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Making this last call a bit earlier because I'll be out starting tomorrow, December 27. Because, you know, it's already the 26th. Right now. So yeah, if you want to join, just say so in the comments section below. I'll stop by every once in a while whenever I have internet, so rest assured I'll still see your comment. But I'll be back home (where I have a PC to work with) on December 1. Because of that, we might start a day after instead (December 2). So you have until then to sign up.
In the meantime, I got Dtoid forum admin and fellow C-Blog posting person OpiumHerz to be the deliverer of everyone's gifts, so you won't know (right away) who sent you that copy of Bad Rats.
Basically, what will happen is once you have your gift, send it to him on Steam and he'll then send it to your recipient ASAP. No, this is not a scam ;) Rest assured, if he screws up, we agreed that he'll surrender all his forum admin powers to me.
So add him on Steam beforehand: http://steamcommunity.com/id/OpiumHerz/
Current list of participants:
Hyper Lemon Buster Cannon
Occams Electric Toothbrush
Robo Panda Z
Solar Pony Django
Once we start, I'll post another blog and PM everyone on what to do next. We'll have a small activity to know who you'll give your present to ♪
Serendipity is a word that I never get to use ever in a sentence. It is a term that means a "pleasant surprise" or as I like to call it, a "happy accident". When it comes to games, I too had my fair share of happy accidents, enjoying games I got in some giveaway or coerced by a friend to try it, games I would never have decided to check out for myself.
This happy accident, the joy of trying new things, this is something I want to share this Christmas season. And I wish for you all to experience and share this feeling too.
This is inspired from a dumb thing we used to do in school as to assure that everyone in class gets a Christmas present. Yes, even that weird kid that no one likes who eats lunch alone.
What if I was that weird kid???
So our "Secret Santa" was a little bit different. What we would do is buy our gifts prior to knowing who we'll give it to. That's because you'll pass your gift to a random person. It lead to scenarios where a guy gets an NBA jigsaw puzzle when they don't even like Basketball, or getting girls cologne but you're a guy. While it sounds awful on paper, I think if we do this for videogames it can be quite interesting, discovering games you've never heard of or ever thought of playing. And through blogs, you can share your experience with this newfound game.
We will follow a similar format:
1. Buy a game you want other people to suffer through experience. You're free to pick any game, but I would suggest something relatively obscure and not a lot of people have tried yet. Since this is just for a fun little blog thing, I would advise not to spend too much on it. I myself am planning to spend no more than $10-20 for my gift.
Digital games, by the way. Like Steam or whatever.
2. Everyone will be assigned a random person to give their gift to. You'll find out later how we'll go about this random draw.
3. I (or to not spoil the surprise for myself, some third party, who will also handle the random draw) will PM each participant with:
a. Who to give their gift to; and
b. Who to expect a gift from (just to make sure you don't end up adding some random stranger on Steam)*
You're then free to send your gift anytime once you recieve the PM.
*We can also do what we decided in the forums (which follows the more traditional format) where there would be a "deliverer" of the gifts as to keep things more "secret". Everyone sends their gifts to that person and they'll then send it to your target recipient.
4. Once you recieve your gift, you'll have to play it no matter what it is. And because we're a blogging community, you then have to write about your experience with said game.
We'll start on December 1. Next week, I'll make a last call for anyone else who wants to sign up.
- Intermission -
As an update to my previous post, two days ago,
WE PASSED OUR FINAL THESIS DEFENSE!!!
Well conditional pass. Still a ton of revisions to the document (as expected, really), but the hard part is over. It's as good as done. This means I'll finally graduate from college early next year! Just 3 more leftover classes to finish.
While I'm not quite fond of using internet memes and image macros, this one in particular I believe is a close approximation of how I feel right now. That burden you had to carry these past four (almost five) years, (almost) off your shoulders. Those groupmates of mine and our adviser are trully unbelievable in every sense of the word and I literally wouldn't have made it without them.
Current list of participants:
Hyper Lemon Buster Cannon
Occams Electric Toothbrush
Robo Panda Z
Solar Pony Django
I haven't been very active in the C-Blogs lately, aside of upvoting a couple of blogs, at least not as active as I want to be. In fact, I don't think I've posted often on the FP as well and I apologize for that. See that V sign? Yeah, that's not a V sign, that's a two. That's approximately the number of weeks I've been out. Been on the forums as usual though and maybe you should too maybe. You can talk about whatever, videogames, annie may and maybe not the current controversies going on in gaming media. Please.
So... life. It like, happened, you know?
I find it hard to believe that I've been going in and out of this university for almost five years now. If we're only concerned about my academics and the time I spent as a student, I can't exactly say that these past five years have been much of a highlight for me. The past three in paricular I'd say has been the most soulless and unfulfilling part of my life so far, as my interest in this college course gradually tapered off to the absolute zero that it is now, and at the same time, I struggle to find what I really want to do in my life instead. The closest friends I had in that establishment were literally the only reason why I still kept going to school and now that they've graduated on time earlier this year, I hardly have any motivation to continue nowadays, let alone perform well in my remaining classes.
With that said, I find even harder to believe that all of that is now one step closer to coming to an end. Because somehow, last Wednesday, me and my three groupmates managed to submit our completed thesis document, one of the last few things I needed to accomplish before I graduate. Three copies in a brown envelope, received and stamped by some lady in the office and submitted 20 minutes before the deadline. It's rushed as hell and will probably require a ton of revisions, but I still find it unbelievable that we actually made the deadline. Such amazing crammers these groupmates of mine are. We probably made way more progress in these last two weeks than we did in the past three months. Say what you will about our horrible work ethic, but I am very much happy and grateful to have these people as my thesis group. Without going into too much detail, I can honestly say that if it wasn't for them, my college life would've been over three years ago.
The trip back home after submitting the document was a strange one indeed. I know for a fact that I was ecstatic at that moment. I was in a dream-like state of disbelief after what just transpired. But I couldn't express any of those emotions because I was way too tired and exhausted. Then I got home and slept for 18 hours.
Thesis defense is on Wednesday and I don't have high hopes for it, to be honest. I don't think we'll be off the hook just yet but regardless...
Some of the blog stuff I plan to accomplish:
Yeah. This was supposed to go up during the Halloween season.
I have another one of those Play-giarisims coming up, probably the last one for a while. I've already run through a good portion of the newest and top games lists and I don't have enough material for yet another one after this. Need to wait until I have a newer set of games to look at, especially ones that are actually worth commenting on. I mean, there are like a million Minecraft clones out there but really, there's not much to say about any of them aside from looking and playing like the real thing and having some variation of "craft" in their title. I gotta say though, as someone who's not much of a fan of mobile games, browsing the Play Store and making fun of the dubious games you find on it has been one of the more entertaining uses I found for this tablet of mine.
In the meantime, why not go check out the first two parts of this series, now would ya?
Part 1 | Part 2
I couple of months back, I posted the first part of what was supposed to be a full playthrough of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix for the GBA. Unfortunately, you won't be seeing anymore of those because I'm not longer pushing through with it. *click* There goes the screenshots.
I think I overestimated the game's ability to be hilariously bad enough to be worth writing a series of blogs on. I started working on the second part not long after I posted the first one and desparately scoured for things to say about it. Suffice to say, there hardly were any. This might as well be one of, if not, the worst game I've ever played. It's the worst kind of bad game, the one that's not even bad in an entertaining way and is just plain boring and unremarkable.
For 4-5 hours, you go through 20 something chapters which more often than not comprise of you being told to go to some place, while being sidetracked to do a bunch of minigames. Some of them include: match the pictures, press the button on screen, connect the dots, click on the thing when it lights up, and something-like-what-you-do-in-DDR-where-you-press-the-button-when-it-reaches-that-part-of-the-screen, whose proper name for that kind of gameplay completely escapes me right now. You also have an RPGs fight every once in a while where Draco and friends are literally the only three enemies you fight for the entire game until the finale.
At around the end, the game even becomes self-aware and expresses pitty for the person who decided to play this game to completion. So yeah, I've had enough of that. Plus, at this point I don't recall some parts of it anymore which means if I do want to finish this blog series, I'll have to play through it all again.
With Christmas season right around the corner, I am planning to do another playthrough of a some RPG I haven't played/finished yet, something that became sort of a tradition I do every year. With the game I have in mind, that means I have to make another dumb character again, which I'm pretty terrible at. So this time, I'm thinking of inserting someone I know into the game. I'll turn them into a girl.
Speaking of Christmas, we're organizing a Secret Santa for Steam/Digital games in the forums. Just a fun little thing to do for the holiday season. Maybe you can join in if you want to. I dunno. Its your life. You make the decisions. You're a big boy now. While ironing out some of the details, I thought of doing a similar activity for this C-Blog community to mess around with for a bit. Something about exchanging obscure/shitty games and writing about your experience with it. Stay tuned. I'll post it within the next few weeks maybe? Though I can really put it out now and start building up a list of participants.
I have many other stuff in mind, monthly musings, personal stuff, whatever, that I can't share yet since I haven't done much work on them aside from "Yep. That's the title." Hopefully, I can get them all out before... wow, six more weeks before this year ends.
Till then, see you around ♥
Part two of what I expect to be a very short-lived series.
Read part one here: Google Play-giarism: Knockoff King of Fighters
I've been very on and off when it comes to drawing as a hobby. During the earlier half of this year, I tried to make an effort in practicing how to draw on the computer using this cheap graphics tablet that I've had lying around the house for quite a while now. I haven't really done much past June. The last thing I did was this drawing of Valerie from Pokémon X/Y.
As you can see, I've got a long way to go before this is done. The outlines are rough and not yet finalised, it's still lacking in detail and I still don't know how to colour properly and efficiently. I gotta get around to finishing it someday and overall get better at this. She's supposed to be holding a Poké Ball. For some strange reason, I keep gravitating towards Pokémon gym leaders whenever I'm looking for a character to draw.
While practising and searching for better drawing techniques, I suddenly took an interest on reading about art plagiarism. As someone who's just starting out of course I often looked at or even tried to copy already existing works. I realized that that might not be the best way to go about things if you really want to get good. Using an image as reference is one thing, but tracing over or completely copying an image or even just a part of it is another.
Poses are another thing I greatly pondered on because you really can't claim ownership of certain poses, especially common poses that almost everyone does and aren't that distinct. I haven't really found a definitive answer to it, but I figured that it's alright to recreate a pose from a piece of work so long as it's, of course, not a direct copy or trace and that it's not a pose that people immediately attribute to said work, like a character's trademark pose for example. Stuff from JoJo or Power Rangers come to mind.
Wait. What was this blog post about again? Right, Google Play Store knockoffs. Well in relation to that, here are some examples of how not to use an image as reference.
Horde of Heroes
Clearly inspired from Castle Crashers, looking at the body proportions in addition to the helmet shape and design (which itself was based on the classic Knights Templar design).
While I could say that the pose came from this knight's pose in the lobby screen, it could've been from any raised shield, charging medieval knight man picture out there, to be honest. The game itself doesn't look too shabby though.
Doesn't really require much explanation. It really does look like they drew (or traced) the 2D art themselves, though it still doesn't make it any less of a ripoff. I wonder if the non-TF2 characters are also borrowed from somewhere else? Like with the previous game, the game itself doesn't look half bad. It's some sort of turn based strategy game.
Battle Of The Saints II
Just one look and I can already tell it's from Warcraft. That's basically the Dranei logo with the bottom portion cut out. Crossed axes and "shield" from the Orcs logo. Frost marks and horizontal rod from the Scourge logo.
Looking at the screenshots, the requisite sexy female RPG character also looks familiar. Her outfit is incredibly similar to the one worn by the requisite sexy female RPG character from Shaiya, some free-to-play MMO. I only know about that game because every other internet cafe here had that poster. Gameplay-wise, it looks like your typical Diablo clone.
How to Train a Draco: The Game
It's not just fellow games that get copied, of course. The title of this one sounds like an M-rated Harry Potter fanfiction. Welp, there it is. Why am I not surprised?
Not exactly the same pose but clearly inspired from it. Note the visible tail, symmetrical wing position and the asymmetrical arm position. Toothless is in a more descending angle in the original.
Oh, what's that in the background? It's twin-headed dragon, skinny dragon and chubby dragon.
Aside from swapping and editing their colour scheme, they also decided to steal another image for Jerry, which is kind of weird since he's already doing a similar pose in the one where they took the Tom image from. Also notice how Tom's left arm, right index fingertip and the end of his right foot are hidden from view because the original image didn't draw those parts as well.
Super mary Go
Raccoon mario from the box art of Super Mario Bros. 3, but the shape of the legs suggests that it was traced from the New Super Mario Bros. 2 version instead. This thing's a Flappy Bird, by the way. I can probably make a whole article on Mario clones, but there's really not much to be said about them really. But you gotta give credit to the one guy who had the balls to just straight up name their game "Super Mario". Now that I think about it, you could actually do that because the original was called "Super Mario Bros". Sleazy but smart.
Super Sonic Runner
I'm really starting to run out of things to say about these. I will give them extra points for ripping art from a not so famous Sonic game, Sonic Rivals. It took me a bit longer to find the exact images that they used. Unlike...
Vampires: Todd and Jessica
This is literally the first thing that comes up when you type "Twilight" on Google image search.
You know, considering that one of the key selling points of the game is to play as your favourite anime characters, there really was no point in mixing and matching them like this. I gotta say though, something about the combination of short pink haired anime girl and Attack on Titan uniform is really doing it for me.
The game itself uses what is either fan-made or stolen anime game sprites. The Naruto one on the sample screenshot is clearly a rip from Naruto Shippuden on the GBA.
Tune in next time where we'll talk about game titles, sound-alikes and word salad!
Just a random thing I'd like to point out:
There's quite a bunch of these RPGs that put a frame around their icon just so that the girl's boobs will pop out of it, giving it a sort of 3D effect. Xich Bich. Heh.
I love free.
There's been quite a lot of giveaways this year, some are quite good, some of them you claim just to run them in the background to get free Steam trading cards. Wasteland 1 - The Original Classic looks to be part of the former.
This particular one takes a bit more effort though as the website that's offering the game for free to new members is in 한국어.
As the resident foreign language expert person who's super bored enough to figure this out, I was going to guide you in how to get a 26 year old game for free, until I found out that the promo just expired right when I was about to publish this blog! Not even sure if it was an actual promo that I got into right before it ended or a bug in their system that was immediately fixed when the word got out.
Now I'm sad. I even took screenshots and everything! Just look at it:
First, go to this website: https://www.directg.net/main/main.html
See that thing on the upper-rightmost corner of the screen that says 회원가입? Click on it.
You're now in the sign up page. Those things with the check boxes? Those are the terms of service. You don't even attempt to read them and just check on the boxes like you normally would.
Click on those two white buttons after filling up the forms. You're not allowed to use special characters (like !) for your password. A popup box will apear for each of them. Just click "OK". Click on the orange button when you're done with everything else.
This should appear afterwards. If not, try changing your username or password.
Go to this page: https://www.directg.net/mypage/order_list2.html
Click on that box and recieve your free Steam key!
I don't want to leave you guys empty-handed, so instead, here are some sites you can regularly check on to (potentially) get you some (potentially) awesome and completely free games in the near future!
Indie Game Bundles
Recently renamed to BundleHQ, it's a very reliable place to go for news about free PC games and game bundles from multiple other sites. That's all there is to say about it, really. Gives clear instructions on how to get said free games.
Amazon Free App of the Day
For mobile, obviously. Very hit-and-miss, but what did you expect from a service that gives away one paid app every single day. I got some cool (but really old) stuff out of it like Sonic CD and Another World. Not exactly the best platform to play those on but I digress. I'd say it's worth a look every now and then. It gives away more than just games.
Raffles you can enter for free! Well, kind of. This is open for anyone who has at least $100 worth of games on their Steam account, which means most of us, really. Whenever anyone creates a giveaway, every user is awarded with one point which they can use to enter giveaways (which vary in price of admission). So basically, you can win free games by doing absolutely nothing but wait for points and click on giveaways to enter. Sounds too good to be true but I can attest to it's legitimacy. I won a copy of Psychonauts from it. But because of my terrible luck, that's the only thing I've won so far. It's still on the user on how they go about in awarding you the prize so it pays to be extra careful. I personally made a dummy email account just to be safe.
This site is also apretty good indicator of what bundles are currently available as most people just give away leftovers from Humble Bundles. Also, when there's a sudden flood of one particular game, you can bet that it's being given away for free somewhere else and people are just capitalizing on it to increase their CV (Contributor Value. Total undiscounted value of all the games you've given away. Giveaways can have a CV requirement so fewer people can get in which means higher odds of winning.)
Guilt-free gambling. What else could you want?
So yeah. That's that. Now to write an actual blog post...
Mobile gaming is no stranger to knockoffs. For every Angry Birds, Flappy Bird or 2048 released in the market, there are several dozens or even hundreds of games piggybacking off someone else's success story by being almost exactly like them. One doesn't even need to be a popular figure on the same market to spawn imitators. Brand recognition goes a long way in making people notice your thing and no name devs trying to make a quick buck would latch on to anything that has that.
Here's a fun little game you can play on Google Play or any app store: Type names of popular franchises and see what comes out. Let's start with...
Oddly enough, you get lots of King of Fighters knockoffs instead.
Now this one seems to be quite popular. Our man in the icon seems to be a mix of Ryu, Kim Kaphwan and his son Kim Jae Hoon.
Same pose from Street Fighter II's intro, similar uniform, similar hair.
Kim & Joe. Definitely not a direct sprite rip or edit, but the resemblance is there. Notice Taekwondo man's right arm and feet, and Muay Thai guy's hair and shorts.
Minus the fact that you have to play a 2D fighting game with an on-screen joystick, this one doesn't look half-bad. Though unoriginal and even traced at some points, the game assets do look like they were made and not stolen.
This one looks pretty good, actually. Looks like a beat 'em up with some RPG elements to it. The art style looks rather nice as well, especially since it doesn't look like a rip off of something (as far as I know).
Can't say the same about the title screen though.
Not all knockoffs can be as crafty or half-decent as the first two examples. Get used to games like Mortal Street Fighter Club. Title tries to remind you of better franchises. Icon contains stolen characters/images, including but not limited to Bane from The Dark Knight Rises and "Guy from Ong Bak" from Ong Bak.
As for the game itself, well...
Behold as our brave champion prepares to enter the womb of her horribly mishapen and unevenly skin toned adversary. "Perform impossible maneuvers" indeed.
"Cheating properly" was one of the more important things I learned in high school. That is, if you're going to copy information from the internet for an assignment, you better copy from multiple sources. That way, with a little bit of editing, the teacher won't even notice that it's plagiarised.
Looks like the makers of Kung Fu Street Fighter have yet to master this skill.
The head, hair, upper torso, lower torso and projectile of each character come from different things. It seems rather fitting to combine Ryu's upper torso with DBZ pants. No idea who armor guy is supposed to be, and why there's three of him on the screen.
Can't find a gif of the exact Ryu sprite they used. I'm guessing it's from SVC Chaos. Also, I think the less said about character portraits, the better.
Also appearing on the search results are these Ninja Fighter games. I've seen three of them, one also has screenshots from Ninja Gaiden while the other took screenshots from the Naruto: Utimate Ninja series. Since the preview images are obviously stolen from other games, it does make me wonder what this game actually looks like...
- Realistic visual effects and the world’s best battle music.
- Slide the screen can be rotated gamers perspective.
- Very easy and responsive game controls.
- +Puzzle +Block game+ Memory game etc.
- Competitive multiplayer to show the world your greatness.
- Adrenaline rush guaranteed."
Last on our list is King Of Fighters Death. Once again, screenshots not representative of the actual game. App description, enlighten me please!
"This is a high-definition picture with fighting hero themed wallpaper program, if you have a childhood dream of doing tough guy hero, then download the program, and the inside of the picture as your phone wallpaper,, let myself not to forget childhood dream!eighteighteen eighttwenteen"
It's a wallpaper collection...
Animated sprites from The Fighters Generation.