Well, after another 24-hour games marathon, I find myself in need of sleep, even a week later. It was fun and raised around £250 for Special Effect. Whilst this is less than the £400 that you lovely people donated last year, that’s still a tidy sum to support their good work. Here’s a little breakdown of what happened over the course of the day. And night. And following morning…
Starting at 6AM, I cracked out Devil May Cry V, which I’d finished a couple of days earlier. I figured that playing Son of Sparda mode would be fun, and I got halfway through before moving on to something else. It really is a great game, and the switch from Devil Hunter to Son of Sparda was fairly light at first. Once I hit mission 10 it became quite a bit harder though. I’ll go back to it and finish off at some point.
Next up was some horror, with Dark Deception, which is essentially first person Pac Man with horrible killer monkeys chasing you around a hotel. It was pretty difficult and felt a little unfair as you have no idea where the monkeys are most of the time. I managed to finish is when I went back to it later in the day, but it felt as though I was lucky rather than good at it.
Around this point, a couple of friends arrived to join in for a few hours. I switched to playing another horror game, called Visage. I backed this one on Kickstarter expecting the Xbox One version of it, but they released an Early Access version on Steam and sent out codes to those that backed the console version. It looks gorgeous, reminding me of PT and, after a rather unpleasant introduction, it sets you loose in a haunted house with absolutely no direction. After a lot of walking around and a couple of creepy things happening I reached a point in which a scary ghost girl appears and starts trying to kill you. Honestly, the game was pretty scary once you start to get going, but at this point it just became annoying as I had no idea what I needed to do and kept dying before I had any chance to find out. Once the full version comes out I’ll take another look at this.
We played a little more Dark Deception, resulting in some amusing reactions from one of my friends that decided to give it a go before I cracked on with a little Apex Legends with some random groups. It was fun, and we managed a second place at one point, but I’m pretty terrible at the game and didn’t really make much impact.
Next on the list was a bit of local Mortal Kombat XL thanks to Xbox Game Pass. We played a little, and it was fairly evident that I hadn’t played a Mortal Kombat game since around MK3. It didn’t last long as we started to get a little tired of it. I find the way MK games play a little tricky. Everything feels super deliberate and if you don’t know what you’re doing it’s pretty hard to get into. Call me more of a Capcom fighting fan if you will.
Up next was a little Tetris 99. I’d heard a lot about this and really did fancy giving it a go. It’s fine and pretty addictive, but describing it as Tetris battle royale seems a bit of a misnomer. The element of randomness for each player isn’t there, and beyond the number of players and the last-one-standing gameplay, I don’t really see how the moniker applies. Anyway, it was pretty fun, and I really wanted to make at least the top 10. I reached 5 at one point which is about the best I can expect, as the competition at that point is insane. I don’t see how these players can do it!
Time for some more local multiplayer! We loaded up an annual favourite in the form of Worms Battlegrounds. I’m pretty terrible at this, but then so was everyone else. Using bazookas and grenades was all well and good, but airstrikes ended up being the key weapon as they’re so easy to use! After winning one game, I very much became the target of everyone’s wrath for the rematch. Fun was had, and frustration emerged!
The second longest game session after Devil May Cry V was probably the most fun: Jackbox Party Pack 5. We often have a lot of fun with these games, but there was less online participation than we’ve had previously. Regardless, this was damn funny. We were rap-battling robots in Mad Verse City for ages and spat some sick bars and phat rhymes. Or something. It was funny though. Split the Room was less funny but pretty interesting. We needed to come up with scenarios that would split the responses from the room. I liked the idea, but it was too much thinking for the style of game the Jackbox packs are known for. Patently Stupid was great and involved drawing inventions to solve bizarre problems. I believe that my solution to tree climbing problems being turning trees into ladders was the play of the night, but no one else seemed to agree!
I was convinced to get and play The Division 2 for part of the night but had no idea that the installation would be such a pain in the arse. I played some more Apex and Tetris 99 to pass the time before it finally loaded up. My local friends had set off home by now, and I settled in for a couple of hours of Ubisoft’s latest game. It was fine but didn’t really grab me. The fact I was pretty exhausted probably didn’t help, as having played it subsequently I’ve enjoyed it more. It’s a god game, but I had to keep the settings pretty low to make sure my laptop didn’t melt from running it and streaming it at the same time.
The drowsiness was really setting in, being about 4AM by now. I needed something utterly mindless as there was no way I could concentrate. I played some Next Up Heroes which was pretty dire. Hack n slash RPG with no RPG elements and boring combat was too mindless even for this time of night. I switched over to Forza Horizon 4 for the last hour or so. That was mindless enough to get me through to bedtime!
Whilst this was maybe less successful than last year, any money for charity is certainly worthwhile. We had fun, and the online games were enjoyable. We had more people involved with Jackbox in previous years, but I think that may be down to the timing of our stream this time. The day after Comic Relief and the day of an England rugby game probably didn’t help too much. I found myself far more tired than in previous years. I’m getting older, and I may need to think carefully about how (and indeed if) I go about this next year. In any case, if you joined in, donated, or watched in any capacity, thank you so much for being a part of this. Every year is enjoyable and it’s all for a good cause. If you’d like to drop a few pounds into the kitty before it closes, the Just Giving page is still going!