Oh Cross Platform

So I’ve been playing Portal 2 during the last few weeks at Canberra where I play on my iMac. When I go home to Sydney to see my family I don’t usually play anything as it takes away time from my family. I only get two nights at home and I don’t want to waste it.

However this past Saturday I found myself with the chores done and the kids engrossed in a video (and amazingly it wasn’t Frozen!) so I downloaded Portal onto the PC at home. I knew it was a cross platform purchase so I figured Icould muck about in it.

What I didn’t expect was to be able to continue from where I left off last week in Canberra on the Mac! Now that is cool. And a surprise because I had tried that with something else and it didn’t work that way (oh that’s right it was Borderlands 2).

Of course I only got through one room after spending an hour waiting for it to download, before the kids came wandering in having finished the movie

And here’s another cool thing. It’s a great clean non(ish) violent puzzle game. So we puzzled our way about in the next room without much success.

Portal 2 – Gee catch up!

620_2014-05-07_00001Hey this Portal 2 game is really cool [yes, we already know that you all think!]. Some really good puzzles - not enough to totally frustrate you, but enough to make you sit and think for a few minutes. Most seem to have only one solution so far.

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Story so far seems to be that I got back to where the evil robot was, swapped the core with the robot that had been helping me only for it to get all mean (or defensive) and throw me down a tube.

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My buddy turns mean

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A long, long, long way down

This ended me up at what is obviously a sort of 1960s era first version of the laboratory that I was in.

620_2014-05-08_00006And I’m guessing I’m in the first of 9 stages to get through this one. So a fair bit of puzzle to go.

A Puzzler! Yay.

I needed a break from Borderlands, so I nosed about in my Steam Library. I tried Left 4 Dead 2, but wasn’t what I was looking for.

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Portal 2 – it was in my library, but I’d never tried it, though I remember hearing a lot about it at the time, it got a lot of great reviews.

Yeah, I think the folks at Valve are pretty funny. Borderlands 2 is theirs, as is Portal. They share similarities in humour.

I’m only a dozen or so rooms into the story, having just woken some other robot up (I seem to be human?) but its a real puzzle game – I feel a bit like when I played Tomb Raider (the original) or even Myst. It’s a real change from Borderlands.

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So you use the Portal Gun

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To make Portals and solve room puzzles.

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And then you wake this AI up…. and I think that’s bad. But I’m about to find out how bad.

 

BL2 – Tiny Tina

I’m at home sick, and they didn’t give me enough sick days to actually head home. So I’m stuffing about on the computer and got into Borderlands again. Full of interesting characters this game.

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I’ve just met Tiny Tina. She seems like a happy 13 year old, but she’s a little, well no, she’s a lot nuts. She built me these rocket bunnies to take out a train.

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I die quite a bit. But it’s a fun ride.

And now I have to go blow up/hijack a train.

Killing the Red Head

The Red Head mini-boss. Not my picture, this guy did it with the pistol, wow. Read on for my own solution.

The Red Head mini-boss. Not my picture, this guy did it with the pistol, wow. Read on for my own solution.

Tomb Raider is progressing quite well. I adventured off to find some tools to fix a boat. This ended up on the wreck of our first boat, the Endurance.

One of the first bad guys I encountered was this large fellow, who appeared could only take damage at the head (hence his “red head” in TR’s Survival Mode view). With my terrible ability at aiming, I was finding myself very quickly overwhelmed and shortly dead. I was starting to look at it being a very frustrating roadblock.

Oh, how about….

Grenades!

A few well placed grenades and the area effect had him stumbling about with the finishing button flashing, so an axe to the head to put him down. That seems to be the easy way :)

Lost another friend in the ship. Having found most of them in the last few “stages” they’re quickly ending up dead. Or kidnapped again, again. So with the boat fixed, I’m off to rescue the Japanese girl again, and hopefully stop whatever has us all trapped on the island.

Just over 60% through the game according to the save game. The optional dungeons are the  best “dungeon puzzles” so far in the game, but there is the odd “how do I open this” puzzle elsewhere as well. A bit less fighting and more puzzles.

Ohhh… and stealth. The old Tenchu game was a big favourite and there are parts of this one where a bit of stealth and the silent bow work very well. I spent a good few minutes stalking an area around a hunting lodge picking of enemies undetected, before I got a bit lazy and took a shot at one who alerted the few remaining. Still about 6 down without anyone noticing. Fun :)

Keen to see this story to the end.

Grenades!

Nah, haven’t un-un-subbed. Been enjoying Tomb Raider. I’ve made it into the castle, rescued my friends (at least for now I suppose) and managed to get myself out of the pit I ended up in. I’m really enjoying the game, though I still would like a little more “puzzling” out levers and jumps etc.

The bow continues to be a strong weapon, though now I’ve moved up from pistol, shotty and have just picked up a grenade launcher so watch out! I haven’t had to fight one of the giant samurai statues, but I’m sure I’ll have to eventually.

Finally set my controls up and find fighting achievable. I find the thumbsticks kind of awkward for aiming (in other games too) and so struggled in much of the fighting. But a sort of auto-aim setting, brings it back to almost the original Tomb Raider. The original, Lara tracked her enemies automatically. This one doesn’t track them, but it does auto aim at the enemy when you draw, then you have to track them yourself  (or keep drawing).  

So anyway, it means I’ve been able to push on through the game. And keen to finish that now. Then maybe I should work on Borderlands 2.

I want to get into playing MWO, but I need a PC for that. I’m not allowed one of those until I finish TR. That’s the rule.

 

Quiet, but busy

I’ve been pretty busy, but not so much gaming. I have decided I really need to finish up ripping all the DVDs in my house into my iTunes library. Now that I have a NAS I have the space. I’m down to just about 6 or so TV series that need to be done. Mostly anime. Then I’ll double check through the stacks in case I’ve missed others.

The computer has also been busy with video footage. There’s a couple of new videos out on YouTube from me.

I did get Borderlands out the other day. Running a couple of missions for Lillith. I didn’t really want to head out on story missions as I knew I wouldn’t have time over the coming days to finish it.

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I was getting about in the Bandit truck I picked up. It fires these saw blades which wreck vehicles, but are a little too inaccurate for animals and bandits, so I switched back to the original scout car.

 

 

2013-09-09_00002I figure I’ll do a few side missions, level up a bit, maybe get some new guns etc. Then when I get some time, I can push forward on the story.

BL2 – Leave No Man Behind

2013-08-22_00002I killed the cargo droid and have rescued Roland. I found a spot where I could ping away at the droids critical spot. Weird thing is that the droid didn’t move throughout the entire fight. Also this time he stopped respawning others. That was probably the tipping poin tfor the victory, the lack of adds.

Now I’m back in Sanctuary about to chase up more work.

BL2 – Roland, the one that got away.

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Find Roland, he will help you. Find Roland, he’s captured by the Bloodshot clan. So first, get into their base. That means defeating

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2013-08-18_00004I laughed at this guy. His midgets get released and join in as well. I managed to kite him back to my vehicle (stranded outside a gate) and then mount up and mow him down. Again, maybe not what the designers intended, but its a kill.

He had the doorkey, so in I went, into the stronghold.

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I spent ages picking off bandits, kiting, separating, killing, and moving back and forth through the rooms. I had some respawn issues as I left the game paused over two nights before I found a Fast Travel station (the save points).

Eventually I found Roland locked in a cell. Just then, droids from Hyperion snatched him and led me on a merry chase. I now have their boss to kill. a large cargo droid that spawns extra droids as you kill them, he’s proving tougher as I have not yet figured a trick to get him.

I prefer to play these sort of games as a long range hitter. I’ve found a solid rifle and with some skill points in the right area I’m scoring some one shot kills. The droids are routine kills if I can hit their “eye socket” properly.

It does take longer, but I am comfortable with this style. Then I realised that in MWO I played similarly with the LRM weapons, lock it up, shoot from range. And also many years ago, my last FPS – Ghost Recon, was the same. I’m not really an in your face kinda hitter. Even as a Shaman in WoW it was a case of separating a mob from the others and killing that one, rather than killing the group, though as enhance, I did bash heads.

Overall, still enjoy this game. I like the humour as well. I would love a different save set up though – my main gripe. My second is that health packs are way less frequent than ammo. Level 13 now.

 

BL2 – Finding the Firehawk.

The Firehawk

The Firehawk

I’ve been tracking down the Firehawk. Been a while since I launched onto this mission so I can’t remember if it was because The Firehawk had Roland (The Sanctuary leader) or just knew where he might be.

Anyway, I found her. Turns out she’s a good guy and works with Roland. That explained why I couldn’t kill the two bodyguards. I could drop them to zero hitpoints but they wouldn’t die. It was a little frustrating. Actually what was wrong was they were part of a set piece and I hadn’t activated that yet.

So now I’m off to infiltrate another gang to see if they have Roland.

This game has lots of factions, and there are also aggressive animals as well. There are even some bad guys who go into berserker rages and will attack anything nearby… including their own faction.

So I’ve set these guys off and disappeared, they’ve then cleared out campsites for me. Or I’ve set the spider crabs things onto bandits. It’s a cool idea that the mobs will actually aggress each other. Sometimes this happens without me even doing anything except waiting for their patrols to cross paths.

This was a good trick, I had two berserkers pummelling each other, after clearing the site for me.

This was a good trick, I had two berserkers pummelling each other, after clearing the site for me.

A good couple of hours last night and another this morning sees me up to Level 12.