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 05:00:04     -    Halo 3 (360)


    In a lot of shooting games, it becomes pretty clear which weapon or two are the most effective. This narrows the gameplay and make the game less interactive. Halo 3 does an excellent job of making almost every gun useful and fairly equal. You want to go into a CQB situation with an sub-machine gun or shotgun, you feel like the Battle Rifle is the best all around, the Needler is deadly from mid-range, etc. Deciding which weapon you want to use in which situation is half of the fun of Halo 3 multi-player.

    If you add in the different types of grenades, the possible ways a given combat situation can unfold is staggeringly high. And what else is nice is that this largely applies to campaign mode as well.

    One gameplay aspect that I'm not sure how I feel about is the meelee lunge. This is a small movement that a player executing a meelee makes towards his target, allowing him to meelee opponents otherwise out of reach. The problem I have with this is that I think it goes against the trend of gameplay Halo already established by making the conflict as player skill-oriented as possible. The meelee lunge basically means that you can have the upper-hand on someone, and they can lunge at you from an impossible distance and steal a kill. Every other action taken in Halo is triggered by the player. Every single movement, except the meelee lunge. It is automatic and not only does it lower the quality of gameplay, it lowers interactivity.


    I mentioned earlier how the reward system in Halo was optimal because it had the ability to respond pretty much only to player actions and not too many outside variables. Another interesting thing about Halo's reward system is that the player is constantly being rewarded. The player is made aware of every kill they get, including just about any kind of streak or spree. bullets cause a satisfying clash with an enemy's shield, letting you know you've hit. New levels allow new player model customizations as well as the respect among your peers. Halo does an excellent job of "keeping the player playing" as per the second required seduction for any game developer by constantly rewarding the player.

    I think another underrated design decision in the Halo series is the way it handles Health. Whereas the original Halo actually monitored a player's health, Halo 2 and 3 both use just a shield system. Once your shield goes down, you are in trouble basically. I like this because it changes the way skirmishes are fought. If you nearly finish someone off, but fail to get the kill, that person can re-appear in a few seconds with full shields ready to retaliate. This raises the chance that the better player wins, and not just the one with more health. It helps to balance the gameplay.

    This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on Mar 6th, 2008 at 05:06:07.

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

    Mar 6th, 2008 at 04:24:15     -    Halo 3 (360)

    Summary: Halo 3 lets players resume the role of Master Chief. It is the third entry to Bungie's FPS franchise. Halo 3 contains a variety of gametypes. The single player campaign resumes the story after where it left off in the second game. There are several multi-player gametypes, such as slayer, team slayer, Capture the flag, and other objective based games.


    One thing thats noticeable immediately with Halo 3 multi-player is the trash-talking that takes place in matchmaking lobbies. I was attempting to figure out why it was Halo was such a popular game to play online, and then it hit me during a particularly intense sniper battle. The Halo series, as far as FPS go, is one of the most interactive games in the genre available. By that I mean that the game does a good job of letting the player maneuver pretty much however he/she wants to. Because it adheres to no ardent realism, there are no rules against jumping in the air and sniping someone in the head. And while this might not be real, it allows the player to feel like they can do whatever they want to with their Halo character. And if they do everything they can and demonstrate their awesome skill by jumping and sniping someone in the head, they get rewarded by the game in pretty much every situation. There is as little random interference with player actions as possible. As a result, the interactivity is high, an effective reward system is implemented that is allowed to respond to pretty much only the skill of the player and as little outside variables as possible.

    One thing Halo does an excellent job with is level design. Levels in Halo focus first and foremost on gameplay. Halo levels are rarely designed with any dead-ends within them, instead implementing circuit-like patterns. This is a design decision that encourages constant movement and provides good flow. Quality weapons are placed appropriately, and great care was taken to make sure that the maps are as balanced as possible.

    During a campaign session, I got to witness Halo 3's impressive AI. I was shooting a brute, and had almost finished him when he signaled to a fellow brute who proceeded to throw a shield regenerator to his companion. Because of this, I myself had to retreat. It really provides a great gameplay experience when the opponent can actually make semi-intelligent decisions and work together to attack the player. it takes the level of strategy required up.

    This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on Mar 6th, 2008 at 04:28:35.

    add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    Feb 20th, 2008 at 22:59:35     -    Final Fantasy XII (PS2)


    For a game that was designed around these sprawling, open environments, and contains these huge areas between towns & cities, I was hoping for a relatively higher level of free-roaming aspects. FFXII is only slightly more linear than its predecessors, with story elements pretty much dictating the game play path. It seems all this time and effort was put into getting every ounce of power out of the PS2 to generate a world that is rife with free-roaming game play opportunities, and yet that aspect of game play is still relegated to a few fairly insignificant side-quests.

    And this brings me to the story itself. This could possibly be an issue of me just being picky, but I feel that, at least thus far, it isn't much more than a fairly stale political adventure. In fact, I would go as far as to argue that you could replace some names and places, and it could be Final Fantasy 9 part 2. I'm going to reserve final judgment on this until I get further into the story though.


    As I mentioned before, I am very impressed with the graphics design in this game. The worlds are huge, the FMV's are stunning, and the in-game graphics are very good, especially for a PS2 game.

    Another design aspect that is definitely worth mentioning is the musical score. As a musician, this is especially important to me as I often find myself zeroing in on the music during certain situations in order to set the mood. The music in FFXII is very well written and produced, and having that backing symphonic score really is the finishing touch to placing the player in the story.

    One very obvious plus to the new combat system is the elimination of random encounters, what I would consider probably the single most annoying aspect of RPG's. Gone are random LSD color interpolations signalling your teleportation into some distant battle arena with some clever scenery to fight monsters. Instead, they wander around the world in front of you, the area of which between cities, is huge. The benefit of this is that it encourages exploration, which I think is a huge step in the direction of encouraging non-linear procedure.

    The only problem is that there isn't much out there to explore. The areas are huge, and there are a few 'hidden' dungeons and some decent goodies, but not too much that is actually significant. Clearly, with the shift in the direction of the design towards a more non-linear progression, some additional dungeons, even significant story elements tied towards a style of progression that is left up to the player's decision would cement non-linear progression as a legitimate part of this game, and not just semblance of what could have been possible.

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

    Feb 20th, 2008 at 21:21:36     -    Final Fantasy XII (PS2)


    In Final Fantasy XII, the player takes the role of Vaan, your typical rogue, young man with large aspirations. The player follow Vaan as his aspirations cause him to get caught up into a larger plot that concerns the well being of the world. FFXII is a 3rd person adventure/RPG. The game employs a 'MMO' style hack-n-slash battle system. It also employs a grid system for unlocking abilities, weapons, magic, etc.


    After just playing for 1-2 hours, the thing that impresses me the most with this game is the level of interactivity. Cities are actually cities. They are bustling with an incredible amount of NPC's, each of which has some purpose to the overall story or atmosphere of the city. Not only that, but there is an incredible amount of area covered by each city. I could truly believe that Rabanastre is a capital city somewhere. Given the capabilities of the PS2, to have all of this running at a steady clip is quite a feet. As a gamer playing a game of progression, I believe that it is the responsibility of the game to suspend my disbelief in order to better engross me into the story, and this game certainly does that.

    I like the license system, but don't like how it is used for equipment. I understand the concept behind it: develop your characters into whatever niche role you want (mage, warrior, archer/shooter, etc). That being said. it becomes incredibly hard to try and level up the abilities that correspond with these 'classes' as WELL as the weapons and equipment nodes. There is already so much on the grid, that I feel equipment could have been left off without sacrificing any game play.

    The voice acting is really well done. One small complaint about it is the quality of the audio files containing it. Its obvious that compression was needed to help fit the massive amounts of dialogue and FMV's onto the discs

    I can definitely say that even with the change in battle system's, combat is still fairly tedious. The only real difference is that you have make to decisions in real time as opposed to a turn-based system. But the bottom line is combat still seems to be a matter of button mashing. And when its not, the gambits make it even less involved.

    add a comment Add comment  -  read this GameLog read

    Older Entries   next
    UntILLtheEND's GameLogs
    UntILLtheEND has been with GameLog for 16 years, 3 months, and 6 days
    RSS Feed
    view feed xml
    Entries written to date: 12
      Game Status / Read GameLog
    1Chrono Trigger (SNES)Playing
    2DOOM (PC)Playing
    3Final Fantasy XII (PS2)Playing
    4Halo 3 (360)Playing
    5Silent Hill: Origins (PSP)Playing


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

    Copyright 2004-2014