I won Oni about a week ago on eBay, and finally got around to installing and playing it last night. For those of you not familiar with the game, Oni is an anime-influenced third person action game that's a cross between a standard third person shoot 'em up and a beat 'em up.
If that doesn't sound particularly enticing, wait - it gets better. Oni was published by Rockstar (of Grand Theft Auto fame) and developed by Bungie (of Halo fame), so the game has real pedigree. It shows, too. Oni combines hand-to-hand combat with running and gunning, and it's surprisingly satisfying. The hand-to-hand melée system is truly excellent. Konoko kicks, grips and throws opponents, or alternatively just batters them with her fists. Flipping over an enemy, grabbing them with your legs and then tossing them into a wall is just awesome. The hand-to-hand combat keeps on surprising you with what you're able to do, as the angle at which you approach an enemy changes the moves and alters the execution of the throws. I'm not too far into the game as yet - only on the third mission (of 17), but I've been really impressed with the combat, if not entirely by the level design. There are loads of nice touches though - such as being able to slide underneath laser trip beams, and the chop-socky is so good that you'll not even want to bother with the weapons for most of the time. It's a nice game - well worth picking up if you see it cheaply, if only to see what you can do with the hand-to-hand melée engine. It's the best you'll see on the PC outside of a dedicated beat 'em up game, and is really rewarding to master.
I won another auction on eBay. The Master Chief is going to look great on my desk at work. My workmates are going to be *soooo* jealous. No, really - they're all big Halo nuts. Trying to prevent Olly from stealing him (or putting him in compromising positions with all the soft toys on Jonathan's desk) will be quite tough, actually.
Customer service? None. Ability to keep promises? None. Yes, our estwhile hosts are still being rubbish. It would appear that they never received the e-mail I sent them on Friday (I never got a return receipt for it, so that's not a surprise), and the telephone advisor didn't update our account notes when I called them on Thursday, so we're still websiteless. I called them again this morning to find this out, and attempted to pressure them into actually, you know, perhaps *doing something* about a website that's been down for a week and isn't generating them any revenue, and I was assured that we'd be back online by the end of tomorrow (meaning Tuesday). Which is what they said on Thursday, so don't hold your breath, anyone. You might die of asphyxia.
I foresee a change of hosting company in the non-too distant future. And there's a prediction I didn't need my Tarot cards for...