06 April 2010

Morning Vent, 6 April 2010

Rain Ocampo takes aim...
    The plumbing event took all of a half-hour, thankfully. That was good since I was distinctly red-eyed from the insomnia the night before and I went straight to sleep as soon as the plumber was escorted under guard to the HQ exit.
     The only gaming I did this weekend was some solo Spec Ops. I'm semi-obsessed with the O Cristo Redentor level on Regular difficulty, playing it over and over and over. And I think I figured out why: It's the level that comes closest to duplicating the bot experience of Unreal Tournament 1999. (Of course, with UT, each game against the bots was different and you could vary their play style any way you liked.) I never get tired of gunning down the Militia in that level, and I like to mix it up by trying to scoop up different weapons to use. My favorite is the Glock 18 machinepistol. Playing that level on Hardened and Veteran, I notice, is less fun than work. Plus, as soon as the enemy sees a single hair on your ass, there are bullets banging into you, filling your POV with strawberry jam. (Bad idea, IW. Really.) What's really less than cool is when the bullets also immobilize your ass to make you an easy target. Then it becomes a Favela-style "dog pile on the rabbit" and you're dead. Worst of all, Ghost's voiceover tells you "we need to rethink our strategy". Maybe it's Infinity Ward that needs to rethink, since increasing difficulty shouldn't mean aimbot-AIs spamming in unerringly accurate bullets in from every corner of the map.
    I played the Hidden level a bit, too. That level is mostly stealth, requiring a cross-country flight to a green smoke marker with snipers and Spetsnaz in between. It's weird, but I played that level the first time and there were claymores, which I used in a pitched gun battle inside the church. The last couple of times, no claymores. It's a cool level, but there don't seem to be enough enemies. I tried the Favela defuse the bomb map, but I don't think there's any way I can finish that map in time. At least, I'm not willing to play the level enough times to learn how to finish without running out of time to defuse the bombs. After seeing a video tutorial about beating the the Snatch and Grab level on Veteran, I thought I'd give it a try. The level essentially repeats the airplane scrapyard segment of the single player campaign, except it tosses in Juggernauts. Juggernauts are uber-healthed, armored douchebags who take about 5 sniper shots to kill. The video tutorial showed the player skipping engaging the Juggernauts completely, just sprinting through, grabbing the intel, and running to the objective. Shadow Company baddies along the way are dealt with using a SPAS-12. It looked easy... until I tried it. I got killed every time, either picked off by Shadow Company or gang-raped by the bomb squad-suited Juggernauts without so much as courtesy reach-around.
    I went back and looked at the comments, and there were things like: "Gee, thanks, I only had to run the level 41 times to get through it!" Screw that noise. Gaming is supposed to be recreation, and I get enough frustration in real life without a gratuitous megadose from a game in the name of "fun". As I've blogged before, I'm not masochistic enough to consider getting it in the asspipe videogame-style 41 times fun.

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