the Andrew Bailey

Go big and go home!

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.

Screenshot of Superliminal, showing a warehouse disintegrating.

Superliminal

Once upon a time, I saw a preview of a trippy game called The Museum of Simulation Technology. It was a puzzle game where you changed the sizes of things by placing things closer or further away. They were local, and it was in a contest at a local college, but I don't think it won any prizes. I signed up to the newsletter, but everything went quiet. I got my hands on the initial preview game, and wondered if this was still happening. A name change to Superliminal and one Epic Store exclusivity period later, it came out on the other game stores.

Screenshot of Batman and some thugs.

Batman: Arkham Origins

I had a gaming fail. You know how I sorta remember that Halloween is coming up a week before, and scramble to play a spooky game in time? That sort of happened again. I didn't know that this game took place on Christmas Eve until I started playing it. The problem? I started playing it the day after Christmas.

Screenshot of a station wagon going down the road at night.

Organ Trail: Director's Cut

No, this game isn't a mispronunciation on "Oregon Trail". Organ Trail is what you get if you cross that with zombies. This was a Flash game made around 2010, then it had a Kickstarter. I got this in a Humble Bundle. Don't be fooled into thinking this "Director's Cut" massively upgrades the visuals. This one looks like the original Oregon Trail from around 1980. This one doesn't have deluxe VGA graphics, but they are sufficient to get the job done. While it has pixel art graphics, it doesn't render in low resolution.

Screenshot of bullet time in Max Payne 3

Max Payne 3

Max Payne 3 was not developed by Remedy, but by a division of Rockstar (the Grand Theft Auto people). Years after closing the book on how he and his family were screwed, Max Payne gets hired as private security for a rich business owner in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Oh, except he had other run-ins before, which some levels flash back to. (Ugh, couldn't we have started from there?)

Screenshot showing some Promethean war dogs.

Halo 4

At last, 343 Industries released Halo 4 in the PC Master Chief Collection. Note that up to this point, Bungie had made all the main entries. By the time they made Reach, they had already bought themselves back from Microsoft. They cited oppressive corporate culture, and went straight into the crushing arms of Activision. (Why oh why did Bungie think Activision would be better?) Microsoft formed 343 Industries to pick up where Bungie left off, and this is the first of the new series.