Monday, January 10, 2005

Downloaded another Popcap game. Anyone remember "Bookworm?" It made for a couple of our noisiest classes in 1st year 2003, as I recall. Popcap's new game is called "Insaniquarium" (actually it's been around for a while already). It's quite addictive, but if only it wasn't such hard work at the same time.

It probably got its name from the insane amount of mouse clicking involved in playing the game. There's this fish-tank, see? The idea is to populate it with different kinds of fish that kinda' live off each other in a fixed food chain. Big fish eat small fish -- that kind of relationship.

As the fish increase in size and number, they drop coins that finance the numerous upgrades for the fish tank, like better quality food and higher calibre weapons. Er... yes, every so often the fish-tank gets a visit from one or more aliens who attempt to eat the fish and so deserve to be blasted into oblivion for trespassing.

A successful round is when the financial rewards collected amount to being able to afford 3 game pieces which assemble into a complete egg that will hatch into a specialized 'pet' with a unique power. This pet goes into a stable of 24 such unique pets and up to 3 of them may be brought into the next round as helpers who run the fish-tank using their unique abilities.

The reward for clearing each round is a sub-game, the objective of which is to 'catch' as many shells as possible within a given time limit. The shells buy fish and other items for a virtual fish-tank that functions as a silly screensaver alternative to the aquarium one MS provides.

I remember Jon saying he watches the fish swim around in his tank for relaxation; playing "Insaniquarium" just might be a little more fun. So, click mouse to feed fish, catch coins, blast aliens, catch shells. A clicking frenzy. A prime suspect as the #1 cause of RSI or Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Get a full workout just by manipulating a mouse. Now we know the secret to Popeye's big forearms.

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