Friday, September 26, 2014
The fact is, you can manipulate any character to fight any other character involved, even themselves. The story revolves around the concept of multiple parallel universes, a pretty common bugaboo in DC Comics. So you not only have the characters you know, but you also have evil, and sometimes good versions of those characters as well.
The characters at your disposal, at least at first, include heroes Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Flash, Aquaman, Green Lantern, Green Arrow, Hawkgirl, Shazam (sooo disappointed it's not Captain Marvel), Nightwing, Raven, and villains Lex Luthor, Catwoman, Sinestro, Solomon Grundy, Ares, Deathstroke, Killer Frost, Black Adam, Doomsday, Bane, Harley Quinn, and the Joker. Later characters were Zatanna, Martian Manhunter, Batgirl, Lobo, Zod, even Mortal Kombat's Scorpion. Additional skins were available for a number of concepts like Blackest Night, Red Son, Earth 2 and others.
Another bonus is the locations and the background characters. All the choice DCU places are here, Arkham, Gotham, Metropolis, Atlantis, Themyscira, and the Batcave, the Fortress of Solitude, and the Hall of Justice just to name a few. Easter eggs are many, look for characters and the like in the background. My favorite is watching Atom Smasher battle Giganta as you fight your own fight.
Arrow, their live-action properties. Listen for Kevin Conroy as Batman, Susan Eisenberg as Wonder Woman, Phil LaMarr as John Stewart, and Tara Strong as Raven, among others. Great skins have been available as well, covering the New 52, Earth 2, Red Son, and Blackest Night, just to name a few. However, any new characters or skins have been halted in the same manner that Pain was stopped by Sony. They're just not supporting the game any longer…
Monday, August 25, 2014
The Simpsons Tapped Out especially, and yes, I've been geeking out watching Every Simpsons Ever on FXX.
In just the last week however, there's been a new game within Simpsons Tapped Out, and I just don't get it. It seems to have a medieval vibe but that's not all. There's nerds, barbarians, seeming Dungeons & Dragons references, and while all that may seem like it's in my roundhouse, the game is completely incomprehensible to me.
Does anyone know how this is played? I think EA just may have jumped the shark by trying too hard and assuming too much…
Thursday, July 17, 2014
For the longest time I never used the play online option. Not to sound sad or pitiful, but I really didn't know anyone else who had a PS3, and those that did, were (ahem) adults and didn't use it all that much, so the play online option wasn't much good for me. When the PS4 was announced, my buddy Ken (who visits infrequently and when he does, we have a blast playing Pain) smartly decided to buy a PS3, as he correctly assumed the price would drop with a new updated system on the market.
You can't even buy characters any more. If you didn't get certain characters before they shut the door, you will never get them. I'm just happy I got Flavor Flav and The Hoff when I could, however, I wish I could have known before it was too late to get Andy Dick. I guess it's Sony that's the real Andy Dick in this one. I want to play Pain online again…
Saturday, July 12, 2014
Monday, July 7, 2014
French Fry Diary blog already know about this, but it's still cool. Denny's has joined with Atari to update some of their retro videogames to match their menu.
They've turned Asteroids into Hashteroids, Centipede into Centipup, and Breakout into Take-Out. This "Greatest Hits Remixed" campaign includes apps on both the iPhone and the iPad as well. The games are just as fun as the originals, just with new fun graphics. Check them out.
And you can read my original blog post at FFD here, and the original announcement here.
Wednesday, June 25, 2014
That said, we're going to talk about those last two games today. About twenty-five years ago, I made the mistake of joining a bowling league. I was lousy at it, and surrounded by people I did not like, and did not like me. One of the few joys of that time was the Street Fighter II machine in the bowling alley's small and hardly adequate arcade. I was late to the fight videogame, and to be honest, it had been a few years (probably since the demise of the Galaxy in Cherry Hill) since I played any videogame. This was a harsh re-introduction.
In this phase of my life, I really kinda dug playing Vega with his pseudo-Wolverine claws and his Spanish matador moves. After some weeks of practice both before and after bowling, I got pretty good. However, by that time, fight games had moved on while I hadn't noticed. My contemporaries were all Mortal Kombat players. This game opened my eyes with its more graphic special effects and just plain graphic-ness. This wasn't for me.
From there, I kinda drifted away from videogames, or at least fight games until I discovered Injustice: Gods Among Us. And that's a whole 'nother story. But there's my fight history.
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Anyway, there are folks who do get bored with the constant building and collecting aspect of the game, and need to change things up to keep their attention, defeat boredom, or just for kicks. These folks are making art. Yep, they're making art with the various building blocks in the game, using optical illusions to make them three-dimensional, and other such tricks.
Here are a few examples…
Friday, April 25, 2014
Most of the mall arcades began as pinball places but moved forward with the times. The Sweet Shop in Atco started as a penny candy place, thus the name, but soon became something else all together. I remember when they first opened, they had one machine, a tank game, which may or may not have been Atari's Combat. In a very short time they added a poolroom in the back, got rid of the candy counter, and filled the front room with videogame machines. I loved playing Space Invaders and Astro Fighter there notably, and remember how the place was always filled with smoke.
While there are some still around, some even as nostalgia museums like Barcade, the arcade is for the most part dead. I think the last tiny one I know of was gotten rid of when the Marlton 8 theatre was remodeled. Malls are dead too, some crushed by 'forward thinking' opportunists, look at what used to be the Echelon Mall for an example of that. That place ironically does have an arcade of sorts, more skeeball and the like than videogames, but still. I guess home gaming and social media have killed the mall and the arcade, and it's a shame.
Thursday, April 17, 2014
Sunday, April 13, 2014
before about my utter inability to play Grand Theft Auto in its intended form. And we've also talked about my love for the tiny little game GTA: Chinatown Wars that I played on the iPhone for hours and hours until my eyes bled or the battery ran out. Well, I've found another GTA like the latter, that I just can't get enough of.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas was originally released for the PlayStation 2 back in 2004, but that's not where I've played it, or even seen it before. I got on board when I first got my iPad, and they were offering it a reduced price. I liked Chinatown Wars, so why not? At first glance, it reminded me a lot of the PS3 game I'd played, lots of things I wanted to do, but was unsure I could make it work - that old bugaboo I have with controls, ya know.
Surprisingly and happily, the controls were similar to those of Chinatown Wars, so easily playable for me, and of course a whole step up from the tiny size of the iPhone screen. The graphics were incredible as well, on par with some I've seen on the PS3. I love this game, and like the iPhone game, I've been playing for hours on end.
While I was on a GTA kick, it should be noted I also downloaded Vice City for the iPad. Did not like it. While it's not bad, and it could be fun, I got spoiled by San Andreas and its fancy graphics. They make Vice City look and feel downright primitive. Now if you'll excuse me, it's time to crash more cars. If you need me, I'll be in San Andreas.
Thursday, April 10, 2014
I first encountered the game, and conquered it at Malibu Grand Prix some time around 1980 or 81. I would play it dependably every time I was there. When I first went to college, there was a Star Castle machine in the lounge that I'm sure contributed to my low grades that first semester.
I loved it, and sadly, it was not a game I saw again that much in the years since. Star Castle was supposedly the basis for Atari's Yar's Revenge, though similar, and even though I loved that game too, it wasn't the same. I never saw it much because, as far as I knew, it was never available for a home video game system.
I have been since able to find Star Castle online, but with keyboard controls, it's just not the same. Check it out here. Then I found Vectrex on my iPhone and my iPad. Granted, it's bigger, and therefore more fun on my iPad. And the touch controls make it easier to work, but for the real thing, I guess I'll just have to break down and buy a real Star Castle machine. I could always hustle folks for the money to pay back the machine…
Monday, January 20, 2014
Back in the early 1980s, when videogames, the band Journey, and the Atari 2600 were all on the rise, the three merged in a wonderful way - Journey the videogame. At the height of their popularity, Journey lent their images, their music, and some would say their souls to an arcade game, and later an Atari 2600 cartridge.
The graphics in the game, correctly titled Journey Escape, were what they were for the time, the music was midis of Journey songs from the best-selling Escape album, and your job was to get the band, one member at a time, past obstacles (groupies, managers, and standard game menaces) and to the show. The show must go on. If you won, you got a mini limited graphic Journey concert.
The PS3 demo called Journey is something else altogether, and has zero to do with Steve Perry and company, absolutely zero. Journey is one of those games, similar to Flower, with amazing graphics, ominous soundtrack, and character and scene movement that syncs with how you hold the controller. It is also one of those frustrating games that has you searching online for instructions, or even just an explanation.
The PS3 game is a work of beauty, but not really my thing honestly, and at least Journey the band has won a Grammy. Ha. I know. The PS3 is gorgeous, but the Atari is more fun. Enjoy your Journey.
Friday, January 17, 2014
Warlords, back in the Atari days, was the fo'shizzle. This was after the initial rush was over, and the bloom was off the rose for the Atari 2600, and then all of a sudden there was a buzz about this new game that was soooo cool, could be played by up to four players, and even used the paddle controllers (which were fairly useless unless you played Pong or Breakout). That game was Warlords.
In Warlords, each player (or if less than four, the 'computer' was your opponent) took a corner in which there was a castle or fortress (or the best approximation you could get with the primitive technology, you had to use your imagination more with the 2600 games). You protected your castle with a rolling shield that could circle your corner. Then you would shoot and catch and shoot back little balls of fire to destroy your opponents' castles. It was like Breakout, only draped in coolness.
Next time, we'll talk about Journey, which is even further off the mark...
Thursday, January 9, 2014
Okay, those of you who read this blog, as well as Welcome to Hell and French Fry Diary, know that I was a sheltered child, and that I am no videogame genius. The truth is I was also a pretty dumb kid.
Outside of television, I had never seen a pinball machine until I was around ten, and that was in my uncle's basement. We visited and while the adults chatted upstairs I was supposed to keep myself occupied with the pinball machine in the basement for a couple hours. So I played my three or four balls, badly, mind you, then waited it out down there for my parents to be done visiting. Yeah, that's right, I had no idea there was a button to push to start over.
And that was my first pinball experience. Did I mention I was a pretty dumb kid?
Later, years later, when The Sweet Shop opened on my hometown main street Atco Avenue, and when I started going to Malibu Grand Prix, I did learn the basics, as well as the more subtle ways of the silver ball. I was never very good, but I had come a long way from that dumb kid in his uncle's basement.
While dating the woman who would eventually become The Bride I got my real education. She is the real player, getting multiple free games and lots of play time out of a single quarter. Watching her I learned how to work the flippers, move the machine, and finesse the ball. Damn, she's good. And she would little to no interest in the PS3 game Zen Pinball.
It is noteworthy that there are some cool tables, including some based on Street Fighter and Ninja Gaiden, and the graphics are outstanding. Pretty, but not playable in a pinball way.