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New games, good and bad

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Bought a couple of new games that I had my eye on. You know, research and all :)

First off, I got Smart Games Pack 3, which is quite a nice little collection. It looks a bit like my pack, with a ton of small-format games, but it works differently. It's got about 20 games, all puzzles. As you play the puzzles, you get a running score for all of 'em. Much like any large collection of games, some of the games are quite imaginative, and a couple are decidedly ho-hum. All in all, it's quite well-done.

Secondly, I got the new-n-improved 3D Centipede sequel, which is a mess. Frankly, I can't figure out how they could have done such a poor job with this one. It's dog-slow, the control is spongy, and it only works at low resolutions. The little cut-scenes are cute, but that doesn't make up for a bad game. It doesn't live up to the cool-looking TV commercials.

Interestingly, both games are put out by the same company, Hasbro interactive. I wonder if this is a problem that occurs when companies get too big. They get a dozen similar divisions brought about by absorbing other companies, and one corporate hand doesn't know what the other one is doing. Since the games market is so fanatically-focused on the Christmas season, sacrificing quality for the sake of the schedule is a yearly thing. If too many people complain, release a patch sometime next year.

On the games front, I think I've got a minor, but persistent, bug fixed with the arcade games. Many of 'em use the space bar as a fire button, and it's a problem if a dialog box pops up at the end of a level, when the player dies, etc. If there are a buncha spaces backed up in the queue, they tend to press the OK button in whatever dialog box pops up. I was simply taking the focus off the OK button, but now I'm allowing all of the keyboard events in the queue to clear before I bring up a dialog box.

Still researching and mulling my next-generation game idea. Once I get something cool going, you'll be the first to know.
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