What We Played #15

It’s not unusual for several of us to have played very little.  On top of working for a living, studying, etc., much of our ‘gaming time’ is given over to TSA.  What we have left can be impinged upon by many other factors.  We’ll get to mine later but first here’s an Old Spicy ePostcard from Tuffcub:

Look at me.  Now look at the other TSA staff.  Now look at me.  I’m in Hawaii!!  Now look behind me.  It’s a hotel complex owned by the U.S. Military where they send all their heroic soldiers.  Now look in my hand.  It’s a refreshing Mojito.

Now look behind me again, it’s a squad of Marines playing beach volleyball.  Now look at me again.  I’m on a volcano!  Now look in my other hand.  There is no games controller in my hand and it’s staying that way for two weeks.  I’m on Waikiki beach.

For some reason he wanted me to pass on that message to you all. I’m sure it wasn’t designed to encourage jealousy amongst those of us stuck here in rainy sunny rainy Old Blighty, much like the fact he’s played through Deus Ex: Human Revolution a couple of times already..

[videoyoutube]Now Dan has been playing games.  First on his list is the hard to buy Xenoblade Chronicles for the Wii.  Says Dan, “I’m only 7hrs in but already it’s one of my favourite games of 2011”, which means he’s putting it up there with the likes of Bastion and Solatorobo: Red the Hunter and further showing that those who have written off the Wii as a casual-party-games-only console are really missing out.


Xenoblade Chronicles has been picking up rave reviews all over; IGN have said it “is the best Japanese RPG of this generation” and Edge called it “a glowing comeback for the Japanese RPG”.  Both gave it a 9/10 in their respective reviews.  During the rest of his week Dan has been playing the “most enjoyable” SkullGirls and El Shaddai: Ascension of the Metatron “which has one of the craziest levels I’ve ever seen.  I would describe it, but you wouldn’t believe me…”

Lack of motivation is Toby’s excuse for eschewing ‘proper’ gaming this week having spent the majority of his gaming time playing Angry Birds.  “It’s fun, but can be frustratingly inconsistent”, he says.  “Sometimes two birds that land in the exactly same place can cause completely different levels of damage, forcing you to ponder whether it really is skill and not luck that is gaining you the rewarding stars.”

LittleBigPlanet 2 is providing “lots of fun” for Blair who is eagerly anticipating the release of the Move pack for it.  He’s finding Toy Soldiers: Cold War to be an entertaining twist on the regular tower defense genre “since you can actually control the turrets”.  Other than that Child of Eden has consumed some of his time.  “I need to find a good game to sink my teeth into,” he says, “ my gaming has been a bit here and there recently.”

Just as well this Friday sees a big AAA-title released that heralds the start of the games avalanche that accompanies the holiday season.  Might I suggest you give that one a try Blair?

You’ll already know that Alex has had an early look at ICO & Shadow of the Colossus HD.  What you may not appreciate is how much he suffered to bring you that preview, playing those two great games on their native PS2:

That’s journalism, bitches, having to fire up a game running at what feels like about 160 x 100 just to try to get a sense of comparison between Ico and Ico HD.  If nothing else, the Team Ico collection demonstrates what difference a better resolution and smoother framerate can do to exactly the same game.  This must be how PC gamers feel about, well, everything.

[drop]The thing that has stopped myself from enjoying much gaming this week is, ironically, a game; The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion.  Oblivion is also where it consigned the contents of my PS3’s HDD.  I managed just five hours of sporadic play amongst six crashes, two of which corrupted the game’s installed data, requiring it to be deleted.  The sixth crash trashed the partition on the HDD, leaving the PS3 unable to recover it.

I only back up my HDD monthly now as it takes so damned long, even though it’s only about 200GBs of data and of course it would have been this weekend I took my next backup, so I’m restoring a backup from almost a month ago.  I’m about to find out how well PlayStation Plus’ ‘cloud’ game saves have worked.

Oh, and when I say I am restoring a backup, I mean I am still restoring a backup.  It’s taken over 24 hours so far, which is on a par with a restore I tried earlier this year to test how well it worked.  (Work in IT or computing long enough and you learn to test your backups from time to time.)  Seriously Sony, backup and restore is a great feature to have on the PS3 but its implementation is badly flawed given how long it takes.

How about you lot then, what have you been playing or what has been stopping you play?



  1. I enjoyed the ePostcard – very nice! Think I’d rather be playing game though! :)

    This week I got the (epic) “Time Travel Will Tell” trophy on Nazi Zombies; and have been progressing with my Heavy Rain Platinum (slowly).

    Most of my time has been made up with transferring all my PSP, PSone & PS2 game data on to my PS3 for 2 reasons. 1 – so it is backed up. 2 – because I wanted everything on my PS3 HDD before I make a carbon copy of my fat PS3, with my new slim PS3 (thank you PlayStation price drop)! Now, just 7 hours and 53 minutes left for backup to complete…. :(

    • Greg, how many gb was your backup?? My previous restore took 11 hours I think and was less than 200gb. I’m currently backing-up 265gb so this may take ages when restoring on to my new PS3 slim!! :( At least I can play my fat PS3 in the meantime!

      • Just over 200GB. As you’ve got both PS3s it might be quicker for you to use the data transfer utility;

      • Jesus – 24 hours is ridiculous!!

        Thanks. I saw that but it says it removes any Save Data from the source PS3 (my fat in this case), so I’m backing-up then restoring to me new Slim. Rather than transferring it I’m trying to make an exact copy, just in case either crashes or dies on me without warning. I’ll use the Cloud for any copyright Save Data.

      • It was 24 hours when I wrote this last night. It was still restoring when I left for work this morning. At least it had gone up from 93% complete to 94% overnight…

      • At least you saw it progress…I was so worried last time when mine seemed to be stuck on 76% for hours!!

        I hope it’s done, ready for the weekend when you get home! :)

    • Wait, you’d rather play games on your Playstation than sip Mojitos on Hawaii? I think you might have to get your priorities straight. :P

      • I’m not a beach person, I just get bored! Maybe if there were jet skis and mojitos! :)

      • I’m very much a beach person. Palm trees, white sand and clear blue water combined with a Mai Tai in my hand and consider me happy. :D

  2. I got the inFamous 2 platinum this week (yay!). I’ve also been playing The Sly Collection again (almost finished), as well as some Dead Nation, WipEout HD, L.A. Noire & even a bit of Dead Space 2. On Hardcore. It’s very, very difficult. This week will probably see me complete Sly 3, and then be more of the same. Just waiting for Resistance 3 now…

    • Did you make it to your first save on Hardcore? :)

      • No! I’ve tried like 20 times! Last night I got further than ever, almost to Chapter 5, and I died at a really easy bit because of one really stupid mistake on my part :(

      • Shit that’s harsh. I wrote several tips for someone else in this thread that you may find useful:


      • I tried hardcore a few days ago but it’s been so long since I played it I kept getting lost (and then killed) and after half a dozen times I gave up. I’ll get there eventually.

  3. Is Xenoblade Chronicles coming to PS3 via Move?

    For me, Tiger Woods 12 has been my main focus of the week, after getting my 12th hole in one a week after beating Tiger Woods’ record and during my 7th Masters win I have pretty much finished it. I don’t have online for it.

    Also been trying to do Portal 2 co-op ON MY OWN *sad face*

    Anyway, excited for the post today, Deus Ex: Human Revolution! XD

  4. Captain America, Battlefield 2, Golden Axe and inFamous 2. This week and a half I have off will involve a bit of GT5 and Deus Ex Human Revo.

  5. If Carlsberg sent postcards……absolutely brilliant

  6. Lots of gaming for me again this week:

    My wife and I stormed through LA Noire between Friday and Sunday (awesome homicide cases but everything after those was boring imo. Great voice acting and character models though)
    Few games of Killzone3 online with a couple of mates Tuesday evening.
    Started Splinter Cell HD Wednesday evening and immediately remembered how great the game play was (and also how awful the lip syncing was)
    I then got my platinum trophy on Tomb Raider Legend last night and started my bajillionth playthrough of Uncharted2 :)

  7. Must be something cosmic, I’ve only really played a couple of games of Coconut Dodge this week! My wife has started her EA Health 2 Thingy, which is nice to watch if nothing else, thinking of starting an anti sports bra petition on the forums. Spent my son’s birthday money on Lego PotC, which I’m enjoying. I mean he’s enjoying.

  8. Got the platinum on Alice Madness Returns yesterday.
    Loved the game, the art/level design is simply sublime. It has a few niggles with load times etc, but really enjoyed it.

    Moved onto the original Alice.
    It hasn’t aged well at all imo. Clunky awful controls and a crappy save system that make it more frustrating than fun to play (for me anyways). I wouldn’t bother but I am so close to that mystical 100% on the trophy list for it and my OCD won’t back down lol

    • Not that there is anything wrong with it in particular, but why did you choose to play them backwards?

      Seems a bit, well, backwards to me!

      • I had already played the original Alice many many moons ago.
        So decided to plunge straight into the new game.

        Glad I did too, as it is far far superior :)

      • Ah fair enough – I keep forgetting that some people may have had the opportunity to play the original when it was the only option available.

        So you would recommend the new one then? :)

      • Yeah definitely, it’s a decent platformer, good story with loads of collectibles to pad it out.

        Can be picked up pretty cheap nowadays too (it went down to £25 a week after I bought it :( )

  9. I’ve just kept to Little Big Planet 2 and Fallout New Vegas this week. I’m 26 hours into fallout and it hasn’t crashed yet (touches wood). Really enjoying it, and i am now enjoying it even more as i didnt realize i had it on hard difficulty, now it’s on easy and im finding it easier if that wasnt obvious.

    • That’s good news about the crashing…I might start it now! :) I’ve held off since buying it as there were a lot of updates in the pipeline!

      • yeah theres been a few patches, are theres not even many dips in frame rate, very impressed with it

      • Good to hear…might start it this weekend!!

  10. I’ve played – Nothing. How crap is that. I have a mountain of games but had zero time

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