For the Puppies.

Unlocktopus — December 8, 2018



Airscape: The Fall of Gravity • Unlock a Containment Level

It’s Christmas Party season, so naturally that means my whole evening is hijacked with one or another party for one or another political event or social group. All that means though is that some good planning needs to be put in place – or, as is usually the case – the fortuitous overlap of a new game and an achievement in the early hours of the day.


Airscape was one of the few Steam games kicking around in my library that looked ‘OK’, and it had some achievements in it so I downloaded it without too much resistance. I was pleased to see this was fairly family friendly little puzzler, given it took about two minutes from me starting the game for my kids to come running into my study, wanting to sit on my knee, and either wanting to have a turn of the game, or make me start an episode of Peppa Pig on my second monitor.


The premise is essentially: you are an octopus, you need to solve a few puzzles to rescue other octopus. The end. There might be more to it than that, but I doubt it … even by the end of the first section the levels were getting fairly complex, so I suspect that it’s a matter of riding the steep learning curve for the duration of the game. And you know what? For a mindless little puzzler that’s OK to play with my kids – I might just do that.


I have high hopes of wrapping up these parties early, going home and playing some uninhibited Red Dead Redemption 2. I have high hopes – but not so high on getting an achievement, so it’s nice to get this out of the way early.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to go and be social.


Congrats! — December 7, 2018



AIDEN • Quest 1 Completed

I don’t know what it is about the use of small, young girls in video games to invoke a sense of terror. I suspect it has something to do with The Shining, the Grady Daughters and their impact on the horror genre, but in any case – I can say with some authority that being the dad of a small, young girl … I think they earn the moniker of being utterly terrifying.

I don’t know what AIDEN is about. I just don’t know. It seems to be a puzzle-lite game, but the motivation behind the protagonist needing to escape, what looks to be a school, is really left up to one’s imagination, at least in the early stages. There is a note in the first room that gives you a brief overview of someone escaping, but that’s it really. I don’t really know, but I suspect this is more of a student project than a genuine indie release. The ‘first puzzle’ involves finding something crowbar-esque and then opening a door to find a key. Once you leave this room, you then find yourself confronted with the aforementioned terrifying girl, who says something about the thing at the back of the class not agreeing (or something like that), and when you turn to see the end of the school hallway, you are promptly killed by … a thing.


I suspect that the low number of achievements in this game account for what should be a series of short, sharp puzzles designed for completion in a single playthrough. It seems like multiple deaths to uncover the ‘perfect’ run is where this game slots itself in terms of game mechanics, and that’s fine – I look forward to the challenge of 100%’ing it – but I certainly won’t be bending over backwards to recommend it as a source of AAA-level quality.

As I say: Every game is an experience.

Welcome to the club buddy — December 1, 2018

Welcome to the club buddy


Africa Hunting • Start the game

I can’t work out if this game, Africa Hunting, is supposed to be racist, funny, or a little from both column A and B … but in either event, the game was a 9MB download that had eight achievements – all of which I earned at exactly 1.17pm. I think that probably tells you all you need to know about the complexity of this game.


Still, I’m thankful for games like this, because it offers me twenty minutes of escapism, gives me some achievements, isn’t a huge download and it allows me to tick off my achievement for today. Everybody wins! Tonight is our local Carols by Candlelight, so there’s a good chance that I’ll be home too late to play a game and write a blog entry, so I’m pleased that I was able to lock-in this one today.

Ho, ho, ho.

Merry Christmas! — November 27, 2018

Merry Christmas!

Screen Shot 2018-11-27 at 3.28.13 pm

Hatoful Boyfriend: Holiday Star • Get to the end of the first episode

I am travelling with work today, so I’m taking a break from Xbox or console gaming, and I left my Vita at home … so it’s time for a bit of Steam Gaming on my Mac! Yes, yes, I know the age-old joke about gaming on a Mac … but I’ve been doing it for a long time so far, and I’ll probably do it for a long time yet. Sue me.

I’ve spoken about Hatoful Boyfriend before, having played it fairly extensively over both PC and Vita, but the Christmas Special Edition is … well … it’s no different really. The difference is, that this version seems to be a bit more linear, with ‘episodes,’ rather than a branching storyline. In either event, I have no idea what’s going on during the game itself … instead having to rely on well-crafted plot summaries from Wikia pages.

In either event, I’m not criticising. This was enough to get me over the line today – and I’m fairly happy with that. I don’t need to rehash my take on visual novels … it’s a well-beaten path … but needless to say, I’m happy with where I ended up with things today. And the best bit? I have a nice little sample of other episodes to go!

A Place where there is No Darkness — September 24, 2018

A Place where there is No Darkness


Orwell • Complete Episode Two

I have had a hell of a day. To cut a long-story short:

  • Both kids up at 3am
  • One kid very sick
  • One kid in peak tantrum mode all … day …
  • One wife now very sick
  • Father-in-Law air-lifted to hospital with chest pain
  • Mother-in-Law staying with us while FIL on-the-mend
  • Sick kid just had a major bowel evacuation that required … cleanup.


So, this afternoon during a quiet patch I headed back to Orwell. It seemed less time-sensitive than other games, and there was no risk of being ‘logged off’ (think: Destiny 2), so I fired it up, and when there was a chance, I did a bit of data-mining to see what I could find. Turns out – I saved a whole bunch of people from another explosion.

I feel like that level of effort is appropriate for a day like today.


Even after a month off, I still feel like the drip-feed of narrative offered by Orwell hasn’t left me wondering what’s going on. If I’m honest, there’s probably a few main characters that I need to be reminded of, but the interface of Orwell gives you enough information to jog-your-memory that it’s not an insurmountable barrier.

And so, the journey continues. I have half-a-mind to jump into a Gambit match or two in Destiny 2 before bed just to unwind, but that 3am start … well, boy … it’s a killer.