So just to remind people I do play games…

I’ve relatively recently played:
Fable 2
Atlantica Online
Fallout 3
Left4Dead demo
Mirror’s Edge
Nightfall
And recently revisited:
Space Empires V
Call of Duty 4

Short reviews:
Fable 2
Fun, especially the first play through, and a fair bit of content. I loved the final choice, mainly because there were more than 2, but hanging around after the main storyline is done fairly boring. I did finish it twice, and wound up seeing several of the different world styles that came from it. I enjoyed that those changes were based on my actions. Sadly I wasn’t so hooked on the content to continue playing it just to experience more, so your mileage may vary depending on how much you enjoy combat and how quickly you finish games.

Atlantica Online
If you can stand grindy games and Korean aesthetics you may find this an enjoyable change of pace from standard MMOs. The tactical combat is relatively fun, and it’s rather liberating to never have to worry about aggroing mobs. The story isn’t particularly inspired, and the translations are… not too polished. Overall, I think it would take a lot more polish on it to keep my attention, but it does deliver something different and approachable in case you need a side MMO.

Fallout 3
Haven’t finished it… in fact I haven’t gotten very far at all. This may sound silly, but I find it kind of annoying that all my faces seem to come out rather babyish. The gunplay mechanics are really good, and the choices you can make are superb. I like that although Megaton is so close it’s almost guaranteed to be your first stop, you really do get thrown out into the wilderness without any direction to begin with. Moira was fun the first time you meet her, after that she can be kind of creepy though… I didn’t appreciate the armor designs as much, but then as you can probably tell, I’m overly fixated on my character’s style.

Left4Dead Demo
Not quite liquid crack, since I don’t feel the burning need to play it, but seriously fun as all shit. The AI director works perfectly, and so far I’ve just PUGed it and not met hardly any assholes. The only times anyone has really been overbearing was when they were ready for a much higher difficulty than the group. I know I can beat it on normal, but it’s still fun on expert even when I’m dieing every five minutes. Don’t play it solo though. The bots are designed very specifically, they are made to take care of themselves perfectly. Problem is, that ruins half the fun of having those ‘oh shit’ moments, and you never get the satisfaction of shooting that hunter off someone, or the quick thank you for being johnny on the spot against that smoker.

Mirror’s Edge
I haven’t had it very long, but it has the same liquid crack quality that Force Unleashed had. It’s just so much freaking fun to play. If I have any complaint, it would be simply that they need more maps. Something that might be fun would be to make a “Tony Hawk” style game out of it’s gameplay, where you could free roam some rooftops and get points for doing the really cool stuff. The story was not the most surprising in the world, but the city was well characterized. Still I have to wonder about police officers that give you one warning, and then turn a helicopter’s machine gun on you.

Nightfall
It’s IF, you’ll need glulx or something analogous to play it. It’s a very well designed game experience overall, and Eric Eve deserves a great deal of credit for creating such an interesting scenario. While it’s significantly less rare in IF, it’s rare in the gaming world to see a good human story. I find it kind of inspirational on that front. I won’t spoil anything for you, but he did use some interesting tricks to allow players to feel as though they can free roam in a world that is actually pretty directed.

I’m not going to review the last two, since they aren’t new experiences to me.

Right now I’m downloading SWG to play the 14 day trial. Even if it isn’t the pre-cu experience, I still feel like I should get in-game at some point and see what there is to see these days.

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