For the Puppies.

Glitch of Death — December 18, 2018

Glitch of Death

South Park: The Fractured but Whole • Used TimeFart Glitch to cause a status effected enemy to lose their turn and die at turn’s end • 30G • 34.67% of gamers unlocked this

These are the kind of achievements I love. The true ‘stumble across’ ones. Tonight’s achievement was more about just the sheer joy of gaming, and getting an achievement ‘for the hell of it’, something that I miss from time-to-time, but for the most part, I carry it forward so that the commitment I made isn’t broken on a whim.

After all, if I try and convince people that gaming’s a serious business then I should be able to hang my hat on ‘something’ in this space beyond the very luxury numbers that popped up in the new Xbox Year-in-Review page.

Once again, I’m falling asleep after a quick gaming session, so that’s it tonight!

In the wise words of Paulie on The Sopranos: “A man needs his seven hours.” Sometimes I feel like seven minutes would be a blessing!

Boss Exterminator — December 17, 2018

Boss Exterminator

Clicker Heroes • Kill 1000 bosses • 50G • 11.39% of gamers unlocked this

Talk about an easy 50G … I wanted to keep things easy today on account of the holiday season, as well as a fairly full schedule of commitments, so I thought I’d first see how far I’d progressed in Idle Heroes (I did earn an achievement there, but not one that required any effort), and then switched to Clicker Heroes to farm the first ‘boss’ of the game, long enough to see this achievement ding.

Over the next few days I’ll load up my laptop with some new stuff for when I’m away over Christmas, but I’ll also try and keep things that I’ve started ticking along for a little bit too. My goal is to have too much to play that I’ll be frazzled over Christmas for achievements, but some old faithfuls as well ‘just in case’ there’s a chance for a stretch achievement on an otherwise uneventful afternoon.

#followbacks — December 16, 2018


South Park: The Fractured but Whole • Became mutual followers with 10 people in South Park • 30G • 59.28% of gamers unlocked this

I had lined up a couple of achievements earlier in the day from Idle Heroes (on Xbox) and Clicker Heroes, both of which I’m delighted to finally have on my Xbox profile – but in the end, it was good ol’ South Park that I wanted to use today, on account of it … well, just being such good fun.

This was an achievement I was keeping track of because there was a large amount of citizens of South Park that seemed to be OK with me taking a selfie, but as I explored the world it seemed like more-and-more were becoming background NPCs and wouldn’t invite the selfie prompt. Nonetheless, a bit more exploring today eventually got me over the line, and so I enjoyed the sweet, sweet taste of achievement gold just before I turned off the game for the night.

The thing about The Fractured but Whole that really gets to me is that I know Ubisoft took the IP back off Obsidian following The Stick of Truth and that annoys me. It’s not like they weren’t entitled to do so, but it seems like a slap in the face for a studio that did such an A+ job on the original, and now they’ve just had that work thrown back in their face. I doubt very much that they see it that way (based on absolutely nothing), but their later success in things like Pillars of Eternity, and clearly the Microsoft buy-out will lead to bigger and better things, is, hopefully, a silver lining, or at least the spoonful of sugar (to help the medicine go down).

Personally, I take solace in knowing that Obsidian’s work underpins everything about The Fractured but Whole. The gameplay foundation, strong narrative and artistic style (albeit borrowed from Trey Stone and Matt Parker) forms the perfect combination for a turn-based strategy game set in the South Park universe.

And I can’t wait to head back there soon!

Get back to the Ark! — December 15, 2018

Get back to the Ark!

Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden • Return to the Ark! • 10G • 55.95% of gamers unlocked this

I had expected today would be a bit more South Park: The Fractured But Whole, but at some point this morning, I felt like giving this a go instead. I saw Mutant Year Zero on the Steam front page a few weeks ago, and I was pleased to see it introduced into Xbox’s Game Pass … but the concept looked interesting, and it was enough to prompt me to download it.

Now I can’t stop thinking about it.


The concept is a little bit Baldur’s Gate with it’s isometric top-down, and a little bit X-COM with it’s turn based combat. It truly is a great combination meshed with a great narrative. You play the tag team of a Mutant Pig and a Duck (the latter’s name is ‘Dux’, but the former’s escapes me), who go out in the world looking for scrap, and this achievement is one of the early ones that you get for returning to home base. This essentially serves as the tutorial, though that still didn’t stop me getting Dux killed accidentally at one point after I glossed over how to use a health pack and left it one-turn-too-long for him to survive.

The best thing about Dux’s death was that it gave me another achievement.

There was a save point at the start of that level, so I returned and took a different approach to the combat encounter, and sure enough – got through without too much trouble. By the time the duo reach the ‘lift’ to the ‘Ark’, you seem fairly well-equipped for any further combat encounters, and you are also then treated to a brief narrative which appears to setup the bulk of the game.


The dark undertones of this game don’t really make it particularly family-friendly. It’s not that there’s heaps of swearing or violence (beyond other similar games), but there is a dark undertone that is evident in everything from the background music to the infliction of the character dialogue. I love it … but of course the responsible parent in me wants to make sure the kids aren’t scared beyond of what a mutant duck and pig are likely to do anyway.

Potty Trained — December 14, 2018

Potty Trained

South Park: The Fractured but Whole • Used a toilet and achieved the highest mastery level • 15G • 67.81% of gamers unlocked this

I bloody loved the first South Park game, and even after 20-30 minutes of this one, I can see myself falling in love with it again. This next outing seems to have a slightly higher polish but I’m literally falling asleep as I type this, so let’s assume that I jumped on, polished off the tutorial and came home …

… Daddy needs a nap.

Vagrant’s Rest — December 13, 2018

Vagrant’s Rest

Ashen • Claim Vagrant’s Rest • 17G • 47.58% of gamers unlocked this

I’m not really sure where the future-state of Ashen and me will land, because – to be honest – I can’t quite get my head around the world building that they’re going for. I think in some respects, it is great to come up with a new IP, and try a different path from the countless other Tolkien or Mythology-clones that sit in game libraries, but these worlds come at it from a point which seems to be lost here … accessibility.

I don’t want to write the game off yet, because it has a beautiful art style and the combat – while simplistic – still seems to be something that I haven’t quite mastered, so I think I owe it to Ashen to have another go … perhaps when the ravages of parenting and the lack of sleep haven’t made me quite so bitter with the world.

Nonetheless, these is also one other main driver for going back to Ashen … to fix my gamer score. After enjoying an odd-number score for so long, todays achievement inadvertently rounded me off to 77,330G … which is just outright annoying. It seems like most achievements sit around the 17G mark, so I’m going to have to keep chipping away at it until I can get back to an off-kilter score … but my energy levels just aren’t high enough for that challenge tonight.

There’s a whole weekend of gaming coming up that should fix that right up.

FINISH HIM — December 12, 2018


Mortal Kombat X • Perform 1 Fatality in a match • 5G • 69.48% of gamers unlocked this

It used to be that fatalities were the enigma in Mortal Kombat. They were a clever sequence of buttons and combinations that would be passed on around the arcade, or in my case, the camping ground. If you were lucky, one of the few gaming magazines you were allowed to buy might have had a special on your fighter-of-choice and offered up the special combination, but even then it relied on the finesse to be able to pull off the combo while your $2 was on the line.

These days, it seems, you hold the right trigger and push the X button.

I know that there’s some more elaborate fatalities available in MKX, but really, I’m not going to bother learning any of them when the LT+X gets me the achievement all the same. I’m not an overly complex guy … I like the path of least resistance, and this is it.

I had a go at the story mode briefly, but I couldn’t see anywhere to lower the difficulty setting, so I parked that for the time being. It’s not like the story (the first few levels I played) offered overly complicated fights, but – harking back to my simplicity – I wanted an easy win. If the mood grabs me later in life I might have a go at the story, but to be honest it’s a fighting game … ten titles deep and I’m not really caring about the narrative.

Nichboy posted a tweet about his love of Ashen earlier today, which has made me even more enthusiastic to give it a go, but timing tonight just didn’t work out. Expect this to make an appearance this week, or at the latest, the weekend, for some initial thoughts.

And so, we enter the time of the year where game cleanup reigns supreme … and here I am still trying to finish the goddamn chicken mission on Idle Heroes.