Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Three Brief Game Reviews

Well as I mentioned a few days ago I'm currently semi-addicted to two games. Yes, I realise that the title says three, I'm going to get to that. Now shut up and let me talk.

About a month ago the GameStop near my apartment (which I moved into at around the same time coincidentally) started selling Perplex City cards. Perplex City is two games at once I suppose, the first game being the collectable cards, as each of the 256 cards in series 1 has a different puzzle on it, ranging from the simple (As I was going to St. Ives...) to the mind-bludgeningly brutal (Card 256 is just a picture of a guy that, apparently, you have to find somewhere on Earth. Yeah.) You solve the riddles and get points, and as you get more and more points, you recieve little badges called Leitmarks. (Ive got my red one already, have earned the orange, but it takes a little while for them to ship from England) Its a fun enough diversion in and of itself, and the cards arent simply entertainingly puzzling, but also pretty high quality artwork.
The second game of Perplex City is an Alternate Reality Game where, apparently, Perplex City, which exists in a parallel universe, has lost something called the Receda Cube, a valuable artifact of unknown origin and power. It is known to be, at this point, buried somewhere underneath the surface of the planet Earth, which does not do a great deal of rounding down. Perplex City Academy has in fact released the puzzle cards to get people interested in the hunt, and unbeknownst to the academy itself (we are expected to believe) the cards each seem to contain some minute little clue or other to finding the whereabouts of the cube. Various websites and blogs are up for numerous Perplex City businesses adding to the realism, and through thorough research apparently the solution lies somewhere therein. Its fun, its obsessive, and its collectible, and it has me hooked. I'm up to four packs a week now just to beat back the craving.

A little while after that though I found something else to obsess over. South park did their season opener recently on World of Warcraft. I had never played World of Warcraft until a week ago, MMORPGs just never did it for me, and I think I realise why now, every one but WoW just sucks. Its seriously that damn simple, Warcraft just adds so freaking much that the others were lacking, and is adding more all the time to meet their consumer's needs. Different classes have different ways to play, different jobs, different... look I could just shmooze on the whole freaking game for about an hour and you wouldnt learn anything you couldnt find out on any fanpage. All I'm going to say is this: I paid $1.99 for the game disc at the GameStop, and I have definately gotten my money's worth. I intend to buy the full game and subscribe, but I realise the game may not be for everyone. If you can find one of those discs though, it is at least worth the try I say. They wont even ask for your credit card.

The third review here is not of a specific game, which allows for the first sentence to be constructed as it has been without the grammar police giving me another ticket. GameTap is a sort of HBO for video games, and I say is because its only sort of happened just today. GameTap is one year old now, and has in that year offered numerous classic and newer video games available for the one monthly rate of $9.95. Fine as far as it goes, but in this year its basically offered games that, by and large, if you wanted them before, you probably got them. Since then though, its gotten better, including two things, acclaimed but hard to find games like The Last Express, which recieved a large following and great praise, but never actually sold very well, and now Exclusive Episodic content in the form of the long-delayed and often-cancelled Sam and Max Sequel(s). Also they'll be incorporating Uru Live, which is sort of World of Warcraft meets the Myst universe in whatever way that makes sense. I initially signed up for just those reasons, and look forward to playing S&M later today since the release of episode one is tonight, but I browsed around on it earlier for no more than ten minutes and was frankly awed by the sheer tonnage of games they offer. Neo Geo stuff, TurboGrafX stuff, even has the old Sierra OnLine adventure games (which have, incidentally, recently been repackaged for retail and, I, as a fan, hate to say, are not worth the $20). I'm looking forward to poking around more in the next few days, seeing what all else I can find, if theres that much time between Sam and Max, Warcraft, Uru, and Puzzle Cards.

Oh, and incidentally, if you happen to know the guy at the Billion2One.org link, let them know.

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