Author Archive

Lumines sales increase exponentially on Amazon… and we all know why.

June 30, 2007

As some of you have no doubt heard over the past week, Lumines has jumped from being the 796th in sales rankings to the 3rd.  What the hell could warrant such a huge jump in sales?  An exploit that allows 3.50 users to downgrade to 1.5, of course.  Known as the illuminati exploit, it requires a copy of an unpatched original Lumines and software that they provide.  While it doesn’t downgrade your PSP, it opens the gate for downgraders.  How nice, then, that shortly after this exploit hit the net a downgrader has already appeared, which happens to be 100% real as its by the same people who brought us the exploit, Noobz.  So if you’ve been itching to downgrade but you shot yourself in the foot by upgrading before you knew what the hell you were doing, then this is a godsend.

In the end, though, this is cruelly ironic, as Lumines is likely to be the last game many PSP owners will ever buy again, as the main incentive attached to homebrew is isoloaders.  Sad, but true… please, if you are planning to downgrade so that you can use isoloaders, do not bother.  Buy using isos you are killing the PSP software industry.  Developers don’t make games just for you to have fun!  They make them to turn a profit, and if nobody buys their product than they’ll cease to develop for the PSP as their next game will probably suffer the same fate.  So please buy all of your games, and if you do use an isoloader only use it for games you already own.

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The end of the PS3 game draught is finally in sight.

June 30, 2007

“I love my PS3, but… goddamit, where the **** are the games?”

This is probably the most asked question by PS3 owners around the globe, and it’s also the question that stops many a person from dropping money on the PS3. $600 is a steep entree fee, especially when the competition is priced much more affordably. The least the PS3 could do is provide its userbase with compensation for the money spent. Unfortunately, it appears to even be failing dismally at that… honestly, when’s the last time you’ve seen a good game come out for the PS3? Motorstorm? Virtua Fighter 5? Those came out months ago!

Well, fortunately for us PS3 owners, developers are embracing us gamers with open arms this fall & winter, as all of the high-profile games we PS3 owners have been drooling at – Heavenly Sword, Uncharted, Ratchet and Clank Future, Lair, Warhawk – are all finally releasing in the consumer marketplace. As I dream of the possibility of finally having a collection that justifies my expensive purchase, I imagine that the other millions of bored PS3 owners are doing the same.

Well, might as well not waste time posting the release dates for the games in question. (Note: These release dates come directly from IGN, so technically any of the release dates I have posted can be subject to change, although I highly doubt it. Also note that if I put an asterix next to a game, it means that it is exclusive)

August

    -John Woo Presents Stranglehold (6th)
    -Lair (7th)*
    -GRAW 2 (21st)
    -Medal of Honor: Airbourne (28th)

September

    -Blacksite: Area 51 (3rd)
    -DiRT (3rd)
    -Heavenly Sword (4th)*
    -Warhawk (4th)*
    -Turok (17th)
    -Skate (18th)
    -Clive Barker’s Jericho (25th)
    -Sega Rally Revo (25th)

October

    -The Club (no date)
    -The Eye of Judgement* (no date)
    -Fatal Inertia (no date)
    -Folklore* (no date)
    -Guitar Hero III (no date)
    -Home (no date)
    -Hot Shots Golf 5* (no date)
    -Mercenaries 2: World In Flames (no date)
    -The Orange Box (Half Life 2 deluxe box-set) (no date)
    -Ratchet and Clank Future: Tools of Destruction* (no date)
    -Singstar* (no date)
    -Tony Hawk’s Proving Ground (no date)
    -GTA IV (16th)

November

    -Army of Two (no date)
    -Assassin’s Creed (no date)
    -Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare (no date)
    -Haze (no date)
    -Kane and Lynch: Dead Men (no date)
    -Need For Speed ProStreet (no date)
    -Rock Band (no date)
    -SOCOM: Confrontation (no date)*
    -Time Crisis 4 (no date)*
    -Time Shift (no date)
    -Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune (no date)*

December

    -Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena (no date)

January

    -Beautiful Katamari (no date)
    -Burnout Paradise (no date)
    -Dark Sector (no date)
    -Frontlines: Fuel of War (no date)
    -Hei$t (no date)
    -Unreal Tournament 3 (no date)

February

    -Condemned 2: Bloodshot (no date)
    -Killzone 3 (no date)*
    -Little Big Planet (no date)*
    -Star Wars: The Force Unleashed (no date)
    -Tom Clancy’s EndWar (no date)

    And of course, in March we have MGS4: Guns of the Patriots. I don’t know about you all, but to me at least it looks like there are tons of quality games to look forward to this holiday season, and I can’t wait.

Paradise Special: Game of the Genre Nominations 2007

June 30, 2007

Paradise Presents: Potential 2007 Game of The Genre Nominations

Heh, it’s been a while since Paradise has done a special. Hell, it’s been a while since there has been a post (disregarding the recent posts by Zucas, of course. Not like I wouldn’t have done so anyways… :P) Well, I’m here to tell ya… we’re back!

So, now that we’ve gotten condolensces out of the way, here’s how this thing’s gonna work. We (Paradise members) are going to take the big game genres – FPS, TPS, puzzle, platformer, RPG, strategy- and argue over which games tower above the rest in each genre. Once we feel that we have the stand-outs for each genre, we’re going to argue some more about which one beats the others by the slimmest of margins. Once that is done, we will decide the game of the year; which game towers above the rest, period.

Sounds simple, right? Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as it sounds. Seeing as we’re only half-way through the year, there’s still a lot of time for potential contenders to come down the pipe. This is why we will be implementing a “round” system. Every two weeks or so, we will update our contender list with potential contenders (games that are shaping up very well) contenders (games that have scored very well) and our thoughts on which games are serious contenders and which ones are not.

Okay, now that we’ve gotten the explanatory crap out of the way, expect to see the first round results for all genres in a week or two (or maybe even sooner if we ever agree on something)! Oh, and one last thing: Feel free to put in your own imput on potential nominations, as we may not be able to think of all of the contenders. So… see ya in a bit!

Edit: One last thing: Expect to see some of our debates translate into new posts on Gamers Paradise. So, again… see ya in a bit!

Home, sweet Home

March 10, 2007

At GDC, Sony, now synonymous with bad PR, unveiled one of its big guns and hopefully one of its first steps in turning the PS3 around: Home. Similar to the Mii at first glance but structurally different, Home is at heart a glorified online lounge, but with a [b]lot[/b] of bells and whistles. Like any online MMO, Home grants you a lot of cosmetic customization. You are free to change your avatar’s looks at (apparently) any time, so if you suddenly feel like changing your positively goth avatar into a positively average schmuck, you are free to do so. However, the bread and butter of Home lies in the scope of your available interactions with the Home world and Home users. In Home, you can do anything from watching a movie to playing an arcade game to making your Home space (house) look snazzy, Sims-style. You can upload your own purchased Blu-ray movies, home-made video clips or any other video which you happen to have and watch it with anybody you want to. At the Home arcade, you can play and try actual downloadable games from the PS3 network such as FlOw. In your Home space, you can outfit it with anything from a bed to a TV which is similar to the movie theater in function; you can upload films to it and invite anybody you want to to watch them with you.

For more information, go to: http://ps3.ign.com/articles/770/770998p2.html

Oblivion & the PS3 finally together

October 1, 2006

It’s official; TES: Oblivion is for the PS3, and is coming on November 17th. For more information click on the source.

Source

Ratchet and Clank: Up Your Arsenal review

August 30, 2006

On November 2, 2004, Ratchet and Clank: Up Your Arsenal was released to the public. Being a loyal follower of the Ratchet and Clank series, I bought this one, expecting great gameplay that was at least as good, if not better than the second game’s gameplay. Well, was it better? A definite YES! if you want to find out why it runs circles around it’s predecessor, read on.

Gameplay

When I got past the intro cut-scene and started playing, I instantly knew that it was ratchet and clank, but there’s a cool, new thing added: different control schemes. I know some of you are bound to have “hated” the controls in ratchet and clank 2. even though there was a strafe button, you constantly had to hold it and if the R2 or L2 button broke, you were out of luck (you could beat the game without using it, but it would be harder). Well now, Insomniac has included a control scheme that’ll change all of that. It’s called “Lock Strafe Mode” and here’s what it does: basically, while you have the wrench out (your default weapon) it controls just like ratchet and clank 1&2, but when you bring out an actual weapon, then it strafes for you, and you can aim your gun using the right-analog stick, and you can fire with R1. This will probably be a godsend for the people who are used to the FPS control scheme on the PS2, but then again, if you really aren’t comfortable with playing in third-person at all, there’s another control scheme called “FPS mode”. I’m pretty sure that’s self-explanatory.

Now, to the actual gameplay. Basically, you blast aliens or robots into oblivion using tons of weapons, but each weapon is fit for different scenarios. where one weapon might be godlike in one scenario, in another scenario it might pretty much be as harmless as a kitten. It adds some tatical depth to the play, which helps make it all the more fun to play. but the guns have limited ammo (except for the suck gun. but I’ll expalin that later) so of course you have a melee weapon: the wrench (or as the game calls it, the omniwrench 8000). This little bugger is good for the small opponents (Tip: don’t waist ammo on small opponents if you can kill them in one stroke with the wrench or use the suck gun to-suprise!- suck up enemies, which is the suck gun’s ammo.)

The game is never extremely hard, but it’s not a wark in the park either. it’s in the middle, especially if it’s your first time through. The enemies will (sometimes) take cover if they’re about to die. Well actually, that’s not completely true. you see, Insomiac used a sort of “code” with the enemies (tyrannoids). the code is counting how many eyes the enemy has. if it has one, then it’s pretty much brain-dead stupid, and it’ll come close to bite you, walking right into your wrench’s range. if it has 2, then it’ll attack from a dinstance with a gun, which is smarter, but it still won’t take cover. if it has 5, then it’s a commando and it has a big gun and it’ll take cover and use simple tactics to try to flank you. Last but not least, there’s tyrannoids that are in mechs, that have lasers that are pretty deadly if you’re on the recieving end.

there’s also good guys on your side that “help” you fight. The helpers are called “rangers”. They’re soldiers. Cowardly, but soldiers nonetheless. these guys die pretty fast, and their help is very aprreciated, so I suggest you try to keep them alive.

Now we’re going to go back to the weapons, except this time, about the weapons themselves. So, incase you’re wondering, you have all the basic weapons that are in any self-respecting FPS game. the ones that I’m talking about are these (I won’t use the guns’ names):

shotgun
SMG
Grenade Launcher
Rocket Launcher
Sniper Rifle

although there’s no pistols and grenades, in this game you don’t really need them. I won’t spoil the other weapons, though, because that gets rid of most of the fun of collecting them!

Oh, and there’s also this minigame which features quark. these minigames are actually not reall y mini games. remember the days of the side-scrollers (Contra anyone)? well, this side-game is a side-scroller, but it looks 3D, but overall it looks really cartoony. the guys at Insomniac did a great job on the character models and the effects in this little game too. it’s great fun, and it makes the experience better.

Oh! I almost forgot to mention the online play and the 4-player split-screen! This is easily the thing that Insomniac put the most work into. The online is awesome, not only because it’s fast-paced and a blast to play but also because the game uses a good inteface for the online. easy to use and fast, this is easily the best on the PS2 in terms of being easy to use.

The game modes consist of Siege, Capture the Flag, and Deathmatch. Deathmatch and CTF are self-explanatory, so the new addition is Siege. If you’ve played Onslaught in Unreal Tournament 2004, then you’ll be instantly familar with this mode. In Siege, the point is to destroy the enemies base, but there’s something else: Nodes. Like in Unreal, these nodes can spawn weapons, vehicles, and you can spawn on any Node you own. these are immediately useful, and you must get at least a few of them. Tip: try to get the one nearest to the enemy’s base. It’ll save a lot of trouble. defend it at all costs.

and to top it all off, it runs at a constant 60 frames-per-second.

Okay, onto the graphics.

Graphics

The graphics in this game are some of the best I’ve seen on the PS2. the game has beatuiful cut-scenes and character models, and the graphics really help flesh out the cut-scenes (and the cut-scenes are laugh-out-loud funny). The enivonments (levels) and effects are awesome as well. The effects in one word are awesome. the gun effects are stunning, and the water effects are just plain beautiful. and the environments-their stunning as well. leaves actually fall of the trees, and there’s tons going on in the backround. In some levels, hover-cars are flying around in the backround, and there’s just a lot going on in the levels.

Oh, and for those who have HDTVs, the game supports progressive scan too. it also supports Widescreen, and if you can do both of those- the game looks even better.

The animation is good as well. ratchet goes through his moves fluidly, and I’ve never seen it suddenly skip an animation (except for him being able to wip out a gun without doing anything. hmmm…). the main-characaters walk fine, and so do the other characters (the bad guys or the rangers).

on to the sound!

Sound

the sound was extremely well done in the second one, and now the sound is better than ever. the sound effects for the guns and the environments…. wow. Some of the gun effects make the guns sound more powerful than they really are! and the music is awesome too! Insomniac had to have paid top-dollar for the soundtrack, because the soundtrack is awesome. The soundtrack solely consists of techno, but man is it good!

Conclusion

This game is simply a must have on the PS2, for it’s single-player and it’s online play. If you don’t have it and you have a PS2, you’re missing out on one of the best PS2 games ever made. get it already and have some fun!

Its MGS, not MGA!

August 26, 2006

MGS fans have been quite giddy for a while about Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops, and its easy to see why. I’ll give you a hint: There’s no A in MGS. Thats right, Kojima Productions has ditched the card-based strategy in favor of the action/stealth that the series has become famous for, with what Kojima Production’s scribe is hyping up to be the best storyline in the series to boot. The other thing thats been widely talked about is the whole ‘hotspot’ thing and the fact that kojima productions have said that any of the characters of past Metal Gear Solids that were seen in this entry would have the original voice-cast. You travel to a certain ‘hotspot’ and you can gain new characters for multiplayer or whatever they decide to put. These hotspots are going to be all around the country… or even the world.

In terms of production values, the game is really coming together. The graphics, while not as good as the PS2 Metal Gear Solids, are still very impressive as they take full advantage of the PSP hardware. The devs are changing something though. The cut-scenes are now done along the lines of a graphic novel a la Metal Gear Solid Digital Graphic Novel. The artist (Ashley Wood) had worked on the MGS graphic comic-book series, and Kojima Productions was fond of it.

The game will in fact have 6-player multiplayer, via Ad-Hoc or Infrastructure. The multi-player game-modes are deathmatch, team deathmatch, Kerotan Rugby and Kerotan Capture. The game is slated for a December 5th US release date, followed by a December 31st release date in Japan. A European release date is unknown as of yet.

-zackletterman (A.K.A weird guy)