Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Creeper World

As long as I'm broadening the blog, I figure I may as well give an honorable mention to a game I've been playing for the past couple years. Creeper World has probably sucked up more of my time than any other game except Minecraft, and for good reason: I love tower defense games, I love strategy games, and Creeper World is both wrapped into one.

Much like games such as Star Fox 64, Creeper World is a difficult game to lose once you get a good feel for it. The real challenge comes from trying to get the highest score possible. This is more difficult than you would think since the score starts at 10,000 and slowly counts down as time passes.

Your resource in this game is energy. You will never run out, but several factors can make life difficult for you. Your base's ability to function is based on your energy production, usage, stockpile, and starvation. Your base will function optimally if you keep your production at least as high as your usage. A high stockpile will allow you to temporarily use more energy than you produce without drawbacks. If you run out, though, starvation will kick in. As long as starvation keeps climbing your economy will slow to a crawl. This is dangerous since your guns can run out of ammo, and the Creeper will begin advancing on your position. Low starvation is a common occurrence and isn't cause for concern. It's when you run in excess of about 100 units that it becomes a problem, as it takes awhile to recover from and eats away at your time.

In fact just about every obstacle in this game is put there specifically to waste your time. Things like starvation will reward you for falling back and consolidating your economy. Again, it's harder to lose this game than to win it. Any problems posed by these setbacks always come down to score: the longer you take, the lower your score counter ticks. It's easy to get sidetracked by trying to cap off Creeper emitters, since doing so makes winning many times easier by saving you energy. However, getting the highest score requires that you keep your eye on the ball: that ball being the totems, as well as the occasional crashed escape pod.

I cannot stress enough how easy this game would be without the score counter. It is both tempting and feasible on many maps to simply construct a doom force of towers and steamroll the Creeper until every last drop is eradicated and all emitters capped off... given enough time. The problem is, of course, time. The game ends when you power up all the totems, and it doesn't much care how you do it as long as you're quick.

To be fair, the game does give you a pause button so that you can issue build and move orders without wasting time or diverting your attention away from the never-ending flow of Creeper. The only issue presented by this is that games do not start pre-paused, which can be frustrating to no end if you forget that little detail. Restarting is always an option, though, so even that isn't a big deal.

There isn't as much detail to go into for this game like there would be with Advance Wars, but it's an interesting game nonetheless.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

I'm not kidding myself anymore

I'm about the only author to ever use this blog, and it would probably have stayed that way. From now on this blog is just going to be my personal blog. Don't get me wrong, 90% of what I post here is still going to be video games, just not necessarily Advance Wars.

And since this blog doesn't have a specific purpose anymore, I've gone ahead and deleted a lot of the touchier posts. I've mostly divorced myself from the mainstream AW community and don't really want to incur anyone's wrath for some of the dumber things I've said and done.