[PC] X-COM: Enemy Unknown Completed

I won’t gush about this game too much but I easily could. I saw this mid-September, took a look at it closer then pre-ordered it. When it came out early October it completely owned my game time. I set aside WoW, Guild Wars 2, Borderlands 2 and Torchlight 2 for it. I played through it twice; once on Easy (I thought I put it higher up after restarting after the Tutorial) then again on Normal. I’m holding off on doing Classic with Ironman mode (my family misses me), but I hear it calling so I suspect I’ll be at it again.

Gawd… I love that game.

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[PF] Done

I let the Pathfinder (D&D/WNG/Wednesday Night) group know I wouldn’t be back playing after taking a number of breaks. First break was during the loss of who would have been our third child (it’s right around that time now), then after the layoff I didn’t much feel like leaving the house and after a short bit back, I took another break because of family scheduling (kids were in soccer 3/5 week nights and which fell on TheWife’s gym nights) where I took one for the Family Team. I was supposed to go back but when the day of return surprised me (literally – I didn’t know until that day that it was the day I was supposed to get back to it) I realized it just wasn’t a priority any more.

I miss the night out and miss the guys – somewhat. Looking over the forums I see things I didn’t miss. Like arguing over (or discussing at length) tracking 1-2 pounds of food which really only ever comes into play if someone can cast Create Food and Water while someone else is 1-2 pounds away from the next level of encumbrance.

Really guys? Definition of pedantic.

That wasn’t intended to offend – in some ways it’s reassuring that I wasn’t the sole source of such things. And in some ways I miss it… the arguing.

Here’s how you deal with it. The one casting Create Food and Water says, “Guys, I’m giving you one day’s worth of food and water so if you’re two pounds away from the next encumbrance level, you’re going to bump into the level until you eat lunch…. or take a dump after breakfast. K? No one is that close to their next encumbrance level? Cool.”(The ‘dump’ bit wasn’t in the rules, I added that part for color… brown color, otherwise see a doctor.)

That said, it’s not the reason I left at all. As I said above, it just wasn’t a priority. I had been considering dropping it before but certain people talked me out of it (for the record: pre-Qwerty and then post-Qwerty; they know what I’m talking about) and I hung on for awhile longer.

It’s a good group of guys that has lasted for a long time (over 10 years now?) and I’m hoping to pop out to the odd pub night they have if they end up canceling a game evening…

[TL2] Couldn’t Help Myself

I caved on Friday night and bought the four-pack (cost of one Borderlands 2 game) of Torchlight 2. I kept one, gave one to the LBO and another to the LLO. I have a fourth sitting here waiting to be gifted and I’m debating who to give it to.

On one hand I can gift it to the kids’ friend up the street that plays all sorts of games with them – figuring he’d play this with them too. On the other hand, neither one of the kids has so much as loaded the game up – they’re smitten by Borderlands 2 so I’m tempted to not give that to him.

On to the game.

I played it a little yesterday and was going to play a little of it now but decided I should give my blog some attention.

I went with the Berserker class (picking maniacal looking dude) and started exploding enemies almost right away. The game seems to have more of a flowing overland sprawl to it so far. I’ve seen a few little dungeons, but it’s not like the first one where you (sorta) just delved deeper and deeper (I’ve never heard that before). The story is light so you jump right into click-killing stuff. The short of it is the Alchemist from the first game somehow got corrupted (yeah, I never completed the first game) and turns on everyone. He takes out the Mage and beats down the Warrior until the Warrior has to turn tail and run. That’s where you come in – the Warrior asks you to figure out what is going on and stop him starting with warning some nearby town.

Classes available are Berserker, Engineer, Embermage and Outlander. I didn’t dig too far into them, I just hopped in and started playing figuring the Berserker looked to be more my style in these sorts of games. My assumption is that the Engineer is either melee or ranged – which ever is your preference, the Outlander is a shooter type and the Embermage is the caster type. There are three trees you can put points into per class, like in the first one, these give you new abilities to use or improve on your character in a passive or active way.

You have a few more options for pets; I think there are about eight in total. Your pet can now wear three pieces of armor – a collar and two tags. Feeding them fish does different things to them, just like in the first Torchlight.

One disappointment with Torchlight 2 is that the multiplayer doesn’t immediately tie into Steam. You have to create a Runic Account (like I need another account… really..) then it can synch from your Steam account for your friends list. I won’t bellyache over this a lot, just a little. The smooth integration between your Steam Friends list and Borderlands 2 spoiled me and I wish more games would go this route. Honestly, I don’t see myself using my Runic Account for anything other than Torchlight 2 Multiplayer so it’s only a matter of time before I forget what password I used for that and have to jump through some password recovery hoops.

Graphics and sound are much like the first Torchlight and the UI performs the same way. Not a lot of really big changes. There are tabs on the side of the screen for pulling out windows; character stats, pet, inventory, etc.

More of the same that you either loved or hated in Torchlight but with multiplayer!

[BL2] Same Ole Same Ole…

… Fun!

Same type of  behavior in the game, same sort of things to kill (though more mobs), lots of back and forth missions, a bit more story to it with characters returning from the first game. I’m having fun with it and finding it slightly more challenging – just slightly.

The LBO claims to almost be done and keeps trying to tell me what happens, looking disappointed when I shove my fingers in my ears and start ‘la-la-la’ing. I did have to give him a hand with one area which he was having a hard time with (did I already mention that?). I opened his eyes up to some different tactics with Axton and reminded him of the importance of making sure he had different ammo types represented (less likely to run out of ammo) and making sure he mixed up the elemental damage types.

Then I ended up carrying all Fire elemental weapons… yeah. If you’ve played the Firehawk portion you’ll realize how worthless Fire weapons are there… at least for killing stuff.

LLO is moving along more slowly. He’s picking up the quests but doesn’t seem to be completing them. I think he just wanted to rush ahead to gain access to a town. I popped into his game (he’s playing as Zero) yesterday to help him out (I caved and got him a Steam account then bought third Borderlands 2 game…). I noticed he still had missions from the first area but gave him help with the area he was in, including a few more after that.

We do have a group we’re playing together with – I think they just got to Sanctuary and no further. I’m playing Salvador and not really liking it as much as the others. I find having two guns with different rates of fire somewhat… weird. I get used to the fire rate and how to shoot each gun so putting two up there that are different? Argh. And if I try to put two up that are the same I just burn through the same ammo quicker (I’m guessing). I’m starting to just let the kids charge in and spend most of the time bailing them out. I hope that’s not foreshadowing their teenage years…

For my own personal game, I’m playing Maya the Siren. It’s taking me a bit to get used to her ability and figuring out how best to use it and which spec line I prefer. I ended up going the route of more elemental effects (Cataclysm) picking up the extend mag and reduced reload times first, then the fire burst when I Phaselock someone. Next up will be the Cloud Kill talent where shooting people has a chance to make a little acid cloud for a short time. I’m building a purely offensive spec hoping to be able to avoid or soak as much damage as possible.

I won’t say how far along I am because I don’t want to spoil, but let’s just say I’m around level 15 or 16 and about to deliver some pizza.

[IRL] Gaming ADHD

So there is an influx of games I’m looking forward to not having the time to play coming out in the next short little time frame…

Borderlands 2 – this Tuesday (Sept. 18). I’ve got this pre-ordered for me and the LBO (LLO) and pre-loaded on the systems we play on. I’m not sure which of the classes I’ll play first, but I do have some interest in Axton and Zero.

Mists of Pandaria – coming out Sept. 28. I have this purchased and installed. I’m looking forward to new content to level through and some of the newer mini-games to engage in… maybe. Mostly new content to level through. I intend to play the rogue through first, then either my DK or Hunter. Paladin and Priest are in the queue as well. I also have my Mage that is slowing creeping towards 85. Further down I have a Druid sitting at 67th and a Warrior up to 60. I just need to knuckle down and get them trough TBC, WotLK and Cata. heh.

X-Com Enemy Unknown – coming out Oct. 9th. I’ve got this pre-purchased and waiting for pre-loading on Steam. This is a throw back to X-Com UFO Defense which is an ancient PC game that I loved. Unlike the more recent interpretations (UFO Aftermath, etc.) this one is more of a true interpretation of X-Com. It is going to include base building (something the others lacked), some of the ship combat (and upgrades) and all the squad based missions and researching and ZOMG… I’m excited just typing about it. There are some additions to the missions, they’re adding in some cinematic effects for some of the actions – so when you shoot a target, it plays it out. If an alien moves to attack you, it plays out in a mini-video using the ingame engine. A lot of it is just moving the camera around – it looks pretty cool (Video here) but I can see it get a little annoying after a time.

So those are things that are going to consume some of my time later this month and into the next.

(And some Guild Wars 2 here and there).

[D3] They Just Don’t Listen

I said previously they desperately need to allow for offline mode for D3 because having to be connected to B.Net to play is B.Shit. You don’t need to be connected to B.Net for SC2, why for D3?

DRM? DRM which really only stops the folks that wouldn’t normally go that route anyway.

Social media? Fuck social media – where’s my choice of being a hermit and not wanting to be connected? I barely use Facebook – it’s full of losers looking for approval or pitty – and Twitter lasted five minutes before I uninstalled it followed up with a, “OMG, who fucken cares that you have a muffin? Noise pollution.”

People have been waiting 10+ years for this game and on opening day its availability is up and down like a hyperactive child with a pogo-stick.

Again… offline mode would have prevented all the crazy posts on the forums and irate fans.

You kids get off my lawn… and turn down that damn noise you call music!

[PC] SmakenDahed + Krogan Sentinel = Win!

Been playing a little bit of Mass Effect 3 multiplayer here and there. Usually hopping in for a couple of random levels and having some good fun there.

Scored a Krogan Sentinel which I like giving a shotgun (M300), under-barrel knife for extra melee damage, shield amp and then run around with my Tech Armor on owning everything with heavy melee hits. Especially gratifying when I hear my Krogan bitch at someone for shooting me in the back… because you know I just blew that Sniper Rifle toting wuss’ headshot by charging in, blocking line of sight and one shotting the target. I also love the launching enemies across the map with the heavy hit.

Good times.

Other night I was doing Silvers with my Geth Engineer, two other Geth Engineers and a Human Engineer – easy wins with three turrets and a drone on top of four players shooting everything. I still have to try a Gold level out, see how insane that is.

If you play and want me to ruin your headshots, feel free to friend me on Origin – just make sure I know you’re a reader or I might block you – “SmakenDahed”… what did you think I’d use?