The Annihilation Button

February 22, 2006 by Tim

I’m always game for sending little digital armies to their certain destruction. Speaking of Empire at War, I finally got my copy yesterday. Knowing how busy my week was going to be, when I ordered it from EBGames I selected standard shipping. No point in paying extra to get it right away when I wouldn’t even have time to play it, I figured.

So it showed up yesterday, and alongside the game, they sent me this little minature Death Star standup. I reacted in kind of a “meh” fashion and tossed it aside. Until my girlfriend picked it up and read the box, where it says “Press the button and listen as the superlaser annihilated your enemy!”

What? Gimme that shit.

So I tore it open, ready to annihilate some shit, and pushed the button. And then this little miniature Death Star screamed at me. I don’t know what sound effects these were, but they didn’t sound like annihilation. Maybe flushing a toilet, but no enemies were annihilated.

So now I have another piece of junk adorning my desk, and if anyone presses the little orange button I’m going to break their fingers.

But Empire at War is fun, so there’s always that. I was very enamored with the demo, which you may recall reading about. It’s not a perfect RTS. I’m not going to lie to you, if it weren’t for the Star Wars name and feel plastered all over it, I doubt I’d enjoy it as much. But the fact that it so accurately captures the atmosphere of Star Wars gives me cause to overlook most shortcomings in the game. Plus I give it credit for deviating from typical RTS formula in some areas. I’ll be bringing this one along to Digital Overload in a couple of weeks.

About the only thing in the whole world (of video games) that could have overshadowed Star Wars was Fight Night Round 3, and that showed up yesterday too. I fell in love with the demo. Well now that demo is out on the street, penniless and used, and the full game is my new infatuation.

I fucked around with character creation mode and career mode for all of twenty minutes before jumping online to go round by round with some gamer monkeys. At first I didn’t do too badly.

Well, the controls were fucked to start (defaulted to config 1, and I’m used to config 3), so my very first match I kept looking to throw a jab or a hook, and end up clinching or throwing an illegal blow. After about three accidental headbutts the ref had had enough, and called the fight against me. Totally not my fault.

But my second and third fights went smashingly, pun intended. I was feeling pretty confident, so I went in for a ranked bout. Second round knockout, piece of cake. I was king of the world.

I took a break to do some work, and went back for some more ranked action, and I swear I could not win a fight to save my life. For the some reason, the next three games I played, nothing went in my favor. My opponent’s eyes practically didn’t exist anymore, I had beaten them to such a pulp, but they wouldn’t go down. So I lost three in a row, which was frustrating. But then on the fourth loss (what was looking like a loss anyway), I countered with a haymaker with Oscar “Golden Boy” De La Hoya and turned everything around.

Safe to say, I’m addicted to this new breed of digital violence, and I would like to subscribe to your newsletter.

I’ll probably play with career mode at some point, for practice, but online play is where it’s really at.

Oh yeah, also got the new EQ2 expansion, Kingdom of Sky yesterday. I
installed it and shit, but most of that stuff isn’t for me. It’s L60-70
stuff and I’m, what, L25? Yeah. But the new achievments system is
pretty cool, and that starts at L20.

Aaaanyway, Digital Overload in a couple of weeks. I’ll be there playing games so you can come kick my ass at Starcraft, Battlefield 2, Empire at War, whatever. Rumor has it that the special rate we have with the Holiday Inn expires tonight at midnight, so you may want to get on that. Plus the hotel is almost sold out for Saturday night, so there’s also that. Aside from myself and a few hundred gamers, Scott Ramsoomair of VGCats and Mookie of Dominic Deegan will be in attendance, “gaming it up” as the kids say.

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