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Actually, no it's not ZombiU. I ended up liking the game. It's not the frame rate problematic Epic Mickey 2. No, it's actually Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed. It's not the game's bad, because it's actually pretty good. It's not that I'm still waiting on the patch to fix the patch that broke the game. No, it's a mistake, because the game's HARD and I'm the type of racing gamer that won't settle for anything less than first, and I've only gotten first a couple of times on MEDIUM! Well, once on Hard, but that was because I was extremely lucky.
Yeah, combat racers are supposed to be hard, but this one makes Mario Kart seem like a pu ssy. I do tend to believe, however, that the game hasn't clicked with me yet, and I'm sure I'll do better at it with more practice once I learn the tracks, but dammit, it's so much more frustrating right now than any Mario Kart I've played before! I have the sneak suspicion that the item distribution is incredibly imbalanced. Anyway, I wish I passed on the game right now, because I don't feel like getting this upset when I should be trying to enjoy a new system. We'll see how I feel about the game in a week or so after I review it.
My original intent was to do this in a video blog fashion, but my camera phone didn't have enough juice and actually cut out on me. Pressed for time, I decided to just do it in a text blog. I hope you'll read it, because it will be quite long. I'll talk about them in the order I played.
The one game that many soon-to-be Wii U owners were hoping for turned out to be a dud, well at least according to GameSpot, but please keep in mind the Metacritic. It's currently at 71, and one source even gave it a 90, so not all is lost. If you're still interested in getting the game, get it. Just keep the receipt.
The largest complaint GS has about this game is the meleeing, and I definitely agree with them. You might think Condemned, but it really is no where near as good. The problem is the meleeing with the cricket bat is inconsistent. Some zombies can take as many as nine swings to knock them down to the ground, and I even killed one in one shot. The real problem is there's no control over your swings. Sometimes you will swing quickly while other times, you'll hold the bat over your head for a long time, like you're going to swing hard. If you did, I'd understand, but it makes no difference. It's problematic when you're trying to fight off more than one zombie at a time.
The cool thing about the game is the survivor mechanic. When you die, you respawn as a new survivor, and your previous body is now a zombie roaming the area where you last died. Like Demon's Souls, if you can make it back to your last corpse, you can recover your loot, provided you kill the zombified survivor first. I also love how well it uses the Wii U tablet controller. You can tap on your radar to ping for zombies in your area, or you can use it as a scanner and gleen some really important information regarding your surroundings. You can avoid dangerous areas altogether if you play it safe.
The graphics aren't what I would call very good, especially by today's standards, and it's not the game you want to showcase your new system with. The textures for the most part are murky and muddled, but with the right lighting, the game's pretty atmospheric. It's even a bit scary at times. Surprisingly enough, this is the game that I wanted to come back to the most as I was playing my other games. There's an addictive quality to it that I can't quite put my finger on. I guess when you die, you get an urge to see how much farther you can go when you try again. If you have a Wii U and are interested in the game, don't dismiss it completely; just use some caution.
If it weren't for me having all these other games to play, this would be the one I'd still be playing. After New Super Mario Bros. 2 for the 3DS, this is a breath of fresh air, which is weird to say because of everyone's preconceived notions that all Mario games are the same. It's clearly seen that a lot of thought and creativity were put into the game's level design if World 1 is any indication.
I guess what makes the game so cool is we finally have a Mario that's displayed in HD. The game looks absolutely gorgeous. It's so bright and so colorful and so smooth, it helps give the game a bigger feel. I love the flying squirrel suit and I can't wait to see what else the game has in store. I'm also really digging the music. Yeah, a couple tracks here and there are still pretty familiar, but it has enough original music to make it sound fresh.
It's also the only game that I know of that you can play on the tablet entirely independant from the TV. I'm kinda disappointed that more games don't let you do this, because a few that I have delegate the controller to banal map duty. Anyway, it's really nice to have a Mario game at launch, even if it just a 2D platformer.
I decided to get this game on the Wii U because I heard it performs better at 60 FPS, but so far, I can't really see it. The graphics do look great, and are an example the Wii U is no slouch when it comes to graphics... for the current generation. which will always be Wii U's problem. Still, it's a great looking game.
As for the game itself, I can't really talk too much about it, because I'm still early in. I just made my way to Boston and am still playing as Haytham Kenway, I think his name is. I've heard you need about two or three hours in the game for it to pick up, and I'm just not there yet. It's a big difference from the rest of the games as far as openings go, but I'm sure I'll start enjoying it. I will say I'm finding myself fumbling with the controls a bit. I'm not sure if it's the set up of the game itself or if my fingers haven't really come to grips with the contours of the controller.
This was the big pill for me to swallow, even bigger than ZombiU. You should know by now the game's not faring well. It got a 5.0 from GameSpot for the PS3 version, and when they review the Wii U version, they'll give a lower score. Why? Frame rate. I don't know what happened when they were making the game for the Wii U, but the frame rate simply struggles, and for no reason at all! I'm talking 10-15 frames at times.
And it's such a shame, because the game otherwise looks fantastic. The cartoon art design, the textures and build of the game, the animations and characters. It's just beautiful... when it's standing still. The presentation is also fantastic, and now the Mad Doctor sings a song every time you meet him and I can't wait to meet him again to hear the next song!
Gameplay wise, it's about the same as the first game, which is disappointing, because the first had potential to be a much better game, if only they'd fix the problems like their camera, which they didn't. As for the incompetence of Oswald, I haven't really encountered that yet, but I'm sure I will eventually. He's not exactly the sharpest tack in the box. Man... I really wanted to like this game better. If you got a Wii U and have other systems and want this game, PLEASE don't get the Wii U version.
This actually turned out to be a pleasant surprise. But it's a bit awkward for me, because I don't have people to play with. For me to try out the multiplayer mini games, I had to pull out a Wiimote and let it idle. But there's defintely a lot to do with 12 different mini games. Some are short and rather boring, but others such as Pikmin Adventure and the Zelda game are quite beefy for mini games.
As a pack in, this is a great. It'll be a fantastic party game, but it won't really offer much in the way of singler player enjoyment. For a 60 dollar purchase, no. There's no need for this game to be 60 dollars. Although it is a good demonstration of what the Wii U can do features and graphics wise, I just can't see someone plunking a full 60 dollars down for a mini game compilation.
Hey, you can't go wrong with this game since it's only 40 bucks! It's also online as well, although I haven't tried that out yet. I played a few races, and it's fun, better than that ModNation Racers I played on the Vita. What I like about the game are the tracks. Sometimes the terrain changes and you transform into boats and airplanes. The basic kart gameplay doesn't deviate much from Mario Kart and other clones but it's what works well.
I like how they have their World Tour set up. Each event has stars you can earn and you only need to place in the top three to get the stars. Most racing games require you to get first to earn them all. Speaking of first, still haven't gotten it yet in this game! It also has different types of events as well, such as boost challenges, to mix things up. I wouldn't mind playing this game online some time.
As for the console itself, I really like it. It's got a sleek design, and the tablet controller is something special. I've already tried out Netflix on it while having the TV off just to see what it's like. I can see lots of families doing this when one person wants to the TV for one thing and the other person wants to do something on the Wii U. It's simply a brilliant idea. I also love the fact that you can use the tablet as your TV remote control!
The one feature I absolutely love about the Wii U is Miiverse. This really is awesome. If you don't know what it is, it's an online community linked to each game that you play. At any given time during gameplay, you can access Miiverse where you're taken to a forum of sorts where people comment about what they like or questions they might ask. You can Yeah comments (which is like Like) and respond in either type or handwritten posts. You can even send friend requests to people. Fantastic thing.
So, I'm rather happy with my Wii U so far, even though I got a couple duds. I already know ZombiU will grow on me a bit, but man... that frame rate issue with Mickey 2... just breaks my heart. I'm glad I got my Wii U, and I hope everyone who wants one doesn't have to wait months like they did with the first Wii.
Also, sorry for this blog not being as detailed as it could have been. I'm getting a bit tired and running out of steam and I want to spend the rest of the night playing.
Just a couple things I want to point. The smaller of the two AC adapters is actually for the charging dock of the tablet. I didn't realize that until after I made the video. Also, the two little u-shaped stands are for the system itself, not the controller. Anyway, I'll follow up with a special Now Playing blog tomorrow.
The Wii U is about 36 hours away. And so far, I'm the only one here locally that's excited about it. I have gamer co-workers who aren't really interested or want one but can't buy it yet. I've talked to others who haven't even heard about it. I don't watch much TV, but when I do, I never see Wii U adds. If you weren't deeply rooted in the gaming community, you wouldn't even know a system launch is just on the horizon.
I haven't seen any promotions at Best Buy. No ads saying "Wii U on 11/18!" No prompts to preorder. There's no demo kiosk. It really seems like this console is not on the radar of this major retail chain. Of course, you see Wii U all over GameStop. It's a speciality chain, so of course, they're going to push a new system.
So, it makes me wonder... On the night of the 17th, will we see people camped outside these stores hoping to score one? How many will get it for themselves and how many will be eBaying it. Speaking of eBay.. *clicks away*
Ahh... forgot about this. Already, pre-order units are being auctioned for upwards of 500 dollars. I do believe there will be campers. It just kinda sullies the experience for me. I shouldn't be bothered by it, considering I'm number one on the pre-order list at my GameStop, but I hate knowing that people out there are honestly and geniunely trying to score a system for themselves, and can't because explotationists are snatching units out of their grasps and selling it back to them with interest. Happens every launch, I know...
It's just weird that outside of forums, I'm not hearing any buzz about this console...
Ok, I get it. People are upset that A) Another Nintendo game didn't get a 9 or above; B) Another 3DS game didn't get a 9 or above; and the last one people are having the most trouble with C) A Paper Mario game not getting a 9 or above.
Let's just try to figure out what happened here. First, if you don't get A, B, or C or all of the above, try reading the review first. If that doesn't help you understand anything, try playing the game first. If you played the game and still don't understand, then perhaps you're simply a raving fanboy. I'm most likely going to put my money on the latter.
Nintendo fanboys are about as rabid as they come, and their behavior is clearly seen on any review comment wall of a Nintendo game that doesn't get a 9 or above. GS long timers, can you think of the two biggest review upsets? Twilight Princess an 8.8 and Skyward Sword, a 7.5. Sticker Star would have been a greater upset had it gotten a video review here, but it didn't, which goes to show you that no one likes reading.
So, back to the case of Carolyn's review. I'm about a third into the game, working through World 3, and so far what she's been saying has been pretty spot on. No, I don't say this to troll. No, I don't say this because I'm a cow, a hermit, a lemming, a hedgehog or an echidna. I say this as a critical, level-headed, open-minded gamer. Sticker Star is... disappointing.
There are reasons for this, though. For starters, the feel of the game in comparison to its pedigree is smaller. True, the game is huge, but the interactivity of it all isn't as grand. It's hard to explain, because although you see flashy things happen with the stickers you press onto the game world, you simply aren't rooted to the world as a traditional RPG does. There is a lack of towns, which means a lack of NPCs, which means a lack of dialogue, which means a lack of meaningful story. The game feels more action-adventure than action-RPG or adventure-RPG.
The lack of RPG feel is definitely attributed to the removal of the leveling system, as well as badges and equipment. You can still up your HP, but you need to find the upgrades. You actually can't increase your defense, so the more powerful enemies begin to wail on you harder and harder. There's no need to cast magic, because your more powerful attacks are in the use of stickers, and therein lies another problem...
Using stickers is fun, but it can also be frustrating. There are times where the game throws a lot of enemies at you that require jump attacks, but you've run out and only have hammer attacks and other more powerful items you don't want to use just yet. It's not the end of the world, because you can simply run or avoid enemies altogether. You really shouldn't ever feel the need to AVOID enemies in an RPG. The game is very liberal with the sticker distribution, though, and you earn coins like nobody's business, so you can always afford to restock. Still, it's a poor combat system when compared to The Thousand Year Door's battle system, which was phenomenal.
One of the most common complaints I'm hearing about Carolyn's review is the "It's no fun being stuck" comment. This is actually a very valid complaint. The bosses are RIDICULOUSLY overpowered. Their health is enormously high; their defense is iron-clad. Sure, you could spend every sticker you have and hundreds of coins on the Battle Spinner (which is a great feature, btw) to beat them, but it's very exhausing that way. The best way to fight them is to use a Thing sticker (you find a thing, like a bat or fishhook, and you can make it into a sticker to use in battle) to strike at their weakpoint allowing you to finish them off without consuming three pages of stickers. One such boss is a fish,who if you don't have the fish hook sticker to fish them out of the water, you will not be able to beat, as it keeps diving into the ocean healing all the damage you did. Nothing like wasting your best stickers on a boss you can't beat because you didn't have the precognitive foresight to find and grab the sticker beforehand, right? Right. So, I don't want to hear this whole "SHE SUCKS! SHE DOESN'T KNOW HOW TO PLAY!" Trust me, you'll run into the same issues if you aren't playing it with a FAQ on hand.
Aside from these large flaws, the game is still fun. It's better than Super Paper Mario, and that alone should make you more than happy. It IS, however, short of being held up to the N64 and GC's Paper Mario by a long shot, and that is me shooting from the hip, calling it like I see it, no bullshi t. Nintendo goggles do you a GREAT disservice, because it doesn't allow you to analzye, criticize and surmise properly. You are hung up on a preconceived notion that Nintendo is infallible, which they haven't been in a very long time, if ever. They make great games; they make average games; they've even made poor games (Yoshi's Story, anyone?) But see, your Nintendo goggles cause you to ignore this. You always focus on the negative, and make it worse than it actually is. 7.5 is still a good score, and it means the reviewer likes the game. You have to get it out of your thick skulls that GS "hates Nintendo". No, GS hates Resident Evil 6. 4.5; now that is a lousy score.
I'm growing old and tired of debating this reader hostility issue. It's getting to the point where I don't even know if I want to review myself anymore. If I was in Carolyn's position, I'm not sure I'd even want to read the comments at all. She's had to develop a thick skin, and a particularly thicker skin than most reviewers because of her transgender status. My hat's off to her for dealing with as sholes who always have to bring up comments like "he-she" and "tranny" every time she writes a review that doesn't coincide with their expectations, because I wouldn't be able to handle it as well. Regardless, I'm just not sure I like this community (not GS, but the gaming community in general) enough to do this as a profession anymore. I'm tired of the wining and fussing over reviews and scores in particular, and it gets worse every year.
Thank god Black Ops II got an 8.0, because people are finally starting to see that GS is for once being stricter across the board. It's no more "This game got a 7.5? Watch COD get a 9.0!" People are starting to get it, but I digress. I just want to say PLEASE try to understand why reviewers give out the scores they do and review the way they do. This REQUIRES at least reading the review with a high school level reading comprehension and preferably an adult-level sensbility, and ultimately requires you playing the game for your opinion against theirs to have ANY credibility. And even then, don't think you're better than they are just because you disagree with them. They don't think they're better than you; they're just doing their jobs.
I just realized I never did a now playing for Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask.. Well, I ended up reviewing it today, so if you want to read it, go here.
I have spent about three or four weeks playing Paper Mario, The Thousand Year Door and Super Paper Mario in succession in preparation for this game, and now it's finally arrived. But, my excitement was dying down a bit when I started learning more about the game. First, there is no leveling system. That's right, there is NO XP to gain from defeating enemies, and any upgrades you get you need to find. Second, it's the sticker combat system. Every action, even a basic jump attack, has to executed via sticker. Although highly unlikely, there is a chance you COULD run out of stickers and not be able to win. Don't like that AT ALL! Strategy schmategy. Just not a fan of consumable weapons. Anyway...
I'm early in. Just finished 1-1, but I wanted to make sure I did this blog before forgetting like I did with Professor Layton. Anyway, aside from the consumable stickers and no XP, it plays just like the old Paper Marios. You can press buttons in time to make attacks more powerful, or you can do the same when about to get attacked to block. Because you have to collect stickers in order to attack, I find I'm actually involving myself more in the world looking for stickers to peel off. The hammer also plays more of a part here being able to change the environment as you slam it on the ground. I haven't even begun to delve into the Paperization mechanic yet, but I'm sure that will be a lot of fun as well.
It's still too early to comment on how well the writing is, but the story took off a lightning bolt, so fast that I'm still not sure what happened. There's some event called the Sticker Festival, and Bowser tried to grab a sticker comet that felt to earth. I guess it didn't like being touched because it split itself up into six pieces, yet somehow dropped a piece on Bowser making him incredibly strong and sticking toads everywhere with Bowser tape. Again, too early to say just how funny it is, but I'm enjoying what I'm seeing so far.
It's a great looking game, by the way. The 3D effect is used well, and this is practically the GC game (which is still very beautiful even by today's standards) on the small screen. The environments are actually made out of corrugated cardboard so they have a little extra dimension to them. Sound and music is already pretty good, and I've already seen a cool special effect where a fleet of scissors cut across the screen.
I was kinda hoping the game would have received higher marks because the game's pedigree is pretty solid, but it seems like it will be a nifty enough game. I remember reading from Carolyn's review that the lack of XP becomes a deterent for fighting, but so far the combat has been fun. If the game keeps up the pace of its sticker distributing, I may actively look for more monsters to fight just to make more room for more stickers. In case anyone's wondering, the stickers DO replenish themselves in the worlds when you leave and reenter, so if you're ever in a bind, you can just exit and start collecting again.
Anyway, if you love the series, you should definitely get this game.
Not me. Can give a rat's ass about the game right now. "But it's HALO!" I guess that's one of the reasons why I can't care about it right now. Don't get me wrong, I love the series, but I haven't really been enamored by ODST and Reach. I bought them at full price and didn't get to either of them months after their releases, so I can see that happening again for Halo 4. Yeah, I know there were loads of deals to get Halo 4 for 40 bucks and whatnot, but even then, I've no time at all for the game.
I've got to finish Professor Layton and the Miracle Mask by Saturday. Sunday is Paper Mario: Star Sticker, and then I have a week to finish that before Wii U launches. I don't see that happening, but you can see why I have no time right now for Halo 4. As much as I want Assassin's Creed III and Most Wanted, I had to pass up both of those games as well. I really really hate this time of year...
I don't like lies, and I particularly don't like the lie that there are no casual or hardcore gamers. There are most certainly casual and hardcore gamers, but you do not have to classify yourself as either.
Casual - someone who plays only when others play; someone who plays only popular titltes; someone who plays until their interest wanes
Hardcore - someone who plays all the time; someone who plays everything; someone who plays their games all the way through
Obviously, these are abridged definitions. I don't have time to do a fully fleshed out blog post or I'd go into more detail. But honestly, don't delude yourself by saying their are no casual or hardcore gamers when game publishers CATER to these markets. Again, you don't have to classify yourself as either, but don't let that blind you from the fact they exist.
No, I didn't buy one. I checked one out from my library. It's a staff device and they're letting us familiarize ourselves with it. The one thing I'm quickly becoming adept at is typing on the virtual keyboard. It's a bit uncomfortable as I can't get my fingers on it in normal ergonomic fashion but I'm making due. Anyway, what would be some good free iPad games or demos to try out?
In exactly one month, the Wii U will be hitting American shores. A few days before it does, we can expect to see people camping out infront of giant retail outlets in an attempt to snag one, either for themselves or to capitalize on gamers who missed out on the opportunity to preorder and sell them on eBay for exobitant amounts. I will not be one of them. I'm first on the pre-order list. The only way I'm not getting one is if my store doesn't get any at all. I'll be sleeping in that Sunday morning, will have a nice warm breakfast, and then I'll head to the store to pick up my machine.
Here's what I can expect:
- My old Wii will be retired to make room for the Wii U. This will make me happy, because my desk is already cluttered as is, and I can still play all my old Wii games on it.
- I will be really impressed with the graphics because it's so much better than the old Wii...
- ... and will remind myself that this is what the Wii should have been in 2006 and then shrug
- I will play the Wii U with the TV off just to revel in the novelty of playing a game on the tablet controller
- I will still curse Nintendo for the name Wii U.
- I will feel that at three games, I don't have enough.
- I will go out the next day and buy three more.
- I will regret two of them.
- I will love my Wii U.
So yeah, I'm excited! Let the countdown begin!
As some of you know, I'm a seven time recovering FFXI addict and the worst thing I can do right now is pine over the game. I blame Theatrhythm Final Fantasy for sparking up the desire to play the game again. Every time I hear the FFXI themes, the Ronfure (although why they went Ronfure instead of Sarutabaruta is beyond me) and the boss theme that I never got to hear, I get transported back into the world of Vana'diel like I never left.
I started the game back in March of 2004 when it was released for the PS2, and I remember having to install the HDD into the PS2, which turned out to be the only game to ever use it. I started out on the Titan server and made a cute Tarutaru named Lookis. I originally set out as a Black Mage and would unlock and level the summoner job when I got it, but quickly changed to something else after I found out the only way to get the Fenrir summon was to beat the fully powered versions of the previous six (SE patched the game giving solo missions to battle the summons at level 20, but you weren't granted key items for beating them, which the Fenrir quest required).
I chose Dragoon for my main job, and I had so much fun with it. Unfortunately, Dragon (DRG) was never a high demand job, and given the fact that I was a Tarutaru, I did less damage, so I really struggled to find parties to level up with after I hit 40 or so. I would spend hours on days off trying to find a group, and during the course of a year or so of me playing, my backlog of games had blossomed. Plus, a friend I was supposed to be playing with was too invested in her character on the Pandora server, which is the whole reason I tried to stick around. But, that ended up not being enough and I quit after a surprise intervention by me friends one night. I gave away all my gear, deleted my character, canceled my account, and I dusted my hands off. I quit.
Until that friend I mentioned begged me to come create a character on her server. I told her no several times but then one day, I caved. I poppped up on her server, made a Mithra named Kitylitter and got sucked in again, this time far worse. I was only supposed to get on when she was on, and we would level together. Sounds reasonable, right? But the problem is, I got on to play when she wasn't there and when she was and left, I stayed on. She got her white mage to around 55 or so, and then she tells me that SHE'S QUITTING! Yeah, how about that? She gets me addicted again, and then SHE QUITS! I guess she was leaving to play Phantasy Star Universe. That's when I should have quit again, but I didn't. I kept going.
Kitylitter was my favorite character. I ended up choosing THF (thief) as my main job and I leveled a NIN (ninja) to 37 so it would be at max level for my subjob. Thieves weren't likes dragoons; a good thief was always in high demand, a very integral component in any good job set up. They were the best pullers (luring monsters to the group) and did excellent damage with their sneak and trick attacks. Sneak attacks were also vital for ensuring that the tank had enough agro to keep the mobs (monsters) off other party members as the thief would hit the monster hard while behind the tank making the the monster think the tank was the one who hit it.
I was a beast of a thief. I spent millions and millions of gil to make sure I had the best gear. I was a natural at pulling, able to safely bring monsters to the party in the most dangerous of areas. A friend of mine once made a party wait two hours until I was able to get to where they were because he said I was the best THF he ever worked with. It made me feel good, and that level of demand is I guess why I stayed on; every timed I logged on, there was action.
Mithras were also pretty versatile characters, which meant they did well with other jobs. When I got tired with THF, I tried other jobs as well. I remember soloing some quests and doing other missions by myself because NIN had abilities to make yourself invisible and THF had a flee ability to hightail it out if you ever got in trouble. I did a lot of quests by myself since I didn't have to worry about escorts. That kept me playing as well.
Eventually, I grew tired again. Turns out to be the best at anything required MILLIONS of gil and it was a very time consuming task to fund yourself. But this time, I would make sure I quit for good. I broke the game disc in half and threw the HDD away. I was done, finally. If I wanted to start up again, I couldn't. Then one day, I checked the mailbox and an issue of OXM (Official Xbox Magazine) and low and behold, a demo disc that contained Final Fantasy XI on it was inside. I knew I shouldn't, but I did it anyway. I installed it... and got sunk in again.
I started up another Mithra, this time named Kazhiraiisajerk (don't remember why) and set off on thief again. I believe the server was Hydra, a specially set up server for the Xbox 360 beta. Oh boy was it crowded. Not having the luxury of the other 20 or so PS2 and PC servers, Hydra was a jumbled mess. There was lag everywhere, especially when you were leveling in the field. Oh, but that was one of the advantages. You never had to wait long to group up. You got invites minutes after putting your search flag up, no matter what job you were. You also got into alliances for missions very quickly. For the two or three month beta period, I was in balls deep again. It was soon announced that the full version would be released and Hydra would be shut down, but they'd transfer characters over to existing servers. I had a way out, and I took it. I opted to not transfer. I was done, again.
Until the retail version came out and I decided to buy it a few months later. Started up another Mithra and this time chose the new advanced job Puppetmaster as my main. I had a lot of fun with it, but the magic of the game started to wear thin. It was now four years after the PS2 and PC releases, and the flood of newbies started drying up. It was becoming harder and harder now to start on the bottom rung. Once you got into the 30s and 40s, things picked up, but it was a struggle to get there. Veterans were doing bigger and better things and others lost interest and quit. So again, I hung up my controller.
I even restarted it on my PC when Steam had a sale. FXI and all expansion packs 11 dollars. I was curious and downloaded it, started it up and played again. But playing it on the PC was a different experience altogether. I missed my controller, and I didn't like controlling the game with keyboard and mouse. This stint turned to be quite short. I didn't think it even lasted a few weeks. I thought I was done for good this time.
Until a friend here on GameSpot wanted to play FFXI because she never did so. So, once again, I bought the game and installed it to play with her, but it didn't go very well at all. She had a very hard time figuring out how to play the game, and my patience drew thin. I turned it off, and turned it on the next day, and the damn game corrupted. Its file was 8 gigs on my 360, and I wanted to get that space back, but the brilliant minds at SE only let you uninstall the files with the installation disc, which the 360 would not read. I had to format my entire HDD to get that space back. FFXI cost me years of game saves, and this time, I was done for good.
No, really I was. I am done. I have not played it since that HDD incident. Most of me doesn't want to play it again. The part of me that does only wants to because of memories. I hate a lot of what's in the game, but there's a lot I really miss. I miss being part of great parties. I miss doing those high risk missions all by myself. I miss grabbing that one notorious monster from a group of other campers and screaming with glee when you get the drop. I miss waking up in the morning, logging on and finding 500k in your mailbox when it sold in the Auction House. I miss the community. And as Theatrhythm pointed out, I miss the music. It's what caused me to write up this blog.
But I can never start it again. For one, I don't have the HDD for my PS2, and my PS3 is a replacement. The old PS3 that could play it died a couple months back. I will never trust XI on my 360 again, and the PC version is not intuitive for me. I just remembered, I tried to install it again and give it a second chance, but for some reason, the new code I was given wouldn't work. Guess that was a sign, eh? Even if I wanted to start it up again and could, I know I wouldn't get far. The game's for veterans now, not newbies. I know getting up to 30 would be practically impossible. Plus, I don't want to play monthly for that game anymore.
With all this said, I'm still looking forward to Final Fantasy XIV. Yes, I know it had a disastrous launch on the PC, but SE actually recognized it and is hard at work at relaunching it. I'm hopeful that the changes they make are beneficial and make XIV worth playing, because I do want to play it. I hope that I can have as much fun with it (sans the BS) as I did with Final Fantasy XI. I dunno.. a part of me hopes it turns out horribly so I won't want to play it. The major reason why is because it's a numbered title, which I still don't agree with it. And I guess that's my biggest lament with Final Fantasy XI, all the times I've played it, I never once saw it through to end game. I've beaten every Final Fantasy since VII, and not beating XI is a hole in my heart, and I'll never have a chance to close it.
Well, actually, I've already finished playing it. I also reviewed it, but thanks to GS's glitchtastic site, my review is mashed together in a single block of text. If you want to read it, be my guest, but I warn you. It's a mess. So, Sunflowers is a simplistic puzzle game for the PS Vita and iPad. It feels right at home on an iPad, but as I mentioned in my review, you bought a Vita for more substantial games, and this isn't one of them.
It's only four bucks, though. Hey! Go buy a burger at a Carl's Jr! You'll enjoy that a lot more than you will Sunflowers. Sunflowers makes a nice warm impression with its cheery art design and bright visuals and tries to entice you into collecting 330 different flowers. It doesn't shadow very well the fact that this game is as much boring as it is inane.
You move the sun around by dragging it to the left or right. Tapping shoots rays of sun out and as they hit passing clouds, the rays cause raindrops to fall down on seeds you've planted. Continue to shed rain on them and they sprout, blossom and produce more seeds that bounce along occupied rows creating combos. It tries to mix things up with thunder clouds that strike flowers with lightning, freeze your screen in the winter causing you to rub the screen clear, dump leaves on flowers having you shake the Vita to get rid of them, things like that. But it just doesn't help the monotony.
I do like the music, as I appeciate classical music, so the renditions of Vivaldi's Four Seasons makes for a nice soundtrack. What I don't like is how my finger tip goes numb after an hour of tap tap tapping. Well, that is if my brain doesn't go numb first. Oh, by the way, this was a freebie given to me by DefaultPrime.com, but I honestly should have charged The Game Atelier (developer) 3.99 to play it...
Still thinking about Resident Evil and the review fallout. Just saw Giant Bomb's review, which is 2/5 stars. That equates to a 4.0. GameSpot as we all know gave the game a 4.5, and Destructiod gave it a 3. A quick glance at the Metacritic shows RE6 to be at a 66, but a closer look reveals that although there are a lot of positive scores (22), there are also a lot of mixed scores (21) and five bad scores, which definitely has dragged the overall score down.
But, let's take a look at the really low scores:
- 4.5/10 - GameSpot
- 2/5 - GiantBomb
- 4/10 - Polygon (never herad of this one)
- 3/10 - Destructoid
- 1/5 - Quarter to Three (yeah, never heard of this one either)
So as it turns out, when it comes to the red scores, GameSpot is the highest. Doesn't quite seem so bad now, does it? But these five scores illustrate something: there is something wrong with the game. If there wasn't, these sources couldn't be able to objectively write about them, and this in turn raises the question: Why aren't the glowing reviews NOT writing about them?
I would put more stock into someone who has mixed feelings or just ends up hating the game more than someone who is dumbfoundly impressed by it. It's the former that usually has more interesting things to say, because someone who is being more critical tends to assess, anazlye and see things than someone who is more relaxed at playing and reviewing games. There's the kind of reviewer who forgives too much and thus everything is 8s, 9s, and 10s, and usually does a disservice to his readers. As for the readers....
It's easy to see why so many gamers are upset. You get 22 positive reviews, but 5 really bad ones. Yet, people simply don't want to acknlowedge the negative reviews and focus soley on the positive. Is it because they're afraid they'll read something in the review that will bother them while playing and not like the game? They were looking forward to this and went out and spent good money on the game and they just want to enjoy it. They want to read positive reviews and see high scores to reaffirm that they made a good purchase with RE6. In that case, stay off the internet. Don't log onto GS. Don't look at the Metacritic. Don't watch video reviews.
Now, this has been going on for a long time with long-running franchises. It seems that it's almost expected for a game to automatically do well. Case in point: The Legend of Zelda. Just because it's a Zelda game, it automatically means that each game released should be a 9.0 or higher and damn everyone else who thinks differently! 7.5 for Skyward Sword anyone? How about 8.8 for Twilight Princess? I love Zelda games, but even I had a hard time with Skyward Sword, and I liked the game less than Tom McShea did. I gave it a 6.5, and I view the game as the worst Zelda released by Nintendo. But, I'm in the minority, so my opinion doesn't matter.
I do believe it does, though. I believe that gamers who don't automatically give scores out of fandom for the franchise are more honest and interesting than those who give free passes. There are reasons why we are mentioning negative problems with these games, not to be jerks about it to piss off fans, but because they exist. They exist either out of problems that have never been addressed, or as new problems from the results of quirky game design decisions, but they're there. Even though we think our opinions have some importance, though, they're still merely opinions. If you want to love a game unconditionally, that is your right, and then you also shouldn't let our opinions bother you.
So the majority rules, and this results in mob mentality and behavior. When someone speaks against the majority, they are met with resitance and hostility. And for what? A difference of opinion. The gaming community cannot be taken seriously until these oversentive gamers stop acting like whiny self-entitled elitists. You might also find yourself in denial, knowing you bought a stinker, but since everyone else around you is having fun with it, it simply MUST be good. One of my favorite quotes is by William Shakespeare: "To thine own self be true." If you want to be of the majority, make sure you really do feel the way you do about the game, because if you lie to yourself, the majority rules over you. It's okay to admit that Resident Evil 6 sucks if you think it sucks. This is why I appreciate GameSpot; they call it like they see it, and they can give a flying fu ck if you disagree.
No, I'm not talking about an RPG or Zelda. I'm talking about a lack of Ridge Racer. Yeah, I know, the franchise is dead now, with Ridge Racer Vita driving the final nail in the coffin, but dammit... it doesn't seem like a launch without Ridge Racer. Ridge Racer has launched with the following systems:
- Ridge Racer for PS1
- Ridge Racer V for PS2
- Ridge Racer 6 for Xbox 360
- Ridge Racer 7 for PS3
- Ridge Racer for PSP
- Ridge Racer for DS
- Ridge Racer 3DS for 3DS
- Ridge Racer for Vita
Now granted there was no Ridge Racer for any previous Nintendo console, but again, they did launch for two of their handhelds. They also perform abysmally saleswise, but they still have a loyal fanbase. I'd have loved to play a new Ridge Racer on the Wii U just for the novelty of playing it on the screen. I guess maybe I'll have to go with Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformer for my racing needs then...
No, no, not a debacle because Kevin's wrong (and from what I've seen and heard of the game, he surely is not). It's just a debacle because it's going to be another 3000+ comment mess of people going back and forth with each other not proving a single thing.
I KNEW this game wouldn't fair well. I could just tell from the first time I saw footage of the game. It's far too actiony for its own good. A proper survival horror game knows how to build tension and suspense. This is why I felt the Silent Hill series was the better proper scare, because it got under and stayed under your skin. All RE has left now is the gore factor.
Capcom was also quoted saying they wanted the Call of Duty audience, which was proven with Raccoon City. RE6 is clearly geared for the more ADD type gamer. Lots of gore, bullets, explosions, things to keep their interest. But it depletes the very soul and essence of Resident Evil! It's unreconizable at best, laughable at worst.
Congratulations, Capcom. You got your Call of Duty, and that is an achievement you really shouldn't be proud of.
Yep, you knew this was coming. I haven't played a series one right after the other since the Splinter Cell games. Super Paper Mario is a vast departure from the Paper Marios of days past, because the RPG style exploration and battle system have been exchanged for 2D platforming. Oh, there's a twist. Mario can flip dimensions and enter 3D, a novel idea, but I've seen it used before and used better in Crush.
So yeah, you run around 2D levels, and when something's blocking your way, or you get stuck somehow, all you have to do is press A and Mario flips the world into 3D, moving blocks and pipes out of the way, revealing hidden passages and even items and enemies. Doing this over and over again becomes tedious, especiall when you start acquiring other characters and have to constantly change back to Mario in order to flip. Oh, and then there are the pixels.
My major problem with the game is how awful it is to keep changing characters and pixels. The Z button on the controller is not utilized at all, and it should have been mapped for a quick change between character or pixel. Anyway, the pixels do different abilities for Mario, but really... one of them is for a butt stomp? That should have been a basic ability...
I'm on the fourth chapter so far, and I'm liking it, but not by the same margain as the other Paper Marios. It's obvious that this is a 2D platformer first, so having to constantly flip and change characters really disrupts the flow of the game. It's an interesting experiment they came up with, but one that just didn't pan out as well. I still love the writing and I love the visual style, but it's just not as fun to play.