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2019 Co-operative multiplayer games with friends

One thing is for certain in this life, community and friendships are very valuable. That being said, a common interest usually keeps you together, in this case gaming. Today I am going to explore a few select titles that I find personally appealing, however have never played but am intrigued by the information presented from other web sites.

Remnant: From the Ashes

“Remnant: From the Ashes is a third-person survival action shooter set in a post-apocalyptic world overrun by monstrous creatures. As one of the last remnants of humanity, you’ll set out alone or alongside up to two other players to face down hordes of deadly enemies and epic bosses, and try to carve a foothold, rebuild, and then retake what was lost.” -via steam, https://store.steampowered.com/app/617290/Remnant_From_the_Ashes/

Destiny 2

I thought it worth mentioning that I have no familiarity with this series.

“Set in a “mythic science fiction” world, the game features a multiplayer “shared-world” environment with elements of role-playing games. Like the original, activities in Destiny 2 are divided among player versus environment (PvE) and player versus player (PvP) game types. In addition to normal story missions, PvE features three-player “strikes” and six-player raids. A free roam patrol mode is also available for each planet and features public events as well as new activities not featured in the original.” -via wikipedia, https://store.steampowered.com/app/1085660/Destiny_2/

GOD EATER 3

Unfortunately a generic and unappealing anime-esque art style, this is of course personal opinion so please do not let it dissuade you. Looks to be an action rpg, with epic bosses and maybe dungeons for friends to venture through. https://store.steampowered.com/app/899440/GOD_EATER_3/

Space Engineers

” Space Engineers is a sandbox game about engineering, construction, exploration and survival in space and on planets. Players build space ships, space stations, planetary outposts of various sizes and uses, pilot ships and travel through space to explore planets and gather resources to survive.” -via steam, https://store.steampowered.com/app/244850/Space_Engineers/

This concludes my list of games. Apologies no images or eye catching material here. Please offer me suggestions and I will look into them. Regards.

Why you will never climb in League of Legends

To put it briefly, it’s a team game. League of Legends is a game where you play alongside other human beings, in all levels and skill based tiers. Therein lies the problem.

In theory there ranking system should be acceptable and beneficial for all players. Lets take for example their elo system. They have Iron – Challenger, the worst being Iron and best being Challenger. The game however does not limit an Iron player from playing in Challenger and vice versa, this is an extreme example, but a realistic scenario. You can buy smurf accounts of all elos and skill levels.

I am going to be speaking from a realistic and idealistic scenario. And that being my initial example of a team game. It’s easy to exploit the game for the uninitiated. And the game designers had this in mind. They make certain champions stronger in early, mid and late game. You can counter play, you can neglect responsibility of farming and playing your lane and deciding to exploit your strengths to disadvantage a player who is playing the game as it was intended.

Furthermore, you can play the game as it was intended and still find yourself at a loss because it is entirely too difficult for a person in Iron – Silver elo to carry a single game themselves. I believe later elo’s this is not the case.

So in summary, Riot games has it in mind that a person who is at as low of an elo as Iron to be able to single handed carry an entire match by themselves.

My message to Riot games is to address this reality, and determine lowest of elos to be at the highest of skill levels. Or I ask more experienced players to offer beneficial advice on how to carry a single game absent of a team.

In addition I intend on examining each specific detail to a single game and offer opportune advice as to expected intentions of your teammates, to maybe productively cooperate with one another.

DO NOT EVER ASSUME YOUR TEAMMATES KNOW WHAT YOU’RE THINKING.

All this being said, the game IS fun. However I do believe unless you’re at the skill level of Faker you need a duo partner or teammates that you can trust to really advance in Ranked games.

Elemental Gearbolt

I initially heard about this game because of the respectable translations and efforts Working Designs put into their games. Their notoriety does not go unnoticed. That being said, I checked out this game because it being on their roster.

Elemental Gearbolt is game in which you’re in a first person perspective and are moving about in a fixed automatic fashion. Your objective is simple, you’re to aim your cursor and shoot at enemies. Seems simple enough? I hope to divulge into this detail later. All throughout this game you’re greeted to beautiful anime sequences, nothing generic or overtly “anime”. Mainly just good animation. As mentioned earlier you’re moving your cursor across the screen and you have optional modes of fire. I personally just use the default shot. They do all offer their own personal pros and cons, and are suited for specific environments of the game.

What makes this game great to me, is simply the mechanics and AI of the game. You this game escalates on a progressive scale, and it genius is in the design. You will find yourself lazily blasting at the screen only for a moment later to be alerted by the sheer volume of enemies on the screen. This game progressively and actively wakes the player up to focus and drive you to play better and more focused. This is not a lazily completed title, but one that works along side you. There are many mechanics in this game that accomodate you and encourage a more dedicated and focused play style.

Sega Saturn Emulation

There are already several guides available to help you with the Emulating the Saturn, but I thought I would offer my expertise and put together my own guide concerning this under dog of a console. Note this guide is for Windows users.

First things first…

Getting an Emulator is actually a lot easier than times past. It seemed that the only available option was SSF , easily the highest compatibility of the bunch. But the GUI leaves a lot to be desired, and the options of graphical enhancements are left to a bare minimum. That being the said, the newest version “TestVer (07-02-2017)” does indeed include an overhaul to modifying and adjusting settings to make games look pretty damn good.

The Emulator that I personally use unless of course there is compatibility issues is Yabause, particularly the unofficial port uoYabause. I find that uoYabause offers more functionality and is also frequently updated. By that same token I find Yabause to run games better than uoYabause on windows 10.

A multi-console Emulator of interest is Mednafen. I have tried several ROM’s with this EMU and find that it is virtually flawless in terms of compatibility. It does not offer any kind of Gui so be prepared to use a terminal and operate settings through command prompts. You can however download a GUI, such as MedGui v2.00 aka MedGui Reborn and/or Mednaffe. I personally cannot tolerate programs such as Retroarch, but I might as well at-least mention it. In terms of graphical enhancement it is bare minimum. And you might just as well use an Emu like SSF. Though it is a remarkable project and they are making up to date progress with it.

EMULATORS…

ROMs/BIOs and Resources…

I feel as if I am morally obligated to mention, that piracy of any kind is illegal and not encouraged. If you legally own the hardware and games, than it is fine. On the other hand Retro gaming has become nothing more than a bragging right, and if you spend in the upward of $500-1000 for a video game you’re clearly trying to over compensate for some inability in your life. I could run off on a tangent concerning the state of current retro gaming, but I feel like I am the old man in the chair, complaining about “times past”. All the same, I grew up as a kid with original hardware and games. Even into my adulthood I held onto my Saturn and Dreamcast, and collected all the well sought after titles of today. I digress, you can find a lot of good information HERE, HERE and HERE, for Rom‘s and Bio files. Listen, out of print titles and merchandise go to individual consumers and do not benefit the manufacturer. Your patronage is better suited in buying next gen SEGA merchandise.

Questions and Answers…

to be completed at later time.


League of Children

Do I really hate League of Legends?

(this is an old post from 7/12/17, this article does not reflect the current changes to the game)
If you look through this blog you will find plenty of posts about video games, a hobby and interest I have had for as long as I can remember. It started with the NES and developed into Genesis and then on and on after that. All of that being said, I have a tendency to get into games, as of late mainly pc games. One of those games being a MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena), League of Legends.  This post has little to do with the game design, mechanics etc. but more to do with the environment and community.

human beings

As with any online games, you’re not alone in this world, you share it with other human beings. With this variable, you will more than likely clash with some personality’s and get along just fine with others. But one of the things about competitive games, is an attraction from ego’s and hot heads, a short number this game has not.

pointless history

When I first started playing League of Legends, I would only play “bot games” (a game where you and human players fight against computer players), this nearly eliminated the verbal diarrhea, although in this it was mostly people complaining about “kill steals”. Overall a semi-peaceful environment. After a 100 or more bot games, you begin to develop a learning curve and these games get boring to play. At the time I never really started playing against many human players, I found the experience to be a little overwhelming and just quit playing the game completely. I cannot say for sure the date when I started playing and when I had a hiatus, but it’s been several years, no doubt.

pointless history pt. 2

It wasn’t until late last year that I installed the game again, and jumped head first into what I call “human games”. I had a group of friends I grew up with who play as well, and we would play regularly after work during the week. It was a lot of fun, but I was far from having any idea of what I was doing. But it was a helluva good time. Of course throughout this experience I started to see more and more angry and hostile players bitching about other people. I am the type of person who knows and understands that I suck at the game, I have no idea what I am doing for the most part. But I know the only way to get better is through practice and playing. That being said, I would take a lot of what these other players would say to heart. I did consider quitting playing the game all together. But like I said, I knew I was relatively new and I wouldn’t get anywhere without practice.

learning the game

Let’s fast forward to present day, and I have now easily over 1000’s of matches and have only ranked as high as bronze 2 in this game (this game has a ranking system, bronze, silver, gold, platinum, diamond and challenger), it’s pitiful but I am slowly learning the nature and behavior of how this all plays out in the game itself. To me this game has many different aspects to take into consideration while trying to get wins and be a better overall player. The first and most crucial and elementary thing to learn is a champion. Learn its skills, its weaknesses, what equipment is good, runes and masteries, the list goes on and on. The next thing is learning objectives, taking out towers, “farming” (killing minions), and finally killing the bosses in the map (dragon and baron/rift herald). Throughout the playing process you will no doubt learn the layout of the map and that is also a crucial part of playing. Once I got my head around this, and started exclusively playing one champion I started to feel like I was getting a little better. Though I am a below average player.

assholes and idiots

Learning the game was probably the easiest part of the whole process of getting into this. The hardest and most difficult area to deal with, is the player base. Getting into a game and seeing yourself doing ok, and then out of nowhere somebody will spout out of their mouth something like, “you fucking idiot! what are you doing?!”. This will instantly tilt me a little, and then again it will reverberate and echo throughout the match. The next thing I know, I cannot focus on playing but instead am focused on this person talking about god knows what. And I see this countless times over. We will being doing well in the game, and then somebody has to complain about somebody else on the team, and then like clockwork we start losing towers or we will start getting pecked off left and right.

the mute button

This is where I learned the utopia of this game, a kind of holy grail. That being the mute button, yes you have the option to mute particular players, or mute everyone all together. Though this will not guarantee victory, it will at least give you an opportunity to focus on the game better. This does come with a kind of blindfold from players who are genuinely trying to see your team succeed, but the game does have pings (An indicator to be in a specific spot, or to let teammates know an enemy is out of position and could be wandering to potential attack, there also indications of assistance and danger to stay back), you can mute these as well. All very helpful, but when used simply to attract attention, they become useless and more of an annoyance than anything else.

kills killing and killing yourself

One thing about egos and competitive play, is that you get people who get into these games and there one priority and goal is to get kills. They could literally care less about anything else other than kills. This is great and probably one of the most crucial parts about a victory screen. But when you get more concerned about kills, you begin to make mistakes and die a lot yourself. A good strategy is to play it safe and focus on objectives. Through this process you will no doubt get yourself some kills, but will also help yourself and team actually win.

I still suck

Some things I am still trying to learn and develop is CS (creep score, more or less killing the minions that group into your lane), utilizing active skills within items, faster item buying and overall layout of shop, wards and warding in general, faster reaction and screen movement (especially during combat), skills and auto attacking, what I might call combos. There is an endless amount of things that I cannot even begin to process in my brain. The pros all have the ability to move around and perform quickly without flinching. I am not one of those players.

I still, still suck

Overall the game is fun, and it does give me the enjoyment I got from playing games like Starcraft, Age of Empires, Quake 3 Arena and Counter Strike. It has a certain attractive simplicity about it, but also a hugely complexity. To me not quite as complex as a game like Starcraft or as fast paced and daunting as Quake 3 Arena, but it incorporates aspects over many different genres of games.

Well I hope this was semi helpful to new players, and might encourage you to keep playing. My only goal out of this game is to maybe get silver, and then gold and so on. Right now I feel like I am placed well. That’s the beauty of this game, you will always play with people in your own skill level. Although a whole other can of worms, is smurf accounts, and the detriment that have to your games.

The Sega Master System

Remember when you had a Nintendo Entertainment System (NES)? Oh, come on, we all know you did. A good ninety percent of gamers had them, so don’t try to weasel yourself out claiming you just had a Master System. I did back in the very late eighties and early nineties and one out of three American households did. Even so, the Master System featured some awesome games such as the first Phantasy Star game, the Alex Kidd series, and awesome arcade ports. Now, let’s move on to the brainchild of Sega.

The Master System or, in Japan, SG-1000 Mark III was the last of the SG-1000 product series, and the only devoted video game console out of the three systems. While the SG-1000 and SC-3000 enjoyed a moderate success, the Master System was set out to combat Nintendo‘s ultimate weapon. 1985 marked the release of the Mark III in Japan and was visually identical to the Mark II. However, this system held hardware enhancements. The processor was speedy in its time with a Zilog Z80 3.6 MHz CPU. Graphics were also improved with a meager, but slightly significant upgrade in on screen sprites; now 64 instead of 32. Perhaps the most noteworthy addition is was a PCM sound synthesizer chip, creating six audio channels. This eradicated the beeps of previous consoles with something that could be considered music.

This console also marked two “firsts”. First off, it toyed with virtual reality. Using supped up 3D movie glasses, each lens would briskly toggle among opaque and clear. While this was happening, on-screen graphics would have to be consistent with the glasses, thus creating a nearly seamless semi-virtual environment. Crude, but still effective to this day. Secondly, it was the first system to use two formats for gaming. The eight bit standard cartridges were used, but a cheaper, market friendly four bit “game card” was created. These games tended to be smaller due to obvious size and memory limitations, but subsequently, much cheaper. This provided a great way for us gamers with almost no cash buy games for their beloved system.

When the NES hit (or literally tackled) the market, Sega found itself in a steep declining of sales. With great games and a cheap price no one could hate, the NES fiercely ripped the gaming market from Sega, and any other competitor for that matter, and took it as its own. Sega had to alter their game plan, and so they gave life to the Master System, aka Mark III (Read above) using some of the most advanced hardware available in the current 8-bit technology. This marked the first of any console to be widely distributed in the US, but that didn’t stop Nintendo’s reign over the gaming market. On launch, an approximate of 175,000 consoles were sold on its first market quarter (Three months) with each system costing 200 dollars.

CEO of Sega, Hayao Nakayama, had a distaste of a 16 to 1 ratio of system sales when compared to Nintendo’s. Figuring he better hand out the marketing and such to Tonka, an American toy company, official preparations were made and carried out in 1988. This turned out to be the idiot’s move as Tonka had no idea on marketing of video games. While everyone knew about the cool, awesome, super-duper NES, most people would scratch their heads at the mention of the Master System. Why? Tonka had no initiative. Due partly with their lack of any know-how, but also what I believe: a little with laziness. After all, they had millions. Why take the time to take video game marketing 101 when they could blindly stumble and hope to succeed? At any rate, Tonka managed to snag two third party developers, the now well know Activision, and Parker Brothers, the board game company. It was probably not too much their fault on that blunder as Nintendo was a pre-Microsoft. That’s right, monopolizing any third party developer they could into an agreement basically saying they were developing for the NES, and only the NES. This severely damaged the system status and chance of succeeding. Sega, Activision, and Parker Brothers couldn’t possibly keep up with the sheer games coming out for the NES, and ultimately had a smaller library of games in the end… or at least in the US. Let’s take a trip down to Europe.

Amazingly, there was some areas where the NES and its power didn’t penetrate. One of the main one locales was Europe. Never had been introduced to a gaming system, or even the NES, Europeans jumped on the Master System when it was released in the fall of 1987. Also, instead of two developers, Europe received fourteen. These are Absolute, Activision, Acclaim, Codemasters, Core, Domark, Flying Edge, Image Works, Sony Imagesoft, TecMagik, Tengen, U.S. Gold, and Virgin. Nintendo was never able to retrieve the Europe market for Sega, one Master System victory. This particular victory lasted until 1996 despite the fact better consoles were out there.

Tec Toy, a small company, released their version of the Master System, the Master System Three in the late eighty’s. With minor aesthetic changes, the revised console only featured built-in games as a new incentive. However, some games were re-created with more familiar Brazilian characters, and translated into Portuguese. Later on Game Gear game ports were created for the Master System, such as the notable Sonic games. Perhaps most unique of all is the only licensed 8-bit port of Capcom’s popular Street Fighter 2.

Despite wooing Europe over, Sega still had loss the 8 bit race, and wasn’t quite sure what to do. Tonka had screwed up any chance for the US Master System to succeed, the smaller, sleek Master System II released in 1988 died quickly, but suddenly Sega had a revelation. They thought with the utter success of the black and white color portable Game Boy system from Nintendo, they could make use with the Master System. Sega’s plan? Cram a Master System (With a few improvements) into likewise portable package, except much bigger length wise with a wide area for your hands. Released in 1990, it sported an awesome color screen, and graphics far surpassing the Game Boy’s, it also drained batteries like crazy. This turned off most casual gamers, and most went with the Game Boy’s and Nintendo’s recognition by name. After all, Little Billy didn’t want to spend money on six more double A batteries for every six or so hours of game play on the Game Gear when he could squeeze 10 to 12 hours of gaming with only four batteries on the Game Boy.

If Nintendo owning 90% the gaming market shocked you, it should of. It was plainly illegal. Binding third party developers to an exclusive contract with just Nintendo was wrong, and by the time of 1992, the Japanese and American governments were starting to get angry, and Nintendo toned down. All ready too late for the Master System for it was gone except in Brazil and Europe.

Now that we’ve gone over the system that should’ve of started it all, but didn’t, we can come to appreciate really good business tactics: Who knows, what if Sega won the 8 bit war? We’d probably see the same cunning tactics on future systems (Sega CD, Sega 32X, etc.) and maybe a future filled with Sega consoles. But, for now, pick up a Master System just for the heck of it, and live in Sega’s past.

Processors
– Zilog Z80 CPU running at 3.58 MHz
– Texas Instruments SN-76596 PCM audio processor (6 channel sound)
– Yamaha YM-2413 OPL-3 FM synthesizer (FM module for Sega Mark III only)

Graphics
– Texas Instruments TMS9929A VDP
– 64K VRAM
– 16-color palette with 16 intensities each (64 colors from a 256-color palette)
– Support for 256×192 (SC-3000) and 240×226 (native) graphics display modes
– 32×28 character text display mode

Memory
– 1 MB system ROM
– 64 K system RAM

Connection
– 1 expansion slot (unused)
– 1 cartridge port
– 1 Game Card slot
– 2 joystick ports
– Commodore-style A/V port and internal RF adapter

Storage
– SG-1000 style videogame cartridges (supports ROM sizes from 128K to 4 MB)
– Sega Game Cards (supports ROM sizes from 32K to 256K)

CREDIT… Anthony and (now defunct) “Sega Base”, web site.