woensdag 28 maart 2012

SimPort leading to nowhere.

For the last days (almost a week now) i have been trying to get further with the SimPort stuff.

So far i had one (!) succesfull host, where a friend showed up in my town to do a show, but for days now, not a single show works. I can't accept a friends request, nothing happens or the sim just doesn't show up.

As far as my own sims on tour, my singer has had 3 succesfull shows, my acrobat 0.
I keep sending them off to do tours but it always ends up with a message like, your friend missed the show or your sim took a wrong turn or some other bullshit, resulting in no rewards/stamps.

In short SimPort seems bugged like hell.

I have been going through the forums to find some solution or just find something that might be causing this, but other than finding more and more posts with the same kind of problems i am having there is nothing to find.
I find it disturbing that it looks like the devs (or Gurus) just don't seem to care, there is hardly any post to be found by a guru, let alone a helpfull one.
Trying to find out if there are any known issues with SimPort is just as hard and comes up with very little helpfull info.

I also find it very funny that in a bug thread a guru is actually recommending to use a THIRD party mod to help with some of the bugs, i mean it is awesome that there are actually mods out there that fix stuff, but come on, they should be fixing this not telling you to just use some third party mods...

Maybe i should not be so surprised, afterall this is EA, everything they touch goes bad.
For once i would like to see some new sims expansion without any problems, i was hoping that showtime would be that one, but i once again got burned..

I am still playing the Sims, but i am awefully close to just quit and never touch the Sims again.

zondag 25 maart 2012

SimPort me!

The latest expansion for The Sims 3 is Showtime.
It adds 3 new professions to the game, Singer, Magician and Acrobat.
It also adds a nice new feature to the game called SimPort, this is where you sent your sim off to do a tour, your sim dissapears from your city for 24 ingame hours to simulate the tour, any of your friends can accept the tour/performance and have your sim perform in their city/game, after the show the sim leaves again, so they're not staying in your city.

You can also host a friends sim to perform in a venue in your city, after a friend sends his/her sim off to do a tour and you accept it or you can ask for a specific performance by posting a "help wanted ad" and any of your friends can accept that and do the show for you, by doing this you can unlock "stamps", achievements and unlock stage props and some new costumes.

There are also a lot of new features added to your personal sims profile page, it almost looks like a facebook now and the best part is you van access a lot of this stuff from ingame now :)

Initially i though that all this might be quite invasive, but it is not at all.
You or your friends will only recieve an ingame message/notification once when a request is made available and when you log into the game after that the requests will only show up in your SimPort window.

At this time i have both a singer and an acrobat and i am definitely having a lot of fun playing them, of course i am also looking for gigs to perform and am always looking to have other sims perform in my city :)
So if you have showtime please add me to your friends, you can find me as Hauntshade or go to my profile here.

Have fun simming.

zaterdag 24 maart 2012

Is this really the end? Another ending post.

There might be some spoilers ahead if you haven't finished Mass Effect 3!!!

I won't go into to many details about the ending of ME3 as i think that's allready been beaten to death by now, and besides Anjin over at Bullet Points pretty much sums it up in the post "Random Shots: The Infamous Ending", so i recommend reading that.
Besides the choice of ending (i went left for i think what was called Synthesis) that post pretty much sums up how i feel about the ending.
I ended up pretty much staring at the end credits rolling by wondering WTH just happened and what that was all about, the ending felt so out of place and was very confusing.

Don't get me wrong i love Mass Effect and i love Mass Effect 3, all was awesome right up until the end. The battle for London was epic right up until you meet the catalyst, that's where it all went down.

I didn't mind that fact that Shepard died as that is probably a suitable ending but the way it was done felt really "out of place" as there was no mention of this kind of stuff during the entire series.
Personally i don't know what to feel about the ending as i am still wondering what the hell happened, what was it what my Shepard actually achieved/did. Was it good or bad?? To me it really felt like you were given the option to choose between the lesser of three evils.

What added to the confusion was that i initially didn't know what i actually did, after listening through the entire story (which was a pretty long story) the catalyst tells you, i was confused as to what the 3 different consoles/options actually did or rather which was which, like i said i went left but there was no way of telling what it was, there was no text or anything hovering above the consoles when you selected them, so i really didn't know what option i actually took until i started looking at YouTube videos of the different endings and noticed that i did in fact took the synthesis ending.

I did feel like the ending i took was closest to what my Shepard tried to achieve (my Shepard, saved the Geth, brought the Geth and Quarians together and actually encouraged Joker and EDI) but i am still left with a feeling of what the hell happened, there's is no clear way of seeing what the results were of your actions (besides the mass relays blowing up), no real closure to the story. Another confusing thing was that you see Joker in the end crash landing the Normandy on some planet and Joker steps out and shortly after that i see Liara stepping out of the ship, Liara was with me on the final attack and i really thought that all that went with me on that final approach had died, only Anderson and Shepard survived, so how the hell did Liara end up on the Normandy??

Another thing that really surprised me, in a positive way was/is the Mass Effect 3 multiplayer, it has been a long time since i found a multiplayer that was so entertaining, i am actually enjoying myself a lot with this.
I really can't wait to see where they are taking this.
I really hope we're going to see some new maps added soon, i have been playing this so much that i allready have those moments of  "not that map again".
And maybe add some new objectives while we're at it too :)

BioWare has definitely been supporting their multiplayer by putting up events, this weekend they added "operation Fortress" and i really hope they'll be keeping this up.

I really felt that in the end the gameplay was way to short, i finished the main story and all sidequests in just over 30 hours, but the multiplayer is really adding some gametime, which is never a bad thing.

dinsdag 13 maart 2012

Mass Effect: Galaxy at War

BioWare has been quite busy getting some more Mass Effect stuff out for mobile devices.
Just today they released the "Mass Effect Datapad" for iPhone/iPad.

This is a pretty cool app, as it's free :)
The nice stuff in there is, you get some messages from your crew through this app while you play through ME3, unfortianatly i allready finished Mass Effect, but i guess it would still work if i do another playthrough.
Another nice feature is that you can do small missions through this app and those missions will reward you with "readiness rating" for your ingame Galaxy at War map, which is pretty cool since just playing through singleplayer isn't enough to get a high percentage of readiness rating (my map capped at 50% after finishing all missions in ME3).
And this app will also give you access to the (ingame) Codex, always nice for the lore nerds (like me).

Another app that has been realeased a few day ago was the iPad game "Mass Effect Infiltrator".
Personally i am not a big fan of iPad (or iPhone) games and this one is no different, i just can't get used to the controls, sometimes it feels like the controls have a will of their own as you try to move to a certain point often the character will do the opposite.
I believe this game is made by the developers of Dead Space and has the same type of controls, so if you liked that game you might like this one as well.

I am however trying to wrestle my way through this game as it is a Mass Effect story and another bonus is that any intel you recover in this game can be added to you Mass Effect 3 readiness rating, so yet another bonus :)

I don't know why but i really do like all these mobile apps that tie into the game and give you other ways to improve that ingame readiness rating, other than doing multi-player in ME3 (which is also pretty cool).

zondag 11 maart 2012

Back on the Normandy and it feels great!

Like many people on my Raptr friends list i have been playing Mass Effect 3.
And so far despite some initial problems, like the first message that greeted me the first time i launched ME3.
This was eventually fixed by using "repair install" on the "From Ahses" DLC in Origin, another message that popped up during character creation, or rather the character import.
That of course annoyed me even more, this message means to me that i am playing with a character that looks a bit like my Shepard (after some alterations) but isn't really my FemShep..

Another annoying feature is that you apperantly need an online connection to play the game in singleplayer as during one of my cutscenes i recieved this message
And yes it threw me out of the game and i could only continue after i managed to get my connection back up and running.

But enough with the bad stuff as Mass Effect 3 is still an awesome game and it feels really great to be back on the Normandy fighting the reapers and seeing my buddies again :)
I did however changed the difficulty on the gameplay to casual, i did ME1 and 2 on normal, cause i never was a good FPS gamer :)
However i think that combat in ME3 has evolved as a shooter and i definitely have not :)
Maybe i am just too old or don't have the skills needed to be good at this stuff, but after the first couple of missions where combat was sometimes frustrating i changed the difficulty level to narrative, personally i really enjoy this difficulty setting, it lets me focus more on the story than on combat, still some of the "boss" fights can be hard, but most of the time i am just blasting through the combat.

I have always enjoyed the story in Mass Effect more than the combat and always felt the combat was only there to forward the story, so i guess that's why i enjoy the narrative setting a lot more.

It's been really awesome to see some of the consequences of my actions in ME1 and 2.
It's really awesome to suddenly meet someone that you apperantly saved in one of the previous games and have a chat with them.

I really think BioWare has done a great job on Mass Effect 3 and i am really enjoying the story, so far i think i am about 18 hours into the game and the journey has been great, i can't wait to see what the game has in store for me :)

zondag 4 maart 2012

Operation Gaming Rig: Success

This weekend i finally finished installing all the new components in my gaming rig.
The only major problems i encountered were a DVD writer that wasn't compatable with my new motherboard, so i had to go out and get a new one and a processor (tec) cooler that i couldn't use with the cpu socket, so i had to use the stock cooler.

Other than that no problems and so far the system seems to be running quite nice and gaming/streaming has so far been without any lag problems, granted i have not been playing and streaming some high end games yet but streaming Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning and the Diablo 3 beta went without any lag for me.

Next plans for the rig are:
Getting some SSD in there, especially for the operating system and for some of the games i play most.

And now that i basicly have a second (prety good) pc laying around, to build a pc especially for streaming, so i can use that second pc to do the streaming while my gaming rig is used for gaming :)

To be continued...