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 End of year 2007 gaming 
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Unread post End of year 2007 gaming
I originally posted this at HBO and figured that some ABOers might be interested:

Hey everyone. So I've been off for weeks now basically gaming non-stop on Live when not working or doing other things, taking the time to complete, begin, play through, and enjoy many of the extremely hyped games that were released during the 3rd and 4th quarters of 2007. I'm sure the majority of people here already have many or all of these games, but I can't help but state how much I loved these games. The list is essentially short, and it isn't very genre-broad, but hey! I'm listing them in the order of purchase. It's sort of a long read, but well worth it if considering purchasing games, or if interested in the thoughts of others on games. The last two games on the list are the most controversial, so be sure not to miss those!
First came BioShock. I absolutely loved this game. I felt that after a while the Splicers became annoying and redundant, but beyond that the game was superb. I don't think there's any game with "perfect" graphics, but BioShock sure was close. The realism of the graphics combined with the sound effects associated with different actions in-game was basically flawless. The story was pretty insane and captivating with some jawdropping twists. The weapons were very fun to use, and the plasmids really made the game more unique and interesting. There's just nothing like snapping your fingers and bursting an enemy into flames. Well, except for freezing them and then smashing them into pieces.

Next came HALO 3. In a review I posted on the forums, I originally gave the campaign an 8.5 out of 10. I'm debating with myself whether I should have given it a higher score or not, because I find myself addicted to the story and coming back to play through the game over and over again. It has its flaws, but the campaign is just so great. I don't really need to go indepth here since this is HBO, so that's all I need to say. As of the past month or so, I've found myself highly unhappy with the multiplayer, though. Way too much to type here. Another post for another day maybe! Either way, HALO 3 is a must buy (if you're on this forum and don't already own it, yet you have a 360, wow, go buy it, now!).

Assassin's Creed was the third game that I picked up near the end of the year. College and work did an excellent job of keeping me from beating it until just a few weeks ago, but the game is amazing. The graphics, aside from some pop-in every so often, were breathtaking and gorgeous. I found myself enthralled by the story and the world(s) it took place in. While a lot of the tasks got to be somewhat difficult as the game progressed, and while many aspects were repetitive or completely and utterly annoying (lepers/alcoholics/etc knocking me around and getting me killed when running or trying to complete tasks, to be precise), the game's story, battles, dialogue were enough to make me love this game. I can't wait for its sequel.

Those three games were the only "must-have" games on my list for 2007. I didn't anticipate buying or receiving the rest of these, but I am so glad I did.

My first surprise buy of 2007 was The Orange Box. What is this talk of cake and being a lie? I have to play Portal to understand? Is it worth it? What? I'm buying Portal and getting 4 games with it? Alright! So, Portal was very short (I beat it in a 4 hour sitting). Short, but VERY SWEET. The game made me think after a while in order to complete some of those puzzles. It also had a pretty interesting "story" to go with it. To be honest, it's probably one of the only games I've ever played where I can't think up anything bad to say about it. The fact that it was short isn't even a bad thing. I really can't say anything other than go buy The Orange Box just for Portal. You'll play it over and over and over again.

I started Half-Life 2, but I found myself glued to the next game on my list (see next paragraph) before I could get very far into it. Either way, Half-Life 2 is a pretty fun game with a great story. Naturally, I haven't gotten into Episode 1 or 2 yet. Team Fortress 2 is tons of fun and is also worth having. $59.99 for 5 games, and one of those is Portal? Totally worth it. Buy it.

Call of Duty 4. This was by far the most unexpected buy of them all. Everyone told me it was better than HALO 3. Everyone told me it was the best FPS around. I refused to believe. I played the CoD4 Beta and wasn't very impressed. It was great fun, but felt just like Battlefield 2 for PC to me. Well, it went on sale where I work so I bought it. The campaign was AMAZING. Non-stop adrenaline! The campaign was seriously like I was at a movie watching the movie while being in the movie. The game is very short, but like Portal, short and sweet ended up being perfect. The story is intense and amazing, the graphics are almost flawless, the combat is realistic, and there are some jawdropping moments and a sense of urgency that makes it all but impossible to put the controller down (I completed the game in a 5 hour sitting).

The multiplayer? I really, really hate to say this, but CoD4's multiplayer knocks the snot out of HALO 3's. That could change if Bungie fixes some of the mechanical and gameplay problems with HALO 3, but seeing as how that isn't the case now, CoD4 is the best multiplayer game out there right now. I was a non-believer once. I refused to believe that Bungie's golden title could be beat by Infinity Ward's. I was wrong. Don't believe me? Try it yourself. Naturally there are flaws in its multiplayer, but it's still top dog.

Finally comes a game I wasn't going to buy at all: Mass Effect. I was stupid and let online reviews and peer reviews disuade me from going for it. Half of the reviewers/friends loved the game, and the other half hated it. I was lucky enough to have this game purchased for me for my birthday. I didn't touch it because I was still glued to CoD4's multiplayer, but I finally managed to pry myself off and start playing. 4 consecutive days later (between work and responsibilities) with 30 hours and 19 minutes of total gameplay, I had completed a game so great and magnicifent that I personally believe that it should stand alongside HALO: CE in its greatness. No game before or after HALO: CE has pulled me so deep into its story, graphics (pop-in overlooked), and music until Mass Effect. I began to feel very attached to my main character (custom created to my liking) and to some of my squad mates. It's story-telling at its best, and most definitely worth purchasing. There are some graphics problems, and your squad members like to get in your way and trap you in places every so often, but all that aside, the game is truly amazing. I mean, c'mon, it's BioWare. BioWare is to RPG as Bungie is to FPS. That analogy = BUY MASS EFFECT. In caps.

For everyone who took the time to read through, thanks a ton and I hope this helps to persuade some or many of you to rent or buy a lot of these games. They're definitely worth it.


Fri Jan 18, 2008 9:26 am
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Unread post Re: End of year 2007 gaming
Mass Effect and Assassins Creed are the only 2 on that list I have not played yet I really want to try them. The only reason I want to try Assassins Creed though is because of its creators, Ubisoft. I have truly loved some of their previous work, and I hope this stands up to my expectations.


Fri Jan 18, 2008 4:38 pm
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Unread post Re: End of year 2007 gaming
Ubisoft Montreal made the game, so it's not made by the "main" Ubisoft company. Regardless, the game is very well crafted, even if tedious and repetitive at times. The story is pretty deep and intense, and the graphics are beautiful. To be honest, though, I'd say Mass Effect is worth buying and playing before Assassin's Creed. Mass Effect is (in my opinion) just that good.


Fri Jan 18, 2008 11:32 pm
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Unread post Re: End of year 2007 gaming
For the most part, I agree with you. However, I didn't really like AC. I found the Gameplay extremely repetitive. You do the same 3 or 4 things, and then you run through a city to kill a guy. Repeat x3. The game did start to pickup at the end, but after you kill Al-Mualim, there is no real ending for the game. You get the "Visions of the Future", the credits roll, and you're done. No ending cinematic? What the hell is that? And the controls are pretty simplistic. Am I the only who found Altair climbing up a doorway instead of sprinting through it?

Call Of Duty 4 is my 2nd gripe. The campaign was very well designed, great graphics, etc. But it took me 6-7 hours to complete. It took me almost double that in H3 on Heroic. I played on Normal, and found it relatively challenging. The weapons were also really well designed, but you could get the good ones to often. (eg. Drag and the Shotty.) The Multiplayer would have been good... If I hadn't played COD 3 MP. 3's multiplayer SUCKED. This maybe has effected my view of COD 4 and it's multiplayer.

I still want to play 4 games: Mass Effect, Stranglehold, Kane and Lynch and the Orange Box.

My GT is DisgracedClub if you don't think I completed the game(s).


Fri Jan 18, 2008 11:35 pm
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Unread post Re: End of year 2007 gaming
Assassin's Creed is highly repetitive, yes. You unlock the achievement, credits roll, but then at the end of the credits it sticks you back in the room to explore the area (there's a laptop in the conference room that was blocked to you for the rest of the game). You can actually check out all the stuff in your room (I won't go into details so I don't spoil people), and from there you realize that the sequel is going to be insane story-wise. And c'mon. You get to punch guys down and then ram your sword into their necks before ripping it down and away. SLICE. So fun.

Call of Duty 4's campaign took me 5 hours. HALO 3's on Heroic took me 8. The only reason it took me that long is because I explore everywhere and everything instead of just zipping on through (which you can't really do in CoD4). Either way, CoD4 was short and sweet. As for multiplayer, I have to agree with you that CoD3 was trash. I don't know anyone who liked that game (campaign or multiplayer). As for CoD4, between Headquarters, Domination, Search and Destroy, and Team Deathmatch, the multiplayer is fluid and great. Unlike HALO 3, my enemies actually die when they're supposed to 98% of the time. And I have a golden shotgun and desert eagle. Give me a golden sniper rifle and shotty in HALO 3 and I'll never say a bad thing about it again. :P


Sat Jan 19, 2008 12:16 am
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