Thursday, April 21, 2005

Yeah, It Happened Again.

So, there was no post last week. This has been happening with a startling frequency over the last couple of weeks but, I assure you, it won't happen again in the near future. The reason for last week's no-post was, once again, Enemy Territory Fortress. As was previously mentioned, I found it impossible to connect to a game running the mod. I was so sure that the 1.3 patch was going to A). solve my problems, and B). be released before last Thursday, that I was completely unprepared when it turned out that neither happened. The not-released-before-Thursday thing is the reason for the missing post. But yeah, that's right, I still can't play ETF. The same problems are present, and it's pissing me off.

So, I played some more Anarchy Online. After "blitzing" missions for so long that I nearly gained a level from picking locked chests, I finally gained enough money to buy my very own Yalmaha at the modest level of 62. "What's a Yalmaha?", you may be asking. Well, it's a vehicle that not only let's you move much faster than foot travel allows, but also grants the ability to fly. The world of Rubi-Ka seems to change immediately, as you're no longer restrained to explore places that are more or less "safe" to travel. Out of the range of enemies, you're free to travel anywhere you please. This I did - as soon as I had my Yalmaha equipped I must have spent an hour or two zipping above the treetops, checking out the sights. Then, satisfied, I decided to take a break. Too much of a good thing, you know how it goes.

So, I've been playing Monster Hunter quite a bit more again, lately. I haven't really "accomplished" anything, as if that really matters, but I did manage to log on for the first time and find out it was "extra materials at the material shop day", so I've got a whole bunch of level 3 pellet ammo just begging to be unloaded in some dragon's ass. A strange fact regarding Monster Hunter - whenever you enter an empty town and signal that you're playing solo, other players show up faster than an N-Gage to a landfill. As soon as you signal that you're looking for some people to team up with, the town is so empty that you start to think of the tumbleweeds rolling by as friends.

One more thing this week, on the free stuff front. I don't know how long it's been around, but with all the hubbub surrounding the Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy movie(which I'd love to talk about, being a huge Douglas Adams fan, but this is a videogame site, after all), it's popped up onto the radar. What, you ask? A slightly graphic-ized version of the 1984 Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy text adventure game. Yeah, that's right, the Infocom classic. There are apparently not one but two versions of the illustrated version available, so choose the one you prefer. Don't forget the junk mail.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Um, Sorry.

OK, sorry about the whole no post thing last week - I'll explain what happened. In keeping with the recent theme of things I'd planned to spend last week's post writing about Enemy Territory Fortress, another total conversion for Enemy Territory in the theme of the many Team Fortress mods. The ET2.60 patch threw a stick between the spokes of my gaming bicycle, so to speak, and I found myself unable to connect to a server. Hence, no game to write about for last week's post. When I realized this I panicked, figured I'd never figure out a backup plan in time(which I didn't), and gave up on the whole thing. I'm not the only one having the problem with ETF, so hopefully by this time next week we'll be back on the right track.

So anyway, I've been playing a little bit of Anarchy Online again lately. The new advertising system is in place and, honestly, it's not that bad. Billboards have been scattered about Rubi-Ka since I got my first glimpse anyway, now they're just advertising real-world products instead of in-game items like Yalmahas. The really sweet part of this deal is it's starting to look like stock Anarchy Online is going to move into the realm of being free for quite a while. Sure, there haven't been any major announcements, but I give you this quote from the news bit linked above: "... I am confident our free players will welcome the permanent continuation of our complimentary subscription in the ultimate sci-fi MMORPG". Seems like a solid hunch to me.

I've bumped my Adventurer up to level 53 by now, but it's been a slow process. Leveling in Anarchy Online, at these levels anyway, is actually quick and easy - it's me that's slow moving. For me, the draw of an MMORPG has nothing to do with leveling, quests, or even socializing. No, for me, it's all about exploring the massive, intricate worlds laid out in front of you. I spend the vast majority of my time in AO doing just that, running around looking for cool areas and maybe taking a screenshot or two, if the mood is upon me. Maybe, if ETF isn't patched by next week, I'll post some of my favorite snapshots of my travels.

I often wonder how different my character would be if I'd never met the kind soul who gave me a million credits and a backpack full of BBI Faithful 22 pistols. I'm sure that I'd be quite a bit more impoverished, as well as having died quite a bit more. I've just recently equipped the last two pistols of the bunch, so that means that pretty soon I'm going to have to take matters into my own hands when it comes to weapons. It also means that pretty soon, I'll be able to do the same favor for another clan Adventurer - I just hope I don't end up giving away hundreds of thousands of credits worth of free pistols to someone who, later on, reveals themselves to be a walking pile of crap.