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Truly A Addiction

Posted : 11 years ago on 9 September 2012 03:32 (A review of .hack//Infection Part 1)

Back in 2000/2001, Phantasy Star Online is released to the world. It is groundbreaking at the time due to be one of the first online games to a console being a MMO. This game proved that online capabilities in console is possible and it’s possible to have MMOs in consoles. During this time, Hiroshi Matsuyama the president of CyberConnect2 was inspired by this game that he went to make a series in 4 games that’s based off on MMORPGs called .hack. Each game came with a OVA DVD that shows the event from the game in the real world, and extras behind of game.

The plot has our main character Kite(Or any name you chose for him) logging on to “The World” for the first time to see his friend called Orca who is famous in the game. They went to a level 1 field for Kite to get used to the game. While going down floors in a dungeon, they encounter a girl in a white dress running away with a weird monster with a red wand. After getting the treasure at the end of the place, everything went odd as they ended up on a different place. The girl from earlier tries to give Orca a book but she leaves when the monster also from earlier appears. Orca tries to attack but none hit it then the monster used a weird attack that deletes him. The monster also tries to hit Kite but was saved by a mysterious person and he gets the book unknowingly. He later finds out in the real world that the player behind Orca ended up with a coma. Back in “The World”, he encounters a Heavyblader called Blackrose who he went with her to the cathedral like area. A monster appears that tries to kill both, but a guy with wings called Balmung came and defeat it, however the monster is immoral for a strange reason. Somehow the book that Kite had triggers and gives him a power while it changed his appearance. He used this new power called Data Drain to drains the monster into a weaker version of itself which Balmung defeats once and for all. After Balmung leaves to think about what happen after threaten them thinking they're the ones that started this weirdness in “The World”. After this event, Kite and Blackrose resolve to find out what is happening recently in “The World” and cure Orca and the other victims.

When you start the game, you head to your desktop, you are able to check your emails, news from over the world, change settings, and log on in “The World”. You go to your email very often to get a certain area words. You also get email on random topics where you learn more about your friends where you have the choice of saying two options. At the start up screen of "The World”, you check the forums where users posted about events, story wise events, and area words you can use in the game.

At Root Town, you can explore around talking to the NPCs where you can trade for items/equipments. It is very important to check the equipment due to that each one has different skills/spells that are useful on certain areas and once you unequip it, you can’t use it’s skills and the other item you just equip you get it’s skills for now. There is a number of locations to check like shops to buy items and weapons, and a place to store your items. Also you are able to raise a pet called a Grunty where you give it food you get from the field area for it to grow and after it grows up, you are able to ride it on any field. Here you can invite any of your friends if they are online at that time you give them a flash mail. You can also talk, trade, and give items to your friends when they are in your party. When you’re really to go, you go on the chaos gate to chose any words from you get from emails, and boards. Also you can go random or make you own keywords to give it feel right for your level. Lastly you are able to hack areas for story reasons and you need things from monsters called virus codes that help you hack to that one area.

At the field, you get a overfield map to show you where the dungeon is. At the field, you will encounter enemies starting the battle screen. You push X for attack, for using spells, you go on the menu to use the skills/spells you have. Also in the menu, you can also use items or to select a strategy like just attack, use only skills, or heal. Now on to data drain, once a enemy's “PROTECT BREAK” come up on the screen, you are able to drain it for them to be weaker and to get a item from it. However there is a catch in using data drain, if you use it too much. It infects you and game over. To decrease, you have to beat enemies without using data drain. At the dungeon, you go through the about 3 to 5 or more floors to get the treasure at the end.

Now let’s get into the good and the bad on this game. I will say that this did a really good job on creating the illusion that you are playing “The World” on a computer and the emails, forums, and the news also help immersing you into this world. The story in this while this is the first one out of the four starts out really interesting and it has something in it that gets you wanting to find out the odd events happening. The menu based gameplay I feel that it has a intense feel to it that draws you more into the game especially some of the few harder parts in the game where you want to win. The music is fine on the most part fitting on parts in the game while it does have a few forgettable tracks. Now for the bad, this is it’s major problem with makes this game not for everyone. It can feel repetitive due to the areas being very similar to each other and you’re going to see it while grinding to be really most of the time. It doesn’t help that something like this has alot of potential to have some really interesting areas, but it is not the case. One last thing is that after completing it, there isn’t much replayability other than a postgame area. It would be nice to have more quests to do before someone get the next game in the series.

I will say this, if you get into the game and want to get the other 3, don’t go into it expecting any changes to it. Other than a few minor changes. It is the same game which people may get tired of.

Overall, If you like the ideas this got and want to get yourself into the game, you may like this. If you don’t like a repetitive feel, you may not like this. Honestly I know this series has issues, I know it can be repetitive but I don’t hate it. I really like the concept, the story is really interesting, the gameplay is addicting that I end up going past my bedtime playing this. I going to say that this game and the series is a guilty pleasure. Now... (buzz) …noW m* Ne*t r#vi!w iS )n a wII 6ame C&lleD RocK n ROl1 adVenturE.

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"I'll Join Them. Someday..."

Posted : 11 years ago on 2 September 2012 07:29 (A review of The Last Story)

After Final Fantasy Hironobu Sakaguchi leave Square Enix in 2003/2004. He founded a company called Mistwalker in 2004 that created games like Lost Odyssey, and Blue Dragon. Then in 2007, he started to work on a RPG on the recently released Nintendo Wii originally called “The Last World”. It had a Sci-fi setting with a dark story and a princess who cry tears of blood. Nintendo didn’t like the ideas so the team went back to the game changing the setting, story, and the characters which end up today as “The Last Story” released in Japan in January 27, 2011, Europe in February 24, 2011 and in North America in the week of August 14 of this year.

The plot has a group of mercenaries taking out a series of enemies on a cave near Lazulis Island due to the magic the cannon on the castle has. In the group we have our main character Zael who has a dream of becoming a knight and a antisocial mage named Yurick looking for Dargan the leader of the group and a woman named Syrenne who like to drink alot while killing enemies. They catched up with each other and get separated finding a way out in a ruins of somewhat. Zael and Syrenne look around for a exit but enemies surrounded them and Syrenne get hit by a arrow in the chest. Zael scared about losing someone due to an event in his past hears a voice granting him a power. Zael uses this to save Syrenne, founded the other group, and got back to a meeting base in a tavern in town. We meet the other two members of the group in the tavern, Lowell a easygoing physical/magic attacker, and a healer named Mirania that likes nature. At night, Zael heads to town to look around than he encounters a person that will change his life forever.

At Lazulis Island, you can explore the town talking to the many people in the streets. Talking to people might get you to do a sub quest during your time in town. You are able to find hidden items in random parts in town by seek mode where you zoom more of your view. There are shops around to buy items, get weapons, armor, color dye which you use to color your own armor, and upgrade your equipment. Another place to kill time is the arena where you defeat a series of enemies. The more times you complete it, the difficulty increases and you get more money. Lastly after going into a story chapter on a certain place, you be able to go back to collect some rare items but with no exp.

Let’s talk about the battle system. During battle your teammates have 4 lives and you have 5 lives, if you allies go down, they be KO for the rest of the battle and if you are out then it’s game over. Before you start the battle, you get to overlook on what enemies are there giving you ideas to plan and your teammates will also mention some details about the upcoming battle. At battles you might have a option to use the environment near enemies to take advantage of like you use seek mode during battle and it shows you what you can blow up a bridge and it falls to a group of enemies making it easier to deal with. You are able to hide on a pillar or something and you can jump over a small object. Magic is done different here, the mages you have take a few seconds to cast and it can be ruined if enemies are by them. Them ready, the spell ends up hitting them and turns to a magic circle that still has a spell’s effect. Zael can diffuse it for the effect by using gale. The power that Zael gets plays a huge role in battles. You use it in battle and all of the enemy's attention will go to you giving the mages more time to cast and it helps that using the power doubles their cast time. Another ability is curing your allies who is down a live. Lastly, Zael is able to have energy saved up and then it is maxed it, you releases it for damage and other effects.

This game also has a online mode. You have the option of playing deathmatch/team deathmatch or join with random people to take down a boss before time is up. At the meeting screen, you are able to choose any character in the game you want even if it’s a enemy. Also you are able to give messages to other players. If you win a match you get points for ranks and items that you can use in the game.

The things I enjoy is the execution of the story. While it is predictable at parts, it works due to the characters. The main characters are relatable, the other in the group are fun to listen to and surprised me at times in the story. It also really helps out because of the voice acting. The voice acting is really good that adds to the experience, the characters in the world their in, and gets you into the story. The battle system is really interesting on how they came out with it and it is engaging with having a strategic feel to it. The music by Nobuo Uematsu is pretty good with memorable themes like this one below that adds to the world we playing at.

The things I didn’t like is the slowdown during battles. When battles get crazy, it becomes to do so which is quite noticeable. Like I say on the story, it can be predictable and there was even one part I predicted and it came true. Lastly it’s abit odd that they have only a few modes for online. With a battle system like this, it would have been interesting to see it expanded into more.

Overall if you like story driven games, you might like this one. If you don’t like a predictable story, you may not like it. In my case, it has a few flaws but it turns out well thanks to the characters, the voice acting, the battle system, and the music. Recommended to Wii owners and RPG fans and for one last note. You may want to find this as quickly as possible because I believe it is on a limited run.

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Damn my curious self!

Posted : 11 years ago on 29 August 2012 09:13 (A review of Ninjabread Man)

( If you are wondering what happen to The Last Story review. I'm in the typing progress of it and it will be posted soon.)

I can be a curious type of person. I love to dive into different games series to get myself part into their worlds and seeing the good and bad parts of it learning more about the gaming world. One day, I wondered to myself, “What happened to the Wii?”. From what I know, sales went down after the first years went by and one reason is due to some of the games that disinterest people that lead them into other consoles. Weeks ago while surfing on Amazon, I encounter a game called Ninja Breadman and I remember hearing how bad it is. Curious to find out how it will go since I don’t go into hating games. I decide to order a copy for $4 dollars and here’s my thoughts.

Usually I talk about the plot first but there isn’t a story to this beside some on the back that apparently monsters has taken over the land and a breadman that is a ninja has to stop them. Even in the game didn’t mention any story at all but here’s my take on it. One day in the world of sweets, an army called the Data Designing Hacks invaded the land. The king of the land and the head of the army made an agreement so they won’t do anything to the land to harm it’s citizens. The catch was that the Data Designing Hacks wanted to make a video game out of this world. Little did they know that the army has a certain dark reason for making a video game. So in less than a few weeks, they got the ideas down and started programmed it. After it was made, it was released in their land and the army lefted the land. When people played it, they were disgusted on what they saw for a numbers of reason and it disgraced their land forever. Why they are disgusted on it you might ask? Well you just have to find out later in this review.

In the gameplay, the objective is to collect 8 power rods for the teleporter to work and go to the next “level”. To get each one, you need to jump platform to platform or solve a puzzle. To jump you need to shake the nunchuk or press Z. For attacks, you have the sword which you swing the Wii remote. Another attack called ninja stars is a long ranged attack that gets powerful the more times you use it. You aim at the screen and press the B button to use them. There are 4 modes in this game. First one is pretty much the normal game mode. Second mode is Score Pickups where you need to collect a certain number of items. Third mode is time attack which is self explanatory. Lastly you have the Hidden Pickups where you collect sweets for the teleporter to work.

Now let’s get to the juicy part, the good and the bad and before I start. You( the reader) have the option to listen to this piece of music while reading the section that starts with this * because the music and I have one thing in common and that is you to figure out at the end.

The good which you could say is bad is that this is very short about 30-45 minutes to complete. People like longer gameplay but in my opinion, thank god it is short for very good reason. Also the title like that gets some reactions that are amusing when I tell them about this game. *Now in the bad (sigh), the level design is bland. It doesn’t have any excitement and doesn’t really interest you and it doesn’t help that the music is equally bland as well that repeats all the time. However these are the least of it’s problems compared to the controls. Imagined one day you find this candy in the store. You buy and eat it when you came home but however after eating it. You feel very sick that you don’t have the energy to do things. Even opening the door becomes tedious and hard because you can’t move your arm on the most part and your movements became awkward as well. That’s the controls in the game. This is the worst controls I ever seen in a Wii game. The motion controls barely works only 50/50. Everything becomes tedious because of the controls. It doesn’t help that when you are trying to use your sword to work. The enemy will just move to just murder and you are doing nothing trying to defend yourself. The jumping is worst due to the fact that you need to jump alot in the game and you really have to make it w/o falling and even pressing the Z button feels awkward. It also doesn’t help at all that they lied to us about the Z button. In the manual and in the game, they never mention it’s use at out. If you are making a game and you forgot in the game to mention one part of the controls, it makes you look like a jerk. I don’t know if this happen to anyone but even the camera has it’s weird moments. In the tutorial when I was throwing stars at targets. The camera zoomed right to the back of my face while showing that the map thing was there. Another time in stage 2 when I was going up a hill, it did the same thing and it was even worst. You need to see what is up next and the camera is just fighting with you. I didn’t do anything besides just moving my character and that happen.

Back to my question, I think I can understand. Games like these that show no respect to gamers is the reason that people were disinterested with the Wii and it lose sales due to the fact that people have to deal with these “games” in the market. Do you know what is the worst effect is. There are certain titles from Japan/Europe that has so much potential that shows the Wii could be even more. You have games like Fatal Frame 4 and the remake on 2, Night of the Sacrifice, Earth Seeker, Disaster: Day of Crisis, Zangeki No Reginleiv, and Pandora’s Tower that will never see the light of day because of disinterest, games like Ninja Breadman in the market, and loss of sales that Nintendo doesn’t give a fucking shit about the Wii even when there a noticeable amount of people that are BEGGING them to release. Just, sigh.

I just going to stop here. If you want to play a bad game, this is one to check out but for anything else. I don’t recommend this game at all. Also you know what else is going on. there is going to be a sequel for this and they are asking people for suggestions to be use. You want some suggestions? I give you some suggestions. How about making the controls good, make the game fun to play, and don’t lie to your consumers you sadistic jerk!

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Pokemon Black

Posted : 11 years, 1 month ago on 21 August 2012 02:22 (A review of Pokémon Black Version)

I’m not going to lie but Pokemon is a huge part of my childhood. I remember in the late 90s and early 2000s where it was everywhere. The handhelds were a mega hit, the anime series was at that time doing extremely well, the training cards are everywhere that wasn’t banned, there were tons of products in stores like I remember eating a cereal with marshmallows of Pokemon, and it was very controversy on parts of the world. Now during 2003-2005 after playing Pokemon Sapphire, I lost interest and got into after things during that time. Than in 2006/2007, I found myself getting back into the series realizing how it’s ridiculous fun and addicting it is. It isn’t the story that make the game good, its the gameplay and replay valve that made it what it is today. Last year, GameFreak released Pokemon Black and White in the US and does it hold up to the others? In my opinion it does.

The plot still has your usual main character and his friends/rivals get his/her first Pokemon. You have the goal to beat 8 gym leaders across the region of Unova to battle the Elite Four the strongest trainers in Unova and the champion. Along your journey, you get involved in a team’s questionable plan called Team Plasma. Their goal is to release Pokemon from their trainers because they believe that trainers are being selfish using Pokemon in their command and Pokemon should live with humans equally without forcing them into anything. You also encounter N, a mysterious person that is the leader of Plasma countless times during your journey.

The gameplay has the usual turn based battle system we see from the other handheld games with new features. They have moveable animations in battles instead of being still from the past games. In this game, you can battle in triple battles and rotation battles where you can switch your Pokemon and attack at the same time. The effect valve(EVs) where you defeat a Pokemon that has a stat like I beat it that has a attack stat you get that added and you go up until 508 remains the same with new items to increase it y one. This game introduces the seasons cycle where after a month went by in real life. It changes in the game and it has a effect in the region. At places you can see the leaves fall, or the snow covering everything, and it’s affects on what wild Pokemon are in the grass. Like the battle tower in the past games, you have the battle subway where you can take in single, doubles, multi battles, and wi-fi battles and each one that’s not wi-fi battles after a certain amount of wins. you battle the master of that one subway for BP. BP are points for each seven battles you win and you use to get useful battle held items. Lastly there is a Pokemon Musical where you dress up your Pokemon while choosing the right ones for the show since each one is different. In the show, you use the touch screen at the right time when you are dancing to steal the spotlight. At the end of the show you get props depending on your Pokemon’s performance.

Now let’s get into the multiplayer/wi-fi modes. The Global Trade Station makes a return as now it’s in the pokemon centers. In GTS now you can make negotiations with whoever you trading as you both chose and see what they agree or disagree on. A new feature also at Pokemon Center is random battles where you don’t need FCs to battle anyone from around the world. In wireless mode, you have the C-Gear which lets you use features like the Xtransceiver which lets you talk and see people in real life. For those wanting to play very close you have the Infrared connections where you can give out your FCs, trade and battle. Also you can go to a place called the Entralink where you can connect to a different person’s region to trade, battle, or take on missions that give you effects to use in a short amount of time. A very big feature is the ability to connect to the Pokemon Global Link a website that uses wi-fi and lets you do a good number of features on there. You can access your rank data on the Global Battle Union that shows how you doing in Random Wi-Fi battles. It starts at a certain amount of points that increase or decrease depending how well you do in battles. Lastly on the GBU, you be able to compete in competitions from over the world within a number of set rules. Also you can get promotions you take like a Lucario giveaway or other content. Lastly you can send your Pokemon to the Dream World which you look over them online. When they are in the dream world, you be able to make berries you can send over, and mini games that let you befriend pokemon which you can send to Black and White.

The things I enjoy about this is the overall fresh feeling I got when playing this. You don’t see any old pokemon like Zubats and such. All you encounter are new Pokemon until after you beat the game which make the experience feel new in a way combined with the new features like moveable animation during battles. The battles are still fun to play with tons of Pokemon, new moves, new additions to try out and it helps that the effect valves makes it more interesting. While the story may not be deep as other RPGs, I will say that I like that they made this more story driven than usual with interesting ideas that adds to the experience. The one thing about the series I like alot is the replay value, there is alot of content to do post game whenever it either making that good team by the effect valve method, catching all Pokemon, or getting yourself into the new features. All of these features keeps you addicted for quite awhile. Remember the TMs you have to use carefully, well now you can use it anytime you want without losing it making it more convenience and less annoying when making a team. Now for the things I didn’t like and that people may not like, this might depends on the person but people may not like the designs on the new Pokemon while I don’t mind the new gen Pokemon on the most part myself while I agree that some designs are abit odd for example Vanilluxe. I kind of wish they added a option to be able to have rematches with gym leaders and trainers for more options.

Overall, Pokemon Black still have the addicting feel we know and love with tons of new features, a more interesting storyline, and a fresh feeling due to the ideas to have new Pokemon until post game. I recommend this to fans and to newcomers that like to try out this series.

On a random note, the next review is The Last Story on the Wii.

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The Seven Sleeping Keyholes

Posted : 11 years, 1 month ago on 7 August 2012 02:34 (A review of Kingdom Hearts: Dream Drop Distance Mark of Mastery Edition)

In 2002, Square Enix released Kingdom Hearts in the US. Before it release, people have no idea how it will turned out due to being a crossover of Disney and Final Fantasy characters. The game surprised everyone and sold million of copies. The game worked thanks to a surprising interesting concept while being corny at times I’m not going to lie about that. The gameplay was addicting and very neat to have Disney characters help you in battle. The music is awesome that adds to the experience. Over the years, they released Kingdom Hearts 2 and other games that took place before in the games and a prequel called Birth by Sleep was released in 2010. Now the very recent game will continue the story after 2 called Dream Drop Distance.

The plot has Sora and Riku go see Yen Sid to talk about the upcoming threat. Master Xehanort has returned and they have to do something before it’s too late. To be ready for the threat, they both have to take the Mark of Mastery to gain more power and be a true keyblade master. They have to go into the sleeping worlds to unlock 7 sleeping keyholes. The reason these worlds are asleep is after Sora saves the worlds in the first one, some remain never return to normal and cut off from the many worlds out there. The creatures that they be on the lookout are called Dream Eaters. There are two types of them, one are nightmares that eat good dreams while Spirits consume the nightmare and aid our two characters to find the keyholes and unlock the power.

Like most KH games, it is an action RPG where you do the usual attack, dodging, using magic, and block. The command deck from Birth by Sleep makes a return where you can set to 8 commands during the game. The big new features in this game is the flowmotion where you can bounce off of walls, poles and such in high speeds to use powerful attacks like a finishing move, and grabbing large enemies and throwing them to other enemies. The second new feature is reality shift is where you see a pink down arrow on the touch screen and once you trigger it, you have to do the objectives right for more damage. If you don’t remember bits from the past game. You unlock the mementos that shows you flashbacks in event on this game and the chronicles where you read the events from Birth by Sleep to Re Coded. Lastly another new feature is the drop system, there is a gauge to shows how much time you have left before switching between Sora and Riku. Once you drop, the more enemies you kill, you can give bonuses to the next person like more attack power and such. There are items to reset the gauge and you can drop anywhere you want during the game. When you drop in the world you’re at, the forecast changes that it could be that items are cheaper, or you get extra bonuses. Similar to the gummi ship, you dive to the world to go to where you go do objectives like collect this much or beat this boss to go into the worlds.

The other biggest feature in the game is the spirits, You can create spirits that you can train by items like balloons, and water barrels increase their bond to you and experience. You also give them food that increase their stats, LP, and such. Also you can pet them kind of like nintendogs that after a good amount of petting, they do a action depending on the spirit that shows their bond like Meow Wow will lick the screen. They also the key on getting abilities and commands by the ability link board where you use LP to get them. At battle they help out attack while doing little damage and sometimes healing you, and once their link gauge is full. In Sora’s case it let him use limits to deal powerful damage than in Riku’s case, it activate a link style similar to the command styles in Birth by Sleep. Lastly your spirits can go play in a minigame called Flick Rush where the objective is using higher value cards while switching spirits to beat the other team to win.

The things I like are the new features on the gameplay on the most part. Flowmotion adds on a already chaotic battle system and made it even more enjoyable, fast paced, and crazy.The worlds are huge with a bunch of treasure chest to explore and find and it helps that the design in the Disney worlds captures on what they look at in the movies other than the fact that they is no NPC around. While it depends on the person view on the story. It does has it corny parts to it that you could do a drinking game on it but in all seriously I like that one of the characters grow more, it reveals alot to keep people excited for KH3, and that most of the Disney characters are in character( Yes even Frollo is still his bad self with some things cut out). The spirit training/petting is surprising addicting with tons of spirits to create with different abilities and making that good team to use. The music is just as good as the other KH games with really memorable tracks that adds to the experience.

The things I didn’t like is the idea of the drop system, it sounds kind of annoying that when you in the middle of something but you have to stop since the gauge is almost out. In all honestly It isn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I would give the drop system itself a 5/10 that I don’t like the overall idea but it is tolerable due to the items that reset it that cost not that much and you can drop anywhere you want. Still this part is going to be a like it or hate it on the system. The AI of the spirit can be alright at time, they do attack but there was times that I was need in healing and the ones on my party that know cure didn’t use it. Unfortunately after you beat the game, it doesn’t have a good amount of replay valve. You unlock a boss, still chests to get, the minigame, and portals to rebattle bosses. I wish they could've added more content after the game other than the new game plus to bring spirit you made with you.

Oh and one more thing, you may want to play the others or look up on what happens before playing this game if I were you. There is a chance that you may be confused about the story if you play this instead of the other games I recommend playing Birth by Sleep, KH 1, 2, and maybe 358/2 Days if you like.

Overall, this title has flaws that might ruin it depending on the person, but thankfully the gameplay is fun as heck, the spirits are surprising neat, and it keeps you interested in the story. Recommend to KH fans and 3DS owners that want a action RPG.

Now I will go dive into the nightmares of bad games and play NinjaBread Man on my Wii to save one of the apparently best( The Last Story) for last.

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"You've met with a terrible fate haven't you?"

Posted : 11 years, 3 months ago on 9 June 2012 04:03 (A review of The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask)

At 1998, Nintendo released The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time for the Nintendo 64. It was an best selling game at the time with 7.6 million being sold with everyone loving it and still to this day been called one of the greatest games of all time. After its release, Nintendo decide to make an sequel that toke two years of production less than the time to make OoT. Originally the sequel was going to be released on the Nintendo64DD but due to bad sales in Japan, it was switch to Nintendo 64. This was finally released in 2000 as The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask.

The plot is that Link leaves Hyrule to look for his friend, While looking around in the forest on his horse. A Skull Kid wearing an odd looking mask with two faries Tatl and Tael appears, steals his ocarina, and his horse. Link chases after him and ends up in a cave where Skull Kid transforms him into a deku. As Skull Kid leaves, Tatl gets separated from him and Tael and she teams up with Link to find them. They end up inside the Clock Tower with a Happy Mask Salesman where they made a deal that if he can get the mask back from Skull Kid, than the Salesman can turn Link back to normal. In the three days, they learn that the moon is going to crash. At midnight of the third day, the team confronts Skull Kid and Tael tells them to find four giants from different locations. Link manages to take the ocarina back and remembers the song of time. He plays it and he is back at the first day. The Mask Salesman turns you back to normal than realize he doesn’t have the mask. The Salesman reveals to Link that Majora’s Mask has an evil power that has potential to destroy everything. Link then have to find whatever the four giants are to stop the moon.

The gameplay remains the same from OoT like you solve puzzles, kill emeries, using the songs to get by, and doing optional side quests with new additions. One is the time limit, you have 3 days that is about 54 minutes to find what you are looking for. If you don’t play the song of time in time, the moon falls and destroys everything. When you play the song, it takes you back to day one while losing items like money, arrows, and bombs. It also saves when you play the song. Another way to save is at owl statues you encounter during the jounary. There is a song that slows the time limit giving you more time to do sidequest or go through the dungeon. The second additions is the masks, they are two different types of masks. One type that you transforms into the mask you put on like you put on a deku mask than you transform into a deku. Each mask you find has different abilibes useful at locations when it’s needed. The other type is the mask you use that has secondary effects that affect certions part of the game but doesn’t transform you, like if you wear an bunny hat than you can move faster.

The things I enjoy are the story. I love how it well thought out it is, the concepts work well and while it’s darker than OoT, it works really well and different from what they usually do. The atmosphere works very well to the dark themes the game has. The gameplay is still good with the controls good, and the time limit system I personally don’t mind seeing as its fits with the story making the experience interesting. The music while takes some songs from OoT is pretty good and it does a great job in capturing the mood and making you feel about the event you watching. While I enjoyed this game a lot, they are some things people might be annoyed with. The time limit may be very annoying to people who prefer to explore with no time limit and people may not like the limits on the save feature.

Overall this game may not be anyone's type of game but I love it for the darker storyline, music, gameplay, and interesting concepts. I recommend trying this one out.

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"Until I Return To Your Side"

Posted : 11 years, 3 months ago on 4 June 2012 08:51 (A review of Pandora's Tower)

In the last couple years, the Wii is losing sales due to focusing on the casual market instead of the hardcore market. People are losing interest on the Wii switch to other consoles for more choices. While there are very few games left on the Wii's lifespan. There are three that have alot of potential to be good while each one very different. In last year, Nintendo of Europe wanted to show one of the three but Nintendo of America say they have no interest in releasing that one and the other two. It went to the point that some fans even created Operation Rainfall. They did as much as they could to convince Nintendo to reconsider their decision. In this year, two out of the three is released or releasing soon. The first is Xenoblade Chronicles which is called one of the best RPGs of this generation and released last April. The second one coming out in July 10th The Last Story made by Final Fantasy creator Hironobu Sakaguchi. The third one however is only released in Europe so far with no word of its release in the US. This third one is Pandora's Tower.

The plot is that Elena is singing for the kingdom of Elyria's Havest festival but however an monster attacked the festival. Our somewhat silent hero Aeron go's and find Elena and escapes with her from the army. They ran into the mysterious merchant named Mavda that takes them to the wastelands near an Observatory. Aeron finds out that Elena has a curse that turns her into a monster as time go by. Mavda gives him the Oraclos Chain and tells him to head to the Thirteen Towers. Each tower has an master he must beat, if he beat each one. He has to take the flesh out of them and Elena has to eat each one to remove the curse forever.

The gameplay is similar to Zelda that you have to solve puzzles to get around places and some cases defeating enemies to get by. To get to the master’s room, you have to destroy parts of it's chain in different rooms to unlock the door. You have the sword to attack at the beginning and if you hold the A button, you can do a special attack for more damage. However the gameplay is more about the chain than the sword and the other weapons you get during the game. You use the chain for puzzles, getting to places, and attacking/blinding enemies. However this is not a game to be exploring a lot, you have to watch the gauge that show you how much Elena has left before she turns into an monster. She starts turning when it’s at purple and that happen to me while in the tower, and you have to leave the tower to give her meat to set the gauge back to the beginning. This may sound annoying at first but this game makes backtracking very convenient that the puzzles you done are still done and you can go shortcuts to get back where you there at. Not to mention there is an item to sends you back to Elena so you don’t have to rush back to the beginning part of the tower. When you face a master, you have to watch its movements to find the weakness to take advantage of the fight.

While not in the towers, you can talk to Elena, give her gifts that she will like, and requests to translate books for you. This you have to do a lot since this increases the bond between Aeron and Elena and this will be important for getting one of the five endings depending on how much you increase it. You can also talk to Mavda that has a shop opened for materials, healing items, and gifts. You can give her flesh, and papers you not using to get money. You can create items that you don’t get in the towers like armor from materials. Lastly you can upgrade your weapons for more attack power from using materials.

I really like the concept of this game that is pretty well thought out with tons of background information to keep you interested. This game did really well in making you feel bad for Elena. The one time the gauge goes down to purple and I went back. I saw Elena has transformed abit and I felt bad for letting it happen. Since that I always make sure I leave the towers when the gauge is halfway so she doesn’t transform. The time limit system works really well, when you in the towers, they will be shortcuts to find/make to make exploring not annoying. I have to say using the chain is pretty fun with the controls good and the difficultly being fair. The boss fights are pretty fun to do finding out what works and what doesn’t work to your advantage. The music is really good fitting with the themes of this game. However I wish they made Aeron more interesting as he is kind of bland and you don’t learn much about him besides a few cutscenes. Also the second half of the towers can be tiring due to it being the same as the first half with the exception of the last two.

Overall with some flaws, Pandora’s Tower is a good game with an interesting concept, fun gameplay, good music, and good use of the time limit. I recommend trying this out and I really hope Nintendo release this to the US.

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Xenoblade Chronicles

Posted : 11 years, 4 months ago on 10 May 2012 10:17 (A review of Xenoblade Chronicles)

The Wii that came out in 2006 was a huge success for its time of its release. The idea of motion controls interested people enough to get the system. However, in recent years, gamers begin to lost interest due to its focus on casual games instead of other games people are interested in that are on other consoles. As the Wii’s final months come by before the next consoles comes out. A few games come out and this is one of them. This is “Xenoblade Chronicles” came out in Japan in June 10, 2010 and recently came out in the States in April 6th.

The plot is about in the endless ocean where two titans like gods who fought in an endless battle until their final blows end both. As eons pass, on one of the bodies called Bionis, life begins as people called the Homs live there with tons of creatures and environments. On the other called the Mechonis, the environment is more advanced and machine like things call the Mechon attack the places that Homs made. The only weapon able to destroy the mechon is a sword called the Monado that has mysterious power like the ability to see visions of the future. The Bionis once welded it during its endless battle. In Colony 9, our hero Shulk and his friend Reyn leaves the colony with the Monado to get revenge on the Mechon for killing a childhood friend during an invasion.

The game play focuses on the exploring aspect. The environment this world gives is huge and each time you find something for exploring. You get rewards like XP and experience points each landmark you found. Once you find landmarks, you can skip to one place to another landmark to back track. The battle system is a real time action type system where you can move around and attack. You can also use art like magic to help you. Once you increase the team gauge to full, you can team up attacks to help you defeat enemies. Another aspect is you can see visions before it happen if a teammate is about to die, you can do action to change the outcome. Like in RPG’s you can do some side quests to get money and experience points. Lastly, there is an affinity system where you can increase the relationship between you and your teammates by being battles or you giving gifts with one of your teammate. By doing this, you can see character which shows more of the character you’re with.

Recently, this game been called one of the best Japanese role-playing games of this generation and I see why. I really like the concept of the story. I love the idea of you being on this fallen god with countless environments. The story is well done with believable characters with twist and turns to keeping you interested. While I don’t usually talk about the visuals most in my game reviews, I’m not going to lie that the locations are gorgeous. The locations are well done to the point that it makes you compels to explore the whole area. I enjoy the battle system and it’s engaging to get into with a good challenge. The music is also pretty good with the mix of composers they got for this. The only issues people might have is the voice acting some may not like while I don’t mind myself. Lastly, the battle system may not be for anyone since it takes elements from MMORPG’s and it’s abit familiar to Final Fantasy XII.

Overall “Xenoblade Chronicles is surprising really good with believable characters, good story, music, gameplay, gorgeous locations, and a great concept. I highly recommend this to anyone with a Wii and definitely RPG fans.

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Posted : 11 years, 4 months ago on 10 May 2012 10:08 (A review of Ni no Kuni Shikkoku no Madoshi)

“Welcome to the world of magic. Magic is a journey striking for greater heights as a never-ending journey. Among your journey there will be insurmountable mountains. They will be valleys to block the path ahead. They will be oasis to smooth your travel wary body. They will be beautiful forest full of temptations. However you mustn’t let these things interpret your journey. All who taken up wizardry must totally devote their self to the entire being to the road of magic. This is the single obligation imposed on all processed wizards. This hardship is absolute.” in this RPG made by Level 5 who made the Dark Cloud series, and Dragon Quest VIII with the collaboration of Studio Ghibli who made films like Spirited Away.

The plot is about a boy called Oliver who lost his mother after she saved him from drowning. While mourning his lost, his tears go on a doll given him by his mother suddenly turns to life. It turns out that it’s a fairy called Shizuku. Shizuku tells Oliver that if he is able to defeat the black mage Jabo. Than he might have an chance to get his mother back since an person have two sides of their self in both the human world and Ni No Kuni, and his mother’s self in Ni No Kuni was trapped while standing up to Jabo. Oliver accepts and after finding a book called the Magic Master and a stick to use as a wand. He cast the Gate spell to enter the world of Ni No Kuni.

With every copy of the game, you get a 350 page-book like the one Oliver gets in the game. The book contains a number of details. One is the spells you are able to cast. Also the book shows you hints on the locations that you will go to in the game that you need to know. There is a section that has all of the items, weapons, and the monsters called the Imajinn where you can look up. Lastly it has short stories about the places and adds more depth to the world the game created.

In the world map, there are hidden treasure chests around that you can find while exploring the map. In the towns, you can take quests that require you to cast a certain spell, kill an Imajinn, or having to look deeper at your book for clues. Also there are a number of puzzles you need to solve from using a spell or looking at a part of the book. In the game you are able to befriend Imajinns for battles with each one having certain types of abilities, and different moves to change the role of the battle. While not in battle, you can play, pet, and brush your Imajinn, you do this so the Imajinn like you more. Also you have to give it food they like since each one is picky. The battles are turn based with the usual commends to aid you in battle. Also in battle you can switch rows with the top is more attack power and the lower row is more defense power. Lastly there is a good amount of extra content after you beat it like the quests, new places be available, spend time in the casino, or going in the coliseum with just your Imajinn facing others for prizes.

One word to sum this game up in my opinion is fascinating. I like the idea of using the book for spells, and hints for the game and the book itself is handled really well with very interesting content to look at. The story is pretty good and it has some short of a charm that gets you more into the game. The animation Studio Ghibli made in the cut scenes are well done with a lot of details being there. The game play is really good with tons of content to do while not following the story or after the story finished. The difficulty is just right while it’s fine in the beginning, it get harder as it go later in the story and after. The Imajinn is done well and while it has a “gotta catch em all” feel like Pokemon, it’s does it in a way it’s not being a rip off. The music by Joe Hisaishi does a amazing job on composing it with really great memorable music adding to the experience of Ni No Kuni. While I don’t have any major complaints, I will mention that some puzzles can be a pain since some of the puzzles require you to look at the book and it won’t go well if you have no knowledge of Japanese. Lastly while you are on the ship, they are higher random enemy encounters that can be annoying since you would be overpowered and you just trying to go to that one place and they keep coming.

Overall Ni No Kuni is one of the best DS experiences I ever had. It has a good story line, great game play, huge content, excellent music, and the book is done very well. I highly recommend this to RPG fans and Studio Ghibli fans.

*I like to thank RedSunGamerTV for the translation from the book on the first paragraph. Here’s his video on the book if anyone’s interested.
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Posted : 11 years, 5 months ago on 11 April 2012 07:08 (A review of Fantasia (1940))

The idea for Fantasia first came along in the mid-1930s where Walt wanted to do a Mickey Mouse short in the style of the Silly Symphonies with the story of the The Sorcerer’s Apprentice. At one night in a Hollywood restaurant, he ran into Leopold Stokowski famous for conducting the Philadelphia Orchestra among being in movies like “The Big Broadcast” and “100 Men and a Girl”. He agreed to conduct the score for the short. During the production, the idea grew more and more as Leopold Stokowski encourage Walt to turn the short into a full length movie with classical music/animation mixed together.

The film starts as if it was like a concert hall is getting started. After we see the musicians getting ready to perform, the master of ceremonies Deems Taylor introduces this program. During the sections of the film, he explains the origins of each pieces to gives you an idea to what it could be before it begins.

Without going into any details on my thoughts on this, it’s one of best movies I ever seen in my life. The idea to mix animation and music is great and the execution is perfect. The animation is very beautiful with great details, textures, very memorable moments, and it has at the end one of the most powerful moments in animation history. The music is handled very much and it matches to the movement of the animation very well. The one I would say that there not a lot of plot to it that may disinterest people and it can be slow at times.

Overall Fantasia is a brilliant movie with a great idea, execution, great animation, and great music. I very highly recommend this to film fans.

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