Whenever there’s a special item you can give to a single villager in Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp, I always give it to Stitches. Now I’ve given my Friendship Sparkler to him! I also reviewed all the past special items he’s given back to me as a thank you.
Bugg, the Crucible hero, is super cute, and I had to record this audio log. In game, he grows little plants that attack enemies. In lore, he used to be a gardening robot who was happy that people liked his vegetables!
This is his Honey Bee skin. I want it!
Here’s a closer look at it even though you can’t see the wings.
His Garden Grower skin is pretty cute too!
I joined Amazon Games a couple weeks ago as a technical writer on the Automation, Tools, and Insights team. I mentioned it on Kor’kron 501st, my other blog, where I talk about World of Warcraft and other MMOs and Blizzard games due to Amazon Games having a new MMO called New World coming out soon. I wanted to mention it here as well because I’ll talk about non-MMOs on this blog.
Crucible is a hero-based shooter released last week developed by Relentless Studios and published by Amazon Games. I don’t have much experience with this genre, but I’ve been playing it a lot this past week and really enjoying it. I included the trailer at the top!
K.K. Slider visited Luna for the first time last week! I’m excited to get him to visit!
I finally spoke to Isabelle because I was curious how my island was doing. I wasn’t focusing on anything in particular to get K.K. Slider to visit. As soon as I checked with her, K.K. Slider wanted to visit!
Now I get my buddy K.K. Slider every Saturday! I love his songs and am glad he’s back again!
From left to right, that’s Jenn, Joe, gem, Duncan, me, Aren, and Haley! While they weren’t shown in this screenshot, Niki and Steph visited as well.
I hosted a scavenger hut by burying a ton of junk, a few bags of bells, and two pieces of fencing around the island. The fence pieces could be redeemed with me for Nook Miles Tickets! Congratulations to Joe and Duncan (I think)!
At one point Duncan led an assault on me!
Happy Dapper Day! It’s too bad we didn’t get to have it in person, but I enjoyed playing on Luna with my friends!
She invited me to her island so she could craft me cherry blossom items that I was missing. Sounds nice of her, right? But deep down, Nikē had scary motives. She came in the bathroom and watched me as I try the bidet! You can already see how alarming it was when the water hit me, but it was so much weirder with her watching.
Bunny Day was the first major holiday in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, and I’m just glad it’s over. If you didn’t play it, basically everything you do could drop eggs, and those eggs were used as materials to craft items. But there were way, way too many eggs. Nintendo nerfed the drop rates a couple days into the event, which is good, but this is still a bad sign for future events.
That said, it didn’t stop me from collecting everything and creating a Bunny Day room.
Here it is with the lights off. I really like the Bunny Day lamp, which is an egg, and the garlands that can be turned on and off.
You can see a little clip showcasing my Bunny Day room above!
P.S. Zipper is creepy.
It’s been another beautiful week on Luna in Animal Crossing: New Horizons! I’m loving all the cherry blossoms everywhere right now, but I guess I’m getting ahead of myself.
I built Nook’s Cranny, the new store. It’s great except that it closes at 10.
Luna also now has its first bridge!
Do you ever wake up with Duncan standing over you? How frightening!
While I was hanging out with Duncan, Joe decided to visit! It was pretty unexpected, which was hilarious.
I also visited Joe’s island. He has a pizza oven! I have on in Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp but not New Horizons. I need it! I really need it!
I ran into this monstrosity on his island! Ahhh!
I also visited Kristine, and she gave me cherries – the last fruit I needed!
I did a lot of fishing. April has some fish that are only found on the pier.
The stringfish was one of the fish that was going away at the end of March. It was March 31st and approaching midnight, and I still hadn’t caught it. The clocked rolled over into April. And then I saw a shadow of a fish. I ran for it, and I got the stringfish I needed!
Here I am enjoying a nice bamboo island.
When lightning strikes, the sky flashes for a brief moment.
I really love the sky in this game.
Look, a shooting star!
Lastly, my resident services and plaza got upgraded today! Hooray! Now, I need to continue searching for Stitches!
I’ve been exploring Luna, my island more! Isn’t it beautiful?
Gulliver washed up on my shore, and I helped him fix his phone so he could get rescued.
I made a new friend named Wisp who likes to visit at night. He’s a little bit… easily frightened… but if you’re careful around him, he’s quite friendly!
Cherry likes to appreciate the local bugs.
This is my buddy Kody. Sometimes we like to hang out and fish together. I don’t get to see him as often as I’d like because he goes to bed early.
Okay, okay, Kody. I know you like to work out.
We built a new museum near my house, which is great! I love to appreciate the local exhibits!
I decided to venture into parts unknown and visit a mystery island. I love this spiral! I met Marina and asked her to move to my island.
I wasn’t prepared for the rain, but Marina was!
This island beat me up a bit, but I managed to capture tarantulas.
I also visited my friend nil on the island of Avalon.
His neighbor wasn’t around, but she apparently stacks up fish and bugs in her backyard. What a weirdo! Also, I think nil wanted to kill me.
nil came back to Luna with me next. We explored the museum together and had a great time.
Look, I’m part of the exhibit!
nil left this nice note on my bulletin board for Kody, who he didn’t have the chance to meet.
Thanks for visiting, nil!
Welcome to Luna, my island paradise! I decided to get away from civilization and move far away to a remote island. I’ve set up my tent here next to water where it was so peaceful and serene. I made it perfect with some tiki torches and a little fire so I can step outside and stay toasty.
My time on Luna hasn’t been perfect however. I’ve been attacked by wasps… twice… during the single day of my new life here. But no matter, because I learned how make a medicine from Cherry, one of my neighbors.
I caught this hermit crab friend practically first thing. I think deep down it wants to be friends with me.
So now I have a roommate.
[It’s nice to play such a relaxing game. Even the calm music is nice in the background while I do other things. I have to admit, it juxtaposes Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp so harshly! That phone game is nothing but stress and timed chores! I’m really loving New Horizons though!]
Stitches deserves every present I can give him. If you don’t have Stitches at your campsite, you are incorrect.
While in New York City recently, I heard there was some trouble with the ghost containment unit down at the Ghostbuster HQ. Everything seemed okay to me at first, so I had fun taking some photos.
And then a Gengar spooked me! The containment unit had failed, and the ghost Pokemon had broken out!
These two bystanders seemed oblivious as they approached the Gastly.
Earthwormgem and I fought the ghost Pokemon, fixed the containment unit, and started trapping the ghosts back inside Ghostbusters HQ.
Shedinja seemed harmless, so Earthwormgem posed with it before we recaptured it.
You’re not scaring her, Haunter!
Ghosts like to haunt places that were significant in their lives. One got away from us, but I knew where it would go. It was time to venture to the New York Public Library.
A free-floating, full-torso, vaporous apparition! It fled inside, but I was in pursuit.
She just wants to be with her books, eh? Maybe I can let this one hang out in the library…
And, uh, here’s some more ghost Pokemon that escaped from HQ:
I had to give my Harvest Fest invitation to Stitches – just like how I gave him the best-friend confection back in February. He’s clearly the best village.
Welcome to my neon dance club! I just love all the colors and lasers. Plus, I like K. K. Slider! I’d like to visit a place like this 🙂
gem came to visit, too. She didn’t intend to match me so exactly, but she chose most of the same items!
And here’s Stitches, my favorite villager; he’s ready to party with me!
Did you know you could have your own pizza place in Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp? You can if you build it! At my Pocket Camp Pizza Place, we can bake two fresh pies for you a time and offer plenty of seating to enjoy the hot slices.
Ready for dessert? A sweet treat is always a good compliment to pizza. Just visit the other side of the campsite to sweet pies, cupcakes, ice cream, or candy!
Welcome to my Super Mario-themed campsite. It’s so cute that villagers can slide down the flagpole!
Stitches is proud to wear a Super Mario shirt.
Maple looks fabulous as Princess Peach.
And I think the Wario hat goes perfectly on Hippeux!
Here I am hanging out with another Mario – or wait, is that gem?!
Can’t forget the cabin, which in my case is now an aquarium of underwater Mario fun!
I hate Boss Challenge events in Dragon Mania Legends. Most events have a refresh period of 6 hours or so – meaning you have certain objectives you have to complete every 6 hour period. That’s nice because even if I have to play 15 minutes, I don’t have to worry about it again for a while.
Boss Challenge has a 2 hour delay delay between each part, which is much more annoying. It’s also hard to know how much of a grace period you have. If you wait three hours, you’ve wasted an hour. If you waste too much time, you probably can’t finish.
Well, I finally finished one. Yes, I had to spend some gems at the end, but I never purchase gems with real money so I’ll consider this a win! I also never needed to interrupt my sleep or anything important during the day. I just tried to be more punctual about checking the event when I was able.
For Valentine’s Day, Nintendo gave each player one best-friend confection to give to their animal of choice in Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp. When you give it to an animal, that animal gives you a bell-jar bouquet with a note attached. There are three types you can get, but I didn’t think about what reward I wanted. I knew I had to give my best-friend confection to Stitches! He’s the best!
I had two EX Raids to do at the same time and didn’t get a response in the Discord for the second about a later group. I went anyways, and no one was going for a second round. I figured I might as well attempt it despite neither of the two accounts with me being 40. Turns out, this raid is incredibly easy. I had about half the time remaining!
Dragon Mania Legends is a typical phone game in that there are multiple currencies in the game, and one of them is purchased using real money. Their events ramp up in difficulty in what I assume is obviously an attempt to get people to spend money to finish them. And I don’t spend real money on this game.
In this style of events, you go through multiple levels unlocking chests. A chest can contain the key to the next level or a puzzle piece toward unlocking a dragon. (Collecting dragons is the primary goal of the game.) The last level has a chest that will contain the a dragon itself, and this is basically the goal of the event. This event celebrated Chinese New Year, and the final dragon was the Nezha dragon.
For the first time, I was able to get that final dragon! The event ends tonight, and I got it this morning. And yet I did some quick math and found that it would be impossible for me to get the puzzle piece dragon at this point without spending real money. Still, I’m happy I finally got the end dragon in one of these events!
I’ve been playing Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp recently. Is it time for a new hat, or can I wear my Happy New Year hat for a little longer? I realize I haven’t blogged here much in a while, and part of that is because I think I need to say something specific. Should I explain what Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp is and review it before I start to write about it? No, I don’t want to do that. I just want to talk about the game. But if you want to add me as a friend, my ID is 2604 7697 654!
Also, this amuses me. These are my only two friends in the game that I actually know, and for a moment I wondered how my friend could be in two spots at the same time. It took me a second to realize that they just dressed similarly today. That’s gem on the left and Anela on the right. Nice fashion!
No celebration is complete without some Super Mario Maker! It was my birthday last month, and while I was spending the day with some of my closest friends, I wanted everybody to come together to make a level with me. Our creation was Peter’s 30th Birthday Bash! If you look closely in the screenshot above, you’ll see “Happy birthday Peter” spelled out in the level.
For those interested in playing it, you can find it using the ID BBD9-0000-01E1-1F90.
Anela kicked off the level with some springs, pits, and a number of enemies. She didn’t pull her punches either. Just when you think she might be nice, she has a trick up her sleeve.
Antonio worked on the next section, and his girlfriend Kaleigh contributed as well. His section contain projectiles, fire beams, thwomps, and more. The POW comes in handy though!
You can usually tell gem’s sections because they’re filled with coins. The areas void of coins in her section spelled out “happy birthday.” You have to take your time here or you could fall to your death.
Edward started his section by spelling my name. He also filled it with lakitus. You really need a star to get through this part (which we added when the level was too hard).
This section was also created by Edward. It seems like he likes enemies.
I ended the level with some Bowser, Jr. enemies and one Bowser.
It was a blast making the level with everybody. I love how you don’t have to be super into video games to enjoy Super Mario Maker. Check it out using the ID BBD9-0000-01E1-1F90.
Thank you to everybody who celebrated my birthday and made Peter’s 30th Birthday Bash with me!
Chip’s Challenge has always been one of my favorite games since I first played it with my dad, grandpa, and uncle on the Atari Lynx. Chuck Sommerville made a sequel, but due to issues beyond his control, he wasn’t able to release it. Twenty-five years later, Chip’s Challenge 2 has finally been released.
It was released alongside Chip’s Challenge 1 on Steam and can be purchased in a $5 bundle that contains both games and the CC2 level editor.
It’s a tile-based puzzle game tasking you with helping Chip collect keys, unlock doors, avoid deadly traps, and plan how to retrieve important items that allow you to get past obstacles. Chip’s Challenge 2 appears very similar but adds a variety of a new game elements.
It’s probably too early for me to talk about it too in-depth as I’m only eight levels into the game. However, I’m having a lot of fun, and it’s almost unbelievable that I’m finally playing this gem of a game. It came at a time when I’m about to be extremely busy for the next week, but I’ll see if I can squeeze in a few levels while at my conference next week!
Congratulations, Chuck, on finally getting Chip’s Challenge 2 released! Go Bit Buster!
In an effort to get through my backlog, I played a lot of my games in the last couple months. I found most of them boring and didn’t give them much time, but some were entertaining for a while. Let’s look at some of the games I tried and decided to stop playing.
Tyrian 2000 is a scrolling shooter with nothing special about it. It didn’t grab my attention at all.
Hell Yeah! Wrath of the Dead Rabbit
I’d call this a run ‘n’ gun game, but I guess that’s not really a genre. It’s like a fast-paced Contra, only not as good as Contra. I do like the visual style, but there’s too much happening on the screen all the time. You control a rabbit who’s the prince of hell, and you travel around killing enemies in bloody ways. I know it’s trying to be over the top, but it felt too over the top.
Ben There, Dan That
This point-and-click adventure game obviously draws inspiration from Lucas Arts. It references a number of early, pioneering games of the genre, which I think is neat. From the few minutes I spent with it, I feel like it could be a good choice if you’re craving a point-and-click adventure game with some chuckles, but it wasn’t doing enough for me.
Time Gentlemen, Please
This is the direct follow up to Ben There, Dan That. As the first didn’t interest me, I didn’t give the second more than a minute or so before decided it didn’t interest be either.
Dead Mountaineer’s Hotel
This point-and-click adventure game was translated from a Russian game based on a Russian sci-fi detective novel (at least according to Wikipedia). It seemed very forced, like the game was dragging from to each scene, and nothing seemed particularly engaging. The voice-acting was odd too. Reviews claimed it was very anti-climatic, and it seems that some pretty major plot points were changed with negative consequences from the original novel. I decided to pass on this.
While I probably put less than an hour into Limbo and don’t feel like playing it more, I’m glad I experienced it. This screenshot alone does a decent job of summarizing the feel of the game. It’s a strange puzzle platformer game that’s a bit eerie. Deaths are definitely gruesome as well without having too much gore and shock value. From what I understand, it’s a fairly short game too, which is nice.
Hotline Miami reminds me of Grand Theft Auto in a number of ways. You commit crimes, you beat people senseless, and it’s pretty brutal. It has an arcade vibe that I liked, but I just didn’t feel like I was getting enough out of it. My friend Michael loves the game though, which does push me a little bit more toward putting more time into it. I just don’t quite care enough.
Duncan bought this simple game on his PS4. It doesn’t quite fit in this list because I didn’t really give up on it. There’s a single-player that mimics multiplayer, but it’s basically a multiplayer game. And I played it a bunch! In a pixelated, stylized setting, two players engage in sword duels in relatively quick matches. It’s great when people are at the house and has lots of settings you can change to mix the gameplay. It also supports tournaments if you have more than two players.
Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP
I’m not really sure how to describe Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP. It’s definitely visually and aurally beautiful. From what I played, it was mostly an intellectual game. There is combat, but the game is mostly about exploring, figuring out what to do, reading minds, and dreaming. Oh, and music is important too. Yeah, it’s a strange game. Compared to most of the other games I discussed, this game appealed to me a lot more.
Snapshot is a neat idea for a platformer. You control the character with the keyboard but are able to cut and paste objects using the mouse. That’s it. That’s the idea. The visuals are neat, with a cute main character too. If I didn’t have so many other things asking for my time, I’d probably play this one a bit more.
In an effort to get through my backlog, I’ve played a lot of games recently. I own a lot of games that I’ve even tried, so I decided to try as many as I could. Honestly, I prioritized games that I thought I wouldn’t enjoy so I could try them and cross them off my list quickly.
I owned a bundle of adventure games from the AGS Bake Sale from Adventure Game Studio, and I had never tried any of them. It seemed like a good place to start. Here’s my thoughts on the first half of them!
As these are all indie games, I feel the need to preface this post with an apology to some of the creators in case they happen to find this. I really do realize that I didn’t give many of these games more than a couple minutes of play. I own a lot of games that just aren’t my cup of tea, so sometimes I judge quickly.
9 Months In
9 Months In is the most interesting game of the AGS Bake Sale that I’ve tried. This adventure games stars a woman in prison who claims she’s been set up. The title comes from the fact that she’s pregnant. I like the art style, and I quickly found that I was interested in the starring character. I’m leaving this title on my backlog and plan to come back to it.
Escape the Barn
In Escape the Barn, you find items, clicking to add them to your inventory at the bottom of the screen and then figure out what items to use on what other items to escape the barn. It was pretty boring, but as it only took five minutes to beat, I decided to finish it.
Someone’s been repeatedly framing you for murder, and you have to get away and figure out who is doing it. It’s a much better premise than Escape the Barn, but it still pique my interest enough to get me to keep playing it.
Ben Chandler, Paranormal Investigator – In Search of the Sweets Tin
Honestly, I can’t really remember much about this AGS Bake Sale title except that it didn’t hold my attention more than a couple minutes.
Barn Runner: The Rich Dame Who Cut The Cheese
This is a pretty interesting world that’s been created. It’s set in a post-apocalyptic future in which humanity is contained to enclosed cities in which almost all work is done by robots. There are 11 titles in this series as of writing this according to this page. I like the idea of the setting, but I played for about five minutes and got bored.
In Abner, you play a character who appears to think he’s a heroic knight. It’s definitely full of comedy even though it starts with a tragedy – all the world’s color is gone! It was a cute idea and style, but it didn’t hold my attention.
Let’s end this half of AGS Bake Sale games on a high note. Falling Skyward is gorgeous. It’s set in the future after an asteroid has struck the Earth, launching chunks of cities into the sky where many still orbit. You play a young boy who scavengers these ruins that are, as the game describes, “perpetually falling skywards.” I only played for a couple minutes, but I couldn’t cross it off my list. I’ll need to return to play it more!
The Last Arcade on the Planet is a private collection of arcade games owned by Juan Sanchez that he opens for public parties once a month or so with his girlfriend, Satu. I’ve written about it previously, and it’s really awesome. Saturday night was the last party; Juan’s going to turn his warehouse into a workspace to fix up the machines and sell many of them.
I wore my Space Invaders t-shirt from Threadless because it seemed appropriate. And don’t worry, I played a lot of Space Invaders.
Edward came with me, and you can see him in this photo playing High Speed. Sadly, the next two pinball machines over were both out of service – Pin·Bot and The Machine Bride of Pin·Bot. The Machine Bride of Pin·Bot is my favorite machine, so it was bummer that it was out of service. gem and I played it extensively on previous trips.
Luckily, Jack·Bot was working. It’s such a gorgeous machine, although I still prefer the rotating box of The Machine Bride of Pin·Bot representing your quest to improve her.
Juan collects machines from 1986 or earlier and charges a $10 cover charge for the parties with everything on free-play. He knows what he’s doing with them too. Throughout the night, he could be found working on them and keeping the machines running smoothly.
Here’s gem playing Asteroids in her Asteroids t-shirt back in September!
This was the first night I had a chance to talk to Juan and thank him for the good times. I’m glad I got to talk with him, because he’s a really interesting person. He works as an animator at Turtle Rock Studios. His latest work can be seen in February’s Evolve. I haven’t had the chance to play it yet, but I posted about it back in February 2014 when I first saw the trailer because it looked so awesome. Juan plans on keeping some of the machines and wants to continue doing some kind of events. He talked about the ideas of Arduino workshops or game jams as well as some personal projects. I’d love to attend some of these events, so I’m looking forward to learning what happens.
I’m sad to see The Last Arcade on the Planet go, but I’m glad Juan’s moving on to his next projects. Good luck, Juan!
World of Tanks requires a pretty decent amount of skill and strategy, but there’s a mode that let’s you forget about all that. It’s my favorite mode, and it also happens to be the only time I can successfully play World of Tanks without solely following my friend Joe’s orders. Check it out.
[Updated on 1/30/15.]
Pixel Press Floors is an iOS and Android game that allows you to make your own platformer levels. I Kickstarted this around June of 2013 because of an interesting hook: you actually design by hand on paper and take a photograph of the paper to import it into the game.
There were a few hiccups, such as the Android version being significantly delayed. As an iOS user, this didn’t bother me. However, two others things did. First, the game changed from a paid game to a free game with in-app purchases. As someone who backed the game early, I got an account in the game that reflected this. Supposedly this would give me bonuses. I don’t know what those are. I thought I was supposed to be able to place enemies in my level (it’s normally an IAP), but I don’t see any option for that currently. [Update: I contacted the developer, and they fixed everything for me within a day. Great customer service!] The second, bigger problem is that the creation mode ended up being iPad only. That’s great if I owned an iPad, but I don’t.
Regardless, I finally had a chance to sit down and make some levels with gem’s iPad, and it was a ton of fun. I’m still annoyed about not being able to create on the iPhone, and I’m hoping they add it. As for the backer bonuses, I don’t know what the deal is there, but I just reached out to Pixel Press to find out.
As for making levels? Fun! You don’t get to change any of the physics or design your own sprites, but you still can set the layout of levels. Even though what initially piqued my interesting was designing on paper, I did the whole thing on the iPad. You can watch the video embedded above to see my level, appropriately named The Adventures of Peter. And hey, I published it around 1:30 today and it already has 77 plays!
If you like platformers, you might want to give this a try. As mentioned, it’s free. There are a ton of community-created levels, and you can search for mine as well.
Yes, I’m behind, but I started 2015 by beating Gears of War 3. I really enjoyed it! I suppose there are going to be some minor spoilers here, but I won’t spoil the big points.
The opening of the game on the CNV Sovereign is cool because it’s nice to see the ship and Michaelson, leader of the COG Navy. He was a major character in the novels, but this was his first appearance in game. Unfortunately, I felt like major changes from the books were changed rapidly. Michaelson is only in the very beginning of the game, likely because people who didn’t read the books wouldn’t care about him. The former Chairman Prescott returns early in the game too with his MacGuffin. It makes sense from a story standpoint, and by the end of the game, it all makes sense, but it still feels weird.
From there the game progresses well. There are more characters that follow Marcus, which makes it more varies and interesting. Anya, Sam, and Jace are all major characters now too. There are floating gas barges that are pretty cool, but at one point you’re forced into combat using one. Similarly, you later control the guns on a submarine. I don’t play Gears of War to do these things. I feel like these levels are the modern equivalent to the “obligatory mine cart” level. I’m not sure what to call them, but I don’t want to take control of some larger contraption with a totally different feel.
Getting through some less-than-amazing parts get you to Anvil Gate, another major location from the novels, so I suppose it’s worth it. We also get to see Colonel Hoffman and Bernie, so that’s pretty cool too! Dom seems a little more reserved and depressed after the events of the second game, which makes for some interesting character development. He has a really amazing moment during the game. The Carmine in this game is a bit more badass too.
The end of Gears of War 2 had gameplay that differed a bit from the main game. It felt anti-climatic regarding gameplay even if the story itself was quite climatic. This wasn’t a problem in Gears 3. The last battles felt really climatic and awesome, which is one of the most important things in a game besides actually being fun.
Now I just have to resist the urge to spend money on Gears of War: Judgment until I beat some of the other games I own!
Offspring Fling! is a cute puzzle platformer on Steam that I tried recently. It was very enjoyable, and just look at that art! What you can’t hear, because I’m not including it, is the great music.
When this mean looking dinosaur shows up, your babies scatter. It’s up to you to rescue them!
You can run and jump as well as pick up and fling your babies. As you carry more babies, you won’t be able to jump as the high. Each level tasks you with getting your babies to the door. Some of the stages definitely took some thinking, but I was never really stumped. You won’t find yourself losing repeatedly like in a platformer such as Super Meat Boy or N+, but you will have to think about the puzzles.
It’s a neat little game with adorable graphics. There are still extras to unlock if I choose to keep playing, but it only took me about four hours to beat the base game. It was definitely worth it.
While going through the games I hadn’t tried in Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection, I stumbled upon Fatal Labyrinth. It started with a corny story for a minute or so before the action started (and even that minute of story could be skipped). Despite showing its age (bad music; can’t go back one level in the menus, so you have to close the menu), it was a very enjoyable game. Not only are the levels randomly generated, but the items are described by colors with each color corresponding randomly to a specific spell. On one play, a blue cane might do blizzard damage; on the next, it might confuse the enemy.
I’ll admit that I used save states to determine what each color did so I wouldn’t waste any items. I never did manage to get the best armor or sword in the game in spite of fully clearing every level. There were are also a couple of interesting tricks I found on GameFAQs. Cursed weapons are very weak, and a curse removal item can remove the curse, allowing you to unequip the weapon. If you remove the curse before equipping the item, it’ll say it has zero power while actually being devastating to enemies. Similarly, if you equip two bows back and forth, your armor will decrease by three each time until rolling over to an ungodly amount of armor. I tried the tricks because I was curious but restored a save because it made me too powerful.
Food was an interesting in the mechanic. While your HP will slowly regenerate, your food value will slowly decrease. You don’t die when you reach zero, but you’ll begin to lose HP. This would lead me to think that I should collect all the food I find, but too much food causes the character to move slower, and if a certain amount of food is eaten, the character die on the spot. Overeating is the number two killer of knights, you know (just after dragons).
It’s been a while since I’ve played a fun roguelike. It reminded me of Azure Dreams, one of my favorite PlayStation games. After playing the game on and off for the past four days, I beat it last night.
I was given a download code for this game to review for Game Boyz. You can read the review, if you’d like. It’s a port of the first two games in the series with additional content. Fun game. This increased my backlog count by one, and I haven’t crossed it off yet because I’m not quite done with it.
World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria and Cataclysm
As usual, I won’t spend too much time talking about WoW. I’ve been playing three characters. First, I’m still doing some LFR for transmog on my main, Devee, the troll priest. I’ve also been playing Voidgazer, my undead warlock. Voidgazer’s in his 50s now. Lastly, I made a pandaren monk named Sleepypaw that recently joined the Alliance. I have some friends that play together every Friday night Alliance-side, so I thought I’d try to catch them. Sleepypaw is 12 or so, and my friends are approaching level 30.
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Justice For All
I’m currently in the third case. I don’t spend a lot of time in this because I only play while I’m walking at lunch at work. It’s fun though!
Dr. Mario Express
I just can’t stop playing this. My high score is currently 55,200.
Knuckles the Echidna in Sonic 2
This game was part of Sonic Mega Collection Plus, and it was about time I finished it. I’ll admit, I didn’t go for the Chaos Emeralds. There was some pressure to reload save states when I failed the special stages, but at this point, I need to decide whether something is worth my time and provides enjoyment. I hated those special stages, so too bad. The game was fairly fun, but I wish the stages were updated more for Knuckles. There were many places in which I climbed and then suddenly hit an invisible wall. Also, I remember there being better enemy and pit placement. If I’m moving fast, as expected of you in a Sonic game, and in a ball, I shouldn’t roll right into a spiky enemy. The game should reward you for going fast. Even so, I like Sonic 2.
Sonic Drift, Sonic Labyrinth, Sonic Blast,The Ooze, Flicky, and Dynamite Headdy
Here’s a nice set of games in Sonic Mega Collection Plus or Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection that were just bad. I was glad to cross them off my list. I jotted some notes down in my backlog after I tried them; I’ll reproduce them here.
Sonic Drift: “Wow, this is bad. I’m glad that they improved the formula by the time Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing was released.” It’s a racing game but just barely.
Sonic Labyrinth: “I finished one level. It’s nothing like a Sonic game and quite boring.” It’s like an even worse version of Sonic 3D Blast.
Sonic Blast: “Played one zone. It’s so slow and bad.” Surprisingly, this isn’t like Sonic 3D Blast. It’s just a really slow, bad Sonic game.
The Ooze: “What? No. Just no.” I don’t know how to explain this one. You’re a puddle of ooze, and you ooze around in a boring fashion.
Flicky: “More fun than I expected, but I’m not going to keep playing it.” You play as a flicky bird, and jump between platforms gathering up your little chicks.
Dynamite Headdy: “Cute style but weird game. I don’t want to keep playing.” You fling your head around or use it as a bomb. Reminds me a little of Vectorman.
Streets of Rage and Streets of Rage 2
I own Streets of Rage in Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection and thought it was about time to give it a try. It seemed boring as beat ’em ups go. I decided to stick with it until I either beat it or got game over. I was on the last round with I reached that game over screen. I’m crossing you off the list, Streets of Rage.
Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection contained Streets of Rage 2 as well (and I also own it on iOS). I went it with the same mindset as the first game and actually liked it a bit more. This I managed to beat.
Ecco: The Tides of Time
Here’s another Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection game. I think the Ecco series contains some really interesting and eerie games. I’m very glad to have experienced them, but I don’t think experiencing more of this game is worth the time put into it. Unfortunately, I’m crossing it off my list.
Okay, one last Sonic’s Ultimate Genesis Collection to mention. It’s interesting to me how old RPGs spend such little time building the story at the beginning. It’s seems less realistic to have you mission and be on your way within two minutes, but at the same time, it’s refreshing to jump into the game. I was also expecting a menu-driven RPG and not a map with a grid. I didn’t realize it was a tactical/strategy RPG. I played it a little, entering a few battles, but I don’t think I’ll play it more.
Rock N’ Roll Racing and The Lost Vikings
I didn’t play either of these, but I added them to my backlog because Blizzard added them to everyone’s Battle.net accounts. Unfortunately, that causes my backlog account to increase by two.
My backlog at Backloggery is now down to 323 unbeat (277 unplayed) from 338 unbeat games from my last post on the subject. That’s a nice bit of progress, but keep in mind that I don’t mind marking games as null, thus removing them from the unbeat count, if I get sick of them and decide they’re not worth more time. I played some games that I thought I’d enjoy like I normally would, but I also played some that I thought I wouldn’t like with the intent to cross them off my list quickly.
World of Warcraft: Cataclysm
I usually open with WoW mainly because I don’t want to talk about it here. I already talk about WoW much more at Kor’kron 501st. My warlock has reached his 40s and just finished the Hinterlands.
DC Universe Online
I also started playing DC Universe Online. Again, I talk about it at Kor’kron 501st because it’s an MMO, but I’m playing a mentalist hero, and I just beat the Scarecrow.
Super Mario 3D World
I’m enjoying this a lot, but I still liked Super Mario 3D Land a lot more. I’m currently in World 4.
The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition
While I don’t have much to report, I began playing this again. I put it down a long time ago now, so it’s nice to get back into it.
I beat one level. Does that count as progress?
Star Wars: Tiny Death Star
I have some terrific news about Tiny Death Star: I stopped playing it. Good bye.
Chuck’s Challenge 3D
I finished the fifth bundle, Eclair, in Chuck’s Challenge 3D. It was a lot of fun; I really love this game.
Diablo 3: Reaper of Souls
I picked up the Collector’s Edition of Reaper of Souls when it was released and have been having fun with it. I’m taking my time, so I haven’t finished the new act yet.
Ticket to Ride Europe
Thanks to Collin for letting me know that this was available for free. I never played the board game, but the iOS game is fun. Unfortunately, it’s pretty easy, but I still enjoyed it.
Here’s a DS game I wasn’t expecting to like as much as I did. I was looking for a quick game to cross off my list as boring, but I ended up needing to beat it. It’s a board game as well, so I might need to check out the physical game. Scotland Yard involves multiple detectives and one criminal, Mr. X, taking turns moving around a board. Mr. X wants to last until the turns are expired without being caught while the detectives want to land in the same space as him.
Mystery Tales: Time Travel
Hidden Mysteries: Salem Secrets
Murder in Venice
…and three bad hidden object games I was able to cross off my list quickly.
Sherlock Holmes and the Mystery of Osborne House
Here’s another I thought would be bad. It seems to be a lot like Layton although they don’t explain the goals of the puzzles. That could be a little annoying, but it was fun enough that I’ve decided I’ll return to it later.
Sherlock Holmes and the Mystery of the Mummy
Oh, another Sherlock Holmes game. This is bound to be like the last one, right? No. This one was a terrible first-person exploration game with dismal controls. Next.
Naval Warfare is a Steam game that’s basically a “twin-stick shooter” using keyboard and mouse. I can’t say for sure whether I’ll want to play it to completion, but it’s worth keeping in my backlog.
Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War
I’m not usually a big fan of RTS games, but this was decently fun. I highly doubt I’ll beat it, but here’s another I’ll leave on my list.
Speaking of “again,” I find myself leaving a game on my backlog again. Again is a DS game about the FBI. One agent can see the past and must match the present to look like the past to unlock scenes of what happened. It could be decent!
When my friend Joe told me about Adult Swim’s new iOS game, Castle Doombad (developed by Grumpyface Studios), in February, I immediately bought it. I’m a fan of some of their previous games, so I was excited to play this new one. I don’t intend this post to be a formal review, so I’m not going to worry about going into too many details on the game. However, it’s a tower defense game in which you try to protect your captured princess from heroes. You can beat a stage by ensuring a hero never rescues the princess, but you can also crown a stage by keeping a hero from ever reaching her. You earn currency in the levels and can use it to purchase new traps or upgrade current ones. In addition, there are thirty tasks called “TO-DOOMS” that reward a second type of currency, used for powerful abilities.
Here you can see that I crowned every stage in the first chapter.
And here I crowned every stage in the second chapter.
I couldn’t leave the third chapter incomplete.
Every good game needs an endless mode, and of course, I played that too.
The Summer Slaycation update introduced a new chapter. In this one, there are two princesses you need to protect. I crowned every stage here too.
I had to ensure all my to-dooms were to-done.
If all the levels were complete, I didn’t really need to make my traps more powerful, but I did manage to unlock and upgrade every trap…
…which means that I earned every achievement.
Okay, Adult Swim, I’m ready for another update now.
What a disappointing game. I thought it’d be fun, and it did keep me entertained for the first half of the first level, but my attention declined quickly.
Obviously, the gameplay is simple – type words to shoot zombies. With such a basic mechanic, the levels should be kept short, but instead they continue long after I became bored. TotD:O presents itself in the style of a B-movie, but it’s over-the-top antics felt too forced. It was filled with cliches and sexual innuendo, and I didn’t enjoy it at all.
Modern Dream developed The Typing of the Dead: Overkill, Headstrong Games developed the original, The House of the Dead: Overkill, and Sega published them. I don’t know who’s to blame, but maybe they wanted the game to be sort of meta. As the boring levels and grotesque cliches lumbered forward like a game idea that should have died and but instead was forced into this state between life and death, I can’t help but think the The Typing of the Dead: Overkill has become the very thing you’re tasked with destroying in the game itself.
Whatever. I’m not putting any more time into this game.
I couldn’t help myself. I bought games in February. I have so many games to play that I know I shouldn’t, but then I always do anyways. My current backlog is at 338 unbeat games, 284 of which are unplayed.
World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria
I don’t like to talk about WoW too much here since I have a separate blog for it, but we did manage to defeat the Paragons of the Klaxxi last month, putting us at the final boss of the expansion.
World of Warcraft: Cataclysm
In Cataclysm content, I got through Silverpine Forest on my warlock.
Twitch Plays Pokemon
I’m not sure if you count this as playing, but Twitch Plays Pokemon did take up a decent portion of my gaming time in February! If you’re unfamiliar, you really missed out. Basically, it’s Pokemon Red, but the emulator’s inputs were tied to chat inputs over Twitch. Effectively, everyone was in control at the same time. In the screenshot, you’ll notice people saying “anarchy” and “democracy.” If enough people vote for democracy, it changed into a mode during which it only took input periodically based on what was the most common. It was used to get through puzzles, but usually the game was in anarchy mode. Anyways, it was incredibly fun to watch, and the lore and content that was created by fans along with the game are what really made it amazing.
Poker Night 2
I continued playing Poker Night 2 last month, really getting into the swing of things. I unlocked everything and got every achievement save one – the achievement for having a net $1,000,000. I’m not sure if I’m going to get that or not. I marked this game as beat.
I purchased this Adult Swim iPhone game at my friend Joe’s suggestion and have been enjoying it. It’s a defense title in which you set traps to stop heroes from rescuing the princess in your tower. It has three level packs, and I’m in the last one.
Super Monsters Ate My Condo
Here’s another Adult Swim iOS game that I purchased in February. I loved MAMC, and the Super version is similar. Instead of going as long as you can, there’s a time limit. The other big change is that there are power-ups you purchase for coins, and you can buy coins as IAPs. Unfortunately, I don’t like it as much. I feel like I’m not going to get a highscore without the good power-ups, but if I don’t have the coins, I have to grind.
This one’s free, so while it’s a new game I started playing, at least I didn’t have to spend money on it. It’s just doing trivia against random people or your friends in a variety of categories. The game tracks your win rate versus each person, and you can level up by playing. It’s pretty great, especially because there’s a huge amount of categories. I marked this game as beat.
Star Wars: Tiny Death Star
I have no idea why I’m still playing this. Someone stop me.
Professor Layton and the Unwound Future
I continued playing this just a tad. I got stuck on a puzzle, so I had to skip it. I feel terrible.
Wii Fit saw a little bit of use but not as much as January.
Dr. Mario Express
This is still a fantastic game, and it’s a great way to fill a little bit of time.
Ace Attorney: Phoenix Wright – Justice For All
I’m still playing this one too in my free time. I’m in the second case.
AVSEQ is an interesting game that I decided to try from my backlog. It combines music with gameplay, but the game itself basically consists of chaining together atoms of a particular color. Connect all the red, detonate them, then connect all the blue, etc. It looked fun, and I enjoyed trying it, but after playing it the one time, I’m done.
Cause of Death Volume 2 – The Connoisseur
I was near the end of the volume as February started and quickly beat it. Good stuff! I’ll probably move on to volume 3 in the future when I have less things on my plate.
World of Tanks
Here’s another game that I played a little but not much. I’d like to play more. It’s fun with my friends, but they play on Friday nights, and I’d rather go out if I can.
pid is some sort of platformer that looks cute on Steam. I picked it up because it was, for some reason, free, but I haven’t played it.
I found this in my Steam library. What is it? No idea. I have no memory of picking it up, and it wasn’t in my backlog.
I unlocked the Portal felt, deck, and chips in Poker Night 2 recently, which gives Poker Night 2 a little more of a science feel! As a lover of Portal, this made me pretty happy. Of course, when Brock asked GLaDOS about Cave Johnson, I got even more excited.
Here’s a video I found capturing the conversation. Poker Night 2 doesn’t have much a story, so I wouldn’t really consider this a spoiler. However, I recommend avoiding the video if you haven’t beat Portal and Portal 2. The Portal series is my favorite series, and I consider Portal to be the best game I’ve ever played. Please don’t watch it if you haven’t played those games!
I thought it might be time to recap what I’ve been playing. As I mentioned in my last post, I began playing a lot of Poker Night 2. I found it a lot more difficult than Poker Night at the Inventory but still just as fun.
Surprise, surprise. I’ve also been playing more World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria in Patch 5.4: Siege of Orgrimmar. I won’t go into too many details since I blog in depth about WoW at Kor’kron 501st, but I did make some good progression. I got some pets, hit exalted with the Brood of Nozdormu, finished the introduction zone on my Forsaken warlock, earned Glory of the Hero, obtained the Twilight Drake from OS 3D 25-man, and began running older content with a new WoW buddy. As for raiding, I killed Garrosh in flex and in normal saw a lot of progression – Kor’kron Dark Shaman, General Nazgrim, Malkorok, Spoils of Pandaria, and Thok the Bloodthirsty!
I’ve been spending a couple minutes with Dr. Mario Express almost every night and set a high score.
I can’t explain why Star Wars: Tiny Death Star is so fun, but it is. This screenshot is outdated as well. In January I finished all the non-Imperial floors and got a lot more bitizens. I’m sure I’ll be done with all the floors this month.
For a series I really loved, I was bad at playing the Phoenix Wright games. January saw me finish the first case of Justice for All in the Phoenix Wright Trilogy for iOS.
Cause of Death is a super exciting visual novel about a detective and FBI agent. I continued playing Volume 2 in January. I own five volumes, so I should get on that.
This screenshot is dated, but I’ve also played a little bit of World of Tanks. My highest tank is a tier VI, the TOG II, which is a gold tank. I’ve been working on the US tank destroyer line, and my highest is the M10 Wolverine, a tier V.
And then there was some crap. I tried Tanktastic on iOS, which is basically a World of Tanks clone. It was terrible. I also tried Tiny Tower. It should be great if I love Tiny Death Star, right? Wrong. Boring.
I’ve been playing Telltale’s Poker Night 2 recently and was finding it much harder than the original, Poker Night at the Inventory. I don’t know if it’s actually harder or if I just needed to get into the swing of things. Just as with the first game, the banter in the second is pretty great. Of course, Poker Night at the Inventory didn’t have GLADoS, so it pales in comparison.
Each character has a bounty you can win, although there’s an outline of a fifth – what’s obviously a personality core. I don’t yet know how you earn it, but earn it I shall. I have Sam’s banjo currently. Hopefully I’ll begin to pick up on their tells, but I didn’t really notice any in the original, so I wouldn’t count on it (and I’d rather not look it up).
It’s been a while since I’ve played Dr. Mario Express. It’s a DSiWare game, and I used to play it all the time. I recently checked my DSi for something and was surprised to find that there was battery charge in it still. I decided to play some Dr. Mario! On the second day of playing it again, I beat my previous high score! I was pretty surprised but definitely thrilled. And then I tried again and sucked the next round. Oh well, that’s how these things go!
I picked up Grand Theft Auto V when it was released. It was generally very enjoyable. The amount of polish and detail was astounding, and the world felt like a great stylized summary of Southern California. Unfortunately, I simply stopped playing it.
I suppose this happens to me much more than I’d like. GTA5 features three different playable characters, and I didn’t even unlock the third before I stopped. I did, however, get Chop, the dog. I love Chop.
One of the great things about the game is just how over-the-top it seems. The series has always been a bit over-the-top, but it seemed to take a step back from that recently. Do you remember using an explosive RC car to blow up a car in the original Grand Theft Auto? I believe the person giving you the mission said something about “that’ll teach Mom to something something.” I forget what exactly, but that wasn’t organized crime. That was comedy. Plowing through the glass walls of a building or pulling a building off of a hill is pretty similar. It’s just so silly that it’s great.
Despite being pretty entertaining, it just didn’t hold my attention enough. GTA4 was similar for me, and I did eventually go back to finish it and all the DLC. We’ll see if I return to GTA5.
For such a simple game, I found Star Wars: Tiny Death Star to be quite enjoyable. Yes, I’m a Star Wars fan. I love the movies (well, I had my problems with the new trilogy of course), and I’ve read a number of the novels. I’m sure that contributed, because all of the little references are pretty fantastic. However, even if you’re not a huge Star Wars fan, you’ll probably find it entertaining. I started playing on an iPhone 4, and it was a little laggy at times as my Death Star got bigger, but after I switched to an iPhone 5S, I never had a problem. If you enjoyed Tiny Tower, I think you’ll also really like Tiny Death Star. It’s free, so you have nothing to lose but a little of your time!
It’s been over 18 weeks since my last post on Game Boyz, but I finally put something new on the site. I’ve been playing Star Wars: Tiny Death Star for a while now. Why not review it for Game Boyz?
I don’t know what’s going on with Game Boyz, by the way. Jamie posted a news story 13 weeks ago. Before that, I reviewed BANG! 5 weeks before that. Things were slowing down for a while, and they seemed to have stopped for a while. Now that I look, in the past year we’ve only had two posts that weren’t from me or Jamie. If I had waited another week to check, they would have been pushed past the one-year mark.
Anyways, Tiny Death Star has been a lot of fun. I have all the residential, retail, service, and food levels. I’m working on recreation now, and then I’ll finish with Imperial levels.
A lot of my friends play World of Tanks, and they’ve been inviting to me join their Friday night games for a while. Last night I finally took them up on the offer.
It’s surprisingly fun. I thought I wouldn’t enjoy it as much as I did. It reminds me a lot of a first-person shooter (although it’s third-person usually), but you’re in a tank of course. It’s also slower and requires more thoughtfulness and caution than most FPS games I play. There are two teams in every battle, and it appears the goal is either to be the first team to capture the neutral flag or to capture the enemy flag depending on the map. To capture a flag, you simply stay in the circle around the flag. The more tanks in the circle, the fast it captures. It’s possible that there are other modes as well and that I just didn’t play them, but I don’t know.
There are tanks from a variety of nations, and each nation has a tech tree. Depending on what you research on a nation’s tier 1 tank, you’ll be able to research and purchase various tier 2 tanks. I chose to focus on US tanks. I researched all the US’s tier 2 tanks – a light tank, medium tank, SPG, and tank destroyer. I’ve purchased all but the SPG. I seemed to have done the best with the tank destroyer, so that’s what I played the most. I researched and bought all the upgrades for it as well.
There’s a lot about the game that I haven’t learned yet, but at least I have a strong enough handle on it to play and enjoy the game. I played 31 battles with a victory rate of 74.19%. That was mostly thanks to my friends though!
Poker Night at the Inventory by Telltale Games has been holding my attention quite a bit lately. I know it’s not new, but I just got around to playing it this month. It’s a perfect game to be played while I’m playing World of Warcraft’s boring parts. I don’t read Penny Arcade, so I wasn’t familiar with Tycho, but Poker Night gives me a decent idea of his personality. The interactions between the four characters are entertaining, and of course, playing poker is fun too.
Sometimes at the start of a new game, one of the characters won’t have the $10,000 buy in. Instead, they’ll use collateral. If you eliminate the character that used collateral, you win the collateral. My first goal (besides just beating a tournament on normal and then on hard) was to obtain all the pieces of collateral. At the time, I didn’t realize that they were items in Team Fortress 2. In fact, I kind of despite all the collecting and crafting that’s warped the launch TF2 that I loved (and I’m not the only one), but that’s a story for a different post. I just wanted to collect them because they were something to collect.
Once that was done, I set my sights on earning all of the achievements. I currently have 16 out of 20, and I think it’s about time I drop that goal, because I’m getting bored. I’m still missing these achievements:
- Straight Flush: Win a hand with a Straight Flush.
- Four of a Kind: Win a hand with Four of a Kind.
- Down to the Green: Win consecutive all-ins.
- Three Wise Men: Win a hand when you have three of a kind comprised of three kings (of any suit).
There are two things that make me want to keep playing. First, there are still some pieces that I need from LFR in World of Warcraft. LFR is a sort of easy mode raiding. I won’t talk details of WoW here, but there is a benefit to me doing them every week, but it’s extremely boring and easy. I can tap one key on my keyboard and do quite well, and I like to play something else at the same time.
The other reason is that I haven’t learned my opponents’ tells. In fact, I wasn’t even sure if they existed. I had to check on Google to see if the characters have any. Yup, they do. I’m just bad if I haven’t noticed. I know I’m unlikely to pick up on all of them, but I’d like to figure out some on my own!
For now, I’ll keep playing a tiny bit. But then again, there’s always Poker Night 2!
Johnny Platform’s Biscuit Romp is a fantastic platformer available on Xbox Live Indie Games. The fantastic game recommendation site, Reccr, suggested I play it, and it was a great suggestion. (Reccr is no longer online, but it was created by Studio Hunty.) Johnny Platform’s Biscuit Romp is a simple platformer with quaint graphics. The game uses vertical level design, which is rare. More screenshots as well as a PC download link are available on the Ishisoft site.
The idea of the game is simple. After killing all the enemies by jumping on them, a door opens that lets you complete the level. You can also collect cups of tea (or some drink), which give an extra life when enough are collected. While the description sounds simple, the level design is incredibly varied and smart. Many levels are very original, and I can easily say it’s one of my favorite platformers.
The game is now available as a free PC download at the link I put in the opening paragraph. In addition, there’s a sequel, Johnny Platform Saves Christmas! I’m very tempted to go download it now, but holiday games are best played near their holidays. I’ll have to remember to play it in December, the best time of year.
As happens quite often with my extensive game collection, at some point I stopped playing Johnny Platform’s Biscuit Romp before beating it. Only recently did I pick it back up, and I managed to finish it. It’s truly a fantastic game.