Tag Archives: Games

Tactics Ogre

Squeenix dropped Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together unexpectedly into Australia retail.  It’s a PSP remake of the original Tactics Ogre game which featured on the SNES.

Tactics Ogre is yet another turn based strategy game developed by the guys who went on to produce Final Fantasy Tactics and Vagrant Story.

It features a branching storyline, and enough tricky combat tactics to keep you busy for some time – it’s dislodged Z.H.P as my current carry everywhere PSP title.

The Australian retail box is a “special edition” which contains a minimalist artbook (meh) and a mini soundtrack.

The PSP remake features a few nice view options, but doesn’t appear to have been drastically altered from it’s original SNES format graphics, which is a nice change. Players familiar with Final Fantasy Tactics Advance or A2 will find the visual style familiar.

Finally! A fight we can win!

Interestingly enough, the game features a screenshot option, and has extra scenarios for you to play through once you’ve finished the main game.  So far I’ve only finished chapter 1, and that’s already taken a few hours of my life to achieve.

Battles are difficult, but not impossible – occasionally a battle really comes together well and you can storm through it, but in general they feel genuinely difficult as you face poor terrain hindering your units mobility and face powerful enemies who shrug off attacks. This, however, rarely crosses the boundary to unfair – and frequently the best way to finish a mission is to rush for the goal than to cautiously fight through the enemies.

Overall, an excellent member of the genre, and worth the time and effort.  The branching storyline should also offer a fair bit of avenue for replay.

Games and Censorship

Oh god, the OFLC and the NSW Attourney-General’s office have opened a can of worms.

Given the latest sort of back and forth, EB Games is a serious violator of the NSW Classification laws for selling games that currently aren’t classified.

These games include titles such as:  World of Warcraft, Age of Conan, Guild Wars and Warhammer Online (all of which I’ve seen on the shelves of my local EB).  I even have evidence of having bought unclassified games from EB in the past – I have a copy of Master of Orion I, which was bundled with UFO Enemy Unknown – UFO was classified, but MOO wasn’t – in its original EB shrinkwrap with the old-style EB price sticker intact.

Anyway, most of us don’t view this as being a big deal.  It seems EBGames doesn’t realise it’s breaking/has broken the law.  The NSW Police seem to be quietly ignoring it along with every other crime they ignore.

Anyway, there is a point to this, other than screaming at how stupid this all is.

Henceforth, I will not be posting my opinions on import games unless I can find evidence of an OFLC classification.  Technically, it might be sufficient to classify as a public demonstration if I include screenshots or detailed information about the game, so let’s just not risk it.  Besides, the imports I bring in for myself are a tiny tiny fraction of the total games I play and I rarely mention them anyway.

And…  if anybody talks about mass complaining to the NSW police that EB and every other games retailer are selling unclassified games, I’d strongly recommend participating.  It would give all of the relevant parties something to seriously think about if, all of a sudden, every reseller of games and the publishers are all being hit with classification infringements…

Fallout 3 – First Impressions

Well, I’ve played Fallout 3 for a few hours (amidst after-hours calls for work issues, but that’s another story).

As somebody who has played both Fallout 1 and 2, I’m quite pleased with the way the game turned out.

Performance wise I wasn’t too sure how I was going to go, my gaming boxes traditionally don’t stay up in the high-performance category for long, and my current one is nearing a year old now.  The 9600GT SLI configuration handled High Detail with a few tweaks (Resolution turned up from 800×600 to 1600×1200, Anisotropic filtering turned off and Anti-Aliasing set to 2x) and I’ve been enjoying a very smooth and responsive framerate.

If you’ve played Oblivion, the commonalities created by both games using the same engine are fairly obvious – Fallout 3 has the same fast-travel system, mapping and fundamental menu arrangement, just all styled to look like the pip-boy rather than the Oblivion in-game menu.

Combat is relatively easy at first, but becomes punishing quite quickly – I found myself with plenty of ammunition, but a lack of healing/treatment items to deal with common HP loss.

Story development so far is a bit… absent.  But that’s mostly because Bethdesia has taken the same approach as they took with Oblivion where they throw players off into the wild without much guidance and hope they’ll stumble into the story along the way.  A bit more guidance would be nice – it took me a while to get the whole subway navigation thing straight in my head, especially since the world location cursor doesn’t move as you make your way through the subway tunnels.

All in all, it’s a very pretty game – it plays well, looks good, and fits the Fallout franchise nicely.  I can see myself plodding through this game to reach the end.