Monday, January 14, 2008

GameLog 22

Crusader Kings (57h) - Yes, nearly 60 hours on a 3 year old game that I only started on Tuesday. I had been poking around the paradox forums looking for snippets of wisdom or at least some things I wanted to know. The after action reports were Ok, but lacking a little class compared to the Footy Manager ones. I did happen to find a link to one problem I was searching for in an AAR for Crusader Kings instead of EUIII, so being a little bored I had a read of it: Real men to it Alphabetically; an AARgau. Or, "How to conquer a game one county at a time (BTW, there's ~1000 counties) in alphabetical order". It was great. 2 hours of reading page after page of witticisms and game dynamics I was hooked. I wanted to play it more than ever and I'd learnt enough about the game and what's achievable from the AAR to make a pretty easy transition over to it. The game still lacks an intuitive interface. Well, it's intuitive once you've done it, which is Ok to move around and get to the data you want, but if you didn't know something was possible you'd never find it.

Our first run at a dynasty started at the bottom end of Ireland with Munster. it was really hard to find anything to actually do for the first part, so I let the game roll and got used to the pace of it. I then started for real with the Duke of Moray, Scottish heartland and stomping grounds of Clan Cameron. As a duke it was a little easier on the money than a small county, but rebellion against the scottish king looked a certainty. My 2nd wife is William the Conqueror's daughter, so we ally and take apart Scotland. Unfortunately the game crashed and revealed there were no saves. At all. Gone. Just like the marketing drive at work. It was 3:30am anyway so it was taken as a sign to head to bed.

We start afresh the next night as Moray but this time it's Norway that come to the party. Scotland implodes from a vengeful king with a fistful of rivals, and we hold back to the verry death to swoop in and claim the crown, just like a good game of "King of the Hill". After all the fighting the rest had gone through, I'm sure I received a few glares, but they happily put their troops away and wait for my instructions.

Norway gets uppity with Sweden and we oblige with the war, but are content with shouting insults across the North Sea as things at home look much more interesting. Sweden has Nothumberland and a few other English duchies after William's death left the country in disarray. We swoop on a vacant Northumberland claiming the rich seat of York for ourselves and vassalizing the rest. We also work on Norfolk while there aren't any troops around as well as finally putting some steel into a bothersome Hereford county.

We could easily sue for peace from our island and get to fixing up our tarnished reputation, but Norway actually looks like it might be in trouble so we venture the seas to help out. While the battle rages back and forth though Norway, Sweden is left relatively vacent for us to put our tents up and camp out a healthy peace deal.

Now we're really overboard with a bad reputation and the vassals are losing patience. We keep our heads out of some juicy battles and prepare for a civil revolt. The Dunkold family is everywhere in Scotland as proponents of the previous rule, but with the passing of the old king we get things back on track with only 2 duchies looking problematic.

Some in-fighting helps weed out the poor rulers, but my daughter's hubby (20 Martial) puts up a good fight, flooring 2500 men with only 350. We re-vassalise them instead of demanding everything so he can fight for us. They also had claim to 1/2 of Scotland and the crown, so it's a prestigous windfall to not claim back the lot.

Europa Universalis III (6h) - Advanced Scotland a little further. Trying to pick and choose our way through the battle lines.

World of Warcraft (5h) - BundyBear, 70 Warrior. Got back into it with the boys to push through Slabs. Having 5 in a room is the way to go for instances.

Trackmania Nations (2h) - Cameron's Fave.

TF2 (2h) - First time playing the game for over a week was a [QGL] clan matchup. We dropped 2 quick captures to 6P before clawing back 1 ourselves. I'm guessing we were all a bit rusty as we improved a lot toward the 2nd half, as I moved into attack and got anotehr back, only to lose ours in a great melee in the middle. We had theirs out again but we time beat us. 2-3. Very close one. Certainly don't mind losing games that intense and tight.