Tag Archives: Review

Modern Warfare 3 Ate My Life

 

Yes, it put a nice caramel glaze on my existence and shredded into cookie crumble shrapnel. I have played the game…. a lot.

So I am going to share my thoughts.

I have only played the multiplayer, which is 90% of the reason anybody would buy the game. Once the initial shock of ‘OMG GUNS PEWPEWPEW’ wears off I will probably move on to single player and joint ops.

But to the multiplayer!

I think some of the reviews have been unfair, calling it a waste of 60 dollars (being polite),  but I would agree with it being the most expensive map pack I have ever played for.

PROS:

  • The proficiency variations that can be unlocked for a weapon coupled with the assorted attachments offer a more specialized playing experience. I can setup a gun to be more of my style or compensate for my bad habits and short comings.
  • The different weapon choices is very nice. I am glad they put more guns into the game. In MW2 we had only four sniper rifles and now we can choose from six, which doesn’t sound like much but the differences are obvious when trying to shoot the nose off a dirty commie. Some have slow fire rate but sound like Thor himself farting, others are quiet but fast.
  • The different kill streak rewards. This is now broken into three formats. We have assault which is the more traditional kill streak with new selections of murderous rampage, assault drone is always fun. There is also support, which lends your hard earned mercantile work to UAVs and some sort of aid that the entire team can benefit from. Lastly we have specialist which is essentially unlocking perks as you progress 2,4,and 6 kills until you eventually unlock all the perks at once. This is typically my killstreak platform of choice.

CONS:

  • THE LAG! OH MY GOD…. I have pretty good internet and play lots of online games. I have never really had HUGE issues with lag before. This game is packed full of packet loss. I have had enemies shoot bullets out of their elbows. To be clear, I am coming around a corner, see a guy standing in a hallway facing to the side and suddenly bullets fly out of his armpit. On the killcam it shows him turning and putting his sights on me while I stand there like an idiot, VERY VERY frustrating. It had made it hard to know if I am actually sneaking up on somebody.
  • The maps are ok, just so. I like a good scale of variation with maps. Some maps should be sniper friendly and others should be run-n-gun friendly. It seems all the MW3 maps are designed with the same combat flow and skill set in mind. This disappoints me because I like to do different things. It feels like the standard player with an assault rifle is rewarded more than using any other type of weapon.
  • Hardcore [Insert Game Mode] is not fun at all anymore. In MW2 I lived and breathed for hardcore, now I play regular. Hardcore rewards cheap kills and camping more than before while regular feels more like MW2’s hardcore with the health of players and power of the guns. I am still confused how a shotgun blast to the face, sniper round to the chest, and grenade in the ass doesn’t kill a player but a throwing knife will regardless of where it hits.

 

Overall I think the game is good fun, but not flawless. There is certainly no shortage of issues for the developers to work on, some new features are done very well while some older aspects fall flat. Leveling doesn’t feel as tedious as before and rewards experimentation more than familiarity with weaponry, which I like. I am curious to see how the game will unfold with updates and  map packs, but I will continue to play it and neglect other aspects of my life, except maybe writing.

Which reminds me, writing post coming soon.

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Book Country

There is a new website designed to help budding writers not only get valued peer and professional feedback, but also help you break into the word business. All done before right? Here is the kicker, not only is it free, but you retain all of your rights. Did I just blow your mind? It gets better!

The peer system is designed for honest critiques. That means you cannot phone in it just to get your stuff reviewed, you have to contribute in some form. Before you can even submit anything, you have to review three other pieces of work. During your critiques, you can’t just say, “Oh I loved this story, it shows heart and depth,” and call it good. You have to give examples and specific details in order for your critique to count.

The site is heavily moderated to keep it friendly and honest, and the moderators aren’t afraid to banhammer any asshats. But to forewarn you, this isn’t for the super sensitive. Based on the reviews and feedback that I have seen, it is a tough love critique site. When something is written and it is awesome, you get praise, when something isn’t working or confusing, you are told in detail. Just know that if you submit a piece, prepare to receive some honest reviews.

Penguin Group put the whole thing together to help writers in their struggle to break into the business. The site launched in March April 26th and is still in beta, but in that time Penguin has bought two novels from writers on the site. Interested yet?

I need to finished my last touches on my book and slap get my happy ass on the website.

Edited: I had some information wrong about the website. Colleen Lindsay, who admins the website, corrected my wicked and asshattery ways. The crossed out stuff is wrong, ignore it or you can proceed to mock me in the comments. 

The website is HERE.

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A Dance of Dragons

I finished this child sized book earlier this week. I’ve debated on whether to post my thoughts on it or not, but given how much I love George R.R. Martin’s work I thought I would go ahead. So here goes.

The book was long, really long. With the breadth of his books, If you can say one thing about Mr. Martin, you can say he can develop his characters in such a twisted and interesting fashion few others really achieve. I don’t know if this is a golden jacket club, secretive among writers, but I do notice few others can make me care/hate the characters in their books like Martin can. This reason alone is just half of why I love his work, the other half would be the harmony between the character’s plights and the overall construction of the story. I feel the elements are perfectly harmonized and add a level of  ‘something for everybody’ vibe. The kudzu fever of fan growth between word of mouth and the success of the HBO show A Game of Thrones is a testament to that.

This book is good, I want to start out and make it clear. It is better than most. However compared to his previous works, this book left me feeling empty relative to the gigantic series of ‘WTF OMG THAT IS AWESOME’ moments I had in the first three books. Much and more is happening throughout the world of Westeros and we get a front seat observation bubble through the roller coaster, I do me all of it. Sometimes the level of detail of the snippets into the POV character’s world felt unneeded and filler. Tyrion’s admiration of the dragon’s road was a little outside of character and need of the story, I felt. The addition of the one Jamie and the two Cercei chapters seemed out-of-place as well. The prologue just confused me, I have no understanding of the relevance of it at all.

The background weaving of the different POV chapters is master class. When chapters start to bleed together and actions happen that affect several important characters, we get to see the different sides of the story in such a unique and refreshing light that it never felt recycled. This is a staple in Martin’s work that really makes me a fan boy. Along with the ‘I know something bad is going to happen’ moments as things are being built up. Perhaps that is what the goal of Martin’s vision is. Get all the chess pieces in place for the next two books, where there will be many a face punches for the reader. If that is the case, then sally forth sir.

The hints and allusions are endless. Nuggets of information we want to believe or have theorized are dangled our in front of us to make us believe that Martin is going to zig, when in fact his zags. Then just when we think he is going to zig (because he just zagged), he zags again and throws us for a loop. Perhaps something is going on under the table that I, as the reader, won’t pick up on or notice until the next book. Given Martin’s knack for football tackling the reader when they aren’t looking, I wouldn’t put it past him. This is another reason I love Martin’s work, I never know what is going to happen.

The epic last chapter of Jon left me with my mouth open, and the last two chapters of Dany made me want to fist pump. Then the epilogue made me go, “Dammmn!” as a few things from the other books clicked in place. This book wasn’t without its rewards. Tyrion’s wit and humor is unchanging, but his maturity is showing. Jon’s need to be a leader first and a friend second is ripe with understanding. Evolution of the characters as their situation changes is, I feel, the name of the game with this book.

The only thing about this book that keeps me from placing it with the first three in terms of awesomeness, is the lack of revelations and HARD plot twists. There are some little ones and two big ones, but not what I would expect from having read the first three. Maybe Martin is leading us into a false sense of understanding or maybe the story has just plateaued until the cathartic release  of the last books. Who knows aside from the man himself?

The book is good and the craftsmanship that Martin has achieved is rivaled by few others. If you are a fan of fantasy, realism, visceral fantasy, knights, dragons, sex, gore, and awesomeness then you should really check out this series.

 

 

Now I look forward to the next big book being released next week. Ghost Story by Jim Butcher. I am very excited!

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