Monday Update: 12/22/14

I came back home this week and all the continuity I had built up so well has gone all away

Volgarr the Viking (XBONE): First Appearance

Retro-inspired games are generally hard, but this is ridiculous and I’m happy that I found it. Possibly the most difficult game I have played so far this year. Very simple, but very fun, similar to Freedom Planet, which I played last week and enjoyed as well. The whole retro-revival type of game has rarely been my preferred style, though I enjoyed Geometry Wars beyond what should have been legal, however I can’t think of many others that I really enjoyed rather than simply tolerating

NBA 2K15 (XBONE): Seventh Appearance, Last Appearance 

I keep losing games in the final minute and I haaaaaaaaate it. That’s gotta be the worst way to live as an athlete, just constantly seeing your team losing because of one or two shots that could have gone the other way. Thankfully I’m not an athlete and I’m just playing a game. I’ve become a very good scorer, and a good passer, and a bad defender in MyCareer. Digital Nik Stauskas may be the worst player of all time, by the way. He’s supposed to be good at threes, and if he can’t hit any threes, then there’s no point to digital Stauskas. I don’t think the actual guy is even that bad, either.

Tony Hawk’s American Wasteland (X360): First Appearance

Oh, dead internet communities. Looking back and seeing an online battleground which was once plentiful with deathmatches or Trick Attacks or whatever brings a strange feeling of hopelessness in an online age where we tend to treat experiences as everlasting. Thanks to the internet, I can play Quake 2, a game from the late 1990s, at the highest settings on my PC. However, I will never be able to recreate the real experience of Quake 2 deathmatches at their height. The 2005 XBOX Live games on the 360 were like an entry into a world that would grow for years, an unexplored frontier, which I don’t know that many people expected to still be available nine years in the future.

I first experienced this in 2009 when I tried to get in a game of Quake 4 on Live, but was met with empty servers. “How can nobody in the world be playing this online right now?” I asked myself. I had seen people move away from the favorite games of the past, but at that point, I had never imagined that nobody in the world, in this world of six billion people (at that point), there was nobody online. Zero people. Five years later, in a game of relatively similar popularity, there was one.

This was one of the few 2005 360 titles which maintained an online community of some sorts past 2010. I remember Call of Duty 2 still had a few avid players up through 2009, and I can remember playing games of six or seven people in THAW through 2011. This is because people who really like Tony Hawk games generally stick to the modified THPS3 engine which was used up through THAW and then discontinued for Project 8. THAW is the only game which straddles the earlier, generally regarded as better, Tony Hawk games and the modern XBOX Live configuration.

Today, I bought the Halo Master Chief Collection, and got almost as excited as I have ever been for a game. Halo 2 online? I can play Halo 2 on XBOX Live again? I immediately remembered when I last played Halo 2 on Live, it was the final day when one theoretically could. I played all my games through a VCR back in those days, and I recorded about 2 hours of a night of Halo 2 and Counter-Strike. Theoretically the last night of Halo 2 ever. But I can play those maps again online now. It isn’t all lost.

Worms Battleground (XBONE): First Appearance

Praise god for games that I can play with other people by sharing a controller in the year of our lord 2014

NCAA Football 14 (X360): Third Appearance, Last Appearance 9/1/14

Moving from five minute quarters to eight minute quarters has changed everything. I just won a game 49-48. Everything is real

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About Joe Bush

The guy behind JoeBush.net and a lot of other things
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