I'm just another twenty-something who grew up with gaming as an integral part of my life. I've owned just about every console since the ColecoVision, and gaming replaced TV for me as my standard entertainment close to a decade ago. I'm not a "hardcore gamer" in the sense that all I want to do is "pwn noobs" but i'm definitely a gamer at heart, and love all things gaming.
I own and operate Players Lounge, Australia's first dedicated Xbox 360 console lounge. We're not a Net Cafe or Gaming Cafe, we have custom made leather couches, 26" HD LCDs, and a clean modern shop. We do corporate events, team bonding, birthday parties, and tournaments/comps as well as dedicated game-nights and other events.
So i've been in top-secret discussions with some other lounges about some inter-lounge tournaments. We're hoping to use this to boost console lounges in general as an industry, but also to establish a bigger reputation for serious gaming in Australia (and beyond).. The general idea is that on set nights you can stroll down to your local console lounge and compete against people around the country(/world?)..
I've been trying to do this for a while now, and already have some pretty decent sponsorship backing the idea, just have to coordinate the efforts with another lounge we've been talking to, to create a decent base for the idea, and then from there see if we can get more lounges on board.
Main reason i'm posting this here, is I figure this is a good place to get opinions from the right demographic.. what games would you like to see used? It can be anything with Xbox Live multiplayer abilities.. preferably team based. The obvious starters being Halo 3, Gears of War, etc.. also feel free to throw in any suggestions for how you'd like to see the tournaments work, what gametypes, etc.
Also, just out of curiosity, what console lounges do you know of, or have been to.. and which ones are closest to you?
It's an endless debate.. I don't expect to find any answers.. but it's been confusing me more lately than ever with all these sequels coming out. Why is Call of Duty 2 more fun than Call of Duty 3? The graphics are 11ty billion times better, the size and detail of the maps has been improved hugely, there's extra features like air-strikes, vehicles, etc.. yet when we have our Call of Duty 3 nights at Players Lounge, people last about 2 rounds on COD3 before they're crying out for COD2.. and i'm crying out the loudest! I can't even explain it myself, I just have more fun with COD2.
Thousands said that Halo 2 campaign was nowhere near as good as Halo 1.. that PGR4 is worse than PGR3 (even me in my last blog).. in all these games the graphics are improved, the complexity is increased, and the depth of the game goes to new levels. Before you say that "Graphics aren't the be-all and end-all of a game".. you're right, but Gran Turismo has proven that graphics can make up for crappy handling in a car game.. Halo 3 has proven that more complexity in game-play and adding some more weapons and vehicles can make up for the fact that it's the same flat/shiny graphics.
There's obviously multiple factors that need to be taken into account.. graphics, complexity, size of game area, how linear it is, the story behind the campaigns, the weapons/vehicles/maps in the multiplayer (even the lobby matters!), and so much more.. but it's just interesting how hard it is to predict, and how much money companies will pour into a game in the HOPE that it will be better than the last. MILLIONS spent on making a game graphically superior, massive maps, and amazingly expensive soundtracks complimenting stories by hollywood script writers.
I'm sure there's some complex "Sequel Formula" that involves multiplying the amount of blood splatter with the detail of the leaves on the trees, divided by the polygon-count of the water ripples, then subtract the number of clouds in the sky. Take that number, convert it into Euros, spend it on marketing, and hope the gamers like it. It can't be any more specific than that, or every sequel would be better than the previous version.
What's some other games you thought the sequel sucked? What's some games you think the sequel kicked ass? And more importantly, WHY?
I'm not sure what validity I have to consider myself worthy of writing a blog. Never really been into writing blogs. But, considering I spend 12-14hrs a day, 7 days a week, sitting in front of Xbox 360 consoles and playing the games as they come out, I -have- lately been wanting to share my deranged views on some of these titles. As usual, this is purely my opinion, and of COURSE it's biased towards my own personal tastes in games.. which may or may not match yours.
The first one that comes to mind has to be PGR4, or more affectionately known as Physics Got Raped 4. Considering how high quality PGR3 was, albeit a very simple and arcadey-type racer of a game.. PGR4 left me feeling like i'd been robbed of my money when I bought it. As soon as I hit the first corner my first thought was "Wow.. Ridge Racer got new graphics!".. it's just so BORING. I thought maybe I was tainted by the fact that i've been playing a LOT of Forza 2, so I got a few peons to join in and give their opinions.. the universal cry was "NOOOOOOO.. please sir may I stop.. it hurts my brain!"..
Granted it's not a total waste of time.. the weather system had me reaching for a cloth to wipe these mysterious droplets of water off my screen (impressively realistic!).. the variety of weather conditions was also lots of fun.. but what's the use of supercalafragirealistic weather if the handling of the vehicles was coded on the 100-Monkeys/100-Typewriters principle? Internal view helped raise the game's rating a fair bit, as it looked pretty good.. so they get some credit there I guess, but the external view of the vehicle models looked like an Xbox 1 game with lots of AA.
In conclusion.. bathing my puppy is more fun than playing PGR4, and it has the same realistic water droplets splattering my vision.