April 19 - April 23

Monster Hunter Tri is the game of the week. It was that or Sherlock Holmes vs. Jack the Ripper. Not exactly the hardest game of the week pick I've ever had. Unfortunately I don't really have anything to say about Monster Hunter, so instead I'll talk about something totally unrelated.

I've been pretty clear that when it comes to Doctors Who -- my best guess of pluralization -- David Tenant stands well above his colleagues. When my wife and I watched over the winter as he turned over the mantle to some oddly-jawed upstart, it was with great trepidation. As Tenant gave his not-surprisingly tearful farewell, and Matt Smith had his four minutes of screen time before the closing credits rolled, my wife and I were in lockstep agreement. We hated him.

So we watched on BBC America this weekend to bear dismal witness to the inevitable ruination of the franchise as perpetrated by Smith's too-young-by-half Doctor. As I pressed play I felt the doors slam shut on any hope of an open minded appraisal. The question was simply how much I would hate the new Doctor Who.

Maybe it was Moffat's writing. Maybe it had been long enough since I'd last watch Tenant tear about the screen like a spiky-haired hamster on amphetamines. Maybe the door just wasn't as slammed tight as I had thought, but I loved it. I don't have a clean read on Smith's Doctor yet, but the initial delivery felt spot on with enough of the familiar and promise of something new to make me happy, and let it not be said that Karen Gillan is hard on the eyes.

So it is with some relief that I discover I can still be a fan of the show.

Xbox 360
- Sherlock Holmes vs Jack the Ripper

Wii
- All Star Karate
- Monster Hunter Tri

Coming Soon -
- Red Dead Redemption PS3 / Xbox 360 : May 18
- Lost Planet 2 PS3 / Xbox 360 : May 18
- Alan Wake: May 18
- Super Mario Galaxy 2 : May 23

Comments

And I never liked David Tenant. Call me crazy, I wouldn't disagree.

As someone who a month ago wasn't particularly excited about Doctor Who in any capacity (I wasn't opposed, but I wasn't a fan), I now find myself really digging the new Doctor AND excited about the pretty sweet looking adventure game they're doing with Matt Smith and Karen Gillan lending voice work.

Well played, BBC.

I'm no fan of Monster Hunter games, but I have had some exposure.

Monster Hunter games are games that are about hunting monsters. Okay - that's not very explanatory. Let's use a few other games for reference.

Imagine you've beaten Diablo and are now gunning for loot. You don't care about the story, you're just grinding for drops. Imagine you're doing it multiplayer like an MMO raid. Imagine that the monster isn't really dropping items, but instead, ingredients for crafting items - the formula of which you have to find out on your own.

Imagine that the monsters are not like Diablo, but more like super-Megaman bosses, where you have to find out the attack pattern or he's going to wipe you and your team to smithereens. No life meter, either. You tell how hurt the monster is purely from behavior.

Okay, now imagine that you're in isometric 3D, with a manual camera - the camera is manual because locking on will occasionally get you killed. Your weapons have specific attack and defensive properties, too, which you can only really internalize through practice.

Got it? Okay, now tack a farming and crafting game on. You don't buy items for health and such (you can, but it's expensive) - you farm for them, gather them, and check on them prior to leaving for a raid.

That's an idea of how Monster Hunter is. It's a hardcore game, and I don't mean that in a media-market segregation sort of way. I mean that in the Play-Megaman-For-The-No-Hit-Acheivement sort of way.

Going to have to disagree with you, Sean. Matt Smith and Moffat is the best thing to have happened to this, new, Dr Who since the inception of the new and bold Dr. Who. Moffats writing is much, much better than anything during Tenants term (except for the few ep's that Moffat wrote of course) and Matt Smith brings a great scary / exhilarating / funny Doctor which is something that Tenant failed to do (thanks to the writing I believe) over and over again. After the first episode I loved Dr Who again and I can't wait to see what is coming.

After the first episode I loved Dr Who again and I can't wait to see what is coming.

I totally agree with this. That's kind of what I was driving at. Moffat and Smith totally overcame my fears of what might happen with the franchise changing hands in so many ways.

I too love Moffat's writing, but -- if I may offer some constructive criticism -- I'd like to see him stop leaning on the crutch of a single phrase repeated over and over as a dramatic device in his episodes, for example:

Patient zero will leave the human residence or the human residence will be incinerated.
Are you my mummy?
Hey! Who turned out the lights?

Sherlock Holmes vs. Jack the Ripper isn't getting its due. Look at these features:

Product Features
From the award-winning developers of Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened
Scour eerie environments and interrogate mysterious suspects
Search carefully for clues in first-person, or zoom-out to third-person and observe the incredible surroundings
An original system that allows you to piece together individual crimes and test your hypothesis as the investigation unfolds

LarryC wrote:

That's an idea of how Monster Hunter is. It's a hardcore game, and I don't mean that in a media-market segregation sort of way. I mean that in the Play-Megaman-For-The-No-Hit-Acheivement sort of way.

Which is why, even though I have always been intrigued by the series, it's just not for me.

Well, that and the jankiness.

Heh. Not for me, either. I think of it as Dwarf Fortress for the Wii - uber hardcore, devote-your-life-to-it gaming that I just can't afford to get into right now.

(yeah, who am I kidding? I'm just saving myself for Starcraft. We'll have such lovely babies)

Wait, I'm confused. Is there a game coming out this week or is all forms of other media banned because it's Doctor Who Week?

There Can Be Only One!

IMAGE(http://dailypop.files.wordpress.com/2009/07/tom-baker-as-dr-who.jpg)

I'm pretty relieved to hear that this new guy is good but I think I'll still watch the first episode grumpy and empty of hope like you did. Let's hope he can win me over as well.

But no love for After Burner Climax? I can't wait to have an epileptic seizure of awesome on Wednesday, the kind that only AM2 can deliver. Pew pew pew!

TheCounselor wrote:

Sherlock Holmes vs. Jack the Ripper isn't getting its due. Look at these features:

Product Features
From the award-winning developers of Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened
Scour eerie environments and interrogate mysterious suspects
Search carefully for clues in first-person, or zoom-out to third-person and observe the incredible surroundings
An original system that allows you to piece together individual crimes and test your hypothesis as the investigation unfolds

Shove off, ye wanker! Sherlock Holmes: The Awakened was a delightful, warm little game! And so was Nemesis. I can still hum the violin solo playing constantly in the background of both. Hmhmhmhmhmhmmm~ Hmhmhmhmhmhmhmhmm~ Hmhmhmhmhmhmhmhm~ Hmhmhmhmhm Hmm Hmm~~~

I wanted to try to check out Dr. Who and figured the new series ought to be as good a place as any, so I watched the first couple episodes, and it did nothing for me. The Doctor (is that the one who's David Tennant, or is David Tennant the guy after him? I get confused) was fine, but his sidekick girl was annoying and the writing didn't seem to be anything special.

Is there some better place to jump into Dr. Horton Hears A that I don't know about, or is this just not for me? It's one of those things that's been going on for soooooo long that it can be a bit intimidating for a newbie.

Tennant couldn't do menacing the way Chris Eccleston could. Doctor Who is best when the Doctor is being crazy scary.

Tennant was a spiky haired hamster on amphetamines. Eccleston seemed like he would annihilate your civilization if you crossed him.

But, then, I thought the guy who played the Master would also make a great Doctor.

The new guy's got potential. The new sidekick is great. It seems like they actually have some chemistry.

I tried Monster Hunter Freedom on the PSP, and really wanted to like it, but the gun mechanics sucked like a quantum singularity and I didn't want to use any of the melee weapons (It wouldn't be the first time I've wrecked a game for myself because I wanted to play it on my own terms). And I got sick of playing the same levels over and over again.

Like Armored Core, it's one of those games that I want to think of myself as the sort of person who likes, but really really doesn't.

So I'll go back to having a blast playing the Wolverine game.

hbi2k wrote:

I wanted to try to check out Dr. Who and figured the new series ought to be as good a place as any, so I watched the first couple episodes, and it did nothing for me. The Doctor (is that the one who's David Tennant, or is David Tennant the guy after him? I get confused) was fine, but his sidekick girl was annoying and the writing didn't seem to be anything special.

Is there some better place to jump into Dr. Horton Hears A that I don't know about, or is this just not for me? It's one of those things that's been going on for soooooo long that it can be a bit intimidating for a newbie.

If you're watching the new series, you get one season of Chris Eccleston then three of David Tennant. Just now we have new episodes of Matt Smith airing on BBC (only one has aired in America thus far).

Everyonbe has their own preferences, but my wife and I (who were also new to Doctor Who) thought the new series got good once you make it to the episodes written by Steven Moffat, who is the new executive producer: give two-parter "The Empty Child"/"The Doctor Dances" a try. And as you've probably noticed, many people consider the whole first season practically just a prelude to Tennant's run.

Even if you give up on Doctor Who entirely, I urge you to at least jump forward to "Blink" in the third season. It doesn't actually feature the Doctor much at all, but is a fantastic standalone piece of television.

There is a Doctor Who thread here: http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/1... ...where you can get other Goodjers' opinions.

Of the first two DVDs of series 1 Doctor Who, the highlights are Ep 3 "The Unquiet Dead" and Ep 6 "Dalek." If you don't like those, then you can safely be done. Empty Child/Dances noted above are the best of the season, on Disk 3.

As for games, I'm still on Borderlands and L4D2 thanks to Steam sales a few weeks ago...

consciousness wrote:

Of the first two DVDs of series 1 Doctor Who, the highlights are Ep 3 "The Unquiet Dead" and Ep 6 "Dalek." If you don't like those, then you can safely be done. Empty Child/Dances noted above are the best of the season, on Disk 3.

Yeah, I don't know how you're watching, hbi2k. If Netflix, they have it streaming, so it is easy to jump around. But this is good advice. If you don't like "The Unquiet Dead" and "Dalek" it might be worth watching a couple of the more outstanding episodes ("Blink," and did I mention "Blink"?); but there's a fair chance that the mix of cheesiness, melodrama, bravado, and suspense of Doctor Who just isn't your taste.

And the new Doctor's hot. Let's be honest. They seem to be getting younger and fitter.

I can't believe how good he is. I've yet to see a proper chink in his armour. He just owns the part: and after Tennant did so well! Just surprised. Maybe I just love the character so much, but it seems like there have been very few screw-ups with the new show.

Being in the UK, I'm seen three episodes of the new series. I am hanging in there, and will see this series out, but if it continues as it has done I will be out of the door after that. The next two episodes just didn't do it for me at all. I was looking forward to a new, darker Who with Moffat at the helm, but thus far I've been disappointed. More likely a flaw with me than his writing, though.

Having said that, all is not lost. This has likely been posted elsewhere, but hey - the team are branching out into other media, which is intriguing.

Thanks for the recommendations, guys. I've got Netflix streaming so other than the very most recent stuff, I can pretty much jump in anywhere. Yay for Netflix.

Best thing they ever did to introduce a new Doctor: Play him against a fabulous child actor!

I miss Amelia Pond. Amy is certainly hot and she will get to have all the adventures Amelia would have had, but I still wish it could have been Amelia. Yeah, I know it would never fly to have a strange man "kidnap" a girl and expose her to the dangers of Dalek disruptor fire. I just wish we could have more of that terrific dynamic they shared.

I don't have BBC America and so haven't seen the new episode yet, but from my perspective in 'lockstep-agreement-of-hating-Matt-Smith-land,' I find this reassuring.

...I now can hope to be pleasantly surprised.