POF Archive: September 2019

I have been writing this drivel for decades. Browse through my archives by clicking the links below.

Tomb Raider Legend on PC (8/10)

Lara is a swinger

I could have sworn I had played this game before, but I wasn't completely sure. I get this one confused with Tomb Raider: Anniversary. All I knew is that I didn't own it and, if I had played it, it was probably on Gametap as a freebie. Well, this weekend it went on Steam sale for 97¢ so I grabbed it knowing that if I managed to have an hour of fun with it, it would have been worth the price.

Yup, I've played it before. I definitely remember the first level. Things get cloudy after that. These games aren't quite known for their strong, memorable narratives. The game would seem completely new to…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Thu, 09/26/2019 - 20:20

Q: The Winged Serpent (7/10)

A piece of 80s shlock that's much better than it should be mostly due to the excellent cast and characters. The plot involves a small time crook, grizzly murders, ancient Aztec sacrifice and the return of Quetzalcoatl. Interspersed every ten minutes or so are hilarious scenes of random New Yorkers being attacked from the sky by a mostly unseen monster. Q emerges in her full stop-motion glory at the climax and by then you are totally cool with how corny it looks. The right elements are all here, and it is very entertaining, but a generally lack of cohesion keep the movie from being great.

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Sun, 09/22/2019 - 10:54

Fat Guy Goes Nutzoid

This print has nothing to do with the movie of the same name. This started as a sketch of a large man with a lobster bib and it morphed into this. I wanted to try engraving in maple again after years of using resingrave. I'm hear to say end-grain maple stinks. The lines are rough and it prints very unevenly. But never mind that. Buy this print!

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Fri, 09/20/2019 - 16:56

Rise of the Tomb Raider on PC (8/10)

Ship in Ice: Rise of the Doom Raider!

Part two of the Tomb Raider reboot doesn't offer anything really new in terms of game play but that's okay. The core of the series is 3-D platforming mechanics and it does that very well. This is especially evident in the nine or so "challenge tombs" scattered throughout the world.

Mother Russia Awaits!

The graphics are stunning and most of the environments are fun to explore. The world is zoned off into half-a-dozen regions which are fairly open-world in their layout. Much of my time was spent hunting down the inane collectibles in order to get a 100% complete. I almost got everything before the end, but there…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Thu, 09/19/2019 - 23:16

Boxer from Shantung (8/10)

A small-time hood uses his fighting mastery to become the boss of his own gang. Features a fight with a giant European wrestler and a long, bloody finale in which the hero has an axe in his belly half the time. The movie is a bit too long but that final fight really makes up for all the fluff. Like Man of Iron, the lead character isn't terribly likable but I guess he makes a little effort not to be a really bad crime boss.

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Tue, 09/17/2019 - 21:49

John Carter (6/10)

A standard, post-LOTR epic movie with clashing armies and English accents. This should be a fun fish out of water tale but the story is structured in a way that kills any mystery and discovery. It has it's moments but no real surprises here. This wasn't the Martian Dreams follow-up I wanted.

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Sat, 09/07/2019 - 23:29

The Ettin

Earlier this year I decided to support a Kickstarter campaign for a new Apple ][ game called Nox Archaist. It is going to be an RPG in the style of the 8-bit Ultima games. There are was a call-out for artwork submissions to be included in the manual. I decided to try and produce some drawings for the project. In the end I made about half-a-dozen pen and ink drawings of various fantasy creatures. This one was perhaps my favorite of the lot. As of this writing they were still looking for more art and, if I can find some time, I'll try to do a few more; continuing my long-standing tradition of…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Fri, 09/06/2019 - 16:23

Ultima Worlds of Adventure 2: Martian Dreams on MS-DOS (8/10)

Martian Dreams

Martian Dreams is built on the same game engine as Ultima VI. Much like that game, it is much less of an RPG and more of an adventure game in which you are wandering through the world, talking to NPCs, and combining objects to solve puzzles. You're not really building up and customizing your character here. Sure there's combat and leveling up, but it doesn't really feel like it matters much.

The most important part of this game is the story and the world it's built around. Martian Dreams takes place a fictionalized the late nineteenth century setting in which space flight is a reality. Dozens…

Submitted by Robert Gomez on Tue, 09/03/2019 - 20:20