Reasons to be cheerful

Many games claim to be the best of it’s genre, you will certainly find their descriptions littered with buzzwords like ‘unique’,’sandbox’,’cutting edge’. Of course many of a games features don’t appeal to all players and one persons holy grail is anothers poisoned chalice, Pinning down the qualities that make a game good isn’t a simple task.

64px-gnome-x-office-spreadsheetsvgI, like many, have sat and played a countless number of games over my gaming history, with a varied mixture of on/off line, single/multi player games. I like to feel my hype-amour is well worn & rusty at the edges, taking a game on it’s own merits not those pumped out by the PR machine.

I’m interested in what elements people find makes a game good, what makes it stand out from the crowd. I plan to list the elements of those games that have given me something different and the items that make you coming back for more.

I’ve highlighted games that I believe fit the bill for the game qualities I like. To make life easier I had to split out MMOs from other games due to their unique natures.


  • Pretty graphics is a poor substitute for good gameplay
    • Too much dependence on the hottest new engine or graphical twist, games should be just as fun running on the lowest settings as well as the top settings (Assassins Creed)
  • Re-playability
    • Whether you dive back into a new game straight away or in 6 months time, it’s the interesting and exciting elements that draw you back in, these tend to be RTS games that I have long term addictions with. (Roller Coaster Tycoon, Dawn of War II )
  • Make it tough not impossible
    • Nothing is more annoying than getting deep into a game only to get stuck on a seemingly impossible area, Left4Dead is  good example of this in action, the Director controller manages overall gameplay making adjustments on the fly to enhance the overall player experience.


  • Not level dependant
    • Games that don’t care about max level in a traditionl sense, where there is still plenty of content once you get to the maximum level. (Guild Wars)
    • I also found the idea of a game were levels don’t equal more power, just increases the diversity of the avatar and game-play (Guild Wars, Planetside)
  • Enjoyable without Goals
    • I enjoy a game were I can play for 6 hours straight and not really achieve anything, but I can still walk away with a smile. Entertaining games that make the time fly.
  • Grouping with friends of any level/skill
    • As gamers become more social it’s only natural for them to want to play alongside friends both online and real-life, systems and methods that all (Planetside, City of Heroes)


  • Realistic achievements
    • Increasing more game ship with a slew of merits that drive players to go out of their way to obtain a predetermined goals.

So what game elements appeal the most to you?
What drives you to fireup a game time and time again?

Varied past-times

A big thank you to Dok, for the 360 bought for Rach and I as a wedding present, very unexpected and I have to admit I have been avoiding purchasing one before now, mostly due to the expected impact on our time. But honestly who am I kidding, it’s all very cool. The SEGA MegaDrive collection is wonderful and we soon got stuck in playing Golden Axe, Streets of rage, Sonic and Altered Beast.

We joined in with the Console club on Tuesday for many laughs and crashes on Burnout : Paradise. I’ve played a few hours on Halo 3 and Gears of War 2, but I struggle with the first person perspective on the controller and long for a mouse and keyboard.

I’m sure I will struggle over games that are released on both the XBox and PC.
My lines can be clearly drawn for some genres but blurred for others, for example Racing and Beat ’em ups are always more fun on consoles, but as a said I do prefer PCs for FPS’s.

Which games do prefer on the PC and which on the console?

Where was I? oh yea

I was shocked to see that it has been 2 months since my last post, it certainly hasn’t felt that long.
So to quickly recap on my most recent activities:

The wedding

Saturday 30th May was mine and Rachs wedding. It was a very small affair with around 40 guests mainly family members, on one of the hottest days of the year. I’m happy to say that everyone including us had an absolutely wonderful time.

The Scan

On Thursday I went with Rach for the 12 week scan of our baby. We are apparently expecting a ninja as the little one was jumping and moving around like crazy. Everything is looking good and we are looking at a date in December,

The Birthday

On the 3rd of June I matured to the ripe old age 30. I’ve never been one to fret about my age and one birthday has been much the same as another. It seems that 2009 sees me all grown up, married and with a little one on the way.
Big kid at heart slowly growing older.

Fingers crossed I can keep up my blogging.