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Living In A Box (Big Money Remix)

This is the first of two posts in which I’m going to get a little silly and tell you what Xbox 360 games I’m keen on getting in the near or not-so-near future. The title outside the brackets is a jab at my current state of mind (living in my Gamerscore and Live Arcade) couched in a semi-obscure music reference; no-prize if you can figure it out.

So what games do I want for the Xbox 360?

  • Halo 3, naturally. I’m harbouring the hope that I can snag the Legendary Edition with the SPARTAN helmet; I think I need to put a pre-order in soon. The good bit is that I have at least six months to stash the rest of the purchase price; I think Bungie are tentatively pegging the release date at Christmas time. Even if there isn’t anything really ground-breaking in the game, I still want to see How The Story Wraps Up, especially after the cliffhanger ending of Halo 2 and that damned announcement teaser:
    • Is the mysterious object uncovered by the Covenant under the Earth’s surface the Ark that 343 Guilty Spark mentioned in the closing cutscene of Halo 2?
    • Does the Gravemind have anything to do with Cortana’s seeming onset of rampancy?
    • Will the Elites, Grunts and Hunters side with Humanity in order to stop the Prophets, Brutes and Jackals commencing the Great Journey?
    • Will we see the Arbiter again?
    • Will the Master Chief survive? You know, aside from dying over and over while I try to beat a particular level?
    • And will the music be as good as it’s been all the way through the first two games?
  • Mass Effect. Cool-looking SF universe, potentially Privateer-level of explorability, Knights of the Old Republic RPG elements polished to a phenomenal degree, “save the galaxy” storyline – what’s not to like about this picture? No firm release date, although the last fan-based FAQ quotes the designers as talking about April and/or May, so I’d better start saving my pennies.
  • Guitar Hero II. At $150 for game and guitar, it’s a “wait until I see how much birthday money I get” proposition. Although I’ve long been ambivalent about the whole guitar-playing rhythm game idea, this post by Wil Wheaton decided me in its favour. Plus, King Podge reckons it’s an absolute blast – when his 360’s working, anyway. (Gives me a chance to catch up on his massive Gamerscore…)
  • Transformers. If you know me, you know I’m keen on this game. From what I’ve read about it, it’s sort of a MechAssault meets Grand Theft Auto. Now, I found GTA3 a bit too emptily repetitive (if they’d included some sort of car customisation/upgrade feature, I probably would’ve been hooked), but – as you can play the Autobots – I like the idea of a GTA with something of a moral compass (okay, yeah, I know, Crackdown and all, but Transformers!). Plus, just look at those screenshots (or don’t, if you’d prefer your cinematic experience unsullied by possible spoilers): nigh-on Gears of War-quality Transformers duking it out! And they transform! I think we’re looking at a June release date, although I think July would make more sense, being closer to the film’s opening date.
  • Halo Wars and Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars. Real-time strategy games on a console? Ludicrous, my good man, ludicrous! Yet Ensemble Studios, home of the Age of Empires/Mythology games, and Electronic Arts, owners of the C&C franchise, reckon they can make their respective games work on the 360. The former is a Halo game, so naturally I’m interested. The latter – well, instead of talking gameplay or universe, let me just throw some names at you: Billy Dee Williams. Michael Ironside. Tricia Helfer. Grace Park. All in glorious HD video cutscenes not seen since the halcyon days of the original C&C games and Wing Commander, and I hope the acting is just as hammy!

If you’re following with your calculator, you’d realise I’m looking at around $7-800 worth of games. I reckon, if I were frugal, I can probably stash $40, maybe $50 per month away. I like the challenge, though; I want to earn these games, so I don’t feel too guilty about buying them. The good bit is I’m only really looking at two games in the immediate future; Mass Effect and Transformers. I know C&C3 is due very soon, but I’m in no real hurry to buy it – let’s face it, I bought C&C2 for James Earl Jones and Michael Biehn and couldn’t have been arsed finishing the game.

In fact, if I were to pare the list down, I’d likely excise the RTS games, or at least shove them into next year (by which time the prices should have dropped a little, or there’d be a sale on). For all I know, Halo Wars mightn't even be out until next year anyway. Also, Guitar Hero II is definitely an only-if-I-have-money-to-be-silly-with purchase (i.e. birthday or Christmas money), so that's shaved $350-400.

But wait – there’s more…

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Another good thing about XBL is that you can download demos of full games too! The CnC3 demo should be up soon, and Armored core 4 is worth looking at for the mechatastic fun at least. For this you may have to create a silver account pretending you're in the US, but that's not too hard. Harder might be sparing the few gig of download bandwidth :)

Oh, and I'm looking forward to Mass Effect too, should be a good. one!

Oh you silly man...fancy warning me in advance! Now I'm going to have to find some cruel and unusual method of keeping up with you! LOL


What - you mean Gamerscore-wise? Hee, there's a thought! Set you up with your own profile, get you a Silver (Free) Live subscription, leave you home with the Xbox all day... you'll have me outstripped in no time! :-D

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