Here are the videogaming thoughts of some guy who probably should be working right now. I blog sometimes and comment often. I'd like a job involving videogames somehow but I'm not quite there yet, so in the meantime I just try to enjoy life and play a lot of games.
Just thought I'd give everyone a heads up from mah travelin' adventures and offer a friendly note that I'm not dead yet. Yay!
I've been busy with all this travelling business and rocking it out in Hong Kong, not to mention planning the next stage of my adventures, but I have also managed to get a little bit of videogame-related stuff incorporated as well.
Just over a month ago while here in Hong Kong I was lucky enough to be around for the Asia Game Expo for 2009, funnily enough while the show was a moderate size the admission was dirt cheap. So I went along to see what all the fuss was about.
Gran Turismo and Gundam, yup I'm in Hong Kong all right.
I went on a weekday so the crowds weren't troublesome and straight away I am greeted by a Gundam Vs Gundam Next Plus tournament, displayed on a big screen with loud-as-fuck presenters yelling in cantonese the entire time. If I'd ever played the game before I might have stepped up and taken a shot at the title, but then again being publicly shamed in an unfamiliar country probably isn't the best way to start my holiday, right?
So after I composed myself I moved on from the temptation of public embarrassment and headed straight to the Final Fantasy XIII stand.
One of the many benefits of being in Hong Kong is that eastern blockbuster games such as FFXIII are released here around the same time as their Japanese versions. With this in mind I was a little confused as to why there were no demo stations for FFXIII when it's already on store shelves. We could see a lot of trailers and a lot of promotional material (no swag though, bollocks) but no demo stations.
Well if any of the fans at the show were disappointed, they quickly forgot about it once the cosplayers showed up.
Silly Tidus, you're not a girl, you're a guy!
So I looked around, took a few photos and promptly made my way to a lovely area marked with a delightful R18+ symbol. I was quite intruigued about this mysterious booth, not because of the nightclub-esque rope queue or the bouncer checking ID cards, what had me the most interested was the fact that since I come from Australia an R18+ rating on a videogame is the stuff of fairy tales, something we Aussie gamers tell our children about what sort of game ratings we might get in the future while we drive around in our flying cars while eating meals in pill form.
The R18+ area- wow! Look at that guy! He really doesn't like having his photo taken huh?
Of course all of the jokes stopped once I made my way inside and spotted a whole bunch of playable demos including God of War 3, Heavy Rain and Aliens Vs Predator. It was fap-time people.
Heavy Rain, fuck yeah.
So first I checked out Heavy Rain, seeing other people playing the game looked great. Seeing the action scenes play out really had me excited for this game, sadly when I had my turn I picked up the game at a really slow and quiet point in the game. I'm sure it is great for suspense and tension when you play the game at home, but when you're at a games expo with 5 minutes of play time the only suspense you're feeling is from the guy behind you waiting for his turn. Also, maybe it was just how the demo booth was set up, but when I played Heavy Rain you seem to move with a jarring 'tank controls' style control scheme where you hold R1 to walk forward and move the stick to turn. Maybe this will make sense in the final product but it just seemed off to me and prevented me from really getting into the game during my short time there. Of course that could also be due to the fact that I was distracted by the game being played next to me.
Aliens Vs Mother-fucking-Predator
I'll admit, I do not play FPS's on the PS3 very often, I'm so used to FPS's on the 360 that when I do play on the PS3 the controls feel a little offfor a few minutes. Sadly a few minutes was all the time I had with AvP. But I have to say, it looks pretty awesome. Control-wise it felt a little unpolished, but I'm willing to put that to the fact that is was an unfinished demo and I was on a PS3 controller. All that aside, the game's atmosphere looks great, the demo was from the Marine campaign where you are inspecting a human colony that has turned to shit and is completely overrun by xenomorphs, is there no better way to begin a game? I think not.
Also this game is adult, very adult. As well as all the blood and gore (which had the PAL version banned and then unbanned in Australia, nice work boys) there is a fair but of swearing in here as well, in the demo alone I heard about 3 or four F-bombs getting dropped and I think somebody might have said cunt too. I love it when game developers don't hold back.
Witness the power of the PS3 as Kratos hangs from an awning! The POWER!!!
And then there was God of War 3. E3 Demo, more GoW but prettier. Enough said. Okay maybe I didn't get to have a shot at the game, so what. Moving on.
I left the R18+ area feeling a lot more manly and decided that after seeing all these PS3 games I should go check out what the Xbox360 has to offer.
The PSN stand, no swag
Okay this is the PSN stand, fair enough. PSN's cool and all. Now onward to the Xbox360 stand!
PSP games. Yay
Uhhh hang on...
More Sony, okay....
Xbox360 stand? Hello?
I'm starting to see a pattern here.
What the shit? No Microsoft representation here whatsoever. Something tells me that this was a Sony sponsored show (no shit, right?) so my hopes of seeing what the 360's got up it sleeve up close will have to wait. Oh well, shit happens.
So after wandering around some more, checking out stands for online MMO's that feature no english whatsoever and checking out some more cosplayers I decided to call it a day. It was a small show, but considering I got to play some unreleased games and I am spending the next six months on a traveller's (nonexistent) budget, this may be my best chance to play some new games for quite a while.
I did see this guy's epic cosplay though.
I'm assuming this is a guy, but judging by the she-Cloud in the background I really should be assuming nothing.
And that's about the most gaming related thing I have been doing since leaving my dear Nanny-state home of Australia. I also paid a very brief visit to a Hong Kong arcade (SFIV withdrawls man), but I will provide more substantial details if I return there again for a longer visit.
Apart from that, there's not much else to say. My DS is getting a lot of love, I'm watching my bank account slowly draining and never topping up again, and my girlfriend, my bro DanMazkin and I are getting ready for the next leg in our adventure; South East Asia, then Europe, then the US.
I'll try to make it video-game related if I can, but I'm making no promises, otherwise we'll just see you all in LA for E3 (Dtoid Party FTW), and San Diego for Comic-Con (got mah ticket!).
Either way Dtoid, I hope all is well with you all. I'm spewin' I'm missing out on all the podcasts (and our own too, good old RC, *sniff*) and Cblogs, Forums, comments and shenanigans. Just remember that while I'm rarely commenting and posting nowadays, I'm still watching.