Survivor

Another World • From bad to worse • Bronze Trophy • Rarity 62.0% (Common)

I feel like Another World has been around on PlayStation for a long time. It has always seemed to be marketed for a nostalgic gaming audience that never really hit my demographic. I, for one, have never seen the game before in my life, and so I’m certain somewhere out there is either a very happy sub-set of gamers who finally can revel in a remake of one of their favourite all-time games … or there’s a fat marketing executive laughing all the way to the bank for pulling off a great scam at the expense of the consumer.

I wouldn’t be surprised if it was a little from both column A and B.

This is a tricky game, and I’m not sure if I can quite decide whether I like it or not yet. I think the premise lies in constant death and quick reload, making changes as you go through to your strategy in order to ‘be better’ next time around, which is normally a strategy I don’t mind, but it might be a case of either being too tricky, or just not my cup of tea. I haven’t decided yet … what I do know is that if I ever get to the end of this game, it’ll likely be thanks to a walkthrough or other internet guide.

Now I have my trophy out of the way, I plan on heading back to Destiny 2 for a little while and just grabbing some engrams and things to keep the wolves-from-the-door. I’m still not sure whether to dedicate some time to my Xbox or my PC characters, but in either case – I am still enjoying the thrill-of-the-hunt.

 

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Quest Completed

Sparkle 2 • Complete your quest • Silver Trophy • Rarity 29.1% (Rare)

I am unapologetic in my love of mindless little puzzle games on the PlayStation Vita. Handheld gaming in general is a huge boon for someone like me. In fact, if the Nintendo Switch had a half-decent achievement system, I could say with some certainty that this would soon be my platform-of-choice.

However, it doesn’t, and it’s not … and so I am left working through some titles from Sony’s “legacy” system … which, after all these years is still going strong.

A little after midnight, I pushed through to finish the “campaign” of the bubble-come-puzzler, Sparkle 2, that felt a need to try and map some kind of story to the overall journey. I suppose it’s a good a goal as any, albeit unnecessary – the journey itself was never a real driver to finish … if I knew there was a set 100 levels, then I would just work towards that goal. Nonetheless, I’m not a game developer, nor am I particularly creative, and so I play the games as-they-come.

Look … I’m not ashamed to say I bloody loved this game. For all of its whimsy, it has solid mechanics and cuts-away any ‘fluff’. It has just the right balance of tension and reward, and it is well-paced in terms of difficulty curve. Something like Sparkle 2 is a good example of what can be achieved when you stop trying to over-engineer a title and just perfect the basics. You won’t find any Call of Duty-style arguments about the length of the campaign here … it is a game about combining small, colourful balls … and that’s it.

Well done to 10 Ton for having the balls to stick with a good concept and doing it well.

There is a challenge mode that seems to be seperate to the main ‘campaign’ which I might be able to have a go at over the weekend – but for now, I’m happy that I got to the end, and I plan to enjoy the catharsis that comes with ‘finishing’ a game.

Chain 12X

Sparkle 2 • Get Chain 12x • Bronze Trophy • Rarity 67.8% (Common)

Yes, yes. I’ve switched back to my old PlayStation account, and so it’s time once again for my ‘have I already used this achievement or not’ dilemma, which I’ll probably find as I (re)venture back to Spider-Man, but for now I felt it pretty safe to select one of the PS+ titles for the month that I was fairly certain I’d never played: Sparkle 2.

I think some of the best games on the Vita are actually the ones that double as mobile games. The kinds of titles you’d find on almost any iOS or Android device, and yet the relationship with a broader gaming ecosystem makes them that much more satisfying. That’s what I hoped for with Xbox’s foray into PC gaming, and I continue to hope all titles do as a matter of course. This does require, of course, a bit more effort from the likes of recalcitrant Sony, but today they announced they’ll allow cross-play in Fortnite, so … you know … ‘baby steps’.

Sparkle 2 is a funny game that tries to wrap a bit of story around a combination bubble shooter and tower defence game. It actually tickles a number of my gaming loves, so I enjoyed working my way up to the first key today, but I wouldn’t say that I’ve mastered it yet – with the 12x multiplier pretty much my maximum streak for the session. Time and familiarity breed better scores though, I’ll get there.

Tonight is actually going to be a PC free night. I’m keeping things lite-on for tonight following some much needed good news today … which I’ll go into greater detail about one day – but for now, it’s back into Spider-Man.

Savior of Ceres

Resogun • Save all humans on Ceres • Bronze Trophy • Rarity 15.6% (Rare)

I spent five and a half hours on a plane today, so I spent my time working through some Resogun and a some other older titles that I’d already earned achievements on (on a different PSN account). I had this one in mind when I fired up Resogun, and I’ll probably use Resogun more than once this holiday anyway, but the short version is pretty much the same as I wrote the other day – save all the humans. Period.

My Vita isn’t connected to the hotel wifi here though, so I haven’t been able to sort out an easy way to get screenshots onto this blog, so I’ve used a good old fashioned stock PlayStation photo to get me through! Looks like it’ll have to be iOS games from time-to-time if I want to keep those pretty visuals!

Savior of Acis

Resogun • Save all humans on Acis • Bronze Trophy • Rarity 17.8% (Rare)

I feel like Resogun was actually the first game I played on PS4 … I remember quite distinctly driving to EB Games late at night, getting my PS4 at launch, driving home and setting it up, and then spending 15 minutes playing a shiny new game on my beautiful new console. I am almost certain that game was Resogun, but now that I’ve gone back and looked at the achievement list, it is only showing up as a PS3 and a Vita title.

This doesn’t matter too much, as I’m playing on Vita at the moment, but it also occurs to me that the achievement lists might be different for PS3/Vita and PS4, but in either event, tonight’s achievement was for something that I probably should have held over until I went away on holidays, but alas, the temptation to find out whether the requirements for unlocking this achievement were really as simple as they appeared were too much. And – the net result – they were really that simple.

While the rest of the internet is frothing at the mouth about Spiderman, I’ve decided to deliberatley (Peter) park(er) playing until I’m back from holiday. For a $100 game, I think I’d rather spend that money on a whole lot of food and drink while lounging by a pool or the beach than have it tied up in a game back home that I can’t play.

And while I’m by the pool … I might even play some more Resogun.

Survivor!

Rayman Origins • Survived a Piranha Pond without a scratch!

I’ve played a lot of Rayman in various forms over the years – but it’s been so on-and-off I haven’t really worked towards a particular trophy. Between different accounts and different games, it’s always been much more of a casual pleasure than on steady rotation, and so when I was playing around tonight and this trophy popped, it seemed like a good a time as any to celebrate.

Ironically, for the hours I’ve put into the game I still don’t consider myself very good! Every time I attempt one of the timed runs (for another one of the little purple creatures) I fall just short or fail miserably. Que Sera, Sera.

Grabbing this trophy frees me up a bit tonight, so I’m thinking a bit more Fortnite or something more shooty bangs on the fixture.

Either way, flexibility is good – as good as a nostalgic walk down memory lane with a good ol’ Vita game to keep you company.

Sticky Start

Super Exploding Zoo! • Collect your first sticker!

And so it begins. The start of a new financial year, and my effort to broaden my horizons. I have deliberately gone with something non-Xbox for the day. In truth, this actually worked quite well considering I’ve spent most of the day out of the house – and so I managed to find something ‘new’ in my Vita library and fiddle around with it for a bit to grab a trophy.

I’m not entirely sure what I’m doing in Super Exploding Zoo! but I suspect it has more to do with just blowing animals up than any real strategy. I’ll experiment a little more over the next couple of days and see if I can work it out.

For now though, I have a shocking headache and all signs point to something viral, so it’s an early night and sleep for me.

Thank God for portable gaming!