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.


4 Move Win! — December 2, 2018

4 Move Win!

Quick Tic-Tac-Toe • Won a game in 4 moves

There’s something quite cathartic about noughts and crosses … but there’s also a sense of relief that comes with being able to earn an achievement while your internet is out for three days (technician scheduled for Tuesday).

This one was fairly simple, and it goes to my default noughts and crosses tactic of the ‘L’ shaped manoeuvre. I’m not going to beat around the bush … it’s an unstoppable tactic, and when even the computer AI struggles, you get a great sense of accomplishment.

Without the internet, I haven’t played a heap of my consoles today, so it’s another win for iOS.

Level 10 — November 29, 2018

Level 10


Rocks and Rockets • Start the level 10 (sic)

It’s not an uncommon phenomenon to have so many games to play and no real interest in playing any of them. I’m sure some psychologist could point to Freud or Pavlov or Maslow and reference some psychological phenomenon, but truth is it’s just a byproduct of contemporary society. The spoilt-for-choice culture has now inundated us with options, that our mind begins to shut-down and wants to choose none of them. Where it used to be the bastion of the gamer and their Steam Library, good ol’ Netflix, Stan and the variety of other streaming services have brought this condition to the masses … and aren’t we lucky for it?

As a result of this ‘mood’, I’ve settled for a quick-and-dirty game of Rocks and Rockets … which is a ridiculous indie title, but it has achievements so there. I wanted to play some Destiny 2 tonight on PC after listening to the latest IGN Fireteam Chat, but one round of Gambit (which I lost) was enough for me, and so I’m left clicking through the Steam store and seeing what options there are.

Spoiler alert: it’s not much.

Sometimes the universe is just telling you to go to have an early night and go to bed.

No Encore! — November 19, 2018

No Encore!

Guacamelee! Super Turbo Championship Edition • Silenced El Trio de la Muerte permanently • 15G • 14.27% of gamers unlocked this

I think a bit like Thomas Was Alone, Guacamelee! has an uncanny ability to position itself in a player’s brain so that – unlike other games – you retain the muscle memory and ability to play it after a long, long absence.

Tonight was a training night, and I am utterly exhausted after two competitive runs on the weekend (three if you include the kids’ dash I ran alongside my son in!), and so I wanted a quick indie that I could just let my mind wander in as I pursued any progress achievement I could. Guacamelee! fits that bill nicely, and while I wouldn’t say the slog to both get to El Trio, and the battle with them itself, was very easy – it was entirely satisfying … the perfect gaming combination.

I’m planning to be back in Red Dead tomorrow, but if I can’t find a poker hand, then there’s a good chance I’ll have to find myself a backup achievement.

Watch this space.

Snakes on a Plain — November 11, 2018

Snakes on a Plain

Snake Pass • Received a Gift from Bol-Dur, Earth Gatekeeper • 30G • 11.34% of gamers unlocked this

Just a progress achievement today, so nothing really of substance here … the kids were overly tired today (so was I!) after our huge day yesterday so we struggled through the afternoon on the couch, with a brief interlude for some gaming.

This achievement kicked in at the end of about level four, which I think is a good pace for achievements like this. It really does seem ridiculous to be clocking in this achievement when I have so many AAAs here to play, but I have to balance my ability to write this blog as well! So I’m going to write about something I can lock in rather than one of the games that I have to ‘experience new’.

Speaking of which, I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was quite excited about a spot of Hitman 2 tonight!

Gated Progress — November 10, 2018

Gated Progress

Snake Pass • Fixed the First Gate • 10G • 76.92% of gamers unlocked this

I am so overwhelmingly tired that I’m not sure how to write this.

I’ve dropped my phone three times falling asleep writing.

Take my word … I earned this achievement today. Mission Accomplished!

Golly Gosh! — November 9, 2018

Golly Gosh!

Rick and Morty: Jerry’s Game • Popped 500 Balloons in a single game • 10 points

I love Rick and Morty. For a long time, I actually only knew about them as a vague pop culture phenomenon in the same style as South Park or Family Guy, but when I dedicated a bit of time to watching it, I really loved it and now I’m no longer left in the nerd wilderness when it comes to certain Rick and Morty memes or phrases.

This game, however, eludes me.

I’m not sure if there was an episode I missed where Jerry was playing this game, or if he designed this game, and it’s quite possible that in watching the entire series thus far back-to-back that I have glossed over some of the smaller details seeded in the episodes, but I’m really not sure how this fits into the overall universe. It’s possible it doesn’t, and this is just a random play on the character of Jerry, which actually makes a lot of sense, but I just wasn’t sure where this landed in terms of context.

Not that it really matters I suppose, because, at the end of the day, this is a game where you pop balloons … and not much more. I can see where the appeal lies in this game because it has some stretch goal achievements built into it, but I figured 500 balloons is probably enough for one lunch break.

Tonight is likely to be more Red Dead, but I’m starting to see some movement in the Hitman space as well, so if that’s dropped, then I’m going to sink some time into that as well this weekend … in among a whole heap of other ‘flurry’ that’s happening. Least of which is a Christmas parade which my family is looking forward to, whereas I could see myself using that time more effectively in smashing through the RDR2 campaign … all part of the journey of life, I guess.

Ho. Ho. Ho.