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SubOrbital's blog

2:13 AM on 02.11.2008

I do not know

What blogs are for, but this one is going to be to share my love of all things Mario Galaxy!

I am in love with this game.

I heard good things about it, but frankly, I just figured I'd be disappointed. I thought Sunshine was a solid game, but very boring and uninspiring. Mario Galaxy is a great return to form. And jumping from one little planet to the next kinda blows me away. I love the freaky gravity system. It just makes me want to play Tetrisphere Wii with a Wiimote!

I have only gotten about twenty stars, but I already just find myself amazed. And it's a good looking game. but most of all, the gameplay gets me. I just love this game.

Another game I thought was nowhere near as bad as people said it was, was Assassin's Creed for PS3. BUT, I do think it ended up being incredibly underwhelming. Only because it had so much potential. It still does, both in story and gameplay. I would give it a solid 7.5 - 8.0. The story and concept is very cool. Biggest problem I found was the repetitive nature of the game and quests. With such a huge world, they should have had a higher level of interactivity with NPCs etc. Just more, I think. It was all very monotonous after a while and the gameplay wasn't capitalized on more. I do hope the sequel goes further. And I look forward to it. This is by no means a badly made game. It just really wishes it was more. And I wish it was more too.

The fighting system needs to be cooler. With a guy who can move around buildings the way he does, I'd expect him to have a more fluid fighting style and be a much better fighter than he is. It's quite jarring to go from fluid movements across rooftops to rather clumsy fights.

I did find it a bit brutal, but with its title, I shouldn't have expected less I normally have a hard time enjoying explicitly violent games, but this wasn't too bad because of the story. I like sci-fi and history, so this piqued my interest. the graphics and atmosphere is just perfect. It's like Kingdom of Heaven in your PS3!

Having said that all, and given this game a good, but not great score, I do think it's about the best game I've played on the PS3, which doesn't bode well for my black box of shite. I love it for playing music, but since it doesn't play all my divx files, and doesn't have many great games on it, I find it the least used of my three machines. I like Motostorm though, for some odd reason, it just rocks my socks. Don't like FPS so Resistance and TimeShift don't blow me away, but I think they're good games. Just not my type. Oddly enough, Super Rub a Duck is a closet fav of mine hahaha. Or whatever it's called. I love it.

Anyway, my rant is over.   read

2:49 PM on 11.11.2007


I hate this stupid writer's strike. I don't even care if it shuts down tv. If I had free time to watch tv, I'd be playing games instead! What I do care about is how much shit this is causing for everyone else. All the 'little' people who aren't part of this stupid union [never liked Unions]. It could be that I come from a different country and I prefer the ECC approach instead of some union boss telling me what I should do for my own good so he can line his own filthy pocket.

But I digress, this shit has been going on way too long and is starting to impact a lot of other people who are starting to lose their entire livelihoods. I think what I hate most about it is that the WGA expects everyone to give a toss about them, but they're really not showing the same regard to other people who are in weaker positions and aren't part of their fight. It just screams selfish. You want a better deal, all well and good, but don't fuck everyone else over at the same time and expect them to smile about it. Maybe it's time to look at the U.K. and their approach, or even Australia.

They all need a good dose of Mario Galaxy or Assasin's creed. No wait, that's me. Come out already!   read

5:25 PM on 11.03.2007

Most underrated game of all time?

Anyone have a winner for this?

My first pick would be Eternal Darkness for GameCube, but I'm not sure if that was underrated or not. I just know it was very cool. I really wish there had of been a sequel made to that, because it had a very cool concept that I felt could have been delved into a bit more.

Beyond Good and Evil comes to mind as well. I really enjoyed that game and I don't know how good it did or if there is going to be a sequel.

Does anyone out there have a really strong contender for most underrated game of all time? From the 8-bit gen to the current one, take your pick. I'm pretty sure there will be many valid suggestions.   read

5:30 PM on 10.27.2007

Age of Empires

Is anyone else here a fan of the Age of Empires series?

I don't know how I ended up being a fan. I was first introduced by my dad of all people, who has a hard time checking his email, but somehow has mastered slaughtering the Turks before they reach their zenith in the imperial age. I, of course, refer to AOEII: The Age of Kings.

I'm afraid my memory of Age 1 is a little rusty now, but I remember thinking back in the dark ages [pre 2000] that Age 2 was a real improvement. And I think it was the Conquerors edition that first introduced farming queues. And thankfully every age after has abandoned that need altogether.

I enjoyed Age of Mythology a lot, because it was original and at the time looked quite pretty. Age 2 looks quite garish now, but it seems to still get played more than Civ 4, which I also love. I suppose everyone has games they play perhaps because their friends or family play it. Age 2 is one of those games that I play against friends and family between Australia and New Zealand.

I enjoyed Age 3 a lot, but nobody else had it, so I tend to still play Age 2 more. Most of the people who have Age 2 don't bother upgrading their computers graphics cards and are happy sticking with a game they know, rather than a new one [that feels quite like the old one but with pretty graphics]. Playing the computer isn't as much fun as playing against a real person.

I'm looking forward to getting into more serious Age 3 playing when more of the Age 2 group move up to it. But considering how many years they've been on that game, i don't expect that any time soon. I suppose the good thing about Age 2 is that it'll run on pretty much any machine out today, but Age 3 isn't so.

I really love this old gem of a game. Another game I loved, was the first Rise of Nations. I thought that was a really solid game. But that, like Age 3, isn't widely played by anyone I know. That was a very solid game. I enjoy these kinds of games. Can anyone recommend similar games to Age 2, even if they're old [sometimes I prefer the older games anyway].

I've heard rumours of a fourth and fifth game, but I would prefer to see Age 1 get a makeover and perhaps have some of Age 2 or 3's gameplay [and a little graphical upgrade] added to it. Mainly because of the historical context. And the lack of ballistics and guns is something I enjoy.

Anyone else a fan of these games or am I an odd one out?   read

6:40 AM on 10.26.2007

Resident Evil 4 - Best RE ever or where it jumped the shark?

Blasphemy to even suggest it to some, I know. It was definitely an incredible game. On the Wii I still found it as good as on the Cube. When it first came out on the Cube, I just couldn't get over the graphics. It remains an incredibly beautiful game and a solid one at that. It was critically well received. I think moreso than any RE before it. However, it did mark a significant post Umbrella era in the series.

So, for you RE fans out there, do you think RE4 was a good entry in the overall franchise, or was it so vastly different to the games before it, both in style and story, that it perhaps heralded the demise of old school Resident Evil? I loved the RE remake on the Cube, I loved RE2 on PSOne, I loved Code Veronica on Dreamcast. I would definitely consider myself an RE fan. I consider RE4 a stellar game, probably the best out of the series gameplay and graphics wise. It just feels a little odd, very different. Agree or disagree?   read

11:11 PM on 10.25.2007

Would cut off a tit to play a FF7 remake?

This was under my name thing on the front page and really, when I saw it, I thought 'someone is psychic', because I would!

I absolutely freaking loved Final Fantasy 7. It made me love the PSOne even more than I already did. I would seriously freak over seeing a remake. Resident Evil was remade on the cube, and it was rather awesome too. I'd love to see FF7 remade on the PS3, fully exploiting all the blu-ray ok-ness.

I wonder though, if it would have the same appeal? It could, but I suppose for such a ig game, it would be a huge undertaking just for nostalgia's sake. But I think if they handle it right, it could seriously unleash itself to a new generation of gamers who like their fancy schmancy graphics and wifi whateverness. I remember seeing that teaser of FF7 remade, and wished it were true. I don't enjoy the spin offs, but I would love to see the original remade, not reimagined. Just remade. We don't need someone doing to FF7 what Tim Burton did to Planet of the Apes and what J.J. Abrams will no doubt do to Star Trek.

The only other game I love as much ias Ocarina of Time, but I don't really feel that needs a remake ... yet. FF7 could, because well, I'm not sure, I just want one. Mainly to bring it to a new generation of gaming and give it the kudos I feel it deserves. For or against?   read

5:03 PM on 10.18.2007

Something controversial and non-Gaming

I'm just curious about something. The net is a rather wonderful beast as it allows people from all over the world to connect up and talk about their favourite shit etc, get into flaming wars. There is a downside to that though and it pertains to racism. I guess this would mainly be for non Americans. See, I'm from New Zealand and I'm a maori, which is the indigenous people of lovely NZ. Most of you probably don't even know what that is. Would I be offended because you don't know the particular sensitivities of my culture? No way. But for some reason I find that people from America, blacks in particular, expect everyone else to know what is and isn't an insult? Not everyone out there is a racist, but I get offended when people expect me to know what's an insult to them when they don't know what's an insult to me. You could call me a coconut and I'd knock your block off, but you could call that to one of you and you would probably wonder why I'm calling you a strange food. You see what I mean? The N word is an obvious one, my grandfather used to be called that as his nickname, which was lovely as you can imagine, so I like to think I know the basics. But when you get jumped on for using innocuous terms, at least to where I come from, in general conversation, I get a bit ticked because I guarantee if the shoe were on the other foot, I doubt anyone would care if they said something I found offensive. I guess I'm just saying I wish people would stop thinking everyone was a racist automatically and maybe return some of that sensitivity they use for themselves with people from other parts of the world. This is just ranting, I suppose. Just curious if anyone else has come across this sort of thing.   read

6:10 PM on 10.12.2007

Retro Daze

In my last three posts I blabbed on about the different machines. While all three have their advantages, some more pronounced than others, all three have their disadvantages. Wii - craphics and catalogue, 360 - Game diversity, PS3 - Games, what games? I think the 360 would win overall though. While the Wii is a different experience, to be applauded, the drawbacks are just so numerous. Hard drive, VC ripoff prices, graphics, graphics, graphics. The PS3 just doesn't have enough games of note to really give it a mention, but I'd put it in the middle. 360 best, PS3 meh, Wii worst. Which is odd, because I tend to play the Wii more than the 360, which I in turn play way more than the PS3 [read: hardly ever]. But even acknowledging how much fun I ahve with the Wii, it's easier to see its long term limitations. I have to say, PS3 has the most potential longevity, unless Nintendo pulls something out of its hat.

If we go back a couple generations to the N64, it was the beginning of the end for Nintendo's dominance. They really dropped the ball back then by refusing to switch to CD format, while sticking to their beloved cartridges. I still loved the N64, because of games like Goldeneye, Ocarina of Time [my favourite game ever], Tetrisphere [bring that to the VC please, Ninty!], to name but a few. But it just never caught on like that other machine ...

PSOne. Of course, it wasn't called that back in the day. It was just the good old ugly as shit Playstation. God, that was a fucking cool machine. I still remember my first one. I almost had an orgasm unwrapping that beautiful machine. Now that was really an exciting time. It was the first real hint that gaming was entertain a new mainstream era. Before then, it just wasn't as widespread during the SNES/Genesis days. At least not in New Zealand. Don't get me wrong, gaming was still popular, but it just had a different feel when the PSOne entered the fray. Even the demo disc, and that awesome little sound the PSOne made when you turned it on, still makes me smile. That was a good machine. Tekken 2 and 3 were awesome. Soulblade was freaking awesome. FINAL FANTASY VII. I still love this game. V-Rally 2 is a game I remember liking as well. Crash Bandicoot 1, 2, and 3.

I don't have a favourite between the two machines, as I loved them both for different reasons. The N64 was the party machine. Smash Bros, Goldeneye, were all popular. I didn't get into the Saturn at all. It's one of the few machines I never owned. I do have to say that I never cottoned onto the PS2 like I did the PSOne. From that generation of machines, which games did you like most? I won't ask which machine, because I know Sony fanboys will far outweigh any Nintendo fans. And as for you Saturn fans, well, I hardly played it so I wouldn't know how yuo'd feel about it. I did love the other two machines. Ocarina of Time, Final Fantasy VII, GoldenEye, Mario 64, Tekken 2. Top five for me, I think.   read

6:40 AM on 10.11.2007

Wii - Are you happy with yours?

The last of my blog posts on the three machines. Perhaps the most controversial of the three machines. The Nintendo Wii. First of all, the name revelation made me think it was a piss poor joke. Pun intended. I mean, seriously, what the hell? But in the end, it worked, with only a tiny voice in your head wanting to make urine jokes every time you hear that name.

Second of all, the revelation that the Wii would in fact have very shit graphics. No high definition and a graphics engine that barely rivals the original Xbox. This will ultimate prove, in my opinion, to be the bane of the Wii's existence. The difference between the Wii and the PS3 is that one has potential longevity, while the other just has potential.

The Wii is a cheap little machine, lacking a hard drive, a dvd player, good graphics, and other staples that the other consoles have. These are all severe cons. By the sounds of it, it may seem I really don't like the Wii. The truth is, it's my most played console. I love it. But even I can see the limitations of this little beauty.

However, on the plus side, the Wii has absolutely opened the floodgates and taken gaming to a new level. The 360 and PS3 are fighting their own little place for what I feel will be leftovers from Nintendo. None of this would be possible without the Wii's unique control system. I never thought it was possible to do what they've done with their little wiimote. I still can't believe it. Now I can't play Tennis on the PS3 or 360 without laughing at how mundane an experience it is. Wii Sports just blew me away more than any game on 360 and PS3. Why? Because when I moved my hand in a swinging motion, the Mii on the screen did too!

The looks on peoples faces when I invited them to play. They'd ask 'what button do I press?' when we played tennis. When I told them they didn't have to, they couldn't believe it. Seeing them move their hands and going wow when they realized they really were playing the game, it was just plain cool. For this reason alone, despite crap graphics, crap media support, a token memory store, I absolutely love this machine. Of all three machines, each of which have their great games, the Wii is still the most fun bar none. The other two might be hardcore, but for a lot of games I just feel 'meh, been there, done that'. With the wii, it has so much potential to even just be fun. Wii Sports is still my favourite game on the system. The Virtual Console, while a rip off, is a load of fun. But the sheer interactivity, motion sensor technology, it all just sells it for me. A year afte rit came out, I'm still playing Tennis and Bowling on Wii Sports. I use the internet channel to watch Youtube on tv. I plug my SD Card in to let a slideshow play when family come over to visit. It's a friendly little machine. It's a fun little machine.

One of my biggest gripes is that there simply aren't enough stellar games on it. The 360 wins that race, with Wii second, and PS3 quite a distant last. Yet still, I love it. It's the little machine that could, and it returned Nintendo to prominence. If I had it my way, I'd lvoe all the machines to do great because that way we all get the games we want. However, if I had to pick a favourite? For me, it's the Wii. It's different. It doesn't have the greatest graphics, but it sure has the greatest little wiimote around. And for me, that means a lot more. I am very happy with mine. Mario Galaxy, here I come!   read

6:35 PM on 10.09.2007

Xbox 360 - Are you happy with yours?

To continue the theme of the last post I made, I'll move onto the 360 and ask owners out there if they are happy with their machines. Now, to give my own view on this subject, I have to say that in general, I am more than happy with mine. I feel it will be the last of the traditional type gaming console. I think the advent of the Wii will influence the next generation greatly, but I digress, this post isn't about that.

If I did have a bias, it would be against Sony. I don't generally like the PS3, but I have a very good feeling I will in the future when it really hits its stride. The 360 I feel has hit its stride, but I am curious how much more potential it has as a machine. I like the 360. I do think the machine tends to lean too much towards FPS and Sports/Driving games. Having said that, it is home to some truly great games. Gears of War, BioShock, to name but a couple. This is probably one advantage it has over the PS3 and the Wii. Even though it has great games, I'm not sure I've found a game that makes the 360 stellar to me. As in, to my personal liking. I loved Call of Duty 2. I would love to see more RPG games on it in the vein of Knights of the Old Republic. I'm not a great fan of FPS, and I suppose that's why I don't find myself in awe over the top tier games on the machine.

All of the above is personal opinion, but that's what I'm looking for. Personal opinion. This doesn't detract from the fact the machine is a lot of fun. The red rings of death of course suck, but besides that, I've found it to be a good machine. I use it more for media than for games to be honest. I have it rigged up to my Media Center PC to stream video and music from my computer to the tv. The Media Center Extender is pretty awesome.

I also use it to play my back catalogue of Xbox 1 games. I love this part of the 360 because it really ups the graphical wow of some old games when fed into an HDTV. This is one of the coolest aspects for me. I get a bigger kick out of this then playing new games. The 360 has some stellar graphics for its newer games though, like GOW obviously.

I think I've rambled on quite a bit about this machine. In short, I'm quite happy with it. I'd give it an 8/10. The PS3 would get a 5.5/10, but I'd raise it in the future when we really see it hitting its potential. The 360 has a great library that is in need of a bit more diversity, but it is a solid machine that has some great graphics. So the question begs, are you happy with your 360?   read

12:39 AM on 10.08.2007

PS3 - Are you happy with yours?

This is for those of you who own a PS3. How do you feel about your purchase? Do you feel satisfied with it? The PS3 has taken a lot of crap since its release and I agree in one area, and that is the lack of worthwhile titles. System sellers, as we like to call them. I know a lot of people mod their machines to become little Linux behemoths, and some use it to watch Blu-Ray. What do you do most with yours and after having it for a while, what do you thikn are the systems pros and cons? And at the end of the day, are you happy with it or do you find it lacking? I'd love to hear what you think.   read

5:04 PM on 10.03.2007

HD-DVD vs. Blu-Ray

Hey everyone,

This is related to gaming in that it uses the consoles. I'm curious to know what people out there think of the HD-DVD vs. Blu-Ray debate. I tend to lean towards HD-DVD because of the interactivity features and the fact that the format isn't still a work in progress like Blu-Ray. I think the difference in picture quality is negligible. What I would like to know is what you guys think of your console's ability to play either format? Is the 360 a good HD-DVD player? Is the PS3 a good Blu-Ray player? I have heard that some Blu-Rays can give the PS3 some grief.

I'm also curious to know for people who might have both the consoles how the PS3 and 360 compare when upscaling standard DVDs. Does anyone have experience like this on an HDTV? I'd love to hear some feedback on any of these subjects. Thanks guys.   read

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