jdodson1

Joined 01/23/2012

Partner to Francesca and father to Finley. I work for Bonobos as an Engineering Manager and built the video game site Cheerful Ghost.

2342 Posts

A couple months back I found a good deal on a Wii U and decided to buy it. I've wanted to buy one for a while now and felt the time was right with the Switch being very popular it seems people are looking to get rid of their old Nintendo hardware. The Wii U deal I found had the base system, extra Wii controller, Skylanders pack and a couple extra games included such as Nintendoland, Mass Effect 3 and Ninja Gaiden. All told not the best of games on the system but it did come with Breath of the Wild as a digital download. The unfortunate part of digital downloads is they only work as long as you keep the old owners account on the Wii U, something I wanted to change in favor of mine. Since I plan on playing that on the Switch it's not a huge deal, but a note if you plan on selling something, digital has zero value in a world where you want to resell your games.

It's Strange Coming Back To The Console World And I Didn't Miss It

I've been away from the console world for some time focusing on PC gaming and the 3DS. The Wii U is a good console but I didn't miss the install times, slow load times and general clunkiness of these kinds of disc based IO systems. I'm used to the quick load times of physical NES and SNES carts or blazing fast SSD drives on my PC, Mac or Phone. Heading back to the Wii U is fun but lots of that fun is slowed down by way to long install and load times. Now that most of the games I want to play are installed and updated, it's mostly fine, but that initial hit is painful.

The Wii U And The 3DS

The Wii, 3DS and Wii U share a similar user experience. The ideal of channels started on the Wii and moved to the the Wii U but the best realization of it is on the 3DS. The Wii U and 3DS were released around similar times but the 3DS user interface is smoother and to me seems better. The only real difference is that the Wii U is slower to load things and not quite as intuitive as the 3DS. This might be because I have much more familiarity with the 3DS but the 3DS just feels better as system to me than the Wii U. The Wii U is functional and also very pretty but the 3DS is just a better version of what the Wii U is trying to do, which is make playing games fun.

The Best Part Of The Wii U

The best part of the Wii U are the first party Nintendo games and I wish there were more of them on the system. The lack of awesome games was the big complaint about the system in general, not that people didn't like it, just that it disappointed people in terms of what you could do with it. This isn't a problem with the 3DS and seems to be fixed by the Switch as well and it's sad the Wii U couldn't overcome it.

Super Mario 3D World

One of the first games I wanted to get on the Wii U was Super Mario 3D World and I picked it up on the cheap at this years Portland Retro Game Expo along with a raft of other Wii U stuff. Super Mario 3D World continues the fun Mario 3D legacy but brings up to 4 players on screen at the same time making for some manic-fun gameplay. The first thing I noticed when I played Super Mario 3D World was how beautiful this game is. Nintendo games in full HD are an incredible sight to behold and the Wii U is flexing It's graphical muscles to deliver one of the prettiest games i've seen in quite some time. The only thing that took me a while to get used to in Super Mario 3D World were some elements of the platforming because you need to keep track of your position to not fall to your death. In the end it's not too hard but when you add another player it can get much more challenging.

With Nintendo bringing back the best of the Wii U games to the Switch I hope they do similarly with Super Mario 3D World. It has some overlap with Mario Odyssey but if people want even more Mario platforming, 3D World is a great game to play.

First Impressions Wrap Up

The Wii U is a very interesting Nintendo console and doesn't seem to get much love from gamers and not much more from hardcore Nintendo fans. Because of this I'm really happy to own a Wii U and it's been really surprising to collect for it as it hasn't been very expensive. The Wii U is a strange system with a lot of quirks that I really find endearing. It's the first Nintendo system to do true HD and has some fun elements like a tablet controller that seemed to be done better later as the Nintendo Switch. But since I love weird stuff, the Wii U feels right at home under my TV.


My family owned a Commodore 64 and as such I remember playing a ton of awesome games on it as well as learning how to program by reading code from included software and magazines. Some of the games I played on it were pretty fun such as Gauntlet, California Games and Nosferatu and remember playing Nosferatu for hours even though I never could kill Dracula. Recently the C64 Mini was released and I didn't pick it up because I wasn't sure how it would turn out but it was recently reviewed by Metal Jesus and seems to be fantastic. The C64 Mini includes a lot of games and some I remember playing but the coolest part is that it includes the ability to program it using C64 Basic and load up other Commodore games! He notes they might release another C64 classic with the old keyboard but until then you have to plug in a USB keyboard to use it fully.

Did you pick up the C64 Mini or is this something you're gonna skip for now?


Grim Fandango Remastered is available now on the Switch and Double Fine has a fun video out to celebrate that goes over 8 inspirations for the game. A couple of these were fun to learn, like The Beastie Boys inspired the game but i'll let you click play to find out how.

Grim Fandango is available on every platform such as PC, Mac, Linux, PS4, XBox and now the Nintendo Switch.


This years GDQ Express was awesome and I've been meaning to do a wrap up post with some of my favorite runs and now that GDQ has posted them on YouTube... here it is!

The Cowlitz Gamers' 2nd Adventure by The_Kov in 10.53 - Cowlitz Gamers' 2nd Adventure is a special homebrew NES game made to support the Cowlitz Gamers charity and a limited run of these carts were made. I was fortunate enough to buy one from John Hancock and was really happy to see it run at this years GDQ Express by The Kov. It's a fantastic game and an amazing run to watch but it's also been released on Itch for download! The game designer of Cowlitz Gamers' 2nd Adventure reached out to let me know that the game is now up on Itch with a recommended donation to Life Works Washington that benefits the Arc of Cowlitz. So watch the run, download the game and support a great cause!

https://mteegfx.itch.io/cowlitz
https://www.lifeworkswa.org/donations
https://www.lifeworkswa.org/arc

Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze by SpikeVegeta in 1:28:56 Spike is one of the long time hosts and commentators of GDQ and also a great Speedrunner seen in his run of DK Tropical Freeze on Switch. He uses Funky Kong due to how brokenly amazing he is to run with and Spike makes the run seem incredibly easy. Plus it's fun because Spike is a very entertaining Speedrunner to watch.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VtA0Mr-dUKc

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds by TheLegendofZaheer in 1:25:23 Do you like Zelda? Do you like Link to the Past? Do you like watching the sequel to A Link to the Past run very fast? I beat this game last year and if you haven't played it yet I recommend watching the run by TheLegendofZaheer to see how you can break this game. Spoiler alert, Ravio will never be the same.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A8pXaF0CrQI


I've heard a lot of friends talk about buying Diablo III again on the Switch. I've also heard it's a great port and from Digital Foundry's review, it seems if you want to head back to Tristram with Deckard Cain this is a great way to do it. Plus with the new Diablo Immortal coming to mobile this seems like it might be the best way to play it on the go.


Another bit of news out of BlizzCon 2018 was word of a new mobile Diablo game called Diablo Immortal. It looks to bridge the gap between Diablo 2 and Diablo 3 and so far pricing isn't known but it seems like it might be free to play. I'm not sure how free to play Diablo would work but with the massive popularity of Fallout Shelter and other mobile free to play titles, I wonder if Blizzard is interested in getting in on that action?

It seemed people were expecting news of a new Diablo game but this doesn't quite seem like what people were expecting. If it is a free to play Diablo game that might be interesting if it wasn't too annoying with it's free to play component. That said, this game looks like a simplified Diablo III and i'm not sure i'm really interested in playing that.

Diablo Immortal doesn't yet have a launch date but when it gets one you all will know about it.


In what might be the best news out of Blizzcon, Blizzard finally announced that it will release an entirely new HD remake of WarCraft III in 2019! WarCraft III Reforged will include entirely new upgraded visuals as well as a rebuilt game engine that looks fantastic! WarCraft III is one of the best real time strategy games I've played and it's focus on heroes make it really unique in the RTS space. WarCraft III Reforged is available for pre-order now for $30 for the standard game or $40 for the game plus WarCraft III themed DLC included in other Blizzard games.

I'm a huge WarCraft III fan and this is a day one purchase for me but since there are no pre-order bonuses I think i'll just pick it up when it launches. I really hope that Blizzard allows the base WarCraft III classic available as a free download as the did with the StarCraft HD release but so far that isn't clear.

If you plan on heading back to Azeroth to play WarCraft III Reforged, let me know!

https://playwarcraft3.com/en-us/


Sony dropped the full list of games on the Playstation Classic and it looks great. The only other game I may have added was Spyro, but this list is pretty compelling. Is this something you're going to get now that the Playstation Classic list is in it's final form?

The Playstation Classic launched 12/3/2018 at any store you can find it for $99.99.


  • Battle Arena Toshinden

  • Cool Boarders 2

  • Destruction Derby

  • Final Fantasy VII

  • Grand Theft Auto

  • Intelligent Qube

  • Jumping Flash

  • Metal Gear Solid

  • Mr Driller

  • Oddworld: Abe’s Oddysee

  • Rayman

  • Resident Evil Director’s Cut

  • Revelations: Persona

  • Ridge Racer Type 4

  • Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo

  • Syphon Filter

  • Tekken 3

  • Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six

  • Twisted Metal

  • Wild Arms


https://www.playstation.com/en-us/explore/playstation-classic/


https://i.imgur.com/1m1ckD4.png
Civilization on DOS was the first turn based strategy game I was addicted to. It felt like you could do anything and I used diplomacy, strategic building and nukes to dominate the other civilizations. The turn based strategy genre has a fun history and Civilization is still the king of the crop even now. But what if you wanted that same Civilization flavor but wanted to simplify it a bit? What if you wanted to build an epic Civilization but didn’t want to spend a ton of time learning a complex user interface or build strategy? What if you could play a Civ type game right in your desktop browser or on your phone?

https://cheerfulghost.com/games/civclicker

Well friend today is an early Christmas because Cheerful Ghost is launching an all new game to our BBS called CivClicker! CivClicker is a empire building idle / clicker game you can play right now in your browser. In CivClicker you start out by collecting resources such as food, wood and stone and use those to structures to house your townsfolk. You can choose what jobs your townsfolk can have such as Farmer(to automatically collect food), Woodcutter(automatically gain wood) and Miner (to automatically gain stone). From there the game branches out pretty deeply by unlocking new structures and giving you the ability to take over neighboring villages and kingdoms. It’s a pretty deep game but simple enough to be accessible to play in your web browser.

One of the most magical parts about CivClicker is that it’s an open source project that was created by David Holley in 2013. David’s original work was later extended by fixing bugs and making the interface work well on mobile devices by Scott Colcord and Luke Nickerson. This open source license allows us the ability to give CivClicker a home on our BBS and you the ability to play it right now. I want to thank David, Scott and Luke for their work as CivClicker is a really special game.

Head over to our BBS and give CivClicker a shot and let me know what you think of it in the comments below!

Your First 15 Minutes In CivClicker

To make the game a bit more accessible I’m going to outline your first steps with the game to help ease you into playing it.

Firstly click the harvest button 20 times and the cut buttons 20 times. This gives you 20 food, some skins as well as 20 wood which allows you the ability to build a hut. You need huts to hire hire villagers to work.

You build a hut click the “idle citizens” drop down and select farmers and click the +1 button. This hires a farmer that will start auto collecting food at a rate of 0.2 every second. If you follow this process (by clicking harvest 20 more times for 20 food per farmer) you can add enough farmers to get 1 food per second and onward and upward.

As you add woodcutters and miners realize that your ability for your farmers to gather food goes down a bit so there is a constant need for farmers for a big village. If people don’t have enough food to eat they get unhappy and die so make sure your village is well fed!

People dying isn’t the worst thing but it requires you to bury them at some point or you might have issues with corpses or zombies…

Those are the basics but if you find anything useful drop it in the comments!


Games Done Quick Express is a new charity speedrun from the Games Done Quick community that drops Friday October 26th and runs all weekend during Twitchcon! The charity it benefits is the TwitchCon Charity plaza which supports The Able Gamers Charity, American Center for Suicide Prevention, The Call of Duty Endowment, Direct Relief, Doctors Without Borders, Extra Life, Make a Wish, Save The Children, Saint Judes Hospital & To Write Love on Her Arms. If you are interested in watching some kick ass speedruns for classic games such as Mike Tyson's Punch Out!!, Ocarina of Time 3D, Diablo 2 and some amazing new ones such as Mario Odyssey then tune in to the GDQ Express this weekend on Twitch!

Each year I watch GDQ religiously and am really excited for this event as it looks like a more bite sized dose of Games Done Quick as it's only 3 days instead of a full week. Make sure to check out the stream when it starts on Friday and the schedule and consider making a donation!

https://www.twitch.tv/gamesdonequick
Schedule: https://gamesdonequick.com/schedule/24
Charity Information: https://twitchcon.tiltify.com/


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