Tag Archive: games

Done: Dead Rising 2 (PS3)

Dead Rising 2 guitar attack

I try to stay spoiler free, but since this is now a Great Hits title it is old and well known enough that some might slip..

I’ve been obsessed with this for the last three weeks. I’m only missing 6 trophies out of 50, and it’s been responsible for a few ‘Oh shit it’s 2am already ??’. A buddy of mine is responsible, telling me simply that I _needed_ this. I suspect he mostly wanted a Coop partner for the platinum, but he was right !

I have not played the original DR on Xbox.. Reading about it and learning about the time limits was a major turnoff. Demos were not as available back then, and there was the whole HD/SD TV font fiasco, so I let it slide. I did buy Case Zero on XBLA, and that was tons of fun. I think it also helped that I thought Frank West looked annoying, and Chuck Greene looked more apt at surviving a zombie infestation.

Long story short: Chuck Green’s wife has been killed in the Vegas outbreak, and his daughter Katey has been bitten and now needs a shot of Zombrex each 24h to prevent her from turning into a Zombie. Chuck is a participant in a zombie-killing TV show in Fortune City (which is basically a Vegas wannabe city) to finance the Zombrex. Someone lets the zombies out of their pens, bringing an outbreak to the city, and the whole thing is pinned on Chuck. He now has about 72 hours to find out who did it to clear his name, while keeping his daughter safe and when possible rescue survivors he can find.

The 72 hours is really a schedule, not a hard limit; if/when you die (or fail the critical missions or Katey’s doses) you can start the storyline from the beginning but you get to keep your level, combo cards, special moves and vehicule keys. Technically you failed, but you probably still made progress that will help you next time around. I think I might have restarted from the beginning maybe 8 or 9 times total. Not bad. Planning ahead helps, it is better to decide on a grinding or a story related run instead of kinda doing both badly..

The items, weapons, outfits and the combo weapons are really fun.. that made all the ‘use all melee/ranged/explosive/firearm wepons on zombies’ trophies enjoyable. Finding hidden stuff in the city was fun. The Psychos are really messed up, and will totally destroy you during your first attempts while you’re low level — making it even more satisfying when you finally kick their asses later. I did get the DLC suits, which made the game easier, but for 4$ I consider it a rather good buy.

I was so into it that I took the info from a wiki site to make a visual aid to plan on survivor rescues: it’s on Google Docs.

I’m giving it a solid 9/10.

What’s left for me to do: redo all cases in Coop mode, kill 72,000 zombies in one run, and get better at the ‘online’ mode, which is a series of minigames in the TV show refereced at the beginning of the game.. It gives you cash to use in the rest of the game, but I don’t need it anymore. Yup, I’m a trophy addict.

Right now I’m reading that ‘Dead Rising 2: Off the Record’ is an alternate version of the story of DR2 using Frank West instead of Chuck Greene, with some added areas and stuff changed around, but.. meh. Too similar imho. They should have worked on a whole new title instead of a v2.5.


Crazy Japan..

Looks like WiiWare is opening doors to crazy ideas, at least in Japan 🙂

Duke Nukem Never

Can’t call it vaporware anymore I guess.. or anything else for that matter.

News link.

Why Am I Playing ?

On April 1st opened Legends Of Zork. I had seen it annouced before, but still everybody thought a bit that it was an April’s Fool. But no, there was really a game.. I had signed up for the beta but never heard from them.

So I jumped in and created an account. I can’t say I’m a Zork veteran — I know of it, have the collector’s on the shelf and on the ‘todo list’, and seen/played bits on the later (graphical) titles at a friend’s place. But Zork is one of those name that is revered by old timers, so my curiosity was titillated.

This is not a new Zork game in the sense that it is not a text adventure. It’s more of a Zork-inspired game. They started off with some of the lore and built from there. Of course you do start neat a White House. You pick which job you just got laid off from (you were a salesman for FrobozzCo International) – that decide what equipement/skills you start with. Didn’t see to make a huge difference..

This is a turn based game, and you start with 30 turns per day. Fights use one AP (Action Point), and going back to Base uses one AP too. You head out to explore and fight monsters, but you do have to get back to base to actually bank your loot. Yup, if you die on the trail you loose all your stuff! This does add an element of risk – if you head back home after each fight you’ll eat up AP real quick. But if you only have a couple of HP left do you dare adventure just one more time ? Greed is a bitch.

When I say explore I really mean picking a location. That’s pretty much the extent of the exploration part.. You pick a location, you can adjust if you want to fight at, under, or over your level (each location has a level range) and click explore. You don’t actually do anything during fights. The screen will show you the monster, your base success %, adjustements made because of your skills, items and fighting stance, and then start rolling between 1-100. If you roll under your final success % it’s a hit, otherwise you get hit and loose 1 HP.. At first monsters only have 1 HP but of course they get tougher with time.

You really have no actions to take DURING a fight. It’s more like playing a hero’s manager than actually being a hero – you decide where to go, but you then wait for the outcome. Hmpf. The fight screen looks more like a spreadsheet than a game screen.. It’s really not clear exactly what affects the outcome.. The only way to know more is to deduce that if you’re using one fighting stance and it’s giving you a boost, that means that this monster is probably using that other stance. Against another one it’ll be exactly the opposite – stances work in a rock-paper-scissor fashion.

What decides your stance is your equipment. A sword will have one type, a mace another. The really bothersome thing about items is that there’s only one source — the store. You get all kinds of loot during your explorations, but it’s ALL autosold when you get back to base !! There’s no feeling of getting an awesome drop that you can use. Everything is converted to cash and you use your gold to shop. So you really don’t care what items drop after the fights – you just might be interested in the gold value – it’s all pretty random. You also have limited capacity to carry items, so they’re another reason to get back to base. If your 100% full, you just won’t see any drops until you get back home. Odd. I’m guessing loot becomes more valuable at higher level, but so far (I’m level 19) it doesn’t really matter if monsters drop cash or items.

Your defense rating (and your defense stance) is decided in the same RPS way, and depends on the store. The thing with the store is that you’re getting diminishing returns for your dollar – the prices go up exponentially for gradually less power boost. We’re used to play games with a steep XP curve, but here we see the exact same thing on the equipment upgrade path. Kinda sucks. It also doesn’t really matter where you adventure. The monster will probably have slightly different skills and setups but in the end it all feels the same.

You can also equip one attack and one defense spell.. Like other items, it just adds to the fighting spreadsheet, it’s not like you can actually ‘cast’ during a fight.. The prices for spells are astronomical, even more so than weapons and armors.

As you level up, you gain skill points. They’re use to buy skills which can add cash drops from monsters, gives you rebates in shops, give you more hp, boosts your win chances against a certain stance or when you use a certain one.

After fights you sometime you’ll also get “Double Fanucci” cards. These can be equipped in different combos to boost your stats.. If you don’t visit the forums to get spoilers on how they work, good luck and plan a looooooot of time to get anything out of them. The thing is, they’re pretty much NEEDED to have any real chance… Odd.

You can also fight in the arena against other players, and put a wager on the outcome. This has been a steady source of income for me, by beating a coworker once daily and betting the maximum! I lucked out in getting better cards and even if we’re at the same level I usually get a 70% chance of beating him..

The game is free, and aims to finance itself via a microtransaction model — you can buy items to give you more turns… I really have no plans of spending a dime on this one.

Thing is, I signed up early April.. We’re now in May, and I’m _still_ playing. I really can’t explain why. For one, it doesn’t take long.. 10-15 minutes a day, that’s it. It can fill a break or keep you busy while you’re on hold on the phone.. It also has really neat graphics for this type of game – kudos to their artists.. They’re also pretty active in making changes, improving things, fleshing out the help screens… Maybe it should have staying in beta a bit longer?

So it is cute, it has a great name to live up to, they seem to be getting better step by step… I’m not loosing anything in the meantime and its mildly entertaining, so for now I keep going back out of pure curiosity…

Back from the dead … ?

Dunno yet.. Just that my other blog has taken a family turn since the baby was born.. this morning I remembered I used to have one on blogspot.. might keep this one for gaming stuff.. hmm..

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