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Monthly Archives: May 2011

Hey guys it’s Sam, and like I said, “more gaming, more voting, and more gaming and voting today and tomorrow!” And an African doesn’t lie, so here I am. So, fans, let’s recap. Yesterday I gave you Splash Master, and I’m back with another Cartoon Network game. This game belongs to Adventure Time, and it’s one I really enjoy, better than its predecessor, actually. Today’s game is the mind-testing castle defense, Sound Castle 2.

The main menu for the game.

As a sequel to the Adventure Time game Sound Castle, this revamped follow-up picks up where the previous game left off, but with a few new tweaks (i.e. playing at night instead of day, new quotes, etc.). The main objective of the first game was that you must protect your castle using nothing but multi-colored sound waves from quotes from these AT characters: Finn, Jake, Ice King, Lumpy Space Princess, and Princess Bubblegum. The enemies sit upon multi-colored clouds, and, for Sound Castle 2, they are changed from the first. The list evolves from simple one-hit evil gnomes, to tree monsters that require three hits of one color, to black-clothed humans that require one hit in each color (as their cloud will change colors upon hit). Then you face the menacing Boss from time to time (just Marceline the Vampire Queen’s dad, otherwise. But, the Boss is a more sleek name, and is also used in badges). This worst enemy is most likely to appear in the middle, with a humongous cloud. The routine of how to kill it is pretty easy, but its technique might be like the black-clothed humans, but is different in an important way. You actually need to trigger SEVERAL hits on a color in order to proceed to the next. Then sometimes, it recaps and gives you colors again before defeat.

You can also hit little swords of different colors to unlock an Adventure Time super attack. Unleash this bad boy and every enemy on the screen will be defeated (except the Boss, primarily). Also, little bars at the very bottom will be filling. These are for characters (the bars also bearing quotes), and their other quotes are listed above their bars. When they are full, they can be unleashed to send a giant version of that character flying upwards, defeating the enemies in that lane. Pretty algebraic, huh?

But that’s pretty much it from the game. All it is, is new quotes, new enemies, and a new time of day. Nothing else. Same graphics, same characters, same etc. It lacks any real innovation.  That’s unforgivable! That’s one big step for a game, but a pretty darn small jump for an experience. :( Hopefully, if they ever do make a Sound Castle 3, they can get a little more innovative this time around.

My final score on this game is an 8.5 out of 10, an 85 out of 100. Smooth play, guys, but it just wasn’t perfected. Now it’s YOUR turn to defend your Sound Castle! Can you fulfill your destiny to slay all intruders? Or will your castle come crumbling down?

Happy defending!


So that’s what I meant by “one big step for a game, but a pretty darn small jump for an experience”, hmm? Now I have a couple opinions that must be expressed, capiche?

Check back tomorrow for more gaming, voting, and more gaming and voting! I may have only two games up, but the fun’s just beginning!

Yours truly,

Sam M. ;)


Hi to all. It’s me Sam, and whoops, again! It’s been seconds, that turn into minutes, that turn into hours, that turn into days, that turn into weeks, that turn into months, that turn into YEARS since I’ve given you a Game n Vote. I’m sorry, but I’m such a procrastinator these days. So, in my return of sincere apology, I’m BACK with a handful of more gaming and voting! Today’s game is from the brand-new Cartoon Network animated comedy, The Amazing World of Gumball. Heard of it? A cat named Gumball, and his fish-with-legs friend Darwin? Well,  the Interwebs finally decided to make a game for it…from thence, Splash Master was born.

I just heard about this game through an ad on Cartoon Network itself, during a commercial break. The real backstory of this game is super-catchy: Gumball and Darwin are looking for the most epic swimming dive. The two take turns diving off a board. In the air will be shining rings, and obstacles (mostly birds and flowerpots, for me). Your job is to collect enough rings to reach the target of required rings, while avoiding obstacles. If you run into one, you’ll lose some rings (which eventually will come floating down)! For extra flair, click your mouse to do stylish tricks, like when Darwin holds his arms to make a heart, and Gumball outstretches his arms while his legs are curled in; all of this done upside down. The board keeps getting bumped up, and so is the target amount of rings. You’ll be diving to shake paws, or fins, with the moon, but it gets a little wacky once you’re high-diving in SPACE! (Try shaking hands with E.T.) If you collect enough rings, your objective now is to click again to form a cannonball to land into the water, making a humongous namesake splash. Nicole, Richard, and Anais will be waiting, and they will give you a score on your dive, the maximum being 10. Splash Master has 46, 942 players…can you be one? I set a super high score of 242, 350 points, making me a “True Pro” diver. Can you beat that?

All of this makes the game a very enticing pick, but let’s talk about its downside. If you dive what you believe is a perfect dive, the judges might still give you scores lower than 10. That means those judges are critical. And after becoming a True Pro diver, the drops get faster, giving you less time to collect all the rings. TOO MUCH OF A CHALLENGE HERE, GUYS! Give us a couple more Easy As! And the ability to only play as Gumball and Darwin ONLY gets very tiresome along the way. And besides, you know how funny it would’ve been to see Richard all out? And WHAT THE HECK IS A SWAN DIVE?!!!? I spent several MINUTES trying to unleash a swan dive, but the game still leaves me baffled! They should have more easy controls next time. Hopefully,  if they give this game a sequel (like Adventure Time‘s Sound Castle and Righteous Quest), they’ll fill all these empty cups for us. Capiche?

My final score for the game is a .5 out of 10. And if you remove that decimal, that makes a 75 out of 100. Now go out there. Get jiggy with it. Become the ultimate Splash Master (that is, if you can beat me)!

Happy diving!


So, you’re back after an epic diving adventure. Now I have a couple polls for you to fill in.

But that’s just the first step in my weekly walk in the park. Check back tomorrow and the rest of the week for more gaming, more voting, and more Gaming n Voting! Oh, and I almost forgot! If you have an account on Cartoon Network, look for these badges on the way. (Boldfaced badges show ones I have already received.)

A badge for performing every trick in a single dive.

A badge for completing a dive without getting any rings.

A badge for performing a swan dive.

A badge for performing a dive from space.

A badge for collecting 300 rings in a single dive.

A badge for scoring three perfect 10s in a single dive.


Yeah, I know that stupid swan dive has me perplexed every time. >:(

Well, this is goodbye from Sammwak for now! Check back for more…oh, I already told you that!

- Sam ;)

Hey it’s Sam back from a pandemonium-filled week! Scoring the power of polite by getting the school Green Team all year long, getting my second consecutive gold medal in our comprehensive reading test program (a.k.a. Accelerated Reader), the list goes on. But now I’m especially looking forward to something. This is something we’ve all being dying–well, crying–for. It’s actually releasing at the end of next month, June 28. Told you it was closer than you think. If you’re a fan of the potty humor heroes of Dav Pilkey (Captain Underpants, Super Diaper Baby), here comes a big, small, and special sequel to one of Dav’s hit bestsellers. Fans…open your mind to the world of the Potty Snatchers.

The follower of 2002’s Super Diaper Baby, this year’s Invasion of the Potty Snatchers is the 3rd graphic novel by “George Beard and Harold Hutchins” (in case you’re confused, the first two were Super Diaper Baby and Ook and Gluk), but the first to be referred to as an “epic novel” from the duo instead of a “graphic novel”, the only epic novels being Dav’s Captain Underpants series. Since nasty Principal Krupp has demanded the boys to stop making any comics associated with poop, they change to a whole different subject: pee. Speaking of pee, the new villain of Invasion of the Potty Snatchers is Rip Van Tinkle, a diabolical genius/inventor/bank robber that awakens to find himself a walking, talking puddle of pee. From this, his determination sprouts to demolish every toilet in town. And for a diabolical, ruthless, devious plan, that’s not too evil.

Could the terrifying Van Tinkle ruin bathrooms with his smart-alecky cat, Petey? Or is this a job for the amazing Super Diaper Baby? Well, duh! Of course it is! Will Billy meet a match when he encounters toilet-taking intruders and even the enormous SUPA KING MECHA-KITTY 3000 (it’s obvious from the ‘Supa’ that it’s gonna be the most hood villain ever)? Perhaps with a hand–well, PAW–from his mighty canine friend, Diaper Dog, our pint-sized hero might put an end to the reign of Van Tinkle terror, and make the planet safe for toilet-lovers everywhere!

As another “treat”/excuse from the release of the ninth Captain Underpants novel, if you’re in for some action, you’re in for some laughs, and you’re in for some more potty humor, “urine” for an awesome treat! Calling all Pilkey fans for the grand sequel to the hit novel that had readers wetting their pants with joy!

Featuring the return of Deputy Dangerous/Doo-Doo’s dynamic doggie, a special guest appearance of Principal Krupp himself, and more of the hit “cheesy animation technology” that had Pilkey fans on their feet! Coming soon to Dav Pilkey’s website: learn how-to-draw all the gallant heroes and diabolical villains from this adventure, and be on the lookout for artwork, videos, and updates from the book! As I said, this novel comes out on June 28, 2011…but start bugging your parents NOW! I mean, seriously; even the cover art’s out!

Speaking of the cover art, it looks like Captain Underpants lent some of his powers to Dav! Watch Dav whip up the cover art in two and a half minutes! Talk about pre-shrunk and cottony!

So, remember, lavatory lovers: if you’re only going to read one book in 2011 about an evil puddle of pee, make sure it’s Super Diaper Baby 2: Invasion of the Potty Snatchers! Amazon says they’re allowing pre-order for just $9.99, but Barnes & Noble pre-orders for cheaper at $9.49! Are you thinking what I’m thinking?

Well, that’s all for now! Remember, my friends: When you need some potty humor to make your day, you know what book will come to stay: Invasion of the Potty Snatchers!

With all due respect,

Sam ;)

Hey guys it’s Sam, and do you know how there are those animated movies no matter how hard you try, you just can’t forget? Let’s take The Lion King as an example. A drop-dead Disney classic, a critic’s love at first sight, and an award-winning score from Hans Zimmer. Let’s go with an example a little more recent. For instance, another Disney success, Up. A down-to-earth heartwarming adventure that had critics on their feet. But now, in 2011, another revision of a classic animated movie is coming this month. Here are some hints: It’s black, white, and AWESOME all over!

Ska2oosh! From the success of 2008’s martial arts action comedy Kung Fu Panda, comes the return of awesomeness in 2011: Kung Fu Panda 2. Picking up where the original left off, Po is now a kung-fu master fighting to protect the Valley of Peace alongside Master Shifu and the Furious 5. When a new shadow of evil arrives in the form of an emperor albino peacock named Lord Shen (Gary Oldman), here to take over China with a treacherous weapon so powerful it threatens the art of kung fu itself, Po and the Furious Five set out to vanquish Shen with the help of four other masters in kung fu. But first, he must confront his own mysterious past in order to find the succeeding strength.

Jack Black returns as Master Po, and Angelina Jolie revises her role as the Master Tigress. Jackie Chan is back as Master Monkey, and Charlie’s angel Lucy Liu returns as Master Viper. Seth Rogen, the BOB Blob, is back as Master Mantis. David Cross and James Hong revise roles as Master Crane and Mr. Ping. Some newbies in the cast are Michelle Yeoh as the Soothsayer goat, Victor Garber as Master Thundering Rhino (the second Javan Rhino behind Kung Fu Panda‘s Commander Vachir), Dennis Haybert as Master Storming Ox, and Danny McBride as Wolf Boss.

Kung Fu Panda 2 is directed by Jennifer Yuh Nelson (I’m actually not joking on that “Yuh”), produced by Melissa Cobb (who grows movies, not corn), and written by Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger (they’re just waiting for you to take a bite out of the movie). With music from the returning team of the legendary Hans Zimmer (The Lion King, The Dark Knight, Inception, Rango, etc.) and the not-that-legendary John Powell (How To Train Your Dragon), this kick-butt action comedy is set to release tomorrow in Real D 3D and digital 3D! :D But before you get all wound up, check out a few promotions:

“Adventure Gets Freakin’ Awesome” trailer in HD

“Kung Fu Staring Contest” trailer in HD

“Super Bowl Spot”/”We Will Wok You” trailer in HD

So, I guess pandemonium begins tomorrow. The path of the warrior demands this from those who walk on it. If you shall complete your training, use your Zen skills to claim some tickets for some good seats of the premiere. If you shall watch it, and cast a negative or positive vote in thee’s poll, some Blogger Points lie ahead.

Ticket Take - Get tickets for the premiere, and watch the movie. Bathroom breaks or refills do not count, because thee is so nice. (15 BP)

Negative Nancy - Some fans have hearts of gold, while others have hearts of cold. Cast a negative vote in thee’s poll, and this demerit shall lay ahead on thee’s path. (20 BP)

Positive Patty - Some fans have hearts of cold, while others have hearts of gold. Cast a positive vote in thee’s poll, and this shall replenish you on your path. (22 BP)

Average Abby - Some fans have hearts of cold, hearts of gold, and hearts that are just in between. Cast an average vote in thee’s poll, and this thumb to thee side, and this shall give you a clearer image on thee’s path.

Well, I’m gonna stop talking Zen talk and display this poll after you’ve had a tummy full of popcorn.

Wait…am I forward in time? The movie hasn’t come out yet, and I’m asking you how’d you like it! Well, I guess today is Thursday instead of Wednesday, and it’s the 26th, not the 25th. So I’ll see you guys next time on Sammwak yesterday, which of course will be today.

- Sam

p.s. Here are some fighting facts:

Did you know that the concept for a “kung fu panda” was around since at least 1993, although work on the film didn’t begin till 2004?

Did you know that Kung Fu Panda was originally going to be a parody?

Probably for inspiration for his Kung Fu Panda film score, did you know that Hans Zimmer even traveled to China to “absorb the culture” and get to know the China National Symphony Orchestra as part of his preparation?

:D ;)

Hey guys it’s Sam, and I’m back with another juicy post from a not-that-long hiatus! And, yes, it talks about video games! ;) You probably thought that from the striking kickoff of the 2003 shooter, Call of Duty, you thought that no one could beat the slam-bang Black Ops. Hah! You’re wrong, bub! No one is underestimated by 2011 in video gaming. Because this November (or in three days), the next COD will open fire. It’s already in co-development by past COD developer Infinity Ward, soon to be published by past publisher Activision. I know it’s going to be your favorite. We all do. Here goes…are you tired of turkey for a Thanksgiving treat?…How about some more Modern Warfare?

That’s right. Call of Duty: MW3 is the next installment in the trigger-happy COD series. The storyline is unknown for me. Maybe if you tag onto online retailers, you might know. It might be possible to continue the oh-so-stale World War theme. It might continue the Cold War era from Black Ops. I don’t know, it might even get a little Revolutionary! Or it can start a new trend all on its own, which is what I mostly suspect. All that fans know from the upcoming MW3 are four teaser trailers released on Friday the 13th, each named after different countries: “America”, “England”, “France”, and “Germany”. Gaming website Kotaku (also on the same day) spilled various info tidbits about the game, stating that it would be a direct sequel to 2009’s Modern Warfare 2, also regarding the weapons, levels, modes, and vice versa about MW3. Activision confirms that it will be revealed on May 20, but at the same time Wikipedia states that it would be a November publication. Let’s see which one wins in 3 days, shall we? ;)

Here are the teaser trailers that were released on Friday the 13th by CALLOFDUTY:






So if you’re a trigger-happy fan of Call of Duty, save your money for the big moment that MW3 will release! Also keep track of what platforms it will release for!

With all du3 r3spect,


Hey guys it’s Sam, and I probably know one thing on your mind: “What movie am I going to watch for the summer?” For some, you might be interested in the DC Comics superhero movie Green Lantern. Alien invasion junkies might be satisfied in the Spielberg summer flick Super 8. For fans of children’s literature film adaptations, you might keep your eyes peeled for Jim Carrey’s new comedy Mr. Popper’s Penguins. But for fans of famed Disney animated comedies, Cars 2 is the one for you. Some July movies are Winnie the Pooh, the second half of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the third and final of the Transformers series (another Spielberg flick), and the Weird Western sci-fi Cowboys & Aliens. But the one I’d like to talk about is a children’s literature film adaptation. One of America’s most beloved book series. All I say is…it’s super RARE!

That’s right. It’s coming, people. Judy Moody and the Not Bummer Summer is what you’ll watch for the summer. Picking up where Megan McDonald’s Judy Moody series leaves off, with the moodiest third-grader heroine planning a super-duper-double-rare vacation with friends Rocky and Amy. But here’s the thing–Rocky has left to circus camp to learn to become a lion-tamer, and Amy has headed to Borneo to save a lost tribe with her mom. Even her own parents also take a trip—to California, leaving Judy behind with Stink, her never-met-before Aunt Opal, and her 2nd-best paste-eating friend, Frank Pearl. It looks like Judy’s best summer has taken the road to the worst. Will the feisty, frisky and moody Judy avail her summer (with some unexpected sources)? Or will it really be a bummer?

Like I said, Jordana Beatty tackles the lead role as the titular Judy Moody. Parris Mosteller is Judy’s brother Stink, and Heather Graham (from The Hangover and Bowfinger) as the never-met-before Aunt Opal. Janet Varney (Psych, Dante’s Inferno) casts as Mrs. Moody, and Jaleel White (Family Matters) as teacher Mr. Todd. 10-year old Preston Bailey is the paste-eating Frank Pearl, and Ashley Boettcher as Jessica Finch. Check out this DOUBLE-SUPER-EPIC-TOTALLY-MEDIUM RARE trailer:

A treat from Relativity Media and Smokewood Entertainment, the moodiest movie of all is due to release June 10. Get those tickets, raid those snacks, and hit some good seats!

Yours truly,

Samuel M. ;)

If you’re like me, you watch Disney Channel’s hit teen sketch comedy sitcom Sonny with a Chance. You know, that show where that girl from Wisconsin strikes a spot on So Random! and gets tangled up with friendships and her relationship with Chad Dylan Cooper a.k.a. Mackenzie Falls.  Why I enjoyed that show was that it was a good conservation of freshly squeezed humor, and it also mixes it with soap opera drama. Now in 2011, that show itself isn’t exactly running anymore, but a replacement is coming in its third season…finally, a show for its show-within-a-show!

As you know from my past posts, I am super lazy. On a rank of laziness, I am rather supreme. I was actually on a trip in Chicago when I found out about this. I was watching Disney Channel drinking my Mountain Dew when it cuts to commercial breaks. And before I can even gulp, I find Nico and Grady rapping about socks and sandals. I realized that this was the day I was looking forward to my whole life. That is, if I was looking forward to the sort-of-perfect doomsday.

This is the same thing they did with JONAS, a perfectly humorous Disney show. Did it deserve it? NOOOOO. But it gets swapped for a second-season show that wasn’t even that good, JONAS L.A. But am I looking forward to this new swap? Heck yes! After seeing ROFL sketches like Mackenzie Stalls, So You Think You Can PP Dance, and Granny Slam, I hope that they can still keep their head straight. Here’s a taste of what to expect at the big debut:

No kidding. Fans, lock your doors. Arm your torches. Grab your cotton candy. Tomorrow is Friday…the 13th. I realized this unfortunate doomsday’s arrival in school. I’ve been a little paranoid ever since. Like, “OMG Jason’s gonna creep in my window!” paranoid. But it’s not like he’s REALLY going to creep the city. After his not-too-successful 2009 reboot Friday the 13th, he should be gone for now. But still, this phenomenon only stalks the unluckiest of months. A sign of excruciatingly bad luck. But especially almost at the break of summer? Total diss-off! So, will you join the fight to overthrow Jason V.?

Well, I guess that’s all.


Hey guys it’s Sam, and sorry I haven’t been here in a long time! My sister was too busy doing homework on here, and I was too busy forcibly making a comic for my friend, Nick B. But now that I’m on here, and after seeing an inspiration on Inside Xbox (some Xbox LIVE jimjam that sprouts to stuff like The Kinect Show and Major’s Minute), I’ve decided to make my own Top 5 Xbox LIVE Arcade Game ballot (as a little somethin’-somethin’ to keep you waiting for my Top 10 Xbox 360 Games which I never seem to release)! These won’t be in my opinion…they’ll be based on YOUR votes! Whoever gets the most votes claims the prize as the Top Xbox LIVE Arcade Game! All the others will sit in their corner and eat their Pops! Without further ado, let’s get to those nominees!

Limbo is a creepy puzzle-platformer that got released for the Marketplace last summer, and has been a huge success since. It takes place in an eerie black-and-white monochromatic atmosphere (which is how the game got recognized as a “video game of art” as well as a “trial of death”) heavily resembling an olden horror flick, where you are this unnamed boy searching for his sister. But that’s not the worst thing. You have to fend off against deadly obstacles like giant spiders, worms, and bear traps! And you cannot pass this game once without gruesomely dying your head off a couple times. Pretty fun, huh? It was often blamed for its abrupt ending and minimal storyline, but Limbo brushed that off with plenty of awards for Best Visual Art, Excellence In Visual Art, and categories like that. Can this scream its way over to the Top XBLA Game title?

Plants vs. Zombies got its grand start at the Arcade back in September at the crack of back-to-school. It is a creative and enjoyable tower defense-stylized action game that takes place at the biggest battlefield of all: your house. With only plants with superb abilities, you must defend your house from the waves of pure zombie ferocity coming at you in different styles, like the Conehead Zombie and even the Zombie Bobsled Team. It as well as its soundtrack got a positive reaction from critics and players, being picked by Gamezebo as one of the “Best Games of 2010.” The game also received an app for the iPhone and iPad. Can this game be the one to soil the path to the grand title?

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World: The Game had a close shave releasing to the XBLA almost at the start of September 2010, but it got a boost a few days before at the end of August and picked up its pace. The game is a side-scrolling beat em’ up based not only on Bryan Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim graphic novel series, but tying in to the release of the 2010 movie of the same name. It picks up the 8-bit feel as you play as Scott, Ramona, Kim, or Stephen Stills, along with characters Nega-Scott as an unlockable and Knives Chau as DLC. The game’s storyline picks up from O’Malley’s classic: defeating Ramona’s seven evil exes. It also adds a touch as you can purchase items to replenish your health and boost stats, as well as the ability to revive knocked-out characters.  The game received mixed to positive reviews, as critics complained of its lack of online co-op, visibility issues, and chaotic 3-player play. But can this game get the coins to win the XBLA title?

The successor, sequel, or adaptation of 2008’s flash game Meat Boy, Super Meat Boy takes it to the next level in October 2010. Actually, over 300 levels. As from the original game, the tiny, skinless, cube-shaped slab of meat we call Meat Boy must save his girlfriend, Band-Aid Girl, from the villainous and diabolical Dr. Fetus. But the quest isn’t just fun and games. Meat Boy’s quest is life-or-death, as he must overcome obstacles like sawblades, salt, etc. Having the required fine timing of series like Mega Man, this guy can run, jump, and stick to walls either to slide off them, jump off them, or as I liked to do, hop your way up them. The game also folds into warp zones and retro-styled bonus levels. Don’t forget to unlock “Teh Internets”! As acclaimed as the game is, can Meat Boy’s blood, sweat, and tears earn it the Top XBLA Game title?

Monday Night Combat is a downloadable third-person shooter from Uber Entertainment, represented as the futuristic Monday Night sport. Available for both the XBLA and Windows (supported by Steam), it pits you up as a Pro in either orange (Hotshot) or blue (Iceman). Its basis is almost like a tower-defense tradition–your job is, with your weapons, fending off against bots (Blitz Mode), opposing teammates, or even BOTH (Crossfire Mode) to destroy the opposing Moneyball (It’s a ball full of money. It’s so simple) while protecting your own. It’s also a good idea to construct turrets/towers in your base that automatically fire by themselves, and upgrade them with loose cash. The Assault is the main Soldier of the game shooting like there’s no tomorrow, while the Support likely resembles a Medic or an Engineer, healing teammates and bots, as well as hacking into built turrets. The Sniper is a good long-ranger with sneaky Flaks and surprising Traps. The Assassin has her own level, cloaking to invisible sights and attacking opposing teammates. And no one forgets the cash-bleeding mascot, Bullseye! Can all this with Mickey Cantor’s silly announcing have a successful fire at the grand title?


Yeah, I know. I put up a GOOD fight. But that’s how you can be super fair! ;) If it were dead easy, then wouldn’t that make SOME game-making companies feel a little guilty?…That’s what I thought.

So, you can cast in your votes for your favorite XBLA game, and we’ll see who gets the grand title as well a spiffy far-too-honoring golden trophy! The runner-up will get a silver, and all the others…well, ever heard of Pops cereal?

See you back here on Sammwak, especially when the time comes to pick out the winner!

- Sam

Hey guys, it’s Sam debuting with my new segment for book reviews–Page Flip! I–Oh, gee. Me oh my. Ba humbug. Big Nate Strikes Again has totally changed my view for Lincoln Peirce’s hit series. And I’m not playing funny. This is the worst book I’ve ever read, besides those epic fails from Goosebumps. Is it worth the read? Heck no. Is it that bad? Let’s find out.

Big Nate Strikes Again is Lincoln Peirce’s second novel in his hit book series from his comic strip, Big Nate. It lunged into bookstores last year, and people have been loving it ever since, like the first novel, Big Nate In a Class By Himself. But when I read it, I never loved it back. First of all, $13.00? That’s a ripoff! But, what the heck, it’s Big Nate, right? Of all the books I’ve read, I just wanted this to be good, darn it! Why does my life suck so bad?

Think of this book like this: Take a bad script, make it worse, then turn it into a bad Big Nate script. Almost every stage of the book was drowned out horribly inconsistently. Let’s start with the humor of this book. Two words: plain LAZY. Lacking heart, inspiration, and innovation. Probably the most innovative thing in this book was watching Randy Betancourt get a bloody nose. But that’s just underestimation.  Everything was broken. The script, broken. The humor, broken. The perspective, broken!

Next, we’ll stop by the actual script or the perspective of that script. It brings you down from the amount of awkwardness the script allows to have, enough to give you a migraine.  I got so mad at this book, I wanted to rip the pages into pieces, go to Lincoln Peirce himself, grab him by the ear, and yell in it, “WHY DID YOU MAKE YOUR BOOK SUCK?!?!” It’s like Lincoln chose his script with the roll of a dice, and that’s not a good thing AT ALL. It’s like Lincoln didn’t give a darn. He just made sure he got all the characters, threw out the innovative parts, added in some stuff, made it inconsistent, and slapped it into a cover and gave us the bare minimum.

We’ll stop by the picturing next. Just like novel one; splendid, charming, and eye-catching. It might be the only thing that bumped the book upwards instead of downwards. Nate’s sketches are still pretty laughable, but they aren’t hilarious enough to lift the bar up to a good score. Why? Because it was BROKEN!…sort of.

Here is something that’s really ugly. People were actually liking this book. Giving it favorable reviews. On Google Books, it got a 4 stars out of 5, summing up all the reviews. We’re talking 3 stars out of 5, 4 stars, even 5 STARS!!! No one even BOTHERED to give it ONE star! Dirty lies! And I couldn’t scroll down a page without seeing a bazillion 4-star and 5-star ratings! NOW THAT IS JUST DISGUSTING! Like my dad, I will hate a lie when I hear one. And now that you lie now, that makes me sick. Really sick, after eating a whole 10-nugget meal from Wendy’s.

Sure, some of the little “games” in there were interesting, but they were as mind-numbing as algebra. Especially a maze that will take you YEARS to finish, just to get  Ben Franklin to his time machine so he can hit the 1700s again! Another was a lame decoding method that couldn’t just TELL YOU THE ANSWERS ahead of time, before you stretch your brain like it’s a chunk of Play-Doh! And as we all know, when you stretch a chunk of Play-Doh too far…it BREAKS APART.

The final verdict to this is our first TWO out of 10 (terrible)! I would recommend Big Nate In a Class By Himself over this junkyard. Even if it wasn’t the perfect comic novel.  Hopefully, Lincoln can try again in his third book, which is already in production, due to release this August. Maybe he’ll take back the innovation and get serious this time.

Here are the emblems Big Nate Strikes Again deserves!

Epic Fail - When you don’t succeed at first, never try again.  The script that makes you sigh, the bonuses that make you blush, and the fails that deserve face-palms are only described as recipients of this emblem.

Broken - When you shudder walking by a book, you know it’s Broken. After hours of reading, you still are unable to wrap your mind around what’s happening and when it’s happening. Maybe more thorough descriptions would rekindle the mishap.

Total Ripoff - Was it a sick joke? Was it all for laughs? When you spend 20 dollars on a book that you later realize wasn’t worth the overspend, you feel like it’s a rotten prank that you just can’t undo…besides the deadly refund. Maybe next time you’ll approach with a little more caution.

Disappointing - Plenty of books out there refuse to stoop to their potential. Books with the potential that falls rather short earns this nose-thumbing demerit for their troubles.


Need I say more? Well, here in Michigan, it’s getting pretty late, so I’m Sam, and I’ll see you next time on Page Flip, AND Sammwak!

Yours truly,

Sam ;)


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