Thank You, Bioware

This was an announcement today that I wanted to talk about. I believe that this move, this excellent move done by Bioware is going to be what the future of RPGs are all about and what they’re shooting for. For their next big game, Dragon Age Inquisition, they are now allowing you to form the world that you’re about to play in. How are they doing this? By creating something called, Dragon Age Keep.

Dragon Age Keep is basically a program within Dragon Age 3 where, before you start playing their new story, you set things up from your previous games. 

Let your shouts and hoorays out. Unless you’ve played entirely through Mass Effect one to three, most cannot appreciate this. True fans of Bioware can, in some sense. I definitely understand why this needed to be added.

How things worked before this was you simply go through the game, go through the next one, and then play the last one with all of your choices in line that you just made through all three games. Wanted to do something else that was huge and a big event? You have to start over either the first or second game, and play through it all again and do something different. This happened a lot for me because I always played through it first as a good-guy then did it again as the evil individual.

No longer will that be an issue. Scratch issue. For Mass Effect, I never saw it as an issue. More of a chore. The chore has been eliminated to where they force you to play through all of the games if you wanted to do something big and significant.

The original idea that they had for this was because some saves may not go over to the next platform when Dragon Age Inquisition is ready. Which is extremely understandable. Dragon Age Inquisition may not be able to be played on the 360 or the PS3. They’re going to be made for the PS4 and the Xbox One. Unless Sony or Microsoft created something for saves to transfer over, in the Bioware fashion, then there’d be no way for your story to be told and the beginning to each game would have been generic. Thanks to the Dragon Age Keep, that is no longer an issue.

I think that this is something that Bioware should have come up much sooner. However, having come up with it at all is amazing and fantastic. Mass Effect 3 would have done better for that. 

The problem that they had if you were brand to the game at Mass Effect 3 is you get the genetic starting storyline. There’s nothing special about events that have happened and they’re all the same if you start over without a save being transferred over. Annoying for people who are brand new to it all.

This is why I was excited for Dragon Age Inquisition. The fact that Bioware has this in place makes me confident that they’re stance in the future of RPGs is going to be powerful.

Advertisements

Writing Problems To Destroy

Why destroy them? Why such an aggressive word? When it comes to writing you have no choice but to be rid of these problems. If certain problems are not taken out of your writing process things will not go well. Writing can be difficult. Some may find it easy, writing may be something that is almost second nature and has become a habit in their daily lives. Others have difficulty getting into their day due to exhaustion or too many other things going on. I know that’s one of the problems I have lately. Work and helping take care of my family are my much larger responsibilities.

You’re either going to compromise with yourself to do writing later on or you’re going to make time. Either one can be good for you. That’s one of the things that you have to discover:

What are ways that you can work your day so that you’re writing but you’re not neglecting something else in your life?

It’s difficult to not neglect something in your life. You’re either writing, or there is something else you could be doing. It’ll be there in the back of your head, bugging you, or you’ll ignore it and continue to write. Do you write or do you get of the lesser task? Does someone else require the task done? It’s all about compromise. Say you devote evenings that you have off after work to get those tasks done to free up your days off. Maybe you write for fifteen or twenty minutes, and then go and complete a task and continue the process? Write for your desired amount of time, then go and do a task. Whatever works best for you – the end goal is to find time to write and try your best to not neglect certain things.

Are there other things that you’re doing that are done instead of writing?

Have a favorite TV show that you adore to watch and just can’t get enough of? Breaking Bad is that television program for me. It’s never bad to sit down and enjoy and excellent show for an hour or even marathon an entire season. However, and I find myself being guilty of this, there are times that you may notice you find yourself wandering through the TV guide and find nothing yet you’re stuck in front of the screen for an extra hour or even two. This happens to me all the time. Especially when it’s my day off. It’s hard not to want to sit there, relax for a few hours and take in the fact that I’m not on my feet. TV can easily destroy motivation to want to write and spend a few hours on the next pages that you promised yourself you were going to finish. It’s difficult to pull away. Find a way to distract yourself and stick to writing. It’s similar to going into a dark corner and enjoying a fantastically written book for hours at a time. Cutting yourself off from the world and taking it all in.

Same goes for when you’re on your computer and being connected to the internet. This is also something that happens to me. I’ll find myself watching YouTube videos for hours, and finding more to watch because there are other things that I can’t help but be curious about. Whenever I find myself on Achievementhunter.com I get stuck watching their videos. They’re incredibly witty and hard to pull away from. Maybe for the first two or so hours that you’re on your computer, you’re disconnected from the internet?

How are you going to keep yourself pulled in?

Sure, you have your rear in the seat and the computer in your lap. You’re typing and the novel is becoming an entity. The words are forming sentences and the story is happening. How do you stay in that state of mind? How do you keep going forward? One technique that will keep me in my seat is listening to music that suits the scene that I’m writing. The music will fuel the scene and I can colorfully see what I want to create inside of my head. Without that music I may stop typing and find myself at a lose. Where was I going? When the music is playing, it keeps me in check. My mind is in the scene, I imagine myself being there and the characters help me write.

Another way you can help make the scene is, throughout the week, create sticky notes of your stray thoughts. Maybe before you leave work or go to bed, write five things down for the next segment of the story that you’re going to write. When you sit down again, gather up all the sticky notes and see what you have to work on. You’ll already have a small foundation and you won’t be starting from scratch. You won’t be spending the first ten minutes attempting to remember what you’ve forgotten from the beginning of the week.

Writing takes a lot of time, effort, and sometimes even willpower to continue to write the story that you want to make. Each time you sit down you’re moving closer to your goal. If you have a plan before you sit down, or a set of techniques to help you move forward, you’ll find that this is going to take your writing further. Paragraphs will suddenly become pages and minutes will smear into hours.

What ways do you recommend sticking to a story and getting that required word count? 

Dragon Age 3 at Gamescon

While I find it annoying that Bioware decided to pull Dragon Age back a year, I’m also okay with it. Why be impatient for a game the developers are not ready to let out yet? Waiting for something to be ready and present has always been better. Although, with all the news that is surrounding it lately I’m becoming anxious. The sort of anxious that can only be quelled with re-reading articles, playing old games and waiting for release date to arrive and begin playing. Here’s the news that I’ve been hearing, have you heard about it?

What is Dragon Age 3: Inquisition about? 

To build on that question, what is the Inquisition? For the past two games Inquisitors have yet to be mentioned. Where are they coming from? Inquisitors have become the gatekeepers that, apparently, the Templars have failed. You are the leader of this group. That is correct, you are now the leader in a Bioware game where you are calling all of the shots. After years of having to crawl to the top in almost every game that they’ve made, players’ patience have paid off. Either a village is going to burn down because of you, or you’re going to save innocent people. Is it helpful to you, or are you morally obligated to save them? As the leader of the Inquisitor, the pros and cons are truly tested here.

What’s happened? Where have we left off?

The veil has broken apart. The thing that has kept the demons, the nightmares, everything that not only Mages but all of the world fears to think about now have a one-stop ticket to the real world. Everything is blowing up around everyone. I believe one big question that I have burning in my head is are the Mages and the Templars still fighting each other? If they are, how is that going to make a play in? Are you going to be taking a side in the war? Are more important things going to be going on?

My best guess is that the Mages are still rebelling. Fighting to survive and make their way around the world unharmed. Perhaps even the veil being open affects them the worst? With all of the nasty things that wanted to use them to get into the world, the Mages could be the best things that the world now has to throw the veil back together.

How are the previous games going to be involved?

Another main role of the Inquisitor is to be looking for the one who started the entire mess. This likely means that Alister is going to be either on the run or fighting in the war. Think Mages will be asking for help or trying to help him out? Part of me hopes that they are going to ignore him. I’d rather run him down like a dog and find him. After the ending of Dragon Age 2, I really wanted to end him. However, another character I made was rather sympathetic for him. If I were to play after that character’s save, would he react differently? Doing the opposite of Mass Effect, Dragon Age decided to use different characters for each game that they made. I don’t think it’s a bad thing, I do however think they’re missing a big writing key if they don’t let all three characters meet. That would astounding! What sort of things would happen in a room with three of your characters?

Bioware meets Skyrim

After five hours, I grew exceedingly annoyed with the fact that the team who worked on Dragon Age 2 thought it was a good idea to continually use the same scenery areas over and over again. It was as if the DM of a campaign was too lazy to paint a different picture. I was disappointed with that because in the first one the areas were vastly different as you traveled around Ferelden. Games need to be as versatile in their gameplay as they are with their environments. With a world like Dragon Age and how big of a reputation Bioware has you’d believe they’d build on it just as they would their story. Luckily, they seemed to pick up that hint. They picked up the mistake that they made from their previous game. Now they’re attempted to introduce a wide variety of landscapes in the same world. Players are going to find mountains, hilltops, grassy fields, and perhaps even battle coated fields with dead bodies and fires all around. 

With the brand new things that Bioware has started with, I’m once more excited for a Dragon Age game. After having finished the second game I didn’t think a third was going to be a good idea. With all that’s been shown in the previews and what’s in store, things are going to be excellent. Bioware may have corrected a mistake that would have branded them for an extended amount of time.

Remembering LucasArts and the Newest Batman Game

Last week had been a difficult one for me to handle. It was as if I had been told that I my childhood would have no advancement. Although, I had a feeling that Disney had something tricky up their “wizard’s” sleeve with Star Wars. I’m sure the news of LucasArts’ passing has been shared by many, yet, I’m not here to inform anyone. What I really would like to share are my own experiences. Games that I most remember from that time and things that I had hoped were going to happen in the next few years with games.

First ever LucasArts game?

Star Wars: Shadow of the Empire. It was a fantastic game. When I go back home from college, I plan to fire up my N64 and start playing it again. I always loved it, found it difficult, and it had been my first ever video game. The first week we had it, my father taught me how to play it. A week later, I was teaching him to how play games like that. There are times today that I wish that I hadn’t been as good as games as I was. My father said it was the reason it turned him off from playing them, which disheartens me. We could’ve been enjoying games to-date and played them together. Regardless of that, it was the first game that I had ever played. Being so little, I didn’t understand parts of the game. Such as, I was wondering the entire time why this guy that I was playing wasn’t in the films, or there was never a mention of him. I thought he was Han Solo (I was five people, little slack, hm?).

Favorite LucasArts Game?

It’s a mix between Empire at War, and Bounty Hunter. Bounty Hunter was one of my favorite games because I got to do something that I hadn’t done ever: Be someone other than a person holding a lightsaber. Hence the origins of my first game, Shadows of the Empire. The idea that someone with nothing special about them, other than their skills that they’ve honed over years was an appeal to me. About Empire at War, I still play this game to-date from time to time. Fighting off hordes and hordes of enemies while attempting to win the galaxy was tons of fun. Dream game that I always hoped to play? A Battlefront game mixed with an Empire at War like game. How awesome would that be? Playing an RTS and when you go to scale it down to the actual battles, you’re off fighting like Battlefront and you’re controlling a grunt to help win (or save) the galaxy for your leader. I would have loved to have seen this.

Favorite Company 

Bioware threw out a wonderful game with LucasArts. KOTOR is by far my top RPG that I’ll ever play. Not just because of the Star Wars aspect. It was my first ever RPG before I had been introduced to both Mass Effect and Dragon Age. KOTOR had been my first steps into a greater world. While KOTOR 2 was my first game to play of the duology, I adored KOTOR much more because of how open it was. While KOTOR 2 had the appealing factor of being darker, and much more thrilling KOTOR gave it that perfect Star Wars sense. The kind we all want to experience as kids.

Future Hopes for the Games

I was hoping for a lot more games like Star Wars 1313. Darker, much more menacing, I had wanted to see LucasArts start tipping out of the norm that was Star Wars. To go a bit farther than what they’re use to. To show an intent to go beyond the standard “let’s keep it for everyone” was really extraordinary to see. I had wanted to see a darker Star Wars, I had wanted to see something that was realistic that you sometimes get in the books. If you’ve ever read some of the books that are out there, a few authors attempt to explore those shadowy regions of Star Wars that few game developers or film makers dare to go. I wanted to at least try it out on a game.

While Star Wars will forever be with me, Star Wars loses something amazing that it always will remember. That we gamers will always remember. LucasArts may have been shut down as a studio, I hope that other game developers want to create these amazing games. That’s the best that we Star Wars fans can hope for. If other developers out there want to do something, make it memorable. That’s we, as fans are looking  for!

Also: Today, it has been announced that Batman: Arkham Origins has been confirmed! Awesome stuff! Batman is where it is at. Check it out here – Batman: Arkham Origins Article

Injustice: Gods Among Us – Last Week

It’s the last week for the Injustice: Gods Among Us Tournament. Who could have guessed it has Superman squaring off with Batman? Not like fans of DC and video games alike couldn’t have seen this coming. Check out the article to get the full details of how I believe the two are compared, and what both sides have to bring to the table. Who are you going to be voting for?

Article

Be sure to subscribe to me on The Examiner. I would hate to lose any followers, and I make sure everyone is updated to all gaming information. I hope to see you there.

Injustice, Mass Effect, Deadpool, and More!

Articles, articles, and articles!

I have been extremely busy the past week. I apologize for not updating the blog with all the current articles that I’ve been working on. Several of them have been published on Examiner.com. Things have been heating up! Several topics, all around, all about excellent games to come in the near future. I’m excited for this gaming year. Every year appears to be getting better by the generation.

Here’s what I’ve written:

Mass Effect 3 Anniversary

Dead Space 3 Awakened DLC

Deadpool’s Game!

Injustice:Gods Among Us Recap and Memorial

Mass Effect 3 DLC – Citadel

Assassin’s Creed 4 Trailer

Star Wars 1313 Delayed

Injustice: Gods Among Us Battle Arena Week 4 Results

Assassin Creed 4 Confirmed

Hope you all enjoy the articles. I’ve been working hard at both school and this work. Enjoy! Make sure to subscribe so you can keep up-to-date with all the latest news, reviews, and information on gaming!

Mass Effect 3 DLC, Reckoning

Today marks the last and final Multiplayer DLC within the Mass Effect 3 content. It’s a sad day, yet, it goes out with a bang!

Be sure to read my article regarding the details that are going to be involved within the newest release. Be sure to subscribe, and I hope you enjoy what’s being said!

Krogan Warlord

Check out the article here: Examiner.com.