January 29, 2010

Fight! For your Right! To wear whatever armor you want...

I've been playing Dragon Age A TON recently - partly because I love it, and partly because I have an ever-growing list of games that I need to play as soon as this one is finished. I appreciate the fact that BioWare put so much effort into this game, especially since Mass Effect 2 just came out (so soon after Dragon Age was released) and we all know how everybody looooooves that game :-) Not like they'd put out a less-than-awesome title anyway. However, there are certain things about the xbox 360 version that really bug me...

The first issue can be summed up in one word: menus. Menus, menus, menus. And not very user-friendly menus at that. There are consistency problems with the buttons - mainly what the right and left bumper/triggers do for what menu screen. Plus, the radial menu is a killer if you don't know what something is labeled under...not to mention the fact that you have to hold down the left trigger to keep the menu up. Don't game developers understand that holding down a button means exerting continual effort? Sheesh ;-)

My main issue, however, has nothing to do with the game mechanics or with Dragon Age at all. Just like every other fantasy game, Dragon Age follows the "rule" that dissuades magic-using characters from wearing heavy armor. My big question is: why? Why can't my cleric wear plate mail? Why can't my heavy damage dealing mage wear studded leather? I can understand the concept: claiming that it's too easy to let any character wear or use whatever items they'd like, or trying to add new dynamics to the game by making the player think before equipping. I can understand the imagery behind it - the battle-weary mage casting a spell as his robes sway and billow in the wind...trust me, I'm a sucker for that just like everyone else. However, my practical side screams "this is wrong!" I mean, if I were the leader of an adventuring group, I'd do my best to make sure that everyone went out and returned with minimal damage - and that means wearing serious armor.

This "rule" has been around for...a long, long time. It's probably not about to change soon either. Which is fine, except that when I decide to change it for my adventuring party or my game - let me. I'm not about to let my healer, the one person who can make or break my team, run out into battle wearing a snuggie (although that image does crack me up). And the argument of how "cloth armor has better stats for mages" can't hold true either - they're called enchantments :-D

Any who agree or disagree?

January 20, 2010

Frag Doll Cadette applications are out!

Hello all!

I apologize for the delay - it's been quite an exciting time for me! I've started a new job, welcomed a new puppy into my family, and have spent some very-much-needed time with those who are dear to me. And for even more exciting news - The Frag Dolls are accepting Cadette applications!!! I'm not excited at all :-D

According to the Frag Doll website [here], submissions need to include the following:

  1. A resume - complete with work and school experience
  2. A 2 page history of your background in gaming, what consoles you play on, and favorite games
  3. A 3 minute video interview answering these questions: Favorite thing about playing video games, What would make you a great Cadette, and Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
Honestly, this was not the application I had envisioned for this program. I was expecting a much lengthier application in which you were required to submit headshots, essays about gaming and women in the gaming world, and your gaming statistics. The actual application seems much more general - not that I'm complaining, but it's certainly not what I had expected.

In any event, even if I create a ridiculously awesome application, the chances of me actually getting into the Cadettes is slim to none. After taking a near-extensive read of the forums, it looks like there are many, many, many young women who send in submissions...and only 12 are chosen. AT RANDOM, no less. But it can't hurt to keep a positive attitude, right? ::sigh::

If I were lucky enough to be chosen for the Spring 2010 Class of Frag Doll Cadettes, then I'd have a very interesting choice to make. I can only guess at what is involved in being a Cadette, and I'm not even sure if it's a paid "internship." I'm guessing that I would need to relocate for the full 6 month duration of being a Cadette as well. Usually, this wouldn't be a problem - however, I now work full-time at a fantastic company in the area. Essentially, I've already started my career path - so, would I give it all up for a chance to get in to the gaming community?

Side note - I played Starcraft and Unreal Tournament at a LAN party this past Saturday. Although I did alright in Starcraft, I did much better in UT - which made me feel awesome. I take pride in my gaming ability, and to put my skills to the test after such a long time was quite nice :-) After all is said and done, the experience has left me craving more headshots and multikills than I would have thought. I truly enjoy that game, and I can't wait to find some time to play/practice/train more.

Well, I'll sign off for now - it's late and I've got work in the morning. But expect to see more posts from me here - I feel motivated and invigorated! Sweet gaming dreams to you all!