Tag Archives: random

Gaming (and typing practise!): Epistory

I have been gaming a bit more recently; I’ve had a whole stack on my wishlist and I’ve picked a few up when they’ve been on Steam sale, and over the last few weeks, I’ve started playing again – mostly a game called Epistory!

I wanted to love Stardew Valley, but it had too many bugs, too many random quests, no help given….screw that. I’m sure it’s fun if you get into it, but for me it was just tedious, and I refuse to waste time on tedium. I also had a go at something similar to Sid Meier’s Civ, but didn’t get on with it.

But Epistory…love love LOVE.

In a story where everything is to be written, ride a giant fox and fight insectile corruption in a beautiful origami world.

I mean, how cool does that sound? And it really is!

The world itself is stunning; everything unfolds as you approach it, and it’s origami-and-paper style designs, beautifully drawn. It’s a sheer joy to look at, especially as there’s a range of different areas that you can travel through, all rendered with different settings (I particularly like the ice floes). The plot is basically “find area, explore, do some puzzles, whomp creatures, learn a new language, explore more” but each level is different enough that it’s not tedious – and there’s a larger story wound into the world, writing itself as you go.

And that’s part of the fun – the story tells itself on the ground as you travel. You fight monsters by typing words and letters. You reveal treasure chests and flowers by getting the words right. If you’re trying to learn touch-typing, it’s an excellent way to learn – as I’m finding! I’m so used to writing from my head that I don’t have to think about how to type a word – but give me one on the screen and I get a little lost, so it’s actually an excellent tool.

I don’t know how long the story is, but you can keep exploring the world even between the levels. On a gameplay level, I love that the game automatically saves and if you die, it puts you back to a sensible save point (so doesn’t immediately put you back into danger!) The interface and tools are very easy – the only thing I’m finding difficult is the movement controls, as the game uses E-F-J-I. It helps typing, but unfortunately I can’t get them into my head as directions so I’m constantly going the wrong way…but that’s a minor bug compared to the rest of the game.

I don’t know if you can adjust difficult levels – if you can, Epistory would definitely be an excellent game to teach children touch-typing! It’s sweet for all ages, though, and beautifully drawn. The story’s still unfolding for me (and I love that I can play in small chunks!) so I’ll keep you updated!

 

Spare Plot going free, one careful owner.

My friend was playing Star Trek, and the Romulans were after some sort of ancient superweapon hidden in a nebula. And it’s probably been done, but I’d love to see a story about a group after a mythical superweapon – which turns out to be a nuke.

They journey to a strange world, finding strange cultures and dangerous beings, a forbidden world of wonder and legend, and find the caves that hide the mythical device. To get inside, they must use a code that’s been passed down for centuries, from generation to generation.

They get inside.

The second code releases the weapon. They type it in, and press the release button.

Which, unfortunately, launches the damn thing.

I think there’s a lot you could wind into that, and you could certainly play around with it – I just liked the idea of an ancient race being us!

(Ps. lots of words on NaNo.)

How to Celebrate Hallowe’en with an Octopus

Have you come across Brian Kesinger’s Tea Girls on Facebook? No? It’s adorable. As well as drawings of Otto, there’s cartoons and other odd bits. Brian’s currently doing #inktober so there’s amusing extra cartoons most days!

If you like Otto and want the books, there’s guides on how to Walk Your Octopus, Travel With Your Octopus and Colour With Your Octopus. There’s also a guide to Dressing Your Octopus which is on Kickstarter at the moment, because of course that’s what everyone should have.

This is a pretty random PSA but I just think they’re adorable. Everyone needs a land octopus!