Thursday, October 13, 2005

Blog Stuff: Nailing down my geek cred.

I may as well go ahead and admit that I like computer games, seeing as how I bared my soul on the topic of SF short stories already. I was never much one for games from various fast-twitch genres, though; probably caused by a childhood predilection that ran more towards dollhouses and Legos than slot-car tracks and air hockey.

In First-Person Shooters, I greatly prefer the slow-motion sneaking and tactical pie-slicing of Rainbow Six to the rocket-jumping of Quake. I'd rather build a SimCity than play in GTA: Vice City. The dreary character-building of Baldur's Gate appeals more to me than the slay-a-thon of Diablo. When it came to strategy games, the RealTime fad caught me flat-footed; I absolutely sucked at RTS games like Age Of Empires. Oh, sure, the concept was intriguing and the game was beautiful, but that was also its main shortcoming for me; I'd get all caught up in the life and times of Woodcutter #73, steering him around the map, walking him to the top of yon nearby ridge to savor the view, helping him find the perfect tree to chop down, guiding him around waiting lions, and... wait... what's that smell? Oh, shit! The computer player is burning down my village while my peasants starve because I forgot to check on their farms.

This is all a roundabout way of saying that I preferred my strategy games to be archaic and turn-based. Being a history geek, I especially loved the painstakingly detailed stuff from SSI; Grigsby classics like Age Of Rifles and Steel Panthers. The problem is that most of these hoary old titles went the way of the C:> prompt almost a decade ago, and a multi-googleherz Nanium machine running Winders 2050 requires work-arounds I'm too lazy to employ to run the old favorites.

Thanks to Cowboy Blob, however, I'm a gamer again. From his blog, I discovered that there's a whole new adaptation of the old Steel Panthers game that is native to the Windows environment and is available from Matrix Games. Any loss of sleep I have in the next couple months is all his fault...

6 comments:

Standard Mischief said...

Well, you could always burn yourself a bootable freedos disk to get that dos prompt back. Just set your bios to boot off of a CD first, harddrive second, and if a freedos disk happens to be in the box when you reboot, you are there.

Looks like they have even have released a disk with a bunch of freeware games on it (I haven't tried it yet.)

Cowboy Blob said...

Thanks for the link! I'm currently playing a USMC campaign against the Japanese. I routinely kick ass except on the amphibious assault missions (when the LCM blows up, it doesn't care how elite the embarked unit is). Mined beaches are a bitch, but I've learned to buy lots for engineers and drop lotsa smoke from destroyers. There's only been one game when I've encountered Jap armor and one other when they've had air strike capability. There is a bug in the game they haven't fixed yet; when landing from the East, I land unopposed and all the Jap units are stacked out in the water somewhere. I'll take what I can get. After this campaign's over, I'll try the more challenging Germany v. Soviets.

I've been playing about five games a day!

Anonymous said...

My fave from SSI is Panzer General 2. There are a lot of good sites with user made mods available, just google!

freddyboomboom said...

I got another one!

I'm the one that pointed SP:WAW out to Cowboy Blob. :)

It is quite the kick ass game. I just wish it allowed newer stuff, like SPII and SPIII did...

Dr. StrangeGun said...

Would you like a DOS PC? I don't mean a hobbled pentium, I mean I've got a couple of honest-to-goodness, in need of a scrubbing, 8088 or 80286 PC Boxen, some with CGA or Tandy ECGA graphics, good-old-PCs with hard drives even just waiting for text/DOS game mania.

I've even got a copy of the original Civ disks somewhere, and King's Quest...

Abject Disappointment said...

Steel Panthers is great.

Check out the forum for a vareity of Campaigns that are constantly being added.

If you need the linkage, drop me a line.

-Abject.