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gamerparent the site was started in 2012, born out of a love for games and my kids.

the gamer parent came into being in 2003 when my first child was born, and I learned how to give her her bottle one handed while I played Diablo II with the other... with the sound off, of course. Since then I've found ways to sneak in gaming, and also involve my kids with games.

welcome to my world.

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raptr profile

Steam ID: yougenius

Nintendo Network ID: gamerparent

3DS Friend Code: 4098-2922-8204

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Tuesday
Nov252014

The amiibo march on to Wii U

amiibo (amiibos?) have arrived

Looking for amiibo on amazon

Nintendo has released the first round of amiibo figurines, and I've gotten a couple of them to play with. Here are my quick initial impressions of the whole experience:

  • the NFC sensor on the Gamepad was a brilliant bit of advance planning on Nintendo's part
  • the figurines accurately portray how these characters look in-game
  • fit and finish is on par with Disney Infinity (I compared amiibo Peach with Disney Infinity Rapunzel and both have the same kinds of blemishes, paint bleed, and so on)
  • using them in Smash Bros gives you a traning partner to play against, but they level up quickly, at least at first (after one match the amiibo was at level 6, after two more they were at level 11)
  • using them is very simple and not finicky, but you do need to hold them still

It's taking every ounce of self control I have left to resist going and buying every single one of these things. So far I've been good during the initial wave. We've purchased Peach and Yoshi for the kids, and Marth for myself. I haven't ordered anything from the December series, but from the February series I've pre-ordered Ike, Sonic, and Mega Man, and I also want to get Rosalina and Shulk. So that's 8 out of 29 figurines. For now. :)

Saturday
Nov222014

I wish I could turn this into a watch blog

So I've been really digging my new Seiko 5 Automatic watch, and really, if you're looking at a perfect entry level watch with a self winding mechanism (no batteries, ever!) then a Seiko 5 is a great place to start. I got mine for under $100 and it's my first sort of 'serious' watch that isn't a Timex.

I created a search on Amazon for only automatic winding watches, and from 'decent' brands. If you want to check out what I peruse when I'm not working or playing games or taking care of kids, this is the page. :)

Automatic watches from 'good' brands on Amazon

Monday
Sep292014

Battle Chef Brigade is my Kickstarter Starred of the month

This game looks stupendously hilariously fun. Hopefully the actual gameplay is good, but the premise (sidescrolling brawler slash iron chef cooking show) is so bizarre that it just might work.

Monday
Sep082014

NA Hunters Rejoice, a Special Edition of MH4U has emerged!

According to Capcom today, there will be a Special Edition of the upcoming MH4U game for 3DS. The package will include:

 

  • a Gore Magala figure
  • a pin featuring a Felyne wearing Gore Magala armour
  • a Monster Icon lanyard
  • a microfibre cleaning cloth
  • the NA version of MH4U
  • a blue Supply Item Box

 

Priced at $59.99 and available for pre-order at Game Stop.

Full details can be found on Yuri Araujo's Capcom Unity blog.

Friday
Aug292014

*New* 3DS, exclusive Xenoblade Chronicles port, and Shulk in Smash Bros

Highlights from today:

 

  • New 3DS and 3DS XL models announced in Japan, include faster processor and a second analog control nub above the ABXYbuttons on the right
  • Port of Xenoblade Chronicles exclusive to the New 3DS models
  • Shulk from Xenoblade Chronicles will appear in the upcoming Smash Bros

 

Here's a look at the new 3DS:

Monday
Aug042014

13 ways Dark Souls is not like Monster Hunter

So I recently got back into Dark Souls, after having merely dipped my toes in the water previously, gotten repeatedly murdered by undead, and promptly stopped.

If you've gone through the experience of Dark Souls, you'll often hear it compared to Monster Hunter in terms of its difficult learning curve, focus on combat, and general frustration level. Or, if you play Monster Hunter only, someone might have said to you, "You should try Dark Souls, you'll probably like it." 

I thought I'd write up a little guide to Monster Hunter players thinking about Dark Souls, and how the games compare. So without further ado:

Dark Souls is just like Monster Hunter except:

 

  1. minions are a mix of humaniods and monsters, not monsters exclusively
  2. humanoid minions can use potions to heal themselves
  3. bosses (and lesser mini bosses) do not respawn, you can only hunt them once
  4. maps are not split into zones but are continuous
  5. there is magic
  6. bosses do not limp away to rest
  7. there are no cat companions, sidekicks or otherwise
  8. there is multiplayer but it can be PvP
  9. you don't get to cook meat
  10. there are character stats
  11. there's actual lock on
  12. even small enemies do significant damage
  13. there are gestures but no text chat

 

 In all seriousness, the two games are very different. About the only thing they have in common is an intricate weapon moveset that varies from weapon type, enemy movements that can be predicted through careful observation, and the ability for the game to punish you if you play recklessly.

If those things excite you, well, you should probably give Dark Souls a try, at least once. And stick with it, just like Monster Hunter. It might grow on you.

 

Monday
Aug042014

New MMO from Immersed Games aims to educate

There's no doubt that video games have the power to hold kids' attention for hours, but what if you could teach them while they were playing, without pushing it on them? That's what Ryan and Lindsey Tropf are hoping to do with their new game, Tyto Online. Currently on Kickstarter (see the sidebar for the donation page), they are hoping to fund the first learning module of their MMO, which will focus on ecology at the middle school level.

To find out more, visit their Kickstarter page, or www.tyto-online.com

---

 

(Gainesville, FL) Video games and education may sound like they don’t belong in the same world. In fact, some would think they’re direct competitors for our youth’s attention. But one ambitious company is looking to change all that with their new futuristic learning game, Tyto Online.
 
Ryan and Lindsey Tropf started out as gamers, solving problems and battling heroically in fantasy worlds like World of Warcraft.
 
“I had learned so much, without trying, through the act of play.  I knew thousands of items, strategies, and approaches.  I knew so much, but not much of it really mattered outside of the game world…” said Lindsey, who realized what a powerful medium games can be for learning.
Seven years later, their mission: harnessing the addictive power of video games for learning.
 
A recent Kickstarter Campaign, which was launched on July 10th, will help fund their learning game, Tyto Online. The $50,000 campaign has raised over $36,000 as of July 25th and proposes to fund the basic features, including networking and a customizable character and room, and the first learning module of the game.
 
The first learning module focuses on middle school ecology. In the game, students will explore various ecosystems housed in futuristic biodomes, solve problems through quests, discover new plants and animals, and have the experience of creating their own ecosystem simulation to apply and extend their learning in a creative way.
 
Immersed Games, the company they founded to create Tyto Online, plans to continue expanding, releasing additional modules over time, until they have covered multiple subjects of material for students in 3rd-12th grade. In this way, they will be creating a game-based learning platform where students can engage in exploratory learning and discover new subjects and educational content.
 
Potential backers have pledged donations in exchange for creative rewards such as naming a street or designing a character. To learn more please visit www.tyto-online.com

 

Thursday
Jun262014

Shovel Knight - background music Famitracker session

If you've ever wondered about what goes into making chiptune music, check this video featuring background music from the game Shovel Knight (out today!):

Famitracker is a freely available music programming windows application with NES export capabilities.

Thursday
Jun262014

MH4U video footage from Capcom E3 2014 presentation

Tuesday
Jun172014

How Nintendo could have ended E3

E3 2014 ended last week, and it's safe to say that Nintendo surprised many of us with their Digital Event and Treehouse Livestream. Unlike so many of the Nintendo Direct videos, which often feature the presenter speaking to the camera in front of a white seamless like an Apple ad from the early 2000's, the E3 Digital Event video was creative, had high production value, good pacing, and plenty of new game reveals.

If that wasn't enough, the Treehouse Livestream featured presenters from the Nintendo Treehouse, the division tasked with interfacing with developers, broadcasting live from the show floor in and around Nintendo's booth. The stream went live shortly after the digital event ended, and showed off new games and actual gameplay with commentary from the developers. We were tantalized with gameplay from Miyamoto, who showed off two works in progress, Project Giant Robot and Project Guard. Bayonetta 2 was shown, featuring a demo of how the Gamepad touchscreen could be used to play the game, as well as just kickass gameplay in general. Monolith Soft's Project X, now properly titled Xenoblade Chronicles X, was shown in all its JRPG glory.

The biggest surprise was the new IP Splatoon. It was shown off on the live stream with two four-man teams facing off in Nintendo's fresh take on the multiplayer shooter. From what was shown it looked like a lot a mayhem and crazy fun.

And here's what I think Nintendo should have done: on the last day of E3, announce that the single arena of Splatoon that they'd been showing us for three days, was now available on the eShop, for free. Drop the mic, boom.

Why not? It looked ready on the show floor, right? Just let us play with it at home. Make it free for the next 30 days, or whatever, limit it somehow. But give us a taste, so that people will be stoked for the game next year, and also to add to the WiiU desire factor, which is already building up since Mario Kart 8. Don't lose momentum between now and the next big thing, which looks to be Smash Bros. in the holiday season.

If Nintendo had announced a free demo of Splatoon I think for sure they would have 'won' E3 2014. There's still time for them to bring it out, and I wouldn't be surprised if we did see a Splatoon demo hit the eShop before September.

Come on, Nintendo, keep surprising us!

Tell me this doesn't look awesome: