Posts tagged “Nintendo”

Friday, 1 January 2016

“Of the Month” January 2016

Tabletop Game of the Month:
machi_koro
Machi Koro

Machi Koro is a fun card game from Japan in which each player is the mayor of a town. You win by being the first to build four major “Attractions” in your town. But those cost money! You generate money by building industries, restaurants, etc. in your town. When its your turn you roll the dice, and if the number matches a number on a card in your town then you gain (or sometimes lose) the amount of money that the card tells you to. There are different varieties of cards, like ones that get you money whenever anybody rolls their number and cards that let you directly steal money from other players. The dice are a very nice bit of randomization injected into a resource-building game. Once you get the hang of it (very easy) games go pretty quickly, usually in under 20-30 minutes, so you can play it over and over.

Video Game of the Month:
splatoon
Splatoon

Yes, this came out quite a while ago, but I was distracted by Super Mario Maker for so long that I finally just got it for Christmas. And you know what? it’s EXCELLENT. A third-person shooter where the goal is to cover more territory with your color of ink than your opponent’s team is a frikkin’ brilliant play mechanic. Splatting your opponents is just a secondary goal that gets them out of the way so you can keep spraying your ink on everything. The online play (you play in teams of 4) is seamless, and I love the fact that you can’t actually communicate with your teammates or opponents; you have to be able to quickly judge the situations and figure out how best to help your team. A variety of weapons and ability-enhancing outfits makes every team completely different every time you play. I’m partial to the sloshing buckets right now myself. If you’ve got Splatoon let me know and we can exchange friend codes and maybe meet up online somewhen!

Artist of the Month:
justin_hillgrove
Justin Hillgrove

My favorite artist that I saw at Urban Craft Uprising in Seattle in 2015. He has a detailed and lush-yet-whimsical style inspired by the likes of Maurice Sendak and Hayao Miyazaki, whose characters are often mashed-up in amusing ways in his paintings:

"We'll Eat You Up" by Justin Hillgrove

“We’ll Eat You Up” by Justin Hillgrove

He does other fun, pop-culture-inspired works like the Video Game Heroes & Villains seen above, as well as some Doctor Who and Walking Dead and Peanuts. He also has a YouTube channel where he uploads timelapse videos of him creating his paintings. It’s very cool to see an artist at work like this:

He has prints and original art for sale, and has also done a couple of comic books. Go check ’em out.

Categories: Of the Month.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Little Nemo Links

On Monday Google did one of my favorite of recent Google Doodles, this one based on Little Nemo, the old-timey comic strip created by Windsor McCay. You should click this image and enjoy, then come back here for more info:

If you don’t know about Little Nemo, you really should take it upon yourself to get some educamation about him. Here’s some primers:

The Comic Strip:
Little Nemo began as a comic strip at the turn of the 20th century, in which Nemo has a series of short adventures in Slumberland that always end with him waking up in his bed. You can read a whole bunch of these amazingly-drawn strips at the Comic Strip Library here. Here’s an example of one, the famous “Walking Bed” sequence:

Little Nemo: The Walking Bed

Little Nemo: The Walking Bed, 1908

The Animé:
In 1989 there was an animé version of the charachter, Little Nemo Adventures in Slumberland. It unfortunately is not exactly stellar entertainment. There’s some excellent animation, but the screenplay went through too many hands. Eventually the screenplay was co-credited to Chris Columbus, of The Goonies, Home Alone, and Harry Potter fame. The whole movie is actually on YouTube right now, but due to the dubious legality of it, you might not be able to watch it for long:

The Video Game
There was also an excellent and quite difficult NES video game that was released around the time of the movie, called “Little Nemo: The Dream Master.” In it you throw candy into various animals and then climb into them and wear them like pajamas, each one giving you a different ability (frog lets you jump high, mole lets you dig, bee lets you fly, etc.). It’s really a classic of the NES, and you can play it online at NESCafe (again, of dubious legality) right here.

Little Nemo on the NES!

The Songs:
The “Little Nemo: The Dream Master” video game, of course, inspired the opening line of The Crazy Boy Floyds song “Scrambled TV Super.” Wot’s that? You ain’t never heard that song? Well, take a listen:

Yes, that’s right: “Sometimes you crawl into a frog, and wear it like pajamas as you hop along your log.” Pretty sweet, I know.*

And then, of course, rapper Mega Ran wrote a song about the video game that samples the 8-bit music from the game! Take a listen:

It all just keeps going! Little Nemo forevah!

*Full disclosure: I wrote the music for the “Scrambled TV Super” song, so I might be a bit biased.

Categories: Comics, Links, Movies, Music, Video Games, Videos.