If there was any justice in the world…
…Dragon Age 2 would be out today.
Wandered round the city today and popped into Game for a quick look around. Couldn’t see a single thing that whet my gaming whistle, which is sadly turning out to be the story of my life. Maybe I’m just getting old?
I’m still attracted to games like Starcraft 2, but the difficulty curve of multiplayer is so steep that playing online just feels like self-flagellation, without the kinky pay-off.
Dragon Age 2 felt quite nice in the demo – the human models have improved somewhat, being a little less uncanny to watch for any length of time (still not great, though). Background texturing still fails, though, and I was not surprised to find myself – yet again – running round a mountain environment that was covered in what looked to be purple-brown vomit. Maybe that’s a side effect of the ever-encroaching darkness?
The combat is a little better (camera still poor) but I don’t get why the control system has to mirror the Mass Effect model so closely. The ability cooldowns are all way too slow, the attack button needs to be hammered way too often, it just doesn’t feel like a “natural” combat system to me. That’s just my opinion, of course, and I didn’t spend much time using the Mage archetype, which might be better for me in terms of gameplay, but it defeats the point when I like playing characters who can mix it up in the melee.
So yeah. It hasn’t quite won me over yet, but it’s a big release froma studio that I’ve long been a fan of, one of the few gaming studios engaged in actual storytelling in their games. I’m willing to overlook my misgivings regarding the combat system just to see what fun I can have in the conversation system.
I also came close to picking up The Wise Man’s Fear, the follow-up to The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. The first book I didn’t pick up until I saw it on discount paperback and honestly because there had been so many people harping on about how awesomely great it was that I just had to get it over with. It was alright. I struggled with the Polgara-level smugness of two of the characters, so never got into it as much as I would have liked to – Kvothe I could just about get the point of since he’s announced on the jacket as the main man, but Denna was kind of pointlessly insufferable unless of course she turns out to be the female big bad.
Anyway, I almost picked up the second book as a hardback, because despite the nits I might pick, Rothfuss writes very well and generally speaking I believe people that you think are talented should be rewarded for their efforts. Whether or not he gets a better cut of the money from hardback, I don’t know, but surely any publisher doing decent sales on first release is going to be happy with their choice of author.
AAAAANYWAY. The cover put me off a bit. Sorry. Lovely border design and typeface choice, wonky-headed sword guy in the middle didn’t win me over. I might have said years ago that covers just don’t matter on the books I buy but honestly I like books that are gorgeous to look at as well, and the UK cover didn’t quite hit the spot – enough to put me off laying down the extra money.
/sigh. So much to do this weekend, a lot of it work. I might try and relax a bit though because I’m feeling a touch ragged today. Maybe the gym this afternoon, some chores and a nice dinner is the best course of action. I can maybe fit a couple of hours work in later on when it might not feel like a burden.