Eric Watson

Eric Watson

Eric is a freelance writer who enjoys talking about video games, movies, books and Dallas-based sports teams. Every week he watches a random film from his collection of several hundred DVDs and live tweets about it @RogueWatson. He also makes a mean tuna quesadilla. He lives near Fort Worth, Texas with his wife and daughter, two dogs, two cats, two fish tanks, some hermit crabs and a bookshelf full of Transformers.

Defense Grid: The Board Game

Today Is the Last Day to Back Defense Grid: The Board Game

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I saw a prototype of Defense Grid: The Board Game at PAX South and while I didn’t get a chance to play, I marveled at its intricate recreation of the tower defense video game series. The upcoming board game is nearing the tail end of a successful Kickstarter campaign. It’s currently sitting at over $75k of $30k funding, which means it’s definitely happening.

Defense Gird: The Board Game is a 1-4 player cooperative game. Players take on the role of the defensive AIs against a horde of alien attackers. You can play 10 campaign missions that get progressively more complex, and award medals you can use to level up your AI between each mission. The board is made up of modular map tiles to create different maps as the aliens try to make their way to your core. Each mission is a lengthy game that takes over an hour to play.

Defense Grid: The Board Game

Securing a copy of Defense Grid: The Board Game will set you back a whopping $80. That’s expensive, even for a big board game. However you get a large collection of neat minis: towers and aliens. The minis look fantastic and include a neat pillar system that let you track shot, hit points, and cores right on each figure.

Since the game uses a buildable map, the publishers have promised to provide 24 bonus missions as free post-launch downloadable content. They plan on releasing one free mission each month after launch. That’s an impressive two year commitment.

Defense Grid: The Board Game will become available to the general public upon its release. The Kickstarter represents the first wave, and is currently scheduled for an October 2017 delivery.

e3

E3 Opens Its Doors To The Public For the First Time This Year

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After several years of slightly declining relevance, E3 just gave everyone a jolt of both excitement and dread. This year’s Electronic Entertainment Expo will be open to the public, for the first time in the expo’s 20+ years history.

Tickets will go on sale beginning next week, on Feb. 13. A total of 15,000 public tickets will be sold. The first 1,000 tickets can be purchased at a discount of $149. After that the price jumps to $249. Tickets are good for all three days E3 2017: June 13-15. E3 is located at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Los Angeles, California.

The Electronic Software Association (ESA) hosts the event every year. Last year E3 experimented with allowing public access through its E3 Live event. Attendees could play many of the E3 games at a separate location in Los Angeles. “The feedback we heard was clear,” Rich Taylor, ESA Senior VP told GameSpot. “They wanted to play the games inside the convention center. In addition, exhibitors inside the convention center wanted to have access to the fans. So this year we’re bringing the two together.”

Business passes will still be available for those in the industry. These passes will allow for preferred entry into the convention center and access to special areas.

In recent years attitudes toward E3 have declined. Major companies such as Activision and EA have pulled out entirely. The once prominent trade show has been suffering from an identity crisis. It will be interesting to see if this big change is exactly what E3 needs, or if it ends up being a huge mistake.

Pokémon GO

Pokémon GO Celebrates Valentine’s Day With More Candy

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In case you’re still playing Pokémon GO, Niantic Inc wants to share the love this week. To celebrate Valentine’s Day this year you’ll receive double the normal amount of candy for catching, hatching and transferring Pokémon. Your buddy Pokémon will also find candy twice as fast from walking. The seasonal event begins today, Feb 8, at 11am PST/2pm EST. It lasts for one week, ending at the same time on Feb 15.

More candy won’t be the only special feature in the event. Chansey, Celfable and “many other adorable pink Pokémon” can be found more often. I just strolled through the original 151 Pokémon that makes up Pokémon GO’s roster and found Jigglypuff, Wigglytuff, Clefairy, Mr. Mime and Jynx that could be included in the event. You could also include Slowbro, Slowpoke and Lickitung depending on how far you stretch the word “adorable.”

From the 2nd generation of Pokémon you’ll see an increase to Cleffa , Igglybuff and Smoochum when hatching from eggs. Currently the only Gen 2 Pokémon available are the babies, and only acquired through eggs. I’ve been hatching eggs since they added Gen 2 and yet to find any, but hopefully you’ll have better luck.

Lastly Lure Modules will see a huge boost. Normally a Lure Module lasts 30 minutes, but during the week-long event a single module will last six hours. Expect to see many Poké Stops with the sparkly sign of a module this week. Catch ’em all, love your Pokémon and hope Niantic and The Pokémon Company realize what the game really needs is more Pokémon.