Ugh, two weeks and no updates. I suppose I could blame it one a lack of actual gaming on my part, but it's not as if I don't have other topics to talk about besides what I am playing this moment, so I'll just chalk it up to me being a lazy bastard.
What little time I have spent on gaming recently has been spent playing PuzzleQuest for the DS. This game is quite the paradox. On the one hand there have been multiple occasions on which I wish to spike my DS out of frustration for the game, but on the other hand, I can't put it down. It's not that spectacular, it's a Reese's-esc mish-mash of "You got your Puzzle Game in my RPG/You got your RPG in my Puzzle Game" which in reality placates one genre (The puzzles you use to do all of your "fighting") more so than the other (The RPG elements of doing quests, buying equipment to aid you in battle, gaining levels, etc.). The aforementioned DS spiking is a result of the the combat. In a Bejeweled-esc manner you line up gems to collect mana, or line up skulls to do direct damage. With enough mana you can do different spells (Depending on your class and level), and if you get four or more of a kind lined up you get another turn and perhaps a bonus. Like in any puzzle game the gems drop "randomly" (I quote that because some battles in the game seem to have decidedly more "random" drops than others), which is where the RPG fan in me wants to strangle the Puzzle Game fan in me. I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that when I am playing RPG I am a control freak. When I get into a battle I want to have complete control over it. Hell, in most old school RPGs that's really the only control you had. You controlled how the battles went, who did what, and you felt like motherfucking Hannibal when your plan "came together." Certain battles in PuzzleQuest I only lost because my opponent got three or four free turns because of randomly dropped gems that happened to be four-in-a-rows which gave him enough mana to do a ridiculous amount of damage, or, drain of a ridiculous amount of my mana which might as well have killed me at that time. I'd like to say that this sort of thing happened just as many times in my favor, but that would be a lie. There is, however, something to be said about the addictiveness of it. It is just as pick up and play as any other Puzzle Game out there, and in my mind it is the epitome of a "time-killer" (Each time I've turned it on I've played for at least an hour) to be used during travel, class, or boring conversations. As far as a Puzzle Game goes, PuzzleQuest gets the job done, and it does it well, just don't go trying to convert any of your RPG fanatic friends with it because of it's "hybrid" nature. I suppose the target audience would be people who love Bejeweled enough to imagine themselves using it as a medium to inflict pain, so if you ever meet such a person, make sure to point them in the direction of this game. Well, make sure to alert the proper authorities, then point them in the direction of the game.