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Monday, November 27, 2006


Card Games

Who needs a deck of cards when you can play a game on your handheld? If you feel left out by all of the folks who are bowling on their new Nintendo Wii, maybe Clubhouse Games can lift a little bit of those blues. This new game for the Nintendo DS has over 40 games on its little chip, including lots of popular card games (Hearts, Rummy, Texas Hold-em), bowling, darts, chess checkers, backgammon and some games that have unusual names but you'll recognize right away (Field Tactics is remarkably like Stratego and Turncoat is better recognized as Othello). What really sets this game apart is that you can not only play nearly all of these games with your friends via the DS wireless connection, but you can also play online via WiFi. Just to make things interesting (and to introduce you to all of the games that you might not otherwise play) several of the games and other features can only be unlocked through single player stamp and challenge modes.

Another game that recently crossed our threshold is Final Fantasy III (also for the DS). I can't tell you too much about it as it belongs to my daughter, but what I've seen looks great. These folks did everything they could to take advantage of the capabilities of the DS. This is more than just a simple port. Maybe my daughter will share a review of the game when she's gone a little further into it (and finished her homework!)

(Voting is still open for the 2006 Video Game Awards. Our game is nominated for five awards. Vote early and vote often! - http://www.gamecreature.com/2006/11/news-flash-family-guy-game-is.html )

Monday, November 20, 2006


Holiday Greetings

Yes, it's time for me to get started on my annual Holiday Message. Hopefully with the long weekend I'll be able to get it done in a reasonable amount of time.

Last weekend we saw the release of both the PS3 and the Nintendo Wii game systems. Sony managed to make their product the "must have" of the season by only releasing 200 units to every state in the union, creating a demand that far outweighs the value of the system. I mean, really. Once you get your new PS3 system, what are you going to play on it? What games are currently available for the PS3 that you have to play right now? Nintendo, on the other hand, released 40 times as many Wii systems on Sunday, meaning that people had a better chance of picking one up at a reasonable price. Even so, good luck trying to find one in the next few weeks.

Personally, I have never been fond of Sony games. From a developer's standpoint, their system is very difficult to write for and they are much more concerned about selling people things they don't need. My prediction is that if Sony got out of the game business tomorrow, there wouldn't be a lot of crying from the game developers.

But hey, Thanksgiving is this week, so get together with your families for some good food (gluten free in my house) and by all means stay away from the mad rush at the shopping malls this weekend. See you next week.

Monday, November 13, 2006


A Colorful Time of Year

Maybe it's just me, but I've noticed a bit more colorful language on the net lately. It's one of the reasons that I won't link to a popular game-themed web comic on this board. The author boasts a rather extensive vocabulary and the intelligence to use it, but can't seem to get past posting a comic filled with crude slang referring to excrement and reproduction. I'm sure the authors of such literary masterpieces can come up with all sorts of justifications for always reaching for the cheap laughs in their comics, but my question to them is why can't they use their creativity to come up with a better way to express themselves? If one truly wants to be recognized for their creativity, they're going to have to work up a little sweat once in a while.

But civility has taken a major nosedive in this country and one cannot lay the blame at the feet of the gamers and the webcomics - they're just the symptom. And certainly the anonymity of electronic communication makes it easier for one to be bolder in their delivery of crude and obnoxious vitriol. But they've been spurred on by an army of pundits and radio hosts that believe it is "entertaining" to dehumanize those they don't agree with and give their millions of listeners justification to lead with their mouth instead of their brain. To them, it's okay to curse and swear angrily at a problem instead of finding help to solve it. But to do that would involve real work and it seems that they too would eschew the challenge in favor of the easy way.

Well, that's my two cents.

(P.S. - Don't forget to vote for my video game in the 2006 Video Game Awards!)

Friday, November 10, 2006


News Flash! Family Guy Game is nominated for 5 awards!

Wow, the powers that be have nominated the Family Guy Video Game in five categories for the 2006 video game awards!

The award ceremony is December 13th and even if we win, rest assured that they'll find someone more "sexy" to accept the award on our behalf. Still, it looks good on my resume. So if you can, I'd appreciate your vote. The categories that we're up for is:

"Best Game based on a Movie or TV Show."
"Best Cast"
"Best Performance by a Human - Male"
"Best Male - Supporting"
"Best Female - Supporting"

Here's the link - go and vote!:


Monday, November 06, 2006


Those annoying e-mails

I recently ramped up the settings on my email filter - I was just getting too much garbage in my in box. My only concern is that some legitimate message will get filtered out. If you think I'm not responding to your email, it may be that it got caught by the filter. Feel free to leave a message here or on one of the forums I frequent and I'll try to get back to you. And while it seems to work in the cartoon world, I think the software on Cal and GC's computer might be inviting a different sort of trouble.

I recently picked up the latest expansion pack for Zoo Tycoon 2. Not only is this a good, family-friendly title, but it won't bore you to tears. As a matter of fact, it's a lot of fun. As the name implies, this game lets you build your own zoo. The trick is to come up with enough cash to cover your overhead (feeding and cleaning up after animals is a lot of work) while keeping the guests and animals happy. What makes this version more fun than the original is that you can actually get inside the enclosures to take care of the animals - feed them, clean them, sweep up after them. Get up close and personal with them. In the latest installment, Marine Mania, you can train animals to do tricks (and throw a treat to them afterwards). Put on a show and make your zoo even more famous. If you are a regular viewer of Animal Planet or just want a game that doesn't require you to kill half of everything you see, then Zoo Tycoon 2 is the game for you.


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