Sunday, September 30, 2007

Halo 2: Kieron is the juggernaut

Both Kieron and John were free this afternoon, so we arranged to play online. Whereas normally we'd have formed a party and gone onto matchmaking, the release of Halo 3 has meant that the number of players has dropped off quite a lot - and John said that he'd had to wait five minutes for a rumble pit game. Team skirmishes weren't going to happen.

So we played custom games between ourselves all afternoon; something we've never really done before. We played three-way capture the flag with rockets. We played oddball with swords. We played 2-on-1 juggernaut, which was great - although Kieron did spend a couple of minutes as the juggernaut just hiding, which lead John and I to wonder if he realised that the point of the game was to kill the others ...

Before John turned up, Kieron and I had a couple of games of Halo 3 as well. They've changed the reloading controls, and how you pick up guns. I kept on missing out on stuff because of this. Well, that's my excuse.

Halo 2: landing on the second halo

Lots of progress today - I destroyed the scarab, and the covenant fleet flew, warping away from Earth (causing much destruction as it went). I was on a ship that got carried along with them.

And then the game switched to follow the fortunes of the army commander who the covenant held responsible for the destruction of the first halo. At the start of the game you see him being shamed and humiliated, but he was then offered a way out of eternal damnation - become the suicidal arbiter and be sent to kill heretics. And then you get given control of him.

It plays pretty much the same as when playing the Master Chief, though your allies are more numerous to start with and are normal covenant forces. And you have the energy sword (which, unlike in multiplayer, has a limited number of uses). And you have an invisibility cloak. This last piece really changes the game - you can be much more exploratory, making sure you know how a room's structured before revealing yourself. The cloak only lasts for a short time, and disappears if you shoot or attack, but it does mean you can be much more strategic.

After fighting my way through the facility - I'm not entirely sure what it was meant to be - flying around the top in a banshee and destroying many guns, and coming across the flood (oh, great), the leader of the heretics locked himself in a room. I was instructed to go and cut the cables - and the facility started to fall. To start with, there was much shaking and I felt that I could jump higher than normal ... but then it all seemed to settle down and it was if the facility wasn't moving at all. Very odd. I went and found the leader, chased him outside, and jumped on a banshee to follow him. He flew off somewhere else, and I started to follow him, but then there was a checkpoint so I went there instead - and somehow I'd caught up with him. He then created two holographic clones of himself and they started to fire at me - but I kept an eye on the real him, grabbed a sword and killed him.

Back to Master Chief, and the covenant ship appears next to another halo. So far I've landed on it, had some great firefights, and have just crawled through a cave to find a very leafy valley filled with snipers. Luckily, there was one sniper in the cave itself, and I've stolen his beam rifle. This should be fun.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Halo 2: big beetle thing

Last night, on the day before Halo 3 was released, I remembered that I've never completed Halo 2's singleplayer mode. In fact, as it turns out, I've hardly started it. Having to start afresh on my Xbox 360, it was pretty engaging and I played for an hour and a half, passing where I'd previously reached - landing on Earth, and working my way around the coast to a bridge. I think I'd reached the bridge before, but had never crossed it in the tank, nor chased the scarab down. I keep on finding myself running out of ammunition, which is a pain, but just before I saved and quit I found a massive bunch of guns. I'm expecting a bit of a rampage now ...

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney: Justice for All: an easy opening

Well, it would have been if I weren't being thick. I managed to completely overlook the second page of the court record.

Well into the second case now, and Mia's back. Hello.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Project Gotham Racing 3: powersliding by St Stephen's Tower

It's fast cars only, which is a disappointment after the superb levelling structure of PGR2. It also starts quite a lot harder, with the cars being a bit twitchy and prone to spin.

But I've got the hang of it now, and am working my way through the levels, getting silver medals. Despite the fact that it looks amazing, and it's got London in it, it's all a bit muted. Maybe I've been spoilt by Burnout Revenge, and Forza 2, and Outrun 2. But I played PGR2 the other night, and that's still great fun, even though I had to start again what with there being no way to transfer saves from my old Xbox.

I've only raced around Westminster so far; I hope there are St James's Park stages as well. They were my favourite from Metropolis Street Racer.

Monday, September 17, 2007