Friday, 9 October 2009


Todays shame: I am not really a "gamer".

I do like playing computer games, but it's never been a regular hobby of mine, and the last "console" that I "owned" was the Sega Megadrive. Pretty sure Bunny has that now.

That's not to say that I'm a complete video gaming naif, I've often played on other people's machines and there are a few games that I've played to death over the years (looking at you Street Fighter 2 & Tony Hawk's Pro Skater 3). But even after I found out Yuki had a bunch of games for the PS2 I didn't really play it regularly.

So, it was clear I needed to "level up" (see what I did there? I wanted to use l33t, but wasn't sure how to spell it and refused to look it up on principle). Partly because I have more time, and partly because Andy was here and we played a couple of games that I wanted to see through to the end, I've played three games for the first time recently and they're all good for one reason or another.

Turns out Yuki has both Silent Hill 2 & 4, and since they were strongly recommended to me by a friend I thought I owed it to her to give them a bash. I'm some way through #2 at the moment and it is pretty fun, if deeply flawed. The music and audio is, as everyone will tell you, amazing. But the actual controls are clunky, especially when you're trying to kill beasties, and every now and then there are puzzles or areas of the game that require you to just walk around a lot, and I have very little patience for that kind of stuff. They do their best to keep the tension high, but when I had to run a mile up the fucking road to find a map that told me to run all the way back again I wasn't too amused. So I spend a lot of the time shouting at the engine and the game itself, but I'm still looking forward to beating it and trying #4.

I don't know when I got the Neverhood, or where I got it from, but it's been on my computer for ages and I finally got it to work... kinda. The "video" bits still don't run well on Vista, but the other bits work just great and it's an amazing, surreal game. Which of course is to be expected since Doug TenNaple is a genius.

The last one I started was みんなのテニス which I believe is called Hotshots Tennis in the West. It's a simple, cartoony tennis game that I'm using for two reasons: 1) to overcome a loathing of tennis games that was instilled in me by having my ass handed to me so many times by Chris, Owen and Alyn and 2) to sate my appetite for unlocking things. The game has like a million characters, but you only start off with 2. Juicy.

Now that I think about it, I've still got quite a way to go before I'm a real "gamer" though. After all, these games all came out years ago. I like Penny Arcade! Do I get points for that?

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