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Monday, August 27, 2007


Two guys talking

Hey folks, welcome to Monday! A new week, a new cartoon and a new blog entry. Maybe it's just me, but I get a little tired of small talk in RPG games. I've just started playing Luminous Arc for the Nintendo DS and there is a lot of small talk in it. By that I mean the characters natter to each other about trivial matters that I suppose are meant to help us get to know them better, but contain little or no useful information relating to the game. To be fair, this game is pretty linear - you go from A to B to C, defeating enemies along the way. In fact, the only place where you feel that you're really in control is in the combat sections of the game (which folks familiar with Final Fantasy Tactics will feel right at home with). I have to admit that the game is really good to look at, with a full cell animated intro complete with J-pop soundtrack and actual voice acting throughout the game.

In other news, school starts today which means no more fighting for the computer, at least in the mornings. Wahoo! It also means that I'm usually the one giving the fur distribution unit her morning walks. But hey, I'm supposed to be getting more exercise, right?

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Friday, August 24, 2007


A Fistful of Quarters

I noticed a review in today's paper for a new doccumentary called "The King of Kong: A Fistful of Quarters." It concerns the efforts of a man to beat the record at the perenial arcade game, Donkey Kong and the forces that conspire to oppose him. I've not had the opportunity to see it yet, but I hope to soon. I remember the first time I spied the brand new Donkey Kong at a local arcade and the game's had a spot in my personal hall of fame ever since. Actually, there's a lot of games in that hall of fame, many from the arcades - too many in fact. Which is why I decided to put together a cabinet designed to play an assortment of arcade games (see Gamecreature Arcade) It saves on money and space.

Back in the day, there were numerous guides designed to make one the champion of these games. I once owned an excellent book on the subject, but have since lost it. In my efforts to find it again, I picked up a couple of other such books, including "How to Win at Donkey Kong" pictured on the right, which I picked up for one whole dollar. These books now reside in the bottom of my arcade machine, where the coin box would sit (if I had one, which I don't - if someone has a Williams-type coin box to spare, let me know how much you want for it). Sadly, there don't seem to be a lot of used book stores where I now live, so my search for these books has been hampered. If you folks happen to run across "Score! Beating the Top 16 Video Games" by Ken Uston or any other books on beating classic arcade games (not console games, mind you) let me know what you want from me to take them off your hands. I've got that Pac Man Fever!

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Monday, August 20, 2007



Yep, still getting my head around the whole working from home thing. Needless to say, there are fewer computers here than people who need to use them. It also doesn't help that they're in an open area and there's no door to close when I need to concentrate on my work. But I do have space set aside for my office and parts are beginning to arrive to make it functional. There's a desk, a chair, a phone, a window and a door (which closes very nicely, thank you). Still need a computer and there's some shortage of parts that's keeping it from coming into being and arriving at my front door. Hopefully there won't be additional delays.


Thursday, August 16, 2007


Like Working Daze? Spread the word!

Hey gang, I've been trying to get my local paper to carry my daily comic, Working Daze for years. I don't even know if they read my letters. At any rate, they're shaking up the comics page again and the editor was asking folks what they read online - so of course I had to weigh in. Probably nothing will come of it, but hey, can't fault a guy for trying! If you haven't done so lately, check out Working Daze at Comics.com!



Summer fun on a PC

I'm a big fan of strategy games. I'm also a big fan of roller coasters and theme parks. So it should come as no surprise that I'm addicted to the Rollercoaster Tycoon series.
In it, designer Chris Sawyer has been able to take all of the day to day tedium of running a busy amusement park and make it fun. Of course, the real thrill is designing your own rides and crossing your fingers to see if people will like them.
I've had the current incarnation, Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 for a while, but never really had the chance to put it through its paces until recently. At first I was a bit frustrated as the visitors to the park refused to ride the rides, but manually installing an update has fixed that and now my parks are running smoothly. Rollercoaster Tycoon 3 has several changes over the first two versions, the most notable being that you can actually climb into the rides and experience them for yourself. If that wasn't enough, now the sun goes down and the lights flicker on and the park takes on that special quality after dark. And in addition to designing fun rides, you can now entertain your guests with your own fireworks extravaganza.
But let's say you've built your own version of the Haunted Mansion, complete with audioanimatronic monsters and ghosts. It's still missing something, isn't it? Fortunately, there's a folder where you can drop your MP3 and WMA files so your guests can listen to "Grim, Grinning Ghosts" while going through your ride.
Your milage may vary, but if you're a theme park and coaster nut like me, you'll want to give this a try.


Monday, August 13, 2007



And the waiting game begins. For those of you waiting for new sketches, the shoe is on the other hand, or something like that. Sit tight, help is on the way. :)


Wednesday, August 08, 2007


Game Review: Picross DS

It seems that folks have discovered that the Nintendo DS is ideal for puzzle enthusiasts, at least if the number of Sudouko games available for the DS is any indication. But if you're tired of filling in cells in a 9x9 grid, then you might want to give Picross a try.

Picross is based on the logic puzzle known as Nonogram or Paint by Numbers, but with all of the bells and whistles one would expect from Nintendo. To put it simply, you have a grid with cells that must be filled in or left blank to form a picture. To figure out which cells get filled in and which are left alone, there are rows and columns of numbers on the side that indicate how many squares in that row or column get filled in. For instance, the numbers "4 2" would indicate that you would fill in four cells followed by two cells in that row. The trick is that the numbers don't tell you how many squares must be left blank, which is where logic comes in. If you've done everything correctly, you'll get a nice picture. In Picross DS, you get penalized if you make a wrong choice and if you make too many wrong choices you won't see the special animation that accompanies a finished puzzle or unlock new levels.
Picross DS comes with over 300 puzzles to solve, and you can download more using the DS Wifi feature. It also has a multiplayer option where users can try to be the first to solve the puzzle or particpate in guessing games. Picross DS is priced at $19.99 so if you have a DS and are looking for a fun way to exercise your brain, you can't pass this up!


Monday, August 06, 2007



The gang is trying to find ways to improve the Gamecreature site. Wise-cracking cats need not apply.

Seriously, I'm looking to spruce up this place, but it'll be a long process. As always, your suggestions are welcome.

Got a few more games to bring to your attention. A few oldies and one new game - Picross for the Nintendo DS. Those of you folks who are looking for some mental stimulation on the DS and are sick and tired of all of the Sudoku offerings, this is the game for you. I'll post a review later this week.

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