Tagged: of 2014

Of 2014: The Most Watched Videos (on my Channel)

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With over 168,000 views in 2014, my YouTube channel is more popular than GameLuv has ever been. I should probably be turning every post I make into a video but text is way easier to bang out and I don’t have a “camera ready” personality. So, with very little shame I present the “winners” for ‘Most Watched YouTube Videos (on my channel)’.

Battletanx “Snuggle Bear” Nintendo 64 Commercial (5,252 views)

For a video that was up for just over half the year, this commercial for a largely forgotten Nintendo 64 game sure drew the views. Is it because it’s only 35 seconds long? Is it because the thumbnail sports a plush, cuddly rip-off of the Snuggle brand Snuggle Bear? Or is this game more fondly remembered than I thought? I wish I knew because I’d love to post more videos this popular in 2015!

Body Harvest Pt. 01: Greece, Stage 01 (3,045 views)

I think a lot of people came to this one out of curiosity. I’m no expert on collective consciousness but it seems like the word is slowly spreading on this proto-Grand Theft Auto game and people want to take a look. But they don’t want to look for too long; the other 9 parts of the series only have 3,000 views collectively and the count trails off as it gets to the end.

Special mention goes to Part 10 for being my most commented video of 2014. This is where I get stumped by the game and give up playing, disappointing all who had come so far to see an ending. Maybe some day I’ll cheat my way through it and put an end to this black mark on my name. Eh, maybe.

More Split Screen Earth Defense Force 2025! (2,855 views)

I have no idea why this video was so popular! Katy’s videos combined barely gathered 700 views but this 50-minute chunk of us playing split screen with a crummy headset between us nearly hit 3,000. Such are the mysteries of YouTube view counts.

The New Tetris (2,195 views)

Now this one I totally understand. The New Tetris is the best Tetris in my opinion and if people didn’t come snapping at it to see its hot visuals then they stayed around for its amazing soundtrack. I wasn’t able to monetize it but the music is just too good to cut out in order to make a few pennies.

Action! Adventure! Shortcuts! It’s Beetle Adventure Racing (1,931 views)

This is another one I completely understand because 1) Beetle Adventure Racing is outstanding and 2) people really want new arcade racing fun. The real mystery here is why it got 241 views on August 5th when it was published five months earlier with an average of eight views a day. Was it reddit? It was probably reddit.

Of 2014: The “Free” Games

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One thing I tried to do in 2014 was come up with a better term for the games you get when you keep a paid membership to a service.  Calling them “free” games and putting a major emphasis on the quotations is the easiest but it isn’t being totally honest. Rights-limited-access Games, no. Fringe Benefit Games, no. I dunno, I guess we just keep calling them “free” and everyone agrees that we all know they aren’t really “free”.

Despite finally getting some goods from Microsoft, 2014’s “free” games weren’t all that great. They basically served as confirmation that I didn’t like a bunch of games I was curious about. Aside from Binding of Isaac I won’t be re-upping my memberships to hold onto access to many of these games. Here’s just a quick thought on each as I run down the list of all the “free” games I played.

Ooh! What if we call them Gimme Games? No? No.

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Xbox 360 and Xbox One

Chariot
Another pleasant indie puzzle platformer. Played alone it’s not so much fun so I stopped.

Crimson Dragon
All the fun of a Panzer Dragoon game crippled by the constant nagging of modern free-to-play design; microtransactions, limiting “energy” and repetitive grinding.

Deadlight
Love the art style and setting but the control never feels reliable enough to enjoy the dressing.

Max: The Curse of Brotherhood
The analog sticks stand in well for the traditional motion controls and the game presents an enjoyable, if mild, physics-powered puzzle platformer.

Strike Suit Zero: Director’s Cut
A sterile and boring space shooter with all the fun of anime nonsense for a story.

Super Time Force
Neat time mechanic and internet humor. Despite being only a few hours long it still felt like it overstayed its welcome.

Volgarr the Viking
Yup, that’s Rastan alright! A great, punishing throwback of an arcade game.

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PlayStation 3 and Vita

The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth
1000% more secrets! I like everything they did with this long-in-development expansion… except for the music.

Borderlands 2
More like Bored– eh, you get the joke. I don’t like Borderlands.

Doki-Doki Universe
A unique adventure game akin to Scribblenauts or LittleBigPlanet. You might learn something about yourself too.

Luftrausers
Not as bad as I initially felt about it, it’s a decent way to kill 35 seconds and maybe unlock something new.

Muramasa Rebirth
Umm, just not my thing anymore. Loved the art though.

My Singing Monsters
Sculpting a tune over a series of days was neat. Ultimately just another F2P “game” I bored of quickly.

Puppeteer
Ultra gorgeous art, frustrating control. Really a shame because I wanted to dive deep into this one.

Quiet Please
An enjoyably simple adventure game with an appreciably simple goal.

Smart As…
… an idiot. This game made me feel pretty dumb. It also took way too long to load and restart.

TkX
That sure is Tempest. I’m no good at Tempest.

Unit 13
Almost up to snuff with the action of a Splinter Cell or Metal Gear, this Vita launch game is pretty bland and I dropped it pretty quickly.

 

 

 

Of 2014: The Bundle List

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I don’t have a bundle problem! Ok, I might… a little, but I don’t think it’s as bad as it is for some folks. All told, this sprawling list of 117 games only cost me about $30. The really shameful part is that I only played the 25 highlighted games but I did give away a bunch of codes on the GameLuv Google+ page. In fact, there might still be some free codes tucked away in the list down below!

Of the ones I did play it was the Humble Japan Bundle that I was most pleased with. None of the three games (One Way Heroics, Unholy Heights, Gigantic Army) lasted terribly long but each was a fun experience I knew nothing about. I even posted about Gigantic Army, persuading readers to check it out before the bundle ended.

I was also happy to finally play Type:Rider which tells the oft-ignored history of typography and fonts through a mostly enjoyable 2D platformer. I got to check out The Bureau: XCOM Declassified which could’ve been on par with Mass Effect 2 if it hadn’t had so much trouble in development. I died over and over and over in the full version of Neo Scavenger, a game I’ve played the demo of countless times. And I finally got to dig into Prison Architect. It needs to be a complete game but what’s there is surprisingly fun to build and wrangle.

Groupee

  • Blood of the werewolf
  • Gateways
  • q.u.b.e.

Humble Bundle

  • Alpha Prime
  • Antichamber
  • Arma 2
  • Arma gold
  • Arma tactics
  • Beatbuddy
  • Bioshock (gifted, to you!)
  • Bit.Trip Runner (gifted)
  • Bridge Constructor
  • Bridge Project
  • Broken Sword 2
  • Dreamcast Collection
  • Dungeons of Dredmor complete
  • Dust
  • Euro Truck Simulator
  • Fez
  • Giana Sisters (gifted)
  • Gigantic Army
  • Gone Home (gifted, right now!)
  • Guacamelee
  • Gunpoint (gifted)
  • Hack Slash Loot
  • Hammerwatch
  • Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet
  • Luftrausers
  • Magical Diary (gifted)
  • Monaco
  • Monaco (gifted)
  • Neo Scavenger
  • NiGHTS
  • Offspring Fling (gifted)
  • OlliOlli
  • One Way Heroics
  • Papers Please
  • Paranautical activity
  • Pinball FX2 tables: Civil War, Balance of the Force
    Excalibur, Mars (OMG, gift for you!), Doctor Strange, Captain America
  • Prison Architect
  • Race the Sun
  • Ravensword: Shadowlands (gifted)
  • Sequence
  • Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed
  • Starseed Pilgrim
  • SteamWorld Dig
  • Symphony
  • Take on Helicopters
  • Teleglitch
  • The Bridge
  • The Bureau
  • The Darkness 2
  • The Swapper
  • Tower of Guns
  • Trainz Simulator 12
  • Type:Rider
  • UFO
  • Unholy Heights
  • Wildlife Park 3

IndieGameStand

  • Derrick the Deathfin

Blink Bundle

  • Archon Classic
  • Blockland
  • Eldritch
  • Gnomoria
  • Hero of the Kingdom (gifted)
  • I have no Mouth… (gifted)
  • Influx
  • Light of Altair (gifted)
  • Lilly Looking Through
  • Mutant Mudds Deluxe
  • Sideway New York

Indie Gala

  • 1000 Amps
  • Aeon Command
  • Arcane Worlds
  • BeatBuddy (gifted)
  • Dead Hungry Diner
  • Depth Hunter
  • Dinner Date
  • dUpLicity
  • Famaze
  • Flight of the Icarus
  • Hippocampal
  • Lucius
  • Megabyte Punch
  • Mini Moto Racing EVO
  • Night Shift
  • Pressure
  • Puddle
  • QbQbQb
  • Rise of Flight +DLC
  • Saturday Morning RPG
  • Shad’O
  • Solar Flux
  • Storm in a Teacup
  • Super Cyborg
  • The Ship
  • The Sun at Night
  • Victory: The Age of Racing
  • War on Folvos
  • Where Angels Cry

Bundle Stars

  • Adventure Park
  • CT Special Forces
  • Fortix 2 (gifted)
  • Gomo
  • Gray Matter
  • Hotel Collector’s Edition
  • Infinite Space 3
  • QuestRun
  • Rescue: Everyday Heroes
  • Zooloretto

Indie Royale

  • BeatBlasters III
  • Corporate Lifestyle Simulator/Zombies.
  • Dead Bits (gifted)
  • Etherlords I and Etherlords II (gifted)
  • Farm For Your Life
  • Legends of Aethereus
  • Soul Gambler (gifted)

Of 2014: The Most Next-Gen Things I Did

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While we’ll never live in the future we sold ourselves on in the past, 2014 did provide some impressive strides toward a magical sci-fi world.

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Xbox Play
The most useful of these advancements has been the reliability of the phrase “Xbox Play”. I can now resume a movie while walking back into the room with hands full of food and drink. The other voice commands still feel flaky and I don’t find them that useful but the play and pause phrases have been indispensable.

Fast Moves and Fifteen Year Old Games
I played a digital version of a European copy of a 15 year old game that let me emulate swapping out music CDs, sold 100% legit from Sony. I’m happy to finally own Vib-Ribbon but even beyond the game it’s great to see Sony able to make it all happen in the span of a few months. It makes me hopeful for quicker turnarounds on everything going forward; old game re-releases, indie games and AAA’s alike.

Everything IS Connected
When we were kids we all wondered why “Sega tapes don’t work on a Nintendo”. That miraculous cross-console box is still a dream but I did do an amazing cross-platform thing in 2014. Playing from an app on my phone I was able to pose as the collective police force of Chicago in Watch Dogs against players on five different platforms. Beyond the platforms it was amazing to interact with other players in an entirely different, controller-less way and still have a major impact on the experience.

Not every next-gen thing I did was a positive

HDistractions
It used to be you could tell which doors you could and couldn’t open by their textures. Door with a modeled knob: open it. Door with a knob drawn onto a low resolution texture: keep moving. Watch Dogs was my first experience with this in 2014 and it led me down almost every alley, pointlessly trying to open every door like it was the first time I’d played a 3D action game.

VR is Real… and I can’t see it
I finally got to try out the Oculus Rift… and it made me pretty sick and didn’t do much for me. When it comes to strapping a screen to your face I may fall into the disabled gamer category as my eyes don’t focus correctly up close. Eye strain doesn’t leave much time to appreciate that VR is finally real but maybe a future version of the hardware will help. It’s neat but not necessary in my life.

 

Of 2014: The ‘I played some mobile games?!’ List

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What is the world coming to when I — Touchscreen Naysayer No.1 — play enough mobile phone games in a year to warrant a list of them?! This was originally a moanful free-to-play list but that trend is so ingrained nowadays it’s not worth highlighting. That I put a ton of time into games on my phone is way more noteworthy so let’s do a little rundown.

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Watch Dogs Companion: ctOS
Status: Still Installed
This is the kind of multiplayer experience I want! The app syncs you up with someone playing Watch Dogs (on any platform) and puts you in control of Chicago’s police force to throw obstacles at them while they try to complete a checkpoint race. It has its own level system with unlocks and achievements and was an all around magic moment of technology in 2014.

Disco Zoo
Status: Uninstalled after months of not playing
I expected nothing less than pure, simple addiction from the makers of Tiny Tower and that’s what I got. This one throws in a memory-style puzzle game to fill the ranks of your ever-expanding pixel zoo. It was simple enough to play for 20 seconds at a time and enticing enough to come back to for a few months.

Dragon Coins
Status: Uninstalled after months of not playing
Coin Dozer meets Collectible Card Game meets RPG. It was a great combination of gameplay that had me strategizing individual coin drops and building up my preferred deck of monsters. It was fun but after a few weeks the endless slog of replaying old battles revealed itself and I mostly burned out.

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Smash Hit
Status: Still Installed
This one is still on my phone because it’s absolutely gorgeous to watch. A simple rail shooter where you launch balls at abstract shapes, it has amazing lighting and wonderful physics simulation (and destruction).

Trials Frontier
Status: Reluctantly Uninstalled
It offers so much Trials for so little I didn’t ever feel the burning urge to buy the newest console version. Maybe they made it too good. Nah, if it were I’d still be playing it but after months of fun challenges I finally hit the brick wall where absolute perfection is required. That’s not something I enjoy working for on a touchscreen so I reluctantly removed the game. It sure was great for a good long while and by far my favorite mobile game of the year.

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Disney Tsum Tsum
Status: Still Installed, Rarely Played
It’s like Bejeweled if it were made out of squishy plush Disney characters. The floppy physics adds a fun wrinkle to the typical fast-paced puzzle gameplay and the steadily improving power-ups enable higher and higher scores. Another one that was fun for months that I now only play very rarely.

Word Puttz
Status: Uninstalled
Minigolf and word games, a combination of two things I love that I never would’ve expected anyone to make. From the You Don’t Know Jack folks, it was great to have a single player word game but then they introduced an evil A.I. opponent that I could never beat. Fun for a bit but those timed challenges ruined it for me.