Big Guns and Big Cats

We’ll start today’s blather with a game review.  Dawn of War II was waiting for me when I got home last night, and I eagerly began the installation process in anticipation of the bloodletting that would follow.

This brings me to the first thing that irritated me about DoW2.  As a copy protection measure, half of the game is included on the DVD.  If you want the other half (for which you have already paid), then you have to open a Steam account with Valve.  Only then will you be permitted to download the rest of the product which you have already bought.

So, you finish the installation and run the program – only to be told that you need a Windows Live account in order to run the game.  And in order to use Windows Live, you have to patch and reboot your XP-based computer, then load the web page, and create and account.

So, you’ve created two accounts and downloaded half of a game and a patch for your operating system, and you try to run the game again.  Only to be told that in order to really run the game, you have to set up a gamer profile in your Windows Live account.  And if you want to use all the features (like trophies), it must be a public gamer handle.  Screw it, screw the features, I created a private handle.  When I want to play an online game, I play WAR or another MMO.  When I play another game, I want to play offline.  I don’t want to deal with anyone else, I don’t want to receive email from anyone else, and I sure as hell don’t want anyone else checking up on me.

The actual game play of DoW2 is pretty good, but this unwieldy front end process makes me want to uninstall the game and ship it back to Amazon.  A game should be a joy to play, not a chore.  Irritation, even in small doses, is bad.  Cackling in insane glee as a devastator quad takes apart a unit of lightly armored Eldar is good.  So, if you can get someone else to set DoW2 up for you, it’s worth playing.  If not, drink a couple of beers first to deaden the pain.

On the WAR front, I didn’t have much time to play, but I did crank out a quick 6 renown ranks on my White Lion on the Vortex server.  Most of it was from RvE – at the late hour when I got involved, Destro had gone to bed for the night.  Luckily, there were a few BOs open for taking.  Being that I’m sitting at level 10 already, I really don’t want to touch scenarios.  I snagged a few items from the renown vendor to fill out my gear, and things are looking better.

I hope to get my White Lion well into tier 2 and get my Archmage to level 20 this weekend.  Hopefully, I can scrape the time together.

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