Batman Arkham Series: The best video game series that you MUST play.


I have some friends who asked me what is a good PC game to start with. After all, I’ve never owned a single console in my life. (I had a Wii, and let’s not talk about that.)

Without a doubt, the first few games I would recommend anyone to play would be the Batman Arkham series consisting of Batman Arkham Asylum, Batman Arkham City, Batman Arkham Origins, and the latest addition Batman Arkham Knight. Each of them are awesome standalone games with a compelling storyline, awesome-to-do side quests, and a kickass experience of beating up criminals and solving mysteries. In essence, this game truly allows you to act and feel as Batman himself as you instill fear into the heart of criminals, just like how Batman in the comics would.

Let’s go through each series one-by-one:

Batman Arkham Asylum


This series tore through expectations when it was released. Much like how comic adaptations of superheroes usually turn out bad (almost all Spiderman games fall into this trap save Spiderman 2 and Ultimate Spiderman), this game wasn’t given more than a glance either. But when you played it, you KNEW something was going to be different. With hyper-realistic graphics, voice acting and cinema-worthy introduction, this was the game to be playing. With almost 2 million copies sold within a month, this game proved itself worthy as an upcoming standalone franchise. Source here.


Batman Arkham Asylum takes you through Joker’s Madhouse, which is basically Arkham Asylum infiltrated and reprogrammed into a trick house by none other than the clown prince of crime himself. You even get to face many famous criminals like Riddler, Penguin, Scarecrow, etc. (The Scarecrow part was honestly one of the best play-throughs I’ve ever.. played through.)


Gameplay was solid, with one of the most fluid combat systems ever created. Even newer game titles started copying the mechanic, where most notable mentions were Shadows of Mordor and Sleeping Dogs. Arkham Asylum also introduced a new stealth mechanic (back then) which was really fun to play, allowing you to strike fear into the baddies as Batman, which was refreshing compared to the dominating Assassin’s Creed mechanics at that time. As you can probably already tell, I had so much fun during the stealth scenes.

Definitely a must play, especially for Batman and Gotham TV series fans.

Batman Arkham City


As experienced gamers already know, sequels usually end up worse. As such, we braced for the derailment of what would have been Arkham City (at least I did). Nonetheless, I gave it a spin and the experience was easily much greater than the first game.


The formula is kept constant. Rocksteady really paid heed to the phrase ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’. The same combat and stealth mechanics were employed and they added a lot more new gadgets into the equation.


Most notable was the addition of an open world concept, where you can now free roam the map while you were getting from objective to objective. Skeptical at first, I tried out the roaming (while also noticing the missing batmobile. Where is it, Batman?!) and to my excitement, the grappling and gliding was exciting, intuitive and loads of fun. Getting from point to point was a blast and I had a LOT of fun.

Batman: Arkham City


– Because who needs a suit right?

Another addition was a new playable character: Catwoman. Her mechanics were notably different from Batman’s and her stealth scenes are pretty fun to play as well. You should definitely buy the collector’s edition just to play her. I mean, look at that costume.

Arkham City easily trumped Arkham Asylum, which was already spectacular.

Batman Arkham Origins


This game was, to say the least, a little bit awkward. This game takes us back to the prologue where Bruce Wayne started off as Batman, and faced strong criminal underlords and villians. However, it seemed more like a 3rd installment than a prologue though. The big giveaway was the fact that gadgets that you had to fight to attain in Arkham City were available from the start in Origins.

A bit of oversight there wouldn’t you say Rocksteady?


Nonetheless, the storyline was compelling and all the same formula applies. New villians, a new look, and a not-too-bad voice cast to take over the usual Batman voice. Still a must-play in my opinion, especially if you’re a Batman fan.

Batman Arkham Knight


And finally, we’ve come to the end of the series (Fun fact: I’m not too sure about this, but I vaguely recall Rocksteady saying that this is the end of their trilogy. What happened to Arkham Origins?).

Arkham Knight is the finale of the series that is taking place after a major change in the game’s timeline at the end of Arkham City (no spoilers).


-I also noticed they paid a lot of attention to his lips this time round. Kissable, no?

Everything to the equation is kept intact, which is awesome. So no point elaborating on that here. Batman even sports a cooler Batsuit slightly after the beginning of the game which looks absolutely sick. And as you can already guess from the box cover, a major part of the game (finally) involves the Batmobile! So let’s break down each of the new aspects:


The Batmobile was, sadly, not that easy to control. It reminded me a lot of Watchdogs’s driving mechanism which wasn’t easy to control and slide. This made chase scenes slightly difficult. The only saving point was that the Batmobile could enter in a ‘Tank’ mode which sort of applies the brakes in order to transform. That was so much more intuitive than using the brakes themselves.

I believe I also mentioned previously that the gliding and grappling function was already very intuitive and exciting. The Batmobile downplayed Batman into a GTA-like mechanic of travelling. Personally, as long as the main mission didn’t require a Batmobile, I ended up just grappling my way across the map.


But a new aspect has been added to the game. Firstly, we establish that the main villian of the game is Scarecrow and the Arkham Knight. In case you don’t know who that is, Scarecrow is the villian who uses fear toxins to overwhelm people with fear. What was magnificent of this game was that the entire game centered around fear itself. There are subtle jump scares planted around the map, and a creepy new aspect added that I will not spoil for you. I wouldn’t go as far as to say that it’s as scary as horror games, but the new addition was definitely refreshing.


– I probably shat my pants at this scene. Go find it out for yourself.

Ok I must admit though, I’m mostly a scaredy-cat and these kind of jump scares still frighten me all the way. Nonetheless, the gameplay was too compelling to stop. That HAS to show how awesome the game is.


Another interesting addition was the chance to play many characters in the game. For the first time ever, you get to play ‘dual-play’ with Robin, or beat up baddies with Nightwing as well. Working together with your companions added a whole new gameplay experience that made this an even more spectacular game.

Overall, Arkham Knight once again defied expectations, making it easily one of the best game I’ve played in a long time.

So here ends my review of the Batman Arkham Series. Have any opinions or disagreements? Leave them in the comment section below!

BatmanAC 2011-12-30 18-51-17-06

– And if you ever got too bored, know that you, too, can kick butt as the legendary animated Batman





8 things You Probably Miss From the Old Gunbound


Similar to Maplestory, a game that dominated most of our time when we should be studying was Gunbound.

Similar to Worms, it was a 2D shooting game where players moved about in tanks and blew everybody off the map. Ah.. the joys of childhood.

Here are some memories from Gunbound that you probably experienced before.

From my previous post, listening to the BGM while reading seems to up the nostalgia factor a bit. So here you go:

(I still listen to it haha)

  1. Your levels of estimation suddenly went through the roof

Let’s face it. Gunbound was mostly about estimating, trial and error, and then correcting from there. From playing, our experience then added up and we were able to make better shots the more games we played.

In a certain way, you can say this is the best philosophy you can apply in life. You can make mistakes. But learn from them, and aim to shoot better the next time.

  1. Boomer shot bonus

For some odd reason, among all the rewards for shots, the ‘Boomer shot bonus’ was the more satisfying one of them all. Boomer shot is achieved when your shot goes back and forth. This can be done when the wind is strong and you aim at an opposite direction via a high angle. Alternatively, a mobile that can easily perform those shots (as always, based on the player) is the Boomer (hence the name of the shot). The Boomer’s shot is heavily affected by the wind, but it strikes really hard.

  1. Random for DRAGON

For me, I random when I wanted to play the legendary DRAGON. The Dragon mobile is something that can’t be picked before the game starts, but has to be gained when you pick a random option.


Nothing made you crap your pants more than Sudden Death. It was the childhood moment of having your balls drop and things to get serious.

  1. The superrrr cute mobiles

The mobiles were really cute, with the huge-anime-eyes and movements. Although each of them probably had strengths and weaknesses, you probably didn’t care about that and chose the cute ones.

  1. The Hardcores

Some people don’t just play Gunbound for the lulz. They were the people who you feared to play with. Some people played with protractors and rulers just so they can get the most accurate shot.

  1. Being dazzled by The Glamourous outfits

The outfits really mattered back in Gunbound. They separated the players with class and the ones that didn’t.

  1. Dealing with the one who never presses “Ready”

Finally, the one that really ticked people off is the same person who probably forgets to press Ready in DotA or LoL. There will always be ‘RDY UP RDY UP’ before the start of each game as that person will just be too busy admiring outfits or alt-tabbed.

4 of My favourite Dinosaur Games

In case you’ve been living under a rock, Jurassic World is in theatres and is rocking box offices worldwide. It even beat the record known as ‘The Avengers’. If you’re like me and think you’re a hardcore fan after you watched that show (we’re not btw), you should know that now is the right time to jump onto the hype trains and experience some good old Dinosaur games!

It has been more than ten years since the start of the Jurassic park series, and with that comes plenty of games that have already cashed in on the franchise. As such, here are my top picks for the best Dinosaur-related games that I’ve played.

Jurassic Park: Operation Genesis

Ok I admit: I’m actually too young to have played any of the early Jurassic Park games. The good ones were during 1993-2001. Some were on the NES while others were on PCs. The one I managed to get my hands on was Jurassic Park: Operation Genesis. This game allowed you to build your very own Jurassic PARK (kinda funny how its the name of the franchise but you never really got around to building a park) and attract visitors. You basically managed a park and deal with situations like dinosaur breakouts, etc. This game also came out during the tycoon era: Rollar Coaster Tycoon, Prison Tycoon, Sim City, etc to name a few. So building a park made of dinosaurs definitely was a breathe of fresh life for the genre at that time.


My first Turok game was actually on the Gameboy. I was actually pretty impressed with the senseless violence back then. Fast forward to 2008, where Turok for PC and Playstation came out. There was effectively no storyline, but the flexible gameplay mechanics and well-designed levels make Turok a good game to just let loose and kill things, especially when you’re stressed out and just wanna kill stuff.

Warcraft 3: Jurassic Park

This was the best survival map. Ever.This is a Warcraft 3 custom map, where you have to purchase a Warcraft 3 cd to play it. Basically, you’re stranded on an island for a few minutes (depending on your desired difficulty) and you need to survive until a helicopter comes to pick you up. During that time, you need to establish a base camp, build defences against dinosaurs and basically not die. As time progresses, the dinosaurs get stronger and you need to work with the players around you to help defend each other. It’s also interesting to note that some players would rather be alone as wipes occur often and this allows you to run to other bases. All in all, this was another 2000s game, especially when you’re taking a break from too much Warcraft 3 melee and DotA.

Monster Hunter Series

Monster Hunter was THE thing back in the army days. We could each bring a Playstation Portable (PSP) into camp and there was no limit of people psychically around you that you could party with.

Monster Hunter had dinosaurs in general, especially the big ones where it took forever for us to kill. Other than that, Monster Hunter was one of the best coop games I have ever played. The concept was the same as Guild Wars: Quest alone or quest with a team, of which you need to gather the team yourself. For a game when mobile app gaming still wasn’t THE thing, it was one of the best coop games out there back then.

Also, do sit tight as it is confirmed that some new dino games will be releasing soon based on the concept of 2015 Jurassic world movie. Even Jurassic world 2015 has already on Google play. This game has amazing features that any game lover will love to check out.

A Grand Theft Auto Clone No More. Is that Necessarily good?

For years, Saints Row has always been dubbed the clone of Grand Theft Auto . With an open world gameplay, a storyline that centers around a gang looking for total control, and senseless shooting with all kinds of weapons, it’s hard not to look at it that way.

However, SR:GofH seeks to finally put a wedge in between GTA and itself. In fact, it has already begun that process in Saints Row IV, which introduced superpowers to the main character. You can run and fly while travelling in the open world (Prototype, anyone?)

From SR4 onwards, you get to run at a speed that gives even The Flash a run for his money. Geddit? Run for his money?

Fast forward to SR:GofH. Instead of playing the Boss of the gang ‘The Saints’, you can now play any of the loyal and trusty lieutenants Johnny Gat or Kinzie Kensington.

The game starts with the Saints preparing a birthday party for Kinzie on the spaceship they acquired from the Zin (from the previous game). At the party, they play a game of Ouija Board, and unwittingly contact Satan who says the leader of the Saints will marry his daughter Jezebel. Satan drags the Boss down to Hell, and upon realization, Saints lieutenant Johnny Gat volunteers to go get them back, with Kinzie following on the argument that it’s her birthday.

SR:GofH still maintained the usual mixture of violence, humor and wackiness that were embodied in all of the previous games. Expect to fight while sitting in an armchair of miniguns while tossing imps at your enemies, who are basically demons with laser guns. Satan even breaks out into a musical at one point. This is definitely not a far cry from previous games when you had a dildo bat and a gun that shoots dubstep music.

This weapon allowed you to shoot at your enemies while playing dubstep music

Storyline was, however, short and slightly disappointing. Basically, you had to get Satan to notice you so as to help you find him. All this entailed was you doing side missions over and over again so as to fill up the ‘Rage Meter’ which triggered missions at specific points. The final boss fight was fittingly tough, but the entire game was nothing more than playing minigames on miniclips. Gameplay was disappointingly short.

The point as mentioned previously is that Saints Row has always been trying to differentiate itself from GTA. It started off by introducing a wacky mix into the whole street thug culture, but now it went so far as to destroy earth and use hell as the open world. Arguably, Saints Row reached it high point in SR2 and SR3, when the essence was still similar to GTA.

Could this be going too far? Should Saints Row stick to its roots of being a wacky GTA spinoff, or continue its path of differentiating itself as much as possible? Comment in the section below!

11 Things We Probably Miss from the Old MapleStory

Whether you’re a hardcore gamer or a casual gamer, chances are you’ve either played or come across one of the more popular games back then: MapleStory.

However, so much has changed since then, with the Big Bang, new classes with dragons floating over their heads, and new maps with even weirder monsters. The real essence of MapleStory is so much different now.

For the sake of nostalgia, here are some awesome memories from the old MapleStory we all knew and loved.

  1. The best hangout spot in the whole game


Who could forget this spot, where people just came here to chill and relax? Back then, levelling was so tough that reaching level 30 almost seemed impossible unless you had no life. Instead, we hung around and just talked or flirted while passing time. Despite being a MMORPG which emphasis on levelling, we took the social aspect more seriously, and made plenty of friends.

  1. Kerning PQ, autoclicking the way to victory

Levelling was so mundane back then that doing party quests was the easier and more fun way to level up. Everyone would queue up in Kerning City around the sewer area and just wait for their turn to enter the quest. I believe the instance system was relatively new at that point in time, thus disallowing parties to enter at the same time.


Let’s not forget the endless challenge of trying to jump to the 3rd sewer drain

Most players would end up downloading a software called ‘Autoclicker’, which did exactly what it’s named after, so as to increase their chances of getting in.

Probably the earliest form of boss fight you can encounter as a player was the King Slime in the Party Quest, where you had to kill it.

MapleStory 2012-02-11 21-02-13-92

The damage it dealt was ridiculous and back then there wasn’t such a thing as tanks and aggro. This means that you had to jump out of reach and constantly deal damage to it at the same time.

  1. Grinding in the Slime caves


Speaking of these little green cute’ses, everybody at the point knew that to maximise levelling, you had to train at the slime caves, where spawn rate for these green little dudes were the highest. These caves were located around the town of Ellinia, where the mages reside. Training here and also listening to the soothing music was surprisingly de-stressing, especially after a whole day in school where you had to explain why you didn’t do your homework since you were too buy mapling!

  1. The best BGMs

Probably the most memorable parts of the old games were the Background Music. They had almost the perfect combination of soothing and uplifting tones and were also addictive. They change as you travel so that it was hard to get bored of them. Have a trip back to nostalgia-land by listening to these:

  1. Exploring Sleepywood

Sleepywood (and subsequently Ant Tunnel) was a memorable location (amongst all the other memorable locations) simply because if you reached here, chances are you already invested a lot of time into the game.


People who reached here probably already had their 2nd job advancement and were ready to tackle the next stage of their levelling process.


We used to challenge each other just to see how deep we can travel through Ant Tunnel before our entire party got wiped. Although seemingly a waste of potions, it was fun just to see who had the wit and skill to survive all the way till the end.


Sleepywood, especially in the Sauna Room, is usually where the infamous ‘Drop Game’ is played. A ‘Drop Game’ is like gambling, where each player (usually 2) would take turns to drop their items, and the other has a chance to snatch it up.

  1. Testing your patience during Jump Quests


These quests were probably the by-product during the creation of hell. They were the true tests of patience, where you needed to accurately jump on each platform all the way to the top. One misstep or loss of tempo resulted in a fall that either required you to restart the whole process or death where you had to restart everything all over again.

Personally, I never got around to completing these quests. I’ve never regretted it.

  1. Experiencing the crowd at Perion ‘Marketplace’

Channel 1 of Perion will definitely bring back fond memories of the events that take place here. Forget the night markets of Taiwan or even any shopping mall during the holiday season. THIS was where the action was.


Players from all over Victoria Island would come and sell, trade or buy stuff there, using ‘@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@’ to help bring their chat bubbles slightly higher. There really wasn’t a need to go to the Free Market, since the action is all there.

  1. ‘Selling Fame at 7k!’

Any MapleStory player would have at least seen someone either buying or selling ‘Fame’ in their journeys. In fact, ‘Fame’ was probably Maplestory’s first ‘service-orientated business’. A player can either give or take away another player’s ‘Fame’ once a day. People who wanted Fame (usually for some equipments or just for lulz) would end up buying them, while selling them was an easy 7,000 mesos a day.


Henesys, the town of the archer, was notorious of having all sorts of pros running around buying Fame, and all sorts of noobs running around selling Fame.

Bullying was also done using Fame as well. When there was a certain someone you wanted to bully, you would call all your friends just to go to that person to ‘De-Fame’ him. This became such a huge sensation, especially for people who went through painstaking efforts to increase their Fame.

  1. KS-ing

The hostile act of KS-ing, or kill-stealing, arguably started in MapleStory. This involved the act of killing the other player’s mob before they can deliver the finishing blow. By doing so, you deliberately lower the experience they can get from the monster. Once again, there was a thing where you could call all your friends and simply go out to mass KS a person’s mobs, slowing his entire levelling process. You may get sharp ‘CC!’ requests (which is a request to change the channel which you were playing in) or him just attempting to run away. However, MapleStory had a ‘Find’ function where nobody could escape from anyone’s target.


  1. Taking a plane to Orbis

Probably the highest point of the Maplestory timeline was the opening of Orbis, where you had to pay for ticket to get there. After almost 2-3 years exploring the old Victoria Island, the opening of a new island was definitely appealing for all.


One particular instance then was the occasional appearance of the Crimson Balrog, which was the most powerful monster back then. It was probably the thing that would piss anyone off the most, after paying the money to get to the new island and ended up in a gravestone back in where you came from.

  1. Exploring


Overall, the general feeling of playing MapleStory wasn’t grinding for levels. Sure, there were people who set out to do that to reach the maximum level of 200. But realistically, 200 was a level so difficult to achieve that people don’t really bother.

Instead, we ended up partying and just exploring Victoria Island together. We could spend all day simply travelling from Lith Harbour to Henesys, Perion, etc. Or maybe visit new spots like Florina Beach or going deep into Ellinia forest. There was plenty to do and see, and we had fun every second along the way. Present players wouldn’t understand the feeling, since this isn’t an economical use of time (even WoW tries to promote map exploration somewhat by granting experience if you uncover new locations).

Other than MapleStory, MMOs in general has placed much more emphasis on the levelling, rather than the social aspect. However, emphasising too much on the social aspect of a game stagnates it (think Habbo Hotel, Second Life) MapleStory back then had a good balance of both to cater to all players alike. No matter the reason why you played the game, there is always a way to fulfil it, be it to be the highest level or just to hang out with friends.

So, what do YOU miss most when you were playing MapleStory? Comment below!

6 Things Neopets Taught Me Which No School Ever Did

The word ‘Neopets’ is probably nostalgic to everyone, especially those born in the 90s. It signalled the beginning of an era where you had to fight to use the telephone or the Internet and also the slow loading of images. Nonetheless, Neopets bore the significance of being life’s greatest tutor. Neopets actually had all of life’s greatest lessons implanted into it, even more than a school itself. You probably just never figured it out, since you were too busy was collecting free omelettes and chasing a Meerca’s tail. So 15 years down the road, here’s why Neopets could have been life’s greatest teacher.

Here are 6 things that Neopets taught me which no school ever did:

  1. You can get a job, but it does not end there

Get back here childhood!

The first main problem when you play Neopets is that you needed cash (Neopoints, in this case). This led to endless grinding sessions by playing games and trying to accumulate as much Neopoints as you can. However, you start to realize that there’s almost never enough Neopoints to allow you to have as much fun in the game. The smarter ones will start to do things like starting their own business and sell stuff, or to play in the stock market. This is actually a very important lesson in life right there. You can have fulfillment in a 9-5 job, but the money you earn from it will almost always never give you the fulfillment you want in life. Eventually you need to invest that money somewhere, either in the stock market or by starting your own business, so that you can have the financial freedom to truly do what you want in life.

  1. Haggle

An interesting concept back then was ‘haggling’, where you can ask for a lower price and there would be an algorithm which will determine whether your lower price goes through. While mostly a computer simulation, it creates a scenario where you actually can ask for a lower price and get away with it. Looking at it in a bigger picture, it goes to show that if you want something at a better rate, you got to fight for it.

  1. There are good cheap deals everyday. You just gotta find it first

Who could ever forget visiting this place everyday?

This is for the people who lament that life is unfair and that there are no opportunities. In Neopets, probably the most famous thing that everyone remembers is the everyday freebies. Everyday resets an instance where you can get free omelettes, codestones, etc. In the stops, there may be rare items being sold at random timings. In life, there will always be opportunities: Networking sessions with a potential new employer, a stock that is unevenly priced for a small period of time, a startup that is looking for interns, etc. In other light-hearted scenarios, there could be good deals around that can help you save some money. You just got to get off your couch and just look.  Rare opportunities only come to those who go out and find them

  1. Stock market

As mentioned, the only way to earn huge money was the stock market. While this post isn’t dedicated to talking about the huge potential a stock market can bring you, the point is to say that even a simple children’s game is teaching a child on to invest their money. Investing your money is probably a fundamental lesson every human should go through at least once, and yet schools are not advocating anything into teaching that. Neopets stock market gave a very brief insight on how a stock market works, and kids around the world managed to earn their riches simply by investing in it. This gives a good insight on how to manage your money at a very young age. Video games 1, schools 0.

  1. Supply and demand

Probably the greatest concept here was Supply and Demand. Rare items are priced extremely expensive while items you can get for free literally had zero value. While it may be intrinsic to some kids, there are some people who just do not understand the concept of demand and supply. Therefore, they learnt it the hard way, where their items will never get sold, or they could have earned much more. The point is that Supply and Demand is fundamental in life. If you’re selling something common, make sure its at a discount. These concepts are heavily embedded into the economy of Neopets, and every player would have at least a touch and go with that concept.

  1. Html Coding

This is probably the fun part. Back then, you were able to customize your profile page by adding some HTML codes that changed your background or added music. This was the ‘cool’ thing. Hell, this was what made you COOL. But in order to do that, you needed some background in HTML. Back then, I went on to learn some basic HTML just so I could put a huge Pikachu wallpaper on my profile. I went to learnt it on Google, which was another fundamental lesson.