Our Week in Games – Week 77

Our Week in Games – Week 77

I don’t know what has been going on in the gaming world this month really, I honestly don’t know where the time has gone. It seems like only yesterday that I was travelling back from Progress Wrestling in Camden Town, yet in reality a whole week has gone by.

If there is one thing that caught my eye, it was the unveiling of the Football Manager Classic 2014 bundle for the Vita. I sold my Vita last year to ex-Reticule writer Mark Reece, but now I feel like I made a foolhardy decision. Regardless, on with Our Week in Games.

Chris

A sign of my European progress with TNS.
A sign of my European progress with TNS.

As you might guess from the game I name dropped above, I have been playing Football Manager this past week while re-visiting Game of Thrones ahead of tomorrow nights season four premier. My need to qualify for the Champions League Group Stage with TNS led me to a dark place, after re-loading my game time and time again, I eventually had to add another manager to take control of Swiss club Young Boys to ensure progression. It wasn’t something I wanted to do, but it is the freedom offered with a game like Football Manager that you can do such things. Many years ago I was managing Rangers in the Scottish league and spent my time controlling every other team in the division to ensure I won the league. Not my finest hour, but I had fun.

I’ve also touched base with Diablo III: Reaper of Souls which has proven to be quite enjoyable so far. I certainly need to dig into it further before I can deliver my Verdict, and hopefully I will once I shift this cold which is preventing much in the way of lucid thought…

Jon

Matters at home have meant I’ve had very little gaming time of late, though things are picking up again, and inexorably, gaming is reclaiming it’s hold on me.

Since I’ve been subjected to a partially failing motherboard and an incredibly severe virus and mallware infestation (thanks to a Father-In-Law trying to stream live cricket from India..) I’ve spent a lot of my paltry free time re-building my PC. On the downside, it’s taken about 11 man-hours (over 3 days), on the upside I now have a shiny Gefore GTX 770.

That said, the PC being down has meant lots of IoS gaming.

First up is the superb Out There. It’s not being unfair to call this game a FTL clone, though mostly for two reasons:

1) it’s actually quite different, core mechanics aside (a larger focus on exploring and humor) and..

2) it’s actually very very good. I thoroughly recommend you pick it up if you fancy something in the same vein too, but what can act as a pallet cleanser for FTL.

The other game is of course FTL. On IPAD. Yes, FTL is now on IPAD, and yes it’s glorious.

Now though my PC is nearly up and running again i’m downloading all those games I want to see at full-res; Metro:Last Light and Thief being foremost amongst the first to get the 770 treatment. Safe to say i’ll report back next week with my findings…

Nick

Helm! Damage report! Erm...Helm? Anyone?
Helm! Damage report! Erm…Helm? Anyone?

Is there an alert state higher than red alert? Infra-red alert? Black alert? If there isn’t, then there probably should be – I’ve seen enough films to know that there are frequently situations so utterly dire that a flashing red light-bulb and infuriatingly loud alarm just doesn’t cut it.

To coincide with its IThingy release, FTL’s PC version has just received an update that brings a swathe of new content. At least, I think it does. It’s a bit hard to look at new content when your starship crew insist on dying every five minutes, but I’m pretty sure that was a new ship that just killed us.

Rather conveniently, my playthrough of last night was undoubtedly one of the most exciting I’ve experienced in a long time. Things were going surprisingly well; ships and events were conspiring to shovel as much scrap in our directions as possible, and as a result the ship’s shields were running at maximum. A couple of lucky hops had left us with powerful weapons and the crew were in high spirits, by which I mean they were still alive. As a result of our good fortune, we’d skipped through the last two sectors with barely a scratch on our formidable armour, and now with the enemy fleet hot on our tail, we were now only one jump from leaving the current sector.

Then I realised what I’d done.

The navigational computer told the whole story. I’d completely miscalculated my jumps through the sector, meaning the exit beacon was out of reach. The only way to get there was to turn back, to fly back through hostile space and slowly loop my way back to the exit, eight sectors of ferocious combat against the very fleet I was trying so desperately to stay away from. I looked at my shields and looked at my weapons.

Do you know, I think we can actually do this.

Set alert status to dark purple.

We hit the ground hard, dropping straight into the middle of the enemy fleet and taking them completely by surprise.  As a result, we destroyed the first ship even before it really knew what was happening, recharged the engines and headed deeper into enemy territory feeling confident, if a little surprised.  Two sectors later, things were changing fast. The fleet had brought its massive cannons to bear and were tearing chunks out of our hull. Fires were spreading throughout the medical bay and engine room, but still we were fighting on. I wasn’t going to let some pathetic and insignificant enormous intergalactic space-fleet take me down without a fight.

Then the boarders arrived, beaming onto our burning wreck of a ship and dismantling the life-support systems. I salute those brave souls. They must have known our ship was seconds from disintegrating and 90% on fire, but still they came aboard, eager to make our last few seconds just that bit more miserable.

I’d like to say we fought them off, that we put out the fires, danced through the enemy fleet like a leaf on the wind and were home in time for tea. I’d like to say that even the most powerful fleet in the galaxy was no match for the ingenuity of my crew and determination of its captain. I’d also like to say that we fought valiantly onwards and ultimately succeeded in our mission.

I’d like to say all that, but unfortunately I can’t.

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