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    Feb 8th, 2007 at 03:18:49     -    Desperate Housewives (PC)

    After the first wave of neighbors knocking on my door, it was my turn to do the knocking. I visited a group of ladies who had nothing better to do than gossip.

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    This game established some conflict in this section by establishing that Edie was involved in questionable business. Apparently she has a habit of frequenting other neighbors’ mailboxes for some unknown reason.

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    Lo and behold, I caught her in the act of badgering around with MY mailbox. I did not tolerate this transgression one bit and angrily shooed her away. I feel this game set up this point of conflict rather well. Even though the player knows almost nothing about any of the neighbors, you can’t help but to feel offended when another person is rummaging through your personal things. Having a gossipy neighbor build anticipation by telling you about her was a clever move on the developers’ part, as well.

    The game itself progresses you through the game by giving you once “quest” after another, as you work and complete them. There isn’t much of a sense of difficulty, as you can always reload an older save file and retry sometimes challenging attempts on activities such as cooking, to obtain an A+ rating on every single one. Despite this, it’s still a tremendous blast to play. Desperate Housewives offers a unique roleplaying experience that is unique in itself, with colorful characters and scenarios, and drama like none other.

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    If this doesn’t keep the player interested, I don’t know what will.

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    Feb 6th, 2007 at 16:16:00     -    Desperate Housewives (PC)

    I’ve always been a fan of role-playing games. I started off playing games like Earthbound and other Super Nintendo RPG’s, the Final Fantasy and Dragon Warrior series, and Diablo 2. Then I moved onto more atypical games like Morrowind and Oblivion of the Elder Scrolls series, which broke the mold by introducing more open-ended, non-linear gameplay. I also started playing World of Warcraft after that, but it was a mistake tantamount to developing a crack habit and I’ve managed to quit several months back. In all of the aforementioned games, you play a variety of characters – from a baseball bat-wielding boy to mighty warriors armed with humongous swords – but there’s something all of these games have neglected. That something is the modern American housewife… desperate ones. Why venture into strange, oftentimes dangerous lands when there’s a perfectly good adventure right in your own neighborhood?

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    I created a sexy redhead named Margaret Hatchet with a matching outfit and an attitude to go with it. The character creation process allows the player to choose different faces, hair, hair color, and clothing. It’s rather limited, but it offers enough variety to create noticeably different characters each time you play. Husband and son creation, unfortunately, offers much less flexibility, as you can only scroll through a set amount of stock characters, with none of the choices available from the main character creation.

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    This cat has claws!

    Soon after I created my character, the game put me through a tutorial that taught me how to use the camera, which seems reasonably solid so far. You can zoom in and out with the mouse wheel and rotate around your character left and right by moving your mouse in the appropriate direction. I fiddled around with various appliances in the house until the door started knocking. I had hoped they’d go away if I just ignored them, but the knocking persisted. When I had answered, the saleswoman from whom I’d apparently purchased this house was there. She opened up with some casual talk and tried to spook me by joking that this house was built over Indian burial grounds, but I saw through her lies. This game allows the player to interact with NPC’s by providing various smiley faces with snippets attached to them. Being a feisty, misanthropic redhead, I always opted to choose the angry face. This obviously lowers the NPCs’ disposition towards you for many of them, but always provides a laugh for me. This game has me interested and hooked so far, so I’ll provide another update shortly.

    This entry has been edited 4 times. It was last edited on Feb 6th, 2007 at 16:35:01.

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    Jan 30th, 2007 at 16:37:17     -    Gradius (NES)

    After watching a student beat the first stage during Monday’s lecture, I managed to do the same. I had originally thought that the volcanoes involved some sort of gimmick; I didn’t think players had to simply shoot at the lava until the game would allow passage. I easily defeated the next challenge, a circular battleship that shot at timed intervals while spastically moving up and down. At this point, I started using save-states just to see where the game would take me. As I have mentioned before, Gradius is absurdly difficult in many places and it simply isn’t a reasonable goal to finish the entire game in one gaming session as a novice.

    After I trivialized the initial difficulty, I breezed through several sections, which displayed surprising variety. From the beginning to where I stopped, I’ve seen fortified landmasses, volcanoes, floating fortresses, and even bizarre Moai statues that fired annoying volleys of projectiles. There is also a wide array of enemies; older ones from earlier in the game would also become progressively more difficult as well. In comparison to a game like Galaga, or other older schmups with more static qualities, Gradius is a true innovation with revolutionary new features.

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    Jan 28th, 2007 at 20:32:42     -    Gradius (NES)

    I’ve owned a Nintendo Entertainment System during my younger days and I have the scars to prove it. Games were significantly more difficult back then and superhuman levels of patience were required to cope with the overwhelming frustration. However, it’s difficult to vividly recall pain until you suffer through it again. Forcing myself to play Gradius opened a floodgate of bad memories and bitter tears.

    From what the game has presented so far, story and characters seem to be nonexistent. The player is thrown headfirst into action after selecting one or two characters, without any backstory or introductions. Considering the primitive gaming system, shoot-em-up genre, and the time of development (1985), this is not a surprise. Instead, the production is focused mostly on the gameplay, where Gradius truly shines. Though I’ve only made it to the two volcanoes spewing lava in the first level, the innovative elements are still well-apparent. This game popularized the “power meter” weapon selection bar, where capsules are collected and the player can purchase power-ups. Gradius also set the standard for shoot-em-up games around this time, though it pales in comparison to more modern games.

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    JK51981's GameLogs
    JK51981 has been with GameLog for 12 years, 6 months, and 11 days
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    Entries written to date: 10
      Game Status / Read GameLog
    1Desperate Housewives (PC)Playing
    2Final Fantasy (PSP)Playing
    3Gradius (NES)Finished playing
    4Katamari Damacy (PS2)Finished playing
    5No One Lives Forever 2 (PC)Stopped playing - Something better came along
    6Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike (PS2)Finished playing


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