Archive for August, 2008


Far Cry 2 Impressions: Part 1

Okay, I’m up to my eyeballs in Far Cry 2 at the moment. So I don’t have a ton of time. But I’d like to share a few cool things I’ve encountered while playing the game over last few days.

Fire: The game has the most advanced fire propagation system I’ve seen in anywhere. Fire is greatly influenced by wind so if you’re not careful when tossing molotov cocktails or dousing dry grass with the flamethrower, the wind can push the fire right back in your face. Always attack with the wind at your back. Also, fire is less effective in lush or moist environments, such as jungles. And you can forget going pyro in the middle of rainstorm. This is just one way the dynamic weather system can impact tactics.

Wild Life: Yeah, there’s a bunch of critters inhabiting the game world including water buffalo, antelope, wildebeests, and zebras. During one of my earliest gameplay sessions I spotted a small herd of wildebeests galloping through a savanna. So I stomped on the gas pedal (…er right trigger,) in my jeep and drove alongside the herd. It was a very Dances with Wolves like moment…yet in Africa…and without tatanka…or President Roslin. Then last week a zebra jumped out in front of my dune buggy while I was cruising at about 60 kph. The dune buggy won that collision, but not without seriously messing up the front end.

Weapon Degradation: Unlike most shooters, the weapons in Far Cry 2 have a life cycle of their own. When first bought, they’re shiny, clean, and reliable. But with repeated use they begin to jam, collect dirt, and even rust. So be careful when using old weapons. I was sniping some enemies with my trusty (and rusty) sniper rifle when the thing literally exploded in my face. Fortunately I escaped injury, but suddenly I was in the middle of nowhere without a primary weapon…and my intended targets were preparing for a counter-attack.

Well, gotta get back to work. I’ll share more about the game in the coming weeks.


Viva Pinata: Trouble in Paradise Author Tips!

From the ruffians…er…writers of the Viva Pinata: Trouble in Paradise Prima Official Game Guide comes a selection of author tips to get your garden started right.  Brought to you by Bryan Stratton, Andre Fredrick and the letter P!

1) Each Piñata can perform two tricks. To get them to perform each trick, you need to find the food item that triggers the trick and feed it to them. Tap the Piñata with the Trick Stick when it’s doing the trick, and you’ll be able to use that Trick Stick to make any Piñata of the same species perform on demand!

Continue reading ‘Viva Pinata: Trouble in Paradise Author Tips!’


Prima Games Author Blog Widget

Can’t spend a day without your favorite strategy guide insiders, well check out our awesome new widget available in tons of colors and customizable formats.  Click below on the image or through the right sidebar!


The widget in use over at the Random House Blog: Suvudu!


Spore Contest, Sims Preview, Guide Discounts, oh my!

It’s Wednesday, which means a whole lot of awesome stuff came out yesterday, huzzah!

Here’s a quick overview:  Spore Contest | Sims 2 Apartment Life Free Chapter | Viva Pinata Trouble in Paradise Free Pinata Prospectus | Warhammer Online Quiz | 25% all eGuides | Read More Below!

Continue reading ‘Spore Contest, Sims Preview, Guide Discounts, oh my!’


The Sims 2: Apartment Life Author Tips 3/3

More author tips:

7. Another way to prevent noise is to line floor next to the common wall with objects (i.e. sofas, tables, bookshelves, etc.). If the tiles adjacent to entire length of the wall are inaccessible to your Sims, no noise will be created because your Sim can’t get close enough to bang on the wall.

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The Sims 2: Apartment Life Author Tips 2/3

Check out some more tips from Greg Kramer!

4. Mind your Sim’s Reputation. If it’s good enough, it can increase the odds of getting Secret Networking Benefits.

Continue reading ‘The Sims 2: Apartment Life Author Tips 2/3’


Too Human: Deciphering Reviews/Bonuses

So the game’s out and the reviews are in. Overall, I feel the critical response was unjustly harsh. Though I admit, when I first started playing the game back in April, I knew this was going to be one of the most divisive 360 game’s since Shadowrun. Either you get it or you don’t. I’m not sure the deadline-wary reviewers spent enough time with the game to really explore its depth. It wasn’t until the second play-through that I fully grasped the finesse of the combat system and powerful customization offered by the skill and alignment trees. Granted, it’s not a perfect game. No game is. But I feel it deserved better. Hopefully the public looks past the reviews and enjoys the game for what it is. I’ve been playing the game for months now and can’t wait to dig into the retail version. Maybe when I’m finished rampaging through Africa?

Looking through the forums there seems to be a little confusion about some of the game’s more cryptic bonuses. Don’t feel bad. I had the same problem. Fortunately, Silicon Knight’s Henry Sterchi helped us with some of these definitions for the guide. Here’s a few definitions of the more common (yet vague) bonuses you may find applied to certain weapons and armor:

Aggression: Increases aggro (makes enemies mad at you faster)
Dexterity: Increases base gun damage
Experienced: Increases experience bonus
Hybrid: A legacy term for plasma
Mastery: Increases named skill tree node by noted level (class-based)
Soothing: Decreases aggro
Strength: Increases base melee damage

For more Too Human info, check out our guide. Included are names (and functions) of fused charms as well as definitions and descriptions of all enemy polarities and associated status effects. We also have stats for all epic weapons and armor pieces.


The Sims 2: Apartment Life Author Tips 1/3

Apartments, communites, roomies, witches and more!  The Sims 2: Apartment Life is full of new goodies for all your Sims and master Sims player Greg Kramer has a set of tips to get your apartment setup correctly the first time!

1. When your Sim is first transformed into a witch by the NPC Witch (Good or Evil), buy as many of each kind of reagent as your Sim can afford. Nothing’s more frustrating than having all this new power and no way to use it.

Continue reading ‘The Sims 2: Apartment Life Author Tips 1/3’


Too Human: Class Spec Faves

Too Human is releasing on Tuesday. Have you given any thought to which class you’re going to choose? What about skills or alignment? Here’s a quick run down of my favorite specs for each class, customized to match my style of play.

Skill Focus: Attack Speed/Dual Wield
Alignment: Human
Dump skill points in the left branch of the skill tree to take advantage of The Bear’s Boiling Blood, Swift of Claw, and Unrelenting Blades. On the human alignment tree, max out Hero’s Heart. Consider maxing out both A Capacity for Rage (skill tree) and Quick to Anger (human tree) to increase the Berserker’s combo level capacity to five.

Bio Engineer
Skill Focus: Durability/Healer
Alignment: Cybernetic
Invest in the center branch of the skill tree to access the awesome Ward of the Norns’ protective shield spider and hit point enhancing Cellular Rebonding. Increase the spider’s deployment time by maxng out Eveflowing Source in the cybernetic tree.

Skill Focus: Aerial Combat/Melee Damage
Alignment: Human
Max out Asgard’s Fury, then invest in the nodes on the skill tree’s left branch, taking advantage of the damage-boosting One Will Rise Above All and Warrior of the Blood-Eel skills. On the human alignment tree, invest in The Everburning Heart to decrease combo costs and Hero’s Heart to increase melee attack speed.

Skill Focus: Ranged Combat/Explosives
Alignment: Cybernetic
Initially, max out the Wrecker of Mead Halls root skill to boost damage of all secondary fire (grenades, missiles, etc.) munitions. Rain of Iron is another worthwhile skill, as are Tree of Shrieking-Flame, Cut to the Bone, and Gift of Gungnir. Choose cybernetic alignment to gain access to cannons, then invest heavily in the left branch to increase ammo capacity, range, and penetration.

Skill Focus: Durability/Tank
Alignment: Cybernetic
Boost your defense by investing heavily in Defender’s Resilience, Ward of the Norns, and Reversal of Wyrd’s. Most importantly, max out Tyr’s Best Work to enhance the protective value of each equipped armor piece. On the cybernetic tree, boost Augmented Musculature and Enhanced Mobility Actuators to increase damage output. At the bottom of the tree, invest in Hardened Carbotanium Chassis to further boost your total armor value.

For more information on Too Human, including detailed breakdowns of each class and all 94 skills, see our guide releasing this Tuesday; or download the sections on the Commando and Defender now for free! The guide has everything you need to take your character to level 50 including maps of every level (showing all obelisks, containers, and secret areas), complete stats for every ultra-rare epic piece of equipment, class-specific anti-monster tactics, in-depth character bios, and much more.



I’ve now worked on two Viva Pinata guides and played the first game rather intensely for a period of a couple of months. I did well, attracted many fun papier machie beasties, and made the lives of unseen virtual children joyous with deliveries of candy-filled whack-a-creatures to bring sugar-fueled happiness to their unseen virtual parties.

Yet I’m still utterly baffled as to how anyone in this world thought up the premise for the game. I mean, how did they pitch it?

“OK, here’s the idea…living pinatas.”

Would you have green-lighted such an enterprise? I would’ve given it some seriously raised eyebrows. It sounds ludicrious. I have trouble explaining it to my friends and family. (“No, you don’t build pinatas, you raise them…yes, like a farm animal.”).

And yet, here we are and the game is a great time. I’m not one for the cutsey, cartoon spawning, collection games but I was enthralled for hours upon hours. Apparently, when it comes to the animate pinatas, I’m a 12 year old girl, delighted when I attracted a Chewnicorn.

The next installment that we’re doing a guide for now is Trouble in Paradise. New animals, funny names, new Garden items and textures. Good times. Pinata times…

August 2008