My first gaming PC!

So I’m down to the final weeks of this deployment and I decided that I would treat myself to a gaming PC for when I return home. At first I looked long and hard at the Alienware Alpha and Steam Machines, coming really close to picking up an i5 version of the Alpha for $650. However, upon browsing Reddit and Steam message boards I saw an overwhelming amount of negative posts about the Alpha, most regarding hardware failures.

Ultimately I headed to iBuyPower and started putting a desktop together. They were having a sale where basically every component you selected would be upgraded to the next higher version for free. I have to admit, I know absolutely nothing about PC’s (I’ve used a MacBook Pro for the last four years, and it’s done everything I’ve ever needed it to, without ever having any issues) so I kind of went into the ‘building’ process blind. I just picked things that seemed affordable, and ended up with the following build:

AMD FX 8320 processor (with Corsair Hydro Series H55 liquid cooling)
16GB RAM (G.Skill Ripjaws X)
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 960 (2GB)
MSI 970 SLI Krait Edition (motherboard)
600W Power Supply
2TB 7200 RPM hard drive

I have no real clue what any of that means, but I’ve heard it’s not a bad start, although many people have said I should have gotten an i5 CPU over the AMD. All I’m hoping for is the ability to run PC games such as Fallout 4 that will look better and run smoother than they do on my Xbox One.

I’m looking forward to getting home in a few weeks and putting the hardware to use!

South Park: The Stick of Truth, first impressions

Yesterday I picked up South Park: The Stick of Truth on Steam. I didn’t know a whole lot about the game, other than it had a lot of hype behind it, but I watched about 15 minutes of a Twitch stream the other night and knew I had to get my hands on the game. I would really enjoy playing it on the Xbox One, but unfortunately it’s only available on last gen consoles and PC.

I played about an hour of it last night and it was hilarious. The game feels exactly like an extended episode of South Park, thanks to it being written by the show’s writers, and the art style is dead on. It’s a blast to explore the world and find all of the little references to the show and the combat is enjoyable and hilarious as well.

I look forward to spending more time with the game.

Darksiders

I’ve had Darksiders in my Steam library for awhile now (as part of the THQ bundle) but never played it. So tonight I plugged in an Xbox 360 controller, booted it up and played for a few minutes. Having recently rented and played DmC: Devil May Cry, I have to say it feels very, very familiar. You get thrown into a space with a bunch of enemies, the exit blocks off with a magic forcefield, you use a combination of light and heavy attacks and combos to fight off the enemies thus opening the forcefield and allowing you to progress.

There are plenty of combos and a combo counter will flash on the side of the screen as you hack your way through enemies. This type of gameplay just isn’t for me. It’s okay, but not something I want to do for an entire game. I’m also not really into the whole platformer thing either…The climbing and jumping and fighting and climbing and jumping….

The game looks cool though… I might play it a bit here and there in the future, but I can’t see myself getting too involved.

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Looks interesting: Kentucky Route Zero

This indie point and click game developed by Cardboard Computer looks absolutely amazing. The art style is quite unique and beautiful and the story / game world looks incredibly interesting to explore. Kentucky Route Zero is an episodic game (much like The Walking Dead) with Act I out now for $7. You can purchase the acts individually (which will cost you $35 in the end) or buy them all now for $25 which also gets you the soundtrack and access to their newsletter. They claim the acts will be released over the next year or so, here’s to hoping we get to see them all this year.

Kentucky Route Zero is available DRM free for Windows and Mac via the game’s website. Be sure to check it out!

Now playing: FTL: Faster than Light

 

FTL, or Faster Than Light, is a game that slipped under the radar for most people. I first heard about it from Giant Bomb, however at first nothing really made me want to go and check it out. Luckily it went on sale during the Steam winter sale and I picked it up for $4.99. The game is actually quite fun and incredibly addicting. You have to navigate the galaxy and fight other ships while maintaining your ship’s systems and determining which systems to upgrade with your limited resources. I’d try to explain it more in depth, but the Giant Bomb Quick Look below will give you the best idea of what this game is like. Enjoy!

 

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Playing Saint’s Row 3

It’s been a little busy during the holidays, so I figured I’d do a quick check in. I’ve been playing Saints Row 3 (Saints Row The Third) on the PC and I’ve had a lot of fun with it so far. It’s a great game that offers plenty of chaos and laughs. I absolutely love the story missions so far, and it’s a blast to drive around the city in various cars causing all sorts of mayhem. The weapon variety is also nice and it’s awesome to be able to call in a UAV to rain missiles from above when you get into a jam.

Below are some assorted screenshots from my playthrough so far:
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