Since I was laid up this weekend, I got caught up on my gaming. I didn't feel like doing much else besides laying down, blowing my nose, and sipping tea, so I went with it.First, I downloaded EchoChrome on the PS3. I've been eagerly awaiting this title for quite awhile since I'm a big fan of games with minimalist aesthetics and the demo I saw a few months ago looked absolutely fascinating. For those of you who don't know, the game is best described as a moving M.C Escher drawing, based on perspective and illusion. After getting through the tutorial, I found myself absolutely stumped on the first level and decided to save it for later. I'm blaming that on my illness, but that might be an excuse.

Next, I switched to the 360 and started (and finished) Penny Arcade Adventures: On the Rain-Slick Precipice of Darkness. I'm thinking of cooking up a review, but for the moment I'll say that it was a pretty solid RPG. The core combat engine is mostly fun and could eventually be excellent with a little more polish. The writing was quirky-smart and had more than a few laughs, and the art was absolutely in line with Penny Arcade itself. A great first effort, and I'm looking forward to the next installment. Recommended, and doubly so if you're a PA fan.

Finally, I jumped consoles again and spent some time with Final Fantasy Chrystal Chronicles: My Life As a King on the Wii. I'm not a fan of the FFCC series, but this one is a pretty big departure in terms of formula. Basically, you play the role of the King, and it's your job to develop your town in such a way as to keep your villagers happy. You also recruit townsfolk to go dungeon crawling for you, and eventually you get the option to change them from standard warriors into the other various classes (Black Mage, Thief, etc.) that are common to the FF games. I was a little hesitant at first, but the game sucked me right in and I'm pretty addicted to it at the moment. Definitely a thumbs up, and although it starts slow and simple (which is a good thing) it heats up pretty quick and I'm on the verge of feeling overwhelmed at the moment. In a good way. At this point (Day 53 in the game) it's Recommended.

Read more at Drinking Coffeecola blog.

Brad Gallaway
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