Tag Archive: gaming


Super Mario Kart Turnier

Auf dem Waldeck Freakquenz 20. August 2016 planen wir nicht wie die letzten fünf Jahre ein Tetris-Turnier, sondern probieren mal was Neues.

Hier geht’s zur Voranmeldung!

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Review: Sherlock Holmes – The Devil’s Daughter

I enjoyed the last two Frogwares Sherlock Holmes adventures so much that I anticipated the next part eagerly. Supposed to be released in May, it came out in June, on my wedding day, so I thought ‘Hey, I’ll buy this one now as a gift to myself’.

Was it fun? Yes, it was fun! 20 hours of fun, to be exact.

There are a lot of things going for this title. I love the dense Victorian London atmosphere, the hidden references, the ‘mind palace’ and character portraits.

But sadly, there are also many things that felt off to me.

Characters

The voice acting and characters in this series have been getting better and better. They were well done in the previous titles, e.g. ‘Crimes and Punishments’.

And they changed the voice actors, which is always a shame. I liked the previous interpretations and I was disappointed to not meet old acquaintances.

(Except Lestrade. They didn’t change Lestrade. Hey, Greg.)

I’ve grown rather attached to that version of Watson. The Watson character in ‘The Devil’s Daughter’ looks like a Spanish rent boy and embodies none of his characteristics as charmingly as his predecessor.

Sherlock_Holmes_Crimes_and_Punishments_Card_1watson

 

 

 

 

 

 

How is that the same person?

 

 

Also Katelyn aka the Devil’s aka Moriarty’s daughter was just plain annoying. Her story arc was well executed, but she didn’t feel like a kid you’d want to save at all. Sorry. Her voice acting felt like an adult playing a cranky girl.

Sherlock was more or less ok, though he looked very disheveled – not very English, right? You don’t even get a suit until the third case. How I am supposed to live?

New and old elements

Some old elements were changed: The lockpicking system has gotten more intricate, which is good, because I like lockpicking! Now there are two levels you can switch between. I think I prefer with system to the previous one (turn the cylinder until the lines match, boring).

They added a some new elements to the game: There are some balancing and chasing scenes. The balancing acts felt very contrived to me. I’m not a assassin, I’m a dectective. I detect. I don’t want to join the circus. In one episode you play street urchin  Wiggins (from the ‘homeless network’) observing a suspect, that was in character and appropriate. The chase was fun and ‘Assassin’s Creed’-like. But I feel that the game could have done without that extra element, which just makes you spend more time on not solving any cases. Which is what this game is all about. Or it should be.

The bar fight was fun, though, and had the right pace! So not all the new elements are useless, but some just weren’t very ‘fitting’. Character portraits, deductions and crimes scene mechanics are the same, thank God.

All in all, it’s worth spending time and money on. But I miss my old pals, and I have no sense of balance whatson-ever.

 

 

Same procedure as every year. Our annual 2015 Tetris contest was a bit chaotic this time: Few players, unrecorded games, winners vanishing and so on. But fun nonetheless. And I won 2nd place. Whoo!

Here are the highlights. Enjoy!

“Ready Player One”

I’ve been reading “Ready Player One” by Ernest Cline and enjoying it immensely. It combines many things I like: It’s a dystopian novel (check), it’s about video games (check), and it’s about a severe case of 80s fetish (check!).

In the not too distant future, fossil fuels are gone, things have gone to shit and humanity is mostly plugged into a virtual world called OASIS. When the creator of this world dies, he instigates a hunt for an easter egg hidden in the OASIS, solving riddles and getting obscure clues will get the lucky winner the legacy of the creator – and all his money. People become obsessed with finding it.

The less you know about the plot, the better (it does have a few nice turns). The creator of this virtual world was a true child of the 80s and consquently all egg hunters (called “gunters”) study the the period meticulously. The allusions and similes are frequent and very funny. I frequently had the same associations the character had. Like for example, he picks up an item and examines it and zooms in on a detail and I think of that scence in “Bladerunner”. And a sentence later he has the thought “It reminded me of that scene in ‘Bladerunner’.” This book is like geeking out with a good friend who has the same choice taste as you.

Here is the soundtrack to get you in the mood.

I’ve always been into adventure gaming. Played all the Lucas Arts Games and then some. Also followed whatever “the old heroes” were doing afterwards as they were continuing to create wonderful things. One of these “later” games I especially enjoyed was Tim Schafer’s Psychonauts. So many ideas, so much fun, so much to discover, so many details! Tim Schafer always wanted to make a second part, but couldn’t find a publisher for his not-so-mainstream games. He mentioned this in an interview a few days ago – and out of nothing Markus Persson (aka Notch, aka creator of MINECRAFT) sends him a tweet:

@TimOfLegend Let’s make Psychonauts 2 happen.

followed by:

[…]Also, I’m serious.

So, that already blew my mind.

And while Tim and Notch started chatting about the idea, Double Fine (Tim’s company) already had a second thing coming up:

(You should really watch the video, but here’s a summary: “Help us raise 400.000$ to make an old school point-and-click adventure, we’ll also film the whole development and make a documentary out of it and all you people will be involved in getting this thing done” – now go and watch the video!)

Less than 24 hours later, the kickstarter project has raised more than 800.000$. That’s already the highest amount raised in 24 hours till now for all kickstarter projects. They even have a chance at reaching 1.000.000$. (UPDATE 12.02.2012: They reached 1.000.000$ in under 24 hours. Go Adventure community!)

All the extra money will go into the project of course, into translations, platform conversions, soundtrack, etc. And that’s wonderful. FU Publishers!

Oh, and this is what Notch had to say after the kickstarter raise broke loose:

I can’t get over how incredibly poorly timed my Psychonauts 2 offer thing was, haha. But I’m so excited about this game I don’t care!

and

Hopefully they still want to do Psychonauts 2 in the future. I’ll keep nagging!

Good times coming up, good times.

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