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Sarin's blog

9:24 PM on 06.02.2008

Homebrew Review: Still Alive DS

(Disclaimer: While I have heard that it is possible to play pirated DS games on a DS storage card, I do not condone doing this unless you own an original copy of the game. Or unless the game won't come out in your country for a while. Or unless you can't afford the game. Or maybe if you just want to 'test' it before you buy it. Maybe if the store is a long walk and its raining outside.)

So, you own an R4 or something similar and one day you thought to yourself, “Hey, today I feel like not doing something illegal” Well, you've come to the right place cause I've got a game just for you.

Still Alive DS is an unashamedly blatant port of Portal to your DS, just squashed into 2D. The game revolves around you trying to collect pieces of cake before getting to the end of each level, while watching out for your old friends, turrets and energy balls. If you loved Portal and just need some more Glados, then you're not going to find it here. Nearly all of Glados' lines are ripped straight from Portal but put in a bad context that rips the humour out of them and rapes them against the wall. The only voice acting is the “Well done” or “Excellent” when you finish each stage, and of course, the song when you finish (I won't tell you which song, you'll just have to play to find out). If you want more Portal because you loved how short it was, then you'll enjoy this game because it's short enough for me to finish over 3 days of train rides (a couple hours).

From that last paragraph you may have gotten the impression that the game is no good. In fact, I loved it. The 'story' levels don't actually have a story but that's not what this game's about. But its also not just about the puzzle. There is some skill involved in playing the game as well, once you've figured out how to do the level, it's still not always easy. I found the platforming the hardest part, especially the last level, which is quite unforgiving. I've read that some people find the portal placement awkward, but its not too bad, as long as you realise that the blue portal is easy to place, and the red one is hard (You'll know what I mean if you play it).

Also, when I said that the game was short I was kind of lying. Once you finish the main mode, there's an advanced mode which I haven't finished yet. There's also an editor you can download to make your own maps, or you can just be a leech and use other people's maps, which you can download from the main site (There's about 10 at the moment, but the game's only been out a few days).

The touch controls are solid and the sounds are all ripped straight from Portal, so they work well. Considering this is a (mostly) original homebrew game the fact that it works is surprising, but its more surprising that I played all the way this through without going back to my proper DS games, because it really is fun. If you have a R4 or whatever else, there really is no reason not to get this game. Its free and only a tiny download so go get it.

Score: 7.36

I sincerely apologise for the use of any meme found within   read

6:29 AM on 05.04.2008

Upside to Everything

It is quite possible that I am the one of the only people in the world who really wants GTA IV, has no restrictions on buying a copy, has a console for it, has plenty of disposable income for it, time to play it, but still doesn't have a copy. And it's all playasia's fault.

It's important to realise that I'm in Australia. You've probably heard about the censorship and like a sane person, not really cared. I, however, am clearly not a sane person because I thought it would be a good idea to cancel my pre-order and import a copy from playasia. It seemed like a good idea at the time. I mean, it would be cheaper, it would be uncensored and it would arrive maybe a day later, after all, their website said that they'd be getting their copy in April, why wouldn't I do it?

Because Playasia are cunts that's why!

So what's happening now is my copy of GTA IV will arrive this tuesday afternoon. More than a week after its initial release, and it will barely be any different to a launch copy.

I have bought from playasia before and had no problems but this has severely damaged their reputation for me. I realise that they couldn't help it, but they should not have advertised that they were getting copies in April if they weren't getting them until May 2. It's only a few days but it turns into a week because they won't transport it on a weekend.

Well, anyway I had a reasonably free weekend this week cause I don't have much Uni work this week so it sucks I didn't get to play, but I'm not that pissed because I got to finish my game of Shadow of the Colossus, and I would like to add that I am very happy that I did, because it was a really fun game and had one of the best videogame endings I've seen.

Best Colossus

Also, Wander and Agro make Kratos look like a little bitch.

Yeah I know that was a pointless blog, but God's been on my ass for a while to do one. At least there's a picture.   read

6:46 AM on 04.17.2008

Comedians of GTA IV

So there have been rumours (or confirmations depending on who you trust) that Ricky Gervais is in GTA IV doing stand-up in one of the comedy clubs around Liberty City. Since there have also been reports of multiple celebrities in GTA IV playing themselves and a hint in one review/preview (can't remeber which) to be sure to catch the comedy club routines. I'm putting 2 and 2 together here and saying that there will be more comedians doing new material in GTA IV (maybe bands too?)

Personally I think this is a great idea, though I would prefer that they were on radio, so I could listen while driving, seeing as just sitting in a club listening to comedy might be a bit boring (unless they worked in drunken pool).

GTA IV is looking better every 3.25 hours so at this rate my head will explode on April 24th (give or take a day)

So, are there any celebs/comedians that you wanna see do some new material in GTA?

I'm putting my name down for Dylan Moran


2:57 AM on 04.03.2008

Evil Party of Evilness

You may have already read some of the Hero Party cblogs out by Mecha Jesus, ZeroTolo, Scary Womanizing Pig Mask or Tenro.

Well they reckon they made some pretty good hero parties, but what if they had to face off against multiple villains? Here's my entry into the foray with my Super Villain Dream Team.

1. Only "evil" characters, in the sense that you're playing a antagonist party.
2. You're playing a video game, so you're not in the party.
3. Nine characters that rotate out. You might only have 3 out at a time, but this is the group that enslaves the world.
4. Two man enter, one man leave.

All around good guy, he's a fighter, mage and is pretty much immortal thanks to that triforce of power..
Weakness: Poncy Fairies

A Super-intelligent computer should be able to mastermind our whole operation without too much difficulty, I just have to hope there aren't any cybernetically enhanced hackers around to stop her.
Weakness: Hackers

Domino Hurley
Domino has the charm and the charisma to be the teams bard, boost morale, demoralise the enemy, that sort of thing.
Weakness: Coral Crushers

Zombie Pirate Le Chuck
A natural leader, he could take charge of the offensive. Also this is zombie version, demon version sucked balls.
Weakness: Voodoo Potions

Tank of the group, usually hiding behind his minions, I'd make sure he was on the front lines fighting for his share of the princesses.
Weakness: Being jumped on.

Dr. Robotnik
Evil scientist in charge of weapons development and creation, and also general upkeep of SHODAN.
Weakness: Needs cute animals to power his machines.

Vladimir Lem
I love Max Payne 2 so I had to work him in here. He's a smooth talking Russian Mafioso, I shouldn't have to say more than that.
Weakness: Protagonists who use too many metaphors.

Carmen Sandiago
This Femme Fatale is is charge of seducing all the male protagonists and eating them afterwards and covering the teams tracks.
Weakness: She'd probably fall for James Bond or Rev Anthony

What? Two pirates and no ninjas? I guess we know who the ultimate bad asses are. My second undead pirate and I'm not ashamed of it, Cervantes rocks.
Weakness: Somewhat insane   read

6:53 PM on 04.02.2008

Gaming's Guilty Pleasures: Gaming Blogs

I have a dark secret. It fills me with shame and despair. Many of you will not understand, you will look down on me as inferior, as the scum of the earth.

I enjoy reading gaming blogs

My secret hobby started as an innocent curiosity. I had heard about the blogs, whispers in hushed tones in the darkest alleys. I told myself that I only wanted to see what caused so much controversy, that I could not possibly want to be a part of something so heinous. But, like many, I became addicted. I would visit these sites once a week, then a few times a week, now its more like a few times a day. I have no drive to leave my house to work or socialise, they have drained me of my life, but I still cannot let go. I tell myself I can control it, that by not contributing to discussions that I am not as bad as the others, that I am not really a blogger. But the truth is much worse, and I need help.

Sucked down into the seedy underbelly of the internet, I frequent sites of ill-repute such as Kotaku, Joystiq, and, worst of all, Destructoid. Dtoid lived in relative obsucurity for a while, quietly corrupting innocent men and women unaware of its evil intentions. Luckily main stream, honest media, such as print and TV, where able to expose these blogs and their perverted pleasures, allowing others to avoid them, and save themselves.

Not all is lost however, I find that there may be hope as long as I can teach others of the dangers of experimenting with blogs. Though I am far from recovered, I have begun doing talks at local schools on how to avoid the blog culture, which has become increasingly hard, especially in low-income areas.

You too can do your part to stop this epidemic sweeping the world. If you see anyone, especially children, experimenting with blogs, or any of the gateway drugs such as YouTube and MySpace, don't ignore the problem, it is your responsibility to the future, to ensure that this perversion of all that is good and wholesome does not spread any further.   read

7:29 AM on 03.26.2008

Delayed Intro Post

So, I decided to post a proper intro so that I don't feel like a total outsider when I decide to post (I'm still too scard to post on the forums. I'm in therapy to get me there). This is pretty much just what you'd find out by looking slightly to your right, but I find that hurts the neck a bit, so here it is, for your front-viewing pleasure, my life in point form:

-my real name is Tom
-I generally use the handle Sarin, but its often taken
-I'm a 19 yo uni student
-I'm studying science(specifically chemistry and pharmacology) at Sydney Uni
-I live in Australia so my intertubes take a bit longer to reach you

-Some of my favourite games are:
Grim Fandango
Secret of Monkey Island I&II
Day of the Tentacle
(Add any Tim Schaefer Game Here)
Fallout 1&2
Max Payne 1&2
Vampire: Bloodlines
Planescape: Torment
This is already too long so I'll stop

-Currently playing:
Grim Fandango for 5th time (can beat it in a few hours now)
N (literally playing as I type)
Resident Evil 4

-I get irrationally distressed when game characters have names like Sarin. Saren(Mass Effect), Sareth(Dark Messiah), Saris(Horizons), there are others
-I am willing to pay full price for GTA IV to play it on release day (That's AU$120 = US$110!)
-Games in Australia are a massive rip-off
-Having no friends is laym   read

10:32 PM on 03.13.2008

Grim Fandango Shirt *Update*

Just thought I'd let you know that the GF shirt I mentioned earlier is now back on sale. Since this is looking like a very short post I guess I'll ramble on for a bit.

So, here's why I think this shirt is worth buying multiples of.

Firstly. Its not so geeky that you feel ashamed to wear it. Most people who see it won't have any clue what it means, but they won't imediately assume that its nerdy (not that I mind looking nerdy).

Secondly. It is nerdy enough to get you some mad respect from that guy who never leaves his basement. GF is cult enough that just by wearing this shirt, your showing all of geekdom just how hardcore you are.

Secondly. You don't need to have played the game religiously, recently, or ever, to recognise its meaning. There's no obscure line that only 3 people have ever heard, or character no-one ever met. The style of GF is so unique that its recognisable to anyone who has seen a screenshot before.

Thirdly. It projects. Maybe its just me, but a few times i have seen someone wearing an awesome geeky shirt and wanted to ask them where they got it, but I only realise what it was after I've passed them. The nice big head of Manny can be seen from a distance, giving everyone a chance to comment on how awesome you are.

That's all I can think of at the moment but I'm sure that its the greatest shirt ever for way more reasons as well.

Also, I know it seems unlikely to you if you just read my rant, but I don't work for Bang Bang Shirts.   read

4:13 AM on 03.12.2008

Grim Fandango T-Shirts

So, I was talking with a friend recently and one of my favourite games of all time came up, Grim Fandango. Turns out he hasn't played it which pretty much drove me insane searching through the game stores nearby to find a copy for him.

Anyway, with all my favourite quotes flying through my head and no-one to share them with, I rushed home, rumaged through my old game pile and installed GF again. I've probably played through it 4 or 5 times, but it never gets old. In fact I think i just decided that its my favourite game of all time.

How does this tie in to T-shirts you may be wondering, after skimming over the first part. Well, in my GF frenzy I started looking for T-shirts on the internets, not really thinking I would find any that didn't suck balls, like most gaming shirts. After a bit of searching I found an awesome design that had sadly sold out, over at bang bang shirts. Dissapointed I almost gave up, but luckily I didn't and came across this posting.

Owner of BangBang:
"Hey all, hopefully we'll have the new batch of GF tees by next weekend! The black tees will be printed in a small quantity to see how they come out and we're going to replace the background colour with a burgundy colour. Most of the t-shirts will be printed on Creme so if you want black you'll have to get in quick!"

He's talking about this weekend people. Hopefully this guy isn't just raising my hopes to dash them quite expertly, cause I want me a Manny shirt.

Also, if you are planning on buying one you better get in before me becasue I'll be buying the whole stock.

Also, I am glad to say that is not my, or anyone I know's arm (In terms of look, not spirit).   read

5:33 PM on 03.09.2008

Tim Schafer, Genius

Joystiq has a few interviews up where they challenge some adventure game heavyweights to put their own unique spin on solving an adventure puzzle.

Ron Gilbert, Steve Purcell, Mike Stemmel, Erik Wolpaw, and Ragnar Trnquist, are all merely the set-up for the puchline of Tim Schafer's brilliance.

While I'm no big fan of heavy metal, I must say I am very much looking forward to Brutal Legend. Tim Schafer is a golden god.   read

9:51 PM on 03.08.2008

Massive Fallout 3 Update

Apparently there is an article in OXM on Fallout 3. It has lots of sweet, sweet juicy screenshots and bitter, demoralising text. Apparently people had scans up but they had to go away.

On an unrelated topic Nuka Cola is my favourite drink . *wink*


Also, that mutant must have been doing a hand-stand for that shot to blow his leg off.   read

2:16 AM on 03.08.2008

Fallout 3 OXM Info

New fallout 3 info for those who care. NMA has detailed info up about the article. The scans have had to be removed cause of legal reasons (What good have laws ever done anyone?!), but I found two floating around

Sounds iffy at best in terms of carrying the spirit of Fallout, but I guess it looks fun for a few hours at least.   read

12:58 AM on 03.08.2008

Not My Turning Point Gaming Rig

My first blog post. An orginal title like this should help me stand out from the pack.
Well, you know what my gaming rig isn't. I guess I'll show you what my gaming rig is.

I built my two headed robot baby a few months ago so that's why there's packaging still lying around (and likely to be there for another few months).
So heres the stats:
Intel Core 2 Quad Q6600
Abit IP35-Pro MOBO
XFX Geforce 8800GT 512MB
Creative X-Fi XtremeGamer Sound Card
Antec P182 Case
Two Monitors (For viewing twice as much destructoid)
Crappy 10 year old speakers (To make my sound card useless)

So I guess I don't really "deserve" the contest rig, but I would probably end up taking the contest rig, and giving this comp to my cousin, and slowly train him to become my nerdy apprentice gamer.

Don't bother bitching about how you hate to see people sign up just for the contests. I didn't do that. I've been skulking in the shadows without an account for quite a while now, and I just happened to sign up a day before the contest was announced.

cocks   read

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