Friday, September 16, 2005

An update and a couple of reviews

Hey everyone. I know I'm late doing any sort of update, but your friendly neighborhood journalist has been a busy busy bee as of late. First off, I had a couple of new reviews go up this week at GameSpy:
One interesting note about Urban Reign. Doing a quick search of a few other review sites shows that some people didn't really like the game as much as I have. Now, I've always said that as a reviewer, all I'm doing is giving my personal opinion of a game, and the reasons I feel that way. It's just funny to see other people have so many different opinions. One person (besides me) says this game has excellent graphics, while another says those same graphics are barely up to standards. One place says the combat has a surprising number of options, and another complains that the controls are weak. Regardless, the one thing we ALL seem to agree on with Urban Reign is that the AI is brutal and unforgiving. But here's where I think things get really odd. I personally didn't take off TOO much for the AI being such a pain because I remember the old school arcade fighters that sucked the quarters out of my pockets because they were just so damned hard. The thing was (and still is in Urban Reign) eventually I got better than the CPU. Sure, it was frustrating as hell, but I did make progress none the less. What I think is so funny is that some places took a sizeable chunk out of the game's score based mostly on the difficulty of the AI. So, my question to all of you is simply, "At what point do YOU think a game should be considered TOO difficult?" For me, I can deal with a little frustration from time to time, as long as I see progress. What about all of you?

Moving right along ...

*SIGH* ... This week marks the beginning of the Tokyo Game Show (TGS) in Japan. The damned thing just started and already news is making waves in the gaming community. Everything from the official Xbox 360 release date (Nov. 22 in the US), to Nintendo's official unveiling of the elusive Revolution controller. And lets not forget about the games ... from Metal Gear Solid 4 to the new Xbox 360 RPG (eM)-eNCHANT-arM, things are starting to look really interesting for the industry right now. Sadly, I didn't make it to Tokyo this year, but I've got some people out there keeping an eye on things for me. Plus, I've got all my standard press contacts, so I'll be bringing you news and info updated ASAP.

Speaking of news and info, a couple of interesting projects are in the works for me here. First, I'm in talks with GameSpy about helping to provide them with regular news updates for their site. Things are hectic at the moment due to TGS, but it still looks like I'll be helping out with the news over there soon. Also, I'm still writing regularly for Electric Playground, however the writing I'm doing is not up at this time. Apparently ever since Greedy moved into its new offices and updated the servers, they've been having problems accessing the database to add new articles. Tavis is working on the problem as we speak, and as soon as it's sorted out, my latest batch of reviews for them should be the first things going up.

I'm in the early EARLY stages of finally producing something I've been interested in for some time. I'm pulling triple and quadruple duty these days, as I'm not only continuing to focus on my freelance writing, but I've also started development of my own small magazine as well. The idea is for me to put together a new mag focusing on the worlds of video games, comic, and other various "pop culture" interests. Once I get things set up and plotted out, the magazine will be distributed online in what will most likely be a PDF format. Also, I'm working on a treatment/pitch for the comic news show (similar to what Electric PLayground is for gaming). AND I'm working with some guys I know from the comic and game industries to try and put together some interesting and entertaining intellectual properties to be used in both comic book and video game formats. I'm not sure where any of these projects will take me, but you're all welcome to join me on the ride.

I guess that'll wrap things up for now. Drop a line and let me know your thoughts, and also what you'd like to talk about next. C'mon guys (and gals), give me a little feedback.

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