Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PS2)

I now seem to be working for Gonzales, as well as still doing some missions with Lance to try to recover where all the drugs we had have gone. It would appear that they’ve mostly gone up his nose. Anyway.

Also expanded the “empire” a bit, and now I’m stuck trying to blow up antennae on the tops of police stations. With a rocket launcher.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PS2)

Much of today’s play on this was spent on expanding my empire a bit, to earn a bit more money each day. Sadly, this wasn’t easy. In order to take over businesses, you have to destroy the vehicle outside them. But, since you can’t manually aim any of your weapons, this means you can only do it by smacking them with something like a baseball bat or golf club (which takes aaaaages), unless you happen to have some (wildly inaccurate) grenades.

Anyway. I did further the story a bit by taking photos of the army bloke and making out he was working with the police, in order to persude some drugs barons that I’m not the reason the drugs went missing. Or something. To be honest, the story is crap.

What isn’t crap, though, is the fact that I found a helicopter! Hurrah!

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PS2)

Gay bikers killed! I’m still not sure why they tried to kill me, but anyway. Then Forbes tried to escape, so I ran him down, then nicked a load more drugs and escaped to… the other island! Hurrah!

Lance, however, has spent all our money (again) on swish apartments. But then, he is an idiot. I’d kill him, but Tommy Vercetti will do that for me in Vice City a few years later.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PS2)

The story in this game really isn’t anywhere near as good as other GTA games. Everything you do seems to be for some tenuous reason. Vic isn’t into drugs, doesn’t want to deal in drugs, and yet almost every mission has him stealing drugs or lining up a drugs heist or something else to do with drugs. And if it isn’t drugs, it’s guns. All to earn money (which Lance seems to be spending faster than you can get it) on your other brother’s hospital care.

Today’s missions included kidnapping Forbes (who, it turns out, was a cop) and locking him in a flat tied to a chair. And then I infiltrated a gay bar full of bikers who decided to kill me. Because everyone knows that gay bikers instantly want to kill people who just happen to have entered their bar by mistake. I died a few times on that bit and gave up for the day.

I hope I get to the other island soon.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PS2)

You know, with “trails” turned off in the graphics options, suddenly everything is a lot better looking. But sadly, still awful.

Problems I had today:

In one mission, you have to use a fire engine to put out a fire. Controls for the fire engine’s water cannon are circle to fire, and the right stick to aim. So you need two right thumbs.

Near the first safehouse you get access to (just south of it, in fact) there’s a motorbike. If you get on it, a “collect shiny things” (or something) mini-game starts. But won’t actually start the clock until you collect the first shiny thing. However, having gotten on the bike, you can no longer start any other missions, even if you get off again. I found this out having driven miles away, and the only way I could “cancel” the mini-game was to destroy the bike, which was easier said than done. I pushed it into the sea using a taxi in the end.

Louise asked me to take over Marty’s business (after Marty became a bit dead), and for a mission I had to go and pick up two goons. Who really were goons, as they did nothing. I couldn’t recruit them, speak to them, or anything. They just stood there. So I ran them down and got Mission Failed.

The mission where you pick up Lance from the airport and then escape from the cholos, then get caught in an alley and have to shoot them? Bloody hell. The driving bit was fine (aside from the crap analogue sticks providing no accuracy on the targetting), but the alleyway was almost impossible due to the crap targetting and the way it kept locking on to already dead people instead of those people in my face, kicking my shins. It didn’t help that the next bit (get a car and escape the police to get to a hotel) was bloody hard too as the police kept blowing up my car mere inches from the hotel front door.

Aside from all them, though, it was “great”.

Grand Theft Auto: Vice City Stories (PS2)

Or rather, Vice City Stories of Blur and Brown. The game looks horrific. I mean, Canis Canem Edit didn’t look great, but this? Awful. It’s like someone took the original Vice City and smeared it with dirty hands. I suppose that’s what you get for porting a PSP game back to the PS2. Anyway.

So I’m Vic Vance, Lance Vance’s (from the original) brother, and this seems to be set a while before the original. I’m a corporal in the army, or rather, was, until my crack-head sergeant send me on drugs and gun running errands and I got the blame.

I then fell in with a few hicks who sent me off blowing up cholo vans and nicking cars and stuff, and then I won a quad-bike race. Oh, and then I did my usual trick of finding the airport and spending ages doing stoppies and wheelies, and jumping over things.

So far, so GTA. Complete with even worse controls than I recall. Despite being the same game engine as Canis Canem Edit, and being the same sort of game, they’ve switched the target button from L1 to R1, shoot from R1 to a face button, and taken away the ability to crouch. And the graphics… I’m not usually bothered by graphics, but when they’re a step behind previous games in the series, and they’re bad to the point where they’re affecting gameplay, I do have a right to moan a bit. I’ve hit a bug already too – all of the vehicles vanished. Every single one, even the moped I’d stashed in my garage – gone. All the people vanished too. Thankfully, starting a mission restored them all.

I’ll give it a bit longer, but I think San Andreas and Saints Row may have spoilt it for me already.

Canis Canem Edit (PS2): COMPLETED!

I won’t go into too much detail of the remainder of the game in case I spoil it for anyone reading, but most of the last hour or so involved beating up, then working with, the townies. I also had to vandalise the house of a teacher, and then there was a huge school-wide punchup, which almost became a SuckySuck(TM) bit as I had to take down all the clique leaders again.

Finally, there was the inevitable showdown with Gary, who had be strangely absent since Chapter 2 or 3. He was very, very easy to beat – I didn’t even take a hit – and then the game was over. Of course, there’s a Chapter 6, which exists solely to finish any remaining tasks, but the story is complete.

Oh, and I was wrong about Gary being the head’s son. Bah.

Canis Canem Edit (PS2)

With the nerds totally won over (again), we set about taking out the jocks. This mainly involved humiliating them to varying degrees (taking pictures of a cheerleader in the shower, gluing the american footballers to a bench, etc.) and eventually I had to take out the entire team on the field. Which was alarmingly easy.

And then Chapter 5!

And it’s all gone wrong. All the gangs hate me (again), and I had to do something to help each one. Johnny Vincent had gone missing (he’d been locked up in a loony bin, and there was a sneak-a-thon to get him out, and I hate them), the gym was on fire and I had to save all the girly jocks, and so on. And I had to trap a teacher in a portaloo and push it down a hill. Nice!

Canis Canem Edit (PS2)

Well, that’s all the Greasers dealt with. This chapter seemed somewhat short, but perhaps it’s just I found it easier and didn’t have to redo any bits.

Now I’m onto Chapter 4 – and time to take down the final clique (which is constantly pronounced as “click” by the characters in the game, much to my irritation – it should be “cleek”), which is the Jocks. Why, then, do I appear to be at war with the nerds again? Tch.

So I smacked them about a lot, broke into the observatory, took down their “leader”, aquired a spud gun, and now it’s time to team up with them and take the jocks down. As it were.

Canis Canem Edit (PS2)

I seem to have had a huge break from this, as I was a bit lost when I started playing – mainly with the awful controls. However, I soon picked up the plot from where I’d left off.

It’s Christmas, and I got a tasteful knitted festive jumper from my mum. I then had a few fights with Greasers, and the rich kids (caused by breaking into their “house” and killing a giant venus fly trap), and have become part of a love triangle (or square, or even hexagonal) with Johnny and Lola and Gord and just about everyone. Dirty girl.

Canis Canem Edit (PS2)

Completed Chapter Two today. This involved lots of punching posh kids, egging their house (with the help of Russell), bike racing, and taking some posh girl out on a date and winning her a teddy at the fair.

The “boss” was another posh kid who kept hiding behind a bar whilst sending minions out to smack me about, but they were weak and easily brushed aside. Gary had been winding them all up with lies about things I’d said about them.

So, now it’s almost Christmas and Chapter Three awaits!

Canis Canem Edit (PS2)

Didn’t progress the story all that much today, mainly just causing havok (well, as much havok as a catapult and some itching powder can, anyway) and attending classes. I’ve completed Art and Chemistry completely now, and managed Shop 2 as well. Still having real issues with the PS2 pad, but then, there’s nothing new about that.

Canis Canem Edit (PS2)

Russell DEFEATED! I think “blockhead” is the correct term for him. He’s a bit stupid, anyway. So I beat him up when Gary went a bit nasty and basically declared war on me (and the school). I’m starting to think Gary might actually be the headteacher’s son or something. There’s bound to be a twist like that somewhere.

After that, I ran some errands for the cook (opening up the town outside the school), entered a boxing competition and won a lighthouse (no, really), and failed Art 5 and Chemistry 5 (bloody PS2 pad). And got busted when I accidentally punched Beatrice in the face when I meant to kiss her. Again, complaints aimed at the PS2 pad. My detention was to mow some grass.

I’ve also acquired a camera from the filthy Ms Philips (who teaches Art) and taken and passed my first Photography class. And! I have a BMX now!

Canis Canem Edit (PS2)

Yes. It really has been over a month since I last played this. But, well, Forza 2 happened, and Carcassonne happened, and Retro Week happened and so on…

But anyway. So I’ve progressed in Art, Chemistry, English and Gym quite a bit. I’ve got a skateboard, helped a freaky hobo, taken part in some Halloween pranks, beaten lots of people up, raided a locker in the girl’s changing rooms, protected some nerds, and assorted other things.

Still not happy with the PS2 pad, but then, I rarely am.

Street Fighter Alpha 3 (PS2)

Hmm. Whereas Alpha 2 was mostly just Alpha with new (or rather, returned) characters and new backgrounds, Alpha 3 is totally new. Totally new fighters, new style, new super combo mechanics, redrawn characters (well, some of them anyway), and new moves.

I played as Ryu, who seems to have gained Ken’s super flaming dragon punch super combo and lost his vacuum hurricane kick, and had a pretty tough time of it actually. Too much blocking and countering for my liking.

It didn’t help that when I finally reached Bison, I died. And do you get to have another crack at him? No. It’s Game Over! Rubbish.

It’s a great game and all, but one fail on the end boss and you have to start the whole game again? Tch.