Collecting Things In Games

Rachel Mii | DoubleJump.comHappy Tuesday!

If you know me then you know I love collecting things. I enjoy various merch that come in different colors or variations – from pins to stuffed animals, Amiibo or Pokemon cards – I love it all. Collecting things in-game is no different.

Collecting Things in Games | Video Games | Gaming | Game Merch | DoublexJump.com

I’m not entirely sure why, but I’ve always been attracted to the concept of “collecting” in games. Also, treasure. I absolutely love getting money, coins, gems, or whatever it is in the game.

There are certain games that are my favorite simply because of collecting. (I mean, there are more reasons than that, but you catch my drift.)

Animal Crossing

The Animal Crossing series is a prime example of collecting things in games and a huge reason why I love it so. I mean, despite paying off your debt, that’s what the game is about. You want to get all the various themes of furniture and clothes, fruit, bugs, fish, and so much more. Not to mention, collecting the villagers, which is easier said than done.

Pokemon

There’s well over 800 Pokemon at this point and I’m pretty sure with Galar coming out soon we’ll have over 1,000 Pokemon. Every time I play a Pokemon game, I always play well after the main story to catch ’em all. I have yet to complete a Pokedex in any of my games, but I’m determined to do it someday. After that, it’s on to collect all the Pokemon in their shiny forms.

Luigi’s Mansion

This game is a good example of collecting money and treasure. In fact, it’s actually part of the game in the end for when you end up with your “real” mansion. Money, coins, gems, pearls, etc, are scattered throughout the entire mansion. They’re in fans, pots, lying on the floor, in cabinets – everywhere. Collect as much as you can and collect it all. Luigi might as well get something out of this experience. Oh, and also you collect the 50 Boos in that game. As annoying as it is, it’s still a decent scavenger hunt.

Do you love collecting things in games? What’s one of your favorite mechanics in games? Let me know in the comments below! If you like this post, please share it around.

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When to Play Games

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Monday everyone!

We’ve done #GamingTogether for the past couple of months on our social media channels. Today’s question just reminded me of how my gaming habits have switched as I got older.

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Do you typically play games when you wake up or before you go to bed?

As a kid, before school, you would find me in the basement with Super Mario RPG on the SNES and my cereal and cocoa right next to me. I used to get up early enough to play a good chunk of whatever game I was into at the time before school. The anticipation of advancing in my game before heading off to school woke me up better than any alarm clock.

Nowadays, sleep is more important to me in the morning and sometimes it takes me a few minutes longer than it should to drag myself out of bed and into the shower. If I get a chance to play video games, it’s usually in the afternoon after my day job and any other work I need to get done. Video games are a reward and a chance to relax (aside from the ones I can get away with calling “work” for this blog) sometime after dinner if my mind isn’t too tired after the day job.

Thinking on it, if I could, I would totally play video games in the morning. Waking up to explore a new world, fight some bad guys, or solve some puzzles would be fantastic in jogging my brain to get ready for the rest of the day. While playing games before bed is relaxing, I have found it a little difficult to turn my mind off when bedtime inevitably rolls around and I need to shut down the console for the night.

Granted, I’m not that picky about when I can reach for my video games. What I can’t stand is only being able to play my games for brief periods of time. I need the time to actually immerse myself in my game.

When do you prefer to play games? Do you have a favorite? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Pokemon Johto Region Vs. Kalos Region [Debate]

Debate Johto Vs Kalos | Pokemon | Pokemon Regions | Gaming Debates | Video Games | Gaming | Nintendo | DoublexJump.com

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This month’s debate we’re putting a couple of our favorite Pokemon regions head to head. It’s Johto versus Kalos, with me on the side of the second generation and Rachel trying to debate that the sixth generation is better than it.

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Ironically, I began my Pokemon journey in Johto since I was super younger when Kanto came out. Still, Kalos is the best region in my opinion. So far, at least. I completed Pokemon X in two days after getting the game and I still go back to it to collect more Pokemon and shiny hunt to this day.

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Kalos was a great region, but Johto incorporated many mechanics that are still seen in the core series of games. The Johto games brought the day and night cycle, making it strategic when it came to catching every Pokemon. With Crystal, Johto also began giving Pokemon animated sprites and gave trainers the choice between a male and a female avatar.

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Kalos introduced some new mechanics as well. While the customization lacks a bit, you can still customize what you want your character to look like and you can change your hairstyle and color throughout the game. They added roller skates in addition to the bike and, best of all, Pokemon Amie. Now we can pet, feed, and play with our Pokemon. Not only is this adorable, but it pays off in battle. Depending on your friendship level, Pokemon will dodge attacks more often and even shake off status conditions like poison.

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Pokemon Amie is a more advanced version of another mechanic that was introduced in the second generation. Friendship was first measured and used for Pokemon evolutions in the Johto region. Breeding was also introduced into the Pokemon games thanks to the Johto generation, giving competitors another way to raise the perfect Pokemon for battles as well as hatching baby Pokemon that otherwise wouldn’t be found in the wild.

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Friendship became a thing, yes, but all you could do to bring it up was to battle and not let them faint. Pokemon Amie is way better. Also, there are Fairy-type Pokemon now. A new type was introduced and used as a gym battle, which was cool.

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Other ways to bring up the friendship was to spend time with the Pokemon, letting them be in your party, as well as certain items. Speaking of items, held items were first introduced into the Pokemon core games as well, bringing on another depth of strategy that became a staple in the games. Johto brought in two new types of Pokemon, Dark and Steel, both of which have been showcased with Elite Four and Gym Leaders specializing in their types. Aside from the new mechanics, I believe the Johto region games had a better plot than the Kalos games. Bringing back Team Rocket from the first generation, playing off of the time lapse between Kanto and Johto, was a great move. With that, the Johto games held onto that lore that a kid from Pallet Town originally thwarted Team Rocket, and gives players the chance to go through Kanto again until they face the most powerful trainer atop Mt. Silver.

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I think it’s safe to say there are a lot of similarities and differences between the two regions. Kalos came out years after Johto, so of course, the Johto region will introduce new things. Kalos has improved upon them. We’ll just have to see what everyone else says.

Which side are you on? Let us know about them in the comments below! If you like this post, please share it around.

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Friday Favorites: My Video Game Hall of Fame

Double Jump Kris MiiHappy Friday everyone!

A couple of new games have recently been inducted into the Video Game Hall of Fame — Mortal Kombat, Super Mario Kart, Colossal Cave Adventure, and Microsoft Windows Solitaire. While there are criteria as to which games are inducted, I thought it would be fun to make a small list of my own for Hall of Fame games.

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Stardew Valley

Stardew Valley has rocketed in popularity since its original release in [date]. The calming atmosphere of the game has likened it to the Harvest Moon franchise while also giving players new mechanics and aspects to the farming sim genre. It added an RPG-like element with cave exploration and monster slaying, as well as allowing players to marry either gender, including fellow players in the co-op updates. Considering the small team that created the game that has since gone on to be published on other consoles, the feats it has done deserves a spot in the Hall of Fame.

Super Mario RPG: Legend of the Seven Stars

This is definitely more of a personal preference than figuring out anything groundbreaking about the game’s mechanics or style. However, it did throw Mario into yet another genre of video games, showcasing his versatility as a video game character. It also was the ancestor, if you will, of the Paper Mario and Mario & Luigi series, games that are popular in their own right. The Final Fantasy and other Nintendo character Easter eggs in the game were fun, and the unique characters that were introduced are popular enough to be shown in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s World of Light mode.

PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds

We’re not a pair of gamers that plays shooting games too often, if at all. However, we have tried out PUBG and have seen plenty of streams of the gameplay, finding it stressful when we play and amusing thanks to the content creators that we’ve watched. It was one of the first major battle royale games that hit the market and, while Fortnite’s popularity and gimmicks may propel it to the Hall of Fame before PUBG, I believe PUBG deserves its share of recognition.

What are some games you’d like to see in the Hall of Fame? Let me know in the comments below! If you liked this post, please share it around.

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Kanto Pokemon Cards

Rachel Mii | DoubleJump.comHappy Thursday!

Last weekend, our Internet at home was being weird. It was working, but things were extremely slow. Slow to the point where I had no patience with it so I gave myself a day off. And what did I do with my time instead? I sorted my Pokemon cards.

Kanto Pokemon Cards | Pokemon | Pokemon Trading Card Game | Nintendo | Video Games | Gaming | DoublexJump.com

I have gone through my Pokemon cards over and over again throughout the years. I have so many and am always adding more to the mix. I have eight small Pokemon books with the card sleeves in them already. I remember buying them at Toys R Us. That’s where I had all my cards sorted. I recently got a binder for myself though. Then, my brother-in-law gave me his Pokemon cards which came in a binder and Kris gave me another binder for Christmas.

So, I have three binders and eight smaller books. My Kanto Pokemon cards have taken up one binder. So, I know I’m definitely going to need more at some point.

I used to have my cards sorted by type. The colors were easy for me to differentiate them enough to sort them. I tried to keep the Pokemon of the same species and evolution chains together, but sometimes I’d miss one or two. I eventually decided to put them by type in numerical order. I could find a Pokemon more easily that way too.

Of course, there’s one other problem. Each Pokemon has multiple cards for themselves and sometimes they’re different types. So, where would I fit them in?

I ended up deciding to just sort them in numerical order by their national dex order.

A long time ago, I sorted through all the cards and pulled out my Kanto cards. I ordered them by their dex number and stuck them in a Pikachu binder. I’ve added more since then so I had a few loose Kanto cards hanging about.

It took me 7-8 hours (my back killed by the end of the night), but I sorted through all my cards by region.

I picked out the few Kanto cards that weren’t sorted and had six other piles – Johto, Hoenn, Sinnoh, Unova, Kalos, and Alola. Oddly enough, not counting Kanto since most were already in a binder, but my tallest stack was Hoenn. I don’t know if I truly got into collecting when the Hoenn region was big or what, but I honestly thought my biggest pile would be Alola, since I’ve been buying so many booster packs lately.

Anyway, random tidbits/background aside, I sorted the rest of my Kanto cards into the binder. Then I went through the binder with Kris’s help. After all these years collecting Pokemon cards, I’m missing eight Kanto Pokemon.

I do not have a single card for Golem, Hypno, Haunter, Gyarados, Ditto, Zapdos, Moltres, or Dragonite.

I find some of that interesting. Zapdos and Moltres or obviously more on the rare side. But Golem? Haunter? They’re pretty common and it’s a wonder I don’t have any cards for them.

The other thing is, there’s a Pokemon card of Haunter that I looked up that looks really familiar. I’m pretty sure I did have it one point… unless it’s mixed in with the other regions by accident or it got misplaced in the shuffle somehow, I have no idea. Either way, I need to go on the hunt for these eight Pokemon.

Knowing that I’m only missing eight Pokemon makes me curious about who I’m missing from the other regions. I can’t wait until I have another day to sit down and continue going through my cards.

Do you collect Pokemon cards? How do you sort through them? Let me know in the comments below! If you like this post, please share it around.

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Cuphead [Video Game Review]

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

Title: Cuphead
Developer: Studio MDHR
Publisher: Studio MDHR
Platform: 
Nintendo Switch
Category: 
Action, Arcade, Platformer
Release Date: 
April 17, 2019
How we got the game: 
We bought it on the Nintendo Switch eShop

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Cuphead originally came out in September 2017 for PC and the Xbox One, and it had always been on our radar after seeing playthroughs of it on YouTube and Twitch. Considering it recently came out for the Nintendo Switch, Rachel and I figured it was the perfect time to try it.

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We kept saying we’d get the game and now that it’s out on our main console, we decided to finally give it a go.

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

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Cuphead is a run-and-gun boss rush kind of game. There is light platforming, some side-scrolling levels for your characters to run through, taking down a plethora of enemies in their way while collecting the occasional coin to spend on upgrades for your weapons and health.

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These particular levels are few and far between, but they’re a lot of fun. We got stuck on the very first level because we’re apparently terrible at the game, but we had a good time nonetheless. So much happens on screen and there’s a lot to keep track of – the various enemies, constantly shooting your gun (or finger gun, if you will), jumping and dashing over platforms, and keeping an eye out for coins to collect or anything pink to parry on. This entire game was made without using the color pink except on a select few objects which you can parry.

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After getting demolished on the run-and-gun levels, you do start to realize that there’s a pattern to all of the enemies’ locations and behaviors. It tests your memory as well as your skills with the controls. Control-wise, you use the analog stick to move Cuphead and Mugman left to right, as well as being able to control which of the eight directions you can shoot your finger guns. The four main buttons are for jumping, dashing, shooting, and your special attack once you build up your super meter.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
As mentioned before, parrying allows you to fill your super meter faster. The more you hit enemies with your gun, the more your super meter will fill up. Parrying helps with that, though I’m not good at it. The bosses themselves are challenging, but a whole lot of fun. With each try, we get a little farther until we get so loopy that we need to take a break. Luckily, there’s more than one place to go to on the main map. Areas are blocked off but you usually have a choice between two or three levels to hop into. So, if you get stuck, you can take a break from that but still keep playing.

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The boss rush fights were each in stages, with the choice of having two difficulties — simple and regular. Gathering coins from the run-and-gun levels to spend on weapon upgrades are key to developing strategies to defeat the bosses. You can mix and match between different types of finger guns, switched easily on the fly with the L/SL button, as well as determining what the best defense would be, whether it’s having an extra hit point or becoming invulnerable while dashing.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
All of the power-ups are useful in their own way, but there are definitely some that fit better for certain stages than others. Of course, this is all trial and error, which is part of the fun. Also, the extra hit point is nice, but it slightly decreases your attack power if you have it on.

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

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Mimicking the old cartoons, Cuphead’s graphics are charming and make me feel like I’m watching Mickey Mouse cartoons from years ago. While the themes in Cuphead aren’t quite as innocent as Mickey Mouse, the images and short dialogue remind me of those cartoons. The art style is a little wacky but the images flow smoothly even in the middle of the boss fights.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
I absolutely enjoy the aesthetic of this game, especially the various boss designs. They all have their own special charm and unique personality. Of course, mimicking the old school cartoon is definitely a plus.

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The music is a lot of fun, and the sound effects are so satisfying. The music itself matches the levels, but it’s also subtle enough to not kill your concentration when you’re going up against the bosses. You’ll probably also be shouting and laughing at the screen for the levels over the music anyway, but if you take the time to listen, it’s pleasant.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
The sound effects are pleasing as well. I enjoy the various sounds when you parry something or even just the finger gun noises. It’s a great experience overall.
Story | Video Game Reviews | Video Games | Gaming | Blogging | DoublexJump.com

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The story of the game revolves around the brothers Cuphead and Mugman, who got into a bit of trouble when they wandered into the Devil’s casino and gambled away their souls. The two begged for another way they could pay off their debt to the devil, and the devil decided that if the two could bring the souls of others who owed him, then the devil would let Cuphead and Mugman off the hook.

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The Elder Kettle warned them of the Devil and his casino, but greed overcame Cuphead must to Mugman’s warnings. Thus, begins a journey for the two of them to battle so many characters in their world… killing them and forcing them to work with the Devil.

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

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Cuphead has some fun replay value, what with it having single and co-op modes and a couple of different difficulty settings for the boss fights. The boss fights themselves can be a challenge, and there are different combinations of weapons and defensive mechanisms that you can try on different runs.

Rachel Mii Double Jump
I can definitely see myself playing this again. While it’s difficult, the boss battles are fun to pick up and play if you’re looking for something fairly mindless, yet challenging. Plus, with the co-op mode there are plenty of opportunities to play with various people.

Cuphead gets…
5 out of 5 lives.

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

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Top Tuesday: Favorite Character Stories In Octopath Traveler

Rachel Mii | DoubleJump.comHappy Tuesday!

Kris and I beat the main story in Octopath Traveler a little while ago. There’s still a lot to do in the game though and I think about it all the time. So, here are my favorite character stories from the game, in no particular order.

Top Tuesday: Favorite Character Stories in Octopath Traveler | Nintendo Switch | Gaming | Video Games | DoublexJump.com

Therion

Therion, the thief, was the character we chose to play as our main throughout the game. Even when we completed his fourth chapter and were able to take him out of the party, we left him in. We’d grown so attached to him. What I loved about his story was that even though he was just trying to get that bracelet off his arm – which showed that he, as a thief, got caught – there was more to it. There was an underlying theme of betrayal which turned into way more than Therion trying to prove something to others but to prove something to himself.

I enjoyed his character development along the way of the long, tedious journey and the way he interacted with his companions. He’s a thief, but definitely has morals.

Primrose

Revenge doesn’t flatter anyone, but Primrose wears it so well. She’s the dancer of the group and the purpose of her journey is to seek the three men marked with the crow and kill them since they killed her father when she was a little girl. I liked how someone as “dainty,” if you will, as Primrose was so snarky, cynical, and out for blood. Yet, she grew as well. She learned a lot about her family and about her self. She had a purpose, whether some would agree with it or not.

Ophilia

Ophilia is a cleric and she has such a kind and naive personality. One reason I love her story is because she takes the place of her sister on a long journey for their church so that her sister can stay home with their dying father. Ophilia would do anything for her family and the church and taking on this daunting task was just the thing she needed to do. Despite loving their father, she allowed her sister to stay behind and be with him until his time came.

Tressa

Tressa, the merchant of the group, seems to be the purest of all – well, aside from Ophilia, technically. Her main purpose is to become a great merchant though I think there’s more to it. She’s young and never really been away from home. She wants to see the world, meet new people, and discover new items and places. She’s always willing to lend a hand regardless of if she’s traveling with the person or not. Tressa grows throughout the story and has a huge purpose for her character development through her journey. There are no true stakes in her story, but I love it all the same.

What were your favorite character stories in Octopath Traveler? Let me know in the comments below! If you like this post, please share it around.

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