Character Gender Equality: Are We Just Treading Water?

As the festive weeks are now fading and 2017 is beginning to warm up, I wanted to start the blogging year with what was the guilty pleasure of those lost days; the gaming equivalent of wearing pajamas all day, eating ice cream straight from the tub, and the almost constant stream of murmurings based around putting the kettle on for just one more round of hot drinks. This year I tackled both Resident Evil Revelations 1 & 2… but no, each time I thought about putting together that post my mind kept jumping back to things that just havn’t sat quite right with me in some of the recent titles I’ve played, so Revelations will have to wait for a week or two whilst I get this ramble off my chest.

… and before I really start to let my fingers run away over the keyboard, I should clarify that this is a rant/ramble. I’m not sure if I have a point, and I know that I’m likely to pick up on examples and titles which only represent a small proportion of games. In short this is not even in the same extended neighborhood of a scientific and balanced piece… just some niggling little twinges that need stretching out… Continue reading “Character Gender Equality: Are We Just Treading Water?”

Hundstrasse’s Top 5 Games of 2016… & A Weary Lookback

It was at about this time last year that I cracked, started typing, gave in to the pressure of the season, and came up with my own ‘Top 5 Games of 2015‘ along with posting a list of everything that I had played that year. If you read that the first time around then thank-you so much for sticking with me for another 12 months!

… erm.. sorry about that 4 month hiatus in the middle there when I got crazy busy… 

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Paladins Beta: A Weekend of First Impressions

Since its beta release back in September, the Steam storefront has been pushing and shoving me into ‘Paladins’ via a less than subtle almost continuous presence on my recommended list and often up there in the hallowed reaches of the featured titles. I’m assuming that the hefty number of hours that I’ve spent scurrying around the deserts and factories of that other, now free-to-play, class-based shooter, TF2, has swayed the great recommendation algorithm into drawing this particular circle around me…  And I’m carefully avoiding (or more accurately: typing and deleting) descending into a rant spiral about the jumbled mess that is the Stream storefront in favour of rambling about my experience with that fantasy class-based FPS, ‘Paladins’, thus far.

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… nice place… 

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Em-Bossed: Bosses That Stand Out

In my last ramble outing regarding the upward moving deceased, Pine717 (Who incidentally runs a tight ship over at ‘The Maximum Utmost‘) jumped into the comments box in defence of the Boss fights of that particular title. Pine717 countered that, whilst relentless, the point was to prepare well, study the attack, and make good use of the brief openings when they appeared (feel free to correct me if I’ve paraphrased poorly). Discussion is one of the best parts about blogging and I always appreciate being spun around to face something from a different angle; the comment rattled around in my head, and I began to wonder what I looked for in a good Boss fight…  Continue reading “Em-Bossed: Bosses That Stand Out”

Dead Rising: Gaming Without Nostalgia

…kick off your shoes, grab some kind of vessel full to the brim of your favourite beverage, order takeout food, and fire up *INSERT READER’S FAVOURITE GAME OF PAST GENERATIONS HERE*…

A nostalgic gaming session is all about reliving the emotions from the first time that you fired up a retro-classic from your own personal library of seminal games. The blank screen melts away to reveal the game’s title, you hit start, the familiar opening scenes play out, and your hands instinctively slip into some comfortable, deeply programmed, position removing the barrier between your consciousness and the onscreen action. You know where to go, how to deal with obstacles, and the best way to tackle each situation…

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Armello: Yes, A Physical Version Might Sound Good, But It’s Not What You Want…

It may be bad form, but I’m opening with a tangent; I’ve always had a ‘thing’ about zooming in and snooping around whenever a game asks you to take a more ‘deitesque’ approach to gameplay. ‘Cities: Skylines’ made my list of ‘Best Games I played in 2015‘ and whilst I didn’t admit it at the time, had the zoom option been absent (or more likely my scroll wheel broken) I would want to circle back past that year’s offerings carefully when weighing up if I should retain Paradox Interactive’s embarrassingly superior homage to Sim City on that particular register. Just hovering, formless, over a street corner, the street lights gently glowing, the wind in trees mixing playfully with the distant traffic noise, watching those late commuters returning to their virtual homes; it is captivating. The same was true of the mostly forgotten Atari STe title, ‘Prince’, (in the bundled ‘Entertainment’ pack) which, past some truly epic title music, was for me an exercise in zooming in and marvelling at the various pixel sprite villages strewn over this medieval battleground before my army was overrun and I was forced to start again. The delicately pieced together tiles that make up the kingdom of ‘Armello’ have that same ‘cosy’ quality, and with that as my kicking off point, the rest of the game isn’t too shabby either.

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See what I mean?… no?… ok, just me then… 

Continue reading “Armello: Yes, A Physical Version Might Sound Good, But It’s Not What You Want…”

Liebster Award Nomination!

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Ladies and Gentlemen of the academy; In the absence of a physical award, but still wanting to convey how chuffed this has made me, I’m currently holding my coffee cup like a shiny Oscar, smiling and waving to the crowd. The ‘Liebster Award’ is a formally informal way for a blogger to highlight other blogs they enjoy, reveal a little more about themselves, and pass the torch onwards in a quirky, classy way… Think ‘chain letter’, but if that were a welcome impact on your doormat. Continue reading “Liebster Award Nomination!”