My Top Video Games: The Best of the Best

Over the past few years, I have been ranking the top 10 games on most of the systems I own. Now it is time to rank the game that I chose as number 1 game from each of these, to find out who the best of the best is! I’ve already talked about each game, so I will just attach a link to their respective original posts if you are interested in the games they beat out and such.

 

#15

Sonic & Knuckles

Sonic_&_Knuckles_cover

Sega Genesis

Sonic Team/ Sega

1994

 

 

#14

Metroid II: Return of Samus

Metroid_II_US_boxart

Game Boy

Nintendo

1991

 

#13

Mega Man X4

mmx4

PlayStation

Capcom

1997

 

#12

Star Wars Jedi Knight: Jedi Academy

Jedi_Academy_PC

PC

Raven Software/ LucasArts

2003

#11

inFAMOUS

Infamous-cover

 

PlayStation 3

SUCKER PUNCH/ SCEA

2009

 

#10

Super Mario Bros. 3

Super_Mario_Bros._3_coverart

 

NES

Nintendo

1990

 

#9

Metroid: Zero Mission

Metroid_--_Zero_Mission_(box_art)

Game Boy Advance

Nintendo

2004

 

#8

Mario & Luigi: Bowser’s Inside Story

Bowsersinsidestorycover

DS

Alphadream Corporation/ Nintendo

2009

 

#7

Super Mario World

Super_Mario_World_Coverart

SNES

Nintendo

1991

 

#6

Super Mario 3D World

super_Mario_3D_World

 

Wii U

Nintendo

2013

 

#5

Super Smash Bros. Brawl

smash brawl

Wii

Game Arts/ Nintendo

2008

 

 

#4

Super Smash Bros. For 3DS

smash 3ds

3DS

Bandai Namco Games/ Nintendo

2014

 

#3

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time

ocarina_of_time_box_art

N64

Nintendo

1998

#2

Kingdom Hearts II

kh2 cover

PlayStation 2

Square Enix

2006

 

 

#1

Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door

paper mario tyd

GameCube

Intelligent Systems/ Nintendo

2004

 

 

And there you have it!

This isn’t a list of my favorite games of all time, but just my favorite game from each system.

Kingdom Hearts III- The End of Something I Have Cherished Most of my Life

Don’t worry, this post contains no spoilers.

I fell in love with Kingdom Hearts the second I played it. It came to me at the right time in my life. I had always wanted to like RPG’s but for the most part found them far too unnecessarily complicated with all the materials, controls, traveling, stats, and spells. I wanted to love them, for I like big stories with a bunch of characters and all that, but it was never worth the time getting to learn the complicated systems of the games.

Then Kingdom Hearts found me when I was around 12 or 13 years old, and I had been delivered what I had always hoped for. An RPG that takes all the best elements and dumbs them down significantly, while combining it with action adventure, my favorite genre.

On top of the ridiculously clever gameplay and opportunity to visit places from the movies I watched so often growing up, I found there was an incredible story being told throughout, making the series original characters some of the best fictional characters I have ever seen, somehow completely overshadowing the beloved Disney characters.

I beat the game and loved it. When KH2 came out, I had missed Chain of Memories and found the story all quite confusing and overwhelming at first, but despite having no idea what was going on, by the end of the game, I gathered the gist of it and realized I had just finished one of the best games I have ever played, with THE best story line, told in a positively convoluted, confusing, and delightful way that I adored.

bbs knights

I remember beating it, watching the secret movie for BBS and wondering what the heck it could all possibly mean. The moment I beat the game, I immediately took to the internet to research Kingdom Hearts 3 and when it would be coming out. Little did I know that I would be waiting for over a decade.

But that’s not to say we weren’t treated to nothing in all that time. Firstly, I immediately got hold of Chain of Memories, which helped ease some of my confusion, but then I still waited for several years to get a new game…a DS game by the name 358/2 Days. Immediately I loved it just by reading the title, it was so ridiculously cryptic and weird, the things I love about KH. This game finally told us what all that Roxas business in the beginning of the second game was about, and gave us a deeper look into all the black coated fiends you slaughtered in the two previous games.

Kingdom Hearts Organisation_XIII

Then to my delight we were treated to another game, Birth By Sleep, less than a year later. But I soon found myself despairing, for it was a PSP exclusive, something I didn’t own. But forget that, I needed to play it. At last I would learn what that secret video from KH2 was all about, so I bought the KH special edition PSP solely for that game and still have no regrets in doing so. I played this game for hours upon hours. I don’t even want to know how many.

And then again in a year, we got another game that finally told us what the message in a bottle said at the end of KH2 and at long last advancing the story beyond 2, not a prequel to it.

3 games in the span of a year. We were finally being rewarded for all our patience.

Then we had to wait nearly another 2 years for the game that set us up for 3, the big one, the conclusion.

khdddgp

After completing Dream Drop Distance, I had that same feeling I did when I first beat KH2. But the PS3 came and went with no KH3 to be seen.

Finally, after a 7 year wait, the game is released and I couldn’t believe it when I started to play it. And then I found I couldn’t stop. Finally, after a week, I beat it and the conflict that started back when I was 12 years old has finally been concluded now, when I am 29, nearly 17 years after the first game.

I loved the game, and I loved the ending, but now I feel so empty. What do you do when something you have looked forward to for more than half your life ends?

Yes, there is more to look forward to, but it’s like I have finally grown up. The 12 year old kid in me has finally moved on, vanished like a heart disappearing up into Kingdom Hearts. I am ecstatic that I beat the game, yet at the same time, was so terrified of beating it the closer I got to the end.

I realize this is just a video game, but the story and it’s characters have always meant so much to me, beyond any book, game, movie or any other form of media has ever reached me.

I feel similar every time I beat a Kingdom Hearts game.  It’s like spending time with those characters was something truly great to me and the time I spend playing these games will always be cherished. But like how Sora has to say goodbye to his friends every time he leaves a world, I too must close this chapter on my life, and make room for a new adventure.

So I guess I am trying to say, thank you Tetsuya Nomura for bringing to life such a fantastic story, Square-Enix for making such a fun game, and Disney, for allowing them to use your characters to kill a bunch of monsters.

If you make one person feel the way I do about KH, on any form of media, for any product, then the creators of that media have done their job and should be proud.

Thanks again, I can’t wait to see what else you bring us!

kingdom hearts kairi_and_sora_wallpaper_by_vamp4ever22-d4jlz2d

Is A Good Lock-On Target System In Video Games Really That Hard To Accomplish?

Think about it. Think of all the games that use a lock on mechanic. Starting from like Ocarina of Time to pretty much every action game since. The worst part is…Ocarina of Time is probably one of the better systems out there.

Z-targeting_(Ocarina_of_Time).png

Seriously. How many games have you played where the lock-on system is more a frustration than anything? If you have multiple enemies in view or in the room, you will most likely lock on to the one you want to target the least, probably some enemy barely on screen and so far away that none of your attacks have the slightest chance to hit him. You can try to change the target, say, to the enemy standing right next to you or in front of you, and you will painfully lock onto anything but that one you desperately want to kill as it’s wailing on you, steadily taking down your life.

There are dozens of games that have this problem, but I can’t think of many off the top of my head. But if I went through my games, rest assured I could pick out quite a few.

The first one I can think of is Kingdom Hearts. The lock on system suffers from the problems I just described. It’s so bad that the only time I use it is on a boss or highly mobile enemy when all the others are dead. This way the camera will follow your target.

Thankfully this is remedied sort of by the fact that you don’t need to lock onto enemies, because when you attack, the character will automatically attack something you are facing instead of just swinging the keyblade pointlessly. This is especially helpful in the later games, when something is far away, you will do a crazy jumping attack to reach them.

But two of the worst games I can think of that I have played recently are Hyrule Warriors and Megaman Legends 2.

hwl

Hyrule Warriors, you try to lock onto something nearby, and you will end up targeting something halfway across the battlefield. You press the button to switch targets, and it will bounce around to the four least desired enemies you want to target, constantly going back to the initial first target you didn’t want to begin with. Sometimes you have to scroll through these enemies four times before it finally locks onto the enemy right in front of you. I believe there are other frustrations out of this, but I haven’t played it in like a year, but I know I was always cursing at the abysmal system.

mmlegends2-11

Megaman Legends 2, I have to say, has the absolute worst lock-on system I have ever seen. This is not a hard game, honestly, almost every time I died was because of the lock on system.

The game claims it will lock onto the closest enemy. This is simply not true. You lock onto anything it feels like. To switch targets, you have to release the lock-on button and press it again until you get the target you are searching for.

This effect also happens every time you get hit. When you take damage, you stop targeting for a moment, despite still holding the button. When you recover, he locks onto a new target as if you intended to switch targets. You will even target things in different rooms or through walls. Many times in the cheap, annoying game, you will be surrounded by enemies out of nowhere, or get attacked immediately by a swarm of them the moment you walk into a room. You try to fight, but you are constantly getting hit, switching targets rapidly so that your view is spinning all over, all the while being bounced around, unable to move, and before you know it you are dead.

And if enemies have a projectile that you can lock onto, like a missile, then you better pray you don’t get hit. There are some enemies that you fight that constantly shoot missiles that fly all around. All you want to do is shoot the missile spewing guys, but can’t because there are tons of little guys jumping into you, and then your targeting bounces around to all the missiles, not the little guys hitting you or the missile launching a-hole standing directly in front of you. After a vomit inducing camera ride, you are dead.

Yes, Legends 2 absolutely takes the cake when it comes to bad targeting systems. If that is the reason you are getting killed in a game, then you know it is a complete failure.

Kingdom Hearts Series Ranked

In celebration of the extremely long awaited Kingdom Hearts III (it’s hard to believe it’s nearly here) I am going to rank all the games from worst to best in my opinion. I will just be listing the base games, not all the Re:this or that or Final Mix versions and compilation games.

So without further ado, here we go!

 

*UPDATE 2/8/19* Added Kingdom Hearts III to list.

#10

Kingdom Hearts Unchained X

2016, Mobile

Times Beaten- N/A

This is a mobile phone game where you collect and upgrade medals of characters from Kingdom Hearts, Disney, and Final Fantasy. You use these medals to perform special attacks. The more powerful you become, the more quests you can take on and the more rewards you will reap. It is a never ending soul sucking game, but I continue to play it everyday…such is my devotion to Kingdom Hearts. For a free to play game, the devs are extremely generous in giving you a lot of stuff, and overall, it’s probably the best mobile game out there.

#9

Kingdom Hearts .2 Birth By Sleep

– A fragmentary passage-

2017, PlayStation 4

Times Beaten- 1

This is a brand new entry included in Kingdom Hearts 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue (rolls right off the tongue) that takes place right after Birth By Sleep and uncovers a lot of mysteries leading up to Kingdom Hearts 1. Well some mysteries anyway.

This is actually a fantastic game, which really gives us a taste of what to expect from Kingdom Hearts III. The only reason it is so low on the list is because of how short it is (less than 3 hours).

#8

Kingdom Hearts: Chain of Memories

GameBoy Advanced, 2004- PlayStation 2, 2008

Times Beaten- GBA 2, PS2, 2

This, gameplay wise, is not very fun. The game itself is very long, especially with the Riku story. It wouldn’t be so bad if the card system was better, but it is so annoying to have your cards broken all the time, making the game very grindy and monotonous. The story is very interesting however, which makes it all worth it, taking place immediately after the first game.

#7

Kingdom Hearts Re: Coded

DS, 2011

Times Beaten- 1

Taking place right after KH2, this takes us on a very unusual journey with some rather differentish gameplay. I wasn’t all that crazy about this one, and the story did little for the overall arc.

#6

Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days

DS, 2009

Times Beaten- 2

This is where the games really start to get incredible. This varies the gameplay up a bit, having you run missions for Organization XIII. There’s an awesome multiplayer where you can play as all the members, and the story, which takes place during the later end of 1, all of CoM and leads directly into 2, fills in a whole lot of confusing things that occur during CoM and especially 2. And the game is incredibly fun to boot!

#5

Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance

3DS, 2012

Times Beaten- 2

Taking place after Re:Coded, this one takes us right up into KH3. The gameplay is quite good, the story rather mindblowing, and the dream eaters…meh…Fortunately the game is so stinking fun it’s easy to forget about the constant care of those needy creatures. And for the first time, you switch off between playing as Sora and Riku, which is most welcome.

#4

Kingdom Hearts Birth By Sleep

PlayStation Portable, 2010

Times Beaten- 4

I have easily put the most time into this game. Taking place like 10 years before the first game, you play as 3 wannabe keyblade masters and experience how each of them is set on a different path that leads to nowhere good. The story, gameplay, and skill customization is wonderful. This is the reason I bought a PSP and have no regrets.

#3

Kingdom Hearts

PlayStation 2, 2002

Times Beaten- Around 5

I can still remember playing this for the first time after refusing to have any interest in it for over a year. When my brother convinced me to play it, I fell in love immediately. The story gripped me so, the Disney characters were awesome, seeing them kill stuff was even more awesome.

As far as gameplay goes, this has some of the worst in the series, but it still holds up enough. It was the first in the series so it gets a break. It’s still a great game and one I still get excited about playing.

#2

Kingdom Hearts II

PlayStation 2, 2005

Times Beaten- Around 4

This is by far and away the best game in the series. The gameplay is absolutely perfect. There are so many abilities to use that keep it fresh, but even just mashing the X button is highly satisfying. The story is as wonderful as ever, leaving us all dying to see what happens next, until Re: Coded came out that is. This is definitely a masterpiece to go down in history.

#1

Kingdom Hearts III

PlayStation 4, 2019

Times Beaten- 1

The conclusion to the Xehanort saga, this game focuses on Sora and company looking for all the other characters that have had relevance in the series. It’s a fun ride, with interesting connections and reasoning for going to each world, whether it be a clever connection to the world itself or the characters themselves. There are less worlds, but they are much, much bigger.

The best part of this game is that it takes the gameplay of KH2, and just makes it better, with all sorts of wild attacks and transformations that are awesome looking, on top of being powerful. I couldn’t stop playing the game. It is so much fun and so diverse. Well worth the wait!

And that’s it!

If you have never played these games, I highly recommend getting the story so far compilation and prepare to have your mind blown with exceptional gameplay and a crazy, amazing story.

Do You Find Yourself Losing Patience With Video Games The Older You Get?

I’m just curious if people are experiencing this as well. I’m nearly 30 years old now and noticed that the past few years I have had no patience for games…like at all. Granted, I’m a very impatient person to begin with, but I just can’t be bothered with a lot of them now.

I still beat every game I buy, (unless it is absolutely terrible/unplayable) but it seems like I rarely find one that I actually enjoy.

I just played a couple Fatal Frame games and Silent Hill for the first time, and really did not like them. If I was younger, I would have loved them. I just found them so boring. But it confirmed something I have been thinking lately…

I am a huge Resident Evil fan, but lately I’ve been wondering if I would like them now if I just played them for the first time like Silent Hill. Probably not, and this is because any game that involves you walking around looking for hidden items to place into spots to unlock other secrets just annoys me anymore. I didn’t mind walking all over the mansion in the original Resident Evil trying to find obscure keys and then trying to remember what door they belonged to when I did finally find them.

But now, forget it, I walk around for maybe five minutes, throw my hands up and say “screw it, I’ve had enough,” and immediately use a walkthrough to beat the game. This is what I did for the Fatal Frame games and Silent Hill. I just can’t be bothered to sit there and waste time trying to figure stuff out.

Other games that drive me crazy are the hard games that force you to use trial and error to beat it. I used to like this when I was younger and it always felt satisfying to me when I did beat them, but now it drives me crazy. And this is because somewhere down the line, I developed an extreme hate for repeating myself, this includes words I say, actions I do, and games I play. Once I do something, I want to be done with it. I can’t stand when I die, and get sent 10-15 minutes back and have to work my way all the way to the part I died, just to get three seconds further and die again, learning the game as I go, until I struggle through to the next checkpoint, only to repeat the process all over again. I HATE IT!!!

I credit all this impatience to the fact that I have severely less free time now than I did as a child and the ever growing backlog of games I have (which is nearing 500 now). I don’t want to waste my time playing the same parts over and over, or waste my time looking around like a lost child for something I don’t even really know I’m supposed to be looking for.

I just want to get through the games and enjoy them while doing so. This rarely seems to happen for me nowadays. Though I guess if the game is truly good, then I don’t mind doing all of the stuff I have no patience for (sort of), so maybe the problem is I just don’t like the games I’m playing? But again, I don’t even really like video games anymore. And yet I still buy them and play them all the time. It’s like a cursed drug!!

Does anybody else find themselves in similar situations as they get older?

My Top 10 Favorite Game Reveals From e3 2018

Another e3 has just about wrapped up and pretty much everybody revealed some incredible titles, so I am going to share the 10 I am most excited about! Note that I am only listing games that were revealed for the first time, or I had no idea were in the works.

 

#10-NioH 2 (PS4)

NioH-2

 

#9- Tom Clancy’s The Division 2 (PS4, XB1, PC)

division 2

 

#8- For Honor: Marching Fire (PS4, XB1, PC)

for honor marching fire

#7- Wolfenstein: Youngblood (PS4, XB1, PC)

wolfenstein-youngblood

 

#6- Super Mario Party (Switch)

super_mario_party_switch_reveal_art

 

#5- Control (PS4)

control

 

#4- Doom Eternal (PS4, XB1, PC)

doom-eternal

 

#3 Daemon x Machina (Switch)

DaemonxMachinaTrailer_Nintendo

 

#2 Devil May Cry 5 (PS4, XB1)

DMC5-Ann_06-10-18

 

#1 Jedi: Fallen Order

This didn’t even really get an actual reveal but was talked about vaguely during EA’s conference. Nonetheless, I am most excited for it because it sounds sort of like Force Unleashed, except you play as a Jedi instead of a Sith apprentice.

 

 

 

My Most Wanted For Smash Bros Switch

e3 is less than a week away and I couldn’t be more excited, but mostly I am excited for Tuesdays Nintendo online video, where there is sure to be lots of exciting news, none more so than (hopefully) a good deal of information on the new smash bros game.

Many people still seem doubtful that this is a new game, but rather a port of the Wii U/3DS versions, which would be a huge let down after all the hype, so I seriously doubt it is. Plus when they initially announced it, they seemed to go out of their way to title the trailer “Nintendo Switch Super Smash Bros” instead of Super Smash Bros for Nintendo switch, which were how the Wii U and 3DS games were titled.

So anyway, there are thousands of characters people want to see appear in these games each time one comes out. Brawl gave me several characters I wanted added (Toon Link, Wolf, Sonic). After that game, anything seemed possible, especially since they added so many newcomers (though I think Little Mac was the only one added that I really wanted in 4…oh and Mega Man…and Shulk…k that one delivered too).

So here are some characters I would love to see…and no…Ridley and King K. Rool are not going to be on this list. I am not opposed to literally any character becoming playable, and honestly I get excited for any newcomer, even if I don’t know who they are, but I would be a tad more excited if these upcoming characters appear.

First and foremost, I would love to see every character that has been cut back in it, which means Snake, Wolf and especially the Ice Climbers, who were only cut because of the limitations of the 3DS. The only ones that don’t need to come back are Young Link, Toon Link is a perfect replacement and Pichu…cuz why?

And now onto the newcomers I would love to see.

Paper Mario (Paper Mario series obviously)

paper_mario_wii

I know, another Mario character, but he would just be so cool. With a ton of partners and sweet special moves to pull from, he could be a whole lot of fun.

 

 

 

 

Dark Samus (Metroid Prime series)

DarkSamus

Aside from looking cool, Dark Samus has an impressive array of powers and abilities, some of them demonstrated as an assist trophy in the last game. Now make it fully playable!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simon Belmont (Castlevania series)

Simon_Belmont_-_01

 

This has been a third party character I’ve wanted for a while. His legacy on NES, his chain and special weapons all make him a great candidate for smash.

 

 

 

 

 

Sora (Kingdom Hearts series)

Sora_KHIII

I love Kingdom Hearts, so to see the main character in one of my favorite games of all time would be magical. Again, he has an enormous move set to pull from to make him a worthy adversary against Nintendo’s finest.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Luigi (Luigi’s Mansion)

luigi-s-mansion-luigis-mansion-32298744-560-576

Give Luigi a moveset based off his Mansion games. There is no need to have him a partial Mario clone anymore, though I was thrilled his final smash in 4 used the poltergust.

 

 

 

 

 

Sonic and Tails (Sonic series…duh)

sonic and tails

Instead of just Sonic, let these two be a team like the Ice Climbers, since in the Genesis games, they functioned in the exact way the Ice Climbers do now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Viewtiful Joe (game with the same name)

Viewtiful_Joe

He’s awesome and has a nice, crazy moveset that would fit right in.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wonder Red (Wonderful 101)

Wonder-Red

He is from the team that made Viewtiful Joe, so I guess I would rather see Red, for he is actually a Nintendo character. Maybe give him a combination of all the other wonder’s power which would give him a truly awesome moveset.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dixie Kong (Donkey Kong Country Series)

dixie kong

 

Either as a team with Diddy or stand alone character, I want her.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Zero (Mega Man X series…not the Zero series look)

zero

I would love to have X, Mega Man and Zero all be in it, but hey, Zero would be a cool addition if I had to choose one, after Mega Man, that is.

 

 

 

 

 

 

And those are just some of my more hopefuls that came to mind right off the bat. Paper Mario is my most wanted for sure, ever since leading up to Brawl. Of course there are dozens more I would love to see in it too.

But I will not be disappointed with who they add, as long as there are very little cuts and plenty of additions, I will be thrilled.

 

What Do You Look For In a Gaming Review?

This is something I am rather curious about, for it is amazing how diverse and critical game reviews are…that is…game reviews written by the players, not the critics and what not.

I personally don’t care about others opinions on games, but I browse through reviews to get a general gist of what the game is like, and most importantly, in terms of PC games, if there are frequent crashes and other errors on certain OS’ and such.

The reviews vary from short and sweet to big drawn out, extremely detailed stories.

The short ones essentially say… “Fun game” or “Do not buy” where as the long ones just tell you everything you will experience from beginning to end with no spoilers.

I find it best not to take any review seriously, for they are that person’s opinion, and therefore one must be aware that yours will likely differ on more than a few matters. It is because of this that I quite often buy games with bad reviews, and I usually wind up enjoying them in the same way I sometimes hate highly praised games…it’s all up to what you think, so I never look at reviews for movies or pretty much anything in the entertainment biz.

But gamers are so critical on games. Many expect every game to be AAA masterpieces and if it isn’t then they tear it to shreds. This even goes for obvious, low budgeted games that couldn’t possibly stand a chance against Call of Duty, Mario or Halo and the likes.

The first thing most gamers mention is graphics. I stop reading a review at this point and try another one. To me, graphics should not even be mentioned. I get that it is the most obvious thing to start with because it is really what you see first, but a game is meant to be played, so shouldn’t the review focus on how the game plays? I want to know if it is fun, not how pretty it is. And I’ve seen plenty of great games get murdered online by gamers due to poor graphics. This makes no sense to me.

Length is another one people gripe about. I understand if you spend 50-60 bucks on a game, you want a good investment of time to justify the purchase, but again, these low budget developers who make games for under 10 bucks that give you 3-5 hours of gameplay are always ripped to shreds. Gamers need to understand that not everything is going to live up to your favorite, high budget AAA title, and given the huge diversity in development teams and funds, reviews should really only answer one thing…is the game fun?

That is all we need to know. Does it work, is it playable, is it fun. That’s that. It’s okay if they briefly mention some other things, but the meat should be all about how fun it is, and no, bad graphics, a poorly written story and bad voice acting don’t take away from the fun of a game, just the overall quality…though speaking of bad voice acting, I’m not sure what people consider good voice acting, because literally every game I have ever seen has been criticized for bad voice acting. There is just no pleasing people…

If gamers adjust their expectations, I feel they would enjoy games a lot more frequently and thus avoid steering other gamers away from potentially good games. After all, I am usually pleasantly surprised by games that have terrible reviews.

But anyway, this is all just my opinion, just like game reviews. Other people may want different things out of reviews, and if graphics are really what makes games fun for someone, than who am I to tell them differently?

The point of a review is to state your opinion and experience of the game, so naturally all of them should be taken with a grain of salt as they say.

Lastly, while we are on the subject of opinions, I must say how I am constantly under attack because my opinions differ from that which the majority of people feel. This goes for things outside of video games as well. I have been told many times that I am stupid or this or that because I wrote a review or voiced my opinion and then I’m told something along the lines of “The rest of the world likes this, so why would you even consider it being bad?”

This gets me every time. So because the rest of the world likes it, I have no choice but to fall in line? And the sad part is, there are countless people that do. It’s baffling how afraid people are of stepping outside of the “in” circle. It makes me wonder how many people actually like something or are just trying to fit in with everyone else.

But I think I’m getting a bit too deep into this. These are my thoughts, and I’m just curious what other people look for in reviews or what they put into their own.

 

 

How Well Do You Take Care Of Your Games?

I am genuinely curious about the care people show to their games, and this is because when I buy used games on sites such as ebay, the amount of ware and tare on these games has generally been fairly varied. A lot of the times I get the games in splendid condition, maybe a scratch or two on the disk, a cracked case, you know, cosmetic stuff that is bound to happen, but also pay a bit extra for them to be in that condition.

But then half the stuff I look at and avoid buying unless there is no alternative look like these games have been through a war or two, plus a few trips through the washing machine.

Like what in the blazes are people doing with these games? The cover art inside the case is trashed. Why is it even out of the case? The booklets are soggy or missing. What are you doing with them? Do people really take them out and use them so much that they are torn to shreds and/or never return them and  become lost. Do people use them for toilet paper?

Some game discs are so scratched it appears that they never reenter their case after being taken out the first time. And this I have personally witnessed. Some of my friends will just pop the game out, throw it off to the side and then put another one in. They repeat this process until there are a dozen or more games thrown about the living room, and then they wonder why they can’t find a game or why it doesn’t work.

And for old cartridge games, the cover labels are practically dissolved down to nothing. How does this happen? I was being serious when I said they looked like they went through a washing machine. It is the only thing I can think of to make some of these games like this.

img_0322.jpgHere is a game I bought about a year ago on ebay. What happened to it?  How did it get so messed up? I had to buy this for there was no other choice, and I was honestly, extremely surprised that the game even worked. And this is in fairly good shape compared to some that I have seen!

 

 

 

banjo-tooie---n64-game__39831.1471352702
Here’s what a well taken care of cartridge looks like…

 

Like, I just have to know what people are doing with these games.

I personally take wonderful care of my games. 99% of them I could wrap in plastic and sell them as brand new. And that other 1% could come pretty close as well. The only signs of use are the old cartridge SNES games mainly, because as they age they become discolored from the original gray. And this isn’t even a sign of use, so much as just a sign of being old.

I keep everything in a case at all times, and keep them neat and organized so nothing happens to them.

So I would just like to hear how you treat your games. Are they in good shape? If not, how did they became like some of the monstrosities I have seen?

 

 

Final Fantasy IV: The After Years Gripes

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 Collection for 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.

Back Attacks…

FFIV_PSP_Back_Attack.pngThis 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.