/me gets up on his soapbox, wearing an old jedi robe and sporting the konami code written in red sharpie ink on his forehead.
Brothers, sisters, I have sinned! I have strayed from the hallowed spaceways and fallen for the gritty gun-battles of Gears of War 2, the bloody goodness of Ninja Gaiden 2 and the freaky awesomeatude of Dead Space. All this time, I did not ONCE log into the blessed void of EVE Online!
OK, so I get off work Friday and headed straight for Yorkdale mall. Took me an hour to traverse a 20 minute journey. Once I got there I made a really bad mistake. I looked at the racks. I had a pre-order for the CE of Gears of War 2, and money is tight, but I looked, thinking my willpower stats high enough. Apparently the employees of EB Games rolled a 20 before I got there.
Hahaha... multiple gaming references.
I bought GoW2, Ninja Gaiden 2 and Dead Space, costing about $202 CDN total. I would have bought R6V2 but I'll have a free copy next weekend.
So, got home, another hour later. REALLY bed traffic. Opened up Gears and got started punching in the codes for free stuff. 48-hour gold account... I'll save that for next year when my current account expires. Flashback map pack, works like a charm. Gold Lancer Rifle, can not download. Huh, try again.. code not valid... WTF?!?!?!?!?!?! I gotta call someone about this.
Got through the single-player missions on normal, just to warm up by shoulders for all the cover I'll be hugging. Active reload is really like riding a bike. You pick it up again really quickly. For everyone who was hoping for a better story mode experience, you got it in spades. Longer, MUCH better acting a story, and the visuals and music really give a lot to the awe-factor. I'm a third way through hardcore, and it's really harder then the first game's Insane difficulty, which fills me with fear of what Insane is like in the sequel.
I tried a bit of multi, but the Live service usually takes a week or so to ease into a game with this large a load. As it is right now there are a lot of connectivity issues, but I'm sure by this weekend they'll be resolved. From what I did manage to try, multiplayer is full-on WIN. Horde is a blast and the other modes are just unique enough to keep things interesting. One word of wisdom though: there's no such thing as a kill-steal when the mode's objectives have nothing to do with kill count. Keep your head in the game and think/communicate/act like a TEAM when it's a TEAM objective.
On to Ninja Gaiden 2. Great game. Brutal in difficulty and in it's bloody ninja glory. There's a demo for anyone interested. I grabbed the Bio-armor and Shadow Walker costume packs. Bio-armor is cool but the Shadow Walker stuff looks like a ninja Power Ranger, and not in a good way.
Dead Space. If you liked Bioshock but wanted more fear factor... get this game. I'm not a fan of horror games and movies because I'm not the type to get afraid easily, but DS had me jumping a few times. It has a good story that's backed up with some good acting and music. Combat is a little unique with odd weapons that mostly resemble industrial tools and non-traditional weak points on enemies. Movement in vacuums and zero-gee works very well. Any HUDs and displays are either on your character's body or projected via holograms within the environment, meaning they illuminate your surroundings realistically and you can rotate around them with the camera. All very interesting.
I did manage to jump on EVE once to check on my sales. Analytical Mind V finished yesterday, so I'm one more big step closer to being done with my learning skills. I kept track of all the news coming out of FanFest, and obviously EVERY PIECE OF NEWS coming out of that wonderful place fills me with geeky wonder and joy. I won't reiterate all the stuff that I'm just scrying from other blogs, as I think that takes credit from wonderful bloggers who actually went and SOMEHOW managed to shake off their hangovers long enough to send goodies over the series of tubes back to we huddled masses. Go check them out.
I think me taking a break from EVE for a while will be good for me. Obviously I'll keep a close eye on my skills, but when I come back with fresh seriousness and vigor, I'll be that much better for it. We're really only talking 2 or 3 weeks at most, and I'll be on to give Quantum Rise a look on Wednesday afternoon. Also have the EVE-meet this Friday, so that counts as EVE time as well.
Comics turned out to be a pretty good batch. I think I'm going to drop Spider-Man from my list though. I appreciate the writing but it's not keeping my interest. The Michael Turner memorial book came out, and it's one of those items that EVERY COMIC READER OR FAN OF VISUAL ART SHOULD HAVE! Wonderful hearts went into this book. The EMPOWERED series by Adam Warren is a great piece of storytelling and art. Sold in B&W TPBs, EMP is funny and sexy and heart-filled. I've always been a Warren fan, and once you give these a look you will be as well.
So that was my weekend. I've got all of $2.64 to my name until Friday, and now you know why. Tomorrow's post will be the next chapter of LSoP. Next weekend I'll looking to set the groundwork for the final chapter. I'll be brainstorming at the meet. Oh, and I'll post pics from the meet (if they don't have a problem with that... A lot of people HATE their pictures being taken)..