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I'm 30-something. I play games and sometimes type things. I summon deities and demons, shoot raiders and wish to settle down with another girl for turn-based battles on the beach, chocobo rides and torchlit dinners in ancient Nordic tombs or mysterious castles that appear at night.

When I'm not slaying dragons or saving the galaxy, I'm probably roaming the open world, rolling into a ball to access secret passages and seeing if my Paragon rating is high enough for discounts at the mall.

For other things and stuff about me you can read here, here and here. You will learn of my origins, my trials and tribulations, how I became a superpixie and what games I really, really like!

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It all started on the Big Shell from Metal Gear Solid 2. Big Shell was under attack by dragons. This was bad because there was a party going on inside the Big Shell in celebration on Bill Cosby's latest film, My Life as Barack Obama's Father hosted by my coworkers from and sponsored by GameStop. Our guests of honor were Bill Cosby and Michelle Obama. The president couldn't make it as he was busy fixing the code for healthcare.gov.

The party was in the dance hall, there was chocolate cake, Jell-o pudding and burgers catered for the occasion. The festivities had already begun and many guests from the Mushroom Kingdom were also there in attendance because all the Toads and Toadettes adore Bill Cosby.

The dragon attack on Big Shell was bad news. The First Lady, now dressed as Princess Peach, was scowling at me as if this was all my fault. Solid Snake and Raiden were nowhere to be found, either, so I had to enlist help from various attendees to combat the dragons. No worries, though, because Mario and Luigi were right there. They volunteered to fight the dragons and informed me that they were orbital frame pilots.

Warp Zone of the Enders: Bros. of Liberty? Well, okay then. 

They handed me an NES controller, some AR goggles and told me - in their usual conversational babble - to use these things to help them coordinate their attacks on the dragons. I was to press the A button for Mario and B for Luigi, naturally, because its an MGS/Mario and Luigi/ZOE mash-up now. 

We move outside, they suit up, a green pipe appears and they jump in to board their orbital frames. They take off into the sky, I put on the AR goggles, hitting A or B as they appear in the sky when Mario and Luigi near the dragons' glowing weak points. These dragons were the long, serpent-like ones - the ones you see in Chinese mythology -  and they had multiple weak points like the dragon in Super Mario Galaxy. As I continue to guide the Mario Bros. to successful attacks in their mechs, I get a call.

Its my manager. He tells me C4 has been planted all over the Big Shell and it must be deactivated or we are all doomed. Also, Bill Cosby ate all the pudding.

I feel someone pull on my jacket. It is Ken Amada from Persona 3. Perfect, I give him the "bomb sniffer" and coolant spray Raiden used in MGS2, because naturally Ken has a radar system and bomb diffusing skills - he can do the bomb disposal since no one likes or will miss him anyway.

After a few more coordinated attacks, the Mario Bros. take out the dragons, Ken manages to disarm all the C4 and survive (damn) and the party is saved thanks to our efforts. We all go back inside and though all the pudding is gone, Bill Cosby and the Toads are very grateful for the rescue.

As a reward, Bill decides to tell us about his experience playing the father of the president as we take a walk around the Big Shell. The Mario Bros. listen attentively, Ken wanders off and Michelle Obama just glares at me. Bill veers between his story about the movie and old stand-up bits like his weird friend Harold or seeing the dentist.

As we end our walk he finishes his story, smiles and says, "You didn't think this boring story was your reward, did you?" And with this he points at a nearby storage locker.

"Go get your reward!" he says.

"Me?" Luigi asks.

"No, stupid," Bill snaps. "Nintendo just gave you a whole year, this is for the girl!"

Luigi sulks and I approach the locker to open it. Inside is a some kind of silvery, metallic, armored exoskeleton. It kind of like a cross between Raiden's suit in MGS Rising Revengence and Fran's outfit from FFXII, so it was also somewhat skimpy in places.

"Its your very own cybernetic suit!" Bill exclaims. "Now go put it on!"

"But what does it do?" I ask.

"You'll see, go put it on!" Michelle Obama says, finally smiling for a change. 

And so I take the suit to the nearest ladies' room. The female protagonist from Persona 3 is there and  helps me put the suit on, but then the suit embeds itself into my skin, unable to be removed. It hurts a great deal and I'm doubled over on the floor in pain as she tries to comfort me, saying "Look inside yourself to find your true power."

An image of a familiar avatar flashes into my mind and I focus on it. The pain subsides, I open my eyes and the bathroom is bigger than I remembered. Huge, in fact - even FemC is gigantic to me now. She looks at me and smiles, then points to the mirror but I can't see it. Hell, I just barely come up to her ankles!

Then I feel my sense of balance is different, some things are stuck to my back. I look down at my shadow to see I have wings! Wings! I start to flutter upward and toward the counter, look in the mirror and I'm a pixie, exactly like the one in my banner and avatar.

That's when Ken Amanda radios me.

"The beastmen are attacking Big Shell! Mario and Luigi left for the Mushroom Kingdom just before the ocean dried out and the beastmen arrived. Oh my go-"

The radio cuts out and I fly out of the bathroom, Bill and Michelle cheering me on. I pass my coworkers and the Toads, who are all eating chocolate cake now and they sing praises of Bill Cosby for it. Moments later, I'm outside and there are the the beastmen hordes of Vana'diel from Final Fantasy XI.

So the Mario Bros. are gone with their orbital frames, Ken Amada is now dead and everyone else is in Big Shell eating chocolate cake, even Persona 3's heroine. This left one cybernetic pixie against thousands of goblins, orcs, Quadav and Yagudo. What could I do?  

Mary Sue the hell out of them, that's what. My loss in stature was not a loss of power. I was at least over 9000. 

The short of it is I could channel magic through my body, I briefly became the spell Megidolaon and flew through the beastmen's ranks at light speed, cutting through them all like a hot knife through butter and wailing like the Skull Kid from Majora's Mask as I did so. The Yagudo took a few extra seconds because Yagudo Ninjas are bastards that can make copies of themselves with their birdjutsu magic.

With Big Shell saved once more and ignoring that the ocean was totally gone, I flew off to Metropolis.

When I arrived, Superman was being put on trial at the top of the Daily Planet. He was being charged with attempting to get rid of all of the lead in the world. Phoenix Wright was Superman's defense attorney, Amanda Waller of the DC universe was the prosecutor and J. Jameson from the Daily Bugle was grudgingly sharing judge duties with Perry White of the Daily Planet.

The reason for this court case was the women of the world had taken to wearing lead-lined clothes. This was because Superman went on a late night talk show and openly admitted he used his x-ray vision to see any woman naked. Superman was not happy with the direction women's fashion, so he tried to get rid of all lead while not thinking about the consequences, like creating shortages of pencils for schoolchildren.

Superboy and Supergirl were going to stay for the trial, but took off with Krypto, saying, "Screw Superpervert, we are going to Cammy's Relaxation River and Chun Li's Chinese Buffet!" and jumped down a slide pointing to that destination. 

Slides were how everyone got around in this version of Metropolis, even if they could fly! The slides connected from building to building, leading to different destinations. I felt bushed from all the flying, the beastmen-killing and where they were going sounded more interesting than watching a trial, so I plopped down on the slide myself and took off.

The slide was translucent, so I could see everything as I was sliding down behind Supergirl. I saw Batman and Wolverine chasing Spiderman around a basketball court and they looked like they were out for blood. I saw an airship fly by with Conrad Zimmerman dressed as Setzer, Jim Sterling as Ultros and he had his Saint's Row dildo-bat tentacles lovingly wrapped around one Johnathan Holmes who was cosplaying Locke. I also saw a bar called "Emotions" where a bunch of 16-bit characters were drinking, having a good time and some bouncers kicked David Cage out.

It was then I slid into Cammy's Relaxation River and Chun Li's Chinese Buffet. Innertubes were dispensed as Superboy, Supergirl and Krypto fell through a hole leading into the river. No innertube was dispensed for me, because apparently I was too small to detect, so I just fell right into the river.

After rising to the surface I look around me. I see E. Honda and Ken Masters just chilling and floating there, a relaxed version of Guile's theme is playing and the Superkids and their dog are further up. Then I see Cammy and Chun Li themselves sharing a large raft, wearing very skimpy lead-lined bikinis and floating by me. Cammy notices me and asks if I'd like to ride with them since I have no float. I nodded "yes," Cammy scoops me out of the water and puts me between them.

We all talk for a bit and soon it seems like a subtle argument is going on between Cammy and Chun Li. I started between them but then Cammy puts me in her lap and later Chun Li grabs me and puts me in her lap. This happens several times for about an hour until we exit the river to the massage and buffet area. Cammy offers to give me a massage with her finger and Chun Li offers to get me some of her world-famous buffalo ranch chicken egg rolls from the buffet.

I don't know if buffalo ranch chicken egg rolls are a thing, but if not, they should be. I was like three or four inches tall at best, though, so finishing even a tenth of an egg roll was expecting a bit much - getting me a plate full of egg rolls was overkill, but exciting!

Then the passive-aggressive arguing began again between them. Even as the news rolled in on the big screen TV that Superman had been found guilty of being a sexist pig that ruins pencils for school children, Cammy and Chun Li ignore it and they start getting in each other's faces.

Then Cammy grabs me off the massage table and stakes her claim of me. "She's mine and I love her, Thunder Thighs," she tells a shocked Chunny as she's kinda squeezing me in her fist. 

This is where things start to get fuzzy. I think there was a fight and that Elena, Poison, Supergirl, Power Girl, She-Hulk, Batwoman and Batgirl also joined the fray in an attempt to also fight for my affections because all girls in my dreams are also lesbians. It never got settled.

The fight stopped when the news mentioned a giant Mother Brain was attacking Metropolis. With Superman out of the picture in a kryptonite cell, someone had to do something. Conrad Zimmerman as Setzer then crashed his airship into the place to recruit us all after saying "Yo motherfuckers" with Usher's "Yeah" booming in the background.

We all got on board. There was a dance party below deck as we gathered troops. Samus Aran, the Demi-Fiend, Alucard, Adam Jensen, Mr. Destructoid, Mr. Andy Dixon, Commander Shepard, some NCR Rangers and the Dovahkiin were all on board. Jim Sterling as Ultros and Jonathan Holmes as Locke got married there on the spot, too, with 16-Bit Celes acting as a priest. She ended the ceremony by pronouning them as Treasure Hunter and Dildo Octopus.

Sadly, the battle with Mother Brain never came because then I woke up. I wanted see if I could woo Samus, marry her and settle down in Skyrim, but perhaps another time.

I don't know how frequent a series of posts like this will be, but I'm always adding game music to my various things that play MP3s, which is my 3DS, my old PC and now my tablet. 2013 had a lot of great music, so I found myself adding things fairly often! 

This list will really just consist of music that happened in games or tracks that were released in 2013. Could be direct game music, fan remixes or instrumental stuff. Its my list, so I pick what I like!

Submerged in Ambience - a Donkey Kong Country remix by The Distortionist

This popped up on Overclocked Remix earlier in the year. "Aquatic Ambience" remains one of my favorite video game tracks of all time, its just very melancholy and relaxed. I never imagined that it could rock, though. The Distortionist surprised me here.

Desierto Caliente - Guacamelee

Guacamelee is a game that scratched all the itches Castlevania has failed to in recent years for me, even musically. See, Castlevania once knew how to mash genres up - to put a little bounce into the dreary, gothic fantasy setting, but with Lords of Shadow it forgot about that. Guacamelee knows how to do that even within its Mexican setting. Its got the spirit, the blend of music relevant to the setting, but mashed up with other genres.

Shooting Star Tsukikage - Code of Princess

This is probably my favorite character-specific theme this year, which compliments the samurai Tsukikage quite well. The upright bass also really sells it. 

Its done by ACE, who also composed a fair bit of the Xenoblade Chronicles soundtrack, which I enjoyed a lot. Code of Princess is honestly a forgettable game, but I'm happy with its memorable OST.

Over and Out - a Megaman 3 remix by Diggi Dis

The password theme from Megaman 3 pops into my head every now and then. I don't really know why, I don't really harbor any emotional attachment to the series. It just happens, my brain doesn't forget songs. At any rate, this take on the theme is infectious and its hard not to smile about.

Gale Force - Etrian Odyssey IV

Its funny how we sometimes get worried when a series does away with an old composition method and then we see (well, hear) we had nothing to worry about. I love the FM Synthesis of classic arcade and Genesis games, which the Etrian Odyssey series thrived on for a bit.

Yuzo Koshiro proved, much like other composers, that the live instrumentation could be every bit as good, if not better.

The Impresario - Balance and Ruin: Final Fantasy VI

The opera music from Final Fantasy VI, but from the minds of Jake Kaufman and Tommy Pedrini. I'm sure if Queen had composed FFVI instead of Nobuo Uematsu it might have sounded much like this, given its all bohemian and stuff.

Naomi's Battle Theme - SMT Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers Arranged Soundtrack

If the SMT series had a recurring battle theme on par with Final Fantasy's "Battle on the Big Bridge," its "Naomi's Battle Theme" from Soul Hackers. Shoji Meguro has amazing range as a composer and like Gilgamesh's theme, Naomi's just has that sort of swagger about it. Atsushi Kitajoh did a great job arranging this version.

Man with a Machine Gun - a Final Fantasy VIII song performed by Smooth McGroove

Nothing much to add here. The bearded one brings the awesome as usual.

Tokyo Map Theme - Shin Megami Tensei IV

SMT games, while among my favorites, have pretty bland or just plain terrible world maps. Thankfully, to offset this the map themes are pretty great. SMT IV's world map is awful, so its only fair that it has a pretty awesome map theme.

Its not quite as epic as the final map theme from SMT III: Nocturne, but that guitar!

Id~ Purpose - Fire Emblem Awakening

The final battle of Fire Emblem: Awakening is a battle where a certain consequence just can't be avoided. Its one of those moments similar to the last scene Final Fantasy X where its hard to not tear up just a bit, but its made more personal because your character had so much more agency in who they had relationships with in FE:A.

In this battle, you knew how much your character meant to all who they had met or loved, but this wasn't an entirely sad goodbye, it was a proud one. This song soaringly reflects that moment.

Though I have to say I never thought a song with accordions in it could get me weepy.

Anyway, that's my mix! Hope you enjoyed it!

Last week I got a Nexus 7 and talked about it. I got it to meet basic computing needs my laptop was no longer meeting. I thought that by getting this I would have to delay my conquest of Final Fantasy VI and Persona 3 Portable until I got a new Vita and now here I am...

So yeah, I turned to the dark side of the tablet and I'm resuming my journey through said games, just from scratch. I couldn't stay pure and saintly about my gaming this time.

I felt it had to be done. The generic, uniform feel of many mobile games was making me numb. There are only so many Candy Crush or Puzzles and Dragons clones I can take. Were it not for Star Wars: Tiny Death Star and Plants vs. Zombies 2 I might have gone insane before going this route - and while all those games are nice, they don't scratch my RPG itch at all. Not like this or P3P does.

So in keeping with the Star Wars theme I'm going with here I'm just "smuggling" my games to my tablet. It is piracy but its piracy of (mostly) things I already have so smuggling sounds good.  It's less of a dark side choice and more a scoundrelly Han Solo decision. A mildly Renegade Shepard choice for the Star Wars uninitiated.

Plus it also gives me the excuse to play this, finally, since it never saw a US release anyway:

Its also gotten me to try some games, such as the Summon Night series, which I had not heard of or tried in years past. Discovering these games and others has had the curious effect of me adding them to my Amazon wishlist.

I try something and if I like it, I'm adding things to wish lists and before you know it I'm hunting through indie games stores for the stuff. Even with Napster back in the day it was like this for me - download some MP3s and then it was off to the record store. Though back then I also did that to lure record labels into sending promos to my campus newspaper because we did music reviews. Turns out that actually worked since those papers got to them and we had an online version of the paper.

Some "dark side" my piracy turns out to be. At this rate I'll be blowing all my money. Perhaps Tiny Death Star got it right - The Dark Side is really just in bed with everyday capitalism.
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So it seems a Fallout 4 announcement is nigh. That's good to know since my plans to build a gaming PC or at least get a Steam Box to run it are also planned for next year. I love post-apocalyptic RPGs and Shin Megami Tensei V is probably a ways off, so a new Fallout is highly anticipated and clearly the next best thing for me - though I will give Wasteland 2 a shot when I'm able to.

At any rate, I'm already dreaming about scavenging for weapons, caps and fending off raiders with my trusty magnums to the tunes of days gone by. Here are four things I'd like out of Fallout 4!

Do more New Vegas-like things.

As Fallout games go, I am someone that liked FO3 but loved New Vegas. FNV felt more connected to Fallout and Fallout 2 in terms of universe, balance, morality and narrative. Perhaps part of it is the western American setting, which has a bit more series lore going for it, but it certainly didn't hurt that Obsidian developed it - they have many of the people that worked on Fallout and Fallout 2 back in their Black Isle days.

FNV had more challenge to it, it made you think harder about how to spend your perks and NPCs conversations were more in-depth. Local fame, faction and choices affected your ability to get new quests and also affected how people interacted with you. Basically, everything felt connected and your choices mattered. Your choices were reflected from start to finish.

Its important that when you champion choice in narrative that you really mean it and Obsidian seems to handle this better than most developers do. It was even rather staggering how much NPCs had to talk about compared to NPCs in Bethesda Game Studios or Bioware games. It really helped build the world right alongside your own experiences.

But the best part?

For me, it was that there was no purely good faction. Even your most altruistic, well-intentioned members of the Followers of the Apocalypse were asking you to plant bugs in someone's computers to monitor their actions. The noble NCR had little problem denying aid to those that needed it if they didn't pledge to be a citizen of the NCR. Mr. House did seem like he could bring order to the Vegas strip, but he was a man from another time trying to control the future.

We know the Legion are a bunch of slavers and thugs. We know the Brotherhood of Steel are a weapon-hoarding cult of power-armored nannies. There is no real reason to trust either.

Otherwise who's to say what's really right? It seems like no matter who you side with in New Vegas there will be some downsides. I just prefer that to being limited to good or evil.

Fallout 3 had to change things to make the Brotherhood of Steel heroic which was a questionable choice. The Enclave are not heroes, but there's no real reason to believe the BoS will work for humanity's greater good when they help you save the day and purify some east coast water supply. They have this doctrine about hording technology for themselves, after all.

A device that purifies radiated water? They'd take that.


If there was one thing that both Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas got right, it was the music. Both games had excellent soundtracks that suited the tone of the games perfectly. I very much enjoyed the characters Three Dog and Mr. New Vegas as well, so I welcome the return Three Dog.

However, if I had one gripe about those games, it's that both games were too tied to licensing music from the distant past. Now, don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with licensing music from the past - it's just that there are a lot of modern bands today that do music in the style of the 20's, 30's, 40's and 50's and they'd fit right in.

Being a fan of the Squirrel Nut Zippers I couldn't help but think of their music while I played Fallout 3. When I played FNV, I felt like I needed some Johnny Cash in there.

The whole series is retro-themed future fiction anyway, so why not? By series lore the bombs don't drop until 2077, so Johnny Cash fits in timeline. Its not like country music in the 60s made leaps and bounds ahead of what was done in the 50s. I think his music still would have happened, even if his career didn't start until 1968.

I think there's some room to take some liberties with music in terms of history. We don't have to be entirely bound to the 1950s and recordings before that. I think Johnny Cash's "Ring of Fire" and Squirrel Nut Zippers' "Prince Nez" are the kinds of songs that would fit in the Fallout universe.

Color and scenery

One of the other sticking points I have about Fallout 3 is that is not terribly colorful. It is a very gray and brown game... a very, very gray and brown game. There was a moment where there was more bright green - actual green, really, really green green. I like that part but I still thought there could stand to be more colors.

In Fallout New Vegas and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim there were many moments where I would stop and have wanted to take a picture. There are some very visually breathtaking moments those games. Asceding the mountain to meet the Greybeards? Awesome view. And arriving on the New Vegas strip? I nearly barfed rainbows - the bright lights were that pretty.

Now, I know this is a post-apocalyptic series and that there are some times, well, there's practically always a wasteland filled with radiation and mutants to deal with.

Even so, I think there's room for a few more breathtaking set pieces in that vast open world. Supposedly, the setting of Fallout 4 is Boston, Massachusetts. I've never been there but as I understand it in terms of series lore Boston was one of the hardest hit areas when the bombs fell, to the point it is more common to resort to the use of androids for outdoors labor.

There's just that much radiation.

Still, I just want those moments where I can stop and take the scenery in. It doesn't have to be pretty nature scenes, I just want to see Bethesda use color to great effect like they did in Skyrim -  even if its just burning neon death for androids.

Jonathan Holmes

It is said that Destructoid writer Jonathan Holmes makes his home in Boston, Massachusetts. It is also said, by a certain man, that Jonathan Holmes is Boston's favorite son.

Knowing this, when I arrive in Boston I expect I should see a statue of Jonathan Holmes at the center of the city. This man of legend should have a tribute to his greatness as a professional psychologist and slayer of dogs.

Now, this statue might be in ruin when I arrive. There could be a quest to restore this statue! I certainly would fix the statue.

Perhaps some children made off with his head, as the children seem to love Jonathan Holmes and want to be just like him. You may even be told they hold conventions in the man's honor where they kill dogs. These children have heard of his exploits as Lieutenant Saucy Portions, Soda Baby and Freaky Constantina. Jonathan Holmes' personas are almost as legendary as the man himself, so why not make it a quest to reassemble the statue as one of these personas to give the players some choice?

Perhaps as a reward we could watch one of his great films that he directed and allowed Willem Dafoe to star in!

Yes, this idea above all others is the one Bethesda Game Studios should consider most strongly. Todd Howard and his crew should explore the lore of Jonathan Holmes deeply, probing his innermost depths.

Perhaps as a twist, we can even see that Jonathan Holmes lives on as a supermutant. Maybe when he sees the statue it will bring a tear to his eye.
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So I got this Nexus 7 thing today. My laptop ceased to be reliable, money is tight and sadly some sacrifices had to be made - namely my PS Vita and a couple games. Good news is I spent no cash on the tablet and most of my Vita stuff was digital, so my PSN games will live to fight another day.

Sadly, Pokemon X was a casualty, too. I did finish the main campaign and catch MewTwo, but I'd be lying if I said I'm a competitive player. Once I was in the Battle Maison and told Xerneas and Mewtwo were banned from that mode offline, I started to lose some Interest. When it comes to single player content, I want my freedom, not to be trained for how other people expect me to play competitively online.

Unless we're talking a co-op online game, anyway. I'd actually prefer Dark Souls beat people's heads in via single-player if they want to co-op online because I don't want to invite a phantom liability. I just don't think competitive strategy should be forced on single player offline stuff.

Anyway, I have plenty of games to attend to in the meantime - its just my completion of FFVI and plans to play some Persona games were postponed as a result of the Vita sacrifice. Not happy about it, I was about to be reunited with Gau on the Veldt and do my FemC P3 playthrough, but those will have to wait. I also wrote that sentence to remember WTF I was doing in FFVI.

I've been thinking once things are a bit more stable for me that I may get into live streaming and, more importantly, video editing. As weird as the PS Vita TV idea is to me, its more compatible with that stuff than a Vita is so maybe I'll get the Vita TV thing when it is out.

I'm still looking into what I'll need for video-based stuff. I'm not some kid going into this thinking a PS4 and Battlefield 4 would be all they need to strike gold. I am not sure if I want "internet fame" as much as the video editing skills, anyway. I also realize streaming or LPing RPGs - my primary interest - could be really boring when done incorrectly so I'm thinking about ways to address that before going in.

I say this because I've watched plenty of LPs to know that showing every damn random encounter and constantly running back to an inn for cheap heals just wastes the viewer's time. I know that if I was stuck in an RPG and were to watch an LP for help, I would not want to see those things but instead stuff like beating bosses, getting past obstacles, finding good loot and such. I don't want a Fallout video where someone is just spending half the video reverse-pickpocketing grenades and dynamite into people's pants for giggles. I want to see the real highlights, not people just goofing around.

The "goofing around" crowd seems to already be locked down anyway. I think screwing around and shooting the shit works better with live streams when you're still learning a game and showing it off. I like watching them sometimes! It is why I have a Twitch account now.

But with LPs... not so much. I mean, different people play things different ways and that's fine, but I think you need to consider your audience and what they might want if you really want one at all.

My biggest personal concern is bringing my trans*iness online that much further - barring that, I've been artfully dodging cameras all my life anyway - but again, I'm mostly looking to use games to practice video-editing skills. That's where its going to start regardless.

The Persona announcements the Sunday were cool. I'm mostly interested in Persona Q for the mash up of P3 and P4, the chibi Etrian Odyssey art style and its dungeon mechanics meeting the gameplay of the Persona games.

Also, a Chibi Kanji plushie needs to be a preorder bonus.

I get the feeling it might be the last time we see  the PS2 era gameplay stylings of the series as we move on to Persona 5 on PS3... plus I think just the dance game would have been a terrible send-off for those characters..

Anyway, that's what's going on with me. I intend to be ready for PQ, P4A2 and P5 when they hit next year. Hopefully everything will back in order well before then.

In the meantime, I'll be doing some Soul Hackers and playing the Zelda Oracle games since I never finished those!
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I guess you could say I'm not all aboard the next gen hype train. Even so, the Xbox One and PS4 kiosks arrived at two different Gamestops in my area and I took one of them for a spin.

I'd say both, but the Xbox One kiosk was really just the shell of a XB1 with a Blu Ray player in it. There were no games to be played, just a loop of videos to watch. So XB1 confirmed it can do video things rather than video games. Its the sort of thing that instills faith in people that their $500 dollars was money well-spent. 

Thankfully, I'm not among them.

Meanwhile the PS4 kiosk, much like the Wii U kiosk before it, had actual games you could play on it. Imagine that!

But first there was the new controller. It feels fairly familiar, except the shoulder buttons and triggers are much closer together like on the 360 controller so you really only have to devote two fingers there rather than the usual four like on prior Dual Shocks. My only real complaint would be the return of the gummy L2 and R2 triggers. Like the DS3 before it, the DS4's L2 and R2 buttons have too much give and that's going to lead to some gameplay misfires (again).

That aside, I played Contrast and Knack. I will say that Contrast is a lot like Wii's Lost in Shadow or the kinds of 2D/3D puzzles the upcoming Zelda: A Link Between Worlds is angling at. Its a little more technically sound than Lost in Shadow was, though the demo did have a bit of framerate stutter here and there while running at 1080p. 

That said, though, I like the mix or 3D exploration and 2D platforming, as well as the whole 1920s/30s setting and aesthetic its going for. It is used very, very well for what time the PS4's timer allowed me to explore it before resetting the system to shoo me away.

You essentially manipulate lighting in 3D situations and then become a shadow and 2D platform your way up to new 3D areas. So its like Lost in Shadow for the prohibition era with 3D stuff in it.

Knack was... well... it felt like what a Crash Bandicoot game would be like if it was very slow, drunk and liked cramming legos together to make a bigger Lego robot. You can move slowly on-rails, slowly smashing things and doing very slow un-Sonic-like homing attacks, evade things slowly with no control over the camera angle or ability to lock on to an enemy. This results in slowly getting hit by things in 2013. 

What I'm getting at is the game is slow.

It looks pretty and could be a great E-rated title for kids and adults alike, but it feels like a sluggish proof of concept more than an interesting demo. This is bargain bin fare, I'm thinking. Don't worry, this game won't get anywhere quickly because it has moves like Snorlax.

As a wise man in Short Circuit 2 once said, "It is slower than molasses in January."

There were some other demos, including a FIFA one, but none of those really interested me to try. The kiosk did have a Vita as well, but I didn't look to see if there was any Remote Play demo there for it. My Vita was dangling from my wrist anyway.

So in summary: I know now that the Xbox One plays videos and PS4 plays games.

Pretty much the same song since E3.

Husky-Corgi is the best kind of dog, by the way. I am off to get Pokemon X now.