We're always, always playing games. We thought we'd do a little piece on what we're working on but yet to beat. Commenters, let us know what you think so far of the games you're playing!
Sleeping Dogs - Harley
I was a huge fan of the top-down GTA games, and some of the early 3D titles. However, GTA: IV really lost me... I quickly grew tired of taking my cousin out for American hamburgers and strippers. Sleeping Dogs shows that you can achieve the kind of 'gritty realism' that GTA: IV seemed to be shooting for, without making your game a snore-fest.
Guns are rare, fist-fighting is the norm, and much of the game (in my first 15 hours or so) has been spent gleefully punching Hong Kong-Chinese dudes in the crotch. (Yeah, it's set in Hong Kong.) Combat is visceral and fluid, and not overly button-mashy.
Only one problem so far, and it's a doozy: I've got the PC version, and the keyboard/mouse controls are tacked on worse than I've ever seen. Playing with my Xbox 360 controller it's a right load of fun, until guns are involved - then it's back to the mouse, because the controller-based shooting controls are equally bad.
Still, better than shovelling hamburgers into my annoying digital cousin.
The Walking Dead - Siobhan
This game came completely out of left field for me when the first episode launched a couple of months ago. As a fan of the comics and TV show, I was interested in the game, but had no idea what I was really getting myself into. The post-apocalyptic zombie adventure game focuses less on zombie killin' and more on the difficult decisions you have to make when forced into a bad situation.
The third episode of The Walking Dead went live just last night on Steam, and the decisions were tougher than ever. Each decision has to be made on what seems like a very short timer, and not all of them are easy. Looking back on it, I regret at least one decision I made, not because of the consequences, but because I believe it was ethically the wrong choice. What are these feelings? Is that my conscience speaking?
Guild Wars 2 - Siobhan
The original Guild Wars was a massive hit, but I never played it. Truthfully, I'm not a big fan of high fantasy, but I've been enjoying MMOs more and more lately, so here I am, playing Guild Wars 2. And I'm enjoying it! Go figure. I'm not going to be reviewing Guild Wars 2 - a contributor who's familiar with the first game will be - and I'm only a few hours in.
I'm playing as a Charr Ranger; that is, a cat-creature who can tame animals and turn them into pets who fight alongside me. I have to admit that I'm so far finding the pets kind of frustrating, but I'm sure I just need to find a tankier pet and level him up a bit.
What I like about it so far is the sheer number of quests and events you complete, and the fact that not many of them are the epic, long missions that pop up in other MMOs. You go in, get something done, and move on. Meanwhile, the game is still telling you a cohesive story. It's just broken down into little chunks, so anytime you want to go and do something else, you can. There are also loads of collectibles and things to loot, which appeals to the part of me that genuinely wanted to collect all 151 Pokemon back in the day.
Diablo III - Zara
Okay, I admit it, I'm still playing Diablo III. I don't mean that it's not worth playing, more that it's a little revealing that I haven't yet moved onto something new despite having so many review games available.
It's not like Diablo has sat still since its May 15 launch, I should point out. There have been several major patchs to fix bugs, balance game mechanics and skills and try to level the playing field between character builds.
Most recently, on August 27, Blizzard introduced a major patch, 1.0.4. If you've stopped playing D3, it may be worth stepping back in to sample the new patch.
With 1.0.4, Blizzard has introduced Paragon levels to Diablo III. What's a Paragon level? Well, once your character reaches level 60 - Diablo III's level cap - you start accumulating your experience towards Paragon levels instead. Each Paragon level you earn gives you an additional 3% gold find and 3% magic find. There are 100 paragon levels to acquire, meaning that you can get up to 300% gold find and 300% magic find by the end of it. Blizzard hopes that this will encourage players who have already reached the endgame to keep playing so that they earn better and better gear.
For me, it's gained a lot more fun again, despite playing on the difficult levels, and I'm hunting for cool items, rather than just heading straight for the auction house.