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Frayed Wire X Podcast Episode 11: All Corners of the Earth

October 11, 2010 Leave a comment

Josh60502, JustMattPwn3r, and LostAddict1993 meet up again to record a new episode of Frayed Wire X. Do they have an idea of what they are going to talk about? No. Does that matter? Def no.

Listen in for discussions about the lack of new posts on the site, the general suckiness of Sonic the Hedgehog, upcoming gaming consoles, and the public’s inability to accept change in games like Metroid: Other M and Final Fantasy XIII.

Due to some issues retrieving the snazzy intro I introduced last episode, this one starts off right away. U mad about that?

Stream it in your browser or subscribe to us on iTunes!

By Josh60502

Disconnected

October 3, 2010 Leave a comment

Everything is in place. The bases are built. The units are trained. Your opponent is in sight. You know you can take them down. It’s time to enact the plan you’ve had sitting in your head for twenty minutes now. The button is pushed; hell is about to break loose. And all of a sudden – nothing. The supplies that were coming in at an alarming rate a second ago are now halted. The units traveling across the war-torn land are frozen in place. Not again, you think. Your wish is not granted. You are disconnected.

Lagging out of a game is no new issue, but it’s surprisingly still an issue. The reliability of consoles are a large part of why I haven’t ever been much of a fan of the ever-finicky field of PC gaming, but some of the PC’s problems still occasionally find their way over to the consoles. Just when I thought I was safe from awful connections and sub-par online servers, I get disconnected from a game on my Xbox 360.

And what a game I get disconnected from. Anyone who has played Halo Wars or any real-time strategy game like it knows how that genre works. You are tasked with building an army to take down your opponents. At the onset of the game, you are given a small number of supplies, which acts as currency to build and upgrade units for your military. The first part of any match in Halo Wars involves building up your forces. Once everything is sufficient, you lead your army into battle.

A game of Halo Wars is a serious time investment. When you play against an evenly matched opponent (or group of opponents), it’s not unrealistic to expect a single match to last over an hour. But what a satisfying hour it can be – by trading blows with your enemy, you learn what strategies they are using and you alter your own approach to counter theirs. You look at the ways you can spend your supplies, make what seems to be the best purchase,s and smile as your units become more and more powerful right before your eyes. Finally the armies meet in a glorious display of explosions, lasers, and utter destruction.

But what happens when you spend half of your match building up for the big fight, but the big fight never comes? What do you do when you anticipate the payoff of the better part of your hour, but that satisfaction never comes? When all the movement onscreen freezes and you freeze in fear along with it, do you feel like you’ve been using your precious free time wisely?

It’s a true shame that a game as fun as Halo Wars can be absolutely ruined by something like bad servers disconnecting players. After all the time and money they spent making the game, the folks over at Ensemble Studios are left with a broken product simply because they couldn’t build a more reliable way to play online. Of course there’s always the line of thought, “Maybe it’s me that’s the problem! Maybe I’m the one with the bad connection!” And then you think back to the other games you were playing online for hours the other day, and you realize that’s not the case at all.

Curiously, I still want to return to Halo Wars after every slap in the face it gives me. I think, “Oh, this time it’ll work. It doesn’t disconnect every time, so maybe now it will run perfectly!” Twenty minutes later, the same thought returns to me. Eighteen minutes later, I’m thinking the same thing yet again. Half an hour later, I shut the game off.

By Josh60502

Categories: Gaming, Halo, Xbox 360 Tags: , ,

Halo: Reach Opinions

May 8, 2010 1 comment

Ah hey there, this would just so happen to be my first “official” post for the Frayed Wire blog.  My buddy Josh set me up so that I could give you some thoughts on Halo: Reach.

Without further ado:

In my quite honest opinion, Halo: Reach is going to be one hullava game. This is, considering I got my first perfection today!

When I first started the demo after downloading it, I had no idea what to expect.  The opening video made my mouth water.  When searching matchmaker, I found, to my complete dislike, that the servers were down!!  This left me rather upset considering I had specifically gone to do something else while it downloaded fully expecting to be able to play it right then on Monday the  3rd.  So when I noticed that the servers were down for some reason, I quickly raced to Bungie.net to see what the heck is going on.  I wasn’t surprised to see a post from Bungie about their servers being down from the massive horde that is their fan base.  So, I went on, for a few more hours without the Beta, until finally the servers were back online!

I couldn’t wait for my first game on the Beta.  I was playing with an old friend of mine who had told me the servers were back up, and so we went.  The first game was 1-Flag CTF, which is just a fancy way of saying Capture your enemy’s flag without having to worry about one of your own, unless you’re defending.  I figured a +2 on my Kills-deaths was pretty good for a first match.  I had to learn to crawl in the game, but I was soon running by the end, using the “stalker” class and going ninja on all of the Red team baddies.  So, we won which left me on a very good note to go ahead on my own to see how to best survive in this world where the best reign and the flag-whores die.

So far, the few things I dislike the most about Reach have already been addressed for the final release of it for the fall.  So I’m not in a bad mood about it, but I’ll give you what I think about nearly every element in Halo: Reach.

The DMR is a sucky replacement for the BR, but quite honestly, I like it much, much better. I’m so happy to have something close to the Halo: Combat Evolved pistol back!! The Assault rifle also sounds like a popcorn popper, but kicks more ass than its Halo 3 counterpart. I like that now the weapons have legit recoil, or visible recoil while aiming. SWAT is now much harder but twice as fun as spamming BR bursts across the map.

The Covie weapons, such as the Plasma repeater, I think, are much better balanced and tweaked than the Halo 3 ones. In Halo 3 no one wanted Covie weapons, save the plasma pistol for certain situations. The Needler may seem like it takes more needles, but it tracks better and has longer range than the sucky excuse for one in Halo 3. The two things wrong with the Covie weapons are that I WANT MY CARBINE BACK(!!!) and the plasma launcher which is beyond overpowered (however I do enjoy using it ;D).

As for the vehicles, the turrets now overheat and the warthog turret has been nerfed. For some reason, every other explosive weapon has an EMP. How do you put an EMP into a 40mm grenade? Not to mention the vehicles killed by only tactical nukes (Ahem, grenades). When tanks need less damage to be destroyed than the Warthog, you know something is up. When your land options fail, bring back the Banshee(!!), as it now has the fuel rod cannon re-added to it, but a good amount of maneuverability reduced, which isn’t that bad. Just watch out for the airborne enemies, they’ll be sort of like those frozen chickens the Mythbusters shot at a plane a while back (They’ll knock you right out of the sky).

The classes/abilities are fairly well done, except for the armor lock, which definitely needs some tweaking because it seems as though they have an overshield right after the lock wears off. Not to mention I disliked the map Sword Base until I got the hang of the jetpack, because it’s built around a single class which is a VERY bad thing. Now Bungie should start making, or tweak maps so that they’re not so one-sided to a single class/ability. My final concern with the classes is the ability to roll/sprint and immediately melee someone, similar to MW2 (which I dislike greatly) with people running around knifing everyone.

As for Invasion, the only thing that allows you to win as Elites is nothing but a good team and dumb luck.  If the defending team has any kind of wits about them, you’ll hardly get the core out of their base in enough time.  Most of the time they’ll all be launching grenades at you via the class that has that such weapon.  Invasion is currently the only map that has vehicles in the Beta for Halo: Reach.

Overall I just cannot wait until it comes out. Until then I’ll be sitting on my grab bag tea-bagging noobs.

Nuwbz (G.T. iSh0cKu)~ Over and out.

Categories: Gaming, Halo, Reviews, Xbox 360

Vote For Your Favorite Game of 2009!

December 16, 2009 Leave a comment

We did it last year at Frayed Wire, and now it’s time to do it again – vote for the best game of the year! I’ll try to get a handful of our editors to make personal lists, but what we really want to know is what YOU think deserves the top honor! Keep in mind that, just like last year, we are asking for your FAVORITE game of the year – not necessarily what you think is the BEST of the year. You’d have to play nearly everything that came out to make a judgment call like that, and believe us, not even we have done that.

Vote in our poll on the sidebar of the site, and the results will be shown in a later post.

By Josh60502

Halo Legends: The… Anime!?

July 26, 2009 1 comment

Even though the Halo games are extremely popular, even this is something I didn’t see coming – a Halo anime. Well, more like 7 short Halo animes, put together into one DVD a la Animatrix style. I’m not exactly well-versed in Halo lore, but I’ll probably rent Halo Legends when it reaches Netflix next year. The studios involved with this project include BONES (Fullmetal Alchemist), Production I.G. (Ghost in the Shell, the anime sequence in Kill Bill), Studio 4°C (Tekkon Kinkreet), and Toei (Dragon Ball Z, One Piece). Lots of talent there, and lots of different styles as well. It will be interesting to see how they handle this western property, but until then you can watch the trailer and “Major’s Minute” segment with some clips of it below:

By Josh60502

Categories: Gaming, Halo, Movies, Xbox 360 Tags:

Top 5 Games Best Supported With DLC

In this gaming generation of online play and downloadable content everywhere, more and more developers are supporting their games after launch with patches, updates, and add-on packs. But which games are supported the best after launch? In my opinion, here are the top five:

#5. Halo 3

halo3dlc

“Fiery Depths” by jEEborz – one of the many pieces of content in Bungie Favorites this week

True, Halo 3, the game practically every Xbox 360 owner has, does not get downloadable packs constantly like some of the other games on this list, but what it does get is some phenomenal support by its developer, Bungie. Every week players can press start while searching for games in the always popular online matchmaking and see “Bungie Favorites”, a list of recommended screenshots, videos, game variants, and map variants that the community produced. There’s almost always something interesting to be seen, or a cool map to mess around in with your friends for free each week.

#4. Fallout 3

fallout 3 the pitt

“The Pitt”, pictured here, is one of five downloadable packs in Fallout 3

If any game is making people see that DLC packs are the future, it’s Bethesda’s Fallout 3. Not only has Bethesda made one of the largest and most well-received RPGs of this generation, but they have made some of the biggest and best $10 level/quest packs ever seen in video games. If you liked Fallout 3, there’s still a lot more reason to come back to the game with four packs out already and a fifth one on the way.

#3. Burnout Paradise

Big Surf Island 2

“Big Surf Island” is a massive expansion to Burnout Paradise‘s already massive world

Usually when developers finish making a game, they start right away on their next one. In Criterion Games’ case, they’ve spent about as much time tweaking and adding to Burnout Paradise as some companies take developing full retail games. The love they have for their community is astounding, and the great thing is that the majority of their extensive additions to the game are free (with the exception of some awesome cars and the enormous Big Surf Island).

#2. Team Fortress 2

the_ambassador

That shiny gun is courtesy of one of Valve‘s nine free updates to Team Fortress 2

Valve, the developer of this superb FPS, has promised updates for each of the game’s nine classes. There’s only a few left to go, and I think everyone can agree that getting free updates with new game modes, maps, achievements, and weapons that can completely alter people’s strategies every couple of months is way better than waiting years for a Team Fortress 3.

#1. Rock Band

rbdlc

If you’ve got the money to buy some songs, expect to be playing Rock Band for a long, long time

Name a band. Any semi-well known band. Chances are, that band has at least one song in Harmonix’s extremely large Rock Band music library. Although there is a Rock Band 2, I chose to put Rock Band 1 at the top of this list just because all of the weekly song additions are compatible with both games, meaning the first one has been supported longer. By the looks of it, the avalanche of new songs coming to Rock Band every week is not slowing down any time soon, and with hundreds and hundreds of songs already available to download, there’s no question that Harmonix’s masterpiece is the best game supported with DLC.

By Josh60502

Just FIRIN’ MAH LAZORS

If the first thing you thought when reading the title of this post (and also of the newest podcast episode) was “why did he spell ‘lasers’ wrong?”, then you obviously need to visit YouTube more often. And while you’re out surfing the web, why not give episode 8 of the Frayed Wire podcasts a listen? You can either listen to it here in your browser or subscribe to us on iTunes. Either way, leave some questions that we can answer in the next podcast in this post’s comments. You might even win some Wii points for it!

Recorded by: Josh60502, JustMattPwn3r
Discussion Topics:
– Post: Free App Spotlight: Vampires Live
– Post: Reader Poll: Which Album Should Matt Review For Sure?
– Post: Reader Poll Results: Which Album Should Josh Review For Sure?
– Post: “Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen” Movie Review
– Post: Well There Go My Dreams
– Post: I Touch the iTouch
– Post: Current Happenings
– Post: “Call of Duty: World at War Map Pack 2” Review
– Post: New Conduit Header
– Post: “1 vs 100” Beta Impressions
– Post: Internet Gaming Spotlight: Pandemic 2
– Post: COD: WAW Shi No Numa Glitches
– Post: Need More Witty Banter
– iTouch games
– Urban Reign
– GameStop’s shady buisness practices
– De Blob
– Are you listening, M80?
– Offroad Velociraptor Safari
– Brawl Tournament #2?
– Gramers in GameStop

By Josh60502