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Tuesday, November 6, 2007

And explosions rocked Stilwater...

Another rough night for me on the baby front. Thankfully, my wife kindly took over for a while to let me get some time in playing Saints Row. After having listened to my son cry for five straight hours, I decided that the Mayhem activity was a good fit for my mood. With an RPG launcher firmly in hand, I jumped into my TraxxMaster SUV and headed off to cause some trouble.

First off, I found that getting out of my car and shooting everything with my RPG launcher wasn't very rewarding. Successful completion of the Mayhem activities requires that you pay close attention to your combo meter: destroy a number of items in quick succession raises increases the current combo meter. The higher the combo value, the more money you earn when you run over, shoot, or blow up anything and everything.

So far, I've found the easiest way to clear a Mayhem activity is to drive around looking for chain link fences or outdoor patios. By driving along the length of a fence or by repeatedly driving through an outdoor patio area, the combo meter goes sky high very quickly. What does this mean? It means that you can easily reach a score of $500,000 worth of damage in the space of a few minutes without breaking a sweat!

I did manage to complete a Level 5 Mayhem mission by taking on the S.W.A.T. team and the FBI. I managed to shoot down a couple helicopters and destroy a number of FBI SUVs, all of which baerely helped me clear the mission with scant seconds to spare. Had I not accidentally run over a police officer earlier in the mission, I would have had a much easier time by simply running over a nearby chain link fence. Still, it was nice to finish the activity in the style that one would imagine when discussing a Mayhem-type activity. I made a silly mistake at the end of this specific mission by destroying the only FBI SUV on the screen to clear the level; I should have blown up something else and brought the FBI SUV to a Chop Shop. Live and learn, I guess.

In other news, I also received my recently eBay-ed copies of Lost Planet: Extreme Condition and The Darkness in the mail. These are both games that I've wanted to play for quite a while and it's nice to finally add them to my bloated video game collection. I really got a great deal on both games and I'm looking forward to playing them as soon as I finish off Saints Row.

Although I don't plan on playing any multi-player, Lost Planet: Extreme Condition looks really cool. I'm a big fan of everything Capcom's done recently (especially Resident Evil 4 and Dead Rising) and I'm hoping that Lost Planet: Extreme Condition shows off some great cinematics. The intro movie was great and I can't wait to play this game through. Snow, mechs, and giant bugs: does it get any cooler?

As for The Darkness, I was keeping a close eye on this game earlier this year. I'm a huge fan of mafia-type games and of face-devouring tentacles - so you can see how The Darkness is a perfect fit for me. However, the game came out at a time when I had already bought a number of games to play. Also, truth be told, I very rarely pay full price for video games. In the past year, I've only paid full price for Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion and BioShock. I was planning on paying full price for Mass Effect and Assassin's Creed this holiday season; however, I believe that Saints Row, The Darkness, and Lost Planet: Extreme Condition will keep me busy well into the New Year. My only concern now is to finish Saints Row so that I can start taking down the Cosa Nostra with guns and darkness powers, stopping every so often to devour a heart or two.

It really is a great time to be a gamer right now. This holiday season is going to be the biggest that the gaming industry's ever seen. Not only have the games been hyped like crazy: many of them are getting great reviews and are now considered "must-plays" for true video game connoisseurs. As for me, I'll do my best to finish off my second-hand oldies and start playing Mass Effect and Assassin's Creed as soon as possible.

With that in mind, I'll be back in Stilwater tonight to cause as much mayhem as possible. I hear there's a way to get by the Mayhem activities even faster by repeatedly blowing up and fixing high-priced luxury cars: sounds like a plan to me!