Forum Posts Following Followers
1546 107 76

YoBrandino Blog


Well, thus far my few posts have focused on video games. Pretty much my biggest hobby, but I go beyond that too, and am currently trying to expand my self further. Specifically into more interesting board games. I have high interest in more strategic boards games like Catan, Risk, etc. But little experience in them and no one to play them with. Since, most require more than two players to be played or to point full, they do not work for Phillip and me to play alone, and our friends generally have no interest in these games. So, it can be difficult to really get myself into new games of the sort.

Kill Dr Lucky BoxCarcassone Box

For my birthday at the end of June, I got two new board games. Kill Doctor Lucky and Carcassonne. Kill Doctor Lucky is a Clue themed game where you are attempting to be the player who murders Doctor Luckywhile moving through the many rooms of his mansion. This was definitely an easy sell to my friends, and an instant favorite. We all look forward to many more nights of sneaking around Doctor Lucky's mansion with thoughts of murder, trying to kill him... and his little dog too!

The second game I got was Carcassonne. This game is more on the strategy side of the field, and boy do I like it. We have been playing it just about every day. It is good to play with even just two players, so that is great news for Phillip and me. But, we have also gotten our friends to give it a try! In this game players take turns randomly drawing tiles and playing them down next to each other to create roads and cities. You also have a few small tokens to play with, called Meeples. You place these on roads and cities as you create them and get points when they are completed. We played the game many times as it originally came, then we added in the included mini-expansion to add river tiles for a more versatile start to the game.


There are many other expansions available, each adding new tiles, pieces, and rules to games. We have already added the Inns and Cathedrals expansion set which gave us more game tiles, some with inns to increase your road score and some with cathedrals to increase a city's score. You also get a new large Meeple to add to you followers, and he counts as two regular Meeples. This come in handy when you are trying to get or keep control over the same road or city as another player. I look forward to exploring more expansions for Carcassonne in the future.

Risk: Factions

So, I have been playing the new Risk: Factions XBox Live Arcade game. I've always enjoyed the board game, but was never necessarily hard core with it. So, with that, I am greatly enjoying this video game.

Risk Factions

The Factions are great; there are 5: humans, cats, robots, zombies, and yetis. I of course, love the robots. Each Faction has a nice little intro as part of the very very short single player campaign mode. The videos are great to watch and each Faction has great personality. The basic story over lined in the campaign may be so so short, but definitely has heart and good humor; it is worth it for sure. You will also be treated to fun battle animations during the game to see each of the Factions killing each other off as you attack.

Luckily, this game has both online and offline multi-player options. Offline multi-player is a huge plus for me as most of the other XBox Live games in the strategy category do not and can only be played online. Sometimes its best to play with someone in the room with you. But its too bad that you can't both go online together, that would have been spectacular. I'm not normally a big online player, but thus far this game has brought me back time after time. Now, there are some issues with the win tracking, but I can deal with that. The main issue is just that the game freezes online a bit, and that can get old, but its definetley still playable.

There may not be enough game option for hardcore Risk players, but there is more than enough for me. With options for cIassic Risk with the World Map or for Factions game play with objective based winning and new made up maps, there is nice variety. But we can still hope for additional maps through down loadable content (DLC) in the future, preferably other real locals from other Risk versions or recognizable fantasy/sci-fi maps. I'd love to see a new space map added with an additional alien Factions. One can only hope for this or other nifty DLC. Until then, what we got is great enough to last a long time.


Well, I'm off for another round of world domination as Commandant SixFour and my league of robots!!


Sometimes you come across that game that you just can't play. Some people are skilled at some games and not so at others. Perhaps these lead to genre preference. I'm sure this is the case for me on some aspects. My favorite genre of video game is the Japanese style Role-Playing Game, aka, jRPG. One characteristic that pleases me is that you usually do not have to jump. Yes. Jumping in video games is my downfall. I may enjoy the Mario games a lot, but you can pretty much guarantee that I will fall in just about every single hole there is. I'm sure there are a lot of people with weird quirks like that.

But what about those games that you try to play, and you can barely see how anyone can even play them. Take for the moment the Castlevania games. Now, I know the die hard Castlevania fans relish in the series' difficulty. But what about us who don't equate frustratingly hard with enjoying playing a video game? I love the Castlevania formula. The play style, the equipping of items, leveling, and so on. I think its great. The Castlevania games would probably be one of my favorite series... if I could play them. I mean, how long am I supposed to go without getting more health? I recently tried Circle of the Moon for the Gameboy Advance again, and after hours of playing, guess where I am? Guess? Yeah, the very beginning. I play, I die, I have to start all the way over from game start and enter your name. How do people do it? Seriously. I'm sure you probably have no trouble, or maybe you're like me. Or perhaps there is a different game that smacks you down time after time.

Game Over

I understand some people enjoy this difficulty, but there is a fine line between pleasant challenge and practically complete inaccessibility. I know this is something game developers struggle with all the time. If they don't make a game hard enough, the die hard fans will scream murder. And if they make it too hard, for the rest of us, it is murder. It is hard for them to strike that perfect medium. So, that is why we usually see the easy, normal, hard difficulty settings. That is fine by me. I like to play on normal when I can. I'm not really the hard mode player. But I also don't want to have to step down to easy usually either. But then I've came across a game here and there that gimps aspects of the game for the easy players, and to me, that's just not right.

It is hard to know when to keep on trying, and when it call it quits. If I put a game down and don't come back to it for a long time, I usually have trouble getting back into it. But if I've reached a difficulty ceiling, I can only have so much patience before I have to give. With Castlevania: Circle of the Moon, I have to call it quits when the problems arise so early. Which is a great shame, since I would love to experience the game. Then other games don't reach that level towards the end and then you have invested a lot of time and its much harder to call it quits when you just need to go a little further to finish the game. But I know we have all gotten towards the end of a game or two and just never been able to quite finish it...

Completed | Muramasa: The Demon Blade

Muramasa: The Demon Blade is a 2D action RPG game with beautiful hand-drawn art visuals. I have completed the game, and am highly impressed with addictive nature it has.

Muramasa Box

The game has two main characters to play as. I started off with the female's storyline evolving a girl, Momohime, whose body was taken over by the soul of a swordsman. While the story is interesting enough, it is rather light. Each characterhas multiple endings. Even though I can be quite obsessive, I generally do not go out of my way to complete games 100% to collect everything and replay for different endings. However, this game certainly begged me to do so. The first ending was rather disappointing, but I suppose it was meant to be to encourage you to get better ending hopefully.

Screen 1 Screen 2

So, why I initially had no intention of working to get all endings, I continued with game for that very reward. At first I found the combat to be a little repetitive, it has really grown on me and just doesn't really seem to get old.Shortly afterstarting the story line of the male character, Kisuke, who is a ninja who lost his memory, Ireturned to Momohime's game and and traversing any area's of the map I missed with her and unlocking barriers I may had missed since Ithen had more of the corresponding swords to break them with. I have succeeded in forging all of the swords for both characters from the sword tree. I have also completed the three different ending for both char caters for six endings total. Some where better than other, but you will have to play them yourself to find out.

Generating a Top 10

So, I'm trying to generate a top 10 games list. Its hard to know where to put each game on the list and deciphering between favorites and 'best' games. But thus far, my list is looking like this:

  1. Tales of Symphonia
  2. Mass Effect
  3. Fire Emblem
  4. Metroid Prime
  5. Super Mario Bros. 3
  6. Fable
  7. Rock Band 2
  8. Legend of Legaia
  9. Baten Kaitos
  10. ...

Perhaps some nostalgia is fogging the list, perhaps I need to remeber some older games more closley that should be on the list. Sure there is bias to RPG's (particullary jRPG's), but I don't think I can really avoid that no matter how objective I try to be. And surely I need to play more games that deserve a spot, since I only included games I have basically completed.

Other games trying to make there way to the list that I have not fully played yet, but have sampled include: Half Life 2, Bioshock, and Dead Space.

360 Returns

Got my xbox back last night, yay! That wasn't too painful. But I sure did miss it, haha.

Also got my Rise of the Argonauts game that I won, but it was a PAL copy and not NTSC. So that was a let down. But not a big deal really. I'm trying to sell it on ebay and if thats a no go, then I guess I'll send it back to them and see if I can get a US copy instead. Oh well. Winning is still fun.

A foced break from the 360 (aka RRoD)

Booooooo! I pretty much knew it was a matter of when and not if. So Monday night after downloading the Resident Evil 5 demo (and before I got to check it out), my xbox360 beeped and froze. Turned it off, and when I turned it back on that only thing that happened were three flashing red lights. Obviously knew what it was right away, the practiacally unavoidable error known as the Red Ring of Death.

So, the console was shipped off to Microsoft for repair, and luckily at no cost to me.

Now I just wait for its return...

I will miss streaming movies/tv shows and music from my wireless network. I will miss netflix. I will miss downloading and watching The Guild (PS, if you don't watch the Guild webisodes... START). And, yeah, I'll miss the games too, but not as much since I can still play my Wii, PS2, DS, PSP, NES, SNES, and Dreamcast - but my 360 was just so much more.

So, I wait...

A return to the Wii

So, no matter how much I love Nintendo and how excited I was for the Wii, the XBox 360 has definetely dominated my gaming time since I got it.

I honestly had hatred in my hear for the original XBox. While I only had the Gamecube & GBA/DS last gen, it just bothered me that the XBox was even there. I got the Wii at launch, and found myself getting a PS2 shortly after, which was good for catching up on games I had missed out on. I always thought I would end up getting a PS3, and the the 360 never really crossed my mind. Then the PS3 started to bomb, and the 360 actually looked promising. I eventually bought a used one of my brother for a nice price. It has since became my favorite console ever.

Anyways, I buy lots of games. Yes, too many. I buy way more than I have time to play. So, its always hard to decide what to play, when I pretty much want to play one thing and finish it, then move on. But there are plenty of games i've started and so it gets frustrating. If I ony had more time to play, haha. So, this has caused my Wii to not see at lot of use at times, even though I have loved every game I have gotten for it.

But now comes along Dokapon Kingdom. I never thought I would find something that hit the right chords like Culdcept Saga on the 360. But Dokapon Kingdom sure has! I'm sure my Wii is happy to see me again, and I know I am definetely happy to be playing Dokapon Kingdom!

Rise of a Winner!

Yay for Facebook, the Video Games App, and Rise of the Argonauts Apps!!

Today I won a copy of Rise of the Argonauts! Comes out 10/14/08.

Its very exciting to be a winner! Now lets just hope the game turns out good!


Well, the game was pushed back to 2009. So, now I must wait more. Still hoping the game will be decent!