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Showing posts from February, 2022

Memory Leaks: Plants Versus Zombies

🧠 There's a zombie on your lawn... Plants vs Zombies  is a 2009 casual tower-defense game from PopCap Games in which you, a humble homeowner, must use plant-based artillery to defend your lawn from a hoard of zombies trudging their way out of the cemetery across the street. It was a breakout hit for PopCap, far surpassing their other casual titles Bejeweled  and Peggle . PopCap was subsequently bought up by EA and--and this should surprise literally no one-- PvZ  was spun into a huge multi-media franchise that never generated another hit. How I Remember It... I don't remember precisely how I stumbled upon this one. I think I was just blindly looking for real-time-strategy games, of which tower-defense is a very specific subset (I feel like I discovered Bloons  around the same time). I know I tried out the demo first. You could play for thirty minutes for free as a trial, and it only took about five for me to decide I wanted to buy it. It has simple yet addictive gameplay and a

Geekway Mini 2022 Redux

I went to Geekway Mini last weekend, hastily rescheduled because of omicron to coincide with both Valentine's Day AND the Super Bowl. Needless to say, it was lightly attended. There wasn't anything in play-and-win that I was super excited for going in, but I found some good ones nonetheless. NEOM The title is, I assume, the sound Cookie Monster makes when he runs past you really quickly. Tile-drafting city builder that feels like a cross between  7 Wonders  and  Big Cities . I liked it quite a bit as a 2-player where there were some more interesting drafting rules. The standard draft at 4 players was a little less engaging. While I enjoyed it, it has a pretty high price point, so it's not one I'm likely to acquire. Luna Capital Another city-builder, this time on a lunar colony with a bit more emphasis on Sushi-Go -style set collection. You get bonuses for grouping like structures, but they all score slightly differently, plus you also have to lay out the cards that you&

Memory Leaks: Final Fantasy VI

🗺️The world is square... Final Fantasy VI  (released as Final Fantasy III  in the US) was the end of an era at Squaresoft. It's sequel, Final Fantasy VII , would be a watershed game that reinvented the series, moving it over to Sony's hardware-- FFVII  was for many people the  reason to buy a PlayStation--and transforming it from a Japanese interpretation of Dungeons & Dragons -style storytelling into the more anime-influenced cyberpunk/urban-fantasy aesthetic that it still has to this day. As important as VII  was, it's easy to overlook what a blockbuster success VI  had been, really representing the peak of what a JRPG could be in the 16-bit era with its sprawling cast, immersive story, finely-tuned combat, and gorgeous music. How I Remember It... Final Fantasy VI  was my first JRPG, and not a single other JRPG has lived up to the promise of what FFVI  told me video games could be like. Okay, it wasn't the first one I'd played. Dragon Warrior  had been all t

Sentinels of the Multiverse: Definitive Edition: A Thoroughly Unnecessary Review

 Time to save the multiverse A couple years ago I was blogging about my love of tabletop games and described Sentinels of the Multiverse  as being either my first or second favorite, depending on what day of the week it was. Then last year they announced a new "Definitive Edition" of the base game with expansion content to follow. This would be a ground-up rethinking and rebalancing that would, amongst other things, be mostly incompatible with the existing content. Of which I have a lot. This has been a "shut-up-and-take-my-money" IP for years now, so it's not like I  wasn't  going to buy it, but I was at first trepidatious. I mean, was this even necessary? And then I saw an interview with the creators where they talked about what they were trying to accomplish with the new edition, and I was on board. And then the Kickstarter launched and more information was available and I got excited. After all, as I mentioned in the above-linked write-up, the oldest Sen