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    Mar 5th, 2008 at 19:48:50     -    The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (PC)

    GAMEPLAY
    Oblivions quest system allows lots of optionality: a new character can join the fighters guild, the mages guild, the arena, or even a secret assassin's guild. Following certain quest lines makes changes to the world irrevocably: Murdering someone for the Dark Brotherhood that gives you a fighter's guild quest seriously inhibits your ability to do Fighter's Guild quests, even if you are not caught, because that person is never around to grant you Fighter's Guild advancement. Or you can perform unaligned quests for random people you meet exploring the world, or for Gods who's favor you earn, in exchange for currency, favor, and artifacts. This open world game play allows you to play the game for any end you like: bettering yourself, helping others, making or destroying things, and much more.

    DESIGN
    Oblivion's realistic graphics are one of the main elements of the game, because it makes you feel like you're actually in the game (except that you don't have a cross hairs in real life). When I made too large of a jump I felt like I was falling, like in those dreams you have where you jolt awake right before the ground gives you a hug. The graphics also make the game world nice to explore, to see all of it because it is worth seeing.
    The combat system, although more expansive than most games on the market, leaves a little to be desired. There are only four attacks you can make (not including powered up versions of those attacks) forward, right, left, and back. Only the backwards attack takes skill to pull off, and none can be guided all that well around defenses like shields or staffs that would be interesting to try and attack past. I realise this expectation is unfair, but it feels that with the other aspects of the game, that kind of combat system is the only way to play.
    Interactivity with the world makes certain quests in this game interesting, like in the Dark Brotherhood where you get an extra bonus in the quest for making the death look accidental by causing a Trophy to fall on the target rather than murdering him outright. If only all kills could be made this way, rather than just having some of them scripted. It would have been interesting to see multiple ways of completing objectives that were less straightforward, like this one.

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    Mar 5th, 2008 at 15:55:42     -    The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion (PC)

    SUMMARY
    Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion, the player takes the role of (Player Created Character), a criminal in the right place at the right time to be freed and earn the trust of the emperor's bodyguards, allowing him the freedom to move about the country and aid or ignore the plight of the guards after the emperor's assassination. It is a massive ORPG, allowing you to decide when and if you want to complete quests, or explore the world for possible dungeons in the froms of caves, castles, and whether or not you want to involve yourself in the main story, or any of multiple side stories.

    GAMEPLAY
    The gameplay is either first or third person, allowing you to watch yourself work, or aim yourself for better precision, depending on what you prefer. As you perform actions(using your sword, making potions) you become better at doing those things. After improving a certain amount in your chosen main skills, you level up, increasing both your attributes and the overall difficulty of the game as a whole.

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    Feb 20th, 2008 at 00:37:19     -    Super Smash Brothers (N64)

    GAMEPLAY
    I tried the solo campaign for the second half of my game log session and I was surprised how different the experience was. For the big part, the computer doesn't get his feelings hurt when smush his face along the ground and then taunt him as he falls. But having only one enemy to focus one, no noise to ignore or challenge, and a goal other than pride change the Smash experience immensely.

    DESIGN
    The most innovative part of this game was that they took characters they knew everyone already loved and brought them together (like Mario Party) for a good oldfashioned asskicking (who doesn't like one of those every once in a while) The game appeals to pretty much anyone (except for anti-violence activists, who, consequently, are usually violent XD) The game also uses levels that everyone is familiar with, like DK's Jungle Japes, Peach's Castle, and Hyrule Castle.
    The main challenge the game provides is whether or not you are good enough to beat the other player(s) human or not. The reward is anything from new characters to a high score to bragging rights. This varied amount of gameplay, coupled with classic characters and beloved game worlds leaves little to be desired (and none at the time it came out)

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    Feb 19th, 2008 at 23:37:12     -    Super Smash Brothers (N64)

    SUMMARY
    In Super Smash Brothers, the player picks from one of several popular Nintendo Characters from other nintendo titles to do battle with other of these characters. Playables include Legend of Zelda's Link, Pokemon's Pikachu and Jigglypuff, and Star Fox's Fox McCloud. The object of the game is to win, and the style of gameplay determines how that is achieved, playing by lives(last one standing) or by time (in which case the most kills wins). In single player mode, you battle a series of computer controlled enemies with the objective of reaching the final boss (The Master Hand) and defeating him, sometimes unlocking new playable characters upon doing so (Like Luigi).

    GAMEPLAY
    The gameplay is fast paced, and enjoyable, but the trash talking with your friends while playing it is definately an integral part. Half of who wins the game comes down to who talked the talked while walking the walk, even if they didn't necesarily win. There are some slight advantages to certain characters, like Pikachu, who has the most powerful grab move, or Fox, who is the fastest. But skill can overcome most of these diffentials.

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