Don’t tell me the ending to: Neverwinter Nights 2


Neverwinter Nights 2 is the game that got me to buy my new computer.  NWNW2 is not a particularly pretty, but the engine is very demanding.  Even on the new rig, it still could not run with full settings.

I’ve been playing semi-regularly since building my computer back in February.

As an RPG, it has a decent and intriguing plot.  The party is a bit stereotypical, but each has a unique twist to them.  A classic drunkard dwarf who aspires to learn the ways of the Monk, but cannot understand it beyond the purely physical ability to fight.  A thief who is also a demon and cannot avoid attention.  The plot is slow to reveal, and I could not spoil much even if I wanted to.   There is probably a twist coming; I hope it is interesting.

Despite bringing my system to its knees, the game is not graphically impressive.  The viewing distance and vegetation are alright, but the character models simply look like something from “last generation”, even when they were new.  Since the game has a powerful editor, much of the terrain is piecemeal.  Still, it has that authentic DnD charm.

The DnD charm is Neverwinter Nights 2’s greatest strength.  It is a legitimate DnD adventure.  Even when nothing is happening, you are still surrounded by inns, shopkeeps, dungeons, treasure, and monsters; all familiar DnD creations.

You can also play the campaign co-op over the internet/network.  This is currently how I am playing and definitely enjoy it.  Or load custom created content made by fans.  Entire campaigns of new DnD stories, or abstract new adventures using custom skins representing the crew of the Serenity.  NWN2 is as much about the multiplayer as the single player engine.

Overall, I am enjoying it quite a bit so far, but it is not for everyone.  It is a traditional western computer RPG, with large amounts of customization, multiplayer, and a long built in campaign.  Not the prettiest, or have any particular “wow” factor (yet), but it is a strong base package.

don’t tell me the ending to: Gears of War 2


Gears of War 2: bigger and more badass.  Bigger baddies, bigger weapons, bigger locations, bigger events, bigger story, and more badass.

I’m currently playing through a campaign co-op romp, and about halfway through.  Gears 2 is a great co-op experience game.  You can play the Campaign through with a friend (highly recommended over an AI buddy + revives), and through Horde mode with a party total of 5.  The campaign co-op is very much the same as Gears 1.  In fact, if you take the core mechanics of the game, the controls and combat, Gears 2 plays very similarly to Gears 1.  The differences that makes Gears 2 stand out in the campaign are easily the set piece levels.

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don't tell me the ending to: Castle Crashers

Have you ever played a game in an arcade?  If so you’ve probably played the beat’em-up genre of Castle Crashers.  You move into the foreground, background, and side to side, and you beat up masses of enemies that walk in from the edges of the screen.  Each usually takes a combo or two to put down.  Blocking is optional, the best defense is to walk straight up or down out of the plane of the attack.

You will also have this nostalgia if you had any of the home console versions of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle games (Turtles in Time! Cowabunga!).

Castle Crashers is the most polished example of the genre.  Polished in terms of production values and gameplay.  However, is the best of the genre worth getting if the genre died out years ago?  Read on: my impressions as a compliment sandwich

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