Smart House

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday everyone!

Aside from my day job, I do a little side hustle in the form of dog- and house-sitting for neighbors and friends. More so for the comfort of the animals, I stay at their homes instead of having them at my house or even just popping in on them a couple of times a day. Besides enjoying my time with the pets, it’s fun being in a different house for a little while.

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Anybody remember that movie from the Disney channel, Smart House? It was about a family — single dad, two kids, a dog — that won a contest that gave them a completely automated house. This was released in 1999, way before the likes of Amazon’s Alexa devices or Google Home. I remember being completely fascinated by the “technology” — rather, the special effects — of Smart House and wondered what it would be like to live in such a house.

In Smart House, the programming had its own room and this giant computer-like device for all the commands. Nowadays, you can have a smart home with a couple of voice-activated devices, subtler way to help make you feel like you were on the bridge of the Enterprise from Star Trek.

At the time of this post, I am actually dog- and house-sitting for a neighbor and, honestly, their house is the closest thing to Disney’s Smart House that I’ve ever seen. They have several Alexa devices in the house, many responding to different names (including one using the wake-word “Computer,” for that Star Trek effect), and most of the lights and other electronics are connected to them somehow. Their security system is also not something to be trifled with. Completely modern, I am always eager to see what kind of tech upgrades were done to the house in between my dog-sitting sessions.

On the flip-side, there’s another family that I have dog- and house-sat for once before (and will again in the winter), and they have a beautiful house. However, their house is also older and much more old-fashioned. They have some beautiful, original architecture and, unlike the house I’m in now, gets their heat from naked radiators rather than having central air and heat.

The two houses are polar opposites of each other, but each are beautiful in their own ways. Yet, it also makes me wonder what other kinds of home advancements will be made in the future?

Do you remember Disney’s Smart House? What do you think of smart homes? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Flashback Friday: Beauty and the Beast – A Board Game Adventure

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday, everyone!

February is almost gone, another month down from the year. I hope everyone had a great February and that you’re all looking forward to what March will bring!

Kris_FlashbackBeautybeast

Beauty and the Beast is one of the most popular Disney movies. While dogsitting this past week, one of the go-to Netflix movies I would stick on for background noise while playing with the puppy (and writing during the few times the puppy napped) was the live-action Beauty and the Beast movie with Emma Watson, Dan Stevens, Luke Bard, and a bunch of other big name actors. It’s not my favorite adaptation of the movie, but I didn’t find it bad. Seeing the movie again reminded me of one of my first Gameboy Color games.

Beauty and the Beast: A Board Game Adventure was released in October 1999. It was like an extremely watered down version of Mario Party but with the characters from Beauty and the Beast. You pick a character and race around the board, occasionally landing on mini game spaces. There were only ten mini games, such as helping Lumiere avoid water drops or finding Chip among identical teacups. One of the selling points was that up to four players can play by passing around the system, “no cable link required!” There was also a Story Mode, where you would race Gaston in each of the boards.

Considering I got this game the same time I got Pokemon Yellow, Blue, and Red, I don’t believe I played it too often. I do remember having a fun time when I did play it. The mini games got stale after a little while — really, there were only so many times you can play as Beast hopping and ducking from wolves — but the game itself wasn’t a bad way to pass the time.

Have you played Beauty and the Beast: A Board Game Adventure? What did you think of it?

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Flashback Friday: Disney’s The Lion King

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday, everyone! Summer is ending!

If you haven’t gotten the chance to check it out yet, Rachel and I have been exploring with streaming on Twitch. One such game that we bought and downloaded from Steam was Disney’s The Lion King.

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Rachel and I have been exploring our Steam accounts more often lately, and a couple of gems that Rachel found recently were a few SNES games from Disney — The Lion King and Aladdin.

The Lion King for the SNES was released way back during the holidays of 1994 in North America, taking advantage of the movie’s commercial success, and it sold fairly well despite the negative reviews attached to it. The difficulty levels spike between stages, going back and forth between being hard for beginner players and repetitively simple enough for advanced players. Nevertheless, it was praised for its graphics, music, and voice acting, even if the levels and gameplay weren’t found to be up to par.

Replaying this game with keyboard controls brought back a wave of nostalgia as we set up the game, and Rachel and I realized that we had never beaten the SNES version as kids. It was a trip going back to this game, remembering secrets and the way through the levels, while also needing to look up certain mechanics when we believed we were stuck (damn you, Elephant Graveyard level). The controls are also wicked precise, especially during a few levels when Simba needs to swing from ledge to ledge, and were the cause of many curses.

With that said, we still haven’t beaten the game — in all honesty, we haven’t even reached the stages where you can play as adult Simba — because that’s how good we are at old school video games that do not have a save game mechanic. Still, it’s a great throwback to our childhood, and we’re looking forward to trying our hand at it again.

Have you played The Lion King? What did you think?

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Flashback Friday: 101 Dalmatians Escape from DeVil Manor

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday, everyone! I hope your July has been wonderful!

July is nearly over and, with it, probably the dog days of summer. Considering what the topic of this post is, that pun was definitely intended. Today, we’re diving way back, over twenty years ago, for a PC game that I used to love as a kid.

Video Games | Double Jump | PC Games | Retro Games | Disney | 101 Dalmatians

A couple of weekends ago, I was dog- and house-sitting for our neighbors. While relaxing with the dogs one evening, I stuck on Disney’s animated 101 Dalmatians and was amused to realize that the goldendoodle was enraptured with the movie, especially during the Twilight Bark scene. Her poodle-beagle mix sister sang along with the Twilight Bark.

It reminded me of an old PC game, Escape from DeVil Manor, that came out in 1997, over twenty years ago. While the characters’ animations — Cruella, Horace and Jasper, and the puppies — were based off of the Disney cartoon, the plot was based on the live-action version of the movie that came out a year before.

I remember playing the game often enough. You controlled two of the dalmatian puppies, Patches and Whizzer, as you tried to do what it says on the title. It was a point-and-click puzzle adventure, with the cursor lighting up on items that are clickable. You’d have to avoid Jasper and Horace, or set up traps for them, as you navigated around the manor. If you got caught, you were thrown into the billiard room.

There were a couple of ways out of the mansion, one of which was from the billiard room, which tended to be my go-to escape route. After actually escaping the manor, the puppies were in a mine shaft and pursued by Cruella DeVil, just like the video game that Roger created in the live-action film. Using explosive barrels from the back of your cart, you had to blast the old mad lady from the mine shaft to be arrested by Scotland Yard.

It was a cute, quirky game, one that was perfect for a little Disney- and dog-loving kid like myself. It’s something that I definitely want to try finding again, probably through an emulator, just for the nostalgia!

Have you played Escape from DeVil Manor? What did you think?

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Flashback Friday: Goof Troop

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday, everyone! I hope everyone’s May was good! This year is going by so quickly.

This month’s Flashback Friday is celebrating a game that Rachel used to ask me to play with her when we were both much younger. It wasn’t a game that held my attention too long, with me preferring Ocarina of Time or Super Mario RPG. However, we did have a good time with Goof Troop when we did play the game!

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Goof Troop was released in North America in July 1993 by Capcom on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. It was based off of the cartoon of the same name that aired around that time. An action-adventure game, it was capable of being multiplayer with one player controlling Goofy while the second player controlled his son Max. Goofy is slower than Max but can deal more damage.

The story is fairly simple, if a bit silly, but on par with the cartoon that the game is based on. While on a fishing trip, Goofy and Max witness their friends Pete and PJ get kidnapped by pirates. Figuring they should go and save them, Goofy and Max go through five areas on Spoonerville Island until they confront the pirates and free Pete and PJ. The game itself got average reviews, but it was agreed by most critics that the game was fun, even if it wasn’t very long or involved.

Rachel and I had fun with the game, mostly due to the game’s puzzles that were made for two players. In fact, the game’s few criticisms came from the single-player mode, when it was tedious from trying to complete puzzles that were meant to have more than one person solving them.

Of course, Rachel and I also had great fun sabotaging each other against the pirate enemies instead of working together! We were reminded of this game due to one of our favorite YouTubers making a video on it. If you’d like, check out Jirard the Completionist’s video of it:

Did you ever play Goof Troop? What did you think of it?

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Of Kingdom Hearts

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday!

We’re actually in Disneyworld right now! Being around Mickey Mouse and his friends reminded me of the popular video game franchise Kingdom Hearts, an ambitious crossover of Disney characters published by Square Enix.

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I’ve only ever touched upon the Kingdom Hearts games when I was much younger. Having never owned the games myself, I was only able to play a bit of the first one whenever we visited our aunt and uncle a couple of towns over from where we lived (coincidentally, this is the same uncle that introduced me to video games and superheroes). If I had the chance, I would start up the game, usually create a new file and enjoy the main theme song, and give the game another try.

The farthest I’ve gotten was, perhaps, to Tarzan’s world, but I vaguely remember Aladdin’s world as well. I honestly cannot remember if Aladdin’s world was from watching my uncle or a friend play, or if there was a time that I had been able to borrow the game to play myself.

I always liked the idea of Kingdom Hearts, finding the narrative to be unique with exploring the Disney worlds to be a fun thought, even with the story line being a tad dark. And, while I don’t completely understand the line of sequels (why is there a game called “2.8 Final Chapter Prologue”? Why is there a Kingdom Hearts II when Chain of Memories is the direct sequel to the first game?), it is a franchise I would like to try.

What do you think of Kingdom Hearts? Have you ever played the games?

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Super Mario Odyssey Was A Movie First

Rachel Mii | DoubleJump.comHappy Tuesday!

Okay, so Super Mario Odyssey wasn’t actually a movie before the game came out. However, Kris and I were watching a movie the other night and I couldn’t stop thinking about Odyssey.

Super Mario Odyssey Was A Movie | Video Games | DoublexJump.com

Has anyone seen Disney’s Meet The Robinson’s? It’s an animated film about a smart boy, Lewis, who loves math and science and inventing things. He winds up in the future to help out a family whose time machine was stolen by a man with a bowler hat.

There’s more to it, obviously, but I’m going to assume you saw it because… it’s Disney.

The hat possesses living things. In the movie, the first thing the hat possesses is a frog. Then the bad guy goes back in time and possesses a T-Rex. Later, the movie takes a dark twist and begins to possess people.

Ring a bell?

I hadn’t seen the movie in a long time, but the farther along it got the more I remembered what happened and who the characters were.

I remembered the part of the T-Rex first and joked with Kris about how the movie is Odyssey. Then, before that part, the hat possesses a frog and it made me realize the movie really is like Odyssey.

That’s about it. I don’t really have anything else “intelligent” to say about it since neither one are actually connected in any way, shape, or form.

I guess this just goes to show that my mind is constantly thinking about video games.

Have you watched Meet The Robinson’s? Am I making any sense? Let me know in the comments below!

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