Frustratingly, dear reader, my television has been giving me some major HDMI issues, displaying a beautiful, sharp image for a few moments before the HDMI connection simply vanishes, unable to reconnect. This especially sucks because I’m in the middle of playing through a few games for review (hopefully the first of those will be up this week), and it also means that I have not been able to review all the games I initially had my heart set on reviewing for this round-up. One of those games, the biggest release on consoles in a while, Minecraft, is one of those games. I played the game on the PC, but at this point, if you know games, you know that version of Minecraft, so it seems redundant to merely review it on the PC.

The console version catches my eye for obvious reasons. Lack of the ability to download mods is one aspect, while another is simply to see how Minecraft’s release effects all of the clones released on the Indie Marketplace itself. I promise to have a write-up of my time with the XBOX 360 version of Minecraft as soon as my television starts cooperating.

Until then, I can tell you about three titles that I was lucky enough to run before my television shit itself. Miasma 2 is the sequel to the 2010 original where freedom fighters engage in battle with a shady all-powerful corporate entity. The sequel is more of the same, delivering crisp graphics, a decent score and solid writing. The game itself is a mash up of RPG and action that recalls memories of Mass Effect and Final Fantasy Tactics. A grid-based system, along with a line of sight shooting/detection mechanic make Miasma 2 totally worth the paltry sum of 80 Microsoft Points (a dollar).

Indie Flop:

Pendulous is a monotonous physics-based puzzler that tries your patience with obtuse puzzles, weak graphics and a miserable soundtrack. While initially, I was psyched for the game’s release, I couldn’t possibly have been more disappointed with both the presentation and the steep learning curve. Overall, what a disaster.

Indie Darling:

Snakester is a simple, yet addicting time-waster where the player must guide a neon snake around the screen, gobbling up white glowing orbs, all the while, the snake’s tail grows longer and longer. Crossing over one’s own tail is instant death, but a score multiplier adds to the thrill of collecting more orbs. Multiple game modes guarantee that you’ll be coming back. Sharp visuals, great music, worth every cent at a whopping 80 Microsoft points (a buck!).

With today being Mother’s Day, I can share an anecdote with you that I’ve carried with me for a while. I had always loved video games. I grew up playing them. Friends’ computers. The Atari 2600. The original NES. I had it all. When Super Mario Brothers 3 came out, my mom picked me up early from school to go buy it from Toys R Us. I must’ve been around 4 or five at the time.

She always did cool stuff like that. Taking me out of school to go buy Jurassic Park when it came out on VHS (I skipped it in theatres because I couldn’t handle loud noises as a kid. Don’t judge me). She bought me Street Fighter 2 – The Animated Movie for me because I wasn’t allowed, due to it being rated R (thanks to my mom, I got to see Chun-Li’s breasts in the pre-internet days of Rule 34). And when a big game release happened, I knew I was going to have it. She’s good like that.

I just wanted to take this space, get a little flowery, and say I love you mom. Thanks for being the coolest chick a dude could have growing up. Without you, my geekdom wouldn’t exist, I wouldn’t have become a writer, and I would never have discovered CHUD, the site I’ve dreamed of writing for since discovering it all those years ago. Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms!

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