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Archive for the ‘Video games’ Category

Sony force Lik-Sang out of business Out of Business due to Multiple Sony Lawsuits: “the popular gaming retailer from Hong Kong, has today announced that it is forced to close down due to multiple legal actions brought against it by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe Limited and Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.”

I’ve just read about this on IGN, and I’ve got to say that Sony really aren’t doing themselves any favours. After yesterday’s news of them blocking imports of the Playstation 3 into Europe I honestly believe they’re digging their own grave. I certainly won’t be buying the vastly overpriced console when it’s released, and neither will many others.

If there’s a Sony boycott happening, I’m in.

Why I stopped playing World of Warcraft

An interesting article on why one guy stopped playing World of Warcraft. I stopped playing after about level 50 because I just wasn’t prepared to put in the many many hours necessary to progress. I’m not the kind of person that can dedicate such long stretches of time to a game (and these raids can take hours!), if I can’t dip in for 30 minutes for a quick play I’m not interested anymore. Don’t get me wrong, the game was great fun for the first 40 levels, but just became another job… that I wasn’t being paid for! So I quit.

Kingdom Hearts 2

Kingdom Hearts II screenshot

I’ve finally started playing Kingdom Hearts 2 on the PS2. It’s been out in the US for six months (and in Japan for almost a year) but for some reason Square kept Europe waiting. I have no right to complain, if I’m brutally honest, as I never actually got around to completing the first one and, as I never had a a Gameboy Advance, have only just got hold of Chain of Memories (a kind of portable Kingdom Hearts 1.5) to play now I’ve got a DS Lite to play it on.

Still, as a fan of the original that I never played properly, I *needed* to see KH2!

If you haven’t heard of the series, it’s kind of a mashup of characters from Disney and Final Fantasy (mostly the former) in a story lead by a number of characters unique to the plot. Wikipedia has much more information than I could ever care to provide, so I won’t bore you with all of that.

Anyway, to cut a long story short (and it *is* a long story, with many many cut-scenes), I’m loving the game so far. Yes, it’s rather easy (so far) in standard mode but this, to me, isn’t really a bad thing. The problem I have is that if I find a game too hard I’ll end up giving up. I never completed Devil May Cry because I just couldn’t get out of the castle within the time limit on the very last level! It’s not so easy as to be boring (and if you fancy more of a challenge, there’s always the harder mode), and the story and visuals are fascinating enough for me to see the game itself as almost secondary to the plot!

That said, I’m only eight hours into the game (we don’t meet the lead character, Sora, again until the titles kick in at around 3 1/2 hours into the game!) so my opinion could very well change.

One thing I realised, possibly too late, is that Jiminy counts the treasures you’ve discovered in each of the lands, and I don’t have all of them from the first, Twilight Town. This isn’t a problem with the others, but Twilight Town has disappeared and I can’t go back to it! I hope this doesn’t mean I’ll get the “bitch ending I deserve“.

My verdict? I love Disneyland and videogames with a plot, and I’m really enjoying it. Take from that what you will.

Sam & Max: North American release!

The new Sam and Max game, Episode One: Culture Shock, is out now… well, in the US and Canada at least. Download it via GameTap if you’re over there. The rest of the world (and me) will have to wait until November 1st to download it from Telltale Games’ own site. If it’s anywhere near as good as IGN say it is, I’ll be a happy psychotic rabbity thing.

Playstation 3 vs X-Box 360: The Game

Penny Arcade offers an interesting comment on the Sony PS3 / X-Box 360 battle this morning: “The game which sits above the ones we play – historically almost naval, in its pace – is more fascinating than ever, this time around.”

Showtime at Apple

Here’s a quick rundown of what’s been announced by Apple this afternoon:

  • iPod beefed up to feature 30Gb and 80Gb models.
  • iPod Nano gets new, uglier, mini-style design. Presumably, as Grid212 mentioned, because of the problem the original had with scratches. It’s also been bumped up to 2Gb, 4Gb and 8Gb models and has a brighter screen.
  • iPod Shuffle gets smaller and restyled to match the new Nano.
  • iTunes 7: Movie downloads, Cover Flow (flip through your DVD and CD covers), updated interface and Automatic Album Art (which sounds rather scarily Big Brother: “As long as you have an iTunes Store account, iTunes will automatically fetch available album art for any CD you imported to iTunes.”).
  • Downloadable games for iPod like Tetris, Pac-Man and Bejeweled.
  • Movie downloads. Still 4:3, though a slightly higher (but still small) 640×480 resolution. It also, predictably, seems to be Disney content right now.

They also announced that they’re working on a sleek looking set-top box tentatively named iTV (no relation, I assume, and, pending a lawsuit from ITV, I am certain it will change) which transmits video from iTunes to TV.

Star Fox Command

I hadn’t given this Nintendo DS game much attention until now which, in retrospect, seems rather undeserved. It’s pretty much a re-working of the original SNES game, one of the pioneering 3D games on the platform, with a removal of the ground action and a revert to good old dogfights. This review of the game at IGN gives it the thumbs up so I think it may have to be a future purchase.

Sam & Max: Good news and bad news

Wired have a new article over at Game|Life about the forthcoming Sam & Max game. As a great fan of the original LucasArts game and Steve Purcell’s comic strips (I’ll forget the cartoon happened) I must admit that I’m very dubious about a successful transition from 2D to 3D and I’m still very much to be convinced.

I’ll put that aside though and announce the good news: It’s out in October.

The bad news? It’s on GameTap, which means a) you lose the game if you unsubscribe to their service, and b) you can’t get it if you’re outside the US! You’ll eventually be able to get the game from Telltale‘s site but there’s no date on that as far as I know.

Ah well, at least they haven’t cancelled the whole project yet.

“Are video games breeding evil?”

After the dribbly ridiculous over-hype of the now infamous “Hot Coffee” mod:

“Cohen ‘bought a 17+ recommended game for her teenage grandson, featuring car theft, shootings, muggings, cop-killing, prostitution and plenty more, but now wants compensation because it also turned out to feature badly animated dry humping, which could be unlocked only by deliberately downloading a patch off the internet’”

Are video games breeding evil? Erm, no.

“Like rock and roll in the 1950s, games have been accepted by the young and largely rejected by the old. Once the young are old, and the old are dead, games will be regarded as just another medium and the debate will have moved on. Critics of gaming do not just have the facts against them; they have history against them, too.”