How I’ve seen WarCraft getting craftier

Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness

Warcraft 2: Tides of Darkness Game Box Cover

The first proper PC game I ever owned was WarCraft 2: Tides of Darkness. I first played it from a demo disk and seeing as the Real Time Strategy (RTS) genre was a rarity on the Mega Drive (which was my main entertainment device at the time) I thoroughly enjoyed the new experience and wanted more. Continue reading How I’ve seen WarCraft getting craftier

Vector Tower Defence

This game has been running around the office this last week. People seem to be struggling with it, can’t get past level 17. :S

I managed to get past level 17 on my first go, and finish it in under a dozen. This score wasn’t my first complete it was the best outcome at the end of the week, completely obliterating the competition.

Hint: Don’t go for the obvious!

200 Perfect Freecell Games

For the past 9 months I’ve owned my new Vista Laptop; its not been great. Constantly waiting for refreshes and “calculating” of seemingly trivial things like a right-click context menu on the desktop. To top this off rendering artwork, particularly as PNG, takes AGES so I’ve taken to playing Freecell Continue reading 200 Perfect Freecell Games

Work Addiction?

So I’m watching this report on ITV investigating Video Gaming Addiction, when I was little I played and played games day in day out, these days I can’t even imagine sitting down to play an hour. I know that to make any decent progress; level up once or move onto the next area it’s going to take me a few hours possibly even a few hours everyday for a week. I’ve got to re-acquaint myself with the game controls, practice so I don’t ruin how well I was doing 6 months-3 years ago and get going again.

These days its wake up, goto University, come home, if there are no plans its finish of this recreational project or a movie to unwind, sleep and repeat. The inner critic rationalises that because I’m not turning down social opportunities to work I’m not addicted but why do I feel so much more at ease when I on camp and can’t work?

I LOVE computer games, I really do, you can participate in events you couldn’t do in real life, dodge bullits, fly, fight, drive. duck, jump, force-push. Its a lovely escape from reality, but thats just it, its not real and all those scores and stats don’t count.

I produce as much as the next guy, more so even, website results are like icebergs; you only see 10% the rest is hidden under, water or behind the pretty template. Yet actually producing something isn’t enough for some people who think that they work hard when infact all they do is send a dozen or so emails each week (like I don’t!). Perhaps I should prove a point and print out every single line of code I’ve cut’n’pasted or written and display it all at my next opportunity? I wonder if the point will be taken?

This is possibly the biggest sign that my childhood is over, work whether it be ‘recreational’ or educational dominates my time instead of play, I didn’t see it coming nor did I ever think that I would fall victim to this affliction as all other adults have. I think its now too late to set course for the second star to the left and go straight on till morning…

Film Review: Zathura

Would you like to play a game? Ordinarily a harmless request but this is an extraordinary game. Zathura takes you into the Jumanji universe where board games aren’t just pieces being moved around a board, they’re adventures beyond your wildest imagination.

Although a film targeted at children I found this thoroughly enjoyable; there are plenty of jokes for all ages and a deeper story about how hard it can be for children after a divorce.

The story starts with a father and his 2 sons enjoying their weekend together playing games, intermittent with him finishing preparations for a presentation at work. Typically the boys compete for their father’s attention and in the process raise some minor havoc which leads to one of them being tricked into the basement and discovering a cool looking game.

The discoverer opens it up and starts playing; a card is ejected but being so young he can barely read and asks his slightly perturbed brother what it says. Upon reading, a meteor strikes, devastating the living room. Looking out of the window they are stranded in space with no parents and an apathetic sleeping teenager – what are they going to do?

I thoroughly enjoyed Zathura. Usually there’s an obvious formula to children’s movies meaning you can almost predict what’s going to happen next, but Zathura certainly kept it interesting for me. You expect a big hoohah seeing aliens immediately and then getting back at them but Zathura takes a different approach, withhold seeing them until absolutely necessary. Get the kids thinking of the most disgusting and scary monster alien they can imagine, and just when they can’t bare it any longer they show you and it’s pretty intimidating but nothing a 5 year old can’t handle.
A good film to go and see if you’re looking for some easy entertainment, firm acting from the cast, thoughtful plot and respectable CG effects. Certainly worth the price of a cinema ticket.

Rating: 82%

Happy Winter-een-mas!!

X3 Reunion Game Box

Well actually it started on the 25th so we’re smack bang in the middle of it but still have a happy holiday none-the-less.

What is Winter-een-mass? It’s a fictional holiday created by Tim Buckley for gamers, to celebrate computer games. With the huge sub-culture surrounding games, brought on by the boom of the internet it was only a matter of time.

So what have I been doing to celebrate this Gamers Festivities? I’ve renewed my efforts to keep up my gaming efforts that severely dropped last year, I missed out on the WoW (World of Warcraft) phase which I’m likely to be shamed about for years to come.

I have however picked up a copy of X3 – Reunion another sequel in the mahusive ‘X’ universe. X is the modern day Elite series, most famous of these is the Elite II – Frontier which I’ve played for days straight, weeks even! Its possibly my first favourite Flight Sim RPG game of all time. The universe was huge and you could practically do anything, skim suns, halo drop, fly-bys, trade, steal, pirate, transport and even assassinate.

To make things that little bit more interesting there were 2 prominent advancement systems you could advance in the Sol Federation (that’d be where Earth is) or the Achenar Empire. You could choose one or the other to advance in but both usually got your superiors curious about your loyalties and tried to have you killed by increasing the danger on your missions. I don’t think I ever achieved Admiral or Prince respectively in either but I did get above halfway.

Anyway X3 – Reunion is mightily impressive, stunning visuals but the control system is taking forever to pick up everything, I suppose in the long run its good as you’ll have everything at your fingertips but currently just trying to remember to drop Chaff on incoming missiles is enough.