24 March, 2012

Full of Sound and Fury

written by Blain Newport on Friday, 23 March, 2012

The Mass Effect 3 ending furor continues. And the furor about the furor continues as well. It's mystifying to hear people on podcasts go on for twenty or thirty minutes about how upset they are about other people being upset, apparently completely unaware of the irony.

What I don't hear is dialog between reasonable people of differing perspectives. What I don't hear is the one thing that might be illuminating, possibly even useful.

As an additional note about Mass Effect 3, I'm also not playing it because there's a bug that doesn't allow you to import your character's appearance. With a series that puts so much emphasis on an epic continuity, that's inexcusable.

Gaming-wise, nothing's going on. I check in with the crew of the U.S.S. Moogie 5 a few times a day to make sure they're keeping busy. I play Devil May Cry for my videos. I look at the occasional indie game, but none of them leave enough of an impression to write about.

18 March, 2012

That One Word

written by Blain Newport on Sunday, 18 March, 2012

What is the most common word in the titles of my blog entries? I don't know. But I'm betting ennui ranks pretty highly. That's where I am with gaming right now.

Mass Effect 3 came out, and while I'm sure it's decent enough, there are so many little ugly bits surrounding it that I'm just not interested. EA refuses to sell it on my digital distribution platform of choice. They were selling so many DLC codes with comic books, action figures, and collectors' editions that if you wanted everything, it would run you over eight hundred dollars. And less than a week after the game came out gamers donated over forty thousand dollars to charity as an expression of how much they hated the ending. (Don't ask me. I don't get it either.)

Additionally, the game has scanning missions ripped directly from ME2, only worse. And if you don't want to do them, you have to grind in multiplayer to get the "good" ending which much of the internet apparently doesn't like.

I imagined great things for ME3. And right now I'd rather keep those fantasies than tarnish them with the reality I've been hearing about.

Star Trek Online is amazing, as time sinks go. The ship combat is all right, but the one time I tried hard difficulty I just died immediately, with no feedback about what I was supposed to do differently. Like most MMOs, you either turn it into a part time job, or go to the internet and read strategies from people who turned it into a full time job. It's not rewarding.

What I've mostly been doing is traveling the galaxy, sending my duty officers on missions, occasionally playing the game to kill time while I wait for them to get done. My pretend crew's exploits are more important than mine. It's multiple levels of sad.

Devil May Cry is still cool. I'm having some issues with the targeting, though. I finally learned how to kill the lizard men with style. But Dante insists on changing targets at the last instant, killing only my buzz. :P

That said, after recording Saturday's installment, I found myself playing and playing and playing, until I finished the game. It was an experience, and I worry that breaking it up over weeks will lessen the impact for my viewers. But it's a little late to change to a livestream format now. :P

06 March, 2012

Keepalive: Nothing To Report

written by Blain Newport on Tuesday, 6 March, 2012

I missed my normal Sunday posting date. There just isn't anything exciting to write about. I've been playing a bit more Star Trek Online, studiously avoiding ground combat missions.

That's it.

Oh, and I started the Devil May Cry video talkthrough (YouTube / MediaFire). The combat is still great. And I'm actually beginning to see more symbolism and meaning than I realized was there. I don't know why it's there. So much of the game is just ridiculous that I don't see why they'd put this much effort into the trappings. Perhaps that's how game developers keep themselves interested.