Castle Crashers: Technical Knockout

Posted on July 28, 2009. Filed under: Game | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

((I know, it’s really long, but I try to be entertaining. I swear! I’m still finding my footing with this blog. Any suggestions?))

After… SEVENTEEN days. Two and a half weeks (I simply don’t have the focus of a gamer, apparently). I have finished Castle Crashers. I started on July 7th, and finished July 24th.

I played as the Gray Guy.

Iddn’t he kyoot? Aww. One of his eyes is angwy. Makes me wanna pinch his gway cheeks. XPPPPPPPP

I’ve played the game before. Long, long ago. So I started as the Gray Guy. He was MY character. I left him off at a level 11. I couldn’t get past the freaking demented River Cat with the bloodstained sock puppet and living white evil teddy bear. I would usually play Mario’s Alien Hominid because he was so darn cute, his ‘magic’ was super effective, and I would just play to level his character up (He’s now at 51. You’re welcome). Since his Alien Hominid had already beaten the game, I would be able to bypass that smelly cat (What are they feeding you? –I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.) and try other levels. I only tried the Tall Grass Field and The Parade (but would get killed practically instantly).

I tend to freak easily, so I avoid things when I know I’m gonna freak, then that leads me to spaz, then I just want to scream, curl up, and suck on my thumb while singing “Take On Me” soothingly to myself, so this whole new experience has been quite interesting to say the least… Controllers flying everywhere. It’s a wonder that I haven’t broken anything (yet) or the neighbors haven’t called the cops. I should really film my adventures in gaming. It would bring the weird.

Anyway, I ended the game as a level 37. I was so excited when I reached level 20, so then I could use the best weapons. My favorites were: the Butcher Knife, the Club (those crit hits attracted me), the King’s Mace, and the NG Golden Sword. Before then, I preferred the Pumpkin Peeler and the Broad Ax.

I also loved how we could use animal orbs to help us out. My constant companion in the beginning was, of course, Giraffey, so I could level up faster. Then as I got closer to the end of the game, I started using these guys: Chicken, Spiny, and the Troll (which I SWORE by in the last cluster of battles before and including the Final Battle.

How did I build up my character? I mostly assigned points to Strength and Defense since I’m not that used to the controller yet and need to smash my enemies quickly and deftly (and to lessen the duration of my freakouts). Then after I had my Strength and Defense built up, I did Agility. I had a few in Magic, but the Gray Knight’s Magic is lame anyway and me pressing the bumpers just gets me hit and killed, so I didn’t bother. I don’t have that speed-thumb yet either. If I had experience in either the controller or speed-thumb, I’m sure I could have cut those 17 days in half. But, alas, I am a novice. I am learning. Slowly.

Since it’s been a few (busier than normal) days, let me try to gather my thoughts…

Everything up until the River Cat I’m quite expert and adept to, so not much to comment there. When I did start playing this time around, however, I did start from the beginning just to feel more authentic, I guess. But it was easy to just re-do stuff here (and it helped level my guy up further. Bonus). Whenever I play Super Mario Galaxy, I WON’T be doing that because some stars I HAVE achieved months and months ago were pains in the ass (btw, that will not be the next game I play).

Level-by-level play-by-play, after the River Cat:

Tall Grass Fields: I spazzed at those blood-stained teddy bears with sharp teeth. Button-mashed my way out of there.

Pipistrello’s Cave: …dotdotdot… Pipistrello sounds more like a teddy bear Italian father figure who runs the best damn pizza joint in the county, but instead he’s an enormous bat who shits smoky green poo on me, and then had his wittle bat minions nibble me to death. Here’s the kicker, I defeated him, but then one of his minion nibbled the last of my health and I DIED before I was officially declared the winner. F&$%^#*&%*$*$$&$#%#@KKKKK!!!!!!

You could say I was a smidge miffed, but I finally got my sweet, sweet revenge. BTW, it wasn’t until here, I believe, that I discovered what those potions were for: restoring health. Thanks Mario! Now I know to set my bumper so I can just tap B during a battle and be all set.

Flowery Field: Oddly, I don’t remember much about that level. I definitely don’t recall encountering any bees. I would totally remember it because I would have screamed “NOT THE BEEEEES!!! AHHHH!! THEY’RE IN MY EYES!! MY EYES!!! AHHHH!! ARRRRGG!!” a la Oscar-winning actor Nicolas Cage. But I don’t have the best of memories anyway, although I have a tendency towards savantism at times (mostly towards cooking/food trivia and classic cinema …or even crappy or campy cinema like the above example).

Wedding Crash: Another PITA level. Clusterfucks everywhere, and then the boss. Naturally, I get squicked when I first come upon a boss (whether I’ve fought them before or not) and then my heart feels like it’s gonna explode, then that adrenaline shoots into my elbows before radiating down to my wrists, then thumbs. It’s a weird sensation. It makes me jumpy and anxious. Is that how gaming is supposed to feel like, or is that generally reserved for n00bs like moi?

Anyway, that Groom is an ass. Nobody fricking fights fair. It’s all long-range stuff. What happened to dueling or even mano-a-mano? Guess dueling went out of style thanks to the pompous ass that was Aaron Burr (who dueled with another pompous ass, Alexander Hamilton …but that’s history). Whatever. I dodged those bombs and Y-ed the shit out of him when I had a chance, but as you get closer to defeating them, they get insanely faster. How can you compete with that?

Man I’m whiny. My n00b is showing. Is there a soothing salve for that?

Regardless, I beat his ass. And he taught me a valuable lesson: You always leave a note. They are BOSSES. They’re ENEMIES. No way in hell they are going to fight fair. They want you DEAD. It’s one of those things that you “know”, but you have to GET to know to actually KNOW it. …if that makes any sense. I know I hardly do. –And that’s not something I “know”, it’s something I KNOW.

#_#

What do I know? I’m used to Sonic the Hedgehog bosses.

Parade: OOH! A parade? You mean I get to put on a pretty bonnet with all the frills upon it and dance with Fred Astaire? Wait, no? Monkey balls. Instead I get to keep tapping Y, fighting yet another Massive Troll, and avoiding his lasers. Easy peasy. Intense, but almost sickeningly easy once you get used to it. My heart was still pounding the whole way through, though.

Cyclops’ Cave: Pretty basic and straightforward: you step into an area, get various minions, fight them off, get the blinking hand, go to the next area, get various minions, fight them off, etc, etc…

Cyclops’ Gate: Avoid lava splatter. That is all.

Cyclops’ Fortress: Those Coneheads are tough little bastards. Damn their lightsabers and agile movements in HEAVY ARMOR.

Lava World: Oh… no. Those Fire Demons are the tough little bastards. The Coneheads are their cuddly little cousins. They keep using their long-range magic attacks that leave me idling to get back up, only to be pelted by yet another fireball. Ugh. Then I got to the Volcano, and I thought ‘oh, this will be too easy’. Then I actually started fighting. Those fire demons just kept coming. When I killed them, they turned into a sandwich. I picked them up thinking they were health that I desperately (always) need. Then I started to go hit the Volcano, but it took NO hits. I finally figured out that I needed to USE the nummy PBJ sammies.

I defeated his magma ass and was ready for the next level. …Wait…what…?

THERE’S A DRAGON WITH A SOCK PUPPET??? The damage had been done. I needed new underpants. I was so scared, I returned to the map. I lost ALL my progress! So I had to start all over in Lava World. I was so miffed. Even if it were easy, it is time-consuming. And it is not easy. I shot Mario an email, bothering him at work. He simply told me to, well, avoid things and keep hitting him. …Okay. But he at least made me feel like I could do it (Buck up, little camper! Everyone’s a winner, champ! …but not really)

My strategy: Make sure my potions are all filled and ready, then switch to sandwiches being ready at the Volcano, then switch back to ready potions at the Dragon. With the Dragon, I stayed near his mouth the whole time, fighting the one minion, getting fire breathed on me (which didn’t deplete much health in the first place, come to find out later), do X-Y repeatedly while his head was down dousing me with flames, and not giving a damn when a boulder came and hit me since it also didn’t deplete much.

This boss’ bark is FAR bigger than his bite. Still scared the crap out of me, so I felt deceived, but nonetheless victorious! I slayed a dragon!

Industrial Castle: Those damn minions were tough and just kept coming, but it wasn’t insanely hard. It was just enough difficulty and pain-in-the-ass-ness; no more, no less. The headscratcher, though, was getting past those spiked mallets WITHOUT getting hit (which you can’t. Meh). On the rising platform, I X-Y-ed the snot out of everyone.

Then, the puffy purple boss with the Snidely Whiplash mustache. I’ll call him Baron von Douchebag, because he looks like he’s of feminine product nobility. Of course, in honor of cowardly bosses everywhere, Baron von Douchebag trumps them all by getting BEHIND a glass wall to control a MACHINE (obviously constructed by a freshman engineering student at Rutgers).

I’ll give that it is a tricky machine when you are first confronted with it, but then you get to know its quirks and choreography, so it’s easy. You just have to be patient to finally get the finger-walking arm, and the other dangerous substance-shooting arm.

Then once you explode everything, the Baron browns his puffy pantaloons and goes running away, but all there is is a balcony, so you excitedly punt him off it and collect a seeing eyeglass, so now you can get passage on the ship.

Pirate Ship: So I finally collected all 3 of those damn trinkets.

NINJAAAAS!!! Not pirates, but NINJAAAAS!!! Ninjas that take two hits, then turn into a log. Much like real ninjas. And they just keep freaking coming. Is there any end?

Desert: Sufficiently challenging without ticking you off. Those poison-spitting worms are annoying, but you gotta get right next to them to kill them and they will gnaw on your flesh a bit, then you have a few more baddies to slay as you dodge scorpions.At the end, there’s random alien spaceship that plop out Alien Hominids that you kill with one single hit, but they keep spitting out one to replace another. Then when finished, you have no choice but to get abducted.

Interesting level. Pretty damn straightforward and almost boring, but after all that adrenaline-pumping fighting before this level, the Desert makes a fine calming moment.

It’s like a mixed-tape: After you pump it up, you gotta bring it down.

Then HOLY SHIT IT GETS BROUGHT BACK UP AGAIN!!1!

Alien Ship: Im in a laser cage, but I use my mad archery skills to bust myself free, but then I get swarmed by cute and semi-deadly Alien Hominids. I slay them, collect their coins, gems, and food products, and then destroy another laserbeam cage.

Um… who the hell is that? Why is there a Beefy Alien and why is he in a cage? Oh shit he’s charging for me. Oh, he’s busting buttons. AHHHH!!! Self-destruct! I only have a minute to escape??!!!

You know how long this took me. A few hours over two days. Many, many, many attempts. I would barely make it to the velvet rope before we got blown up. Then I’d have to start ALL over again with the easy, but timely slaying of the aliens. Then there were a few times I got close, but then the next attempts would have me make stupid mistakes like getting hit by smoke which idles me, or hit by the ambushing aliens which again idles me.

Desert Chase: Just an interlude level. Again, to calm me down.

Sand Castle Interior: OMFG AMBUSH!! Why do you toy me so, Castle Crashers??

Sand Castle Roof: o_O? A volleyball game? It took me a while to figure out wtf was going on, and even longer to figure out HOW the hell to PLAY it. I got defeated countless times (they all pointed, laughed at me, and yelled “FAIL!” I hung my head in shame. I wanted my mommy).

The depth perception of the game SUCKS. You only THINK you’re right at the ball ready to whack it at them, but nope–it ends up flopping on your side and THEY get ticked a point and I get ticked off.

A few times I got close, but then I FREAKING WON!!! Boy did that feel good. I did a little dance.

Marsh: Easy as pie. You kill skeleton zombies and plunder graves. All in a day’s work. Those Forest Knights are sons of bitches, though.

Corn Boss: Super easy. Quite predictable. You just keep running across the map to better avoid where he may pop up. You can see him snapping at you from a mile away, and whenever he’s doing his weed-whacking movement, he always starts in the same spot and goes across in the same places. It’s just at the end when he’s constantly burrowing underground and popping back up at an insanely fast rate, so it’s harder for you to deliver the last blows. He’s also more likely to hit you, too, then, so it depletes your health, so I had those potions ready.

Flooded Temple: For some reason, once I got to this level, I was REALLY impressed with the game. I mean in terms of sheer imagination and art style. They truly thought of everything. Those large Fish Men were an interesting foe. Not too hard, not too easy, and the right amount of intimidating without making you crap your pants. I like that. I enjoy clean underwear.

Medusa’s Lair: Aaaand heeeeere’s where I crapped myself, since it’s a boss. I paused and shot Mario an email, asking for advice. Come to find out, like the Corn Boss, she has a predictable modus operandi. Block, short burst, block, short burst, block the cosmic rays or you’ll be turned into stone, etc, etc…

Full Moon: SCREW FULL MOON!

Ahem. I always got killed. Never could progress. Then I got Mario to play with me, so we had two characters. But as soon as we logged on together, suddenly the next level was unlocked. No need to play Full Moon.

Needless to say, we never played Full Moon and never looked back.

Snow World: Those Iceskimos are pesky little bastards. But we kicked the shit out of them.

Ice Castle: OMFG. Getting TO the boss was tougher than the actual boss. I had to keep reviving Mario’s guy (since he had to play a level 1 on the same machine as a different player) WHILE dodging arrows and ice balls. Not. Cool. *grumblepun*

We finally made it to the damn Frost King (Reminds me of the Snow Miser. ‘He’s Mister Icicle, he’s Mister Ten Below’, anyone??) We had to do a lot of quick stepping to avoid his attacks, his ice formations, and his falling icicles. So we got a couple of hits at a time here and there, but it took a long freaking time. And, naturally, as we got close to defeating him, he quickened his pace and had a greater barrage of falling icicles.

But we got ’em. We melted his ass.

…and he screams like Howard Dean? WTF? Creepy. And such a shame.

But now it’s time to take off your pull-ups and put on your big-boy pants. All that other crap is done with. Now, we come to the big stuff…

Wizard Castle Takeoff: Not much here, but certainly an introduction to all the trouble you’re going to be thrown into. You just walk through a desolate landscape with pretty purple lights, and then stop at 4 bosses (the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker, and the paininmyass) who take off. Then you whiz off into the sky and you have to avoid falling rocks.

Wizard Castle Interior: Those Wizard Minions. They aren’t the toughest minions (I think the Stove Faces (and especially their Beefy ones), BY FAR, are, followed by the Industrialists and Fencers), but they certainly are up there.

I get through all that crap, then I’m taken to a room with 4 doors. 3 are sealed. I go into the first and am met by The Painter. He’s quite irritating because first it’s like ‘Who the hell IS this guy? And what the hell is he doing here?’ He seemed so out of place, and it deviates quite far from the overall feel of the game and even the art style.

The paintings are just as irritating. How the hell do you kill them without harming yourself? The Painter won’t come back down (giving you chance to attack) until his current batch of creations are destroyed somehow. So I was resolved to using my right trigger and the B button to bomb them.

And bomb them.

And bomb them.

So either I have to keep bombing them umpteen million times a piece, or I give up and let them hit me, taking off some of my health (thankfully I used the Troll orb to restore it bit by bit, so the bombing interludes were beneficial when I needed to keep my health and not use potions until later bosses), but it also makes those bright cheery bastards disappear, freeing up their asshole creator, so I can X-Y the shit out of him for another 2 seconds.

Then at the end, he has a whole roomful of friends join us as I make the Painter come down with a case of food poisoning (“It must have been something I ate”), and then barfs up fresh food for me to eat. Yum. Yum.

Cyclops II is by far the creepiest anything in this game. He’s a freaking zombie (who you first defeated earlier) who carts around the coffin of his zombie friend (or rumored to be his son) The Groom. I cannot emphasize this enough: It is fucking creepy.

So the Cyclops spits fireballs at you, then sits on top of the coffin, lets out the undead Groom who ghoulishly chases you while bloodcurdling organ music plays, and the Cyclops ass-slams his way around on top of the coffin to try to squish you.

O_O

As creepy as it is, it is unbelievably easy since there is a definite rhythm. All you have to do is keep running around the room to avoid stuff and get closer as you know the Cyclops is idling himself so he’s open to attack. You’ll know when he’s going to body-slam the coffin into you (and he attempts about 3 times at a time), then he spits fireballs (which you simply block), and then releases the Groom and does ass-slams. Easy, easy, easy.

Creepy. Well done.

Ahh, the Necromancer (is that a portmanteau for someone who romances dead people?). Here’s where the ‘T’ in the ‘TKO’ comes in.

I never defeated this guy.

What happened was I’d button-mash my way through all the crazy freaking chaos, but I’d end up hitting B a lot and would deplete my potions really quick. I did ALMOST defeat the second wave. It was down to me and one of the Beefy minions. The Beefy minion won, naturally. I was frustrated, so I had Mario play the rest of the game, beating it all.

I wanted to watch to see what I’d be up against.

Thing is, I never could defeat that damn second wave at the Necromancer’s level. So I skipped that and went straight to the…

Final Battle: There are about 6 incarnations of The Evil Wizard. It’s easy, but exciting. I enjoyed every second of playing him, unlike the wretched Necromancer. I, myself, defeated the Evil Wizard.

So it was a KO, as I played the Final Battle by myself, but a TKO as I never got through the Necromancer myself.

And the coup de grace was we unlocked the bane of my gaming existence:

Stove Face. Freaking Stove Face.

I never plan on playing the game again, so this just taunts me miserably.

Overall: The game is deceptively cute. It is far more difficult than you’d think it would be. The creators but a lot of work and thought into it, and I respect that immensely. There are many parts where it is either way to easy or else wickedly difficult, and not a lot of balance.

I can say I fucking did it, though! I DID IT!!!

I also wanted to use my Gray Knight to play the Ice Arena and beat it to get Mario the Iceskimo, but so far my efforts have been full of fail. I might have to use the Alien Hominid to blast them all to kingdom come. And also easily go around to obtain the Sausage (or Kielbasa to us Polaks), the Pitchfork, maybe the Ribeye, and maybe a few others. We shall see.

So what is my NEXT game? Well, I’m thinking there was one game I really laughed my ass off watching Mario play. Maybe it’s time I play it as well. Doesn’t seem too hard, but not too easy. Maybe I can even co-op with Luigi, as I had the pleasure of watching Mario co-op with Luigi to hilarious results (backing up SWAT trucks over each other and such). Good times.

GTA IV, bitches.

~Peach

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Still Crashing That Castle

Posted on July 14, 2009. Filed under: Game | Tags: , , , , , |

So… this one game a week thing… No idea how that’s going to work out since I don’t have the patience and endurance of a gamer. 2 hours of gaming at a time is a stretch for me and I’m prone to headaches. Bah. I like gaming, but my body doesn’t. Double bah.

What I originally thought, was to play (and finish!) one game every week. A lofty ambition, I know, but I’m without a job right now, so it could be possible. I had hoped Castle Crashers would be a perfect first game to get me warmed into it. OMFG that’s a lot of game! I’ve played through all the parts that I have either all ready played, or that I watched Mario play, but there’s still A LOT of game left.

So maybe 1 game every 2 weeks with periodic updates? Once I get a job (who knows if part-time or full-time), I’ll have less time to game and will need to fight Mario for the controller, but he will win of course since he IS a gamer.

So my thoughts on Castle Crashers so far?? Okies. It’s a cute game, the music’s awesome, the animation’s distinctive, the game controls are okay, and the Y button is my favorite button. I hate using the ‘magic’ because I find if I use my bumpers, I get hit by my opponents, so might as well just continue to pummel them with that treasured Y button.

Where have I ended up? I got as far as the Lava World and beat it on the first section of the map. I now have all 3 items to allow me passage on the ship, ended up in a desert with large hairy worms that spit green poison, and then I got abducted by alien hominids. Just another day in paradise…

I also went to that abandoned factory to save the clown princess and I beat that short, puffy, purple douche, but I was tired and quit the game after that, losing ALL my progress. So I will have to start all over again. See, I don’t have that gamer patience to just go until I have a save spot. If I’m done, I’m done. Save be damned. That’s the BIGGEST flaw of the game. It takes so freaking long to get to a damn save spot, so I would have to sacrifice my sanity just to get to a damn save spot on the more elaborate and timely levels such as the abandoned factory. To the seasoned gamer, that’s nothing, but to a novice of modern gaming, it’s moving heaven and earth and the angels don’t like it.

My (mis)adventures in gaming consisted of getting MAD wrist pain the morning after my first gaming session. Ow. Ow. Ow. Sharp stabbing pains came every few minutes. My wrist was in freaking labor! So I took a break that day. I could only imagine how my poor wrist would have felt after playing with the OLD Xbox monstrosity of a gamepad! I much prefer the Playstation gamepad. It’s simple, smaller, and sleeker. The Xbox 360 gamepad is still too bulky and fussy. Meh.

Yes. Yes, I DO yell at the tv while playing a boss that just keeps killing me. Every boss requires me to die several times before I get to return the favor just once. Like that damn Bat boss. The mini bat minions would just nibble me to death, and then I’d get a smokey green poo on me. A couple of attempts, I would defeat the boss, but then one of the minions would nibble me and I’d DIE! So it didn’t COUNT! I would have to do it all over again! Boy did I scream at the tv then.

My favorite moment was: “Wait! There’s a SECOND BOSS?? Then wtf was that guy?? Holy shit this second boss is massive. And it breathes FIRE?? AND there’s hulking boulders hurling themselves at me from the other side?? And he was a sock puppet??”

What is it with bosses and their sock puppets? The cat in the river, the Lava World devil-looking thing that breathes fire?

Anyway, I about shit my pants when I saw that second Lava World boss that I returned to the map to chill out and reorganize. Well, I LOST all my progress in the Lava World level, so I had to start ALL over again. Dammit.

I’m going to take Castle Crashers’ mother out to a nice seafood dinner and then never call her again.

…I’ll keep playing the game, though 😉

~Peach

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