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I Dub Thee: "Special Edition"
Day 1845 (Pathological Video Game Use)
So before I begin ranting, I'd just like to boast how lovely the weather has been the last few days. It barely rains here, and the soil is what we call "red loam", so it's not exactly the most fertile ground around, so the fact that it's been raining non-stop for almost 48 hours up 'till last night sometime is a great thing, and almost unheard of here. If you watch the weather radar when rain is sweeping across south-east Australia, you'll notice how it either dies off or swerves around a town called Mildura completely. Some people jokingly say it's because we have a river running nearby and we have enough water already, but really it's just a weather deadzone.

I was comparing my PS3 trophies for FinalFantasyXIII-2 last night with a mate, and trying to work out the last few. Upon reading the guidebook, we learned that there are two trophies that are only available to those who play on normal difficulty, as opposed to easy difficulty (the only other choice). I played mine on easy, my mate played his on normal, and we're at roughly similar stages in obtaining every fragment for 100% completion, with me still needing 20, and he only needing the one for knowing everything about every variety of creature. We are both bothering to do the work to watch the 'secret' ending you get after obtaining everything, which someone in a lead position at SquareEnix said is fundamental to the beginning of the story for Lightning Returns: XIII-3. Me being the few-time FinalFantasy fan-boy I am, this is a must. Now I face the prospect of replaying the game on normal mode (about 100-120 hours to get where I am now) or just watch the secret ending on YouTube and throw away all the effort I've put in to earn it. At this point, I have the urge to start playing through on normal mode right now, which is a good thing I suppose.

Reading the article in this month's GameInformer on InFamous: Second Son re-sparks my interest to go back and play though the first one on evil to get all the trophies. InFamous was one of the best narrated games I've ever played, and as irony has it, Sony gave it to me for free after that business with Anonymous hacking PSN a couple years back. The sequel, like so many sequels, pissed me off, and I'm not the only among the fans. Sucker-Punch describe the first game as the game for the fans, and the second game being more like their vision. By the looks of the trailer for Second Son, and the reviews, I think the developer must have realized the importance of actually making money from their work, and the fact that the legacy of an IP is destroyed when you make stupid decisions like messing with the voice acting and character model for the main character that everyone connected with. But all that aside, I couldn't be more happy with this new game after reading the exclusive in GameInformer. Main reason being, I don't feel like they're milking it, it's a legitimate storyline sequel with plenty of new content written, and really fleshing out the reality of what would happen in a world where meta-humans (my term) exist and law-enforcement agencies are backed into a corner by fear. Sucker-Punch have treated the PS3 trophy data for InFamous2 as a poll in order to write Second Son, whereby the vast majority of people chose the good path, and sacrificed Cole's life in order to kill the beast and scores of other conduits along with them. Second Son is set seven years after Cole's death, where U.S. government has promptly either formed, or consolidated and re-trained, all their law-enforcement and counter-terrorism agencies under one banner, the Department of Unified Protection (pretty sure), which basically has Seattle under lockdown after a bus crash (?) containing some conduits, where our new protagonist Delsin Rowe instinctively rushes in to save the survivors and (news to himself) absorbs the smoke-manipulating powers of one of the conduits. Delsin quickly discovers his ability he was born with, to absorb the powers of other conduits (okay I'm thinking ray-sphere at this point... this could get bad). The review states that Seattle is soon fully militarized (watch towers, spot lights, security cameras, hordes of soldiers(?)/cops(?)) and, I guess that's the playground for the game.

Delsin is described as being an anti-authoritarian, with so-far little success in anything, and enjoys banksy-style political graffiti-ing (I suppose in support of the conduits). This, and the fact that the game is written in a way that assumes you chose the good path in previous games, leads me to believe that the game will center around Delsin liberating the country from military control and might even go so far as to establish peace between the human population, and the remaining conduits that weren't quarantined.

Fun fact, Seattle is the hometown of the developers that make the game.

I was going to add a review on a psychological study about pathology in video gamers here but I'm a bit tired. Will most likely edit this before anyone even reads it to include this.

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