Archive for the 'Journal' Category

Journal: Thoughts on E3 Pt. 2

The last time I wrote, I talked about EA’s E3 line-up and how excited I was to see what they were offering.  This time, I’m excited to jump into the world of Nintendo.  They brought it big this year at E3, and though I’d like to see a release year for the 3DS, there was just too much to love.

Golden Sun Dark Dawn.  I cannot be more excited about this title.  The first Golden Sun is not only the first RPG I’ve ever played, but also one of my favorite games of all time.  I play the series annually at the very least, and the gameplay formula hasn’t aged a day since launch.  All I can hope for in Dark Dawn is that it will have the puzzle-solving I’ve grown so used to and have a sprawling narrative with unique towns and sub-plots.  If Camelot delivers on my promises, it will likely steal my heart just as the first two have.

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Journal: Thoughts on E3 Pt. 1

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There are so many things that I want to touch on in this journal, but in keeping with being reader-friendly and digestible, I’ll split my thoughts up over a few entries.  Today will feature my thoughts on EA.

EA made a huge killing this year at their press conference.  From name dropping their top five partners (Respawn, Dice, Crytek, Insomniac, and Epic) to seizing complete control on the FPS genre, there wasn’t much more they needed to wow me with. Let’s start with the pulpiest of games: Bulletstorm.

Bulletstorm is still looking as entertaining as ever.  The environments are beautifully lush with plant life and the man-made structures are unlike anything I’ve seen in a video game.  There is something Baroque about it’s architecture, but also foreign and alien.  It’s gorgeous, the gameplay is striking, and the comments from other members of the party are hilarious.  Bulletstorm has a solid release date of February 22, 2011.

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Journal: Kinect Four

Though I was unable to write last week, I found a little spare time to play some games.  I jumped into a few games of Battlefield Bad Company 2.  I absolutely love the team mentality that is required for that game.  It’s the reason that Call of Duty has become more and more obsolete for me.  That lone-wolf style of game gets old really quick, but playing with your friends (not to mention spawning on them so you’re never out of the loop) seems to have a lot more longevity.  As long as EA and Dice continue to support it, I’ll continue playing.

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Journal: E3 is Nigh

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Sadly, I haven’t played many games this week.  I’m still working my way through Assassin’s Creed 2, and I still feel the same way I felt last week about it.  The free-running mechanic is pretty fun, but ultimately still a little broken.  My most frustrating moments come with the assassin’s tombs.  Though gorgeous and well-crafted, the camera angles kept the free-running from being enjoyable.  Also, because the mechanic isn’t perfect, rushing me to complete them only made the issues stand out that much more for me.  I only have one more of them to finish though before I hit the rest of the end game.

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Update on this blog

Hey there guys!

It’s been a very long time since I’ve posted here, and I’d like to start things up again.  In any case, I’ll give you a short run-down about why I abruptly stopped posting and what’s happened since then, and finish strong by letting you know my goals and purposes for this blog.

To put it simply, I stopped writing here because I got a volunteer writing position at Kombo.com in February 2009.  Shortly after getting the position, I was flown out to Los Angeles for a developer interview and hands-on preview of Wrestlemania.  Needless to say, I was in a pretty good place.  I had a blast, and continued to write news for the site after that.

Around June, while studying abroad in Germany, I had some personal issues come up that forced me into a position in which I stopped writing for them.  This wasn’t a problem with the site, there were personal matters in my personal life that took precedence over things.  After I regained some composure and got back on my feet, I returned to write for them a few months later only to quit yet again, but this time for academic reasons (I was back in the US with a much more stringent and difficult school schedule).

After finishing my German Major that semester (December 2009), I started a Journalism majorwith the hopes of fulfilling my dream of being a video game journalist.  That’s where I am right now.  This semester is starting to wind down, and I’ll start having more time to write frequently –at the very least, regularly– and this blog is a promise to myself that I won’t lost sight of what I want to do for a living.

So, what are you going to gain from reading this blog, you ask?  What are my purposes for this blog?  This blog will be completely dedicated to the gaming world.  Although I don’t discriminate between consoles, it will be focused more on the hardcore gamer.  In this regard, most of the writing you’ll find on this blog will be in relation to Xbox 360 and PS3.  This isn’t to say that the Wii has no place, it just means that because there aren’t as many “core” games for the system, it won’t get as much coverage.

In addition to news coverage from time to time, I will also try to post some columns about games and the industry as a whole.  I see games as the ultimate collaborative art form, and the columns I write will keep that as their focus and show how certain games push the medium forward.

My purposes for this blog are simple.  It will give me the the practice I need to write consistently and create my own voice.  It will also help build a small portfollio as I work through my Journalism major.  And last but not least, it will also help me keep you (and me) up to date on the industry and the direction it’s heading.

So, to say the least, I’ll be working out some ideas of what I’ll be doing for this blog as well as when I’ll update it, so keep checking back for more updates.  Until then, enjoy your gaming and follow me on Twitter.

-Bobby Crossen

Journal: Snowy Wastelands and Baby Rhino Power

Well, as predicted, I was unable to throw together some posts during the week, so I’ll recap a bit of the important stories –capping my bandwidth didn’t help matters.  After which I’ll explain what is in store for me this coming week, and what I’ll be doing next Sunday and the week which follows it.

To start off, the Operation Anchorage DLC was released for Xbox 360 and was recieved with various opinions.  The four to five hour long sidequest addition dumps your character into a virtual reality situation where the only things that transfer through are your stats.  When you kill enemies, they fade away in a mix of The Matrix and Tron styled fashion disallowing you from picking up the weapons they drop.  There are plenty of reviews out there –as well as some video footage— if you’re interested in more indepth coverage.  I on the other hand am going to ask the number one question:  Have you ran out of stuff to do in Fallout 3 to warrant the download of a  $10 expansion?

In more hilarious backlash news, Sony both relayed the message that, yet again, the PSP2 is not in production, as well as dissing IGN for their rumor starting skills.  It would seem that a Sony representative was having a bad day and decided to end the endless unsubstantiated PSP2 rumors with the following quote:

Clearly, being a quiet time of year, many, what we thought to be credible websites, are making up stories about PSP2, and how it allows you to teleport across the globe, travel through time, and will be powered by the horns of baby rhinoceroses.

Hopefully, you can sense a mild tone of sarcasm, which should hopefully indicate how ‘on the money’ IGN are. Needless to say, we don’t comment on rumour or speculation, but this is nonsense.

Clearly Sony is tired of the PSP2 rumors running around the video game world in a marathon where the only winners are photoshops and speculation.  Hats off to Sony for standing up and telling it how it is while reminding us that baby rhino horns won’t power a non-existent handheld platform.

In news that is less gaming related, and more gaming news site related, Joystiq has done not only given itself a nose job, but also went under the knife to combine their offspring into one ultimate being.  One can now access all of their site from Joystiq.com by using a prefix to the address such as “xbox.“, “playstation.” or “nintendo.”  The idea behind this was to remove the “Fanboy” monocre and get those other sites to sound more reputable when trying to ask for interviews and the like.  So, what are you waiting for, I’m not posting anything, and their professionals!  Check out their site and leave them pretty little comments for Ben Gilbert, one of the newest hires, to moderate.  He’ll love you for it.

As for me, I’m still pacing myself through my final week of the semester.  I’ve downed one test with more ease than expected and am preparing for the rest to ambush me later this week.  On the video game front, I’ve been working through Chrono Trigger, and I’m still getting frustrated beyond all means.  My frustrations, sweat, love and tears will all be put into words when I finally complete the game, but that won’t be for a while.

If you’ve been following these journal updates, you’ll know that I’ll be taking a long flight back to the United States next Sunday, and will finally be able to dip my toe into the pool of games that I’ve been dying to swim through — please don’t splash.  I’m getting really excited for next week, and I’ll be attempting to write pieces about the games I do get my hands on, albiet without my computer.  To reitterate from last week, I’ll be sending in my laptop for some much needed hardware assistance (read:  Dell is fixing my keyboard).

Next:  More studying with game breaks and the occasional stop for some relaxing movie or TV entertainment viewing.

Journal: The Chrono Trigger Push


In my last journal entry, I made some remarks about how frustrating Chrono Trigger can be due to its dated mechanics, and it still is.  Luckily, I was able to power-house my way through a boss that I had been stuck on for –i-dunno– a couple weeks.  I looked up a a walkthrough online which was absolutely no help, so i just had to experiment.   It was tried and true trial and error gameplay.

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