Surf Report – 5/6/2013

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Surf Report

Welcome to the Monday edition of the Surf Report.

.: God :

Ever since I can remember, my wife has told me that her dream was/is to be a stay-at-home mom. I knew this before I married her. This spring, after 8 years of teaching–I don’t know if she’ll ever know how proud I am of her–, we started praying over whether she should continue teaching or not. A few months later, the deadline for her contract renewal came up. We had to make a decision. Oddly, we both felt like she needed to stay home with our son. Now, what is odd about this is that we both crave comfort; we both crave the security that her job provides. Well, we ended up deciding that she won’t be teaching next year. This means big changes for the Hall household.

Last night, my pastor mentioned the above “balance beam” sermon by Francis Chan. Even though I have peace over the decision my wife and I made, I still feel like I have been desperately clinging to the balance beam of life. Not wanting to let go of the safety and comfort the balance beam provides. Sure, I’ll let go and tell God that he can have my stress, fear, and worry. Almost immediately though, I grab back onto the beam.

Following Christ is all about stepping out of our comfort zones. I know this. I don’t want to live a life of sheltered/calculated risk. I want to go and do what God is calling me to do…even if that means moving forward and letting go.

I don’t want to go where the majority goes…

.: Life :

See above.

.: Gaming :

I went out and bought 3 games on Saturday:

  • Trauma Center: Trauma Team (Wii)
  • Dragon Age 2 (PS3)
  • Metroid: Other M (Wii)

Trauma Center: Trauma Team – My wife and I fired up the Wii and immediately dove into surgery–once we figured out how to set up the controls for co-op–. Overall the game looks and plays like a Trauma Center game, no surprise there. I’ll keep ya’ll posted on this one.

Dragon Age 2

Dragon Age 2 – I am not the biggest fan of Dragon Age Origins. Origins is one of those games that I really want to like but just can’t seem to get into. Dragon Age 2, on the other hand, has been pretty awesome so far. I love the fluid magic system (I’m playing as a mage) and the character interaction. DA2 plays more like an action game with RPG elements versus DA1, which was an RPG with action elements. The $10 price tag makes the game even more awesome.

Metroid: Other M – Universally hated by reviewers due to it’s portrayal of series protagonist, Samus Aran. Metroid: Other M, features tight gameplay mixed with cutscenes that depict Samus as a girl with daddy issues. The disconnect between the Samus portrayed in the cutscenes versus the Samus I’m playing in the game is jarring. We’ll see if I keep going. My Wii’s disc drive was making some pretty crazy sounds while I was playing. If the Wii fails, this will be the second time I’ve had to send it in for repairs. Lame.

wavesplinter

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

Maturity

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My fondest video game memories all stem from childhood. Be it sitting in the family room playing the NES with my younger sister or hanging out at a friends house playing Road Rash on the Genesis, video games have always played a part in my life. Fast forward to today, and I often find myself trying to recapture those moments.

In November of last year, my sister flew out to spend some time with my family and I. We mostly just hung out around the house and played with my son. Nothing big. However, we did end up playing Super Mario Brothers 3 on the Wii. Talk about stirring up some memories. By the end of our game time, I had realized a few things:

  • My sister will always be a better Mario Brothers player than I will ever, ever be.
  • Gaming is best when your playing with others.

What was great about revisiting this past time with her, was that no fights broke out. I’m serious. My Mom never had to swoop in and take the controllers away because we wouldn’t share or honor the others next turn.

“You die one more time and I get the next life.”

Age has a way of making one want what has been. Having my sister out and playing Mario 3 though made me realize that those gaming moments haven’t gone away. In fact, they have only gotten better due to age and maturity. One thing that I will never miss is being grounded off the NES due to fighting. Hurray for growing older.

What are your favorite video game memories?

Monster Hunter Tri Bundle

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Nintendo announced today that Monster Hunter® Tri will indeed be bundled with the Classic Controller Pro and priced at $59.99.

Monster Hunter Tri has made a huge splash in the Japanese market, and we’re confident the bundle with the Classic Controller Pro will give fans in North America plenty to get excited about,” said Steve Singer, Nintendo of America’s vice president of Licensing. “Gamers of all kinds enjoy playing games on Wii. Monster Hunter Tri delivers an incredible new experience on Wii, while the Classic Controller Pro gives players even more control options for their favorite Wii games.”

The new Classic Controller Pro includes a second row of shoulder buttons and ergonomically friendly grips. The Classic Controller Pro plugs directly into the Wii Remote™ controller, and until now, has been available only in the Japanese market.

The Classic Controller Pro will be compatible with more than 450 Wii, WiiWare™ and Virtual Console™ games. The Classic Controller Pro bundled with Monster Hunter Tri will be black, while both black and white versions of the controller will also be available separately at a suggested retail price of $19.99. The game will also be available without a controller at a suggested retail price of $49.99.

For full press release click here.

The hunt begins this April.

So Happy Together

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A friend recently asked me what games would be good for him and his girlfriend to play together. Below is a list I compiled in response:

  • Animal Crossing: City Folk – Imagine the depressed creatures from the “Where the Wild Things Are” movie, hopped up on happy pills, and enslaved to a mob boss named Tom Nook. Good times abound as you work to pay off your mortgage, plant trees, and interact with animals far too dependent on your existence. The best part of all, teaching the animals new slang words!
  • Trauma Center: New Blood – Make incisions, perform surgeries with the aid of the “Healing Touch”, and wade through all the drama that exists within a hospital. Trauma Center allows you to play co-op surgeries with your friends and family. Sudden game difficulty spikes put a damper on things but do not let that get you down.
  • World of Goo – Tucked away on WiiWare, World of Goo is a puzzle game that forces players to use their resources wisely while building goo-structures to win.
  • Other Mentions – Big Brain Academy: Wii Degree, Mario Kart Wii, Excite Truck, Wii Sports Resort, New Super Mario Brothers Wii.

Games that allow the second player to assist –

  • Super Mario Galaxy – One of the main reasons I bought a Wii, Super Mario Galaxy allows the second player to help collect items as well as stop enemies. My wife and I beat this game together.
  • Zack & Wiki – While I have no first hand experience with this game, I have heard that it is well worth looking past the crazy cover art.

Think I missed something? Let me know in the comments!