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Everything posted by Cube

  1. Just wait until I get to the McDonald ones. (That said, those ones actually understand that LCD games should be very simple games)
  2. I have decided to set myself a challenge: try to play as many Sonic games as possible. This will be between different games and not non stop after each other. I will be playing the best versions of games rather then the very original ones, although vastly different versions will count separately (16 bit and 8 big Sonic the Hedgehog, Console and DS Colours and Generations for example). Some will require emulation as they haven't had releases since, or I have no platform to play them on. I have also added a few select ports as I think they deserve mentioning. Instead of release order, I have randomised the order I will play it in. However, Series of games will be played in order (So if Sonic 1 is #23 and Sonic 2 is #19 they get swapped around). There are some games which I may not be able to play. There seem to be some old mobile games which don't exist anywhere online, and Sonic Free Riders is probably a bit expensive to play considering it's quality (requiring a Kinect...I don't even know if my 360 is compatible with it or if it needs an update as it doesn't have WiFi). This will probably take ages, but I'll update this thread for each game. I may not be good enough to complete them all but I'll try my best, as long as I put a decent amount of playtime relevant to each game.
  3. Sonic the Hedgehog’s Gameworld Original platform: Sega Pico Original release: August 1994 Available to buy: No The first thing to talk about with this is the console it appears on: the Sega Pico. This is an “edutainment” device released in 1993. The internals were the same as a Mega Drive, but it featured a drawing pad and a pen, and the cartridges were books. The console can recognise which page you are on, and you can even press parts of the book to activate things in the game. This game is a collection of minigames that take place in an amusement arcade. Each page of the book features a collection of minigames, plus some short dialogue (some of it voiced) from the characters. The first page features a car race where you have to tap a button to go fast, a Skee-Ball minigame where you have to select the right power to aim your ball, a climbing game where you tap fast to win, and a basketball hoop game where you have to aim to shoot balls into hoops (although I found it easier to just aim forward and wait for the moving targets to align). The second page has a Simon Says flag matching game, a crane machine where you pick up toys, and Whac-A-Mole where you have to tap the drawing pad to hit Dr. Robotnik. The third page has three mini games. One based on the “ball under a cup” game where a bird hides inside an egg and is swapped around with empty eggs and a card game where you have to match pairs of cards. The third is a battle between Sonic and Dr. Robotnik where they’re throwing rings at each other. You press a button and a random icon is selected which determines who gets to throw a ring. The final page of games has a game that is a bit like “Finders Keepers”. You have to run around multiple floors of a building, looking under everything for emeralds. Then the game has an extra page where you get to colour in and draw. In the Japanese version, it features casino based minigames instead, like a roulette wheel. For the intended audience, it’s a pretty fun minigame collection, and as it focuses on “dexterity”, feels like it’s much heavier on the “video game” side of things than “educational”. Wacky Worlds Creativity Studio Original platform: Mega Drive Original release: November 1994 Available to buy: No This is much more of an activity more than a game, and came with a mouse. It features six themed worlds: A sci-fi planet, fantasy kingdom, halloween, safari, dolls house and underwater. You can place stickers throughout the level. Some of these stickers are animated and you can recolour them. For the visual aspect of the game, that’s it. I made an image of Tails being attacked by a Metroid. The other mode of the game is a music maker, but I couldn’t figure out how to use it to make anything good. Considering that this came out a few years after Mario Paint, this is extremely bare bones and doesn’t even feature any actual drawing. Sonic the Hedgehog: Card Game (Waddington’s) Original Platform: Board Game Original Release: 1994 Not played: expensive to get second hand A Sonic board game from 1994 from British card manufacturer Waddingtons. The aim of the game is to get rid of all your cards. You play character card into the middle of the table, while a ring card is played by your deck and ends your turn. Sonic the Hedgehog 3D Action Game Original Platform: Board Game Original Release: 1994 Not played: expensive to get second hand This is a “spin and move X spaces” game. You either gain rings or lost them. Once you reach the flipper spot, you have to try and catapult your Sonic to the higher level, then proceed to defeat Dr. Robotnik. If you miss the second level, you have to move back round to the flipper again. Sonic Spinball (LCD Game) Original platform: LCD game Original release: 1994 Available to buy: No Not played: Cost of buying second hand too high. An LCD version of Sonic Spinball. This is a single-screen pinball game with limited ball positions and features. For an LCD game, it’s much easier to follow than the platform LCD games, and seems like it’s something enjoyable enough for a quick blast every now and then. Sonic the Hedgehog 3 (LCD Game) Original platform: LCD game Original release: 1994 Available to buy: No This LCD I had the actual physical device. I forgot how horrible these were to use, with screens that are very difficult to see so you need bright light, but then the bright light causes a lot of glare on the screen you you can’t see what’s happening due to that. They really are a nightmare to use. The Sonic 3 LCD is similar to the previous ones, move to the right and defeat enemies until you get to the end of the level. In this, you’ll sometimes fall in water and need to jump out before a timer runs out. There’s no way to see which sections of the level are gaps you can fall down or walk across. I found that just mashing right, up and attack would work for getting through most of the game. Amazing Sonic (LCD Game) Original platform: LCD game Original release: 1994 Available to buy: No Not played: Cost of buying second hand too high. Amazing Sonic is a typical maze LDC game. You have to navigate Sonic around the maze to collect chaos emeralds. These games are always frustrating ad you only see a tiny potion of the maze at any one time. The rather random background of this one would make it even more difficult to see. Sonic Blast (LCD Game) Original platform: LCD game Original release: 1994 Available to buy: No Not played: Cost of buying second hand too high. This one seems very difficult to find actual image or footage of – I managed to find one very low quality YouTube video of it. Sonic Blast has nothing to do with the Game Gear game (or the 3D Blast games), it just happens to have used the same name before either of those were made. From what I can tell of the game, it’s a bit like a pinball game. You launch Sonic into the “machine” and he will bounce around. Instead of using flippers, you move platforms to fill in gaps to keep Sonic bouncing around until he bounces into everything he needs to complete. I don’t think you have any other control other than filling in the gaps. Sonic 3 Limited Edition Original Platform: Mega Drive Original Release: Cancelled (In Development 1994) Version Played: Tested two prototypes Available to buy: No All in all, this is just a very buggy version of Sonic 3 & Knuckles. Sega were planning on releasing the full Sonic 3 & Knuckles game on a single cartridge, without needing the lock-on. For some reason it never happened, but a couple of prototypes exist.
  4. https://news.xbox.com/en-us/2022/01/18/welcoming-activision-blizzard-to-microsoft-gaming/ For $70 billion. Still needs to be finalised, but they're sure enough to officially announce it. The industry becomes more and more monopolised. That said, Microsoft can probably massively improve working conditions for the staff.
  5. 1.2 is essentially modern southpaw. I imagine people will struggle with the controls for this, unless Nintendo have added any (can you swap the sticks in the Switch settings?).
  6. Sonic The Hedgehog Card Game (Board Game) Original Platform: Board Game Original Release: 1992 Not played: expensive to get second hand A Sonic board game from 1992. It’s hard to get a great idea of what the gameplay was like from the images online, but it sounds like you’re trying to collect emeralds while trying to screw over the other players. The description on the back, each player has a hand of six cards, then will draw a card and play a card on their turn. They can attack their opponent to get rings or choose to protect their own rings. If you collect all emeralds, you win automatically. If not, the game ends when all Zone cards come out and the winner is the player with the most rings. Sonic the Hedgehog Game (Board Game) Original Platform: Board Game Original Release: 1992 Not played: expensive to get second hand A Sonic board game from 1992. This is actually a lot like a Mario board game from around the same time. Each player takes turns rolling the dice, moving Sonic (everyone uses the same token) and collecting coins. Once you get to the end of the board, the person with the most coins wins. Each person has three tokens to help themselves and three tokens to hurt other players – even though you’re all trying to get Sonic to defeat Dr. Robotnik, you want the other players to do poorly. Sonic the Hedgehog (LCD game) Original platform: LCD game Original release: 1992 Available to buy: No A full size version of the Sonic LCD game. The gameplay in this seems to be similar to the watch version, but with different sprites. This also has a background based on Marble Hill Zone. In the game, you move right and jump into enemies, trying to avoid attacks. There’s not really any “platforming”, the four stages are just flat. Once you get to the end, you reach Dr. Robitnik and jump into him to defeat him and move on. The action is very difficult to see due to the nature of the device it is on, and these devices are never fun to use for more than a couple of minutes. SegaSonic the Hedgehog (LCD game) Original platform: LCD game Original release: 1992 Not played: Was only available in Japan for a limited time. A Tiger Electronic game available in UFO Catcher machines in Japan. This looks like a fairly typical LCD game where you have to avoid projectiles, which will increase in speed in each “level”. The aim of the game is to get the highest score before you lose all of your lives. The only controls are moving left and right. SegaSonic Bros Original Platform: Arcade Original Release: Unreleased (Finished 1992) Available to buy: No A colour matching puzzle game. In this one, you have to form lines and loops with colours, rather than matching in rows. Sets of four Sonics will come down from the top and you need to move and rotate them to get to your desired location. Form a suitable line or loop and you will zap Dr. Robotnik. Get to level 30 and a fourth colour will be introduced for extra difficulty. This game was completely finished, but failed location testing and was never released. I can see why, as I really could not get my head around how you plan the acceptable lines to form links to remove blocks, I had far more luck just putting them down randomly. Although, I do appreciate the colours used as I can see the differences easily, despite my colourblindness. It’s fascinating that a game can reach its final state but still be cancelled, so it’s a lost Sonic game that can actually be played. SegaSonic Cosmo Fighter Galaxy Patrol (Arcade, 25th April) Original Platform: Kid’s Ride Original release: 25th April 1993 Available to buy: No Similar to Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car, SegaSonic Cosmo Fighter is another little game built inside a children’s ride. This one is a simple scrolling space shooter, where Sonic must fight through enemies and defeat Dr. Robotnik to save Flickies. You can swap between different weapons, which are all powerful and defeat enemies with ease. Getting hit will cycle you back one level, but you can just change back to the next weapon up. There’s no way to die. When you finish, Sonic will rank your performance out of five. It’s a very basic game, but I can see it being a fun part of a simple ride for a child. Sonic Chaos Original Platform: Master System Version played: Game Gear Original Release: 25th October 1993 Available to buy: No Sonic Chaos is quite possibly the easiest Sonic game. The levels are short, and there aren’t many obstacles. In a way, this is good, as it’s a stark contrast to the many obstacles you couldn’t see in the Master System version of Sonic 2. That said, there are still a lot of blind jumps, it’s just that in Sonic Chaos, they usually lead somewhere. Other than being easy, Sonic Chaos doesn’t really try anything new or different. It features two Green Hill Zones – one called Turquoise Hill (that looks exactly the same) and Mecha Green Hill, which is a decent twist on the level. Sonic Chaos is a fairly safe Sonic game, it doesn’t doing anything bad, but is very unremarkable overall. Sonic the Hedgehog Spinball Original Platform: Mega Drive Original Release: 15th November 1993 Available to buy: Yes When I was a kid, I never fully understood what this game was. I thought it was just a pinball game. I played it on and off, but never saw much outside the initial starting area. Playing it now and it’s more of a pinball platformer game. You have to hit Sonic around levels with paddles, but also have a degree of movement to adjust his course mid-air and can even move him around if you land on flat surfaces. The main part of the game is having to figure out how you unlock routes to the Chaos Emeralds in each level. Once you’ve found all of them, you can then fight the boss. This is repeated across the four levels. While the game has enjoyable moments, it can often be frustrating, and random bounces can often mean being sent back to an earlier part of the level, having to work your way up. It’s an interesting concept and has some great music, but I think it could have done with feeling a bit more consistent in terms of controls. Sonic the Hedgehog (Mega Play) Original platform: Mega Drive Version Played: Mega Play Arcade Original release: 1993 Available to buy: Yes The original Sonic the Hedgehog had two arcade releases. The first was on the Mega-Tech system. That one was just the original game where you would play for time, while the Mega Play was a proper arcade adaptation. In the Mega Drive version of Sonic the Hedgehog, some zones were cut out – Marble Zone and Labyrinth Zone are gone, along with the third act of Scrap Brain Zone. As most of you will notice, these are the “slower” stages, as the focus here is on speed. Each level has a time limit that counts down. If it reaches zero, you lose a life. Losing all your lives will result in game over and you can submit your high score initials. You can continue from where you left off, but your score will start from zero. This is certainly an interesting version of the original Sonic, and is one of the few times where people will actually care about the score. Sonic the Hedgehog 2 (LCD game) Original platform: LCD game Original release: 1993 Available to buy: No The LCD version of Sonic the Hedgehog 2. This features a background of Oil Ocean and even adds loops to (awkwardly) run around. It’s the same basic game – move to the right, defeat enemies and then defeat Dr Robotnik – but the loops make you go to the left of the screen before moving around them. Later stages feature gaps you can fall down, although seeing the difference between these and “gaps” that are just a flat surface is very unclear. There’s a surprising amount of different enemies for an LCD game and the Casino Night Zone level even has a gimmick in the form of flippers.
  7. Your Gaming Diary 2023

    Ghost of Tsushima I loved to to the point that I explored the map to find everything. Combat was a lot of fun and the story was fun (even if some moments made no sense). The game looks absolutely beautiful and the setting is wonderful.
  8. So, it's been a while since I've updated this, and I plan to reorganise and continue doing so. I've completely changed how I've posted them to my website, previously it was a massive list of them in order of completion, but I've since realised that while it creates a mix of games, it's a pain for someone to find particular ones. I've now reorganised them to be based on date (I'm sure people here recommended that to begin with), all games I haven't done are also on the pages for each year, so you can see which ones I haven't gotten round to. https://djcube.co.uk/history-sonic-the-hedgehog-games/ I will be going through all the remaining ones like this. I will be posting any games I haven't posted here before as I go though the remaining ones. I've also created a Twitter account for posting them https://twitter.com/allsonicgames Rad Mobile Original platform: Arcade Original release: 3rd October 1990 While I will be limiting Sonic’s appearances in other games to its own article, the Rad Mobile appearance is of significance because it’s the first ever appearance of Sonic The Hedgehog, before his first game was released. Rad Mobile is a timed checkpoint racing game with some impressive graphics for the time (particularly the 3D road), dangling from the top of the screen at all times is a swinging Sonic the Hedgehog. Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car Original Platform: Arcade car Original release: 1991 Where to get: Unavailable Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car was a video game that was installed in a coin operated car ride – the type that children sit in and it moves around for a couple of minutes. In Waku Waku Sonic Patrol Car, Sonic is a police officer on his daily rounds. You have to dodge traffic and can give hand signals to slow cars down. Towards the end of the “ride”, you have to fight Dr Robotnik, who is throwing bombs at you. You can use a jump attack to hit him a few times as you dodge bombs. Once you finish, you get awarded a score out of five. It’s an extremely simple game, but for the audience, it’s much better than just sitting one one of those rides. Sonic the Hedgehog LCD Wrist Game Original Platform: LCD Game Original release: 1991 Not Played: Game is only available second hand and is very expensive. The first Tiger Electronic Sonic game, this one part of a watch strap. The game consists of four levels where Sonic has to move right and jump to defeat enemies. Due to the nature of how these games are made (sprites are only in one location, it works similar to a digital watch screen), these games are always extremely simple, and are more of an amusement for a few minutes.
  9. Your Gaming Diary 2022

    The last game I finished last year. Pentiment It's a very solid point and click mystery game. There are a few mysteries throughout the game, but there's no "right" answer. You can only do a limited amount of things in a day (luckily, only certain actions trigger the passage of time, you can take as long as you like to look at everything), so you only get access to parts of the information. You can only make your assessment based on what you know. Part of these limitations will be the different knowledge sets you can pick, these will help with some situations while others may be inaccessible (you're never stuck in the game, though). The story is interesting, although the final mystery (which pretty much reveals itself with no investigation) is a bit disappointing. I was kind of expecting the game to be a bit more unique (and use the "book" styling a lot more), but it's still a solid point and click game.
  10. Wot u got 4 Xmas

    I got some new pans, socks, a blanket, Ghost of Tsushima, Star Trek Short Treks, a Star Trek apron, a Star Trek wallet, lots of chocolate, an egg and soldier chopping board and some deodorant that supposedly smells of a sweaty football player.
  11. Drahkon's Gaming in 2022

    I don't have fancy graphs, but some of my stats: Money spent on games in 2022: Games Played Games that I really enjoyed (no particular order or amount)
  12. Merry Christmas

    Had a good first Christmas with Ollie. We hosted and I made food for Louise's family, it was good.
  13. The Muppets Christmas Carol

    Just a note: you have to play the full version from the extras menu, default is missing the song. It's a yearly tradition for me.
  14. Are You Ready For Nintendo's Next Console?

    I am not ready for a new console. The Switch feels like it's barely started, and has so far been the most disappointing Nintendo console for me. The only Switch game I played this year was Return to Monkey Island, which I would have played on Xbox if I was at home. I played more mobile games than Switch games while at the hospital. Super Mario Odyssey and Splatoon 2 Octo Expansion are pretty much the major Switch games for me.
  15. Your Gaming Diary 2022

    LEGO Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga Unfortunately, this game is a bit of a mess. The quality of the main campaign is all over the place, with some levels being extremely short, important moments skimmed over and some odd focus on stuff that barely matters (or even happens off screen). The space part of the battle of Endor is completely missing. The game makes fun of the “It’s a trap” line yet misses the actual moment it happened. Then you have a mission where Jar Jar looks for the Gungans after returning to Naboo. The worst part about this mission is that you just walk around empty corridors and then return. This is one of the many moments that take place in the “open world” component of the game. However, as you can’t access all parts until you unlock free play and can use abilities you can’t access during the story, so it’s better to just move on. This means long sections just walking around these open hubs. It really breaks up the gameplay and it feels like you spend more time slowly walking places rather than doing anything. Ultimately, this makes the main story feel like a disjointed mess. The puzzles are quite rare and the gameplay itself just feels slow and plodding. The freeplay section of the game, however, is filled with stuff. There are a lot of planets, each with at least one open world level of objects to collect. There are a ton of easter eggs, missions to complete and puzzles to solve. Unfortunately, this is hampered by how the stuff you unlock doesn’t unlock characters or ships, but instead just unlocks the ability to buy them with studs (the in-game currency). Having to grind to unlock the stuff you’ve earned sours the experience, especially with so much stuff. If the gameplay was fun, this section would be great, but ultimately, it’s a very boring experience and didn’t hold my attention for long once I’d beaten the main story. I also think that the game could have used a lot more LEGO in its world design. High On Life A first person shooter with a ton of crude humour and some genuinely funny moments. The gameplay is a ton of fun. While there aren’t many weapons in the game (each one is also a character with a ton of dialogue), it makes up for it with multiple abilities and uses for each one. On top of this, your movement abilities improve so much as you unlock some fun abilities throughout the game. Some of the humour is extremely dark, with you killing innocents and the like. However, these moments are pretty much done by the player - most of the time there’s not even a reward for your actions, so it works better than expected. There’s no grand moral, just a “what did we just do?” The length is quite short, but that’s a bonus for a game like this as it doesn’t outstay its welcome. I really enjoyed this Banjo-Kazooie My yearly playthrough of this. I love this game so much.
  16. Rate Your 2022

    A very life changing year for me. Started off with buying a house, then the arrival of Ollie and his heart issues. We spent a total of around 2 months in the hospital with him. But it's been worth it as he's amazing.
  17. The best announcement for me was Horizon DLC ..until they announced that they're screwing over PS4 players. Hopefully E3 next year can bring back the old trend of showing off game footage.
  18. Quickly browsed through some stuff while making a bottle for Ollie, doesn't seem like anything worth paying attention to.
  19. Your Gaming Diary 2022

    Sonic Frontiers While the focus on Sonic Frontiers is on the open world - or open zone as Sega call it - I think it’s worth taking a look at the more traditional levels first. The disappointing thing about these are the themes, they take a few level themes from older games (including the much repeated Green Hill Zone and Chemical Plant Zone) as a basis for the levels, I would have much preferred if they just used the theme of the current island instead. At the very least, each individual level has its own unique (and really solid) music. That said, the levels are still fun to play. They are a bit simple with only a few branching paths and don’t reach the height of Sonic Generations or Colours, but they’re still a ton of fun to play. Some levels focus on specific gimmicks while others are a bit more traditional. With these levels alone, Sonic Frontiers would be a pretty good game. But, the main bulk of the game is the open zone islands, something that sounded like it could easily go very wrong, especially if they don’t get Sonic’s movement’s right. Luckily, they did a great job. Sonic went where I wanted him to go, and turning was incredibly easy. Running around enemies is extremely easy, which ties into Sonic’s new power where he can draw a shape to hurt enemies or activate objects inside. I do wish that Sonic’s starting speed was much faster. Towards the end of the game (with my speed levelled up to around 25 out of 99), it felt amazing, but this really needed to be the starting point. Each island consists of collectables, challenges, levels, story missions and fishing. The collectibles are “memory tokens”, used to progress the story and unlock little side cutscenes. Most of these are found by completing mini levels on floating platforms (although some are nicely integrated into the world itself). There are a lot more than you need to unlock everything, so they’re more of something to find on the way between everything else and not something you have to painfully track down one by one. The floating platforms that these are made from do have major pop-in issues - although it does seem to be managed in a smart way where parts you need to work out a route to an object are visible. I feel like they could have added a “cyber” animation to these objects to make them seem like they’re being generated by cyberspace instead of just popping in, Challenges help unlock the map, some are little puzzles, some are timing challenges, some are time trials (which are like mini levels integrated into the world) and some make use of specific powers. They’re fun to discover and do. One kind I did find odd is one where you have to parry objects, as to parry you just need to hold down the button, there’s no timing, but these challenges were definitely designed with timing in mind, so I think they changed the parry system fairly late on in development. Story missions are…quite bad. They’re a bunch of mini games that involve herding, pinball and a hacking minigame which is a very simple Ikaruga-inspired 2D space shooter. These could have been missing and nobody would care. Fishing is an optional extra and is nice and relaxing, although it seems like way too much effort has gone into the rather detailed fish models - and there are a lot of different fish. Combat is a lot of fun. With the cyloop opening up enemies for attack and a lot of special moves to perform. There’s also an option to perform these automatically (at the cost of slightly reduced damage) if you prefer to button mash instead. Each enemy also has specific ways to deal with them and their design is a clue as to how to defeat them. In the open zone there are also “guardians” to fight - large bosses which feel like full on bosses from other Sonic games. These are an absolute delight and it’s very surprising that they work well in the open world as they feel like full on set pieces. The final boss of each island is also spectacular - although the final boss is downright awful, nothing more than a quick time event. There are some parts of the open world that feel like a mini level, parts like long underground tunnels or other small sections. These parts are brilliant, and I really hope the next game focuses more on this - having levels built into the open world itself is a great way to go about expanding on the formula. I really hope Sega builds upon Sonic Frontiers instead of their usual method of ditching something and trying something new. Overall, I absolutely loved Sonic Frontiers, and while the standard levels aren’t quite Sonic Generations, I do rate this as Sonic’s best 3D game.
  20. The Traitors

    Classic mafia tic tac.
  21. Did Terk from Disney's Tarzan murder DK and replace him?
  22. Sonic Frontiers

    Started this over the weekend, finished the first island and onto the second. Loving it so far. The most surprising thing to me is just how well Sonic controls, and how easy it is to turn around and move in a small area. They're by far the best 3D Sonic controls. The open world is a lot of fun, with lots of stuff to find and neat little challenges, although some mini-games are a bit random. The bosses in the open world are great. The zone levels are fine. There's a few different routes, but nothing too complicated. The biggest issue with them is just the visual theme of the level, some more variety would be very nice. I think even using the same theme as the island itself would be fine and more coherent. It does seem a bit like a mix of ideas, but it's an immense joy to play and I hope they refine it in the future and don't do Team Sonic's usual method of ditching something and trying something completely different.
  23. Your Gaming Diary 2022

    Let's Build A Zoo A 2D pixelated zoo management game. It starts off great, with lots of systems to work out and a small amount of animals to work out pens for. There’s a lot of stuff to unlock, and even good/bad choices you can go though. Good choices are mainly about renewable energy, while the bad choices are about exploiting your zoo and animals by farming. There’s also genetic splicing and breeding as you try to find all variants of each. Where the game falls apart is that it starts to slow down. New animals will start to become very rare (even though I had unlocked less than half of them) and I found myself putting it on fast forward for hours just waiting for new things to do. No Man's Sky Second attempt at trying this. There is some fun stuff about the game, and some lovely sights, but it still has the main big issue as last time I tried it: before long you just learn the patterns of planets and animals, and it takes all the fun out of new discoveries once you notice these patterns. 80 Days A really fun choose-your-own adventure where you have to make it around the world in 80 days. It's based heavily on the bizarre and wonderful style of the world in the Jules Verne book. The first time round, I took a fairly traditional route across trains, things were going well until a boat I was taking to America decided to detour and my mutiny attempt failed, leading to a massive setback. I somehow missed all of the bizarre stuff and went past the 80 days (what’s nice is that you can still continue your journey). The second time, I went via the north pole and encountered loads of marvellous machines, and multiple hidden cities and societies. It was a lovely adventure and I had over two weeks to spare. Return to Monkey Island Monkey Island is back (again)! I really like what they did with this one, with similar style of puzzles and lots of great dialogue (I really recommend turning on the extra lines in the options - the “director’s cut”). The graphics - which looked odd in trailers - are surprisingly very beautiful and the game looked fantastic at all times. It addresses the fairly terrible ending of Monkey Island 2 in a clever way, while also being a sequel to all the Monkey Island games. It was nice that they didn’t discard the other stuff. One thing it does extremely well is the hint system. For other point and click games, I've been using a website that provides "hint guides" that point you in the right direction instead of telling you specifically what to do. The hint system here does the same, and can provide clues without ruining the experience (unless you keep drilling down into it and it eventually gives you the answer). The one let down is the ending. It’s one of those where you can tell it's going to be a let down, but it’s still a let down when you get to it. It’s not quite as bad as the Money Island 2 one, but is still a bit of a sour note to end on. There Is No Game: Wrong Dimension A very strange game about a game that isn’t a complete game. You have to work out what to do by clicking on things to reveal objects to use in a point and click style. Along the way you end up in other games and have to solve puzzles from “outside” the game by sort of breaking the game and using objects from HUD elements to move into the game world. It’s a lot of fun with some crazy stuff happening (including a musical section). Sally's Law A cute puzzle-platformer. Each level you progress by jumping over gaps but - surprisingly - all the obstacles keep moving out of your way. You then re-do the level as another character who then has to solve puzzles and hit switches in order to remove obstacles before your previous character gets there (your movement is recorded, so it’s based on your exact performance). It’s a really nice mechanic.
  24. Baby Cube

    So it's been a long road, getting form there to here. The stint in ICU was agonisingly long for us, he had a failed excavation (he couldn't handle breathing after his ventilator was removed), but then was moved from the ventilator to the next step down in breathing support. He had a scan done, and the person who did a scan was "oh no" and seemed to think another surgery was needed soon. The doctors spoke to us next day and said it was as expected (he has a leaky valve due to his compressed coronary, the hope is that it will now heal over time). Last weekend he was moved from ICU to the next step down (called HDU), one of the doctors wanted to go very slow on weaning off the breathing support and said (not directly to us, to other doctors) that he'd probably be in the next step for weeks. A few days later, they took him off breathing support for pressure relief, he did so well that he never went back on. We're looking at potentially going home soon because he's doing so well now.