Saturday, December 15, 2007

Argh, Crippled Graphics Card...

I just realized how terrible my graphics card really was. I downloaded one of those stress tests that measure the performance of your GPU and decided to give it a spin. No pixel shading support. Low framerates on moderately complex scenes. Huge problems with reflections. Such is the track record of MX models of Nvidia GPUs. I have an Nvidia Geforce2MX and it's a sad day when I can't play Morrowind with somewhat of a decent looking graphics quality. Also, Metal Gear Solid 2 just chuuuuugs. I even had problems with Final Fantasy 8 of all games. Is my computer really slower than a PSX?
Back on the subject of Morrowind, I love that game. Morrowind is really my kind of game despite obvious technical limitations and inevitable frequent crashes caused by the very thing that makes them lest devastating: saving. I don't mind those so much so I can just enjoy Morrowind even if it crashes every 15 minutes or so. I really like the sense of exploration you get by traversing the land because I was always fond of open-ended games that allowed you to roam free and do whatever you like. Morrowind lets you do just that. You can fight monsters, do quests, or even quite literally get away with murder (if planned properly... good thing premeditation isn't a factor in this game) assuming you can evade the guards.
That's the beauty of this game though, no rules. They designed the game so that they gave you some items, a world to explore, a bunch of quests, but you are not obligated to do anything. This is a game where you can have endless hours of fun without doing anything related to the quest. Also, like I said before, you can be a criminal if you choose to. As there are no rules to this game except for the laws imposed by the government in the game (which you can break) you can realistically simulate being as crooked as you like. Inversely, you can be a heroic knight that stands up to the mighty forces of the Daedra and kills monsters. I prefer a more indirect approach to everything. I like to stop along the way to smell roses and stuff.
People may make games and claim that they are "Open ended" or "non linear" but fail to make it as such because they impose too many rules and boundaries. On Morrowind, there are more than a few ways to do things and bend the rules a little. Say for instance you needed to get through a gorge with an enemy stronghold at the bottom of it (you are at the bottom too). You could either:

A: Go through the stronghold kililing enemies along the way.
B: Cast a jumping spell on you and use your empowered jumping to scale the stronghold and cross to the other side.
C: Repeatedly use invisibility effects to cross the stronghold unseen and avoid conflict.
D: Scale the gorge and go thorough.

There are probably other ways to get across, but I've barely scratched the surface of this game. I really like the open endedness of the game because sometimes the linear games get a bit boring and you run out of new things to do. Morrowind has variety and lots of map area to explore. I personally recommend it to anyone who doesn't have the computer for Oblivion (the sequel) or just wants a fun game filled with variety.

No comments: