Silent Hill 2: The Second Time

I haven’t kept up with this blog lately. I’m sure it’s the only blog on the Internet with that issue, right? It’s mostly been for good reasons: I’ve been working on a screenplay that I’m pretty excited about and I really want to hammer out the first draft ASAP. But I’m still gaming, so I wanted to speak on that a bit.


My wife and I are playing Silent Hill 2 right now. It’s a game I really didn’t like when I reviewed it. I didn’t find it scary, and a lot of it annoyed me. But recently, Games Radar awarded it the best video game story ever, so I decided to give it another shot. In fact, we chose it over Bioshock Infinite (buy here), which I picked up for $30 a month or two back.

We’re playing the Xbox port – Restless Dreams – which I bought years back at a Hollywood Video closing. Thankfully, it’s backwards-compatible with my 360. It’s also a pretty fun game. My wife hates scary movies, but can handle scary games. Having her next to me, jumping at things, actually enhances the experience. Plus, she loves maps; Silent Hill 2 has awesome maps that are updated constantly as if you’re drawing on them.


Is there a gathering of games more animal-shelter pathetic than the Xbox Marketplace’s Indie Games channel? I like to browse it every so often, and download trial versions of games that look interesting – knowing full well the rate of success is low. Even still, I’ve found some really cool stuff in there: Quiet Please, DLC Quest and Dead Pixels instantly come to mind. Add One Finger Death Punch to that list.

If it was described as Kung Fu with a stick person, you’d think it was terrible. The description isn’t wrong, but it misses all the awesome things. The game is violent, it’s fast-paced, and throws so many interesting things at you. I’m inspired to replay levels until I get gold medals. Basically, it’s Kung Fu with an “if I knew then what I know now” philosophy. And it’s a buck. So if you have an Internet-connected 360, I suggest you buy it. And look up those other games, too – as well as You Will Die, Ophidian Wars, Shoot 1-Up, Fast Fast Laser Laser… Ya know what? Maybe a list is in order. I’ll add it to my to-do.

The Steam Summer Sale was an amazing thing, per usual. The addition of virtual trading cards is just another way to get you to buy more, even though the things are quite useless. I grabbed a few games. To The Moon is an RPG I’ve been wanting forever. McPixel is best described as point-and-click adventure games meets WarioWare. I got some other stuff, but won’t mention them as I haven’t played them yet. I did sink more time into The Binding of Isaac, though. I’m lucky to get to the third dungeon before dying (though I’ve earned several trading cards).

And it’s worth noting that one day, out of all the games I own, I chose to start playing Duke Nukem Forever (buy here). As obsessive as I am, I spent about half my time trying to knock in all the billiard balls and getting a high score on the in-game pinball table – both of which have just terrible physics. But I did actually have fun seeing what Duke’s been up to. Still, it remains to be seen if I’ll go back to it.

And going back to Rock Band 3 (buy here) is what I did last night, around 2 years after I last played it. As my wife played Animal Crossing: New Leaf (buy here), I plugged in my guitar and rocked it for a while. I was surprised both how many songs I have and how quickly I got my skills back. I often play on Hard, and moving my hand along the fretboard was still intuitive.

All About The Paper… Mario.

In a 24-hour period, I completed two games I started a LOOO0000oooong time ago: Super Paper Mario (Wii) and Puzzle Agent (iPhone).

The first was a game I reviewed back in 2007. I got about 11 hours in, but never completed it. Kate and I started from scratch a couple months back, and played through it. It’s funny, adorable, entertaining, insulting, redundant, innovative, ugly, and clever. I’m glad we played it. And I’m glad I had someone alongside me who would help me voice all the characters and read their dialog.

Not sure what we’ll pick as our next play-together game. Driver: San Francisco? iNFAMOUS 2? Silent Hill 2? Zelda: Skyward Sword? Luckily, I can use my as-yet-unplayed Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story as a backlog replacement for the new Paper Mario: Sticker Story.

Puzzle Agent is by Telltale Games, who is keeping the adventure genre alive with episodic titles like Back to the Future and The Walking Dead. This game is closer along the lines of Professor Layton, except the story is along the lines of if Fargo and X-Files had a baby. I rarely ever had a time when I played it extensively, and really the last year I’ve barely touched it. I just fired it up on my new iPhone 5 while synching Kate’s iPhone 5. Four puzzles later, it was over. Okay then.

In other news, I’ve decided to not include any video games on my Christmas list. I originally thought this would be a good workaround for my year of backlogs, but decided it would be akin to cheating. And I’m no cheat… at least, as far as you know.