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    Apr 28th, 2011 at 06:33:33     -    darksiders (360)

    Darksiders is a puzzler meets hack and slash meets platformer. You play as one of the four horsemen, war. It is believed that with your presence that you are the one that brought upon the start of the apocalypse. You have no idea why you were called to earth, but it is now your objective to find out who called upon you. You start then game out with all of your god powers but shortly after the first pseudo-boss fight, they are taken away. You swear to find the person who started the apocalypse or you will be killed. Once sent to back to earth you are weak and only have your sword to beat off enemies with. As you progress through the game you have the opportunity to get your powers and weapons. Most weapons you will obtain will be through a challenge or bought with souls. Souls are obtained either by killing enemies or through chests that are scattered throughout the different levels. One can also find chests that have health or energy replenishments or chests that increase the amount of health, energy or rage you have. Souls can be used within the store to buy generic RPG items; health or energy potions. Souls can also be used to buy the scythe weapon. Souls are mainly used so one can buy more moves. Each weapon you have you mount to a specific button on your controller and with movement, jumps, and dash combos one can perform the different moves. With energy one can use magical abilities that can help you along your journey. Once you reach a certain point in the game you will be able to start accumulating rage and had a demonic form you can turn into once obtain enough rage.

    The game could be considered hack and slash because all of the enemies you encounter and all one must do is spam your sword button. The game can be considered puzzler because to get through levels there are blocked passages, items that must be obtained and even objects that must be triggered to allow the player to continue through. The game can be considered a platformer because of how each level has different levels and platforms that the player must navigate through.

    During my first play through I manage to make it up the first boss. Your mission at the time is to obtain this creature’s heart because when you collect enough for this guy he will tell you how to defeat the main bad guy. This is all important because you believe key was this bad guy that started the apocalypse and is using you as a scapegoat. The first boss is a giant bat dragon thing. She will shoot you with fireballs, fly around, throw you about, and try to eat you. The main way to kill her is to use the exploding balls you discovered earlier in the level, to knock her out of the sky. Once on the ground you have so long to just beat on her. It is a rinse and repeat process and if you fail to mash the right buttons during her kill scene you will have to retry her. It took me a few times to get into a good rhythm but overall it was an enjoyable boss fight. Her kill scene is quite epic.

    The next boss I got to way the giant beetle-praying mantis boss. Before you get to fight him you must mess with train carts and getting power restored to areas to be able to pass. Some parts were tricky to get past, but once you kept your eyes open long enough you started to see what you needed to do. Inside this level you obtained gauntlets that allow you to destroy crystals. Once you get to the boss you must use the train carts some more and ram him a few times to weaken him and then pound on his crystal heart some. This boss fight was annoying because he spawned adds that would just wail on you could kill them all. After the boss fights you head back to the guy your helping out and you receive a nice gun to shoot the weak enemies with.

    During the second play session I got to the third boss. The game seems to like to keep adding new features that would make the new area more challenging. In this area you have to worry about time. Things are happening too fast for you to react to so with a special knowledge you get to use the time stones. Once these are triggered, time slows down for a short period of time. This usually allows the player to get past the event that was happening to quick in normal time. On the way to the giant worm boss, you encounter small worms. You do not get to kill any of these worms, you just get to run. Two thirds of the way to the boss you encounter a mini boss and once this challenge is completed you obtain a steed to make your travels a little less long. Like anything else given to the player it is used for a few more mini bosses and then on the giant worm boss.

    During your travels between areas you get to see the drama between the demons and angles and neither is really painted in a good light, which I enjoyed. During different parts of the levels, you get the opportunity to use power weapons that belong to the angle or demons and in bring in a little refreshment into the game when you have been smacking everything with the same sword. There are also challenges where you will be sent to an arena and given instructions that you must complete to continue. Most of the challenges help the player learn their moves and abilities.

    Weapons each have a lot where an item enchanter goes, which gives slight perks when using each one. Some of these perks are; more souls found, more rage generation, and makes your weapon hit harder. As one uses their weapon they will get experience towards that weapon and can level it up to do more damage. Even through there are many weapons as you play you will find your favorite two and use those more than the rest.

    Overall the game was quite fun to play. I enjoyed the amount of senseless gore and the playing off of heaven and hell fighting for earth. I think the story line helps to keep the player interested in the game but there also isn't too much so the player isn't confused. I would suggest this to anyone who wants to play a gory hack and slash game but would also like to play a puzzle game. Neither is too difficult so if you are looking for something hardcore, this is not the game for you.

    This entry has been edited 2 times. It was last edited on Apr 28th, 2011 at 06:34:33.

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    Mar 28th, 2011 at 23:12:06     -    Pokemon Red (GB)

    Pokémon Red

    Description:
    In a world full of creatures called Pokémon, it is your job to go out, catch and train these monsters. As you travel on your way, you face tougher trainers who are training their own Pokémon. It is your objective to collect, train and become the very best (like no one ever has). You are first sent to Professor Oak who gives you and his nephew, your rival, the choice between three initial Pokémon. Your new rival will challenge you periodically throughout the game. As you go along your travels discovering Pokémon and honing your skills, you find out there is a trial versus the best trainers called the Elite Four. To face the Elite Four, you must battle the eight gym leaders and gain their badges. Through traveling to compete versus the gym leaders, to collect your badges, you face an evil force called Team Rocket. They use Pokémon for stealing, robbing and anything else they want. Once you beat the Elite Four, you have technically beaten the game but you can continue so you can collect all 150 Pokémon and complete any of the remaining side missions.

    Player/Game Mechanics:
    The main character is preteen boy whose goal is to become the best Pokémon trainer his world has ever seen. He must use Poké balls to capture new Pokémon and train them to become strong. It is a turn based game which means that every move must be picked and then you must wait till your opponent has gone, rinse and repeat. Every type of Pokémon has an advantage and disadvantage to other types of Pokémon. It makes it so that it is like rock, paper, scissors in the fact that you must train multiple Pokémon so you can beat different opponents, when they might have an advantage over one of your Pokémon.

    Graphics/ Music:
    The graphics are not that amazing but they really are not bad if you remember this game came out in 1996 on the original Gameboy. Some of the sprites can look a little funny and not really match the Pokémon’s image but once you start battling the Pokémon look pretty good in their green and red tints. I started playing with the sound and started remember some of the sounds from when I first played the game many years ago. Some of the sounds are amusing and fun to listen to but after playing for a few hours the repeating of the background music gets quite annoying. There is a volume button on the Gameboy for a reason and I just turned it down and only tuned into the music when I enjoyed it.

    World:
    The Pokémon world is made up of ten towns that your character must travel through. Between the towns there are routes, forests and even dungeons that player will encounter opponents and Pokémon. Within each town there are Poké Marts, Poké Centers and gyms. In the poke centers a player can get his Pokémon healed and take advantage of the pc in which he can store items or Pokémon. In the Poké Marts, a player can buy items that can help him along his journey. At the gym a player can battle the gym leaders and gain badges for his overall goal.

    Game Session 1:
    I have beaten Pokémon red before but it has been quite a few years since I have pulled out my Gameboy, so I decided that it was only appropriate to start fresh. I created a new game and was off into the world of Pokémon. I went straight to professor oak to get my first Pokémon and decided that I would start out with Bublasaur. My rival of course chose Charmander and the first battle started. I was able to defeat him, the NPCs like to use a few moves seem to do very little, giving my Pokémon plenty of time to beat his Pokémon down. After beating the rival I head out of Pallet town and onward on my adventure. On my way to Viridian City, I had to walk through the tall grass, which is where the Pokémon will attack. The first few fights were exciting and I knew that they would be no match for me. Taking more steps I start to remember some of the monotonous aspects of the game. To level you must fight players or wild Pokémon and these fights can happen often. Depending on the zone all you want to be able to do is keep running and never battle anyone. After arriving at Viridian City a NPC asks you to deliver items back to Professor Oak and once there you receive a Pokédex so you can keep track of all the Pokémon you encounter. You also obtain a town map that will help you figure out what direction you need to head in next. Now it is time to head over towards Pewter City to fight your first gym battle. The only way to get there is to go through Viridian City, Route 2 and then through Viridian Forest. It is smart to attempt to catch Pokémon and start to train them so you have different options while fighting enemies. Viridian Forest can be quite annoying since one faces a lot of poisonous creatures and since you are just starting out you will probably die a few times. Once you finally make it to Pewter City it is time to heal up your Pokémon and face the gym leader. The leader of this gym is Brock and his Pokémon are all of the rock type. This was an easy fight for me because I have a grass Pokémon and Vine Whip is very effective against rock Pokémon. Leaving the town you get to face your rival and he has leveled his Pokémon and gathered a few more. This fight I lost because I did not heal up my Pokémon before I left the city. After having a blackout, in which you are returned to the closest Poké Center, I decided to take a different route to the next city. On your way to Cerulean City you must pass through Mountain Moon. It is here where you first encounter team rocket and you begin your trails against them. Dungeons can be annoying to travel through, because Pokémon will attack you anywhere inside. Again like earlier depending on if you need to level up your Pokémon, it can be rather annoying to fight all the wild Pokémon.

    Game Session 2:
    A few days go by and I am able to pick up the Gameboy again. I finish making my way to Cerulean City and I make my way to heal up. At this point I’ve caught a Piggey, Rattata and bought myself a Magikarp. All healed and ready to go I head over to the gym to face Misty. Misty only trains water type Pokémon. I had no big advantages or disadvantages against water Pokémon so the fights were a little slow but I end up winning my badge. Before leaving town I like to explore all the buildings and I find a store that sells bike but they are way over priced and I can’t afford one. I wasn’t too disappointed because I remember that I could get a free one, I just kind of forgot since the last time I played when I would get it. While all my Pokémon are leveling nicely, Magikarp is leveling pretty slowly but that is because he doesn’t actually have an attack and all he can do is splash a target. I find on my way out of town that there is a day care where I can leave my Magikarp and he will slowly level as I’m away. I now begin my journey to Vermillion City. While there I’m able to get a bunch of goodies. I begin to explore the town, I see that the gym is blocked by a strange bush, I find a guy that gives me a fishing pole, I find the guy that gives me a bike voucher just by chatting with him about his Pokémon fan club, and lastly I board the S.S. Anne. There are a lot of trainers and items around the boat, I fight a few and get bored and start to avoid fights. As I make my way to the captain of the shit I have to face my rival again and of course win. Once reaching the captain he shares the HM 01, which is cut. Now with cut I figure I can manage to get past that strange tree in front of the gym. Once inside the gym you get to face Lt. Surge and his Pokémon type is Electric. Again it was like with the water Pokémon and it wasn’t anything to difficult. I head back to the previous town and got my free bike. Heading forward I now move a lot faster on my bike and travel time is now slightly less boring. I make my way towards Pewter City. The issue with getting to Pewter City is that there is a sleeping Pokémon in the pathway, so you must head into a tunnel to get to the town. If you train your Pokémon with flash you can see within the tunnel but I had to Pokémon available to teach flash to and I had to go in blind. I spent a good hour running around the different levels of the tunnel facing opens and wild Pokémon. I became really annoyed the longer I spent my time being lost within the cave. I blacked out a few times and had to start my journey over and over again but finally after a lot of running from wild Pokémon I find the exit. At this point I make it to the City save and turn the game off.

    Overall:
    Overall it was pretty fun replaying Pokémon Red after so many years. It was kind of annoying fighting many of the wild Pokémon and the trainers when they were under my Pokémon’s level. Gym battles and fighting your rival were more enjoyable though. I have become slightly addicted to Pokémon games again and I’ll probably keep my Gameboy in my book bag for any down time I encounter. I will make sure to go back into my closet and find my other Pokémon games and replay them.

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    Jan 27th, 2011 at 18:27:02     -    Clue: Discover the Secrets (Other)

    Deception of Clue
    Clue is a multiplayer board game for three to six players. The objective of Clue is to find out who is the murderer, with what weapon, and in what room. The game play is a complete free for all, and there can only be one winner – if there is a winner at all.

    Players:
    Each player picks a color which is represented by game token. Each color is related to a persona of that make up the murder suspects. In this version of Clue, when each player picks his or her color, they get a personality card. With these cards a player has special abilities he or she can use upon their turn.

    Board:
    The layout of the board is of a mansion. Players make their way through each room, creating rumors as they go, attempting to narrow down the possibilities of who is the murderer. Players’ tokens start on colored squares that match their color persona. A player can move through the house by rolling the dice on their turn and moving in the hallways. Players can also use the secret passages in the rooms they are in, which will take them to other rooms. Players can create rumors about who the possible murderer is but can only suggest these rumors while in a room. The only room one cannot make a rumor in is the pool room. When a player has figured out who they believe the murderer is he or she must make their way to the pool room and make the accusation there.

    Cards:
    There are four types of cards used during Clue. Two of the cards are given at the start of the game, personality and rumor cards. The other two cards are mixed into a pile for players to use during game play. If a player rolls a dice and gets a question mark, he or she must draw a card. If a player lands on a question mark on the game board, he or she must draw a card. There are keeper cards and clock cards. Keeper cards can give the player the advantage of moving multiple times during their turn or can let them see another player’s rumor cards. Clock cards are harmless until the eighth card is drawn. When the eighth card is drawn the player that drew said card is now dead and out of the game. They must show everyone else their rumor cards and place the eighth clock card back into the card stack. The final clock card can be pulled over and over again. There is a chance for everyone to die before they can find the murderer and no one wins.

    Game Play-
    During the first running of the game, it was three people playing. It seems unfair because everyone can mark off half of the possible murderers, weapons, and rooms. It was also the first time any of us had played in a very long time so we took 20 minutes to read the rules and set up the board appropriately. Game started pretty slow, we all rolled the dice and move our tokens. It was when someone landed in a room where the game got interesting. He suggested a rumor that neither the other player nor I could prove him wrong. We thought, well this is going to be the fasted game of Clue ever. The other player and I rushed to the pool room to see who could make the accusation. The other player got there first and looked into envelope, which holds the answer, and discovered she was wrong. We just learned that it is ok for a player to use one of their own rumor cards when they started a rumor to trick everyone else. For rest of the game it was down to two players. The game became a little drawn out as it was just back and forth. Finally after visiting most of the rooms, it was the other player that won and not I.
    During the second game that was played, the player who lost first knew what she was not going to do again. Everyone was very suspicious of each other and the game went slowly. In this game there was a better chance of seeing how the cards played into the game. There were only a few clock cards pulled and everyone got to use their keeper cards strategically. All in all it was a slow game and not as eventful as the first but was enjoyable. If we were to play again, we would invite more players so we could have a lot more fun.

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    1Clue: Discover the Secrets (Other)Playing
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