I am currently on my third cup of coffee, my eyes won’t stop begging me to close them, and I am suppressing yawns approximately every other second. Why am I so tired today? Because last night I gamed until I saw the sun tentatively peek over the horizon. My exhaustion is well worth it though, as I finally unlocked an elusive achievement that I have been working steadily towards for the past two and half years. Oh yes, persistence sometimes does, indeed, pay off.


I am a puzzle game addict. Along with anything involving copious amounts of blood and bullets, I also enjoy relaxing with a challenging single-player puzzle game. I purchased Zuma on the Xbox Live Arcade right upon its release. I would rate this deceptively simple frog-spewing, ball-throwing, chain-making title in the top five games available on the XBLA. Before last night, I had made it to the last level (13-1) once. That heartbreaking night so long ago only made last night’s victory that much sweeter.

About a year ago I was happily playing Zuma and breezing through the levels. 12-1 came and went, along with the other six levels in that stage. Thinking I had finally beaten the game, I began a misguided celebration of joyously jumping around the room. Only then did I realize I had not solved the game and that there was one more level to beat, level 13-1. Settling back into the couch, I pushed the button to continue to the final level. Right at that precise moment I lost my internet connection. Normally that wouldn’t be a big deal, but Zuma is one of the games that was affected by a Red Ring of Death episode, rendering it unplayable offline. As the error message popped up, I fervently prayed to the Zuma gods to somehow let the game continue. It was to no avail however because the second the game stopped trying to load the final level, it kicked me out of my current game and straight into the trial version.

Apparently Xbox Live didn’t think taking away my victory was quite enough because not only did I not get to finish that particular game but it also erased all previous game data. I could not restart on level 12. I could not restart on level 11. I could not even restart at level two. Any trace of progress had disappeared, apparently to the same mysterious place my internet connection wandered off to. Needless to say, since that was the first time I had ever completed level 12, I was slightly bitter. Dejectedly, I turned off my console and did not play Zuma again for months.

After I was able to let go of the disappoint of that fateful missed opportunity, I once again began to furiously spit colored balls from my frog, more determined than ever to solve Adventure mode. I often start at the very beginning of the game in an effort to save up as many lives as possible. Typically I lose them all either in the very hard ninth stage or the impossibly difficult 12th stage. Last night, however, my frog was on fire. Balls went to their intended destination with the deadliest of accuracy. They sped through the smallest of gaps to create impressive chain reactions. Simply put, they went where they were supposed to go. One life was lost in Stage nine, and I began Stage 12 with an astounding 15 lives. Eight lives and seven levels later, I completed Stage 12 for the second time.

As level 13-1 loaded, I literally held my breath. I waited to lose my internet connection. I waited for the power to suddenly go out. I waited for the Red Ring of Death to pop up at the most inopportune time. Struggling through the longest load time I have ever encountered, red-faced and desperately needing oxygen, I began the final level. In the most anticlimactic fashion possible, I passed the last level on my first try. As the achievement unlocked sound vibrated around me, I felt a sense of peace. A peace that Adventure mode on Zuma was completed after a very long two and a half years of trying. A paltry 20 points was added to my gamerscore, but more importantly all was finally right in the world of Zuma.

Now for that Sharp Shooter achievement. Talk about a bitch.

11 Responses to Ribbit

  1. wolfy says:

    it’s horrible when that happens but you made it sound so funny

  2. This sounds just like my battle with Luxor 2. I can’t believe how long that game is. The strong always triumph. Why should it be any different for bs angel?

  3. Talli says:

    Level 9… the bane of my existence. *cry*

  4. Soulofaqua says:

    You may be tired from a long night I am tired because it will almost be the end of it su excuse me while I try to read it…. today actually

  5. Slothboy says:

    I haven’t played that in a while, but I think I’m on level 11. I need to get back into that.

    The sharpshooter achievement. *sigh* the closest I have come is 7 seconds.

    Uh.. That’s what she said.

  6. Ragingterror says:

    HawtyMcBloggy.com: We know drama.

    …… what?

  7. bs angel says:

    LOL, … Should I switch the name of the blog to Lifetime?

  8. Ragingterror says:

    ^^^ Only if every post somehow involves an abusive man taking out his frustrations on a woman. Sometimes, I wonder if that network is run by lesbians. >_<

  9. CzarCastic says:

    Congrats on the accomplishment, but you’re story’s got nothing on mine.

    My friends and I got together last weekend to play Rock Band. We decided it was time to conquer the Endless Setlist (all 58 disc songs in a row). We started at 5:25pm. After a couple breaks, including a long break for dinner, we made it through all of the songs except The Who’s Won’t Get Fooled Again, which is the last song. It’s now 12:15am. As we were just about to get to the long solo section of The Who, the frickin’ power went out. There was a storm blowing through the area, but the lights never so much as flickered. We haven’t lost power in months, years even. We were literally 2 minutes from finishing our 7 hour Rock Band marathon.

    Needless to say, that took the wind out of our sails for the night. The worst part is that this was our last big blowout with all of our band members, as one of our members is moving to Georgia this week. If I wasn’t so disappointed, I would have probably broken something. As it was, we all kind of sat there for about 15 minutes without hardly talking to each other. With my buddy now moving to Georgia, we’ll never get this chance again. :(

  10. bs angel says:

    Wow. What an absolutely horrible ending to an otherwise probably ridiculously fun night. That just sucks. :(

  11. Oh it is soooo addicting…just seeing the screen shot makes my head scream for a game, or two, or three or thirty-three!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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