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Christmas 1995…Santa finally came through for me…with the newly released Sony Playstation. A few days later, I was strolling the streets looking for my first ‘next-gen’ adventure. While browsing the very limited collection of games, one cover stuck out from the rest…A little wizard partnered with Death (riding a luggage chest) being chased by a giant turtle … I’ve always had a strange sense of humour and when I spotted the familiar name of Monty Python’s Eric Idle on the cover I happily parted company with my cash.

Discworld did not disappoint in any way. It looked fantastic! One thing I still love today is the hand drawn, unique styled backgrounds. Not only did they bring the magical world to life, but with a re-render I think they’d still look great against anything today.

The game’s charm didn’t stop with the design, which Pratchett had personally overseen. The voice talent was also incredible. Eric Idle, Jon Pertwee and Black Adder’s Tony Robinson were brilliant. It was a real shock for well known actors to step into the gaming world. I guess this was an early stage when games started using acting talent to enhance their characters. Whilst writing this short piece I also stumbled upon another name on the credits. Gavin and Stacey’s Rob Brydon, this must have been after his own adventure into shopping Television.

The story revolves around a dragon which terrorizes Ankh-Morpork, the largest city on the Discworld. The wizards of Unseen University are charged with the task of banishing the dragon. You play as Rincewind, the University’s worst wizard and thus you are also its most expendable…It is your quest to deal with the beast. The plot thickens as you discover that it has been summoned by an evil brotherhood…Rincewind has his work cut out.

Just like Rincewind, the gamer is equally challenged. Discworld is a hard, unforgiving game that adds its bizarre humour into puzzles…with an obscure logic. For example; at one point you need to acquire the magic staff of a high ranking wizard at the Unseen University, unfortunately he’s clutching it while in a restful slumber. So how do we get it? You soak a snake in starch to make it stiff OF COURSE…WHAT ELSE?! Then use your Indiana Jones style skills to swap it without him knowing.

The bulk of the events throughout the game escape me…it was 1995 when I last played it…but I do remember loving every minute. Besides, that’s the best time to take the game for another spin, when everything seems almost new and you can’t remember how to solve every puzzle. So I’m off to keep my appointment with death…he’s a keen poker player!

I think Death is bluffing...but how do I tell?


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This is an appeal to my brothers in arms…if you’re sat on the fence, grasping Modern Warfare with postmortem hands and a fear to try something new…JUMP DOWN, grab your ammo, fear no explosions, enlist and ship out!

I was once one such person, curious about what MAG said it would bring to the table with its 256 soldiers battling it out for supremacy in the shadow war. I had a vision of chaos reigning supreme, nobody listening to orders, DOGS AND CATS LIVING TOGETHER…but in reality, Zipper Interactive have made an addictive shooter with depth and strategy creating that “just one more round” feeling.

For those who enlist there are three factions to choose from but once you join a faction you cannot pick another…until you reach lvl60 at least. I originally thought this was a bad idea but this persistence builds faction loyalty as you fight alongside familiar teammates trying to make your faction superior. You become a band of brothers in the virtual sense.

When playing on the larger maps it can feel a bit overwhelming at times with planes flying over, AA guns firing and people dying all around you. This creates the atmosphere…add to this the knowledge that everything around you is being caused by someone and not a set scenario the fight morphs into an organic manmade battleground.

As you progress you become eligible to apply for squad leader, this is your introduction to the command structure of MAG which takes it above and beyond the call of duty. A squad leader is in charge of a squad of eight players and can designate a target such as a bunker or AA gun for his squad to assault. Staying near the squad leader boosts abilities like increased reload speed or resistance to damage. More importantly, squad members will earn double experience for following orders and taking out or repairing targets along with any enemies within the vicinity, which is a powerful incentive to follow orders. With further progression up the ranks you can apply for further promotions and with these come more powerful abilities to swing the battle in your favour like air strikes or calling in respawning squad members as paratroopers (providing all AAguns have been taken out) add to this the idea of being in charge of a team of 127 other players is mouth watering.

So for those of you who are unsure about MAG, bored of modern warfare and crave a deeper challenge then my advice is simple….give it a try. You may love it, you may disagree with everything I’ve said but at least you will make your own opinion and that is the least MAG deserves….GAME ON!

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