I haven’t been revealing my nerdy side as much recently. It’s time to fix that.
As you know, I play video games fairly regularly. I play different types of games to elicit various emotional and mental states, like how others might choose different books or music based on their feelings at the moment.
For example, a game with a compelling story is one that I’ll play at night to wind down and forget about everything on my to-do list. I look for one that makes me feel like I’m living in that world like a fantasy novel. During the day, I like to play something less plot driven, with more of an emphasis on gameplay with puzzles and requiring split second decision-making to stimulate my mind.
When it comes to gaming during the season, I’m rarely playing on a console. Many hotels don’t have TVs with HDMI inputs, and I have to limit what I pack during road trips. Instead, I opt for my Nintendo 3DS, which has an extensive library of new and classic games. This list is heavily weighted towards portable games.
After being successfully funded on Kickstarter, the indie developer Yacht Club Games has released Shovel Knight on pretty much every platform. This 2D side-scrolling platformer takes much inspiration from classic Nintendo Entertainment System games like Super Mario Bros 3, Ducktales, Zelda II and Mega Man.
Because of this, the gameplay is extremely challenging, but I never felt lost like I normally do when playing NES games. What’s also sweet is that, instead of a sword, the main character uses a shovel to attack enemies.
The story is fun, quirky, and at the same time a page turner level turner. From Wikipedia:
Prior to the game, adventurers Shovel Knight and Shield Knight journeyed across the world alongside one another, but while exploring the Tower of Fate, a cursed amulet takes over Shield Knight and leaves Shovel Knight outside of the sealed tower. Grieving for his beloved, Shovel Knight gives up adventuring and goes into self-imposed exile. During his absence, the Enchantress rises to power, spreading evil across the land. Upon hearing that the Enchantress has unsealed the Tower of Fate, Shovel Knight begins his journey back to it, hoping to find and rescue Shield Knight. In order to do so, Shovel Knight must fight the members of “The Order of No Quarter,” who have been dispatched by the Enchantress to impede him.
By the end, I was so invested in the plot I teared up a little after the credits rolled.
This game is a trip. I marathoned through this game during spring training because my roommate had an Xbox 360 and a copy of the game. As the third game of the thought-provoking first-person shooter series, Infinite does not disappoint. From Bioshock Wiki:
The game takes place in the airborne city of Columbia, in 1912, where the player assumes the role of Booker DeWitt, a disgraced Pinkerton agent. Booker has been given the job of finding a woman named Elizabeth, who has been confined by a hulking beast called Songbird and the city’s leader Zachary Hale Comstock.
Following in the footsteps of previous BioShock games, the world of Infinite explores the chaos that results when strong ideals are taken to the extreme. Here, the philosophical concept of “American Exceptionalism” is perverted into ultranationalism, religious fanaticism, and social Darwinism. The numbers of flags, patriotic music, and propaganda posters that promote idea that Columbia is a ‘haven’ from the so-called ‘unwanted’ of the world.
If you like first-person shooters and thrilling stories that have you reading articles and watching theory videos to figure out “WTF just happened,” this is the game for you.
Who hasn’t played a smash game, whether it was Brawl on the highly popular Wii, the competitive scene of Melee or the original on the N64?
Last fall, Nintendo released two Super Smash Bros. games — one for the 3DS and one later for the Wii U. I own copies and DLC for both. However, my favorite for the season was undoubtedly the 3DS version. During the last month of the season, I would play 1v1 ranked battles online before games to get into a competitive mindset.
Its ability to be easily played on the go and online play capability sealed the deal. I main as Link wearing a red tunic.
If you want to play me, leave your Nintendo Network ID in the comments. Also down in the comments, let me know what your favorite game was in 2015 and why!