I Remember The Oregon Trail

By on Jul 28, 2007 in Blog Posts, Games | 1 comment

I Remember The Oregon Trail It was the early 90’s and I was in middle school looking forward to only one part of my day – the lucky few moments when I led my virtual family in a trek across 19th century North America to find a better life in the West. It was a hard journey, fraught with danger and disease, but with a little luck and enough time to finish I just might achieve victory over The Oregon Trail. It may not seem possible that a game created in 1985 could have been this epic or enduring, but I assure you it was and is. I had never played a game that was so customizable (you could name all five of the family members!), nor as deep (never before had I seen so many choices to be made in a game). My fellow students and I experienced this classic on the classic Apple IIc in a small computer lab at what was then S.P. Morton Middle School. Though not cutting edge, the...

The Nightmare That Was Empire Earth III Beta

By on Jul 25, 2007 in Blog Posts, Games | 0 comments

Last Friday Fileplanet released the Empire Earth III Beta to subscribers. After downloading the 2.4 GB installation file and installing it I was met with a surprise. Sierra, the publishers of this “game” had implemented a system where, prior to actually being able to run the game, you must first download the executable from a website. When prospective gamers visited the site and entered their license key they were greeted with a database error telling them to try back in “some minutes”. After repeated attempts to retrieve the necessary executable from the website, the site locked me out and disabled my serial number. I reviewed the Beta forums to find that this was a common happening and that almost no one could actually play the game.The Beta remained on the Fileplanet home page on Friday and through Saturday until it was finally removed on Sunday. Sierra has...

Flyff (Fly for Fun) Review

By on Dec 27, 2005 in Blog Posts, Games | 0 comments

OK, so Fly for Fun is probably the worst name ever for a MMORPG. Let’s go ahead and move past that. Flyff is an interesting entry into the growing list of MMORPG. What sets it apart is its price tag (it’s free) and the world the game is set it. For a free game there is a lot to do and see, but don’t be mistaken – there are many flaws and issues to be worked out. Like Dungeons & Dragons Online (see my previous previews) this game has a dedicated fan base and a good deal of support and communication from its developers via web and forum postings.Many very strange things occur in Flyff. It snows for no apparent reason. Shouting can be heard by everyone, everywhere. There is no group window to see the stats on your “troupe” mates. The grammar and spelling are the worst I’ve ever seen in a game, ever. The are bugs in nearly every aspect of the...

Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach – Stress Test 2

By on Dec 19, 2005 in Blog Posts, Games | 0 comments

Round Two! I am happy to report that DDO is even better the second time around. Many minor issues were resolved and the graphics have been improved. There were minor changes to some of the quests (I made it to Level 3, Rank 1), but all in all the experience was the same. I really like the addition of the Rank system, which I won’t discuss in detail due to the Non-Disclosure Agreement. The community is growing stronger and the magnificent developer support is still there. My only gripe – I have submitted a BETA application and participated in no less than three events designed to give players a chance to win a BETA account, yet I have never even seen a GM (Game Master – they came around and gave them out in the game). Boo-hoo.

Dungeons & Dragons Online: Stormreach – Initial Thoughts

By on Nov 19, 2005 in Blog Posts, Games | 0 comments

The DDO stress test is over and I find myself blankly staring at my notebook pondering what I will do with my spare cycles. Due to the non-disclosure agreement that was agreed to by me and all of the other participants, I am not allowed to go into detail about the game. I will however point a few things out for those of you wondering what it is all about.I’m not a D&D fan. I have never played the pen and paper version, nor the board games or even the electronic versions. DDO has been my first experience with the genre. The DDO world is an immersive and entertaining one, rich with content and attractive to see and hear. Being that this was a stress test, one cannot hold against it any server issues that occurred. I will say that the developers were the most responsive I have ever seen to server crashes. Not only did they quickly resolve issues (I don’t recall being...

Civilization 4 Review

By on Nov 2, 2005 in Blog Posts, Games | 0 comments

I have been playing Civilization since the original game was released in 1991. I love the series. Many hours of my life have been happily spent positioning cavalry and capturing enemy tiles. Needless to say I have extremely high expectations for any game in the series and Civ 4 does not disappoint.The best way to describe Civ 4 is to say that it’s the best of all of the previous games and then some. Units and technology that we are so fond of are all present and accounted for, with some additions to mix things up. As with previous versions of Civ things are bigger, better and more polished in the latest release. The new graphics engine provides a clean and attractive interface for governing your people. The game has excellent sound effects as well as music. I feel as if I’m watching The Lion King every time I open the game. Tim Rice and Sir Elton would be proud.Single...