Wednesday, March 30, 2011

From the vault: Tools of a professional killer

This is an article I wrote for OzBoxLive ages ago but seeing as though they have decided to no longer credit me for the work I'm going to post it here.

If you are finding that no matter what you do you just can’t rack up a decent amount of kills it might be your weapons letting you down. Custom classes allow you to go into a battle with any weapon you want (provided you have unlocked it) and save it for the next battle if you like it. Skill goes along way but if you have a shotgun in a sniper map you are not going to get far. Remember “you don’t bring a pistol to a machine gun fight!”

When creating a custom class ask yourself these questions:
  1. Will it be appropriate for the maps I want to play on?
  2. Will it be appropriate for the game type I want to play?
  3. What attachments have I got and what do I need to unlock to make this loadout better?
  4. What perks have I got and will they be appropriate for the weapons I have chosen?

Lets look at each question individually. Question one asks us what maps we want to play on. Think about the maps in MW2, are they all designed for the one type of fighting (sniper fights, CQB etc…) or are they all different? Some maps fall under more than one category. For example Highrise is a good sniper map but with the underground tunnels it is also good if you like to get up close and personal.

Question two ties in well here. If you are playing free for all sniping is no good because with out backup you can’t hunker down anywhere for a decent length of time. So in this instance using a Sub-machine gun would be better because it gives you mobility and a high rate of fire in short to medium range battles which are common for free for all matches. However in Team Deathmatch or domination sniping is a viable method of attack.

In MW2 weapons can be upgraded with attachments. However attachments need to be earned so if you are new to MW2 you will need to play a little more to unlock then but you can do it faster by playing one game type with the same weapon. Free for all is the best for all weapons except the sniper rifle where unless you can quick scope having some backup will be needed. Back to topic, if you’re playing on maps that combine close quarters with more long range fighting then you will want a red dot/holographic sight or if you like the iron sight then perhaps the grenade launcher would be better. Hang on a grenade launcher at close range? Yes, if you shoot the grenade at close range straight into your opponent it will kill then instantly. Think of it as a solid-shot shotgun. Otherwise firing it at a nearby wall will do the job too. For maps that focus on long range but require you to move about (e.g. wasteland on free for all) then the ACOG scope on any assault rifle will do. While increasing the accuracy of the weapon over a distance it will not increase the range of the gun so don’t bother putting it on a MP5 or something like that unless you are trying to unlock a challenge. Also the ACOG makes weapons difficult to fire accurately at close range. If you are trying for stealth the heartbeat sensor is great for seeing through walls and around corners and the silencer means that when you fire your weapon you don’t show up on the radar as a red dot making infiltration easy.

Perks are add-ons to a player’s performance. From running longer to adding more than one attachment to a weapon. Again many of these need to be unlocked but the best for new players are marathon, stopping power and steady aim. Bling allows you to have two attachments on your primary weapon. One attachment is all you need unless you are trying to unlock the bullet penetration challenge where having a heartbeat sensor with FMJ makes finding targets easier. For close quarters commando increases the range at which you can knife people. Good for if you have multiple enemies and little ammo in a small space. For Game types like domination, marathon gives you unlimited sprint so you can defend objectives with ease. For those who like to quick scope then invest your time in unlocking slight of hand pro, This makes aiming down the sight faster.

Finally name your classes appropriately. Don’t leave them custom class one, custom class two etc… It just takes longer to find the loadout you want. I name them the primary and secondary weapon in that slot (e.g. AK-47 / USP-45) or you can name them by game type or by fighting method (e.g. CQB).

And of course practice makes perfect. Find what weapons and attachments suit you and use those. The more comfortable you are with a weapon the better you’ll be. There is no perfect gun in MW2 just the right loadout for the right job.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Beaterator review.

A few weeks back I said I was working on a Beaterator review. Well your wait is over, here it is.

I've seen many sites give Beaterator poor scores because of its lack of gameplay and storyline. They are completely right, Rockstar made a terrible game. Good thing Beaterator isn't a game. It's sound editing software designed for the PSP. This review isn't a game review its a software review. So no score at the end nor a trailer (I know how much you love them but its for games).

As far as sound editing programs go (To which all the experience I have is Beaterator, Audacity and FL studio) This one is pretty good. it has a few thousand loops preloaded, all of which can be edited to create different sounds. Add to this the ability to import MIDI files and with the use of a Microphone you have a portable recording studio. 

There are two modes to use Beaterator, Live play and studio mode. Live play allows to record beats as you make them in a live setting. Good place to start mucking around and hearing what sounds work well with others. Theres a little animation of Timbaland dancing about and pressing buttons as the music plays. The second mode is studio mode. Studio mode is more serious and looks like any other sound editing software out there. Here you can create, import, edit, and place loops along a time line to create a song.

Once you have finished your creation and you want to show it off to the world you can upload it to the Rockstar social club for others to listen to, download and remix. The only problem is that you have to do all this through your PSP. So if you are no where near a wireless hot spot or worse are one of those hardcore Sony fanboys that bought a PSP the day it came out and haven't upgraded and its getting old and the WLAN switch is broken (like me) there is a solution. Beaterator has an export feature allowing you to export your song as either a WAV or a MIDI file to edit on another program, convert to an MP3 and upload it to the web either via Mediafire or Youtube. This is my favorite feature. It puts everything you need to create and publish your own music in your hands.

The only major limitation to Beaterator I've discovered is that the built in keyboard only has five octaves. I discovered this when I imported a MIDI of Fur Elise by Beethoven. Other than that I've had no problem other than my own knowledge of the program.

Well there you have it. What I think of Beaterator. Finally up here on the interwebs for you all to enjoy.

Till next Wednesday, Peace.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The deal with the R18+ rating in Australia.

People from all over the world read this blog and you are all awesome. So I thought I might take this time to explain some stuff going on in the Australian gaming scene and how you all can help out.

Some of you may have seen either on the news or on the Social network sphere that Mortal Kombat was banned (or refused classification) here in Australia. It was banned because the powers that be decided it was too violent regardless of the fact that the previous titles in the series were just as violent and were allowed on our shores. This is because the maximum rating for games is MA15+ which means that people between the ages of 15 and 17 can view/play but only with an adult supervising. There is no R18+ rating.

Why is R18+ so important? More importantly what the hell does R18+ mean? R18+ is the maximum rating that can be given in Australia's rating system. It means that only people over the age of 18 can view content given that rating. Why it's so important is that games like Mortal Kombat would not be banned. Currently there is a work around. Games that are banned can resubmit again by modifying the game to remove or tone down the violence/drug use/sexual content/etc... and try to get it rated. Grand Theft Auto is famous for getting rejected and then the modified version is let through. The problem with this is that people then import the game from America or another country which is bad for our economy. This means that game prices go up and in turn more people pirate the game which hurts the gaming industry as a whole.

What really annoys me is that all this goes on and our government doesn't care. When Episodes of Liberty City was released on Xbox Live it was hosted on American servers meaning it had all the sex and violence that was banned from the original game. You paid your 12 bucks and effectively got a "bring back all the good bits" patch along with the DLC. Another example is Left 4 Dead 2. If you purchased it from a retail game shop like EB you got the modified version. If you purchased it from Steam you got the original game in all it's uncensored glory.

Earlier I said that there was a way you could help. There is an online petition being circulated to be sent to the government asking them to introduce an R18+ rating to video games. Please sign it and tell everyone about it. You will be helping shape Australian gaming history. The link is here:

Till next week.


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

World cyber games announces game titles for 2011

The WCG has announced its Games for this years Grand final matches which will be held in Korea towards the end of this year. The titles for 2011 are:

  • Tekken 6 (Namco Bandai Games)

FPS (First Person Shooting)
  • Counter-Strike 1.6 (Valve)
  • Crossfire (Neowiz Games/Smilegate)
  • Special Force (Dragonfly)

MMORPG (Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game)
  • World of Warcraft®: Cataclysm™ (Blizzard Entertainment)

RTS (Real Time Strategy)
  • League of Legends (Riot Games)
  • StarCraft® II: Wings of Liberty™ (Blizzard Entertainment)
  • Warcraft® III: The Frozen Throne™ (Blizzard Entertainment)

  • FIFA 11 (Electronic Arts)

Many of these titles I saw coming but some of these games I've never heard of. Also League of Legends? don't get me wrong I'm a LoL fan but I thought that people who competed in these things wouldn't touch League of Legends with a ten foot pole and play Dota instead. Maybe the idea is to try and encourage the less hardcore into professional gaming. Is this a sign of the times? The ever shrinking number of professional gamers due to the span of their careers and the stigma of the profession that it isn't a job. Whatever the reason I like LoL and I know I'm going to pay more attention to the WCG because of it.

They have also announced that they will also have official mobile titles which people can compete in. Mobile games? I had no idea there were enough hardcore solitaire players out there.

Till next week.



Wednesday, March 2, 2011


Ok so all my friends are going on about how awesome Minecraft is. They all start servers and play together (from what I hear very rarely is anything built they just fill the map with TNT and crash the server) and want me to play with them. So I jumped on the free alpha and gave it a go. 10 minutes later I go to bed only to discover that 10 hours had passed. I got my hands on the beta and that's what my life has amounted to this past week. I write this not in my usual pants free zone but in a pants on area so please forgive the bad writing. My eyes are completely bloodshot and I'm sleep deprived but hey, I managed to build a grotto and a tree farm!

No I'm not going to write a review on the game until it is finished. By finished I mean in full release and out of beta. Besides there are a million and one websites that have reviewed what game there is. Go there if thats what you want from this weeks post. Otherwise sit back and enjoy the rant.

So as the title suggests MINECRAFT IS EATING MY LIFE!

The last time I spent a solid 10 hour session on a game was during the glorious summer I spent playing Grand Theft Auto San Andreas for the first time. I'm really surprised at how addictive this game is. I've heard people say that they hate the game because and I quote "I've got nothing to do after I build a house so I don't die." Well yes this may be a problem if you lack any imagination. If you however are even at all slightly imaginative you will enjoy the game. I kept finding things to do. First I built a house to keep safe then I built it out a bit then I built an observation room then a panic room then a grotto with waterfall and back lit pool. It doesn't seem like much but this was a week of my life which could be better spent doing ANYTHING else.

I know that a lot of people who are slaves to the education department read my blog, let me give you some advice. If you even remotely care about getting any kind of grade that isn't an F then don't download Minecraft. Unless you have incredible willpower you are guaranteed to fail. Wait until you have a spare year to kill then get it. This isn't to say never download the game, its brilliant in its simplicity and should be commended as a win for indie games. This amazingness is what makes Minecraft so dam addictive.

If I survive till next week, be sure to check back then.