Throwback Thursday: Game Night

Rachel Mii Double JumpHappy Thursday!

We’re nearing the end of another week. Kris and I have been trying to play video games every Friday night since it’s hard to find the time to play. 

However, we recently got in touch with old friends and decided to get together at least once a month with them.

Throwback Thursday: Game Night

These friends that I’m talking about have been family friends since we young kids. Our mothers used to work together and are good friends still. We’ve lost touch over the years as we all went to college, got full-time jobs, and basically just moved on with our lives.

However, in high school, Kris used to have her group of friends over once in a while. We’d sit in the basement and play Super Smash Brothers or Mario Kart. It was a lot of fun.

Now, these friends aren’t really “hardcore” gamers, but they do enjoy the casual games once in a while.

We got together in September and played Mario Party 2. It was a blast (especially since one of our friends had no idea what he was doing). It was also great just to catch up with each other. We decided that we need to see each other more often (seriously, it’s been quite a few years since we’ve seen each other… aside from their grandmother’s wake eight months ago).

We thought it would be a great idea to get together at least once a month. Catch up, play a game or two, and just hang out and enjoy the company of old friends again.

Kris and I are getting together with them again tomorrow night. Who knows what game we’ll play this time, but it’ll be a lot of fun either way.

Do you have a special group of friends you like to play video games with whether they game a lot or not?

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Pokemon Generations

Pokemon Generations

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Pokemon Generations are these little shorts — almost sound bites — about different characters and events that happen in the mainstream games. They’re usually about five minutes long, and Rachel and I just binge-watched the six to seven episodes within a half hour. My first reaction regarding these little shows is: why can’t the Pokemon Anime be like Pokemon Generations?

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It’s pretty awesome. The animation is tight and, as Kris basically just said, it’s much better than the anime. The voice acting is spot on and it’s pretty interesting to go back to the past to the older regions and see what those characters have been up to.

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I think that our major complaint is that they’re too short. They do their job well, in that they get you excited to go back and play the games, to be that hero again to protect the Pokemon world. Case in point, I went and started a new game on my Omega Ruby version last night.

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They are too short. I wish they were actual episodes instead of just little blurbs. The first episode was cool as they showed Red going through all the different regions with his Pikachu, but that was it. There was another episode where Blue goes through the Elite Four, but the battles were quick snippets and that was it. I would have loved to see each battle in full!

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To see more of the battles fleshed-out would have been fantastic! I do think the first episode with the montage of Red and his Pikachu was really well done, though. The music and energy jumped off the screen, and it was awesome seeing the game locations animated as battle grounds. I personally would have loved to see more of the episode surrounding Suicune. The lore of the Burned Tower from the second generation was one of my favorite aspects of those games.

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Ah, yes. The Suicune episode was cool because I honestly had forgotten about the lore. It definitely would have been nice to see more of that. We also got to see a bit of Silver as well, and that was pretty cool and get a little more background on him.

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It was always speculated that Silver was Giovanni’s son, but I don’t think it was ever really confirmed in the games. I don’t know how canon Pokemon Generations is, but it was an interesting tale for them to show. I think I would love a little episode showcasing Rayquaza quelling the clash between Groudon and Kyogre or the battle frontier or safari zone.

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I think I would just love the whole history behind Pokemon. I would watch the heck out of a documentary like that. That would be awesome. If you haven’t seen Pokemon Generations, definitely do so. It’s quick, fun, and they upload a new episode pretty frequently.

Have you seen Pokemon Generations? What are your thoughts on it?

Character Spotlight: Yoshi

Rachel Mii Double JumpHappy Tuesday!

This month’s Character Spotlight is, I’m sure, a fan favorite from pretty much everyone.

 

Character Spotlight: Yoshi

Yoshi is an adorable dinosaur. He first appeared in Super Mario World for the Super Nintendo by Nintendo in 1990. He was originally created to be Mario’s sidekick and is just that in many of the games. However, Yoshi grew as his own character.

He stars in many of his own games such as Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s IslandYoshi’s Story, and, the latest, Yoshi’s Woolly World.

Yoshi can do a lot of things such as eat items and enemies with his long tongue, create eggs and use them as projectiles, and he can also fly short distances. He comes in a variety of colors, which is just cool, and in some games, such as Super Mario Galaxy 2, each color has its own abilities after eating a certain kind of fruit.

I don’t know if Nintendo expected Yoshi to become as big as he did, but he is definitely his own character now with his own games and merchandise. Yoshi is iconic now and what a wonderful character he is.

Creepers (and Skeletons) Be Creeping

Double Jump Kris MiiOctober is flying by, isn’t it? We’re already halfway done!

Rachel did a post about us getting Minecraft recently for a couple of our computers. While we haven’t played too much with it, we’re both enjoying it. This post is just about my perspective of the game.

Minecraft was never a game I was interesting in playing when it first appeared on the market. In fact, I thought it looked utterly ridiculous. I enjoy games that have compelling stories and characters with goals to head towards, with a healthy dose of exploration. Minecraft seemed to be all about exploration without an end in mind. I mean, sure, there were some boss characters that you could defeat, but there were so many loops and hurdles to go through in order to get to said bosses that it didn’t sound that enjoyable.

We only got mildly interested in the game due to some of our favorite YouTubers doing a Let’s Play series of the game. With the goal of defeating certain bosses, the YouTubers gave themselves the challenge of one life — once you died, you were out of the game. No respawns. It brought a sense of suspense, and it was helpful that the YouTubers are hilariously entertaining.

Anyway, while our XBox 360 version of the game wasn’t that great, we’ve been enjoying the computer version. And, surprisingly, Rachel and I aren’t falling into our usual co-op roles.

Usually, when Rachel and I play a game together, I’m the one diving into the fights, taking care of enemies, and moving forward. Rachel loves to collect the treasure and money, being sure that we leave no stone unturned (or, in the case of The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures, no pot unbroken) lest we miss something while exploring.

Minecraft, though? Here I go mining underground to explore the caves and see what kind of materials I can find for the crafting table and furnace, while Rachel is outside beating up skeletons and zombies. I thought I would be the one protecting our base while being ready to be blown up by creepers while Rachel takes care of the shelter, but it’s been the other way around. It’s definitely an interesting twist in our usual roles, and it signifies our growth, if you will, in playing games.

While I hope I’ll get used to the controls enough to jump into fights more often, switching up our usual roles is rather entertaining.

Friday Favorites: New Games

Double Jump Kris Mii

Since starting this blog, I’ve come to the realization that I don’t play as many games as I thought I did. I mean, I’ve been gaming since I was old enough to pick up a controller, but my gaming tends to be limited in my favorite franchises. The Legend of Zelda and Pokemon, with the occasional Mario, games dominate most of these posts.
In recent years, video games and everything that’s associated with them (story, art, characters, software, etc.) became more important to me, and I’ve been trying to find different games to try. Below are some of my favorite “newer” finds.

4. Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney

Alright, so this series isn’t exactly new, but it’s definitely a gem. We had found it on the Wii’s Virtual Console and, having never heard of the series, had decided to give it a go. Gaming wasn’t exactly a serious pursuit at that point, but it was a key game in opening up my mind to everything gaming could be — the writing, the characters, the stories themselves are amazing, and were an inspiration to keep following this art form.

That, and this series was played not only with Rachel but also with our elder sister Lisa. Lisa’s not a big gamer at all, but to be able to share this series with both my sisters will always make it special to me.

3. Assassin’s Creed

I haven’t played this game yet, but it is there on my to-do list. This game series always seemed interesting to me and it was bought on a whim when Rachel and I were looking for more games for our PlayStation 3. Hopefully it’ll be a great game and open some more doors for us, genre-wise!

2. Batman: Arkham series

I was supposed to play the first game of this series a couple of months ago, back when Rachel and I were challenging each other to play a game that the other hadn’t played before. Because our XBox 360 died, I still haven’t been able to give this game a shot. However, Rachel has played it, and it was definitely not the kind of game I would ever think of my sister playing. Seeing her try out the combat-heavy, dark-themed Batman game was awesome — like the Phoenix Wright series, the Arkham franchise opened our eyes to new games and styles of play.

1. Minecraft

 

Rachel touched upon this game already on this blog, and this probably won’t be the last time you hear about it from us, haha! When Minecraft first came out, I honestly thought it seemed a bit silly and didn’t see much of a point to it. Sure, there are some people who can create some fantastic pixel art with the block style of the game, but it wasn’t until Rachel and I watched some streams of the game from our favorite YouTubers that we got interested enough to try it.

Of course, our first go-round with the game, the XBox 360 version, wasn’t that great, but after getting our desktop and then a gaming laptop, Minecraft was always one of the first games we wanted to try out. The game has been great so far, even if it is just Rachel and I trying to survive (and failing at times) in the world!

What are some of your favorite newer games?

Adventures in Buying Minecraft

Rachel Mii Double JumpHappy Thursday!

Show of hands, who plays Minecraft? I know it may not be as popular right now, but it is a pretty big game, and Kris and I just downloaded it.

 

I’m sure most of you know by now that Kris and I have a soft spot for YouTubers. One of our favorite guys does a Let’s Play series of Minecraft Hardcore with six other YouTubers that we love to watch. There are a couple of seasons and they just announced that a new season if coming soon. We’re very excited!

We always wanted to download Minecraft, but we found it for the XBox 360 one day instead. We bought it for $20 and played it only a handful of times.

Now, our XBox broke and the game is stuck in there forever.

Either way, I wasn’t a huge fan of that version. Even though I had never played the game before, I think the controls were a bit much. I had a feeling the game would definitely be easier on the computer.

However, my laptop isn’t as young as it used to be. We bought a desktop a while ago and thought about downloading it on there. But we wanted to be able to play together so we held off for a bit.

Now that we have our new gaming laptop, we caved and downloaded the game.

We just got it a couple days ago so we’ve only played it about three times, but we love it and we wish we got it earlier.

We’re not very good at it and have no idea what we’re doing, but that’s part of the fun. We’ll figure it out eventually.

So, that’s our latest gaming craze at the moment. I’m sure we’ll be trying to play Minecraft whenever we get a spare moment.

Do you play Minecraft? If so, how do you like it?

Twilight Princess HD Review

Title: The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess HD
Company: Nintendo
Console: Nintendo Wii U
How we got the game: We bought it.

Our Review:

 krismii

The Legend of Zelda series is a favorite around our house. They’re the types of games that we return to time and again, and we don’t mind (too much) spending money to buy an HD copy of the game even though we have the original. Twilight Princess HD was no exception.

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We haven’t played the game in a long time. I barely remembered half of it. So it was great to play it as though it was my first time.

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I remembered most of it, with the majority of scenes and dungeons coming back to me as we got closer to them. However, a bit silly of me, I did forget about the Twilight Realm and those disembodied hands that try to steal the Sol balls away!

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Those freaked me out enough to jump out of my seat! Actually, the whole Twilight Realm did. And we played it at night. The music was creepy so it did its job!

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Yes, it did! All the music was gorgeous, as usual. My favorite tunes had to be the boss fights and the Temple of Time.

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The boss battles were epic! I loved each and every one. I really loved the final battle with Ganondorf. The scenery for the game, especially in HD, was gorgeous. It really took you to a new world.

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Of course the graphics were amazing. The worlds in the Legend of Zelda series are always imaginative and beautiful, and the HD factor highlights them. Despite being able to warp to places in the game, I took every opportunity to ride Epona through the land to enjoy the sights (that, and horseback riding is one of my favorite aspects of the game).

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Even the sound effects for everything (like Epona running) was enhanced. The game as a whole is wonderful: the music, graphics, story, everything. You can’t go wrong with  another Zelda game.

Twilight Princess gets…
5 lives double jump5/5 Lives