Call of the Sea: Chapter 2 Looking For The Ladder

I’m really enjoying this game. The narrator, Norah is a cool, calm individual. She takes everything in stride.

I was temporarily stuck, then logged out and when I went in fresh the next time, I found five things I had missed on my first examination of the Expedition’s shacks and surroundings. That’s quite a bit to miss. A person has to slow down and do more pixel hunting to be sure to succeed in a game where clues abound.

I am now stuck in a different way, when trying to climb down a rope ladder, my character freezes. I tried re-loading but still frozen. Not sure how to get past that.

Never fear! I wasn’t actually stuck. Norah starts down the ladder and stops, but you’re supposed to inch her down the rest of the way with the S key, doh.

I’ve now made it to Chapter 3. There is so much to see, my note book is filled with drawings and notes. Not as much goes into that Journal as I’d like.

Here’s another ladder just to go with the post title:

Ha, in Chapter 3 there’s lightning and thunder, and all these lamps that look like a person in a distance between flashes. I can just imagine me screaming and boring my way right through the roof if a person does show up.

Really enjoying the game!

Call of the Sea: A Classic Adventure

I picked this up at the Winter Steam sale and have just started it.

Norah Everhart is on an uncharted “island of death” alone, looking for her husband who disappeared in June of 1934 while on an expedition to find a cure for her unnamed disease.

Though the expedition was well supplied, she has only found small abandoned supplies and camps (so far).

In classic adventure style, she has a great journal which refreshes your story as you go.

She finds helpful notes left by someone. I liked this one so much, I put it in my own journal I always keep when playing such a game.

They might want to hire me for my drawing skillz on the next game…

My first real puzzle is this combination lock type totem. I haven’t solved it quite yet.

Simple controls:

WASD to move

Tab to open journal, up and down, left and right arrows to move around in the journal.

Move in close to get an EYE to look at items, or a Hand to interact.

Somehow I wasn’t paying attention when they said how to SPRINT. Oh well.

In true adventure game style, Call of the Sea maintains tension via the story itself, and the exploration of an unknown land where others have disappeared.

Throwback Thursday: The Greatest Adventures

Video games exist in their own universes, telling a story, inviting you into an adventure.  I wanted to list my favorites of all the in-game adventures we’ve had.  My husband and I played all but one of these and more together.  Typically he “drove” or moved us around, while I wielded guns and wrenches against an onslaught of bad guys and monsters.  I always take it personally when my character is attacked, so in addition to providing all the screams, my self-preservation instincts kicked in plenty and got us out of tight spots.   These games formed us both as gamers.

These are my personal favorites:

 

Tomb Raider

The adventure of any lifetime in rambling trap filled tombs.  Wild leaps to safety or death, enemies galore, and something I always love, endless ammo.

 

 

System Shock 2

We weren’t familiar with the first game, so we trusted The Good Doctor Polito, and were shocked indeed by Shodan.   I think we played more than once and tortured over the stats we should pick, making this unlike anything else we had played.  I loved hacking those doors, under considerable pressure as The Many crept up behind you.   The whispers of those creatures, heard in advance of their getting to where you were (insert screams here).   It was so scary I remember us trying to hide on a bunk bed once, holding our breath, hoping they wouldn’t notice us.

 

Alone in the Dark

Apparently we wanted to be scared more, scream more (truthfully it was always me) so we picked up this haunted house exploration story.  The graphics seem very blocky today, and I’d loved to see them modernize the game.  The story, the music, and a couple of sequences of things crashing through windows  were almost too much.   A mystery to be solved,  finding of clues and objects as you went.

 

Oblivion

One I played on my own.  I really could have used my husband in the Ayleid tombs, which just were too scary, again ambient noises being the thing.  I had to listen to cheery, upbeat music any time I went in one.  This was my introduction to the Elder Scrolls, I hadn’t played Morrowind or any others then.  I found the world to be rich and life like, just incredible.  I loved going in bandit lairs to loot their goodies.  I eventually had all the houses and they were filled with weapons and armor and alchemy ingredients.  Except for the initial shack, those places were beautiful.   I had favorite npcs to sell loot to.   I’d wander all over the countryside exploring and picking flowers.  I didn’t want to close all of the Oblivion Gates or finish the main storyline because it was such fun to loot those.  I had a crush on Martin so I wouldn’t finish the main story line and leave him to his fate.   I know many like Skyrim best, but Oblivion is still my favorite.  Another game that needs to be remastered for modern computers.

 

Star Wars Dark Forces

This we played together.  What a great game for being immersed in a Star Wars adventure.  We developed all kinds of strategies for creeping out quick to draw fire then pulling back and making the bad guys come to us.  That’s one thing about a single player game, you can save often and re-do a fight or move, learning as you go.   With this one, I recall we’d just go around the next corner to see what was there, let’s just look at the next level, then go to bed.  One a.m. blam! blam! blam!

Happy New Year from The Last Chapter!

World of Warcraft

After having so much fun working in Neverwinter, I had to break to do some of the Winter Veil activities.   Just as with the last couple of holidays in World of Warcraft, I approached the many requirements half heartedly.  There are too many activities for this busy time of the year, and having three PVP ones is a real pain.

So I did the gnome/battlefield one, entering the Isle of Conquest for the first time ever in a skimpy gnome Santa outfit.  Because I’d lose my gnome form if I shape shifted to my feral cat form or a bear or moonkin form for that matter, I had to go in as my Elf Self transformed.  I used my secondary talent set for which I have no talent never ever having used it…restoration.  I can confess here because I feel guilty that I was concentrating on my toolbars and skills and when I entered the battle ground I went in marked dps as always.  I suspect this saved my miserable gnome hide from instant death because I just looked like the only Santa gnome in the place, but not a falsely labeled one.  Shame, shame.

WoWScrnShot_122213_141805

We tried some dungeons as a guild to get some of those achievements.  Only I and my husband and son and nephew dungeon dive, others don’t.  So we did a few, just us, to test things out, then got in the dungeon finder queue.  Unbelievably our first one had this Pin Brain From Mars who was critiquing everyone’s dps and skills and blah blah blah.   Obviously we were doing fine and didn’t need the Head of Bone and we should have drop kicked him sooner, but we waited till the end.  Luckily the next guy was just normal and we sailed along.  Not so confidence inspiring to those who we can’t talk into dungeons at all most days, and to me playing my dread rogue who I know is just awful, thanks for applying the brown sauce.

I’ve been running my shaman through some dungeons trying to level her up to use in the group instead of the rogue.  I’ve had trouble with her in the past which is why she is my lowest level class.  The dungeons in the 50 levels are just torture.  I am always so grateful to qualify for Hellfire Peninsula at 58.  I have been running into one after another of what I call “draggy tanks”.  They aggro one group of mobs then just chain drag them and everyone else through the whole place. Gack.  THEN there was the gnome who was playing his healer with his tank on follow or was it the other way around.  Nobody but me spoke up and said how bizarre that was, and when he died immediately because his following character got stuck on a wall, then everyone died…I got dungeon deserter for leaving that fun time behind.  How I love dungeons.

In an effort to have my spouse help me with a Winter Veil quest, I logged in his guy to just get him set up.  Lo and behold he has an in game email from the devs inviting him to try Raiding.  Hello?  He’s never going to try raiding.  Did any of my characters get it? NO.  Grrr.  Not that I’ve been raiding either but I do play.  

raid invite 2

Rift

Aimlessly working on my Pyromancer in Rift.  Am at level 24.  I was trying to do every quest in Silverwood but I couldn’t stand being there forever so I made sure my gathering skills were to level, finished what I could and stepped over the border into Gloamwood.  It is all gloomy and spidery, not looking at all like Duskwood from Wow but having that ambience.  A nice change and I feel like I’m making some forward progress.

Dearth of Games for PC yet again

I was thinking this year how in years past there were always maybe five games out in the fall I wanted badly and I’d ask for them for Christmas.  I can’t even think of the last time I asked for a computer game.  It is not as if there are a bunch on another platform I’d be buying either if only I didn’t love my keyboard/mouse so much.  There is not much of interest released if Action/Adventure is your genre.   I do not count those stoopid find the hidden picture puzzle games as Adventure.

There are a few upcoming lists with some possibles, but not much.

Board Games

New additions this season are Forbidden Island and Carcassonne.  I and my team mates liked both and appreciated the cooperative nature of each.  We are going to see if we can’t re-institute our board game day here, maybe we can eventually lure in others on a regular basis.  Snacks and board games, hard to beat that for entertainment and relaxation.

Repopulation

They’ve got my attention with the new game trailer and Kickstarter for the Repopulation.  They are sidestepping what I thought was a hardcore pvp game and practically stepping out of the video saying if you loved Star Wars Galaxies pre-NGE you will love us play play play!   Am I someone who could resist that?   I’m supporting the Kickstarter and if they bring that puppy up I’m going in for a look.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/therepopulation/the-repopulation-a-sandbox-mmorpg

repop

Happy gaming in 2014!   Atherne and the crew of the Last Chapter

Puzzle Adventures

I loved all of the early RPG adventures I played.  I enjoyed the combination of story and puzzle.   Two of my favorite series have Kickstarters:

7th Guest: the Collector

7th guest kick

and from the creators of Myst a whole new game  Obduction   (just a few days left, jump in there NOW!)

obduction kick

I’d love to see these succeed not only so that I can play through a game written by developers who created some of my best game experiences, but because if you look for an “Adventure” game now you find a timed hidden picture puzzle game.  These have some plot to them but the action is constantly stopped with another hidden picture scene, and these become boring and repetitive (do you PLAY so that you can deal with boring and repetitive or would you like to leave that behind at the end of your work day?)

Let’s go beyond these and think our clever thoughts.   Here are a few things for you to read so that you too begin wishing for more clever adventures:

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/feature/131326/designing_and_integrating_puzzles_.php?print=1      What makes a good puzzle game?  Classical Adventure Games.  Action-Adventure Games with an Emphasis on Action.  Mixed Action Adventure Games.   The Golden Rules for Integrating a Puzzle.  Integrating a Movement Puzzle.  Integrating a Goal Puzzle.

gamasutra designing puzzle

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/189266/The_technique_LucasArts_used_to_design_its_classic_adventure_games.php     Make it Bushy.  Work Backwards.   Too easy? Break Something.  Too hard? Branch Out.   Break up Story With Gameplay and Vice Versa.

gamasutra lucasarts

https://vagrantcursor.wordpress.com/2013/01/10/choice-vs-puzzles-in-adventure-game-design/    Examines the gameplay and puzzle choices in Telltale’s The Walking Dead

vagrant cursor puzzles

http://owlcave.net/2012/07/17/how-to-design-adventure-game-puzzles/    Puzzles should exist to provide pacing to the narrative….

owlcave puzzles

http://frictionalgames.blogspot.com/2013/02/puzzles-what-are-good-for.html    “A puzzle should make players to do something in such a way that they feel they came up it themselves.”

frictional Games puzzles

http://www.adventuregamers.com/articles/view/24000    If Not Puzzles, What?   Adventure Gamers “Three Pillars of an Adventure Game are Story, Exploration and Puzzles”.

Adventure gamers on puzzles