Editorial: May – Oh? No Thank-You!

On top of the games that I’ve blogged about this month, my wife and I have been playing Yoshi’s Crafted World. We’re always on the look out for some co-op action and I decided to buy if for my Wife’s birthday on the whim of it looking cute and being met with positive reviews. It’s a game that highlights a big problem with blogging about Nintendo games; namely they’re so remarkably well put together it’s pretty difficult to say much about them at all. In this respect Yoshi’s crafted world doesn’t disappoint; it’s a solid platformer with a balanced array of puzzle mechanics that’s brimming with charm. As a co-op experience it’ll have you smiling & laughing as you both bumble around the levels landing continually on each other’s backs and more often then not eating and then firing your teammate back out at some foe. I’m not saying that it’s going to be to everyone’s tastes or that it’s the greatest game int he world ever… it’s just exactly what you expect it to be and the highly polished product of a company that … let’s face it… know what they’re good at. Continue reading “Editorial: May – Oh? No Thank-You!”

Editorial: April – Apex Probability

April is upon us and I seem to have continued my run from last month of being a little inconsistent with blogging. I think at least some of this is because I’ve been a little all over the place with gaming recently. I started to month off by revisiting Resident Evil Code Veronica but that playthrough is currently sat at about 50% complete and I would like to settle back in to it before the end of April. My wife and I have also played through (most of) Nine Parchments; a kind of fantasy erm.. isometric shooter? It’s one part Torchlight and another part Magika and, despite being nice to look at and light entertainment, it’s nowhere near as absorbing as I would have liked; essentially it’s walk forward, shoot enemies, repeat. Most of my gaming time has been spent in Apex Legends, it’s meeting that desire for a satisfying play cycle and, despite not being very good at this latest entry in to the battle royale arena, I’m at least not terrible.

Having spent a fair slice of that time on the character select screen, and being faced with the occasional player who kick up a real fuss if you select their favourite class, I began to think about statistics & probability. Anyone who’s been reading for a while will know that I’ve been known to over-analyse games and the numbers involved in battle royale games make them a particularity good target for this as I demonstrated some time ago when I tried to work out the minimum number of players needed to keep Fortnite:BR afloat. The topic of my meandering thoughts this time are that character select screen. Continue reading “Editorial: April – Apex Probability”

Editorial: March – Late

My vacation of the week before last rolled in to a pretty intense work week with two days of travelling to meetings before I could even begin to work out what had been happening whilst I’d been away. Couple that with a few other bits and pieces that have been going on and … well… what I’m trying to say is that I missed both last week’s regular post and the Friday slot for this editorial…

… and yeah, I’m not going to beat myself up about it. This whole blogging malarkey is a hobby so having an off week doesn’t really bother anyone but me from a content creator point of view. From a personal point of view however it’s a little frustrating that I couldn’t find an appropriate time for a hobby, and that’s nobody’s fault; it’s just the way that things fall sometimes.

On top of this I’m also down on community engagement; I know loads of great posts have been going up in the past few weeks but I’ve been out of the rhythm of reading them. Continue reading “Editorial: March – Late”

QotM*: The Protagonist

*Question of the Month is a stack of pancakes whipped up by Later Levels and drizzled in Maple Syrup by OverThinker Y!

2019’s ‘Question of the Month’ format has been shaken up. Instead of individual gaming conundrums the dream-weavers in charge of this community chaos are focused on a much bigger goal: Coming up with the Ultimate Video Game over the course of this rotation around the sun. Each month they’re asking for entries to add to the growing structure of this fantastical game covering different aspects. For February the community have been charged with adding the main protagonist to the existing setting.

… still not entirely clear? Head here to see details of February’s challenge and read more about the overall concept…

I was thrilled to be picked as the winning entry in January’s challenge to define the setting of this game and, as I’m now part of the team, I’m no longer eligible to win in future months. This doesn’t mean however that I can’t just join in for fun and as I came up with the setting I thought I’d have a crack at trying to put a suitable protagonist in to it.

If you haven’t read my description of the Setting then click here to read that piece as it will give what follows much more context!

Of course regular readers might have noticed that I’m not one for just answering the question and I often take liberties with what actually constitutes an answer so the following is my own meandering extension of the piece I wrote covering the setting; I’m sure that many of you out there are much better at defining characters and I look forward to reading what everyone comes up with… but for now here’s my own take on who the protagonist could be…    Continue reading “QotM*: The Protagonist”

Editorial: February 2019 – Downstream

Wow! I’ve really hit the ground running this year with a crazy busy time blogging; I managed to fit in two bonus blog posts (but more about those later) along with following through on my promise last month to do some streaming.

The original idea was that I wanted to have one more revisit of Resident Evil 2 (PS1) before the remake landed last week and as it’s a game I know *ahem* pretty well I thought it would be nice to invite people along for the ride by streaming the event. Now, I have streamed in the past, most notably my dive in to Jurassic Park: Trespasser, but this felt a little different as I wanted to actually add some value with my narration rather than just laughing at the weird-legged dinosaurs. The goal was to share why I love this game so much and hopefully provide a few interesting crumbs of trivia along the way. I also managed to stream from the original hardware; yes, the stream featured my original copy of the game, original PS1, original controller, and even the original memory card that I dedicated to this game. Technically it was a little bit fiddly to set up and I discovered in a test (luckily) that you couldn’t stream the piracy warning stream without the whole thing falling over (I never worked out if this was OBS or the cheap USB capture device I picked up). Continue reading “Editorial: February 2019 – Downstream”

QotM*: The Ultimate Video Game Setting

*QotM is a solitary waffle hand cooked by William Shatner himself and thrown at you from across the restaurant by Later Levels

I know what you’re thinking “What are you doing? This isn’t a regular posting time!”. Indeed, this is a bonus post to provide an answer to this year’s first Question of the Month. The puppet-masters have mixed it up for 2019 giving an overall gameplan to the QotM formula. Over the next 12 months they’re hoping to compile all the elements of “The Ultimate Video Game” by tasking bloggers to come up with a new element each month and then selecting the one that is ..erm… the most ultimate… does that make sense? No? Well there are plenty more details here!  Continue reading “QotM*: The Ultimate Video Game Setting”

Editorial: January 2019 – An Upcoming Event

… and a Happy New One to all of you Yearlings out there!

2018 was a good year for blogging given that I was pretty consistent and had lots of fun doing it. I also managed to write some pieces that I’m pretty happy with, although it’s tricky to tell if I’m just getting better, my standards are dropping, or I’m more content to verge on the nonsensical than I was when I started doing this a few years ago… Walrus…

From a community point-of-view I’ve enjoyed the conversation and friendship of fellow bloggers, been involved with a few collaborations, and even managed to meet the LaterLevels team at Rezzed. Hopefully 2019 will hold more of the same and I’ll actually manage to be a consistent reader; I try to read post of everyone I follow, but sometimes it’s difficult to find to the time.

Ultimately I try to find a balance between being consistent, trying new things, and having a fun!

Continue reading “Editorial: January 2019 – An Upcoming Event”