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Aliens: Colonial Marines Review Type Thing

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As a huge fan of anything Alien or Predator, this game is not worth playing. Even if you just want the "atmosphere" of Aliens, you won't find it here. The graphics are horrible at the highest settings (roughly 2003-4 era graphics), the acting and story is worse than a MST3K movie, and the Aliens are a joke.

I tried, really tried, to give this a go since I got it for basically free and *supposedly* recent patches have improved it....

Don't be fooled, it is still a buggy crapfest. In just 40 minutes of playtime, I encountered five instances where aliens just got stuck and stood still as I blasted them. The aliens, when working, had two modes of attack - climb around the walls like a spaz and never attack me, and run up to me and stand in front of me for (what feels like an eternity) me to shoot in the face. To artificially add difficulty, the aliens basically instantly kill you if you do not have armor (even on the "Soldier" difficulty) and the M41A pulse rifl…

Dungeonbowl Review -or- "Reasons NOT to buy Dungeonbowl"

(Guest poster, ChrisA)

I'm a long time Bloodbowl fan, and the fan created Dungeonbowl rules were quite fun, and eventually considered a standard in the Bloodbowl. So when Cyanide came out with a digital version of Bloodbowl, I was all over it. And despite its many flaws, I do really like ... mostly because it lets me play Bloodbowl without trying to gather the 3 people in my area (MAYBE 3) that still actually like to play.

If you're not sure what Bloodbowl is, it's a mix between American football and rugby, played by the races of the Warhammer universe (Humans, elves, chaos, dwarves, undead, etc). The best part is, killing the opposing players is perfectly legal ... and the major way of getting star player points (experience) besides scoring touchdowns. Dungeonbowl is essentially a tournament within the game. Just like football has its "bowl games" like the Superbowl, Rose Bowl, ProBowl, etc., Bloodbowl has bowl games as well. The namesake Bloodbowl, the Chaos Cu…

My time in Guild Wars 2 Beta - Classy

(Guest poster, SteveH)

Yesterday I promised I'd write a shorter article on the classes I played while roaming around Guild Wars 2. It might have been a bad play for me to promise it would be a shorter talk but I am keeping my promise about the second article! So, without any further typing, here it is!

The classes for Guild Wars 2 are as follows: thief, ranger, necromancer, mesmer, elementalist, warrior, guardian, and engineer. I played all of them briefly and the elementalist and guardian the most.

Before I get into that, this might be the best time to explain how Guild Wars 2 handles skills. In most MMOs a character gains a skill every other level or so and ends up with more skills than any sane person can keep track of. In my experience it's best to find 5 - 10 skills that you commonly use, put those in a position easily accessed, and then putting the rest around the extended skill bars and almost never use them.

Guild Wars 2 changes that in a few key ways but the main way …

My time in Guild Wars 2 Beta

(Guest poster, SteveH)

I'm no wizard, sorcerer, or any other conjuror of magic, I just happen to get into a few betas!

Anyway, here in lies my thoughts of the weekend I spent in the Guild Wars 2 beta. It was sort of open so there's no NDA I have to fear.

Guild Wars 2 has been the MMO I've been waiting for both in terms of me hearing about it and thinking to myself "yeah!" and in terms of my feelings after I played it and thought to myself "yeah!" Why for? The biggest reason, for me, is just how fluid it all is.

You know the general MMO formula, quests you can do alone, quests you need a small group for, and then quests you need massive amounts of people for. Yeah, that was fun a while ago, but now I just don't have the time or patience to sit around and "LFG" for hours on end. This is what killed Star Wars the Old Republic for me, "DPS LFG" (2 HOURS LATER!!!) "DPS LFG.... please?" I just can't stand that anymore!

We…

I lied - I bought Star Wars: The Old Republic

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"Why would I spend $60 on Old Republic? I have Skyrim to play!" I said. "Ugh, this beta is pretty bad - how could Bioware have released such a half-baked product?" You may have heard. Well, now you're seeing me eat my own shoe. I broke down and bought The Old Republic for its launch and have been playing it daily for an hour or two (or many more on select weekends) pretty consistently. I only partially feel bad about spending the money on it. What it gets rightWarzones - like battlegrounds in World of Warcraft, Warzones are your quick two-team PvP affairs. The maps are all based on objectives: Voidstar = Assault a thing, Huttball = Capture the flag named "Huttball," Civil War = Control things. As simple and fast as these warzones are, they actually promote playing the game and not just farming kills. You get more rewards for winning and you get rewarded for performing or assisting the objectives of the game (kind of), which is a nice switch from WoW/R…

My time in Diablo 3 beta

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(Guest poster, SteveH)

Oh come on, its only been, what, 3 or 4 months since I last wrote an article! Yeah, I know.

But I've got a good one today! Late last week I got a bet invite to Diablo 3! After beating the Skeleton King (the end boss of act 1 and the end boss of the beta) with all but one class I'm ready to type up my experience with it. First we must explore the "getting there" portion, pre-Saturday patch, then we can get to the good stuff.

So lets begin at the beginning (an odd choice). The download and install was as easy as one would imagine, I started it on its path when I came home briefly for lunch and it was done by the time I got home from work for the day. After dinner and some homework I was ready, willing and... not able.

This brings me to problem 1 with the game, always online. When I tried to log in I would get an error message telling me that my request timed out and I should try again later. I tried again and again for a few minutes and then went …

Why I won't be playing Star Wars: The Old Republic

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I tested Star Wars: The Old Republic this last Friday as a republic Jedi Knight (how edgy is that?). What you'll see here is from just about 4 hours of game-play, which, yes, is not enough time to truly test everything in the game. I'm going to be quite candid, and while this may seem very negative, my overall rating for the game (well, RTM candidate beta) would be a B-, 74%, 3.7 out of 5, whatever. I'll just go straight down the list of the focus areas I generally care about.

Graphics: Sub-par. It's somewhat cartoon-like, but not as cohesive or stylistic as World of Warcraft. It's kind of in-between, and doesn't really pull it off well. I was suspicious of Bioware since Dragon Age 2, and it seems that their art team is functioning at about 80% capacity. It's not horrible, it's not bad, it's blah. Animations are decent, and at first glance seem a lot more "matched" than WoW (when you hit a guy, they parry or have a hit animation) but it eve…