Pokémon Generation Slugfest

Enjoyment level of Pokémon generations for me:

  • Gen 2 – 92/100 (Crystal)
  • Gen 6 – 91/100 (X)
  • Gen 1 – 85/100 (Blue)
  • Gen 8 – 80/100 (Shield)
  • Gen 5 – 78/100 (Black 2)
  • Gen 4 – 68/100 (Pearl)
  • Gen 7 – 38/100 (Moon)
  • Gen 3 – 25/100 (Sapphire)

There’s some cool things in each generation, but Gen 7 and 3 didn’t grab me or really make me want to play- mechanics and story both fell a bit flat. For whatever reason the pacing in each game felt off. Apparently I don’t like Pokémon games set on islands? These are also the two generations after my favorite ones- I’m willing to admit there may be a bit of “letdown syndrome” at work here.

Silver was very enjoyable, but something about Crystal took the game to a whole new level- hours and hours were spent making my Tyranitars the absolute best they could be! As for X, if I could have found a good way to stream “Wonder Trade Runs” I very much would have (the ways I tried just didn’t work out for it to still be enjoyable); it’s the only generation I tried speed running without an emulator.

Update: Shield came out and it was really, really fun! The pseudo multiplayer required encounters took out a little bit of the overall fun, but the mechanics are well refined and it was amazing being able to play on my TV.

Endless Space – Spaceships Lite

I’ve had Endless Space (ES) on my list of games to check out for a while now. Unfortunately the early releases weren’t very good, but now there’s a much better tutorial and seems much better overall- didn’t crash once this time! At this point Sid Meier’s Starships is a much better version of this game; I’m not sure how much ES influenced Starships, but someone learned their lesson well (assuming they had even played this one and weren’t just taking cues from the large wealth of 4X games that came before this).

2016 Gaming Backlog

I needed a third because I’m bad at getting to all of these. Then again, according to most list of how long games should take it’s going to take something like a decade to get through all of my games anyway…so maybe I shouldn’t be too hard on myself.

  • Grim Dawn
  • Cities: Skylines (Satisfied back in 2016 but I still pick it once in a while)
  • Shadowrun: Hong Kong
  • Pokemon: Sun/Moon (Completed in 2018!)
  • Final Fantasy XV (Ended up not buying or really even trying on this one…)
  • Icewind Dale: Enhanced Edition
  • Evoland
  • Wayward

Sid Meier’s Starships – First Impressions

It was a happy coincidence that my vacation happened during the release of Sid Meier’s Starships. With a few games under my belt the initial reaction is summed up nicely as: that is one fun little game.

The turn based nature of the game gives it a go-and-wait feeling that would feel great on an iPad if it saves the state- sadly my current iPad is not up to specs to play so I was reduced to playing on my gaming rig. As it is on the computer the feel is fine- the only gripe I found myself having was actually do to with camera panning with the arrow keys; if that’s not minor I’m not sure what is.

Possibly the best overall aspect is the multiple win lanes- depending on how you feel like playing you can win the game differently. Though that did lead to a rather humorous point where I won a Wonder Victory while trying to go for dominance; on the turn I was going to assault the home world I bought a  wonder since it filled out a blind spot on my ships and instead it triggered a win. Whoops?

The core of the battle system feels like a board game of spaceships done right as a computer game. Many times it feels oddly translated but I could imagine this being an actual board game to compliment the digital game. This is much higher praise than the simple two sentences would make it seem.

Overall, a great game and well worth the cost!

2015 Gaming Backlog

I’m not going to replace anything since I’m still working on the last one. I will be adding to it though!

  • Pokemon Omega Ruby (Complete 2016-01-01)
  • Pokemon Alpha Sapphire (Complete 2016-01-01)
  • Wasteland 2
  • World of WarCraft – 10th Anniversary Achievements (Complete 2015-01-02)
  • Marvel Heroes – Prestige back to 60 & 3 Geared Characters (Complete 2015-01-31)
  • Xenoblade
  • Mario Kart 8
  • New Super Luigi U
  • New Super Mario Bros U
  • LEGO Batman 3
  • LEGO Marvel Superheroes
  • Defense Grid 2 (complete 2015-03-09)
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Civilization: Beyond Earth – Complete Achievements (complete 2015-02-20)
  • Planetary Annihilation
  • Space Run (completed in 2015)
  • Magika Expansions (completed in 2015)
  • Transistor

FTL: Fastest To Lose?

FTL has a cool RNG based nature; it’s also its downfall I feel. Many people have been playing, streaming, praising, and damning this game for months. I finished it a few months ago but forgot to note it, so I picked it up again while recovering from surgery. Easy went down fast, it’s amazing how much those asteroid fields help with shield! At that point, around 2am, it was time to start Normal. 2am, on recovery drugs, stuck on my back, starting Normal FTL. What could go  be better and less frustrating? Knowing the pain I was getting myself in to really just made it more hilarious; had to keep quiet a few times to not wake up my wife from laughter at how ridiculous things were. After a few false starts I got through it again at about 4am blissfully happy to have had something to keep my attention off the pain for two hours. Thanks FTL!

Scribblenauts Limited

The original Scribblenauts was amazing; couldn’t put it down! I had decent hopes for Unlimited, but knew better than tot expect the same game with new levels even if its what I really wanted. What I ended up staring at on load wasn’t what I was expecting at all though. Instead of “levels” it was small issues to deal with everywhere on the map. While I understand the idea they were going for it was rather jarring and detracted from the general sense of accomplishment the previous game had. No longer could it be the game I picked up for 90 seconds between compiles, or the game in the background I tabbed to on occasion; now it was something with a very real time commitment. Which brings me to the (oddly) limiting factor: there’s too many things to do all at once. What sounds like a great idea ends up being such a distraction that I wasn’t fully able to enjoy the game. Thats said, the increased dictionary and larger scale of what you can do once you get over the screen shock is pretty awesome. So if you have the time, and the patience, check it out.

And yet it moves…boringly…

I got through “And Yet It Moves…” (AYIM) while I’ve been stuck unable to move post surgery. The game starts pretty creative, but the novelty wears off pretty quick. Unlike Portal which changes things up and keeps you in with the narrative AYIM just gets more and more convoluted with every passing level. I don’t know why but I just couldn’t quite get in to this game; I know a lot of people that love it and I’m glad they do, it takes these types of games to keep the industry fresh and moving! Will I play again? Probably not. Do I think everyone should at least check it out if they have the chance? Yes.

Dungeons of Dreadmore

It’s like Rogue with graphics! And music. And pseudo-talent trees. Most importantly though, it’s Rogue with graphics. That really does sum this game up. It has some humor and the crafting part is a bit entertaining. The crafting is what really sets it apart for me though and is what will bring me back to playing some day.

All in all, a fun game to play for a few hours! 

EVE – Restarting the Spreadsheet Game

I started up my EVE accounts again. Lost a few ships while I remembered how things work. I got seriously frustrated when I lost one of my ships; I had put a lot of time and effort in to getting it only to lose it to weird connection issues! After it happened I sat back and tried to remember the last time I actually was that attached to a game, or had that much straight up emotion while playing anything.

That said, due to the community I will probably be letting my subscriptions lapse again at the end of this. It’s a fun game to get in to for a little bit, but the people take it a wee bit too over the top- I’m not looking for constant realism or a second job, I have both in plenty already. One of the recent ad campaigns was about being the villain; I get enough of those outside of games, too!

In the mean time (between now and December) I’ll be looking at joining a larger corporation, doing some research (I like crafting in MMOs), flying a carrier and just generally having fun mining a couple nights a week.