Here, you'll find up to 20 of the most recent posts from the people who have the good taste to follow my blog. Only public results gleaned from the last 200 overall posts to HG Blogs will be displayed. If you see no results below, that means not a lot of people are following me, or my followers haven't been active in a long while, or they simply aren't sharing their posts.

Game Progress 6/16/19
Posted June 16, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

It's been a while since I've done one of these. Every time I say I'm going to spend more time on this site and try to be more social online, I end up getting too involved with some lousy game and stubbornly refusing to stop until it's done.

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1 comment

The Underbelly: Kampout
Posted June 14, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

The Underbelly #3
(aka: American Bigfoot)
Director: Glenn Martin
Premise: A sasquatch goes on a rampage after its young is killed. Unimportant characters tremble in fear.

Kampout left me kind of confused.

Was it a straight up horror movie? A horror-comedy? A campy, self-aware flick? A muddled mess of conflicting tones and halfhearted storylines? A decent, low budget script in bad need of an overhaul or a copy edit?

Somehow all of the above?

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The State of the Site: June, 2019 Edition
Posted June 06, 2019 by honestgamer

It feels like a reasonable amount of time has passed since my last update on the State of the Site, so I figured I would go ahead and post another one tonight. I'll try to keep it brief, but as you know if you've been around the site for a long while that I tend to fail at that particular objective once I undertake it. Like... almost every time.

This post will discuss the site's current traffic levels, revenue, what that means at present and what I plan to do about it in the future. Some of this information isn't the sort of thing a site would share in public, but then, we're not a typical site.

Site Traffic

First up, let's talk traffic. I looked up results on Google Analytics, and here is how we did in April of this year:

* 12,743 unique users
* 17,833 sessions

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Thanks Jason, message received
Posted May 17, 2019 by jerec

"Hello, jerec, and thank you for being a member of the HonestGamers community! Your participation helps make the site better for everyone. Remember that your account lets you contribute reviews, post on the forums, update your blog and even track your game collection on the site. Just let staff know if you're having any trouble with anything, and let's have fun celebrating video games together!"

I was greeted by this message today. I guess it has been over a year since I wrote a review. It's probably been about that long since I beat a video game. It's become less of a priority in my life, I suppose. I much prefer building stuff with LEGO... anything to get away from the screen for a bit.


I'm struggling to get through my current project, but not my previous project...
Posted May 12, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

I thought I would have a hell of a time getting through Phantasy Star II. It kicked my ass two times before, and it tried to do so again. However, I didn't waiver. I stayed the course, fought hard, took advice from everyone on here (thank you all again!) and managed to power my way through it. It was ultimately fulfilling.

Hell, even when Sekiro took the wind out of my sails dozens of times, I never really contemplated throwing in the towel. I made idle threats, but knew I would never let myself give up.

[read the full post...]


Game Progress 5/5/19
Posted May 05, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

RPGs take time to complete, and I don't always have a lot of time. That's why I decided to play five of them simultaneously and basically hamstring myself. Good idea, right?

Okay, so two of them were short and won't be mentioned here much: Undertale and Cat Quest. Both are done, and there isn't more I can say about them.

However, the three current time sinks I'm pushing through are meatier titles with completely different content in regards to quality among them. I've already pumped countless hours into two of them, and have only scratched the surface of the third....

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Vacation Day 2: Night of the Creeps (1986)
Posted April 22, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

You've seen "The Price is Right," correct? You know how the bidding usually goes. Someone comes up with a really killer price, like $700 for some cheaply made, overpriced chandelier. However, the final contestant bids $701 and the previous bidder gets left in the dust. That's sort of how I feel about Night of the Creeps.

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Vacation Day 1: Starry Eyes (2014)
Posted April 21, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

I'm on vacation now. As part of my time off, I seek not only to deep clean this house of mine, but also watch some horror movies. You know, same old, same old. Hell, I figured I'd even blog about them.

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Game Progress 4/18/19
Posted April 18, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

I've been bouncing around a lot for the last week or so. The only two games that steadily kept my interest for the last couple were Sekiro and Phantasy Star II.

Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice (PC)
I haven't got really much to say here except "Holy crap, this is hard!" and "Completed. Review live."

I took me close to 50 hours to get through this one, partially because of what I said before in a previous blog. Playing this game via Steam Link streaming is a bad idea.

Phantasy Star II
I have a routine worked out. It's:

Grind ---> Explore ---> Recruit characters ---> Do dungeons ---> Repeat

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1 comment

Writing Notions: Audience and Purpose
Posted April 17, 2019 by honestgamer

Why do we write? Who do we write for? When should we listen to criticism and when should we ignore it?

The above three questions chase writers their whole lives, and the answers will almost certainly change over time and in different circumstances. I thought it was maybe worth addressing them here at HonestGamers, where we are a community of writers and gamers. Careful self-examination can help us to improve as writers.

Of course, a good rule with all writing is that no one can tell you exactly how to write. No one should even try. So this post isn't an attempt on my part to say "Write like this." Rather, it is a post intended to prompt thought specifically on the three questions I mentioned at the onset.

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Lesson learned: No more playing Sekiro via Steam Link
Posted March 31, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

I own a Steam Link. It's been a wonderful device for me because it allows me to play some of my games in my living room, on my large TV rather than my dinky monitor. Also, my computer room stinks and probably will until my next vacation, when my wife and I plan to tear out pretty much all of the carpeting in this house.

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1 comment

My (brief) thoughts thus far on Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice
Posted March 30, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

Now with easy bullet points!

+Stealth scenes are actually well done--reminiscent of Tenchu: Stealth Assassins.

+Prosthetic tools are cool! You have a prosthetic arm that gains attachments like a spear or a firecracker dispenser.

+Some of the bosses are challenging and actually quite fun.

-But not all of them... Some are just pricks for the sake of pricktitude.

-Camera issues crop up during boss fights about half of the time. I've died more times than I can count because the camera screwed me over.

-Target locking system similarly screws up during some boss battles. Sometimes a boss moves off-screen for a moment and the target disengages. It's imperative that you see the boss at all times. Breaking your concentration can easily kill you.

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My Thoughts on Google's Stadia Streaming Service
Posted March 19, 2019 by honestgamer

Today at the Game Developers Conference, Google revealed (some of) its plans for an entry into the console market, if you want to call it that. For some time now, rumors were reporting that Google would reveal a streaming console, and that's about what it did. Called "Stadia," the platform appears right now to be more virtual than physical. Its primary draw is that you'll be able to play games on a range of devices, from your phone to a weak laptop or desktop, using controllers that suit you or the new one Google unveiled.

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Game Progress 3/19/19
Posted March 19, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

Iconoclasts (PC)
Finished. Oh man, this one was tough. There are two hidden bosses that are both pretty hard to kill. One of them requires you to dive underwater and damn near drown to reach it. Thankfully, that one wasn't bad, but if it kills you, you respawn at the save point and not at the boss. In other words, you need to trek all the way back to him again.

The second one, Mother's Corners, was heavily reliant on pattern recognition, and they had a couple of attacks that were basically random. One of them threw flames at three points on the screen, sometimes right on top of you.

[read the full post...]


Joe Rates: Monsters season 1, part 2
Posted March 09, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

No screenshots this time. I don't have the ability to do so with my TV, and searching for them has turned up some sour results.

Episode 1.7: The Legacy
Featured monster: Spirit of some kind

Noteworthy names: Based on "The Legacy" written by Robert Bloch (author of Psycho).

An actor discovers a makeup kit allegedly owned by a renown, Lon Chaney-like character actor. He finds the actor's spirit inhabits the kit, and it teaches him how to literally transform into his old roles.

Ending spoiler: The spirit ends up possessing his body as the credits roll.

Rating: 3/5

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My 3DS Wish List
Posted March 08, 2019 by honestgamer

Did you know that the 3DS is basically done at this point? The stream of releases has long since slowed to a trickle, and the only big retail release confirmed as definitely still coming to the platform this year is Persona Q2 in a few months.

I've been fortunate, in that I've mostly been able to buy the games I wanted for the system as they released, but there are always a few that slip through the cracks. I'm posting this list for my own personal reference, because it's easy to check as I'm out and about and potentially shopping for games, or if I want to go on a semi-organized buying spree on eBay or the like.

Here's my list:

01. Batman: Arkham Origins - Blackgate
02. Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker
03. Conception II: Children of the Seven Stars
04. Cooking Mama 5: Bon Appetit!

[read the full post...]


Joe Rates: Monsters season 1, part 1
Posted March 02, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

I used to watch a show with my dad in the late '80s: Monsters. It was a horror anthology series that lasted three seasons, and was a successor to another such program called Tales from the Darkside. Obviously, Monsters focused more on antagonistic creatures than Tales did, from garden variety beasts like zombies or vampires to more imaginative critters (e.g. a bed that eats people, anthropomorphic bees, a "cancer vampire," etc.).

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Is Game Freak playing things too safe with Pokemon Sword and Shield?
Posted February 28, 2019 by honestgamer

When I finished watching the Nintendo Direct that Nintendo broadcast on YouTube early yesterday morning, my first reaction most decidedly was not "Well, this will get a lot of folks up in arms!" I was too excited, a grin plastered across my dopey face. I couldn't remember when I had been more thrilled at the thought that in less than 10 months, I'll get to play a new Pokemon game.

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Game Progress 2/24/19
Posted February 24, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

Knocking stuff out of the way, one game at a time...

Dust: An Elysian Tail (PC)
Done. Finished, Over. Finally.

It's such a good game, too. It's a shame another one hasn't come out yet. Review coming soon.

Endorlight (PC)
A delisted roguelite platformer on Steam. It's a very simple game, actually. Every level you drop to the bottom of the screen and look for a door, avoiding hazards along the way. It's more difficult than it sounds, but it's not very interesting or entertaining at all. I'll probably play this for a few hours. If I don't finish it after a while, I'll probably give it a review and move on.

Red Goddess: Inner World (PC)

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Playing through the negatives of my Steam library
Posted February 16, 2019 by JoeTheDestroyer

I've begun a sort of project where I search for all the Steam games in my library that are marked negative in terms of overall reviews, as well as anything that's been delisted (e.g. Endorlight, Fist of Jesus, etc.). If a game doesn't have a consensus, then I look at what few marks it does have and judge where to go from there. Of course, this means I'll be playing a lot of rubbish horror games, but what else is new? So far, I've managed to tackle a few titles.

Roarr! The Adventures of Rampage Rex
Status: beaten
Genres: Casual, party, brawler, co-op

[read the full post...]

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