May 4, 2005 by Tim

So last night I sat down to play Jade Empire. I’m playing for a bit, and I swear that I recognize one of the voices. The voice of Gao, in particular. So I look it up in the credits, and just as I suspected, it is Nathan Fillion (Captain Malcolm Reynolds) of FireFly. Pretty damned cool.

Speaking of which, it occurs to me that I haven’t really reviewed any games here lately. I’ve been so busy that I haven’t had a lot of time to even play games, much less write reviews for them. But a lot of people ask what my opinions are and about this game, or that game. So today I’m going to touch on my thoughts concerning a few of the titles I’ve been playing recently. In no particular order, here we go:

Jade Empire: Everything BioWare touches turns to gold. If you played KOTOR, Jade Empire will be immediately familiar. But then there is a whole new level to it. Jade Empire has superior voice acting, a great story, and more beautiful kung-fu than you can shake a stick at.

Just as in KOTOR, you get to choose your responses to conversations, and it affects your standing in the world. Not so much “goodie two-shoes or snarling madman”, but more of a “gentle lotus blossom, or iron hardass” approach. But there are definitely more than enough options to warrant a second play-through at least. Jade Empire is easily one of the best RPG’s on the Xbox, and maybe one of the best I’ve played.

God of War: What can I say about a game where you literally tear your enemies in half? If you want action, blood and really cool fight moves, this game has got it. The controls are responsive and fairly easy to get used to. The game also makes a good mixture of real-time action, and choreographed button-press actions (similar to Resident Evil 4). Definitely some pure fun to be had here.

Guild Wars: People keep telling me about this game as if I’ve never heard of it. As if I didn’t do a couple of comics about it last year at the time of the “E3 for Everyone” event. I also participated in the closed alpha test while they were still building the game early last year.

I did pick up a retail copy, but I haven’t had much time to play around with it. From what I’ve experienced, it seems like a nice little departure from the norm, and I especially like the option to choose if you play with others or not. Basically any time you venture out, you get your own little copy of the world, and you can go it alone and not worry about retards with names like “Rickjames Bitch” or you can invite friends along to join you. It’s sort of nice not to be forced to put up with the masses of raving MMOtards if I don’t want to.

The graphics are nice, living up to the promise they showed last year when I played. I particularly love the glowy effect. I think it’s nice.

The only complaint I have right off the bat is the controls, but I’m sure with some more tinkering, and a little adjustment on my part, they will be fine.

DnD DragonShard: Ok, so I actually only played it this morning. I downloaded the multiplayer beta and gave it a shot. I really enjoyed the one game I played. It oozed DnD, from the detailed characters, down to dungeon crawling for gold and special items like my Boots of Haste. Personally I’ve always preferred Forgotten Realms, but regular DnD is pretty cool too. I’m also keeping an eye on DnD Online. I’m definitely going to go check it out at E3.

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