Please sign in or sign up!
  • Forget your password?
  • Want to sign up?
  •       ...blogs for gamers

    Find a GameLog
    ... by game ... by platform
    advanced search  advanced search ]
    Recent Entries

    Mar 6th, 2008 at 02:29:12     -    Deus Ex (PC)

    The combat in Deus Ex is heavily reliant on the skills chosen at the beginning of the game, as they affect both weapon damage and accuracy. In other words, your twitch skills from Half-life won’t help you in Deus Ex if you put all your skill points toward swimming, if JC is a bad shot, you are a bad shot. I am quite certain that this will upset a great deal of people (those who play shooters) but I quite like it, I guess that owes a lot to my favoring of the RPG genre in general. In addition stealth seems to be favored over running and gunning, and this is impressed upon you with your choice of weapons in the early game. In addition to your pistol and riot prod you are offered a choice of a sniper rifle, a tranquilizer crossbow, and a GEP gun (rocket launcher). None of these offer a whole lot of room for gun slinging in that early stage. I mean, I guess you could blow a few baddies to giblets with your three rockets but that is hardly an appropriate use of force.

    Deus Ex also structures its dialogues in an RPG fashion with its use of conversation trees multiple outcomes, some of which can only become available through the actions of the player. The game actually encourages and rewards exploring the environment with goodies such as ammo and experience points. An example of one of Deus Ex’s possibility for variable dialogue comes at the very beginning of the game on Liberty Island. JC is asked to find and capture a terrorist leader who has claimed the remnants of the Statue of Liberty for himself his merry little band of secessionists. Throughout the level the brass informs JC that he is to capture the leader alive so they can lock him up and perform enhanced interrogation techniques on him or something. In any case, if you ignore this advice and gun him down anyway you’ll return to HQ to find your boss is pissed and that you’ve moved down a pay grade. Not a novel concept, I admit, but it’s something not often seen in shooters, and sure beats Bioshock’s “intense moral dilemmas.”


    Deus Ex is a game that revels in its atmosphere. Everything is grimey and the entire game takes place at night (not ‘a’ night, but ‘at’ night) which sets the tone quite well. From when you first step onto Liberty Island you get the idea that something is dreadfully wrong. The Statue of Liberty, the once pristine symbol of American freedom, lays in ruins, a testament to dark times. In fact, every aspect of the setting of Deus Ex is in some way run down. The only places that look colorful or mesmerizing are the lairs of the devious plutocrats who scheme to control the planet. They grow as the world dies, they are vampiric, they are parasites.

    The game makes creative use of cutscenes in that it does so sparingly. There are only four cinematics in the game, one for the beginning and one for each of the games three endings. They represent the introduction of all of the problems and conversely the resolution. There is no need for them in the game’s middle, which is where the gameplay tells the story. In a way, it allows for a great deal of freedom that would not otherwise be allowed. At any given moment, the player is in control of JC Denton, and that creates a supremely immersive experience.

    This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on Mar 6th, 2008 at 02:36:09.

    read comments (1) read comments  -  add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    Mar 6th, 2008 at 01:58:55     -    Deus Ex (PC)

    Deus Ex is a FPS RPG made by company Ion Storm. The game revolves around the main character JC Denton and has a plot that draws heavily upon espionage and conspiracies. The main character is upgraded throughout the game with skills purchased via experience points and “augmentations” which give the player additional powers.

    The character creation system takes place before anything even gets moving and basically involves choosing the protagonist’s real name, (although his code name, JC Denton, which everyone calls him by, is set in stone), his appearance (basically his skin and hair color), and skills. The skills are the real meat of this section and include things like swimming and first aid, all manner of weaponry (low tech to heavy), and computer use. Now secure in the knowledge that Agent JC Denton had an apt grasp of spreadsheets I thrust him into the world.

    Deus Ex opens with a narration issuing from what are clearly members of some sort of shadow government conspiracy bent on world domination. I can tell because they have a massive sculpture in their lobby of a stone hand gripping the world in its mineral embrace. Oh, and they casually talk about how they’ve engineered a plague and are selectively choosing who gets the cure. This opening cinematic makes use of a lot of fancy camera angles and creative use of zooming in addition to presenting the core plot. The only problem is that the game’s limited graphics coupled with in-engine cutscenes results in a somewhat and entirely unintentional campy beginning. Which is a shame.

    add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    Feb 21st, 2008 at 02:31:40     -    Final Fantasy (PSP)

    If you have ever played a Japanese RPG the combat in Final Fantasy won’t surprise you. Everyone lines up, taking turns assaulting each other with weapons or magic. A particularly annoying part about combat in Final Fantasy is that you choose everyone’s actions at once, regardless of when they’ll attack. So if I have Lao and Shiv attack the same wolf and Lao defeats the wolf before Shiv’s turn, then Shiv will proceed to swing his rapier vainly at the air where the wolf once stood rather than focus his efforts on another, living enemy. Oh, and for veterans of the Final Fantasy series, yes, even in the original do your characters dance every time they defeat a batch of enemies.

    Upon reaching the ruined castle where Garland made his base I proceeded to loot the place of everything that wasn’t nailed down. After stowing away the loot (a cap, a potion, and a… cabin?) I finally came face to face with princess thief. He greeted me by asserting that this was in actuality his princess and that I was grossly mistaken in my liberation attempts. He then informed me that his only recourse was to initiate my collapse. I then refuted his argument with violence. As his wretched form lay twisted on the ground he could only accept that mine was the sounder argument. After speaking with the king he gave me a lute and sent me on my way. After all of this the opening credits began to roll… Oy.


    All right, I realize that I have been bashing what is perhaps the single most important RPG released in the past two decades that doesn’t have “Dragon” in the title, but cut me some slack. The game set the stage on some level for virtually every electronic RPG released in the past twenty years. Without Final Fantasy we might never have some of the most memorable scenes in video gaming history (most of which were NOT in the original Final Fantasy). I understand that the game was a milestone and superb for its time, but the end all be all RPG? No, not by a long shot.

    In my three hours of play time, I had yet to encounter a single character that had, at any given time, more than two or three sentences of dialogue. Sometimes, that is ALL the dialogue they had. I didn’t encounter anyone I could say I would identify with/love/hate/etc. and the only memorable characters (Garland and a pirate captain named Bikke) stayed in my mind because of their absurdity. They were, quite literally, jokes (and in Final Fantasy’s defense, pretty funny ones).

    Although I must cut the game some slack, it kept me entertained, if only because I’m a fan of the RPG genre, for the nostalgia value, and *ahem* historical context. If you like RPGs, you’ll like Final Fantasy, you’ll have played better and you won’t hold it in any high regard, but you’ll like it. The game distinguished itself in the late eighties and early nineties because concepts which are now at worse cliché and at best standardized were new and innovative at that time. I am thankful that such a thing as the original Final Fantasy existed, but I would not afford it anymore praise than that.

    read comments (1) read comments  -  add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    Feb 21st, 2008 at 01:51:51     -    Final Fantasy (PSP)


    Final Fantasy is an NES RPG by Square Soft (now Square Enix) created in 1987 and released stateside in 1990. The game’s protagonists are four heroes who each have different abilities and are chosen by the player at the beginning of the game. The game has an in depth story that spans several hours of play time. Gaining levels and money is done through random encounters and boss battles.


    You read that right, I’m playing Final Fantasy. Not Final Fantasy VII, or X or XI or XII, no, I’m playing the original game that started the series long ago when Reagan was president and MC Hammer was an up and coming celebrity with the world ahead of him. Now I should clarify that I am not playing the re-released or reedited version of the game with CG cut scenes and shiny graphics. I am playing the old NES version, so you can’t fault me for giving it a decent shot. Knowing this, I’ll have to ask you to bear with me when I say that it shows its age.

    After being shown the storyline involving light and orbs or something (easy, these are the jokes!) I am presented with the ability to customize my party of four rag-tag heroes eager to prove themselves in the ring of honor or some such thing. Anyway, I went with a party of Lao the wandering martial artist (fine, Black Belt!) and his compatriots, Shiv the Thief, Izix the Black Mage, and Eevi the White Mage. At which point Lao suddenly appeared in a field just south of a castle town. I wasn’t given any pretense of what to do, so I decided to move in the direction of civilization.

    Cornelia, the town, is your usual fantasy genre shopping mall. You’ve got your weapon shop, armor shop, Inn, item shop (where they sell things that are not weapons or armor), and your (black and white) spell shops. The inhabitants just had one thing to say and were happy to repeat it as many times as I liked. As it turns out, Cornelia’s King was in the market for Light Warriors, lucky me that I had four on me. So after a quick jaunt to the castle I found my way to the king who, like everyone I had met thus far, only had one thing to say. Lo and behold, he lost his daughter, the princess (obviously), to some ex-knight named Garland and needed me to rectify the situation.

    add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    Older Entries   next
    Harman Necroskowitz's GameLogs
    Harman Necroskowitz has been with GameLog for 15 years, 10 months, and 17 days
    RSS Feed
    view feed xml
    Entries written to date: 10
      Game Status / Read GameLog
    1Deus Ex (PC)Finished playing
    2Final Fantasy (PSP)Stopped playing - Something better came along
    3Kirby's Adventure (NES)Finished playing
    4Sacrifice (PC)Finished playing
    5Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines (PC)Finished playing


    games - logs - members - about - help - recent updates

    Copyright 2004-2014