Wednesday, July 26, 2017

GNOG

** A Geek Daddy received the featured product for FREE to review **

I've been fixated lately with a fascinating video game for the Playstation 4 called GNOG that is filled with funky images and tunes which present puzzles for you to solve.  Players must move pieces and discover patterns to complete challenges that combine to unlock images that look like giant robotic heads, space ships and metallic lunch boxes.  It is an offbeat game that is fun to play because of its originality and uniqueness.

You start off a puzzle with a master image and must move parts of the pictures inside it with your controller to make your way through a maze of challenges.  Sometimes this involves flipping switches to create a specific color pattern and other times it may be rotating knobs to get a certain arrangement of sound effects.  In other situations you are looking to uncover hidden objects or find a way to gain access to something. There are a huge variety of tasks to keep players intrigued about completing level after level.



At first the game can be really frustrating to play because it doesn't come with any instructions.  You need to primarily utilize your controller's analog sticks to push, pull, toggle and slide puzzle pieces around the screen.  Once you get a knack for how the game works it really becomes fun to play.  So stick with it and you'll find yourself rewarded by the experience.  Discovering on your own how to manipulate GNOG's imagery actually is by design to get players completely immersed within the game.  As you get a feel for controlling the environment your game play will speed up and your focus will shift from how to move things about to identifying audio and visual patterns that need to be replicated or problems that need to be solved.


Once a level is finished the image you've unlocked comes to life and sings an upbeat congratulatory song as a reward.  This really provides a sense of accomplishment!  The strong audio-visual components of this game really contribute to its enjoyability and the engineering angle of its challenges provide a real sense of excitement when you solve them.  I also enjoyed the combination of eccentric artwork with mechanical details which provides an energetic vibe to the game.

Because GNOG is an out of the ordinary video game experience that involves using both brain power and curiosity to solve puzzles in an entertaining way, it has earned A GEEK DADDY nod of approval.  For more information about the game, please visit www.gnoggame.com


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

FUN THINGS TO DO OUTSIDE THE POOL AT GOLDFISH SWIM SCHOOL

** This post was sponsored by Goldfish Swim School **

swimming lessons

We always arrive a half hour early to my kids swimming lessons at Goldfish Swim School so they are ready to go and don't miss a minute of class.  My kids are never bored showing up early though because there are plenty of fun things to do outside the pool.  Just another reason we've had a golden experience at Goldfish Swim School!

The twins love to draw on the large chalk boards in the waiting area and sometimes I have to pull them away so they aren't late for class even though we arrived early and are only a few feet from the pool.  They've really created some impressive drawings and the kids enjoy having the feeling they are helping decorate the place.  Plus there are always activity sheets and coloring pages tied to the swim school's monthly theme available to keep children occupied.  July's theme is "Celebrate Ocean Life."

swimming lessons

Rushing out the door and forget to give the kids something to eat before leaving home?  Goldfish Swim School stocks a snack bar filled with affordable family-friendly items to help energize kids for their swimming lessons or re-fuel after class.  Items to eat range from bowls of Cheerios to Rice Krispy Treats along with juice or bottled water to drink.  They have coffee as well to help perk up moms and dads.

swimming lessons

My son can't go into class without checking out the pair of turtles and tank of goldfish that are on display.  It is amazing how as many times as we've been there he is always fascinated with checking them out.  Have to admit I always go over and look at the turtles too whenever we're at Goldfish Swim School.

swimming lessons
turtles

If you have toddlers and preschoolers there is also a play area stocked with games and toys to keep the little ones amused before they get in the pool.  As part of the theme of the month program, they also give out to students a small toy or puzzle that ties into it.  They really do a nice job with these giveaways and my kids are always on the lookout for them.


After class is over don't forget to grab a FREE balloon to take home with you!  At Goldfish Swim School your kids are sure to have fun in and out of the pool.  For more information, please visit goldfishswimschool.com.  You can also follow along with my family's fun times on Twitter and Instagram.


Monday, July 24, 2017

WALMART SUMMER DEAL ON MASH 'EMS + FASH 'EMS

** A Geek Daddy received a complimentary sample of the featured products **
Collectable mini-figures that come in mystery packs are all the rage with kids right now.  My daughter had some fun opening up a selection of Tech 4 Kids' Mash 'Ems and Fash 'Ems that we got from Wal-mart.  Tech 4 Kids has licensed a variety of brands ranging from Batman to My Little Pony and created super squishy figurines that range in difficulty of finding from common to ultra rare to obtain.  They come enclosed in hard plastic boxes so kids can't cheat and feel through the packaging to guess what may be inside.  That adds to the excitement of opening them though as children really are blind about what they are going to get out of a pack beyond knowing what the theme of the toy will be such as Cars or Monster High.


Mash 'Ems are the brands that Tech 4 Kids has licensed that tend to be more action oriented such as Batman, Cars and Super Pups while Fash 'Ems are more fashion orientated with brands like Littlest Pet Shop, Monster High and My Little Pony.  While both lines contain figures that will interest boys and girls, essentially the Mash 'Ems are more geared at a male audience and the Fash 'Ems are targeted to the ladies.  That being said, the favorite figure my daughter pulled from her mystery packs was Cat Woman from the Mash 'Ems Batman collection.


Mash 'Ems and Fash 'Ems can be squished like a stress ball, stretched to contort the figure's appearance and twisted into a variety of shapes.  Pull, tug and bend them all about and these figures will retake their original shape and size after they've been wrestled with. Some really humorous results can occur that will really delight children as they try to create the goofiest looks they can. 


Whether you are looking for something to entertain your kids during a long road trip car ride or to keep them occupied while taking them along doing family errands, Mash 'Ems and Fash 'Ems are the perfect size to be carried around on the go.  They also make nice playthings to enjoy outside or to be played with on a rainy day inside.  Kids can have a lot of summer fun with Tech 4 Kids' Mash 'Ems and Fash 'Ems!  

So you won't want to miss out on a special deal from Wal-Mart!  From now through the end of August, select single figure Mash 'Ems and Fash 'Ems mystery packs at Wal-Mart locations across the country will be discounted to $2.88 each which is a great price for them.  What Mash 'Ems / Fash 'Ems adventures will your family be having this summer?


GROUPON CAN HELP WITH YOUR HOME IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS

** this post is sponsored by Groupon and U.S. Family Guide **

It always fixing or improving on something around the house and a trip to The Home Depot seems to be part of my weekly routine.  I just found out about a great way to save money when shopping at The Home Depot that I wanted to share.  Have you heard of Groupon? 

I knew Groupon offered discounts for restaurants but just discovered they have special offers for retail locations too.  Groupon.com actually has more than 70,000 deals for over 9,000 retailers ... including The Home Depot!  If you head over to Groupon.com right now you can also take advantage of an additional 25% off deals you can purchase through Groupon by using the code WELCOME at check out.  Now that is a good offer to take advantage of!

Often times offers are a discounted deal you purchase up front through Groupon. The Groupon site though also provides coupons that allow you to save without making a purchase through them.  The Home Depot offers a lot of coupons on Groupon.com.  One of my favorite is $5 off a $50 purchase.  That can really come in handy!

groupon

So what are you waiting for?! Head over to Groupon.com and see how you can save yourself some money!  While you are there check out the deals and coupons from a few of my other favorite retailers that have joined Home Depot on Groupon.com including Bass Pro Shops, Barnes & Noble, Jos A Bank, and Omaha Steaks.  Groupon really can help you with a bulk of your shopping needs!

retail


Saturday, July 22, 2017

Colonel Sanders Free Comic Book Saga Continues

DC Entertainment is continuing its Kentucky Fried Chicken promotional partnership with the release of a third installment in the Colonel Sanders comic book saga at this year's San Diego Comic-Con International.  KFC first partnered with DC in 2015 with KFC #1 THE COLONEL OF TWO WORLDS and followed that up with KFC #2 COLONEL CORP in 2016.  From July 19 - 23, 2017, attendees at Comic-Con can pick up a FREE 20 page print edition of KFC #3 ACROSS THE UNIVERSE at DC's exhibition booth (#1915).  Can't make it to San Diego?  The comic book is also available for FREE on DC Entertainment's online comic book store powered by Comixology.  In fact while you can also download digital editions of the first and second issues of Colonel Sanders' comic book adventures for FREE as well with a Comixology account.


In KFC #3 ACROSS THE UNIVERSE the Colonel goes cosmic in a star-spanning quest to bring crunchy, spicy satisfaction to a hungry universe, only to face a “thieving varmint” who steals his space-bound Zinger chicken sandwiches. Who else but DC’s Green Lantern can help the Colonel scan the universe to catch the thief?! Of course the Colonel won't sit back and let someone else come to the rescue and joins the Green Lantern Corps himself!


These comic books are great because they aren't taken more seriously than the promotional pieces they are meant to be and KFC doesn't hold back on spoofing itself. Filled with goofy scenarios, tongue-in-cheek one liners and humorous imagery, these comic books are finger licking good fun to read.  The partnership with the DC Entertainment's creative team provides the polish needed though to make the comic book an enjoyable gimmick rather than en eye rolling bad KFC ad. KFC #3 ACROSS THE UNIVERSE was written by Tony Bedard with the assistance of penciler Tom Derenick, inkers Trevor Scott and Sean Parsons, and cover art contributed by Tom Grummett and Trevor Scott.  I really liked the big battle scene where the Colonel goes KFC on the bad guy!


Super Girl races Jessie Quick for title of World's Fastest Woman

Following up on the success of their Colonel Sanders comic books, DC Entertainment has also created a series of free comic books tied to a promotional partnership with Snickers.  In conjunction with the annual Comic Con International event in San Diego this weekend, Snickers Comic #2: The Fastest Woman Alive is now available as a digital download for a limited time on DC Entertainment's online comic book store powered by Comixology as well as at comixology.com.

It’s the race of the millennium: Supergirl, the Woman of Steel versus Jesse Quick, super-speedster of the Justice League! But a monstrous figure plans to attack the stadium during the event—and it’ll take both Supergirl and Jesse, plus Superman, the Flash and an army of Snickers-powered spectators, to bring him down!


Snickers Comic #2: The Fastest Woman Alive follows up on a free issue provided at last year's Comic Con in San Diego that pitted Super Man versus the Flash in a similar story.  Unlike the past KFC Colonel Sanders comics that can still be read online, Snickers Comic #1 is no longer available.  So if you are interested in reading this new Snickers comic download it while you can! 

Marvel Comics and Comixology Team Up to Debut Immortal Iron Fists

Marvel is partnering with comiXology, Amazon’s comic shopping & reading service, for a line of exclusive digital comics. These will be available for free to comiXology Unlimited subscribers and only available to purchase for non-subscribers through comiXology and Kindle. New users to comiXology’s popular subscription service can also access Immortal Iron Fists for free as part of their 30-day free trial. The comics will be part of the comiXology Originals line of exclusive digital content.

Marvel and comiXology’s team up kicks off with Immortal Iron Fists, a 6-issue bi-weekly series written by Kaare Andrews with art by Afu Chan.  A unique entry-point that’s perfect for new fans and longtime readers alike, Immortal Iron Fists tells the tale of Pei, a young female monk from K'un-Lun and the youngest person to ever bear the mark of the Iron Fist. While Pei tackles the trials of high school, Danny Rand, the Immortal Iron Fist, faces his greatest challenge yet: training the inexperienced Pei. All the while, a growing threat appears that will take more than one pair of Iron Fists to defeat!


Immortal Iron Fists is $2.99 per issue for non-comiXology Unlimited subscribers on comiXology and Kindle.  Additional exclusive series will be announced soon. The exclusive series will be new content in addition to the over 10,000 previously published Marvel Comics titles that comiXology Unlimited subscribers also currently have access to.