Sunday, June 24, 2012

Be Mine 3

Hey, guess what! I won a Twitter contest!

I wasn't going to buy the "Be Mine 3" bundle because I already own the headlining games (the first two Oddworld games). But that doesn't mean I can't enter random drawings to win it for free. Which I did! Ha! I was bound to win eventually! 

So these games, huh?

Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus and Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee are the first two games in the Oddworld franchise. Now, I already owned these games, since I got the Oddbox a while back on Steam, which includes these two as well as Munch's Oddysee and Stranger's Wrath. I'm not sure how to describe these first two. Abe's Oddysee is about a guy named Abe who's a janitor at a food factory, and when he finds out that they're going to start making food out of the workers (Soylent Green is people!), he has to escape and take as many of his fellow workers with him as he can. So it's like a platformer with puzzle and stealth elements, sort of. I haven't actually tried Abe's Exoddus yet, but it appears to be a similar thing.

The Oddworld series is pretty cool. It has this weird art style and silly aesthetic that appeals to me.

I don't know much about Avernum except that it's an RPG series. This bundle includes a triple dose of it: the fourth, fifth, and sixth games in the series, packaged together.

The series is set in a place called, eponymously, Avernum. It's an The gameplay is a top-down isometric deal with fairly primitive graphics, and apparently it uses mostly traditional RPG mechanics. So we'll see how it plays out, perhaps.

Garshasp: The Monster Slayer is an action game along the lines of God of War. You fight, you have quicktime events, and that sort of thing. It looks like it could be fun, although just from the trailer I suspect that it'll be graphically demanding and I really hope I don't have to deal with annoying framerate issues.

Hamilton's Great Adventure appears to be some sort of casual arcade-style puzzly game. Seems you play as a classic explorer archetype (Hamilton, I presume) and you have to collect the bling scattered around each stage. I like the visual style, but I'm not sure what to make of it.

And then lastly, Red Orchestra: Ostfront 41-45 is a first-person shooter that describes itself as a realistic, tactics-heavy multiplayer FPS set on the WWII Russian front. And when they say "realistic", they mean it--the realism elements are seriously pushed.

I'll quote TV Tropes's Fackler Scale of FPS Realism here:

A very harsh portrayal of WWII combat. There are no crosshairs and, when fired from the hip, weapons are not centered to the screen, but wander back and forth as you move. There are no crosshairs, no ammo counter, few HUD elements in general, and no healing at all. All weapons have significant recoil that must be carefully controlled when firing rapidly. Weapons can be rested against surfaces to steady them, and weapons with bipods (such as machine guns and anti-tank rifles) can be set up on any suitable surface. Ballistics are fairly realistically simulated with travel time and bullet drop, though no penetration or ricochets. Machineguns overheat if fired in long bursts, even to the point of warping and ruining the barrel. Damage modeling is severe and universal and one hit kills are common, especially if a person is shot in the head or torso. Wounds bleed, shrapnel takes arms and legs off, and direct hits from artillery shells can turn men into a red cloud. Combat is highly tactical, and which weapon you're given depends on your class. Since all classes except "Rifleman" are limited in number, most soldiers end up with a bolt-action rifle or, if they're lucky, a semi-automatic rifle or submachine gun. Cool Guns like sniper rifles and machineguns are limited in number and must be used wisely.

The game also approaches simulation level in its portrayal of tanks:
Crew Of One is averted, a tank must have at least a driver and a commander/gunner to be used efficiently. It's almost impossible for the gunner to aim the cannon while the tank is moving, so voice communication between gunner and driver is a must. There is no third person view, so the tank crew can only see through small view ports. To get a better view, they have to open the hatch and risk being shot in the process. Tank armor varies in thickness depending on the model and part of the vehicle, with rear armor being the weakest. Tanks can be disabled by penetrating the engine compartment or disabling the treads, or completely destroyed by aiming for the ammunition storage compartment. Shells that impact tank armor at a sharp angle will deflect off harmlessly. 
I can only speak for myself here, but frankly, that sounds very unappealing, and I probably just won't play this game at all. If I want a first-person shooter, I'll just play Team Fortress 2, thanks.

Anyway, that's the Be Mine 3 bundle.

The Indie Underdog Pack added some new games as well: Hillbilly Organ Grinder, an arcade shooter where random debris falls from the sky and you shoot it with organ music; and Take Arms: Bot Wars, a 2D shooter game that was originally a multiplayer game for Xbox Live but apparently is single-player only on the PC port. Neither sounds very exciting.

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