Inatimate1's Blog - Apr to Jun 17 (7 followers)

PermalinkAre Indies The Way Forward? (Thoughts of a Gamer #1)
Since I upgraded from the 360 console to the XBOne console back in December I have noticed that I am spending more and more of my time and money investing in games from Indie Developers. I find myself playing less games Published by the bigger names such as 2K Games, Square Enix and Capcom, and delving more and more in to the hidden gems of the Marketplace.

I'll give you one such example...

Probably one of the biggest names in Indie gaming are Team 17. They were a lot more mainstream back in the late 90s and early 2000s when the Worms franchise was all the rage. In fact it was a franchise that was pretty much their sole focus for a long period of time, between 2002 and 2009 they released 13 games, only 3 of those weren't affiliated with the "Worms" franchise, and two of those (Lemmings and Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust) were continuations of other established games from earlier generations. It was a trend for them that would pretty much continue until the launch of the 8th Gen consoles, and since 2014 Team 17 have released a variety of new titles. Games such as The Escapists, Overcooked, Beyond Eyes & Sheltered have all had decent reviews, and have shown that the still Indie developers have a lot more to offer than just Worms throwing Banana Bombs.

Perhaps it's just myself that's gone down this road, but I'm pretty sure a lot of you like-minded achievement hunters would tend to agree with where I am coming from here. My own personal Gamerscore has effectively doubled since picking up the XBox One and a large factor of that has been through popping achievements in these Indie games. I still own well over 100 Xbox 360 hard copies of games, but when it comes to XBox One games I have just five games on Disc, I have only purchased a couple of digital copies of mainstream games, I do have both an EA Access and Xbox Game Pass memberships, but I must be somewhere near to triple digits in terms of these digitally owned copies of games from Independent publishers.

A lot of this might be due to the pretty "simple" nature of their achievements, taking games such as the aforementioned Beyond Eyes, or games published by Curve Digital such as Hue, The Swapper and Thomas Was Alone, they are pretty simplistic in terms of their gameplay, but offer a full 1000 Gamerscore for as little as an hour's worth of time. Is it a case of simplicity that adds to their appeal, or does price also play a pivotal role as well?

The second part of that hypothetical question is definitely a key factor for me. I could easily go to my local game store and purchase a copy of Rise of The Tomb Raider for £10, something I was happy to do when I had the 360 console, but now that I have the access to a much more advanced store, and due to my own competitive nature when it comes to things like GTASC I stop and weigh up the options. My own train of thought goes down the following lines... Would I pay £10 for a game with a basic Gamerscore of 1,000 (2,021 TA Score), or is it more worthwhile for me to purchase 5 or 6 Indie games from the sales which could bring me 5-6000 Gamerscore (or around 10,000 TA Score) for the same price and for less time investment?

Over previous generations I would have gone out this past week and replaced my lost copy of Final Fantasy XV and probably bought a copy of Forza Horizon 2, but instead I chose to purchase no less than 26 titles from the recent Indie sale. That's basically 26,000 Gamerscore for me to target! Has the decision to upgrade these "Arcade" games from 200 or 400 Gamerscore up to 1,000 like the vast majority of 'hard copy' games led to a surge in interest in these 'lesser known' titles. I for one now adopt my own assessment when it comes to purchases, a sort of pounds to points to time ratio to help me to establish whether or not to make a purchase.

I have recently adopted a new approach where I find myself happy to buy everything that's on sale for less than £2, I'll then have a quick blast of playing a game, unlocking an achievement and then moving on to the next title, just so that I can add them to my collection and go away and assess where I can target some easy scoring. Some of these games are garbage, some of them provide me personally with a lot of enjoyment, but I cannot say that they aren't all "value for money" for achievement hunters like myself.

This all raises another question... Would things be different if these Indie games still only offered 200 Gamerscore, or even no Gamerscore at all like a lot of them did back on the 360? I don't know how successful the Indie section of the store was back on the 360, but for every "I Made a Game with Zombies in It!" there were a multitude of games that just looked poor. Even though they were nearly all available for 69 pence, none of them really appealed to me and my competitive nature. With a lot of these Indie games on the One 'Powered by Unity' (how many times have I seen that message?) there's been a vast improvement in the slickness of a lot of the Indie games, and many of them are damn good fun too!

I for one am thankful that these titles have been given a 1,000 Gamerscore quota, otherwise I might have given games such as Bard's Gold, Letter Quest or Penarium a miss, but these games have enlightened me as to how enjoyable a simplistic idea can be at times. There's nothing overly fancy about any of those three games, but each of them have provided me with hours of fun in their own unique way. It's like Xbox One has tapped in to the fact that there are different kinds of gamers out there and they have cleverly utilized this to their advantage. You're always going to get the casual gamer buying Call of Duty, Forza, Battlefield, FIFA and the likes so there's always going to be the strong demand for these established franchises, but the more competitive gamers out there who are trying to score as much as they can are tapping in to these cheap Indie games as a result of their appeal in terms of scoring.

It says a lot to me when more people on TA have played "Beyond Eyes" than "Worms: Ultimate Mayhem". Yes, it's only a small fraction of the total gamers on the site (2-3%), but the numbers all add up and it means that between us all there's going to be at least one hidden gem among the crowd that the vast majority of gamers haven't played. So are Indie games the way forward in terms of racking up the Gamerscore, it's hard to argue that they're not!

Until next time guys, keep gaming and keep scoring!
Posted by Inatimate1 on 28 June 17 at 16:57 | There are no comments on this blog - Please log in to comment on this blog.
PermalinkGame Completions - 20th May to 1st June
There's no point in me even attempting to type up a full blog post of the many achievements and games I've been working through since my last update, especially since Game Pass came live, so instead I'm going to do a brief blog for my game completions over the past couple of weeks...

Game #1 - Jetpack Joyride (Windows)
This is one of those endless run games like Minion Rush & Flappy Birds which I have previously completed on the Game Center app through iOS. I was made up to find that the title was also available on Windows platforms with the same sort of achievements available through Xbox Live.

The achievements themselves aren't too difficult, most of them are cumulative based ones which require you to spend the coins you pick up in the game, with a couple of achievements that are based on reaching a certain milestone in the game, for example...

Jetpack Joyride (Win 8)GermaphobeThe Germaphobe achievement in Jetpack Joyride (Win 8) worth 29 pointsFly 2km, without touching any coins, scientists, or tokens.

That achievement is probably the most difficult as it requires you to travel a fair distance in the game without picking up any collectables, whereas this achievement...

Jetpack Joyride (Win 8)Romeo Alpha DeltaThe Romeo Alpha Delta achievement in Jetpack Joyride (Win 8) worth 29 pointsFly over 5kms.

....requires you to travel a full 5km in a single run. When you get the hang of things it isn't too difficult, there's a couple of upgrades which you can use to make things easier, but all in all the game mainly requires a bit of grinding out runs and picking up the coins to be able to purchase the different upgrades.

In fairness it is a decent enough game that will keep you occupied for a while, it's just a shame that there's only 200 GS on offer, although there are 20 easy enough achievements to collect for people who are more interested in boosting their numbers rather than their score.

Game #2 - Game of Thrones: A Telltale Games Series
Nothing too much more than your standard Telltale story here, decisions are seemingly your own to make but the end result is often pretty much the same, not a bad little game if you're a fan of the Game of Thrones franchise but I won't be getting the full series on the back of this title.

Game #3 - Life is Strange
You would be forgiven for thinking that this is a Telltale story as well, but it is actually a Square Enix game which follows the story of Max, who has the ability to reverse time. This is actually a pretty good game in fairness, the story is pretty unique, it also has the same sort of linear style of progression with the player having the options to make different decisions, but I feel that the overall gameplay and depth of the story involved is actually quite alluring. I can see me picking up the rest of the game at some point just to see where the overall story goes with this one. Square Enix have always had that ability to craft out a decent storyline and this point and click style of adventure is no different. The first episode leaves you with plenty of questions wanting to be answered, so overall it is a decent addition to this vastly growing market of games.

Game #4 - Sega Vintage Collection: Streets of Rage
Ahh the nostalgia rush, what 90s gamer didn't grow up with games like Streets of Rage? This title is part of the Game Pass and gives you a chance to replay all three games of the iconic Mega Drive series. I didn't realise quite how simple the second game in the series actually was, but the first and last installment of the trilogy are beyond frustrating at times. None of the achievements are all that complicated and you'll mainly find yourself tracking back to the start in order to finish the character based achievements for the games, but the rest of the achievements are simple enough to be able to 100% the collection without too much trouble.

Game #5 - Pac-Man Championship Edition
The original Pac-Man may have got frustrating at the best of times, but this remake is a game for those who fancy something a little 'easier'. Rather than rushing to gobble up every powerpill on the level, the player only has to gobble up a sort of 'mini row' of them in order to progress to the next set. Pac-Man gets increasingly faster as the time progresses but the achievements as a whole are all pretty straightforward and basic. I'm no expert at the original game myself, so if I can get through the whole 200 Gamerscore in just over 2 hours then everyone else shouldn't have too much difficulty either.

Game #6 - Brothers - A Tale of Two Sons
Ahhh, these types of games are pretty relaxing. a 3-D platform puzzle game which is unique in that you control both characters at the same time using the two analogue sticks. Rather than awarding achievements for progressing in the game they are all based around 'mini-quests' alongside the story which in themselves are pretty simple if you're following a guide. Be careful though because they are miss-able, but overall it's an easy completion, if you don't fall asleep whilst playing the game like I did.

Game #7 - Mega Coin Squad
Very fun game this one. If you've played Penarium then there's a fair few similarities between the two games. Mega Coin Squad involves you collecting coins in 12 different platform levels, and then banking them in the large piggy bank in order to progress to the next stage. Every fourth level is a sort of 'Boss Stage' where you have to kill enemies before getting a large coin to dump in said large pink deposit box.
The difficulty comes in picking up three stars on each level. This requires the player to a) complete the level within an allotted time frame, b) complete the level by only depositing your coins once, and c) complete the level without losing any of your three lives...
Whenever you pick up stars in a level you then get a sort of mini-game where you have to jump at a box (very akin to the end of a level on Super Mario Bros 3) and the item in the box when you make contact is the upgrade that you will carry over. There are 6 characters in total to finish the game with and you pick up an achievement for completing the game with each one, but there's two potential snorters in there that may cause some difficulties...

Mega Coin SquadRoad Runner - Beep Beep!The Road Runner - Beep Beep! achievement in Mega Coin Squad worth 172 pointsComplete the single player game within 30 mins

That achievement requires you to beat the game within 30 minutes of level playing time. Time between the menus doesn't matter, but you pretty much have to rush through and collect enough coins to progress to the next zone as quickly as possible. My best time is around the 25 minute mark so it's not all that difficult and you can pretty much get this in your second or third playthrough of the game.

The more difficult achievement is this one...

Mega Coin SquadNot TodayThe Not Today achievement in Mega Coin Squad worth 205 pointsComplete the single player game without using any continues or retries

Now what I would say with this is to concentrate on finishing each level more than anything. Don't worry too much about time but try and focus on not getting hit and completing the level with a single deposit to pick up at least two stars. You can get upgrades that will give you up to 50% more time in a level and providing you don't lose all three lives on a level you can actually go back to previous levels on the world map screen and aim for more stars to boost your upgrades. Focus on picking up the Double Jump and the level 3 punches upgrades first and foremost, then get the invincibility, Coin Magnet and Coin Spawner upgrades so that you can pretty much avoid confrontation during the latter stages and pick up easy coins. This should then come easy enough when you've got a real hang for the game.

Finally there's a grinding achievement that you'll end up getting last, and that's this one...

Mega Coin SquadEasy Money!The Easy Money! achievement in Mega Coin Squad worth 211 pointsBank a total of 100,000 coins in single player

Now I hadn't even got the achievement for the 50,000 coins when I finished the rest of them so this really can be a bit of a grind, but what I did was finished all of the standard levels to three stars, this should give you all but one of the upgrades in the game. Then I just concentrated on working through as many coins as possible in Level 4-1. This needs 800 coins to pass, but there's plenty of spawn spots that will provide enough coins.
Take out the 6 crushers on the bottom of the level first and then just pick up as many coins as possible, every time you lose a life it should only cost you 50 coins if you've got the right upgrades, and then rush to the piggy bank when you get knocked down to your final life. I was able to bank around 2-3k coins on average each time I played the level meaning I had to do around 20 playthroughs of the same level to finally get the 100% completion, but overall it's a pretty fun game!

Now for the usual drivel...

Race to 250,000 TA Score
Points to target = 66,112
Current Required Points Per Day Rate = 310.3

Race to 5,000 Achievements
Achievements to target = 358
Current Required Achievements Per Day Rate = 1.7

In the last 12 days I've near enough picked up half of the achievements I need to meet my end of year target. I have also brought my required points per day rate down by over 20 per day by picking up 11,000 TA Score.

GTASC has seen me progress to what is now the 21st week, the target for this week's solo bonus is to pick up at least 5,000 TA Score worth of achievements and I already have 5,539 so that's in the bag already, as is progression to the 22nd week of the competition and final 194 competitors.

I am nearly in the top 3% of all TA gamers in terms of total games played, not really an accomplishment, but it helps me with extend my list when looking for easy Gamerscore from titles I have played, and I'm also on the verge of the top 10% in terms of Completed Games and overall GamerScore, my aim is to get to the top 10% of both of these, as well as the top 10% in terms of Achievements Won, and then I can start to progress on improving my leaderboard positions in all of these categories.

I am not going to be using the Xbox One as much for the remainder of the week as it is the focus of a Takeover operation, so hopefully my uncle and cousin can get me a few achievements on new games whilst I try and whittle down the Windows 10 achievements in other titles.

Alphabet Challenge I'm up to the Letter 'F' so far having had to do 'A' & 'B' twice as the console decided not to time stamp the original 'A' achievement. I have my list all ready to work through and apart from the letter 'X' being a bit of a grind, the rest of the achievements are very straightforward indeed.

That's it for now guys and girls. Until next time, Keep Gaming and Keep Scoring!
Posted by Inatimate1 on 01 June 17 at 18:20 | There are no comments on this blog - Please log in to comment on this blog.
PermalinkHunting for Achievements (Not the Race to 250,000 TA Score)
Today we take a different approach than the one I've had over the last few months. In fact, this isn't even part of my overall aim (theoretically).

For the past six months or so I've had this aim of getting to a 250,000 TrueAchievement score before the end of this year, that alone has left unlocking actual achievements as a bit of an afterthought and meant that I have mainly been concentrating on the achievements that have the best effect on my score. Today is going to be a bit different though boys and girls, but first, a mini recap.

Apart from bringing out the elderly version of me and cracking on with unlocking a couple of achievements in Microsoft Jigsaw , I've been hearing the "Bloop" a fair few times over these past couple of days. 7 achievements in Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris have passed, this afternoon I finished the main game by defeating the final boss. I can't be the only person who gets irritated by that ridiculous English accent that she has which is pretty much in no ways English in the slightest. I'm yet to meet an actual person who talks in that "Tally Ho!" way, but I guess that's the American view of English culture...

Today I also decided to start up on the remake of Phantom Dust, it's actually a pretty unique type of game in a sense, it's effectively an RPG, but the battle system is pretty akin to the Dragon Ball Xenoverse way of battling, but utilizing Action Points in order to perform an attack or defense. I can see myself enjoying this game, I'm sure I'll be using it to gain a fair few TA Score for upcoming periods of GTASC, but I think I'd be best leaving the game alone for a short while until everything becomes a bit more standardized (especially as I am expecting a fair whack over the coming weeks from my achievements in Giana Sisters this week.)

The one game that has contributed plenty of achievements though is Minecraft: Xbox One Edition. It is free for this weekend so I decided that I needed to get targeting the achievements as soon as possible, and I was amazed at how straight forward the 19 I have picked up so far have been. It only took around 45 minutes to reel them all off, and it has moved me up nearly 500 places on the Achievements Won Leaderboard. I can't really complain at that kind of progress and it's exactly the kind of game I'd been looking for in a sense of popping as many achievements as possible over a short period of time. I did show my sadistic tendencies though by slaughtering two pigs in front of their child and then tried feeding the piglet his parents chops. As soon as I opened the gate to his pen he was straight out the door and as far away from me as possible... But I just wanted that achievement for eating a pork chop :(

The 905 TA Score I have picked up today should be enough now to see me through to the next period of GTASC, so that means I can target a few more achievements before the start of the next period. I'm not going to lie though, I am fairly confident that I can have the 3,500 TA Score required during next week's period boxed off by Monday evening though, but that's another story...

Tonight sees me targeting more of these low scoring straight forward achievements, so here's my list of 10 for this evening...

#1 & #2 - Make It Rain: The Love of Money
A couple of achievements for buying investments in the game that work out at just 57 TA Score. The great thing about these two achievements is that I can leave the macro running on the laptop whilst playing on the Xbox, it may take me an hour or so to actually get them, but it's not going to distract me from going for achievements on the console at the same time.

#3 & #4 - Battle Island: Commanders
These are two very basic achievements, one for sharing a replay with an alliance, and another for donating a unit. Again, low scoring in nature (just 25 TA Score combined), but two achievements for a couple of minutes of gameplay.

#5, #6 & #7 - Jetpack Joyride
Three more pretty bog standard achievements here. One for clicking the 'share' button after a run, one for getting fried a few times, and one for picking up a specific number of coins in a run, just 29 TA Score in total from these, but three more achievements to add to the list.

#8 - Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris
Walkthrough, pick up 5 red skulls on the first mission, achievement pops worth 7 TA Score, job done!

#9 & #10 - Ryse: Son of Rome
Two achievements available for completing the next part of the campaign mode. It shouldn't take me long in all honesty, it's worth just 77 TA Score for the two of them, but it's an easy couple of pops that shouldn't take me too long to accomplish.

I honestly think that these 10 achievements should take me a couple of hours MAX and would be a steady addition to the other 32 I have picked up over the course of today. As soon as these 10 are popped I'm going to be concentrating on working through Banjo-Tooie before going to sleep, I still have a fair bit of work to do on this one but as it's a straightforward but low-scoring game I just want to focus on adding another completed title to my list, plus it works wonders for the big scoring achievements in Rare Replay.

Looking at the Store and I feel that I may be obliged to purchase the Team17 Indie Collection before it gets pulled from the sale. I already have two of the titles in the collection, but the £15.75 price tag for an additional 8 Titles & 1 DLC worth 182 Achievements and 27,505 TA Score is nothing to be sniffed at.

And I'm adding these games here for my own reference too...

Ghostbusters: Sanctum of Slime £0.84 - 12 Achievements - 351 TA Score - 6-8 Hours
Small Arms - £0.84 - 12 Achievements - 420 TA Score - 4-5 Hours
Haunted House - £0.84 - 12 Achievements - 511 TA Score - 6-8 Hours
Hardwood Backgammon - £0.84 - 12 Achievements - 283 TA Score - 3-4 Hours
Interpol - £0.84 - 12 Achievements - 233 TA Score - 2-3 Hours
Hardwood Hearts - 12 Achievements - 312 TA Score - 6-8 Hours
NIN2-JUMP - £0.84 - 12 Achievements - 259 TA Score - 2-3 Hours
Crystal Quest - £0.84 - 12 Achievements - 303 TA Score - 4-5 Hours
Mutant Blobs Attack £1.59 - 14 Achievements - 619 TA Score - 6-8 Hours
KOF98UM - £1.68 - 12 Achievements - 314 TA Score - 1-2 Hours
Ticket To Ride - £1.68 - 12 Achievements - 438 TA Score - 6-8 Hours
Braid - £1.68 - 12 Achievements - 303 TA Score - 6-8 Hours
Monday Night Combat - £1.68 - 12 Achievements - 281 TA Score - 6-8 Hours
Word Puzzle - £1.68 - 12 Achievements - 348 TA Score - 4-5 Hours
The Maw - £1.68 - 12 Achievements - 365 TA Score - 5-6 Hours
Bomberman Battlefest - £1.68 - 12 Achievements - 399 TA Score - 2-3 Hours
Omega Five - £1.68 - 12 Achievements - 424 TA Score - 3-4 Hours
GAROU MOW - £1.68 - 12 Achievements - 388 TA Score - 2-3 Hours

18 Games = £23.43 = 218 Achievements

It's a list of easy enough cheap completions that I can add to the collection before the sale ends...

That's it for now, until the next update, Keep Gaming and Keep Scoring!
Posted by Inatimate1 on 20 May 17 at 17:48 | There are no comments on this blog - Please log in to comment on this blog.
PermalinkFalling Down (Race To 250,000 TA Score)
It's been 10 days of fun ladies and gentlemen. Aside from all the usual riff raff there's been a couple of completions thrown in there along the way, but let's have a brief recap first and foremost.

One of the games I scored 1,383 TA Score on is NBA Live 15. If you manipulate the rules in your favour it's actually a pretty easy game to wrack up the TA Score in. I am slightly disappointed though at a couple of achievements not popping when I completed them though.

These two achievements...

NBA LIVE 15Never Any DoubtThe Never Any Doubt achievement in NBA LIVE 15 worth 398 pointsWin the game after being down by 30 or more in the second half in a single player game

NBA LIVE 15Did I Just Do That?The Did I Just Do That? achievement in NBA LIVE 15 worth 275 pointsGet a quadruple-double in a single player game

...should have added an extra 681 to my total after I was successful in my second attempt, however I think that there's a problem when you restart a game rather than going back to the main menu and starting up a new game entirely. I can however take a bit of pleasure in knowing that I have been able to do this though and probably could repeat that feat if things get tight for me in terms of GTASC one week.

Moving on from this though, and after progressing to the 19th week of GTASC in have started off in decent enough form to pass on to next week. Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams - Director's Cut has been a very good game in terms of heavy scoring, working through the second, third and fourth worlds and finishing the bosses there has brought a further 1,176 TA Score for the cause, and has contributed to near enough half of my TA Score during this period. Bits and Bobs in other games have lead to a fair few low scoring achievements that have mounted up, but now I'm going to move on to the two completions over the last 10 days.

First up comes Vertical Drop Heroes HD from last week. Now this game was on sale a couple of weeks ago, and I am actually surprised that I am only the 65th person to finish this one. It's a platformer mixed with a rouge-like RPG and fans of games like Bard's Gold or Spelunky would like this game. You'll be lucky if you do manage to finish the 11 floors on first play-through, and the real fun comes in using the gold you accumulate to improve your hero's starting stats for subsequent runs. It doesn't by any means make the game easy though, you'll still need a fair bit of good fortune to clear the game three times in order to unlock the final achievement, but all in all it isn't really all that difficult to get the 1,749 TA Score that's available from the title.

The second completion came with Super Party Sports: Football. I only picked this one up as it was on sale and to be honest it's a pretty dire game. There's nothing sporting about it in reality. It's like Stickman Golf meets Angry Birds in terms of its puzzle style gameplay but again, it's pretty simple to finish. 1,800 TA Score to pick up if you manage to get 3 stars on all 100 levels, but a few attempts on each level should be enough to get the full 28 achievements that are available, a couple of the levels will be frustrating, especially the ones with boulders, but it's not the one of the easier completions that I've managed to work through.

A few new titles have been added to the list as well, I'll say that Zuma's Revenge is a decent follow up to the original title as part of the EA Access membership, fans of the Big Fish game Luxor will enjoy this one, and there's 20 achievements available in a pretty low scoring arcade title to be had if you need to bump up your total achievements.

Naturally I have started on the two new Games With Gold releases for the next fortnight. Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris is a fun game which deviates slightly from the traditional Tomb Raider style of gameplay and focuses more on the puzzle aspects of the game. Whilst LEGO Star Wars: The Complete Saga is the usual bundle of fun, however the achievements are by no means a breeze for what they are worth and I'll probably stick to this game when I've got enough score to ensure progress to the next period of GTASC.

The last game to add to the new starts in Trove, now if you're one of the 90 odd percent of players that haven't started this freebie yet then what are you waiting for? This game is brilliant, it's a mixture of Minecraft and WoW I would say in terms of the gameplay. It really does look like oodles of fun and I would honestly say that this is one of the better titles that are available across the Xbox One platform as a whole, and in terms of a freebie it really is top notch! There's plenty of TA Score available for players who are willing to put the time in to the game and I would say that you could easily lose a day or two just enjoying the game as a whole.

So now on to the technical side of things...

I think I'm going to need to score around 3,000 TA Score to progress this week, which is another 627 away, it shouldn't be all that difficult given that I have nearly 3 days in which to do this, but I would like to get this done as soon as possible in order to relax with games like Banjo-Tooie or LEGO Star Wars.

Race to 250,000 TA Score
Points to target = 77,569
Current Required Points Per Day Rate = 341.7

Race to 5,000 Achievements
Achievements to target = 697
Current Required Achievements Per Day Rate = 3.1

Both of these long term goals have come down by a fair amount over the last 10 days, I'm hoping more to work on the 5,000 achievements goal as I feel that I can really get this finished with a few months left to spare and then start getting to work on the 10,000 achievements goal. I've made a real jump up the achievements won leaderboard over the last few weeks and now find myself closing in on a top 50,000 position, as this is the leaderboard that I am falling behind in more than the others I feel that this is where I need to be putting in the work whenever I get the opportunity.

I'm nearly inside the top 10% of the TrueAchievement score leaderboard, closing down another 3,200 TA Score should see me inside this marker, so hopefully that will come alongside progressing with GTASC. I'll also reach the top 10% of the Games Completed leaderboard if I manage to 100% another 5 titles, so again, this is all about finishing those near completions or finding another few easy titles to get myself over the line here.

Finally I'm under 6,000 TA Score away from my monthly aim of breaking inside the top 35,000 on the TA leaderboard. This has the potential to get out of hand if I have a couple of quiet days, however, another couple of high scoring days towards the end of the month should see me safely pass this target.

That's it for now, until next time though, Keep Gaming and Keep Scoring!
Posted by Inatimate1 on 18 May 17 at 18:02 | There are no comments on this blog - Please log in to comment on this blog.
PermalinkAway With The Fairies (Race to 250,000 TA Score)
Another week passed and another cut line made in terms of GTASC. Making it to week 18 feels like a real achievement in itself for me, I must admit that I am pleased to have kept up such a level of consistency that has enabled me to progress so far and hopefully I can continue this over the next week as well.

In the end this week was a bit anti-climatic in terms of hte competition, usually I find myself having a mad rush to gain achievements over the last couple of days in order to make the cut, but this week I managed to get enough TA Score to progress within the first couple of days. I was up to nearly 3,000 TA Score by Tuesday morning, and thus I decided to have a bit of a relaxing breeze through the final 5 days, aiming to ramp up my progress on the other leaderboards within the site, mainly in terms of unlocking achievements and completing games.

This week has seen me start a fair few titles, but I'm going to concentrate on the three games I've completed over the last 7 days and give a bit of insight in to these.

Firstly came Banjo-Kazooie. This comes as part of the Rare Replay title but is a game in its own right, so picking up achievements in this also count towards stamps in the main title, and as games go, it is an absolute belter! N64 fans would probably have played this when it first came out, and I liken the gameplay to another important N64 title, that being Mario 64. It's the same kind of 3-D adventure game that the company mascot is known for, and has the same sort of basics when it comes to entering massive individual levels and progressing through the game by completing different tasks within those levels. Where Mario 64 awards you with stars for completing these tasks, Banjo-Kazooie provides Jiggies, little jigsaw pieces.

There are plenty of similar types of levels, I mean they both have levels based around the desert, levels where you have to swim through, winter themed levels that both involve a race, "haunted" based levels, and the final boss is fought on top of a castle. Why I've never played Banjo-Kazooie before is a mystery in itself, but it really is an incredible title within the collection, and some of the dialogue is absolutely brilliant. There are a few tough moments within the game, the last main level you reach involves climbing up a huge tree, and I was getting very frustrated at times when it came to jumping between platforms. Just when you think it's all over when picking up that 100th Jiggie things get all the more frustrating when the next part of the game involves a quiz based on literally EVERYTHING you have encountered during the game. However, there's only a small number of questions so if you have a good enough memory you'll be able to pick up the answers during the 3rd or 4th playthrough and breeze past this part.

It is such a good game that I was sad to see the end of it, the achievements aren't overly complicated and basically require you to pick up everything there is to get, but I have started on Banjo-Tooie, it's not as good as the predecessor but still retains a lot of the original game's concepts and a completion update for that one could come during next week's update.

Next up was a sale offer on Faery: Legends of Avalon, it's not often you find a sort of hidden gem, but this most definitely fits that category. On first look it seems like a girly type of game that I'd expect my 14 year old cousin to play, but underneath it's actually another fairly decent game. The overworld exploration is reminiscent of a Baldur's Gate or Dragon Age in terms of picking up quests, customizing your character, leveling up skills and equipping items, however, the battle system is a JRPG style and something that is very much lost in the modern era. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed playing this one, and it's just a shame that the game itself hasn't been expanded on to make it longer. There's plenty that can be expanded upon by adding another level or two, but all in all it's defintely worth a go for fans of turn-based battles who have a few hours to spare in order to breeze through the game.

The final completion this week came from Dead Space: Ignition, which is a recently added game to the vault for EA Access that was released as an arcade title on the Xbox 360. Having had so much enjoyment from playing Dead Space earlier in the year I decided to give this game a go, only to find that it's nothing like the main game series. Instead it's a puzzle game which has 3 different concepts within it. There's a sort of racing game where you have to get to the end of a linear course with a red dot. A reverse tower defense game where you have to send your shapes in to take down the enemy defenses, and a great little game similar to bridges/chopsticks where you have to connect coloured lights to different terminals. In fairness it isn't overly complicated and after finishing the first run through it should be straightforward enough to go back and complete the other 4 to unlock all the achievements across the two game modes. It's an easy enough 12 achievements for a couple of hours of play and seeing as it's free to EA Access members it's worth it if you want to add another title to your completed games list.

As has been the case previously I have also used my time away from the competition to add more games to the played games list. I have broken inside the top 5% of TA Gamers in that respect having unlocked achievements in 380 different titles. Within these games, there's a couple which have really perked my interest for future grinding. Firstly is XCOM: Enemy Unknown, this game was previously part of Games With Gold back in July of last year. I've had it installed on my XBox One console since I got it, and yet I hadn't got round to starting it. Yet it's a turn-based strategy game akin to Metal Gear Acid on the PSP with an 'overworld' setting reminiscent of the original fourth generation Bullfrog title Syndicate... and it's very much a game that is right up my street in terms of it's gameplay mechanics.

It's 80-100 hour completion estimate doesn't get me interested at this moment in time when I'm trying to focus on wracking up the True Achievement score, but it's definitely a game I will be looking to 100% Complete at some point in the future when I've finished with my current goals. Sadly the game is no longer available on the marketplace, but it is backward compatible so it would be worth finding a 360 copy from somewhere.

Time for some quick stats:

These two figures are rapidly falling, I feel like I can easily make my achievement target within the next couple of months, 801 achievements isn't too many in the grand scheme of things. I've picked up 145 in the last 11 days alone, so on that basis I should be reaching the target in the next two months. The 250,000 TA Score target by the end of the year is also becoming easier, It's currently at just under 2,500 TA Score per week, and knowing that I need more than that to progress in GTASC I can keep myself well ahead of that target by maintaining my position in the competition.

Race to 250,000 TA Score
Points to target = 84,152
Current Required Points Per Day Rate = 353.6

Race to 5,000 Achievements
Achievements to target = 801
Current Required Achievements Per Day Rate = 3.4

I have some easy enough points targeted for the next few hours. By the end of the night I am hoping to add 664 TA Score through NBA Live 15 then I'll be getting on with my 1,170 TA Score target in Vertical Drop Heroes, which shouldn't cause me too much trouble considering the effort I have put in to the game previously. I'm also just a few stages away from 1,413 TA Score in HoPiKo which would bring my overall weekly total up to over 3,000 TA score which I think could be enough to progress through to week 19. Other games still have plenty of lower scoring achievements available for the remainder of the month. I know I'm not that far away from the high scoring achievements in Rare Replay, it's just a matter of working through the other titles in the game, so hopefully that can be utilized next week in order to reach week 20 looking forwards.

Leaderboard positions are important to me at the current time. I've made it inside the top 20% of gamers in England based on TrueAchievement score, but I currently find myself lagging behind a lot of people in terms of achievements won. I'm currently outside of the top 60,000, so whenever I progress to the next week I'll have to set my sights on popping a fair few of these...

That's it for now, until next time Keep Gaming and Keep Scoring!
Posted by Inatimate1 on 07 May 17 at 20:30 | There are no comments on this blog - Please log in to comment on this blog.