Gaming Round-up

Other than a Hellgate: London post, I seem to have entirely neglected games for a month or so. I haven’t been playing an awful lot, but a quick round-up from the last few weeks:

A few screenshots and previews of STALKER: Clear Skies (or possibly S.T.A.L.K.E.R.:. C.l.e.a.r. S.k.i.e.s.) reminded me I’d never completed the first game, so I dusted off the most recent save game and headed back into the Zone. Turned out I wasn’t too far from the end of the game, and I managed to finish it off. Twice, in fact, with different endings. Thoroughly enjoyed it, though I probably vastly over-used the quick save/quick load keys in the last couple of levels. The story, like the game as a whole, is a sprawling mess that doesn’t really seem like it ought to work, but it sort of does, just about.

In Guitar Hero 3, the insane solo of Cult of Personality on Expert still has me stymied, I’m not sure I’m going to make it to that final tier. Still, plenty of fun to be had noodling around the other songs, plus both Guitar Hero: Aerosmith and the Wii version of Rock Band are scheduled for June (in the US, at least. So we might see Rock Band on the Wii in the UK sometime around the year 3124.) I’m not a huge Aerosmith fan, but I’ll probably pick up their Guitar Hero game, so long as they skip the naff-awful latter day ballads. The Wii version of Rock Band, disappointingly if not surprisingly, looks like it’s going to be quite similar to the PS2 version, lacking several features, principally downloadable content. Have to think about that one a bit more…

In spare moments, I manage to fit in a few Audiosurf tracks, though I haven’t found anything particular spectacular there. MMO-wise, I’m marking time in City of Heroes waiting for Issue 12 (and trying to decide whether to roll up a new character when it goes live, or play an existing one some more…) I just stuck an order in for the Collector’s Edition of Warhammer Online, as the pile of goodies both in-game and out look most nifty, a mere six-ish months to go there to decide on a class. In Hellgate: London, there was a big patch last week that changed the Marksman class quite significantly, I think, probably, though I couldn’t be bothered to study the patch notes in great detail to find out exactly how. Melmoth and I finally managed to get a couple of hours in last night, so we headed over to Stonehenge to take on Moloch again. Fortunately he’s caught up to my level since last time (with a mere single character re-roll en route), and the run went pretty smoothly. In the Moloch fight itself, we were knocking his health bar down at the usual glacial rate, but every time one of us died it jumped back to 100%. A quick alt-tab and proper read of the patch notes confirmed this new ability of his, to regenerate 20% health when he kills a character, which looked like it might put a bit of a crimp on things, but a stack of health injectors and some fancy footwork saw us right, and we took him down without any major problems. According to the notes, the new patch also introduced some ultra-shiny loot drops for Moloch, but we didn’t see any of those, t’ch. Still, we did assemble quite a collection of headgear from his corpse (though the use of yellow rather than purple for epic-quality items in Hellgate tragically precludes the oh-so-hilarious “shiny purple helmet” reference).