Living the Good Life, Episode 93 (August 4, 2018): Lotta fun books!

Yay, another good week! Mainly reading stuff over here, though πŸ˜€

WATCHAN:

As with last week, nothing really on this season I’m interested in, so nothin watched :p

EATAN:

TIMAN:

Sent more stuff to Sky, though she’s busy till the end of the month ;o

PLAYAN:

Ooooh! Lotta new developments for Phoenix Point and Bloodstained! Phoenix Point is finally gonna include the Geoscape (the strategic layer) alongside its battle maps (the tactical layer). That’ll take a long time–the next demo won’t be ready till November–but it’ll be worth it, I bet πŸ˜€ Man, I can’t wait! Check out the updates:

https://phoenixpoint.info/blog/2018/7/27/backer-build-three

Also, they have a Development Roadmap up for the rest of the game, but it contains information on a LOT of things, like classes, enemies, etc.! Don’t click on the following link unless you don’t mind being spoiled!!!

https://phoenixpoint.info/blog/2018/7/30/the-development-roadmap

 

Bloodstained, on the other hand…well, we’ll see how it goes. Earlier this week it released a kickstarter update, with a little new footage of a new attack, but mainly explaining how the team has heard some of the complaints about the newest demo and is working on fixing ’em. Hope that goes well πŸ˜€ Check out the update here:

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/iga/bloodstained-ritual-of-the-night/posts/2246691

Oh, almost forgot: Backed Xenonauts 2 recently! As I always say, I’m kinda burned out on crowdfunding, but I put a lot of hours into the original Xenonauts (which was essentially a clone of the original X-COM), so I figured the makers deserved my support for a second one. Not too much support, though…just gave them about 25 bucks or so, enough for a copy of da game but not much more. Here’s the campaign if you’re interested, it ended a while ago:

 

READAN:

Redblade by Robbie MacNiven. Another Warhammer 40k story, this time about a rebellious member of the Space Wolves (the Warhammer version of Space Vikings, pretty much) becoming inducted into the Deathwatch, an elite team of alien hunters taken from all varieties of space marines.

The story is that Drenn is a young Space Wolf recruit unable to rise up the ranks due to his brash nature, despite his prowess in battle. He’s assigned to defend a base on a high-gravity gas giant from an Ork incursion, which catches the eye of a Deathwatch captain sent to help the Space Wolves out.

Eh…I didn’t like this story as much as Robbie’s other ones (which, if you look through my review history, you’ll know I’m a huge fan of). Yeah, I know Drenn is supposed to be the rebellious punk upstart, but he’s still kind of annoying in this story. But there’s some great action scenes here, including and especially some nice aerial combat, so I still gotta give this 4 stars πŸ˜€

Infestation by William Meikle. The canadian government detects a Russian boat straying strangely close to its waters, not responding to any communications, so they ask for a British special forces team to investigate. Naturally, when our plucky Scots and Irishmen reach the vessel, they find a lot of corpses, one beautiful Russian survivor, and…a whole bunch of giant hungry isopods waiting to be unleashed upon the world! As you can expect, they have to stop it :p

So yeah, that’s pretty much it, and what you just heard is what you get. There’s a lot of fun action and gunplay, some gore (the isopods kill a bunch of people in violent ways), and the classic Scottish bantz between the special ops team members is nice. This also helps the characters stand out πŸ˜€ If you guys don’t know what giant isopods are, they’re the deep-sea version of the little pillbugs/roly-polies we see on land, except deep sea gigantism makes them grow to like 2 feet in length. The mutant ones in this book are the size of small cars. So that might make things seem funny rather than scary, but either way, I got a good deal of enjoyment out of this even if it’s not the most distinguished novel ever, so 4 stars from me πŸ˜€

Sacrifice by Russell James. Six high-school troublemaking boys encounter an evil ghost preying upon their town’s children and attempt to stop it. In the course of their research, they find out it’s been haunting the town for centuries, and find out about a ritual that can halt it. They succeed in carrying out that ritual, but thirty years later the ghost returns and they have to put it down for good this time.

Yeah, as you can tell, the premise is pretty similar to Stephen King’s IT. However, there’s more than enough to differentiate James’ novel from that of the old master’s, even if Sacrifice isn’t quite as good. The characters are all well-drawn and both amusing and sympathetic, and there are some plot beats that do diverge from IT, namely concerning the nature of the ghost–no spoilers, but he’s not a Lovecraftian entity from beyond the stars but something borne out of human cruelty and vindictiveness. Still, there aren’t any scares quite as good as in IT, and the evil ghost (The Woodsman) is nowhere near as memorable as Pennywise. But at least I got my money’s worth, so as usual, 4 stars it is πŸ˜€

Stephen by Amy Cross. At the cusp of the 20th century in England, a young governess/nanny freshly graduated from a convent is hired at the sinister, mysterious Grangehurst estate to help care for a young child named Stephen. But as our naive, sheltered protagonist will soon find out, there’s something very wrong with Stephen, as well as his parents!

Whoah man, this was a scary novel! It’s written in the form of a memoir the protagonist wrote decades after the story occurred, but there’s still a scary twist at the end to keep things interesting. While I found the super-naive protag to be a little annoying (and even the heroine admits she was really dumb when she was younger), the buildup and some of the ghastly imagery near the end (combined with some freaky sexual content) kept me turning the pages until I was finished. 5 stars for this one, definitely worth the price!

 

WRITAN:

A little bit on one of my projects, but not much else, busy readin all those horror novels this week!

And that should about do it. See y’all on the 11th πŸ˜€

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