Brad Gallaway's blog
By Brad Gallaway on April 2, 2009 - 10:15pm.
Don't get me wrong—technology is a wonderful thing. Seriously, I'm not the kind of person who wishes we could go back to the days of listening to the latest pop hits on wax cylinders, or who thinks that microwaves have killed the art of cooking. That said, a person's got his limits and there are definitely some times when things in the tech world just get going too fast.
Of course, I'm talking about all this newfangled "Cloud" stuff that's been going around. For those who may not have heard about it yet (and trust me, I'm sure you will) the gist is that some people have gotten the idea in their heads that the best way to take video games to the next level is to do away with traditional consoles as we know them. No more going down to the store, picking up a disc, popping it in your console of choice and enjoying with a slice of pizza or cold beverage. Instead, games will allegedly be run from a central server and streamed via broadband to a receiver box which will then send that signal to your home TV.
By Brad Gallaway on March 30, 2009 - 3:54pm.
Although the Community Games area on Xbox Live was slow to start, there's no doubt that the content is heating up. More and more titles of notable quality have been surfacing, one of which is the fully 3D Adventure title, Mithra: Episode 1 – The Calling. If you haven't heard of it, don't be surprised… Microsoft's been lacking when it comes to promoting the better selections. However, that's what I'm here for.
By Brad Gallaway on March 28, 2009 - 11:46pm.
Still working my way slowly through MadWorld. Not that it's really difficult or long, it's just that I get bored of it and have to move onto something else after two or three stages. Thankfully, it looks to me as though I'm getting close to the home stretch.
I have to say, I'm a little confused as to where all the over-the-top praise is coming from. Every review starts off by saying "I'm not giving this game a high score just because it's on the Wii" and yet, I can't help but feel that's a big factor. The game's formula is quite simplistic, the action gets repetitive, and to be perfectly frank, I don't think that the black-and-white color scheme really serves the game well. It's definitely distinct, but it can be hard to navigate the levels at times. When you're surrounded by a group of enemies, it's next to impossible to tell where you saw that last life-up dropped.
By Brad Gallaway on March 26, 2009 - 1:26am.
I just completed Fallout 3's newest DLC, The Pitt. It was a lot shorter than I expected it to be, and I have to say that the story progression and how everything ended up kind of left a bit of a bad taste in my mouth…
I don't want to ruin anything for those who haven't played it yet, but let's just say that although the appearance of having choice in what happens is there, the reality is that it's a lot more narrow than it first seems. Still digesting it, though.
By Brad Gallaway on March 23, 2009 - 9:51pm.
Picked up Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars on DS a couple of days ago. Tim Spaeth from the podcast was raving about it, and if I'm not mistaken, I believe the words "game of the year" were in there somewhere. I hadn't originally intended on picking it up, but after hearing his praise I decided to take the plunge since I had a little extra trade credit on hand. In terms of production it's certainly got everything nailed down tight and I am impressed by the ability of programmers to pack so much onto the DS, but in all honesty, I got quite bored of it almost immediately.
By Brad Gallaway on March 19, 2009 - 10:58pm.
Am I the only person who's not completely bowled over by Street Fighter IV? I had a mad urge to run out and pick up a brand-new copy on the release day, but I held out in an effort to stick to my budget, and wow... I'm glad that I did. I finally got a chance to put some time into it and I've got to say, it left me a little cold.
For some reason, I thought the graphics would be better (and yes, I'm playing on an HD set). It's not just the resolution or whatever, it's that the actual art direction is just weird. The characters look kind of cartoony, kind of not… it's just odd. Besides that, the hit detection seems kind of wonky to me and I've got to be honest in saying that none of the characters really float my boat. Rufus, especially—I mean, how did that guy ever get off the drawing board at Capcom R&D?
By Brad Gallaway on March 17, 2009 - 8:25pm.
A couple of days ago I finally located a copy of Alone in the Dark: Inferno for the PlayStation 3. I'm not a huge Alone in the Dark fan in general, but prior to the game's release for the Xbox 360, there had been quite a lot of talk from the developers about different ideas they were trying out, and their approach to making something they saw as fairly revolutionary.
…Of course, it ended up accumulating countless negative reviews and extremely poor word-of-mouth. Last time I checked Metacritic, the 360 had an average score of 58. Basically, pretty much everyone who played it hated it, and it crashed and burned spectacularly.
After this potent feedback, the development team at Eden Studios gave the game a radical makeover and fixed many of the things that sunk the first release. This new and improved version (PS3 only) was subtitled Inferno, and despite addressing the concerns, this release also went nowhere. Currently, a brand-new copy can be had for $20 or less, and last I heard, any hope of a sequel has been utterly destroyed.
By Brad Gallaway on March 15, 2009 - 9:51pm.
The friendly folks over at Atlus were kind enough to share some preview information about their upcoming game The Dark Spire, and so I'm passing it on to you…
If you like your RPGs old-school, and I mean old-old-school, this game should definitely be on your radar.
By Brad Gallaway on March 15, 2009 - 9:46am.
Another sneak peek at upcoming Atlus goodness, this time around I've got some shots and info on Super Robot Taisen OG Saga Endless Frontier. (Whew, that title is a mouthful.)
I don't have a lot of dirt on the game at the moment, but what I do know is that it's an RPG with a sci-fi setting, most of the female characters are ridiculously endowed (sold you right there, eh?), there's tons of sexual innuendo, and the combat system takes place in real-time—I've heard a few people compare it to Xenogears in the way that each battle plays out, but I cannot confirm or deny that. I can confirm the cleavage, though.
By Brad Gallaway on March 13, 2009 - 12:20am.
Don’t get me wrong. I really like DLC when it's done right, and it's something that I think is going to become a very vital part of the industry, if it hasn't already. (And really, I think it already has.)
That said, certain companies and their practices are really starting to piss me off.
In my mind, it seems to me that the proper role for DLC is to extend the life of a game after it's been out for a while and would ordinarily have been put aside in favor of newer releases. Perfect examples would be something like the add-on missions for Oblivion, Mass Effect or Fallout 3, each new piece of content able to reignite interest in games that would likely have been traded in or covered with dust on a shelf if not for the knowledge that something else would be coming down the pike. A trait common to all of these is that their core games were all unquestionably complete in and of themselves, including all the trappings we'd expect.
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