Musings of a Gamer
1. A Toomanywires update
I have been posting here at blogspot for going on half a year and am happy to report that page-views have increased each and every month. I’m fortunate to have readers from all over the world - the US and UK account for 90% of the hits, but I seem to have regular readers in Slovenia, Singapore and Japan amongst many others – and a Google search for toomanywires now brings up my blog as the top result, instead of a plethora of electricians. So thanks to everyone who visits regularly, and don’t forget to leave comments if you have time as it really helps to keep me motivated and writing.
In an effort to offer more reasons to visit toomanywires-uk, I am trying to get into the routine of posting three times a week (Monday Recommendations and two other entries) which I have managed to do over the last fortnight. This is a pace I hope to maintain, time permitting. I’m always playing with new ideas and am very open to requests or recommendations, which you can leave in the comments or send by email to toomanywires at hotmail dot com.
2. Demon’s Souls
The doctor tells me that I have a run-of-the-mill virus, one that is doing the rounds at the moment. It has left me rather lethargic the last few weeks and I can’t seem to shake it. The doctor suggested rest and paracetamol, but failed to recommend ridding my life of Demon’s Souls, which I’m convinced is making me ill.
A year and a half removed from first abandoning it, I decided to give Demon’s Souls a second chance. Caught in a video game rut – I had finished Dragon Age II, NBA Jam was a huge disappointment and Yakuza 4 was yet to arrive in the post – I decided to throw on From Software’s challenging action RPG. I have been swearing like a docker with his finger caught in a car door ever since. It is possibly the worst game to play when you are feeling ill as its dreary yet addictive dungeons pull you in and keep you on edge, too terrified to let your guard down for even a moment for fear of being sent straight back to the beginning of the level.
Demon’s Souls is difficult, though not impossible. It’s all about trial and error and demands a great deal of patience, something which I have never had an abundance of. That is why the disc is now locked away, back in its case, never to cast a shadow upon my PS3 again. I’m already starting to feel better.
3. Nintendo 3DS
I have a problem with Nintendo’s UK TV advertisements. It’s hard to put my finger on exactly what it is, but they rub me the wrong way. I hate watching celebrities who most likely have never touched a video game in their life explaining the benefits of Brain Training or Wii Fit, or semi-famous families huddled around the TV exchanging suitable-for-all trash talk as they repeatedly put Luigi into a lava-induced coma. Then there are the gormless fucks dancing like … gormless fucks, writhing in perfect formation in font of their TV. And don’t get me started on the commercials with three people using the same DS. Predictably, I’m not a fan of the 3DS ads either. There is no good reason why members of the public would be that gob-smacked by 3D. They react as if they have just got an eye-full of Chris Brown’s latest NSFW photos.
But I digress. I was able to restrain myself and didn’t get a launch 3DS. I think it has every chance of being a huge success, but I won’t be shelling-out for one until the software library improves (the MGS3 and Zelda remakes will most likely be the tipping point). However, I did get the chance to try one in-store at my local HMV. The effect was impressive, and I understand it improves once you are able to customize the 3D settings, though I can’t see myself being able, or wanting to play it in 3D for any extended period of time. It would be great to get some thoughts from people who already own one.
4. Just Let Me Play
I received a review copy of WWE All Stars earlier this week, a couple of days ahead of its general release - one of the perks of writing for criticalgamer. My hopes of getting a quick session in before hitting the sack were soon thwarted as, despite not even being released yet, I had to sit through a lengthy patch install. Why on earth would this game already require an update? The laborious load times and painfully slow install made matters worse and only left me with five minutes to get my arse kicked by Stone Cold. What happened to the days of jumping straight into new games?
5. Some Purchases
Having finished with Dragon Age II (you can find my review here) and becoming increasingly frustrated with Demon’s Souls, I decided to splash out on a couple of new games. Firstly I picked up a copy of Yakuza 4, as I had always intended to. It seems to be following the same pattern as Yakuza 3 so far; tough to get into over the first hour or two, but once it starts clicking its difficult to put down. On a side note, it also has a really nice front cover, unlike the Yakuza 3 travesty. I also finally bought NBA 2K11 after hearing great things about it from so many different people. In the past I have stuck with the NBA Live series, usually buying an instalment once every two or three years, but since there will be no Live/Elite this year I thought now would be a good time to check out the competition. I have a feeling the controls may take a bit of getting used to, but I’m sure I will have the Suns back in contention in no time.
Lastly, I went for Tactics Ogre on the PSP. It was a bit of a no-brainer, being that I am a huge fan of Final Fantasy Tactics, and I couldn’t say no to the rock-bottom price of £11.99 at GAME. I have it earmarked for my next trip abroad, as I rarely play portables when at home. I was pleasantly surprised to learn that my copy is the Premium Edition (see above) which comes with a pretty art book, a mini CD and a 50% off voucher for Vagrant Story on PSN.
6. Chime Super Deluxe
I am always on the look-out for another gem from PSN, but have been rather disappointed with its recent output. Although there have been some enjoyable titles over the last 12 months (Pac Man Championship Ed DX, Joe Danger come to mind) I haven’t seen a must-buy for well over a year.
I’ve recently been on the look-out for a puzzle game and was intrigued by the demo for Chime Super Deluxe which appeared on the store this week. It’s a block dropping game built around dance tracks supplied by the likes of Moby and Orbital where the squares you create trigger different samples. The demo was interesting and I believe all proceeds go to charity, but it just seemed to be severely lacking in the gameplay department. Can anyone recommend it, or is the demo fairly representative of the full experience?