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Everything posted by Alexlotl

  1. On a related note, I've been playing a lot of Streets of Rage 1 this weekend, including an about 40 minute 2p session with my 5 year old, the longest I think I've seen him play a game. I used to play this one back in the day, but haven't played it much as a grown-up. The moveset may be limited, but the enemy AI, the tricks to beating each boss, and the stage layout (rhythm of challenges and energy refills) really makes it stand out. Oh, and the music, of course. My only gripe about the game is that the UI goes right to the edge of the frame with no overscan allowance, which on the a Mega SG means that 5x vertical mode crops a little, 4x is a bit poky, and scanlines look bad with 4.5x scale. Finally worked out how to beat the Twins properly on my last play, and managed to get to Mr X as a result, but died in fairly short order. I still find those damned wrestlers difficult, even when I know the trick to beating them. Going to keep going until I beat it, then maybe make knocking off the whole series my project for the next few months - I've only ever actually beaten SoR 4. I also got tired of my 2.4ghz 8bitdo M30 dropping button presses and getting stuck, so re-applied the firmware to the pad and receiver, the latter of which involves taking the receiver apart with a screwdriver. In theory, I was reapplying the same version that it shipped with, but it definitely seems better after having re-applied it, so who knows.
  2. Alexlotl


    It's a crude approach, but I find that some beans which are unpalatable as black coffee taste good with milk, and vice versa. That can salvage a bad bag. Left to my own devices I tend to just buy whatever says it tastes like chocolate orange and drink it black, but I often get more esoteric stuff when friends and family give me beans as a present.
  3. Yup, you’re right now I re-read the manual. In our defence, it was late, and the manual doesn’t flow very well. Doesn’t explain how we made up another rule, though!
  4. Forgot one! The Tea Dragon Society Card Game: nice little card-drafting game, like a gentler Dominion, well themed both in structure and art from the comic series of the same name. You have to build memories across four season, with each season end being triggered once all four available memories have been made. This basically means choosing between buying cards that do stuff for your deck, or buying memories (victory points, effectively). It sounds a bit like the theme is thinly veneered when described like that, but it really works. A hit with my wife and the eldest.
  5. Kids (9 and 5) are starting to reach the age where some family gaming opportunities are opening up, and they're even occasionally going to bed early enough for some couples gaming time with my wife. Recent plays: Sleeping Queens - the kids gave each other Sleeping Queens and Rat-a-tat Cat for Christmas, but this one stole the show. Fairly simple, a decent mixture of luck and strategy, and it's tricked my five-year old into learning addition sums. Technically this one is 8+ and Rat-a-tat Cat is 6+, but I think the hidden-information stuff in Rat-a-tat Cat is harder for kids to grok than just a bit of simple maths. Throw Throw Burrito - my christmas present from the kids. Essentially a chaotic, simultaneous-play, simple trick-taking game where you occasionally have to throw squishy foam burritos at each other. I'm fairly sure you could play this with a few decks of normal cards and some rolled up sports socks, but that doesn't diminish the fun. Every parent needs a socially acceptable medium in which they can throw things at their children's heads, it's very cathartic. Set - found this in a charity shop ages ago, and my daughter pretty much instantly grokked it and loves it. We don't even have to try to lose, some nights. Ligretto - a car boot find, basically a simplified version of Racing Demons with custom cards. My daughter loves this, and my wife gets crazily competitive. Sushi Go - the Seven Wonders card-drafting mechanism attached to a fairly straightforward trick-building game with a fun theme. A hit with everyone over the age of 5, although I'm convinced they're all putting too much emphasis on pudding. Seven Wonders: Duel - I have had this for years, but never played it! Having added Taj Mahal to my pile of shame, I figured it was one in one out. Had the first game last night with my wife, and we both really liked it. We managed to balls things up in the third age and forget to stop the game after the 7th Wonder was built, but I think that was probably a blessing in disguise, as it spared us any bitterness over anyone losing! This will definitely be played again, and soon. Next on the pile of shame is Favour of the Pharoah, which I think I bought from someone here.
  6. I found the Rio Grande edition of Reiner Knizia's Taj Mahal in a charity shop yesterday, £5. Always fancied this one, with the tiny injection moulded palaces and a fairly handsome board, and the BGG reviews are good, so I reflexively bought it. It's all there and very lightly played. I'm not sure when I'll have a chance to get a minimum 3 players, 60 minutes game on the table, though!
  7. Alexlotl


    So he tested positive for Covid on the 16th, then did a maskless tennis event with children on the 17th? What a hero! I don't believe he had Covid in December - I think the issue here is that the Serbian Government are basically lying on his behalf, which makes this a diplomatic issue. The Judge would have to take their documentation at face value.
  8. Alexlotl


    I'm very much a tennis casual, but for some reason I reflexively hated him from the very first moment he hit the scene, for no reason that I could work out. I've always felt vaguely bad about it, so it's been a delight to see him belatedly justify my previously baseless dislike.
  9. Phantasy Star 1 on the Master System. Properly revolutionary. In 1987, this game had: A gameworld spread over three distinct planets. A cast of characters with defined personalities (not player created, or anonymous pre-rolls), including a female lead and a cat. Fluidly animated 3D dungeons. Incredible graphics and FM sound. All that, and you could genuinely talk to the monsters.
  10. Sega-reprogrammed ports of games by their arcade rivals were surprisingly common, the practice seems to have started on the SG-1000 and stretched all the way through to the Mega CD with Final Fight CD. Strider, Forgotten Worlds, Mercs and Chiki-Chiki Boys on MD are all Sega ports of Capcom titles, apparently done with minimal support from Capcom and lots of guerilla reverse-engineering on Sega's part.
  11. Alexlotl


    Buying instant coffee is like buying mass-market cheddar. Have a rough idea in mind (e.g. mild, mature) then just buy whatever's on offer that week, be it Cathedral City, Pilgrim's Choice or the supermarket's own. I keep instant around as a backup, and always get one of the varieties of "posh" stuff in a tin with a bit of ground coffee mixed in with the freeze dried. Whether that's Nescafe Azera, Kenco Millicano, Lavazza Prontissimo or Illy Classico depends on which one's on offer that week. I think the Lavazza is the best, but it's also the least frequently on offer.
  12. I gave Bernardo the Vice Captain's armband. If Salah gets rested I'm going to be chewing holes in the sofa. I got Watkins in for Foul Ole Ronaldo this week though, so I can't complain too much.
  13. MLiG got that working, although they had to partially deconstruct a GC link cable to make it fit due to the shape of the moulding.
  14. I filled up a basket, but the subsequent queue gave me time for reflection, and I decided to wait until 2023, when I suspect they'll be generally available.
  15. I watched the MLiG video last night, looks very impressive. Shame the dock is currently so under-developed, though. Haven't decided if I'm going to put a pre-order in today, locking up close to £300 until 2023 seems very decadent.
  16. Presumably it’ll work with the inevitable jailbreak firmware, though.
  17. Will digest that MLiG one tonight, got to love those vowel-manglers and their commitment to accuracy. Without having time to digest the epics above, quick question - can you just suspend games whenever, Switch style, and is there any Save State support?
  18. My 14 transfers and captain choices have netted me 64pts, 4.1m in team value and about 490,000 rank places. Not bad. Some of that reflects some short-term choices in my GW1 team (Tsimikas) though, along with some just flat out bad choices (Shaw, Buendia, Targett). Slightly ahead of the top 10k average this week with 54 all out, but a haul for ESR or Ramsdale could change that, as they have high ownership. At the moment it seems to be a story of Bernado Owners vs non Bernardo Owners. Kane can get in the fucking sea, though. Twice this season I've picked premium forwards for good fixture runs (first Lukaku, now Kane) and got precisely cock-all. My brother has just given up and bought Brighton's non-playing £4.4m forward so he can put extra money into midfield, I'm starting to think it's not a bad idea.
  19. We had a BBC B, my first computer - this would be 1984 or so? I’ve no idea where it came from, as there’s zero chance my parents bought it new. We had quite a few games on cassette (no disk drive), with Killer Gorilla, Gorf, Firebug, Acid Drops, Centipede, Chuckie Egg, Repton 3, Thrust, Stryker’s Run and Citadel being some notable highlights. It got difficult to find BBC games in our local model shop though, leading to an unfortunate brief dalliance with the rip-off that was the Home Computer Club. Then one day a few years later my dad found a rubber-key ZX Spectrum, held together with duct tape, at a car boot sale. Suddenly the door opened on £1.99 and £2.99 budget games, cover tapes, and copying games onto D60 on my friend’s twin-deck Amstrad midi-system. We didn’t really look back after that, despite the Beeb looking and sounding worlds better. I still miss its big chunky switch and “booo-beeep!” startup sound. I met plenty of BBC Masters at school of course, but their floppy drives, monitors and lack of non-educational games almost made them feel like a different system. My mum was a teacher and used to sometimes get to bring one home in the holidays, so I was the king of Droom (and learnt the cheat for the driving level from the teacher’s notes). I’d argue the biggest thing to originate on the BBC was the ARM chipset! The Beeb used a 6502 of course, but the ARM1 was initially a BBC Master add-on, and that platform was used for development, evaluation and testing. I absolutely love that the phone I’m typing on right now is a descendant of my first ever computer.
  20. Football: SWOS ‘96/97 (Amiga) Basketball: NBA Jam TE (MD) Golf: Mario Golf Advance Tour (GBA) Speedball: Speedball 2 (Amiga) Beach Volleyball: Beach Spikers (GC)
  21. The SMB mini-games, particularly Monkey Target, were the stuff of legends in my second year student house. I still think the rise of modern boardgaming is directly linked to the death of local multiplayer.
  22. Basically by beating the final boss at different points in the game. There are a number of ways to get him early in the main game, and it's even possible to win a mid-game battle against the boss which you're supposed to lose for plot purposes. Once you've unlocked New Game+ (a phrase invented by Chrono Trigger, I think), which carries over all your levels and equipment, it's quite feasible. NG+ also adds another route to let you battle the boss right from the start of the game. Basically depending on which plotlines you have and haven't resolved, you'll see those consequences played out in the end credits. Plus there's a few just plain goofy ones in the mix too. I love Chrono Trigger, but I'd honestly recommend just playing the game through normally, then watching the alternative endings on YouTube while you do the dishes. They're not substantial enough to be worth the effort.
  23. Ooh, I’ll take a look once we’ve exhausted DuckTales. In the interests of balance, my youngest also likes PJ Masks and Mickey & The Roadster Racers, both of which are akin to living death.
  24. The 2017 DuckTales reboot is so damn good. It's a hit with my 5 y/o and 9 y/o, and I frequently find myself laughing out loud at it. I genuinely doubled up laughing multiple times in the A Nightmare on Killmotor Hill episode, as each character visits the others' dreams. The characters are so well drawn, in multiple senses, with each of the kids having a very distinct personality, and David Tennant is having a whale of a time as Scrooge. Most popular kids telly on there, in our house: DuckTales 2017 Mickey Mouse 2013 (these are anarchic and wonderful, I'd have said I hated Mickey Mouse two years ago) The Owl House (superbly off-message version of child-enters-magical-world trope) Miraculous Lady Bug (French magical girl superhero show which credits its viewers with a lot of intelligence - also on Netflix, but it's a season behind) Between those and the original Avatar on Netflix, it's a good time to be a parent.
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