Archive for November, 2011
League of Legends
LoL is essentially Dota made easy. If you don’t know what Dota it is, it’s an overhead “action” rts in which you control a single character with increasingly dizzying skills.
The premise is quite simple 5 players face off against another 5 players to do battle and destroy the opponent’s buildings. What’s remarkable about the game is the way the basic stats of an RTS
say physical vs magic damage, casting radiuses, things like that all stack to a remarkable level of creativity and strategy in the character you control. Characters, in a very broad sense, range from mages that deal damage over distance to melee fighters that have to get up close to score. You level up your characters choosing the right spells for you and figuring out when to gank the other characters. Now I mentioned LoL is a simplified Dota, it is. The entire game takes place on a single simplified map. 3 lanes with little of the trees and other adornments that make Heroes of New Earth and other Dota clones so complicated. The equipment is easy to use and understand, while also vast. The game’s real quirks come in it’s strategy, Annie for instance is a small ranged mage who is a “nuker”. Nuker pile up ability power and then kill opponents when they least expect it. Annie has a stun that occurs every fifth spell using this in combination with her other powers means she can stun and possibly take down another opponent in 2 seconds or less, of course Annie is squishy, you can easily kill her in combat which makes her a prime target for other champions. Other champions very drastically, there is a grave digger who summons spirits to fight for him and gains attack damage with each one, there’s two champions that turn invisible for shorts times, there are tanks huge hulking damage sinks that lumber into late ships on your demise, the game in other words contains so many different styles while maintaining a cohesive universe. It all makes sense somehow. I also like the design in LoL, the cartoonish characters are far better than the more realistic designs of the DOTA 2 force. I also like Evelyn’s comments on heels or when Mordekaiser barks at you, you only have to click once.
Left 4 Dead 2
When the first left 4 dead came out i played i believe one level in it and was stunned, left 4 dead 2 I like the characters more, but the game itself is annoying. I don’t see any reason to play this game and I’m glad I only paid 6.99 for it.
Rock of Ages
I loved Zeno Clash, but Ace Team’s second game is a little less addictive than the last. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still awesome, it’s just not as great as Zeno Clash was.
Assassin’s Creed 2
I finished Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood before any of the other games, so playing through Assassin’s Creed 2 is a little surprising, from the introduction of Ezio to the linkage between the templar’s futuristic modern day hide out to the van the third game begins in, but what surprises is more the disconnect between satisfying mechanic, say free running and the story, or the way the game seems to make the correct sacrifice valuing fun over narrative sensibility, after all sitting down at a bench shouldn’t keep guards from finding you if they know what you look like or the way the Assassin’s all end up in identical uniforms walking through town as announcing, “Hey I’m an Assassin.” The animus doesn’t quite work, genetic memorys? It seems like quantum effects would be a better sci-fi premise, alternative timelines? entanglement? But the games do entice me to finish missions wether climbing the highest towers or killing the simplest merchants.
On another note the pc, long the bed of easily copyable games, has become a bastion of the indie game scene. Steam games apparently make up a larger part of many companies’ income than xbox live and other games. The freedom of the pc is being copied by the console, but the habits of the pc gamer are more align with the desires of the indie dev than the marketplaces put up by Sony and Nintendo. The PC still fosters the dream of the next self made million dollar game. Dota, Portal, Team Fortress, these are all examples of the pc’s mobility, the way a couple of kids in a cyber cafe can be big time designers in a moment. What the Ps3 lacks is the ability to empower its users to mod the games already on it. The crytek3 engine has been taking up my time, I love making islands in it and stuff like that. I’m a tad sleep deprived.
See yall later.
and Hey Darren!!! I hope you’re doing ok.