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Posts Tagged ‘MAG’

July 25, 2011 – Playstation Plus… or Minus

July 25, 2011 Leave a comment

So… my “welcome back” free subscription to Playstation Plus expired.  The free trial actually made me NOT want to subscribe to the program because it made me realize that much of the content I was getting was in reality only rented.

In particular, I downloaded the DLC Escalation pack for MAG.  Frankly, nobody plays the DLC so it wasn’t the game mode I was interested in… it was the extra weapons that came with the Escalation pack.  I became addicted to using the Gotha assault rifle and losing it has been difficult.  The abrupt loss of DLC and any free games downloaded while being a member of Playstation Plus seems worst than never joining PS Plus in the first place and simply spending that money on owning the actual content instead of the subscription.  I was only a member for one month and felt the pain of loss on leaving the program … I can well imagine all the content I would suddenly be without if I had been with the program for a year or more.

Apparently the only thing you get to keep is the free avatars or games that you bought at a discount price.  So what do you get by being a Playstation Plus member.. well, apparently you get early beta access, but this seems very limited because betas are often now bundled with other games or available on various twitter feeds.  You get the ability to try a game out for one hour… no big deal as most of these games offer demos anyway.  Early access to demos?  Again, not a big deal as the demos soon come available to everyone.  Some free games, yes, but you lose these when your membership expires, and this applies to the free DLC as well.  Overall, what you seem to mostly get is the rental of some free games (mostly small games available at a cheap price anyway) and some free DLC.  You do get some special pricing, which for some people may make the program worthwhile, but overall I think the withdrawal pains of losing free games and free DLC if your subscription ever lapses is a pain that is difficult to measure, and not worth the small amount of savings you might get on some older games when they go on sale.

Playstation Plus… I thank you for your one month free trial.  It has saved me from making an expensive mistake.

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July 8, 2011 – in the company of strangers

July 8, 2011 1 comment

Last night I ended up in a large group playing MAG.  I was only familiar with one of the group members and the others were all strangers to me, but it’s amazing how the loose bonds of being in a group seems to reinvigorate the gameplay.

People were reviving each other, there was constant talk about strategies and enemy movements and mostly there was encouragement – just run in and take the objective -screw your KDR!  Not surprisingly, we ended up with a lot more wins than losses last night – something that doesn’t often occur with the Raven faction, especially when playing against SVER.

The mechanism in shooter games of being in a “squad” or being a part of a team just works so much better when people actually talk.  I can understand there there are times when people don’t want to use a mic… often when playing late at night and out of consideration for others in the household, or younger kids (the game is rated T for Teen) that maybe shouldn’t be exposed to some of the language adults use when they get killed by a shotgun at long range then teabagged.  Still, the people that don’t use a mic are missing out on such a large part of online gaming.  There’s nothing quite like the feeling of yelling “I’ve got the flag and need cover” and hearing encouraging (and useful) comments from your teammates.  There nothing quite like saying “There’s a guy planting a charge at our bunker” and hearing someone else yell “I’m sniping at the back and have him!”.  There’s just such a wonderful sense of comraderie when playing with a team or squad where most people are using their mics.

Strangers or not…  for that brief time when playing the game, those strangers are my “teammates” – a word not to be taken lightly.  It’s the one word that sums up why I enjoy online shooter games so very much!

Follow Me!

June 17, 2011 Leave a comment

Leadership is a quality needed throughout life, whether you work in a business, are self-employed, run a website, a gaming clan… and now even for playing games.  One of the more interesting aspects of the game MAG is that it allows most any player to become a “leader”.  You are randomly assigned a squad and given powers to set objectives and lead your squad of 7 other players in strategies to achieve those objectives.  It’s interesting to see the different leadership styles and increasingly on the game forums there is a call for giving more “powers” to the leaders in order to ensure compliance with their strategy.

It seems to me that a lot of people misunderstand leadership.  Leadership isn’t a “power” it’s a “skill”.  You can give someone a fancy title, the power to set priorities, a nice office and a big raise… but unless they have the skill of leadership, people will not follow the directives.  One of my favorite quotes is from Dwight D. Eisenhower, who once said that leadership was “The art of getting someone else to do something that you want done because he wants to do it.”  This is perhaps a simplistic definition, however it encompasses the ability to achieve a goal through the inspiring of others to not only do something… but to do it because they want to!  In his book “The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership”, John Maxwell is even more succinct and declares that “leadership is influence – nothing more, nothing less.” A 2002 SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management) survey showed that the most important qualities of a leader were: performance, character, adaptability, flexibility, persistence and ethical standards.  Rarely do I see a definition of leadership that entails the ability to teamkill people that don’t follow orders, to penalize insubordinates, or to rule with an iron fist.  More often that falls closer to “dictatorship” than “leadership”. Read more…

Me and My Gun

June 16, 2011 1 comment

OMG!! I’m one of “them”!!  How in hell did this happen??? I used to be such a nice girl. Now, I’ve become that stereotypical gamer… spending my evenings loading up some shooter game and yelling at people into the mic.  The fact that I’m old (49) and female, well that’s irrelevant because I’ve become exactly how I always thought gamers were – addicts who bought SOCOM or HALO and played them night after night.

I don’t really know how it happened.  It was never my intention.  I look at the games scattered near my console and most every night I find myself playing an FPS or shooter game – usually MAG, Homefront, L4D2, Resistance 2, KZ2 or sometimes Warhawk.  I find this odd.  I don’t like guns. I’ve never fired a gun in real life. I don’t know guns and always think a SCAR is a mark left by an injury, or that FAMAS is somebody misspelling Famous (OMG… I’m Famas!)  I don’t even know the differences between an SMG and an assault rifle and they all kind of seem the same to me – point, shoot.   Terms like bullet spread, grips and suppressors always sound vaguely S&M dirty to me. Read more…

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