December 25, 2014

Kicking Gnomes: The Rest of 2014

I didn't get the chance to shoot photos for everything this time and since I missed my Summer and Autumn editions, I'm just kind of combining the rest of my year into one blog and I'm already certain I've forgotten things! I was super busy this year so my pickups were not as fruitful as I had hoped, but regardless, here's some of the stuff I managed to put my name on this past few months.
I apologize for the horrific photos.

I've been in the market for an Atari for a while now, and when I noticed this Atari Flashback 5 (at Bed Bath & Beyond. Right?!) I figured it would make a decent substitute since 2600's aren't exactly popping up like weeds anymore. So, this bad boy comes with 92 Atari games loaded on it and two wireless controllers! It also has ports for Atari paddles and they appear to be compatible with Genesis (Mega Drive) controllers, too,  which I intend to make regular use of. I may do a Les Dispositifs blog on this in the new year... let me know if you're interested!

I've put quite a bit a mileage on my Nintendo rep lately…
Whilst browsing the oft neglected Wii section, I came across this copy of Pandora's Tower. I've heard many good things about the game but failed to ever check it out for myself so I swooped it up for my own! There's always room for more Wii titles in my collection.

I also replaced my copy of Super Mario Galaxy (not pictured), since it's become clear to me that I'm never going to see my original copy again.

Then, while tidying, I came across a copy of Mario Party (also not pictured). Awesome.

I can't remember where I was when I came across Faxanadu, but I remember playing this way back when and I knew it was absent from my collection so for $5... no longer an issue!

AND! I also got a copy of Pilotwings. I've never actually owned Pilotwings, but I vividly remember its
kickass tunes!

I also began building my WiiU collection recently, picking up Bayonetta 2 (and 1!) immediately at release, and a copy of WiiFitU while I was at it. I was under the impression FitU was slightly different from the previously titles, which I like to return to from time to time for some exercise, but I haven't thoroughly checked it out yet. I do use the Fit Meter though! It's a handy little device that keeps track of my movin' and shakin'. Kinda fun.

After writing my Game Binge blog on WiiU games, I couldn't hold off on Pikmin 3 any longer. Ran out and picked it up after having a rather bad day. Pikmin are great for bad days.

And since I've been spending so much time with my WiiU lately, to test out the virtual console I bought Metroid. Wanted to see what it's like to play an old favorite on a new console. Wasn't too pleased when it popped up for free (sorta) from Club Nintendo a few months later, but whatever.

I also purchased from the eShop the newly re-released Fire Emblem, to make my pal Darren proud. And because I like the FE series and don't own enough of them.

Purchases for Xbox have been mild this year because every time I've fired the damn thing up I've had nothing but problems. I'm pretty fed up with Microsoft right now and just really not inspired to play, but I had an extra points card laying around so I decided to hop on and (with great labor) finally purchase Bastion. While I was poking around my 360 I also remembered I have a barely-started copy of Dust: An Elysian Tail that's been sitting there forever. That game is just gorgeous and I really want to finish it soon.

Sony, on the other hand, always keeps me busy. Not only did they offer Suikoden on PSN, but Suikoden 2, as well! You bet your ass I picked those boys up! And I so look forward to reliving Suikoden.

While surfing through one of the many flash sales, I happened across Beyond Good and Evil, and couldn't really recall much about it. A quick trip to twitter confirmed that I need to play this, so I picked it up as well.

In the non-PSN pile, I couldn't resist picking up a copy of Tales of Hearts R for the Vita. We all know I love the shit outta the 'Tales of' series and Hearts has been eluding me for years since it was never released in English. I've not exactly heard amazing things about it, but I know a lot of people just really aren't cut out for 'Tales of', so I reserve the right to make my own judgement!

I posted about this on twitter, because I find it just hilarious that while making a quick trip to the drug store to buy concealer, I came across a clearance bin of PS3 titles, and among them were the Ratchet & Clank Collection and Beyond Two Souls. I love R&C so that was a no-brainer for me, and I've been meaning to check out B2S for a while now, so for the price (I think $20 each?) I couldn't pass them up. I did also get concealer, in case you were worried about my under-eye circles...
I also hit the jackpot in finding South Park: The Stick of Truth for a really great price. I love South Park in general but I was really pleased with the small bit of gameplay I saw from Stick of Truth. Also the surrounding episodes were absolutely hilarious and I hear this game is a quick and funny play so I'm looking forward to it!

When I went to pickup Pikmin 3, I did my mandatory peruse of the other sections, too, and saw a bin on 2 for $20 titles that included Red Dead Redemption and Fallout New Vegas. I've never had the chance to fully immerse in RDR but I know it's a highly respected game so I'll have to give this a proper go soon, and while I'm not terribly familiar with the Fallout series, everyone who knows me tells me I'll like them and New Vegas seems to be widely regarded among my peers. We'll see!

In the "totally random" files, I happened across a copy of Heavy Rain for extremely cheap. If you've been acquainted with me for a while, you may remember that I didn't particularly love Heavy Rain, but it occurred to me that a lot of the people in my life that aren't core gamers would really enjoy it, so I decided to add it to my collection for such occasions.

And then, of course, some more junk!
I popped over to Toronto, Canada this year for Fan Expo, and in addition to meeting some lovely twitter friends, I made friends with this here Wario plushie. I absolutely adore Wario, far more than any other character from the Mario universe, so when I saw this official, great-quality toy, I just couldn't walk away. I don't particularly like to collect stuff like this because it tends to just add up, waste space and collect dust, but I always make exceptions for things like this. I love just walking by and seeing him chilling in my home...

I also found these TMNT stress ball-type toys somewhere. Can't remember. I think I was going to give them to somebody but obviously I didn't. Whoops.

Also from Fan Expo I found this miniature Gunblade from FF8. The Gunblade is my favorite invention ever so I was quick to scoop it up. I've turned it into some sort of necklace which doubles as a letter opener. But mostly I just silently shoot and stab people with it.
I'm finally the owner of this extension of one of my favorite games, Bioshock: Rapture is a prequel to
Bioshock written by John Shirley. I'm about halfway through and will update my Bioshock blog once I've completed it!

Funko Pop! vinyl figures have become incredibly popular as of late. I promised myself I wasn't going to collect them (see "don't like wasting space comment") and then I promptly broke that promise when I saw Deadpool. Again, a little-loved character that I just cannot get enough of, and this thing is just so damn cute! $10 to boot, so I'm now the mildly disappointed owner of a DP figure. And of course, I later found Vegeta at the same store, and HAD to have him. I love bad guys...
The last thing I'm going to share with you today is Arcade Block. This is a spinoff of Nerd Block which is one of those subscription mystery box services that are suddenly popping up all over the place. I had no intention of partaking in this trend but my friend Erica made a video showing off some of the stuff that Arcade Block offers, and I decided it might be a worthy investment after all. It's something like $20 a month, and you get really quality stuff. The only crapshoot is whether the items pertain to games you actually like. So far it's been a bit of a miss for me, but I remain optimistic. I'm going to try it out for a few more months at least. If you'd like to see more, check out the website!

There you have it. The stuff I remember. I feel like I spend so much money on my gaming hobby, but every time I type up one of these blogs it seems like so little. Huh.

Happy Christmas to those of you who do that sorta thing. I hope you all unlike me got some cool gaming stuff for Christmas!

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