Concept Art – Beyond Good and Evil

I just recently replayed through Beyond Good and Evil. It’s an action adventure game where the main character, Jade, has to save her planet from an alien race that is intent on consuming the residents for energy and prolonged life. She does it using a camera to take pictures of the truth behind all the missing people and the connection between the aliens and the army. It’s a fun game, I’d definitely recommend it, though since some of the plot line is a bit gritty, keep it for the older gamers in the family.

Beyond Good and Evil was released in 2003, and it recently got an HD rerelease. BG&E has some history of trouble when it comes to a sequel. Mostly because the technology for what they wanted the game to be wasn’t available yet. The sequel was being worked on in 2008, but it was put on the back burner until the technology was ready. This year we were given a peek at Ubisoft’s current project based on BG&E, a prequel. And let me tell you, it looks fantastic. You can find the trailer here. (FYI it’s NSFW, for the swearing.) Compared to the original game the in-game art is a huge step forward. It looks amazing!

While I was looking around for concept art from the original game to juxtapose with the concept art for the new game, I came across these Instagram posts from Michel Ansel, who is a video game designer for Ubisoft. He shared with us some of the concept art for the game they had been working on in 2008. Hope you like them as much as I do.

Young Jade . Non official visual research I did a long time ago with art director Celine Tellier

A post shared by Michel Ancel (@michelancel) on





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Texts From My Kids – DragonVale LoZ

This was just sent over from Kiddo-bean the Eldest.

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School Setup

The kids have been back in school for about two weeks now and I’ve finally started to feel like we’re getting into a routine. Thought I’d share with you guys part of the setup I have for the kids school stuff. We don’t have an official Mudroom, but this is the hallway from the garage into the house. The opposite wall has our coat closet. We put up the backpack pack hangers last year (they came from Ikea), and I had been eyeing this artwork from Threadless. Finally saved up enough to get it and I absolutely love it. Officially it’s title is “It’s Dangerous To Go Alone! Take this“, but we like to call it the Link Katamari.

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Saturday Craft – Journey Traveler Origami

Today’s craft project comes from Matt Nava, who was the art director from the PS3 game Journey. On his BlogSpot he shared with us direction for how to make an origami Traveler.


For this craft, you will need origami paper. A pack will run you somewhere between $5-$10. This is a bit more complicated of a fold. It will help if you or your child have some experience reading origami instructions and have done some folding in the past. If you get stuck, you can check out this YouTube from Tavin’s Origami Instructions. Happy crafting, everyone!

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Friday Funny – Pikachu Uses Handtongue

Pikachu Uses Handtongue

From reddit

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Happy School Year’s Eve

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Sunday Sillies – No Combat Training

So this happened in one of the kid’s games yesterday. Fire Emblem can be so snarky! 

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Craft Saturday – RiME Coloring Pages

Coloring pages! What a great project if you have a little artist in your house. There are quite a few pages out there for Pokemon and Zelda and such. Earlier this year RiME shared with us these coloring pages. 

Coloring pages are a perfect idea for them, since the world of RiME is art. And beautiful art at that. They even have a Tumblr account where people can send in their fan art. 

Coloring pages are not an expensive or difficult project. You just print and grab your coloring medium of choice and you’re ready to go. You can find these coloring pages for download here.

Enjoy your coloring and I’ll see you next week for another project!

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When Games Get Confused With Real Life #12

From Reddit (unable to determine OP)

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Video Games For Road Trips

Like many families, we take a lot of long trips by car: 21 hour drives to see the grandparents, eight hour trips to the see the pandas at the zoo, five hour trips to go camping. I can remember the first year we travelled with a DVD player in the car. It was like night and day compared to previous trips, so much easier. When the kids got old enough, as in able to read on their own, we started having them bring their handheld gaming systems, and it was even better. Between movies, games, books, and watching the world fly by out their windows, the kids gave us some pretty peaceful car rides. Their dad and I are usually able to have a book on tape going in the front, or music depending on our mood, and the kids entertain themselves peacefully in the back. Sometimes if they are playing a cooperative game, I will break out my 3DS and join them. Now that’s fun. If you like video games, I definitely recommend that.

Our road trip games are required to be low frustration, high engagement, and mentally challenging. I’ve pulled together a list of games that fit this criteria. Personally, I recommend 3DS games over Vita because the library of games for the 3DS is bigger and the possibility for cooperative play is greater, but a few Vita games are included at the end. Video games that are better for older kids are starred.

Here’s a round-up of our favorite:

Video Games for Road Trips


Brain Teaser/Puzzle Games:Mario vs Donkey Kong 2

  • Crazy Machines
  • Mario vs. Donkey Kong 2: March of the Minis
  • Professor Layton and the Curious Village
  • Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy
  • Scribblenauts Unlimited
  • Scribblenauts Unmasked

Time Management/Town Management/Farming Games:914wwIu3ZuL._AC_SL1500_

  • Animal Crossing: New Leaf
  • Ever Oasis (as well as Adventure)
  • Story of Seasons
  • Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns

Cooperative Games:91+ZVMp3I6L._AC_SL1500_

  • Heroes of Ruin*
  • Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate*
  • Monster Hunter Generations*
  • The Legend of Zelda: TriForce Heroes

Strategy Games:91f6zYaD9lL._AC_SL1500_

  • Code Name: S.T.E.A.M.*
  • Fire Emblem: Awakening*
  • Fire Emblem: Birthright*
  • Fire Emblem: Conquest*
  • Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia*
  • Hyrule Warriors: Legends

Role Playing Games:81dj6E0hqAL._AC_SL1500_

  • Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light
  • Kingdom Hearts 3D Dream Drop Distance
  • Xenoblade Chronicles 3D*

Adventure/Platformer Games:

  • 91fxZC6su1L._AC_SL1500_Chibi-Robo!: Zip Lash
  • Ever Oasis (as well as Town Management)
  • Kid Icarus: Uprising
  • Kirby: Planet Robobot
  • Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon
  • Mario and Luigi: Dream Team
  • Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Gates to Infinity
  • Pokémon Sun/Moon
  • Pokémon X/Y
  • Poochy & Yoshi’s Woolly World
  • The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds
  • The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D
  • The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time 3D
  • The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (Digital Download)
  • The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Season (Digital Download)
  • Yoshi’s New Island

Vita Games:81iDFyqqzSL._AC_SL1477_

  • Broken Age
  • Final Fantasy X*
  • LittleBigPlanet
  • The Sly Collection


Not Recommended

There are three kinds of games I definitely do not recommend for road trips. The following game styles do not lend themselves to playing in a car. I have listed out the series names for these exclusions.

Competition Games: While I make exceptions to the no competition rule at home, there are no exceptions on a car trip. Feelings can easily get hurt and there is nowhere for frustration to go when you’re stuck in a car.

  • Mario Kart
  • Super Smash Bros.

Motion Games: No one wants a kid to get car sick. We avoid all games that include gyroscope motion play (tilting the game system) and fast in-game motion.

  • Gravity Rush (Vita)
  • Katamari (Vita)
  • Metroid Prime Federation Force
  • Rollercoaster Tycoon
  • Star Fox
  • Tearaway (Vita)

Drawing Games: It is simply too difficult to draw with a stylus on a screen on any kind of road surface. Too many bumps, too much frustration.

  • Art Academy
  • Okamiden


Road Trip Gear

The last thing to considerPikachu 3DS Case is the gear each kid will need:

  • Case
  • Extra Stylus
  • Headphones/Earbuds
  • Car Charger


If there are any games not listed here that you are curious about or any other questions that you have, leave a comment and I will let you know what we think. I hope that your road trips are filled with fun!

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