GGF#3: Monsters invading my bedroom

[Gamer Girl Friday]

The irony of being a gaming writer/editor and generally working in the gaming industry is that one hardly gets to play games because one gets so busy with work.

I’m reading and writing about games more than I’m actually playing them, which is a dreadful shame. Can you believe that I’m only level 7 in Age of Conan and I got that game about 10 days ago?

Well, I suppose there’s always Rock Band. I try to keep my weekend evenings free to jam with my friends and we’d play till the wee hours of the morning.

I love my life, nevertheless (when I’m not being hassled by idiots).

==================================================

Table of Contents

  1. Monsters invading my bedroom
  2. Enter the World of Wifecraft
  3. Adventures of Sheylara the Barbarian Part II
  4. Ninja Gaiden II gameplay (sneak preview!)
  5. Someone won the mystery prize
  6. Six more days to win Grand Theft Auto IV!
  7. Ask Sheylara
  8. Win a Ninja Gaiden II game!

==================================================

Monsters invading my bedroom

So, the Goonfather has been addicted to the silliest of games for over two weeks now, playing it every night before going to bed.

It’s one of those cheap arcade games you can download from the PlayStation 3 Network for a ridiculously low price, which just goes to show that it’s a silly game.

[All your, um, trees are belong to us]

It’s called Pixel Junk Monsters, supposedly inspired by the ever-popular Tower Defense. The Goonfather claims that it’s gotten the whole world addicted to it.

You play this old man who looks like a cross between a tortoise and a spoon.

I am totally not joking.

[It's a busy world]

Your whole sad mission in life is to repeatedly protect a bunch of ugly-looking baby freaks from getting eaten by wave after wave of invading monsters.

[We are freaks, hear us squeak]

As a side note, I would like to comment that the monsters are infinitely better looking than the tortoise man and his sad babies.

[Panda bears]

Those freakish babies, may I inform you, do not add value at all to your existence as a tortoise man because they just jiggle around in a corner and don’t even lift a finger to help you (assuming they have fingers) and just meekly get eaten by monsters without putting up half a fight.

[Save the trees!]

When I watch the game, I feel terribly sad for the tortoise man (who the Goonfather informed me is not actually a tortoise but a village chieftain wearing a shield on his back). Every second of the game, you’re making him scurry around the screen frantically, performing any one of the following tasks:

  1. Turn trees into artillery towers to shoot at monsters that come close.
  2. Pick up coins and gems dropped by dead monsters before they disappear.
  3. Stand in a tower and do a silly awkward dance rivalling William Hung’s virgin performance. Towers get upgraded when you’ve danced long enough in them.
  4. Unlock new artillery with the coins/gems you pick up.
  5. Try not to get eaten by the monsters yourself.

It’s a simple game that’s not simple, if you get what I mean. The levels get harder and babies get eaten faster.

[Winter is when summer is not]

I don’t know about you, but I’d just let the babies get eaten and then I can wash my hands off ’em and run off to Maui to relax on the beach with all the coins I picked up from the dead monsters.

I don’t know. Some people are just weird.

[Back to Table of Contents]

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Enter the World of Wifecraft

This video is a must-watch for everyone, gamer or not. While being kookily entertaining, it also explores a very serious social problem that has plagued humanity since MMORPGs were invented.

It’s the problem of spousal neglect resulting from MMORPG addiction. This video offers a solution… or not.

It’s not exactly rofl-funny, but it’s very, very amusing. I love how these men have name and guild tags above their heads! Haha!

[Back to Table of Contents]

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Adventures of Sheylara the Barbarian Pt II

Read Part I first

Sheylara and her new friend, Casilda, had been trekking through the jungle for a few hours now. Hot and thirsty, the girls decided to stop for a drink.

[She waited for the brick to fall]

“Hey!” Casilda suddenly shouted out. “I know a shortcut to the city!”

“Why didn’t you say so earlier?”

“Well… it isn’t exactly the safest route.”

“Forget it, then. I don’t want to get hacked again.”

The girls were silent for a moment before Casilda ventured again. “If we took that shortcut, we could get there so much faster…”

“No.”

“But…”

“No.”

“I’ll help you beat away the mobs. C’mon.”

So, it was that Sheylara allowed herself to be talked into taking that shortcut.

[It was a nice and sunny day out]

[The pigs had been at it again]

As she stepped hesitantly through the arched opening, Sheylara had a feeling that something wasn’t right.

She was right.

“YUAAAAAAAAAARRRGHHHHHHHHHHHHH!” was the next thing she heard, and then…

[It was a refreshing bloodbath]

“To arms! To arms!” cried Sheylara. “Flank my right!”

The intended recipient of her cries, unfortunately, had considered and promptly rejected Sheylara’s suggestion of strategic flanking, preferring instead to hang back and offer help by applauding.

[Everyone needs an audience]

“Oooh, fierce!” clapped Casilda, her eyes widening in both fear and delight.

“CASIIIIIILLLDAAAAAA!” shrieked Sheylara, and then she could speak no more.

[The air smells fresher at the bottom]

“WTF,” said Sheylara’s corpse.

“Oh dear, oh dear,” fussed Casilda. “What a mess. You’ve got gore all over your new swimsuit.”

Sheylara would have strangled Casilda if her corpse had been able to move. “I am dead and you’re worried about gore on my swimsuit!?!?!”

“Awfully sorry, mate,” said Casilda. “I’ll, uh, I’ll keep watch here while you release and run back, okay?”

Muttering curses under her non-existent breath, Sheylara released back to her spawn point and started trekking back. She had half a mind to leave the dumb blonde to her own devices, but she needed someone to show her the way to Tortage.

Sighing wearily, Sheylara made her way back to Casilda.

“No more shortcuts!” demanded Sheylara, once kind-hearted and innocent, now still reasonably kind-hearted but not quite so innocent anymore.

“Alright, alright!” said Casilda amiably.

The scenic route to Tortage took the two girls the better half of the day but they eventually arrived at an impressively intimidating gateway.

[Blue skies, nothing but blue skies every day]

“Oooh, the city of Tortage!” Sheylara sucked in a deep breath of awe.

[The city that never sleeps]

Excitedly but reverently, Sheylara pushed open the gate and stepped through.

[The natural city]

“What kind of city is this?” sputtered Sheylara. “There’s nothing but trees!”

“We’re not there yet. This is only the city perimeter.”

“Oh.”

The girls continued walking and came upon a road sign pointing the way to the city.

[That way to the rest of your life]

“I feel cheated,” said Sheylara. “I thought we were there already. I’m tired.”

“Aww, don’t,” Casilda said. “Tell you what, I’ll do your hair to make you feel better!”

“Well, I don’t…” began Sheylara.

She stopped abruptly as the real city gate of Tortage loomed before her.

[She considered the best way to scale them walls]

“Is this is?” Sheylara eyed the structure suspiciously.

“Yes!” beamed Casilda.

“Ooh!” Sheylara danced with joy. “Let’s hurry! I’m dying for a cream soda!”

“But what about that hairdo?”

“I really don’t…”

“You want to look your best when you enter the city, don’t you? Think of the hundreds of barbarians you’re going to meet!”

“Well… okay.”

“Awesome!”

So, Casilda did magic with her fingers and transformed Sheylara into a new barbarian. Her job done, the sometimes hairstylist clapped her hands to her ample bosom and gushed proudly. “It’s sooooo beautiful!”

“Lemme see! Lemme see!” cried Sheylara as she skipped to the nearest pond to look.

[The makeover took a really long time]

“OMG,” said the relatively kind-hearted and still a little innocent Sheylara. “What have you done?! I’m a…”

“Blonde!” finished Casilda.

“But…but…”

“Haven’t you heard?” smiled Casilda sagely. “Blondes have more fun!”

(To be continued next week…)

[Back to Table of Contents]

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Ninja Gaiden II gameplay (sneak preview!)

I know you guys can’t wait for the launch, so here’s a short teaser clip of the Ninja Gaiden II gameplay, showing Ryu Hayabusa fight his way to the first boss!

If you click on the screen to go to the YouTube page, you can select the high quality video option.

[Back to Table of Contents]

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Someone won the mystery prize

Last week, as a side contest, I invited readers to rank the three major consoles in answer to another reader’s question.

I am pleased to announce metal_spider as the winner of this contest!

Thank you for your answer. You win the mystery prize of a PSP pouch!

Front view:
[Front]

Back view:
[Back]

It’s a soft pouch. It looks crumpled because it’s new.

Congratulations, metal_spider!

[Back to Table of Contents]

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Six more days to win Grand Theft Auto IV!

There is still time left to try and win yourself a Grand Theft Auto IV box for the Xbox 360!

[Grand Theft Auto IV]

Click here to read the rules if you’ve forgotten all about it.

[Back to Table of Contents]

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Ask Sheylara

Ask me any gaming-related questions! Post them in the comments or e-mail me, I don’t really care. I will try to answer all questions (unless I get like 500 questions a day).

ToughGuy asks an irrelevant question:

Will you marry me?

Sheylara Says:

Um…. no, not really. Awfully nice of you to ask, though. NEXT!!

Jason Ng asks an Xbox 360 question:

Can you recommend me some Xbox 360 games that are must-buy? Anything but FPS games cos I don’t like them.

Sheylara Says:

Here are some of the more popular non-FPS Xbox 360 titles:

Ninja Gaiden II (coming June 4)
Grand Theft Auto IV
Assassin’s Creed
Mass Effect
The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
Lost Odyssey

Why not try some FPS, though. The Halo series is one of the best-selling titles exclusive to the Xbox and it’s really a shame for an Xbox owner not to have played it. Try Halo 3, the latest in the series, at least!

Bunnie asks a Rock Band question:

I read that you play Rock Band. Can you share how to become better at playing it? I like it but always can’t catch up with the notes.

Sheylara Says:

Uh… how do you get better at anything? Practice lah. For any instrument you choose to play, start with the easiest songs on Easy mode. Play each song until you can get it almost perfect, then move on.

If there are segments that keep causing you to lose marks, go into Training mode and play the song on a slower speed. Gradually increase the speed and practice until you can play it with your eyes close.

Any specific questions and answers you want to read in Ask Sheylara? Well, ask Sheylara! You can use a pseudonym if you don’t want your name to be splashed all over here.

[Back to Table of Contents]

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Win a Ninja Gaiden II game!

Why, yes, I just happen to have another game to give away this week, you lucky fellas!

I don’t want to make it a habit and spoil you, but I gotta give ’em away as I get them, don’t I?

This week’s prize is a Ninja Gaiden II game, exclusive for the Xbox 360!

[Ryu Hayabusa demands royalties for his appearance]

How to win this week’s prize

  1. Tell me something funny or interesting you’ve encountered as a gamer, whether in real life or ingame (no word count requirement).
  2. Post it in the comments here by June 3, 2008, 11:59 pm
  3. A lucky draw will be conducted to pick a winner from all entries.

Once I’ve got a winner, I will contact you via e-mail immediately and try to arrange to give you your prize on June 4 so you can own the game on the very first day of game release!

Exciting, no?

Well, obviously, if the winner is from overseas, you’ll just have to wait till the prize gets mailed to you.

Now, get to it! This contest lasts only four days!

[Back to Table of Contents]

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

I wonder if anyone ever reads this bit at the end.

Because Gamer Girl Friday is such a physically long entry, I have a thought that most people just stop reading halfway and go away. Some might read selectively by clicking on only the topics they’re interested in (since I’ve so helpfully incorporated a very convenient navigation system for yous).

Well, if no one’s reading this, should I be shortening my keyboard’s lifespan by typing away here just for the sake of having a last word?

That’s kind of a rhetorical question, but you can answer it if you like, if only to prove me wrong about there being no one reading this.

Have a fantastic weekend!

[Gamer Girl Friday]