Media Recap: January 2013

Posted on Thu 31 January 2013 in media recap

Summary: 5 games, 2 novels, 1 movie, 1 podcast

Games

  • Puzzle Agent 2 (PC)
    Puzzle Agent 1 left me expecting a lot more from its successor. The humor wasn’t the same and many, many puzzles were far easier than the ones in part 1. Except for the three involving numbers, those were off the chart and at least one of them had nothing to do with numbers at all.

  • Final Fantasy Tactics: The War Of The Lions (iOS)
    This purchase was a personal failure. Don’t get me wrong here. I adore both Final Fantasy Tactics: Advance and Final Fantasy Tactics: Advance 2 - Grimoire of the Rift but those were nice games. They featured explanations where applicable without requiring you to read hours and hours of content in a separate ingame help. Neither had they values such as Faith and Bravery which could get a unit to leave your service if too low or too high.
    What ultimately made me give up on the game however was its controls. If I tap anywhere but the button which currently has focus I don’t expect the button to be pressed. I expect the game to register a “Cancel” action, not a freaking “Confirm”. I mean, I am not even pressing the button! This behavior is fundamentally wrong on a touchscreen device and drives me insane.

  • Wordament (Win8)
    I’m not sure how I heard about this game. It might be that it was the first game to get Xbox Live achievements on iOS. I tested the Windows 8 version and found it to be a nice casual game. I’m astonished by the fact that I’m way better playing the English version than the German one - whereas German is my mother’s tongue.

  • Terraria (PC)
    I’ve saved writing the part about Terraria for last. During the first two weeks of January I played a lot of Terraria. More than 48 hours to be precise. I was kind of sloppy and let a lot of work slip during that period. I’m not sure what prompted my addiction to Terraria but I’m willing to bet it has something to do with the ability to build all the structures you can imagine easily (well, as long as they conform to the gameplay rules). Initially I couldn’t grasp the depth of the game but as soon as I skimmed some of the wikis that grew around it I was captured. There are so many things to see, so many things to craft and the overall playtime and fun I got during playing Terraria made me think that this is one of the games I paid way too little during a Steam Sale. I’m still proud of the huge apartment complex of glass which I built above the ocean.

  • Ghost Trick (NDS)
    Now, Ghost Trick was a lucky pick of mine. I loved Time Hollow and felt reminded of that game. A puzzler on the NDS is something I really adore, especially if it comes with a fascinating story. I don’t care that much for gameplay in those cases, but Ghost Trick easily beats Time Hollow in terms of game mechanics and can be recommended to a lot more people due to less restrictions in terms of creative situation solving. Which doesn’t mean it’s not linear, because it is.

Novels

  • Touch Of The Demon by Diana Rowland
    By now I expected nothing but excellence from this author and was not disappointed. It’s a whole less urban-fantasy due to this part being set almost entirely in “the demon realm”. However, Rowland uses this to conjure even more amazing elements and side characters. It has some exciting plot twists and I can recommend it to anyone who liked the previous books of the Kara Gillian series.

  • Netzkinder gegen Offliner: Danke Internet. (German) by Alexander Fuchs
    By the time of this writing I haven’t completed this book yet. It sure seems like a huge rant against those people who don’t “get” the Internet (the offliners) but I have to agree with a lot of the points the author introduces and am looking forward to reading the other half of it.

Movies

  • Step Up 2: The Streets
    So yeah. I like the Step Up movies. Mostly for their soundtracks and the urban style they exude and not so much for the actual dancing, I have to admit. In particular Moose stood out pretty much from the cast of this one, he was a very likable character.
    The movie was quite enjoyable even considering the extremely kitschy scene after the party. I mean, it was a certainly a nice scene, I won’t argue that. But nevertheless I thought I had to force myself not to skip it. But since I wasn’t the person in control of the remote, that wasn’t an option anyway. That, by the way, also meant watching the movie with German audio.

Podcasts

  • Mac Power Users 121 - The Website Show
    This episode of MPU focused largely on publishing and blogging platforms as well as the tools to work with them or administrate said platforms. In an attempt to check out alternatives to WordPress I listened to the show but quickly realized that one of the main topics was going to be WordPress. Another point was Squarespace which I haven’t checked out yet, but being a database oriented model again, I’d probably have little love for the service. I prefer having my own data on my own domain.