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    Oct 19th, 2009 at 15:09:44     -    Worms Armageddon (PC)

    Summary

    In Worms Armageddon the players take turns to control teams of cartoon worms who use an arsenal of weapons and the terrain around them to try and kill off all of the opponent worms on the map. In the game, each team starts with a variable number of worms on their team and can use weapons such as: a bazooka, mini-gun, “holy hand grenade“, and other comical weapons to either knock the enemies off of the map or to take away all of their HP. Once there is only one team left alive on the map, the game is over and that player wins.

    Game play One

    When I first started to play the game I had heard good things about it from my friends so I went in with high expectations. First thing I wanted to do was to create my own team. In the team creation screen you are able to give each of your worms a name; generally these are immature and goofy such as: fuzz ball, toenail, or captain stupid. After assigning names I then sent and set a sound scheme for my worms for when they make attacks or get killed. All of the sound files built in the game were very funny and this was a very enjoyable process. Lastly I set my game flag and grave stone and was on my way to do a scrimmage.
    In the scrimmage I was against a team of computer players in a 4 vs. 4 games on a randomly generated map. I quickly found out that the computer is very good at using the bazooka into the wind and hitting my worms off of the map. In the time I was alive however I had a great time using the many different kinds of weapons and watching the interactions between the worms as the hurt one another and snickered and jeered as they killed one another. When I had one worm left, enough turns had gone by to where the holy hand grenade was unlocked. So in a last ditch effort I went in tossed the grenade beside two of his worms listened to it scream “Hallelujah” and watch his two last worms go flying off the map in different directions. I was victorious.

    Game play Two

    The next time I went and played the game I decided to get one of my roommates who was familiar with the game to play against me. Since the game is a turn based strategy game we were both able to play at my computer. So we went into the multiplayer interface both selected our teams and team colors and were ready for battle. The map was randomly generated and our worms were all randomly placed in the map. The was the multiplayer game works is that users take turns using weapons to try and knock each other off the map and or to kill the other players worms. As more turns go by, the player gets access to more and better weapons. This helps out if players are having difficulty killing one another. Since he was more experienced than I was the game with quickly over and we had to do a rematch. On the rematch I made him take it easy on me and I got to try out some more of the new weapons such as the “sheep” and “super sheep”. The sheep is a cute little sheep the hops around and then when the player hits the space bar again, it explodes. The super sheep is similar to the sheep except when the player hits space bar the sheep turns into a super hero with a cape and the player can control the sheep with the arrow keys. Once the sheep hits something it will explode causing damage. Once I was able to use some of these more powerful weapons, I was quite the force to be reckoned with.

    Design

    Some of the main design components that make the game enjoyable are the customizable options. The player has the options to chose worm names, graves, speech, flags and the player can also import custom maps and if they are experienced enough, their own weapon sprites. Besides being customizable the game play includes some great components which add a lot to the overall experience. The physics in the game are very well done. The player has a rope that they can use to move around as well as jumping and running. All of these things respond as the player would expect. You can use the rope to help you repel off buildings or jump up obstructions in the map. Besides the movement aspect the physics also affect the overall way the game is played. If you shoot the ground near a player then they may go flying through the air based on the trajectory of your shot or how big the explosion is. Also if you throw a grenade it will bounce around depending on how hard you threw it. Lastly, the cartoon/ humor aspect of the game really is what makes the game enjoyable. If I was to be shooting a player with mini-guns and had him bleed all over the place and scream for his life, which would be kind of sick. But watching a cute little worm strap on the mini-gun and head band in a “Rambo-esque” style and quite Arnold’s famous line from terminator “Hasta la vista” while shooting a worm to listen to him scream something funny , is very enjoyable.

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    Oct 4th, 2009 at 20:01:22     -    Super Smash Brothers (N64)

    Summary
    Super Smash Brothers is a game way before it’s time. In this game you select Nintendo characters and participate in either a free for all or team battle fighting scenario. In the game to object is you use your character to kick punch and use special attacks to kill your opponent the most in the allotted time or until they run out of lives. The game also offers a one player campaign mode where the player will fight their way past multiple opponents, and sometimes teams of opponents, in an effort to defeat “The Mater Hand”.
    Game play I
    Super Smash Brothers has always been a favorite game of mine. When playing the game my roommates and I are actually pretty competitive as we all like to think of ourselves as pretty good at the game. Everyone chooses a character who they think they are good with and we take off the stage selection option to make the stage completely random. Once the game starts we all start with 5 lives and proceeded to try and kill each other by any means necessary. All of the players have special attacks that give them a different kind of attack versus other players. There are also items in the game in which players can either heal themselves or use them to hurt the other players.
    In our game we like to turn the items off as we think that many of them give an unfair advantage to the player. I personally like to use Kirby as my character. Kirby is able to jump much more than any other player so he can easily perform aerial attacks when players and trying to get back onto the level. I use this to my advantage and kick players downward in the air to get an easy kill.

    Game play II
    For the second game play I went through and played the campaign mode. The campaign is set up in a way to where you always face the same opponents but their difficulty varies by the difficulty that the player selects when starting the campaign. The campaign mode is not just fighting one opponent at a time however, like many old fighting games. In this game you have many allies that fight with you against harder, and usually larger, opponents. Also many a few times there will be a team of foes you have to fight. Although usually they are not very difficult individually, fighting many of them can be.
    There are also small mini-games in the campaign mode. In these games the player must either “board the platform”, “break the targets”, or “race to the finish”. The player must do these things in the given time limit in order to get the extra point bonus. If you complete all of these mini-games with every player in the game, you can unlock a secret character. This is also the case if you beat the game with every character.
    For the final battle you fight “the master hand”. Unlike the other characters in the game, the hand is not a Nintendo character, he is a gigantic gloved hand that flies through the air shooting and trying to squash the player. This battle also differs from the other as the hand is not able to be killed like the other opponents in the game. The hand has a fixed amount of health and once you hit him enough and get him down to 0 the hand explodes and the game is over.

    Design

    The game design in Super Smash Brothers is great. The players are usually familiar with all of the characters and to see them fighting each other makes from game play that never gets old. The interface of the game and choosing character and stages is all very easy to do and setting game options is as simple as a few clicks. The game offers great diversity by giving each character their own special moves and almost every character their own interactive stage. Although these stages offer no “home court advantage” to the player, they are all still fun in their own accord.
    The music for the game is also great. Each stage has its own soundtrack that matches well with the game play and to that courses character. For example, Hyrule Castle plays music that a player may have heard from the other Nintendo game “Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time.” The music is upbeat and dramatic and adds a lot of the games play of the game. Also the characters audio reactions add a lot as well. When a player make a strong attack they seem to yell, where as if they get smacked off the screen you hear them scream in pain as their voice fades as they get smaller and smaller in the distance.
    One of my favorite aspects of the game is that the replay value is wonderful. Not just the multiplayer, but the unlockables in one player mode will keep the player entertained for hours. The player must beat the game with all the characters, beat the mini-game with all characters and play enough multiplayer matches to unlock all the secret characters in the game. The multiplayer also keeps players well entertained as players get better the game only provides more challenge by player having to figure out which character does better against your opponents attacks. All and all I would say that Super Smash Brothers has to be one of my favorite games ever.

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    Sep 28th, 2009 at 07:50:11     -    Mario Kart 64 (N64)

    SUMMARY
    In the game Mario Kart 64 player chose from familiar Mario characters and race around a verity of courses in hopes to obtain the best place in each race. In each map players can get power ups to help them either go after to hurt the other players by slowing them down or spinning them out. Each race consists of 8 racers and as you complete each race your position gets you points. The player with the most points at the end of the race wins and is shown in a victory cut scene.

    GAME PLAY
    I played Mario Kart many many years ago when I used to have a Nintendo 64. My roommate recently bought it and I came back from a long day of class and decided it would be fun to go back and play it. I started off on the “50cc” one player mode. This is the equivalent of “easy” in any other game. I did the mushroom cup race and found that I remembered everything about it including some of the short cuts.

    The maps well all very familiar but still held their fun value as I raced around the track taking out the computer players with an onslaught of turtle shells, banana peels, and fake power ups. I found that the easy difficultly was not very challenging as I was able to obtain first place on each race. As easy as it was however, seeing the familiar cut scene with the gigantic fish blimp and catchy music made my first place victory all the sweeter.

    GAME PLAY 2
    On my second take of game play, my roommates and I decided to race against each other. In this mode in the game, there are no computer players, it is only players. We all chose our characters and chose the star cup. This grouping of maps contained my personal favorite “Bower’s Castle” (as I always play with Bowser as my character).

    As it turns out I was not the only one who remembered how to play the game as the competition was stiff. My roommates both had the game growing up and quickly caught on to what strategies I was doing and where I liked to use certain items. Needless to say I did not come in first place this time and we found ourselves playing another pack of maps and then another. It was very fun to see how well my friends played the game and how fierce the competition got and people’s reactions as you hit with a last minute turtle shell as pass them at the finish line.

    DESIGN
    The design of Mario Kart 64 can only be summed up in a word, “great”. The controls could not have been easier, the maps were varying and exciting, and the items added a great dimension to the game. All of the screens in the game form choosing which mode to play to the character selection were all very intuitive and simple. The game also offers a battle mode in which players try to use turtle shells, bananas, stars, fake power-ups and overall girth to take out the other players. Each player has 3 balloons and once you have been hit three times you are out. Adding this battle mode to the design I thought was brilliant so if a player is not great at the racing aspect of the game it adds an aspect to the game play for him/ her to show off their skills. All in all Mario Kart 64 helps develop a wonderful player experience by taking our favorite Nintendo characters adding fast cars, crazy items, and creative maps. I will definitely find myself going back to play Mario Kart again soon.

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    Sep 4th, 2009 at 16:43:17     -    Super Mario Bros. 3 (NES)

    Other design contects I enjoyed were:
    - hidden secrets and warp points in many of the maps where I could find whistles.

    - Mini games such as the matching game or memory card game where I could win extra lives.

    - The Map: In this Mario it got rid of the linear level progression and players are able to (somewhat) chose which levels to go to and in what order. Even able to omit some completely.

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