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Thursday, October 30, 2014

Top 10 Halloweenish games or games with Halloweenish themes (part 1)

Well, tomorrow is Halloween (at least at the time of this post).  If you are looking for some Halloweenish video games, here are 10 different Halloweenish style games you may like

1. Castlevania Series
Random picture from Castlevania Dracula X - in this scene, Richter Belmont fights the evil Count Dracula in a final boss battle
Castlevania is probably arguably the most halloweenish series in gaming,  The Castlevania series comes in many different forms and sequels (mostly 2D, though there are also 3D versions too).  However, despite the diferent titles in the series and all, the premise is pretty similar.  You play as a hero (such as Simon Belmont, his descendents such as Richter Belmont in Castlevania X, Dracula's son, Alucard or similar characters) and play through a series of levels and even a huge castle fighting against hordes of ghosts, vampires, monsters, werewolves, demons, and even huge goulish bosses including: Death the Grim Reaper, headless horsemen (Dullahan), Frankenstein Monsters (aka "The Creature"), giant bats, and many others.  Also, the main antagonist of the series is none other than the infamous Count Dracula himself (though not every game has him as the final boss as is the case in games like Dawn of Sorrow, Lords of Shadow and Lamment of Innocence).  My favorite Castlevania games includes: Dracula X (SNES), Symphony of the Night (Playstation), Dawn of Sorrow, Castlevania 64, Portrait of Ruin, Lamment of Innocence (basically a prequel to the series) and even Harmony of Despair.

By the way, here is a Youtube video showing off one gamer's favorite 15 boss battles in the series:

2. Red Dead Redemption Undead Nightmare - 

Sadly, I was never able to finish Red Dead Redemption Nightmare (focused more on the main game instead, plus my brother took the game with him when he moved out), but I was able to play through parts of the game.  This version of Red Dead redemption is definitely spooky.  Set in the old west (early 1900's era), you play as John Marston in an alternate storyline of events where his world basically gets infested with zombies and it is up to John Marston to save the day.  In addition to fighting Zombies, John Marston also gets various interesting missions, including: hunting sasquatches (yes they do appear in the game, at least early on), riding the "7 horse of the apocalypse" horses, hunting chupacabas, etc.  By the way, even in the regular version of Red Dead Redemption, have you ever been to the ghost town, Tumbleweed at night?  The town is abandoned, but according to some of the ingame newspapers, the town is haunted and you can actually see the buildings with lights on but nobody is there (though I don't remember seeing any apparations or anything like that when I checked out Tumbleweed at night, though sometimes you can encounter gangs there). The game definitely makes an interesting and eerie sequel to the main game.    
3. House of the Dead Series (arcade)

I've played this game at an arcade at Whistler, Canada on various occasions.  My family stays at Club Intrawest when we visit Whistler (usually around Thanksgiving time) and they actually have a free arcade there (where you can pretty much play arcade games for free) and the last few times I was there, they had that game (not sure if they still have it or not though).  It is a shooter type game where you go through various different levels (kind of like  the game, Area 51) and you have to shoot zombies, gargoyles, monsters, etc.  Hitting innocents or even getting hit by enemy attacks costs you a "life" and if you run out of lives, it is game over.  These games are full of goulish creatures that you have to shoot, especially zombies which make the game fun.  Lots of supense and action too.  Also like the Castlevania series, each level ends with a major boss fight.
4. Sims 2 (PSP version)

I used to have a PSP (before getting a 3DS), but sadly it stopped working (I tried to download an update for a game I got, but it didn't download properly and my system stopped working).  But I remember getting Sims 2 for the PSP.  The game is basically a spinoff from the original version of Sims 2 for the PSP and functions more like a roleplaying game instead of a traditional Sims game.  You play as a character you create and you are stuck in the middle of a desert town called Strangetown.  Based on the Strangetown in the original Sims 2 game, you feel like you are living in Roswell, New Mexico (a town in New Mexico famous for its alleged ufo crash back in the late 1940s) and Strangetown is known for its strange phenomenon.  Sadly, I wasn't able to finish Sims 2 for the PSP before my game system stopped working, but the game was pretty fun and interesting too.  Noteworthy moments in the game includes:
- Living in a haunted house infested with 3 ghosts (including a ghostly maid named, Emily), 2 of which will try to scare the heck out your character if you enter in the rooms they are in.
- Interacting with aliens
- Solving a wear wolf mystery
- Side quests involving a wierd cult that worships cows (seems to be a parody of golden calf worshipers from the book of Exodus in the bible as well as the Baal religion).
- Stopping a mad scientist that wants to take over
and many other features.

Sims 2 for PSP was definitely an interesting title in the Sims series and is definitely one to check out if you are into the paranormal stuff.

5. Kingdom Hearts 1 and 2 - especially the Halloween Town level

Above is a random video from Youtube showing off the Halloween Town level in Kingdom Hearts.  While the Kingdom Hearts series is not really halloween oriented per se, they definitely have some elements that make them halloweenish, especially the halloween town level.  By the way, this version is not to be confused for the "Halloween Town" from the movie, Halloween Town (the one with Debbie Reynolds and Kimberly Brown).  It is the one from "Nightmare before Christmas".  You play as Sora, Goofy, and Donald and as you can see, they dress up in costumes and set out on a series of quests to save the day with hordes of heartless (those shadowy creatures you fight) as well as the evil Oogie Boogie trying to take over.  It is definitely a spooky level to play through, with gouls, people dressed up in costumes, spooky music playing in the background, pranksters you have to defeat (the trio), etc.  At the end of the level is a huge boss fight against Oogie Boogie himself.  There is also a Halloween Town level in Kingdom Hearts 2 as well by the way.  In that version, not only does Sora have to face Oogie Boogie again, he also sets out to save the day in Christmas town as well.  By the way, Halloween Town is not the only Halloween theme in the Kingdom Hearts series.  Other ones includes:

KH 1:
- Fighting heartless creatures.  These are shadowy creatures that constantly hunt Sora, Donald, and Goofy in their aventures throughout the series
- Disney villians.  Reminds me of the ones featured in "Disney's Trick or Treat".
- Malificient boss fights.  In fact in the first game, as in the movie "Sleeping Beauty", after you defeat her original form, she turns into a huge dragon and you have to defeat her dragon form as well.
- The End of the World level.  The final level in the game was pretty eerie.  You even fight that horned dude from Fantasia as well and revisit worlds you have played through early in the game too.
- Final Boss against Ansem, especially his final form where he is this huge beast that you have to defeat.

KH 2:
- The seven wonders quest in Twilight town.  Didn't some of them seem to be very real for Roxas (like the one where you have to fight a clone of Roxas or where you are investigating a wall in an alleyway and someone tries to hit balls at Roxas from the otherside of the wall.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

GTA Online: How to Find the Snowy City in the Sky

I never knew you could find North Yankton in GTA Online.  I will have to try and recreate this for myself.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Halloweenish Moments in Grand Theft Auto 5 part one.

You know I have recently beaten the game on Grand Theft Auto 5 and even got to the 100% completion mark.  This month is October and as you know, Halloween is just a few weeks away and Grand Theft Auto 5 has several Halloweenish moments.

Spoiler alert: this post assumes you have played through GTA 5.  If you haven't played through the game and want to be suprised, feel free to skip this post.  Alternatively, why not grab yourself a copy of GTA 5 via Amazon.  

Moving on,here are 3 Halloweenish moments in the game (this post is too big to do in one setting, so I will have to break it up into several posts):

1. Do some ghost hunting at Mount Gordo
Mount Gordo

Yes, ghosts do exist in Grand Theft Auto 5.  In fact, if you are venturing out to Mount Gordo late at night you might encouter this ghost.  Presumably it is the ghost of Lenora Johnson, who was murdered prior to the events of the game.  The Mount Gordo summit is hidden off to the side of the freeway connecting Los Santos with Paleto Bay just north of the Sandy Shores area (if you get to the Paleto Bay area going north, you have gone too far).  Once you get to Mount Gordo, you can either hike, ride a bike, or use a motorcycle to get to the summit.  The ghost will appear in a specific spot along the mountain, so you will have to scout it out.

Few notes about the ghot of Mount Gordo:
- There is a specific point at the top of Mount Gordo where you can encounter the ghost you will have to some exploring at the top.
- The ghost only appears at a certain time in the game (I think it is 23:00-0:00, or 11:00 pm to 12:00pm).  The ghost disappears afterwards.  If you get there too early or too late you will have to wait till the same time  the next night (btw, you can camp out there if you want if you are the patient type).
- The ghost basically just hovers over the rock.
- You can't shoot the ghost (bullets will go right through her)
- For a closer look at the ghost, I recommend getting a sniper rifle in the game.  You can get a closeup view of her with a sniper rifle
- The ghost will disappear if you try to get too close to her.  Interestingly if you back away, she will reappear again.
- Also, if you get to the rock she hovers around, you can actually see blood on it.
It's pretty creepy if you ask me.  By the way, it seems to be a residual type haunt as it doesn't seem to notice you and just does the same thing each night.
- You can also get a view of the lighthouse below in the distance from where she is.  Presumably she fell to her death from the top of the mountain.

Tips and warnings about this ghost:
- The ghost appears at a specific time (from 23:00-0:00 game time).  She disappears afterwards.  So you do have to time your visit to the mountain perfectly.  Alternatively, you can always camp out in the vincinity.  The fastest way to the top is via motorcycle.  If you go on foot, be sure to give yourself plenty of time to get to the top.
- Watch out for cougars, especially if you go there on foot.  Just like hot it is in the game, Red Dead Redemption, cougars do exist in the game and will attack you if you are on foot (if you are on motorcycle, they will just run away).  Usually you will hear a growl followed by seeing a red dot on the radar and that will indicate a cougar nearby and closing in on you.  I recommend taking handy gun with you with plenty of ammo if you venture out to mount gordo for your protection.  Even a good pistol can take out cougars pretty quickly if they get too close.
- For a closeup view of the ghost, you will need a sniper rifle.  You can't get too close to her, otherwise she disappears.

Here is a video about the ghost:


Part 2: UFO's
Here is a picture of a ufo I took at the top of Mount Chillad (note that it only appears late on a stormy night there and after you have gotten 100% completion of the game)
Mount Chiliad

Yes, aliens do seem to exist in Grand Theft Auto 5.  Some ufos and aliens can be found before the 100% completion of the game, such as the sunken one near Paleto Bay as well as what looks like the remaints of an alien hidden beneath the ice near North Yankton at the beginning of the game (can be easy to miss).

After you have gotten 100% completion (these ufos will not appear till after you have gotten 100% completion), more ufos can be found, including:
1. UFO easter egg on top of Mount Chillad (appears after 3:00 on a stormy night).

After 100% completion of the game, if you venture to the top of Mount Chillad late on a stormy night, you might encounter a ufo there (close to the top of the gondala).  By the way, there is a cheat code that makes it so you can change the weather if you want it to be stormy sooner
Mount Chiliad
(see http://www.gamefaqs.com/xbox360/634491-grand-theft-auto-v/cheats if you have the Xbox 360 version or http://www.gamefaqs.com/ps3/634490-grand-theft-auto-v/cheats for the PS3  version).
The Mount Chillad Ufo is probably the easiest one to spot if you know where to look and when to look.  To spot this ufo (after the 100% completion), make sure it is stormy out (if it is a clear night, the ufo will not appear) and night time (preferrably after 1am) and take the tram from the tram station near Paleto Bay to the  top of the Mountain.  Assuing it is still stormy, around 3am, a ufo should appear.  By the way, there are cheats you can use to change the weather, so if it is sunny out for example, you can use cheat codes to make it so it becomes stormy.  Note: the weather can change during the course of a day in the game (such as going from rain to clear) so you will want to wait till at least 2 hours before 3am before entering the cheats to ensure that it is still stormy by 3am.  If you change it  too early it might change and you will miss out.

2 warnings and other info about this ufo spot:
- cougars do roam on Mount Chillad and will try to attack you when on foot, so watch out for them, especially if you decide to hike down the mountain.  Carrying a gun is a must for defending yourself against cougars.
- You can parachute off the mountain if you want, though you can also bike, hike or take the tram back down.  If you hike watch out for cougars.
- It might work if it is raining out, though I haven't tried that approach myself so I don't know if it works that way.
- Unlike the UFOs over Zancudo Air Force Base and Sandy Shores, it doesn't turn hostile if you get close to it.  Instead it vanishes (much like how it is with the ghost on top of Mount Gordo).
- The easiest way to make it stormy is to use cheat codes to change the weather (otherwise you could be waiting for a while before it gets stormy).  Also make sure you time it correctly (say anytime after 1am).  If you do it too early, the weather might change on you.
- The Mount Chillad UFO seems to be a part of a larger mystery.  If you get off the tram there is a picture that looks like the inside of the mountain and a ufo that appears on the top.  There are rumors surrounding Mount Chillad I have seen online, such as elevators into the mountain (though apparently they don't work) at Fort Zacudo and the tram station seems to have what looks like panels that could open and lead inside the mountain but I don't know how to open them.   It is possible that Rockstar will add some DLC that expands on the mystery some day, though it is not clear if or when they will make the expansion (they might also make the changes when the Xbox One and Playstation 4 versions come out).  I will try to keep you updated if I hear anything.

2. UFO over Sandy Shores

If you are flying high above the Sandy Shores area after you have gotten the 100% completion, you may encounter this ufo hovering over the hippy camp (the one that has the green landscape with ufo enthusiasts. This one can actually be tricky to find and easy to miss if you don't know where to look, though not nearly as tricky to find as the one at Fort Zancudo is in my opinion.  Here is how you can see  the ufo:
- I recommend using Trevor for this one and be sure to purchase the Mckenzie Airfield if you haven't done so already (it is the one in Sandy Shores).  Also, I recommend using a helicopter for this one.  If you do not know how to fly a helicopter in the game, you might want to consider doing the flight school missions at Los Santos Airport (ideally you should have done flight school during the Merryweather Heist preparation events, and I think it is required for 100% completion).
- As Trevor (or whoever you want flying), get in a helicopter and fly it as high as you can over where the hippy camp is and eventually you should see a UFO decending from the sky.  Note that the appear appears right around the hippy camp and nowhere else around sandy shores.
- You can get a picture of the UFO using the ingame phone, though it can be tricky to fly and take pictures at the same time.
- It might be possible to land on the ufo or parachute onto it (I have seen videos of people doing this), but it is very risky doings so.

Quick warning about this ufo:
- It becomes hostile if you get too close. If you get too close to it, it shoots this invisible beam (you will hear a wierd noise, don't know how else to describe it) that renders your plane inoperable, which means you have to parachute a long way down from the sky.
- Also, if you are using a parachute and get too close to the UFO, it will "shoot" the parachute as well, sending your character falling down to his death.
- Sometimes jumping out of a plane or helicopter can get you a wanted level.
- The ufo might not appear right away when flying around the hippy camp.  If you do not see it yet, you can fly around and keep trying to gain altitude and eventually you should be able to see it.

Ufo 3: Fort Zancudo

San Andreas
Picture of the Fort Zancudo UFO
 Update: I was able to get a glimpse of this one last night. If but if you fly high over the Ford Zancudo Air Force base in the game (again assuming you have 100% completion), you might be able to a ufo flying over the base.  Of the 3 UFOs that appear after 100% completion, this one is probably the hardest one to spot in my opinion and perhaps the most risky one to find too considering that you are flying over one of the game's restricted areas.  To see the UFO, you have to be flying high above the airforce base and if you are patient and know where to look, you should eventually see a UFO flying around.  Unlike the other 2 UFOs, it has a military style look, materializes in front of you (unlike the one at Sandy Shores where it decends from the sky) alost like it has a cloaking device, and looks like it is missing parts of its sphere.   Apparrently you can shoot at the UFO if you have a Lazer or military helicopter, though you can't seem to do real damage to it.  By the way, good luck getting a lazer or combat helicopter, since not easy to acquire as you have to sneak on to the base (which gives you an instant 4 start wanted level), fight your way to the helicopter (and yes military personnel do have tanks that will come after you) and manage to take off without getting shot down.  I recommend using the invincibility cheat (makes you invincible for 5 ingame minutes) if you are struggling to get to the helicopter (the only real hard part then is trying to avoid getting shot down).  Alternatively, you can fly a helicopter over to Ford Zancudo from either Los Santos as Franklin or Mckenzie Airfield as Trevor)
Interestingly, like the ufo in Sandy Shores, it looks like it gets hostile if you get too close and will try to shoot you down.  By the way, the Fort Zancudo ufo seems to be a reference to rumors about ufos being seen over real life military bases (such as Area 51, for example) and seems to pay tribute to a similar military base in GTA San Andreas.  I've never seen a ufo in real life and don't really know if ufos really appear over military bases, but I have seen shows on it, including a special on Travel Channel about Rachel, Nevada and Area 51 that talks about that kind of phenomenon.  Though I have never been to that part of Nevada so I wouldn't know if there is any truth to the claims about the place.

Quick warnings about the Fort Zancudo UFO:
- As with real life military bases, trespassing is forbidden at Fort Zancudo.  If you try to set foot on the base there, you will get an instant 4 star wanted level, which can essentially be a death sentence for your character unless if you are good at eluding police and military personel on a 4 star wanted level in the game (which is definitely intense).  Also, you have tanks on the base hunting you down too, which can kill you in one hit it shoots you.  If you fly over Fort Zancudo, unless if you are high enough, you can get shot down.  For the Fort Zancudo UFO, you will have to be flying over the base as high as you can and you should not have to worry about getting shot down, which can happen if you if you fly too low.  This should not be a problem if you are flying from Sandy Shores or Los Santos air port as you have plenty of time to gain altitude on the way.
-  Like the UFO in Sandy Shores, the Fort Zancudo UFO does get hostile if you get too close and will try to "shoot" you down, which can be dangerous for the player over the military base.
- This one can take several tries to find since it is not as easy to find as the other 2 are.
Part 3: Aliens and Alien Abductions

 You know, just thinking about UFOs, Aliens also seem to exist in the game too.  In the video above, there is a side mission Michael can take where there is some politician trying to legalize medical cocaine (seems to be a parody of real life medical marijuana) and when Michael takes a free sample of the drug, he has this hallucination where there a horde of aliens appearing and closing in on him and he has to shoot them with a mini-gun. It was a pretty wierd mission in my opinion.  Also they try to abduct Michael and if they succeed, Michael dies so you have to avoid getting abducted by them.  By the way, this is not the only time Michael can encounter aliens.  There is a more disturbing encounter during another mission (I think it is the "Did someone say Yoga?" Mission (it is the one where Michael temporarily breaks up with Amanda till towards the end of the storyline missions) where after doing Yoga and Amanda threatens to leave Michael for some Yoga dude, Michael encounters Jimmy.  He has Michael take Jimmy to get drugs (yes drugs do exist in GTA 5 and your characters can use them with funny effects) from a friend and tricks Michael into sampling the drugs (even while driving I might add) and it sends Michael into an instant hallucination trip where he gets abducted by aliens (they look like the aliens from "Aliens vs Predator" in my opinion) and sent back to earth.  There also appear to be aliens roaming the streets of Vinewood (GTA's version of Hollywood) as well as the Vinewood Studio (which is based on the Hollywood Studios in Los Angeles). Definitely a halloweenish moment.  It is probably the best paranormal events that take place in the game too.

By the way, here is a video I found on Youtube about some player causing a UFO to crash and get attacked by aliens.  Pretty funny (not sure how the easter egg works though as I haven't seen it yet).

Well that is all for now. Will add more Halloweenish moments at a later post.  Other Halloweenish moments I know of which I will try to expand more on as time allows includes:
- Killer clowns with Trevor.  It is pretty similar to Michael's hallucination of aliens, but involves clowns.
- Solve 2 murder mysteries
- Watch out for...Jaws (yes, man eating sharks do exist in GTA 5)!
- Joining cults (such as the Epsilon cult as Michael)
- Altruist Cult (basically cannibals in GTA 5)
- Trevor Philips as a psychopath.
-  Cougars!
-  Vandalism and costume dressing
- Ghost dog (there is a dog that appears in one of the "Strangers and Freaks" mission that only Franklin can see and seems to warn of impending danger for his "master"?
- Ghost of Trevor Phillip's mother (aka the Mrs Phillips Strangers and Freaks Mission)?
- Does bigfoot roam the Mount Chillad wilderness (also known as the "Last one" Strangers and Freaks mission).

Stay tuned for more.

Disclaimer about GTA 5: the game is rated "M" for mature and is definitely not for everyone content wise.  Content includes: violence, criminal acts (btw, don't even think about trying anything you see in this game at home for obvious reasons unless of course if you are trying to get arrested or end up in jail for a long time, or even wind up on death row in some case), drug use and references, dark moments, and similar things associated with the GTA franchise.  If you are the type that is easily offended by video game violence and similar types of content, then Grand Theft Auto 5 is probably not for you.