Exploding Elephant Toothpaste Write Up

Hydrogen peroxide (H?O?) is an unstable oxidizer that will readily decompose into water and oxygen, given… [more]

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TNG Site 3.0!

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PAX Prime 2012!

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Another update, and podcast.

Well here we are again. I've updated the site a bit, as you can see. There's now a nifty youtube feed… [more]

Another update, and podcast. Another update, and podcast.

iReview: Chaos Rings

So I’m starting a new segment here on the TNG blog called iReview, in which I’ll, you guessed it, review a game for the iOS device lineup, aka the iPhone, the iPod Touch, and the iPad. Now, there’s a fast set of nearly 100,000 games for these devices, so there’s no way I’m going to be able to review them all, but I intend to review the ones that a) I have had the time to play, and b) That are actually noteworthy. Noteworthy because they are good, or noteworthy because they are bad, it doesn’t matter.

Anyway, moving along to the actually review, I will now be reviewing one of the best looking games on the iOS series, produced by Square Enix, Chaos Rings.

Bad-ass looking characters

Suffice to say, the logo is great in itself.

Chaos Rings is a RPG in the likes of Final Fantasy, following the story of four couples, who have been abducted into the realm of the Ark Arena, in which these couples fight for their lives, and the ability to return to their original times. Yet throughout this trek, they find the motives behind the ideals of the Ark Arena, ultimately fighting against the monstrosity behind the Ark Arena.

The gameplay is relatively simple. The overworld of the game is played from a third person perspective, with a track ball to move your character. One great thing that the developers did is made it so that, no matter where you initially place your finger on the device, the virtual track ball is based wherever you placed your finger. While this seems good in context, sometimes, when placing your finger initially near the edge of the screen, your character cannot move as fast as possible. A slight mishap, but it doesn’t matter if you just don’t place your finger in a certain place. (iPhone 4 antenna issues anyone?)

The other part of the game, the battles, are standard Final Fantasy-esque scenes, most reminiscent of Final Fantasy XIII. Heck, even the camera positions while you are making choices as to what to do, or attacking, are FFXIIIish.

Yellow Sparklies

You see what I mean?

In battles, before each turn, you are given the choice to either do two solo moves, or do one devastating pair move. However, if you chose to do the pair move, then any attack will hit the both of you, so there is greater risk for the greater reward. This adds a new element of strategy to the battles; yet I never found myself using the ability, as most often the benefits of having two separate attacks outweigh the benefits of a single, strong attack.

This is not the only strategical element in battle, as there are two more features. One is the break gauge, seen in the top left corner. This represents the “momentum” or the “flow” of the battle; if it points in your direction, then your attacks will do more damage, and your opponent’s attacks will do less. Likewise, if the break meter favors your opponent, then your attacks will do substantially less, and your opponent’s will be stronger. While it seems as if it’s a cool mechanic, this drastically changes the ideals of battle; speed becomes essential, as the first attack done majorly puts the battle in your favor. And once the break meter is in your favor, then essentially you’ve won the battle, with no skill involved. After a while, the concept break meter simply makes battles uninteresting.

The third and final strategic element is the concept of elements, no pun intended. This, in realistic terms, is simply a game of rock-paper-scizzors. The three elements, Aqua, Blaze, and Gale, follow characteristics as you would expect: Aqua beats Blaze, Blaze beats Gale, and Gale beats Aqua. It’s quite reminiscent of Pokemon, in actually.

In fact, the game has many throw-offs to Pokemon. The monster design, for instance, is based off of animals, similar to that of Pokemon. This is not to say that the monster design is bad, heavens no. If anything, the design of the enemies is fresh, and the boss designs are quite intimidating.


The fact that animals are the basis for all character design is expanded upon, as whenever you first defeat a monster, you obtain their genes. These genes have special abilities, which you can obtain by defeating monsters in battle. You can equip these genes to your characters to be able to utilize these abilities. The abilities include magic attacks of certain elements, the ability to increase stats, and the ability to inflict a certain element on an enemy. These are basically your Mana or PSI skills if you will, and are to be used sparingly, as your HP is refilled between battles, but not your MP.

Even though some of the gimicks of the game seem to draw back from the game, the soundtrack nearly makes up for these faults in whole. The boss themes,  for instance, are astounding, and seem as if they could belong in an actual high-budget movie. Just take a listen to this song, entitled Ark Arena;

Ark Arena

Shweet goodness at it’s finest. And, just if you’re curious, the soundtrack is available on iTunes for $7.99, if you wish.

Overall, Chaos Rings by Square Enix is by no means a light RPG, but rather, it is a complex game with amazing graphics, an amazing soundtrack, and much more. That being said, the hefty prince tag of $12.99 may throw some people off of the Square Enix/Final Fantasy/RPG bandwagon; but I state that if you can afford it, by all means, go ahead. You are definitely getting what is worth your money, a 20 hour game with PSP-like graphics.

Of course, if you can’t afford the price, then you might as well dust off your old gameboy, pop in your cartridge of Pokemon Yellow that you were never able to beat, and have a go at that, anyway.

Check me out on twitter, twitter username TNGStaffan. Seriously. It’s worth the amount of time it takes. Especially because it doesn’t take any time at all. :)

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Testing from iPhone

This isn’t really a great update, but I just wanted to test publishing on the blog from my iPhone. If this works, then you’ll be seeing a lot more content from me, so yay for that.

Be sure to check out my twitter at www.twitter.com/TNGstaffan for awesome tweets. Pardon me, Twitter CEO, Tweets.

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10th anniversary of Majora’s Mask

Today is the 10th anniversary of Majora’s Mask!  YAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!! So, I decided that this event deserved my first write up for the site.   As many of you probably know already, Majora’s Mask is one of my favorite zelda games (or any games for that matter)  of all times.  Back when it was released it was a huge departure for the series.  People were expecting a standard sequel to OoT with few changes, using the same zelda formula.   Instead they got a strange and dark game with a new formula.    It introduced a new “Clock” on the game which made you beat the game within 72 Hours in game.  Skull kid is commanding a moon to fall on the city and destroy it in 72 Hours.  The game has a very dark atmosphere, much different from any Zelda game before it.  Early in the game, you recover your ocarina which allows you to play the song of time to return to return to the dawn of the first day.  You keep all your major items, but you lose all minor items (Bombs, Arrows, rupees etc.).  To avoid running out of time, you can play the song of time backwards to slow down time to half speed.  Your goal is the gather the four giants from the four compass points and bring them to the top of the clock tower to stop the impending fall of the moon.   The game is widely considered by many people to be more side quests and collectables than required quest.  This is where the game shines.  The side quests have an extra level of interactivity of meeting people at certain times and coming to places at specific times to talk to a person there only at that time.   This all culminates in the tragic and climatic 3 day Anju and Kafei side quest.  This game is just as good as any other Zelda game and if you haven’t already, I highly recommend checking this out on the Wii Virtual Console.   Even if just to celebrate the anniversary of the game.

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3DS Price and Details Announced

In a press conference in Japan early this morning, Nintendo announced the release date and pricing details on the 3DS.  It will be released in Japan in February 2011 and March 2011 in Europe and the US.   They also announced other features such as a Gameboy VC and the ability to turn a 3D picture of a person into a Mii.  Other currently Japan only features include a Television service and the ability to pick Wifi almost anywhere.  The Price will be ¥25,000 (yen).  This translates to about $300 but since the dollar is so weak, I’m expecting the US price to be $250.  In the past ¥100 roughly equals $1.  They also announced a new Wiimote with wii motion plus built in.  What do you guys think?  I’m totally psyched.  I’ll be definitely be buying this pretty close to release day.  Also can’t wait for Ocarina of Time 3DS!

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The Nerd Gamer’s Zelda Marathon II

I’m here to announce our next Zelda marathon.  Now, don’t get your hopes up, this is still about 9 months away.  I just thought I’d start planning early so we can make the best quality marathon possible.  If everything goes as planned, it should turn out very similar to our last marathon with a few changes for the better.  I will document these in a forum thread and leave it open to any comments or suggestions.  We would greatly appreciate it if you could help us out.  http://thenerdgamers.com/?page_id=5&mingleforumaction=viewtopic&t=22.00
The trailer can be viewed below.

Posted in Gaming | 1 Comment

Important Site Update.

Hey everybody, I’m here to announce an important update to this site that some of you may appreciate.  So, you may have noticed by now that we are called the NERD gamers and we don’t really focus much on the nerd part. That ends now.  We will be posting stuff about Math, Science, Rubik’s cubes and our other Nerdy hobbies here shortly.  If you don’t want it, you don’t need to look at it.  Just hit the gaming tab on the sidebar if you’d prefer not to see it.  We’ll be creating a new Youtube channel for our nerdy video ventures and a link will appear here shortly.  Let us know what you think, if you don’t like it we won’t do it.  Questions or comments can be posted in the comments below or sent to us at general@thenerdgamers.com.

Posted in Blog, Gaming, Site Update | 1 Comment

TNG podcast -Episode 1

ON ITUNES NOW! http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=392448648

Please rate,listen and subscribe.

Show notes

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New Twitters

Check em’ out

Zeke- @TNGZeke

Staffan- @TNGStaffan

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New Store and LP

Check out our new store!  http://www.zazzle.com/thenerdgamers All profits will go to funding the site.  We currently only have a pin but more products are coming very soon!  So please go check it out!

Also I’m starting a new LP shortly; Metroid: Other M!  Check out the trailers below.  The LP can be viewed at our youtube channel.

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Site Update

Hey it’s zeldafan314 here to give you guys an update on the site.    We’ve changed the theme back to the zelda theme, the gaming nights theme was temporary.  The forums now have a mario skin.  This will probably be changed over to a zelda skin in the near future.  As for our next streams,  Staffan(Okuu) is planning on streaming a game or two on specified days.  He’ll probably announce those shortly.  As for other streams, we probably won’t have anything big until next summer.  This is due to time constraints because of school among other things.  Although we’ll still be adding content to the site.  Speaking of which,  we have tons of LP videos over at our youtube channel!  Definitely worth it to go check em’ out.  So anyways stick around for more content and join our forums!

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