» Web A Gaming Diary Mon, 11 Oct 2010 15:35:59 +0000 en hourly 1 Minecraft (Mac/Web/PC) Mon, 16 Aug 2010 11:59:44 +0000 That Rev Chap Yes, I used all three clients over the weekend. I played it on my desktop PC at home (a winter wonderland I forgot to take a screenshot of) and using the Mac and browser clients in the office. (I had to come in on Saturday and Sunday over the weekend, briefly.)

But, today, I’m not going to show off my single-player achievements, instead I’m going to show you some of the stuff that’s been built on the BeeX server.


What you see when you log in.


And this is what you see when you turn round. The tunnel links a lot of the stuff people have built.


A statue I made (which then was added to be an unknown user).


My great beardy tower. You can jump from the top, which is as high as the came lets you build, into a pit that goes down to the bottom of the world. It kills you, but it's fun.


Strange, oddly beautiful towers.


Roads, walls, towers and more.


Castles are popular - and very impressive.


Dimrill's castle is simply amazing.


It's even got a library.


Graffiti, Minecraft style.

And that’s just a tiny fraction of the amazing things people have built on the server.

What’s nice is how well everyone’s been playing together. I don’t think there’s ever been any intentional vandalism, people have found open, unused areas of the world and made their homes there.

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Minecraft (Mac/Web) Thu, 12 Aug 2010 11:21:56 +0000 That Rev Chap After spending some time exploring massive caverns beneath the earth, I decided to build a stairway as high as it could go.


Building the staircase was stressful.

I fell off several times making it, but always found my stone and steps.


The view from the top.

Once it was as high as it would go, I made a platform with a couple of holes in it and poured lava down one and water down the other. I was hoping for some obsidian when they met at the bottom, but it was not to be.


The falls.

Still, it’s fairly successful, I think.

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Minecraft (Mac/Web) Wed, 11 Aug 2010 13:21:32 +0000 That Rev Chap I just lost everything.

I was building a big tower to make a lava-fall and I fell off the top and died.

Ran back, but couldn’t find my stuff anywhere, except a couple of bits of stone. That’s a bucket, full set of iron armor, diamond pickaxe, etc. all lost forever.

I had just enough iron in storage to make another bucket, so I managed to complete the lava fall, but now I’ve got to go looking for more sources of metals and diamonds to replace all my stuff.

At least I had a good stock of stone and iron pickaxes and some food.


It glows!

It’s a nice lava-fall, but I don’t think it was worth it.

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Minecraft (Mac/Web) Wed, 11 Aug 2010 11:47:56 +0000 That Rev Chap I decided to make a giant stone face, full of sadness, then use water to mimic tears streaming down its face.

A very good idea.

But things didn’t work out as I’d hoped.


The Crying Man.

I still think it’s a good idea, but that version isn’t very good at all.

Must try harder.

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Minecraft (Mac/Web) Tue, 10 Aug 2010 11:58:58 +0000 That Rev Chap Things I have done in Minecraft, a pictorial guide.


Built a statue holding a flaming sword.


Built a house for myself inside a hill.


Carved out a staircase into the depths of the earth.


Fought terrifying creatures hundreds of feet below ground.

And that’s not even the half of it.

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Minecraft (Mac/Web) Mon, 09 Aug 2010 14:12:38 +0000 That Rev Chap The indie game sensation that everybody seems to playing right now.

It’s baffling at first and I had to read forum threads to work out what the heck I was meant to be doing, but I’ve wormed my way in. I’ve made a nice little house inside a hill and below it have a sprawling mine network.


The main room in my house.

I’ve found lots of coal, but only small amounts of iron and gold.

My first night was terrifying, sat behind a door in the dark, hearing terrible sounds all around. Since then, though, I’ve been mining at night and haven’t had any problems with monsters.

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Gravity Hook HD (iPhone/Web) Thu, 29 Jul 2010 08:38:52 +0000 That Rev Chap “From the makers of Canabalt.”

That should tell you everything. You’ve got a simple, ferociously addictive little game that costs £1.79. And you can play it on the web for free.

Gravity Hook HD

Green blobs are safe to latch on to. The blue ones, less so.

Just bear in mind that it’s a lot simpler to tap on orbs than it is to move the mouse over them and click. My average score is a lot better on the iPhone than the web version, at least.

My only real problem with is it that my name breaks the high score tables. I’m using the same account or Canabalt and Gravity Hook, but it doesn’t look like the high score tables in Gravity Hook are prepared for my user name.


Gravity Hook HD

My name's That Rev Chap.

Gravity Hook HD

That Rev and Chap aren't two different players.

Gravity Hook HD

It's all messed up.

So, yeah, if you’re reading this, developers, it would be lovely to see a fix. I know it doesn’t matter globally – I was one of the first to get the game, so that’s probably the only time I’ll be in the global table – but it would be nice for my local high score table to be formatted properly.

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Farmville (iPhone/Web) Mon, 28 Jun 2010 11:20:34 +0000 That Rev Chap Yes, you heard me.


The word that strikes fear into the heart of every gamer with a Facebook account.


The insidious, creeping evil that’s eaten the hearts and souls of the womenfolk and turned them all into ragged beggars, patrolling news feeds for eggs and bricks, working their very lives around their crop schedules.

So what was I doing playing it, especially as my wife broke her addiction a few months ago?

Curiosity. Plain, simple curiosity.

I mean, I wouldn’t get sucked into the stupid thing and then I could always stand aloft, safe in the knowledge that I was condemning something I’d tried. I would have faced the evil and lived to tell the tale and warn others.


My first plots.

Yeah… it hasn’t quite worked out like that.

Oh, don’t get me wrong, I haven’t given them real money yet. I’ve not posted a single message about it on Facebook. I’m not even sure if I’m going to carry on playing.

It’s just that, well, I’ve got some crops going and I’m level five and if I get to level seven I can buy a sheep and…

Oh dear.

Oh dear me.

I blame Peavy. I was all ready to give up and then she sent me a friend request and I accepted and sent her a gift and then she sent me one and then I went to fertilise her crops but I can’t seem to do that and I don’t know why.


My first neighbour.

I’ve even got some decorations on my farm. Three hay bales and hanging flowers.


My first decorations.

I even harvested some wheat on the web version of the game this morning. It seems a lot more complicated, though, with lots of buttons and an avatar and stuff. I think I’ll stick to iPhone version. After all, it means I can harvest my crops whenever I need to and not to be in front of a computer at certain times of day and…

…oh shit. Did I just say I was going to stick with the iPhone version? I did. I can see it there in black an white. Argh!

So, so, so what is the appeal? Why do millions play it? Why am I still playing it?




Help me someone, please…

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Pac-Match Party (Web/iPhone) Fri, 11 Jun 2010 11:34:07 +0000 That Rev Chap Pac-Match Party is an excellent free web game. You can play it HERE.

Pac-Match Party

The web version.

It’s another match-three game, but adds lots of nice twists, such as matching presents to get power-ups, making lines of ghosts next to Pac-Man so he can eat them for bonus points, having to make matches on coloured tiles to complete levels and having parts of the level inaccessible.

It’s too easy, but apart from that, it’s probably the best evolution of the match-three concept that I’ve played in ages.

So when the iPhone version was released I plunked my £1.19 down without a second thought. Which may have been a mistake, as the iPhone version loses a lot of what made the web version special.

Pac-Match Party

The iPhone version.

There’s a much smaller playing area, no Pac-Mans (Pac-Men?) on the field, no parts cordoned off and different power-ups, to name the changes that spring immediately to mind. Much of this will be a result of the platform, of course. In fact, there’s a good chance that all the changes are a consequence of having a smaller playing field. It’s hard to block sections off when there’s not much there to begin with, after all.

Initially, it was a huge, almost crushing disappointment. It’s not the same game at all. As I’ve played it more, however, I’ve started to like it, at least a little. There’s bonus point-scoring items to tap, which you don’t see in the web version, and the new Pac-Man power-up seems to have great scoring potential. There are also achievements to gain, though there’s only a local leaderboard. Which is a bad thing.

Talking of bad things, you can’t move tiles (or even tap bonus items) until everything’s settled down, unlike the web version. Oh, and the short between-level cutscenes are in landscape mode even though the game’s in portrait mode, which is just bizarre. It’s also just as easy as the web version – I’m on level fifteen now and haven’t broken a sweat.

It’s confusing, really. If the web version didn’t exist I’d probably like the iPhone version more. (Except, of course, that I’d probably have ignored it.) It’s not a bad game, it’s merely a decent example of a crowded genre, when the web version promises much more.

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Eco Punk (Web/iPhone) Wed, 10 Mar 2010 11:32:14 +0000 That Rev Chap So, right, you’re a punk rabbit on a skateboard, collecting rubbish and – when powered-up – destroying horrible, polluting cars. (And, er, Segways.)

It’s all a bit “MTV cares about the environment, yeah” for my liking, in a self-consciously “cool… but with a message” type way.

But I’m an old fart who had to be bullied by the local council into finally, grudgingly doing some recycling, so I doubt I’m the target audience.

Eco Punk

It looks nice, but seems to be trying a bit too hard to my thirty-six year old eyes.

Anyway, the game itself is all kinds of fun. Well, no, it’s one kind of fun. The collect-stuff-while-avoiding-enemies kind of fun. So, er, yeah, I guess it’s the third avoid-em-up of the day.

Anyway, it may be very simple, but it’s responsive, fast and has an excellent combo system that encourages risk-taking and speed.

It controls better on the web version – my high score is five times my iPhone high score – but the iPhone version isn’t bad after a bit of practice. Would feel absolutely fine without the web version to compare it to, I think.

Anyway, you can play it for free online HERE or grab the iPhone version for a mere 59p. They’re exactly the same, as far as I can tell, apart from the controls and the iPhone version having OpenFeint achievements and leaderboards.

Not essential either way, but a good way to waste a few minutes. Six months ago I’d probably have been singing its praises from the rooftops and demanding you purchase it forthwith, but we’re absolutely spoiled for choice these days.

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