Published on March 17th, 2014 | by APant10
Rainy Day Games
Spring is almost here, and we all know what that means, right? Near-constant rain for about a month and a half. That’s living in the swampy part of Florida for ya. But what to do on all those rainy days? I have a small catalog of games both old and new I seem to return to when the heavens open up. A good rainy day game is something it’s easy to jump into and gets fun right away. They always seem to add a bit of sun to a cloudy day.
One of my top five games of all time, I always go back and play through it every year or so since I was a kid. It’s a very late release for the NES, so it’s pretty impressive in terms of graphics and overall depth. The game is very Zelda-like, only there’s way less back-tracking. There are a few really bad 90s jokes and some bizarre references to Nintendo Power’s Howard and Nester comic, but even decades later, the game still has surprises and secrets I’m still discovering.
I’ll save you some time right now, there’s a part where you have to enter a code in the submarine, and the game instructs you to take a letter that came in the original game’s packaging and dip it in water to reveal a number. If you happen to have an un-dipped Dr. J letter, that thing is worth bank, so don’t get it wet. Sell it on Ebay. The code is 747. Yes, I know that by heart. Don’t make fun of me.
I usually wait till it’s pouring before I start playing FTL; maybe the thunder makes it seem more like I’m piloting a space ship through an ion storm. FTL is a strategy game with a heavy pinch of Rogue-like. Every playthrough is different, and the events and challenges you encounter are randomized. Rushing into a burning space station might be a heroic move once, but it might be a trap the next time. The combat is simple, click on a weapon like a beam or missile, and then click on the enemy ship where you want to fire. You can even pause at any time. FTL’s strength is in its depth, as prioritizing enemy targets and threats is the difference between a victory for the rebel fleet and a burning pile of space junk. The soothing and ethereal soundtrack by Ben Prunty really puts the cherry on top.
A lot of modern shooters put a lot of emphasis on the metagame: leveling up, unlocking skills and perks, buying weapons, and that’s all great. Both Left 4 Dead games focus on making the core experience excellent, rather than add in other gameplay elements. Again, every game is going to be slightly different, as the AI may block off parts of the map and send the zombie hoard and specific enemies to hunt your team based on how you’re playing the game. If you rush ahead of your team, a Charger may pin you down and kill you before they can free you. With each campaign only taking an hour or so, you can ride out a light rain shower pretty easily alone or with a group.