I'm all packed up and about to head out to Another Anime Con up in Manchester, New Hampshire. If you're in the area, stop by and say hi! I'll have a table and I'm also doing two panels. That's about 50% more panels than I think I need, but we'll see what happens. There's one on Friday at 7pm, and another on Saturday at 10pm... that one is 18+, so I think that means every other word needs to be a swear. We'll see how that goes.
Additionally a friend of mine asked me to bring some Warmachine to play, so I'll have a small battlebox force on hand. If you bring your stuff, and want to get a game going, just ask!
I finished Dishonored (which I loved through and through), and I'm now on to a different type of joy... a joy bordering on masochism. And by that I mean XCOM: Enemy Unknown- Classic Ironman. If you're not familiar, XCOM is a turn-based tactical strategy game... a remake (a fun one, I might add, if not entirely faithful) of an older game(s). Classic is a difficulty level, and Ironman mode means you only get one save. Or in other words, you have to live with all of the consequences of your choices/missions.
Since that means that your soldiers, which you level up and get attached to, can die, and its permanant. Nothing you can do but call up a rookie and try to choke back your tears.
Classic Ironman is brutally unforgiving... and in hindsight perhaps I should have played a campaign on a lower difficulty setting, to learn the ropes. But it's too late now, trial by fire time. As painful and harsh as the game is, I still find the challenge makes the potential victory all the sweeter.
I've also been playing a little game called Chivalry: Medieval Warfare. Like the recently released War of the Roses (which I have not yet played, so cannot compare for you), Chivalry features intense medieval multiplayer combat. It's the kind of game, and the kind of experience, that I simply cannot do justice with words.
Instead, let me refer you to a couple of clips from my first twenty minutes of the game.
The combat is fairly deep, relying completely on timing, positioning and strategy. It makes for some crazy fights, especially amongst large groups. I also found that no matter how you die, it's still hilariously awesome to experience, and I was laughing even when I was getting dismembered.
There's no single player mode, this is entirely a multiplayer experience. There are typical deathmatch, team deathmatch, elimination and flag capture modes, but also a tiered objective mode that pits two teams against eachother, one trying to accomplish something, the other trying to stop them. There's enough variety in the game modes and the maps that I was able to play for hours on end without getting bored.
The experience is improved even further by playing with friends, preferrably on Skype or Ventrilo. Certain coordinations like shield walls to protect your archers, or a line of spearmen slowly advancing on an enemy postion can only be accomplished this way.
The game isn't perfect... it can be a little buggy at times, but the sheer brutality of the combat kept me spawning in over and over again, grinning the entire time.
If you're interested, I recommend checking out these two tutorial videos. Playing the in-game tutorial is invaluable for getting a feel for the game (even if it is a little silly), but these videos do a far better job of explaining the combat.