Flashback Friday: Sonic Battle

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday, everyone!

Hey, guys, with the end of March, 2019 is a quarter of the way over. Isn’t that kind of scary to think about? 

Kris_Post_FlashSonicBattle

Sonic the Hedgehog has an interesting reputation. The majority of people believe his earlier games are the best examples of the speedy hedgehog, but his later games seemed to do well enough for them to keep on coming. I was always a fan of the character, even if his games weren’t the best quality, and one of my favorite games that featured Sonic was Sonic Battle for the Gameboy Advance. Considering Sonic is known for his super speed, a fighting game starring the character was a bit unorthodox, but I found it fun.

Sonic Battle was released in Japan at the end of 2003 and North America and Europe at the beginning of 2004. It got mostly mixed reviews, with most of its fighting and arena aspects being praised but its story and some mechanics being criticized. The battles themselves were fought in 3D stages, each with their own design, while the characters themselves were 2D, reminding me briefly of the graphics in the Paper Mario series.

There were a plethora of characters, each with their own standard attacks and combos, as well as heavy attacks, air attacks, upper attacks, and aim attacks. Sonic’s attacks relied mostly on speed, Shadow had the use of Chaos Control in his combos, Knuckles was one of the heavier hitters, etc. One character, Emerl, is the most unique in the game. As an ancient Gizoid, Emerl has the ability to copy attacks from the other characters after engaging them in a fight. These attacks are represented as cards and the player can build a custom move-set for Emerl to use throughout the story. It gave the game some replayability, even with the linear storyline.

Still, it was fun. It had the characters I cared about in a light that wasn’t seen too often. Sonic Battle is one of the few Gameboy Advance games that, even to this day, I would play casually when given the chance.

Have you played Sonic Battle? What did you think of it?

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Monday Memories: Red, Blue, and Yellow

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday everyone!

Today brings us back with another Monday Memories, this one dedicated to the Gameboy Color Pokemon games: Red, Blue, and Yellow. These games were introduced to me by a couple of close friends of mine from a couple of decades ago…

Kris_MMredblueyellow

Way back in elementary school, I was friends with a pair of twins.

Hanging out at their house, they had a Nintendo 64 hooked up to a little television in their parents’ bedroom. Thinking back on it now, I wonder if the parents had the console there due to being sure the kids wouldn’t spend too much time playing, but I also don’t remember them having any other television. That could also be due to our days — when not playing video games — being spent playing school, pool days in the summer, walking their dog, but I digress.

It was due to these friends that I was introduced to games such as Mario Golf, Mario Tennis, and Pokemon Snap, along with Pokemon Red and Blue for the Gameboy Color. I was just beginning to get interested in Pokemon, not really understanding the games themselves, but knowing that there was a cartoon and fun little cards that apparently had more of a purpose than just being pretty. I got suckered into the casual fun of taking pictures of Pokemon in Pokemon Snap and started asking for a Gameboy Color from the Easter Bunny with the Pokemon games.

The next time I had a play date with the twins, I just remember excitedly showing up at their house with my own copy of the games and Prima’s Official Strategy Guide for Pokemon Yellow. My friends were impressed, claiming that the Pokemon Yellow version was the “rarer” game (which, years later, doesn’t make sense but, hey, we were in elementary school). We spent much of that day with each of us on our respective Gameboy Colors, with each twin playing either Red or Blue and me playing Yellow.

While I unfortunately haven’t been in touch with these old friends in years — since they moved away before we even reached middle school — I do credit them as part of the reason why I enjoyed the Let’s Go titles when they came out for the Nintendo Switch. The nostalgia alone of seeing and hearing Pikachu by my character’s side throws me back to those times when I was sandwiched between my friends on the floor of their living room as we cheered each other on in battles.

I do wonder occasionally how they are doing. I hope they are doing well and, maybe, if they also have the Let’s Go Pokemon titles that they’re marveling at the evolution (pun intended) of the games as well as share this bittersweet feeling about a dissipating friendship as I do.

Do you have any old friends that you connected with over video games that you may not see as much now? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Tetris 99 [Video Game Review]

Video Game Review: Tetris 99 | Nintendo Switch | Nintendo | Video Games | Gaming | Game Review | Tetris | DoublexJump.com

Title: Tetris 99
Developer: ARIKA
Publisher: Nintendo
Platform:
Nintendo Switch
Category:
Multiplayer, Puzzle
Release Date:
February 13, 2019
How we got the game:
I downloaded it from the Nintendo Switch eShop

 

 

 

Tetris has always been the kind of game that I barely played. I enjoy it, but I never owned the various games of it myself. I’ve played mobile versions and tried my hand at the older games once in a while. So, when they announced Tetris 99, I thought it was cool and I was excited. The best part of all, it’s free.

Gameplay | Video Game Reviews | Video Games | Gaming | Blogging | DoublexJump.com

Tetris is one of the simplest games to play despite it being a puzzle game. Blocks in various shapes and sizes fall from the top of the screen at a fairly slow pace. Before they reach the bottom, you can move the pieces from side to side as well as turn them depending on how you want them to fit on the ground. The point is to lay them in the straight line to make said line disappear. If your stack gets too high and reaches the top, then it’s game over.

Tetris 99 is no different – other than the fact you’re playing against 98 other people who are able to target you and sabotage your game so they can be number one. You can sabotage people by clearing lines on your own board. Lines with one or two spots missing will force their stack higher adding pressure for them to clear their own lines before their pieces get too high. Using the analog stick on the Joy-Con, you can choose any player you want to aim for and this can be changed throughout the game. So, if you notice someone is in the red and is close to getting out, then aim for that dude.

I personally don’t really aim for anyone. I’m not very good at checking the other boards to see where people are in their games and try to make them lose faster. I just focus on my own game and play by the rules. For some reason, I get targeted by multiple people at once and get screwed over. I’m not the best at Tetris, to begin with. My OCD enjoys fitting the pieces together just so but the pressure gets to me. With that said, as of writing this review, my best place was 31 and that was the third game I had played. Not bad, if I do say so myself.

Graphics & Music | Video Game Reviews | Video Games | Gaming | Blogging | DoublexJump.com

Tetris 99 looks and feels like a high-tech arcade game. There’s not much to the main menu other than the game itself, your stats, and options/settings. But the colors are bright and the game itself is vivid and flashy. It’s really well done and the first game I played, I got distracted from the Tetris pieces flying around from everyone’s games.

The music is awesome too. It’s the original tune but seems remixed or remastered for this particular game. It’s definitely one that gets stuck in my head and one I don’t mind looping as I play the game for a while.

Replay Value | Video Game Reviews | Video Games | Gaming | Blogging | DoublexJump.com

The replay value is endless. No two games are ever the same and it’s easy to get addicted to the gameplay. Some games can be short depending on when you get KOed. It’s far too easy to get sucked in and keep saying, “just one more match.”

Tetris 99 gets…
5 out of 5 lives.

Have you played this game? What did you think? Let me know in the comments! 

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Our Favorite Links

Joint_FaveLinks

krismii
One of my favorite aspects of the Legend of Zelda series is the lore. At the core of the games, the story is a basic formula of a trio of ones chosen by the world’s goddesses to embody the spirits of Wisdom, Courage, and Power, being reincarnated time and again so the holders of Wisdom and Courage can protect the world against the corrupted Power. While Link is the default name of the Triforce of Courage, nearly every game has a different incarnation of Link and, despite him mainly being a silent protagonist, each is able to show off his own personality through gestures and their friends and allies.

rachmii
The Legend of Zelda is a classic when it comes to lore and storytelling. It’s definitely one of my favorite games, easily. All the Links are similar to each other but each one is vastly different. It’s hard to pin-point one of them and pick a favorite.

krismii
While I don’t have a negative thing to say about any of the reincarnations, there are a few that are at the top of my list, like Twilight Princess Link. I enjoyed his design as well as the impact he had on the children of his village. I thought it was adorable how they idolized him. You could also pet cats and other animals in his game unlike in Breath of the Wild (c’mon, Nintendo, let me pet the dogs). Seeing the animals following him around was one of my favorite details!

rachmii
I agree with you on that one. Twilight Princess Link looks the most “adult” to me. He has such a soft, yet tough, personality. I really enjoyed Skyward Sword Link. Since it’s the “first” game in the timeline I also felt like Link was younger and inexperienced, even though all Links kind of are in a way. For some reason, it just seemed to fit better in Skyward Sword.

krismii
Skyward Link is adorable. His progression from student who slept in too much to hero trying to rescue his best friend — with some sassy “dialogue” choices — throughout the game was wonderfully done. We totally both cried during the cut scene that had Link trying to reach Zelda before she went to sleep in that crystal! Speaking of sassy, I enjoyed Breath of the Wild Link’s personality as well. While he seemed stoic the majority of the time, his interactions with the world around him felt natural. And I completely enjoyed the fact that he made seal puns with the Gerudo.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
All true. Any Link, Breath of the Wild included, who makes faces to express himself is a great Link. That being said, I love Wind Waker Link. His cartoonish look is cute and his faces – especially when he’s tired or hurt – are hilarious.

krismii
Wind Waker Link does have great expressions, but I think the Toon Link style may be my least favorite. That’s not to say I dislike the art style, as I do enjoy it and find it unique, but I’m more inclined to play games with the more “realistic” looking Links, such as Twilight Princess, Skyward Sword, and Breath of the Wild.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
Toon Link is special in that sense. I think I prefer that “realistic” ones as well, but I love the risk Toon Link made. Overall, all the Links are fabulous in their own way. I can’t wait to see more in future games.

Which Link is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below! If you like this post, please share it around.

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Top Tuesday: Favorite Nintendo Switch Games We Own (So Far)

Rachel Mii | DoubleJump.comHappy Tuesday!

The Nintendo Switch has been out and about for a little over two years now! We’ve played a lot of games – old, new, indie, and more. All have been great, but here are a few that stick out in my mind. Of course, the games listed below are games I’ve played the most of.

Top Tuesday: Favorite Nintendo Switch Games We Own | Nintendo Switch | Video Games | Gaming | Nintendo | Nintendo Games | DoublexJump.com

The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild

This game was breathtaking (no pun intended). While I’ll admit it’s not my favorite Zelda game, it’s definitely high on the list between the music (which could be soothing or intense), the graphics and open world, and the game play itself. Kris and I put a lot of hours into this game and tried to squeeze out all we could from this game before beating the main story. This is the kind of game where I wish I could turn it on for the first time again and be totally amazed and not being able to wait to see what happens next.

Octopath Traveler

This is another amazing game. The graphics and music are top notch – higher than top notch. The characters are all loveable and while, I would like more character banter and development, Kris and I have a wonderful time filling in the blanks and imagining what they would all do and say on their journey together. Still, we’ve been playing this game since it came out in July 2018 and still haven’t beaten it. We’ve been taking our time and enjoying every moment of it.

Super Mario Party

I wouldn’t say this is my favorite Mario Party game, but it’s a good Mario Party game. Would I like more boards? Yes. Would I like them to be bigger and longer? Yes. Is it like Star Rush or Top 100? Yes and no. They added elements from those games and mixed them with old elements we love and it worked beautifully. Are there any vehicles? No cars, no moving together, but there is a raft… but that’s mode’s actually fun, so I can’t complain. Overall, Super Mario Party is a game we’ve played over and over again. It was definitely refreshing to get this game.

Super Smash Brothers Ultimate

While I haven’t played this one as much as I would have liked, I’ve been enjoying what I have been playing of it. Smash is a good that’s fun alone or with friends, even though it’s better with friends. World of Light is an amazing story mode and the roster is overflowing. This game was certainly made with love and I’m so happy to have the chance to own and play it.

Pokemon Quest

I had to put this game on the list. Even though you don’t do much, I’ve played this game quite often and have put a lot of hours into it. It’s a mindless, relaxing game. It’s good to put on, especially if you don’t know what to play. Someday I will actually beat the game… Pokemon Quest is grinding at its finest.

What are some of your favorite Nintendo Switch Games? Let us know in the comments below! If you like this post, please share it around.

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Friday Favorites: Octopath Active Skills

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday everyone!

Considering Rachel and I are still playing Octopath Traveler, and that there is talks of a prequel and sequel in the future for the game, I took a look at the active skills that get the most love from us when we play. Here is a list of the favorite skills we use during battles.

frifavesoctoactive

Apothecary’s Empoison

Generally, if I have an apothecary in the party, one of the first things I do against a boss fight is poison the main baddie. Seeing the boss slowly lose health from the extra “hit,” if you will, has definitely helped us to whittle away their HP, especially when their shield is up.

Thief’s HP Thief/Steal SP

Technically two active skills, the thief being able to swipe back some HP and SP is extremely useful. Instead of wasting a turn with using an item, your thief hits the enemy twice with a dagger to steal a percentage of HP or SP depending on the damage. It’s a bonus if the enemy’s shield is weak to daggers, as you can get two hits in without using a boost, if you’d like. I’m also amused at needing to spend SP to use Steal SP.

Scholar’s Analyze

For the low cost of just 1 SP, scholars can reveal the current HP balance of an enemy as well as at least one — more with boost points — shield weakness. It was nice to just take away the guess work, especially for boss battles with high shield counts, while also giving us an idea as to how long the battle may take.

Dancer’s Lion Dance/Panther Dance

I definitely became more appreciative of the support buffs of many of the skills from this game, but the Lion Dance and Panther Dance became a couple of favorites. The Lion Dance buffed allies’ physical attacks, and the Panther Dance was used mostly on my thieves to help with their Divine Skill, which dealt damage proportional to their high speed.

What were your favorite skills and attacks from Octopath Traveler? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Picross Puzzle Game

Rachel Mii | DoubleJump.comHappy Thursday!

I enjoy my fair share of puzzles and logic games that help exercise the mind. Am I necessarily good at them? No, but I still get them done eventually and have fun doing so. 

Picross Puzzle Game | Picross | Puzzle Games | Video Games | Gaming | DoublexJump.com

Word Search puzzles are fun. I’ve always been a fan of Sudoku. I love word puzzles (just not crosswords or word scrambles unless I have a word bank) and jigsaw puzzles. One type of puzzle I recently got into was Picross.

I had never heard of the game before until Pokemon Picross came out in late 2015 for the Nintendo 3DS. To this day, I’m not very far in the game. It of course has “energy” so if you use it up you need to wait a certain amount of time before you can play again. That said, I often went into puzzles, got stuck, and exited out of them to try a new puzzle. Thus, using up my energy in just a few minutes without actually accomplishing anything.

I understood the concept of the game pretty well though. The numbers on the left side and the top needed to match in the order and the numbers couldn’t touch each other. For example, if the grid is 12×12 and the numbers are 2 and 10 in that order, then you know automatically the row will have two colored squares, an X, and then then ten colored squares to fill up the rest of the row. Those rows, that equal the amount in the row, are the easiest to figure out. From there, you can figure everything else out.

Of course, it’s not easy to explain the game through a blog post. Even in person I have a hard time explaining the rules of the puzzle. It’s just something you need to play and practice in order to understand what to do.

I found a Picross app on my iPad and I’ve been playing it for a few months now. There are nearly 2,000 puzzles. There are two packs containing 64 puzzles, five packs containing 100 puzzles, and two packs containing 400 puzzles. I’ve completed them all and am about halfway done with the first 400-puzzle pack. I need to complete all those puzzles into order to unlock the second and final 400-puzzle pack.

The funny this is, while writing this post, I went onto the app to count the puzzles and noticed they updated the game. I thought I was going to beat the game fairly soon but they added a new pack that has 225 puzzles. So, I guess I’ll be playing for a while longer.

There’s a hint option for each puzzle that costs 250 coins (which you get by completing the puzzles). When I first started playing, I used the hint option a lot – to the point where I ran out of coins and I just needed to scratch my head and really think until I got more coins.

Now, though, I have a ton of coins because I haven’t needed to use the hint button in a long time. It’s amazes me how much your brain can learn and figure things out when you do the same thing over and over again. Even if I get super stuck, I sometimes exit out of the game and immediately jump back into it. Right away, my mind finds what I was missing just a minute ago.

While I have nearly 800 puzzles left to solve, I’ve completed more than half of what’s on the app. I’ve been playing for months, but it tracks how long you’re on the app for. According to it, I’ve played the app for almost four days. This means that it’s taken me a little less than four days to solve all the puzzles I’ve solved. I’m pretty impressed with myself.

Picross isn’t an easy puzzle to solve or to even understand in the beginning. I never thought Picross would be my go-to puzzle, but I’ve been enjoying it more than I thought I would. I definitely need to look up the Picross games on the Nintendo Switch and give those a try.

Do you play Picross? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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