It’s an “away” week for me – I’m currently sitting in my Significant Other’s kitchen in Sydney, air-conditioner thankfully tempering the 36 degrees outside – which means that I’m (somewhat self-)limited to mobile gaming. Sure, she’s got a Wii (and PS4) here, but – with the exception of some Skyward Sword practise a few months ago, I’ve not really tinkered with consoles here… it’s very much her (or rather, her kids’) hardware.

I have tried to make a bit of an effort to clean up the iOS section of The List a bit in the last few months, playing a few games pretty heavily, but my inability to Complete anything (just one good run needed for Monotaur, a 1000 Nagoya Attack game for Space Invaders Infinity Gene, a defined endpoint for Super Tiny Leap, and a lifetime of skill for Pilot Winds) left me a little… well, mopey. In an effort to liven up my interest a bit, I decided to have a little taste of all the games that I’d acquired for that platform that I’d never played before… and there were a few.

Hundreds impressed early, with a beautifully clean aesthetic and smooth gameplay. Forty levels on one plane ride was perhaps an overdose, in retrospect, though I yearn to return to it… if only to figure out what the mysterious messages embedded in the game mean (I hope I can get them re-displayed!). Pivvot was an interesting followup, with relatively swift gameplay making me feel completely cack-handed. I haven’t quite figured out my Completion requirements for that one yet – unlocking everything is a bare minimum – but I’m sure I’ll return to that one soon. Great music, too. Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective certainly looks great, but it appears that the DLC Chapters are unavailable (again, apparently), so I’m unsure what I’ll do about that.

But the bulk of my playtime this week has (unfortunately) been with Nihilumbra. I can’t recall when I snaffled this game, or on whose recommendation I decided to acquire it, but it has been one of the most frustrating experiences I’ve had in years. The last level of the game’s Story Mode conjure more ill-tempered profanity from me than anything in recent memory, with unclear mechanics and twitchy controls getting in the way (hah!) of a heavy-handed monologue that seems like it’s been translated to English from a depressing East-European fable (via a dissimilar African language). I’m determined to Complete this one as quickly as possible, but the Void Mode – super-difficult remixes of the Story levels – is almost tedious in its aggressive hate for the player.

So… I’m not liking it much.

I’ve got another week here, banging my head against Nihilumbra‘s obstinance and (hopefully) some cheerier DS-ing, before returning to Adelaide for a couple of weeks… and I’ve already got a plan-of-attack for my console-time: Dark Souls.

Apparently, I like torturing myself.

Coming Clean (Part 2)

One year and one day since my previous admission (and, indeed, the previous post on this blog), I thought it time to re-engage my writing gear. There’s been a fair few personal changes in the last 366 days: I was (amiably) retrenched by my employer after around seventeen years, and am (still) considering a career sea-change whilst burning my redundancy payout. I’ve also formed a blissful relationship with a Significant Other, and she’s brought a pair of children (and a dog) into my world… a world that, previously, had been free of such non-gaming-things. It’s been a real whirlwind of personal growth, of evolution, and there’s more to come.

The gaming that I have been doing has evolved a little as a result: my Significant Other lives in Sydney, and my current lack of employment has seen me spend half my time there, and half at home in Adelaide. Mobile games are getting a bit of attention, now: the 3DS is getting a bit of love, and so is the gaming platform that shapes the bulk of this post… my iOS devices.

I was never a big Consumer Gadget Guy: I tended to buy electronic gadgets based on the opportunity to programatically tinker with them… which I rarely ever did. Yes, my Clié 710C and an assortment of phones were never really gaming platforms to me: more utilitarian than playful, as anyone who “played” those early Java applets on the Sony Ericsson T630 would know. But one day, almost on a whim, I decided to buy an iPhone 3G, and my Apple lock-in began.

Since then, I’ve upgraded a few times – I’m not a massive bleeding-edge fanboy (despite having waited in line on release day once or twice), and I’m still relatively happy with my current iPhone 5S and iPad 3. And, as pretty much the entire gaming world would know, they’ve really matured as gaming platforms (despite Apple’s lame protestations)… so it’s time to add the bulk of the games I’ve acquired of six years of iOS ownership to The List.

(There are some notable omissions here: I’m not listing my sudoku, Go, or chess apps. I’m not really compelled to “complete” them, which is just as well: I’m completely crap at chess and Go, despite loving them both.)

  • Brain Exercise with Dr. Kawashima
  • Archon
  • Space Invaders Infinity Gene
  • Poppi
  • Noby Noby Boy
  • Osmos HD
  • Bit.Trip Beat HD
  • Bit.Trip Beat
  • Cut the Rope HD
  • World of Goo
  • Minotaur Rescue
  • Today I Die Again
  • Pilot Winds
  • Frog Minutes
  • Minotron 2112
  • Angry Birds Rio Free
  • Alien Zombie Death!
  • Deflex
  • Zen Bound 2
  • GoatUp
  • PicoPicoFighters
  • Monkey Bump
  • Caverns of Minos
  • Jelly Pops
  • Gridrunner
  • FiveADay
  • Rubik’s Cube
  • Lumicon
  • Super Ox Wars
  • Super Hexagon
  • Lost Winds
  • ZooKeeper DX
  • Lost Winds 2
  • Monotaur
  • Super Tiny Leap
  • Middle Manager of Justice
  • Lost Treasures of Infocom
  • 10000000
  • Osmos
  • Hundreds
  • Ghost Trick: Phantom Detective
  • Nihilumbra
  • Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP
  • Pivvot

These, along with some other gaming pickups in the last year (some redundancy-splurges, Games For Gold freebies, and the sublime WiiU triple-threat of Bayonetta 2, Splatoon, and Super Mario Maker) leaves The List with a paltry 143 outstanding games.

Good thing I don’t have a pesky job, then. But I do have a wonderful partner, two amazing kids, and a needy (and adorable) puppy to distract me…