Paperbound – Giggle Fest

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I have been playing videogames with my son since he was three years old. We have grown from sharing a single controller, with him pushing a limited range of buttons, to full blown sessions of coop goodness. At the age of six now, he recently completed Skylanders Trap Team without my help. Still not sure how I feel about that. But I love sharing my hobby with him.

headerThe other night we fired up Dissident Logic’s Paperbound on the PlayStation 4.

Devious giggles ensued as my son and I slashed at each other and hopped all over the stage, swapping gravity at will. The little dude had trouble differing the jump button from the gravity button, but did a good job overall. His giggling is what got me though. He only does it when he feels like he is getting away with something. Makes me grin.

A few rounds in, my son started wanting to swap his character after each round. I call this the Skylanders-effect. (Side Note: For those of you who do not have kids or haven’t played Skylanders, the game allows you to swap characters on the fly.) Paperbound‘s minimal menu setup allows for kid-friendly character swapping. This kept our menu time brief and our game time at the forefront.

Paperbound is a solid couch coop that would be an absolute blast with four real life players (the game does offer an AI option). For my son and I, Paperbound scratches the brawler itch with a cool aesthetic and non-gory gameplay. There is nothing like hearing my son giggle as he slices through my character or pegs me with a pair of scissors. Little does he know that I’m holding back on him. The boy is going down. Hi-ya!

DEFCON 5wavesplinter5/5 – Just buy it already!

Wave SplinterTitle: Paperbound
Developer: Dissident Logic
Platforms: PC, PlayStation 4
Reviews on: PlayStation 4
MSRP: $9.99

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Surf Report

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Surf ReportWelcome to the Monday edition of the Surf Report. A quick stop to the Bryan shop.

.: God:

Church is about what you do, who you are, and being the hands and feet of Christ. Too often we, as Christians, get caught up in the physical building of the church. The walls we build can blind us and hold us back from doing what we need to do.

Yesterday, after a quick breakfast and message, my family and I loaded up and headed to a local grocery store. There we handed out giftcards, in the store (with permission), just to make someones day better.

I’m hesitant to write about this because I don’t want it to come across as bragging. I was/am excited about getting out in the community and making a difference, even if that difference is a giftcard to help with groceries.

.: Life:

Had a date with a rototiller this weekend. Together we attacked:

  • Two flower beds
  • Soil in the garden
  • A small space out front for seed planting

There is something satisfying about working outside.

.: Gaming:

Accidentally found myself fighting for the Traveler once again in Destiny. Completed a level I had been stuck on for awhile. Actually the reason I had quit playing the game.

destiny-2Destiny, even at it’s worst, is still a better game than Dragon Age Inquisition. The shooting mechanics are solid, there are no Rare-like fetch quests, and I feel like the game respects my time. The story may be a bit undercooked but the music/graphics/gameplay make up for it. I’m in love with Destiny again. Oh, I also made it to Venus. Goodbye Moon!

Side Note: My experience with Paperbound will be up tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Wave SplinterThat’s it for this weeks Surf Report. Make sure to comment below and have a good week!

First Impressions: Assassin’s Creed Unity

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Tale as old as time

Song as old as rhyme

Arno and Elise

Les Misérables. The Count of Monte Cristo. Tales of hardship, revenge, and redemption. Classic literature depicts the nation of France as a country fueled by passions. Life is never easy. Royalty forever corrupt.

Assassins-Creed-UnityI started playing Assassin’s Creed Unity last night (3/25/15). The war of the Templars versus the Assassins is in full swing. Lightning swords, hidden blades, and historical tourism are loving rendered in next-gen console glory. The game is the most realized Assassin’s Creed game I have ever played. Much like Assassin’s Creed Black Flag, Unity runs on an engine that allows the game to soar. There is rarely ever any distracting slowdown. The loading times are, for the most part, quick–more so miraculous for how much the game is loading–. Unity is both limber and taunt, ready to take the player on one heck of a roller coaster ride.

Buckling in

Arno Dorian is Unity’s protagonist. He is the French counterpart to Ezio, from Assassin’s Creed Ezio Trilogy. This is the highest compliment I can pay the game, at this point (I am a big Ezio fan). Assassin’s Creed III fell flat in the character department as did Black Flag. All I want is a character I can somewhat like, Arno delivers in spades.

1024px-Prise_de_la_BastilleMemory sequences of Arno’s childhood build back story and player empathy. The use of Arno’s father’s pocket watch, as a symbol of something lost, is fantastic. I also enjoyed the prison escape framed against the Storming of the Bastille.

Unity features slight game control tweaks that serve the series well. For instance, Arno now has the ability descend buildings in a quick manner. Sounds like a simple mechanical change but it is often breathtaking and crucial to game flow/movement. Sword fighting seems like a Black Flag upgrade. I can’t tell if I like it or not. First impression: Doesn’t feel tight but reminds me of Batman Arkham Asylum. Go figure.

I am excited to see where the Templar/Assassin romance could be heading. SPOILERS! Can love cool revenge? Can love overcome death? I can’t wait to find out.

(This is the 600th post on my blog. Woo hoo!)

Rewind Wednesday – Backpack Life

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Note: I think this is one of the first pieces I ever posted to JBG. Thought I’d share once again. – Bryan

Life is full of in-betweens, periods of time spent waiting, watching, and listening for the events that mark one transition to the next. We spend most of our lives in transit; out of our comfort zones, away from the stability that normalcy provides. I believe God uses these periods of change to remind us that there is a great need for Him.

Not knowing personal direction (job, relationship, etc.) keeps us, as humans, searching for solid ground. We find ourselves desiring black and white answers, all the while demanding that God illuminate our current life path. We are scared of the unknown; we find ourselves in need of our Creator.

In the transitory periods of life, the time spent living out of a backpack, we long for God the most. I know I do. The journey from childhood to adulthood is unmarked by any specific event. The world around might say having sex is the mark of an adult, while others might say voting in an election is. No specifics are given as to what qualifies as a transition, we live life without a hint book.

Perhaps one of the greatest errors society makes is the lack of specific transitory ceremonies. I can only imagine what such a ceremony would entail. A starry night comes to mind as a campfire burns in a forest. Communion with nature somehow mixed with pain. Pain always seems involved with transitions, whether they are physical or mental.

The notion that God is good becomes bedrock while searching because ultimately God is good. Stripped down of unneeded thought or theology, we can find ourselves resting on the firm foundation of God. Now I’ll be honest, God’s foundation is not always easy to find but is indeed there. I am not saying that God’s foundation moves but that there can be trouble areas in our lives that keep us from finding him. God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. I take comfort in God being good and Lord over all. During the times when you cannot fathom where life is leading, times which grip one in fear, remember the solid foundation that is Jesus Christ. Living out of a backpack isn’t all that bad when one knows that the journey has already been written and has an end. An end no movie sequel can hope to resurrect.