Square Enix's Triple Triad iOS app is quite good

02 Sep, 2015

tl;dr: It’s the Triple Triad you love, you’ll just wish the doses were bigger.

Opponent Selection Deck Composition Card Album

I’ve recently been whiling away a few minutes of each day playing Square Enix’s newly released Triple Triad game on their Final Fantasy Portal app. After defeating all of the main NPC opponents, and finding it difficult to acquire the high rated cards, I turned to google. Whenever I google anything related to the Triple Triad iOS release, the following headline floats close to the top of the results:

Square Enix’s Triple Triad iOS app is an embarassment

Seeing this view at the top of any related searches, unopposed, motivated me to weigh in. I don’t think the article I’ve linked is totally wrong about any of the points it makes, but I think describing the whole thing as “an embarrassment” or to imply that it has ruined Triple Triad is a severe overreaction.

As the author of the linked article says, you are encouraged to link your Square Enix account to the Final Fantasy Portal app. This allows you to:

  1. Keep your Triple Triad progress across devices.
  2. Earn points by playing daily that you can spend on cards / other Final Fantasy Portal stuff.

I didn’t bother, and I don’t feel like I’m missing out. After playing FF8 on the PC, I agree with the author that dealing with the Square Enix account can be a pain, but you’re not really missing anything by skipping the link at this stage. Sure, I’ll miss my cards when I inevitably drop my phone in the toilet, but whatever.

Yes, the amount you can play in a session without paying is pretty minimal. Yes, if you’re going to pay real money for charges, it’s pretty expensive. The final, and I think key, thing that the author says is this: “At least it’s still untouched elsewhere.”

Once you’re in the Triple Triad game itself (accessible immediately from the FF Portal screen), there’s a short tutorial (as if we don’t already know the rules off by heart) and you can get down to business.

The essence of the game hasn’t changed. It’s nostalgia packed, and with the energy crystals recharging every 30 minutes, it’s a great way to pass some time in line at the shops, bus stop, etc. It’s the Triple Triad we all know and love, and to write off the whole thing as an embarrassment because you don’t like the freemium model is over the top. It’s rating restaurant food 1/5 stars because you didn’t like the curtains.

Ruby Koans

30 Aug, 2015

Speak at your Local User Group

24 Aug, 2015

Throughout school and university, my feelings regarding speaking in front of any sort of audience approached something resembling abject terror. The last time I had the opportunity/slash obligation to speak was five or six years ago, and it’s not a fond memory.

Naturally, when one of the organisers of the local Ruby User Group asked if I wanted to do a presentation on a module I’ve never touched from a framework I’ve barely heard of, I immediately said yes.

The arrangement was that we’d each take one of the gems that compose the Lotus web framework and do a 5-10 minute talk on it. I was to do the validations gem. The presentation went pretty well, and I can’t say I really felt nervous. There wasn’t a huge amount to cover, and my talk was largely a regurgitation of the docs with a few minor insights.

The presentation itself is largely beside the point of this post. The key thing for me is that I proved to myself that I can talk in front of a group.

If I had said no, it could have easily been five more years before another opportunity had presented itself. At the time, I was five years out of practice when it comes to public speaking. I didn’t want it to become ten.

There may be times in your life when you’re called upon to talk in front of people, and really, any practice you can get is good practice. If you go to any sort of local meetups and you’re given the opportunity to talk, I recommend taking it. Even if your initial reaction is to run for the hills.