Daily Archives: November 4, 2009

Borderlands

I’ve just gotten the new game Borderlands and having a couple days before the start of one of my never ending classes I decided to give it a spin.  I’m still a newbie when it comes to PC gaming and so don’t have a huge amount of experience to draw on in order to compare this with other.  My experience with first person shooters is limited, in fact, to Left4Dead and Team Fortress2.

Borderlands has a larger universe than either of those taking place on a post-apocalyptic, Mad Max style world.  The gameplay is pretty straightforward.  You get missions (almost always involving killing a bunch of mutant psychos, bandits, or local wildlife that’s looking to make you into a meal) and, if you survive them, you get rewarded.  I don’t think they’re breaking any molds here, yet the game is very addicting for a few reasons:

  1. Visuals:  The game is really quite stunning to look at.  It’s not overly realistic in its appearance and yet not too cartoonish either.  The landscapes are fantastic…so good in fact that after one mission in which I was surveying a sun scorched desert seeing nothing moving and only the corpses of a dozen or so skags I had just slaughtered littering the landscape I was overtaken by a sense of dispair.  I had, indeed, become death, destroyer of worlds.
  2. B.F. Skinner:  They totally figured out how to tickle that reward seeking part of your brain.  They advertise having ’87 bazillion guns’ that you can win/find/buy/loot and I think they’re right.  You always want to see what’s next and before you know it, it’s 2 a.m.  Intermittent reinforcement, my boy.  That’s the name of the game.
  3. A kick-ass soundtrack.  The sounds are great in this game.  From the voice work to the mood music to the theme music.

Check out these vids (ideally at a high volume)…

 

Oh…and the best news?  They’re getting zombies

Can’t a vegitarian veteran get a little love?

Applebee’s is doing something really nice for Veterans Day this year.  Any veteran or active duty member of the military will be entitled to one of six free entrees.  Pretty nice…

But allow me to take a good long look in that gift horses mouth…

All of the dishes involve beef or chicken.  While I will be the first to admit that us warrior vegetarians are an extremely rare breed, it is possible that someone might want some fish or no meat at all.

Still, my criticism is rather petty.  It’s a great gesture…