754 Permission Slips.

This page… Architecture is absolutely not my strong suit. Against all odds I think this came out alright. I hope it seems at least a little creepy.

When I was in Garden last week I found Mario Galaxy on clearance, so I finally have a copy. For all intents and purposes it’s the same as the sequel. In fact I might even go so far as to call it a proof of concept for Mario Galaxy 2. It’s a lot of fun, but I think it would have been better if I had played it first. It’s not quite as polished as 2. Everything feels incomplete. I’m sure these feelings are caused by having played the games in the wrong order. Had I picked this up first I’d probably be touting Galaxy as one of the best games I’ve played.

I had a similar experience with Knights Of The Old Republic. I was working in a game store that was failing when it came out and I bought a lot of stuff I wouldn’t have normally just to make a sale once in a while. Even with the flaws KOTOR 2 had it seemed more polished than one when i went back and played it. I think that one is the superior game in many ways, but 2 has a more finished feel in some ways. I would love to see a KOTOR 3, but with the MMORPG coming out I suspect that is an empty desire. No matter what they do the MMORPG will not have the things in it that made me like KOTOR in the first place, plus I don’t play those kinds of games anymore.

I am not making this mistake with Mass Effect. I am going to play them in order. I might also try out Dragon Age if I can find the first game for cheap. I found a cheap used copy of Mass Effect and I’m playing a little bit of it and Mario every night.

It took a while for me to get the hang of combat in ME, but once I finally got it I loved it. Very much like how I hated the combat in KOTOR until I stopped thinking about it as an RPG. Or rather started thinking of it as a different kind of RPG.

Mass Effect is an impressive game in pretty much any way you choose to grade it. Like KOTOR it can be a little overwhelming at times though. The first city is sprawling and I expect it doesn’t get any more simple from there. At least the rapid transit is pretty ubiquitous. I don’t see why they just didn’t put it on the subscreen like in KOTOR though. I guess it adds to the cinematic quality.


You did a good job, if anything the moment the page loaded, Scooby Doo instantly popped into my head.

I’m playing Dragon Age right now in order to get a true perfect playthrough so I can feel satisfied playing Dragon Age 2, those in tune with ME series, you should definitely love them.
I have all 4 games, but I like Dragon Age better, if it’s sci-fi v. fantasy, I’ll choose Dragons and sword over aliens and blasters everytime, but that’s just me.

It’s 1pm here (est) so Dream World opens up today for you Pokefans reading the comic.

Ironic that you describe KOTOR 2 as feeling “More complete” considering the sheer amount of cut content in the game like the conclusion of the “Where did all the HK-50s come from?” plot.

I suppose I am one of the few people that wasn’t all that impressed with any Mario game after the first. And even the first was more impressive to me because it was the same game at the arcade and at home. Not that I didn’t enjoy them, at least until they went 3D, but they really weren’t anything I would have considered great. Mass Effect was sorta the same way with me. Although I do admit to getting my Seth Green fix out of it, I felt cheated after chosing (what was it they call it in ME again? Infiltrator?) Anyway, I chose the supposed sneaky build, and got pretty much zero opportunity to be sneaky. It was sort of like playing Metal Gear and just shooting everything instead of, I dunno, sneaking around. Plus it has that annoying habit of most shooters where you hit someone with a sniper rifle and then every enemy charges at you. I mean, it’s a sniper rifle, how the hell are they able to pinpoint the shot’s origin from one bullet? I realize this isn’t the issue it was way back when, but it still bothers me in every game I find it in. Now pinpointing you after a dozen shots and you aren’t smart enough to move…. That’s at least understandable.

Ah, the old haunted schoolhouse. Jinkies. So is the clock missing a hand? Or is it stuck at 4:20? Like school let out late one day and it stayed there forever. Can they get in the front door? That’s assuming the doors aren’t locked. Abandoned buildings tend to get locked up to prevent various transgressions (primarily squatting and vandalism, but also often for safety reasons. Don’t want that bad ceiling to come down on some poor, unsuspecting person who wasn’t supposed to be there in the first place.)

Also reasonably sure that whoever would notice the car, too. Slightly less easy to conceal out in the flatlands.

Definitely play Mass Effect before the sequel, because you will feel exactly the same thing you described about KOTOR2 versus KOTOR. In fact, you will feel it much more so. ME2 very much builds on the first one. In plot, in polish, in gameplay. Its one of the few sequels where they truly take the weaknesses of the first one and address all of them. Does ME2 succeed in all of it? Thats a matter of opinion (I think it did, though), but nobody can deny that this was overall an improvement.


Yeah, I think you captured creepy and the building is clearly identifiable as an elementary school, circa 1955.

Boy, John’s really falling down on the job — directions, permissions — did he come prepared at all?


If you liked KOTOR, you’ll probably like most of the Bioware games. At least some of them are available inexpensively on Steam, so you might check that out.

Also, for a series of thoughts and meta-reviews on Bioware games by someone who likes them, start at this blog post and follow chronologically:

The building freaks me out. It’s got a really sureal ghosty feel to is. If you’ve got the hang of ME’s combat system then the game become a lot more interesting. ME2’s combat system is less complex and a little bit more fun. Enjoy.

Ha! Jon’s done all his research viewing B-grade scary movies. The characters in those movies never research in depth or prepare adequately, even if they’re aware of any possible danger. If they did, what would be the fun in that?

And here I am wondering what happened to Jolene’s hat.

The creepy school is very creepy, dude.

I loved KoTOR and Jade Empire. I want to love Dragon Age and Mass Effect, but I can’t. The stories are just, not grabbing me. Well, I shouldn’t say that. They do grab me, but they don’t hold me for long. It really makes me mad, since I absolutely love how polished and beautiful these games are, and the obvious amount of time and energy was put into making long and involved storylines, which are usually the ticket for good RPG’s. Another problem for me is that both DA and ME (the originals) have very unappealing combat systems that I could never find my groove with; ME felt like it was trying to be a tactical game and a fast paced shooter at the same time and not really succeeding at either, while DA felt like I was playing a WoW dungeon except I’m micromanaging the entire party instead of minding my own self. I’d better stop because this is turning into a rant.

I’ve heard that the sequels to both these games smooth out many of the combat flaws from their predecessors, but much like you, I don’t want to play a sequel before the original when there’s so much backstory I’d be missing out on. Oh well, guess I’ll go play Jade Empire again. :P

@BriGuy, sorry i gotta ask why were you micromanaging your team in DA, i played through it and found as long as i set the tactics settings right i could concentrate on my own combat tactics with dying very rarely. and as far as mass effect and it’s sequel’s story you don’t really have to play the original. granted some of the subtle parts of the story will be lost but you can make your story if you start a new character by answering a few questions at the beginning of the game.

but to be fair if you want the full experience it’s recommended that you play the first to completion as you can move your save from the first game over to the second, even though you will start over from scratch when it comes to level, equipment, and money. oh just FYI if your following the ME story line don’t get rid of the ME 2 save either since you can import into the third game. supposedly this is supposed to cause you to have over a 1000 substory lines and potential variations of the story line.

I find its awesome to no end that thomas drives a car from the 1940’s from the profile i looks like a ford 1946 super delux tudor sedan

I wouldn’t sweat it about the architecture. You may not be good at making buildings that behave properly, but neither were the architects from when that building was supposed to be built.

If permission was all that was needed to investigate spooky places, Scooby and the others would never get anywhere.

“I was working in a game store that was failing”

Well that sort of informs the comic, now doesn’t it…

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