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Too much of a good thing

Posted by briandh on March 28, 2007

I’ve been exceptionally quiet since getting my new machine and finally getting it set up correctly.

The reason is simple – I’ve been doing exactly what I said I would with my new machine – playing games.

I first spent more than a month playing nothing but Oblivion – no, not all day and all night, I do have a life outside computer games. Not much of a life, true, but it is there if you look hard enough. After this I thought that I needed a change, I hadn’t finished Oblivion but went looking for something else to occupy my time.

I came across a (UK only) legitimate game download site called Metaboli. For a small monthly fee you have access to a growing set of over 100 games – 140 if you opt for the more expensive option. You download and play the games from their site and there is no limit on how many games you can play or for how long – as long as you keep up the monthly payments.

The games themselves are mainstream games, not made-for-budget ones. They are adding new games all the time and these will generally be recent games perhaps just past the full flush of retail sales (so only a few months old in some cases). They have even scooped a couple of games before retail release – Darkstar One was the most recent one.

You do have to be online to play and you can usually play online games as normal. About the only technical limitation is that game mods will not work in most cases.

The way the pricing works seems very fair to me. There are two options – “The Essential Collection” contains currently 114 games and costs about £7 a month, “The Ultimate Collection” costs £13 per month but has around 147 games. Each week they usually add 1 new game to the Ultimate Collection and 1 game from the Ultimate Collection becomes available on th Essential Collection. So eventually all the games come down to the Essential collection.

If you are like me and can never play all the games you want then the cheaper option works well. By the time I work my way through the ones I want from the cheap list there will be some new ones already waiting in the wings.

Most games have proper PDF manuals, a few are missing and the quality of some is not brilliant (photo-copy quality rather than proper PDF’s).

I have been using it now for about 10 weeks and I’d say it is excellent value for money no matter how you add it up – provided you use it. And I have been using it – hence the “Too much of a good thing”.

So far I have gone through four complete games:

  • Syberia
  • Deus Ex: Invisible War
  • Splinter Cell: Chaos Theory
  • Still Life

clocked up several hours in a few others:

  • The Bards Tale
  • Beyond Good and Evil
  • Perimeter
  • Syberia II
  • XIII
  • Dungeon Seige

and dabbled in about a dozen more.

The dabbling is great, you can play games you wouldn’t think of buying normally to see if you might like them after all.

Oh, and Oblivion? Yeh it is great, and I will finish it – just after …

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