So, I’ve been working on some other projects, and now I’m going to recycle snips of those articles into a blog post, I mean, share what I’ve been working on!
First, I recently reviewed the new Nintendo DS game Women’s Murder Club: Games of Passion on ThumbGods:
WMC follows the usual pattern of story cutscenes, hidden objects and minigames. The hidden objects casual adventure game is a pretty crowded genre, so it’s hard for a new game to really stand out. Probably the most unique characteristic was the James Patterson characters. Players solve crimes and meet with the WMC ladies as Patterson’s detective Lindsay Boxer, and supporting characters with solid personalities made this more that just a reskinned HO game.
The story progresses via cutscenes and dialogue options. Players have some choices for what to say, but it was more of a quiz on recent plot events. Believable banter makes the cutscenes worth reading, and the linear storyline makes it feel like reading a novel, not being hemmed
Random side note: The mysterious Chinese markings found on the victim actually do say bu zhong, Not Loyal. My Chinese literacy is just good enough to be completely thrilled with the developers for using real words when dramatic red scribbles would have acceptable. (It always cracks me up when I see upside-down characters or random other words.) Good work, THQ.
I know I’m supposed to be all blase about it, but that’s a photo of my review copy of WMC. It’s a hard copy with a press letter and everything. I’m going to keep it it on the shelf next to my other review copy, just as soon as I finish doing my I’m-a-real-journalist happy dance.
I also reviewed the Screaming Narwhal:
Telltale’s new Monkey Island is not to be confused with the LucasArts updated re-release. No, the Screaming Narwhal is an all-new tale in the saga of Guybrush Threepwood, mighty pirate. Elaine and LeChuck (and at least one other familiar character!) are back as well, revamped from their grainy 2d incarnations, but following the spirit of the originals.
Goofy dialogue, creative uses for found items and pirate-y silliness are the hallmarks of the Monkey Island games, and the Screaming Narwhal has them all. Guybrush uses his razor-sharp wits to deal with the wacky denizens of Flotsam Island, whether that’s a clever ruse of selling fine leather jacket, an amazing use of misdirection (Look! It’s Louis XIV!) or coming up with a believable excuse on the spot. The dialogue is not a memory test of in-game facts, but a chance for zany interactions.
The awkward conversation in which you ask the one you’re seeing if the two of you are in a relationship isn’t new, but Facebook adds a new dimension. Are we in a relationship … on our Facebook profiles?
If you’re taking your new relationship Facebook-public, congrats! That little in a relationship with link is our generation’s class ring or football jacket, a public announcement that what you’ve got going on is more than just a couple of dates. It says you’re exclusive, and it also means no more of those awkward “my, um, friend” introductions.
And I have another article on TechCoquette about ending a relationship and defriending the ex on Facebook.
If you actually meant that line about still being friends, Facebook defriending may help you create the space you need to become comfortable on your new footing. You may refriend him the future, when time has passed and you’re both ready to reconnect; but until then, you don’t have to be reminded of him whenever you see his status updates. Also, you won’t have to read sickly-sweet wall chatter between him and his new girl, and you won’t be reminded when he goes back to your favorite brunch spot. Even after a mutual decision to split, reading a feed of your ex’s daily life and thoughts can be unpleasant.
This last one is significant because it’s one of the rare times I’ve titled one of my own articles and been really happy with the title. Let’s Not Be Friends. Clever, huh? And much better than my usual lame titles like What I’ve Been Working On.