My Top 10 Years In Gaming

Over the years I have created top 10 lists for my favorite games on most of the systems I own. Then I did a best of the best list, and a top 10 developer/publisher list. Now, I am going to take a look at all the games that made those lists release years, and see which years happened to produce my favorite games the most often, so I can find out my top 10 favorite years in gaming!

 

Okay, so as predicted, this one is like the development list, and there is a whole lot of ties, so that there is actually only 9 rankings. So every year that produced some of my favorite games will be honored in this list…at least for now!

#9

There are two years that tied for ninth, with one game from each year.

1989

1990

 

#8

Four years tied for the number eight spot with two games from each of these years.

2015

2016

1999

1987

 

#7

A two way tie here, three games from these years.

2006

1988

#6

There’s a whopping five-way tie for the number six spot, four games from each.

2014

2008

1991

1998

1993

 

#5

Another five years tie for the five spot, with five games from each year. Triple fives baby!

1992

1996

2004

2001

2003

 

#4

Pulling back a bit with a slightly smaller four-way tie here, six games from each.

2007

2010

1995

2009

 

#3

Only three years tied for this one, seven games each.

2012

1994

1997

#2

In the big leagues now! No tie here! Just one year managed to represent eight great games!

2000

Go millennium!

#1

We don’t have a clear winner here. In fact, four years tie up for the number one spot!

2013

2011

2002

2005

That’s all for now. Maybe one day this list will become more clear cut.

 

 

 

 

 

My Top 10 Developers/Publishers

Over the past few years I have made top 10 lists for my favorite games on most of the consoles I own. I have recently ranked the #1 games from each list against each other to decided the best of the best.

But now it is time to pick the 10 publishers/developers that most often appeared in those top 10 lists, #1 being the company that most often made it.

I can tell you my top three developers by personal opinion right now, but I won’t. I am curious to see if those three make the list and in what position.

So here we go, the 10 most recurring companies that made games that made my top 10 lists! Okay…So there was a LOT of ties, so it turns out every developer/publisher that has made the games in my top 10 lists will make it here, so think of this as more a celebration to all these companies that have brought us such wonderful games! I thank you all!

#10- There’s a Whole Lot of Them

These companies all tied for the #10 spot, which also happens to be last place. Each of these companies appeared once in my top 10 lists…

I will list them all in no particular order

HexaDrive

Game Arts

Monolith Soft

Quintet

Mercury Steam

Naughty Dog

Electronic Arts

Visceral Games

Pandemic Studios

Jupiter Corporation

Atari SA

Spike

Activision

Treyarch

Good-Feel

Valueware Co., Ltd

Sierra Entertainment

Monolith Productions

Nordic Games Publishing

Kaiko

Devolver Digital

Flying Wild Hog

THQ

Volition Inc

Westwood Studios

Blizzard North

Takara

Eden Entertainment Software

Sega Interactive

Traveller’s Tales

Sega Technical Institute

Flying Edge

Sculptured Software

Clover Studio

Flagship

TOSE

h.a.n.d. inc.

Dimps Corporation

Grezzo

Banpresto

Arzest

Phew…Told you it was a lot…But thanks to these companies for delivering at least one video game that I very much enjoyed!

#9 There’s A Handful

Not nearly as many as the number 10’s though. These next companies made it into the top 10 lists twice.

PlatinumGames

Ubisoft Montpellier

Sucker Punch

Square EA

Raven Software

Camelot Software Planning

Game Freak

There ya go, not too bad.

#8 A Few Here Too

The next companies appeared three times in my top 10 lists. This is where the companies really start to shine in my eyes.

Ubisoft

Konami

SCE Santa Monica

Blizzard Entertainment

#7 Another Handful Here

These next companies appeared an impressive four times on my lists!

Namco Bandai (or Bandai Namco)

Retro Studios

SquareSoft

Alphadream Corportation

Inti Creates

#6 A Few Here As Well

The next companies appeared 5 times on the list. Now we are starting to see the cream of the crop!!

Intelligent Systems

LucasArts

Square Enix

Sonic Team

#5 There’s Only Two Here!

We skip the number six, because these two companies showed up seven times with amazing games!

HAL Labs

Sony Computer Entertainment America

#4 Rare Ltd.

At last, one company stands alone! Rare has made the top 10 lists eight times!

#3 Sega

The guys behind Sonic and a few other amazing titles make the number 3 spot, due to appearing a whopping 10 times on my lists! As it would so happen, I actually consider them my third favorite developer!

#2 Capcom

The company that brought us Mega Man and Resident Evil has appeared 19 times in my lists! Wowsers!! They would actually be about my fourth favorite developer in my personal opinion, but clearly they deliver more of my favorite games than any other company except…

#1 Nintendo

These guys are absolutely my favorite developers. Practically every game they have ever made has been incredible, and the ones that aren’t are just plain good. This company has destroyed the rest, taking a massive 82 spots on my lists! They are indeed my favorite video game company!

That’s all folks! Every single developer that has made my lists!

I always update these lists if new games make the top 10’s, which really doesn’t happen often, but when it does, I will update this list as well, which has the potential to change this entire thing drastically. Who knows what the future will hold? If this list does change, that just means I have discovered some truly incredible new games!!

 

nintendo logo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.

Is This the End of Humble Bundle As We Know It?

For those who don’t know, Humble Bundle is a website that used to give you bundles every couple weeks of 10-15 games for just as many dollars, with part of the money you spend going to a charity of your choosing. Nowadays they have a huge store with some great sales usually, book bundles, software bundles, comics, all sorts of stuff.

But where have the game bundles gone?

For the longest time they have always had two different game bundles available, with a new one replacing the older of the two each week. But for the past month or two, there has not been a single game bundle put up on the site.

Now, most of these bundles are garbage. 90% of the time they are just lame indie titles, but occasionally they do have really good bundles, and I myself indulge in maybe 3 of them a year or so.

I looked forward to seeing the new bundles each week, even though they are almost always disappointing. But when I found that one I wanted, it made all those months of waiting worth it.

So, with the game bundles barren, are they strictly just going to be a game store nowadays like Steam? I certainly hope not.

While we wait for an answer to this sad question, gamers will have to go to fanatical.com for their ridiculously cheap bundles.

How Can People Consider the “Spin Off” Kingdom Hearts Games Not Part of the Actual Series?

In the hype leading up to KH3, I have seen a lot of people argue that the hand held games are not relevant to the series at all. These are mostly those macho “hardcore” gamers who wouldn’t dare play anything on anything other than the shiniest, manly console, thus they say only the numbered titles are the actual series.

I can understand where they are coming from. The three numbered games stick to the same formula (with huge improvements to gameplay as they go on). And they are the 3 best games, as I show in my ranking of them. So in those terms, I get what they are saying. But to just write off the others, which also have superb gameplay, is just ridiculous.

And then many others say the handheld games are not even important to the story, thus the spin off term coming into play.

This is just an unbelievably stupid thing to say and makes those who say it look incredibly ignorant. Yes, we get that you haven’t played the games. Leave it at that. Don’t keep talking about it, because the fact that you haven’t played them takes away your right to talk about them, for how can you judge what you haven’t played?

But if you want to follow the story, you will be woefully lost playing just 1, 2, and 3. I played 2 before Chain of Memories, and while I got the gist of what was going on after a while, it was confusing for a few hours. But that was just from one game. There are 4 games that came out between 2 and 3, all which set up everything that was going on in 3. Playing just the numbered games, you wouldn’t even know who 90% of the characters are. Ventus, Terra, Aqua, half the organization members, the main villain…all not important people at all. And even people you do know, like Axel and Roxas, you would only have a recognition of them and no little to nothing about their actual characters.

I’m sorry, I just get a laugh out of these folks is all.

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

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.

 

Games That Most People Love, But I Don’t

I thought it would be interesting to see just how many games I don’t like that most of the world quite adore. This is nothing fancy, just a running list I was inspired to write by the very rare times I’ve bought games simply because everyone was raving about them. Of these times I’ve done so, I wound up not really seeing what all the fuss was about half the time. So let’s take a look and see how much I disagree with the world…

 

Going to start out with an old classic…

  • Tetris: It’s a fun game overall but it gets pretty boring really fast. Hardly anything amazing outside of 1985.
  • Every basic racing and sports game. Series like Need for Speed, FIFA, Madden, Gran Turismo, F-Zero. They are all fun for a bit, but get old fast, which I guess is why they release  some every year.

 

  • Halo Series. I remember playing the first one when it came out and thinking it was the worst fps I ever played. I’ve only played the first 3 and was equally unimpressed with them all.

 

  • Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate: I really tried to like this game, but it got boring real fast. But admittedly, it isn’t really my cup of tea. It’s the only game I’ve played in the series and the only one I intend to.

 

  • Shantae: Risky’s Revenge: This is one of the games I bought simply from constantly reading how everyone found it to be absolutely incredible. Yeah, well..it’s not. It’s just an okay platformer. It is the only one in the series I have played and I’ve no interest to go beyond that.

 

  • Street Fighter/Mortal Kombat/SoulCalibur Series: These are games I really tried to like, but I just don’t like fighting games, so I guess that’s on me.

 

  • Speaking of fighting games…Marvel Vs. Capcom 2: I thought this was the coolest game ever when I first played it, but it got old real fast. Again, I don’t like fighting games, but this one did it a tad better than most, but still…meh.

 

  • Animal Crossing Series: I’ve only tried two games and got unbelievably bored within a few hours. I guess I hate sim games, like the Sims. That crap is boring. Why would I want to live a basic life in a game? I have enough with my own real life.

 

  • Assassin’s Creed Series: I’ve played everyone up to 3, and only liked Brotherhood and Revelations. The rest are horribly boring and stupid and poorly executed in my opinion. And the two I do like, it’s not a strong like, just like an “okay, that was good enough” kind of deal. Plus the ending credits in each game are enough to make you want to kill yourself.

 

  • Call of Duty Series: This is a weird one. I actually enjoy all the games very much. But I play the campaigns only, whereas virtually everyone but me and two others I know of play for the online play, which to me is when the series started to decline heavily. The games under the “2” title are some of my favorite fps’ ever made, cuz that was before all that online hooplah and they actually put real effort into the games.

 

  • Elite Beat Agents (DS): While this isn’t like a huge game to most people, everyone who has played it claims it’s so amazing. I don’t know, I got like 3-5 missions in and found it to be just so very boring.

 

  • Grand Theft Auto Series: The series is good for mindless slaughtering of innocent people for a half hour, but the actual games, like the campaign and all the meat, is just rather long and boring.

 

  • Star Fox Series: I actually like all of these games but not to the extreme level that most people do. And I find Star Fox 64, probably the most popular one, to be okay at best and one of the worst in the series.

 

  • The World Ends With You (DS): The only reason I bought this game was because I heard some of the characters were going to appear in Kingdom Hearts 3D. And with this game being called the best game on DS by pretty much everyone, I thought “what could go wrong?” Well, the idea is cool, but I thought the gameplay was rather terrible and the game seemed to never end.

 

  • Final Fantasy Series: I do like most of the games, and some I don’t like I find okay. Others I despise. But most of them are just miserable to get through regardless of whether I like them or not, often being littered with unbelievably annoying factors and dumb development decisions. The series as a whole is one of the most overrated things I’ve ever heard of. 7 is not nearly as good as people make it out to be either, though I do enjoy it.

 

  • Super Mario Bros (NES): People always talk about this to be one of the greatest games of all time. Sure in the sense that it is responsible for kickstarting everything we play today and all that, but that is entirely different from how the game plays. Yes, when it first came out, it was jaw dropping. But today, it’s crap. I like the game, but it’s still crap and definitely one of the worst in the Mario series.

 

  • Going along with that is Super Mario 64: Again, this game is more famous for being revolutionary. I remember being blown away by the 3D graphics and seeing Mario’s world in all new dimensions, but then I was disappointed by the gameplay and the game itself and I found myself missing 2D suddenly. Again, I like this game, but it’s nothing spectacular.

 

  • Donkey Kong 64: Like SM64, this just made me wish they made another 2D instead. By the time this came out, the 3D wasn’t exciting anymore, so it didn’t even have that going for it. It’s a good enough game however.

 

  • BioShock: I don’t know about this one. I played it for like 3 hours and then stopped. I loved the commercials when the game came out and was excited to play it, but I just found it to be a boring mess. I have no interest to play the others either.

 

  • Borderlands Series: I’ve only played the first two, and actually I had no interest in buying them, but my two brothers wanted me to play it, claiming the second one is one of the best games ever, and so they bought them for me, and I wished they just saved their money. The first one is just barely playable, and the second is just barely okay. They are more annoying and monotonous than fun, and though the games have great humor, I am to miserable playing them to actually be amused.

 

  • Tomb Raider Series: I haven’t played the rebooted ones, but the original games are just okay at best. Kind of boring, but it’s not a horrible struggle to beat them, and they do get better as they go on, so that’s something.

 

  • Going along with that is the Uncharted Series: This is difficult. I haven’t played the PS4 entries, and I loved 2, but 1 and 3, and thus the series as a whole is rather underwhelming, especially since it’s considered one of Sony’s flagship franchises. And the fact that it is a shameless ripoff of Tomb Raider doesn’t help it either, but it’s done way better than those games, so I guess it balances out.

 

  • Overlord Series: I get a lot of flak for despising this series. I’ve played the first two and find them to be awful. The gameplay is bad as well as the controls. It’s just a mess and no fun at all.

 

  • Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six Series: Out of all the games I’ve played in this series, only Vegas 2 did I truly enjoy. The others are just unbalanced, horrible messes that depend too much on AI and the gamer understanding what the heck is going on. Maybe they are just too complicated for someone like myself, who does not have the patience to learn anything like this.

 

  • Crash Bandicoot Series: I really loved these games when they first came out, but now they are just okay. Definitely not worth getting the recent remaster of the trilogy.

 

  • Xenogears: This game is okay at times, but I really hated it most of the time. Everything is so slow moving, way too much boring talking for half hour+ times, the story is told in an odd way with a lot of build up and a disappointing ending. The end boss is ridiculous and requires far too much grinding and money to be able to beat him well enough, and by that time, you come to the conclusion it really isn’t worth it because you realized the game stopped being fun 10 hours into it.

 

  • Devil May Cry 1-3: These games aren’t bad at all, but don’t live up to the hype they get. They are good, but nothing at all spectacular, though I suppose they might have been when they first came out.

 

  • Jak and Daxter Series: Boy, I really am hating on Naughty Dog. I enjoy all three games, but none of them are truly wonderful. The first is my favorite, but the direction they went after that just wasn’t all that much fun.

 

  • LittleBigPlanet Series: I thought the first game was incredible when I first played it, but then I realized that it doesn’t cater all that well to single player. You need to play online or local multiplayer to really get the full experience and that is just something I have no interest in doing. They are undoubtedly creative games, but aren’t super fun or anything.

 

  • Shadow of the Colossus: Everything about this game is awful. I couldn’t even stomach the thought of finishing it.

 

  • Fatal Frame series: What a horrible mess these games are. They are definitely playable, but they are just too annoying to fully enjoy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.

 

 

Final Fantasy-How Did This Game Spawn Countless Sequels?

I am here to rant about a game most people have heard of… Final Fantasy. That’s right, I’m talking about numero uno! The one that started it all back on the NES in 1990. For the time where there wasn’t much expectation and they were still trying to get the genre down, I suppose it was a pretty good game. But I am saying that very loosely. There shouldn’t have been any reason to ever make a sequel to this, much less at least 20 others, though sequel really isn’t the best word since most of them have nothing to do with the rest.

Anyway, before I start my rant, I just want to give you my history with Final Fantasy. The first one I ever played was when I was back in grade school, Final Fantasy 8 for PlayStation. It was a pretty sweet game, and though it’s been well over a decade since I’ve played it, I remember enjoying it. Only problem is once I was about to beat the first disc, the game froze and I could never get past it. What a piece of junk!

Then I got Final Fantasy 7 a little after that, and I enjoyed that too, though I had commitment issues as a child and never finished it. I played for a while, then stopped for a few years, then played again and stopped again and have never gone back to it.

Oh yeah, and I also played an emulated version of Final Fantasy 3 for SNES for about 20 minutes, but never went back to it for whatever reason.

Since that time, a billion other games have come out with the title “Final Fantasy” and the only one I ever got was Crystal Chronicles for Gamecube and actually played it quite a bit, though again, I never beat it. Came close though.

ffweapons_1280_270h

Anywho, throughout my life I have watched these games spew out and watched people rave about them. I began to wonder if I was really missing out on one of the greatest series in gaming history. So naturally, I decided to get back into the games, but starting from the beginning. Soon after I made this decision, the PlayStation store was kind enough to hold a Final Fantasy sale, and I was able to pick up 1, 2, 4,5,6 and 9. I already have 7 and 8, so I didn’t bother rebuying them. Later I got 3 and 13 on Steam.

And by the way, if you are like me and are trying to figure out which games to buy, it is quite confusing. The original versions are all numbered in a non-sequential way, for most of them were never released outside of Japan. It wasn’t until recently that they rereleased them all and renamed them the numbers they actually are supposed to be. So the FF 3 I played briefly is now officially Final Fantasy 6. It’s a confusing mess and I was nervous I was going to buy the same game twice, just with different titles. It also doesn’t help that each game has been rereleased like three times. It’s a nightmare.

Anyway, I have now finally set out on my Final Fantasy adventure, and just like I wanted to, I started from the very beginning. Though I have the updated version from Final Fantasy Origins on PlayStation, so it scares me to think that the original version is even more inferior.

So finally, what are my gripes about the game? Where to begin? Let me start off by saying, it has the potential to be a good game, but there are so many unnecessary annoying things about it that completely ruin it for me.

Let’s start with something I experienced in the very first minute of the game that set the tone for one of the most annoying games ever.

I walked into the first town and many of the people just block your path. There are many tight paths that only one person can fit through, and there are just all these jerk faces standing in my way. I shouldn’t have to wait for these idiots to move before I can proceed! And sometimes they move and I start to go, and then they quick move with lightning speed to block your path again. What crap programming! And there is an item shop that always has some douche blocking the door. I deal with idiot people standing in my way enough in real life, I don’t need it in a game too!

And that is nothing compared to the last town in the game, Lufenia or something. The entire town is practically a one person-width town and it takes forever to push your way through, having to wait every second for someone to walk over to a spot where the road widens and then move out of they way! The spell shops are kind of hidden, and I missed them at first. It wasn’t until I looked it up that I knew how to get them. But it was no wonder I missed them, because they are far off to the side where you have to follow a one person wide path, but I missed it because some guy was always standing in it, and he was nowhere near a two-wide path. So it’s no wonder I missed them. I had to wait close to 5 minutes for his old scraggly ass to move. What the fudge!

There are even sometimes bats in caves and such that love to fly in your way, forcing you to walk around them. This wouldn’t be quite so bad, but every extra step you take is a huge risk of being caught in an enemy encounter, which brings me to my next complaint…

There are a relentless amount of enemy encounters. This is far from the only game with this issue, but I don’t care about those game right now.Rarely do I get to take more than five steps without getting into a fight. This drives me crazy! Especially when you are trying to explore a dungeon and get lost. You never have time to figure out where you are going because you are constantly being bombarded with enemies to ever remember where you have been and haven’t been yet. Like, it’s crazy. And most fights aren’t exactly easy either!ff-nin

So let’s talk about all the issues I have during fights. There are quite a few!

First off and most importantly are your characters. I picked the warrior, thief, white mage and black mage. Of these four only the warrior is good. The other three are entirely useless. And I mean USELESS! Seriously, you could not beat this game and even beat more than two enemy encounters without the warrior.

The warrior has high physical attack power and high defense. Throughout the game, he can kill almost anything in one hit and he also takes very little damage. He rarely ever misses his attacks too. He’s a real stand up fellow.

The other three are just a huge liability. They miss 8 out of 10 physical attacks, and do hardly any damage when they actually connect. The mages don’t have high armor value, so they take a ton of damage, thus they can die very quickly.

Now you might be thinking, “well mages are supposed to use magic,” which is all well and fine, but this game limits your magic to the extreme. Instead of having mana or MP or anything like that, they give you spell levels. Each mage can learn three spells per level, and each level has its own set of charges. So say my black mage knows fire, lightning and some debuff spell, each a level 2 spell. By the time you buy these spells, you probably have about three charges for this spell level, meaning you can only use any of these spells 3 times. And not three times each, mind you…if you use fire, your charge drops to 2, then if you use lightning, it drops to 1, etc.

So basically you have to save your spells for really tight situations. The higher your level, the more charges you can gain, but that’s useless. The most charges you can get is 9 for each spell level.But by the time you get a decent amount of charges, those spells have no relevance anymore, meaning they are all too weak against enemies now, so why would you ever use any of those spells? My point is, your useful spells will always be limited to 2-4 charges before you and the enemies outgrow their effectiveness.ff-char

So yeah, all the characters are just there to inconvenience you. The tempting route is to just let the useless ones die and let the warrior soak up all the experience. He hardly ever takes more than 2 damage, so he is just a killing machine. But you want your other party members to level, so you do all you can to keep them alive, which is more annoying than it needs to be.

Healing is so stupid in this game. My white mage has all sorts of healing spells, but again the charges are so limited they aren’t very helpful, and even when you do use them, they only heal like a fifth of your HP. Your main way of healing is potions. But here’s the kicker. The potions only heal like 15-30 hp, and when your party has 300-600 HP and each battle the useless ones stand to lose 50-150, you have to use an awful lot of potions. So you have to constantly spend around 3,000-5,000 gil (the currency) to restock potions. Having 99 at all times is a must, for it takes 10-15 potions to bring the HP up of a severely damaged character. And you can never buy any more potent potions either. It’s always those. No high potions or super potions or anything like that. What a bunch of crap!

And speaking of potions, you better stock up on a crap ton of antidotes too, because like all old rpg’s, this game loves poison. I would venture to say that at least 60% of the enemies in the game can poison you. And the only way to cure poison is with antidotes. It is so annoying. And what’s worse…antidotes cost much more than potions, though I only usually carry around 25 with me at all times, so buying as many is not required.

Going back to annoying things about battling is the turn order. It seems to be completely random, but I swear it works to your disadvantage all the time. If you are fighting a big group of enemies, (6-9) you will more than likely need to cast a spell to do a lot of damage to them quickly. But your caster will likely go last, so if he is the target by most of the enemies he will die, leaving you with a much longer battle. Or even if he doesn’t die, it’s annoying to watch all the enemies attack you while you wait for your most important attacks to go off. Not to mention you might kill an enemy or two, making you feel like you wasted your precious spell charge. The warrior and his one shot will almost always go last too.

What is annoying is I swear the enemies you target will attack before the ones you don’t. Most of the time, I will select my targets. The ones I selected will all “happen” to attack first. Then my party will go and kill the ones that just attacked. Then all the remaining enemies attack me. What the hell? Why can’t I ever get lucky and kill an enemy before it attacks! The game cheats in that way. And what’s more. When the enemies finish out a round, you think “Oh, good, my guys will go now and finish them off.” Nope. More often than not, the enemies will attack twice in a row, once at the end of the last round, and once in the beginning of the next round, just to sneak in that last attack before they die. What bull crap!

The damage you receive is random as all hell to. I know it is supposed to be, since its an rpg and all, but this takes it to a whole new level. Like I said, my warrior will generally take 2 damage, and my other guys about 30-60 in your average fight from one hit. You start to rely on that formula to know when you heal or not, but then eventually it just will throw you for a loop. My warrior will randomly take 50 damage and the others over 100! And that isn’t even when the enemies land critical hits either. It just randomly will devastate you with the same attack that barely hurt you last round.

Another annoying thing are “enemy first strikes” which means all of them will go in advance before you can even input your commands. This happens in many rpgs and that’s fine, but it happens wayyyyyyy t0o often. I would say once every five fights or so. And it seems like forever when a group of 9 enemies gets first strike. On more than once occasion, I ran into enemy first strikes three times in a row!

There are preemptive strikes where your party can attack in advance, but that only happens about once every 20 fights. Fair, right? And the best part is there are instant death traps that take advantage of the enemy first strikes. You will be walking along a dungeon and a random encounter will occur with enemy first strike. Then they will all use instant death moves and it’s game over. Just like that, there is nothing you can do about it. What is the point of that? It doesn’t add to the challenge and improve upon the game in anyway. It makes you just want to quit the game because it’s so cheap, pointless and just a waste of time! Thus with this always being a threat you have to “memo save” which is just a temporary save for you to restart at if you die, after every battle. How annoying is that?

And when a party member dies, the only way to revive them is to bring them to a town with a church and pay a butt load of gil to revive them. The white mage can eventually learn a revive spell, but if she’s the one who dies, you’re screwed. And you’ll want to save all the charges for the revive, so using any other spell on that level is out of the question.

ff-party-dead

If you’re in a dungeon and the white mage dies, now you have to make your way out to get to a town, fighting enemies every five steps. You don’t have enough HP to fight everything and you want to get out as fast as possible, so you start running from every fight. This tactic will lead to all your party dying except the warrior, who is too slow to run from fights. So you will sit, having to solo fight every enemy that comes along, killing them one by one. This is really fun when fighting 9 enemies, just having to wait for 9 attacks, before killing one guy, then waiting for 8 attacks and so on. You just want to die so you can restart at your memo save, but it is just faster to fight and make your way back than to wait for something to kill you, for when you have 400 HP, and they take away 1-2, it takes a long time. But even if you do run, you end up dying like right in front of a town anyway. It’s really great.

final-fantasy-1-psp

And what is really terrifying to think about is that I guarantee the memo save is a feature added to the PS version of the game, meaning the original is probably nearly impossible to beat unless you grind the fudge out of every dungeon and have an enormous amount of patience.

“UPDATE”

I learned that you can press L1, L2, R1, R2, Start and Select to reset the game in a way where you don’t lose your memo save. This improves things slightly. SLIGHTLY!!!

Eventually, my thief became somewhat useful, and by the end of the game, he is almost as good as the warrior, but the other two suck unless I need them to perform a spell. But as I said, you are so limited to how many times you can use them that you will do everything in your power not to use a spell. You get to upgrade your character classes, which other than making them all look cooler and allowing the thief to equip heavier armor, more or less does nothing at all.

But those are my beefs with this game so far. Thankfully, I have finally beaten it. Honestly, it is not the worst game out there, but boy is it annoying, and stupid, and bad. I can’t believe this trash is what spawned the biggest franchise in video game history.

Here’s to hoping the second one is a vast improvement. Though I am doing nothing but dreading it right now…

ff-boss