TQAE

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Titan Quest Anniversary Edition

I’ve put 100+ hours in to Titan Quest and I was quite excited when I saw that I received a free upgrade to the Titan Quest: Anniversary Edition. TQAE combines TQ with the expansion Immortal Throne, and includes hundreds of bug fixes and gameplay balances.

So I jumped in with a lot of enthusiasm and ticked up several more hours. Nostalgia is one helluva drug and all my rosy memories of TQ started to not look at good. I started to nitpick little things:

  • Damn, I have to pick up gold? No auto-loot?
  • Where is the loot filter?
  • Why do I have to drag components to my inventory to combine them? Can’t I combine them while they’re in the inventory?

Then I remembered there is a game where all of this was fixed: Grim Dawn.

Called the spiritual successor to Titan Quest, Crate Entertainment started GD by licencing the TQ engine, then proceeded to combine the great TQ multi-classing skill-trees, with a good story and build in a decade of ARPG improvements.

I hope TQAE will eventually be updated with some modern features of ARPGs. It’s still a fun game with a good storyline and fun skill-trees. It’s just that the edges are a little too rough. A little polish would extend the life of this great game.

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Elite: Dangerous

My D3 hours has been stagnant for a while. I’ve even gone back to Torchlight and PuzzleQuest for some light gaming, but I think I’ve found my D3 replacement for a while. (At least until Season 2 where I’ll need to grind up another character to 70 to get the transmog rewards):

Elite: Dangerous

Part sandbox, part simulation, part MMO. Elite, is an open ended game with lots to do and explore without the massive learning curve of EVE Online.

I broke out my ol’ Microsoft Sidewinder Precision 2 and quickly found out that it doesn’t like the front USB ports on my new rig. Luckily, the rear usb ports worked and Windows 8.1 x64 had no issues with my favorite, decade old joystick.

I pre-ordered the game and received a ship upgrade immediately. after a few trade runs and finally dumped the new ship for some cash and bought a hauler. Trading still seems like the best way for me to make money until I figure out how to blow npc’s up willy-nilly.

The graphics are pretty good. I’m hoping that getting into some nebulae will be possible. Those must look gorgeous. Still, some of the best scenes are coming out of hyperspace. The stars are the destinations in hyperspace, so you always pop into a system near the star. Dropping from a couple thousand c down to nothing at all right in front of a huge burning ball of gas is still impressive. The sound effect really helps convey the power that goes along with it. I like it a lot.

I’m still getting around the game a bit. I’m going to try mining soon. I love mining. Some of my best gaming memories are from EVE Online when I was mining with some guildies talking about 80’s action movies. Yes, I paid $15/month and best thing out of it was the chat room functionality. Not really. I did like EVE. I just didn’t want to invest in Excel.

Elite seems to be a bit easier in that regard but still offers the depth if a player wants to go for it. I’m hoping to get a lot of entertainment hours out of it.