Friday, 4 March 2011

I must be getting old... but is that so bad?!?!

It’s funny how as you get older, so do the games you play. When I was a kid and in my teens, perhaps even my early twenties, I was always eager to get the latest games available. Then that tendency stopped – partly due to lack of funds to pay the new release prices, and partly from not having the hardware capable to running the very latest games – and now I’m in my thirties, it’s almost gone full circle. Do I bother with the latest FIFA or Pro Evolution Soccer games (my PC is certainly up to the job)? Well, no… I spend a lot of time playing Kick Off 2 on the STEEM Emulator. I catch up on the great LucasArts adventure games I never managed to own when I was younger. I download retro games and retro remakes.

Sadly, this is a sign that I’m getting old. Perhaps it’s a sign that a lot of modern games just don’t always appeal to me as much (blood spattering around the screen is not something I’m fond of, for one thing). Still, it’s also an indication of just how much enduring appeal games from the 8-bit and 16-bit eras had – and how aesthetics really aren’t the most important thing to gamers! A lot of indie games (most of the new games I get these days are indies) are going back to the concept that gameplay should come first – (though some are producing great looking games too). Still, Kick Off 2 looks absolutely awful (STEEM even emulates the flicker caused by whatever technique was used to push the graphics into the area normally occupied by a black border on the ST), but has any football game ever quite matched the sheer speed and excitement of Dino Dini’s classic?

Not to me… but then again, I’m getting old…



Associated Blogs:

CaptainD's PC Gaming Blog
Jonathon Wisnoski - Game Reviewer and Commentator

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Sniper Elite - Xbox

Sniper Elite, for the Xbox, PC, PS2, and Wii, puts you in control of a sniper in WWII who primarily operates alone behind enemy lines to accomplish his missions. The game is mainly about honing and perfecting your observational skills with a close second going to the mathematical approximation of gravity, distance, and wind, or more succinctly sniping.

The observational part comes about because it is imperative that you notice both other snipers and normal troops before they notice you. Most of the game is made up of moving between cover and constantly scanning both the ground and, primarily, the windows and roof of all the buildings; Of which their are normally a lot, since you are primarily venturing through war-torn cities.


But the most enjoyable aspect of the game is of course the shooting. And in this it is the best sniping game I have ever played. The normal concerns of adjusting for distance and wind are here, which in their own right are very fun; As you end up shooting at all different ranges so much over the course of the game you get very good at it, and of course get enjoyment over your skill at it. One particular example of a very enjoyable sniping achievement in my play-through was when I was actually able to get a head-shot on an opponent so far away that the enemy was not even close to being on the screen while I pulled the trigger. Additionally, their is a lot of strategy involved. For one it is important to not only notice when enemies are on screen but to observe them over time and from different angles, noting all of their locations and movement patterns. The soldiers also act quite realistic and will jump to cover if fired upon and will even try to rescue a injured companion, which is a very devious and effective strategy to use.


Not that these are the only things that you will be doing in the game; Like you would expect you are given a range of mid-ranged weaponry, claymores, and other explosives; All of which you will have to use at some point.


In closing I would say it is a great game that while being primarily a sniping game covers a wide range of military action/stealth gameplay, and really does not do a single thing wrong.


Associated Blogs:

CaptainD's PC Gaming Blog
Jonathon Wisnoski - Game Reviewer and Commentator