I crashed on Piggy Island…

May 3, 2014

So, friends and followers, you may ask what I’ve been up to since the A to Z challenge and Camp Nanowrimo wrapped up this year.

The plan was to dive into critiques for the TNEO workshop and short story revisions.

Instead, I’ve been spending a lot of time gaming on my iPhone. 😉

Back in March, I downloaded Angry Birds Epic. It’s currently in an iOS soft launch for the Canadian, Australian, and New Zealand App Stores only, so you might not be able to get it on your own mobile device until the wider release later this year.

But I’ve been having a lot of fun with it, and losing a lot of time to it. Instead of the usual Angry Birds slingshot game format, this is a turn-based adventure game. You start as the Red bird, a level 1 warrior, in the bird’s nest on South Beach, as the pigs have carried off all his friends and their eggs. Gradually you explore the map, which is full of locations where you can fight pigs – generally referred to as ‘dungeons’ even though they’re not underground.

During the first fights, you have only a few choices each turn – attack a pig, (by dragging your finger from Red to the pig you want to attack,) or defend (by tapping on Red.) Each pig gets their own chance every turn, either to attack you or maybe use a special power.

During the fight, a chili icon at the bottom of the screen gradually fills up with red light until it’s full to bursting, letting out steam. Then you can use the chili with Red during his turn, unleashing a super-power attack on the toughest pig left standing.

As you proceed through the map, you can rescue the other birds, who join the group with their own special skills; Chuck the yellow bird is a sorcerer, Matilda the white bird a cleric, Bomb the black bird a pirate, the three inseperable Blue birds are thieves. Once you have more than three birds in the party, you have to pick which three go into any particular fight.

There’s a lot more going on in the game; tracking resources, weapons and other gear, treasure, wave battles and so on, but I think this gives you an idea of why it’s kinduv compelling. Hopefully while the phone is charging, I can actually get some real work done this afternoon!

The Birds – they are Angry!

May 3, 2012

I’ve spent quite a lot of time this evening staring intently at my iPhone, catapulting birds at pigs and their walls made out of wood, glass, and stone – and then angrily hitting the ‘replay’ button when a particular angle didn’t work out quite as I expected them.

My usually mild obsession with Angry Birds only started around Christmas. I’d downloaded the ‘pusher’ free sample version of AB from the App Store quite a while before, but never got around to playing it, partly because I thought that you needed to register with Angry Birds separately – instead of just using my apple ID and password. But once I tried it, I quickly grew interested enough to pay up the 99 cents for the basic version.

I’ve now cleared almost every level that comes with that basic version of the game – all eight sequences: “Poached Eggs”, “Mighty Hoax”, “Danger Above”, “The Big Setup”, “Ham ’em High”, “Mine and Dine”, “Birthday Party”, and “Surf and Turf.” I’ve also unlocked and cleared eight out of the ten crazy ‘Golden eggs’ levels.

The last two golden eggs are rather challenging to earn – for each of them, you have to get a perfect record on every single level of the first two sequences – all 63 levels in “Poached Eggs”, and all 42 levels in “Mighty Hoax.” A perfect record, in this case, means earning a score that is considered to be ‘three star’ worthy for each level.

Thanks to considerable effort this evening, (and some helpful how-to videos on youtube which I do NOT consider to be cheat resources,) I now have 3 stars in 62 out of 63 for Poached Eggs. Surprisingly, level 2-12 is the tricky holdout, just over halfway through. I haven’t given up for good, just for tonight.

There’s a lot that I love about Angry Birds. It isn’t a game with a very complicated plot, but you have some very simple elements – a half-dozen or so different bird types, each with their own strengths and weaknesses, against pigs from big to small who just sit there, hunkered down in their best-built houses and wait for the birds to come at them.

The physics of the game play is intuitive and remarkably realistic, and it demands incredibly fine control of your catapulting angle and split-second timing to best utilize the special abilities that most bird types bring to the game. Red bird and his Big Brother Bird unfortunately have no unique powers of that sort – Red is just the plucky bird who isn’t better than his friends at anything, really, but throws himself into what he needs to do with enough heart that he almost makes up for that, and Big Brother’s specialty is just his size and weight that can often smash through or drag down the strongest fortifications.

Wish me luck! I’ll try to remember to let you know when I unlock those last golden egg levels.

An NS Basic List App

August 20, 2011

Well, I’ve been doing a bit more NS Basic App Studio work lately, and I like my newest program – it’s a very simple to-do list that I can use for grocery shopping or that sort of thing.

There are lots of grocery store apps in the app store, but that’s the problem; there’s too many to really look through, and most of them seem to be way too complicated, with built-in lists of possibly groceries or what have you. I didn’t even need all the bells and whistles of the Palm to-do program when I used that for groceries. All I really wanted was this: Read the rest of this entry »

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