Micael Andrei Diaz de Rivera

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On Games and Kids

I wanted to know what was behind the Sonic game I played when I was still in Grade 4 that catapulted me to where I am today. That's why I bought the latest game from the Sonic Team in Sega using the paycheck that was recently given to me by K-Zone (thank you).

After beating the game, Sonic Rush Adventure, for the first time (took me just an afternoon) , the game winning experience was not really that different from other games I've beaten. The Sonic game I played 10 years ago was pivotal and monumental to me but this one felt as if it will just join my "beaten" games list. This new game for the Nintendo DS is better than the one I played years ago but I don't know why it's not moving me.

After I defeated the game I allowed my youngest brother, 9 years old, to play the game. This is an E for Everyone game so it was OK for him to play. He has beaten at least a dozen of games now and can beat your average adult gamer in some of his favorite games. He's good in games and good in school. My 17 year old younger brother who is now taking up Electrical Engineering in UP Diliman considers my youngest brother's 2nd Honors as below average but I think it's good because I personally did worse than that when I was his age (he he).

To cut a long story short... I just realized what was behind the dream of making games one day. I love being part of the happy experience of kids in any of media.

This revelation explains the following things:
  • Why I'm into buying E for Everyone games rather than the more popular M for Mature games.
  • Why I love Nintendo Games - Majority of their games are rated E for Everyone.
  • Why I enjoy Pokémon - It was basically made for kids and to be part of a community of kids which are all happily engaged in the franchise is bliss.
  • Why I find writing in K-Zone cool - Thousands of kids from all over the Philippines become your audience.
  • Why I actively belong as member and moderator to forums with a young population - Need I say more?
    Why my library includes titles such as the effect of marketing to kids.
  • Why I find time to read magazines like Smart Parenting even if I'm too young to have kids yet.
  • Why I constantly bug Gym Leaders to push for a Kid Friendly Pokemon League atmosphere at leagues.
  • Why I am a frequent visitor in toy stores to look for what's "in" in today's kids. (Incidentally, Yoyos are what's cool today)
  • Why my Feed Reader includes blogs that talk about child safety, family news, etc.
  • Why I think shows like Kid Nation is "risky to kids (in the show)" but very very interesting! I think I've watched more Kid Nation than Heroes Season 2 lately.

After all the failures... I realized that I may actually be living my dream already. The thing that makes me happy... I don't have to wait or hope in the future because I've been already doing it for a long time now. Wow I guess that Sonic game did something to me after all.

I better return to writing my Call Simulator/Generator proposal now.

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First on GameOPS

I posted my first official post at GameOPS today. If you're following me from all of my activities, you might have already read about it but in case you haven't please do check it out.

Monday, September 24, 2007
Philippine Malls are Pirate Free?
Posted by: Micael


Subscribe to GameOPS by getting our feed here.

In other news... Tinda Online is now online (but not yet in service).

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Two More for the Library

We loved the first Brain Age so we definitely had to get the newly released Brain Age 2!

I still can't give my whole review on this game since I have only unlocked one out of eight extra Daily Training Exercise. The Brain Age Check function is definitely better than the first. The new Piano Player exercise is very fun to do!

Well... today was my younger brother's Card Day and his card showed some good grades so my parents decided to give him a prize for his efforts.

Square Enix's Heroes of Mana! He's going to play it first and that means I won't be able to make any reviews for that game till I get my hands on it.

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Gamers Start Your English

I'm stuck here in UPLB because of a scheduled field trip to the Cultural Center of the Philippines tomorrow for my Humanities 2 class and I have nothing better to do but read and surf the Internet. I unfortunately exhausted my library of magazines for the week because of the two day class suspension so I dropped by the nearest Book Sale store here to get some old magazines to read.

A large amount of my allowance is spent on buying local and international magazines. I got EGM (Electronic Gaming Monthly) January 2007 for around 100 pesos a while ago by the way. I'm sure the magazine would keep me entertained for the whole night. The magazine has this monthly section where they showcase jobs related to the gaming industry and for that month they showcased the job of a game guide writer. What a coincidence... K-Zone Philippines is looking for game reviewers! The two jobs are very much different but both require a person to be able to work with English very well and thus the title of this blog.

Interested? Go visit Ka-Blog for more details!

"Mike says: ?Work hard on your English classes and study your grammar." - from the Ka-Blog post.

Micael says: Amen!

I'm not sure if I can purchase another game to whip up a review for this event but we'll never know. I know K-Zone will always be open for new articles but if you really want to get noticed then it's the best time to send them your game reviews. One good tip that you should remember when writing for K-Zone is to know your audience. Cheers!

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Disney's Spectrobes Delivers

I've been wanting to get this game since its first trailer appeared. What made me not get this game as soon as it was released was because of the early bad reviews it got from reputable game review sites. It averaged a grade of 6 for the reviewers.

This game was released last March and I just got it a few days ago for my birthday. This game was supposed to be added to our library of Nintendo DS games before we even get Pokémon Diamond and Pearl but we all know that didn't happen since we got the Pokémon a few days after it was officially released in the United States (April 2007). And now without further adieu, Micael's thoughts on Spectrobes for the Nintendo DS.

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Spectrobes
Publisher: Disney Interactive Studios (Buena Vista Games)
Developer: Jupiter

Micael says : From the developer of the Pokémon Pinball series comes this new game that looks pretty much like Pokémon. This game reminded me more of Digimon play and Yugioh art than anything Pokémon really. Pokémon introduced the world to the collection of monsters and Spectrobes' core revoles around that and that is basically the reason why this game is often compared to Pokémon. This game or franchise cannot compete against Pokémon yet. It has the potential to be great someday but I doubt if it can ever reach the position of Pokémon.

The collection of Spectobes does feel like a choir but the battle system is not that bad. It's actually enjoyable if you've tried to experiment the different ways you approach and finish a battle. My 9 year old younger brother really likes the game. If you are a Pokémon fan looking for a new fix then this game might satisfy you. For me, this game was better than I expected!

Verdict: 8/10 - Looking forward to a better Spectrobes 2.

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To Go Against Gaming Piracy


My name has, for a time, became synonymous with the phrase Gaming Piracy because of the shocking picture I sent to the popular Nintendo Fan Site, GoNintendo.

I wanted to bring our local piracy problem to the world because I thought that maybe international pressure could heal our problem. The picture mentioned above inspired several groups of people to actually continue exposing our gaming piracy problem here in the country to the world. I cannot actively fight against this problem anymore as much as I want to because my parents don't want me killed. It's not that safe for do-gooders here in the Philippines really. (They may be over reacting but we'll never know.)

I still want to work on the video gaming industry before I die though and the best thing I could do for now that won't get me "killed" is to buy original games myself. Am I a fool to be cashing out on original games while everyone else gets it for cheap illegally? A lot of people say I am and I'm glad to take the road not taken once again!

This Friday... we're going to spend another 2000 Pesos for a Nintendo DS game (our 12th?). I decided to get the underrated Disney/Jupiter game known as "Spectrobes". Stay tuned for my personal review.

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Starcraft 2

One of my most loved PC games of all time is getting a sequel. An in game video of the game was presented at a Korean fair. I really got excited when I saw this video. If you're rather old like me then I'm sure you've played the first game before.



I now have a reason to upgrade our computers!

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My Hotels in the Philippines

We went to a Toys R Us Philippines store here in our place to buy our second Monopoly board. Monopoly is known for selling many theme sets and for this purchase we got the Monopoly Philippine Edition.

Monopoly has been my most favorite board game of all time. It beats Clue and The Game of Life.

I never have won a full game of Monopoly ever since my nine year old brother came to this Earth and started playing the game. Yesterday's game went differently. My other younger brother was not able to play with us yesterday for he still had to study for his Calculus exam in UP Diliman. The game included me, my nine year old brother, my mom, and my dad. I was able to take down my mom first with three hotel landings on Mabini Street. I took down my dad next by buying my mom's property before she went bankrupt. The final battle was between me and my nine year old little brother. I won by doing a Monopoly over all the properties with Hotels all on top of them!

Sweet victory!

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