Sunday, 6 October 2013

Dreaming of a Dozen Dead Ducks

Why, hey there stranger. You like ducks, right? Good, ‘cos I like ducks too. We have so much in common, we should start a duck-club together. We could bring our ducks with us and play with each others ducks. You would like that wouldn’t you? Yeah, I know you would.

No? That didn’t scare you away either? Well, I suppose I should really stop trying to scare you away then seeing as there’s nothing that will keep you away from…

Yeah. It’s time for one of those again.

Having actually completed every game on my list as well as the reboot of Tomb Raider — it was awesome by the way — I was left with very little options but to try my hand at the B-list of games I had. Which wasn’t actually a list but more of a notion of games I had seen somewhere or heard about somewhere. Not a very reliable “list” is what I’m saying.

The first thing on that “list” was a game called Remember Me, which is about as ironic as naming goes considering how utterly forgettable the game was. Super interesting Sci-Fi — rewrite people’s memories whilst trying to recover your own — premise coupled with condescending “Go here. Okay. Good. Now, go here” -hand holding from the start and a very high concept/poorly executed combat engine makes for a mostly annoying experience. Yes, annoying, because that’s the emotion I experienced the most when playing this.

So for whatever it’s worth, here’s my advice to Dontnod Entertainment: Make the combat like the two Batman games — fused with your “Build your own combo’s idea that in itself would make for a kick ass game — and you’re good. Use clever environmental design to guide the player in their path finding, i.e. don’t use giant arrow. Also don’t do those “Resident Evil” -styled cinematic camera angles. I hated it back when Resident Evil did it and I still hate it.

Verdict, 2 out of 5 rubber ducks.

Last Thursday all the designers at my work went out for bowling, which was fun because… well, when is bowling not fun?  The service on the other hand was appalling to the say the least. Whilst I got my Chicken Grand Canyn — When a place can’t spell their own food right, consider yourself warned — burger with added Jalapeños in a reasonable waiting time some of my co-workers weren’t as lucky and had to wait for 45 minutes before their burgers showed up.

Aside for a family seated at the other end of the restaurant we were the only ones there eating and waiting 45 minutes for a damned burger is bullshit. But again, I didn’t have to wait that long so I suppose I shouldn’t complain. Then again, there wouldn’t be that many posts to read here if I didn’t complain, now would there?

The bowling was fun and as expected I sucked pretty badly — having only bowled once before — and lost. Well, I didn’t lose the first game and for the second game, two co-workers played with the bumper guards up making it difficult to judge where I would have ranked had they played without them. But the most important thing is that we all fun, right? Right? Fun, fun, fun, definitely not a serious test of stamina and discipline. No, definitely not. In the end I scored 78 points with the winner scoring 137 points. Apparently the best you can score in bowling is 300, so I suppose I have a bit to go before playing with “the big boys”.

Losing at bowling gets 4 out of 5 rubber ducks. Because, fun fun fun!

When we first moved to England we slept on air mattresses for a couple of months. I remember it vividly because that we also had mice and the idea of sleeping on the floor was… well… concerning.

So whilst I was very happy to get a real actual bed it didn’t have the most comfortable mattress because I could feel the springs poking at my ribs sometimes and in hindsight I now know that I didn’t sleep as well as I could.

So naturally when my wife started talking about ordering a mattress topper I was up for the idea. I became less enthusiastic later on when she suggested a Duck Feather Mattress Topper because I thought “Ducks? Wtf? People make mattresses out of ducks?” but after reading the description which contained words such as “firm and thick” I figured it couldn’t be worse than what we were currently sleeping on.

Verdict, 5 out of 5 rubber ducks.

So, what is it like I pretend you ask? It’s amazing and I would gladly kill the ducks myself to get to sleep on this, that’s how awesome it is. Well, maybe not gladly, maybe I would be a bit hesitant at first but then I would tell myself “It’s for a greater good. These ducks need to sacrifice themselves for the greater good. For my greater good.”. And I might cry a little when I stab them in their duck faces but in the end I would get over once I got to lie on the glorious mattress topper made out of the death of a thousand ducks.

That’s it this time. Did you like looking at my duck? Yeah, I know you liked looking at my duck, didn’t you?

Softboiled private detective Richard “Duck” Wentworth finds…

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