Sometimes, I'm reminded just how shit life can be. This week was a hell of a week for that. I don't understand people sometimes. Don't have much to say, emotionally drained from personal matters on top of some of this internet drama and some realizations. But I will leave with this link to a lovely roundtable discussion, between Chloe and Allistair. I wish them both the best.
Way back in January, when everyone was doing their Top Games of 2012 lists, Grethiwha chose Way of the Samurai 4 as his favorite game of the year, which intrigued me as I hadn't really heard much about the series until then. Well, it took me a while, but I'm finally getting into the series. I decided to start with Way of the Samurai 3, since it was cheaper, and then possibly get 4 depending on how much I liked 3. So far, I'm really enjoying 3 a lot! It seems to be slightly less wacky than the way Grethiwha described 4, but it's still a pretty silly game. If you look past the silliness, it's still a fairly solid samurai game. But the humor is where the game shines.
The very first thing I did in the game was pick up a green onion off the ground, which turned out to be a weapon you could use. So obviously I equipped that deadly veggie immediately, and then proceeded to beat a thug to death with it. And with that, within a few minutes of playing the game, I was already in love with it.
I continued into the village, where I helped a housewife chop vegetables with my vegetable, retrieved an old lady's lost underwear, and spoke to a beestung man who wished he'd been stung on his junk, so that maybe it would look bigger for the ladies.
Silliness aside, the gameplay is kind of strange but actually pretty unique. If you die in the game, you'll have to start over from the beginning of the story again, but any items, points or unlockable content you obtained in that playthrough will carry over into the next one. Permadeath gives the game sort of an arcade-y feel, but since the game can be beaten in only a few hours, and most progress you make carries over, it doesn't really feel unfair. It might become tedious for some people to have to replay parts of the story over and over again if they die, but you can keep things interesting by choosing different actions, dialogue options or story paths each playthrough. It might take a while to get used to, but it can be very rewarding when you finally get it.
So now I'm really looking forward to finding out what Way of the Samurai 4 holds. But in the meantime, I've still got plenty of thugs to kill with my trusty sideonion, while running around in my underwear, with a falcon on my shoulder.
So, last time on Young Just- Oh, wait. I promised video games, didn’t I?
Well then video games ye shall have!
First things first, though: as you saw yesterday in Strider’s caps, we’re looking for a new recapper to take on Sundays. I don’t want to alarm any of you, but if we don’t find one I have it on good authority that Phil will sadface. And not just a regular old sadface, but Phil will be all like:
And nobody wants that.
So if you think Phil doesn’t deserve to sadface and/or magically transform into a pony, get off your lazy butt and cap Sundays! Just send a PM to any of us or the Recaps account. As the freshest Recapper of the bunch (so fresh you guys) I can tell you that it’s a lot of fun to do. My experience is that a good portion of every day consists of good blogs, with some okay-ish ones making up the rest, and one or two shitty ones for you to throw on the Fail pile. And as an added bonus to reading mostly good stuff, in your own exclusive –isms or –gasms you get to talk about whatever the hell you’ve been spending time on during your week.
Like Young Justice! Which, incidentally, I’ve been watching this week and got up to the second season in which Robin is now Nightwi-NO! BAD SHADE. VIDEO GAMES!
You wouldn’t know it, but I actually played video games over the past week(s). Genuine, honest to god video games. ‘magine that. For one, I finished Papo & Yo and Anodyne, both of which are really great. I’ve got a lot to say about Anodyne in particular, but I’m probably going to save that for a blog of its own. I bought and started Of Orcs and Men, which is another awesome little game, as bbain will attest to.
What I want to talk about now, however, is Primordia.
Primordia is one of the best point-and-click adventure games I’ve ever played. No hyperbole. The fact that this game had to go through Steam Greenlight is also literally the reason I lost faith in the Greenlight system. Sure it set an amazing record for getting greenlit, but it should never have been on there in the first place, especially since it came from a well-established dev. Still bitter about that.
It’s the latest game by Wadjet Eye, who previously did Resonance and Gemini Rue, both of which I’ve yet to play unfortunately.
This game takes place in an apocalyptic future, where the only thing left on earth are robots, most of which don’t even remember what “humans” are anymore. The ones that DO remember worship them as the deity called “Man”. The protagonist is one of those latter robots. He lives in the wastes with his witty sidekick friend Crispin, until the power core that’s providing them with energy gets stolen by some big laser-shooting ‘bot, who takes it to the robot-city Metropol. Cue Horatio and Crispin going into pursuit, and finding more than they bargained for.
What follows is a story that borrows a thing or two from 1984, but which places it in a universe that is very well fleshed out and absolutely brimming with atmosphere. In particular, I felt that all of the different robots you meet throughout the game are really well done. Every single one of them has a very unique personality intertwined with them, well…being a robot. There are robot-Britons, robot “sir, yes, sir!” soldiers, robot prophets, and even robot lawyers.
All of them, from the first to the last, absolutely nail their role. I mentioned this before, but while “robot prophet” may sound ridiculous, the dude completely sells it. And as for the main character? Horatio’s voice was provide by the Bastion narrator. Yeah. You get to hear that dude in a starring role. It’s bloody awesome.
Because of all of these peculiar robots, there’s a fair share of humor in the game as well. Crispin in particular has some great lines. I heard some people criticizing this aspect because they felt it clashed with the more suppressive and dark story, but personally I felt that the game manages to keep the right balance pretty well. It knows when to be dark and when to be humorous; I for one never found something that bothered me. Instead, I think it did both aspects pretty well indeed.
I haven’t yet seen all of Primordia’s endings yet (from what I hear there are 10) but I’ve at least gotten one I can be satisfied with. Most importantly, the ending I got featured the full backstory on the game’s protagonist: there’s really interesting stuff in there. It probably wasn’t the absolute 100% “good ending”, but that doesn’t matter to me. It was more of a middle-of-the-road type of deal where some things get solved while some don’t, and it reminded me of Bastion’s ending a little bit. I actually like these kinds of endings a lot better than the standard “everything is all sunshine and flowers now” ending. Primordia definitely leaves the door open for some grey areas, which only serve to make it more compelling if you ask me.
So yeah, if you like point-and-click, sci-fi, the Bastion narrator, or simply well-written games, check out Primordia. Do it.
Ok Strider. Three things to check off tonight: Weekend recaps, Injustice update, anime update.
Oh, and Animal Crossinggodmotherfuckingdammit.
So first off, ever since I first joined the Recaps team, I always found it strange that everyone recaps one day except the weekends guy. Is it because the Weekend guy has more disposable time? Because he really likes weekends? Because they're a glutton for punishment to recap two days worth of good and shitty blogs?
Well, I guess I should've vocalized my thoughts earlier because we're thinking of splitting the weekend recaps into Saturday and Sunday recaps because Phil is losing sleep over his damn deal.
So PM anyone on the Recaps team or the Recaps account itself to express interest in taking one of the weekend days off of Phil. He's specifically said he doesn't want to let go of his usual recapping position because he's so close to tenure. But two days for arbitrary reasons is a bit weird and we're fixing that. Because Animal Crossing.
Injustice update: I'm playing Green Arrow now. I played him all wrong on launch day. His keepaway is shitty because he needs time to load trick arrows to make his keepaway decent and even then, the need to load trick arrows lets other zoners outpace him. He's all about rushdown and pressure, though unfortunately he needs time to load trick arrows to become decent. The good news however is that his freeze arrow, the crux of all his good combos, is completely free. Sure Green Lantern and Superman only need one bar for combo extensions but one bar means a lot when you need to save for pushblock, clash, and armored moves too. Green Arrow on the other hand can load freeze arrows for free or even end strings with a reload. He also has a combo with a low/high/low built into it, which makes him way more interesting for my Can he block it? series. Speaking of Can he block it?
I'm tempted to post a new Weeaboo Corner blog but I want to briefly touch on what I've been watching on Crunchyroll. Because Animal Crossing.
Attack on Titan Every dedicated anime fans' most anticipated anime for the season due to its critically acclaimed manga. Nearly every human on Earth lives in literally the last bastion of humanity, a massive walled fort that probably encompasses the space of Texas within its three walls. All to protect them from mysterious giants whose only purpose seems to be to eat and kill humans. As good as the action is going to be with humans equipped with fancy grapple machines to slice at the titan's weak spots (the nape of the neck), there's a ton of mystery involved as the humans in the show know about as much about the titans as the audience does, and the plot only thickens from there. The design of the titans are also consistently... unsettling.
The Hentai Prince and the Stony Cat We love immature jokes here on Destructoid. Perhaps some of us are all about stupid jokes. Perhaps those people aren't their true selfs when they get up and go to work. They need a facade to function normally in society. But in this show, what if you lost your facade or whatever other emotional mask you need? The protagonist is a horn dog really, but feels sad that he can't be his true self in public. But the cat statue at the edge of town promises to take what you don't want and give it to someone else. Now the protagonist can't help but remark at girls' bras in the rain out loud.
While it might sound like any other ecchi comedy, I really must stress that this show respects its character more than you expect and you get a lot of great development in the characters. Honestly, I started watching this series on a whim and didn't expect much when I saw your usual pervert shenanigans but by the end of the episode, I was hooked on seeing how Yokodera, Tsukiko, and Asuza turn out in the long run.
Valvrave the Liberator I thought it was going to be Gundam. It was Gundam with high school drama. Then three episodes after its hook of a pilot and it just became high school drama that happened to be in space with a Gundam. Not cool man.
Seriously, the titular robot was teased to have a mysterious curse. Something powerful enough to not only imbue the hero with the skills needed to pilot a powerful robot, but also bring him back from the dead to continue.
Instead, I get what is essentially Japanese Van Wilder. In space.
Rolling right off of last weeks Wrenchism, lets talk about another comic book icon clad in a stompy robot suit – Iron Man.
I Finally got out to see Iron Man 3 last night and I'm taking some time to digest it. For a Marvel action flick it was a very strange movie in some ways. I think I got a little head-faked by some of the pre-release chatter. When I heard the movie only had Tony in the suit for about 20-25 minutes, that he was coping with PTSD from the events in New York during The Avengers, the idea of the Mandarin being re-cast as a sort of Bin Laden/Bane character contrasting against the re-branding of the War Machine as Iron Patriot, I thought Iron Man 3 might be a slightly more cerebral or introspective Iron Man flick.
Suffice to say, it isn't. In fact, "a more cerebral Iron Man" sounds pretty dumb now that I think about it.
Not that it's a bad thing. I'm all for watching Robert Downy Jr fire off smarmy dialogue and blow stuff up with repulsor blasts. Just felt like they missed a few tricks. Not bad or anything, it just seemed like maybe they set some stuff up in earlier drafts that they got cold-feet on and back off of.
Have to give some credit to director/co-writer Shane Black for pulling off some stuff that sounds terrible in isolation. "Wait, your going to give Tony a kid-sidekick?" Yes, and it's actually going to be fairly charming. Black wrote the fantastic script for Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang another RJD classic, so it shouldn't come as a surprise that he can write some loveable characters with great back and forth repartee.
But then there are some other things. The climatic fight scene and some late-developments with Pepper Potts characters both stood out as "yeeesh" moments for me. I don't want to spoil anything so soon after release, but I'll be interested to see if some of the late-events in the film are ever referenced again in the next Avengers or Iron Man film, or left to drift into obscurity – just like so many abandoned comic book plot threads.
We are officially a week away from the big Xbox unveiling event. I imagine my next Wrench-ism is going to be MEATY. I can't wait to finally see what Microsoft has up their sleeve to take on the PS4. They've had plenty of time to adjust to Sony's hand, lets hope the next console generation is a real horserace to the coolest and least expensive system possible.
Did you guys know Animal Crossing New Leaf is coming out real soon? Like, real soon. But there are plenty of other things Strider can talk about. Like Animal Crossing. I'm sorry, maybe design influences? Krieg the Psycho Bandit? More Injustice?
Yeah, I want to talk about Animal Crossing.
This is a description of Strider's solocast on episode 14 and not about his excitement for Animal Crossing New Leaf. There was a glut of good blogs and news plus even a few questions!