A lot of times I’m late to the gaming party. Oh well, I’ve been on a roll lately. Sorta.

Whatever. Alison dropped a copy of Game Informer on my face one day, and she had it open to a page with a bunch reviews and recommendations for mobile games. One of them caught my eye because it looked very RPG-ish, and it was only 3 bucks. Turns out it’s pretty awesome, and I’ve already spent like… 20 hours of my life on it. It’s good.

It’s called Battleheart. The game itself is very simple. You micromanage four dudes of different classes via touch controls. Waves of enemies appear, and you beat them down using your mad tanking and kiting skills. Winning battles earns you items, XP, and gold, which you can use to buy equipment and accessories from the merchant or upgrade the weapons and armor that you already own.

There are 14 different characters you can choose from to form a party. Each character is one of the 10 different classes that exist in the game. Each class is pretty different, so you’ll have a fun time exploring all their strengths and weaknesses. I usually went the traditional tank and spank route with a party comprised of a Paladin, Barbarian, Ranger, and Cleric. There are plenty of other combinations that are worth a try.

Every 5 levels, your dudes earn access to new skills. Some are active, some are passive, and sometimes you get to pick between two skills. The nice part is that you can toggle between skills whenever you like, so you’re never locked into a particular build. It makes sense too, because the skills you want to have equipped are very situational. Often times, you need to be able to shoot of a lot of AoEs, other times you need a lot of CC. It depends on the battle.

Apart from some interesting boss fights, the game is a lot of battle, buy, rinse and repeat. However, the excitement of new skills and better equipment will keep you very interested in playing. Plus, there are quite a few levels before the end of the game, as well as arenas that are worth fighting in even after defeating the final boss. Give it a shot. Battleheart is available on both iOS and Android.

Rob / November 27, 2011 / Cool Stuff, Gaming / 0 Comments

Mega Man X3

I haven’t been doing a lot of gaming lately. For the most part I’d say that a lot of games these days aren’t really tickling my pickle in the right way anymore. I could blame it on the changing gaming industry, and write off nearly all new games as being utter crap, but instead I’ll openly admit that I don’t give games much of a chance. This is a sure sign that I’m getting old and stuck in my ways. So to celebrate, I decided to play through and write a post about one of my favorite games of all time: Mega Man X3.

So what actually possessed me to play it again? Egoraptor. Go watch his awesome videos. He recently made a hilariously amazing video on Mega Man X. Now the first of the X series was fantastic, but X3 happens to be my absolute favorite, mainly because you get to play as Zero and also (if you know all the secrets) you can get X to become insanely powerful – probably more unfairly powerful than any other Mega Man game in existence. No joke.

If you compare what X can do in X3 versus the previous two games, it’s pretty nuts. Sure, you can acquire the Hadoken that one-shots dudes in the face, but you have to be on the ground and have full life to use it! In X3 you start off able to dash, and can get 8 armor upgrades after that. You can double dash in the air, get this amazing red bubble shield that pretty much makes it so you can’t take more than one point of damage when hit, and if you’re running low on life you can just stand still to regenerate. And it fills up your E Tanks.

To top it all off, you can acquire Zero’s Z-Saber, which you can use at any time just by charging your buster, and it’s guaranteed to do 50%-75% percent damage to any boss. So yeah… you can kill Sigma in 2 hits. You’re kinda overpowered. It’s somewhat anticlimactic, but still quite neato.

How do you acquire the Z-Saber? I’m glad you asked, because I’ve often wondered myself, and almost all of the walkthroughs on GameFAQs don’t tell you! A couple of them tell you the WRONG information! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve played through the game trying to get it, and screwed up due to misleading info. I’m going to tell it to you straight.

After defeating 2 bosses, you’re presented with opportunities to fight Bit, Byte, and Vile as mid-bosses. When you encounter them, you can either just win the fight or you can destroy them completely. To completely destroy them, you have to last-hit them with specific weapons. You can a-splode Bit using Frost Shield, annihilate Byte with Tornado Fang, and blow Vile to bits with Spinning Blade. To get the Z-Saber, the only requirement is that you kill Vile with Spinning Blade, the weapon you get from Crush Crawfish. You do not have to have certain items, and you can die as many times as you like. It doesn’t matter. Just kill Vile with Spinning Blade. That’s it. Oh yeah, and make sure Zero isn’t dead.

Once done, you’ll notice that the second Doppler stage is different! It’s not blown to bits like it normally is! Well, that means you’ve done everything correctly, and when you get to the mid-boss gate, switch to Zero and fight. The boss will crash into Zero, damaging him. Zero will leave you with his sword, and you’ll proceed to kill everyone in the face. Enjoy.

Ok, that’s it. Go play old video games now. Embrace your childhood.

Rob / November 13, 2011 / Cool Stuff, Gaming / 0 Comments

I see you like to play Transylvania…

Transylvania Title Screen

A few weeks ago, I was on the phone with my dad, and for some reason we got to talking about old text-based adventure games we  used to play on an ancient Apple II computer. Now, I’m not really sure what inspired me to do this, but nostalgia is a powerful thing, so recently I decided to search all over the internet for old computer games to see if I could figure out the titles to all the games we used to play.

It was a difficult task. After all, the internet barely existed way back then. Armed with only my faint memories from when I was a youngling (and a little luck), I was able to rediscover this aggravating and frighting game, Transylvania. Even more fun was discovering how to actually play old DOS games on an up-to-date Windows machine.

You need these things:

  1. DOSBox
  2. DOSShell
  3. Some place to download old DOS games

I’ll let you figure out how to piece them together.

The best part about the whole experience was slowly remembering things as I played through the game, though occasionally my memories conflicted with what I was seeing in Transylvania. For example, I distinctly remember picking up a cross on top of the grave… and then you used the cross to kill the vampire in his castle… and then you could go to the basement of the castle to pick up this sweet item… but it wasn’t there! WHY!?

Transylvania Grave

It turns out they made several versions of Transylvania, and the DOS version I found wasn’t the same as the old Apple II game I used to play. It was actually a lot harder, but still quite fun. I totally stayed up until 2:30am and beat the game. On a weeknight. I strongly recommend taking the time jump back into your childhood and finding some of these gems. If anyone can find Grandma’s House, let me know.

Rob / October 12, 2011 / Cool Stuff, Gaming / 0 Comments

League of Legends

I freakin’ love this game, I really do. It’s been a while since I’ve played a game that gives me the competitive adrenaline rush I crave. LoL does the trick. Fortunately and unfortunately, matchmaking puts you up against tough opponents, and learning the intricacies of the game is difficult. I’ll admit that I’m still pretty new to the game, but I wanted to give some friendly advice to new players or players that are just interested in reading my opinion on how to play.  Here goes:

1. DON’T DIE. The absolute WORST thing you can do in this game is die. In fact, it would be a million times better for you to stand around and do nothing than die. When you die, you give the opposing team lots of gold and experience, they become stronger, and then they kill you, and then you die. Don’t feed the opposing team their power.

2. Don’t go for the kill unless you KNOW you can finish the job AND SURVIVE. Unless you can kill 2 or 3 people… Remember, that if you’re on a killing spree, your opponents will gain lots of bonus gold for killing you.

3. Control your emotions! Bloodlust is one-way ticket to Deadville. The moment you seek out your revenge is the moment 5 guys show up to slaughter you. Don’t be a hero.

4. Early game is EXTREMELY important. Pretend that a game of LoL is like a giant 5-ton sledgehammer standing on its handle with teams on either side trying to push the head to crush the opposing team. It’s really easy to sway the battle when the weight isn’t pushed to either side, but once the hammer has started to crush you, it’s almost impossible to push it back up and onto the other team. Don’t ever think, “oh I died, that’s ok, it’s still early in the game.” WRONG! A death at level 1 is ten times worse than a death at level 18. First blood sets the tone for the rest of the game. You simply cannot afford to be careless at the beginning.

5. LoL is a TEAM game. Communicate with your team constantly. Work together. Set up ganks. Be aware of what’s happening all over the map. Let your team know when opponents are missing. When a teammate needs help, RESPOND QUICKLY. Saving a life or a tower is WAY more important than finishing off that minion that will give you blue buff. If something goes wrong and someone does something stupid, GET OVER IT and start planning for the next attempt.

6. If your opponents are missing, they’re waiting for you to become vulnerable to gank. It’s not a good time to push. Get one or two hits on a tower and get back and do something else. Don’t be alone.

7. Don’t stand around and don’t spend forever shopping. While you’re dawdling, the other team is getting more powerful. If you don’t have minions to kill in the lane, get in the jungle and start acquiring buffs.

8. If you’re low on health, get back to the base and heal. Don’t think you’re too useful to go back. You’re a target. You’re a liability. Get out of the fight. Do not stay and kite, do not turn around to get another hit in. RUN AWAY AND HEAL.

9. If you’re ahead in levels, hunt your opponents down and feed on their weakness. Use equipment that makes you more powerful as you acquire more kills. The payoff is more significant than you’d think.

10. If you’re losing, think of creative ways to drastically tip the scales. Kill the dragon for gold. Get the Baron buff. Work with your team to take out the opposing carrier. Don’t keep playing the same way you were. You’ll keep losing, I promise.

11. Know which items you’re going to buy before you get to the store. Memorize the exact amount you need to make your next purchase to make your shop stops infrequent. If you’re going back to the store, you’re not gaining XP. You’re losing. If you already have all your final items, purchase consumables that give you temporary power.

12. Prevent your opponents from acquiring XP. If you can, body block them from the minions they need to kill. Constantly harass them and make them return to heal. Control significant points of the map. Place sight wards near important buffs and gank your opponents before they acquire them.

13. DON’T DIE.

I know a lot of this seems like common sense, but I think they’re still worth mentioning. If I think of anything else, I’ll update the list. Feel free to comment, correct, or give your own mad strats for LoL.

Rob / December 23, 2010 / Gaming / 0 Comments