Friday, 30 September 2016

Resident Evil Marathon! Dates and Details

A while ago the donation incentive for the Resident Evil marathon got met and now that we're finally into October it seems appropriate to finally get around to doing this thing!

Right now the date for the marathon will be the 22nd October and there is no real set time for when it will end.  The idea is that I will be playing Resident Evil's 1-4 back to back on Stream.  This event however is the fist event I'm doing with a sort of stretch incentive.  If another £100 is raised before the end of Resident Evil 4 then I'll add Resident Evil 5 to that list.  If another £200 is raised after that, I'll suffer through the shitfest that is RE6 and then if another £300 is raised after that then we can get Resident Evil 0.  So if you want to see one extra good Resi you're going to have to donate for two shit ones first!

I'll also see into adding prizes for donators just so you guys have a little extra incentive to add those extra games to the list!  Keep the 22nd in your calendar because it should be a laugh riot!

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Dragoneers Aria

Here's a game that I doubt all that many people have heard of but one that I've, at time of writing, just finished playing.  It was released in 2007 as a PSP and while it isn't the worst RPG you could ever play it sure is pretty fucking bad.

In this game you play as typical JRPG girly man Valen (who's name is different if you put the voices in Japanese) as he goes on a quest to save the world from an evil black dragon.  On the way he meets a bunch of other characters which include a girl in a mini skirt, a loli and an elf who fills the role of grumpy magical ass wipe.  From there you fight through a typical JRPG plot that is so cliche if that if I tried to go into any more detail on it I'd probably fall asleep at my keyboard.

Falling asleep during play seems to be the main feature of this game because when you aren't suffering through the badly acted and predictable story scenes you're contending with it's incredibly slow turn based combat.  It's one of those games where you put all the commands in for each character before a turn starts, which is fine, but then the animations that play for each command feel like they are being fed to you through power point and on top of that they sometimes have to load which makes combat an absolute chore.  The interesting thing about the combat though is that all the characters have a shared mana bar which builds up as you hit things with normal attacks and then any spell you cast comes from that shared pool which makes strategizing each long boring turn at least a little bit interesting.

The game also has a magic system similar to Final Fantasy 7 where you slot your equipment with Mater...I mean Lusces and each spell levels up individually.  The problem is, the other type of skills that you get, the dragon skills, are just generally better in every way and all the magic outside of the heal and physical buff are useless.  There's also a crafting system which I never used because all the gear you get from shops is good enough to bash stuff around the head with and you have to go so far out of your way for materials it's almost never worth it.

One feature that sounded interesting was the games "Dragoneer Mode" where you can team up with 2 to 4 people via the wireless LAN to raid dragon nests for items and experience however in combat you only control your one character rather than an entire team.  However I never got to try this feature because I have more chance of finding an alchemical formula to turn my shit to pure gold than find another person who owns this game.

Not a terrible game but extremely mediocre and filled with useless features and game play mechanics you'll never use.

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Lights Out

So recently I saw this movie in my local cinemas so of course I have to do a little blog post about what I thought about it.  I almost completely ignored this movie because it states at the top of the poster that it's produced by James Wan of The Conjuring fame.  The Conjuring was a particularly shitty horror movie that I watched on a plane once so my expectations for Lights Out were fairly low.

The first thing that struck me when I started watching this movie was that some of the scenes early on are very reminiscent of viral video I saw on Facebook one time.  Here's the video

Well the reason is reminded me of this short so hard (which during my viewing I had forgotten the name of) is because Lights Out (the movie) is based off this short film of the same name from 2013.  So almost all the information you need to know about Lights Out is contained within this short and the movie version is just a longer a version.  One thing to mention is that they did change the ghost a bit and now its sort of a reverse Witch from Left4Dead which goes berserk in the dark instead of when you shine lights on it.

Anyway this is going to be a spoiler free short review so I'm not going to go into much more detail about the plot.  The movie relies heavily on jump scares which is a little disappointing but there are a few moments which generate some tension and some really clever stuff going on in the climax which made it considerably more entertaining than The Conjuring.   It's short of a shame that it went for so many jump scares really because there are a few good scenes where characters are walking around in the dark and your not quite sure where the creature is going to come from.  When they did have the monster attack though it was always a loud, screamy affair that just blew all the tension away and just left you feeling like you've been punched in the face.

One thing that did strike me is just the incredibly attractive cast.  The main character is played Teresa Palmer who is just crazy hot and even her boyfriend portrayed by Alexander DiPersia was giving me a bit of a man crush.  Even the ghost was played by an insanely attractive woman, Alicia Vela Baily, I mean just take a look at her.

If she wants to invade my house in the pitch black and hack me up then by all means.  I know having attractive actors and actresses in these movies isn't uncommon but for some reason in this movie it felt as if they were almost photoshopped into reality.

Anyway, Lights out won't leave you feeling upset that you spent your precious time watching it but it's nothing special and you'll probably forget about it in a few months.  If you want to save yourself the price of a ticket or a DVD then just watch the short on repeat for 2 hours, you'll basically get the same experience.

Saturday, 24 September 2016

That One Unbeatable Game

I think anyone who has played video games for a significant amount of time ends up having a game like this.  That one game that sits in your collection that isn't shit by any means but for some reason you just can't bring yourself to beat it.  Every so often you'll go back to it, start a fresh file and have some fun with it but then things start to go wrong and you end up shelving it for another couple of years again.

For me, this game is Kings Bounty: The Legend.  It's a strategy RPG where you have to ride around the world on your horse, building up an army and doing quests.  It plays sort of similarly to Heroes of Might and Magic but instead of building up a town and recruiting monsters that way you have to travel around the game world buying them from limited stockpiles.  This is a game that I always end up playing for a while, and then giving up because I always feel like I'm under powered and destined to fail the challenges ahead.

You ask your friends what their unbeatable game is and I'm sure they'll have at least one, for example I have a friend who attempts Vagrant Story every couple of years only to have it beat him down and then it gets shelved until the next time.  You may not even be bad at the genre that the game is in, it's just that ONE title that gets you every time.

Right now I'm attempting Kings Bounty: The Legend yet again although I'm already lacking in my own confidence to finish it.  Maybe this will be the run!  If you have a game like this then I suggest you go play it right now, go and dust it off and give it another go.  That game will always come off the shelf every few years because you just can't let that bastard win.

Friday, 23 September 2016

An Apology

I think an apology from me is in order.  Posts have been pretty sporadic, streams have been few and far between and YouTube uploads have been thin on the ground.  I've been sitting on the ending of Discworld for god knows how long and the incentive for the 2nd episode of the cooking show was met AGES ago and I still haven't filmed it.  That's just the stuff that you all can see too, I've got a ton of ideas floating around in the empty space that is my head and I've not even begun to write/film for it.

Nothing has even happened, I don't have a sob story or some kind of life excuse for the lack of content, I'm just a lazy piece of shit.  My routine fell into a pretty bad loop of just working and sleeping and has been stuck like that for a while.  However I'm going to jump back on the routine of daily posts, streams as often as possible and a weekly upload schedule for YouTube.

The reason I'm making this post is because it's all well and good just promising myself this shit in private but I'm pretty good at breaking promises to myself.  If I post it on the blog then it's like I'm making a public announcement that I have to keep or risk being called a lazy, fat, stupid piece of shit and I don't want that.

So watch this space, a whole batch of content should be coming very very soon.

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Maybe Call of Duty Should Stop Making So Many Sequels

Call of Duty was a series that got its start in 2003, which I bet a whole bunch of the embryos that populate modern CoD servers weren't aware of and it's a series that I didn't have much interest in for the longest time.  A younger me would have looked at something like Call of Duty which was set during World War 2 and then I'd look at something like Doom, Quake, Duke Nukem or Unreal and I think I'd much rather play a game like that over something all gritty and realistic. 

But then 2007 rolled along and out came Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and at the time it really did blow me away.  People had liked CoD in the past but no one in my circle of friends had ever raved about a game in the series as much as they were with Modern Warfare so of course I end up trying it and really enjoying it.  The game was just generally really fun and the multiplayer really helped give it some sticking power.  I remember thinking at the time that this was easily the best console FPS multiplayer experience I ever had but my expectations were particularly low after trying out F.EA.R and Prey's multiplayer modes.

Fast forward to 2016 and I had to do a google search to find out what Call of Duty is up to now.  I had no idea what the fuck Infinite Warfare is but I think the series has gone all spacy and science fiction with multiplayer looking more like a slowed down, shit version of Unreal or something (in Black Ops 3 at least) rather than an actual Call of Duty.  Not that there's anything inherently wrong with this, it just seems that since I dropped off the series has taken a weird direction.  That doesn't mean however that the game has lost any traction by the sounds of things, there always seems to be some degree of hype for the latest installment and the multiplayer modes always seem well populated.

However a week ago I stumbled across an article on GameSpot that said "There will always be Call of Duty games", here's the link

I'd be upset by this if I was a fan of the series.  Every time there is a new Call of Duty game you have to shell out full price and these games come out yearly.  Sure, you can linger around on the old games for a while but if you're into the multiplayer, which most are, you WILL have to move to the next game or else be completely left behind.  Every goddamn year another full priced game with the inevitable DLC map packs that you'll have to buy a couple of months down the line.  The sheer blatancy of the money grubbing here is astounding and I'm actually baffled as to why there aren't huge numbers of fans just putting their foot down and saying "no".

Just look at Counter Strike as a great counter example of this.  Counter Strike Source was bundled with Half Life 2, a game that every man and his dog had, back in 2004 and then Global Offensive came out in 2012.  That's an 8 year gap and the game is consistently populated with a large number of players

To top that off the game is only like £12 and you don't have to worry about another one coming out in the next 6 months.  Sure, you can shell out extra cash for a few maps or to get some skins for your guns but this shit is all optional and you won't have trouble finding matches without the extras because despite having not played for a long time I'm sure DE_Dust2 is still a thing.

The fast sequel thing really turns me off to the series.  The game doesn't look shit by any means, it looks well polished and fun to play but the fact that I know Infinite Warfare will be perma-shelved in 2017 for the next one makes me not want to buy it.  I wish they could just give us ONE game that they update constantly with lots of cool shit rather than this yearly release stuff.  It's not like you couldn't have WW2, Modern Day and Sci-Fi War shit all in one game and just release it as a stand alone multiplayer experience at this point.  Still, if they did stop they might lose their license to print money so I guess the sequels will never end.

Monday, 19 September 2016

Gaming and Social Media

The fact that gaming and social media have sort of come together in recent years is such a strange phenomena to me.  Back in my younger years if I shared gaming related things on my Facebook wall then I would be ridiculed for being a loser but now I have game systems that let me, at the push of a button, upload screenshots, videos or even put out links to my Stream direct to Facebook and other platforms.

Allow me to share a little story about my first experiences putting gaming content on social media platforms.  A long while ago I used to play a lot of Monster Hunter Freedom Unite on my PSP, it was a grand old time.  Just when I was starting out, I managed to grind enough of a certain creature in order to get my first full, self crafted armor set so I was pretty excited.  I thought I'd share this excitement with some of my so called "friends" on Facebook so I snapped a picture, uploaded it and put a caption on it like "woo! first proper armor!".  The comments that I got back were things like "holy shit you're such a loser" or my personal favorite "there's casual, hardcore and sad.  Guess which one you are".  THEN fast forward to 2016 where I can smash a button and upload a screenshot from Bloodborne where I just killed a boss or something and suddenly the comments are things like "well done that game is hard" or "omg I wanna play that game so bad".

This is just one example of that happening but it happened many times more and with other titles.  If you were to go through my old photo albums and look at the screen shots for Left4Dead, Guild Wars or Shin Megami Tensei: Imagine then you'll see a lot of abuse but viewing similar content on newer titles or even posts for this blog clearly shows that gaming content has become a lot more "acceptable" on social media.

Gaming platforms have always had their social elements to them with things like Steam offering ways to share pictures or content with other players but with that it's always self contained within it's own community of gamers.  Facebook is where a lot of the filthy non-players reside, the kind of people who don't understand games and think they are either for kids or for lonely, fat basement dwellers with nothing better to do with their lives so the fact that people now are willing to more openly share their gaming experiences is a bit of a shock, but a good kind of shock.

This improving of the relationship of social media and video games is something we all frowned upon back during the launch of the next gen systems.  You had people on stages at press conferences harping on and on and on about social media this and Twitter that and we just turned up our noses and said "where are the games?".  However we now live in an age where there's a large number of people working within gaming media who are trying to smear and shame it.  Lot's of articles about gamers and games being sexist or violent.  It's stuff that happened before but now it's coming from within.  Except what these social media features allow us to do is show the people directly, the people who don't know any better and would buy into this shit otherwise, that this just isn't the case.  We have been given the tools to fight back against the clickbait, sensationalist bullshit that would seek to damage gaming for a fast profit rather than help us evolve the medium.

Times have changed drastically and I'm actually rather thankful for it.

Sunday, 18 September 2016

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Super Mario Run Is Dumb

This game isn't even available to me just yet on the Japanese app store but it's already disappointing.  You could argue that I shouldn't be chatting shit about a game I've not even played yet but I'd argue that I played Temple Runner and Sonic Runners and every game in this genre is essentially the same goddamn thing.

Anyway, in case you're not familiar with these type of games, a "running" game is a genre that's pretty popular on mobile platforms.  The idea is that your character will just run forward through the stage without stopping and it's up to you to tap or swipe the screen in order to make them avoid obstacles and not die.  There are usually items for you to collect in order to boost your score and other items that you can buy or find in order to facilitate longer running times.  After that it's just a case of seeing how many points you can get.  Sonic Runners tried to incorporate a story where running a certain distance would progress a plot but at the end of the day it's all the same shit.

Now Super Mario Run looks, from the screen shots, exactly like that.  The game isn't going to be crap per se but it is going to be another forgettable running game.  The kind of game that you'll download, play for about a week and then delete in order to make space for a different stupid weekly top pic game off the store.

It's disappointing that Nintendo have resorted to this and not because it's suddenly Mario on an iPhone but because they just went for a dime a dozen running game.  Nintendo are famous for always trying something new, weather it's successfully with the Wii or the DS or unsuccessfully with the WiiU, the point is the are pretty much always trying new things.  So it's sad to see that the debut game on the iOS is just a running game.  Like I said, I can't get it right now so what's the fucking point?  It's not like I'm going to get excited for a game like this and if I REALLY wanted to play a game exactly like it I could just go and download one of the THOUSANDS of these games available on the store.

What's even more disappointing is that back when Iwata was alive he said that this would never happen, that Nintendo wouldn't just sell out their shit for fast profit.  He DID once talk about how Nintendo had plans to use smart phones as a platform to attract users to the main line Nintendo systems and the piece of software that came from THAT plan was Miitomo.  If Iwata saw THIS shit floating around the app store he would be rolling in his grave.

This is like watching a loved one get sick, deteriorate rapidly and start to die right in front of your eyes, it's just sad.

Monday, 12 September 2016


I know I've been very slow in finishing this game, I started playing it last December and I only finished it, at time of writing, 3 days ago.  Don't worry though, it's not because Bloodborne is bad, it's actually fantastic but this kind of comes with the territory when you have a huge backlog like this.

So this is where I would usually talk about the story in Bloodborne but if I did that on here I feel like I would be cheating.  I played the game in Japanese and while I don't usually have much trouble playing games in Japanese the language used in Bloodborne is impenetrable and I had no idea what the fuck was going on for most of the game.  I realized that there was a hunt and I had to put a stop to it somehow but almost everything about  the story managed to escape me.   Once I beat the game I had to go to YouTube to get an explanation of what was going on so I'll just point you in the direction of that video if you want to know the story.

Game play wise it's pretty similar to a Souls game and I'm pretty sure everyone knows how they work by now since they are famously hard.  However if you're a Souls fan going into Bloodborne I feel like there's a lot you have to unlearn and relearn in order to become proficient at this title.  The combat is a lot faster now, there's no standing around with a big shield up and looking for an opening.  It's all about dodging and dashing and knowing how to use your transforming weapons really well and all that kind of thing.  On the surface it's just a standard Souls game but once you start to get into the combat a little bit the game is very VERY different. 

As far as complaints go, I only have 2.  One is the Japanese and that's really more my fault than the games fault and it's not even an issue that a native English speaker playing in English would have.  Second are the chalice dungeons which are optional side areas that you can play through for certain bits of special loot.  The problem with chalice dungeons is that they are all so fucking BORING.  You start to glaze over as you play them and they start to feel more like a chore than anything else so unless you're going for that 100% playthrough then I'd recommend skipping them.

At the end of the day though, Bloodborne is a great addition to the Souls series and if you're a fan then you'd be doing yourself a disservice by not playing it.  It's also a great place to start for a new player since it's very fast and actually quite forgiving in the opening moments although the difficulty very quickly ramps up.  Check it out, I'd say it's worth buying a PS4 for. 

Saturday, 10 September 2016

Video Games Helping People Walk

No, I'm not about to make a jokey post about so called "lazy gamers" being forced outside by recent mobile hit Pokemon Go but instead I'm going to quickly talk about something amazing I found about a week ago regarding VR and medical science.

Apparently the deal is people are using VR and some other apparatus in order to help paraplegics gain some function back in their legs.  Of course its not just a case of shoving them into the occulus and then BAM PRESTO they can walk again, but some steps have been made for these people to regain some control and improve their quality of life.

For the original story please check it out at this link

I feel its important to point out stories like this because all too often games are demonized for shit that isn't inherently their fault.  Let's face it, the Oculus was designed in order to be the leap in gaming but here are a bunch of people adapting it in order to do some really good stuff.  One quick google search on this story shows that there aren't any modern gaming outlets reporting this story, probably because they are too busy writing about made up controversy for clicks.

Hopefully VR will not only change gaming for the better but will find itself being used for all sorts of good stuff like this, it's quite the invention.

Wednesday, 7 September 2016

The New YouTube Rules

Oh boy, YouTube have really kicked up a storm here.  Very recently they decided to change some of their rules when it comes to monetizing videos and people are NOT happy.  Let's start with an image of the new rules shall we?

Now from what I've been reading, the reason people are pissed off mainly revolves around that final bullet point.  There are lots of vloggers and youtubers who discuss so called "controversial" topics that are starting to get denied or have lost monetization on their videos since these new rules have been put in place.  It's shitty because it allows YouTube to punish users who hold opinions that may be considered "offensive" or if they don't agree with the status quo.

Some of them are either unimportant or make sense.  For example YouTube has ALWAYS had a problem with sex stuff, I mean it's an American based company and we all know just how prudish Americans can be when it comes to sex stuff.  Also the thing about drugs sort of makes sense to me.  No matter what you're opinion on certain substances are, drugs are at the end of the day, illegal so promoting them is probably not a good idea.

However from my stand point it's the general vagueness of the rules that grinds my gears.  For example am I not allowed to make a dick joke in any of my videos any more?  That point about inappropriate language is also very strange.  If I'm doing a play through and something bullshit happens am I not allowed to curse.  Every death in a game now being followed with "Oh fiddlesticks!" or something equally PG13.  Makes me wonder if the Angry Video Game Nerd has been hit with this bullshit at all?

Granted, YouTube have NOT said that this content isn't allowed on their site, just that you aren't allowed to monetize it.  With that in mind though, without the incentive to get paid for their work, I'm sure there are plenty of uploaders who will not be creating as much content for the site as before.

As much as I'm talking about this though a quick flick through my video manager and none of my stuff has had its advertising taken away and it's not like I'm some kind of saint so maybe it's not all as bad as it seems.  Only time will tell