Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Got Some New PSP Stuff Today

I went and bought a couple new UMDs today. Well, one new and one used.
These are a game, Metal Gear Acid, and a movie, Serenity.

I picked up Metal Gear Acid because I actually liked what I played of it when I checked it out recently.

Most everyone I've talked to here has been kinda put off by the mechanics of the game. They just can't imagine Metal Gear as a card game.

Surprisingly, I find that it works.

I've played Magic the Gathering and several other card games and often thought of mixing the card play with traditional role-playing, since the people I played Magic with also played Dungeons and Dragons.
Unfortunately, no one else could be swayed into trying to adapt it.

Metal Gear Acid comes very close to what I would expect from mixing the two together. And then you also get the added bonus of not having to keep track of your info because of game saves.

One of the features I liked the most of the game would be the randomness of the cards you're dealt (based on the deck you're using at the time). Decks follow a rule of number of cards in the deck and number of specific cards in that deck that's similar to standard collectible card games. This makes you have to choose the right mix of cards to put into your deck for each mission to compliment your play style.

At the end of each mission you're rewarded with cards that are added to your card pool. If you meet certain requirements you get a few bonus cards, as well.

Another feature I like is the layout of the map and movement. Very similar to strategy games like Final Fantasy Tactics or miniatures games like HeroClix, the map is laid out in grids and movement is measured for each character.
There are some cards used solely for moving, but you can also move Snake by just discarding a card.

Overall, I find the game very original and fun and I'm looking forward to playing Metal Gear Acid 2 once I finish it.

Serenity, for those that don't know already, is the movie that reincarnated the cult television show, Firefly.

If you've never seen Firefly, it's available on DVD in a single boxed set. If you like sci-fi, westerns, bad-ass rogue characters or witty writing and dialogue you need to at least check it out.
When you hear that there's simply nothing else like it, it's true. This show is one thing: unique.

Fox really screwed Joss Whedon (the creator of Firefly, Buffy and Angel) several times over this show.

First and foremost, when the show first premiered Fox didn't show the two-hour pilot episode. Instead, they opted for an episode that started with all the players already in place. But there's more: for the showing of this episode, it was pre-empted in the two biggest markets (New York and Los Angeles) for a ball game.

The pilot episode would not see air until after the show was announced to have been cancelled and would be the final episode shown.

The show was offered to other broadcast and cable networks but no one went after it. Sci-Fi Channel seemed like a good place for it, but wouldn't pick it up.

Joss, after the success of the DVD set and the impact of the fans, decided to pull it from the networks and take it to the big screen. Finding a home at Universal, the movie, Serenity, brought the 'Verse back to life.

Sci-Fi Channel did, however, pick up the show to rerun the episodes leading up to the movie's premiere.

Serenity, the movie, was much more than I had expected. It simply wasn't just a two-hour long episode.
But it wasn't a transparently cheezy summer flick, either.

Questions were answered, humor was dealt, adventure was had and people... changed. Permanently.

There were a few things that happened in the movie that the fans could've screamed bloody murder at Joss for. However, because of how friggin' well written the movie was, everything was lifted to such a higher level.

I highly reccomend seeing this movie. And while seeing the show isn't really required, it is also reccomended as it makes things in the movie more impacting.

Also, another thing about the UMD version that I found very pleasing was the inclusion of two behind the scenes featurettes. I was really worried that UMDs would be forever "lesser than" DVDs because of the lack of space for extra features.
I mean, why would I want to buy a UMD of a movie that I'm going to buy on DVD, also?
Both at the same price, even.
Especially if I have a portable DVD player?
The inclusion of the bonus material really helped sway me into picking it up on UMD.

Meanwhile, I traded my Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex in to help pay for these two items.
I just couldn't get into the game, found the robot annoying as I prefer to sneak about at my own pace and disliked the loading times (which occurred way too frequently).

Here's a recap of what I have bought so far for my PSP:

Untold Legends: Brotherhood of the Blade
Rating: A-
Status: Still playing.

Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
Rating: D
Staus: Traded back in.

Metal Gear Acid
Rating: B+
Status: Playing.

Rating: A+
Status: Keeping.

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