Thursday, June 23, 2011

Update: Bomberman


8 hours of online gameplay
continuous draw game loop
2:00 min rounds
random placement off
pressure blocks off 

2 achievements unlocked
Draw 100 for 5
Battle 1000 for 20

9 achievements reamining

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Duke Nukem 3D (XBLA)

So Duke Nukem Forever finally arrives within the next two weeks. Taking around eleven years to produce (beginning in 1997), (referenced June 4, 2011) the next closest thing in terms of production time would probably be Alan Wake, which took five years before production was complete. (referenced June 4, 2011) This Xbox Arcade version is idenical to the original release of 1996, with the ability to play with friends cooperatively and competitively.

Although Duke Nukem is an anomaly in terms of development, it seems the ongoing trend within the game development community is to continue established venues of success with sequels or reinvent them with reboots of the franchises. It could possibly lead to the cynicism that people often get to where they say to themselves, "Everything that can come out now has already been done before." Which is similar  to Charles Duells famous 1899 quote, "Everything that can be invented has been invented."(referenced June 4, 2011)

Needless to say you wouldn't be sitting in front of your computer if that was the case.

Game speed completion: Four to six hours for the story mode with an additional one hour for the 500 online kills. Can be done faster with the assistance of fellow gamers or with online walkthroughs. Not much to it due to the straightforward achievement list. After finding 70 secret areas in the game, the rest of the time played will be devoted to simply running through as fast as possible for full completion.

GSL Potential: Duke Nukem 3D probably can't be considered GSL material since episodes only unlock after completing the preceeding episodes. In considerations to staking points, a solo player can choose to play up until the final level of the first episode if they are trying to keep the game off the played games list. This would also mean refraining from tipping the exotic dancer, which usually comes just out of habit. Running through the first level in under three minutes would also net the player an additional ten points which can also be popped after finishing the first episode. Even after all that preparation though, the participant would only net 45 points. With a boosting partner, 500 kills can be pumped out within an hour for an additional 50 points. Not necessarily a high scoring point vessel; but despite the point to time ratio, can be considered a, "bottom of the barrel" source for points if someone is between shipments of games.

What the guides don't tell you: You can check how many secrets you have officially discovered in each level on the options screen.  You'll need 70 unique secret areas, and you don't get credit for finding secret areas that you've already discovered... because they're not a secret anymore.

Attack of The Movies 3D

     Well I'm finally back from a personal road trip. It was a long time coming, and definitely something that should have not been put off for so long. If it weren't for the interruption of a few unexpected (but welcomed) phone calls from prospective employers, then I just might have kept on going. None the less, the trip is not complete yet, as I got the east coast to tour as well as possibility of perusing Europe in the upcoming year.
     One person can say that this is simply a terrible game. Another person would say that this is a tribute to the old cabinet style rail shooters like Area 51, Lethal Enforcers and Mad Dog McCree. That same person would STILL say that Attack of the Movies game was bad, however. The game wouldn't be so bad if the developers didn't make the first and last level so unforgivably hard; to the point where you do have to enlist the help of local talent.

Game speed completion: From personal experience, the game has the potential to be completed 100% in two to three hours, provided that you have either three LOCALLY talented friends, turbo controllers, or preferably both. At my skill level, I was able to get 950 of 1000 points on my own in that same time period with the assistance of a turbo controller, but required the help of three others for the "Underwater Mine Expert" achievement. Expect high levels of frustration in the first and last levels when playing on its hardest difficulty when playing this game solo, but success comes from memorization of the rail path, enemy attack patterns and power-ups like many rail shooters in the 80's. Supposedly this game is completable solo, but with my own experience with the game, I can't comprehend how.

In short: bring friends, provide food and drinks and make it a boosting party disguised as a social event. (Playing a game that your friends probably wouldn't be too interested in playing.)

GSL Potential: Attack of the Movies 3D does have competitive potential due to its short time requirements for completion (six respective levels to play at approximately ten minutes each.) The methodology of tackling this game will determine how much time will be required to complete. Most GSL participants will opt to initially play on hard in attempt to quickly unlock the 220 point, "Hard to Complete" achievement but will suffer the frustration of replaying the first level, wondering how the hell others actually got through this unforgiving level. (As stated earlier, memorization of the enemy attack patterns, when checkpoints register, and the layout of the power-ups/extra lives as well as when to utilize them will determine level success.)

In retrospect, I could have decided to play on normal first, simply to learn the levels first, then completed on hard and I may have shaved off some personal frustration and lost time from replaying levels. Difficulty choice does determines the ease of completing the various level challenges but success is more determinate on the player's skill of handling the extremely sensitive cross hair controls.

Game visibility is low; it won't be sitting on a GSL participant's gamercard prior to being played. Point expectation would be around 500 to 800 points from any competitor within the initial three to four hour time frame of playing the game, with the possibility of returning at any time for point cleanup.

What the guides don't tell you: The player's ability to cope with the controller sensitivity will determine the level of difficulty they will have with this game. A person with ham fingers and an inability to articulate small thumb stick movements will most likely need more help than those who don't.

Also, the sensitivity of the cross hair also changes with the controller. The default Microsoft controller has the best sensitivity, but shooting in game will be done manually, which means your fingers will be fairly punished after a session with this game. The two Hori pad versions even have different levels of sensitivity, with the blue version being the better of the two with the added bonus of turbo.

On the first level, (the ant movie) most people will be initially stuck after the first checkpoint. If the player can at least get to the 1-up powerup continuously and die before reaching the end boss, this loop can be repeated as necessary to get the, "Big Score" achievement where you must earn 75,000 points in a level.