the Andrew Bailey

Go big and go home!

Screenshot of Xen's alien landscape and scenery, with an ominous tower in the distance.

Black Mesa

Once upon a time, Valve released Half-Life: Source. Everyone expected it to have improved visuals, but were disappointed that it was merely a port. The water looked better, but since you're not looking at water for 99% of the time, that's not an improvement. Some industrious fans decided to make what they expected it to be, calling their project Black Mesa: Source. They set to remake Half-Life to a standard comparable to Half-Life 2. After practicing some mandatory Valve time, it appeared as a mod in 2013. A blogger wrote about it in 2014. Valve blessed the project, even granting permission to sell it on Steam. It released in 2015 with the same levels as the mod. They promised the ending Xen levels, which released in 2020. Said blogger bought this months ago, and it has been mocking him from his Steam library ever since.

Screenshot of Chaos Mode, where War transforms into a fiery demon.

Darksiders

Do you have a game that you like playing it one hour, then despise it the next? And that's repeated ad nauseum? That's my general opinion on Darksiders. I'm cruising through it for a while, then a boss comes around, and I wipe about 10 times on it, making me want to stop playing. However, there's some addictive quality here that made me want to come back of my own accord. It wasn't just a desire to finish it, but curiosity to see what happened next.

Screenshot of Dead Space 3 combat

Dead Space 3

I kinda knew that Dead Space 3 wouldn't totally disgust me like the last 2. It has far more of an action game vibe going on instead of a horror one. While almost none of the puzzles in this game revolve around broken equipment, there's still too much snot on the walls. It's pretty clear that these alien marker things don't make good things happen, but religious zealot cultists don't see it that way. We once again join Issac Clarke in his grim dark future.

Sitting around the campfire.

The Walking Dead Season 2 and Michonne

Now that Halloween is coming up, it's zombie time. Last year, I took a peek at the first season of Telltale's The Walking Dead. Thanks to Humble Bundles, I got some more at the same time as the others. This is more of the same.

Screenshot of me crusing the streets of the future.

Cyberpunk 2077

Cyberpunk 2077 is a complicated game. It came out broken, made some people angry, and caused hardware upgrades. Having sunk 100 hours into this over a near 100% playthrough, and halfway through another, I'm still not sure what to make of this. When I realized that the next blog post would be the 256th one, I thought it would be a crime to not have it be this. So let me get this out of the way before going into something seasonally appropriate.

Screenshot of WarCraft 3

WarCraft III

Some time ago, I asked a friend if I could borrow a few games to play on Twentieth Century. Even though he was born in the latter 90s, he's a big fan of 90s games from id and Blizzard. He presented a few Quakes and WarCrafts. I tried playing WarCraft 1, but a few missions in, I got annoyed by the lack of build queues and a 4 unit select limit. I got a bit further in WarCraft 2, but sometimes ran out of resources before getting an army off the ground. Back in the bad old days, I had downloaded and played the WarCraft III demo quite a bit, and I remember liking it a lot better. While the base Reign of Chaos game installed and ran fine on Twentieth Century, the Frozen Throne expansion refused to install, complaining about hardware requirements, even though it ostensibly met them. So I installed these on my main rig, and this article is about the originals; not about the new Reforged remaster.

Screenshot of Planetary Annihilation: Titans, with a commander exploding and another planet floating by in the background.

Planetary Annihilation: Titans

This game has quite the story behind it. When Supreme Commander 2 turned out as a dud, some of the people behind it left to form another company, and put together some ideas for a spiritual successor. Since the 2012 crowdfunding rush was in full swing, they launched Planetary Annhilation. After being quite expensive in early access, it came out to mild praise some time later. In 2015, they launched an expand-alone, Titans. This was a substantially discounted paid upgrade to existing players (original backers got it for free), and they discontinued sales of the original.