Jay's Internet Log

Tag: NXE

Fable II – Somewhat Initial Impressions

by on Jan.14, 2009, under Gaming

So I figured that I would write up a little blurb about Fable II as I’m playing it again.  I had previously played it for about 2 hours before stopping because of all the bug reports that were flowing in and because it made my xbox sound like it was going to lift off.  It just wasn’t fun and because of this, I thoroughly got to enjoy Fallout 3 which I never would have if Fable II was released AFTER going through a QA stage.  Okay, that’s out of the way and more eloquently said that how I really feel.  I got word last week that a large number of the game ending bugs had been fixed in a patch that was released this past Saturday.  On Sunday, I installed the game to the hard drive, fixing the cd-rom noise and constant hiccups, and installed this new patch to hopefully allow me to play the game all the way through.  That story will be for another day as I’m not that far along in the game.  Upon starting up my “hero” again I noticed that the game ran much much better.  The xbox was silent, moving around was very smooth, and going in and out of the menu is now nice and quick.  First impressions are good!  Also, I made 90,600 gold in the 77 days since playing last.  Not too bad for doing nothing!  I start walking around and find a new town called Oakvale.  It’s a beautiful country town and the people are nice to me.  It’s almost surreal how well made these locales are.  I decide to chop wood for an hour or so.  It’s the most boring thing ever, but I was having a blast for some reason.  I start getting back into the feel of the game and it’s now completely consumed me.  This game is really awesome.  It’s not violent really, though saying that may be misconstrued:  I’m trying to be good, though there’s a temple where I have to do a few bad things.  I went to this temple and learned that I need to have people follow me there and sacrifice them by spinning the “Wheel of Misfortune”.  I bring 3 villagers and a monk there and impale them to death.  I go and find a few more monks (They give you more points upon sacrifice) and shock them with lightning.  Only their skeletons remain.  After getting so many points, this evil monk guy tells me to make the ultimate sacrifice, so I go get my husband (I’m playing as a girl for the same reasons I played Fallout 3 as a girl), bring him to the circle, and light him on fire, killing him and netting me a pretty sweet sword.  Later dude.  My kid is in an orphanage and I’m ready to continue on my journey.  From now on though, I’ll be trying to be good 🙂

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NXE – Installation of games

by on Nov.20, 2008, under Gaming, General

     The New Xbox Experience allows you to install full games from disc onto your hard drive, making the Elite model not a complete waste of money anymore.  Each game takes about 5-7 GB (not pronounced gee-bee, but if you must) of space and I had about 83 GB available yesterday.  I had previously read this site that somebody created to show differences in game performance when loading from HDD versus reading from the disc.  It’s a really nice site, and I was especially impressed with the performance of Fallout 3 and even more-so of Fable II.  I’m still not playing Fable II for the same reason that I am playing Fallout 3 now.  I will eventually install Fable II onto the hard drive, but last night I started with Fallout 3. 

     On the main Xbox page, you can see the game that is in the drive, and with a hit of the Y button, you can choose to “Install to HDD”.  This process then takes about 8-10 minutes.  I did the dishes.  I then checked my email.  I then pet the cat until it was finished.  I think Willie watched online as well, so he can attest to how exciting this process is!!  Anyways, after it is complete, you can then “Play from HDD”….the game boots up…whoa, the xbox doesn’t sound like a jet taking off….this is pretty cool!  So I start to play Fallout 3 and I notice a few things.  Load times are improved but initially not drastically.  The first load time is probably about 80% of the previous first load time, but going between house and outside, which used to take 7-10 seconds each time, was closer to 3 seconds.  This was very cool.  Fast travelling takes about 5 seconds, versus about 15 seconds previously.  Also in my hour of playing last night, I didn’t have a single drop in framerate and enemies were being drawn further away than before.  It was excellent.  I had one glitch that I came across, but it wasn’t a big deal.  I was walking East from Old Olney towards the Republic of Dave and I came across a farm of sorts.  I can’t think of the name right now, but it was on the map.  Up on a silo was a Raider.  I shot the raider from long distance in VATS with Lincoln’s Repeater and got a Crit 1-hit-kill on her.  It was one of those VATS shots that slow motion followed the bullet from the end of the rifle to the neck of the Raider separating the head from the body, and was totally awesome.  When VATS exited, her arm was flying in the air around me…She was dead but her arm was flying around like a bug all crazy…it was very cool.

     Around 9:30PM I decided to try installing Call of Duty 4 on the hard drive.  This is a game that I solely play online so I didn’t think that much would really change, but I tend to listen to everything around me in this game, so I thought that the silent dvd drive would benefit me.  Again, after 8-10 minutes I was ready to play, so I jumped into a party with some guys and we took off.  I noticed immediately that before getting online, everything was instant.  I would hit Multiplayer, it would wait 1 second and go into the Xbox Live room, then instantly into the party room.  I noticed that when I clicked on Barracks or Create-a-Class, there was no pause….everything was completely instant.  This doesn’t sound like much, but it really is in my eyes (am I weird maybe?  well, yes, but I was still impressed with this).  When using the disc, there’s the slightest pause, but from the HDD, nothing.  It’s perfect.  Okay, so I start playing in some matches, and I notice that I have a horrible connection, like 2 yellow bars, but everything is moving smoothly.  I had a very bad connection, but I didn’t get a SINGLE pause in the game.  I don’t know if this is because of the installation or not, but this has never happened to me before in my 500+ hours of online CoD4.  The most impressive thing however was the silence.  It’s something that you don’t really notice that’s there until it is gone.  I have a relatively new xbox, with one of the quietest drives that I’ve heard in any, and CoD4 doesn’t really tax it very much (ahem, Fable II)… But playing off of the HDD was incredible, and something that I am so glad that I did for this game.  If you are a fan of this game and are reading this and have an extra 6-7 GB of disc space, I highly recommend installing it.

     I plan on installing Rock Band 2 and Fable II (once patched) onto the HDD as well.  This is a really sweet feature, and as I said before, something that makes the Elite model not wasted any longer.

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Initial Impressions – NXE

by on Nov.19, 2008, under Gaming, General

Launch Day Avatar

My Avatar

 Well, the New Xbox Experience hit today.  I woke up early and downloaded it and created my avatar.  I would show you but xbox.com appears to be down at the moment.  Figures.  Anyways, after the download, you get to watch a cool intro video, then it walks you through the avatar creation.  I know that this is a blatant rip off off Nintendo’s Mii characters (Happy 2nd birthday Wii!) but it’s done extremely well.  They allow you to customize pretty much everything that you can in a Mii but clothing also.  It appears as though new clothing will be available via DLC, but all I really want to do it put my 10th prestige icon on my shirt, which is not yet available.  Then I came into work, so I haven’t really done much with it yet…

<– Here’s my avatar!!

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