My name is Eric and I am a 29 year old video game collector. I have been playing games since I was 4 years old starting with Atari and have gotten all of the main stream systems from then until now throughout the years. I currently have over 2500+ games in my collection spanning over 20 systems from Atari to Xbox 360. I am a big collector of video game related things in general such as t-shirts, some figures, posters and other such stuff.
I was a former Game Crazy (former video game store; attached to Hollywood video) employee for 5 years before the company went bankrupt in June of 2010.
I enjoy video game music, be it original scores, symphony, chiptune, remixes, or whatever else. I also listen to metal/hard rock. I am currently listening to bands like Poets of the Fall, Skillet, and Mudvayne. My all time favorite band is Soundgarden, and my all time favorite artist is Chris Cornell.
I am also a wicked sci-fi nerd, primarily Star Trek. I also love Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica, Stargate SG-1, etc..etc..
If you've already read my last blog about PAX, then you know I got some pretty sweet stuff and saw some fun games. Day 2 was no different, albeit I STILL didn't want to wait forever and a day for max payne 3. I promise, tomorrow I will go to it. I was speaking about Borderlands 2 and whatnot last night and I honestly have no urge to see it. If the line is fine I'll go but the lines for Max Payne 3, borderlands, and spe ops thin line were the WORST ever. Demos this year are like 20-30 min long! So I'm gonna wait 2-3 hours to play some long ass demo? Last year demos were easily 10 min tops and that's how it should be. You get more people to actually play your games!
So I arrived later today, figured since I have my badge and the exhibition hall opens at 10am I'd be fine... I was wrong... almost. You see at PAX they queue everyone up near the tabletop gameplay area then let them in at 10am. I figured, as media, that I could get in at 10 whenever. Wrong. Not taking no for an answer, I walked around PAX and found a way in and just walked right into the line of people as they came into the hall... I got in at 10:10 having gotten there at 9:30pm. So missions complete. The sad news is, at this time, Max Payne's line was already around the booth and against the wall... as was Borderlands AND Spec Ops... So i chose XCOM Enemy Unknown and then my day began:
High Points: - XCOM Enemy Unknown: This game looks fantastic. Simply put. It keeps in with tradition of the series with its strategy/tactical gameplay, just with enhanced visuals (semi-cartoon like, hard to explain, I guess Team Fortress only slightly less cartoon-like if that makes any sense). So you move your troops or attack during your turn, sometimes both depending on your abilities. Then the enemies move and this happens back and forth. But on the other side of things you go back to your base and can train troops and upgrade things all to help save the Earth. You have to go to a world map and find enemy landings, or sometimes fight ships in the air. Now I absolutely LOVE this play style in games. I am in love with turn based games for some reason. I prefer the strategy style of a game rather then smash attacks and kill enemies. With that said, it plays a lot like Gladius did and to me that is the best news ever. Granted this is aliens and that was gladiators BUT it's still a "move your character and/or attack" style gameplay and I love it to death. I forgot all about XCOM even being a thing! I played XCOM 2 many moons ago and then this re-imagining/reboot/remake whatever you want to call it comes up and I couldn't be happier. I will 100% be buying this game and if you too enjoy aliens and turn based strategy/tactical games then I suggest you do so too in the Summer. Also, if you like lots of one liner jokes, this game is gold in that respect too!
- Dragon's Dogma: Now I have had my doubts about this game. I mean seriously, how many more medieval games can we make? The game caught me by surprise how interesting it plays. SO you control a man who they call the Arisen. Whether he gets a name later, I don't know. But you control this guy who has a sword and shield and you start with a friend with you wearing armor. As you progress, you find some stone which can summon in more teammates, called pawns, and a portal literally opens up and they flow in from the ether to assist you. So you walk through a cavern, fighting goblins and large birds. The system works very well and is pretty clever in its execution. X and Y do light and heavy attacks and B does another attack. When you hold the left or right bumper, the moves change however. So when I held LB and hit B, the Arisen would tap his shield to lure enemies. Your teammates are computer controlled but they aid you both in battle and healing and they have some clever one liners referencing modern day things much like XCOM also did in that non-playable demo. Then in the end you fight a Chimera (snake head for tail, lion body, and goat head attaches to it's back) which was pretty intense. You could jump and grab onto the creature Shadow of the Colossus style and slash at him or hold the bumpers for more varied attacks. Graphically the game held its own but was nothing spectacular as I've seen much better in medieval games but all in all a fun experience. Might pick it up for the game and not just for the Resident Evil 6 demo once it releases in May. Also the cool poster and large cardboard shield were cool swag.
- I Am Alive: As we know this game came out a few weeks ago and is getting odd reviews. I have no idea why because I thought it was creepy and it had me guessing and searching often. I mean you have a handgun at the start with no ammo, but you can useit to scare enemies and some will back down. Other times you want to wait for THEM to come to YOU so you can attack them and get their weapon or kill them with yours. Apparently this was the full game (which they didn't tell me until 30 minutes later). I found this odd since the game HAS a demo to download. I am inclined to believe that's why some of these demos at PAX are WAY too long. I mean, do I need 30 min with Spec Ops to know its another military shooter? gimme 10 min and kick me off, you know? I'm here to PEEK at new games, not play half the game. But I am alive is post-apocalyptic, it uses the silent hill map system where blocked routes get marked on the map, it has a dark gritty grey style to the game (I didn't see an ounce of color just blacks, greys, and whites). It feels like Silent Hill but with surviving people
- Card Game: Sentinels of the Multiverse: Now I don't play games but I'll gives these guys a shout out. It's a super hero card game that has 4 players, an environment player and a villain. To those of you who play card games, I hear its a normal setup. In this game you are each a specific hero and you battle the villain. small rings on a player card are used t denote current health or damage modifiers and a die or dice represents health of smaller enemies. If you're into card games and like super hero themed games, check it out. I played a 15 min card game demo (if thats a thing) and got that cool signed poster you see below my Xenoblade chronicles poster that Nintendo gave me (I also picked up my copy of Xenoblade Chronicles today during my Gamestops last 10 min of being open, which I went to right from PAX. I got the last art book too for my preorder which was awesome).
- Double Dragon Neon: This was announced Friday and I played it today. It's cool in style, but kind of boring. I know I have it on my high points of PAX, but it's a very early build and the design is awesome and very 80s inspired. They stole elements from other games like resuscitation in Castle Crashers. THe difference is that in Double Dragon Neon you put a pencil in a cassette tape, and wind it with the left stick to wake up Billy/Jimmy. I thought that was hilarious and clever. They also have crazy 80s hair and the females wear dominatrix gear and have their junk hanging out all over the place. Think Poison from the SF universe but definitely female. My only gripe is there were only 3 enemy types and a giant Abobo. It got boring quick. Now with rumors that maybe Battletoads DLC could happen, that would make it a LOT more interesting, but hey have a lot to go, but I say it's going in the right direction. Also its a re-imagining not a remake, so while there will be similarities, it won't all be the same stuff just revamped, it'll be all new.
Low Points: - Losing the puzzle fighter and PAC-man tournaments: it happened again, I was denied victory. Puzzle fighter I didn't expect much since it's been a while, I beat 1 guy then lost. That was that and it's all done. My big one was the PAC-Man Championship DX tournament. I made it to the FINALS and choked. I won my first round, barely from minor errors, but then the next 3 i killed it, breaking 1.9 mil each time on the Championship II map (which is a VERY good score) but then in the end I died.. and when PAC-Man dies even once in this game, you can forget about hitting 1.9 million... and it sucks because the winner had 1.890 million, a score i beat 3 matches in a row. I was asked to rest before the final, since my match was the 2nd semi-final. I chose not to and paid the price. The cool part of it all was that last year i was final 4 in PAC-man, and 2 of those guys were there this time too. The winner last year was at PAX, but didn't go to the tournament, he told me yesterday when i saw him for Puzzle Bobble that he wasn't playing a lot of PAC-man DX so he'd be crappy... a guy who holds a top 20 score in this PAC-man level on the PSN leader boards. But the fun part was the 2 other guys were last years 2nd place winner and my fellow sem-finaler from last year and I got to fight against them both and beat them. I beat the 3rd placer, Luis, by 4000 pts... that's a ghost and a couple pellets. Amazing match. I guess I can find solace in the fact that my score of 1.947 million. Despite choking in the finals only getting just over 1.5 million. Sad sad day, but I still did better than last year so practice does pay off.
- Girl Fight: Yes, they finally did it, a game called girl fight where... well.. only girls fight (and yes I know Arcana Heart exists, but that's at least playable). This thing was a mess. It looks like a wanna be DOA, but has nothing but scantilly clad and skanky looking females who fight. You also select 2 "psi" augment abilities like fire skin or stone skin for perks in the match. Now they had no control scheme listed but me and some other guy played and good lord was it sloppy. The character models look kind of scrubby, one minute B is blocking, the next I'm countering, but the next I'm doing a grapple, The attack buttons did different things, like no specific punch or kick button. It was pretty lame. Think Rumble roses only put it in a fighting game, make the girls sluttier, and somehow manage to make it crappier than rumble roses.
- Steel Battalion looks boring: I didn't play it yet, so don't go BUT the line was super short.. and the demo super long. So I stood there for what seemed like an eternity and just watched the players try this game out. First off.. it's a Kinect game where you use a controller... umm.. what? Yes you use a controller for movement and aiming but then randomly throw your arms out to hit switched from within the tank to look in a scope, and all kinds of other craziness. Graphically the game looks great but it looked like a "why is this on Kinect again?" type of game. IF I have to use a controller.. it defeats the purpose. I'd rather use the original giant steel battalion controller then mix and match Kinect and controllers for a lesser realistic feel. It looks as though it's not very immersive. If the line is short I'll try it, but I am not so sure.
- Secret World seems kind of crappy too: Again, I am NOT a PC gamer, so don't go all crazy if I don't understand things. I hate using WASD for movement, there I said it. So right there I was miffed to even attempt this game but a spot was open, i had time to kill before PAC-man, so I tried. The female character I used would NOT run. But whenever I died, I come back in like a spirit world kind of thing, have to walk to my dead body, and resurrect myself.. only to be slaughtered again. I was on some beach with these Fallout-Mirelurk-wannabes but my girl had attacks that did nothing and would NOT outrun them, she wouldn't even run. The i finally got off the beach after constant ressurrection and saw zombies that just seemed out of nowhere. IF this game is free to play, I might give it a go, but I don't recall if it is free. It grabs my attention since the girl had powers but there's also zombies and creatures in the game.
Day 3 Attempts/goals: - More SWAG: I got way more on day 1, and the posters are from day 1 but I forgot to post before, but I know there's more out there I can feel it!
- Lollipop Chainsaw: The lines were bad but not borderlands/max payne 3 bad
- Firefall: a free online FPS which looks pretty nuts (and had inflatable futuristic gun so I am up for it if they have some left)
- Spec Ops The Line/Borderlands2: Maybe if the lines aren't still super ridiculous but if so, I won't bother waiting and will try more smaller games.
- Play more small scale games: Everyone keeps talking about Shoot many robots and Orcs must die 2 but I never really played those kinds of games. So I think the final day will be all smaller games along with Max Payne 3 and others if time permits. Sure I have 8 hours there.. but if it takes 2 hour to wait in a line and play for 30 min, my day is more than 1/4th over for ONE game.
- Actually buy something from a merch booth: In keeping with tradition with ANY event, merch is off the wall expensive. They have 2 different classic video game booths.. and ALL their games are SUPER overpriced. I cannot stand seeing places like this. I swear they see what ebay sellers are TRYING to sell it for, but don't actually notice what they DO sell for ultimately. On what planet does shovelware N64 games cost $10-15? The prices sucked and as a video game collector of over 2300 games, I know what classic games go for because I buy and sometimes sell them often enough to know. Sorry end of rant (it just irks me that these types of booths at events/carnivals do this and rip off so many people). The buy it now price does NOT indicate what a game is worth, that's just what some sleazebag is trying to get someone to buy it for so he makes more cash. There's my ebay tip for everyone.
I leave you with these pics from PAX. As I said last time I'm sure I forgot some things, but if it comes to mind I will an I will post many many pics after the 3rd and final day of PAX. ENjoy and comment if you feel so inclined.