21Dec '14
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Sims 3 Legacy, Attempt #2

After the unfortunate demise of my previous founder, I started over again with a new founder who I also named Terra Nova. I hoped that using the same name wouldn’t automatically doom this character too.Terra Nova (the 2nd)

This Terra settled on a different lot than her predecessor, one in the middle of town rather than on the edge so traveling would be easier.

The mostly empty lot in the center

The mostly empty lot in the center

Due to some custom content I downloaded, she was able to buy slightly cheaper furnishings and bought a few more things, including more than one chair and a chess set. Big spender, I know. Read more →

20Dec '14
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Tune Den: A Story About My Uncle

A Story About My Uncle does not have weapons, armor, or any shiny loots. You do not play a grand adventurer, a hero or villain changing the world. You play as a young boy searching for his missing uncle, armed only with a grappling hook and a suit that lets you jump very far. You won’t fight your way through enemies but you will explore a strange and wonderful world using the few tools that you have. The emphasis in this game is the story, the scenery, and flying through the air at dizzying speeds.

The story is short (it took me 6 hours to play through it) but cute and heartwarming. It’s narrated by a father telling a story to his daughter about when he was young and his inventor uncle disappeared for months. The voiceovers seem a little off sometimes but other than that, I think they’re well done. The graphics are quite beautiful, as you’ll see in the screenshots at the bottom of this post. And while some of the level designs were frustrating to get through, the mechanics overall were a lot of fun.

But enough of that. This is a Tune Den post, which means that we’re going to talk about the music. In A Story About My Uncle, your character is by himself, facing these obstacles alone. And there’s almost no monsters to speak of, so the soundtrack (or lack of it) is what’s used to set the mood. Read more →

09Dec '14
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Tapestries and new Wurm music

It’s been a while since I’ve talked about Wurm but now I have some exciting news that I want to share!

Tapestries

The dev team has been working on adding more decorative items which are sorely needed in Wurm. Among them are tapestries, an idea that I love because they’re strongly associated with Medieval times and there have been next to no wall decorations before. They are still working on implementing them but in the meantime, Wurm’s PR officer RedBaron held a competition for players to submit their art to be placed on an new in-game tapestry. After I saw some other players had submitted their own Photoshopped screenshots, I decided to try it myself for fun. I spent several hours creating a bunch of submissions, submitted them, and then promptly forgot about the whole thing because I never thought I would win. You can imagine my surprise when a friend congratulated me after I was announced as the winner! Read more →

23Nov '14
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Never Alone (Kisima Ingitchuna)

Loon spiritI have a fondness for winter and the North that I can’t quite describe. Falling snow is beautiful, cold temperatures are invigorating, the silence is serenity, the northern lights are downright breathtaking…the world somehow feels more real and alive when it’s below freezing.

I know I’m in the minority and that most people would rather have sunshine and balmy weather year round. Perhaps that’s why I have a certain fascination with the Inuit people. After all, they’ve lived with the snow and ice for a very long time.

You can then imagine my delight when I saw Never Alone on Steam. Here was an Inupiat (Alaskan Inuit) fable about a girl and an arctic fox told through a video game. I bought it in an instant and I’m glad I did.

I could tell you about how it’s a puzzle platformer that could be played as a single player or co-op. But really, that’s just semantics. What makes this game different is its story.

Half of the experience comes from the narrator telling the story in the Inupiat language (with subtitles). It’s not very hard to imagine sitting around a campfire and listening to this tale while blizzard winds howl outside. It’s the visuals and the gameplay that complete the other half of the experience, the one where you are inside the fable, guiding the pair through a treacherous quest to save a village. Read more →

21Nov '14
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The rough start of a legacy

One of the gaming blogs that I follow is MmoQuests.com, which is not just about MMOs but also a lot of different games. One of the games Stargrace talks a fair bit about is The Sims 3, in particular her legacy families. The Legacy Challenge has you begin with a single founder, a huge lot, and almost no money to furnish it. You then have to continue your founder’s family line through 10 generations and try to build up your house, your money, and your fame.

Now I hadn’t played any of The Sims series in a long time. I remember playing the first game in the series when it was all new and shiny, which was over 10 years ago now. I hadn’t really thought about it until I started reading Stargrace’s posts. The Sims 3 looked to be a lot more fun than The Sims 1 so several months later, I finally caved and bought the Starter Pack on Origin. I’ve only had it for about a month now and I’ve already bought 4 expansions and 2 stuff packs, downloaded god knows how many player-created items, and logged over 200 hours. So Stargrace, if you’re reading this, I’d just like to say that this is all your fault. 😉 Read more →

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