What a start to 2010

By: Craig Lager

Published: March 12, 2010 Posted in: PC Gaming Nonsense

Twentyten has kicked off with a blast and this year is looking to be an excellent time to be into PC gaming. I’m actually worried; there is just so much to play and I already have a backlog. A long backlog. I don’t really mind; too many games to play is the best problem in the world to have, and I thought I’d share it all with you for an easy going Friday post – then we can have a nice old natter about what everyone else is up to in the comments.

WhatAreYouPlaying - So. Many. Dead. Don't worry - most of them were zombies

I managed to get Bioshock 2 out of the way early, which was lovely. The multiplayer though is plain old broken – every time I’ve jump into a server it’s been nothing but lag so it’s stricken from my list. I’ve not long completed S.T.A.L.K.E.R which was more than excellent. And since it has a <£20 price tag - which is, frankly, ridiculous - anyone interested in games enough to stop off here should be playing it. I actually went through it like a bit of a sadist: hard mode and no crosshairs. I wanted to be scared of the zone and have to play it like a STALKER: scouting, sneaking - it worked.

Currently I’m absorbed in three wildly different new releases/soon to be releases. Battlefield: Bad Company 2 is utterly brilliant. It’s controlled chaos and proper Battlefield – as in Battlefield 2 battlefield. I’m tending to play as a Technician which is fantastic; silenced Sub-machine guns for deep, stealthly infiltration; accompanied by rocket launchers and the ability to repair vehicles. Perfect.

Sup Com 2 I keep dropping in and out of. The AI is pretty boring to be honest and it’s only the Two Toms who are willing to do proper multiplayer matches. Great game though – we have a little chat going up about it on Monday, and you should bear in mind that we did this before we did a 1 vs 1 vs 1 game with all 3 of us – I’m much happier with it now.

WhatAreYouPlaying - Tanks! Asplodes!

Lastly I’m playing Just Cause 2, but I’m not allowed to talk about that. I can say I enjoyed the demo a lot though.

I heard a bit ago that something called “Mass Effect 2″ came out and is rather good. I really want to play it but I need to tackle ME1 first. It’s firmly on my ‘to play’ list but is continually getting relegated. It’s the same with Modern Warfare 2 though to a much lesser extent. The fact that it’s still £40 (double the price of STALKER on release) added in with the fact that I hate so many things about it (50 cent, dedicated servers, blah blah)  is keeping it at the bottom.

Torchlight has been sapping a lot of my time. It really is wonderful and very hard to find fault with. You can session it for hours or just pick it up for 15 minutes, and because it’s so light on resources you can happily play it while your PC is busy doing other stuff. I think the joy of it is in how easy going it makes dungeon crawling without making it simple and how well it fights off tedium with distractions and shinies.

Me and Ed ended up playing a fair bit of Titan quest from the THQ pack but it’s died off a bit. He’s a hard as nails mage/healer while I’m flouncing about with dual swords, trying and failing not to die. I can hit hard but always seem to end up tanking, which isn’t what my character’s for. Maybe if Ed STARTED BEING A BETTER HEALER I wouldn’t die so much. It’s fun though and is scratching that co-op itch I get now and again.

Talking of Ed, I know he’s off in Start Trek online. If an MMO has ever appealed to me it’s that – it sounds like it has properly stepped away from the kill x of y formula that I so hate. But, it is still an MMO. They need commitment I just can’t give and I think I’d rather just play a better crafted/written singleplayer RPGs anyway. Like Mass Effect.

WhatAreYouPlaying - This is Razz. He is a psychonaut.

More stuff is sitting waiting from the steam sale too. Beyond Good and Evil is calling to me since it’s always cited as being so bloody lovely and I’ve never played it; then Darwinia and Psychonauts are the same.  Day of Defeat, Overlord I and II, Red Faction, Monkey Island, and Xcom all need playing or continuing with, but again, slip below the other stuff.

And this is all against a tide of releases. Mafia II, Splinter Cell and Ruse (hopefully Ubi will drop this ridiculous DRM), Brink  and everything else I can’t think of at the minute but know I’ve missed. God, what a year it’s going to be.

That’s me anyway. What are you lot up/looking forward to? I fancy a natter so go ahead.

Craig Lager
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