I've actually gotten some new game play in this week. What a shocker!
In my previous post, I talked about the new Star Trek Encounters game I was going to try. At $14.99 I can't say I was too optimistic but the screenshots made it look really good. Plus who wouldn't want to pilot around a Star Trek spaceship blasting at Borg, Klingons, etc. I wrote up a quicky review on Gamespot (which I will add to this blog at some point) and I'll summarize the experience here. Basically I was impressed with this little title. It had the feel of a budget game but unlike many budget games it didn't suck. It was ambitious of them to configure a 3D space combat game on the PS2 controller and they used every button available. You "fly" with the left stick, aim your weapons with the right, balance your power reserves with the D pad, switch weapons with the symbol buttons, fire with the right shoulder buttons, and move up and down in space with the left shoulder buttons. The result is awkward at first, but I got used to it (slowly). Graphics look very cool and the ships are right out of the TV series (including one called Star Trek: Sentinel?). Audio is nice - good effects sounds and even some narration by William Shatner (odd they didn't hype him on the cover art). On the downside, the game forces you to play through each episode sequentially, unlocking the next only if you succeed. And you can't save part way through a mission. The missions are broken down into short objectives, but with 7 or so per mission (felt like more) it would be nice to be able to save without getting to the end. At least if you die you only have to restart from the objective. I have a feeling that I'll have some problems getting very far in this one, but I'll try.
One game I'm quickly feeling will be a major time-sink is Club House Games for the DS. Just your basic card/board/pub games but you can play wireless with other players. Being a very old PC internet gamer, this shouldn't be any great shakes to me, but the fact of having a system in the palm of my hand that is playing backgammon with someone in Germany still amazes me. And the games themselves are really good. I've played bowling (yes, bowling) on it as well as mahjong and I think I would have been happy with this collection even without the WiFi.
I've just started playing a little bit of Pokemon Mystery Dungeon: Blue Rescue Team (whew!). From the reviews I've seen, this is a fairly old game model that was used and then the Pokemon franchise was dropped on top of it. The good news is it is new to me. :) Cute so far, but haven't done much more than the introduction. (My DS is getting alot of use these days.)
Also been keeping up the FFXI-ing. Our merry band of misfits has gotten up to level 59 in our main jobs thanks to some VT bats in King R's Tomb. We also scored 2 more Astral rings (yes!) in some very close BCNM 20 battles. One is getting sold and the other is Morbo's. He's so happy he'd cry if he wasn't such a tough Galka-boy.