Damon's #BE3 Impressions!

  12:02:00 am, by Damon   , 1086 words  
Viewed 8250 times since 06/15/15
Categories: Games, Elder Scrolls, Fallout, Analysis

Ladies and Gentlemen, I've taken meticulous-ish notes  notes on the BE3 stream, and I'm SUPER psyched about the new titles being released soon! Except for one of them, but I'll get to that soon. Also, I discarded the meticulous notes, because writing notes and making detailed posts isn't how I roll. That's boring! This is incoherent fanboyism and excitement coming out however I make it come out!

The first game detailed out on the Bethesda conference was Doom. The single player gameplay is a fast-paced, deadly first person shooter with badass melee, cool weapons, and a lot of blood and gore. It looks to be a rather formulaic entry to the series, as far as first-person shooting goes. The main attraction for me, personally, is the Snapmap and the multiplayer. Snapmap is an in-game editor where the players can sculpt their own maps and challenges, alter game logic, and so forth, to create endless unique multiplayer missions, challenges, and so forth. All-in-all, though, it's not the top of my list of "must-have" games, although it is one I'd like to eventually get.

The next game they revealed information for was Battlecry, an MMO that is being released. Oceania has been involved in a beta of the game, and it's going to be opened up to a worldwide beta soon. This game is the one I am the least interested in. I'm sure Battlecry will have its own unique twist, but overall, it's largely a heavily stylised and cartoony PVP MMO, and it felt very "Team Fortress 2"-ish, in my own opinion, and I'm not terribly interested in getting the game.

Next up is Dishonored 2: The realm is being taken over by a usurper, and Corvo and a new protagonist Emily are going to be teaming up with their own unique abilities and skills to save the world. It looks quite intriguing, although I've not played Dishonored yet. (Someday I will, honest!)

While we wait for Dishonored 2, a Dishonored: Definitive Edition is being created, which is a remake of Dishonored with all of the original DLC remastered for the Xbox One and Playstation 4.

The Elder Scrolls Online stuff, I'll leave to Alarra to go on about, since she's the ESOTU guru of the lot of us, and she wants to do her own impressions post about BE3 shortly after mine.

Before I get to the biggest attraction of the release, Fallout 4, there is a spin-off TES game that Alarra will hopefully cover (because I missed it and heard only a few details as I got a drink), and there's a Fallout Shelter smartphone game. Fallout Shelter, I do know about, and it's a stereotypical micromanagement game where you build a vault, gather settlers, and blah, blah, blah. Looks cute and adorable, but I don't have a smartphone, so as these are my own impressions, I'm going to gloss over this as I'm not interested.

FALLOUT 4 COMES OUT ON NOVEMBER 10, 2015!! In Fallout 4, you make your player, a voiced male or female of a family from pre-war, and you sign up for the local Vault 111 in Boston. The player will witness the bombs go off, and though spoilers were not given, you survive the blast and two centuries later are the sole survivor of Vault 111.

The UI is beautiful, simplistic, and the game is running off a modified Creation Engine from Skyrim. At first, the thought of a rehashed Creation Engine bothered me, but when I saw what the next generation of Creation can do, it took my breath away. In Fallout 4, the player will be able to construct a settlement in this large world by dynamically creating and building buildings in real time, can draw in settlers and traders between settlements they found, and can and should build defences to protect against bandit raids. Customised weapons and armour are possible, and the player, by stripping down any item in the world, can build and customise weapons, armour, and handmade and placed buildings to an extreme degree that just makes me giddy as hell and SUPER SUPER excited!

The characters have had hundreds or thousands of popular names recorded, so whatever name you enter as your name, characters can dynamically say it and include it in conversation, for instance using the name "Howard" from the presentation. Cosworth, the family robot, would address the player by this name, as would his family, and that was absolutely incredible! It will definitely make the world feel a lot more alive and that you're definitely a part of it! The gameplay looks amazing!

The player's power armour from the trailer looks like it's a tank, with speedometers, jetpacks, badass weapons, and other cool stuff, all customisable, and it's really exciting that the game will at last feature power armour that's a mechanised warrior capable of mass damage instead of a sturdy heavy armour as has been done in the past.

The last thing I want to touch on is the pip-boy from the collector's edition of Fallout 4. It allows the player to insert their smart phone and use an app to access the pip boy i-game. According to Todd Howard's own words, it's like the other "stupid fucking gimmicks" that other people do, but his looks really cool. The one thing I'm curious about is why on earth you'd drop your controller to touch your phone on your wrist. Eh, still cool, though, and since I finally have gainful employment, I'll have to pre-order the collector's edition when I can do so. Yes, I know, people say don't pre-order, but it's a game I'd get anyway, and unlike Ubisoft, BethSoft has a good track record, and I'm a hypocrite anyway.

These are all just my random and excited thoughts on the game, and I can't wait for Fallout 4 to come out this year on the tenth of November! I'm definitely saving some money to build a gaming computer to take on this game! And Doom and any other cool ones. No way I'm playing such a game like the other console peasants, no offence to you people (okay, maybe a little offence).

I CAN'T WAIT!!! Also, here are three screenshots (in no particular order) of concept art for Fallout 4, an image of the player outside of the vault, and of Fallout Shelter, which if I haven't mentioned yet, is now available on your smartphone app stores, and was released at the end of the presentation. I wanted these images in-line with the text, but the blog always wrecks my formatting and other stuff.

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Revision History: Xbox One NA guild!

  03:18:00 pm, by   , 162 words  
Viewed 6213 times since 06/10/15
Categories: Elder Scrolls, UESP

The United Explorers of Scholarly Pursuits have begun their Xbox One expedition on the North American server! To join, send an in-game message to DarkSoup, aka Jeancey (hail, Doyen!), or leave a message on the talk page, or in the UESP guild forums.

Regarding the launch, everything finally worked out in the wee hours of the morning, after two or three hours of trying to log in. It wasn't quite the disaster some have made it out to be. But now, at least, the ESO support center message is accurate: login issues are affecting "some" players.

On behalf of North American XB1 gamers, I'm sorry, Europe. Some impatient Yankees decided to try their luck on the EU server, and basically screwed things up for the Old World, too. If it were up to me, they'd all have to live with their choice permanently or buy new copies of the game. But really, it's kind of stupid that they even had the option.

Presented Without Comment

  02:10:00 am, by   , 0 words  
Viewed 2973 times since 06/09/15
Categories: Elder Scrolls

MMO Aspects of ESO - a brief guide for new players

  10:01:00 pm, by Alarra   , 1711 words  
Viewed 2320 times since 06/08/15
Categories: Elder Scrolls

I meant to write this a while ago, back before the change to Tamriel Unlimited. The other day I was replying to a comment in an Elder Scrolls Facebook group, where someone had asked about what's different in ESO since it's an MMO, and my reply got so long, I realized that it would be much more readable - and beneficial to more people - as the blog post I had intended to write.

Note that more detailed information - especially when it comes to character creation, classes, skills, and crafting - can be found on the wiki; a great place to start is our First Time Players page, which links to a lot of the key information.

Read after the break to read the whole thing:

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Football Manager has stolen my life

  05:33:00 pm, by Damon   , 791 words  
Viewed 1548 times since 06/08/15
Categories: Games

To commemorate the fact that I have my first ever trophy on Football Manager 2014 after 7 months of playing Football Manager 2014,  8 or 9 seasons playing the game and trying to learn the rules of football, and after 200 or more hours of playing the game, I decided it was time to make a post about Football Manager. And, I haven't written on the blog in some time, so that seemed like a good idea.

Anyway, I suppose the question to answer is "why do I play Football Manager"? I'm an American, Americans don't appreciate soccer, and why, of all the games I could play, did I pick up Football Manager?

Honestly, I got it on a punt. I had no idea what the rules of association football were, and I knew nothing about the sport, aside from the fact that there were two famous English teams I'd heard of over the years called Manchester United and Chelsea. But, I decided for the hell of it to give it a try after watching someone play it on YouTube.

The game is unlike any other game. It's not like Madden, the FIFA series, or any other typical sports game where you take the players and you directly play as them to influence the game. This game is played from the perspective of the manager. You handle the recruiting, training, transfers, scouting, and more of various players, handle press conferences, and you set up the formations, go to your match, and you watch the players play the game autonomously. How successful the team is depends on how good of a manager you are, and how well you can prepare and develop your team.

I know, this game sounds like it could be dull, and to most people it probably is. Honestly, 98% of the game interface is glorified spreadsheets like this, with a 2D or 3D game interface for the matches themselves, based on your own preferences (I personally use a 2D top-down view for normal gameplay, and I like to use a 3D view for goal replays. It's a game for a niche market who prefer management simulations and the micromanagement that comes with it.

The part I really love about the game, however, is the story the game tells by not having a story to tell. It's odd to hear, I reckon, but stay with me.

I started my Football Manager 2014 save as 25 year old American Damon McKnight, born on 20 September 1987 (You have to be at least 25 as a manager on the game, and I'm younger than that, and I can't use 1992). I started my football managing career at the start of the 2013-14 preseason for Sky Bet League 2 team Oxford United, and it's my first management position. Through the trials and tribulations of being a manager, and through watching my players age and develop, and through watching my team reach success or fail, I am creating the life stories of my own person and of each of these individual players.

It's my first year on the job, and after some hiccups, I've won a trophy that the real life OUFC has never succeeded at getting, I've been challenging for first the entire year, and when the 2014-15 season rolls around, odds are that I'll be in League 1 with Oxford United while holding a fresh contract extension to stay with the team. Or, I could decide to move on and start fresh at a new team and experience all the excitement, anxiety, anger, and ecstasy that watching these successes and failures bring me as a manager.

Unlike other games, which have a defined story at the end of the day, it's this game's complete lack of that makes it so appealing to me, because I control my own fate. I could remain with a lower league team in England forever, or as I lead my team to victories, promotions, and trophies, I could find better teams to take over and move to higher English leagues or move to one of the leagues for the dozens of countries I have loaded into the game right now and someday become a world-class manager of Jose Mourinho or Sir Alex Ferguson's fame. The choice is all mine as a story teller and role-player, and even though I'm not the biggest sports fan in the world, I relish the possibilities that await me.

I'm going to wrap up this post with something I read a few weeks ago that got me thinking about how I play the game. I'm not THIS far invested into the game as far as story telling goes, but this demonstrates the commitment and general insanity that comes with being a Football Manager addict and letting it steal your life away... Like it's slowly been doing to me.