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Weekend Download №66


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Weekend Download

JohnBDid you know that the original meaning of the word "weekend" referred to the time from noon Saturday to Monday morning? Did you also know the word "download" seems to have originated in 1980? AND, did you know I spent a little too much time reading about the etymology of these words?

meritous.gifMeritous (Windows, 3MB, free) - A very simple but wholly addictive exploration-based role playing game with strong action/arcade leanings. Shuffle through rooms in the dungeon dispatching enemies with your chargeable psychic powers. When they die, grab the crystals and use them to upgrade your stats. And of course there are treasures to be found and bosses to be fought. The color of the rooms indicates how much danger you're in, and depending on the type of music humming in the background you can tell what part of the map you're in. Highly recommended.

marathon.gifMarathon Trilogy (Mac/Windows/Linux, various, free) - The spiritual predecessor of the Halo series, Marathon: Aleph One, Marathon: Durandal, and Marathon: Infinity are first person shooters created by Bungie and originally released in the mid 90s. Now all three games are available free as open source projects. You take the role of a security officer aboard an enormous starship in the year 2794. Defend the crew from a race of alien slavers and slowly uncover the corruption amongst the humans you once trusted. Don't expect top-notch visuals or modern play control, but do expect a story-driven experience and a surprisingly deep atmosphere. Note: To play the games, download an episode along with Aleph One for your OS. When both are unpacked, copy Aleph One into the appropriate Marathon folder and you're good to go.

verge.gifVerge (Windows, 7MB, free) - A 2D platformer created by the developer of Bonesaw for the TIGSource Commonplace Book competition. Take control over the unnamed protagonist who must travel between two worlds in order to solve simple puzzles. Impassable blocks in your way? All you have to do is die — that's right, go step on some spikes, Karoshi style — and you'll be transported to the flipped underworld where you'll likely find a way to get through. But be careful, as enemies in this dark realm will attach to you and steal your energy, so make your trip through the underworld a short one.

cosmicinvaders.gifCosmic Invaders (updated version) (Windows, <1MB, free) - If Space Invaders were a tower defense game, it would be Cosmic Invaders. Buy and deploy one of several types of turrets at the bottom of the screen. As the aliens descend from above, they fire and destroy as many of the buggers as they can. Spend the cash you earn to repair and upgrade turrets whenever you have a spare second.

34 Comments

SonicLover Author Profile Page December 6, 2008 3:22 PM

I'm having trouble running Verge. I'm using CrossOver Games with an XP bottle, and only a portion of the game is visible (the bottom area is just a white rectangle). It looks like this:
http://i35.photobucket.com/albums/d174/SonicLoverDS/verge.png
What does this indicate? I've had similar problems running other games, like LogiGun, with the same bottle, and I haven't yet tried any other bottles...

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SonicLover Author Profile Page December 6, 2008 3:27 PM

Oh, and by the way... that's supposed to be the title screen there in the screenshot I provided. You can see the real title screen on the page the Verge link takes you to.

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regarding meritous:

Good concept, but gets boring really fast. The point of the game is to do a 100% item run. Story added as an afterthought.

The reward for plodding through the levels are the boss fights, which are kind of fun.

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Verge is great, if a bit short. definatly worth playing. Would have liked to see the idea explored fartehr, it has potetnial

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Everyone, please go download and play through the whole Marathon Trilogy. I used to play these games back in the 90s when they were new (and actually cost money), and I will tell you that Marathon 2 is still my favorite FPS of all time. The only game that even approaches the perfection that is Marathon 2 is Chrono Trigger, in my opinion. I guarantee you that if you play through these games, you will not be disappointed.

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Cosmic Invaders really reminds me of Moon Invaders by Hamumu...

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sjdhalkjfgs Author Profile Page December 6, 2008 6:09 PM

Once I've downloaded the first Marathon and Aleph One, unzipped them both and put the aleph one folder in the M1A1 folder, what do i do to start the game? I can't figure that out...

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I like the idea behind Cosmic Invaders but I wish

that the best strategy wasn't to build all spark towers.

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I'm stuck on Verge, the level where you can drop the yellow block and alternate the blue blocks on and off with the red switch, and reset the yellow block with the yellow switch. It looks like I have to go up, but I can't figure out how.

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Are you kidding about that Cosmic Invaders strategy? I just tried it and I only made it through 5 waves, half as far as I did the first time I played.

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@Username
try going into the underworld that usually helps. another useful tip: if you jump into the underworld or out of it you can boost yourself with pressing a jump button when you are near the surface

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Meritous has mod music classics! ;_; (cries for nectarine)

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Tranchera Author Profile Page December 6, 2008 8:23 PM

Hoorah for Marathon!

First game I ever played on a Mac, back in 1994.

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Verge is one of the best games ever! I like the whole "underworld" thing, and the graphics are good. A concern though is that the dragon-soul-eater-dudes are really hard to shake off (or I'm not doing it right) and some of the spikes that your not supposed to kill yourself on end up being just a hair too long that i spend a few minutes getting past a really long zone. A complaint is that I would apreciate some direction so that I know where my goal is and I'm not hunting around for it.

Overall though, 4.5/5

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Wow, I too used to play Marathon back around 10 years ago or so. Such fun games.

Played through Meritous as well, got the 100% run and everything. It was pretty annoying, but enjoyable at the same time.

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fnord3125,

My bad, that doesn't work in the beginning of the game, I wasn't clear.

I have filled up the entire screen with fully upgraded spark towers, the game plays itself now. Last time I checked I was on wave 58.

I had good luck starting off with laser turrets on the right and left sides of the screen along with missle batteries closer to the center. I made sure to upgrade the turrets' reload speed and the batteries' shrapnel damage. Then, when I could afford it, I started adding spark towers in the center of the screen. Eventually, when I had enough money, I slowly began replacing everything with spark towers. Good luck!

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Marathon: good stuff.

To the person who couldn't start it: double-click the Aleph One icon. If that doesn't work, something went wrong and you should probably try reinstalling them.

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Whatwasmypasswordagain December 6, 2008 10:17 PM

Cosmic Invaders 0.2.1 is pretty fun until you get to the later levels. Then it becomes a rush of "repair everything you can as fast as you can and then upgrade as quick as you can during the short break." The bosses are actually easier than the regular levels, except for the first one when you don't have any really meaningful defense and you lose 12 lives (eh...)

It could seriously use either a no-enemy attack option or keyboard shortcuts (including being able to select towers by using the left and right keyboard arrows), because I gave up after accidentally clicking the button beside "repair" that says "demolish".

Demolishing structures should also refund a percentage of the total build cost, not the initial build cost.

The original quick-shoot upgrade icon is cooler than the new one. The new one also doesn't differentiate between the penultimate and the last upgrades.

And no, full sparkies won't get you anywhere on the new version. They're far too weak to do much good and you get killed on the bosses, which it can't reach. I suspect that the vertical-shooting lasers are actually more effective than the missiles, but I could be wrong.

However, it is certainly a fun game. I'm not interested in the repair rush again though.

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Ahhh, gotcha, Ben. The way you phrased it in your first post, I thought you were suggested that was ALL you had to do from the beginning. :) Thanks for the additional strategy tips, but since tower defense style games aren't really my thing, I'm probably not going to bother with it any more. It's fun for a little bit though.

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Played verge. Interesting, strangely reminded me of Portal in some parts. Just before the ending though...

Gravestones. I'm left to wonder if they represent every enemy I killed. Perhaps another path if you reach that point with no kills?

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tried dl'ing that meritous, and unpacking it for windows XP. keep getting these CnC export errors etc, so can't run it after unpacking it, saying files are corrpeted. Anyone else getting this?

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Ashiel: I would try re-downloading it. I'm assuming whatever youre using to extract it can support .zip; if not i suggest downloading winRAR.

Meritous is awesome, it does get a bit repetitive but I can't stop playing.

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fuzzyface Author Profile Page December 7, 2008 4:15 AM

Ninjaz, you cannot do it without killing something. At least on lvl 3 you would have to push the block through a unmoveable monster.

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The gravestones could represent the number of times you died...

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sjdhalkjfgs Author Profile Page December 7, 2008 11:58 AM

Yeah, I've tried double clicking the aleph one icon.. it never works. Strange, this also happened with that Out of Order game that was featured here a while ago. I'll click it and it'll look like it's gonna start up, and nothing happens.

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sjdhalkjfgs Author Profile Page December 7, 2008 12:23 PM

Nevermind, figured it out. I put the whole Aleph One folder in the M1A1 folder and it didn't work, but once i copied just AlephOne.exe into the M1A1 folder, it started up.

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Ralphomon December 7, 2008 8:45 PM

Yay Marathon! (although the original was called just Marathon. Marathon 1: Aleph One is the name of the remake). I grew up with Marathon on my old Performa 630. Such memories.

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So Meritous was alright. I enjoyed it for the most part. The biggest complaints I have are thus:
--Sometimes while walking through the levels, you're suddenly confronted by about 100 enemies who have been attracted to/following you from all around the dungeon, resulting in either you dying, or killing a ton of enemies very quickly. Eventually, after this happened enough, I found that I had killed about 90% of the monsters after only exploring 20% of the dungeon.
--For the most part, the game is devoid of a story. This, by itself, would be fine. The small introduction it gives in the beginning help menu really is enough, as the gameplay makes up for it. But after hours of nothing but killing monsters, you get to the final boss and it's all "LOL 10 MINUTES OF DIALOG ROFL." So maybe it wasn't 10 minutes, but it was long and unprecedented and didn't make sense and it put me off.

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I liked Meritous up until I decided to suddenly beat up those 3 bosses and the enemies decided to skyrocket in difficulty. :(

Maybe I should've just played in easy mode... @_@ It probably would've been more enjoyable. Meritous is all about the exploring anyways.

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:) Yay!! Marathon. The medieval mod was pretty amusing back in the day. I loved those games so much. I spent more time running around in circles. Those maps were insane!

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In Meritous, I can't beat the last boss (the one where you use the spear to enter)... Its 4th form always kills me. Any good strategy? I've got all 8 secondary items and about 2/3 of the maps explored.

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I can't believe Marathon is available,

I'm with all the people who played it as their first big Mac game (used to live with a girl who had a Mac although was born and bred PC).

Meretritous is a perfect 'render' game (to play while things are rendering at work)...

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Okay, I feel stupid now. I can't figure out the menu for Marathon (the first scenario)!

I tried clicking on things, using the arrow keys, wasd, and everything else I could think of, but I cannot figure out how to get anything to work! Am I missing something, or did I screw something up when I installed everything?

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Never mind! I figured out what my problem was!

Vista users will need to run Marathon in Windows XP compatibility mode!

So far, It's fun, but I suck at these Kinds of games... XD

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