Halloween, and more

The new Deus Ex expansion: The Missing Link

It has been another busy week, and I’d like to say I didn’t post last night because I was working, but really I was just playing the new Deus Ex DLC – The Missing Link. Halloween was on Monday of course, and strangely didn’t feel as “Halloweeny” thanks to the medic Halloween party being last Tuesday. My chosen costume…House, MD. Those who saw it, and watched House (suprisingly few, considering they study medicine) recognised me instantly, though I had a few people think I was an old man. The only thing I was missing was Vicodin! Now the countdown is on to get a costume started for 2012. Am I joking? These things take time, and if I intend to have an awesome costume it will need some planning. I’ve also become a board game convert, with the Sci-Fi club’s acquisition of Pandemic. It’s a fantastic game, and a change from the norm as you work together with other players to try and stop the spread of various diseases through various means. I also just finished A Storm of Swords, the third book in the Song of Ice and Fire series. What an ending! George R. R. Martin is a fantastic writer, and I can’t wait for the next season of Game of Thrones (season 2 will be based on A Clash of Kings, the second book). I highly recommend both the books, and the TV series.

Back to DLC. The Missing Link has been pretty good. When I first heard about the expansion, I couldn’t figure out when it would take place. If you’ve played Human Revolution, you’ll understand too, but The Missing Link manages to slot in fairly close to the end of the main story, and adds another 4-6 hours of gameplay. The plot revolves around Adam Jensen being captured and stripped of his augmentations, forcing you to head off in search of your gear and reassign your praxis points (if you haven’t played yet, they are used to unlock augmentations). I welcomed the opportunity to start anew, though I still managed to pick pretty much exactly the same augs as last time. There are a few clear choices that you can’t do without, and many you can. I spend most of my time trying to be stealthy, though that normally results in a massive shootout and bloodbath. The AI can be frustratingly good at times, and if they see an opening, they don’t sit and wait to be shot. They simply walk up and shoot you in the face as you frantically try to reload. That’s by no way a bad thing though, as it makes for a great challenge. Having to start without weapons or armour is pretty tricky, considering you can be killed in a couple of shots, though it added more strategy in the way enemies have to be dealt with. This was only for a short period though, and soon you start to regain weapons and equipment. Writing about it just makes me want to go back and play it again, which I shall do as soon as I get this finished!

Your average Cylon

I’m not proud of it, but up until last week I had never seen an episode of Battlestar Galactica. That has now been rectified, and I’m making my way through the first series. So far, it has been very good, though at times a tad repetitive. I wouldn’t recommend starting the main series without watching the mini series first, as I tried that, and just ended up very confused. I was hoping to see more of the classic Cylons, but most of the ones I have seen are built to appear human, and some are even programmed as sleeper agents to infiltrate the human ships. The camera style is also quite interesting, as many shots are handheld rather than using a tripod or dolly, and add a slightly more visceral/realistic feeling to the series than others like Star Trek. Speaking of Sci-Fi, I also got to the cinema to see In Time. In a dystopian future where everyone stops aging at 25, the trade-off is that after 25, you only have one year to live. People are paid in time, and spend time in place of money. Time really is money in this case, and the film makes it abundantly clear with a cheesy time related pun. The film follows Will Sallas (Justin Timberlake), a blue collar worker from the ghetto who is given a decade to live by an unusual stranger he saved from a bar fight. This doesn’t go unnoticed, and the Timekeepers are soon on his trail. There are a fair few plot holes here and there, and some elements are blatantly ripped off from 1984, but overall I did really enjoy it. The main gripe I have is with the casting of Justin Timberlake. He’s a singer, plain and simple, and he should have stuck to that. There’s no emotion, except smug contempt, and sort-of-anger, which really shows in some of the sad scenes. Another thing that bothered me, people seemed to have a general disregard for others lives, and I know that was intentional to some extent, but even characters who had never shot guns before happily murdered others without losing sleep. It just felt artificial and detached in that respect.

I may have to cut this entry slightly short, as I’m in a car on my way to Lisburn. Thanks to my laptop and phone, I can get internet anywhere I need it, which is always awesome. So if you aren’t playing a board game or Deus Ex right now, or watching Battlestar Galactica, you should be!

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