Posts Tagged ‘sex’

Fallout 3 Appreciation: All in the Atmosphere

SPOILER ALERT FOR FALLOUT 3

Seeing as how the Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim releases in a little over a week (Vote for what console you want Kat to play Skyrim on!), I wanted to take a look back at another game brought to us by Bethesda, Fallout 3.  I know that this game is old news; heck, even the full game expansion pack is likely old enough to be under $30 at your local retailer.  But I wanted to take a step back and examine what made Fallout 3 great.

When Fallout 3 first came out, I was only mildly interested, if that.  A game about a post-apocalyptic, war-torn land, with crazily mutated beings wasn’t exactly up my alley.  A friend brought the game over and showed me the gory head explosions (or whatever limb you happened to target) and seemed even less likely that I’d want to try it.

Fallout 3 Centaur

Yeah, this is really NOT what I picture when I think 'Centaur'.

Months later, the Game of the Year edition went on sale at Target.  I decided to purchase it and give Fallout a try.  After all, Bethesda had also given us the Elder Scrolls games, so that should say something good about Fallout.  Fallout 3 starts off pretty safe, with you growing up as a child in a vault that has protected you from the ravages of the radiated Wastelands.  Escaping the vault was both nerve-wracking and thrilling.  And stepping out into an eerily empty town with partially or mostly destroyed houses set a great, lonely tone.  It was a relief to finally make it to Megaton, knowing that there actually were survivors out there.  I decided to keep up with the ‘Following in His Footsteps’ quest.  I wanted to see Liam Neeson *ahem* – dad – again.  Unfortunately, since I’m such a Scaredy-Kat, going into the tunnels caused me minor panic attacks (Feral Ghouls, Super Mutants?!!!  Limited ammo?!!), and I gave up.  You have to admit, some of the creatures are very creepy.  (Centaurs!!?)

A month ago, I decided to pick the game back up, and was sucked in.  I found Dogmeat, and having a companion by my side made me feel much better about traversing the Wasteland and even… tunnels.  Once I had this confidence, I was able to see Fallout for the great game it actually is.  There are so many aspects to Fallout, so much to do and see.

Fallout 3 Couple

*ahem* This couple was clearly enjoying themselves when disaster struck. And the creepy part is, you still have the option of sleeping in that bed...

For one, this certainly is no kids game.  There’s the more obvious limb exploding and violent deaths, but there’s also a lot of rough language, sexual aspects, and just plain horrific events.  Visiting Minefield and seeing a smaller skeleton than most in a room that contains kids toys is just heart wrenching.  The whole deserted mood of Minefield is haunting (no pun intended).  Did anyone else pick up through their conversations that Jericho raped/attempted to rape Jenny Stahl?  And of course, there are the perks:  Lady Killer, Black Widow.  There are actual sex benefits to choosing this perk (at least for a woman as a Black Widow), and one being a threesome, in fact.  Nova is there for more than just viewing pleasure.

Fallout 3 Springvale

Telephone Poles: Built to Last, even through Nuclear Catastrophes!

Another is that this game, the whole Fallout series, presents a unique idea that hasn’t been explored as much as a genre like fantasy has.  And they do it damn well.  The vistas, while fascinating as a torn apart and gritty world, don’t exactly make me want to live in such a world.  But they speak strongly for what the game is portraying.  The mood created in the game is often lonely, always eerie, and deserted.  Most of what you encounter in the Wasteland is going to try to kill you.  Finding a town might be a safe harbor, but you can’t rely on that.  In fact, a lot of the towns will have something nasty lurking inside; Raiders, mines, fire ants, super mutants.  But in a world like Fallout, that fits perfectly.  It’s to be expected.

The story of Fallout is great because, while there is plenty of tension waiting around every corner, and you never know what you’ll encounter next, but there’s hope in this dark world.  There’s hope that life will continue, despite all the hardships, and that what’s been destroyed can be rebuilt.  And that’s really what keeps me playing.

-Kat

VN:F [1.9.11_1134]
Rating: 4.3/5 (3 votes cast)

Video Game Pin Ups: Nathan Drake

For this week’s Video Game Pin Up, I decided to choose someone whose roguish charm, rugged look and adventuring ways remind me a bit of Harrison Ford’s Indiana JonesNathan Drake, main character of the Uncharted series, definitely fits the bill of a sexy, sarcastic adventurer.  The award-winning Uncharted games would be nothing without their likable and relate able main character, Nathan Drake.

Mmm, man with a gun and still a sexy little smirk.

And of course, for us ladies, there’s the romance aspect.  Drake is great fun to play as, with his agility allowing death-defying leaps; but what’s better than a little heat brewing between two characters?  In Uncharted 2, sex is handled maturely, and adds depth to the story without seeming like the writers were snickering behind their hands when they added the scene.

Side note – Alistair‘s voice (well, Steve Valentine‘s voice) is totally in this game as Harry Flynn.  Isn’t it weird to hear Alistair talking in Uncharted 2?!  And Morrigan, aka Claudia Black, is also in the game as Chloe Frazer.  What the heck?!  Do they just rotate these excellent voice actors around from game to game??

Ass Stamp

We're happy to see YOU, Nathan Drake.

So, for Nathan Drake’s charisma, athleticism and pleasing appearance, he rightfully earns himself a spot on the Video Game Pin Up list, and our very own Ass Stamp of Approval.

-Kat

He looks ready for ACTION.

VN:F [1.9.11_1134]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Dragon Age: Origins – Would You Tent Me?

As I’ve continued further within Dragon Age: Origins – Awakening, I still find myself being incredibly huffy at AndersWhy is Anders such an A**hole? He hasn’t said a word of praise to me, while he’s flirted with every other female-resembling-object around.  I’m steamed, and apparently can’t seem to get over this.

So I will pass my question along to you, dear readers.  Tell me, would you tent Avaline?  With enticing green eyes, a sexy pout, long, lean legs, and never wearing more than those Chasind Robes found in the Kokari Wilds, Avaline is one hot little red-haired minx.  Don’t you agree?

-Kat

VN:F [1.9.11_1134]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)

Dragon Age: Origins – Rogue Love

A few quick things – Polish the Console moved to new hosting over the weekend!  You may see some new ads along the sidebar here at PtC.  And secondly, we have a guest blogger today!  After reading her comment in response to the Anders the A**hole post, I decided to take her up on her offer of writing a thesis on why she loved Zevran.  And now, Calamitybird’s post!

-Kat

“Allow me to say this:  What we are doing here, stopping the Blight…I cannot think of anything I have ever done which is so worthy.  I intend to see this through to the end with you.” – Zevran Arainai

Zevran

While Kat & Wadoobie retch, Calamitybird swoons.

Not a quote you’d attribute to Zevran? Unsurprising.  Little has brought girl gamers together quite so much in recent history as the shared love for Dragon Age and its dashing, British, wise-cracking hero Alistair.  Zevran arrives under deplorable circumstances, and easily makes a bad first impression.  The hate I see for Zevran in gaming forums is positively vitriolic.  I almost like it – I have a thing for underdogs, and admit I secretly enjoy feeling like I appreciate something others don’t ‘get’.  But when Kat offered me a chance to defend the honor of my sweet, pragmatic, oft-maligned Antivan hottie, I couldn’t resist the opportunity.

(Note:  Utterly spoilerrific in regards to Zevran’s history/dialogues.  If you still plan to give Zevran a chance on your own, set this aside for now.)

Sense of Humor: Yes, he has one.  Alistair tends to get the credit for this, and I understand why.  But the longer I played, the more I felt that Alistair’s humor was an old familiar I like to call the ‘Chandler’ variety (for those who remember “Friends”; otherwise think Xander from “Buffy”.  If you haven’t seen that either, what kind of geek ARE you?).  I began to see Alistair’s self-deprecating jokes as passive-aggressive and attempting to cover for a genuine lack of confidence and self-esteem.  Alistair gave me a ‘fishing’ feeling – he always needed me to validate him, to tell him what he thought and who he was and what to do.  And it got wearisome.  Man up, Alistair – I got over your type by the time I was 22.  Zevran admittedly doesn’t make with the charming zingers nearly as often, but jokes around often enough to show he does have a sense of humor, even about himself.  Given his cocky affect, the unflattering stories he chooses to tell about himself and his past adventures are unexpected, yet there is no awkwardness or fishing in the telling – he is simply comfortable pointing out his own mistakes and lucky escapes.

Zevran the Archer

Aren't elves always archers?

Hey, I Had A Hard Childhood Too:  With apologies to his fans, I got tired of Alistair’s daddy issues, which he seems to alternately attach to Eamon, Duncan, and Maric. He weaves tales of childhood abandonment and stepmom issues with a forced nonchalance that fails to hide his resentment.  And frankly?  He trailed off into near-tears over Duncan so many times that I was shocked when I discovered he’d only known Duncan for six months prior to Ostagar.  Even perhaps a little insulted, given that near as I could extrapolate from events, I’d been on the road with him playing therapist for at least twice as long by then and yet I doubted my demise would elicit the same epic moping.  Sure, Alistair had it tough.  But Zevran wins the Hard Childhood Contest hands down without a trace of the same bitterness.  Grudgingly raised by whores until he was barely old enough to be sold to murderers, then subjected to brutal and potentially fatal training (including, as the Warden witnesses in Zevran’s memories if he is brought into the Fade puzzle section, withstanding rack torture without crying out.  That’s fairly hardcore, I think.)   All of this he discusses unabashedly if asked, with a matter-of-fact perspective that acknowledges most of his peers had it worse, and that he appreciates life for the pleasures it does offer.

Easy Lover: I think this is where a lot of people get the impression of Zevran as being sleazy.  Folks, maybe I read too much Robert Heinlein and Spider Robinson, but I just don’t get this.  Zevran is actually quite respectful when it comes to sex (hey, stop laughing!),  which to him is simply this:  a Maker-given, enjoyable act between consenting people, compatible with but not bound to love and monogamy.  He says what he means, plays no games and oversteps no bounds.  Early on he caught me off guard by calling me beautiful, and then asked if he shouldn’t.  I told him not to …and I never heard another word about it, though I retained the conversation option to flirt first if I wanted that track back.  That pattern is consistent:  Tell him to back off – no matter how far things have gone already – and he graciously does, though you may really hurt his feelings as evidenced by the approval ratings.  Give him a clear signal that you are receptive, and prepare to be frequently reminded that you are incredibly sexy, dangerous and desirable.  When I experimented with romancing him and Leliana at the same time, however, he put his foot down – which greatly surprised me until I heard his reasons.  Though he would never lay a claim upon the Warden, he explains, he realizes Leliana (or Alistair as the case may be) is a traditional romantic…and that if you are seeing both of them, it is definitely not with the other’s informed consent.  “I am many things…but I am no cheat,” he says.  “If whatever is between us cannot be honest, let it not be at all.”  My inner Heinlein applauded.

License to Kill: This is where arguments with my BFF got particularly heated: as far as she’s concerned, this is the Insta-Win button.  Zevran kills for a living = Zevran is Eeevyil = The End.  But he’s always been completely forthcoming about his background:  Purchased at the age of seven, trained to know only murder, and threatened with death should he ever consider leaving.  To him, this is How The World Is.  Dig at his motivations, and there are great conversations to be had – about the definition of an ‘innocent’, about whether a mark would have been killed with or without his personal involvement, about whether he would ever choose to live his life another way if he had a choice. Take an accusatory tone with him, and he will ask the Warden to examine her own soldier past and the merit of the lives she has taken.  It’s clear that he has considered the question, and has done his best to fashion a philosophy he can live with.

Further, gain his trust more fully and Zevran will finally tell the Warden of his last assignment before this:  Mistakenly believing a woman he loved had betrayed them, he allowed his partner to kill her, turning a deaf ear to her cries for mercy.  He brokenly acknowledges his behavior was “utterly cruel” and makes no attempt to justify himself.  He then tells you he no longer wanted to live after that, and in fact had grossly underbid the other Crows on this assignment precisely in order to “throw (him)self at the one of the fabled Grey Wardens”.  Okay, that bears repeating:  Fully capable of both love and self-examination, he essentially admits to remorse so deep that he tried to kill himself in “suicide by cop” style.  Whatever his past, the Zevran now traveling with the Warden could no longer live as the person he had been, found compassion where he expected none…and is open to the possibility of another way.   Does he still want to die?  “No,” he answers.  “What I want is to begin again.  Whatever it is I sought by leaving Antiva, I think I have found it.”

Zevran Sex Scene

Easy to bed for sure. For any gender.

Mind you, all of this requires a compassionate Warden to bring out; treat him badly and he’ll quickly revert to old ways. I’ve heard Zevran called “easiest to bed and hardest to love”, and indeed it was only over a few playthroughs that I drew out his entire story and even an eventual declaration of love and a proposal of sorts.  But in a game filled with moral ambiguity, shady pasts and opportunities for redemption, he’s definitely one of the more fascinating and rewarding characters to get to know.

-Calamitybird

VN:F [1.9.11_1134]
Rating: 5.0/5 (4 votes cast)

Prince of Persia: Tenting Tension

Prince of Persia

Prince of Persia

To start off, I randomly got a new game this past weekend, Prince of Persia.  I thought I needed a break from all the Dragon Age excitement, and yes, even I will admit that it can get tedious after awhile.  When I start swearing at the screen every few minutes, it’s time for a change of pace.  Sometimes it’s nice to take a platformer and just enjoy the freedom it provides.  Sometimes I’ll do that with Assassin’s Creed – just scale buildings and run across rooftops and sometimes assassinate guards when I need to and run some more.

Prince of Persia is similar to Assassin’s Creed in that they’re both Ubisoft games, and both provide wide open worlds that you can perform amazing leaps and climb to impressive heights.  To be honest, I’ve never played any of the Prince of Persia games, so I’m not invested in the story emotionally.  I didn’t even realize that this isn’t the same ‘Prince’ who usually stars in these games.  This isn’t ‘Sands of Time‘ or ‘The Forgotten Sands‘; this is a whole different place with a whole different story.  And you have a sidekick.

Elika's hot, nimble, and totally going to fall for the Prince.

A hot, female sidekick with whom there’s a whole lot of sexual tension.

In fact, the story starts with a bang.  *wink wink nudge nudge*  And I aaaaalmost mean a bang.  Elika, your soon-to-be sidekick, literally falls on top of you.  Shortly thereafter, you are carrying her, catching her when she nearly faints after healing lands, grabbing her hand when you scrabble across a cliff wall, catching her in your arms when you drop from a height, flirting with her, holding her waist as you fight a warrior, etc.  Sure, she acts resistant, but with a guy who’s charming smile could dazzle stone and who’s chiseled abs could be used for laundry…it’s only a matter of time.

Many of the reviews that I’ve found for this Prince of Persia game are saying that the protagonist is unlikeable, stereotypical, and without a shred of a multi-dimensional personality.  I beg to differ.  While he may not be the funniest guy around, he makes an effort at jokes and in the process keeps the mood light where it could easily fall into the heavy and depressing side of things, and I’ve actually found myself giggling aloud at some of them.  Flat jokes are absolutely realistic.  Sometimes when guys try…they try to hard, and it’s painful.  Others might argue that it’s actually sexist to force Elika to be the sidekick when she seems to be more valuable to restoring the lands than the prince himself.  True, but what woman doesn’t dream about a knight in shining armor?  (Also, it’s kinda funny what comes up when you Google ‘knight in shining armor’.  I like the shopping results…there’s a teddy bear dressed up in medieval garb)  Plus, while Elika surely could figure out how to pick up a sword and could fight alone, I think she takes some strength from having a figure like the prince there alongside her.  Suddenly, the nightmare seems like it can be turned.  It’s not too overwhelming or impossible to overcome.

To be honest, all this ‘tenting’ tension has me playing longer than I might normally (yep, up until 1 am playing the other night).   I can’t wait to see what happens next.

-Kat

VN:F [1.9.11_1134]
Rating: 0.0/5 (0 votes cast)