Saturday, December 29, 2007

Search Results for IMBACORE

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Friday, December 28, 2007

On the Last Week of December AMPED Gave to Me...

Who multiplied my cheese?

You might think I'm demented loading this into my Amped account:

But! But! When converted to WRCash:

I just couldn't resist the gdanged promo. Thanks Amped!

Promo runs from Dec 26 to Dec 31. It's still free to play of course but you can use the ingame cash to buy extra firepower for your trooper. Now would be a good time for you to join the fray!

(Note: I already had 33 WRCash in my account before I topped up, mind you.)

8 Pa

One rich geek toting a FREE P90. I AM happy/I'm feeling glad/I got sunshine in a bag...

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Sunday, December 23, 2007

Empire Earth II "First" Impressions

... Yes, under a rock. For two years. Me.

After lying in my cabinet collecting dust for almost a year, I finally installed my copy of Empire Earth II. I bought it for only 200 Php and I must say, it's head and shoulders above "not bad" and by far the deepest RTS I've ever played. It doesn't have the heavy micromanagement skills requirement prevalent in games like Warcraft III (where most units are so fragile that individual troops or even groups need to be "danced" away from harm). This game, in my opinion, places more emphasis in the macromanagement as there is more than a truckload of technologies waiting to be researched and a whole slew of buildings that need to be constructed. It goes without saying that this fact alone will make or break the game for different players.

It's not the Great Wall, but it's still an impressive looking one nonetheless. Outside, an AI ally's fortress stands watch for any hostile forays into our borders.

Yes, walls are needed in the game and this for me, is the only one that made me feel like those stone- and wood-depleting things are indeed serving a purpose. Make do without them, and you just might feel the pain of what catapults can do to your universities, city center, markets, and temples.

As surreal as it sounds for a real-time strategy game, Empire Earth II uses markets and trade routes; you can send trading vessels across oceans to trade and everytime they do, you gain money proportional to the distance traveled. Sometimes they earn you technology points too, which let you unlock improvements for your military and economic sectors of your civilization. Astounding depth really.

We will cut a swath through their ranks. Or maybe not.

The combat is where this game falls short of my expectations. I felt it when I first plowed headlong into enemy ranks but at that time, I couldn't put a finger on it. Then I read forum posts and started really noticing that the game doesn't implement the tried-and-true RPS (rock-paper-scissors) scheme really well. Unlike in games like, say Warhammer 40, 000: Dawn of War, where you could really feel --- and see!! --- troops with
anti-personnel armaments cut through infantry like scythes through corn stalks, here in EE2 counters really don't do significant damage than their comrades.

RPS in this game is a bit faulty: those siege engines will eat up those barracks much faster than those macemen can take down that Korean house but macemen and archers seem to be equally adept/inept at taking down a given kind of enemy infantry.


I am still tackling the first campaign of the game, which puts players in the role of the person who founded Korea but "battle through the ages" is the slogan of Empire Earth games and I've seen in the manual mech units that are named "HERCs."

Hmmm, of Starsiege fame? (but isn't that from another developer --- that is now defunct ---?) This may get interesting as the weeks pass!

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Sunday, December 16, 2007

IGN's Review for Universe at War Now Out!

"Do not run, we are your friends."

I watched its trailer and it's awesome. Read the review here.

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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Sarah McLachlan It Isn't

Crispin!! Basillio!! Part 2

And so after nearly ten years of wondering who is singing that song that has only the phrase "thank you" for its chorus, I finally got the name.

(It wasn't the Alanis song I was looking for you annoying buggers! That to some of my cousins who insisted.) Lol! I can't sing to save my life and I didn't know the lyrics so no one knew what I was blabbering about. I tried Google all those years back but the first page was deluged with Alanis links. I got tired searching. Now after several years I searched anew and this time other names popped up. I found her among the jungle of names. To think I bought "Surfacing" thinking Sarah was the singer hehe! Thanks to Vivien for introducing me to Sarah McLachlan's music and made me a fan.

Lol! That (wrong!) album was so intertwined with that chapter of my life that everytime I hear its songs I remember the times. I remember the skating rink kissing scene with a girl. I remember us leaning back to back in one of our study sessions. I remember her favorite playful phrase "basta, basta". I remember it was that same girl and me that made the private study area in our library available for groups of three or more only.

I miss the girl but not just because of her. I miss that time. I remember NCPF. I remember it was not only one girl haha! I remember one with a surname that can fit in an elven saga (and who I think, bound me with elven magic for a time). I remember that girl's favorite playful phrase "maulit sad ta." I remember Vitasoft. I remember being dragged from my slumbers by two women ---- from a seaside cliff ---- in a forest --- in the early morning --- so we could go swimming in the reefs.

Dang, I'd give anything to have the ability to go back there at will.

Songs. So potent.

Yet that magical time is over; if I met them now, all that remains are the experiences, the past, mini-legends lost forever. I am sharing it now with my wife and there are no favorite playful phrases; only that wonderful lilt whenever she says "bag" or "pan". I listen to new songs and with time, when I listen to them, I will remember the magic that is now.

Anyway, enough with the babble. You can listen to the song HERE and see its lyrics HERE.

And no, it's not Sarah McLachlan, it's Natalie Merchant but I am thankful for "Surfacing", thankful for the memories contained in it.

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Crispin!! Basilio!!

It's a sure sign that you are hooked to computers when you rack brains trying to remember where in your digs you put your Warhammer 40,000 rulebook and all you can think of is:



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Sunday, December 9, 2007

On the First Week of Christmas My Mother Gave to Me.....

.... improved crosshairs in War Rock.

Signs of the times. You now can't drag your parents like the last time you wanted those shiny Ravage and Frenzy Hasbro action figures. It's the reverse now; you are older --- YOU will be the one to buy them gifts after all those years of dragging them across supercenters mewling about how you have to have that blue-gray-and-flesh-toned Man-e-faces toy. Hence, this December, over a dinner with my wife and my mother I blurted out "Ma, Christmas gift ko; 50 pesos lang, pangbili ng one month na War Rock crosshairs." My wife pinched me, my mother laughed and poof! Off I went to the nearest store that had Load Central posters plastered all over its glass doors.

Hmm. No torn blouse sleeves, force exerted, and mewling. After decades of plying the trade, I must have gotten good at this.

This was the first time I rented crosshairs so I must admit, I got really pleased with what I paid for:



It's more visible this time; perfect for those maps that make it hard for you to see the default crosshairs. (Nerbil's perpetual snow for instance.) What really surprised me was the reticule's behavior when you hit someone. Running still lowers your accuracy and the crosshairs reflect this by moving away from the center dot.

Nothing new with that.

However when you hit someone:

... it reddens. This is very useful because you can retreat back to the nearest cover if your crosshairs don't redden --- a sure sign you're hitting only air. Before, it wasn't so clear if your bullets were finding your mark, particularly if your target was so far away; you could have stood there pumping lead without hitting anything. Now, you can take cover, reload and shoot again --- and hope that the next time you can quickly cap the enemy soldier.

Thanks ma! One of the best gifts ever!

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