Archive for January, 2006

Midway Arcade Treasures 3

And then I remembered that this arrived from Play this morning, so I decided to play it.

The main game I bought it for is Rush 2049. I was a bit worried because everyone’s been saying it’s rubbish, but it turns out everyone’s wrong. The graphics haven’t aged very well and, yes, the handling is incredibly twitchy (especially on the default settings) but that’s not really important. The important thing is that the track design is as great as it ever was. I spent half an hour on one track, just searching for shortcuts, alternate routes and coins. (There are coins dotted around the track which disappear permanently when you collect them. I’m not sure if there’s any reason to collect beyond wanting to, but I want to.) I came last in every race and couldn’t find a way into a lot of the shortcuts I could see, but I had fun. Fun! Then I spent ten minutes in stunt mode and managed to miss every coin I tried to collect. Never mind. I’ll be back.

I then tried Hydro Thunder, because it’s meant to be the good game in the pack. And it’s surprisingly excellent. The first track is short and boring, but after that there are huge open tracks with lots of detail and the game bursts into life. It actually feels like racing on water, with the all the necessary bumpiness. I played it enough to unlock the Medium tracks and then quit out.

I get the feeling that either of those games would be worth the fiver I paid for the disc and there are a fair few more on there, too. (Though they’re probably rubbish.)

SWAT 4 Demo

Oooh, now this was a surprise.

First off it looks lovely. I’m sure it doesn’t do as many clever things as FEAR but, to my mind, it may look even better. Secondly, it seems to mix things up a bit whenever you try a mission. At least, I found a hostage in a different place when I played the second time after get killed very quickly first time.

The only problem was that I didn’t really know what I was doing and thought I’d killed/arrested everyone, but the mission was still ongoing. I found a status screen and apparently I have to report on everybody’s status and pick up all the bad guys’ weapons. And I couldn’t be arsed to go back and do all that, so I quit out.

But it’s very tense and the interface makes ordering the squad around so simple that even I found it easy enough to find my way around. Now if I can remember to pick up weapons and things as I go next time then it’ll be ace.

I’m really very impressed indeed.

There’s an expansion out soon, which is what prompted me to download the demo of the game. I wonder if it’s on budget yet?


Straight after installing I had to download a 122MB patch. Aren’t PCs great? Only took a few minutes download, though. I remember spending all day trying to download a 13MB patch for Carmegeddon. It took ages and it wasn’t until my third or fourth try that my net connection managed to stay up long enough for me to get it. Gah.

Oh, yes, anyway. FEAR. (Just put the full stops in mentally. I can’t be arsed to type them every time I write the name.) It’s great. It’s depressing to see so many settings on “medium” in the menus, but it runs nicely for the most part. Every now and again it’ll just die for no reason for a second or two, which is odd. But that only happened a couple of times in the hour I just played.

Anyway, so far there have been loads of fights against nasty men with guns and only one crate puzzle. So that’s okay. Thoroughly enjoyable. And, yes, it’s a bit spooky at times.