F.E.A.R. 2: Project Origin

Downloaded the demo from the Playstation Network today. And it is bloody scary. 7 minutes into the game I was wetting my pants in terror and wondering whether that thing on the wall is a child’s insides (this took place inside a school) or something not quite dead about to jump from the ceiling, grab my head and munch away at my jugular while I shoot away all my gun magazines at hallucinations.
The flickering lighting didn’t help at all, with the strobing lamps disguising the movements of anything that thinks you look tasty. School desks and chairs would fly across rooms and block doors, preventing you from escaping the weird mutant-soldier things that are everywhere. One door scared the crap out of me by only opening a few centimeters, like there was something on the other side…
Just running through all this is not an option, as ghostly hallucination things move out from walls and degrade your health constantly. Shooting them constantly is the only way to shoo them away. There were all sorts of side rooms that possibly could have been explored, but quite frankly I didn’t want to see what was in them. Or who.

Battlefield: Bad Company

Bought Battlefield: Bad Company a couple of days ago at my local game store. I have played the first three missions, and had thoroughly enjoyed it for the ease with which you can change the environment in urban areas via simple application of an explosive to a wall, creating a door with which to throw more explosives through.

The countryside is a little more harder to traverse, with large open spaces leaving you open to long-range fire.  Sprinting through these open sections can get slightly tedious, though the urban sections make up for this slightly. This gets slightly repetitive, as you sprint across open space, mop up stragglers, assault urban base, clear out base, re-arm and move onto next base. Walls present little problem, as your default gun comes with an underbarrel grenade launcher that makes short work of buildings, and explosive barrels and crates are scattered liberally near structures need only a burst of gunfire to go off.

In the midst of battle identifying and tracking targets can be hectic and difficult, and those enemies with rockets and other explosive weapons can present a major problem. Actually dying is rather a rare occurrence on easy difficulty, with your main form of health regeneration an adrenaline shot that comes in unlimited supply. There are many varied weapons ranging from pistols to silenced sub-machine guns to sniper rifles, though they come in pre-set packages that cannot be modified at all. This is a little unneeded, as the aforementioned default rifle is more than enough to get you through most situations.

There is some, but not much, variation on attacking enemy areas, with the options being driving a vehicle into their buildings, flanking them from around the back or sides or just plain rushing in. Taking their turrets is a priority, as they can inflict loads of damage and blow up walls, exposing you. But if you take them for yourself, you can rain hot death upon the base, decimate houses and just generally blow up stuff.

The Frostbite engine behind the progressive destruction of buildings is quite detailed, with only important things like ladders and supportive walls being invulnerable becuase they are needed for consistent play and objectives.

The multiplayer is in the classic Battlefield style with the classic weapon package system, but with the new (and only) game mode of ‘gold rush’. This entails having one team attacking gold crates and the other team defend them. Each vehicle and player respawn (on the attacking team) deducts from the attacker’s war fund which can only be replenished by blowing up the crates and taking the gold. Each time 2 crates are destroyed, the defenders move back to a new base with 2 new gold crates. This is a rather fun game to play, with some bad merits (of course) but not nearly as many good ones.

Feeling Better

My illness seems to have run it’s course and I am now feeling better and getting out and about.

On Hiatus

I have been ill for the past few days and will probbably not be able to post for a few more. Will be back online once I am better.

PS3 Update Today

First one for a looong time. I was beginning to think that Sony had finished improving the system software.

Happy Birthday Mum

A big happy birthday to my mum who is [This Number Has Been Deleted By An User Or Administrator] years old today. A big round of applause.

More Fruitcake

More stuff from the loopy side of the Internet. First off is www.thetadnahealing.co.uk, a rather strange site about healing cancer at the molecular level. With your mind. And www.dianacooper.com, one of the strangest sites I have seen in a long time. This site warrants several evenings of hilarious discovery, from a 5-dimensional Atlantis to carrying some rocks to align your bloodstream with high energies in 2012 (2012 is another rant entirely). All of this is of course good clean fun as long as you do not take it too seriously and start sending off for rocks and flower water worth an arm and a leg, plus your firstborn for postage and packing. Here’s Diana Cooper’s Atlantis page. Thanks to NewScientist and it’s readers for finding this.

Bush Flower Essences

A rather funny quack medicine website, Bush Flower Essences “work on the mind, body and spirit and are obtained by extracting the healing vibrational quality from the most evolved part of the plant – the flowers. They work on an emotional level, harmonising negative feelings and belief patterns, held in the subconscious mind”. Yeah. Right. It goes on to say: “Flower Essences are produced by imprinting a flower’s unique vibrational healing signature onto the carrier solution and are used to treat imbalances at a higher level, bringing about balance and well being in the whole person”. And examination of how they actually make this stuff reveals it’s just super-concentrated brandy with flower water. Stirred with a stick. All of this is $13 for a bottle the size of your thumb. Here’s their Q&A page, with some more information.

Acer Predator

Just got back from a day in the city (Melbourne). Went to a geat geek store, Geek Central. They had a demo of the new Acer Aspire Predator, a new gaming machine with some very high-end performance ratings. It has god knows how many USB ports for all those peripherals you need, and a rather cool-looking couple of CD slots with protctive arms that open up for the tray. The whole box has a front panel that lifts up (See below), revealing all the front-end stuff. There are two sets of water cooling systems and overclocking capacity. All of this monstrous machine costs AUD $5,000. It will be intresting to see how this compares to the Mac Pro, a machine that can cost as much as AUD $250,000 when fully decked out with the works.

Starcraft II

Just watching a trailer for Starcraft II, an up-and-coming RTS by Blizzard. Blizzard is also responsible for a lot of other RTS’, with the previous Starcraft games and the Warcraft series under their belts, as well as the world famous World of Warcraft. Starcraft II seems to be a great investment so far, although so many things seem to have changed. Many of the units featured in the new ‘Battle Report‘ video are missing from the official website’s repository of information on the game. Other areas of the website also seem to be asleep with the only regular updates being screenshots, the occasional piece of concept art and a trailer or gameplay video every few months. It’s unfortunate, as I would really like to have some sort of expectation of when SC2 will be released or even just have a beta put out.