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    Oct 18th, 2009 at 23:01:15     -    Contra III: The Alien Wars (SNES)

    Game Play: I am a little on edge since I have last played Contra III because the levels have gotten increasingly longer and harder! Rather than scrolling from side-to-side like normally, The levels have switched from time to time to scrolling up and down; this can be a challenge for a 5 year old, who is still developing his hand/eye coordination.

    Design:
    One of the most important things that I must commend Contra III on, is creativity. From level design, to weapons, and enemies every aspect of the game is very unique.
    The levels in the game do not seem repetitive at all, and this is very important when it comes to “run and gun” games. It is very easy to get bored when the only objective seems to breeze through a level and shoot everything in sight, but Contra III provides many environmental obstacles, such as flames, and platforms that make timing and precision very important. There are also a few levels, where the camera angle of the game changes, making the movement and angles change considerably for the player, which makes the player have to adjust their style of playing for these specific levels; because of the sudden change in camera angle ( from side view to over head), the levels appear to be much different; no longer can the player simply jump over enemies, they must become skilled in the art of strafing from side to side to avoid enemy contact.
    The conflict aspect of the game, makes Contra very intriguing and addictive to the player; It was very easy for my nephew and I to play the game for 3 hours straight ( any game that can keep a 5 year old interested for 3 hours is quite a game!). With many games, a player can be hit multiple times before it costs them a life, however in Contra one hit and the player is dead! With such little room for error, each move the player makes is important, and because the game is a port from SNES, the ability to save and start from the save point is non-existent to the game. The stress of having to spread 3 lives with 3 continues (9 total lives in all) over the game is quite a rush for the player!
    The reward structure in the game is very strict, which has its pros and cons; I am always very appreciative of the rewards I get (extra lives, new rocket launchers), but the limited availability of these rewards, makes me very hungry for their presence. With each life lost (remember one hit and your dead!), the rewards that the player achieved will be lost as well. There is a remarkable weapon, a flame thrower, that makes it very easy for a player without precision to take out numerous enemies along their path, however it seems like once in a blue moon that the flame-thrower is present; there have been many times where there has been an off-screen battle between my nephew and I of who was worthy of getting the flame-thrower this time around. Sometimes the scarcity of the rewards, left me feeling bitter and frustrated towards the game, but somehow I couldn't walk away.

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    Oct 18th, 2009 at 23:00:38     -    Contra III: The Alien Wars (SNES)

    Summary: Contra III:Alien Wars is a fast-paced, side-scroller where players run and gun through levels. The game is set in the year 2636, where Earth has suffered an alien invasion and must fight back! Originally for Super Nintendo, Contra III was ported to Wii's virtual machine to be downloaded and played.

    Game Play: Although Contra III is 17 years old and there are games on the Wii with far better graphics, Contra is perhaps one of the most fun games I have played in a long time. I remember playing the earlier version of Contra on NES and I must say that the series has improved based on the SNES port that I am currently playing; The game runs a lot smoother, a lot more fast paced, and the weapons are a lot more interesting (I love the homing missile launcher!).
    Perhaps one of the greatest aspects of the game that I like so far, is the ability to play with a partner. The Contra series, is known for being very fast-paced and difficult, almost to the point of being overbearing for the player. With my little nephew, the game is still a challenge, but I feel a lot more confident because I have someone to watch my back for aggressive aliens that are trying to make me their next victim.
    Within 45minutes, we have already fought two bosses, and I must say that they are Gargantuous and quite intimidating! Again, I am gracious for the opportunity to have a partner because fighting a boss that takes up half the screen is quite a challenge for just one person.

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    Oct 5th, 2009 at 18:06:12     -    Wii Sports (Wii)

    Caleb Bell

    Game Log

    I have taken a break from the multiplayer version of Wii Sports and have started to play Wii boxing. I loved the idea of creating my own avatar (it looks a lot like me!), and I have gotten the hang of dodging and evading attacks. With each round it gets harder and harder to defend against and defeat each boss. I love a challenge and Wii sports definitely provides a good one.

    In my generation, a lot of games have centralized on graphics, cutscenes, and story line but Wii Sports is truly unique because it centralizes on player interaction, and emersion. The characters are simply comprised of blocks, yet the idea of being in control of a character through one's own movements, make the game seem less passive like most video games and more active. I find it quite impressive that games such as boxing, are capable of detecting a 3 dimensional range of motion and through moving the controller towards the player, the character is able to duck and dodge.

    Although the controls of Wii Sports are very innovative and give the game a great amount of its luster, they are not exactly perfect; there is often a lag present when the player moves and the character reacts, which as imagined can cause a lot of problems. There were many times when I would deliver a punch and my character responded too late and instead of dealing damage, I received it, which can be very costly after awhile. There were many times when I tried to deliver accurate punches during the game and the system was simply irresponsive and in the end rather than landing carefully calculated punches, I was forced to succumb to simply flailing around.

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    Oct 5th, 2009 at 18:05:44     -    Wii Sports (Wii)

    Caleb Bell


    Game Log: Wii Sports

    Wii sports is a compilation of sports games such as boxing,golf,tennis, bowling and baseball that uses the wii-mote in innovative ways to simulate these actual sports. Through customized avatars, players can compete head-to-head with each other ( up to 4) or against the computer.

    Wii Sports is one of the first games to demonstrate the new innovative ways that the wii allows players to interact with each other and their environment. What makes Wii Sports stand out from previous games that I have played is that it is easy to look past the usual shallow elements used to critique games such as graphics, and focus on the game play experience.

    Bowling was one of the most interesting games to play because my nephews enjoyed it, and they were actually able to give me some competition in the game! The controls used to play bowling were very fluid and responsive, and it was quite an experience to see my 8 year old nephew bowl strike after strike.

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