Wednesday, May 2, 2012

First LAN of the year!


What's up nerds, gamers, and friends.  In my last post I hinted at some really good news coming your way, and I have enough in place to go ahead and announce the first LAN party of this year.  I will be holding this event on June 9th, and welcome all St Louis PC gamers to attend.

I am currently working on getting a dedicated site built to hold everything, but for now I have a discussion board set up with some information including the main thread that has all of the details for current, and future LAN parties.

Here are the details for the June 9th LAN:


Where:
WashPC
2 Wainwright St. Suite 120
Washington, MO 63090

Here is a break down of the space we are using:
ALL networking equipment in place. All full gigabit with CAT6 cable and gigabit switches. We also have more switches if needed for more tables etc. we have 35+ really nice leather chairs and nice tables, we have room for folding tables and chairs We have a dedicated VLAN for the conf center area so it will share our internet, but that is fine, we have the 50M\5M service. Plenty of parking space.

Details
Date:
June 9th 2012
Time:
6pm - 12am (if it goes longer we can extend without issues)
Games:
- Team Fortress 2 (free on Steam) 6pm - 9pm
- Free play (whatever you want to play) 9pm - 10 pm
- Quake 3 TDM (if you have not played Q3 in a long time play online here for free: quakelive.com) 10-12am

What should I bring?
1. Computer/monitor and all equipment you require to game. (duh)
2. Snacks/drinks (we will provide some for a small cost should you forget)
3. Game software (in case something needs to be reinstalled)
4. Headphones! (no speakers)
5. Friends are welcome

General Rules:
Adult beverages are not permitted.
You are responsible for your own equipment.
Bring any games that you think would be a good contribution to the LAN.
Internet will be provided.
Trash talking is encouraged, but don't be a huge dick
Respect the property you are visiting!!.


Here is the link to our primary site:
http://stllanparty.net
Facebook fan page:
http://www.facebook.com/StLouisLanParty

I hope to see you there, and if you have any questions please hit me up at jetset@stllanparty.net.


Saturday, April 28, 2012

Awesome news coming soon!

Hello geeks, gamers, and nerds! I know I have not posted much in the past month or so.  I have been busy working on a few very awesome events for the St Louis gaming community (if I dare call it that).  Here are some quick reviews for you to keep you up to speed on what I am playing when I have the time.

Order of favorite to least favorite games:
1. Blacklight Retribuition:  Free to play futuristic shooter.  Think Modern Warfare meets Free to Play with larger maps.  I love this game right now, and it is mostly due to the quickness of the matches.  If I have a free 15 minutes before I have to go to work, or take the gf out I can hop into a match and be done with time to spare.  I love games like Blacklight Retribution, because I can still be invested in the game, and not have to sacrifice personal life stuff when my schedule gets filled with other shit.

Screenies:


2. Mass Effect 3 :  I LOVE the multiplayer in ME3.  Hoard modes will always have a soft spot in my heart (Halo 2 anyone?).  Also as per my review I loved the game, but now that i have beat it a couple of times, I want to get all the weapons for MP.

3. Tribes Ascend:  Really fun and free to play as well.  I like Hi-Rez studios Free to Play model.  You can play all you want and still get permanent upgrades.  However the hefty upgrades will take a lot of dedication to unlock for free.  The maps are huge, and gorgeous with enough room to go really fast.

Screenies:


I'm stopping at 3 because aside from these games I have been breaking out a lot of old school games.  Installed Crysis 2 last night as well to test out the new HD7950.  In the next week or so I plan on doing a full mini-blog on the 7950.  I don't have the money to fork out on multiple cards so the only one I have will have to suffice.  I will be getting another one of these bad boys soon.

Crysis Screens I took today with the hi-rez pack and DX11 patch:



I hope a great weekend is had by all, and stay tuned for more posts, and some really awesome news for gamers in the St Louis area.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Mass Effect 3 - First completion thoughts.

Spoiler alert.  If you are easily "butt hurt" to find out key plot points please turn back now, and play the damn game rather than reading blogs about a game that you intend to play. 


Intro:
I have been a fan of the Mass Effect series since the original release back in Fall of 2007.  Mass Effect 3 delivers the same pulse pounding action, and sci-fi orgry that nerds love and expect from the series.  I completed my first run through a couple nights ago, and I must say I was not disappointed.  There were a few issues with the story that had me a bit confused, but these complaints are minute compared to the overall enjoyment I experienced from start to finish.

Mass Effect 3 is the final (doubtful) installment of the Mass Effect series, and is centered around the Reapers invading all known civilizations to bring intelligent life in the universe to an end. Players play as Commander Shephard, a soldier in the Alliance military who has shown tremendous feats of bravery, and strength in the first 2 installments of the Mass Effect series.  Shephard is needed again, and Mass Effect 3 starts on Earth where the invasion first starts.

After running around a lot with Captain Anderson, Shepard makes it back to the Normandy and starts his mission to unite every race against the Reapers. The decision to leave Earth is a tough one, but there is no hope unless everyone is united against the galactic threat of the Reapers.

Confusion:
Now that the introduction is out of the way I would like to talk about a few key items in the first moments of the game that gave me some concern.  First of all, one of the characters that you keep throughout the entire game is a dude named James.  James has an American accent, but in a failed attempt to create a mexicano feel, we are left with random Spanish words, and not much more of his background is released.  My first question is who the fuck is this guy?  He was not in the first 2 games, and now he is a primary character with no background, or formal introduction.  I "no comprende."

The second item that gives me concern is the running animation.  When Shepard runs it looks like his/her arms and legs are attempting to pull themselves away from the torso.  At first I thought Shepard may have had a bad rash, but this rash persisted throughout the entire game.  Maybe he caught something from Miranda in Mass Effect 2?  Shepard's got the herp!

Some footage of the Earth invasion:


The typical Mass Effect story:
After Shepard leaves Earth to unite everyone in the fight against the reapers, players travel to different worlds, and assist where needed.  Mass Effect 3 is pretty much a game of political "Let's Make a Deal."  Everyone refuses to help until you help them with their needs.  This is pretty much the entire middle of the game:

Go here..kill stuff...go there..kill more stuff....talk to a guy...kill stuff...have a weird fucking dream about a kid who dies at the beginning of the game..kill more shit....console crew members....watch old crew members sacrifice themselves...more shit to kill...pause for romance option...more killing....sex scene with crew member ..and then...the ending.

This redundancy is by no means a bad thing.  Each world gives its own well thought out back story, and being reunited with characters from the previous games was awesome. However,  watching some of your former crew sacrifice themselves for the "cause" was very touching.  I'm not gonna lie..I almost poured some out for Mordin..that dude was boss.

I am not going to go into too much detail about the end of Mass Effect 3.  This is not a review, but I did post some thoughts down below.

Inventory/Weaponry
The inventory system now involves upgrades that can be found, or purchased.  These can range from damage increase mods, to mods that lower the overall weight of the weapon.  Weight comes into play only slightly in the game.  If what you carry is less than a certain amount your powers recharge quicker.  I played a soldier, so I could pretty much walk through anything.  There are no full time heavy weapons in Mass Effect 3.  This is odd considering Mass Effect 2 had at least 7 heavy weapons that could be used every mission.  However the guns you can use feel awesome, and the overall sound quality of the guns is fantastic.  There are a couple of guns that have some massive recoil.  There was a couple of times the screen was shaking so badly I thought I was going to fuck up all over my monitor, but I will say that the Geth pulse rifle is by far the most awesome weapon ever.

Now some items to bitch about:
I am going to join the rest of the fold when I admit I have no fucking idea what happened with the ending.  I liked it, but I think a bit more explanation of the choices would have worked better.  I also did not understand the personification of the boy from the first half hour of the game, and the same boy who I had to chase around in those random dream sequences.

I would have liked more missions to Earth.  The whole message is to take back Earth, but players see it at the first of the game, and the very end.  Having some missions in key tourist attractions would have been awesome.  I will say that that seeing Big Ben in London was awesome.

Big Ben:


I thought the Prothean DLC was cool...kind of pointless, but cool nonetheless. 

Aside from that Mass Effect 3 will be keeping me busy for a good while.  Some of the stuff I mentioned does not take away from the game much, but had they included my complaints, well..I would not have had any :).

Here is an imgur photo album of some screen shots I took while playing.  Enjoy!


Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Some Mass Effect 3 Screenies

I am already in love with this game.  Everything has gone to hell, and the invasion areas are fantastic.

A view of a Reaper chomping down on some Turians:


Part of the digital deluxe edition included an N7 hoodie to wear on the Normandy:


The puppy pet is another item from the Digital Deluxe edition.  Freakin worthless, this is all it does (like most dogs I know):


Flying into the Citadel.  So pweeetyyyyyyy:


Some Reapers chomping down on Earf:


Not gonna lie Shepard, we're fucked:


I hope you enjoyed some of the screens I took.  I will certainly be posting new cool stuff I find.  :)

~JetSet~

Monday, February 6, 2012

Star Wars:The Old Republic Thoughts

I have always loved Bioware, and it is safe to say that I have been a fanboy since early high school.  I started off with the Baldur's Gate series, and followed them up to their most recent release of Star Wars: The Old Republic.

Bioware first delved into the Star Wars universe with their release of Knights of the Old Republic back in 2003.  This game won the hearts of many Star Wars fans since it took a different approach to the story line.  Rather than revisiting the movie era, KoTOR took players to a galaxy far far away about 3000 years before the birth of Darth Vader.  During this era everyone and their mother carried a light saber, or had a war to fight.

Star Wars: The Old Republic continues the story of the first two games in an MMO format.  However, the amount of changes Bioware brings to the genre is very welcoming.  For starters, the game is nearly all voice acting.  When a new quest is given the dialogue contains a detailed back story, and in many cases the story is continued throughout several quests.  This method gives depth to many aspects of the game. Thankfully Bioware foreseen the redundancy of the same quests with multiple characters, and included a quick way to get to the conversation choices.

I am not going to go into any detail regarding class story lines. All I will say is that the 2 I have played through (Inquisitor and Bounty Hunter) are amazing.  On the flip side I want to go into some detail about PvP and Space combat.

PvP in SW:TOR's launch consists of 3 war zones, and an entire planet dedicated to PvP at level 50.  The 3 war zones are Huttball, Void Star, and Civil War. Here are my thoughts on Huttball and Civil War.  Voidstar is nearly a broken war zone, and an absolute pain to play so I am skipping that one.

Huttball is a lot of fun and my favorite out of the 3 at this point in the game.  There are 2 teams, Rot Worms and Frog Dogs (the names mean something to some 40 year old virgins out there I'm sure) and each team is greeted with an obstacle course that is set ablaze with fire nodes and a slime pit thing at the start of each area.

The object of Huttball is to grab the ball in the middle of the field and carry it across the opposing teams line.  First team to score 6 points are the winners, but in most cases the timer runs out before 6 points are scored by any team.

Each player that joins a Huttball match have an ability called "Throw the Ball."  I doubt I need to go into detail, since if you can read this, I am sure you can figure out what happens when that ability is activated.  So a player can pass the ball to a team mate if they are close to death.  Possession changes hands when the ball handler is killed, or the ball is intercepted by the other team.  Incomplete passes result in neutral ball where the ball is placed back into the middle of play.

Now that the intro is over here is a video of me playing some Huttball to some drum and bass :)


Here is a video of Civil War as well.  The objective is to capture the nodes on the map to win the game.  SW:TOR has an interesting approach since the nodes are gun batteries that cause the durability of the ships to go down.  First team to zero are the losers. This video sports a dub step soundtrack.  Enjoy :).


Space Combat

Another awesome addition to SW:TOR is the space combat.  At a certain point in the class questline each character receives their own ship to pilot around the galaxy.  At this point in the game most of the piloting between areas is done through cinematics.  However you can take your ship through space missions that are awesome arcade style rail shooters.  Many want to have free flight PvP zones and I really hope that Bioware implements that at some point in the future.

So here are a few vidoes showing the space combat.  I am not going to ruin any of the story by showing these since most of the details are in the quests that are received to do these missions.

Mugaar Ice Field 


Skaross Fortification


Within the next couple of weeks I hope to do a post regarding SWTOR's end game content.  So far the content has been really enjoyable and, once we get the boss fights down I will feel more comfortable posting.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Thoughts - Diablo 3 Beta

I received an early Christmas gift this year in the form of a Diablo 3 beta invite.  A midst the crazy gaming season it has already been (Skyrim, Old Republic Beta, Tribes Ascend beta, Anon 2070, Serious Sam, Battlefield 3, etc.) I was still able to set aside a lot of time for some Diablo 3 action.  Blizzard's third installment of the serious has gone through some major overhauls.  Thankfully the ability to click furiously is still very much a part of the game.

The invitation that I received tests aspects of Act 1,  including the in game Auction House which is a new feature in this installment of the Diablo series.  If you are not sure what the Auction House will be used for check out this link.

Each beta is public and all content that I am going to be sharing falls withing their Nondisclosure Agreement (NDA).

Cinematic intro (pulled from Youtube.com):


From this point on I am going to show some of my own footage.  The first video is of the 5 playable classes in Diablo 3.  I went through both male and female versions.


The content here is not intended as a spoiler, but shows about 10 minutes of game play.  I decided to show one of the first quests in Diablo 3. Luckily there was a server wipe of all characters last week so I had a clean slate to show you some of the combat, and environments. Enjoy!


Graphically the game sits head and shoulders above previous installments. This is expected since Diablo 2 came out a very long time ago. However this game will still run on most computers.  Blizzard tries to ensure that anyone who has a computer under 5 years old can play their games. For graphic whores like me this is a bit of an issue, but what they don't include graphically they more than make up for in game play.

Diablo 3 flows very well from area to area with little load time.  The fluidity of the NPC (non player character) interactions, and ridiculously large battles feel seamless.  Thankfully the "it's done when it's done" mentality of Blizzard continues to pay off in the gamer's favor.  The attention to detail given to the environments, and the player's interaction within those environments shows a very creative team of developers who are excited about their game.  On the downside, waiting for  release sucks, but once the finished product arrives the extra time and attention is very much worth it.