Flawed Beauty

When I first started playing Arx Fatalis, I was hoping for an RPG along the lines of Morrowind. I was looking for a huge non-linear campaign world that would keep me entertained for weeks at a time, maybe months. I also wanted sheer beauty, incredible sound and an engaging plot. I guess my sights were set a bit too high. Arx Fatalis is a good game, but it is very short-lived and the many flaws with both the game interface and the mission outlines were constantly competing with my ability to enjoy the game. I ended up playing the game … Continue reading Flawed Beauty

It’s a Kind of Magic

I’ll make this clear up front: I’m not a great advocate of ‘collectible card games.’ I’ve played Magic: The Gathering and some of the other ones. But the sheer volume of knowledge required to even handle the basics seemed like too much squeezing for the juice. All the accounting required to keep everything straight killed the fun of it for me, and there would always be questions that arose during play, such as cards with seemingly opposable powers and situations that arose that required the intervention of a referee to determine what the correct course of action was. But now … Continue reading It’s a Kind of Magic

Follow the Call

All I can say is – WOW! If all of the next generation of Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Games, popularly called MMORPGs, are as good as this then we are indeed in for a real treat. Asheron’s Call 2: Fallen Kings (herein after called AC2) takes place in a land called Dereth which is comprised of three Islands. Osteth is ancestral home of the Humans. Omishan is the ancestral home of the magic using Tumeroks. Linvak Massif is the ancestral home of the lumbering Lugians. You start your life, after choosing race, sex and how your character will look; … Continue reading Follow the Call

Chemicus: Above the Learning Curve

It’s no big secret that I like puzzle games. I love to spend my computer game time solving riddles, fixing machinery, and finding solutions. And if I can learn a thing or two while I’m at it, so much the better. Chemicus was right up my alley. Chemicus is a puzzle game, but you get to (some would probably say "have to") learn so much about chemistry and related fields that I was seriously tempted to declare this a cleverly disguised educational game instead of a puzzle game. The introductory movie and background in the manual are certainly melodramatic enough. … Continue reading Chemicus: Above the Learning Curve

Get Shaken and Stirred with Nightfire

Whether attending an elite cocktail party for a billionaire madman or storming the beaches of his private fortified island, today’s elite superspy needs to be deadly and well-dressed. 007 Nightfire does an excellent job of capturing the flavor of the James Bond world, and providing a lot of action to boot. Basically, the game is a shooter, with some extra elements added in to give the game a bit of flavor. Each mission has certain Bond-like things you can do that will give you extra points and trigger the way-cool theme song. You don’t have to perform the Bond-moves to … Continue reading Get Shaken and Stirred with Nightfire

Freelancer Boldly Goes

For fans of the spaceflight genre, freelancer is probably the most anticipated game of the year. The title follows in the tradition of both the Wing Commander and Privateer series, and is more closely related to Privateer. This is a good thing, since Privateer II remains one of my all-time favorite games. What was so good about Privateer II, and what shows promise in the beta of Freelancer, is the completely non-linear nature of the gameplay. You can play a good guy, taking missions that help the police or the military. Or you can become a pirate and lie in … Continue reading Freelancer Boldly Goes

Impossible Fun

It’s not easy to break the mold, especially in the real-time strategy and shooter genre. You can improve the graphics and sound, but at the core we have not seen anything too new for a number of years. Impossible Creatures does bring new and exciting elements to the table, much to the joy of tired tank-rushing RTS gamers. The two interesting elements are that you can combine real-world creatures in a primitive lab to create just the right behemoths of destruction, and the fact that you have to use real-world creatures and their abilities to do it without the aid … Continue reading Impossible Fun

A Decent Quest

It takes some guts to put out a puzzle game in a declining market that is rife with them. But it really takes guts to put one out that is based on a movie that was put out almost twenty years ago…and your name isn’t Lucas, that is. Auryn Quest is just that, and it is in many ways not what I expected. Based on The Neverending Story (it’s even hailed as Part I), this game takes you to various places in Fantasia to retrieve the Auryn and help the child-like Empress fight back the nothing…again. Must be like a … Continue reading A Decent Quest

Real Time D-Day

A real time simulation of the Allied invasion of France in 1944 sounds VERY interesting. Too bad Matrix Games and Lamb Software did not end up with a product fitting of the intended scope, possibly due to the scope itself being too large. Problems start right at installation. No manual came with the game so there is no immediate help in getting started. I installed the game and no icon came up on the desktop. No problem, just open and close the CD door to get the CD to run. Hmmm, seems like the only option is to install the … Continue reading Real Time D-Day

The Sims Online is Addiction Squared

Adding online playability to the immensely popular Sims series is like throwing gasoline onto a bonfire. For fans of the game, it is an excuse to permanently enter the ranks of the addicted. Maxis has created an inviting and friendly online world, more so that I have ever experienced before. The world’s rules are completely stacked to foster cooperation between players. The end result is that it is unlikely that you will have a bad experience when you start playing. When you first begin your Sims experience, you will have to first create the person, your avatar if you will, … Continue reading The Sims Online is Addiction Squared