Geekend
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Welcome back to The Geekend! We’re all about games this week, including some of our usual favorites and some newer titles as well. What have you been into this week? Tell us in the comments!

Michael Riel — Staff Writer
Have you ever played one of those games that had a certain charm, but the battle system was so infuriating and weird that it kind of throws the good parts out the window? Well, I’ve been playing Ni No Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, which originally came out for DS but was released on the PS3 in the U.S. not too long ago. As soon as I saw the cover at Gamestop, the first thing that popped into my mind was Studio Ghibli because the game had the same art style. When I saw that I was right and that Studio Ghibli was involved, I purchased it solely on that basis, which probably wasn’t the best of ideas. It’s a charming little story but lacks a bit of oomph, and as I said, the battle system is truly annoying. It reminded me of a slightly modified version of the battle system from Eternal Sonata, minus the turn-based aspect. I’ve also still been playing WWE 2K14 and kicking people’s online buttocks with my created version of Billy Mays, because why not. But wait there’s more! No wait…there isn’t.

Jimmy Stephenson — Staff Writer
I’ve been fairly busy with games for this week. Over the weekend, I played through the PC indie game Gunpoint, a puzzle-platformer that has you playing a spy for hire. The two main mechanics in the game are the spy’s ability to jump and fall incredible distances without being hurt and being able to rewire switches and other electrical devices at will. Each level is very open in how you can approach it, and it’s a lot of fun trying to get through without alerting the guards. The story, which is told via text messages, is also amusing, and gives players a bit of freedom as to how it plays out. I’ve also decided to get into the holiday spirit by booting up Guild Wars 2, just in time for the Wintersday Festival. It’s been over a year since I’d last played, but I was able to quickly get back into the swing of things. It is still a lot of fun to adventure with friends, and seeing Lion’s Arch decked out for the celebration is very cool. I’ve participated in over a dozen snowball matches, battled against rampaging toys, and torn my hair out attempting the latest themed jumping puzzle. Seriously, those snowflakes are brutal.

Jennifer Griffith — Managing Editor
I’ve been spending some quality time with the recent Vita game, Tearaway. The developers behind Little Big Planet have outdone themselves with this adorably addictive experience. It’s one of the first games I’ve seen that actually takes advantage of the fact that its handheld has a touchscreen in an innovative way, and I’m including titles on the 3DS. In Tearaway, you can actually interact with the in-game environment by pulling on tabs on the front screen and punching holes through paper from the back touchpad. You can even create little works of art that become part of the game, as if you were some kind of benevolent god. That sort of feeling is reinforced by the fact that your face is part of the sun in this paper world, courtesy of the Vita’s front-facing camera. In any case, it’s lots of fun, and I definitely recommend it. I’m also still trying out new visual novels, including a mystery/thriller called Nicole, in which you play as a college student investigating a series of disappearances on her own. I use the “thriller” category loosely, though. The game is a bit too easy, it’s not very scary, and it’s very slow to get started, but I found the story enjoyable enough to finish.