There's a lot of coverage and interest with The Terminator vs. Video Games trudging through the Supreme Courts right now. I'm sure blognation will cover it much better than I but I'll share a story about games and parenting as a gamer and a parent of a 5 year old. While I do not claim to be the world's best parent (my son would disagree with that statement - as I am sure every parent's kid feels their parents are 'the bestest') I do try to answer his questions honestly. When he started asking for a brother or sister, and the inevitable questions began about how do babies get in bellies, I did explain about eggs, and how the mommy needs a daddy to help make the egg a baby, etc. Of course I did it in a non graphic way of trying to explain to a child how things work without really letting the cat out of the bag.
So, at breakfast yesterday when we were having eggs and toast for breakfast, he exclaimed:
"Daddy! Mommy is eating eggs! So now you go kiss her belly and then the egg will crack and a baby will grow! Can I watch?"
Next time I am using diagrams. Erm. Maybe not.
I have been a late adopter for games as of late and just picked up L4D2 as a huge fan of the first title. My 5 year old has his own laptop and plays his own uber MMO (Club Penguin) and after physical play time, or just winding down, we'll sit on the couch and take an hour playing our games together. He caught me playing L4D2 and became completely enthralled in the game. I'll share some fun/interesting observations after the break - just don't call Child Services on me.
A sequel so close to the original - (Left 4 Dead launced last November) seems to have the fans of the title confused. Some, who have spent tons of hours in zombie guts glee are extactic that the new game, with new features and improvements, is coming out so quickly.
Others feel ripped off - and that in typical Valve style they would be playing free upgrades and mission packs for a long time from now (a la TF2).
Read the comments in this blog announcement to see the ruckous.
I can understand the fret from an economics point of view, but the fandom in me from a title I logged 100 hours playing for the box (through the single player, co-op, co-op versus and recently free released survival mode) and loved every minute. A game with set play, limited levels, and replayability isn't going to hold me much longer than that. I am ready for something new.
So it comes as no suprise, that I am pretty excited about the announcement.
In Valve's defence (if it's needed) or additional cheering (which camp are you in this announcement?) they haven't said the pricing structure, future support for L4D1, or anything of that nature. One would suppose that the majority of the fan base of L4D1 will pick up the new title, leaving less games for people who stick with L4D1. You could also make the argument that by next November, a lot of people will be tired of the original title and ready for new anyway.
Will be interesting to see how it all pans out. Whatever Valve has touched lately turns to gold - hopefully that translates into gold zombies, and not upset L4D1 fans.
Lots of little gaming going on. Will touch upon them.
1) LOTRO revisted: While I am trying to organize friends to go through the trial, nothing concrete is set up although a little interest and a couply people hopping on Brandywine. I said this before and I will say it again - the fact that LOTRO doesn't allow you to play their two new classes WITHOUT buying MoM is a terrible design decision and puts me in a bad mood immediately at the character creation screen. I wanted to test drive the Warden for the trial again - it made my list of favorite fantasy classes although I only got to level 10. My beef with this is that the characters start at the exact same spot as the previous character classes so not having them available upon start is just a silly money grab. I am trialling the game to see if I am going to resubscribe - let me choose the character I want to play. The high end zones included in MoM have no impact on the class selection - it will be months before I even get to MoM - so let me play them dammit! To be fair, they do have a 10 day trial for MoM - but on the welcome back weekend I can use my old box (that I paid for). Maybe I do want to resub, and maybe the game is fun enough to buy the expansion (when I get there) - but it will be awhile before I get there, and I want to do it as one of the new classes. We are off to a poor start, me and LOTRO. So I rolled a Champion, and if all goes well I am going to have to drop $40 bucks on an expansion and reroll to a character class I want to play. Shame on you, Turbine.
More random stuff after the break.
*I noticed some Google searches pushing people to this blog post. I DID find a solution (all on my own) and I posted it in my 2k9 forums thread - linked in the article below. GOOD LUCK if you are having the same problems!*
Customers suck, right?
We bitch and moan about EVERYTHING! Go read technical support forums. Whine whine whine. Threats - both against the company, and the people who are trying to help. Customers are impossible to please - so it is understandable that companies have varying degrees of how they do - and don't - attempt to. I consider myself an "ideal" customer. I know things take time to remedy, and besides essential living services I give that time to be fair. I don't make unrealistic or false threats. I know the people who are helping me are paid poorly, and have a specific job to do, in a manner that is typically scripted and must be followwed. ("Is it plugged in?" = le sigh). I am also competent enough with a PC that I generally just find my own fixes on the internet and make it work. I rarely contact customer support unless it is the last beacon of hope for me. The past three months I have contacted four different companies regarding software/hardware questions and problems and I am going to share my results with you - ranked from worst to best. There is a bit of a surprise here. After the break.
I don't really "review" games, and I am not going to start today either. Will keep it simple and sweet. If you like FPS's, play L4D. If you like Co-op, it is well done. If you like opposing Co-op, it's a great game. If you like Zombies, go buy it. If you like a base achievement system, ca-ching. If you like perfectly paced gameplay in the aforementioned settings, buy buy buy. I don't throw the word perfect out a lot. Now that that is settled, I want to talk about the absoulte, most awesomest, fantastical gameplay mode in the entire universe that is also included in Left 4 Dead. After the break.
Sheesh, where did the week go? It CAN'T be Friday already. I haven't even started my week yet. I barely gamed all week, dabbling a bit in WoW, spent some good time in L4D, and attempted to workaround my Bioshock/Vista issue. Bioshock 2 - you will not be purchased. There are over 3000 replies on various threads on the 2K forums regarding the same problems I am having. You can blame FMOD, you can blame Vista, but I bought *your* product and it can't be fixed without a patch. You are still selling the game, still support it. It was my first ever 2K game, and it will be my last if you don't fix it (hell, at least tell me you are working on a fix instead of leaving my specific thread unanswered on your official Tech support boards for a week.) Just tell me you care. That is what customer support is.
Le Sigh. More depression after the break.
To be honest I don't get what most people hate about Monday mornings. I tend to work weekends, so there is definitely no rest for the wicked at ihaspc. My to-do list on Mondays is as long as any other day but I tend to ease into everyone else's typical work week - check blogs, prioritize tasks (I know, the irony, considering that comes second) and catch up on emails. Usually Multitasked. I decided Mondays will be my little themed post where I ramble off a bunch of randoms. What better way to "start" the week?
RIP - Burning Crusade: Much how mauve is the new pink, Burning Crusade is the new Azeroth. Empty. Of every class except Death Knights. If you play by your tune and have a healer alt in the 60's now is the optimum time to level that toon up - there are hundreds of Death Knights begging - and paying - for healers to work with them through instances. One group offered 100 gold for a basic Ramparts run. Of course, his name was Chucknorus so you might hold out for 200 gold. With everyone in the mad dash to be the first 80 (most classes/races have already hit that mark on server firsts on Whisperwind) I wonder if destroying old content areas such as Azeroth and BC gives Blizzard cost savings on server loads, etc. - that resources normally held to hold high populations in those zones. Perhaps abandoning that content is as much a business as a stupid move? On a side note, how in the hell is the Wow Armory service STILL in beta?
More after the break.