Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Tibet brings out the beast in Nate

I've now played through both Uncharted games and I have to say that I'm truly impressed with the experience that both games gave me. Not even Assassins Creed II or MW2 could sway me from completing the single-player mode in Among Thieves - I'm now playing Drake's Fortune through for a second time but on the hard mode setting.

I've recently reviewed Uncharted 2 over at Caught in the Crossfire - close to perfect as a gaming experience can be and probably my game of the year. The excellently paced action-stained storyline has some stand-out moments but the one that engaged me the most was the Tibetan village 'down-time' of chapter 16.

I love videogames for moments like these when they are unexpected but fit in so well with the mood the game has set. The scene comes just after the cinematic chase over the outside of a moving train(chapters 14/15) and the video above highlights a few of the subtle moments that made it a highlight for me - the beast mode medal is something I initially missed. Playing ball with the children and discovering others hiding from you are very nicely scripted.

I do hope there's to be an Uncharted 3,4 and 5!

Sunday, 22 November 2009

A gamer's gluttony

2009 has been a year where I've crowned my gaming with a big fat 'g'. Yes, I've felt overwhelmed by the wealth of videogame that has been played on my consoles - I also fear/giggle with glee that 2010 will see a sharp increase over the catch of 2009.

From the releases of 2009 that I rented, owned or borrowed, only 3 titles have I completed ☑ - none of which have been a favorite ♥ for single-player storyline experience. Of course, the very newest releases could well be the titles that I will yet complete - even if it's in the early part of 2010:

Assassin's Creed II
Batman: Arkham Asylum♥
Burnout Paradise The Ultimate Box
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2
F.E.A.R 2: Project Origin☑
FIFA 10♥
The Godfather II
Halo 3 ODST
Lord of the Rings Conquest
Left 4 Dead 2
Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising
Resident Evil 5☑
SEGA Mega Drive Ultimate Collection
Section 8
Street Fighter IV
Terminator Salvation☑
Uncharted 2: Among Thieves♥

In 2010, and as early in as January, Bayonetta looks a very tempting 'first game purchase' of the New Year. It has all the ingredents to blow away, the final remaining cobwebs of 2009.

Saturday, 14 November 2009

The World according to Snoopy

  • Snoopy must get at least one nap per play.
  • If Snoopy cries then your not paying the right attention to her.
  • Snoopy will hide in the most out-of-the-way places. Causing panic to all those around her.
  • Tails are to be chased and bitten.

Finally, after 12 years without a cat, an 8 week old female kitten has joined the Osbon clan. This is our first ever kitten(only previous cat was adopted at a few years old), so all is new to us. I spent most of the early morning sleeping with her on the living room sofa!

We decided on the name Snoopy because of her markings and her sometimes timid, sometimes understated character but all very cute.

And then there were three...

Sunday, 8 November 2009

'No' to NaNoWriMo

Two years ago I failed, somewhat miserably, at finishing a novel of 50,000 words in the month of November - aka NaNoWriMo. I didn't take part again in 2008 and again this year I'm stearing clear but my experience, back in 2007, was a good one of self-discovery. I still have the 10,000 or so words in a number of notebooks and even have an idea for a new novel which would suit the NaNoWriMo but not for this year.

The blogger that lead me to be involved in the NaNoWriMo experience was Yeager from Soul Kerfuffle, who doesn't look to be involved this year. A blogger who has become fairly infrequent with his posts but to my history of blogging and motivation he's invaluable. My personal thanks to you, Dave.

A number of my fellow bloggers that are attempting to put aside their procrastination and are actively involved in this years NaNoWriMo are listed below - I congratulate them all for their bravery:

"If any of you reading this have danced around the idea of NaNoWriMo or generally around the idea of trying to write something, but have managed to slither out of it through a combination of apathy, procrastination and terror, then maybe my experiences can be of some help. I’m not trying to bully or cajole anyone into NaNo — for me, it’s helpful to have a deadline and a public commitment, but that’s all it is."
"Just for fun I thought I would be fun to take a screenshot of my novel written on my iPhone everyday. That and it is easy way to keep my blog active. So, check out today’s snapshot."
"I’ve done NaNoWriMo once before, in 2006. I spent every morning before work diligently typing away, and had one crazy weekend where I wrote 20,000 words over the space of two days, and ended up finishing around November 20th. The finished novel, tentatively titled “Reality”, then sat on my computer for years. Every so often I’d open up the Word file and cringe at how awful it was, have a go at editing a chapter or two into something resembling a real novel, and then give up again, but mostly it just sat around being ignored. I kept thinking that I really should do something with it, because it was a really really awesome idea – zombies in the Big Brother house! – and then Charlie Brooker’s Dead Set happened, and I finally acknowledged to myself that I never would work Reality up into a publishable novel and it would be forever consigned to the dusty recesses of my hard drive."
Good luck guys!

Sunday, 1 November 2009

My Eurogamer Expo 2009 roundup

 Early morning queues

Ah new games! Their smell is so inviting! And sure enough, this years Eurogamer Expo drew a merry bunch of bloggers, tweeters and more importantly, gamers to London town. After missing last years expo, I'm so glad I made the short trip into London.

Stand by your beds!

The organised meet-up came together well(although I did lose everyone near the end of the event) and in attendance was: shuttler, pragi_uk, jonshute and vanhemlock, teppotastic, xbevisx, tigerears, oueddy and copperbird. I also spent some time with DolphGB talking over such things as the missed oppurtunities of the PSPgo, why the hell is there no release scheduled for the God of War Collection in the EU and his great site, PS3 Attitude - which does great things for the GamesAid charity.

The expo posse, minus a few...

It can be a little daunting when you meet up with people you have only ever 'talked' to online, for the very first time. I'd like to thank all those I met on the day for being themselves and making the day a very enjoyable one.

Gamer's delight?

So let me first begin with what I thought had the best showing at the Eurogamer Expo.

God of War III

I loved God of War II on my PS2 but I never finished it. Thankfully there's the God of War Collection to come, even if I have to order it on import, where I'll be able to relive the game, remastered with Trophy support.

The proported last in the series, God of War III, looks jaw-droppingly good and the E3 playable demo shown at the Eurogamer Expo shows off some of the new gameplay mechanics. March is beginning to feel too far away.

Plain Sight

A surprise for me was to find an indie game I enjoyed and would consider buying. So step forward Plain Sight, 'a 3D multiplayer arcade game with robots, bombs, swords and messed-up physics'. Fun fighting as a robot with a sword in a multiplayer domain, sounds an unlikely mix but it works. I understand that it's to be released on multiple formats sometime in 2010.

Bonus time needed

The Saboteur looks like it should, given the recent gameplay videos I've seen. But I didn't really get enough time with this title, as there were only two booths for people to try - not sure why that was. For now, I'll be keeping my preorder placed.

While I'm on this subject, I can't for the life of me understand why Assassin's Creed II only had 4 booths when most other titles on display had at least eight. I did hear that the version playable was fairly old but as I couldn't get to try it myself, it's hard for me to comment on this one. It was that busy, I really had problems even seeing the monitors and they were not small by any accounts.

shuttler takes on Global Agenda

Star Trek Online was the first title we looked over at the expo and our playthrough left a fairly good impression, even if the demo was fairly short. It's hard to judge an MMO demo when so many features are not included and the 'Massive' is missing from the MMO. I did sign up for the closed beta - something I haven't done for any MMO this year. For the sake of my fellow gamers who are looking for a new MMO home, I hope STO lives up to its early promise. Check over Shuttler's more indepth appreciation of STO at the expo here.


I'll not be playing Dragon Age: Origins, on the strength of what I saw. I'm will sure it will sell well but it's not for me.

I'll be looking forward to next years Eurogamer Expo with the hope that I can meet up with the same guys and girls. But I wonder, can we expect next years batch of titles match the flood of great videogames over the last two years?

I'd like to think so.