Archive for February, 2006
It won Best Mobile Game award at this year’s 3GSM event in Barcelona, so I thought I’d check it out.
It’s very simple. You use one button to keep a stone skipping over water. Press the button at the correct time, you’re fine, press it at the wrong time and you lose some of your energy. When your energy is gone, your stone sinks.
If you start doing well the game throws a random effect at you, which could be good or bad. More often bad, because anything that changes the stone’s behaviour is going to throw your rhythm off.
None of them are as bad as playing on a bus that’s throwing you around country roads, though. That really makes the game hard.
Anyway, like those Flash games involving yetis and penguins, it’s an addictive little bugger and it’ll probably end up getting more play than anything other mobile game over time. Fills the same gap as King of Fighters M2, but has the advantage of actually being good.
My best distance score is 3.23km and my best splash score is 24. Rubbish, but I was playing on the bus, like I said.
It’s a PSP mech game.
I thought I was being clever, ordering the Japanese budget release rather than the expensive UK version. The Japanese version has an English language option, you see. Unfortunately, the manual’s in Japanese. As are the introductory training videos. Ah.
Anyway, I’ve muddled through. My team The Revstars have started with five mechs. I’ve renamed one of them Big Red and fiddled about with it. I’ve tuned the parts, played the with AI, that sort of thing. A lot of it is understandable, but there are lots of acronyms like EO and, er, other things that I don’t understand. What are hangers? I dunno. It’s almost like Gran Turismo, where it’s assumed you know what the difference between a manual and automatic gearbox is, or something. The whole game seems to be like that. It’s assumed you know what all these things are.
Anyway, I decided to test Big Red out. First I tried him out in AI mode and he killed the opposition. Then I tried him out in manual mode and didn’t know what the hell I was doing. Couldn’t work out which buttons did what, really, and just when I thought I was getting there, I blew up.
Played this for over two hours now.
It’s really, really great.
Slightly unpolished, sure, but the core gameplay is superb and the graphical design is excellent. There’s an excellent sense of scale and of actually helping to fend off an alien invasion.
Unlike Zombie Zone, which was great despite being fundamentally a little bit rubbish, this game is great because it’s fundamentally a great game.
Still not convinced?
Tarantulas the size of four elephants! Great striding war machines! Swarms of small UFOs! Great huge motherships! GODZILLA!
It’s got great enemies, yes. And you’ve got great weapons to kill them all. And the levels seems endless. And endlessly destructable.
There’s nowhere you can’t go and nothing you can’t blow up, as far as I can see.
It’s just superb.
Shame about the framerate, the Japanese language and the annoying “you’ve killed a big bad” camera, but they’re hardly worth worrying about in the general scheme of things.
Oh, bloody hell.
It’s been telling me over and over again that I need more trees. So I’ve kept planting and planting and planting…
And now it’s complaining that there are too many trees.
Yes, it’s Japanese. Hence the name. A Japanese budget game in which you have to kill hundreds of giant insects attacking cities including London.
It’s great fun.
I’d love an English language option so I could kit myself out better and, yes, the PS2 can’t really keep up. And it’s very grey. And the camera could be better.
But everything else is brilliant. Huge ants climbing over Big Ben! Getting in a tank on a bridge and managing to blow the bridge up, sending me into the Thames below! Giant ants climbing all over an office block? No problem, just blow it up! Flying a jetpack around a giant ants nest that’s appeared in the middle of a city!
I can’t do 360s on the PSP d-pad it seems.
But then I doubt I’d ever choose to play as any charatcers that need to do them, anyway.
Went through the Story mode with four or five more characters. Takes about twenty each time. There’s always a sticking point. The worst characters for me to play against are Ayane, Hitomi and, curiously, Bass. And Alpha, obviously, but she’s not as bad as I’ve been led to believe.
Then I tried Survival mode a few times. Best was five wins and about 920,000 points. I’m at 80,000 in the world-wide ranking now, out of 105,000 people.
Through story mode with Kasumi and Kokoro.
It does seem utterly random whether I win a round or not. I’ve given up trying to throw the computer characters and I really can’t counter, so I mainly just launch flurries of punches and kicks, but try to mix them up a bit. And then get cocky and decide to try some blocking or countering and find half my health bar disappearing.
Trouble is – apart from being a bit too quick for me – is that with a lot of attacks I’m not sure if they’re high, mid or low. Is it where the attacks hits or where it starts? I’d assume it was impact point (head, chest, stomach) but I’m not sure if it is. I don’t know if I’m countering the wrong way or at the wrong time.
I hate Eagle.
I think it’s bed time.
Hooray, I’ve just finished Asia in world tour mode.
Last bit took a while. In one battle I could only damage the enemy with combos – and combos of over two hits. I can’t do that, due to rubbishness. But you start off with a bigger health bar, so I just had to bugger about avoiding damage until the timer ran down. Next battle was against Sagat, a two out of three job. A Power battle, which means his attacks did loads more damage than normal. That’s what took…
Hang on, this is tedious even for this diary, which is an exercise is ultra-boring geekdom.
Anyway, yes, I kicked some arse and progressed to the USSR.