A little here and there

Hey look - a new post! Why's that? Cuz I'm actually playing some games!

Yessir, this Christmas I received a Wii game from my mom (the A Boy and His Blob reboot - yay!), two games on Steam via a Secret Santa program (Armed & Dangerous and Dark Messiah of Might & Magic), and I bought myself Painkiller off of Steam when I saw it was $5. Almost got Torchlight for the same price, but missed my shot, I guess. Either that or I was hallucinating. This weekend I resolved to play at least one of these games before they totally fell off my radar. I ended up starting Blob and Painkiller.

If you ever played the original Blob, you will notice one striking difference: the new one's not hair-rippingly difficult. So far the worlds are short; the only real "goal" is collecting three treasure chests per level, which open up a secret world, where if you get through it, you get to see extra content. So it's world, chests, world, boy-and-blob sketch, repeat. Not too earth-shattering. The art is, thankfully, as beautiful as expected. Backgrounds are slightly less in the background, with snails and dragonflies capering amongst brackish swamps and European-style forests. I'm very grateful for the inclusion of a "hug" button, which I use every chance I get. There's just something about seeing an amorphous alien blob smile that gets me right in the cockles.

For a delightfully demented 180°, there's Painkiller. Released in 2004 but playing like it's 1997 (and lauded by Yahtzee), it's a gothic Quake-style throwback that's all up in my wheelhouse. I haven't even gotten the rocket launcher yet (a classic in any FPS!) and I'm loving the killing sprees. Staking enemies to each other at 50 paces? Check. Spearing and dragging distant enemies so their corpses come flying towards you at breakneck speed? Check. Grinding up enemies like so much beef with a portable rotary blade? Check. I used to think Doom's chainsaw was the ultimate in ultraviolent melee gadgetry, but man, I dunno anymore. The physics are a bit wonky, though highly touted for the time. I guess being able to stick on random parts of wall by jumping like mad constitutes a "feature." I was also immediately miffed by the fact that you can't crouch...I'm more used to stealth in FPSes than I realized. Regardless, it was only $5, but with the fun this game provides, it easily paid for itself within the first five minutes.

We shall see what my schedule holds. The nice thing about single-players is eventually they will end. I'm suspiciously optimistic about being able to hold down a webcomic and still have time to play games, but who knows? It could all hilariously backfire and I'll never have time to do anything ever again. Always an adventure.

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