Newish Dad + Handheld Gaming = BFFs

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Whether you’re a parent or not, gamers are all alike and we stick together to talk about one of our favorite past times: Gaming. For those who ARE gamers with little ones I’m sure it’s been hard to find time to pick up the controller for even a half hour session on the big screen. I’ve fallen into that category many a time at this point with my now 10.5 month old. He’s growing up fast, yet not fast enough. These are the times where I have to be crafty and squeeze in some time whenever and wherever I can.

Most of that time now is spent gaming with my handhelds:

Gameboy SP which has Metal Gear Solid

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3DS with Resident Evil Revelations

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PSP with MGS Peace Walker

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PSP with Resident Evil classic

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I’ve also been rotating a handful of mobile games on my 4S:

Deus Ex: The Fall

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Mass Effect: Infiltrator

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I enjoy casual fare as well:

Raiden Legacy

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This title is great when you’ve only got one free hand if you’re bottle feeding your little one. It’s reminiscent of those top-down arcade shooters but you only really have to move one finger around in the screen dodging while shooting. It’s great.

Mikey Shorts

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There are tons of Super Mario Bros clones out there but this is one of the fun ones, and tight touch controls to boot.

Candy Crush (how’d this get on the list?!)

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This one is pretty self explanatory judging by the amount of ppl I know who play it. And don’t lie. You’re all probably stuck on some level running out of moves. I’m STILL stuck on level 39…

I also recently procured a copy of XCOM: Enemy Unknown on my 4S as well and it’s pretty great I must say. Aside from graphical downgrading from its console/PC cousins its exactly the same, only it fits in my pocket.

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I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, gaming is like any other great past time or when you’re sitting down enjoying a good book or watching a favorite movie/show. For me personally it’s a great way to just escape life for a while and occupy my mind with something fun and not too routine.

Other things gaming related I’ve been doing is installing some AAA games on my MacBook to see if they’d actually run:

Deus Ex: Human Revolution

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I still have to finish Deus Ex classic and Deus Ex: Invisible War before I really embark on Human Revolution.

Batman Arkham Asylum/City

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Both these Bats titles deserve utmost praise for game design, visuals, and most of all playability. BA City has Catwoman as the initial protagonist which is awesome!

Star Wars The Force Unleashed Ultimate Sith Edition

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I’ve played the regular edition on Wii when it first released and when it came out on PSP as well. I’ve been on a Star Wars kick as of late and was even Trying to find a way to install Knights of the Old Republic on my 4S as its an iPad only game. I see this as unfair due to the strict fact that a multitude of console/pc ports of other titles have been released on iPhones lately. Best examples are: XCOM, Limbo, LEGO DC Super Heroes, Bastion, Sine Mora, Lara Croft Guardian Of Light, GTAIII, GTA Vice City, Max Payne, The Walking Dead.

Left 4 Dead

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I have both L4D1 and 2 for my 360 and now also have them running on my Mac. I enjoy this series on its own and also because its reminiscent of an action packed version of the show The Walking Dead. It’s always you and your crew of three other cohorts trying to survive the zombie apocalypse.

Half Life

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I have the first as well as the second game and I only really installed this series because its been talked about and referenced in many a gaming site and somehow also inadvertently became a meme, using Gordon Freeman’s namesake. It so permeated the internetz that I became intrigued and some time later here I am, still perpetuating its spirit in this article. Might as well play it and see what all the hubbub is.

Portal

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This edition of Portal came with my copy of Half Life 2 and both its subsequent iterations Episode 1 and 2. As I mentioned above, “It so permeated the internetz that I became intrigued and some time later here I am, still perpetuating its spirit in this article. Might as well play it and see what all the hubbub is.” I’ve only gotten thru the first handful of levels and realized its a puzzle game wrapped in a silky smooth FPS game, though its way more subtle and sophisticated than the grunt inducing COD and Battlefields out there. That moment I figured out how to use the Portal gun to get to the top of an insurmountable platform I literally said “OOO NICE.”

Borderlands

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This series, which of both I’ve installed, had me frazzled for a little while, not really in gameplay but in the troubleshooting I had to go thru to even get the game to run properly on my MacBook. Yes Macs aren’t really gaming platforms as PCs, yadda yadda. All you PC elitists can chew on this for a while. Once I installed Borderlands 1 and tried to run it my screen started flickering and having a hissy fit. I went thru all the forums relating to this issue but nothing seemed to remedy the situation. I even deleted and reinstalled, hoping to start a fresh copy, but to no avail. Then I just started doing what I usually do, run my fingers thru the whole keyboard hoping to win the lotto. Then something happened. I think I pressed the COMMAND + ESC combo which turned the full screen game into Window mode. Suddenly everything made sense and my game was whole again, or finally.

I give myself these little “projects” to do between feedings, diaper changes, temper tantrums, and nap times just to retain my sanity and keep a part of my old self active and healthy. And trust me, those precious spare five or ten Me Time minutes of blasting candies, jumping over chasms, or ducking for cover away from space baddies is a godsend when having a long day. It’s a necessary outlet for me.

Don’t get me wrong. I have other outlets such as the occasional friend when time and schedule permits, as well as retaining a gym membership for 3-4 days a week to just get my mental and physical faculties sorted out. All in moderation as they say.

So yes, my handhelds, my little friends who take me away to their far off worlds, I’d like to thank thee, to commend thee for keeping my parental life well rounded enough to also want to share my favorite things with my son when he’s of age to game. I’ve already got a PSP waiting for him to play with which is loaded with tons of my childhood goodies. Then once he’s graduated to consoles I’ll bestow upon him my near mint condition Xbox 360 Elite (because both of my PS3s are MINE). All in due time.

Those naysayers who say games are for kids are just ignorant knowitalls (contradiction) but that’s for another topic in itself.

PRESS START!!!!

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