I man to forget. So this one’s for you, Dio! (Give him a commission, why don’tcha.)

Besides, Dragon’s Dogma is a third-persion open-world action-RPG where you climb up giant monsters and stab them in the face; it’s totally up my street.

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Gaming

Blog 816: RoX

I’ve been meaning to write properly about Safrosoft RoX because I’ve mentioned it obliquely a few times since I built my Windows XP machine — it’s one of the straws that broke the camel’s back, which, along with the inability to play Age of Empires II and Atrox on my real PC, made me take the olde worlde plunge.

I mean, this will be a mostly academic discussion, because you can’t play RoX anymore — it’s a hoary old piece of 32-bit Visual Basic shareware, and while it might be possible to rig it up on a modern OS with some decidedly unseemly DLL registry shenanigans, nobody’s realistically going to take that risk. Which is a shame because RoX is a fantastically compelling little game.

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Gaming

Blog 814: Metal Wolf Chaos XD

There are two things I like in a videogame: mechs and explosions. The bigger, the better.

Metal Wolf Chaos XD involves the President of the USA driving a mech around and blowing half the country back to FREEDOM from a villainous coup led by his Vice President.

It’s a questionable mech shooter but it’s hilarious and I spent most of my time with it almost crying with laughter.

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Gaming

Blog 812: Shadows of… Damn

I replayed Baldur’s Gate earlier this year and foolishly thought I could get away with just that, and not immediately transferring my character to the sequel. Fast-forward a few months and yep, here I am, chugging through Baldur’s Gate II: Shadows of Amn. Except I’m realising more and more that…

Despite all the quality-of-life improvements made to the Infinity Engine, despite the more detailed NPCs and the fun extra-planar jaunts, I really do prefer the original game. Even worse, I’m beginning to think that I don’t like Baldur’s Gate II at all.

(There will be spoilers.)

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Gaming

Blog 811: Duke Nukem: Manhattan Project

I didn’t know anything about Duke Nukem before I played the demo of Manhattan Project, but he obviously hit a nerve as I spent the rest of my years at school putting on my deepest voice and delivering all the lines — “makin’ bacon!”, “hail to the king, baby!”, “ooh, that is gonna leave a mark”, “there’s only two ways this can end, and in both of them, you die!” — blissfully unaware that most of them originated elsewhere and the Duke’s appeal was merely in concentrating them into a single pastiche. I’m more widely read nowadays, honest!

Thing is though, it was also a really fun game. Why haven’t I replayed it for years? Good question. Let’s see if we can answer it.

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Gaming

Blog 810: Atrox

I seem to have a thing for games that end in “ox”. We all know Exon is a vast tribute to Nox, and one of the other reasons I built my old XP computer was Safrosoft RoX… and then we have this RTS Atrox. Like Age of Empires II, Atrox suffers from having a 256 colour palette in a 65-million colour world and so needs to be played in the past.

History has likely forgotten it for more reasons than that, though. Atrox is a Korean Starcraft clone that is… Well, just how closely they managed to copy Starcraft with such a small core team is actually quite impressive. Three asymmetric factions. Two resources in convenient little semi-circles. The same cliff/plateau/ramp style of terrain.

Even so, it’s one of those games that’s been lodged in my psyche since the day I first set eyes on it, so let me tell you why it’s deserving of at least a little attention…

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Gaming

Blog 807: Elex

I enjoyed Risen 3: The Titan Lords. It wasn’t perfect, but it was good, colourful, vibrant fun. So when the same studio made a sci-fi game that was noted for being pretty similar, I thought… Well, who doesn’t want more of a good thing?

It came on sale and I figured it had been out long enough to be stable and final, so like the comet that brought the titular magic crystal (and the apocalypse) to the planet of Magalan, I took the plunge.

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Gaming

Blog 806: The Conquerors

I remember seeing a (p)review for the Age of Empires II expansion pack The Conquerors in an issue of PC Gaming World at the time… In fact, I’ve still got it on my shelf. (It’s the same issue that gave Deus Ex a very lacklustre write-up. Oops.)

I remember misreading the word “allies”, in tiny text next to a tiny screenshot, as “aliens” and getting really excited for all the wrong reasons.

Well, it turned out okay in the end.

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