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[ red_a02 ] Shuzhen – The first episode was a lot of fun, cos it had an interesting cocktail of sexual tension and smooth fight choreography. This episode is like the awkward aftermath...
27 Aquarius 13 18:13
[ vermilion_2 ] YAPX – I understand that most of your stories are dialogue-based and heavy on retorts and counter-retorts. This one felt unnecessarily circular. It starts with a cool premise: a killer/villain/vigilante uses Lent to swear off something that should be second nature to him (I suppose), and then talks about a story. The link between the two (giving up killing & the story) isn’t a 100% fit. Maybe instead of “let me tell you a story”, it could be “hey, you see I even passed a guy up for death today!” or equivalent. Something to drag Lorelei into the banter and the premise. // That’s my only complaint. I’m not a big fan of dialogue-based stories, but I can make a exception for this.
14 Aquarius 13 08:03
[ 130204 ] YAPX – Good pace, good characters, great dialogue. The thing I like best is a combination of the three: how you build up their pseudo-relationship through all that back-and-forth exchange. Somehow, you craft a unique, strange relationship: from any one point in the story, both of them are manipulative, victimised and hypocrites - though not all at once. // On word choices, I felt you could change the word “janitor” (“cleaner” or “uncle” would’ve given a different, but more acute local flavour to it). Mostly because, it’s connotes an added level of difference through: class. Whether or not you intended it, by portraying the “janitor” and “student” you bring out the fact that he’s stuck there socially in all sense of the word. It made the part where he says he reads books during weekends completely out-of-context and weird. // Also, there’s too much “sliding” in and out of the room. Not sure if that’s intentional repetition, or just a lack of other words. // I thought that the girl’s own background is pretty compelling. Even after everything, I can’t tell if she’s speaking the truth. Because I’m all for unreliable narrators and characters, I can still find her well-thought out. But other readers might lose patience or wonder at her sudden change of heart at the final moment.
04 Aquarius 13 08:48
What with the latest fuck-ups (note the plurality) in UO, I have been diverting myself with other games, mostly from my old collection. Here’s a quick run-through –
Diablo II, of course, kicks major ass. The mindless addiction factor actually has me keeping away from the game so I don’t see hours disappear on me.
Faery Tale Adventure II : Halls of the Dead is a brilliant game in the old fantasy role-playing style – kill stuff and raise skills. The game world is huge, the spell list is huge, there are more “named” magical items than your characters can use, there is an actual coherent story behind it and it offers a few different endings based on what your characters do.
It never won any awards, though, mayhaps because of its dated graphics. Unfortuantely, the Dreamers Guild, who created this game, had to file for bankruptcy, leaving the game incomplete, though it is still playable and immensely entertaining. The original plans had more speech, more quests, and a quest generator. The “completed” game was left without a publisher for six months before Encore Software agreed to publish it.
Here’s a cheat if you decide to play this game – Birket, the Coach Master of the Coach House in Padavis, will give you the cheat item the “Staff of Ugh” if you give him an oil lamp. One can be found in the Padavis Inn.
Magic: The Gathering, by Microprose. Basically it allows you to play the card game with cards from the Fourth Edition set against the computer. Three add-ons were released, with cards from other sets and an addition called “Manalink” that allows online play.
The Shandalar part lets you start off with a pathetic deck of randomised cards and ante your way up to a deck powerful enough to kill the big old baddy. The game is addictive in the same way M:tG is addictive, you need to think in order to play.
Ultima VIII : Pagan sucks. I played it again for three days before I realised why it was utter hell to complete it the first time. You’ll notice the lack of mention of Pagan in my Ultima site.
Might and Magic VI : The Mandate of Heaven – I love this game. I’m about three-quarters of the way through it right now. It came out at a time when fantasy role-playing was dead, and this game was so successful it spawned two further sequels in similar style.
Finally, the Sims rocks, and there’s a new add-on out for it.
416 words / 1697
Of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these: “It might have been!”
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