Archive for May 14th, 2012

, | Game reviews

You have to come to Warlock on its own terms rather than holding against it that it looks like Civ V. This isn’t an epic strategy game in the traditional sense of the genre, where you build farms on plains and mines on hills and watch the cities grow accordingly. You will never set your tax rate, manage happiness, choose a government, or finesse diplomacy. Instead, Warlock is armies and spells and that’s pretty much it. It is a throwback to the sleeker fantasy wars of QQP, SSG, and, of course, SSI. If those letters don’t mean anything to you, this is going to be a new kind of strategy game.

After the jump, let’s do the monster mash Continue reading →

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, | Game reviews

I had five or six games going when it happened. As soon as it happened, I had a few options. I could throw my iPhone against the wall, I could take a deep breath and practice the tenets of buddhism taught by zen masters in the far reaches of Tibet, or I could just stop playing Nightfall. The answer was obvious, since iPhones cost several hundred dollars and I’d never actually been to Tibet.

One by one, I went through all my games of Nightfall. Forfeit, forfeit, forfeit, forfeit, forfeit. There. Problem solved.

After the jump, the fall of Nightfall Continue reading →

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, | Movie podcasts

In Dark Shadows, Tim Burton and Johnny Depp have done it again! Then this week’s 3×3 takes a look at the writing on the wall: starting at the 38-minute mark, we talk about the best graffiti in movies.

Next week: Battleship

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, | Features

Trials Evolution track of the week: Rainbow Road. Track designer: LatChoX. Difficulty: Medium.

I’m flying on this track. I’ve totally nailed the opening, where you immediately have to finesse the throttle so you approach that first trough with just enough momentum to be able to nail the first jump, but not so much that you smash into the incline. I’ve learned not to over-think the loop. I clear the track without a fault. Great. I’m flying.

On the leaderboard I’m somewhere past one thousand. What the hell?

I start thinking about parity. I’m riding a Scorpion 450cc. That’s the best bike I’ve unlocked so far, the best bike I can unlock given my license level. Am I supposed to put in more track time in the game before I mess around with the community tracks? No. That can’t be it. But still, I realize I’m running against folks with far better bikes. How am I supposed to compete with them? This doesn’t come up in LBP. In LittleBigPlanet, all sacks are equal. My sackboy is only limited by his human. Not so in Trials Evolution. Here we are also limited by our equipment. Ahem. At first I find this disturbing. Then I find it brilliant. There’s a sort of feedback loop here. A reason to return to the actual game beyond cosmetics. If I get more medals I’ll get a higher license and a better bike, and thus a better time on this community designed track. I start to see a beautiful back and forth.

Rainbow Road, you deserve to be featured on your own merits, but I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that our president’s announcement about marriage equality this week helped your chances. Politics aside, once I get a better bike, I will be back. You can count on it.

Rainbow Road was designed by LatChoX.

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