Owlboy (2016) Review

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Owlboy is an independent game created by D-Pad Studios, the game began development back in 2007 however it would not see a release until November of 2016 a full nine years later.

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You play the game as an owl called Otus who lives on an island in the sky, the islands of the earth have all floated into the atmosphere due to the unfortunate result of an event explained later on in the game, one day the floating islands are attacked by Pirates who are looking for three mysterious relics, its up to Otus and some friends he meets on his adventure to find the relics and stop the pirates from causing havoc.

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Owlboy is a 2D platformer at heart but it has a lot of different elements which help to make the game stand out amongst others of its kind, the main methods of attack are spider webs, fire and guns, Otus can only use these attacks by carrying his allies in his claws while flying, the gun weapon is best used for defeating enemies, the fire is handy for destroying plant life and the shotgun attack which comes with it is great for destroying tough barricades, finally the web attack is great for taking out flying enemies and it can also grapple onto some surfaces and items. Along side these attacks Otus can fly and spin into enemies to deal small amounts of damage.

Puzzles are also a large part of the game, the majority involve having to find switches to open doors or having to get from one area to another in a given amount of time, my favourite puzzle was when you had to squeeze the water out of clouds in order to bring items to the surface.

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The Visuals are really great in this game, the graphics look gorgeous they have a basic 2d look and they remind me some what of the super nintendo however the visuals here are much better which is to be expected, the animations are smooth and the entire game plays with no lag or frame rate issues.

Owlboys Soundtrack is fantastic it was created by a gentleman called Jonathan Geer who has a very impressive history of creating soundtracks for smaller gaming projects, Owlboy isn’t one of my favourite soundtracks of all time but I would say its worth purchasing instead of just listening to it over youtube

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Owlboy is an amazing game however I do have one issue, as much fun as the game is its very short, I beat the game in around 9 hours which didnt impress me considering it costs around 20 pounds if it was just a little longer this wouldn’t have bothered me so much.

Even though it is a little bit short Owl Boy is one of the best indie games I have ever played and it is well worth the money regardless of its length, it has a great plot,beautiful graphics, a really nice soundtrack, lovable characters and even a little bit of replay value with collecting coins and buying everything in the shop, its a fantastic experience and I hope for a sequel in the near future 9.8/10

I hope you enjoyed this review Of Owl Boy for the PC, PS4, Xbox One and Nintendo Switch

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

 

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Splatoon (Wii U) (2015) Review

Is Splatoon a brand new and innovative experience or is it just a game of paint ball?

Game CoverWhen Splatoon first got announce at E3 last year the reaction from most Nintendo fans was firstly excitement for a brand IP and secondly fear due to the game being a First Person Shooter, personally I was ready to pre-order the game when I first saw it but I did worry that it would end having a generic FPS feel and not so much a Nintendo feel.

After almost a year of waiting Splatoon has now finally been released and I am ready to share my opinion with you all.

The first thing that shocked me about Splatoon is that before we even got any explanation of a plot we had to create a character by choosing gender, skin tone and eye colour.

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I chose to play as the female inkling as I prefer her character design over the design of the Male inkling.

Once you’ve chosen your character and his/her features you are then taken to a short tutorial level which teaches you the main mechanics of the game.

tutorialSplatoon mostly focuses on multi-player game play in a mode called Turf Wars, in Turf Wars you will first need to pick your weapon, at first you will only have access too a weapon called the splat shot junior which is simply a standard machine gun but as you battle you will earn more money allowing you too go to shops in the main hub where you can buy new weapons and clothing.

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Each weapon, shirt, hat and pair of shoes you buy each come with a perk which can help enhance your characters abilities during Turf Wars for example some items will give you a faster running speed, quicker re-spawn times, allow you to hold more ink and so on.

The different weapons are definitely the most interesting due to the various variety of weapons available and the different battling styles they offer, my favourite weapon at the moment is the 5.2 Gallon which is a more powerful version of the splat shot but it has a shorter range, another favourite weapon choice is the roller which is essentially just a giant paint roller that you can roll all over the map spreading Ink everywhere while also running over and taking out enemy players.

Each weapon also comes with a sub weapon, these sub weapons are only available after you spread enough Ink, some examples of these weapons are mines, sprinkler systems and giant Ink canons.

When you enter a match of Turf Wars you are put into a team of three other inklings and its your objective to cover more of the map with Ink than the other team before the timer stops.

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When your not in Turf Wars there is still plenty to do in the main hub, one of the more interesting things is that if you speak to another player you can order their clothes and weapons from this guy in the alleyway called Spyke this is super cool as it appears that every players has a random assortment of clothing available in stores upon booting the game, the only downside to ordering it is that you need to wait 24 hours before the gear is available.

Other cool things are small arcade games that you can play if your bored or stuck in a lobby waiting for a game.

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A local multi-player mode called Battle Dojo, in Battle Dojo you and a friend go against each other to see who can pop the most balloons before the end of the match, killing the other player will take away points from there score so this game can be a fun a little blood bath if you want it too be.

battle dojoThe Single Player Campaign has you working as an agent for a creepy old dude called Captain Cuttle Fish

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and its your mission to rescue to Zap Fish from the evil Octarians, The Zap Fish provide all of the electricity in Inkopolis (the world of Splatoon).

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The Single Player Campaign is great it has a lot of action when you are running around and blasting the Octarians but it also has a lot of puzzle and strategy elements as well.

Yes this is a shooter so you are going to have to use good aiming and strategy to take out enemies but certain parts of the levels will have the player needing to throw Ink Grenades to distract shielded enemies so that they become vulnerable to enough to hit and also the creativity of the stages also offers a wide variety of puzzles, some stages will have an invisible floor and invisible platforms which you will need to find by spraying your Ink in order to make the path clear, another example is that some stages have sponge platforms and if you shoot these platforms the sponge will absorb your ink and will expand this will help you reach higher platforms and some platforms that are further away.

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The most iconic part of both multi-player and single player is the ability to turn your self into a squid, you can do this whenever you want and the ability has many advantages as well as disadvantages, if you turn into a squid you can hide underneath your own ink making you invisible to enemies and you can also swim through your own ink allowing you to move through out the levels and maps faster, turning into a squid is a very good strategy to use in both multi-player and single player.

The disadvantage is that you cant swim through enemy ink, you cant fire your weapons or grenades while you are a squid and if you walk on enemy ink you will get stuck making you slow down.

The final thing relating to gameplay I want to talk about is Amiibo Support, Splatoon has three Amiibo available Inkling Girl, Inkling Boy and (Limited) Inkling Squid.

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If you find the amiibo section of the main hub and you scan your amiibo it will offer you additional challenges in the single player campaign, completing these challenges will offer you awards such as money and armour.

Graphically the game looks fantastic, I personally feel that it has a similar graphical style to the Jet Set Radio games , the game has had a lot of work put into it which was very much needed as the competition when it comes to FPS’s is the Call of Duty games which as much as I’m not a fan of that series I cant deny that it has an extremely large fan base which in reality is probably at this point bigger than the Nintendo fan base.

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My favourite aspect of the look of the game is the shininess of the Ink, you can clearly see where the brightness of the sun is hitting the Ink while the Inklings are fighting and that small detail really helps make the game look and feel more realistic, another thing I really like is that some miiverse art that people make is occasionally painted on the walls as graffiti which is a great nod to fans and the best part is that these miiverse images are enhanced to look like actual graffiti instead it just looking like the developers have simply thrown it on the wall.

The games music is pretty fun to listen too it reminds me of a lot of rock/punk bands I would listen too when I was a kid, the music isn’t too memorable but the main theme song I honestly cant get out of my head.

The Splatoon Main Theme

I am pleased to announce that Splatoon surpassed my expectations and is in fact a fantastic game, it has very tight and easy to learn controls, fun and energetic on-line game play, the local is also pretty fun, I like the character customization that was thrown into the mix as it makes playing on-line have a reward system allowing you to spend money that you win on new weapons and clothing, the single player campaign is a lot of fun but its way to short and its a bit of a disappointment especially if you don’t happen to have internet access as you will getting a lot less out of the game.

Apart from that Splatoon is like Jet Set Radio meets Super Mario Sunshine an odd mix but the final result is absolutely brilliant.

9.2/10

 

My thoughts on Gender Roles in Society

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How often have you heard the phrase “Bacon is a mans meat” or “only boys can play with Transformers”

This is a form of forced gender roles and I am sure that everyone has heard a phrase or a saying similar to these at some point during their lifetime.

In this blog I am going to try and analyse why we have gender roles and my thoughts on the subject

The most common form of forced gender roles is found in toy stores, when you go into a toy store the two most common colours you will see are Pink and Blue.

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The reason for this is because Pink is often considered to be a girls colour while Blue is often considered to be a boys colour, the Pink section of a toys store will be filled with Barbies, My little Pony and Disney Princess while the blue section will be filled with G.I. Joe’s, Transformers and Hot wheels.

This would be a flawless idea if all girls liked girls things and all boys liked boys things, but what happens when a girl wants a Teenage mutant ninja turtle action figure or when a boy wants a My little pony doll?

You may think whats the big deal they can buy whatever they want, but how can they when society has told them that those toys are only for the other gender to play with.

This wasn’t as much of an issue until bronies hit the scene, bronies (A combination of bro and pony) are male fan’s of the show My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic a show targeted at girls but surprisingly has a large male audience.

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So what happens in this situation because My little pony is Pink but the majority of its audience are males, which is something that I don’t think anyone saw coming.

you will often see bronies in the Pink section looking for my little pony stuff and people who see them will often look disgusted and pull their children closer to them, or if its a child who’s a brony then its usually the parents that will receive this treatment.

Toy stores are not the only thing that are very heavily genderized, the same can be said for TV shows, Movies, Music,magazines, shampoos, and pretty much everything.

A prime example would Pop Princesses, a CD series that is heavily advertised that it is for a female audience

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Another example would be any gaming magazine which are genuinely targeted towards a male audience with very few exceptions such as Girl Gamer (a gaming magazine for girls).

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something that makes me really happy is when I see a female who’s a plumber, builder or a mechanic all jobs which are often associated with men, the same goes when I see male receptionist, nurse, hairdresser and stay at home dad.

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Bringing gender roles into food and beverage is just stupid, anyone should be able to eat or drink what they want and I honestly don’t understand why people try to genderize food in the first place.

Women can eat Steak and men can drink wine, we should not be told what we should eat and drink just because we are a certain gender.

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Some people may look at gender roles as a good thing and I understand why some people believe that each gender should do as society says, personally I think that having gender roles is genuinely a bad idea not only because it limits the consumer to what they should buy depending on their gender, but I also feel that it affects the companies that produce the goods because limiting their products to specific genders does in some way limit the amount of money those companies can gain from sales.

Gender roles are something that we will always have, I don’t personally see it as good thing but I understand that it helps companies identify what gender they are targeting their products at and in that sense it does help benefit the companies in some way or form.

I think we need to draw the line when having gender roles becomes a brick wall built by society trying to prevent someone from taking on certain careers or purchasing gender specific products without them looking weird or strange in the eyes of the general public.

Whats your opinion on Gender Roles?

Do you agree with my opinions on the subject?

Thank you for reading this blog

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer