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Tycho / on Fri, May 23 2003 at 7:31 am

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The Buddy System

Gabriel briefly discussed the Buddy System on Monday, and the rules for this system are uncomplicated.  There are but three tenets:

  • Stay With Your Buddy
  • No, Seriously - Stay With Him, Otherwise, What’s The Point
  • and

  • Don’t Poke Your Buddy In The Eye.
  • As we can see, these rules are not rocket science.  They aren’t even the science that governs Gogurt.  They aren’t any kind of science whatsoever.  But they are apparently very difficult to grasp for some people, by which I mean Porkfry, my erstwhile E3 buddy who is known in the the north as Pork-Fry Eyebane.  He was dissatisfied with my E3 buddy performance as well, because I would spend as many as thirty minutes listening to people talk about the Pokemon version of Monopoly or a new RTS based on the Oh Boy, Oberto Beef Jerky License.  So, I suppose all’s fair.  In my defense, much of the shit we looked at was - in almost every respect - off the hizzy.

    Take Crimson Skies, for instance.  Still a few months away, but already a product with indelible visual style and a feast of multiplayer options.  The combat looks like some fancy airshow even with neophytes at the yoke, because like a fighting game (for example) dashing maneuvers are triggered by very basic positions of the analog stick.  What’s not invigorating about that?

    And what about the special Bethesda meeting?  Who treated Porkfry right, then?  We saw the visually gripping Sea Dogs 2, by which I mean Pirates of the Caribbean.  While it does have a movie license, the events of the film don’t seem to the the focus of the game - if anything, it mainly just amounts to a piratey context for the proceedings to occur.  And occur they do, I don’t know if there’s a screenshot out there that shows the moon on the water but you should try to find one right away, it was like an aphrodisiac and I did things in that booth to grown men that I’m not proud of.   

    We also saw the Bloodmoon expansion, which you can see an ad for to your right probably, so I don’t know how I should cover that.  Let’s just say it was Game of Show

    The one game Porkfry and I had a meeting of the minds on was in that very booth, actually - Call Of Cthulhu:  Dark Corners Of The Earth.  I basically freak out anytime the Mythos is mentioned, you will note that I have used it as a proper noun, which implies that it is simply better than other nouns.  If people like this first one, they have plans to follow the lineage of the main character Jack Walters in subsequent games across multiple platforms - but I guess I’m getting ahead of myself.  I do feel a bit of regret for how I behaved during the demonstration, as more legitimate journalists like my friend John Keefer were trying to write actual articles that contain actual data and I was asking questions roughly every five seconds about nothing.  I couldn’t help it.  Why do the cult members holed up during a standoff with police seem to recognize the main character?  After this encounter, released from the asylum after an undetermined period, protagonist Jack Walters begins his life as an investigator of the paranormal, but dark priests and mobsters with a trace of demon heritage are making that more difficult than it could be. 

    Read John’s article for many interesting details, but what I liked most was that they have tried to reinforce that you as a character are a part of the proceedings - when you open things, close things, pick things up, they don’t just disappear and magically reform in your inventory.  Your hand reaches out and bolts a door against intruders, let’s say, or actually grips the railing on a pitching boat at sea while you try to keep from being thrown overboard.  The insanity effects - when you glimpse an unnatural creature or perhaps look down from a great height - were tasteful, and not overdone as I might have feared.  They are there to add context and did not obscure gameplay. 

    I have lots more to say today about lots more stuff.  Stick around.

    (CW)TB out.

    we need the codes

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