tempest in a teacup

the pointless musings of a strange recluse

PAX 2010

Went to PAX with Perfect Stranger (friend from Singapore), so I figured I’d write a short piece about the stuff I played and saw.

And before you ask, no, I didn’t get to play Duke Nukem Forever. The queue was way too long and I wasn’t about to waste two hours in line to experience the revolutionary ability to pee by pressing R2.

Sonic the Hedgehog 4

Oh god, where to start.

I don’t know what version of the game was playable at PAX, but the physics were pretty fucked up. Sonic has a LOT of inertia before he starts going, and this also extends to trying to jump sideways from a standing position. I actually had trouble jumping onto a higher ledge to reach a spring. Also, rolling STILL doesn’t make you go faster down slopes. In fact, you slow down, which is about as far from ‘classic Sonic’ as you can possibly get.

PS also managed to break the physics in a bunch of ways, returning to a neutral animation after bouncing off a spring by pressing the down button, and managing stand still on an incline. Way to go, guys!

On top of that the general prepoderance of doodads that force you to speed up or bounce in certain directions hasn’t changed at all, so overall I’m going to be giving this a miss.

Sonic Colors

This was a lot more fun, however! It’s basically Sonic Unleashed’s daytime levels with slightly modified physics (Sonic feels a bit less slippery) and the addition of Wisp power-ups. Given that it’s been eons since power up items have made an appearance in any Sonic game, their inclusion has me very much interested. I also noticed a bunch of alternate routes and secret items that you could get if you found the right paths. Bottom line? I’m probably going to be picking this up.

Guild Wars 2

I hung out at the booth a bit since PS was interested in the game, but the game does look rather nice. The developers demoed a boss fight with a giant flaming dragon monster – giant as in a few hundred times the players’ size. Looked great, and apparently it’ll be possible to jump into PvP immediately with a level 20 character. I usually avoid MMOs, but PS insists that I should give this one a go, so I suppose we’ll see, won’t we?

Marvel vs Capcom 3

I gave this game a go and had the misfortune of being paired up against someone who obviously knew what he was doing, and lost all three characters to Dr Doom lockdown. That said it felt pretty fast and responsive, and even though I kept trying to air dash as Ryu I may pick this up once it’s released.

Epic Mickey

I gave this a shot since I was curious about what sort of game it was. Turns out it’s a sort of open-world platformer with mechanics revolving around spraying paint and thinner on the surroundings. It seemed pretty cool from what I was seeing, but the camera needed a bit of work, with some jumps being hard to gauge correctly.

And then my play experience was cut short when the game crashed during my play session! Wee.

Fallout: New Vegas

I gave this a shot randomly – Fallout 3 didn’t really impress me, but I had heard Obsidian was changing some things for this spinoff. One thing I noticed straight away was the presence of factions in the game, with your actions either improving or worsening your standing with each of these factions. This seems like a much better way to handle choice/consequence than Fallout 3’s karma meter (which is still in the game for some reason). I did want to try out the new Hardcore mode they had talked about, but it wasn’t on display as far as I could tell.

Random notes

  • PS won tickets to an exclusive ArenaNet party, and then won an EVGA Geforce GTX 470 in a Guild Wars 2 raffle, the lucky bastard
  • Everyone and their mom was using Modern Warfare 2 to demo their hardware, even the PC hardware manufacturers
  • Everyone and their mom also seemed to be hosting Super Street Fighter IV tournaments
  • I bought a Marvel vs Capcom branded Madcatz TE stick for $100 and a Gyakuten Saiban art book for $40 at Capcom’s booth
  • Brink is looking kind of cool, but the queue was long
  • Portal 2’s queue was long throughout the day – there was no way I was going to spend half the day waiting there, as much as I want to marry that game and have its babies
  • PS and I took part in a Team Fortress 2 match to try and qualify for an Alienware raffle to win a Killer NIC card. The map was cp_steel, and with PS as my pocket Medic I managed to lead a bunch of successful pushes until the enemy team basically spammed us out of point E. Didn’t really help that we had two Medics and only one Soldier on a team of nine, either…
  • I went to the ArenaNet party with PS but after I found myself trying to beat my high score in Dodonpachi Daifukkatsu in a corner I figured it would be best if I left early.

And to end on a colorful note, have some pics (mouseover for alt text):

The queue right outside the exhibition hall right before it opened

Sonic the Failhog 4

ArenaNet's opulent Guild Wars 2 booth 

I'M GONNA TAKE YOU FOR A RIDE~

Torchlight II! Looked pretty good, but the booth was pretty crowded so I didn't linger.

Happy fun co-op robot time

TF2 cosplayers in the lobby!

Scout's Mom and the RARE ENDANGERED SPYCRAB

Until next year!

2 comments

2 Responses to “PAX 2010”

  1. NeoChaos says:

    – Colors already had my interest as a platformer nut, and your take on it has already reaffirmed why I’m liking it. 4 I’m going to wait for the reviews.
    – “Everyone and their mom was using Modern Warfare 2 to demo their hardware” – even the TE sticks? I kid, I kid.
    – “I bought a Marvel vs Capcom branded Madcatz TE stick for $100” – 360 stick, I presume? Be careful, though – the button layout is set for the defaults of the downloadable MvC2 release, which uses L1/LB and R2/RB for HP and HK instead of R1/RB and R2/RT.
    – “Didn’t really help that we had two Medics and only one Soldier on a team of nine, either…” Lemme guess, two snipers, two spies, W+M1 pyro and non-Gunslinger Engy?

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