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Published by Samuel Penn.

Also, see my profile for things that interest me.

Glendale Website - My main web site.

Yags - Main site for yet another game system, a generic GPL'd tabletop RPG.

Yagsbook - Documentation on the Yagsbook RPG documentation format, a Sourceforge project.

Mapcraft - Documentation on world mapping tools, another Sourceforge project.

Midnight Saga - An Ars Magica campaign.

Active Topics

The current topics are currently under active development (relatively speaking).

Yags is Another Game System - Game design notes for Yags, a Free roleplaying game system I use as the core system for most of my campaigns.

Yagsbook - Notes on an XML based documentation system I use for documenting Yags and related campaigns.

Full Thrust - Notes on Full Thrust

Stargrunt - Notes on Stargrunt.


Playstation 3 Games

In reverse order of having started playing them. May include spoilers. Scores given on 1-5 scale. Obviously, anything I think I'm going to hate I don't buy, so the average score will be quite high.

Score Meaning
A Truly amazing.
B Very good.
C Good game, worth playing.
D Mediocre, skippable unless bored.
E Very poor, annoying.
F Awful.

For reference, I would give an A to Elite, Lords of Time, Exile, Thief, Baldur's Gate and UT:2004. Not sure what else.

Viking: Battle for Asgard (C)

Having really played this much yet, but is rare amongst PS3 games in that it seems to give you some freedom on what you can do, rather than railroading the plot down a narrow track. Nothing amazing, but nothing bad yet either.

Pain (B-)

Simple downloadable game. This is a fun multiplayer game, though really needs more content.

Conan (C+)

Actually better than I thought it was going to be. The combat system is very good, and unlike Heavenly Sword you're not overwhelmed by numbers of opponents so you get time to actually learn to use the various moves. Different weapons have a different feel and function. The game fits the style of the Conan genre quite well (except for the use of magical armour), down to rescuing half naked women and dismembering opponents. The character graphics look a bit rough (especially compared other games such Assassins Creed or Heavenly Sword), which was what initially put me off buying the game after the demo.

Currently unfinished, stuck on fighting the last boss, and suffering from “I can't be bothered”. As with many PS3 games, it suffers from stupidly difficult end-of-level boss monsters despite the difficulty of the rest of the game being about right.

Gets a + for getting the Conan feel.

Lego Star Wars (C+)

Okay, fun, but nothing great. Some good humour, but very simple and obviously aimed at the younger market. Being able to chop up Jar Jar Binks with a lightsabre is fun.

Devil May Cry 4 (E-)

Similar to Heavenly Sword, though not where near as good. It's a railroaded beat-em-up type game which overdoses on button mashing combo attacks at the expense of any interesting plot or choices. Having never played any of the Devil May Cry games before, I was expecting something a lot more RPG-like, but it's not at all. Bad camera angles, which suddenly change as you're running along a ledge causing you to fall, repetitive combat against mindless critters, stupid 'puzzles' which make absolutely no sense all add up to a pretty poor game. As in Heavenly Sword, the cut scenes are very nicely done, and are about the only redeeming feature. However, I wouldn't consider them redeeming enough.

Burn Out Paradise (B+)

Another driving game, based on the idea of just driving around, racing, crashing and doing stunts. It's actually growing on me quite a bit, and though it does get a bit monotonous after a while, it looks good and plays quite well. It would be nice if there was a 're-try event' option, since at it is, you race all the way across the city and lose, then have to make your way back to the start again to retry - assuming you can remember where the event started. Some weather and day/night effects would make things more interesting, but otherwise quite a fun game.

Online side of it is okay, but nothing I consider important.

The Darkness (B-)

I bought this because it was cheap in Game, but it turned out to be quite a fun game. Bad points: slow loading times and only one ending, good points: some cool game elements and interesting story. It's the closest to an RPG I've yet found on the PS3, and the least railroaded of the games so far. Being able to sneak up on people (along walls and ceilings) with a tendril, and assassinate them, or smash lights etc is fun.

However, it really needed a “don't eat people” option, which didn't appear to exist. The end looks like it gives you a choice of whether to succumb to the Darkness or not, but it's a fake choice, and you're forced down a single path whether you want it or not. Gets a minus because this forced path.

Call of Duty 4 (C)

Good graphics (though the lack of anti-aliasing really shows in some places, not sure whether this is a PS3 failing, but most games I've played so far seem to lack it), and an interesting story driven plot, however it is very short. Reviewers complained that Heavenly Sword was short, but this is much shorter. Low score because of lack of length.

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune (B)

Good but short game. Very rail roaded, with no real chance to explore the world. This is a shame, since it's quite a nice engine. It is a platform jumper, but frequently saves so it never really gets annoying when you run off a ledge because the camera changed its angle at the worst possible moment (the camera angle changes as you move around, so if you're running to jump over a chasm, you suddenly find that though you lined yourself up perfectly when you started running, by the time you jump you're actually moving in a different direction since the movement controls are relative to the camera).

Resistance: Fall of Man (C)

A very rail-roaded shooter. An FPS without a mouse and keyboard is very difficult, but it's entertaining.

Motorstorm (C+)

Fun arcade game. In no way a driving simulator, which is probably why I like it. This is actually taking a while to complete, and though some tracks are quite difficult, there's a good selection of tracks to attempt at any point, so you don't get trapped on a single 'level' for ages trying to complete it.

Assassins Creed (B-)

Very nice graphics, with big environments to wander around and explore. Quite well put together, but the lack of a proper saved game really cripples it. It would have been so much better if you could save at any point, and therefore try out different tactics.

I couldn't give a damn about the modern day side of the game (the graphics in the modern day were embarresingly awful, and the plot was just tacky), and tried my best to ignore it. They should have just made it an entirely medieval based game.

Several points where the game forces you into a script (e.g., I'm standing next to the guy I have to kill, but have to wait for him to wander off with his guards because the scripted scene says I have to), which were annoying. Never got the point of collecting the flags, and gave up in the penultimate fight because I found it too hard (plus the game cheated, not allowing you to kill someone whilst they were on the floor).

Generally fun to play, and I never had any of the reported stability problems with it. I'm undecided about how to rate it, since there is a very good game hiding in there trying to get out, but there's also some very bad design choices which really cripple it in places.

Ninja Gaijin (F)

Pretty awful, and I can't understand how it got good reviews. I've got as far as the first boss, and I've probably given up on it. The disc seems to have a fault, and I now can't retry the first boss (it just hangs at the door), but I don't really care. It looks pretty, but the game play is pointless and dire.

Ridge Racer (D)

Rather average racing game. You can't smash cars up, so it's just a case of driving round tracks again and again. Does have a multiplayer splitscreen option however, which is fun and makes it worth while if you want a multiplayer racing game (none of the good racing games on the PS3 seem to have a multiplayer option - network doesn't count).

Heavenly Sword (C+)

Very pretty, very good cut scenes. The combat system is quite interesting, but there's no real chance to get good at it - some practise options would have been nice. Some of the boss fights turn into games of simon says (press the right button at the right time), and I gave up on the end boss for a while, but have now completed it.

Overall, quite a good game however.

user/samuel_penn/ps3.txt · Last modified: 2015/02/04 22:40 (external edit)