Anything to do with games in the broadest sense.

Totally useless post! Also Armored Core rantings :O

Well, I updated to the newest version of WordPress just now. It’s almost 1 am, I don’t have anything better to do with my time, and it’s been a while since I made a blog entry. So what do ya know, I’m making a blog entry! But…about what? Hmm….

Oh, well I hope everyone had an enjoyable and safe Turkey Day! We almost always have Turkey Day at our house…and we also usually end up making the entire meal save for a few drinks and deserts and it was no different this year. In all about 14 friends and family members came to enjoy the culinary fruits of our labor, and it was good. I actually didn’t gorge myself on food this year, which is a surprise because it all tasted sooo delicious. Can’t wait to do it again next year :]

Aha! Almost forgot to mention, but I recently got my hands on Armored Core 4[for]: Answer. Yes, I’m so lazy that I linked to a wikipedia article :P Yes, the name is weird. Yes, it is a Japanese game. It has been my opinion, on and off anyways, that the Armored Core series has been going down the drain since Armored Core: Nexus. I could rant endlessly as to why I believe this, but I’ll just sum it up this way: It’s kind of like the relationship between DOOM and Doom 3. The original game was completely awesome in it’s execution and gameplay mechanics; very fast-paced, lots of customization, lots of cool and interesting parts, and simple to pick up and play. When I first played the game I thought the storyline was really engaging and unique (at the time anyways; if I were older when I first played it, I may not have thought that). This formula held up through to the PS2 versions of the game…up to Armored Core: Silent Line (the sequel to AC3) that is.

Nowadays things have changed. Change isn’t necessarily bad, and things have definitely been going better, but for the most part it has been…bad, I guess. From Armored Core Nexus to Armored Core 4, I’ve been slowly repelling myself from the game. The latter part of the PS2 series of the game added ‘realistic’ mechanics to the game. You know, for more ‘realism’…because, apparently, ‘realism’ automatically makes a game ‘better’. And by ‘better’ I mean ‘intolerable, unplayable, awful’. They amped up the heat mechanics of the game which totally killed the arcade style feel of the game and turned it into a ‘I want to pull my hair out’ simulator. It’s really quite a tragedy for me because those games had to much promise; the new parts OMG the new part OMG. If your an Armored Core fan, then you’ll probably know that it’s all about the new parts :D But if the game isn’t fun to play then it’s hard to stay excited about all of the new parts :( I was still very dedicated to the series though and I spent many hours playing Nexus, Ninebreaker, and Last Raven, but it wasn’t the same experience as the older games. Basically it goes like this: Nexus = bad, Ninebreaker = so bad don’t even get me started on it, Last Raven = same mechanics but much much better; could be better. Then we get into next generation – Armored Core 4. I didn’t get my hands on a new console until almost a year ago and AC4 had been out a little while. I grabbed a copy armed only with what I had read about the game and less-than-stellar expectations. I will say that they managed to bring speed back in a BIG way but a lot of the game felt overwhelming to me. I found this to be odd since I’ve been playing the Armored Core series avidly since the first demo of the game on the PS1. The changes are too numerous to list but a lot of them are trivial and for the better (like online play, the ability to save as many designs as you want, extremely in-depth designing, GAME UPDATES to rebalance parts and such [awesome], etc etc). However the game started to feel like a first-person-shooter which I didn’t really like. Also the control setup of previous games is 90% impossible in AC4 for reasons I won’t go into. In short, I’d give AC4 a C-.

So let’s get back to Armored Core for Answer. Lots and lots of new parts (awesome), faster-paced gameplay (awesome), really fun missions fighting those huge Arms Forts (awesome), slightly less cluttered GUI (awesome), ability to change the HUD color (awesome…since I couldn’t see a damn thing on my old TV in AC4)…I could go on. I should also note that Ubisoft published the game this time instead of Sega (who did AC4). I must say they did a much better job than Sega or Agetec did (Agetec did most of the PS2 series of the games…and AC:MoA too, I think). I was really pleasantly surprised with this game, definitely moreso than AC4. I could be biased in this conclusion though; I finally learned to use the new control scheme! I never though I could do it and truthfully I’m still sort of adjusting to it…but it’s finally grown on me and it makes the game 10x easier to play. I attempted to setup my old scheme that I used in AC4 that resembles the old-style, but with the inclusion of Assault Armor it was just too clunky (plus I wouldn’t be able to drop weapons :( ). So I forced myself to learn the new style…and yea, just awesome. Oh yea…Assault Armor. I’m still now sure what to think of it. At first I thought it felt like it was kind of a rushed concept that was injected into the game last minute, but I’m slowly changing my mind about it. I still can’t make a final judgment about it yet though. So far I’ve really enjoyed the game and I’m slowly working my way to finishing all of the missions on hard…and from there I’m going to attempt all S-rank! Wish me luck!

And that’s all she wrote. Wait, I’m not a woman D:

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