Occasionally, just occasionally people have their uses.  Take the Doctor for example – he brought me a fan to use at night to help cool down so I don’t overheat when trying to sleep as I can’t sleep without a duvet to wrap up in.  Mind you it is very big and the amount of chilled air it puts out is quite remarkable.  Naturally there’ll be a cost associated with it through my thrice-damned electricity bill but all things being equal, I’m happy to pay if it means seven or eight hours sleep per night.

In Nintendo news, I’ve been informed (and subsequently confirmed) that the Stars Catalogue has been updated with Mario Kart trophies.  They are about the size of a juice glass and there are three of them to collect for 5000 Star Points a pop.  They do look nice though I can’t recall if they’re made of metal or are plastic.  Furthermore, 5000 Star Points is a lot (you’d have to purchase approximately twenty games to qualify for one) and I’m still hoping for the SNES classic controller…though this month’s Retro Gamer (or was it last month) had these available commercially now.  I dunno.

I’m still slowly grinding my way through Kid Icarus Unleashed though I notice that Kingdom Hearts was available from today; albeit for £40.  And in something that’s more personal to me, I met “Mofo” – one of my “regular” Streetpass Hits for the first time in ages – though twice in two days which has  finally giving me a level 6 character to use in the Quest games.  Of course if Brendan were in London, he’d be Level 5 by now (and I’m going to keep harping about on about it Saffa Boy).  There’s a new “puzzle” out today – Kirby 3D.

Yeah, things really are coming together lately.  There’s 6 days until I go on leave, perhaps 7 until Thorpe Park.  Go Ape & Powerboating are this weekend followed by an evening of…stuff (games).  I’m looking at dates for a Brighton trip and who knows where else.  Only Thursdays during my leave period are empty at the moment though if I do head to Invicita Plaza on a Wednesday night, I dare say half of Thursday will be given to catching up with sleep.

I’ve been doing really well with walking this week, been able to get in nine miles most days since Sunday.  I can see what the masseur at Nickel Spa meant when he said I had ridiculously huge calf muscles.  Speaking of Nickel Spa, I would like to book in a visit at some point.

I’ve been thinking about some old Commodore 64 games this week as one of my lunchtime Wikipedia trawls led me to first Factor 5 Games and its predecessor company, Rainbow Arts who produced, amongst other titles, Turrican.  Now there was a game I used to love.  I first picked up a copy at New Covent Garden around 1991 and never really looked back.  For the uninitiated, Turrican was an 8-Bit & 16-Bit platformer, not quite a Gun n Run game but featured the hero trying to re-establish human control of a former colony world which had fallen foul of the main computer which had gained sentience and lashed out at its creators. 

Turrican had the usual arsenal or upgradable weapons under his control and had the (then) unique ability to turn into a gyroscope to help him progress through levels where he could lay mines to lure enemies into certain death.  Of course I didn’t know (then) Samus had something similar but hey-ho.  And there were the usual collectables, this in the form of diamonds to gain extra lives.

The game was massive – huge.  Enormous even and really pushed the boundaries of what the Commodore 64 was expected to achieve.  There were only two soundtracks in the “jet-pack” levels, the rest of the game relied on FX (perhaps unusually) but this didn’t detract from the gameplay.  Although there were only five levels (each level having a couple of sub-levels to explore), there was a great deal to explore and achieve with some quite challenging and tricky end of level bosses.

Turrican 2 I’m less familiar with as I only ever played the C64 demo thanks to Zzap 64 covertapes but I may get a hold of a copy from somewhere.  It played like a dream though and it was a great deal more fun given the better weapon upgrades that Turrican packed.  Turrican was re-released on the original Game Boy under the Universal Soldier brand…it was a give away when Jean Claude Van-Damme could turn into a gyroscope…

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