The Times They Are A' Changing
Posted on Tuesday, January 23 @ 21:02:04 PST by Duke_FerrisOne week to go, and it's good bye XP, hello Vista.
For early adopters, as always, that sharp, stabbing feeling will be directly in your wallet area. New rigs will be required for many, and graphics cards that truly support DirectX 10 (which I believe is only the GeForce 8800 series right now) are pricey indeed.
So what makes it all worth it? Well today I had a chance to get some hands-on with six Vista games. And it's no wonder that Microsoft is emphasizing gaming for Vista, because let's be honest here, my old Windows 3.1 computer did my taxes and word processing just as well as my new computer will.
What my old computer cannot do, or even my current one, is run games as innovative, complex, creative, and downright pretty as the ones I saw today. So without further ado, let's talk games.
Fancy graphics and crazy physics are at the heart of this sci-fi shooter. With its own cutting edge graphics engine, Crysis was easily the one game I saw today that taunted me by screaming "There is no chance in hell this game will run on your current computer". When aliens invade the earth, apparently they bring with them more particle effects and flying debris than you can imagine. Impressive videos and screenshots await you.
If you're looking for scope, you're looking for Supreme Commander (Deluxe with Cheese). This futuristic real-time strategy game features unbelievably huge maps, hundreds and hundreds of units on the battlefield, and a zoom that can take you from close in on the action, all the way out to a tactical satellite view.
Designed withe the hardcore enthusiast in mind, it even features dual-monitor support so you can put your tactical controls on one monitor and have a battlefield view on the other. Flying missiles and huge death-beam sporting robotic titans are coming, check out some movies or screenshots to see for yourself.
World In Conflict
A strategy / action blend, World in Conflict brings us back to those heady days of Rocky 4 when we all knew those Russkies were up to no good. As far as I'm concerned, they should just rename it World in Explosions, because the destruction is truly beautiful. Dropping a nuke is so cool looking, it's irresistible. I hereby announce my candidacy for President in 2008. Sadly no video, but screenshots a' plenty to be found here.
I'm not sure who it was that decided take a classic RPG and make a shooter out of it, but it works. Easily the most fun game to just pick up and play today, it turns out that assault weapons and magic combine like chocolate and peanut butter. Use your Submachine gun to kill, your bat wings to fly, your magic to resurrect, and your powers to teleport - Shadowrun rewards creative strategies.
Also, Shadowrun will be the first game to take advantage of Vista's Xbox Live support allowing PC gamers and 360 gamers to compete directly against each other. PC players can even use the 360 controller if they want to. Hack into some screens and videos.
Age of Conan - Hyborian Adventures
The only MMO in the crowd, where World of Warcraft goes for the fun, cartoony look, Conan smacks that idea down with a giant club and goes for the realistic. With lush environments, authentic looking people, and eerily human faces, at least the graphics will totally crush your enemies. Nurture your inner barbarian with some videos and screenshots.
As an RPG nut, I saved my favorite for last. Hellgate combines science and sorcery as the forces of Hell invade foggy London. It also combines first person shooter action with the depth of an RPG. Most amazingly though, Hellgate pushes the tech envelope, because it never plays the same way twice. The areas, encounters, items, instances, and story-driven quests are actually created fresh by the game itself every time you play. Try and write a walkthrough for that, cheaters. Meanwhile, check out some hellishly cool movies and screens.
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