Monthly Archives: August 2017

Indie Delay Land

Heya, readers and friends and friends who read. Stress and high workload over the weekend have culminated in a painfully overloaded writing arm today, so I’m delaying typing Indie Wonderland until tomorrow. Thanks for understanding.

– Jarenth

EDIT: In light of the website’s recent troubles, I’m postponing this week’s column to next week entirely. No sense rushing out work if the site won’t let anyone read it.

Ranneko Plays With Timing – Channel Update 2017-08-25

The Star Realms analysis videos continue, though feedback is, as usual, unfortunately limited. I got the typical dozen or so views I get for the first episode of a new series but the first episode this week has thus far received no traction. We will see how it does long term.

Currently, I release videos every day at midday, with the theory being that people who live in the same timezone as me can watch them at work, but I am considering trying a later release time to see if I can catch more people at a time where they might want to watch. My current thinking is to try shifting video releases by an hour, waiting a couple of weeks, comparing and repeating. So if a video seems to be out at an unusual time, that is probably why.

As a reminder, the Ransistance will return once War of the Chosen releases on the 29th of August. Firaxis has released a free demo that consists entirely of the photobooth, which means there is now a free tool anyone can use to create soldiers that can be imported into XCOM 2. This means I have revised the recruitment form. I have stripped out the overly long second page, if you want to be added you can either just specify a name and optionally a few other basic details. If you want a fully specified soldier, now you can create it yourself and then send me the file.

The current schedule is:

Saturday: Syfro Saturdays – Ranneko and Syfro Play Thimbleweed Park
Sundays: Curious Ranpedition
Monday, Wednesday, Friday: Let’s Dissect A Couple of Games of Star Realms
Tuesday and Thursday: Torment: Tides of Ranmenera

After the break, more about the videos that released last week!

Indie Wonderland: Pixel Shopkeeper

Has there been any game about RPG shopkeeping since 2007 that landed quite as well as Recettear? I’m wondering. I know more games do exist in that particular hyper-specific niche: I remember playing Holy Potatoes! A Weapon Shop?! (review here), and I’m waiting for Moonlighter with pretty baited breath. But has anything so far made a similar splash?

I find myself thinking these things as I watch the Steam download bar for Pixel Prototype‘s Pixel Shopkeeper, the genre of which I think you can probably intuit now. I want another RPG shopkeeping game to make the same splash as Recettear, because Recettear ruled. Maybe Pixel Shopkeeper will be the one?

Only one way to find out.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, low. Mechanical, medium.)

(Game source: Bought it myself.)

After the break: Pixel Shopkeeper. Not a game about running a pixel shop, but… Actually, that’s pretty valid too. Take it however you want, I guess.

Ranneko Plays With Star Realms – Channel Update 2017-08-18

This week we finished up Massive Chalice. I had a great time with the game but it turns out it was a little shorter than I needed right now. The plan was to go from Massive Chalice to XCOM 2: War of the Chosen, but that doesn’t come out until the 29th.

Until then in the Mon/Wed/Fri slot, we are going to do something a little different. We are going to talk about Star Realms. Specifically, we are going to look at replays of Star Realms games and try to work out where the pivotal moments were. Where the initial mistakes were made that resulted in later victory or defeat. It is a little bit different from the other coverage of Star Realms on my channel and I hope people like it.

The Ransistance will return once War of the Chosen releases on the 29th of August. Firaxis has released a free demo that consists entirely of the photobooth, which means there is now a free tool anyone can use to create soldiers that can be imported into XCOM 2. This means I have revised the recruitment form. I have stripped out the overly long second page, if you want to be added you can either just specify a name and optionally a few other basic details. If you want a fully specified soldier, now you can create it yourself and then send me the file.

The current schedule is:

Saturday: Syfro Saturdays – Ranneko and Syfro Play Thimbleweed Park
Sundays: Curious Ranpedition
Monday, Wednesday: Ranneko Plays Massive Chalice
Tuesday and Thursday: Torment: Tides of Ranmenera
Friday: Let’s Dissect A Couple of Games of Star Realms

After the break, more about the videos that released last week!

Indie Shortieland: Tacoma

The gaming buzz on my social media timelines the past week or so has been pretty much all Tacoma. And with obvious reason: It’s the latest opus of Fullbright, they of the superlative Gone Home. As part of my general non-disclosure agreement with any and all games news I haven’t read much about Tacoma, but I have learned a few things: That it features gameplay much in the vein of Gone Home, that it has a character either called or named after Odin, that it’s set in space, and that people say it takes about three hours to complete, start-to-finish. Obviously, the latter seems like silly exaggeration, and after playing it for myself this weekend, I can confirm that that number is nowhere near accurate.

I completed it in two and a half hours.

It should be obvious that I can’t really use my regular review pattern with a game like Tacoma. Not only is it primarily narrative-driven, which is always a dicey prospect, but if I did my usual ‘I’m playing through the first half hour or so and what is this’ shtick, that’d essentially spoil outright almost a sixth of the game. I do want to talk about what made Tacoma work for me as it did, though. So you all get a Shortieland. I know you were probably clamoring for another 7000-word epic after last week, but I hope we can all agree that it’s for the best I leave some of this game intact.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, low. Mechanical, high-ishl.)

(Game source: Bought it myself

After the break: Tacoma, or What In The Name Of Space Happened Here.

Ranneko Plays Camping – Channel Update 2017-08-11

This week I am away! Camping on Gotland for Medeltidveckan (medieval week). As such there isn’t too much to discuss right now, I have been trying to record enough to stay ahead because I keep having small trips which is making it harder than I would like to maintain a buffer.

The current schedule is:

Saturday: Syfro Saturdays – Ranneko and Syfro Play Thimbleweed Park
Sundays: Curious Ranpedition
Monday, Wednesday and Friday: Ranneko Plays Massive Chalice
Tuesday and Thursday: Torment: Tides of Ranmenera

After the break, more about the videos that released last week!

Indie Wonderland: Pyre

I’m guessing approximately zero of you are surprised I’ve been looking forward to Pyre. In case you are, let me give you some crucial backstory: Pyre is made by Supergiant Games.

That’s it. That’s the backstory. Supergiant Games has made two games before Pyre, and both Bastion and Transistor (which I reviewed here) were great fun, and masterclass studies of the use of innovative design techniques. I loved both games and still rate them very highly; that I was going to try and dive into Pyre as soon as possible was basically a foregone conclusion. In fact, I’ve gone even further than my usual ‘try to go in as blind as possible’ approach: I’ve pursued an active campaign of non-information against Pyre. All I know so far is that it’s… an RPG? Or a sports game? Or both?

Or maybe neither? I’ve been really thorough about not knowing anything.

(Spoiler levels: Narrative, low. Mechanical, medium-high.)

(Game source: Bought it myself.)

After the break: Pyre, I game I’ve been avoiding news of so studiously I might almost have missed that it exists.

Ranneko Plays A Curious Expedition – Channel Update 2017-08-04

Time to start a new game on Saturdays, let’s go with one that takes place during the age of exploration, where the player has to embark on 6 expeditions and compete to gather the most fame. A very novel concept and definitely not one seen on the channel before.

On a more serious note, it was actually Curious Expedition that got me to play Renowned Explorers, a friend had been playing the former and I realised I owned a very similar game in the latter. I have played around with it a little bit before and watched my friend, which means I’m not going onto Curious Expedition completely blind, but I have never successfully finished a run. Hopefully I will learn over the course of the series.

As always, I am still soliciting feedback on the schedule I will move to once I have some tips recorded, and Curious Expedition is complete. Any feedback or suggestions are very welcome.

Here is the schedule I am currently angling toward:
Mon/Wed/Fri: Long Game Slot
Tuesday: Tips
Thurs/Sun: Shorter Game or Oneshot
Sat: Syfro Saturdays

The current schedule is:

Saturday: Syfro Saturdays – Ranneko and Syfro Play Thimbleweed Park
Sundays: Curious Ranpedition
Monday, Wednesday and Friday: Ranneko Plays Massive Chalice
Tuesday and Thursday: Torment: Tides of Ranmenera

After the break, more about the videos that released last fortnight!