Friday, July 8, 2011

Old Skool Games: Gears of War

this is the first box for Gears of war on the Xbox 360

Since I now have an Xbox I decided to play an old game that I thought was really good the first few times I played it, but, as it turns out, isn't all that great. The first couple times through Gears of War a few years ago led me to believe it was one of the greatest games at the time. I was originally swayed by the amazing multiplayer because I didn't really spend much time on the campaign other than learning the controls. Turns out I was wrong.

Gears of War was a great game at the time because of the graphics and in your face gameplay with curb stomping bonuses, and nowadays it's just average at best. The campaign took me less than 6 hours even on the hardest difficulty and now that there's better games to play the online setup feels lonely because if you wanted to play Gears you'd be playing the second one. I must admit though, I still enjoy the second Gears because of the inclusion of an offline multiplayer with bots.

The lack of a substantial offline multiplayer makes the first Gears of War a relic in my view. The only reason to buy the first Gears now is because you have a need to play through the first campaign to get the full story and you have no friends that have it lying around. Everything about the second game is miles ahead of the first, and you'd be crazy to pay any amount of money for a 6 hour campaign.

I just checked, and this game was released November 17th 2006, which isn't that long ago. The difference between this Gears and Gears 2 was massive considering that there was only 2 years between the two. I guess that what I'm hinting at here is that video gaming is progressing at an amazing speed if 2 years is all it takes to make a revolutionary game obsolete. I'm just wondering how awesome games will be in the next couple of years.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Mass Effect 2: Best Game Ever

I've recently gotten an Xbox at Target because they've been nice enough to offer one for $199 and you get a $50 gift card for buying it. I have finally been able to play Mass Effect II, and I must say that I think it is one of my favorite games...of all time. 
The first game had the best story of any game I'd ever played until I got to Mass Effect II and realized that most of the things I'd done in the first one could have been carried over to number 2 so the next thing I did was burn through the first game so that I would be able to play through #2 with the choices I'd made in #1 in effect. That was the best choice since buying Mass Effect 2. In the first game I had to save Wrex, the Krogan, who was also my favorite character, I had to be a renegade and let the council die and appoint my bro Udina as the leader. I haven't gone back and played #1 with different choices yet to see how different #2 gets, but I like the depth that the creators gave Mass Effect 2.

The only thing I had a problem with in #1 was that if you chose a character that  used any sort of powers, you'd have to stop the action and select it, aim it, and then restart the action to use it and it was way too clunky. They sure did fix that in the second one because it played almost like Gears of War with added superpowers. The only problem I have so far with the action and gameplay is that the second highest difficulty was too easy and the hardest difficulty might be too hard because I've had some parts that I had to play about 15 times until I finally won, but that will make it so much better when I finally save the galaxy.

Mass Effect 2 is without a doubt the best single player game I've played on the Xbox 360. What it lacks in depth and replay-ability to an open world game like Oblivion or Grand Theft Auto it more than makes up for with the best story since the Bible. The fact that you should now be able to pick up ME 1 and ME 2 for under $25 total makes it the greatest 2 game set for that kind of cash.