Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Victor Vran

Gaming Writer's SaturdayThere’s a moment in a gaming writer’s life when she doesn’t want complex storyline, character depth or non-linear game play. Instead, she wants the sheer joy of mowing through the endless hordes of monsters to remind her of the misspent youth when she lost days and night playing Diablo and Diablo 2. At such moment she thinks of Diablo 3 buried somewhere at the bottom of the box with her game discs and before she even considers digging it out, she remembers that the third installment of the third series failed at the most important aspect: being addictive. Continue reading “Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Victor Vran”

Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Arcanum

1I played Arcanum: Of Steamworks and Magick Obscura when it first came out in 2001. I waited for the game only because three of its developers were the people involved in Fallout 2 which I loved, and Arcanum promised a similar game-play, rich story and turn-based combat. I still remember the doubtful thoughts when I’ve learned that Arcanum would not transfer me to a post-apocalyptic world, but instead invite me to the world of fantasy. What interesting and fresh could there be about fantasy in the games mostly dominated back then by Dungeons & Dragons cliches?

Oh, how little I knew. The game had charmed me, and now, after fifteen years, when I came back to the game, it’s still the same. Continue reading “Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Arcanum”

Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Divinity Original Sin

1I first learned of Divinity: Original Sin when it was released, but I’ve been playing another game at that time, and I wasn’t keen on spending money on something that I didn’t know much about. Then the positive reviews poured in, and my gaming friends started mentioning it more and more often, so I added it to my wishlist, but of course, I had plenty of other games to play… But in the end I craved for some old-style cRPG, so the game got its chance. And I tell you, it didn’t waste it for sure. Continue reading “Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Divinity Original Sin”

Gaming Writer’s Saturday: This War of Mine

1This War of Mine’s release had been loud enough even for me to hear about it in my little corner of the Internet. The early reviews had nothing but praises for the innovative idea, mature approach to an uneasy topic, and emotional impact it has on players.

I eyed the game once or twice, but I had other things to play and I didn’t get the game until most of the hype already died out. (There was a sale… Don’t blame me!) Continue reading “Gaming Writer’s Saturday: This War of Mine”

Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Shadowrun Hong Kong

1With all the positive impressions I’ve had about Shadowrun Returns and Shadowrun: Dragonfall, it was certain I’d play the newest installment of the acclaimed cRPG series. As the Kickstarter campaign hit stretch goal after stretch goal, I expected the game to be even better and more exciting than the previous parts, yet I hope the developers would manage to keep what was the best in the previous games: Shadowrun’s mood, interesting characters and engaging story. Did they succeed? Continue reading “Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Shadowrun Hong Kong”

Gaming Writer’s Saturday: NEO Scavenger

1I’m not particularly happy with how young adult so called “dystopias” distort the post-apocalyptic genre (and the Huxley and Orwell dystopia in the first place), but that’s a rant for another time. Needless to say, I prefer the mood set by Fallout 2 (and Fallout 3 too), even if not fully realistic, surely more gritty and pos-tapocalyptic than the “youngsters against oppressing faction” we get in books and movies nowadays.

That’s why NEO Scavenger caught my attention. I’ve never heard about the game, but the reviews promised a survival game, and I got hooked when I’ve learned they didn’t just mean slaughtering endless waves of mutated animals and raiders. In fact, when playing the game, you’ll more often find yourself frantically trying to run away from a famished dog than tryingto take it down. Because fights mean wounds and wounds in post-apocalyptic world can kill you faster than you can say “young adult dystopia”. Continue reading “Gaming Writer’s Saturday: NEO Scavenger”

Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Age of Wonders

1Some of you might remember the awesome series Heroes of Might and Magic that brought an excellent turn-based strategy and RPG elements together, and created a memorable and colorful world. I followed the series up to the fifth part, and although some hardcore fans argue the changes to the system, I still enjoyed the campaigns and gameplay. But at the same time the fairytale-like graphics made me miss another game, probably less known, but darker… and as entertaining as HoMM: Age of Wonders. That’s why I couldn’t say no to GOG.com sale (thank you, GOG!) that offered me both parts of the game I started playing when I was still in high school (and that was quite a long time ago).

Age of Wonders got me glued to the screen for the long hours with it’s multiple choice plot line, dark graphic and generally less fairytale feel. It ensured I stayed immersed with the journal entries of the main character (that I got to create and keep throughout the campaign, just like in any “proper” RPG) and made me replay the campaign choosing different paths to the victory. I confess, I was more inclined to play with the Dark Elves’ Cult of Storms faction than to help High Elves’ Keepers, but all in all I’ve finished the campaign playing both sides… or so I remember. Continue reading “Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Age of Wonders”

Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Shadowrun Returns, Shadowrun Dragonfall

1More than video games, I love a good tabletop RPG game and in the past I used to play regularly (and still would if I had a chance), so I wasn’t unfamiliar with the name “Shadowrun”, though I never get to play the tabletop version, and when Shadowrun Returns emerged on the Kickstarter, I didn’t think much of it. I didn’t get the game until much later, when Shadowrun: Dragonfall was already out. A friend recommended it to me, so I purchased the bundle and found myself immersed in the dark and rich world of magic, technology, powerful corporations, and shadowrunners. Continue reading “Gaming Writer’s Saturday: Shadowrun Returns, Shadowrun Dragonfall”

Gaming Writer’s Saturday

1I’ve been a gamer for about as long as I’ve been writing stories. First on Atari XP, then on Intel 386, and finally on stronger PCs and laptops as well as game consoles. Whenever I need to relax a bit and I’m too tired to read, I switch a video game on. Games also help me when I search for inspiration, so it seemed like a good idea to share all the games that support my procrastination … erm, I mean my writing. These can be critically acclaimed and world-wide famous big games, little flash applications or classics only really old people remember. Continue reading “Gaming Writer’s Saturday”