On X-Men Legends, Scribblenauts, and more


Shortly after Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 was released, I realized that I had never beaten the first X-Men Legends game. In fact, I had barely started it. Although I have been reading up on the Marvel Universe lately, I still didn't know much about the X-Men. I knew they were mutants, but beyond that I was clueless. And although the game doesn't deal with their personalities a whole lot (most dialogue is presented in text form and doesn't change depending on the character who speaks it) I can at least identify each character and their powers. That wasn't something I could really do before.

I'm totally enjoying the game, but there are some issues. I'm playing the GameCube version, and because the GameCube controller has one less button than its competitors you have to press X and Z together to use energy packs. Pressing Z first will cause a health pack to be used, so you have to make sure you press X first. But X is also used to grab enemies and pick up objects, so it can be difficult to use in the heat of battle.

Despite that, I was still able to keep playing the game without major problems. But once I reached the Arbiter section, another issue cropped up. During this mission the X-Men have to rescue crewmen from a ship called the Aribiter, which happens to be sinking. You have a limited amount of time to do this, and that alone can be frustrating. But there are also Xtraction points on the Arbiter, which you can use to save. Save without enough time to rescue all the crewmen and you're screwed. If the ship sinks or all your party members die, your only options are to return to the main menu or reload a save. In X-Men Legends you cannot restart a mission from the beginning. I don't think I've yet reached the point where it's impossible to pass the mission, but it's definitely going to take a few more tries. Maybe I should use the Xtraction points to train in the Danger Room. It won't add any additional time, but leveling my characters should help to get through enemies faster.

Another game I've been playing recently is Alter Echo. I had no expectations going in, but it's surprising good. Switching between forms, performing sick combos, it's quite fun. Even the sync node/time dilation stuff - which turned me off initially - ended up working better than I expected it to. Just had to ignore the timing bar and figure out the right pacing myself. A pleasant surprise, and although it doesn't look like it offers much in the way of replayabilty, I may end up doing so at some point anyway.

Last Friday I bought some new games. They were Professor Layton and the Diabolical Box, Scribblenauts, and Mario & Luigi: Bowser's Inside Story. First, Scribblenauts. Everything you've heard about the game is true. Yes, you can create just about anything. Yes, most of those things serve no purpose. And yes, the controls are terrible. But despite that, it's still a good deal of fun. What other game would let you tame Cthulhu and have God ride around on a T-Rex? Yes, the title screen really is the best part of the game.

After spending some time with Scribblenauts I popped in Diabolical Box. Although I haven't spent a lot of time with the game, so far it's exactly what I'd want out of a Professor Layton sequel. Love the puzzles, and Luke's attempt to remove Inspector Chelmey's "disguise" was great. I haven't started Bowser's Inside Story yet, but I hope to do so in the near future.


Mayhem Intergalactic is done (or is it?)

Today I unlocked the final achievement in Mayhem Intergalactic, Maestro of Multiplayer Mayhem. First game that I've unlocked all the achievements in. And with that, the game's done. I don't think there's anything else left for me to do in that game. Actually, the game's page on the Steam store claims that it's possible to create custom maps. I've never tried that; never even knew the feature was there. Maybe I should try to figure out how to access that...

Anyway, as you can see from the page I linked to above, I'm the first person on Giant Bomb to unlock the Maestro of Multiplayer Mayhem achievement. In fact, only 1.0% of Mayhem Intergalactic players have unlocked it. I have one of the rarest Steam achievements in existence, so that's pretty cool. :)


Gaming update - 8/22/09

After beating Persona 4, I wondered what I would play next. Eventually I decided I should finish Dragon Quest VIII, and then I'd probably move on to Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne after that. But for whatever reason that didn't happen. I ended starting Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker instead, played that for 28 hours, and then switched to Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime. And after rescuing the last six slimes in the game, I didn't stop. I just kept going, and I guess now I'm aiming for 100% completion. That's a great way to remove all the fun from a game...
Oh, and I found out Dragon Quest Heroes: Rocket Slime's credits are amazing. The slime puns never stop, even for the credits. It's a shame you can't watch them more than once. You could probably find some video on YouTube though if you want to see for yourself.
Other games I've been playing recently at some point: 

  • Fire Emblem - I'm up to Chapter 26 playing as Eliwood. I'll beat it eventually. Eventually.
  • Super Mario Advance - Collecting several eggs for the Yoshi Challenge, currently at 28/40. Collecting the Yoshi eggs and then beating the level without dying can be tricky, especially since the Yoshi eggs often take the place of mushrooms.
  • Mayhem Intergalactic - This is an indie game available on Steam. I bought it mostly for the achievements, but it's not a bad game. Oh, but I'm still playing it for the achievements. I just have one left, and it requires 100 multiplayer wins. Guess what? I've never played a multiplayer game against actual people. There aren't enough people playing the game, so I always have to go up against bots.

10,000 pages. I win.

StarFoxA can have his 100,000 wiki points. While he's been contributing large amounts of quality information for a group of games, I've taken a slightly different route, contributing smaller amounts of data for many more games. 
Today I decided to focus on WiiWare, uploading "box art" for the games and making sure the release info was up to snuff. Not particularly exciting, but I don't do it for the excitement. I just went about this task for awhile, and then I decided to load up my contributions page. Scrolling through the list of pages I've contributed to, I eventually reached the bottom of the page and was greeted by this: 

That's 10,001 individual pages that I have at least 1 wiki point on, which is more than any other user. It's even more than admin has, and admin gets a point every time a page is created with an image. admin was the user that came closest to beating me though.
I believe Brain Challenge was the page that brought the count to 10,000, but here are some of the other things that brought me to this point:
Genre - Block-Breaking
Breakout, Arkanoid, there's a ton of 'em. When the genre was added to the site the only game listed with the genre was Shatter. I spent a lot of time making sure other block-breaking games were accounted for, adding several to the database in the process. 
Platform - PC
110 points, no actual page edits. Apparently I got all those points by attaching the platform to games. In most cases they were newly created pages. 100 new pages for PC games? I'm actually surprised.
Concept - Steam
Games distributed through Steam are common contributions, whether I'm helping write the article, attaching the concept to games, or creating new pages for Steam games. Perhaps that's how I ended up creating so many new pages for PC games. 
Game - Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4
I've contributed various things to many aspects of this game. Most characters, Personas, locations, nearly every person listed in the credits. It's a great game and it deserves the attention.
Game - Scribblenauts
There's so much stuff in this game. I could keep adding characters, objects, and concepts for some time. Be sure to buy the game this September because it looks pretty sweet.

Theme - Adult
Giant Bomb has a lot of pages for adult games, many of them with impressive articles. I'm one of the sick people responsible for this. But I'm not alone, so don't be hatin' on me exclusively. ;)
Theme - Anime
A very popular theme, found in many Japanese games. Many of them were added by yours truly.
Companies no one likes - Particularly Data Design Interactive
I make sure Giant Bomb covers such games as Billy the Wizard and Rock 'n' Roll Adventures. Why? Why not!
These are the guys making those games for companies no one likes. Adding hundreds of person pages isn't fun, but it's something that needs to be done. Or not. I'm not sure if anyone really cares what games Bill Alexander was credited in, but I make sure people know anyway.
Every release added counts separately. I add a lot of releases, and it adds up. A lot of people forget about this feature, but it really is an important feature of any video game database. If we had more help in this area, it would be great. 
Maybe it could even help you beat me. :)

No, I don't love IGN


Okay, admit it! I use IGN. I use the site a fair amount actually. Probably more than most people I know. Not just for video games, but occasionally for TV and movies as well. (PROTIP: Don't read IGN's spoiler-filled TV reviews until after you've already watched the episode.) I also follow IGN's Twitter account, IGNcom.

But until a few days ago, I had never thought about my relationship in IGN. On August 6 IGN ran a contest through Twitter. The tweet in question read:

Want a Droplitz PSN code? Random RT of this post gets it! Closing at 12:01 PM PST. #iloveign

So by retweeting (reposting another user's message), you're entered to win a copy of Blitz Arcades' new puzzle game Droplitz. I did just that, and then watched as my friends did the same. Then I saw Jensonb, the rebel that he is, post this:

#ihateign (Yay for random acts of inconsequential defiance/rebellion)

For those of you not familiar with all of Twitter's weird conventions, #iloveign and #ihateign are hashtags, which help give context to tweets and facilitate searches for specific topics.

But what is the purpose of the #iloveign hashtag? It could make it easier to find all the contest entries among other replies and retweets, but why use #iloveign? Why not an alternate hashtag that's more contextually relevant? Are they testing what length IGN's readers will go to in order to promote the site? Trying to create a trending topic to gain even more visibility and even more popularity?

But I don't love IGN. I don't even have an account. IGN's just another site that I happen to use from time to time. Do I love IGN? No. And most of the people using the #iloveign hashtag probably don't either. It's hard to love IGN when things like #iloveign exist.


Reach Out to the Truth


My new site Reach Out to the Truth is now live.

Reach Out to the Truth is the site where I'll be publishing all my future blogs. Most people don't know, but I currently blog on seven different sites. Reach Out to the Truth makes it easier for me to keep track of all my blog posts, reminds me of the sites that I need to publish the blog on, and increases the visibility of my "exclusives" which may include content of interest to all my readers.

Reach Out to the Truth takes its name from one of the songs on the Persona 4 soundtrack. Truth and the desire to obtain the truth is a common theme in Persona 4. I'd like to think that has something to do with the site, but I really just chose it because I like Persona 4. And that's the truth.


Is there really a problem with Giant Bomb?

Didn't even notice this until jlrm01 pointed it out to me. I need to read my friends' blogs more often.

Seems a bit melodramatic. Although I do agree that staff priorities seem to be misplaced, his method just seems wrong to me. What's the point if you're not going to be here any more?

I myself have had only minor difficulties contacting staff about issues, but even then there's so much stuff that can't be handled through PMs. I once messaged Jeff for clarification on something and never got a response. But when I messaged Jeff and Brad about other things, I got quick responses. It does work sometimes, but it's inconsistent. Even Gia has tried and failed to contact Jeff.

Snide does have a point about the small staff of course. But that's why the mods should be given additional powers. And instead of unimportant stuff like trivia, achievement tracking, the "improved" image editor, battles, and other crap, the staff should be working on more important stuff. A revision and rollback system for the wiki. The ability to move topics to forums outside the main ones. More powers for wiki moderators. Those are things that should be priorities. Yes, there are other things that are constantly being requested, but these are the things that would most benefit the community. Not just on Giant Bomb, but on Comic Vine and Anime Vice as well.


Okami completion stats

Play Time: 46 hr 16 min 47 sec
Days Passed: 58
Saves: 105
Deaths: 2
Enemies Defeated: 330
Money Gained: 2818285 Yen
Demon Fangs Found: 80
Praise Earned: 2682

I'm surprised at the amount of stuff the game tracks. I didn't realize my deaths were being tracked, because the game doesn't show them off prominently on the save screen like Zelda games do. And I had no idea it would be tracking the amount of days that passed or the number of saves I created.

I thought I had earned a fair bit of praise, but apparently I only actually got a minimal amount of praise. There were still a lot of animals that I hadn't fed yet, and there's probably other stuff I missed too.


Andrew's Top 30 greatest games ever made of all time - The Top 10

Andrew's Top 10 Favorite List of the Greatest Games Ever Made in the History of Ever

Game of the Year Edition

10. Gods and Generals
I've never played this game, but my friend who works for the developer says it's really good so I put it on the list.

Billy and his friends compete in a game of Quidditch.
9. Billy the Wizard: Rocket Broomstick Racing
This game used to be called Barry Hatter. This game is full of creativity.

8. NRA Gun Club
Shooting cans is much more fun than shooting people.

7. World War II Combat: Iwo Jima
Unless you're shooting people in World War II, which I understand is the time period in which this excellent game takes place.

6. Hooters Road Trip
Combining the best aspect of Hooters and road trips, this is one hard cross-country drivin' game.

5. George of the Jungle and the Search for the Secret
Will George ever find the secret? I won't tell you. This is a taut thriller that you'll have to experience for yourself.

4. Drake of the 99 Dragons
Drake of the 99 Dragons proves you don't need good graphics, controls, or a working camera to make a great game. I can't recommend this game enough.

3. Anubis II
This is the exact same game as Ninjabread Man, yet at the same time is so much better. Such brilliant game design could only come from the masterminds at Data Design Interactive.

This changed my life
2. Charlie's Angels
This developer would go on to make the Cocoto games. Unfortunately they were never able to top Charlie's Angels.

1. Big Rigs: Over the Road Racing
This game changed the way I looked at life. Developer Stellar Stone took a simple concept and managed to wrap an amazing story around it. Big Rigs proves that no matter what the world throws at you, no obstacle is insurmountable. Just plow on through. Nothing can stop you from the ultimate goal of becoming winner.

Do you know about Shin Megami Tensei games?

I picked up a package today. I wonder what's inside...

[cool video of me opening my mail]

Oh, look. It's Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne.
[cool picture of the game]

I payed out the ass for shipping and customs, but I think I still got it for a pretty good price.

I hope to start playing it after I finish with Persona 4. And I hope to play it for a few days before I get frustrated, toss the game on my shelf, and never look at it again. I'm that good at playing games. :P