F1000003's forum posts

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#1 Posted by F1000003 (48 posts) -

Does anybody know how I attach a blog to a game specific forum like we could on the old site? Adding a tag doesn't seem to be making a difference.

#2 Posted by F1000003 (48 posts) -

Many years ago, I played it obsessively for a couple of days, but only made it to around level 40. One of my friends finished it (although blames it for her PhD taking a year longer than it was meant to!)

#3 Posted by F1000003 (48 posts) -

I've logged eighteen hours into the pc version of this game, (still can't finish Hyper Hexagonist), and have just discovered that instead of moving your hand from the arrow keys to the space bar in order to reset the game (or tediously bringing a second hand into play), you can instead simply leave your middle finger rested comfortably on the up arrow key and use that instead! W also works for anybody using A and D instead, although the space bar is already more comfortably located under the thumb for such players.

Just wanted to share this just in case anybody else had missed it. The discovery certainly made me happy... It's the small things.

#4 Posted by F1000003 (48 posts) -

I am continuing with the rather futile task of playing all the video games.

Eight months ago when I started this blog some (including myself), doubted if I'd make it this far. Now that I've finished with all the games beginning with "0", I thought that I'd begin with a summary of the zeros.

There are fifteen games with wiki pages listed in the Giant Bomb website. Of these games, there were two which also had a different handheld game with the same name which I played - 007: Everything or Nothing and 007: The World is Not Enough for the Gameboy Advance and Gameboy Color respectively. There were three games listed which I didn't play.

005: An arcade game from the eighties by Sega which hasn't seen a re-release.

0 Story: A language heavy Japanese dating-sim for the PS2, which didn't see a launch outside of the region. I didn't fancy my chances of understanding what was going on!

0x10c, which I haven't played, because it hasn't been released yet.

My personal favourite game was 007: Everything or Nothing for the PS2 whereas 007: Racing for the original PlayStation takes last place. Are there any of these games that I'd actually recommend? To be honest, probably not. A couple of these games would probably have been good in their day - and I've been pleasantly surprised that not all Bond games are as terrible as I'd imagined. I would say that 0 A.D. (currently only in alpha), has an interesting back story and is worth keeping an eye out for in the future. I'd also add that 0D Beat Drop is the sort of game that I'd imagine some people could get really into - it just wasn't for me. A few people have expressed concern for my continued sanity, playing through so many potentially terrible games! Please don't worry, I'm also playing other games too! I'm only spending about 25% of my "gaming time" on this blog - including investing 100+ hours into at least two other games this year.

So while there were only 15 games beginning with a "0", there are 131 beginning with a "1". At my current rate it'll take me six years to play through all of those. Anybody reckon I'll do it? Well, there's only one way to find out!

Game 000016: 10,000,000

10,000,000 is the best game I've played so far... In fact I'd even go as far as saying "you should play this game." I played through 10,000,000 on the iPad, pretty much in one four hour sitting, (I actually slept for several hours half way through, but I didn't leave my bed from beginning to end!) There doesn't seem to be an Android port yet - which is a shame.

10,000,000

Reading through the forums, the name seems to be almost universally hated by fans of the game. However, I think that it's a brilliant name, succinctly describing the entire point of this Bejeweledesque match 3 puzzle game - to score 10,000,000 points. It really is that simple - keep playing until you can achieve this improbably high score and then the credits roll and you're done.

To help you on your way 10,000,000 is a puzzle game with an RPG twist, similar to Puzzle Quest but less epic.After each game you will earn various resources and XP, allowing you to upgrade various stats which will aid you on your quest to reach the high score.

Fight on!

Instead of having a game clock for each instance of the puzzle - a mini infinite one dimensional RPG dungeon is randomly generated for you to play through. If your avatar is faced with a monster match "Sword" or "Magic" tiles to damage it. If you have a locked door in your way match "Key" tiles - and meanwhile match "Chest" tiles to unlock power-ups, or "Resource" to spend in the shops. As you play, the screen is continuously scrolling at a fixed pace, so you have to overcome obstacles fast enough to not be knocked off the edge of the screen. Each level gets progressively harder, and you will eventually lose - and it is in between levels where you get to purchase your upgrades. With a mixture of in game achievements and upgrades to buy, I thought that this game seemed quite well balanced, making you work hard so that your upgrades feel well-earned, but not so hard that it becomes a slog.

It really is a very simple idea, and the mock retro graphics and music is a nice touch. To be honest, I think this game really stood out to me because it didn't out stay its welcome. There have been a few other similar games this year, such as Puzzle Craft, another puzzle game where you slowly upgrade your abilities in between round. The core game is just as good, but whereas Puzzle Craft really peddles the micro-transaction route hard... "Isn't playing this game tedious - spend some money so you can get it over with quicker" is a business model which I still don't really understand... 10,000,000 isn't continuously after more money from you and so doesn't feel the need to draw out the game indefinitely. You'll actually finish this game and gain a sense of completion!

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I've played through quite a few terrible games this year - but this game makes me glad that I started this process. Although the experience was rather short, this was up there with the best of the games I've played this year.

The next game in the database is 100,000 Games, a compilation package which isn't easily available in my region (and looks terrible), so I'm not going to jump through hoops to track it down. Therefore 10,000 Bullets for the PS2 is next on my list.

#5 Posted by F1000003 (48 posts) -

I am continuing with the rather futile task of playing all the video games.

Since last time I've been messing around with the mini games in Nintendo Land and playing through 5 player New Super Mario Bros. U (that game is really fun and chaotic in co-op mode.) But more fun than the Wii U... Super Hexagon! I've sunk hours into that game over the last week - and have just obtained a top 200 time by surviving 2 minutes on the first level.

I also played through the next game on my list, 0D Beat Drop. I quite like rhythm games; Elite Beat Agents, Audiosurf and Guitar Hero games being among my favourites. I also really enjoy block matching games; Tetris, Bejeweled Blitz and 10,000,000 are all games I've enjoyed in the past. However I didn't really get on with the previous puzzle rhythm hybrid game I played Lumines - despite the fact that most people seem to really like that game. Similarly, 0D Beat Drop never really clicked with me either... Like with Lumines, most reviews seem reasonably positive about it - I guess the genre just isn't for me.

Game 000015: 0D Beat Drop

0D Beat Drop is an XBLA exclusive released in late 2009. There is a Quick Look for it here. I played through the standard Planet Quest mode on easy difficulty, (which was actually pretty tough), and then spent a little while messing around with its song import tool. I probably spent around 3 hours playing this game in total before I got bored with it.

0D Beat Drop

The game is your standard coloured blocks fall from the sky, match 3 game - with the added twist that the blocks will only disappear if you drop them on the beat of the background music. Most of the modes have you face off against a CPU, and there is usually a big advantage to deliberately avoiding dropping blocks on the beat until you can build up a big combo - as connecting multiple blocks simultaneously sends a load of junk onto your opponents board.

You need a fair amount of tactical awareness to succeed in these battles - as there are a few nice subtleties to consider. Such as your opponents attacks don't actually hit you until you miss a beat drop. So controlling when you want an attack to land can give you a tactical edge - especially if you have a few combos lined up, sometimes taking the extra junk pieces will likely set you up for something even bigger. However, this quickly results in attack escalation, with the advantage swiftly swinging from side to side with increasing magnitude. I think this was my main gripe with the game - you are often not rewarded for doing well - because the closer you are to failure, the easier it is to launch a devastating attack on your opponent. It is a mechanic which is meant to keep the battles interesting - but ultimately adds just a little too much randomness for my liking.

Battle Mode

I didn't really find the music that interesting either. This can usually make or break a rhythm game; but I was reasonably impressed with the tools available to add your own music into the game (even if it did seem incredibly hacked together). The in-game music analyser appeared to use some nice Fourier techniques to quickly fit a beat to your music. This worked surprisingly well unless your track happened to change pace midway through; it couldn't really cope with that.

This game was fun for a while and is certainly based around a cool idea. If you like Lumines and Tetris Battle Gaiden, then maybe this is the game for you? However it never really clicked with me, so I doubt that I'll be returning to this any time soon.

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The next two games in the Giant Bomb database are 0 Story, which I won't be playing because it is a story driven Japanese game and I don't speak the language - and 0x10c which looks really cool... but hasn't been released yet. So, unless anybody in the community can find me another game which begins with "0", then next time I'll write up my thoughts on 10,000,000.

#6 Edited by F1000003 (48 posts) -
  • Hexagon 126.22 134.47 138.54 169.91
  • Hexagoner 88.59 113.12
  • Hexagonest 61.17
  • Hyper Hexagon 66.02
  • Hyper Hexagoner 61.24
  • Hyper Hexagonest 20.38
#7 Posted by F1000003 (48 posts) -

I am continuing with the rather futile task of playing all the video games.

With one huge exception I have relatively little experience with Shoot 'em Ups. Until 2006, I'd never bought one - I thought they looked dumb. Then, (the first time I met him), introduced me Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved. I was instantly hooked. The bright coloured shapes... the background which warped as you fired your bullets... the music! Geometry Wars is still in my top ten favourite games. It is also the only game I have ever topped an online leaderboard, (admittedly on an obscure level in the equally obscure Nintendo DS version)... but it still felt good!

Since then I have played quite a few Geometry Wars clones, but nothing (other than Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2), kept my interest for more than a couple of hours. I've also since revisited some of the classics of the genre, such as Ikaruga, and had some fun with some of them. I have come to the conclusion, that they are the sort of games which are hard to do right. Because most of the experience is usually incredibly repetitive, it is essential to get the core mechanics right. The smallest fault can soon start to niggle at a gamer - and I think I have a low tolerance for the genre, so it takes something which reaches the heights of Bizarre Creation's classic to keep me interested for long. Luckily for me 0 Day Attack on Earth only took about 90 minutes to burn through... It still outstayed it's welcome.

Game 000014: 0 Day Attack on Earth

0 Day Attack on Earth is a co-operative top down dual analogue Shoot 'em Up from Square Enix - not the sort of game I'd traditionally associate with them. It is available to download for 1200 Microsoft Points from Xbox Live Marketplace.

0 Day Attack on Earth

The game features three seven-part levels, where the player(s) have to defend off alien attack over New York, Tokyo and Paris. Rather cleverly, the maps are based on Google Earth images with many of the buildings rendered in 3D. That's the best thing about this game... The background maps. Even those lose much of their magic after you watch endless spaceships crash to earth into buildings without even denting them.

Your allies (CPU) are atrocious, get stuck on map geometry and don't seem to realise that the enemies all have weak spots so just fire seemingly at random. The enemies seem mildly interesting at first, and it's quite fun working out how to take down the bosses efficiently - but after New York Day 1 you just fight exactly the same space ships and monsters again and again for the next six levels, until the whole process begins again with a new city. Most of the modes are multiplayer only, and apparently the servers have been pretty dead since a month after launch.

If we are ever invaded by aliens, I hope it's more exciting than this game.

The majority of the enemies in this game are pretty tough, and take a while to take down. The idea is that you learn how to defeat them and avoid their attacks during the early waves. This then puts you in a better position to deal with dozens of identical adversaries later on. It's all pretty sound design - but I think ultimately the game never really gets intense enough to be exciting. You can almost always find space to retreat, regroup and try again. The best Shoot 'em Ups can bring on an adrenaline rush which allows the player to overlook the repetitiveness, and often get chaotic to the point of forcing players to rely on instinct and muscle memory in order to progress. This game seems to be encouraging a very cautious style of play - and I'd be surprised if any dual analogue shooter could pull that off.

Attack patterns soon become easy to predict.

Other than that the game is pretty functional - the controls work as you'd expect - left stick to move, right stick to fire. There are a few (slightly) different handling aircraft to unlock. Although there are no alternative weapons or power-ups to collect - which is a shame, because it would have added some much needed variety to the game. You have three lives per level and three bombs to use per life. Bombs do a small amount of local area damage, and you also has a completely pointless boost which is insanely fast and almost always results in you colliding with an enemy as soon as you use it.

As I said, I have a low tolerance for these games. My hunch is that it is terrible - but maybe it's actually mediocre. Luckily, the final boss fight was pretty simple, so I got my achievement fix when I found out I didn't have to replay the whole game on hard!

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This is turning into a rather prolific week for this blog - although I'm getting a Wii U on Friday, so things may return to a slightly slower pace for a little while soon. However my XBox informs me that 0D Beat Drop has just finished downloading, so I better get started on that.

#8 Posted by F1000003 (48 posts) -

@ShaggE:

If it's a compilation of previously released games, such as the recently released Midway Arcade Origins, then I intend to skip it, and play the games individually when I come to them.

If it's a game which is either an expansion, or is intended for people who had previously played another game, such as your "1000 Levels for Doom" example, then I intend to skip ahead and first play the original, before returning back to play the expansion.

If it's an old game where I may struggle to play it cheaply and legally, such as your "100,000 Greatest Solitare Games for Windows 3.11" example, (where I know some later versions of Windows have compatibility problems with older titles), then I will skip it.

If it's a large collection of original games, then I will the collection until I get bored of it. Often these packages are grossly misleading when it comes to the content that they actually contain. I believe for example that the game 100,000 Games by Viva Media includes tens of thousands of "slot machine" games in that count.

#9 Posted by F1000003 (48 posts) -

I am continuing with the rather futile task of playing all the video games.

After finishing off the last of the games beginning with "007" I jumped straight in and downloaded 0 A.D. I don't actually have too much to say about that game - it's still in alpha, so is missing much functionality. However, before I embarked on playing all those shooters I put my cards on the table and provided my thoughts on the genre, (in order to put my views on individual games into perspective). Therefore I thought that I'd briefly talk about my past experiences with Real-Time Strategy games first.

Back around the year 2000, I used to play a lot of RTSs. I sunk dozens of hours into the first two Age of Empires games, and almost as much into Total Annihilation. I never really got into online gaming at the time - but did get around to networking the family computers, so I sued to play Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings and later Age of Empires II: The Conquerors expansion pack with my father. (Almost always, Regicide, Rivers on a small map with no AI... We both enjoyed base building, so found that the rivers provided easy early defence points, and regicide provided each player with a Castle to slow down early attacks. The other advantage of Regicide was that conquest just took too long to finish after one player had clearly won - so killing the King provided a nice abrupt ending without the need to hunt down the last remaining transport vessel hiding in a corner of the map.) Whereas Total Annihilation was the game I'd play with my friends.

However, I think it's probably not too controversial to say that while the late 90s and early 00s were probably the golden age for the RTS, (not only the games listed above, but also the StarCraft, Warcraft and Command & Conquer franchises were going strong). With the exception of StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty and the original Supreme Commander, the last decade has not been great - or at the very least, I personally have not been compelled to pursue my interest in the genre. Maybe I'm wrong though? Maybe there's some gem I've overlooked? If anybody knows of anything worth playing, let me know - I used to really like these types of game.

My hunch is that the genre has been partially absorbed into the Tower Defence format. Plants vs. Zombies, Mushroom Wars and Eufloria are all games I've enjoyed in the last few years - but I'd probably regard them as RTS-lite.

In conclusion - I like the RTS format. I especially like the epic, designed for PC, convoluted ones which you can get engrossed in. Things with massive tech-trees... you know the sort.

Game 000013: 0 A.D. (Alpha 11)

0 A.D. isn't actually out yet. Twelve years in development, Wildfire Games released alpha version 11 to the public in September of this year.

0 A.D.

The game began life as a mod for Age of Empires II - but as that game began to show its age the team decided to build their own engine from scratch. In July 2009, the game became open source - and a community of over 100 people have now contributed to the game. 0 A.D. is available to download for free and is available for Windows, Mac OS and most excitingly, Linux.

I played the game for a couple of hours under Windows on a cheap laptop - but also got my house mate to test it on his gaming laptop, running Linux. The game was functional on mine, and featured possibly the quickest loading time I have ever seen in a video game, from double clicking the icon to seeing the main menu! However, as I approached a population of around 100 (of a potential 300), it did begin to lag. Still, it performed about as well as can be hoped for on a cheap computer with no graphics card. On the gaming PC, it ran smoothly - and although it wasn't the most amazing game graphically, it was certainly presentable and by no means a bad looking product.

Large population cap.

I was impressed with what I did play. The game is clearly being made by a community of enthusiasts for enthusiasts, as can be seen in the attention to detail which has been put into the mechanics. It plays like Age of Empires, but where things just work how you'd want them to. For example, multiple villager being able to work on one form - and military being able to construct buildings and help out collecting resources. This one change did take some getting used to, as my usual villager rush strategy left me defenceless against an AI who would focus on military without having to completely sacrifice its early growth.

The game also has an interesting mechanic where it keeps track of your borders. Building additional town centres can expand your borders, but other than buildings may only be built inside your borders - so gaining territory is a more well defined concept than it is in most RTSs. This becomes important, when you find that you can't build a depot next to the stone you are mining, and your villagers have a long inefficient walk back to base.

Ships

I found it a little difficult to differentiate between my own units and the enemies at times, (quite a big problem when controlling an army!) So if anybody can think of away to improve it and knows C++ - please go and submit a change!

At present, the number of units and buildings which are available are quite limited, and I began to loose interest after a couple of hours with it. My hunch is that most of the development effort has been put into the early game, with the number of units, buildings and technologies available to research being rather low. The game does not yet have a campaign mode, and could probably do with a tutorial (although it should feel very familiar to fans of the genre.) Still, there was enough to it to make me excited to see how this progresses. The developers seem to have grand ambitions, and are taking their time with this project. I imagine it'll need another graphical overhaul before it's eventually released - but I'm sure that many people are just enjoying the journey watching how this game slowly develops. After all, there's no real reason to ever actually finish this game. They could just keep on making it better and better.

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Next time 0 Day Attack on Earth for Xbox Live.

#10 Posted by F1000003 (48 posts) -

On the other hand, Goko, a company which I added about ten minutes ago is already showing up in the search... So there goes my theory!

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