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    Crime Scene (DS)    by   jp       (Oct 1st, 2023 at 01:02:06)

    Oh no.

    I think I might have played another game in this series - and, I think again, I struggled with the "collecting evidence" part of the first mission. Here I had to dip a swab (success), then swipe it on an area to collect evidence (success?), and then, invariably, the swab breaks - too much pressure it says, and I fail. I tried for 5 minutes or so (for an interaction that only takes a few seconds) and just gave up.

    Did the game seem interesting? Yes! Collecting evidence, talking to witnesses, and so on. It looks like a full-fledged "police detective" game with all the trappings. But the interface let me down here.

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    No Plan B (PC)    by   jp       (Oct 1st, 2023 at 00:59:35)

    I guess my struggles with the tutorial level were an indicator that things did not bode well for my experience with this game. I don't think I played more than 3 of the game's missions - and that's mostly because I failed to really understand how the interface worked including the meaning of the symbols on the timelines and how they worked. It didn't exactly help that I was able to clear some of the tutorials via a combination of trial and error and blind luck. That's never a good sign.

    But, is the game interesting? Yes. I does scratch an itch that I think is quite prevalent in the tactical strategy game space - that feeling of having a team move in perfect coordination taking out enemies and responding in the cool and professional way you see depicted in television shows and movies. Everyone knows where to go, what to cover, and has excellent reflexes to respond in time. So, this game eventually gets to that point, but you need to carefully choreograph everything in a, for me at least, haphazard way. It feels like solving a puzzle one step at a time by trying all the options. It falls apart because, well, the sequences get longer, and longer, making it harder to understand what you need to do differently or where you went wrong earlier. Having everything "ready to go" for it to all fall apart is a bit of a disappointment. I wonder how much room for improvisation there is for each level? Did the designers pre-imagine a few different options and balance the game such that they were viable? Or are you expected to iterate your way to the one bullet ballet that works?

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    Wildfrost (PC)    by   jp       (Oct 1st, 2023 at 00:46:19)

    Still playing!

    At this point I'll rarely do a "free" run - I mostly do the daily ones and, I think, I'm getting a lot better at the game. I'll regularly place in the top #300! I even had a pretty good (daily) run in which I (finally!) beat the game! (I placed #239, so I'm guessing it was an "easier" run for most).

    What's fun about the daily runs is that stuff is really mixed up and you just have to make the best of what you get. BUT, you also often get a random assortment of cards you'd never see together otherwise. Or, your cards will have unusual upgrades and such. So, it's been interesting to mess around with that - or at least to try to make the best of it.

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    Cell to Singularity (iPd)    by   jp       (Sep 26th, 2023 at 18:38:18)

    I've reach the point where the main simulation takes too long to make any real progress AND I think I tapped it out in terms of things to unlock and see? I think because some things get unlocked based on progress in the other idle game simulations that are part of the game as a whole. So, with the main one getting a bit tiresome (the dinosaurs is the only one that seems to have a pretty regular/even progression - I can cycle/restart every few days and there are still new things appearing and getting added) and the space one being quite uneven (sometimes it moves faster, but other times it's super slow with no progress).

    So, I'm going to delete it - mostly because I've installed a few other games on my phone and I don't want to play too many at once.

    BUT - it's been really interesting to see this game. Most of what I've learned comes from the fact that there are multiple idle games in the game - and they all function slightly differently from each other AND the experience playing them is noticeable different for me. So, the rate at which you can make progress is important, and the feeling of things being fast or slow is also super important. And how often new things get added/unlocked, etc.

    The other thing I think characterizes this game is how much of an element of surprise there was as I played - new stuff opening up, new games, mini-events, etc. All of this kept me playing longer because it was fun to discover an entirely new idle game - plumb its depths (at least a little) while continuing to play.

    So, good stuff!

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    Shootas, Blood & Teef (Switch)    by   jp       (Sep 26th, 2023 at 17:01:49)

    I picked this up on a lark - no research, no references other than HEY, it's ORKS! (and 40k). I guess the art style intrigued me because it's cartoony, simple, and with a sense of humor. Sort of like what the orks used to be in 40K before it was called 40K - it was all darkly funny and a bit stupid, but hey - that was the game's flavor. It's interesting to see how quickly and effectively Games Workshop was able to wipe the past and overwrite it with a darker, grittier, and grimmier (not a real world) flavor of ork. To be fair, it made sense - and was thematically more consistent with the rest of the universe.

    So, what's the game? Well - couch co-op (one of the main reasons I got it actually, with the idea of playing with the kids) side-scrolling platforming shooter. I played it a few months ago (so this entry is way late) - but I recall there being a control scheme I didn't quite get used to...and the game was doing everything it should by the numbers (points, upgrades in between levels, there's some sort of story, boss levels, and so on).

    From what we played - (2 levels?) - you fight orks and humans (guardsmen and marines) and it was fine. Not boring, but fine - fun enough for a couch co-op experience, but I realized that neither of us was urging the other to play the game again, so it started to collect dust (the box at least) and so I've decided to just put it on the shelf.

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    Final Fantasy XII (PS2)    by   DCuster

    No comment, yet.
    most recent entry:   Sunday 11 February, 2007
    After twenty hours of play I think I'm going to bury this one away. It became boring mostly because of all of the leveling involved trying to get money and liscenses. Also there is so much running around because the world is so expansive. The plot never really grabbed at me too much either. The game did introduce a lot of new cool things to the final fantasy series but I feel the world was too big. The fighting system was cool but the old battle system was never really that flawed and I feel there was no need to change it. Also the game is so long it never really feels like you ever make any progress. Each mission also takes at least a few hours which can be exhausting as well. Anyway it was a good effort but I feel the game just lacks in certain areas where other final fantasy's excelled.

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