Sunday, June 24, 2012

A Girl Gamer Recommends: Home Systems

It's been so long! What have I been doing?

Dream Dresses from Breaktime Studios, available on the App Store
And This:
Sweet Shop from Breaktime Studios, available on the App Store
And This:
 Pocket Potions from Breaktime Studios, available on the App Store

Before I realized it, I had become the equivalent of a Diablo addict. Husband has dubbed this “Cute Diablo” and I have to agree. There is no real goal to these games except to click on things and watch bars fill up. At least because these games are on my iPad, I'm not chained to a computer desk and can take my addiction with me to bed and dinner, and... wait I don't think that's really a great thing after all.

As much as I would love to recommend these games, I just can't do it in good conscience. Yes, they're fun, but I can't say to other people “Oh yeah, throw away your free time by clicking on things almost constantly with no end in sight”. Don't make my mistake.

There are other games that I enjoy though and would happily recommend! The nice thing about having a super gamer husband (and being a very indulgent wife) is that we have just about every system worth having so I'll be sharing my favorite games to play! Today we'll do the home systems. Most of these games are multi-platform so I'll just note when they're exclusive to a certain system.

Lips (Xbox360): This isn't so much a game as it is a way to turn your 360 into a karaoke machine. Included was one mic and a general list of songs with the official videos as background. There are/were more songs that could be downloaded via the online store, but the best part was that you can plug in your MP3 player and sing along with any song that you have stored there! It really is fun, I just wish I wasn't so shy so I could sing with all of my friends karaoke box style!

Rock Band 1, 2, 3: This is pretty much the reason why I really love my 360. Husband and I haven't really played with it since we moved because we lost our usual drummer! (Now accepting auditions?) In addition to all the extra components that you need to play (drums, two guitars, keyboard... I still really really want a mic stand) we also have the ottoman that nicely holds everything... except for the keyboard. Well you can't win them all I guess. Maybe I'll convince Husband to find someone to drum for us here!

Mini Ninjas: I just recently got this after playing the demo when it first came out. This is an ADORABLE game that's really easy to pick up. You play as a mini ninja who has the power to become one with different animals. There are some evil people who are trying to capture all the cute little animals for nefarious purposes so it's your job to save them! Each different animal (and there are a ton) have their own little special abilities or attacks. It's half level-based, half open world... and there's certainly replay value because there are plenty of things to look for and find in each level in order to get a full complete on the game.

Kingdom Hearts 1 & 2 (Playstation2 or 3): I actually got into this series because of my mom. Secretly my mom is a crazy gamer, as long as she has one game that she really likes. Seriously though, has anyone not at least heard of this game? If you haven't at least given it a chance then you should. Once you get through (or are at least prepared for) the SquareEnix overuse of cut scenes the games moves along at a nice pace. Mom and I played with the official guides so we wouldn't miss anything, but it's just as easy to figure out on your own or use an online walk-through if you get stuck anywhere. I didn't play any of the other follow up games because the plot gets so unbelievably complicated and involves having to have played games that are only available if you have a Japanese cell phone, which I don't.

Bayonetta: I really wanted to play this game because it looked really cool, however I'm usually not very good at picking up games that require you to learn a bunch of combos and whatnot. I don't like to be on the bottom of the learning curve when I'm trying to play a game for fun. Enter Bayonetta and what I dubbed the “OMG Baby Easy Mode” Playing on this mode meant that I got to button mash my way through a beautiful and fun game with a really interesting plot. I seriously wish that more games would do this. I would buy so many more popular titles that way (like the Assassin’s Creed series).

Super Mario Bros Wii (Wii): I am a seriously hardcore Super Mario Bros fanatic. When they announced this game I was so excited, and also a little wary. I actually have an old school Nintendo so that I can play the original Super Mario Bros the right way. This game did not disappoint though. It updated the classic so so well and I have come to love it almost as much as the original. This game features up to four person multi-player, but there is a warning. There's a reason why multi-player on this game has been dubbed “divorce mode”. In order to get a full complete, and sometimes even beat some of the levels, you NEED a second player. Having said that though, playing this game together is going to definitely test your relationship, communication skills, and patience. You can kill the second player if you're not paying attention, working together, and know what the other person is trying to do. I think in it's own way, Super Mario Bros Wii managed to make our marriage stronger in the end.

Super Paper Mario (Wii): This was originally Husband's game but I think I ended up liking it way more than him. I'd watched him play the other Paper Mario games where the fighting was all turn-based, but this one is mostly side scrolling levels (with a twist) so I gave it a go for myself. The plot is really fun and there are tons of things to do in the “town” between levels which makes for a game that you can make as long or as short as you want. I'm really looking forward to the next Paper Mario installment on the 3DS, even though it will be going back to turn-based fighting.

Mario Kart Wii (Wii): I had the original Super Mario Kart for my Super Nintendo and it was my game of choice growing up. When we first got the Wii, this was one of the titles we really wanted to have. I really like the way that the races are very unpredictable. Yes you have to have some “skillz” but even if you find yourself in last place, there are power-ups in the game that can very quickly turn things upside down. The courses are all really inventive and a nice touch is that any Miis that you have made on your Wii will show up in the crowds randomly to cheer you on. I love little things like that! A note on the steering wheel accessory: it's junk.

 Kirby's Epic Yarn (Wii): Husband got this game because he's been on a mission to find me more side scrolling platformers (which is my genre of choice). When he saw an adorable bear in the game (which I can now not find a picture of) he knew that I would love it. And I did! This newest Kirby game is a simple side scrolling platformer that features Kirby using yarn power now. It was really adorable and easy to pick up and play. I never did get the full complete on the game because I was starting to get really angry and frustrated. If that full complete wouldn't have been still haunting me, I'd probably pop it in every now and then and still play it.

And those are my at-home games of choice! Wow I didn't realize how many I actually have played and enjoyed! If you decide to try any of these games or already have, let me know what you thought! Next up are going to be the games that I like, but don't actually play... they've affectionately become known as “wife games”.

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