This Week in Steve (10-29)

Chris and I attended the Chicago Game Jam this past weekend, so I have a bit less Steve-related news this week, as my usual gaming time was almost non-existent.  That said, the jam was a blast.  You can read about my experience here, and Chris’s here.

At the jam, some of my fellow devs were talking about Pokemon X and Y.  I’ve never played a Pokemon game (I was in the age group where I was too old be seen playing it, but too young to stop caring and just enjoy it anyway).  The thing is, I still play World of Warcraft here and there, and when I do, I’m mostly interested in the pet battling that you can do now. I’m acutely aware of how much of a Pokemon ripoff it is, so I figured it was time to try the real deal.  When I got home Sunday afternoon, I was exhausted but wired, so instant sleep wasn’t really an option.  The first thing I did was fire up my DS and buy Pokemon Y (I think it was Y, anyway).

I’m the type of gamer who likes achievements, completion-ism, etc…  How the phrase, “Gotta catch em all!”, hasn’t hooked me in earlier, I don’t know, but I’m certainly hooked now.  Pokemon is extremely cartoon-y and very child-friendly.  My fiance loves to tease me for playing it, calling it my “baby game”, but she can’t wait for the Sims 4 so that she can adopt a fake puppy.  Art style aside, it’s a great game.  As a child of the Nintendo revolution, I’ve enjoyed games with all sorts of different graphical styles, so I’m not one to dismiss a game simply based on art.  The idea of Pokemon is obviously solid (or else there wouldn’t be like 500 different games) and X and Y have gotten great reviews.  I can only assume then, that the version I’ve been playing is a pretty solid contribution to the series.

I feel like all I do in my weekly updates is praise games that I love.  For once I’m going to tell you about a game I didn’t love…  The Stanley Parable.  Before you jump down my throat (because I get the feeling that everyone loves this game but me), let me say two things.  First off, I certainly don’t hate it, and second, I’ve only played it for about 45 minutes.  I managed to complete the game a few different ways, and I also got to the hidden museum, so I experienced some of it, but certainly not all.  I’m also aware that a 45 minute play session just might not be enough to really get to the meat and potatoes of it.

The Stanley Parable wasn’t a major release, and so you may not be familiar with it, but I’d suggest giving it a once-over.  it’s not a traditional gaming experience by any stretch, and it’s not the type of game that requires hours of time to get into.  If you’re into indie games at all, it’s worth your time.  I’m definitely going to give it some more time over this next weekend, because I don’t feel like I’ve really put Stanley through his paces yet.

Other than those two games, the lady and I watched Man of Steel.  A portion of the movie was filmed about a mile from where I work, so it was really cool to recognize that scene (it’s the tornado scene).  The movie itself was pretty average though.  Zack Snyder‘s films seem very hit-or-miss to me.  While I loved Watchmen and 300, I did not care much for this film, or Sucker Punch (although his visuals are always outstanding).

This week I’ll definitely be taking some much needed time off, as the game jam wore me out.  Hopefully that affords me some time to get a bit of serious gaming in.