QotM*: Who is the Most Memorable Video Game NPC?

*Question of the Month is the blogging equivalent of a weaponised Furby who has disobeyed orders and gone rogue, all to the delight of those architects of anarchy at Later Levels

I’m not one for spoiling the magic, but for those of you who might want to peek behind the curtain into this strange gaming blogging world, I will say that this question caused quite a stir amongst the regular participants; there was some question over what constituted an NPC in this context. I know you’re all shouting at your monitors that surely it’s pretty obvious, but the concept of ‘Non-Playable Character’ is open to interpretation and there are certainly examples of entities within games that are both ‘characters’ and ‘non-playable’ that I wouldn’t class as an NPC. Continue reading “QotM*: Who is the Most Memorable Video Game NPC?”

QotM*: Which Videogame Should Have Had a Sequel?

*Question of the month is the blogging equivalent of that cup of coffee in the middle of a tedious job brought to you by those good people over at Later Levels… with a Jammy Dodger on the side… Game sequels tend to get a raw deal, developers are pressured into slapping a ‘2’ on the end of their successful title, building on the original, keeping it … Continue reading QotM*: Which Videogame Should Have Had a Sequel?

QotM*: Which Video Game has the Best Idle Animation?… and Retro-Mumblings on ‘The Lion King’

*QotM is some kind of warming stew that’s sitting in a slow cooker waiting for you on a cold day brewed up by Later Levels

It’s time for July’s round of ‘Question of the Month’ which has pitched some of the greatest blogging minds against each other in cerebral combat to answer the question “Which video game has the best idle animation?”.

I know that idle animations are present in modern gaming, but I can’t help but associate them with the 16-bit era. Something about wringing every last bit of enjoyment from a game at that time meant that quirks like idle animations & easter eggs held more wonder in games where deviation from the ‘game’s formula’ had a more significant resource cost. I guess it was also the era when idle animations first appeared. Whatever the reason, the question immediately made me think of my days with the Sega MegaDrive, so it is after careful consideration that I have come up with my nomination for the best video game idle animation, and in accordance with the normal rules, here it is in under 100 words:

Continue reading “QotM*: Which Video Game has the Best Idle Animation?… and Retro-Mumblings on ‘The Lion King’”

QotM*: Which Videogame Contains the Most Surprising Plot Twist

*Question of the month is some kind of marshmallow joined to another marshmallow… a “doublemellow”…. thought up by Later Levels Spoiler Warning: This post talks about a plot twist in PlayStation Classic ‘Metal Gear Solid”… read no further if you want to remain in the dark! For this month’s question those masters of the cerebral poser over at Later Levels have asked which game has the most … Continue reading QotM*: Which Videogame Contains the Most Surprising Plot Twist

QotM*: What is the Best Non-Gamer Game?

*QotM is a virtual ice-cream sundae dreamt up by Later Levels

Giving and receiving game recommendations is one of the many chocolate sprinkles that makes being a gamer so tasty; that first “Have you played…” through to the final “…gahh, I don’t want spoil it, just go and play it” is a magical time where we stumble and fumble around the difficult process of articulating the why & how of enjoying something. Likewise the receiving of this, often garbled dessert, is rewarding purely to watch someone that into something and doubly-so if you take the recommendation and run with it to the point of giving it a go yourself. Who knows, maybe you’ll even have the chance to pass this Eaton Mess of a conversation on to someone.

I’ve been both parties in this banana-split of an exchange many times, however it has been a while since the person I was talking to was not a “gamer”. Giving advice about games to a non-gamer is something that I’m aware I have a skewed perspective on. That’s not to say that a non-gamer wouldn’t appreciate the games I play… because I think that my tastes are wide & varied; it’s just that gaming is such a big part of my life that I’m unsure exactly which aspects of gaming may or may not appeal or be accessible to someone not familiar with the medium. For example, I once (some years ago) got asked when playing Mario “… but how did you know that the mushroom was good and not bad?” … and you know what? I couldn’t answer them. The mushroom moves along the floor and looks similar to the goombas, so why is it good and not bad? … see? There are so many aspects from control schemes, pickups, visual or audio cues, and accepted conventions that we, as gamers, take for granted.  Continue reading “QotM*: What is the Best Non-Gamer Game?”