Date Joined: 11/06/08
Pros: I took a chance and picked this game up on sale almost a year ago. I ended up really liking it. I had played a few MMO's before (WOW and Guild Wars), and this one was by far my favorite. The ship to ship combat is straight out of pirates (or the even better, though incredibly rare Sea Dogs), the environments and characters are unique and attractive, and the mission and rewards structure keeps you coming back for more.
Also, once you get a couple dozen hours into the game, the brilliance of the economy starts to unfold in front of you. It takes a while to grasp its intricacies, but it is one of the most phenomenally addictive systems of buying and selling I've ever seen. There are players out there who have made their entire fortunes on learning and exploiting it, and others who buy their goods and use them to fight and earn their own cash.
Also, there is a good social structure put into place.
Cons: The avatar combat, at least when I was playing it 10 months ago, was fairly atrocious. It integrated some good concepts (like different fighting styles and plenty of WOWish special moves), but in the end it always turns into a mad button-mash. This is probably due to the fact that you are often going it alone in these missions, as they're all instances, but strategy is neither required nor rewarded (unlike in the naval combat).
Also, like so many MMO's, PoTBS does not have a very large player base. I started playing right after they merged a bunch of servers, and even still, there were very few real people patrolling the seas, and those that were were usually high-level PvPers looking to sink my puny ship.
I did join a society, which helped me get into player interaction and PvP combat, but even so, the Caribbean was largely populated by bots. It also probably didn't help that I chose to play as a Spaniard, one of the least popular nations in the game...
Overall Review: This game is the best MMO I have ever played. Anyone who likes pirates and swachbuckling should pick it up, as well as those who are interested in a truly brilliant economic system.
I stopped playing because I was going on vacation without my pc, but I may pick it up again soon, just to see if it's improved.
Pros: Works great. Looks fine. Roughly three times cheaper than what you can find in stores - even with shipping.
Cons: Tried to cook me breakfast, but failed.
Overall Review: I have so many other thoughts I just can't handle it. Too bad I'd break my 1,000 word limit if I posted 'em all here.
Pros: This games has some seriously awesome moments to offer, particularly while you are controlling the grizzled Reverend Ray. The quickdraw element (allowing you to slow time when both guns are holstered before whipping them out to reign fire down upon your enemies) is particularly sweet. The weapons do get a tad stale by the end of the game, but it always throws new situations at you which involve pwning countless outlaws and desparados.
Cons: Unfortunately, that end comes very soon. I played this game for maybe about six hours before it was over, with little reason to play through it again. The end just made me want more balls-to-the-wall reverend action HOWEVER...
Many of the levels played as Billy (the title's other protagonist) are downright boring. This game has all of the trappings of a particularly bad-a** FPS, but only half the game plays as such. A level towards the middle of the game which revolves around you riding through a pretty but boring southwest environment, hunting rabbits and climbing a mountain in a bad platforming twist was particularly offensive.
Also, though the games has some nice graphical touches, it is definetley aging poorly. Many of the textures (particularly on clothing) are just bad. I had the game set all the way to maximum settings on directx10, and was not impressed by many of the sights to be seen, though the overall setting provides a very compelling backdrop for the decent story.
Overall Review: Really you should buy this game, download a save file right near the end, beat it, then use the chapter select just to play Reverend Ray's chapters. Billy's levels are one big yawn once the novelty of the bow wears off, and the story is neither so excellent nor difficult to grasp that it requires the frustration they provide. Cutting these levels would take the game's running time down to about 3 hours, but they would be some of the most fun ones you've had on a computer in a long time. For the price this little stick of dynamite goes for, they're definitely worth taking a look.
Pros: Convenient knobs for volume and backlight; detachable num-pad you can fix to either side, LOTS of customizable macros and lots of options in general with the software; sweet, adjustable, blood-red backlighting; looks great sitting on my desk next to the sidewinder X5 mouse; solid feel when hitting the keys, though also not to loud or clicky.
Cons: It may just be my clumsy hands, but the keys feel just a tad cramped. Also, the layout of the non-qwerty keys is slightly different then on most other keyboards, most notably (as others have already pointed out) the odd placement of the escape key (an vital key in any gaming session), and the macros buttons on the side, which I occasionally hit instead of ctrl.
Lastly, the lack of any tilt whatsoever is slightly offputting at first, though I realized after trying to jury-rig something myself it lacks this feature because of the detachable key-pad, which to me is a good tradeoff.
Overall Review: A good-looking and very functional keyboard with lots of options which make it great for gaming, but the oddly cramped feeling it has when typing keeps it from being perfect.
I can report however, that I have had none of the problems with pressing multiple buttons that others have experienced, though admittedly, I have not exactly gone looking for them.
Pros: I have been using this mouse for a few months now, and have come to favor it over all my others. Some differences are immediately noticeable (like just how cool it looks lit up), but others, like the on-the-fly dpi switching and well placed side buttons are features whose convenience you really start to appreciate and miss when you're using a generic, cheaper mouse.
Also of note: I've used this mouse on a variety of surfaces including my desk, my floor, and even my pants leg, and it always tracks flawlessly.
Cons: The 'games for Windows' palm button is unnecessary, and can lead to some obnoxious situations if accidentally clicked, though they make this pretty hard to do. As others have said, the mouse seems occasionally not to actually read the odd click or two, though for some reason this problem has become much less frequent as I use it more and more. The only other minor gripe I have is that I wish it included just one or two more buttons, but this is probably just a personal preference.
Overall Review: A solid mouse for a good price. Looks cool and performs well; especially useful features for gaming. The included software is decent, with a ton of options if you really want/need them. I would definitely recommend it for its mix of style and convenience.