What We Played #13

Wind ups and practical jokes are not uncommon here in The Towers.  As such you have to try and stay fairly sharp and on the look out at all times.  When I wander around from floor to floor asking what everyone has been playing, daft comments intended to trip me up are not unusual.

Take for example recent accounts that some of the staff have been playing Duke Nukem Forever.  That mythical game’s the very definition of vapourware, destined never to see the inside of PC or console, so there was no way I was falling for that ruse.

[videoyoutube]This week when I asked Tuffcub what he’d been up to, which is not something anyone close-minded should try, I was pretty certain I was being set up for some kind of joke when he said that he and his sock puppet Kitteh had been watching a Blu-ray movie called Rubber.  Immediately my mind began to wonder how many Xs must feature in the rating, but then he proceeded to describe the film; “[it’s] about a killer car tyre that can make heads explode”.


Erm, quite.  Being the ever-diligent researcher though I fired up IMDB fully expecting to draw a blank.  Imagine my surprise when I found out the film actually does exist.  Here’s IMDB’s description:

When Robert, a tire, discovers his destructive telepathic powers, he soon sets his sights on a desert town; in particular, a mysterious woman becomes his obsession.

Apart from watching films that are nuttier than squirrel droppings the lucky blighter has managed to score TSA’s review of a certain game featuring human augmentation and set in a not-too-distant future that’s strikingly reminiscent of Blade Runner.  Being laid up in bed with a bad back he probably wishes that that human augmentation would hurry up and arrive.

Someone else enjoying films on their PS3 this past week, this time to the complete exclusion of games, is Chris.  Other than performing a pre-emptive strike in anticipation of weekend gaming by updating the firmware, his PS3 has done nothing but spin up a copy of Donnie Darko.  Such a brilliant choice of film I think we can let him off not playing any games this week.

It took a little bit of goading but for only the second time in thirteen attempts I managed to get Peter to admit he plays games too.  As TSA’s Ed he is used to wielding immense, god-like powers for real and this week he’s been doing the same in-game to review From Dust which despite “one or two flaws” has become “one of [his] personal favourite downloadable games this year”.

[drop]When we caught him flailing his arms around in front of the TV we first thought he had simply succumb to apoplectic rage at another news report blaming the ills of the world on video games.  Instead it was something far worse; he was playing Fruit Ninja Kinect.  He claimed he really enjoyed it and that the reason it was on so much is because his wife, not him, at gotten insanely competitive about it.  We know the truth though.  He’s run out of patience waiting for MGS: Rising and was desperate to practice his melon slicing skills.

Either that or it was an unsuccessful attempt to distract me from the fact that he’s been playing a certain super-secret iPhone game that he’s absolutely, definitely not allowed to talk about as it’s under a super-secret NDA.  An NDA that includes a clause allowing the two tyrannical developers responsible to “break my legs or something”.  The subsequent enforced convalescence period would have to take place in a closed environment under the steely gaze of a ‘friendly’ guard-husky.  Obviously we cannot reveal the game or the developers involved.

The elusive Jen popped briefly into The Towers in an attempt to grab a biscuit and run but being sufficiently watchful I was able to intercept her to find out what she’s been playing.  As she scampered back out the door I could have sworn she said she’d been playing outside and getting dirty.  Obviously though what she actually said was that she’d “been outside a lot so only played a bit of DiRT 3”.

Also seemingly stuck in a one-game rut is Toby.  He’s been persevering with Crysis 2 and is starting to enjoy it more.  This week though he’s set aside the single player campaign and has ventured into the “initially ruthless” multiplayer.  After adapting to Crysis’ style of gameplay he’s found it “a fun and unique diversion away from the likes of Call of Duty and Battlefield.  In addition, the nanosuit is really well integrated into the online modes, so nothing feels particularly overpowered or unfair.”

[drop2]Blair claimed to have had a busy week which had made him miss out on most of his gaming time.  “Missing out” on gaming meant he only played Cut the Rope: Experiments, Groove Coaster, Cover Orange “and many other iPhone games” in addition to trying to play BioShock and hammering out some choons on Rock Band 3.

It was a case of trying to play BioShock on his PC because he had to tolerate “lots of crashing” just to get to Rapture (the underwater city, not the anti-climatic supposed rising to Heaven).  He thought the water effects and lighthouse were very impressive compared to the console graphics but yet another crash while in the bathysphere saw the game abandoned.

He “also played Rock Band 3 with friends” which is an odd thing to do as most of the rest of us find it easier to play using the provided plastic instruments.  Guess he must have bought the ‘solus’ pack.  “Every time I play it, I think back to my review and realise it’s completely justified: it really is the best rhythm game ever and it’s such a laugh when you have people round.”

Our dedicated über-newshound Dan has had a rough, gaming-free week due to some unwelcome news:

I lost my job, so have been spending most of my spare time writing CVs and looking for ways to make money.  I will remove my clothes for money.

Some of us staff and the odd ex-staffer are busy working on ideas to raise funds for a counter offer.  We’d much rather he got into the habit of keeping his clothes on and are hoping we can come up with sufficient fiscal encouragement.

What have you played this week?



  1. Bit of a mix for me this week:

    Played a bit of Medal of Honor and realised the multi-player is still awesome and the single-player is still garbage ;)
    Moved onto MOH:Frontline and lol’d at how at how much better this 2002 game is in comparison to the MOH game mentioned above.
    Mopped up a few trophies on Smackdown2011 before starting SpiderMan Shattered Dimensions last night. With the exception of some repetitive dialogue, the game seems pretty good so far, particularly the Noir levels :D

    • LAN tomorrow as well so I would imagine games of Left4Dead, Gears2, Killzone3 and Motorstorm:A will be on the cards :)

    • Knew I forgot one, played a bit of the Resistance3 beta last night too. Initial impressions: meh. It seems ok but the visuals are a bit naff and the perks feel horribly unbalanced at the moment. It has potential to be decent but I think it will need quite a bit of work… something that won’t happen given the game is out in under a month

    • I also laughed at the fact I found Frontline miles better than MOH 2010, it didn’t feel outdated for me

  2. I have been hammering the Sega Classics thanks to PS+ so Golden Axe, Streets of Rage 2 and Comix Zone. Also finally got hold of Dirt3 which is awesome so been playing that a fair bit too. Yesterday Portal 2 arrived from Boomerang Rentals so that will no doubt take all my time for next week!

  3. *Adds Rubber as high priority to my LoveFilm account*

    I’ve not had time for gaming this week, apart from some iPhone gaming. Found a glitch to get money super-fast on Plants vs Zombies so bought all the mini-games and completed them. Also finished Cut the Rope Experiments.

    Probably won’t game any more tonight eiter, but need to finish watching Machete. Watched the first half hour and its ridiculoulsy good!

    • Machete is AWESOME – I can’t believe you only managed to watch half an hour & weren’t gripped to watch the rest if i am honest!

      Hobo with a shotgun is next on my list. Oh & as of today…Rubber, as that just sounds deliciously mental.

      • I was really tired and up for work this morning, but will watch the rest as soon as i get home. The women are just too hot. And that was a novel way to carry a mobile phone around :P

        Hobo with a Shotgun I added the other day too. Sometimes you need some mindless violence to perk up your day.

  4. Had my patience repeatedly tested to the limit, to the point of almost going all “can’t do it, don’t like it” with Catherine this week. Stupid slippy-slidy-ice worlds. I’ve also been getting into Dirt 3 and Operation Flashpoint: Red River, which I picked up late last week for £30 from ShopTo. Dirt 3’s sheer volume of DLC available is a surprise, I can’t help but feel I’ve only been sold half a game – though what’s there is really, really good.

    • Ice worlds!? Want.

      • Yeah, you say that now. Stupid ice blocks, acting like conveyor belts – as if the game wasn’t hard enough! It’s like, “Really, Catherine? Ice? Did you think I had it too easy in the opening couple of levels?”

        Brilliant game, mind.

      • Having tried the demo before my PS3 went tits up, I can where the frustration would come in. It was very more-ish though. I’ll definitely have to pick it up.

        Seriously though developers. More ice worlds please. And Hello Kitty games in the mould of a cross between Critter Crunch and Manhunt.

      • You heathen! Ice worlds are the work of the devil (ironic, I suppose, given his penchant for fire and brimstone), a dev’s torture device that leaves me forever falling foul of friction free frustration.

      • That last line is just poetry. *happy sigh* ;)

      • It’s all for you, Ernie :)

      • If your in to Red River matey, get into the gaming banter forum. Crazy_Del, Moakesice and myself Play it together. (Although I’ve been absent recently) Its a good laugh!

      • Yeah, I saw that – I was thinking I ought to play it through myself first (although the occasionaly moronic AI is putting pay to that, having issues trying to ambush a PLA convoy early in act 2 at the minute as my squad tend to wander off) but if you’ve got room for one more I’ll happily join!

  5. Managed a couple of fights on MK last night. bumped into a friendly South African who didnt spam moves, Just wanted to learn Freddy’s moves in an online environment i guess because they kept picking them!

    • Oh, and that film looks awesomly wierd! Im gonna give it a try

  6. Been a bit of a weird one for me this week with missed meets, meets i decided i wouldn’t attend (that i usually would) & generally spending a bit more time with the wife. I know, it’s unheard of!

    The little playing i have managed to get in has mainly revolved around Mass Effect 2, as i have discovered that i quite like being a prospector & am now considering taking it up as a profession. Just need to lay my hands on a decent spaceship & crew & i am set.

    Also played a little Mortal Kombat, but not really enough to write home about & as usual attended the Motorstorm meet on monday, which is always a good laugh. If you haven’t signed up yet, why not? The meets are held on Mondays as well as Fridays & not having the game is simply no excuse.

  7. Fancied a bit of mindless violence this week, so I stuck GOW3 on for the first time in ages. Turns out I was at the last save point. Played for about 3 mins and watched 15mins of cutscenes ! :(

    Other than that, been fliting about between RDR, SC Conviction, Twisted shadow planet, Shadow complex (yes, still not finished it!)and Infamous 2.

    • Oh yeah. I borrowed Kinect off a mate last weekend.

      Its not bad TBH. Kids loved Kinectimals and adventures. Personally I thought kinectimals was rubbish and didn’t play it for 7hrs by myself at all, no way, not me… Im 37 y’know… I’d never play anything like that…

      K-Adventures is Ok if a little frustrating at times. But naked Dance Central with the missus was fun ;)

  8. I played patience with a stack of cards and a few things on iPhone but any longer than 5 minutes on any of them and I enter a whole new world of tedium.

    My PS3 has OD’d on PES 2010 and gone into cardiac arrest, I pulled the plug on wednesday and am entering stage 4 of mourning. Past anger, watching “The NeverEnding Story” (Spoiler: It ends) and sobbing into my pillow, now I’m at the “what’s the meaning of life?” stage.

    Tomorrow I’ll be playing a maths puzzler. That’s right, I’m going to the bank. Equally as frustrating, tedious and time consuming as PSN puzzler – Numblast.


    • For queries regarding the meaning of Liff… Erm… That is, Life, I suggest reading the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series ;)

  9. I’ve actually done a fair bit, played heaps of AC: Brotherhood, I thought it was pretty good, though it makes me rage sometimes – the controls still need some work and the camera sometimes goes beserk.

    Also bought Just Cause 2, and that game is cool but it makes me sad – as good as it is the original Mercenaries game did everything better, if only the sequel wasn’t so shit. Or they gave it a HD upgrade/re-release.

    Lucky Tuffcub, Deus Ex: HR is my most anticipated game, full stop. Any ideas on when we will see the review?

    Sorry to hear that Dan, I know what that’s like :(

  10. Dirt 3 has been top of my list this week. A little bit of Tales from Space about a Blob, and the kids have been enjoying Toy Story 3. Also been fattening up one of my arms trying to get all the stars on Sports Champions table tennis.

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