Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Thanksgiving, Stargate, Star Wars the Old Republic, and XBLA Deals.

I know it's been a while since I posted and admittedly I have been slacking but well, here's a new blog for your reading enjoyment.   Incoming giant blog!


No this isn't my Thanksgiving Meal.

I'm not really one for tradition or holidays and don't really see much of a point in this one.  I guess I look at things like, why have a designated day to be thankful but instead be stressed with the burdens of cooking an elaborate meal, most of which won't be eaten and eat till you get sick?  Don't get me wrong, I'd love a good meal and have no problem at all cooking a good meal but this is something I gladly do daily and on daily basis I'm thankful for the people, friends and family, I cook for and eat food from.

With that said, I've never been able to eat most of the food on thanksgiving and get really sick if I do.  I can't handle turkey and I've only been able to eat organic food for the past 3 years.  It was nice to see my cousins there though getting a good meal, one of them is struggling financially and lives with roommates who eat all of his food and the other doesn't ever get a good meal at home and is basically skin and bones (needs to eat more protein danget).

On the flip side, thanksgiving is a really big deal for my grandma who's extremely into tradition.  Me, my sister, and my mom all offered to cook but she didn't want us cooking and wanted everything prepared by her which means TONS of salt.  Well my aunt is on this blood type diet and can't eat a lot of things which includes a lot of sodium, my mom is vegan, and I can eat only organic (otherwise I get very sick) but everybody except for me broke their diets and ate.

Needless to say, my grandma and my mom both got sick.  My mom was having stomach problems, heart burn and her carpal tunnel was flaring up and my grandma got light headed, dizzy and was having chest pains.  Needless to say, they took their blood pressure and they were sky high.  So I had them drinking Herbal Teas with ginger and peppermint in them and I had them eating veggies and Greek yogurt.  They're both feeling a lot better since then but also since then my mom had a long talk about her age, health, and nutrition with my grandma and she's been laying off sodium filled and greasy foods and has been eating more plants, grains, oats, and nuts.

 Nothing says I ate too much like a cat.

While it was annoying having to clean up the entire kitchen after not eating hardly anything, I'm just glad to see them both feeling better.  I'm hoping that my grandma doesn't become an extreme vegan but at the same time I'm glad to see her eating better!


The main Atlantis Team by the final season.

It's been a while since I've talked about this but I have been watching it this whole time faithfully just about every night from my Nintendo 3DS (I love that dang system)!  Anyways I have finished up the entire Atlantis series.  My thoughts and opinions?

Much like Stargate SG-1 I didn't know what to expect.  I knew it was a sequel/continuation to SG-1 but only by name.  I literally knew nothing else about this and only know one person who's seen the show (who I haven't talked to much about it).  To my surprise it felt very much like SG-1, except started off at a pretty good quality.  Its characters are a good mix of different walks of life and they go on the same crazy types of missions that Col. Jack Oneill and SG-1 went on for the majority of the SG-1 series.  In the second season, they introduce one of my favorite characters in a show so far, Ronan Dex, who gives the Atlantis team their own Teal'c (though he's quite different).

All in all, I enjoyed seeing this series and will miss the cast, characters, and interesting plots of Atlantis the same way I will miss SG-1.  Its too bad it took me till I was in my 20's to actually give them and scifi shows in general a try.  I've been regrettably missing out on a lot for a while.

SG-1... and a little person.

Speaking of SG-1, I also made sure to watch the movies which right after I seen the Atlantis series, I decided to watch the final (or I believe final) movie of SG-1, Ark of Truth.  It was enjoyable and wrapped up 1 of the story plots (there are more) that needed to be finished.  I hope to see future series's finishing up what both SG-1 and Atlantis started.  There's a lot of lore there that I'd like to see finished.

Star Wars: The Old Republic - Beta Test Weekend

I think I killed that guy a couple times!

I have been salivating over this game for a very very long time (since it was first announced and my art school friend told me he's been working on it).  It's one of the few games that I've been keeping up with constantly reading almost every tid bit of news (though I've been avoiding major spoilers like the black plague) and it's the only major retail game that I'll be getting during this holiday season... which there's a story to that.  This is due to me pre-ordering the game the day pre-orders were allowed, going for the collectors edition (which has a whooole lot in the package but costs $150), and registering the early access code.  I soon was hit by random charges by microsoft, started getting car problems, and got hit with a slew of other financial things which made me want to change my pre-order to a normal edition, which I tried but found out, I couldn't without losing my early access code that was already linked to my account.  So, that was the dilemma... HOWEVER this dilemma seems trivial after playing the beta!

This is how I handle problems in SWTOR.  A flame thrower to the face!

The beta started the Saturday after Thanksgiving.  When I got on, the servers were jam packed with every server at heavy or full status.  This is to be expected, it being a stress test and all.  I made my character which was a Cyborg Bounty Hunter that greatly resembled a certain Dex Ronan character from a certain Gate Star show.  When I got in, the servers had a ton of lag.  There had to of been nearly 300 people all doing the same thing at the same time, it was insane.  Because of this, for the first 4 hours or so, there were glitches and problems like some people getting stuck randomly, some people having armor and hair floating off their characters, bad frame rates issues, and game crashes among other issues.  This was to be expected, as I said, the servers were FLOODED and when I say flooded I mean there were hundreds to thousands of people in each servers waiting queue, with some servers listing wait times of up to 27 hours.  As I said though, this only lasted about 4 hours or so.  Soon after the test started, Bioware opened up 10 or so new servers and it really helped the load.  From there on out, it was much much smoother sailing but it was still crazy crowded.

The Dark Side of the force is strong with this one.

This is coming from a MMO vet who's played TONS of MMO's and is directed at any nay sayers, skeptics, and doubters.  Questing in this game has to be the most enjoyable questing experience I've had in any MMO ever.  The quests are long enough, not too long (looking at you FFXI) and not too short (looking at you Warhammer), the cutscenes aren't awkwardly dragged out (looking at you WoW Cataclysm) and they're not unreasonably short (looking at you Aion), the quests have great direction (unlike FFXI) and progress you nicely without having you constantly run across areas back and forth in a very unorganized fashion (looking at you Age of Conan).  

Furthermore everything's fully voice acted with high quality (or rather Bioware quality) voice acting, story, and writing and the decision system really draws you in (just like Mass Effect and Dragon Age).  Unlike those 2 other Bioware games, this one multi player and gives each person a random role on the decision they pick while doing story in a group ultimately allowing each player to have a role and gets everybody involved in the story.  The more quests you do with others, the more social points you earn.  I'm not sure what they're used for but there's a meter there so it has to be for something.  Note, the cutscenes are not skippable, so if you don't like story, don't play this game but if you do, and want a funner, deeper, and more challenging questing experience from you MMO's, this is the game.  I'd also like to note, there's a lot of group quests and really tough "elite" (or SWTOR term - heroic) mobs that you'll need a solid group to take on.

I also want to note, the first dungeon was a lot of fun and had just as much story as the quests.

Is it a group of players or is one a companion?

Speaking of groups and quests.  Companion characters add a huge element to the game that most other MMO's are severely lacking.  It gives you that extra side kick like character you get from normal RPG's, giving them the like/dislike system seen in other Bioware RPG's and giving you a lot more control over them then most other NPC characters in most other MMO's.  Think of them almost like World of Warcraft's hunter's pet or warlocks demon's except even more versatile with some working as your healer!  This of course adds another lair to questing, making you want to choose things that your companions like while still getting light/dark side points.  Also it makes combat a lot more interesting for all classes, giving you access to an undeniably useful resource that no other MMO I've played has.

A PVP Warzone showing off an epic battle.
Speaking of combat, the combat requires you to constantly press buttons (like DC Universe, Champions Online, and Age of Conan) which imo really keeps you involved and keeps players from slacking off.  To be honest, I don't mind auto attack, but I find auto attack kind of lets people slack off in MMO's and hurts over all gameplay more then helps, where as actually pressing buttons keeps people more involved and keeps raid groups awake and alive.

The Chaos of Player vs Player combat!

I love PVP, it's not the only thing I like but it IS one of the things that draws me to different MMO's and competitive games in general.  While TOR doesn't have the strongest PVP system I've seen a MMO, it is there, and it feels surprisingly polished.  Then again I'm saying this as a lower level who played a Bounty Hunter in only 2 Warzone battles.  From what I can tell, each character has some form of USEFUL CC (crowd control) and a world of warcraft pvp trinket like move (letting them break out of a CC once every 2 minutes).  It really helps out, this is one of my biggest problems with most MMO PVP as it makes things feel very unbalanced.  Deaths aren't as quick as WoW and I wasn't in CC for 20 seconds straight (like fighting rogues and mages in WoW).  It was very fun and thrilling and I can't wait to see what all they do with the PVP aspects of this game in the future.

The crafting system.

Crafting in this game is pretty solid from what I can tell, giving you worthwhile items to craft (unlike Aion) that actual do stuff for your characters at early levels that you won't get anywhere else (unlike World of Warcraft).  Like the gear I could make was much better then what I was getting from quests, really giving me an edge gear wise and making me a solid choice as a tank for dungeons and a hard to kill, face melting, cyborg, iron man in PVP.

Your Companions can craft for you.

That is one of my absolute favorite features.  Along with you companions leveling as you level, your companions can also craft for you, meaning when you get further in the game and get other companions that you're not using, you can actually have them craft for you leveling your skills and making you useful gear/mods/consumables.

The Codex system returns.

One of my favorite things about Warhammer is its one of the few MMO's with a Codex like log system.  Codex's are really awesome if you want to learn more about something quickly without having to leave the game and look it up or deal with what could be (and usually is) internet trolls.  Just like Pokemon's Pokedex and Mass Effects Codex, everything you need to know, from back stories of NPC's you meet, knowledge about places you go, weapons, creatures, and much more, is all in there.  No, I don't believe it's voiced but this is for the lore people who read stuff anyways.

Gotta love them space battles.

The last and final thing I'll talk about with this game is space battles, which by the 3rd day of beta, I finally got to try.  It's not a mind blowing feature, there isn't a lot of customization there and works only as a mini game on the side but the combat was indeed fun.  It's nothing like Star Wars Galaxies fully featured space combat system and it's a lot more like Star Fox on rails dodge and shoot style.  Don't get me wrong, it's a ton of fun in short bursts but don't expect it to be very deep.

Traveling just got a lot easier!

Yes I know I wrote a lot about this game but I'm super excited about it and after playing it, I can honestly say that I'll be putting that collectors edition to good use.  There's a soooo much more I didn't talk about and I could go on and on about but I need to keep an already staggeringly long blog shorter then epicly long.  I will say that come December 20th (hopefully 15th with early access and all), I'm sorry a head of time if you can't reach me, because I'll be in a galaxy far faaar away.

XBLA November deals!

I know I've already typed for a while so I'll try and keep this short (I had pictures planned out but gonna skip them for length reasons).  I got a $50 dollar microsoft points card on my birthday and only bought 1 game with it.  I saved the rest of the points figuring that I'd see some sales later down the road but didn't realize they'd be right around the corner.  Microsoft apparently was doing a Fan Appreciation sale, Black Friday sale, and Cyber Monday sale along with their normal deals of the week and monthly price drops.  Needless to say I cashed in.  Thanks to Major Nelson for being on top of the updates.

  • Crazy Taxi - 400 MSP - 50% Discount (deal of the week)
  • Sega Rally Online Arcade - 400 MSP - 50% Discount (deal of the week)
  • The Fancy Pants Adventures - 400 MSP - 50% Discount (fan appreciation)
  • Super Meat Boy - 400 MSP - 67% Discount (fan appreciation)
  • OutRun Online Arcade - 400 MSP - 50% Discount (fan appreciation)
  • Mortal Kombat Arcade Collection - 400 MSP - 50% Discount (cyber monday)
  • Beyond Good & Evil HD - 240 MSP - 70% Discount (cyber monday)

Needless to say, despite my grandma and mom getting sick and having to clean a huge mess in the kitchen, my thanksgiving weekend was amazing.  I'm very thankful to see my family and to see Bioware, Microsoft, and other companies help pull gaming out of a huge slump.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Major Disappointment and Excitement.

This year has been full of some of gaming's highest high points and gaming's lowest low points but how does this affect the gamer.... Well let me tell you, it's been a total raging to total fanboy gushing experience.  This past few months has been no exception.

The Disappointment

Sony's UMD Solution for Vita  

Basically Sony has come up with a solution for future Vita owners who were also PSP owners and their backwards compatibility needs.  The way they're going about it though is absolutely horrible and is a huge slap in the face to PSP supporters and people who spent a good penny collecting UMD movies and games.  They're adding a system so you can register your UMD discs online but at a cost meaning you have to pay for each game, that you already purchased, in order to use them on your Vita.  While I guess they need to make money for keeping up this service but the fact of the matter is, this is a slap in the face of your own fans and greatly needs to be reconsidered.  This is even worse then NoA's PR BS a few months back about certain Japanese games people have been waiting for.

Invisible Walls

I've been watching IW for a while now and I used to really like the show, its always fun to here people talking about stuff you like and are interested in and dissecting those products and talking about the strong points and weak points of each game however this Past Episode was beyond fanboyish and got to straight hate trolling status.  Of course I'm talking about the Legend of Zelda part.  

Hey, I know, the game is on Wii, the graphics won't be mind blowing and the game will be limited in what it does on a technical stand point, but to say the game hasn't evolved, talk about it as if its unplayable, and to straight diss on it then go on to literally have nothing but good things to say about the newest Call of Duty game, a series that has seen 7 entries in the same generation, has been using the same engine since the 3rd entry in this generation, and for the most part, plays and looks the same as the last 5 games, well.... I have to ask the question if we should be taking this seriously anymore.  Granted, I don't hate CoD or anything (though I do recommend people that only play CoD to try other shooters) however I think if you have such standards and stipulations for 1 game, you should have it for ALL GAMES.

Too Many Releases

I know I've probably talked about this before but there are way waaaayyyy too many releases all back to back especially for multi console owners.  It's frustrating because there's a lot of big titles that I've been looking forward to for a very very long time (Rayman, Skyrim, Skyward Sword, Battlefield 3, King of Fighters, and Mario Kart to name a few) that I won't be able to get any time soon do to limited funds at this time.  Its very frustrating.  Furthermore this summer was one of the driest droughts across all platforms for games (minus downloadables) and nothing was coming out.  If some of these games came out then, I'd would of definitely picked them up but now it will honestly be quite some time before I get a lot of these games...

The Excitement

Nintendo 3DS Update

Look at the top of the picture, what do you see?  Yes that's right, a join game option.  Doesn't sound like much but this is a huge HUGE deal.  It means, in addition to all the stuff that the 3DS will be getting in the update, you'll get this one simple feature that is actually a huge deal.  You'll finally be able to join games with friends which is a huge thing for Samurai Warriors, Street Fighter, Dead or Alive, Tetris, Mario Kart and other games that I don't remember that also have online.  While this doesn't make the 3DS's online on par with the competitors online services, this is a huge step in the right direction.  Finally we'll be able to play games and communicate with friends the way we can with all other devices and this update is right around the corner.  Anybody fancy a match of Super Street Fighter IV 3D?

Heroes of Ruin Walkthrough Trailer

I've been pretty excited about this one since I first read the Nintendolife article about it a while back and since then have only been liking what I hear more and more.  The online features are very strong, as a matter of fact, the online sounds stronger then most the big name games on PS3 and 360.  It's shaping up to be one of the best online coop experiences on any platform and it's a freakin 3DS game.  It just got a release date of 4/3/12 (for NA) and is right around the corner.  I highly recommend checking this one out.

Star Wars: The Old Republic Beta Invite

After being depressed that I won't be able to get most the games I wanted because of real life circumstances, I got a nice little email from EA inviting me to the beta of the game I've been wanting to play the most.  Needless to say I had a nerdgasm and freaked out... had to read the email about 6 times through but I read right.  I'm super SUPER excited about this one.  It made a previously crappy month get really really good.  I also read up on a forum that I can't seem to find, that everybody who preordered it before the Nov 11th will be in the beta which I honestly have no problem with.  It gives me a chance to try it out ahead of time.  Really really looking forward to this, good timing Bioware and EA!

Monday, November 7, 2011

MIA, Birthday, and New Games

Missing In Action

I've been MIA recently or rather I haven't posted a blog in quite sometime so I figured I'd get around to doing it.  Where have I been?  What have I been doing?  Why haven't I posted in quite sometime?  Reading, gaming, and working.  When I have free time I've noticed that I spend more time reading then writing or gaming lately, especially with the plethora of gaming news during this season.  Also last month I went back and started playing World of Warcraft and Minecraft again which sucked up a huge amount of free time... while WoW wasn't worth it (not going to go into the many details as of why) Minecraft was pretty fun to play with friends again.

Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic

I started earlier in October playing Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic on Xbox and streaming it on JTV however due to some serious lag issues, having PC gaming withdraws, and hot room syndrome combined with a nasty texas heat wave (my room heats up literally 15 degrees at night if I have my tv and game system on) I put it and other console games on hold.  Unfortunately I forgot to save footage and they took the footage off of JTV pretty quickly sooo... no vids.

Stomach Virus

Later in the month, towards the end I got a nasty stomach virus which lasted nearly a week.  Didn't get much done work or gaming wise.  Could hardly sit up without feeling dizzy and getting extremely nauseous.  Good news is I got over it..  Bad news is I got it again the day of my Birthday.


I'm not the type of person that really likes seeing a lot of people on their birthday or really get into special occasions or holidays however my birthday kinda sucked because I re got the stomach virus on it.  It didn't last all day, left by day end but when I woke up, I was sick to my stomach and knew most the things I was going to eat just weren't going to happen.  Good news is, I did eat a very veggie riffic fully loaded cali style burrito and had this awesome ginger brew soda for dinner and the combination of the 2 made my stomach feel great.

New Games

Got some new games as well this month, though none of them are the big release titles that everybody is talking about.  I actually spent a while recently thinking about what to get, cause there's a whole lot I want right now however I finally decided on getting some games for my 3DS.  I mean I only have 1 3DS game (Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition) and I wanted to get stuff that doesn't require my PC or TV to be on so my room doesn't get hot, is slower paced then the frantic fighting game mechanics of SSFIV3D, and I know I'll play right away.  You see if I get something on consoles, even if its a huge AAA title, I'm likely to not play it right away because I would want to finish the previous games in the series's as well as if I started playing whatever game and I'm not finished by the time Star Wars: The Old Republic comes out, I'm likely to not finish them (that's the big game I'm most looking forward to).

So I decided on games, 2 on 3DS and 1 on DS.  All Turn Based Strategy (2 of them TBS RPG's).

Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimiore of the Rift - DS


This is a game I've been wanting for a while now, its for the DS, its a sequel to one of my favorite games and its actually becoming pretty rare now.  Online at amazon, the cheapest copy of this game was without a case and for $25.  At gamestop you couldn't purchase this one online and all the normal civilian stores in my area didn't have it, the only one that did was on post which I don't have a military ID so it would require me going with family or friends and it was going for $20.  Good news is a local game store had it in with the case, like new, for $9.99 which of course I jumped on.

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor Overclocked - 3DS

This is a game series that not many people know about but 2 of my friends have been talking about for a while.  Well this game is a remake of a DS game with minor updates to the graphics, full voice over, and quite a bit of new content.  Not enough to purchase the game if you already had it but enough to warrant a purchase for people who may of missed the original (like myself) and/or could be looking for a new title to play on their system (like myself).  It's crazy though, this game came out 2 months ago and is already becoming super rare.  You can't purchase it online anywhere outside of amazon which at amazon the cheapest listing for this game new is 15 bucks above the original price.  I saw it at 2 of the local gamestops (gotta love their online database) and went to the one next to the local grocery just to find out that it wasn't their (for whatever reason it was in their database even when they checked but they didn't have a copy) so I had to go to the one in the mall which luckily had 1 copy left :D  Though it was full priced at $39.99 I felt lucky to get a game that's already rare.

Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Shadow Wars - 3DS


This was the other 3DS launch title that I wanted but never ended up getting.  It's also a turn based strategy game but a bit less of a RPG and more of an Advanced Wars style game.  It's a western take on the genre (being more Military and modern weapons based) and I've heard nothing but good things about it from friends and those who've purchased it.  Luckily, unlike the other 2, this one isn't going rare so I found it on amazon for less then $15 and picked it up.  Including shipping and tax it's less then $20.

Dungeon Defenders - XBLA

 While I'm extremely open to all sorts of games and play a whole lot of them, not many games come along that instantly catch my eye, however when I first saw the development team for this game doing stage design and showing gameplay for it on JTV, I was instantly sold.  This game blends 3rd person action mechanics from hack n slash (like the Gauntlet series) with Gears of War horde mode style gameplay with the strategy gameplay of tower defense games with strong western RPG elements such as phat loot, talent trees, and customizable characters.  It does all of that and also features strong local and online multiplayer components and delivers 13 stages, 3 bosses, and a crap ton of challenges as well as a bit of PVP thrown in.  Quite frankly, this isn't just one of the best games available for download on PC, PSN, and XBLA, it's easily better then the majority of the games that have come out this generation and it's a smaller scale game available for $15.  Easily a must have, I highly recommend it.  Funnest console game since Borderlands.

Thursday, September 29, 2011


I haven't been around much lately, a couple reasons for that so I figured I should do an update.

What I've been playing.

Phantom Brave: We Meet Again

I've finally started playing this.  Like most the games in my library, I picked it up and didn't get around to playing it right away but I finally sat down and started going at it.  It's really fun, very lighthearted but also very deep.  A nice tactical RPG experience and something RPG fans and Wii owners should definitely not miss out.  If you like Disgaea games, you'll love this.


Minecraft, oh Minecraft.  So many things can be said about this game.  The one thing that needs to be said is this is easily one of the best games every created.  I've finally updated my server and started playing with some friends again and checking out the new features.  Explored abandoned mineshafts, made new portals in the hell world that took us across the world, built a huge wall around our land and made a chicken farm with a nice egg dispensing system :)  Needless to say, I love this game and have mad respect for Notch.

Dark Void Zero

I've finally beaten this game.  It's very fun and very challenging but also very short.  3 15-45 minute stages give or take on if you want completion on each level, how quick you play, and how much you die.  Still for 5 dollars, this isn't half bad.


What I've been watching.

Stargate Atlantis season 1

I've finally finished this, its a nice take on the series.  It has a bit more of a modern scifi feel but still keeps the stargate vibe and stays true to it.  Still follows the same formula that SG1 followed, especially seasons with Jack O Neil.  The actual story built up quite nicely and is going strong into season 2.


Sleep Insomnia

So... I have a bad case of this.  Which is why I haven't been doing much updates lately, to be honest I haven't been doing much of anything lately because of it.  I'm always tired and drained but when I lay down I can't fall asleep and wake up.  It's getting really frustrating, only got maybe a hour of sleep last night and I'm exhausted now.  It's also really messing up my sleep schedule.  I fall asleep at different times all throughout the day and haven't been getting much done because of it.  Gonna start forcing myself to stay up during the day and hopefully I'll be able to fall asleep at night again.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

September Updates and News

-note, this blog was made 4 or 5 days ago on another site like most my other blogs and I just never got around to bringing it over till now.

Haven't updated in a while, not a lot to talk about however there is some new stuff that I've been playing, some new stuff I've been watching, and more importantly a crap ton of gaming news.

What I've Been Watching

Stargate SG1 season 10

I finally finished the series.  Enjoyed it a lot, much more then I thought I would.  Season 10 was no exception though it left me with a lot of questions about the story and the future series's of Stargate which I will be watching.

Stargate Atlantis


Seeing as I finished SG1 I decided to jump right into Atlantis which is actually pretty good.  The first episode was a nice introduction to the new characters and a good transition from the SG1 series familiars to the new faces we'll be seeing all throughout Atlantis.  Only on the 5th episode and I'm liking it so far though I'll touch more on it another time when I've seen more episodes.

What I've Been Playing


After completing the Metroid series I've been thinking about a lot of the games I need to beat and series's I need to go through to prep me for some of the games I'll be getting in the future however while I know I need to go through some of these other series's I figured I'd just go ahead and actually have fun with one of the many other titles in my library that I haven't really played.  So I give you Opoona, a very different style kind of happy go lucky JRPG.  It's appearance looks very childish but its gameplay is actually pretty deep and there's a lot more to do in the world then your standard JRPG which actually makes for a enjoyable experience.  Just don't expect an epic story cause so far, that is absent.

Dark Void Zero

Much better then the 360/PS3 version imo, this one is very Castlevania and despite it being short is extremely fun.  One of the funner DSiWare games out there and I highly recommend it.  The rocket pack makes gameplay fun.

Nintendo News and TGS

So much has been happening lately.  A crap ton of news has been coming from the Nintendo camp from this very awkward analog attachment to all sorts of game announcements.

I understand the desire for a second analog but this really isn't appealing.

Needless to say during the 3DS conference there was a ton of info talked about, too bad I didn't understand none of it however GoNintendo took a lot of the info and dissected it to help us understand.  A new update is on the way which is good, not really sure what all it will entail however I hear we'll be getting demo's which is needed.  Mario Kart also shown off some interesting features some of which looked like inviting friends to games.  Also while not a ton of games were announced some pretty big ones were such as Fire Emblem, a new Culdcept, Bravely Default (a new SquareEnix RPG), and a little known game called....

                                                  Super Stoked!

Furthermore a lot is being shown off for Vita, 3DS, and 360/PS3 which is always nice.  Vita also is showing off a lot of features and some really strong remakes like FFX HD.  With the Vita dropping this year in Japan, it's going to be really interesting to see how the 2 systems fair.  Just hopefully Vita makes its way to NA sooner then later.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Finishing up the summer... and Metroid.

This summer I started a lot of projects, not all I've finished though some will be finished soon, however I got a lot done.  One of those major achievements that I've finished this past week was the Metroid Prime series (console games) which took me a while as I kept taking breaks but I finally finished it.

The Older Metroid Games


The original Metroid was one of the games that I loved a whole lot and I played at several of my friends houses but I never owned myself.  I don't know why I never owned it, but I never did.  When I heard the news of the Wii having the Virtual console, this was the first game I thought about.  Unfortunately I didn't end up getting it till about 5 years into the Wii's life and took about 4 months after purchasing it to actually play it.  However once I sunk my teeth into this game, I couldn't stop.  Despite the technical limitations of the time it withstood the test of time and kept my attention the way it did when I was a young pup with a NES. 

Easily a 9.5 out 10 for me (only because its short).

Super Metroid

Another Metroid, same story, though it didn't play as big of a roll in my childhood, it was definitely a game I always wanted and a game I seen others play and played myself quite a few times that I wanted.  To be completely honest, I prefer a lot of SNES games like this one over a lot of the current lack luster games.  This game is easily a classic and imo the best in the series.  It's style has been cloned on many occasions but outside of Symphony of the Night, I have yet to try one out that really compares to this.

Another 9.5 out of 10 for me (for the same reasons).

Metroid Prime Trilogy


I've had this game for quite some time, I don't know why it took me so long to get started on it - or the entire Metroid series as a whole but this is easily one of the best packages this generation out of any consoles, right on par with the Orange Box, Elder Scrolls IV Oblivion: Game of the Year, Smash Bros Brawl, and Dragon Age Origins: Ultimate Edition.

Metroid Prime

I originally got this game on the Gamecube.  I started it up three times and all 3 times my GC memory card got messed up do to Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles and Phantasy Star Online... dang those games and there addictive awesomeness.  Anyways I like this game before but once I played it with the Metroid Prime Trilogy I have to say, it got a lot easier to play do to the controls which were implemented pretty well (as long as you customize them).  Also the the game held up pretty well to this generation current gen and despite it being in first person, it did retain the Metroid feel and style.  One complaint though about it and this series in general is while I liked them, they're a bit slower paced do to the scanning (which I did like but wasn't as fun) and you don't feel anywhere near as powerful in this as you do in Super Metroid.  Over all I like the experience though.

Another 9.5 out of 10, it lasted longer but was slower paced.

Metroid Prime 2: Echoes


The red headed step child of the Prime series, Echo's while not as good as the other 2 Prime games is better then what people make it out to be.  It still retains the interesting logs, item collection, exploring, and good graphics however also adds a light and darkworld system, in the vein of certain Legends with a blonde kid who can't speak right.  It does add another lair of depth to the game but it also could of been implemented better as it also makes the exploring, item collecting, and scanning a lot more tedious making the experience even slower then the previous game.  Also the difficulty was turned up a few notches which I welcomed but the morph ball puzzles were just down right annoying.  Still, despite the gripes, I really enjoyed fighting dark Samus and the challenge while annoying at times was fun.

8.5 out of 10

Metroid Prime 3: Corruption

Easy.  That's the best word to describe this game.  I liked it a lot, I liked the story, it was the redeeming title for Retro Studios after Prime 2 but it was really easy, which while I like a challenge, it didn't give me headaches.  I still got lost a few times but its much easier to figure out stuff, especially when your items appear on the map.  The game has more story then the previous 2 with voice acting and other bounty hunters added into the fray.  The phazon mode was unbelievably useful and powerful which made the ending pretty much a breeze, especially if you took your time to collect items.

9.5 out of 10

Over all the Trilogy gets a 9.4 out of 10 from me.  This as I said is one of the best titles out there and is greatly worth it.

Metroid: Other M


Before it came out, this was one of the most anticipated games for most people out there.  After it came out there was a lot of hate on it with a lot of people bashing it.  At the time I didn't have much money and had to choose carefully what I would get that year.  With Monster Hunter Tri, Tatsunoko vs Capcom, Goldeneye, and many other games dropping that year, Metroid had to take a back seat, especially after seeing so much negativity.  I know, I shouldn't base my purchases on reviews.  I know, I don't, I base them on how much game I'll get out of it.  Eventually, I got this and other games I missed (though I'm still missing Galaxy 2) so when I started up the Metroid series I had to make sure I did this one.

I honestly have to say, I'm against the crowd on this game.  This game was a whole lotta fun.  The pacing is quicker a lot like Metroid 1 and Super Metroid, the game was as challenging as the older games, it went back to a 3rd person cam which I welcomed and Samus feels strong again like she did in Metroid Fusion and Super Metroid.  It retained the item collection, the exploring, and had a first person view point again, which while there was some annoying points with it, it didn't hurt the game pacing the way people made it out to.  Despite not using the analog, the controls worked very well.  The morph ball wasn't annoying and the sequences were actually kind of cool.  The big problem I had with this game was the fact you don't get all your powers until literally the very end of the game.


The story has been the big thing that people talk about when they say they don't like it.  A lot of the people who say they don't like the story then go on to say they liked games such as Eternal Sonata and Final Fantasy 13 which I couldn't stand, so I can't take a lot of them seriously.  The story was decent imo, it's Team Ninja, I wasn't expecting a Hideo Kojima or Bioware production, however it's far from bad.  I'm not really fond of the hero who's a robot and doesn't have thoughts, opinions, or personality that's thrown into a story that everybody thinks is amazing - it feels fake to me.  Anyways, the voice acting could of been better, it wasn't bad, but it wasn't as high quality as the rest of the game, more so for Samus.  The facial animations were pretty good, especially when compared to Metroid Prime 3 and while I'm not a fan of FMV's in games, they were very well done in this.

Despite the negativity about this game I liked it a whole lot more then I thought I would and felt the same way playing it I did with the old Metroid games.  9 out of 10

Other Games I beat

Lost Planet 2  


As I said in a previous blog post, a friend has been trying to get me to play this game for quite some time.  I gave in and I beat it recently,  beat it as in seen the credits, I got a long way to go with unlocking stuff.   This is easily one of the funner third person shooters I've played in recent times.  Good action, nice graphics, coop, and some really awesome weapons.  Also the story and bosses weren't half bad at all.


Grand Theft Auto IV: The Ballad of Gay Tony   


Finally finished this game, started it a when it first came out and never got around to finishing it, mostly because each time I turn it on I end up going online which online is a whole lot of fun and a crazy time waster.  Anyways the story in this was really good, like all Rockstar products the voice acting was good, and unfortunately the gameplay was the same as the previous 2 "GTA4" games which is feeling its age do to a crappy physics system.  I liked the game but I hate the physics.


The Charge

So, a few days back I check my email and I have a nice email from Microsoft saying thank you for purchasing Record of Agarest War, a game that I do have an interest in trying and want eventually want to get around to playing but not something I remember purchasing. 


So the next day I call them up and talk about it and try to get the charge removed.  Well apparently it was bought from my 360 so my account wasn't hacked however because it's a full game and not a downloadable game I could only remove the purchase if it wasn't downloaded already, however instead of saying download now, it said download again meaning either A somebody downloaded it and deleted it or be it started downloading then was cancelled.  Either way I didn't do it and it was charged to my card.  So I look at my 360 and noticed when I turn it on, the first thing that was up on the screen was this game, so if I or anybody using my 360 drops my controller when its on, while its a very small probability, it could be purchased.  Also the full store titles don't require microsoft points, meaning it charges straight to the card.

This really brings my piss to a boil.  Seriously.... I remember about 6 months back trying to get my card out of their freakin system and them giving me all this run around, now this happens.  Well at least they took my card out so this won't happen again but this really ticks me off.  It's stupid things like this that make me wonder how game companies intend to compete with these other multi purpose platforms that have there stuff together.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Watching List

I've been watching a lot of stuff lately... a whole lot.  This is mostly because I'll be having to get rid of the netflix dvd plan soon.

The Watching List

Stargate SG1 season 8 and 9

I've been watching a lot of Stargate lately so I can get up to the movies.  Finished up season 8 midway through season 9.  *spoilers*I miss Jack O'neil : *end spoilers*  Though I can't lie, the new guy is also fun too.  The story has really picked up in season 9 which is always nice as well.
Season 8:  6/10
Season 9:  8/10 (so far, not finished).

The Next Three Days

The Next Three Days is about a guy who's wife was accused for murder and all the stuff him and his son go through while she's locked up and how he attempts getting her out.  It was very suspenseful and better then I expected but still a far cry from a AAA movie.



Together is a Chinese drama that focuses on a child violinist prodigy and his dad and their journey for his success.  It's touching and really shows the lengths a good father will go for his son.  I highly recommend this one.

12 Monkeys

People from the future aka 1998 travel back in time 1995 to stop the army of the 12 monkeys.  Not a very good movie but crazy Brad Pitt makes this movie definitely worth watching.
Would be 5/10 but gets a 10/10 just for crazy Brad Pitt.

Law Abiding Citizen

A very suspense thriller.  Basically a guy's family was murdered right in front of him and the justice system didn't do anything about it.  And well you can kind of guess where the movie goes from there.  Lots of gore and intense scenes.   This is not a movie for those with a weak stomach.


Another suspense thriller, this time with Shia Lebeouf.  It's about a kid on house arrest who gets bored and spies on his neighbors all day.... peekin through there windows.  Creepy huh?  Not as creepy as what happens in the movie.

Dragon Hunters

Dragon Hunters is a kids animated movie about a Dragon Hunter, his conman friend, and a princess in search of a cool hero knight to save the kingdom.  She's pretty hyper active btw and can't stop talking which is partly what makes the movie funny.

The Way Back


The final movie and nowhere near the least is called The Way Back.  It's about a group of people who escape a communist camp in Siberia and their long journey across Asia to freedom.  Very good story, very good acting, and I highly recommend this one.

The Boy in Striped Pajamas

Another drama in wartime, this time following a German boy who's father is a colonel in charge of a Jewish concentration camp where he thinks all the people are in striped pajamas.  He makes a friend inside the camp, a Jewish boy around his age.  This is a very sad and disturbing movie but good none the less.


I'll be watching a lot more this week, gotta finish up the Netflix stuff but soon I'll be moving back to doing a lotta gaming soon.  By the way, I originally wrote this up 2 days ago but didn't get to post it here till today..... mostly do to some posting complications....

Friday, August 12, 2011

What's New? 8/11/11

It's time for another blog update, figured I'd give some of the topics a rest for now and have a normal update.  With that said lets get right into it.

Gaming Progress

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm

Ok, I just have to throw this out there.  I am, indeed, a MMO junkie.  Ever since Phantasy Star Online on the Sega Dreamcast, I have been completely addicted to them.  Which of course, eventually after playing many other MMO's I of course got around to the World that is Warcraft.  I actually put the game down about 4 months back mostly because I was just plain bored (I have over 400 days total of playtime on it) but also cata just wasn't that much fun for me.  Well recently I was sitting at my computer surfing the net with my Razer Naga and well I ended up doing a week welcome back trial and played the crap out of it.  Finished up all the cata quests, got epic'd out through pvp, and well... sat around in Orgrimmar being bored again.  Probably won't be going back anytime soon, don't want to do raids or rated battlegrounds which require an insane amount of time and to be in the for the most part elitest guilds, which I hate.  Maybe 1 day Ill go back for real but with certain other online RPG's on the way, I just don't see it happening anytime soon.

Other Gaming

Not much else done this week.  I've been sucked up with WoW however I'll get back to the consoles very soon.

What I've Been Watching

Little Children

For the remainder of this month I'll be getting dvd's from Netflix that I can't get at the library or the red box.  In that list of movies was a movie I probably would of never saw on my own if my sister hadn't put it in my queue called Little Children.  With that said, this movie surprised me with a lot more comedy then I thought it would have.  It's definitely not a movie for everybody but if you like those more strange type movies, you may like this one.

Foo Fighters iTunes London Festival

Another thing my sister wanted to see, her computer wouldn't play it so we watched on my computer the Foo Fighters concert which was actually quite good.  A lot of energy and the crowd was really feelin it.

New Games

Shiren the Wanderer

I've been wanting this game for sometime now but whenever I looked it up online at amazon it was always still over $30.  Well recently I went to and saw it new for $15 but it wasn't in however I looked it up in the really nice store/game location system they have and found that it was in at one near me, so I went over and nabbed it.

Phantom Brave: We Meet Again

Valkyria Chronicles

Both Phantom Brave and Valkyria Chronicles are 2 Tactical/Strategy RPG's I've been wanting for quite some time.  I finally have them both and I'll definitely be playing them very soon.  Give both my Wii and my PS3 some love.

List of Top 10 Most Anticipated Games

There's a lot of games coming out, a whole lot (unless you're talking NA Wii's...) and with all the games coming out I know for a fact I can't get them all and have to focus on the ones I want the most.  So here's a list of my top 10 most anticipated games, mostly stuff I know I'll drop full price (or more) on to play.

#10 Monster Hunter Portable 3rd - I don't own a PSP but if if this game comes to PS3 the way it's supposed to there's a very strong possibility I'll be getting this one.

#9 Heroes of Ruin - While Nintendo isn't known for it's amazing online, this development team in the UK under the SquareEnix flag is doing something truely ambitious.  They're attempting to make a really core online experience on the 3DS.  This game is shaping up to be one of the hottest titles of next year and it's on the 3DS!  Really looking forward to it.

#8 Mass Effect 3 - This is a game that doesn't need any introduction.  It's the final party in an awesome trilogy and easily my favorite game from E3 2011.  Even though I'm not happy with the delay, I'm highly anticipating this game and I'm hoping that the extra time taken really pays off to do whatever polishing is needed.

#7 Battlefield 3 - Another very strong and very good looking game coming from the EA camp which I'm also greatly anticipating.  The Battlefield series has become my favorite FPS series and BF3 looks to be no exception to this.  The graphics are insane and I'm probably going to be nabbing this one for the computer to really flesh out the visuals and have the game running as well as possible.  Not to mention more players in rooms and how PC games evolve.  I'm all over this one.

#6 Pandora's Tower - No this hasn't been announced for North America yet.  No we're not guaranteed to get it.  However this game looks very awesome and if it does come out, I WILL be getting it.  To me, looking at this game, this is how Castlevania should be in 3D.  Castlevania with God of War elements not God of War with Castlevania elements.

#5 Rayman Origins - I'm a huge Rayman fan... HUGE.  When I first caught wind of them going back to the roots of the side scrolling platform style, I was very excited.  After I saw the E3 trailer, I was instantly sold.  I'll be getting this game, no doubt about it, the question is what system should I get it for?

#4 Phantasy Star Online 2 - More really good gaming news came this year when we got to see a nice trailer for yet another one of my favorite games, Phantasy Star Online.  Yes Phantasy Star Online 2 is coming, however it will be PC exclusive.  Not sure if I like that however I'm super stoked about this game, hopefully they deliver on a good PSO experience and not deliver a PSU-esc game.

#3 The Last Story - Yet another game that we don't know if it will be coming to NA or not, the Last Story has been an anticipated game of mine since I first heard of it being in development.  A Hironobu Sakaguchi game on the Nintendo Wii?  No way!  I love Mystwalker games, I loved Hironobu Sakaguchi's old work with Square Enix, and therefore I couldn't wait to try this one.  However like Pandora's Tower, we're not certain this game will be released here.  I really hope this does well in Europe and NoA gets their stuff together and starts releasing games people want.

#2 Star Wars: The Old Republic - For those who don't know, I'm an artist and went to art school.  Some of the people I went to art school with ended up working for some really big companies.  One of those companies was Bioware.  Well around the time one of them started working for Bioware, some really big news started surfacing from Bioware about a certain specific Star Wars game.  When I first heard about this game and how a group of over 12 writers were working on the game 3 years before it came out, I was super excited.  The very next day after I heard this news, we had an open house and our old classmate who was now working for Bioware ended up there and was also talking about this game and telling us more info.  Since then, not only have I been hyped and excited, I knew that this would be the next MMO that would really draw me in.  I want this game so bad, I even dropped the $150 for the collectors edition - yes, I know.  I'll be in this game the moment I'm allowed in.

#1 Xenoblade Chronicles - Xenoblade Chronicles aka Monado: Beganning of the World is yet another game on the Nintendo Wii that we have no idea if it will come to our region.  The person behind it, Tetsuya Takahashi delivered my favorite RPG experience of all time, Xenogears, and 2 other really strong RPG experiences I loved, Baiten Kaidos and Baiten Kaidos Origins.  Well this game also looks to be absolutely amazing.  It's being called the biggest Japanese RPG to date and is said to be the game that's really driving the JRPG experience forward.  Also this generation while there has been some big JRPG's, there hasn't been many, especially on the Wii.  This is the game that RPG fans and Wii owners need and I personally can't wait to play.  There's little doubt in my mind that I won't pick this one asap if it comes out in North America.

Honorable Mentions:

Mario Kart 3D
Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
Earth Seeker
Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword
Rune Factory Tides of Destiny
Gears of War 3

What are some of the games you're looking forward to?