Friday, December 26, 2014

Playing games, watching K-dramas

To be accurate, I've only really been playing one game these past few days: One Way Heroics. I highly recommend it, especially at Steam's current sale price (only $0.87!). There isn't much of  a story - darkness is creeping in on the left side of the screen, eating everything in its path, and you have to keep journeying right until you finally meet and hopefully defeat the Demon Lord. I have yet to defeat the Demon Lord, despite having battled him several times, and yet I continue to love this game. According to Steam, I've spent 8 hours playing it. It hardly feels like it.

There are lots of things that add to the replay value of this game. There are special maps that change each day, as well as standard randomly generated maps. If you find a really good item in one map, when you die you can store it for use in a future game. You also have the chance to acquire "Hero Points" that give you the ability to buy Perks (new/better abilities) and Classes (Knight, Pirate, etc.). The game is turn-based, so, even in battle, you have time to think before you act - as someone who's not a fan of adrenaline-fueled, fast-paced battles, I especially like this aspect.

The only other game I've played recently is Sid Meier's Civilization V. I think I bit off more than I can chew with that one. It's also turn-based, but it's about a thousand times more complicated than most games I play. I haven't even made it through the tutorials yet, and even those are daunting.

Now for the Korean dramas. I've been trying the Viki app on my TV, which is actually not too bad. Yes, there are commercials, but only for two or three minutes at the beginning of an episode - after that, it's non-stop show. The only thing I don't like is that there's no way to stop an episode and start it again from that spot. You have to watch all the way through in one sitting. I tried to fast forward once, and my efforts were a complete failure.

The things I've been watching:
  • The Great Doctor/Faith - I've actually been watching this via Netflix. I just finished it last night. It took me ages to get through, not because it was bad, but because all that emotional content was sometimes too painful. I plan to review this soon, but, for now, I'll say I highly recommend it to romance fans. A few warnings: the heroine is fairly annoying in the first three episodes, and several beloved characters die throughout the series. On the plus side, there's a happy ending.
  • Dr. Frost - I've been watching this via Viki. It's about a seemingly emotionless genius psychologist/bartender who sometimes helps out the police. His assistant is energetic and bubbly. This one was kind of rough at the start but got better at around episode 3. Unfortunately, the latest episodes have been giving me fits - for some reason, quite a few subtitles are missing. I don't know if this is usual for Viki. I know the subtitling is mostly (always?) done by volunteers, but I don't know if missing subtitles is usual for the site and I don't know if they ever get filled in later.
  • The King's Face - I watched one episode of this and don't think I'll be watching more. The Great Doctor made me want to try another historical drama, but the premise of this one is just too out there for me. The king was told that he won't be a good king for his country because his facial features are all wrong, while his son's indicate that he would be a good king. There's also a cross-dressing girl whose facial features are supposedly those of a pure person. The first episode ranged from brutal (torture and killings) to silly (the king's son pretending to be a fortune teller), and the tone switches didn't work for me.
  • The Night Watchman - I've seen one episode of this via Viki and may watch more. Unfortunately, the one episode I saw cut off near the end (a blip in either the app or my Internet connection), so I'll either have the skip the last stuff or rewatch the whole episode just for those last few minutes. I might see if the website is better about allowing viewers to skip ahead in episodes. There are some interesting supernatural elements in this one, as well as a lot of fight scenes. It's just too bad that there was so much use of muted "eclipse lighting" - I actually thought there was something wrong with my TV at first, because who would think it's a good idea to make a fight scene that hard to see?

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