The last 2 or three e3’s have been more or less disappointing. But at long last, this year was different!
The first conference I saw was Ubisoft, and they had lots of exciting announcements, most notable the Mario/Rabids crossover known as Mario+Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, which looks awesome, and the completely unique game Skull & Bones. Fans of the Assassin’s Creed series will be excited for the new Egypt based game. See it all here.
Next up was Sony. There conference was great because there was hardly any talking and they just played trailer after trailer, which makes me wish they just made a video like Nintendo to keep the flow going better.
But anyway, they basically showed the same games they showed at last years e3, but with much longer trailers/gameplay. And this was fine with me, for they showcased a lot of great looking games, most notable for me was Days Gone and the PS4 exclusive Spider-Man. I can’t wait to play those two games! Check it all out here.
But the most amazing part about e3 by far was Nintendo’s “Spotlight” video presentation. Anyone who said the Switch doesn’t have a lot of software has now been proven wrong. They announced a whole slew of new titles for both this year and next, guaranteeing two years of great games. Yoshi, Kirby, Metroid, Mario will all be making appearances, to name a few. You can check out everything in detail here.
They are the only ones I saw in detail, but Microsoft revealed a few new games and the brand spanking new, powerful consoles Xbox One X. You can watch the conference here.
It was a great showcase, and I am very excited to be a gamer right now.
So LEGO is selling a LEGO set based off of a movie that is based off of a couple video games that are based off of LEGO sets that are based off of various movies and TV shows that are based off of comic books.
Damn!!! That is a lot of money out of our pockets, if you happen to purchase all this stuff, which I imagine only supreme Batman lovers do.
At long last, my Final Fantasy marathon ends here…for the time being anyway. And I have to say, it ended with a great game, bringing me back to my early days when I first played FF 8 and 7, as I described in my post about the first game.
After playing through this game, I have come to the conclusion that Final Fantasy didn’t truly become great games until the PlayStation. I really enjoyed 7-9. The more advanced system with it’s “powerful” hardware allowed for some great story telling visually with the beautiful cut scenes and also the bigger space spread out on multiple discs allowed for more in game story told through a much larger world as well.
FF9 was also void of any annoying things that plagued the series from 6 downward. There were only 2 cheap instant death encounters I met the whole game, and it was mainly due to cheap overpowered counter attacks. For once, I could go through the whole game without wanting to pull my hair out.
Gone too are the obnoxious amounts of random encounters. Most games had you fighting endless amounts of battles for little experience. FF9 reversed that by having less battles with more experience, and that is just fine by me!
The skill system is great in this game as well. Each equipable item has skills attached to them that can teach one specific character something, or multiple people. This is truly great, for by the end of the game, all your characters know a vast amount of skills that you can equip to fit your needs at any time.
The story isn’t great, but it’s enjoyable enough, and there is great character development. The ending, however, is very weak and unnecessarily long for such a disappointing payoff. But the character development sort of makes up for that though.
The only real complaints I have about the game is that the encounters take way too long to start…like over 10 seconds you have to wait before the battle begins. First it kind of loads, then you are forced to watch as the camera unnecessarily scrolls through your environment, as if the developers were so proud of the world they created. Then your party and the enemies magically fade in to existence and then finally the fight begins…which brings me to my second complaint.
The fighting seems so delayed. It is so slow moving. Sometimes you just are sitting there waiting for something to happen. Even when you have given each member something to do, everyone just kind of dances around for a while, then the enemies go, then one of your characters attack, then the enemy might go again after waiting, then wait some more for one of your guys to go. Honestly, if you tell all four of your characters to do something, it might take close to 2 minutes for your fourth character to finally go. By the time they do, the other 3 have already refilled the battle meter thing and have new commands already inputted. When that fourth character finally goes, you had forgotten what you told them to do and a lot of the time, the flow of the battle has shifted by then so that their attack or whatever is more or less useless.
But other than that, it is a fun game that I really enjoyed. Now I can finally understand why these games have some kind of following. It only took 9 games and 15 years.
As always, I will rank the games from best to worst. This time though, I will include 7 & 8, though it is a little unfair since I never beat them completely.
For most of my life, I have heard that this is one of the best games of all time, and most people claim this one or Final Fantasy VII as the best in the series. Sure enough, if you look at best games of all time lists, FFVI will likely be at least in the top 20, and for best SNES game lists (as Final Fantasy 3), it will be in the top 5, if not the top 3.
So, you would think I would go into this game with incredibly high expectations. But don’t worry, I treated this like most any movie or game I play…meaning I went in with no expectations…well if anything, they were probably a little low judging by what I think of all the games prior.
What I found was that I was right in not expecting much. The game is mediocre, like the rest of them, and I certainly wouldn’t put it anywhere near “best games of anything.” And yeah, VII is way better. And VII isn’t even my favorite.
But that is not to say that this game was bad though. It was just okay. First let me mention what the game does well.
All the games prior to this one followed a basic format. Walk around on the world map, go to towns, then to some dungeon or cave or castle, fight stuff and kill something or find something, rinse and repeat. While this game does that as well, it doesn’t feel like it. All the environments are very varied and fun to traverse through. The environments just look great and don’t give the game a boring, repetitive feel like some of the others did. In terms of scenery and setting, yes this game is by far the best out of the first 6 games.
They also relaxed a bit on random encounters, making it bearable to walk around in this game. This is a huge plus for me. And what’s more, they even let up on the unbelievably annoying, and seemingly constant status effects. So, in other words, the gameplay is the best I’ve seen so far as well, well except for maybe FF4.
Honestly, through most of the game, it is pretty fun and a solid game overall. I like how the story dictated what characters you could use about half of the time, instead of just picking four of the 14 possible characters and just using them throughout the entire game like a lot of RPG’s do. The story itself started out interesting, but then it just kind of stopped halfway through the game and turned out to be not so great.
I like how every character could learn any spell by equipping the summons. That was a nice touch.
The best addition to this game is the fact that you keep all your experience if you die. You will start at the last time you saved like all the other games, but this time you kept all that hard earned experience, making it easier to ensure you aren’t always underleveled.
So yeah, not a terrible game. But here is what kind of ruined it for me. Instead of having annoying status effects all the time, this game loved putting in enemies that would counterattack after you killed them. This became quite annoying, as these counters were generally very strong. There is even one part where you only have one character in your party, and when you kill a certain enemy, it countered by casting a spell that turns you into stone. In other words, that’s an instant game over. That is just cheap and/or horrible game design! You shouldn’t be able to find yourself in that kind of situation! And towards the end of the game there are enemies that when killed, instantly kill one of your party members. Why? You just wind up running from them, because you typically fight two of them along with another enemy. It is not worth using the items or magic it cost to revive two characters that are guaranteed to die. This should not be in the game. It doesn’t bring any challenge to the game, it is just an annoying, cheap, unfair way of inconveniencing the player. But you can’t have a Final Fantasy game without those factors involved, it seems!
And speaking of death after battle, there is a spell that puts a timer on one of your characters, usually about 30 seconds. When it drops to 0, that person is dead. But you would think that when you defeated all the enemies in that battle that the counter would stop. But no, it doesn’t. After killing the enemies, the amount of gold, experience and any items you get all show up one at a time, and that counter is still going, so if you take too long to read your rewards or if the counter is very low at the end of the battle, you can count on having to revive the character after the battle.
Another issue with this game is the frame rate during battles. It just randomly slows down badly, often messing up my timing and so many times I’ve used the wrong attack or targeted the wrong thing because the game was too busy sucking to register my button inputs.
But all that is tolerable. What really killed me was the end of the game. As a child, in every RPG, I would switch out all the characters and level them all equally, only to find that towards the end, I was horribly underleveled and had to grind four characters to make them adequate enough to beat the game. So after falling into this trap a whole lot of times, I learned to just pick four characters from the get go, and things got a whole lot easier. It turns out, for FF6, I would have been better off playing this game as a child. For the last area of the game, without any warning or chance to back out and prepare, you have to choose 12 of the 14 characters and split them up into three groups. Most of the characters were within 5 levels of each other thanks to the story having you always using different characters, but most of the time I used the same 4, who were much, much, much stronger than the rest. So now I had to divide them up to carry my weaker members. But I didn’t know this was going to happen, so everyone had crappy gear, didn’t know many useful spells, and were slightly underleveled. I also never got a chance to buy a bunch of items to keep me alive.
So what did I have to do? I had to unequip all the characters I wasn’t using and equip the group I was using with the best possible stuff I had. Thank goodness I never sold any equipment, for some members were stuck with old crappy weapons, but this was better than having none at all.
To make matters worse, the strength of your enemies seemed to have tripled. These fights would have been easy with my A-Team, but now they were downright difficult. The game doesn’t give you enough magic points to use any offensive spells, you had to save it all for healing, and I barely had enough to do that. My saving grace throughout the whole game were 3 items that allowed you to equip two weapons and double attack on each round. So yeah, I beat the entire game more or less just using physical attacks. It was cool.
But anyway, after dying a bunch of times, they eventually all grew a few levels thanks to keeping your XP when you die. Once I finally reached the end of one section, I had to unequip all my weapons, armor, relics and summons, so that they would be available for the next group, then painstakingly equip it all on them. So I just kept moving on, fighting a bunch of bosses with my three underleveled/undergeared groups and somehow managed to eventually beat it. I progressed through the game fairly quickly and easily, but I was in the last area for around 4 hours before I conquered it. The worst part is there is a long boring scene before the last boss that you can’t skip. The first time I fought him, I didn’t know what I was doing, because all your characters might have to fight him, so I ended up fighting him with all completely unequipped characters and died immediately. Then I had to watch the long boring scene again, and lose to the boss again. After the second failure, I understood what was going on, and after once again watching the long boring scene, I went all out and beat him. By the end of it, I was sick of the game.
But they had one more great surprise for me at the end. A long…oh my God, how long…boring…seemingly never ending scene. I kid you not, between the ending and the credits, its over 20 minutes long. The credits are terrible even! Instead of the traditional scrolling text, they opted to just show an airship floating around through clouds while occasionally showing a name or two at time. I mean, it is so uninteresting AND SO F-ING LONGGGGG!
And the game suddenly becomes obsessed with this woman you never even see in the game having a baby. Like towards the end, you go into this town you’ve been to a couple times before, and she’s all the people can talk about all of a sudden. Who is she and why should I care? She isn’t important to the story. She doesn’t do anything useful at all. And then when you beat the game, like 3 minutes of the ending scene is dedicated to this woman. Who is she? Is it just supposed to be some weird happy ending, symbolizing that things live on and grow in the aftermath of chaos? It’s just stupid.
So the game is pretty good until the last dungeon. That is the point I am trying to make I suppose.
Well, I’m back, here to talk about my experience with Final Fantasy V as I plow my way through most of the series. I’ve already spoken about 1, 2 and 4, and now I’ve got a bit to say about 5 as well.
To start, it’s not a horrible game, but it isn’t very good either. I like the story and the job system was kind of fun, albeit annoying at times. But it made for some fun customization options.
There isn’t too much to say about it that I haven’t already said with all the other games. By now I have realized that all these games have one great flaw. There is just so much annoying crap in them that it makes them very difficult to fully enjoy. This one is no exception. So I am going to single out what really made this game annoying.
That would be the last area in the game…
As per all the games, this place is loaded with difficult monsters that would love nothing more than to kill you most savagely. That’s not the real problem though. The problem is is that these monsters prefer you to be a zombie, a rock or a frog before they kill you. This is the most obnoxious thing about this game. Every monster seems to have the ability to turn you into one of these things. And the dungeon is very long, so you are constantly having to cure yourself of these ailments.
The rock and frog status isn’t horrible, for you can cure them with the Esuna spell, but it gets pretty taxing on your MP, so thank God I just happened to stock up on the curative items, Soft (cures rock) and Maidens’ Kiss (cures frog) throughout the whole game so that I had a crap ton to heal with. I stocked up on these because the last three games taught me that they would most likely come up to annoy the hell out of me, and I was right. But what I had not counted on was the newer zombie ailment. This can’t be cured by any spell other than using a cottage on a save point or sleeping at an inn. The only item that can cure it is Holy Water. I unfortunately did not stock up on these, so I only had 4 on me that I happened to find in chests.
So I painstakingly fight my way to the final boss, only to find that he loves using some spell that does a ton of damage to you, but worse, puts a random status effect on all characters. This is just great, for my first time through, I had used up all my Holy Waters, thus any characters that were zombified had to stay like that. And if you don’t know, this is a serious problem. A zombie character is basically dead, so you lose their attacks against the boss, but they don’t actually die, they instead attack you. And you or the enemy can’t kill them, they will be there forever. You can’t heal them if you don’t have Holy Water, so you are completely screwed and might as well reset the game at this point, because you won’t beat the boss.
So going through from where ever the last save point was, I made sure to keep my 4 Holy Waters. This meant that every time I was turned into a zombie I had to reset the game and try again. After like four tries, I finally made it to the boss and was able to cure all characters that turned into zombies.
This is a needless annoyance. What if I didn’t have any Holy Waters? I would have had to fight my way back out of the dungeon and then buy a bunch of them, and then redo the entire final area all over again! And that is something that just should not happen! Why do all of these games just have annoying, time consuming issues? This doesn’t make the game anymore challenging, it’s just cheap and unfair, stupid and a waste of time. The challenge in a game should not come from such cheap tricks. They are on their fifth game and they still have yet to figure that out!! They wouldn’t be such bad games, but my God! It eventually just gets so irritating that I may or may not look like this…
And one more thing that is super annoying in this game is the time it takes to bring up the menu. It takes about three seconds. This doesn’t sound like very long, but dear God, when your sitting there just waiting, it seems like much longer. It takes a tad longer to exit the menu too. So it becomes very annoying.
But the dumbest thing of all about this game is the enemy counterattacks. This is nothing new in the series. Some enemies can counter any of your attacks with either spells or physical attacks. The counterattack would occur immediately after your attack. But not in this game. They would counter whenever they feel like it. And some of these counterattacks are devastating. In the older games, you could react by holding off on an attack or healing someone who was countered, but those simple strategies become obsolete in this game. They will randomly deploy their counterattacks in FF5. So say your guy hits an enemy that counters, you wait a bit, but he does not counter, so you attack again, still nothing, and then again. You’ve done 3 hits to the guy, but one of your characters hits twice in one attack, so that’s four hits to the enemy. After those four hits, he decides to counter with four attacks of his own…one for each hit he took. He will then use his normal attack as well. So that’s five hits coming at you at once. If the counter hits all your characters, there is an extremely high chance you will all die. If it a single person attack, he will likely take out 2 or 3 of your characters.
There seems to be no pattern to when they counter, it is just completely random, and many times have I died due to this horrible flaw.
Would I recommend this game to anyone?
If I had to rank the games at this point, it would go as follows, from best to worst…
Last April I wrote about my first impressions on the then brand spanking new “My Nintendo Accounts.” I spoke of how I was disappointed that it was far worse than its predecessor, Club Nintendo. I ended it with the hopes that maybe after some time the site would get better. And I am here today, after the site being live a whole year, to see if it has gotten better.
The quick answers…Is it better than a year ago?
Is it better than Club Nintendo?
In case you forgot, Club Nintendo was the companies old rewards program. Any digital purchase would earn you coins on your account, while physical copies of first party games and even some third party games gave you a code you could enter to earn coins. You had to fill out a bunch of fun surveys with each game you bought, as well as random ones every so often.
If you obtained 300 coins, you achieved “Gold Status,” while 600 coins netted you the mighty “Platinum Status.”
At the end of every year, (the sites year was from July 1- June 30) you got to choose a reward based on your status. There was a nice mixture of digital games and just some cool Nintendo related collectibles and such. Obviously the platinum rewards were much better than gold.
During the year, however, you were free to spend coins on other collectibles that were pretty nifty, as well as some Virtual Console games that changed monthly. Good games too. I got many a free game using my earned coins. The only trouble was that the games typically cost a hefty amount, but hey, I’d rather spend coins than dollars.
Another thing I should mention is that if you didn’t use the coins, they would eventually expire, though it took like 3-5 years, so I was never worried.
Now that you know all about Club Nintendo, let’s talk about the current My Nintendo Program.
As I said in my blog a year ago, you earn platinum points for doing basic things like signing onto the eShop every week and the like. There is a whole list of “missions” you can complete to earn coins.
Gold coins are better for some reason, and can be earned by purchasing DIGITAL GAMES ONLY!!! That is an enormous load of BS!! I prefer buying games physically, so unless something goes on sale for ridiculously cheap, which rarely to never happens, or I buy some indie games that don’t have physical releases, I will never get gold coins.
But why on Earth would I buy a digital game at full price when I can get the physical game for likely $20-$40’s cheaper on Amazon.com. Are gold coins really that much of an incentive to buy digitally so the developers can make more money? Well, honestly, not if you look at the rewards. The coins are essentially coupons.
For instance, I will tell you the software rewards right now. You can spend platinum points to save 20% on Fire Emblem: Sacred Stones, which I got for free with the Ambassador Program when 3DS quickly dropped its price…
Fossil Fighters: Frontier, whatever that is…
Mario Vs. Donkey Kong: Tipping Stars, a series I don’t like…
And Dr. Luigi and Game and Wario, BOTH IN WHICH I GOT FOR FREE FROM CLUB NINTENDO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Now for gold coins, you can save a bigger 30% on some better games.
Fire Emblem Fates: Birthright, which I don’t want and if I did I would buy physically…
Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon, I already have…physically…
Kid Icarus: Uprising, I already have…
Kid Icarus, I already have…
Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters, I already have…
Mario Kart 8, I already have
Xenoblade Chronicles X, I already have…
Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE, I do want this game, so I might take advantage of this, but I can probably find it cheaper on Amazon even without 30% off…
The Legend Of Zelda: Majora’s Mask 3D, I have the original N64 game and don’t like to buy remakes…
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages and Seasons, have them both already…
Paper Mario, already own…
Rhythm Heaven Megamix, whatever that is…
and finally Chibi Robo: Zip Lash, which I already have.
So of all those games, there is one I might consider taking advantage of. And that is one more than usual. For just like with Club Nintendo, the rewards are always changing, but I think less frequently now. It is a nice way to promote some games I suppose, and I really shouldn’t be complaining about getting discounts on stuff, but I do have a right to complain when they used to give stuff away for practically free, no matter how you bought the product, and I can get coupons for my groceries by looking in a newspaper or whatever, so why should I have to buy digital versions of games just so I can get a small discount on games most people already own? And like a said last year, chances are, the games you would be buying to earn the coins are all the games that are discounted, so if you didn’t have any coins, you’d be screwed.
Now there is one last type of coin…the phone coins.
Last year, there was only one Nintendo mobile game, Miitomo. Now there are three. Each game has their own set of missions and rewards for you to earn and spend coins on. As I mentioned last year, the site is basically just a cheap way to promote their cell phone games, or at least it very much feels like it. These coins can also double as platinum coins, so that’s nice.
Aside from games, there are small rewards like 3DS themes and recently they added computer backgrounds…ohhhhhhhhhh!!!
So yeah, the benefits are simply not there. The only good thing is that the “rewards”don’t cost all that many coins. But then again, they might. That Tokyo Mirage Sessions discount costs 140 coins, which basically means I have to spend close to $140 dollars on eShop just to get one lousy discount. That’s 2 full priced Nintendo games and like a few indie games. F that!!! I can buy like 7 games on Amazon for that price.
Oh, and just like Club Nintendo, the coins expire. But instead of a hugely long time, the platinum ones expire in just 6 months, and my hard earned gold in just a year. I had almost 2000 platinum coins stock piled…I never spent a single one because the rewards stink…only to find 2/3 of them expired. I now only have 140 gold points, and many of them will soon expire, and who knows how many already did!?!? What is the point of making them expire anyway? It’s not costing anyone anything to have them there. It just doesn’t make sense. They just do it so you can’t stock pile coins and then utilize all the discounts at once…what cheap a-holes. So in fear of wasting the rest of my coins, I blew most of my platinum ones on some 3DS themes. I didn’t want them, but it’s better than just losing the coins. The gold I guess are just going to wither away.
The lack of a status stinks too. It was a smart business decision to make the consumer push for platinum status, because then we’d buy more games. I always made sure to get Platinum Status to get the cool reward at the end of the year. Now the only incentive to use the site is…I’m drawing a blank…maybe to have all your consoles linked to one site?
Bottom line…this “Rewards Program” is garbage. I would say only use it if you actively play the cell phone games, otherwise don’t waste your time. Unless you enjoy extra discounts and prefer digital games and somehow don’t have all these games. Then knock yourself out. But I personally feel like this is just a slap in the face after Club Nintendo. So my thoughts after one year, is the site has improved slightly, but it still is crap…just in case I didn’t get that across throughout the entire post.
I’ve already talked about Final Fantasy 1 & 2, so here I am with another installment as I trek through most of the series. Today I will be talking about the 3 part game known as Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collectionfor PSP, but more specifically, the third and final game, The After Years.
Final Fantasy IV is a pretty solid game, and really is quite good. I like 2 better, but I have no real complaints about the game. The second game, titled the Interlude, is just a quick 2-3 hour plot filler basically.
Then we come to After Years. It starts off with separate tales starring most of the cast from FFIV, their lengths ranging from 2-3 hours. Most of these are okay, if not a little monotonous. You basically just venture around, doing God knows what while trying to solve the same mystery in each tale. Because they are so short, you will get in monster fights every 3 steps to make sure you really get your fill of fighting. But this is all okay, except for Edward’s tale, the wuss of the game, who is stuck with even weaker soldiers to help fight you through his tale. This is the longest tale probably, and only because it takes forever to kill anything with this weak batch of people.
But anyway, the tales all end in one of two areas, combining all the cast into two separate groups. Once you beat all the tales, you unlock the final tale, (can’t remember what it is officially called). By the time you reach this tale, you are kind of burnt out and are thankful that only another 3 hour segment and the game will be completed.
Well…it was going into this game with that mentality that really made it annoying for me, for the final tale is not short. In fact it is around 20 hours long, which is how long it took me to beat the original game. So combined with all the tales, that’s around 40 hours, which is fine, but I felt tricked that it was so long.
That isn’t even the real issue though. I don’t mind long games at all, as long as the length is through reasonable approaches, like story progression or fun gameplay and the like. This is not the case with the After Years. They just made the game long because they could. There is nothing new and clever at all with this game. It is the same locales from IV, and features the same enemies and bosses.
In short, the game drags on and on, and on, and on, and on, and on. I could type that for hours and if you read it, then you might get a feel of how much the game drags. There isn’t even a well told story, so there is nothing interesting to keep you motivated to beat it. I was just beating it for the sake of beating it.
In the final tale, after doing all sorts of stuff, you go to a new moon and have to trek through a long 14 floors of some tower or something. It might even be longer. After you finally make it through that and you again think you are close to beating the game, you are treated to another 23 floors! Dear god…really?
And again, I stress that this wouldn’t be a problem if it was fun and interesting. It is just a monotonous, never ending adventure. And here is everything I recall that really make these some 37 or more floors even more annoying.
This is when the monsters randomly sneak up behind you and get in first hits. This also means your characters set in the back row are now in the front and your front row characters are in the back. Characters in the back row are usually there because they have ranged attacks and low armor values. So these back attacks, if the monsters gang up on one of these characters, ensure a speedy death for them.
This wouldn’t be so annoying, except I swear 90% of the random encounters start with back attacks. In fact, they are so often, I eventually switched the rows of my characters so I wouldn’t have to waste time switching their rows mid battle. But guess what? When I did this, the back attacks stopped happening. I rarely got a back attack. So I switched the rows back to normal, and then the back attacks started to happen overly frequent again. WTF!?!?!?!?
In addition to the game being long and dragged out, so are the battles. Even some regular enemies take forever to kill, these battles lasting close to 5 minutes sometimes. And mind you, when you get a random encounter every 1-3 steps, it becomes so tedious and time consuming. That is when the impatience and rage really starts to build. Floor by floor you go, fighting and fighting, unable to escape the relentless attacks. Oh my God, it is annoying!!
And you know what is even longer? The boss battles. Some of these take 10-15 minutes. It is just a marathon of how long you can keep your guys alive while slowly whittling down their health. And to do the most damage, you would use the most powerful spells and attacks, right? But guess what, that is incredibly time consuming as well. The more powerful the attack, the longer the animation is for the attack. Some attacks have an animation of over 10 seconds long. While they look impressive, it just adds to the length of the game horrendously. And just think, you have 5 characters, and sometimes the enemy can have just as much. If everyone involved uses some big attack, that’s like 2 minutes just for one round!
So in short, you get too many random encounters, that take too long to kill using attacks that have animations that are too long, to go through a tower that is too long, to fight a boss that is too long. And when you kill that boss, it takes like 15 seconds for the thing to explode or dissolve away. If this was a good game, you would take satisfaction away from killing it, reveling in it’s elongated destruction. But no… you are so impatient and angry at this point that each extra and unnecessary, tedious second is like someone twisting a knife in your gut.
And let me tell you how many bosses there are in those 40ish floors. Around 30, if not more. All you do in that big long tower or whatever it is is fight bosses. Over and over again. You fight nearly every boss from Final Fantasy 1-6 I’m pretty sure. I’m not even sure if there are any new bosses mixed in there. And to make matters worse, the random encounters become tougher and longer with each floor too! They eventually become all bosses themselves!
Oh yeah, and every time you kill a boss, you have to painstakingly listen to what each of your five characters individually think about that fight. I’m assuming they are thinking to themselves, because they all have nothing to do with each other. It’s like one says, “That was an interesting fight,” then another will say, “That creature had dark powers,” then another says, “It smells like death in here,” then another says “I need new socks.” Who cares? Just shut up and let me take 3 steps so I can fight another monster! This happens after EVERY BOSS!!!
While killing all the demons in hell and traversing through the tower, there are rest points. These usually spawn an entirely unnecessary story sequence which usually consists of two characters talking at night about more or less nothing. The scenes are so boring, so uninformative and so long, that it just all dumps onto the raging impatience of just wanting the putrid game to end. And there are probably about 20 of these scenes too.
And when you FINALLY get to the last boss and beat him, which takes about 30 seconds for him to explode, you think you beat the game right? Nope. Now you have to run from the place you are in, all the while getting in constant encounters with the still dying boss. This part just happens to annoy you further. It dangles the end of the game in front of you, while doing everything that annoyed you for the last 40 hours all at once.
And then when it is finally all over, you are treated to an incredibly long and boring ending. By this time you are so fed up with the game that you just want to see the final screen, save your game and never look at it again. But this never seems to happen, because my god, the ending is so long. The only thing more boring and longer that I can think of are the ending credits to any Assassin’s Creed game.
FF4 is a great game. But stay away from the After Years, because all it will do is shave a few years off your life.
I enjoy looking at top 10 lists, especially when they involve video games and such. It got me wondering what my top “whatever” are, so here I am, looking into my top 10 favorite Nintendo 3DS games. By my count, I have 61 3DS games, but of those 61, I have only played 40 of them, the rest are on my backlog. So of those 40 games, let’s see what my 10 favorite are.
This game took an interesting take on the New Super Mario Bros series, the focus being on collecting tons upon tons of coins, even including a few new power ups and items to help you. On top of that, it is a really great platformer that far surpasses the first New Super Mario Bros game for DS.
The fourth game in the unique RPG series is just as hilarious, creative and bizarre as the others. Mario has to jump into Luigi’s dreams to rescue some pillow people, and in the real world, the bros have their own mission to complete. The battle system is as fun as ever, with some really cool and creative attacks, especially in the dream world. A great game for the 3DS library.
The first numbered game in the Mario Kart series is also the first game to incorporate gliding and underwater driving, two nice additions. Tons of new and old tracks, carts, characters and other customization options make this the first handheld Mario Kart game that feels like a home console game.
The first handheld Paper Mario game takes the series back to it’s roots, sort of, well actually not. It’s back to turn based action in any case. It now has a world map like Super Mario World, no doubt to cater to the quick, on the go play style of handheld games. To attack, you must collect stickers of all shapes and sizes, learning to balance the small, weak ones with the huge, powerful ones, for only so many can fit in your sticker book. You get more pages as the game progresses though. This makes for a lot of fun, and some of the stickers are very creative and entertaining. The only negative thing I can think of is this is one of those games that you never know where the heck you are going, and some of the puzzles are near impossible to figure out.
The 3D visuals for this style of graphics is remarkable as well. Paper Mario is a game that should never be played without 3D. Unfortunately this will likely be the only game to ever be graced with such wonders.
Am I living in the 90’s again? This game feels and plays exactly like Yoshi’s Island for SNES. And that…is a wonderful, wonderful thing. There is some new additions to the gameplay, differentiating it, but keeping the core mechanics the same. It is truly a great sequel to a masterpiece. The only thing bad about it is the name.
All your favorite Sega, Capcom, and Namco-Bandai characters coming together to save the world (or worlds)? And with a side of countless scantily clad women and big bouncing boobs? How could you ever go wrong? Combine those exciting elements with great grid based RPG gameplay and you can’t at all. This game is fantastic in nearly every way. It also provides around 50 hours of gameplay, so prepare to immerse yourself in something amazing!
I was surprised how good this game was. It is a sequel to the beloved Link to the Past, and does everything that game did right and added it’s own unique twists as well, such as the ability to traverse the dungeons in any order and turning into some painting figure. The game is a complete masterpiece, just like its predecessor.
What do you get when you take one of the best games of all time and update it? Well, an updated version of one of the best games of all time, plus it’s now in the palm of your hand! With improved controls via the touchscreen and gyro sensors, along with updated visuals and other changes, Ocarina of Time has never looked or played so well.
This game plays just like all the other great Kingdom Hearts games, but this time you get to switch between Sora and Riku while they each progress through their own separate campaigns. The game features tons of new worlds, enemies and allies, and a new fighting mechanic known as flow motion. And story wise, this game is one of the best in the series, mainly because it finally answers all the questions that you might have had from all the other games and finalizes everything out and leaves only one unopened door. That door being the long awaited Kingdom Hearts 3. Everything else has been settled and the game ends with setting the scene for the third and most likely final game in this specific story arc.
The fourth entry in the series proves to be the best, thanks to its huge and diverse roster of characters and stages. It is also a wonderful thing to have Smash in your pocket for whenever you wish to play it.
There are a ton of collectibles and trophies. The newest idea, and probably the worst, is the inclusion of somewhat different special moves for every original character, which is nice if that was something you were hoping to mess around with. The trouble is they are so tedious to collect. You will likely get the same ones 10 times over before getting one you don’t have. Aside from that, it’s the Smash Bros gameplay we all know and love. And to me, it’s all about the fighting, so the more characters and stages, the better the games. Who cares about all that single player fuzz? Though there is certainly a ton of it if that’s your thing.
This is the first Smash Bros game to include DLC as well. There are multiple characters and stages available, and countless Mii costumes, so the fun never stops.
There you have it, my favorite games in the 3Ds library, with Smash Bros being my favorite. Thanks for reading!
So this past Friday was a pretty relevant day. In case you haven’t heard, Nintendo’s newest console, the home/portable hybrid called Switch was released. Today, I just want to talk about the system itself. What I like and dislike, etc. And I must say, while it is exciting for any company to come out with a new system, it is a whole lot more exciting when it happens to be a Nintendo console, strictly because they offer something different, new and exciting. It gives gamers a chance to experience something they really haven’t before. It isn’t all about graphics. It’s about the experience, about the gameplay. I seem to be in the minority when I say, I buy video games to play them, not look at them.
Any who, let’s get back to talking about the Nintendo Switch.
To start off, I was amazed how small it is. Even though I knew how small it was from videos and such, I was still completely shocked, for it is much smaller in person than you would expect. The whole console is a screen slightly bigger than the screen of the Wii U Gamepad. I’ve actually seen some of the ridiculously large cell phones come close to the size of it. Once you slip on the Joy Con controllers, that adds like 2 inches (if that) to each side. That is your entire console. By far and away the smallest home console ever made. Placing it in the dock, which connects it to your TV, only fattens it up by another inch or two. So the whole console is roughly 9 inches long with the controllers connected, four inches high, and about 2 inches wide. Those are some nice dimensions.
Wii U Gamepad and Switch Console
Switch Console with Controllers and Dock with Wii U Gamepad
It is welcome news for someone like me, who has an entertainment stand a bit on the small side. I’ve already got a Ps2, PS3, PS4, SNES, N64, 2 Wii’s, Wii U and a DVD Player hooked up to the TV and I’ve more or less run out of space to put anything else in there. The small size of the Switch couldn’t have come at a better time. I can easily fit it anywhere. It makes me pray that every console in the future should downsize. While the Switch isn’t the most powerful machine out there, it is mighty impressive how small they made it nonetheless. Microsoft and Sony should follow suit, downsizing the technology before throwing out these clunky machines, only to resell them smaller years later. But those slimmed down versions are monstrous compared to Switch.
Now I just talked about how small the console itself is, but what really is shocking is how small the controller is. And I’m talking about when you slide the Joy Cons on the controller dock to play it like a normal controller. It is this tiny little guy! It took a bit to get used to using it, because the buttons are closer together than normal. But after a minute or so, you get comfortable with it. Even playing with one tiny Joy Con becomes comfortable after a short while.
Standard controller set up in my hands
PS4 and Swtich controllers
While there are many ways to play the Switch, my personal favorite is having the console docked to play on the TV and just holding each Joy Con in each hand, without the controller dock. It gives you a satisfying feeling of freedom. Imagine it is like the Wii Remote and Nunchuk, but without the wire tethering them together. You are not restricted to one space like you are using any other controller in the world either. You can rest your arms anywhere, have each hand in different positions and still play normally. This is especially welcome, since I have two cats that love to sit all over me when I play games, thus forcing me to move my controller to an awkward position to play around the cats, or having to adjust them so I can still play. Now, thanks to the freedom of the Joy Cons, I can have my arms where ever I want, and the cats can lay however or where ever they want.
And you know what else is small? The game cartridges. The cases are tiny, smaller even than a PSP game, or thinner, but taller than a 3Ds game case. And the actual cartridge is about half the size of a 3DS cartridge!
Now I haven’t had too much time to play around with the Switch, but I will talk about what I’ve noticed once the system is on.
Firstly, just connecting it was a problem because the included HDMI cord is too small. It’s about maybe three feet long, but when you have to weave the thing all over the place, it ended up being a few inches short.
So what’s it like when you turn it on? Right off, I don’t like how they set up the app selection in the main menu of the console. It is now like the PS4 or 3DS where everything is just lined up in one long line. I know in the 3DS you can change this to have multiple apps appear on screen in 4×4 blocks or more. I don’t know if you can do it on PS4 or not, but it’s really annoying to have to scroll through 20 different things to find an app or game you haven’t used in a while. I loved the method the Wii U and Wii used. There was like 16 apps or so on the screen. One button scrolled to the next page, where 16 more things would show up. I have a lot of digital games on my Wii U, and they are all confined to 3 or 4 pages. That’s close to 100 apps you can choose from in no time. With the Switch, it looks like you would have to scroll through each one, one by one until you find what you are looking for. I despise doing it in PS4, and I will here. You may be able to change this though, I haven’t looked into it yet.
Another thing that bothered me is there is no music in the main menu or on the eShop. The eShop itself is rather pitiful. You only have the option of buying 9 games, but hey it’s brand new, so I expect both the menu and especially the eShop to drastically improve once more games and updates come out.
Now speaking of games, how did the Switch do with launch titles? Well, I’ve got to say, it’s terrible. Zelda is the best launch title you could hope for, but other than that, there is nothing particularly a must have. There isn’t really anything at all. 1,2 Switch looks pretty cool, but the other games aren’t really my cup of tea, so whatever. What makes it worse, is Zelda isn’t even actually a true Switch title. It’s just a more advanced version of a Wii U game that was supposed to release almost 2 years ago! What were they doing this whole time? We’ve been hearing about the code name NX for like four years! They couldn’t make some good games for it by launch?
Lack of launch games don’t really bother me though. Games will come and when they do, I’ll get them. I don’t need to have everything right out of the gate, but it’s important to most people, so I thought I’d mention it.
But speaking of launch titles, this whole argument you can find between gamers on the internet with the importance of launch titles really cracks me up. Most anywhere, you will find someone say “I won’t waste $300 on a console with no games. I’ll wait until they come out with more before I buy it.” Or they’ll say things like this… especially pertaining to Wii U, “there aren’t enough games to justify buying the console.”
This argument really makes no sense. I understand what they mean, but it honestly translates to “I can’t waste $300 because it doesn’t come accompanied with 5-10 $60 games I can buy alongside it.” The other example with Wii U translates to “I don’t have money to waste on the console because there isn’t enough money for me to spend on it after I buy it to justify it.”
What sense does that make? If you aren’t going to jump into the console immediately, then yes, it is smarter to wait for a good bundle or price drops in games, but if the argument is you don’t want to waste money, that is just stupid. If you know you are going to buy it eventually and there are games you want, then you might as well get it. But to each his own. I don’t really care what people do, but don’t bash a console for stupid, nonsensical reasons.
Well, I’m getting off topic here. That is everything I have noticed with the short time I’ve used the Switch. It can only get better from here! If you are one of the people who want tons of games, then I would suggest waiting. If you don’t care, then pick one up, you won’t be sorry.
But remember, the more support for a console, especially early on, the more likely more games and support from developers there will be!
Oh my god…what an improvement. The game literally took everything I complained about with the first and fixed it. This is a game I can see people liking and spawning dozens of sequels from.
Not to mention, it added a whole lot of unique qualities not often seen in RPG’s such as every character being able to use any weapon or spell. The leveling system is different too, having to constantly use spells and attacks to upgrade magic and weapon skills, as well as your base stats. It’s the only game in recent memory that I was excited when I got hit by things, because that meant you were that much closer to increasing your defense and hit points.
The only gripe I have with this system is it takes way too long to level up some things. Hit points go up easy enough, but your magic points take forever, as well as spells and weapon skills. The max you can get any of these skills to is 16, but you won’t get anywhere near that. I completed the game with only one kind of high spell…Cure at level 10, and that’s because you have to use it all the time. My weapons skills were level 10 as well.
The game doesn’t make you grind all that much, which is a wonderful thing. I really hate the games that make you grind for hours. This does it very balanced, until the last dungeon. My god is it hard. I was always strong enough to get through any dungeon without too much difficulty throughout the entire game, but then you get to hell or whatever and you find yourself very underpowered.
But the best part about that is you just fight some enemies there, they beat the hell out of you and you become stronger, so I was able to progress somewhat fast regardless, and by the time I made it to the last boss, none of the enemies gave me a hard time anymore. But if you want to get to the last boss, you better set aside a few free hours. I mean, holy crap!! You have to go through a tough and lengthy cave of hell and when you finally get through that, bruised and bleeding, you find yourself in an entire castle you have to climb now, nearly twice as big as the already lengthy cave. It takes forever to get to the boss! Fortunately it was my day off and I could sit there for a long time to beat it.
That is the problem with both these games. The points in between saves are wayyy to long. Throughout the week, I really only play for 20 minutes at a time. I constantly had to shut off the game in the middle of a dungeon, or just leave it on until I had time to complete it. It’s so annoying! And if you die, you are screwed. It’s ridiculous. You have to start all over again. Thank god for the inclusion of memo saves in Origins for PlayStation or I would never have the patience to play these games.
Overall, Final Fantasy is a piece of crap, but Final Fantasy II is great. Now I am on to Final Fantasy IV!