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    Take a Spin with PopCap Slots

    Resident Englishman and bon vivant (What, he can’t be both?) Rowland drops by to spin a tale of slot machines.

    There are so many wonderful ways to play PopCap games. On a beach, on a cruise, okay…even waiting in line. But did you realize that you can enjoy PopCap games via the supreme audio-visual presentation: slot machines. BLAST your senses with total immersion in slot heaven; that would be my pitch for the marketing copy anyway.

    I feel more like Danny Ocean already, you maybe saying to yourself. And if not, well bear in mind these are totally custom made experiences for beloved PopCap games like PvZ, Bejeweled and Zuma.

    In my dream palace, I certainly would make space for PvZ Gargantuar and Backyard Showdown.


    Behold! Gargantuar! Plus Slots! And A Showdown!

    These beautiful machines add a certain “Holy PopCap! PvZ slot machines! Are you kidding me? Take my money!” to any residence. See for yourself below:


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    February Caption Contest: And the Winner Is . . .

    You know, I always have mixed feeling at the end of a Caption Contest. After a multitude of amazing captions come in, and then you winnow the list down to 5, you always have just one winner. Which is great – yeah! But then it’s sad, cause all the captions were so good, and then the whole thing is over, passing us by into the annals of Caption Contest history. For now, though, let’s not dwell on the whole impermanence of it all, and instead just bestow the laurels of champion on the awesome Dale, as his swell caption won the day! And give another thanks to amazing super artist Chris Sheridan. Together, they give you the fantastic combining of words and image below.

    Her parents didn't approve. He had no money, no future, no brains. But he had her heart.

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    Valentine’s Day the Video Game Way

    Question: What video game character (any era, any system) would you want to spend Valentine’s Day with?

    Here’s how the Blog Ride team answered:

    A.J. pours it on:

    If you know me well, you’ll know about my fondness for harem pants and pirates. As well as skull belt buckles, the canon of obscure-ish Mario characters, and syrup. So, it’s probably no surprise that my Valentine’s date pick is Captain Syrup. Sure, she’s a bit greedy, and a bit of a baddy big boss here and there, but if you want to be a female pirate captain, and rival of Wario, you can’t be all sweetness and light, pals (even if your ship is called The Sweet Stuff). And while she might not be a good choice for lifelong companionship (what pirate is?), I’ll bet she’s lots of fun and, like me, enjoys a good fruity tropical drink and singing pirate songs. All of which makes for a memorably awesome Valentine’s Day.


    Rowland stays in-house:

    I love Chuzzles. They are like little chirpy pillows of squiggly fun. They are just SOOOOOooo fluffy. Can  you really imagine taking Commander Shepard out on a date? Or Isaac Clarke? You. Would. Not. Survive. Nothing good could happen from this. Chuzzles on the other hand offer nothing but safe, reassuring, comforting love. And they always pick up the tab.


    Dana swoons:

    I play Ascension on my iPad every day, literally. It’s a deck-building game, so it’s all about acquiring powerful cards and slaying scary monsters. You start out with a basic deck of weak cards, but you use their combined strength to get better cards, and the better cards let you do cool stuff like slay the Sordid Asp or the Constricting Horror. Along the way, you find pretty powerful warriors you can add to your deck, like Prodigal, who can slay a monster costing 3 or less, or Arha Templar, who slays monsters costing 4 or less. And then there’s Aaron the Godslayer. He can slay any monster, regardless of cost.

    Maybe it’s because I’ve lived in cities most of my life, but for me, one of the most attractive qualities a man can have is the ability to protect me in a dangerous situation. If I could choose any video game character to go on a date with, I’m picking the one who carries a gigantic sword! The one with the quiet look of confidence on his stoically handsome face.  The one who could quickly dispatch whatever monsters might appear.

    The mechanics of a deck-building game also inspire some really unhealthy jealousy! If I can’t afford Aaron, I’m likely to banish him altogether to keep my opponent from getting him. That’s right, if I can’t have him, no one can! Sorry, Aaron, for all those times I’ve sent you to the Void. I hope you know I did it out of love. (And if I get my hands on the Serpentcall construct, I’ll totally come rescue you.)

    Philip pounds his keyboard until words come out:

    I love video games almost as much as I am bad at them. And where would we be without the first video game that I was bad at, Pong? Nowhere, that’s where. So for Valentine’s Day I choose to spend my time with my oldest friend in the industry, Paddle. Is it the left paddle or the right paddle? Does it matter? Maybe I’ll spend the day with both of them. No expectations. No entanglements. Just clean, simple up-down, black-white in a gray, uncertain world.


    Tara gophers it… goes for it (puns are hard):

    When I ask myself which video game character I’d like to spend a lovely Valentine’s Day with, there is no question in my mind that the fuzzy, smiley, hilarious, Big Fish Games gopher that graces the Fairway Solitaire game is the one for me. Gutsy McDivot’s sweet cheeks, mysterious smile, and those eyebrows! I just think he’s the cutest and funniest human-sized gopher around and wouldn’t mind getting to know him a little better this holiday. So… is it a date, McDivot?!


    Julie wins (again) because she married a guy named Leroy Jenkins way before the name “Leeroy Jenkins” became a thing:

    Leroy Jenkins.

    The real one.


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    Solitaire Blitz: Lost Treasures Comes to iOS!

    This post is brought to you by the lovely and talented Tara. Take it away, Tara!

    Today’s Blog Ride update is unlike my usual “hey look, a new Solitaire Blitz: Lost Treasures island” post. This one is extremely special, announcing something we’ve been working on for quite some time and can finally release out into the deep blue sea for all of our awesome fans out there.

    If you are like many of us here, you may have a strong attachment to Solitaire Blitz. This is the healthiest of habits, allowing a break in your day for some virtual competition with your friends, a fabulous story with evolving characters to keep up with, and of course the actual gameplay which keeps your mind active and your senses sharp! When Solitaire Blitz came to iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, it became a break you could take anywhere, literally. But there was still something lacking while playing on the bus or in line at the grocery store…. the island adventure, the Quests, the STORY! This part, the Lost Treasures part, has only been available to play on your PC or Mac on Facebook. As of today, we are so excited to announce that you can update your iOS application to include all that Solitaire Blitz: Lost Treasures for iOS has to offer!

    When you first update, you may be a little surprised to see that you are immediately thrown into the tutorial, even if you already know how to play like a professional. Don’t worry, it’s a short tutorial, and it’s there because some players have only ever played on their mobile device and haven’t yet been introduced to completing Quests. Once you get through the basics though, you’ll re-download your island content from Facebook and see your progress sync up with your device (unless you are past island #47, as this is as far as it goes for now).

    I know some of you are a little nervous of change and might be wondering about the specifics of this update. Well to start with, everything you have won or purchased will sync over to your iPad, iPhone or iPod touch when you start. Your hard-earned Silver, your Boosts, your Decks of Cards, and all the unlocked islands will match wherever you play. What things are different you ask? Well for one, when you play on your iOS device you will earn achievements. That’s always been there, but it’s worth mentioning because it adds an extra set of challenges to work towards that just aren’t available in the Facebook version. Your devices will also store your Win Streaks separately. So, your Win Streak that exists on your Facebook will be different from your Streak record on your iPad, and your iPhone version will keep a separate Streak from your iPod. Make sense?

    Other notable changes to your game are the fancy new leaderboard, new invite system via email or text, crew invites in your Message Center, and brand new artwork and animations for each of our favorite lovable characters. Something that isn’t unique to this update, but definitely worth reminding our players of again is the swipe. The swipe is the motion you make across your screen to draw from the Draw Pile! It’s kind of like the space bar of the mobile world for Solitaire Blitz: Lost Treasures.

    Please join us on Facebook for more information, free goodies, and a weekend-long celebration for the birth of Solitaire Blitz: Lost Treasures on iOS. Please never hesitate to contact our Support team if you have feedback, technical issues, or just want to say HI! We are always happy to hear about your experience or help out if something isn’t working right.

    So, what are y’all waiting for… go update your apps and ENJOY!

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    Ask a Zombie: “Bury Your Treasure Where It Can’t Be Found” Edition

    Zombie makes everything better. Write to ZombieAdvice@PopCap.com and let Zombie make everything better for you.

    Dear Zombie,

    Valentine’s Day is always so much pressure. I try to make my man feel special and appreciated every day, so holidays are just kind of annoying—like, now I have to come up with something better than what I already do, just because it’s some arbitrary holiday? What sort of thing would make you happy on Valentine’s Day?

    No Fan of Cupid

    Dear No Fan,

    How you not be a fan of Cupid? What you got against a little nekkid guy running around shooting arrows at peepul? Hmm… now that Zombie write it down, it do seem like the kinda thing you might want to call the cops about. But Zombie heard Cupid sometimes ride a dolphin, so maybe wait around to see that before you get on the horn to the man to break things up.

    Anyhoo, you not gots to celebrate Valentine’s Day. You could celebrate the Roman feast of the Luprecal. Might be tricky if you not into sacrificing animals. So scratch that one. You could celebrate the Norse holiday of Galatine’s Day, just to be… Norse? Or you could go around being all French about it and saying, “Mais non, it eez Galantine’s Day!” but then you might not have boyfriend when this dumb thing roll around next year so tread carefully. Also you sound like Pepe Le Pew.

    Oh, Zombie know! St. Valentine is also patron saint of bee keepers, so fill your house with bees as a surprise for your man! Zombie bet he not see that one coming. Or, if you just over the whole thing, Zombie think you could celebrate, “Aw Crud! Taxes Due in Two Months Day!” That should take the starch out of romance right quick



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    February Caption Contest: Voting Time for Valentine’s Day

    You may know who your Valentine is already, or not, but one thing you don’t know is – what is your favorite Valentine’s caption from the below list? We’ve winnowed down the massive list of submissions to the below five to help the process along, but now we need you! So, go on, vote.

    PS: If you really want to print out the image above and use it for your Valentine’s Card, then, well, I give you permission. Cause I’m all heart.

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    Our Brand New Holiday. “Make a Pound of Fudge. Don’t Share.” Day

    Once again, the 2014 Plants vs. Zombies calendar has encouraged us toward gluttony. Yes, February 10th is officially “Make a Pound of Fudge. Don’t Share.” day. That’s both greed and gluttony!  Those zombies really have no shame. Okay, then, I thought, I’ll make the fudge… but I will resist the temptation to hoard it for myself. I’m better than that… I know I am.

    And then I made the fudge. It turns out to be kind of a process!

    Seriously, I have to chop 18 ounces of chocolate into little shards? That's...really hard work. This picture is only four ounces, and I've only made the first of many chops on it.

    As I went about the arduous and time-consuming task of making this fudge, I began to gain a new perspective on this holiday. Why am I doing all this work, only to turn around and give fudge away? Does anyone else deserve this fudge as much as I, who have toiled to create its deliciousness? Fie, I say! This fudge is mine, all mine!

    Mine! MINE!

    Spare me your pitiful looks and pleading. No fudge for you!

    Okay, so… the truth of it is, the only thing harder than making a pound of fudge is working off an entire pound of fudge. Also, sharing is caring and all that jazz, and people will like you better if you give them fudge than if you smack their fingers when they reach for a piece.

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    Peggle 2 & Gamers for Giving

    Resident Englishman and truly a Sunflower in all of our hearts, Rowland is back with news from the world of Peggle 2.

    Gamers for Giving 2014 is holding a Peggle 2 tournament this weekend, with a very impressive trophy for the winner. Who or what is Gamers for Giving, you may be asking?

    Gamers for Giving is a competitive gaming tournament/LAN party that helps generate resources and awareness for the initiatives of Gamers Outreach Foundation. The next event will take place at the Grand Ballroom of Eastern Michigan University’s Student Center the weekend of February 8 & 9, 2014. Gamers for Giving is a nonstop gaming marathon which begins in the morning hours of Saturday, February 8 and lasts until the evening of Sunday, February 9.

    Sponsors help cover overhead costs associated with hosting the event so that attendee entry fees and donations can be used strictly for the programs of the charity. Funds raised from previous events have helped build portable gaming carts for children in hospitals and send video game care packages to U.S. troops overseas.

    The goal is to raise $20,000 to help kick off Gamers Outreach Foundation’s charity programs in 2014 by hosting a great event for its supporters. Gamers for Giving is a welcoming, friendly environment where gamers can come together to play their favorite video games in a clean, social and competitive atmosphere. Simply by participating, gamers are making a positive impact in people’s lives through resources generated by the event.

    There will be live streams to enjoy even if you cannot make it to the event, and you can find out more here: http://gamersforgiving.org

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    Rejected Game Ideas VII: It’s Like That

    It’s time for the fantastic seventh edition of Rejected Game Ideas! If you’ve missed the other six, then friend, I pity you. But not too much, cause you can go back and read them all and have your life change from the sad thing it is today into a life of happiness, laughter, amazement and – did I say laughter? Well, that’s what it’ll be after you read about the most awesome games that never were, and maybe never even considered as real games (though between you and me, they should be; maybe; maybe not). But remember: these are solely for fun purposes, and fun porpoises, only. And also remember, as Fleet Captain Curtis once said, “Please don’t steal. Or, if you do, steal well.” With that, here are the finest rejected game ideas ever thought of by man, woman or beast.

    Table Full of Eggs
    Eggs. Eggs. EGGS! And one table.

    Mustache Comb Carnival
    It’s a saga of hirsute hilarity as you progress along a map of classic rides – with hairy twists. From the Handlebar Hurricane to Muttonchop Matterhorn, can you make it through with combs intact?

    The Devious Designs of Dr. Tangler
    A dance/adventure game mingling modern torture horror movies with buck-and-wing moves, you’ll have to kick up those heels or have them sliced right off by the world’s cruelest choreographer.

    Don’t Be Crewel
    The world’s top educational game designed to help kids learn embroidery, fencing and Latin, all at once (also contains a strong anti-bullying undertone).

    Ducks With Four Wings
    A gang of dangerous drakes threatens to pull the pond into ruin. Only you and your band of ruffled vigilantes have a chance of cleaning up in this hack-and-feather hit.


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    February Caption Contest: Love Is In the Air Edition

    It’s time for another charming Caption Contest – and this one has an extra dose of charm! That’s because we’re inching up to the most romantic holiday of the year (and I don’t mean Singles Awareness Day on February 15th). To start the heart-y celebration, lovely PopCap artist Chris Sheridan (who also writes and draws the best comic in the last 5 years, Motorcycle Samurai) has put together the below Valentine’s special. Now it’s up to you! You have to put the perfect caption over in the comments on our handy Facebook page. If your caption is the winner, then you’ll get fame, fortune and adoration.* So, don’t wait around – let your love flow, via your caption.


    *This constitutes no promise of fame or fortune. But adoration, sure.