Seriously, Right onto Your Head

Seriously, Right onto Your Head

Monday, September 28, 2009

Spore Ends Up Failing

I was really liking Spore for a bit there, but I gotta say it fell off pretty quick. After the Creature Stage, you move onto the Tribal Stage, where you have a small town full of creatures that look like whatever you ended up with at the end of your creature stage plus some outfits and accessories that you can change around (most of which have no effect on your creatures whatsoever...lame). At this point the game is still reasonably fun, you have a few other tribes with which to interact, and you can sing to them and give them gifts to gain their favor or just kill 'em off. I did a little bit of both and it was fun for a while, then I advanced to the next stage.

The next stage is the Civilization Stage. The main issue I had at this point was that the game lost its initial appeal of evolving and changing around your creature while gaining new abilities etc. It began to feel like a mediocre RTS. I spent a lot of time designing buildings for my cities which I could barely see unless I zoomed in super close which was disappointing, seemed like it really wasn't worth all the effort. You can also create a land vehicle, boats and aircraft, and despite (once again) all the time one will take to design them, there isn't too much to do with them. I ended up just driving around collecting resources and blowing away other cities. It was pretty dull, and the next stage, the Space Stage, was no improvement.

I figured this could be pretty cool, advancing to space, exploring other galaxies! Nah, not really. This is probably the most boring of all... just end up flying around from planet to planet doing menial tasks, abducting creatures, zapping the occasional enemy craft. All in all, it was not impressive. So while Spore has a really promising start, it really fails to deliver.

The graphics remain bright and bubbly and the sound effects are cool. The game has a good feel overall but I just wanted more from it. Eh, maybe I'll pick it up again some other time.

Sunday, September 27, 2009


I started playing Spore this weekend and I'm enjoying it despite the fact that my creature keeps getting eaten and starving to death...
The game starts you as a microscopic organism and takes you through various levels of evolution, ending in space I believe. At the moment, I've gotten my guy outta the water and onto the land.

Here's a bit of my evolution so far...

One of the first stages of my on-land evolution.

Gave myself some wings and a horn-esque thing on my nose to impress.

I decided to go for kinda a mix between a dinosaur and an insect for this stage.

This is my current state. More insect-like than anything I guess. No, I have no idea why I put an eye on his chest...

I haven't really gotten the hang of the game quite yet. It seems pretty cool so far but I think I need to learn how to better customize my creature. There's a ton of options (arms, legs, pincers, ears, mouths, wings etc. etc. etc.). Each one costs a certain amount of DNA points and holds its own benefits such as the ability to impress and/or eat other creatures. I feel like my strategy from this point on is going to be to focus on either impressing or killing, not try to balance both of them.

As for the look and feel, the graphics are bright and colorful as are the sound effects and music. The game contains a wide variety of other creatures to encounter, all of which are very different in shape and size. The controls are simple, mostly just point-and-click and a couple number keys for various abilities. All in all, Spore is looking pretty good.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Final Thoughts on Prey

I finished Prey today and while it was fun, it was way too easy and altogether not that satisfying of a gaming experience. The game doesn't allow you to die...which is convenient but kinda makes battles seem pointless. You can just stand still, get shot at, die, come back...etc etc.

The spirit realm you get sent into when you run out of health. You shoot arrows at the red flying thingies to get your health back.

Some of the later weapons turned out to be pretty cool. I guess I just prefer more realistic weaponry to bizarre alien alternatives. The guns I really liked in the game were the first one, comprable to a machine gun/sniper rifle combo, the shotgun-like rifle that shoots green goo at your enemies and another gun that seemed like a chaingun or something. In a sci-fi environment it wouldn't really have made sense to have human weapons but I just find random alien crap kinda dull a lot of the time.

The shotgun-esque weapon and a view of your protagonist's girlfriend being tortured...good times.

Some of the scenery later in the game was pretty cool, lots of large geometric shapes containing reasonably fun puzzles and battles. This didn't make up for much though.

The final boss is within that box, probably the most fun fight in the game, but still not that great.

Overall, I wasn't impressed. Despite these few cool-looking scenes most of the game takes place in random alien hallways and caverns. The ability to change the center of gravity, allowing your character to essentially rotate rooms seemed cool at first but eventually got pretty tiresome and just rather confusing.

One of the cooler looking areas in the game.

The end was probably the most fun part, but I definitely am not gonna be playing it again. I don't really have much more to say about it.

Prey gets a best. I'm gonna tackle Spore next, we'll see if it does any better!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Yeah...I Bought a Bunny


I bought a bunny.

His name is To'Kki... means rabbit in Korean.


I'm back on the gaming wagon for a bit, so here's what I've been getting into!
It's been a while since I've been able to play any newer computer games. However, I recently got a new comp and can finally do that!
I acquired a game called "Prey" which I've been hitting up over the last few days and it seems pretty decent. The game centers around a Native American (or "Injun" in politically correct terminology) who gets abducted by aliens along with his girlfriend and grandfather. We've all been in a similar situation so it's totally easy to relate to his, you know?

It's bloody (they seem to have no problem chopping up children all over the place), a bit creepy, and has some nice visuals and some interesting alien weaponry. All good features in a shooter.

See what I mean about the kids?
The graphics are a-okay on my Macbook Pro with a NVIDIA GeForce 9400. I have no idea how that card scales up with other video cards, I'm assuming there's way better stuff out there...anyway, the graphics look pretty sick.

One of the low level monsters...after a good wrenching.
I am not entirely wow-ed by this game as of yet though. It has some interesting elements, such as anti-gravity platforms which make for some dizzying scenes and puzzles. One of the coolest features is your characters ability to leave his body in spirit form and pass through areas that were otherwise impassable. This coupled with the many portals and anti-gravity rooms makes more some pretty cool, yet simple, puzzles. The focus of the game is definitely not puzzles, but blasting anything that moves. That's okay in my book.

Standing on the ceiling.
All in all, so far, Prey's getting a B. We'll see if it shapes up...I could use some better weaponry and maybe some more interesting baddies.