iPad Casual Games #hazm8playsgames – Q2 2018

The S.O. says I play “a lot” of iPad games – not sure if it’s something to be proud of – and suggested I could do recommendations for casual players.

My short-lived Instagram hashtag #hazm8playsgames was actually similar in intention. It was meant to be a compilation of games that I felt were less mainstream for the casual player, one who might not really browse the App Store regularly or install new apps, etc.

I don’t like putting star-ratings on games, as I think it depends a lot on what kind of games each person likes. These are my preferences:

Genres
  • Puzzles, especially word and logic games. I don’t like physics-based puzzle games.
  • Strategy/Simulation, which is code for “I have a stupid weakness to time management games”, like Cooking Dash 2016 (here I am, playing the game for x years).
  • RPGs, though they aren’t really casual – I’d love to play more, but I only seem to manage to finish one every few years!
  • Not platformers. I’ve found, over the years, that I don’t really enjoy them. I’d play a few levels and then tend to lose interest.
Styles
  • Cute or cartoonish art or animation style, over realistic or, hmm, less cute styles. (I’ve never liked the Ren and Stimpy art style, for example)
Other
  • Casual games, because however much I want to think of myself as kind of a gamer, I never seem to spend time playing “heavier” games. Which leads me to…
  • Free / Freemium / $0.99 Games, partly because casual games tend to be cheaper and I can’t justify spending more money (straightaway) on games that I might not actually play. Yes, this means I have probably missed out on a lot of wonderful indie games!  🙁

So it’s not exactly book reviews – I’m still struggling to read, thank goodness for fembookclub! But let’s give it a go…

Games this quarter

Wheel of Fortune: Show Puzzles / Free Play

Words / Trivia
Thoughts

I had no idea that the sound clips of original Wheel of Fortune TV show, occasionally watched in my childhood, were embedded in my brain. The game makes use of the sound clips – new word, letter found, letter not found – which set off a nostalgic spark within me. Weird.

Website

Tiny Bird Garden

Idle / Pets
Thoughts

I found this game through an interview with the developer(s), which I haven’t been able to find again, aww. </3

The art is super cute, and although it very obviously models its gameplay on Neko Atsume, it expands the concept with human friends and other features, like hats and adorable messages from each bird. Birbs are frens!

But Neko Atsume was a game which, despite playing it patiently for a few months, eventually lost my attention. So with Tiny Bird Garden, I also struggled to stay interested. I appreciate the “idle” nature of the games, in an era where so many games fight for your constant attention, but it doesn’t quite work for me.

Website

Cat Condo

Idle Clicker
Thoughts

More cute animals and cute art but this is a clicker game and I do not recommend clicker games because they are just so mindless but I’m still playing this one so it is on the list but you really should not play clickers okay gonna drag more cats around bye

Games revisited

Sometime this year, I was forced to reformat my iPad, losing quite a lot of game data, I’m sure. Before you chime in about iCloud syncing, one of the reasons I had to reformat was that I had been unable to sync or back up my iPad/iCloud data, so I was sure that some of my game data would not have been survived.

Bloons Tower Defense 5

I hadn’t played Bloons TD 5 in over a year! (I’m aware of the release of Bloons TD 6, but I’m not sure I’ll be getting it) So after a long break, I re-downloaded the game – all my data was lost after the reformat, sniff – and found that it was still pretty satisfying to destroy masses of “evil” balloons. Poppity pop.

Website

 

Next post will be for games in Q1 2018!

Blog traffic for the wrong reasons & archiving my older posts

I finally did it. I archived an old post about feminism and a popular cartoon (and game) character who I shall not name.

Okay, the game was actually Kingdom Hearts II, but I won’t mention the cartoon name or the character.

That post got me a lot of traffic, y’know? Mostly from people searching the cartoon character by name, rather than the title of the cartoon show or Kingdom Hearts II (KHII). I’m comfortable mentioning KHII, by the way, because I still am interested in sexism and representation of women in games (“video games”, say the Western peoples) and in media – I have a tag for ‘women in media‘ on my Tumblr.

It was not traffic I particularly valued, eventually – no one tried to have a dialogue with me about it, and I became less interested in having a dialogue about it myself.

But blog traffic for the cartoon character specifically? I was tired of it. It was not traffic I particularly valued, eventually – no one tried to have a dialogue with me about it, and I became less interested in having a dialogue about it myself. This specific point is perhaps my main reason for archiving it. I usually am a believer in keeping your old work up, but it’s held less and less value for me throughout the years.

The attention seemed accidental, to be honest. WordPress is so good with SEO; my straightforward post title ‘[Character Name] & Feminism’ was enough to drive the post to Google searches. Ultimately, it got significantly more traffic than my other writings.

I don’t want it to represent my blog anymore. I’d rather people read my blog for my other thoughts and ideas; I don’t mind losing blog traffic if it means having a more relevant readership.

Which brings me to… this blog itself. I know. I never knew how to angle it. “I guess my blog is my book diary and my projects?” I asked myself, again and again. It was probably why Tumblr came as a relief – I could post content without sticking to a theme, which I had never quite clearly defined in my head for this blog. Tumblr’s structure allows you to be random, with only tags stringing your posts together. WordPress, and everything I’ve ever known about blogging, seemed to require consistency and regularity, which I struggled with. (I wrote about this on Tumblr too, here.)

But I love WordPress, and I’ll probably always find a home for myself in it. I love it as CMS, as a container for content; I like building and maintaining other websites with it. I update it from version to version with reluctance, but I delight in finding new plugins that extend its user experience. It’s still one of my favourite platforms for reading longform writing.

I’ve started restructuring the categories on this blog. I hope the new categories make sense. While moving posts and categories around, I archived other posts too, a small number of them. You won’t see them again unless they were caught by Wayback Machine and the like. They never fit in anyway, and seemed more Twitterish or Tumblrish in spirit. You won’t miss them.

And to all who look for feminist discourse around that certain cartoon character – thank you for finding me, but this blog was never a good place for it. I hope you found better articles and insights out there. Thanks for the website hits.

Into the archives she goes - Thanks!

 

Written with StackEdit.

23
May 2017
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A fan of art goes to an art show (UBD Impact and Spectacle)

This year was my third time visiting the UBD art & design graduation exhibition, known in 2017 as Impact, and in previous years as Spectacle.

Forgotten Sight by Nuratikah Mohd Harunthmarin, UBD Spectacle 2016

 

This is a write-up and reflection of what I’ve seen in these exhibitions.

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19
May 2017
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Being on the 33 under 33

In February, I was told I would be featured by Muslyfe on a list of 33 women under 33 who were “influential”, though it has since been changed to “to watch in 2017”. I can tell you it led to a number of people asking me what I’m planning in 2017, and a healthy amount of self-doubt. But after all, I had agreed to be listed.

“33 Brunei women under 33 to watch in 2017” – by Lyfe Media (Infographic / Article)

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06
Apr 2017
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Lateness Culture, and making it a little better for everyone

Illustration for Lateness Culture - Traffic - Commissioned from Ibrahim

You see all those cars around you? Yeah, it’s traffic. Yeah, you’re late. (Illustration: Ibrahim Yussop)

So, this one time, I was half an hour late, and no one else was late, and being late actually mattered.

It involved underestimating 5pm traffic, and forgetting that I’m not too familiar with Kota Batu. The event was full of formally-dressed people. The event only kicked off only after my arrival. I was mortified.

And yet, I do not know if this is unusual in Brunei. I do not know how often instances of lateness are met with shame. You would even say that lateness is unashamedly rampant.

In some social circles, 5 to 15 minutes’ lateness may be accepted. But I’m amazed at how tolerant we are, when:

  • “late” means half an hour late, or even an hour late
  • a latecomer to a meeting doesn’t let you know they’ll be late
  • a rehearsal or a launching starts more than an hour after the stated time.

Surely this can’t be normal. I’m not talking one-off lateness, I’m saying that perpetual lateness is a habit. I’m talking about how we perpetuate this unnecessarily in all our social and work groups.

How are we constantly letting others wait for us? How can we be happy to throw around the excuse “Janji Melayu”, allowing it as a cultural habit, and masking that it’s actually an inconsideration to others? Read more…