I make no secret of it.
I am a 43-year old man who loves playing computer and video games.
And why not?
I was a teenage when Space Invaders, Asteroids and Centipede took over the arcades.
I was sixteen when I bought my first computer, a TRS-80. It was great for primitive gaming.
And I’ve got a great collection of old computer software in a special room in my basement. Perhaps I’ll do a video of it some day so you can see.
I like to work hard and I like to play hard.
When you love what you do, your work is very much like play. It’s enjoyable, fun, exciting, and the payoff is significant. So there are stages in my life where I will not play games much because I’m having too much fun building my business.
But there are other times where I take a step back. Business can become serious business and it isn’t so much fun anymore. (I’m actually in the process of remedying that right now.)
So what are the latest games that have my attention?
1) I bought a Sony Playstation 3 for the family for Christmas. We have it hooked up to our 103″ home theater screen.
Holy schnikies! This is one killer system!
We’ve got a Wii, and it is a technological marvel. And we’ve got an XBox 360. Cool stuff.
But neither of them touch the PS3 as far as an all-in-one gaming machine and media center.
It’s got a large hard drive, plays Blu-Ray DVDs (you should see Planet Earth on this thing), connects to the Internet for online play, allows you to download add-ons and demos from the Playstation store, plays music, video and displays photos. All in glorious 1080p resolution!
So the first game we played on this system was Rock Band.
I’ve played Guitar Hero. It’s great fun.
But Rock Band comes with a drum kit, guitar and microphone, so I was able to jam out with my kids. Since I knew more of the songs, I grabbed the mic. You haven’t heard anything until you’ve heard me belt out the lyrics to Bon Jovi’s “Wanted Dead of Alive”. Well, perhaps its better that you don’t hear me.
Nevertheless, it is great fun and we’ve not yet unlocked all the songs. I love that you can go online and purchase new tunes for the game. I picked up “Limelight” by Rush, “Roxanne” by The Police and a couple others.
There are very few games that keep my attention all the way through to the end.
The Ratchet and Clank series on the PS2 has been one of those games, and the latest game for the PS3 does not disappoint.
The game is called Ratchet and Clank Future: Tools of Destruction
It’s a 3D platform style game where you are placed in a lush and beautiful world (many worlds, actually) and play through the story by smashing, shooting and solving puzzles. It’s easy to pick up, full of Insomniac Games’ fantastic sense of humor and some of the most wonderful eye candy I’ve ever seen. It’s totally appropriate for all ages and I will probably end up playing through it again some time.
Finally, I have recently started playing Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune, an action/adventure title set in lush jungles and old ruins.
It’s very much in the style of the Tomb Raider series, only there are some new twists and moves added to set this one apart. Naughty Dog games did a great job creating a compelling storyline, developing interesting characters, balancing gunplay and action with exploration and adventure, and really making you feel like you playing a movie. The story unfolds at an appropriate pace and the realistic scenery is breathtaking. Sometimes you have to stop the action just to look around and smell the virtual roses.
Moving on from the PS3 to the PC…
It’s no surprise that I am still playing World of Warcraft on a limited scale. I have fully leveled my warrior to 70 many moons ago. I’ve got my epic flyer and some nice gear. Since I am not a hardcore playing, I’m not tweaked out in epics, but I just don’t have that much time to play.
And I am waiting for the expansion pack. Sometime in 2008, hopefully sooner than later, Blizzard is releasing the second expansion to the game, Wrath of the Lich King. WotLK will introduce players to an entirely new continent with new quests and critters to fight. It will also increase the level cap to 80. So when it finally does come out, I’ll probably be highly unproductive for a month or so.
Finally, I have spent many nights repeating this phrase… “Just one more try…”
Why? I acquired a copy of Peggle from Popcap Games.
WARNING! This game is highly addictive and is only recommended for those who are willing to sacrifice precious hours of their lives!
Here’s a summary. Imagine “Pachinko meets crack”.
The game board is filled with blue, orange, purple and green pegs, with each board displaying a new design.
From the top of the board, you shoot a ball towards the pegs with the goal of eliminating the orange pegs before you run out of balls. Hitting a green peg gives you a special ability for a short time, while hitting a purple peg increases your bonus points.
It looks so innocent.
It’s not. Popcap is evil. They owe me hours back.
I finished the regular game a few weeks back, only to be introduced to a “challenge” mode, which provides you with 75 additional challenges!
The good news is I’ve completed approximately 60 of those challenges, so there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
But there is nothing like the victory dance you do on the inside after completing an extremely challenging level and receiving an in-game trophy. Big whoop, huh? I know. “Get a life, Joel”
So, that’s what I am playing.
How about you? Are you a gamer? Do you just “not get it” when it comes to video games?