Solve Unamusement: 6/21/09 - 6/28/09

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Solve Unamusement has been closed, but that does not mean you can't still find random amusements or keep in touch with the former author of this blog.

Everything shall be on the author's deviantART journal and there is a feed to go with it.

The Dudel Journal

Hand Held Emulation (VBA)

Emulation is not stuck solely for in home consoles, which is proven with the Virtual Boy Advance. The Virtual Boy Advance or VBA, emulates all Nintendo Game Boy games from the Advance down. Which allows for a vastly extended library of titles. Like the ZSNES the VBA has some interesting features that allow for enhanced play opportunities. Cheatp to play with low system reqs this is for a lot of people who aren't looking for "too much" or need a dose of something they might miss from earlier years.

Core Features
(In No Particular Order)

Windows Windowed. Unlike the ZSNES the VBA opens in an actual windows window which allows for being stretched with the mouse rather then having to adjust settings within the emulator. This is handy considering the base size for the screens is that of the systems they come from. (1 x 2 in and 2 x3 inc are standard)

Run Zip: Like the ZSNES the VBA does not require you to unzip game files in order to play them. The VBA itself must be unzipped. This saves hard drive space, but not much, and also provides simple loading and reloading.

Save States: While common among most emulators and ROM files, the save state is still a core feature to the VBA. This allows to save without the need for in game save options, which is handy.

Recording: As with a lot of emulators recording is slowly becoming standard. This allows you to, simply put, record your game sessions for whatever reason. You may also screen shot/capture.

Ease of Use: The emulator puts everything right in front of you with simple drop down and know how buttons. There is even a help menu for those that may need it.

Among those there are also many options on how to adjust the audio and video so that it will run on any machine. Forcing the frame rate, allowing the audio to adjust, as the Game Boy audio was brutal. My suggestion for options is to mute the audio on the VBA as the horrible music and sounds do not translate well into even low end PC speakers. The video will be a machine by machine base but to improve speed the easiest thing to do is boost or lower the frame rate which can be done simply in the frame rate option.

Most new emulators have these features, but the VBA was one of the first to get it working great before it was all standard. An update for the VBA has not been released sense 2005, do not get your hopes up for one.

Caution: Using emulators and having ROMs without owning the cartridges is technically illegal. Any ESA restricted titles that are obtained are illegal even with owning the cartridge.

Talk About A Crappy Day

Mr. Matsubayashi is having a horrible day that keeps getting worse and worse and ends on a high note. Do you feel sorry for Mr. Matsubayashi? Personally, I think anyone that can't blink or move their jaw any sorta deserves to get the world turning against them.

mr. matsubayashi by ~linoc on deviantART

Artwork needs no real explanation for it but I feel lazy if all I do is post the image and move on.

Comedy Nerd News (AOTS)

The G4tv exclusive show Attack of The Show provides an hour of amusement every day from seven to eight pm, eastern standard time. Attack of The Show is hosted live by Kevin Pereira and Olivia Munn for an hour every Monday through Friday. Having been around for years with showings five days a week, the show gets great ratings, especially considering their target demographic doesn't usually watch TV.

Gadget news on the newest and most recent technology to come out, done once or twice a week. There is also DVD reviews and suggestions by Chris Gore on DVDuesday. A show that covers almost everything the 18-35 year old male would be interested in, women included.

Not counting the news and other "information" that AOTS actively and daily gives there is also their attempts at humor. Some are horrible misses that make you ponder what the heck you watch the show to begin with while others make you glad you have Tivo, or wish you had Tivo.

With that knowledge I would like to share a moderately old sketch about the Xbox 360 epidemic that is STILL affecting much of the hardware. This video is funnier when you know of the problem they are mocking, otherwise it makes limited to zero sense at all.

That was a simple "taste" of what AOTS has to offer. They are not afraid to make fun of themselves, or anything really, just for a cheap laugh. News on relevant to me issues is gone over as well as some interesting point outs about certain videos on the net.

Multiple Endings

In Crono Trigger you play the role of Crono (You may rename him and the rest of your party members upon meeting them) the main plot behind Crono Trigger is to save the world. The trick is WHEN to save the world. As the name of both character and game imply the "Time Trigger" is what needs to be watched out for. There is a greet evil that will eventually destroy the world and its up to Crono and his group to defeat it.

That "feature" alone for Crono Trigger allows for several different endings, none of which I will state here. I will state that the "happy ending" requires the most play time and the saddest least fulfilling of the endings requires the least amount of play time. The story is beautifully written and does not hold the typical standards that most RPGs, in general, have.

  • Open the "Black Chests" in the present after examining but not opening them in the past for better items.
  • When playing the first time through do not look for "easy outs" on killing the final boss.
  • Talk to Crono's best friend Lucca's (or whatever you have named her) father for Lucca's best equipment.
  • Do not fret when you may have possible "mess something up", this game is intended to be played multiple times so you may try again next time.
  • Play the game AT LEAST TWICE.

The game starts in Crono's room where he is pestered by his mother to wake up. From there he is encouraged to go to the fair, but I'd suggest exploring town a bit before you do. The fair is filled with a few mini games and has a battle training area where you fight a singing robot.

After a little bit of time Crono, literally, bumps into a blond chick who doesn't give her name. Crono and the chick decide to explore the festival together. At the "top" of the fair/festival is where Crono's best friend and her father are making a new invention. The two think the invention will change the world, and it does, but not in the manner they think. An error occurs on the machines and an odd dimensional rift is created, sucking the blond chick inside. Crono, of course, decides to follow regardless of the risk and the adventure begins!

Traveling between time and locations, Crono Trigger is a grand game that evolves multiple endings. For its time, this was a rare thing, to be implemented correctly. If you've an SNES or the ZSNES emulator, I'd highly suggest this game. Playing on the ZSNES would be the preferred as their is less chance the game will crash or fail. There is also the added bonus of extended memory and the ZSNES features.

OOC Opportunists (Cantr Thieves)

Thieves are a common thing in Cantr and a sight for amusement when handled "correctly" while avoing a break in the Capital Rule of Cantr. The CR (Capital Rule) being the only rule of Cantr is simple to know but some fail to understand its simplicity.

There are several types of Cantr thief. They range from the most common and easiest to handle of the "Suicidal Newspawn Thief" to the more difficult and ruthless "Cantr Pirate". As stated previously the most common and easiest to handle is the "Suicidal Newspawn Thief". These are those that appear into the world of Cantr with an odd chip on their shoulder and think everything that is not bolted to the ground theirs. Worthless parchment and town laws, along with simple and/or broken tools up and removed by a naked man in his twenties. Soon after he drops all that he has taken as the guard strikes him down dead.

Being on the other side of a thief strike is not always fun for the character but as a player it provides needed in game excitement. Simple thieves are nothing, though, compared to the constant fear of pirates and other threats nearby.

Pirates do more then steal notes and run. Cantr Pirates lay waste to towns, killing all they can and taking real resources that the town has to offer. Of course, Pirates are more of a coastal problem then the "Suicidal Newspawn Thief' but the causality as most cities and towns thrive on the coast compared to inland is substantial.

The minor problem with either of these "thieves" is their actions are done in an out of character (OOC) manner. Taking things when they see "characters sleeping" (Players not playing). Taking advantage of such an event could be RPed as late at night but the fact that players are using the info to organize attacks is the "gripe". Especially with attacks and kills being quicker then most can respond to, there are many reasons for this.

Small issue of OOC behavior aside; in my opinion of Cantr Thieves they provided excellent, if not random, role playing opportunities. Each unique in its own manner as the one before and after. Sometimes the thief gets away, other times he steals something powerful and is difficult to catch. Other times, still, he is gone unnoticed for years and may even return to a town he has "pillaged".

Note: The "Suicidal Nespawn Thief" is looked down on by most players despite its random interjection of RP on an otherwise quiet and boring town.

Music Sells A Game (Persona 3)

Persona 3 US CoverImage via Wikipedia

Despite the very stale Japanese RPG name and stereotype most want to toss Shin Megmi Tensei Persona 3 into, the game is great and filled with amazing music. Like with most games, sound development is key to immersing the playing in the experience. Persona 3 and its "expansion" do this very well. I assume the expansion "FES" does this well as I've yet to play it.

The basic story behind Persona 3 is a bit drab comepared to other RPGs with similar stand points. You, the main character of your own name choice, is sent to a new school in Japan. This school has a certain group of people who have a special power called "Persona". Thse are reflections of your inner self and are able to be used during "The Dark Hour" to fight against "Shadows". Thats the general premis in a nutshell but there is SO MUCH more to Persona three then the cookie cutter people think it was made from.

The art, music and style of the game are the real selling points. The music ranges from some basic but not typically irritating j-pop to something resembling that of progressive/medolic metal.

The intro sequence for Persona 3 will have you wishing you had the game and a PS2 to play it on.

If that didn't get you then the battle music will surly grab your attention. The guitar rift alone took me from my seat, for reasons that I was not fully expecting it in such a game, then added in with the tone and soothing vocals its a blast.

These two samples are nothing compared to the full game experience. I'd fully recommend Persona 3 to ANYONE looking for an amusing game with excellent sound and graphics. However, I will note that some parts can drag but this is typical of RPGs in general. The controls are simple and the story, despite my HORRIBLE simplification, is deep with lots of character development.

Arkanoid On Crack (Stick Brix)

Stick Brix (linke in sidebar) is a fast paced Arkanoid clone where the goal is NOT to break all the blocks, or bricks, but to instead kill all the stick people that are on the stage. This is accomplished by knocking them upside the head with the play ball, removing blocks from under them so they fall to the ground or shooting them with a rare power-up.

The controls to the game, like most Flash Games I like, are simple. All you have to do is move the mouse from left to right. Doing so causes the bounce back bar to move from left to right. The only problem, I've found, with this is getting to close to the sides of the game. If your mouse moves off the game screen EVEN SLIGHTLY then you no longer have control. This is common among flash games but with the need to have the bar reach the very edge of the game, it creates problems.

Music and visuals for the game are just great! That is the only phrase I'd have to use on such simple and epic graphics and sound. However, a word of caution. If you are pron to epileptic seizures I'd suggest against playing Stick Brix.

Most levels are easy enough but once you find ones where the brix are made of brick and can not be destroyed. You can be annoyed because if the presision needed that the mouse does not always give. "So close" and/or "just missed" will happen on these levels a lot but that is a minor gripe for a free game.

Boss battles, yes there are boss battles, require the same as all the other levels but these Sticks fight back. They drop large exploding spike spheres of doom. These spheres can not hit the ball you are bouncing OR the bounce back bar or your life meter will drop.

The life meter stretches across the screen, giving you (I think) nine lives. Each time the ball is exploded or you miss one of the bounce backs a heart is taken. I've yet to see a way to get hearts back, but they may be there.

Enemies consist of simple fodder, men with baseball bats, cannons and all other sorts to find. Each only needing one strike, that I know of, to remove them from your game screen.


  • Pay Attention to Projectile Enemies
  • Watch for Power-Ups
  • The "F" power-up is a missile, use it to hit brix before enemies.
  • Try to "catch" enemies as they fall for combo bonus.
  • Hit multiple enemies at once for combo bonus.
  • Be calm and calculating on non-destroyable brick levels.

On those notes, I wish you luck and fair gaming on "Stick Brix".

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