Sunday, September 26, 2010

Baldur's Gate: Lives

I previously completed BG2 (but, not the expansion) and just picked up BG1 off of Good Old Games.  I then linked them using BGTutu.

I rolled a gruff Ranger.  He's a red-headed double axe wielding beast.

Haters Gonna Hate

From a role-playing angle, he's a loner, but has a soft spot for bubbly small folk.  I'm expecting he'll have maybe one or two party members.  He hates meddlers, almost as much as he hates city slickers. He's rather not have to go through towns and just spend his time wandering and tending to the woods.

Anyhow, I ran into a small problem while playing - I was abusing the save/load system.  I'm not sure I came out of a single fight on my first go (okay, maybe a couple) and I definatley just butted my head against some tough fights until the dice were in my favour.  It feels really lame to do this and takes away a lot of the tension game.  I was thinking that I should play "hardcore", one and only one life, but considering the punishing difficulty of the BG series, that was just too masochistic.  Instead, I took a cue from old-school video games and decided that 3 lives plus the opportunity to earn some more is the way to go.  Every time my character levels, he gets a life.  The initial 3 lives should give me enough opportunity to get through the growing pains of understanding a new classes gameplay and the extra lives should compensate for the difficult ambush fights.  I still expect to see a lot of Candlekeep through new faces.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Minecraft: Hanging Gardens Finished!

A couple thousand blocks later, I finished up the hanging gardens!

Everything went together fairly smoothly, except for one major error on building the base blocks.  I built one layer with a row too many that required me to cut down a row of wall and reposition a bunch of streams.  The only other hitch was when a creeper decided to blow a hole in the side of one wall.

On an unrelated note, I found an elusive tree cow.

A tree cow perches in a tree, awaiting passing prey.

Update: You can now check out the Gardens on the server (see sidebar).

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Minecraft: Introducing

If you haven't heard about it yet, there is this awesome indie game called Minecraft.

It seems to be sneaking up on the population and references to it are popping up everywhere.

Its grasp has drawn me in.  The premise of the game is...well there really isn't one.  You spawn in a generated blocky world that you are expected to survive in and build upon.

Yes, that fleshy coloured block is my hand.

At first the game is just about survival and discovery.  While my first day was bright and full of happy cows and frolicking pigs, the following night was grimmer.  Without giving too much away, I was fortunate to discovery how to put together a sword from some of the stone I harvested and craft a leather helmet from the cow I layed some smack on earlier.  Figuring out how to craft various items on my own was fun for a day or two, but I eventually started to just look up recipes online to move onto the more enticing aspect of the game - construction!

Once I had some basic survival equipment down, I started toying with the construction elements of the game.  I first built a two room cave to store all my materials and safely craft recipes without worrying about the dangers that lurk in the darkness.  Afterwards, I added aesthetic (and defensive!) touches to the entrance.

After toying around with the basic digging and construction aspects, I decided it was time for a big project.  I am now working on a Hanging Gardens-esque pyramid.  First, however, I have to mine enough material to build it.  That is a task in itself.  I'm working on obtaining stone currently, but I'll need to start getting plenty of sand too.

Current mining operation.
I've layed out the base layer for the gardens, so hopefully my math was correct, as it will be a bit of a pain to correct it after this.

If this game interests you, now is the time to check it out.  For the next couple of days (maybe less), it is free!  My guess is that the reference to Minecraft in Penny Arcade is the cause of the flood that made the game free this past weekend.  Penny Arcade has brought down servers (by accident of course) in the past.

I am also planning on putting up a Minecraft multiplayer server.  I'll post a link when it is up and running.