torachan: (Default)
[personal profile] torachan
So I have been meaning to write a post about this game for a while and I thought hey, why not 1. write it for [community profile] three_weeks_for_dw and 2. post it to this comm? So here I am.

I have been a huge fan of the DKC series since the first game and was very, very sad that Rare's breakup with Nintendo meant there were no more DKC games (forever, I thought at the time). But then Donkey Kong Country Returns was released and I was thrilled at the idea of a new DKC game for the Wii.

Thankfully like the New Super Mario Bros. series, it is "retro" and doesn't try to be 3-D or anything. 3-D games can be fun, but I really prefer my platform games to be side-scrollers. (Just as I prefer my RPGs to be 3/4 topdown with super-deformed characters... Really, the SNES was the height of gaming for me.)

DKC Returns does incorporate some flash-bang new technology stuff by having Donkey Kong shot into the background by barrels and stuff like that, but for the most part it's still straightforward side-scrolling action.

Of course this is the Wii, so it also incorporates motion-sensor tech. Personally I could do without that. I find it fiddly and it gets tiresome to keep shaking the controller for stuff. (This was most tiresome in Wario Land Shake It, but DKC Returns comes close.) You can choose to use the nunchuk + controller, or just use the controller turned sideways. (I use the nunchuk.)

The gameplay is pretty much exactly like the DKC games from the SNES. You collect bananas and puzzle pieces and letters to spell KONG and red balloons. You can jump and roll and throw barrels and ride minecarts. In some ways it is more limited. The only animals that appear are the rhino (whom you can find in some levels) and the parrot (whom you can buy from the shop and then use to locate hidden puzzle pieces). Also the only other character is Diddy, who is not playable himself (except in two-player mode) but can be used to help Donkey Kong jump farther.

One thing I really dislike about it is that it's obviously meant for a much larger TV than I have. When you're shot into the background, it doesn't switch to having that as the foreground, so you're really tiny and sometimes it's hard to figure out what's happening. Also the backgrounds are beautiful, but they're so detailed that again, it's sometimes hard to differentiate between background and foreground stuff.

I also felt like the game had too many levels where you had to be really precise and duck/jump/etc. at just the right moment. Like, I don't know if I'm explaining myself well, but I like levels where you get a little more freedom to explore, but I found that those felt too few and far between and instead the focus was more on levels where you could only do one thing or you died. (This is especially true of minecart levels, of course (of which there were many), but there were a ton of other levels like this as well.) Once you get the timing down on those levels, there's not a lot of replay value (at least not for me).

Overall this is a fun addition to the DKC line and I'm very happy to have another side-scrolling game for the Wii, but it really made me want to get on the virtual console and buy DKC 2 and 3 for the SNES and replay those. (Since I didn't have the money, I contented myself with watching playthrough videos on youtube. That...can get addictive quickly.)

Heads Up!

May. 10th, 2010 12:16 pm
telesilla: Alistair from Dragon Age: Origins (DA swooping)
[personal profile] telesilla
I should have posted about this before, my bad. There's still a day left to get The Humble Indie Bundle. It's five very cool looking, DRM free indie games for Mac, PC or Linux and the very cool thing is, you pay what you can afford and you choose where the money goes.

So you can pay $20 and have all of it go to Child's Play. Or maybe $25 and split it between Child's Play and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Of course, if you want to throw something to the developers of the five games, you can do that too, or even split your money between all seven recipients.

It's a totally different and cool way to buy games, so check it out!
eisen: Scoobies (ready forever). [<lj user="vice">.] (we hit the streets with all we had.)
[personal profile] eisen
Okay, let's see if I can write this thing!

... because previously all attempts to write it have ended with me getting up with a burning desire to just play the game instead (and then I am stymied by the fact that my Dreamcast is currently packed away under a pile of clothes, and so nothing gets done).

You see, I love Grandia II probably more than any other game I have ever played, certainly more than any other RPG I have ever played, and if I had not come across Grandia II when I did I guarantee I would not care about gaming as anything more than a thing which other people do. That is how much I love this game. I grew up with friends who I played Final Fantasy games with - I vividly remember playing FF7 for the first time with them, and likewise Suikoden I and Suikoden II - but, unlike everyone else's experiences with those games, I was never very impressed with them or even found the battle engine very engaging. In short, RPGs in particular were eye candy but they weren't things I cared about. I read epic fantasy as a kid; RPGs, story-wise, had nothing to offer me, and I didn't learn the appeal of dungeon grinds until I was almost out of high school, so it's safe to say simply pounding away at monsters wasn't gonna win me over, and I already mentioned that the eye candy of the first couple console generations wasn't enough to hit my buttons either.

(I have since learned the appeal of these things; I have gone back and with fondness played a lot of games I didn't find interesting as a tiny kid. But back then? Nah, they did nothing for me.)

I am honestly not sure why, of all these games, Grandia II carved out a piece of my heart and crawled in there to stay, but it did.

in which tara talks far too much and requires a cut tag simply to keep from probably breaking someone's circle in half )

In short, it has everything I want from a game and a fair bit more, and I revisit it at least once a year even now, almost a decade after its original release; it's safe to say it is one of my longest-lasting fannish loves, and I expect I'll still be playing it ten years from now with fondness and affection.

Besides. Canon OT3. That's basically my reason for loving it right there.
gorgeousnerd: A cartoon Batman from "Batman and Sons" holding his baby Terry, smiling and whistling. (Batman.)
[personal profile] gorgeousnerd
I've played a bunch of games in my time, in various genres. First-person shooters are probably my favorites; I grew up on the Doom and Quake series, and I'll still do rounds of co-op Doom 2 with my sisters whenever I get the chance. Still, I don't think any gaming experience has been quite as rewarding as the experience I've had playing the Rock Band games.

A couple thoughts on Rock Band. )
shanaqui: Dinosaurs from The Land Before Time. Text: mine! ((LandBeforeTime) Mine!)
[personal profile] shanaqui
Vanguard Storm is, apparently, a sequel to Crystal Defenders, with somewhat similar goals, though a different battle system. You only have a handful of units, which you can move each wave to your best advantage. Each of them can attack in a certain way -- a Black Mage can cast magic at the entire row of monsters, for example, while a Soldier can only attack what's directly opposite it. It's pretty simple, really, and quite easy, easier than Crystal Defenders. It has very little by way of plot, which means I'll pick it up sometimes, play a couple of levels, then just put it down again without caring once I get bored. Because it's quite easy, that happens quite quickly.
schattenstern: Rue from Magna Carta 2, wielding her shuriken (MC2 - I will protect the princess!)
[personal profile] schattenstern
Subject line says it all - I come bearing icons! I recently finished Magna Carta 2 and when I sat down to see if I could express my love for the game in 100x100 pixels, it turned out that I had way too much fun with the SD pictures of the characters from the official artbook. What can I say, they're adorable. ^^;

The other game I found myself iconing (which totally is a verb. Because I say so.) is Fragile Dreams: Farewell Ruins of the Moon. Behind the strange name we find a relatively new Wii game developed my Tri-Crescendo and Namco in which our lone protagonist sets out to find out if there are other people left alive in the post-apocalyptic world the story takes place in. (Easier said than done when you're trying to fight off ghosts, wild dogs and loneliness armed with a flashlight, a stick and an AI with self-esteem problems who will nonetheless try to emulate your optimism.)
I have yet to play more than three or so hours of the game, so there's not much else I can say about it other than that, while the combat system can be a bit wonky thanks to a stubborn camera, the atmosphere more than makes up for it and I'm enjoying myself very much. <3

Teasers:



Here there be icons )

Feel free to use these in any way, whether as bases for your own icons or as they are now! Credit makes me a happy Sternchen but isn't necessary. :D
telesilla: test reading: three weeks for dreamwidth (3 weeks 4 dw)
[personal profile] telesilla
I'm not a huge fan of tower defense games. My favorite Pop-Cap game is Bejeweled, which I don't play against the clock. Stuff that's timed or involves a lot of tension is normally Not For Me.

So why did I fall so hard for PvZ?

It's all about the fact that it's kind of hard to get too tense when you're playing a game that has such a goofy premise. You have a house and all that's between you and the zombies (who, of course, want to eat your brains) is your front lawn, then back lawn, then back lawn with a pool and then your roof.

Your defense? A series of increasingly weird plants, starting with pea shooters and sun flowers (the sun flowers provide suns, which enable you to buy more plants) and going on to potato bombs, various mushrooms, spikeweed and even melonpaults (yup, catapults that hurl melons) just to name a few. Your opponents? Various kinds of zombies. My favorite is the Michael Jackson zombie who summons up a troupe of dancers attired in 80s fashion rags.

There are also a series of mini games that you unlock as you go. Tip and new levels come from your neighboor, Crazy Dave ("but you can call me Crazy Dave"). It's very cartoony in a fun way, and the music is bouncy and more than a little addictive.

The game actually gets kind of hard in the last few levels and the final boss is kind of tough, or at least he was for me. The thing that I found surprising was that it's very replayable; I've played a lot of the mini-games and actually gone through the main game a few times.

So yeah, even if you're not wild about tower defense kinds of games, you might want to give this one a spin. It's incredibly fun, and isn't that what we want our games to be?

Oh also, it's available for iPhones & iPod Touches, but I've never played it on one.
kaptainvon: Photo of me running D&D, wearing what appears to be half a Fourth Doctor costume.  It was very cold in that warehouse. (3weeks)
[personal profile] kaptainvon
Hello! My name is Von, and I am a person who plays games and thinks about them a bit too much. Found the community via [community profile] three_weeks_for_dw and thought, in the spirit of the fest, that I might share this little story about how I run tabletop roleplaying games, and how that got started.

It started, as these things often do, with a wager. I forget what was actually being wagered, but that's not important anyway. Shiny, a chap who history shall know only as Awesome Mike (because he is, mostly), and I had an afternoon on our hands and some Call of Cthulhu that we had an urgent need to play. )
cypher: (she's like a breath of fresh air)
[personal profile] cypher
Up-front disclaimer: I am all kinds of fannish about video games. Almost all the fandoms I write fic for are games. This means that I wind up talking a lot about characters and relationships in my game reviews! ...I promise to put in some stuff about play mechanics too. Also I am kinky (and so is this game, seriously), so there will be a little bit of stuff in here about powerplay themes as they come up in the game. I will try to keep the spoilers to a minimum. ^^

So, Magna Carta 2! To answer the first two obvious questions: (1) it's for the Xbox 360 (and so far that seems to be the only system it's on -- only time will tell if it turns out to be one of those games that releases for the PS3 a year later). (2) You do not need to have played the previous Magna Carta game on the PS2 to follow the story -- it inherits the name, the character designer, and a few of the themes, but doesn't share a world or characters.

aaaah I love this gaaaaame )
telesilla: Alistair from Dragon Age: Origins (DA swooping)
[personal profile] telesilla
So, people have been posting here, which is awesome! It's also got me thinking that maybe doing something for Three Weeks for DW might be cool and so I was wondering if people would like to participate in an informal Game Manifesto Fest.

During the next few weeks, why not post about a game you love? Tell us what you love about it and why we should all be playing it and anything else you feel like saying to share the squee for that particular game.

ETA; I should add that you may do as many games as you like. Also more content is better content, so feel free to write up a game someone's already written about. :)
shanaqui: Seifer from Final Fantasy VIII. Text: burn. ((Seifer) Burn)
[personal profile] shanaqui
It's Three Weeks for Dreamwidth, which seems to call for some content. So after my question yesterday (which, tsk, no one answered), I ended up buying three games made by Squeenix for iPhone/iPod Touch: Hills and Rivers Remain, Crystal Defenders, and Vanguard Storm. Over the next three days I'll review each of them (or at least do a reaction shot). Starting with Crystal Defenders! You can get this for most platforms now, according to the Wikipedia page, but this is specifically the iPod Touch version.

Basically, it's really simple. There's no plot, it's just tactics. The game is a series of maps which you have to defend. When monsters get through your defences, they take some of your crystals. There are various kinds of unit you can use to fight against them -- the usual Final Fantasy stuff: soldiers, black mages, time mages, thieves... -- with various different function, and various kinds of monsters. So some monsters are airborne and your soldiers won't touch them, some monsters take multiple crystals, some monsters move really really fast... Before each wave, you get to add new units to the area to defend it better against the kind of monster that's coming up next. You can also level up your units so they have a bigger range, etc. Both actions cost money, which you get by defeating monsters. When you lose all your crystals, it's game over.

Unfortunately, one of the flaws of the game is that it's very hard. If you build up your army early on, you don't get much money: the amount you get is dependent on how much you already have. The more you have, the more you get. So you're encouraged to get through the game with as little defence as possible. Another thing is that you can't move a unit once placed.

There's also no reward for doing well at it, other than a high score, as far as I can tell -- you don't earn any new types of units, or any new content. It quickly gets frustrating, but it's fun to pick up for ten minutes or so -- boring bus rides or waiting for an appointment or something.
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