Borderlands Shaping Up

Finally, Gearbox shows off some gameplay of Borderlands. Can't wait to see more this week at E3!

Matt (MWG)

Bud Finally Finishes Prince Of Persia......

.....and is pissed as hell. Ok, first of all this post is gonna have a spoiler, as the ending is what made me pretty mad. I don't know about anyone else but what keeps me playing a game or even interests me in a game, is almost 80 percent of the time, the story line. I mean its what drives me to keep playing, that thought of, what happens next? How does it all end? This is the reason why I decided to marathon the game till the end. In this games case it makes the repetitive tasks worth it. Worth it till the end sequence, in which you have to run and undo everything that you just did for the past 10+ hours......all to "save" the female character in the end. Now I don't get mad easily over bad or crappy endings in games, but this literally made me want to throw the game in the trash. I also regretted even purchasing the game in the first place. The end honestly ruined any fun or memorable experiences I had with this game. I dunno, it just strikes me as stupid to say: "Hey we are gonna offer you this awesome experience of sealing away this ancient demon lord that was set free by a father trying to save his daughter, ok now that you sealed him away, set him free upon the world to save the same character that this whole mess started off with"

Ok I think im done ranting, does anyone else have any thoughts on this if so please share. As for me i will be trading it in for red faction: guerilla. Lets hope it fetches a decent amount so I can get something worthwhile out of this experience.

Scribblenauts - Quick! Grab two ladders, fourteen ironing boards, and a tiger. Then meet me at the icecream stand.

So I haven't really bought any new handheld games lately, even after inheriting my brothers dusty old original DS. I have a few games on my mental list, but just haven't really gotten around to buying anything as a direct result of my cheap-assedness and being pre-occupied with console stuff.

One of the games that I'm looking forward to playing is a puzzle/adventure game for the DS called Scribblenauts. Its being developed by 5th cell, the Drawn to Life guys, and kinda hinges upon a similar game mechanic. In Drawn to Life, which I've seen, but never played, you were able to draw objects, weapons and accessories with the DS stylus that your character could interact with. Cool idea, but from my understanding it was kind of limited. Scribblenauts draws from that basic idea, re-arranges it a bit and "takes it to the max", if you will.

The game throws out the idea of having to draw items, and has you type or write the name of whatever object you need. You can then use that item, or however many items you ask for, to solve a puzzle. They've built out a seemingly endless library of items that will be available and as a result of that, an endless number of ways to solve each puzzle.

This is instant gratification at its best, people. If you want a boomerang, you can have a boomerang. And then you can ask for something else that's not a boomerang, and then you can also have that.

The level creation/sharing aspect of the game sounds awesome as well and seems like it could definitely serve as a cure for my Little Big Planet itch. Scribblenauts comes out this fall and Joystiq has some pretty informative preview blurbs on it, check them out here.

Matt (MWG)

Matt's Top 5 games @ E3

So there's a ton of info about to drop next week at E3. But some games have me a little more excited than others. Here's a peek at which games I'm looking forward to hearing more about.

1. Mass Effect 2

It's predecessor was one of my favorite games of last year. Dare I say, of all time? Yes, sir, I dare. It's about time Bioware squelched all of the "Is Shephard dead?" rumors and I'm definitely looking forward to getting a closer look at all the HUD and gameplay changes I've been hearing about.

2. Lost Planet 2

Even though I wasn't terribly into the first game. The recent LP2 trailers and announcement of 4 player co-op have me interested. I'm always on the lookout for a decent co-op game, something the 360 doesn't see too often.

3. Borderlands

Ever since the Gameinformer reveal months ago, I've been interested in this game. Details, aside from the game's bi-polar art direction, have been pretty scarce. I know I'm going to be able to choose from 80 bajillion different weapons, but gimme something else to get excited about.

4. Alien vs Predator

I wouldn't have expected this to be on my list a few weeks ago. I watched a friend of mine play alot of AVP back in the day, but lacked a PC and never got the chance to get into it. Sounds like this one's going to be alot like the old one, and if so, I'm sold. There's opportunity for an amazing multiplayer experience here.

5. Alpha Protocol

This game seems like a really sweet idea, but I also get the feeling it's going to be hit or miss. Hopefully Obsidian will show off some more in depth gameplay vids explaining how this spy/RPG hullabaloo is going to work.

Games that didn't make the top 5, but I'm still mucho excited about.

Brutal Legend - I already know enough. Jack Black, Tim Schafer, Metal...I'm there.
Bayonetta - DMC on steroids with bewbs. So there.
Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 - So many good memories of the first, gotta play the sequel.

What are you guys excited about?

Matt (MWG)

inFamous Demo Impressions

Well at this point in the games development I would have to slap you silly if you haven't heard about the comparison of inFamous to Prototype. It seems it has been an on going comparison ever since the two games have been announced but now that everybody has gotten to play inFamous, the comparisons are now being made to Crackdown more so than Prototype. Now I haven't played Crackdown so I have no idea what it's like but to my understanding of things, inFamous plays like Crackdown but looks something more similar to Prototype's more grungier look. Anyways, comparisons aside, the demo is awesome!

The demo puts you in the middle of the action with just enough gameplay to give you an idea of what to expect of the retail copy. The first thing I took notice of is the landscape and how great everything looks. The city really feels like its living with life with everyone grasping just to survive. Its really great to just walk around and notice the sights and see the devastation that has been brought upon everybody (now that I think about it, that almost sounds disturbing). Aside from the pretty graphics, its the gameplay that really impresses me. The controls in inFamous are really fluid and simple to learn. Everything just seems like is meshes well together whether it be aiming at and enemy or jumping from building to building. I never found myself confused or frustrated with the controls which is something I'm always a fan of.

Now inFamous is an open world game so you can only expect that there will be your main story missions, side missions, hidden packages, etc.... Of course I'm not dissing the game, but you can only expect that from these types of games. In the demo, your also granted a taste of the hero side and the evil side, both of which have their own types of powers. To me, being evil looks like it would be more fun to play because you just cause all sorts of destruction where as the hero side is more about precision aiming to take out your enemies. Either way, inFamous is a game where it looks like I'm going to be playing multiple play throughs just to see what both sides have to offer.

Now I could talk about this game all day but I think I'll end it here. As you can probably tell, I had a blast with the demo and it definitely looks like inFamous is going to be a welcome addition to my PS3 library as well as everybody elses.


Sign me up for Red Faction: Guerrilla

I don't know how much you guys have been looking into Red Faction: Guerrilla. The Single player, and now multiplayer demo are both available via XBL. I played through the single player demo a few times when it came out. I felt like it had potential and the destruction aspect was amazing, but honestly I didn't really think about it much afterward.

Until today. I queued up the multiplayer demo to download last night and booted it up a few hours ago. I seriously just got a good 2 hours out of it, and I still want to go back for more. First of all, what a great demo. Although it restricts you to playing only one gametype across two levels, you're actually able to level up and unlock items as you will in the full game. I'm not sure how to explain why the multiplayer, and not the single player really sold me on this game. Maybe it was just a bad level choice for single player, I'm not sure. But I feel like the depth and enjoyment I found in the multiplayer kind of proves the worth of what the single player could be. I dunno about you guys, but I'm ready to buy this game day one. Make sure to check out the demo and lemme know what you think!

Matt (MWG)

We're too lazy to cover E3, But GGTL's not!

So I'm sure we'll get around to posting some impressions from all the happenings at E3...eventually. Honestly though, I'm too busy playing old ass games that no one talks about anymore, Bud's sitting at home trying to get his Prince of Persia disc to work, and I guarantee you Travis is lost somewhere in the Fallout wasteland and has no idea what the eff is going on.

However, if you're interested in some up-to-date E3 goodness, I have some exciting news for you. Our friends over at Gamer's Guide to Life have created a site solely for their 2009 E3 coverage and will be updating throughout the show.

Here are some awesome things you can look forward to from GGTL before and during E3:

- Full coverage of all the major conferences, including Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo
- Live Blogging of all the major conferences
- Previews and news relating to E3 and E3 announcements
- Loads of other E3 related content
- Coverage starting a week before G4TV and GameSpot

NAOW that's what I'm talkin' bout. Check out starting May 25th through the end of the show.

Matt (MWG)

Midwest Gamer Podcast Episode 11 - "Bud's a sucker for chainguns"

We are back with Episode 11! Download it here or subscribe on Itunes. Don't forget to leave us a review on Itunes if you wanna be super nice.

Now Playing

FFX, Castlevania, Johnny Platform's Biscuit Romp, Fatal Frame 3, Xmen Originis: Wolverine


E3 buzz, Duke Nukem, BS Deals of the week

Looking Forward

Red Dead Redemption, Brutal Legend, E3 stuff

Thanks for listening, guys.

Matt (MWG)

Inspired by Faith...

It's ironic that this is the second post I've made about something Mirror's Edge related, and I've never really had an interest in playing the game. But It's always awesome to see game-inspired art/performance, and this will be especially interesting for you Mirror's Edge Fans. Savage Land Studios has an entire photo collection of Mirror's Edge inspired photos up on Flickr. Everything from shot angles and locations down to the color pallete of each photo very closely resembles the game. Pretty awesome stuff. Check the album out here.

Excuses for Matt's possible future absence.

So I wanted to let everyone know about this before you hate me for not posting as much as usual. I fully intend on spending as much time as possible with MWG, but I've been given the opportunity to write for another really rad gaming blog. This new gig will most likely take priority being that it's something a little bigger than what we've got going here. But, no worries, compatriots, I will not abandon you in the heat of battle. My heart and soul is with MWG. Who knows, I'm known throughout the lands as a mad awesome multi-tasker, so perhaps nothing will change. But if it does, and I can't post my normal 2-3 a week-ish, don't hate my guts.

oh yeah, 100th post! woo!

Matt (MWG)

Wal-mart automated game trade-in kiosks.......FTW?????

Wal-mart is currently testing this system in the Northeastern part of the nation. Basically you scan the bar code on the game your willing to part with, the machine then gives you a quote, and upon accepting the quote you get credit on your credit or debit 2-3 days. E-play, the company that is partnering with Wal-mart for this awkward idea, has said that if successful they may offer Wal-mart store credit.

Eh...I was wondering when Wal-mart was gonna get there slimy tentacles into this area. The only action I think these are gonna get are wii games from desperate soccer moms who need the money.

On a lighter note, we will be recording episode 11 this thursday. If you guys have any questions or have something you would like us to talk about on the show just leave us a comment.

Bud (MWG)

Wait, I had fun in Home??

Well, we all know that Home is forever going to be in a beta form. I don't think Sony even knows what they want Home to be at this point and the word beta always gives a product an excuse of just sucking, it seems. At least Sony thinks so because they're obviously still funding it and to my surprise, so are other companies.

Well today I decided to delve into the world of Home and see what new excitement it had to offer. I did hear about the new apartment you could grab for free this week and thought I would see what all this talk about Xi was about. Now that stuff wasn't too exciting but, I did however find something in Home that I thought was step in the right direction. Looking through the new locations that were available, I noticed that an area for Siren was available and to my surprise, the Siren area was actually pretty enjoyable. What made it fun was the Ward of Despair mini-game that pit you with 4 other players to make it out of an hospital within 5 minutes while collecting items throughout the hospital. What makes it interesting is that they have zombies that pop out that you have to avoid and of course if you get hit by them, then your done. Apparently your supposed to get new costumes or something if you collect all the items or something but all I got was a shirt... I'm sure there's more to it, I just have to go back and play it again. Still though, what amazed me most is that I had fun in Home.

Siren was the only area I was able to visit but it seems like Sony is heading the right direction with Home. Now all they need to do is just keep adding games like that because it actually gives you something to do. I know Sony said they have a bunch of stuff in store for Home later this year and hopefully it will be more areas like the Siren location because it actually makes Home, dare I say it, fun.

Travis (MWG)

One JRPG at a time.

It's good to be picking up a genre I left behind for so many years. In preparation and as a result of getting psyched for Final Fantasy XIII, I've started my first play through FFX. The last Final Fantasy I attempted was FF8, that was probably close to 5 or 6 years ago. I never completed it, but really enjoyed the characters and got really involved in the story. I got stuck and one point and either couldn't go back and grind to level up or wasn't aware that I could. So, I'd like to finish at least one Final Fantasy before XIII comes out, and FFX seems to be the right choice. It may turn into an all summer affair,(considering JTV peeps have said they've logged between 60-80 hrs.) but I'm already loving the story and taking the combat a little more seriously and strategically to prevent myself from another unfortunate Final Fantasy experience.

That reminds me. I should go read how FF8 ended. I'm guessing I wasn't the only one who had a crush on Rinoa?

Matt (MWG)

The Short But Sweet Modern Warfare 2 Trailer

Though the trailer is small, the anticipation for this game is huge. I still go back to play COD4 from time to time and still have a ton of fun with it. It makes you almost wonder what they could do to improve on the original. Well I'm sure we will find out more at E3 but for right now all we have is a tease of in-game footage that spans all of a full 17 seconds. From it though, it looks like they have added more melee moves and are now making vehicles apart of the single player. Another thing to point out is that it looks like the developers are taking you out of a hot and humid Middle Eastern environment and sticking you into a very cold winter wonder land.

If anything, Modern Combat 2 is sure to look just as stunning as its predecessor. Now I'm pretty sure that there will be a beta for Modern Combat 2 and I'm guessing something will be announced somewhere here in the next couple weeks during least we can hope right?


JTV Summer Schedule

Now that I've finished up school for the semester, I'll have more opportunities to broadcast on our JTV channel. I've been wanting to come up with a set schedule to make it easier for everyone to show up for live broadcasts. So, for the summer at least,I'll be broadcasting every Wednesday and Saturday starting around 8pm EST. Wednesday broadcast will last til around eleven. Saturday will last later as long as I don't have to be up early the next morning. In addition to gaming broadcasts, were going to start broadcasting podcast recordings whenever we can. Live podcasts will be all over the place, so I'll make a blog post and tweet it out before it happens, thanks for listening guys. Schools out for the summah!

Matt (MWG)

Midwest Gamer Podcast Episode 10 - "The Bud had to leave early show"

Hey guys,

Episode 10 is here! Download it here or subscribe on Itunes. Don't forget to leave us a review on Itunes if you feel so inclined. Thanks for listening.

Now Playing

Tomb Raider: Anniversary, Red Dead Revolver Finished, Bioshock, Banjo-Kazooie: Nuts and Bolts, Fallout 3, Viva Pinata, Metroid Prime Hunters


Marvel vs capcom, Turtles in Time, The Backtrack Show

Matt (MWG) it.

Bud wrote a post about a flash game called Scary Girl awhile back, in addition to speaking about it on the show a bit. If you're not convinced that the game is worth playing yet, check out this trailer and stop being a TOTAL MORON!!!

Play it here, it's free.


Matt (MWG)

Behold, the power of metal.

New Brutal Legend trailer. Anyone else excited? It looks like a genuinely funny videogame, we need more of these.

Matt (MWG)

Jason Rohrer's Passage

During the most recent episode of "A Life Well Wasted", Robert Ashley talked with and discussed the career of game designer Jason Rohrer. I was fascinated by Rohrer's attitude and overall outlook on life, in addition to his thoughts on game design. I decided to check out Passage, one of Rohrer's games mentioned on the episode.

The game only lasts a few minutes and is free to download, so I highly suggest you check it out for yourself. Despite it's simple nature, Passage is probably one of the most though provoking games/experiences (whatever you want to call it) that I've come aross in awhile.


Matt (MWG)

Episode 10, don't fail me now!

Greetings people of the Internets,

Episode 10 should be happening pretty soon here. Hopefully the outcome won't be as tragic as last time. I haven't discussed it with Bud yet, but I was thinking during episode 10 we'd discuss what game to play for our "Backtrack Episode" (title pending), where we go back and play an old game we missed or never finished, and then devote an entire episode to discussing that game. For the record, we're not trying to be original, we know every other podcast is doing this and it's something we'd like to do as well. So if you have any suggestions for games or names for the show, let us know!

As usual, we'll be talking about videogame news, what we've been playing and what we're looking forward to. Email any questions/comments you'd like us to talk about on the show to or leave a comment on this post.

Thanks for listening!

Matt (MWG)

Improving Old School Game Mechanics.

I just recently finished up Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow for DS. I really enjoyed the game and can't wait to dive into another Castlevania game sometime soon. I can't help but complain, though, about the difficulty of actually navigating the world within the game.

The game is set up so that all the action happens on the bottom screen, and the map is constantly displayed on the top. Much like other Castlevania, or Metroid games, your placed in an open world that is for the most part unmarked and devoid of any points of reference. The only rooms marked on the map are save rooms and warp stations. As a result of this, there were plenty of times where I would come back to the game and not really recall what I did last or where I left off. I was forced to double check every last spot on the map that looked promising. Towards the end of the game, I became more adept at reading the map and remembering the shapes of rooms to reduce the amount of time spent running around pointlessly, but should navigation really be the most diffucult aspect of a videogame?

It really wasn't as bad as I'm making it sound, but it seems like there are so many easy little fixes that could have done away with all my problems. For example, Dawn of Sorrow was really good at implementing the stylus within boss fights and puzzles. What if when I pulled up my map, I was able to tap a spot on the map with my stylus and make a note to myself? Something like "door is locked, need new magic seal". This would prevent me from repeatedly running back to check that same door. It doesn't seem like it would be too much to ask for, even the ability to set waypoints would be nice.

That being said, if you were into the backtracking and exploring aspect, there are rewards to be had. The world is full of nifty little secrets and there were several times where I accidentally discovered unmarked nooks and cranny's that contained special items, but nothing significant enough to erase the navigational paranoia I faced each and every time I started up the game.

While I'm not all about purging every last ancient game mechanic and making games super easy, I think it's safe to say that vague world maps in an open world game are a thing of the past and can easily be improved upon. Sorry for the rant, any thoughts?

Matt (MWG)