Ah yes, Castle Crashers is truly an awesome game which gave us some truly great ideas. We need to make a theme where people can come along and crash some castles. But how would people do this? Easily: They would simply draw their sword, wield their shields and march into the gate of the castle. This was a relatively quiet month for us, so it was great that we got so many creative entries out! However, check it out for our monthly GeekOut Bristol Meet Gallery!
Friends, I am afraid there has been a blight upon this land, so evil it is that we cannot imagine how to deal with it. This is why I have called you all here once more, to assist us in vanquishing the villainous warlocks and sorcerers, the fallen knights and their undead companions. Join us, for we have a tale for you. A tale of heroics unlike ever seen before will unfold. We’re going Castle Crashing!
The world is ravaged by evil-doers and the greed of man. There are countless people out there, trying to undo countless years of civilisation, breaking apart our very nations.
But, with the right guidance and help, you can help us. You can save us from ourselves. You can come along… and GeekOut in our Hero Academy!
Stand tall, friends, you and I are in for a bumpy ride, as we’re going to be looking to stop the evil-doers of the world. We’ll be taking you back to school, learning the very basics of your powers and abilities. We will show no fear and we will take back control of our cities!
FOODIE PRE-MEET Times Pending (Poll Pending):
That’s right, we at GeekOut South-West believe in having a good nomming session before we start the night off of fun, games, drinks and great company!
The poll is up until Wednesday 10th, so please be sure to make your vote if you’re coming along to this month’s pre-meetup event! With a new comer on the list in Casa Brazil, be sure to put your vote on our poll.
MAIN EVENT: 14:00-Midnight (Old Market Tavern)
If you’ve seen the phenomenal anime My Hero Academia, this meet will be for you.
Love the X-Men? Great! This meetup is equally for you.
If you are a fan of Marvel, DC, or any other superhero stories, this meet will also be for you.
If you aren’t a superhero fan, then hey, this meet will still be a GeekOut Bristol Meet, filled to the brim with games galore and plenty of things to do and see. So as ever, come along for a fun evening!
Food & drink can NOT be brought in with you to the Old Market Tavern. If you are caught with food and drink on the premises, you will be asked to leave until you’ve disposed of your food or drink.
There will be a food menu at Old Market Tavern in the evening! The food is very cheap and it’s absolutely delicious! Trust me, I’ve eaten there enough times… But regulars of the event are also fans of the food there! The food is home made as well, so it’s simply scrummy! Food is usually available from 6pm.
Final note: If you are asked for ID by the bar staff, we will not vouch for your age – You must provide ID.
BOARD GAMES (& a dash of video games)
As always, we’ll have a large selection of board games available, so please do check out what we have:
– Bears vs Babies
– Bucket of Doom
– Cards Against Humanity (UK Edition + Expansions 1, 2 and 3)
– Cash n Guns
– Code of Nine
– Exploding Kittens*
– Goat Lords
– Harry Potter Trivial Pursuit
– Jungle Speed
– Love Letter
– Pokemon Monopoly
– Rogues to Riches
– Star Trek Settlers of Catan
– Star Wars Guess Who
– Three Wishes
– Unusual Suspects
– Zombie Munchkin
AND MANY MORE!
We won’t be bringing every game listed above with us: If there’s a specific game you want to see, please let me know in the comments below, before I finish making a real system for this game request feature.
Also, bring along your devices – Quiplash, Drawful 2 and JackBox Party Pack 3 are played throughout the day. These are games where you connect with your smartphones or tablets (Or anything that can connect to a browser really). We also sometimes play other games, such as Worms and people with 3DSes can pick up StreetPasses and of course play games with other 3DS players. Also, people can play Mount Your Friends and other video games. We’ll try to bring the Raspberry Pi as well, which has some arcade games.
We will try to get a new game for this meetup as well.
*Please note, as of right now, Exploding Kittens appears to be missing. We’ll try to locate it, but it may have gone walkabout. As such, if we genuinely cannot find it anywhere, then we’ll get a new copy of it at some point.
BOOK & COMIC SWAP
We felt that we really needed to revamp our Book/Comic Swap system. As such, starting from this meetup, we will not be bringing all of the books and comics with us; but rather a sample of 10 books/comics. As such, we will be opening a spreadsheet from February 2018, listing all of the books/comics we own. If you wish to see a specific one, please let us know before the day via the spreadsheet. It’ll be included in all future Meetup descriptions!
Books/Comics you saw last month might not be present this month, unless you have a specific request for book/comics. You may take a book/comic home, free of charge. You may leave a book/comic with us to put into our list as well.
COSPLAYERS (Group Cosplay Picture: 9pm)
Coming in costume? Fantastic! If you’ve come up with your own My Hero Academia inspired costume; or if you want to be a member of the X-Men; or perhaps you just want to be your very own superperson – at 9pm, just after the competition, we will be getting a group shot of all of our heroes!
*CHANGING FACILITIES* If you want to change into a costume when here, please note there are no changing facilities. There are just standard toilet cubicles – Which are fine to change in, but you might want to consider this first.
We’re one of the geekiest events in the South-West. We get people together to play board games and video games, share a pint and discuss what they enjoy in geekdom. Books, comics, music – Anything that you’re passionate about, you’ll be sure to meet fellow geeks who are into the same thing as you!
We do not discriminate – But if you ever find you have a problem with anything at the event, just let the host (Timlah) know and he’ll sort it out!
COMPETITION: Heroes Academy (8pm-9pm)
Everyone loves a good competition and this month will be no different.
For the heroes amongst us, this competition will not be for the feint of heart. We’ll be doing a heroes academic test for only the most heroic among us. We’ll be putting to test your knowledge of what it means to be a hero. But, before you can do that, you must create your very own hero persona. As such, this is a two-part competition, which we’ll run at throughout the day, with it wrapping up by no later than 8:30pm.
When you join us, you’ll receive a Hero Profile Sheet, allowing you to create your very own superhero. Once created, come speak to Timlah and have a couple of minutes to spare. You must use this superhero to overcome a series of ‘practical’ tests. If you manage to get to the end, we’ll then score your results and compare them to others.
1st Prize: My Hero Academia Volumes 1-3, £25 cash and a GeekOut Poster of your choice.
2nd Prize: Logan Pop! Vinyl, £15 cash and a GeekOut Poster of your choice.
3rd Prize: Sky High DVD, £10 cash and a GeekOut Poster of your choice.
Note: Occasionally, there may be even more on the day!
*Please note, when I say practical, you will not be actually doing any physical heroics. Sorry about that.
There is so much to do and see at this months GeekOut Bristol Meet, so please do come along, bring a friend or a member of your family and come for a geeky night out.
As part of our commitment to being a great night out, we do not discriminate based upon age, gender, race, religion or sexuality. If at any point you feel you need to speak to someone about another’s actions, please grab the host (Timlah) and we’ll sort it out!
Silent night; holy night. All is calm. All is– Ooh a present!
Yes, you’d better believe it, you voted for it and you’ve now got it; we’re going to check through video games once again for another Christmas staple – Wrapped Presents. See, throughout the year, wrapping paper is an oft-forgotten part of gifting, as really it’s only Christmas wrapping paper that has some intriguing design choices.
We’re going to delve deep under the Christmas tree of video game past, in hopes to uncover some still wrapped gems. Maybe we’ll uncover a brand new game? Or perhaps we’ll uncover some more delicious wall turkey? Mmm, wall turkey.
… Sorry; last week’s ‘A History of Festive Food in Video Games’ is still on my mind.
Dashing through the less than 1 inch of snow here in Bristol, the weather has gotten rather chilly as of late! However, one thing we all really enjoy in life, is a good festive feast. From the traditional roast turkey, through to party foods and of course, a copious amount to drink. The holiday season is always full of cheer and goodwill.
Pinball is a very physical game, the skill that you need to hit the ramps at the right point in time and be able to nudge the table just enough while avoiding activating the tilt switches is a real skill. Pinball machines date right back to the 1930’s, my attraction to actual machines probably started in the 1980’s where I remember playing on them in an arcade while I was on holiday with my parents. Now the history of Pinball itself is something that is well documented on the internet so rather than tell you something that you can just go and look up I thought I would tell you about my personal history with the digital version of the same game.
It all started for me around 1992 when I first played the hit game Pinball Dreams on the Amiga. Programmed by a small Swedish company called Digital Illusions, eventually, they were made a subsidiary of Electronic Arts and most people might know them now as EA DICE. I have already written about my love for the Amiga in general but I am sure that Pinball Dreams and the games that followed it contributed significantly. The game shipped with four tables that all had a theme, they were called Ignition, Steel Wheel, Beat Box and Nightmare, all of which were well designed with plenty of room to learn where the combinations, modes and jackpots were. I had played other digital versions of pinball before then and the thing that made Pinball Dreams so different was that the ball actually felt like it had weight. You could aim it, even juggle it between one set of flippers and another with some ease. Remember that this game was made way before the Havok physics engine existed and the processing power of the machines in those days was rather limited.
In the latter months of 1992, Digital Illusions released the first sequel Pinball Fantasies, needless to say with the amount of time that I had put into Pinball Dreams it was almost an instant purchase for me as soon as I could afford it. It was not just pinball games on the Amiga that I enjoyed, in 1993 one of my friends owned a Sega Megadrive and we clubbed together to buy the crossover game Sonic Spinball. There was something very oddly playable about Sonic Spinball. They had added a mechanic where you could actually control Sonic in mid-flight which allowed you to get a greater amount control over the game.
It took Digital Illusions two more years to come out with a new pinball related game and it was to be the final one that they would release named Pinball Illusions. Again I must have put hours into this game challenging my friends’ scores by uploading them to a bulletin board. My obsession with the digital version of pinball did not stop there because in 1996 a new batch of developers took up the mantle by the name of Liquid Dezign as they produced Slam Tilt. As far as I am aware this was the only game that they ever made.
Finding a good digital pinball game today is a tricky thing to do. If you have a powerful enough Apple-based mobile device then you might want to check out the work of Cowboy Radio Apps who has remade both Pinball Dreams and Pinball Fantasies in normal and HD. I have no idea how accurate or good these are but if I had an Apple-based phone they would be on my list of things to try. However, if you have some version of Windows or an XBox then I can highly recommend Pinball FX 2 and now the more recent Pinball FX 3. Let’s put it this way, I think I have Pinball FX 2 for both PC and XBox, that’s how much I liked it.
There are several reasons as to why I like the game. The newest version is available for free via Steam and you get a single table to try out, the game itself is graphically pretty, it plays smoothly even on low-end machines and the ball has that weighted feeling that allows you to do trick shots once you get used to the mechanics. As a bonus, if you already own tables for Pinball FX 2 then you can use them in the third version at no extra cost. As a slight criticism, the cost of a single table can range from £1.99 to £7.99 per table so you will find it is best to buy packs of tables and/or well worth waiting for a sale to pick up your favourites.
I do have one bit of advice for you if you are planning on playing Pinball FX 3 on a Windows machine. Turn off sticky keys. The defaults for the game are the left and right shift buttons to use the flippers and it only takes Windows a few moments to offer you the option of “sticky keys” and if you don’t turn it off then it can get quite annoying. Have you played any good Digital Pinball games or are you a pinball purest sticking solely to the physical form? Get in touch with us in the usual way of dropping us some comments or via Facebook, Twitter and Reddit
Love and multi-ball jackpots to you all
Itching for something truly geeky to do this coming March? If so, you may be pleased to hear that Bristol is about to become even more geeky, so if you’re from the South-West of England, now’s the time for you to get your cosplays planned! Bristol Comicon and Gaming Festival is coming to the City Academy Sports Centre soon. But hold your horses there folks – You don’t even know anything about this event yet! Buckle up and read on:
Once a year, I go to meet up with Joel and a bunch of our friends at one of the large two conventions we attend annually. This year was Kitacon, where we did some relatively ambitious stuff, such as an in-convention podcast for a Top 10. Next year, we’re going to be attending AmeCon as we all managed to get ahold of tickets.
Ladies and gentlemen, geeks and nerds, we are gathered here in memoriam of those we have lost but not forgotten. This is a sad Top 10 to have to write, because the games companies we have assembled below have all contributed titles to history that have inspired and driven creative minds world-over to go into games design, or in some other way create incredible works. For reasons beyond their own control these companies have fallen by the wayside to create no more.
Join us, one and all, as we mourn the Top 10 games companies who are no longer with us. (more…)