Wednesday, 31 December 2008

Living_Skins_fig01 Well the year is almost up. Only a few hours left before 2009 begins. It's been a good year, admittedly the Den has only been alive for less than half of it, but in about 4 months I'll have updated 68 times, that's not bad considering previous blogs have only lasted a few posts and about a week before I lose interest.

Anywho, this isn't gonna be a long a wordy post, I've got a few posts in the works but with it being new years eve I probably won't get them online till Jan 1st now. So this is just an update to wish everyone a Happy New Year, I hope you all have luck and good will in it and fingers crossed this time a year from now we'll all still be alive and going huh?


Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Oh the good ol' days.


funny santa So Christmas is over and New Year is only days away. It's been a full year for me with lots of stuff going on. It's kinda peaked in the last few weeks with Christmas rushing, being social (a rare thing for me) and a lot of illness going around (and although I've managed to escape the two major bugs everyone I know seems to have caught, I've found out I have asthma and a heart Anyway, that's pretty much why there have been no updates for about 2 weeks. Sorry about that.

Theirs a little good news though. With Christmas comes Christmas presents! I've gotten quite a few games to review as I find time as well as a few rants brewing and not to mention some small plans to change how the Den works.

Anywho, I'll try to date soon.

Till then enjoy the new look :D

Tuesday, 16 December 2008


d20_black_350 I wanted to update with something long and wordy today with at least a few pictures. Sadly I was distracted by being lazy so no major update, sorry. Although I did do my rounds of the MMO websites earlier to see if there was any news on the Open Beta of Runes of Magic (as my download is gonna take over 24 hours thanks to the 3 gig install...I know...scary huh?), no real news on RoM but I did spot an update on Dragonica. This games been mentioned on a lot of MMO sites for a while now but for some reason it caught my interest today and I checked out the new trailer...gotta say the game looks bloody fun!

Anyway, pointless me trying to sell it based on a single trailer, better off showing you the trailer and letting you pick for yourself. Keep in mind it's gonna be hosted by the evil behind FlyFF and Space Cowboy...bastards...

Sunday, 14 December 2008

Katy Brand's Music Videos

Ok as a sorry for no updates this weekend I give you a collection of the spoof music videos by good ol' British born and bred comedian Katy Brand. She's starting to feel like the UK's long over-due answer to Weird Al. Admittedly if your from outside the UK you probably wont get most of the people she's spoofing sorry. Enjoy

Saturday, 13 December 2008

XNA, The Future of Homebrew, or Evil Tool for the Retarded?

So, recently I've been enjoying my 360 more than normal. Why? Well partly because I wanna get my gamer score up (I dunno why, it's as useless as the score in Super Mario Bros. 3 on NES), and also because I've been enjoying the growth and development of the NXE. I must say in general it's going good, but there are a few exceptions. I won't go on about them all today because I wanna focus on one.

The Community Games...

Microsoft released a bunch of tools a while back called XNA, this was to allow small time indy developers to make games on their PC then port it to Xbox 360 and if it passed moderation it would be sold on the Xbox Live Marketplace. Awesome huh? Well I think so.

Anyway, with the launch of the NXE came the launch of the Community Games shop, finally everyone could enjoy small time games for the average price of about 400 points. This appealed to me endlessly because I've always taken the view Homebrew causes creativity beyond that of a major games company. Sadly this isn't so.

There are about 20 games on the community shop right now and almost all of them suck. I know these are small time developers with no real budgets, but I used to be part of a small time MMO project, although we never finished our game, by posting for help on sites like Deviant Art we got some decent 3D modeler, some amazing artists, and some good writers as well as some impressive concept and think-tank members all working for free just because they wanted to be part of a game development team. So how come games like this get into the Xbox Live Community Game Shop:


I downloaded this game cause I thought the cover must be a's not. This is the quality of images you can paint with the tool. I am in NO WAY joking when I say MSPaint that comes with your copy of Windows, or whatever you get with a Mac and Gimp if your using Linux is VASTLY better than this pile of crap and doesn't cost 400 shitting points!

This is what truly concerns me. The game got though the moderation and put online for people to buy...why? It's the kind of thing freeware sites don't even put online. This shows some serious issues with the moderation and rating system which leads me to believe that within a few months the Community Shop is gonna be filled with horribly badly made games with no visual, gameplay, or audio quality at all. If you don't believe me, and have a 360, download the trial of RPaints and try questioning me then.

Seeing that this can make it onto the shop though has made me realise even I should be able to make a, if you can code C++ and your bored, let me know, let's make a game where a stickman has to jump over lines...we'll be freaking rich!

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

Actor In Neck Slash Stage Horror

An actor portraying a suicide bid accidentally slashed his own throat on-stage following a prop mix-up.

Daniel Hoevels, 30, collapsed with blood pouring from his neck after using a real blade instead of the blunt stage knife.

He was taken to hospital after the dramatic scene at Vienna's Burgtheater in Austria.

The audience had been in raptures, unaware the actor was facing his own demise for real.

But when he failed to greet their applause for the show's spectacular special effects with a bow they separated fact from fiction.

Police are now investigating whether the mix-up was murderous.

Full Story Here

Sorry guys and gals for the no-show on an update today, busy day. I did bump into this story on my rounds of the news web sites today though and thought I'd share. Kinda scary huh? I'll TRY to update tomorrow with my real update (got a bit of a rant on the go Happy) so see you then <3

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Blinko - Real Time. Real (Special) People.

I'll make this quick cause I need sleep bad. So today I was looking around the net when I noticed adverts for a site called Blinko. As far as I can gather without giving them my details it's a social network site aimed at mobile phone users. The site it's self isn't important. What's important here is their advert. Check this out;


Now am I alone in mistaking their horrific little character there for a mentally ill possibly down syndrome kid? Their even worse in the animated adverts (but I couldn't embed the flash into the site to show you the horrors Sad sorry). It's nice to see special people popping up in adverts and other places, but ones gonna like me for saying this and the terminology I use, but are they trying to say their entire user base are retards?

Anywho, I might be able to update tomorrow with something a bit more substantial than a YouTube video or a random little thing like this, so check back then you sexy peoples (and the ugly ones too I guess).

Monday, 8 December 2008

...And Yet I Bet He Sucks At Guitar Hero

Bored? Enjoy!

POO The internet is a big place full of wonderful things, weird things, amazing things...if you know where to look. If you don't, the internet is a sodding boring place with nothing to do. Because of this I've been collecting random sites in my favourite menu just to give to you guys to keep you entertained. Today I thought I'd give out a few links to what truly prove the internet is a weeeird place. So, as I can't be bothered to go on and on anymore, here are the sites:

1. The Zentai Project
For anyone worried there might be Hentai (as it's only a letter out) in this site, as far as I can find there isn't any. Instead this site is dedicated to the Zentai movement, a weird form of dressing up. I won't say any more than that because I don't wanna spoil it for you...but seriously, what the hell?

2. Zombo Com (requires sound)
This is Zombo Com...Welcome To Zombo Com...You Can Do Anything At Zombo Com...Yeeees...This...Is Zombo Com...

3. Leekspin (requires sound)
Don't worry, it's not Meat Spin *shivers*

4. You Fell Asleep Watching a DVD
Quite literally the ability to pick a movie from a list and see it's DVD menu on loop in a dark room as if you've just woken up at the end of a DVD...why? Because it's the internet and it can.

5. Clearly Closed
Seriously...I'm all for collections...but what the hell?

Saturday, 6 December 2008

R.E.M - Munich

Cover of Editors Song

Out of the Red and into the £££!

180px-House_cupcakeSo, good news! Big Grin I have a joooooob!

Until recently I've been working on a voluntary basis in a local Charity Shop, but yesterday I got the sexy news that a job I went for a good 2 months back has accepted me. This is good on a few fronts, for starters I get to work in a place with heating. Secondly I no longer will be under the control of A4-fucking-E! About sodding time! Those slave drivers waste my time, and the tax payers money under the false claim of helping people to find work. Thirdly I'm gonna be in the money! This means getting games more up to date meaning reviews about the same time as everyone else. A better PC meaning better gaming, and I finally get to blow some money on doing things I've always wanted to do and no doubt I'll document them here!

So, wehay for me. I hope everyone is sexy good. I'm off to drink Pepsi (ta Del) and eat Yorkie Bar (once again, ta Del). G'Night!

Zombie Master 1.2.0

cute_li__l_zombies_by_zombiebunny0 So, it's been a long time coming but finally version 1.2.0 of Zombie Master is out! :-D Joy!

So, what is Zombie Master? Before you go shouting rip-off this games been out for longer than Left4Dead's been in the works. Zombie Master is a Mod for Half Life 2 in which a group of online players take on the rolls of survivors in a zombie apocalypse. The twist on this game compared to games like Zombie Panic and Left4Dead is the fact one of the players dose not play a survivor or even play in a first person mode, Instead they take on the roll of the Zombie Master (kinda like a Dungeon Master). The Zombie Master gets an RTS view in which he/she can summon zombies, setup traps, or arrange ambushes of one of 5 different zombie types (all quite similar to the zombies found in Left4Dead, that's your Valve original thinking there). The game, being a mod (and a popular one) has a lot of player made maps, ranging from the shit (Tetris) to the bloody amazing (Asylum). The game has it's fair share of glitches and like any online based game, a lot of arse-holes and people who abuse the Steam in-engine audio system (you get sick of people blasting sound clips or Rick-Rolling you Yawn) but it's a solid mod with fun varying maps and has kept me and my friends amused for a long while.


So, for people who DO know what Zombie Master is and haven't heard about the new update, what dose the update change? Check out these sexy new things:

- Molotovs
- Revolver
- Immolators
- Banshees clinging to the ceiling
- Load-out map entities, letting survivors start out with equipment
- Overhauled spawning menu and system
- Late-joiner autojoin
- Lag compensation: Banshees can now be hit
- Zombie-view spectator camera
- Lots of balancing tweaks, and a lot of bugfixes

I mean, if your getting bored of Zombie Master all I should have to say is "Banshees clinging to the ceiling" and you should be back on there in a flash! It adds a whole new element of tactics for ZM's and a whole new scariness for survivors. Also a new anti-spam system stops people like me spawning a shit load of zombies anymore, meaning some of us need to rethink our tactics.

Check it out : HERE

3D-Bit Awesomeness!


If your a reader of Kotaku you already know about this, but I bumped into this site though the lord of gaming news that is Kotaku and loved it so much I thought I'd stick it up here for people who don't spend all day trolling though updates on game sites like me and other lifeless people out there.

The site is in Japanese but it's not about the text, however insightful it may or may not be. No, this is about the sexalicious pictures. They are simple but amazing, it took me a while to work out if they were 3D or actually models someone had made and photographed. I love crap like this, if you know of any good sites for stuff like this why not tell me, I'll credit you and stick it up here for the world to see...and by world I mean about 3 people...including me...and you.

Dotter Dotter

Wednesday, 3 December 2008


Tuesday, 2 December 2008

The CrapTop Strikes Again!


Well I downloaded the 1.3 gig install file. Bypassed the patchier because there is a glitch in it and ran Shin Megami Tensei : Imagine Online. So, how'd it go? Crap Sad

Sadly due to some bizarre programming decisions they decided to code the game to fall back on processor power more than RAM, because of this the game can be run on sucky ram (512mb) but the problem is no computer with 512mb or RAM has a 3.0mhz processor, In truth only new computers do (although I'm not taking into account Korea and other eastern countries from where this game originated's technology levels in comparison to us). Because of this I can't run the game very well at all. On an 800x600 resolution with everything set to low in the graphics menu the game still lost frame rate to depressingly low levels whenever more than about 3 people were on screen, the thing practically died when I entered a patch of monsters.

This is a kick in the balls for me because I've been a fan of the SMT series ever since playing Nocturne on PS2 and soon after discovering Persona 2 on PSX (oh and dieing to get my grubby little mits on a copy of Persona 3). It's also annoying because from what I did get to play the game it's simple, beautiful in it's own basic-graphic way, and actually has a plot that interests me (I've never played an MMORPG and been driven by it's plot before, not even Final Fantasy XI and that has little else too it).

I have passed my Closed Beta account onto a friend though who also loved the Shin Megami Tensei series and is if anything a bigger MMORPG fan than me (you'll find out more about him soon with a new project I'm part of). Fingers crossed I'll get enough feed back off him soon to pass on in a quick post to let anyone out there who's interested (and for some reason reading my blog o_O get a life) if the game is really worth a big download and a slow tutorial.

More news on this soon Happy

Oh Fable II, You Bitch...

927246_20080513_screen015 So, I finished Fable 2 a few hours ago. I've gotta say sweet Jesus that sucked. I wanted to tell you how the epic ending topped off a good story but it really didn't. Which brings up a whole new issue in my mind which I think we'll all start to see more and more. I won't say how Fable 2 ended but it ended in a really open way. I know the whole point is that you carry on living after the story, but Fable 1 did that but still ended the story well and gave us an epic battle with Jack of Blades first. Fable 2 doesn't have a final battle...seriously, no big bad boss...and considering up until now their idea of a boss had been throwing trolls at me, I was hoping for something good to make up for laziness but all. After the fight you get to pick one of 3 wishes, but unlike in Fable 1 where it was true power or the life of your sister, in Fable 2 it's between bringing your loved ones back to life (which somehow excludes your sister), bringing thousands of people back to life, or lots and lots and LOTS of money. Nothing TRULY evil, just greedy, and whatever you pick the characters try to make you feel like shit for it.

So anyway, you pick one of them and get pretty much the same result with more or less money and more or less loved ones or random people. Then there is a moment in which you realise the story isn't really over and evil isn't gone. I won't say what happens, but you can tell this (unlike Fable 1) is setting up for a truly connected sequel. But then I realised something, it's's setting up to make us wanna fork out money for downloadable chapters, just like GTA IV. These days not only is quality control going out the window on the basis of "we can patch what issues the public find" but also we are paying top money for less than a full game and having to pay more for the rest. Downloadable content like new items or quests is fair enough but whole new chunks of story, that's taking the piss.

But still no matter what I can't over look the fact the ending to Fable 2 sucked balls. I mean a friend warned me about it, but I kinda brushed it off as 'oh he was just let down because we waited so long for this game' but after seeing it...I mean no boss battle? That makes as much sense as Neo going to face Smith at the end of Matrix only to find he'd topped himself...HUUUUGE anti-climax.

Who Rules? I Rule!


Oh yeeeeeeeeah, I got into the Shin Megami Tensei: Imagine Online beta with Aeria Games! Big Grin That's put a smile on my face, I'll let you know how it goes when I've played it a bit.

Monday, 1 December 2008

December Look

tat16 So as you can see the sites got a bit of a new colour design. Why? Well a few reasons really. First of all I get bored of one look very quickly so I like to change the design on my sites every so often just to give it a fresh feeling, keeps me interesting in the project and keeps me updating Happy Secondly I'm starting up a new little idea, I dunno how long it will last but instead of a total redesign of the site every so often which has been known to lead to disaster before (I've deleted entire archives by accident) instead I will stick with the current setup but each month on the first (or second) I will update with a new background, title and colour scheme, nice and simple. Third and finally I have some web-space coming my way soon with a domain and everything, it's been over 6 months since the last time I owned real estate on the interweb so it's been a long time since I last got to fiddle with PHP and HTML so I'm trying to get back into it enough to get something respectable made with my fancy new web-space (no, I wont be closing down the Den, this is my own place where I can talk about what I like how I like, the site will be for a project with a team I hope).

So, fingers crossed the snot-green look will be here till January now and then what colour next? Only time will tell!...if you find that at all exciting you should probably kill yourself.

Sunday, 30 November 2008


Well, thanks to my two updates tonight it's now 3:35am and I've gotta be up at 8:50am...shit, gonna be a fun day in work. Night people and hope you enjoy your December


Pinch, Punch First of the Month, No Backsies!

HH9W6UF95KKKB9HWS2T4_M So, today is the first day of December, the final push before the new year, kids are starting their advent calendars, I've gotta put up my trimmings, and the stockroom at work is gonna be filled with the sound of Xmas songs for the next 25 days (which sounds good but as I'm the only one who enjoys Xmas in the stockroom the music is followed by the grumps and grumbles of old men).

Being at the end of the year always causes me to look back at the year and think about what I've done. Each year it's pretty dull, normally consisting of stuff like survived another year in school' 'finished school and started college' survived another year in college' 'finished college' and so on but this year I realised I can be more proud of myself, in a single year...

I've moved out, made new friends, reconnected with old ones, I've taken up a job for a charity, I've finished more video-games in this year than any year before it, I've opened a blog and kept it running, I've handled some hard times well (or at least well enough to mean I'm still alive and sane...ish) and had a few good times too. I've learnt new things including electricity costs a lot, life sucks without a TV licence, and money doesn't grow on trees. I've taken on the responsibility of two tiny lives in my Hamsters Mog and Mindy, I've rediscovered Tetris though the wonders of Facebook and I've discovered the horrors of being stuck in a small room with 15 chavs who all wanna mug me at best and kill me at worst. I've found new enjoyments like the AG Podcast, Kotaku (yes shockingly before 2008 I didn't know what Kotaku was), and a Cheese Burger at my local Cafe, Bettys. I've started more projects than I can count on my hands and fingers crossed I might actually get one to the point where I can show it off before I shelf it. I've gotten back into my online gaming (Gamer Tag : Ch0vY if you wanna say hi) and challenged myself to read a real book (not a comic book or a kids book) and it's slowly moving alone well. I've loved, and I've lost. I've sparked conversations with total strangers and discovered things I'd never have known otherwise. I've taken small steps towards a more healthy lifestyle (less crisps, more fruit and working in a stockroom always helps), I've discovered music more beautiful than anything I could imagine and I've seen sights more horrific than I'd ever want to imagine (no more 4chan for me!). I've made jokes about cripples to people in wheel chairs and made them laugh, I've made stereotypical references to an Asian guy and been thanks for it. I've been offered pills to extend my penis, keep it up longer, I've won the Spanish lottery at least 300 times, my 20 of my long lost cousins have died and left my over 1 billion dollars in total if only I had my credit card details at hand to give them...oh and I've broken my spam-filter. I've laughed, I've cried, I've even thrown up twice. I've acquired an original Nazi coat (don't ask...I just think they were sharp dressers), two walking sticks and a new hat. I've tried (and failed) to grow facial hair, and I've also discovered shaving over a mole causes a lot of blood. I've discovered new things about friends, I've moved on from old events. I've tried stuff I shouldn't have, yet still I've remained T-Total. I've stood my ground, and I've voiced my opinions. I've been told I should be a writer if only someone would invent a spell checker that can correct the wrong use of 'there', 'their', and 'they're'. I've been called Ugly, Fugly, Disgusting, and an Asshole (love you Mum...I'm kidding incase she's reading). I've watched Wall-E 4 times. I've been told off by the job centre for looking for too many jobs. I've been turned down by too many jobs. I've been accepted for a job, but may not start till May 2009 if at all. I've pissed everyone off by going though phases of using the term 'slappy wag' in every sentence. I've been mistaken for a girl countless times. I've gotten the chance to be there for friends, and I've actually used over £100 in phone credit (I can normally make £20 last a year). I've found out how good it feels to be the big kid in the park who makes other kids too scared to play on the swings. I've tried Sudoku. I've decided to kill the creator of Sudoku. I've won a game of Scrabble (for a Dyslexic that's a big thing). I've played Guitar Hero on a TV over 6ft tall. I've gotten to meet old teachers and see their disappointed expressions when I say I'm unemployed leeching off the government. I've spent a month replacing any term for 'Penis' for 'Winky'...that was odd. I managed to avoid watching even the smallest moment of the Olympics. I've even (to my surprise) managed to come up with theories on religion which have caused religious studies and religious people to question their views and opinions.

But alas I'm not happy. Why? Because even with all these things covered in just one year there are a million more things I wanna do with my life. People say 'oh your still young' but the truth of the fact is in this day and age (or any day and age) I could die in any number of ways at any time and maybe I won't have a significant effect on this world which will justify my existence in the grand scale of the universe, but I've been blessed with a life a lot of people don't get the chance to enjoy or even experience, so I wanna use it before it's too late. I want things to tell the grandchildren when I'm old. I want to grow wise with time though experiences, not what I'm told by others. I know some people might think not being happy with the past year after a list so long no one will be bothered to read it (can't blame you) is a bad thing, but if your content with what you've done with your life that means you have nothing more to live for, and then what's the point? We should always strive for more, but at the same time never beat ourselves up if we fail to reach our goals. I don't really know where I'm going with all of this, I guess I just wanted to rant but for once not about something negative. There is a lot of shit going on in the world right now, horrible things, tragic things, the last thing the world needs is people like me bitching and moaning too. So, enjoy one of the few times you'll read me being the optimist in life. Then go out there and do something you can look back on when you think about this year in your life and this chapter in your book if your ever rich and famous enough to con people out of a few quid.

Paper Mario & Friends

Afbeelding 2 No, not the name of the next game in the Paper Mario series, in fact this isn't really about Mario at all, it's more about Nintendo. I am a long time lover of Papercraft, I made my first model about 3 years ago (a paper Prince from Katamari, fucking hard but damn was I proud till I dropped a book on it) although there are a LOT of Japanese sites to sift though to find good papercraft to cut up and glue together. I was browsing the net today though and stumbled upon Nintendo Papercraft!

Nintendo Papercraft is a huge site that catalogs and links to hundreds of different Nintendo based papercraft works for you to make ranging from the simple box characters all the way up to intricate highly detailed models of characters like Ganon or Falco Lambardi. There are also some strange models like the PictoBox from Wind Waker and Sonic pops up in the Others category.

The Categories are simple covering all the major titles from Nintendo and each is over flowing with models to print out.

One thing I liked about this site also is a discreet link under the Category list which will take you to a 16+ Minute Tutorial on how to rip textures from N64 games and turn them into papercraft. With helpful stuff like this for budding papercrafters you can be sure the site will be stocking up on new models for years to come.

So, if your interested in making yourself a Paper Mario Hat to wear or maybe Link's Master Sword to hit people with (will probably bend after the first hit though so go for the heart) or even just a cute little Box Bunny Mario then check out the site!

Website : Nintendo Papercraft

Saturday, 29 November 2008

Fable 2 Review

fable2box Right, time to review the game! Now then...this is currently the third attempt at starting this review because Fable 2 is one of those games where you don't know where to start when it comes to explaining it. Let's go for the basic points first starting with Story.


The story in Fable 2 follows you, a hero who doesn't know it yet. You and your sister (who sounds like she's voiced by someone from Eastenders) are homeless orphans living on the streets with dreams of one day living in the Castle. Needless to say life doesn't stay like this for long as something major happens which causes the world around you to change forever. The plot in Fable 2 is just as dark as the first Fable but this time with better voice actors, and the fact your an orphan with only your sister to look after you in the world it feels like so much more is ripped away from your character than in the first game. I'll admit I've not finished the story in Fable 2 yet but think I'm about half way though and so far I'll give it too them, Lionhead Studios have written a long story full of interesting characters, dark moments and some good humour. To accompany the major plot as you move though the timeline you'll also follow the stories of some lesser characters like a businessman who's always asking for help with some idea or another.


So, moving on from Story lets talk about Audio, another area that Fable did right but Fable 2 has improved upon. Although a lot of the world doesn't use music the ambient sounds as well as the chatter of children or the calls of market stall owners really gives the game a feeling of life. Voice acting is all top quality and kudos to LH Studios for using the voices of not only Stephen Fry but Zoë Wanamaker and the man behind Firefly's Shepherd Derrial Book, Ron Glass. When there is music it's very fitting to the atmosphere of the area your in and works very well in battle. The use of audio in this game also includes the wise choice of when to use none at all. A few times I've managed to get though Demon Doors and into the twisted worlds behind them and the lack of any music or ambient sound at all gives a really weird, unnerving but beautiful effect to the areas.

Right then, I think next we'll cover game lets watch Fable 2 fall on it's face. Now don't get me wrong, the basic controls are smooth and work well, but there are so many issues with handling in this game. Your character turns so slowly at times you'll end up looking like a moron as you walk into walls. There is also the issue of your characters inability to swing at small boxes on the floor resulting in you having to kick each box one at a time instead of doing one fine swoop. Using items is a slow and cumbersome process involving you having to pause the game, go to your items menu, find the item you want to use and pressing a, but if you want to use the item twice you have to go though the same process again as the second you use an item it closes the menu. There are hotkey's for the D-Pad to use items but they will only appear when the game feels you NEED them and there seems to be no option that I can find to hotkey items myself. Another control issue which bugged me was spells. In Fable 1 you'd hold down your trigger then press A,B,X or Y based on what spell you'd hot keyed to what button to cast it. In Fable 2 you only have one spell button, you assign spells to it based on how long it's held down, the problem with this though is if you want to use a spell above level 1 you have to hold the button down without being hit for a few seconds, which is almost impossible if there are more than about 3 bad guys on screen. Issues are not just limited to controls though, there are also problems like the lack of an ability to steal anything off shop shelves like you had in Fable 1, the ability to buy items in bulk is gone, and battles jump between stupidly easy to next to impossible. Visually some fights can get so confusing due to the number of bad guys on screen I was left unable to see my own character and just button bashed the X button till everything died. House owning is also an area of game-play which is vastly over rated. You make very little money renting stuff out considering how much you'll put into the house. I've spent well over 50k on houses in the game but for all the houses combined the rent is only 1,300, makes it hardly seem worth it.


Ok what next? How about the online mode? LH Studios bragged about the drop in system for Fable 2 and in fairness I have to admit it works beautifully. One second I was running around alone, the next minute a menu popped up, I picked what gold, experience and so on I wanted to share and my brother jumped into my game, took about 1 minute and wasn't confusing (although we did have some issues with hearing each other over our headsets, but I've put that down in one of the billions of glitches in the game). Sadly though that's about all the praise the Online mode gets. For some unknown reason you cannot bring your own character into someone else's world...this makes NO sense as every item your character can wear is stored on the other persons CD too meaning the information you'd have to send over the net to use your character would be tiny, the fact you can see the hosts character means viewing other peoples characters wasn't an issue for LH Studios so I have no idea why this was messed up, the only logical reason I can come up with is the fact they'd admitted the online co-op may not be out with release but managed to rush it and get it in, maybe they had to cut corners and we'll see this change in a future patch. This isn't the only problem with the co-op mode too. The second someone joins your game or you join theirs the camera switches from the nice smooth good working camera you've gotten used too and becomes a fixed camera, nether players gets control over it and it limits the movement of characters so that they cannot be more than about 10 feet apart. This doesn't sound too bad but numerous times while playing we'd be unable to see where we were going because the camera would get stuck in front of us, or would shift violently without warning causes us to run the wrong direction, sometimes it would even move in a way where one of us would get stuck until the other came running back. The online mode is something that got me VERY excited for Fable 2 along with many friends and we all feel cheated by it.


Ok so how about Downloadable Content? Well there is none. A lot of people would see this as a bad thing but I see it as a good sign. How much would it piss you off if you baught a game brand new only to find content online at a premium price? You'd feel you'd paid full price for half a game. Also to be fair LH Studios have just announced a peice of DLC which will unlock a whole new land with quests and a continuing plot and in a move of kindness will release a patch which will allow players without the DLC to still co-op with people with it, good of them if you ask me.

So, that's Audio, Gameplay, Story, Online Mode and DLC...what else? Oh, visuals!

The graphics in Fable 2 are beautiful, sure the textures are not amazing but everything works so well, the fact plants will move under your feet looks beautiful, the way the lip sync on even the smallest mouths of children are done perfect looks good too and shows a good level of attention to detail. The landscapes are very immersing and truly inject some colour into this brown generation of gaming. Sadly there are areas where the visuals fall down a little though. Almost all the women in the world (and the men) are pretty damn ugly unless their whores, also a lot of the weapons in the game are rehashes of previous weapons with new textures which feels a bit cheap. One of the biggest issues I had with the game though is my classic complaint, it's not very SD TV friendly, and I know a lot of people will say that's a silly complaint to make in a world which is going HD but there are still a lot of us who can't afford HD TV's and as long as there are I will continue to see this as a problem.

God I've written enough for a short book and there's still more to go, almost done now though!


Next the matter of character customisation. This is a major part of the Fable series and what caused it to stand out in a world of other RPGs. All in all it's pulled off very well in Fable 2 but I do have some issues. I played as a woman with the intention of turning her into a hot goth chick (what can I say, if your gonna give me the tools to make a sexy woman I'm gonna do it). Alas this went horridly wrong though because the second I upped her physical strength she turned into a huge butch lesbian bordering on the edge of being a genderly challenged man. To make it worse although I'd only taught her a few basic spells as I wanted to mainly use my sword these spells had caused the magic markings on her skin to appear. Also due to a few bad deeds my skin was covered in some freaky lines which just looked ugly. I know LH Studios wanted to make everything have a reaction in the world but I quite liked Fable 1's system where stuff like getting fan required eating a shit load of food, not having 3 or 4 pies. Things had to be done in excess for the effects to show which worked well, in Fable 2 you have to be careful of EVERY action incase it turns you into some cross-dressing whore look-a-like.

Oh, I almost forgot something unforgivable! The Dog! Fable 2 prides it's self on an IA Dog which accompanies you and sniffs out treasure as well as doing tricks, looking cute and chewing on the ankles of bad guys who are knocked to the floor. He can be useful but half the time he feels kinda pointless, he'll bark at chests which are blatantly in the open and anyone can see, any treasure he finds in the ground for you to dig up is usually crap, and his only REAL use is to get you though 1 demon door and find treasure for the archeologist quests. Maybe if they'd given some more interaction than fussing, scolding, feeding and healing it I'd have enjoyed it's company more but in truth I'm starting to wonder about the mental health of the guy in my local Game who told me by the end of the game he had kinda bonded with his dog. In fairness though he doesn't really get in the way if you can ignore his barking, so he's no major issue.


So, time to end this review by summing up for everyone who skipped the wall of text above. If you did read your probably a bit untrusting of Fable 2 with all the issues I raised but in fairness sure the controls are badly thought though, and 90% of what they promised us isn't in the game, and the online mode sucks, and the golden line that's meant to lead you around will constantly get confused and send you the long or even wrong way, and you'll spend way too long doing timed button tapping games to make money, all of this is overlooked if not forgiven by the humour which will have you at least smiling if not laughing at times as well as the well written plot which will keep you playing and telling yourself 'just 10 more minutes' till it's 6am. For every issue in Fable 2 there's some element of charm or some little nod to the previous title which will cause you to forgive it and carry on Some of the games floors are almost charming in themselves, and if you need more convincing to give this game a shot all I should need to say is Stephen Fry man! Stephen fucking Fry!


Fable 2 Take 3!

So, yesterday I was in town looking around, avoiding the guy dressed up as a teddy bear, and trying to talk my house-mate into hugging the other guy dressed as Santa when I walked into Gamestation to find Fable 2 for £ keep in mind just down the road it cost £39.99, and I'd forked out £39.99 for my original two broken copies. Now I know I had vowed not to touch Fable 2 for at least 6 months due to the looooooong list of fuck ups, let downs, and general butt-fuckery when it came to working CDs, but at £20, and the offer only on for a week I gave into temptation and spent half this fortnights food money on a back to frozen chips every night for me for 14 days.

Anyway, I got home, stuck the game in and rushed the sloooow intro (I've now seen it over 5 times...needless to say at this point I'd begun to hate the guy selling the "magic" items) and got to the point that my game ALWAYS freezes up aaaaaand...

















Yup, I am now officially a Fable 2 player! About fucking time Lionhead fucking studios!

Anyway, Just wanted to post this I'll get to writing the review now Happy


If Two Wrongs Don't Make A Right, How Many Do?

werehog So, I was in town yesterday hanging around in the game shop bugging the staff with questions about Fable 2 CD issues and so on when I noticed the setup demo for customers to play on the new Sonic for everything except the little white box that specialises in party-based DVD games (Wii). Now as any gamer will know, sonic went down hill a while back, the specific title he lost his way on is a little mixed up though, some people say it went bad after Sonic 3, some people say after Sonic Adventures on the Dreamcast, others say sonic is still good while rocking back and forth in a dark corner drawing their fan-art and stuffing their faces with Pocky.

Anyway, there is a whole new generation of gamers growing up now without a good Sonic title, lets just say that. Because of this I was more than a bit unwilling to try the demo so I must admit I hung around and watched others when will Sega ether put a bullet between the blue bastards eyes or make a chuffing good game?! Visually the game, although quite polished, felt like it was lacking something and cluttered up the screen to horrific levels of ugliness. It was slow...a sonic game...that's SLOW, wtf?! Worst of all was the combat which has been butt fucked and replaced with a warehog hack and slash style battle system instead of just jumping on things or spinning at sonic is MENT to do.

I know I can't give an accurate review of the game based on looking over the shoulder of an uncomfortable gamer lacking the same to avoid the controller of doom, and I know after I've posted this I'm gonna have to wait for the demo to pop up on XBL and try it out just so I can back up my rant here, but seriously, how on earth dose Sega continue to fail at a game which was good for its simplicity?

Monday, 24 November 2008


Whoops, sorry for the lack of updates this weekend, had some planned but instead abused my back changing the setup in my room to make it more Nerd friendly (wide screen TV next to bed and so on). I'm collecting up some stuff for a list-thingy for web 2.0 fans though :-)

I'm also gonna write up my basic + and - of NXE on Friday.

May update soon <3

Friday, 21 November 2008

The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly #1

Bored of doing my usual '5 random things to check out' or reviewing a game that no one cares about anymore or something I thought today I'd start something a little different. The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly will pop up every now and then and in one post I'll give you one game I consider good, one I think should be burnt, and one that's just down right hideous. So, let's begin:


The Good
Magic World Online
080424I hate...HATE Ancient Asian MMO's, their way over done, boring and feel horridly unoriginal. Every time I play one it's the same dribble and gets boring, no creativity. Because of this when I'm presented with an Ancient Asian MMO I skip it, every time, this includes Hero Online, Kal Online and plenty more with the word 'Online' after them. Oddly though the other day in a mad fit of 'what the hell, let's give it a go' and because I'd run out of other MMO's to try I downloaded Magic World Online. This is hard for me to do...but I have to admit I enjoyed it SighI've put a few hours in and although the game isn't without it's bugs, boring bits and grinding (a lot of grinding) it feels like if the guys behind Legend of Mir had made an up to date version of their game this is what it would be like. Sadly there is a huge draw back. Although the graphics are 2D, the word is huge and because of this the download file size is HUGE. 2.28 Gigs for the install pre-patch isn't pretty for a 2D game but in fairness if you want a quality 2D MMO it's worth the download time (provided you have the bandwidth).

The Bad
Atlantica Online
atlantica20080724215011ih0 Atlantica Online will strike you as an odd one for me to stick down as 'Bad' because it looks so bloody gorgeous. I'll admit it's up there, way up there, when it comes to graphics, but sadly that's about it. The game play on it is so boring. The GUI is about as simple as brain surgery and the battling although seems awesome at first, quickly becomes a bit boring and over done but unlike every MMO that works like this, at least their one click battles, these are about 25 click The quests are pretty boring, the characters keep spurting out the same single line over and over and I don't mean that in any exaggerated way (every time they attack, every time their clicked on, every time they do ANYTHING they'll say the same line which my good lord will drive you insane O_O) The download is 2.04 gig which is a lot for a game which is needlessly confusing from the start, boring, and will annoy the piss out of you.

The Ugly
4STORY_view 4Story will make no sense to you looking at it, not just in pictures but videos because it looks good, and I genuinely thought it would be my new MMO to play religiously...theeeen I spotted something. 4Story is hosted by the nemesis of the MMO, Game & Game. Game & Game are notorious for picking up good or at least interesting looking MMO's, badly translating them to English, then sticking them on servers as old as I am leading to epic lag causing REALLY shitty game play. Once again they've done the same with 4Story. The game play jumps around constantly, it took one time 5 minutes for an NPC to talk to me thanks to lag. Game & Game have the ability to make ANY game ugly and they've made this one hideous though the fact it seemed like such a quality game before they hosted it. I wouldn't recommend this game for a few years, give G&G time to go bankrupt and someone else to buy up the rights to hosting then give it a go and I'd say you'll be facing a high quality game Big Grin

So, there we go, that's the first GB&U, fingers crossed I'll be able to make more of these soon and I hope you enjoyed it and your a little curious to try these games. Let me know of any you'd recommend for any GB&U lists too Happy

Thursday, 20 November 2008

New Look? I'll Say!

lolcat So, as you can see the Den has a bit of a new look. I fancied a bit of a change after the fancy look for a while. Something that would fit my cool Xbox Avatar (I have to admit I've fallen in love with the Avatar System on NXE Drooling) and something a little brighter.

My weekend starts tomorrow so fingers crossed I'll get some updates out on here soon Big Grin I'm kinda low on content right now though, might go on an MMO spree, give some short reviews or something unless I find something worth giving a long rant on, but I'll try getting some kind of update online.

Anywho, I'm off to lose against the end boss in Gears of War a few more times, why is he so bleeding hard?! Crying


Wednesday, 19 November 2008

It's Mii- I mean, It's Me!

Ok so I just finished playing around with the NXE update and I'm quite happy with it, I'm still getting used to it though cause it is a total over-hall of the original system, there are also a few bugs Microsoft didn't expect on launch day even after a week of beta-testing which is a shame (mostly slow loading content or not loading at all) I'll give it a week then write a short review of the NXE when I'm more at home with it (if I can be arsed).

Till then one thing I'll say is I LOVE the Avatar System Big Grin Seriously, I know it's a cheeky rip off of the Mii's but you can forgive them considering just how much better than Mii's and how much more integrated they are into the Dashboard. The fact you only get one pre-profile means you feel that your Avatar is YOUR Avatar unlike the Wii where I owned over 100 Mii's and could use any of them.

Anyway, as I'm gonna be a bit quiet for the next few days (as always I'll try to update a few times on the weekend), I thought I'd let my adoring fans see their Moriarty in his full glory!


Tuesday, 18 November 2008


Only a few hours till I can turn on my Xbox and see something like this
EEE! *sex wee!* 

I'll try to update after I've toyed with NXE a bit but I'm ill and have work and all so I'll probably end up in bed by 7pm :-(