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    Mar 5th, 2008 at 20:18:18     -    Mass Effect (360)

    Gameplay:

    Just got past the second part where I now become a spector for the Galactic Council. This means that now I get to kick some ass and take name later. This was a wonderful addition to the classes because this helps me train and become better with the pistol and the shotgun. I love using the shotgun whenever I enter a warehouse or underground cave because I am like a surgeon carving my way through the tunnels, slicing away at enemies with my boom-stick. The pistol is still a good weapon to use for long distance stuff, and if you activate marksman, you can tear through 3 guys, all with head shots, in just one boost of the marksman.

    One thing that makes this game so much fun to play is the unique enemies you encounter along with the exotic places you travel. Already I have seen a paradise world and another which was like a Citadel that was used for the Galactic Council. I have heard that you get to travel to other worlds and use like a tank to survey the planets for minerals, gases, and other collectible items. I have only been to one galaxy, but then this galaxy has like 2 or more systems, then from there each system may have from anywhere to 4 to 7 planets in each system. Now I have already seen like 7 galaxies, and I know that as the story progresses, you get to come across like 9 more galaxies. I cannot wait to do some more exploring on these foreign planets and uncover some more of the mystery.

    Design:

    It must have taken a team of like 150 people to come up with the artwork, level design, narrative, and game play because there is such remarkable work involved with this game that needs recognition. First off, the story for Mass Effect is unlike anything I have ever come across because it involves a storyline that is compelling and somewhat believable. Also, the story includes detailed accounts of an additional 20 alien races, all with their own back story and unique factual information. I find this to be quite amazing because hardly do you come across a game with such a detail narrative that directly helps to make the game play and progression of the game that much more interesting.

    Since Bioware was the company the did Knights of The Old Republic, 1 and Sith Lords, and Mass Effect, it wasn't too shocking to see the decision tree stuff from KOTOR inside of Mass Effect. It was nice however, that they made his talk this time and you only had to choose key phrases, like Maybe and Hell no, and the character avatar of John Sheppard would speak like a couple of lines of dialog. This never happened in KOTOR, but it still was a good game with or without it. I liked how Bioware kept the same stuff, like different aliens for your team, along with the different classes and sub weapons that made for a truly customizable, but not full control game, like we are constantly searching for as hardcore gamers.

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    Mar 5th, 2008 at 20:01:31     -    Mass Effect (360)

    Summary:

    In Mass Effect, you take control of Commander John Sheppard
    as he discovers the truth behind a rogue spector and the revival
    of a ancient deadly race. You will encounter many situations that
    require a unique response that ultimately change your fate in the
    galaxy.

    Gameplay:

    Mass Effect is unlike any game that I have ever played before because
    it combines some unique aspects of both a over the shoulder third person
    shooter within the setting of a role playing game. This allows you to have
    the ability to customize your equipment from the bullets you shoot to the
    scope or barrel you choose to put on the gun. This allows you to shoot
    enemies from either a close range with a shotgun, to long range with the
    assault rifle. This makes for unique game play from a fps but you can
    customize weapons like a rpg. You can also attack enemies with certain tech
    abilities like disable and sabotage, or biotic abilities like lift and warp. You have to choose from either one class or possibly a hybrid of the two and you must stick with this for the entire game. I decide for my first run through to choose a hybrid class known as the Vanguard, who are both soldier and biotic. This allowed me to get the best of two
    worlds.

    I was able to use weapons like pistols and shotguns, and also biotic abilities like warp, lift and revive. I would have liked to have tech and solider, but the idea of "science magic" was too tempting to give up on my first try of the game. I have to say that this class seemed to be somewhat difficult to control but once you get the hang of the two classes combined, you become somewhat of a killing machine as you take out squads of enemies with only your shotgun. I would recommend on your first run, choose the vanguard class because you can unlock 75% of the achievements on the Xbox 360. For someone who is a completionist this makes the job much simpler if you had chose another class like either soldier or technician. With just playing one time, I am already hooked on this game play and plan on not coming to class to finish up the first mission.

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    Feb 20th, 2008 at 17:55:45     -    Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64)

    Gameplay:

    So I got really into the game and what do you know almost 5 hours later I am three dungeons down and about to race to the temple of time to get access to the Master Sword. Well, I actually did get the Master Sword and from there on, I found out that being an adult isn't all that's cracked up to be. The next two dungeons that I went through were good if not much better designed than the first dungeon. My favorite one so far though has been the dungeon inside of Lord Jabu Jabu's stomach. It was kind of annoying dealing with Princess Ruto and trying to help her escape and find that damn stone of hers(not knowing it was actualy one of the crystals I needed to open the Temple of Time, but besides her constant nagging and the occasional weird attacks inside, that was pretty fun to play through. The second dungeon was alright, except it just seemed to be pretty repetative and the puzzles weren't as great as the other two dungeons that I faced off in. Plus the boss fight was way too simple in the second dungeon. I actually found more of a challenge with the boss in the other two.

    When I finally reached the adult stage of the game, I was kind of mad that I lost some of my equipment, but then learned that it was possible to gain new and better equipment along the way. The world so far that I witnessed has gone from a very bright, peaceful place to this dark and gloomy hell hole. But of course, you can thank Ganondorf for that, according to the story line so far. One thing that I did notice was that there were some cool things that I could do with my Ocarina that I never could before. The Ocarina was a good addition to the the game, because it allowed for some cool abilities, especially the one where you can communicate to your friend and ask for advice. I can't count the many times where this came in handy when I had beaten an area and needed to go to where next. The transition between dungeons was sort of cumbersome because it seemed like I had to kind of guess where to go next. But this session was interesting and can't await another run through.

    Design:

    So like I said before, the change to 3D makes this Zelda game a notch above the previous games that were two-dimensional. Of course this game doesn't even hold a candle to Twilight Princess, but at the time they came out with Ocarina of Time, this had to be revolutionary for die hard fans of the Zelda series. The storyline of the game is somewhat similar to the other games, in the sense that this time also you have to fight Ganondorf/Ganon and save the princess, but the designers encapsulated this basic storyline into a much more developed background story than the previous games. But basically this story is very much similar to the one from Link to The Past. There is nothing wrong with this, except that most of the games follow the same basic princess/evil wizard trying to capture Princess, but it is a essential part of the Zelda games and as long as the designers figure out new people and puzzles to include with this plot line, Zelda games like this one and future Zelda games will continue to be successful.

    In general, Ocarina of Time gave designers the flexibility of a large environment compared to older, 2D games but it seems that this was met with outstanding results. As you move through these areas, you feel like you are in the Kingdom of Hyrule. This is done through the use of very basic elements that we think of with old kingdoms, such as castles, horses, villages, and the basic weapon of Link, the sword and shield. One way that this game could have got it wrong was if they had left out the basics that made the Zelda series the success it already it. The reward systems are basically the same, you have to find new items to help you progress through the dungeons, find keys, such as the master key, to unlock doors in the dungeons, and kill the boss to get the crystal/stone and like always a piece of heart to increase your total life.

    It may seem like the designers just got lazy and used the same old stuff and just made the game 3D, but the removal of these basic building blocks in all Zelda games would have left the player with something that has the Legend of Zelda logo, but nothing like they ever witnessed before. I think that if you have something that works and has continued to work before the next generation comes up, you shouldn't have to redo the entire game mechanic. Keep what works for you and has proven to work in the past, and just figure out how to incorporate new, small additional elements that make the game better than the last, which is exactly what Ocarina of Time has done and what makes this game a great addtion to the Zelda library.

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    Feb 20th, 2008 at 17:16:58     -    Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64)

    Summary:

    In The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, you take control
    of our hero Link as he sets out on a quest through Hyrule,
    trying to save the Hyrulian Kingdom from ultimate destruction
    by the hand of the evil Ganondorf. Throughout the game, you must aquire
    new weapons and skills to overcome the evil that is bound to destroy
    the peaceful kingdom of Hyrule and ultimately save Princess Zelda from the evil wizard/thief Ganondorf.

    Gameplay:

    After playing most of the 2D Zelda games, it was kind of weird getting
    used to the 3D version of the game, but I have to say this is quite an
    improvement over the previous ones. Don't get me wrong, A Link to The Past was by far one of the best Zelda games ever created, but this one seemed to have some new concepts behind it that I thought were pretty cool. Right off the bat, you are thrown into this storyline that is quite compelling and interesting. The story behind the creation of Hyrule and the three Golden Goddesses is very intriguing because you build a back story into how you character must try and discover how the three parts of the Triforce became unknown to the world. One thing I found interesting was how this story began compared to the other Zelda games, In Link to the Past, you just know that you are some kid living with your uncle. In Ocarina of Time, you are a fairy child living in the Deku Forest, under the protection of the mighty Deku Tree.

    During this play through, I was able to beat the first dungeon and leave the forest heading for Hyrule Castle. I have to say that this dungeon fight was much better then the other games because you actually felt like you were in some sort of underground area where you had to find some treasure and beat the main boss of the area. It had the same idea like previous Zelda games, but with the addition of 3D, the gameplay value goes way up as you progress through the areas of the world. As I entered the new and large map, I immediately understood why most of my friends claimed that this was one of the best Zelda's to this date. The area was full of wonderful artwork and details such as rivers flowing and the transition from day to night. Can't say that I witnessed much of this from a 2D perspective. In just one dungeon and completing a small portion of the story line, I am already hooked on this game and await another session sometime real soon.

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      Game Status / Read GameLog
    1Final Fantasy VI Advance (GBA)Stopped playing - Got Bored
    2Final Fantasy XII (PS2)Stopped playing - Something better came along
    3Halo 3 (360)Finished playing
    4Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64)Finished playing
    5Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina of Time (N64)Playing
    6Mass Effect (360)Playing

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