Continuing our summer of experimental zine content, Issue 19 is hot off the presses, featuring the booking puzzles of the Gangbusters! Comedy Enjoyment Program. Why, there’s practically a puzzle on every page. Solve our historical puzzles, solve the new puzzles constructed for this issue, spot puzzles that don’t exist and solve those too!
Filtering by Category: Games
Tiny Tower Vegas - - Another Tiny Tower! The economy in this game was much slower than in the original game, so it took me more than a year - maybe pushing two - to collect all every floor. Finally done!
Lost tracks - - Not much of a game, really. This was a student project I read about online somewhere.
Sky Force Reloaded - - I've collected and completed everything available so far in this game. Better curve and card power ups than the 2014 edition, which I've gone back to replaying now that this one is pretty much done.
Emily is Away - . - Good atmosphere. This is an epistolary type of game set in late 90s instant messaging. I always run into the same problem with these kind of games though, which is that I want to replay to see another branch of the tree, and then you realize how little effect your input actually has on the course of events.
Affordable Space Adventures - - I've been looking forward to this since seeing the demo at E3 last year. The co-op in this was great! I was expecting player two to get a flashlight, but the split of controls was a treat. Definitely a game about the journey more than the destination. If I would have waited like two weeks, I could have gotten the game for next to nothing in a humble bundle, but I can feel good about giving the devs full price for this one.
This year's E3 experience was much less frenetic than last year's. The Treehouse Live booth, an improved version of my after-the-fact schematics from last year, is now run by Nintendo. So instead, I helped to produce some videos for their YouTube channel. In brief:
- The Star Fox Zero reaction video you see above,*
- The 360º booth tour video I posted the other day,*
- A Super Mario Maker reaction video,*
- A recap of the Nintendo World Championships 2015,**
- A recap of Nintendo's entire E3 experience,***
- A couple of fan videos made by a guy who turned up in several of our official videos.****
I'm really glad I got to work on some more stuff for Nintendo this year. Plus, I had a little more time to wander around the show floor (as evidenced by the Yoshiller videos). I haven't played a Star Fox game since the original, but of the demos I played on various systems it was the most fun game I got to try.
Of course the internet is always mad, but it really struck me this year how wide the gulf was between the angry, angry online opinion and the truth of actually being on the ground. This is a shot from just before the end of the last day of E3, when booths are turning to tumbleweeds:
*** assistant editor
**** dude playing game demos, then suddenly cameraman
The end result of a game of Letterpress has always vaguely reminded me of Conway's Game of Life, which is an early computing application that I had assumed was only referred to as a game out of respect for the dead, but Mr. Conway survives.
Anyway, I've been collecting these game results for a while, in order to be able to do this:
(Click to enlarge, arrow keys to cycle through.)
This week, let's look at a bunch of games. All played on the iPhone and iPad.
Star Wars Commander - ★★★☆☆
A Star Wars take on Clash of Clans. I made it to Level 6 before it lost me. The biggest takeaway I have from this game is how not worth playing it feels. And, since I've stopped playing, I've racked up way more points (medals) than I would have by working at it, since waves of randos throw themselves on my well defended but mostly abandoned base.
INGRESS - ★★★★☆
Google does a great job of hitting the facets of freemium games that make this addictive, but it's basically capture the flag with flags that dissolve even if nobody's actively destroying them, as a front for a big data mining operation. I don't regret playing, but there's no end, and I know I'm not going to get as involved as the people hacking the system to do brilliant and impossible things, so level 8 is going to have to be my victory condition.
Defuse Dbomb - ★★☆☆☆
I figured there had to be a game in the app store about bomb disposal, and after trying a bunch of demos, this was the one that seemed the most similar to fun. I thought there would be lockpicking games too, but there's not much.
Smash Hit - ★★★★☆
This is a game about breaking glass things with marbles. Or ball bearings, maybe? Anyway, it's pretty satisfying to smash things, and because I didn't buy the IAP unlocks, I got good enough to play the whole game in single sittings.
God of Light - ★★★★★ (iTunes)
A really well done puzzle game. I got 3 stars-or-whatever on every level and found all the fireflies. The core game is about reflecting beams of light around, but new mechanics and units are added regularly to keep things interesting. Really nice.
Space is Key 1 and 2 - ★★★☆☆
A port of a simple-as-can-be flash platformer, in which you make your square jump over the rectangles at the appropriate times. I didn't think much of it at first, but I played through all 100 levels (between the game and it's included sequel), and then the next night I did it again.
Forbidden Island - ★★★★☆ (iTunes)
This is a port of a board game to iOS, but that makes it a video game, and I did win several rounds of this game. I beat it playing two characters on my own, and in two player games where we played one and two characters apiece, on various difficulties. Have yet to beat the toughest modes or buy the additional island setups. A solid adaptation.
80 Days - ★★★★☆
I was genuinely surprised to find that I successfully navigated around the globe in only 77 days. I thought all was lost! This seems like a huge game, with so many more possible cities to visit, routes to take, or even things to do in the cities I've already been through. The sheer difficulty of seeing everything makes this seem like the kind of game that would drive me crazy, and might even somehow slow me down from playing more in the future. I have a lot of exploring to do here..