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Tycho / on Fri, Aug 29 2003 at 5:22 am

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Demons, Demons Everywhere

Otogi impressed me a good deal at E3, but after the demo on Official Xbox magazine I had resolved not to get it.  I’m told now that the demo section was basically a lobotomized version of a level later in the game, and it didn’t help that the disc that comes with that magazine never quite seems to agree with my machine.  In any case, readers gave me their guarantee that we would not be disappointed - and you won’t be either, if you are enthused about straight-ahead, balls-out action games.  The game is largely characterized by its diverse weapon selection, destructible environments, its lavish presentation and just a hint of basil.

I played it a good deal yesterday over at Gabe’s while he drew the comic, and when we stopped off at the store later I had every intention of purchasing it.  Software, Etc. had no intention of holding up their end of the bargain, the Selling Videogames end, as they had only received two copies of it and chastised me for not having reserved it.  I tried to get Bombastic and Republic too, at the store, where one buys games, but they have apparently forgotten how our relationship functions.  The reason this store did not stock these games is because they had not received enough pre-orders for them.  I buy maybe six games a month, most months - shit, in the story I just related, I was about to buy three - and I almost never reserve games.  That’s just not how I indicate my interest in a title.  I pre-order a game every once in a blue moon - in cases like Final Fantasies where I fully expect to be trampled to death getting a copy.  I certainly don’t pre-order puzzle games where devils - no more than a half-inch tall - run around on dice, or highly involved political strategy games.  And now, they don’t stock them, either.  None get ordered because they’re sort of obscure, and I dont pre-order for that a host of other reasons.  Awesome system! 

Bombastic and Republic are a couple of the “pet games” that I have watched with some interest, many of which all decided to come out at or about the same time.  Etherlords II, the card battle/RPG title from Nival Interactive just went gold, and a demo for it hit just yesterday.  I tried to download the 200 meg file several times, and was only able to get a clean copy via the BitTorrent client - that was about one in the morning, so I haven’t had a chance to play it yet.  Readers keep me abreast of gaming’s hidden places, I think of them as a black cloud of ravens from which there is no evasion.  In this case, they have served admirably:  X2:  The Threat.  They initially drew my attention to the first one, which I had heard about but never played, and the sequel is silly with beauty and charm.  It’s hard for me to zero in on exactly what kind of game it is, but it’s clear that at it’s base it is a space-sim with many, many other genre elements incorporated.  Download the rolling demo and see how it’ll run on your machine with everything on.  I think they’re planning on a November US release, which is cool, because that will give me time to buy a new video card.   

Hegemonia is also one of my favorite games, and though I don’t see a US publisher yet for the Solon Heritage expansion it stirs my heart to know that one is even in production.  I figured that game would be the sort of thing I would like and nobody else would, as sometimes happens - I thought we might be talking about some Salad Master type shit.  I’m very glad to be wrong. 

(CW)TB out.

beyond reach of the sonar

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