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12:52 PM on 06.27.2010

The Great Escape - Chrono, Magus, Lavos and the end of time.

The end of the world. Everyone is standing around, talking to each other, worried about what happens next. Who would have thought that when it was all over, all that would be left would be a dimly lit courtyard with portals leading to every other time period. How absurd. And I get the feeling the old man leaning on that lamp post knows more than he leads on...

I remember as a kid, I was really into my super nintendo, a lot of kids in the neighborhood chose to start detective clubs, I was playing Secret of Mana. A lot of kids played sports, I was forced to join a few soccer leagues myself, but as soon as my cleets were off the field, they were tossed aside so I could play through Rocky Rodent again (That game is fucking hard! I don't think I've ever finished it). But the game that truly hooked me at a very early age, the first game I can remember actually falling in love with, not only turning down outdoor activities for, but actively turning friends away so that I could play it, was Chrono Trigger. This was the game that turned me into the raging, video game obsessed sociopath I am today. It's also the last JRPG I absolutely loved.

Before Chrono Trigger, I went crazy for games like Final Fantasy 3 (VI), Secret of Mana, Super Mario RPG, Earthbound, you know, all the SNES classics, but nothing after Chrono Trigger, to me, ever came remotely close, I liked Final Fantasy VII, I liked a few other titles, but either due to the fact that Chrono Trigger was SO great, or because everything else was so mediocre, I outgrew the genre. But at least once a year, I tear myself away from whatever console/game I'm fully hooked on. Let it be running around the Capital wasteland, collecting body parts in Fallout 3, or beating on crackheads in Condemned, I'll put my next gen console aside, dust off the super nintendo, and spend a few weeks just playing through Chrono Trigger again.

Every year, I think I'll get to drink all the stupid root beers at the festival, or that I might finally be innocent enough that the court will let me escape the dungeon unscathed, yet every year, the story unravels pretty much the same as it has before, although this time, I didn't steal that guys lunch, I found the girls kitten, but I still ran into that clumsy stupid princess. The main difference this time around is that, unlike fifteen years ago, my characters aren't named after my best friends, high school crushes or pets. They aren't named Dicks, or Boobs, or any other vulgar body parts or racial slurs. I've become a purist who keeps the real names, the game is called Chrono Trigger, not Jon Trigger, or PENIS Trigger, come on! That's just immature. The game hasn't had a real sequel, although so many people yearn for one. The game hasn't changed, save for an added dungeon here and there in later re-releases, but that's perfectly fine, because the core game is so great. Just seeing the swinging pendulum in the intro screen brings on such a wave of nostalgia to me that I can't help but feel happy to be playing again, and every year without fault, I always keep one save file right before the future motorcycle race, just in case I want to go back and do it again later on, only to realize that you can do that race whenever you want. Maybe this time I'll remember that.

This love letter to one of my favorite games of all time could go on for several more paragraphs. I could talk about one of the greatest video game soundtracks of all time, I could talk about how I never really played Chrono Cross, or how there are certain endings I still haven't seen, but I feel like I've done this game justice enough, and that all that to say that, no matter where I am in life, working retail, unemployed, working two jobs, living at home, I always make time to escape back to the Millennial fair to check out Lucca's new invention, maybe this time, things will go as planned and she'll unveil this really amazing teleporter, just like in that movie "The Fly".   read

4:48 PM on 06.26.2010

Half-Assed Marathon Gaming

I've recently decided that I needed to write more, I also love the shit out of this site so I thought what better way to do so then to post blogs right here, like I see so many of you do.

I'm a bad gamer, and by that I mean, I'm impulsive, I buy any new release that comes out the slightly catches my eye. Sometimes I can be tricked into buying stuff I don't even really give a hoot about. Like Blur for example, I just picked that up last week because of the 20$ off coupon. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I know better, a voice is screaming out, telling me, "Listen, just wait... it'll drop down to that price eventually anyways." but no, my impulsive, got to have it, other side purchased it immediately. All of this to say, I have too many games, and not in a holy cow I have every console, every game, etc just that with work, and a semi functional social life, I have a hard time keeping up with all these games, and I recently decided that that needed to change.

What I decided to do, coinciding with my hours being cut at work is that I would marathon as many games as possible, but I'm not going for speed runs, and I'm still fully indulging in the cut scenes, story lines, whatever, I'm just not achievement whoring it, not that I ever did and I'm not fully appreciating the games, which is a bad thing, for example, thinking I had gotten all the stranger missions in Red Dead Redemption, only to later on see my friend helping a Chinese slave find a white stallion, and I was like "uh... What the fuck is this mission?", he then berated me for not being a real gamer, because I didn't spend hours stabbing cougars and shooting bears in the face, as fun as that sounds, I just did all the stranger missions I could get my hands on and the main quest, I didn't do much of the hunting, gathering, living the old cowboy life type stuff.

After Red Dead Redemption I decided I was going to play Allan Wake, I rushed through that, loved the shit out of it, mad at the ending, waiting for DLC, then I started Mario Galaxy 2, played a bunch of levels, getting every single star, comet coin, etc until I got to the first purple coin comet, I got irritated, threw the game aside, and decided to play through Condemned 2, I remembered enjoying beating on the cracked out homeless with broken bed posts, electrical conduits, razor sharp lollipops and bottles of Jager, so I figured I'd finish it. Side note: That bear is fucking scary! so I got through that in a few weeks, got frustrated everytime I'd miss one antennae or those vibrating capacitors, but I told myself I wouldn't go back, so my stun gun was maxed out but the rubber soles of my shoes were too noisy, this might not make sense but I'm rambling... Got through that, it was crazy, crazier than the first one, peoples heads exploded, it was crazy, ending was a bit frustrating, too much shouting, but I enjoyed it enough that I wanted to continue with horror games.

My next title was Dead Space, it's what I'm currently playing, I had gotten through half the game when it first came out, but some bigger and better title came along at took my attention away from it, I can't remember what right now. Going back to it now though, all fetch quests aside, I really dig it. The game is scary enough, without dragging on, the monsters are cool, it's like the Thing in space. the only thing that really pisses me off is that I ONLY use the first gun, the one that shoots three bolts, I have it fully maxed out, but at one point... the shooting range, THE SHOOTING range of all places, I used the big saw gun to get through it to get the achievement, not realizing there was an achievement if you only used the weakest gun. ARRGHGHGH!!! So now I'm at chapter 10, I'm helping some scientist put back some statue in a planet and it's all good.

I'm not sure what game I'm going to do next, I'm thinking I'll either go back to Mario Galaxy 2, try to finish Deadly Premonition, although for that one, I really want to immerse myself in the crazyness. I'd also like to finish Demon's Souls, 3D Dot game heroes, metal gear 4, splinter cell conviction, maybe go back and finish up twilight princess, I don't know. If anyone actually reads this, maybe you can help me out in picking something. I can't make up my mind, but then again, as I'm playing through something else, my peanut sized brain might wander off and buy something new to satiate my impulses to spend all my money and never ever have any savings. I'm thinking maybe Transformers, or Mafia 2. Singularity? Is that supposed to be good? I might check that out... Crackdown 2 I'm going to wait on since I have the first one and haven't finished that either. I think I'm good, at least for the next few weeks, although that's not counting all the online stuff that's available too, I just got Trine, Portal: Still alive, even though I finished portal, I want to get that snoopie flying game, looks good, that Winterbottom game was fun, might try to finish that, Lode Runner pisses me off, can't go back to that. anyways... I'm sure I've bored any somewhat interested readers at this point, I'm going to go play Dead Space... or maybe I'll just watch an episode of mall cops: Mall of America, because television is a whole other story.   read

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