Hello! I’ve had rather a long day, visiting the University of East Anglia in sunny Norwich. Very nice place, and I’ll hopefully be going there in September*. I’ve also been playing Dragon Age 2, which is excellent. I’ve been playing Origins for the last month or so, and the improvement in combat is VAST. The increased immediacy of the combat is such a welcome relief after the sluggish, shuffle-around-to-hit-anyone combat of Oranges. I prefer the Hawke character to the Oranges character, if only because he has a name characters can call him**, but also because his family and background affects you immediately and continuously, rather than in the origin story, wherever you visit that’s relevant and in the epilogue.
I’ve been reading Shamus Young’s stuff about Mass Effect 2, another Bioware game I really enjoyed, and it’s all rather interesting. He’s right about Miranda, the most irksome and arrogant companion since Adam***. As Shamus says,
…Miranda, who keeps telling us how smart she is while doing very little to convince us. She’s rude, short-sighted, and she can’t articulate any kind of reasonable defense for Cerberus. The one project she ran only had three people in it, and she still had somebody go rogue on her. And then she executed our only lead. I’d trust Grunt with managing a research project before I gave her another one.
I was at Scott’s the other day, and we were watching the Midsomer Murders episode ‘Things That Go Bump In The Night’ (which I’ve seen several times before, but I still rather like, if only for the bit in the first episode where the brass band is playing the theme tune at the fair) and I thought (not for the first time) that the series effectively has the same plot with minor variations almost every episode. That reminded me of something I’ve noticed while playing through Dragon Age 2****. There are about three or four sidequests (and main quests, come to that) with pretty much the same ‘asked to deal with crazy/demon-possessed child by their parents’ plot. Not that it’s the worst thing in the world, but when Bioware said they were going to make family more important in their game, I hadn’t though it would be quite like that…
Well, that’s it for the moment. If you’ve got a spare minute (and if you’re reading this, you undoubtedly do), I’d recommend you go and listen to some Anamanaguchi who do great music, watch the latest episode of Charlie Brooker’s How TV Ruined Your Life (worth it if only for the David Mitchell’s Rave Britannia joke. I’d also recommend you watch The Killing, a Danish thriller being shown on BBC 4 about a grumpy detective who wears snowflake jumpers and looks like my mum, perhaps because she spends all her time frowning. It’s really worth your time, although the first few episodes have shuffled off
this mortal coil the iPlayer, and I don’t know whether they’ll be repeated*****. In any case, that’s all for this evening. I’ll see you later. Goodnight!
*though that is contingent on my getting good grades, and cramming two years of work into one isn’t going to be easy. But there you go. The wages of sin (or being lazy).
**bloody hell, that scene at the end of Oranges where Alistair is singing your praises is so irritating “The Hero of Ferelden… the Grey Warden…” For goodness sake, each of the selectable characters has a non-changeable surname! Why not “The new Teyrn Cousland/Mahariel/whatever the dwarven name is”?
***I know, someone irksome and arrogant called Adam, right? That was a Doctor Who reference, by the way.
**** and not just the repeated dungeon/house interiors, but I have noticed those too
*****The BBC still haven’t quite got the hand of the whole ‘series catch-up’ thing, have they?