hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts


StriderHoang's blog
destructoid  Cblog Ninja

1:25 AM on 10.03.2015

A Nintendo rep who happened to be checking stock at Toys R Us found me a Little Mac amiibo behind the counter #collusion #bias


7:06 PM on 10.02.2015

I found Kirby's Dream Collection at a GameStop. Now that was quite a find.


2:10 AM on 10.01.2015

All I need is some sound absorbing foam against a wall and maybe I'll get back into podcasting in my new apartment set up


2:51 AM on 09.30.2015

Want to fight about it? A Wii U owner's lament on fighting games

Fighting games were a peripheral fixation of mine since I was child. Street Fighter II of course was the only real one I liked asides from Mortal Kombat. But when Street Fighter IV came out (that was fucking 2008 oh my fucking god it's felt longer) I became fully ingratiated with the fighting game community. Say what you want about how one goes about including themselves into a community, I spent classes in college just opening up YouTube and watching subscriptions uploading SFIV footage from channels like Spooky, GAMEacho, and ArcadeInfinity (RIP). I drove an hour to get a taste of Blazblue back when it was still new, Calamity Trigger, and confused as some sort of missing link to Guilty Gear. I went through the previous generation's unnaturally long cycle playing everything from SFIV, to Marvel, to Injustice, and Persona 4 Arena. I've made friendships and broken them in this genre. I should show more appreciation to Virtua Kazama.

But for the past year I've been on the Wii U, which as we all know has a notoriously shallow pool for games. Now the water is filled with herbs and oils, creating a quality experience but nonetheless you're only getting your ankles wet. You'll have fucking awesome ankles but that's it. I've been missing out on Mortal Kombat X, the SFV beta, Killer Instinct, KOFXIV was announced (HA), and who knows what else?

All of these games are not on Wii U and I'm on some serious Smash Bros. fatigue.

I want some Mika 3:16

I'm starting to really burn out on Smash's unorthodox fighting mechanics. The mobility mechanics, the air game, the edge game and percent system. I still like playing it thank god because I live for fighting games and matchmaking but my god I'm really missing a fighting game that just takes a step back into the old fashion face-to-face and life bars fighting game. I miss thinking about meter management, I miss executing special moves I find easy and hearing people complain about how they can't do quarter circle forward motions, I miss mechanics built for traditional combos, where getting hit is called hitstun and not hitlag and I can cancel certain footsie moves into special moves. And when I say combos I mean I'm tired of chasing opponents as they directional influence away from my attacks and I'm tired of seeing something being called a combo when the victim simply fell into an attack as a misjudgment on spacing or as part of an elaborate tech trap.

That's not to take away from Smash 4's amazing staying power within its balance and competitive community. I mean that from a context where when Brawl came out it just died a slow, stagnating death on the vine when it came to community. Melee continues to live as the 3rd Strike of Smash Bros. and Smash 4 is kind of like SFIV: it has its fair share of problems but people still enjoy it. I daresay Brawl is like the Street Fighter EX of Smash Bros. but anyways, I'm saying I've been playing a lot of Street Fighter IV and I want to play some Persona 4 Ultimax.

Calling you out Skullomania

Full disclosure, I play a lot of Little Mac on For Glory. So burning out is inevitable as I decide to cram nails through my hands with such ferocity as I am currently. I do like playing Bowser and a few other characters like Ike (wields a club, not a sword), Roy (hello Fsmash), and Ryu (what are inputs?). I suppose I should just cool off a bit with For Fun and goof off or work on some Classic mode runs to earn coins and trophies and round up some trophy collecting. But I salivate at the idea of playing Ken as the most different he's been in any version of Street Fighter, Ryu with his denjin fists, an Charlie with his fucking teleport shenanigans and Genocide Cutters (Rugal fucking called you Nash). I want to give Tremor a go and play as an Earthbender in the Mortal Kombat universe, with its fucking wacky variant system expanding matchups (even if most people just play one version of Sub-Zero apparently and why would anyone play as the version of Kung Jin that uses arrows when you can just beat people with a big stick?). Hell yeah I'd want to play as a Buick-sized Native American named Chief Thunder in Killer Instinct and stomp on insensitive white people (and werewolves, and skeletons, and aliens) or play as a giant golem who can create his own corner combos. All of these examples have unique strategies in using meter, using special traits and powers, and doing actual high-low attacks (holy crap I miss actually worrying about blocking high or low).

To add salt to the wound, I also don't have much a PC gaming presence despite my obviously answer being Steam like Rising Thunder. Though if my laptop can run Skullgirls and KOFXIII (King of Snores XIII), I guess I should try out Yatagarasu. I'm not good at 3rd Strike but its not exactly like 3rd Strike at least. Hell, Yomi is receiving some praise in my circles and that's half card game, half fighting game.

Yes Smash 4 has it's own unique set of mechanics to make it stand out like knocking people off stage, edgeguarding, ledge trumping, tech chasing, pivoting, and meteor smashing people into the disrespect hole. But hopefully you see where my fatigue is coming from. It's honestly just the Wii U complaint about the availability of games and diversity on the platform and repurposed to specifically talk about fighting games.

Now before you call me out on it, yes Pokken Tournament is on the way to attempt to save the day. Ironically I'm not a big fan of Tekken and this might be the first Tekken game I'll take seriously (Pikachu is basically Heihachi by the way). Even though it'll still be comparatively wacky with respect with the form of fighting I miss, it'll still have many of the mechanics I miss in Smash which are in most mainstream fighting games like meter managment, life bars, and it'll even have assists like the faster, team-based fighters. Weavile might be my jam as the speedy, technical type but I'd love to play as Gengar as the tricky type, or even Suicine as a fucking quadrupedal beast looking to hang out in a bipedal fighting party and let's not forget that not only is there's Heihachi reborn as Pikachu but an alternate Pikachu dressed as a luchador who justifies grappling moves by way of grabbing Pokemon with electromagnetic waves.

I'm seriously thirsty for a different fighting experience from Smash but all I have is the Wii U. I don't read frame data spreadsheets but I love counting frames in training mode. I'm not travelling to competitive tournaments but I like getting online to see the dumb shenanigans people will cook up to compensate for lag, lack of skill, or a combination of both. I'm ready for a new experience. That may be par for the course in the context of Wii U ownership but I'm not salty about it. I want some new salt is all.


1:07 AM on 09.30.2015

I need Monster Hunter X in my life and in english


1:03 AM on 09.26.2015

Plague of Shadows: a great excuse to get back into Shovel Knight

Shovel Knight's expansion is a great excuse for more Shovel Knight, even if you're not actually playing as the titular and agile Shovel Knight. While I've seen some people complain about how different Plague Knight is and how different his mobility is, I think they're not thinking of Plague Knight differently enough to really understand that he isn't Shovel Knight and needs a different mindset.

So first of all, why should you play the new Plague of Shadows expansion for Shovel Knight, asides from it being free? Personally, I figure Plague Knight offers a different way to play through Shovel Knight's enjoyable level design. Whereas Shovel Knight gets through meticulously designed stages with his shovel plunge and variety of sub-weapons, Plague Knight subverts the same stages with swift aerial movement. While he doesn't respond to a variety of melee situations well, Plague Knight is all about approaching combat from another angle. We're talking about a maniacal scientist who seeks to exploit weaknesses rather than face them head-on with his own mettle. One example is the giant spear wielding warriors from Mole Knight's Lost Civilization stage. Shovel Knight would have to engage them directly in most cases, avoiding their flaming crossfire attack and dodging their spear thrust. In most cases for Plague Knight however, I was able to sit comfortably from a distance and throw the right explosives that would reach my enemy from outside his effective range. The ability to approach combat differently is probably the biggest crux for playing Plague Knight. Shovel Knight really only fights up close with his shovel blade while his relics offer an opportunity to expand upon it. Plague Knight can change his explosives drastically based on a variety of different cases, powder, and fuses. I can attack enemies on different heights with the lob casing and the long fuse, create fire and forget defensive traps with sentry fuses, and even perform more adequately in close range combat with the boomeranging whirl case and impact fuses.

Plague of Shadows offers up an interesting, concurrent story running parallel to the main Shovel Knight quest story. I always thought the knights who make up the Order of No Quarter were really cool. Polar Knight's implied history with Shovel Knight, Specter Knight's mysterious immortality, Treasure Knight's obsession with gold and wealth. Plague Knight isn't portrayed as a dastardly villain but rather a social outcast alongside his arcane and scientific colleagues. Characters from the main story like Percy the horse or the Magicist appear again as nerdy foils Plague Knights socially awkward egomania. While Shovel Knight's feelings and guilt remind you as dream sequences involving saving a falling Shield Knight, Plague Knight has an underlying plot with Mona, the robed female Shovel Knight might've played a few mini games with. While she appears apathetic and quiet to the Shoveling Dynamo, Mona displays more dynamic expression in the secrecy of the Potionarium with Plague Knight. It's highly implied that the two are crushing hard on each other, and this is implied very early on. The rub is that being both the scientific types, they're either too shy to do anything about it or focus on the task at hand instead. Even collecting music sheets from the main game is given to Percy, the horse, who needs paper to write his notes on. In exchange for paper he can't use, not only does he give you gold but he offers love advice.

Overall, Plague Knight is about enjoying Shovel Knight again in a different way. It's not about enjoying it as a standalone experience for me but as revisiting the game in a different way. It's no wonder in order to play Plague of Shadows that you need to beat the game first. You'll enjoy the expansion more if you've played it before as Shovel Knight. While there's a code to unlock the mode straight away, it's highly recommended to beat the game first.

Shovel Knight was my game of the year last year. Any excuse to come back to such an excellent game is a welcome idea.


12:24 PM on 09.14.2015

So who has Mario Maker here anyways?


12:43 AM on 09.03.2015

Just so you know, I've been a Huge subscriber for a few years but I thought I had until the end of September to cancel it. So I've opened an inquiry for the refund, which is on tinypass' end of things by the way.


12:25 AM on 09.02.2015

Pivot smash my way to victory


3:11 AM on 09.01.2015

Challengers wanted: Aggron the immovable object

From deviantart

The metagame for Pokemon is extremely large. And as such finding a challenger to battle can lead to any number of varied experiences. Even if you fight against tier hogs who adhere to the strictest idea of playing with tryhard pants on, the tier list for viable Pokemon across the OverUsed tier is as long as a guest list to a private party being held by Kojima. I've battled against a team of poorly trained and mismatched legendaries, team composed entirely of deadly sweepers, teams with a deadly mega of some sort being supported by a gaggle of deadly walls with crippling hazard setters and status spreaders, and everything in between holding choice bands and priority moves. I myself, as a battling trainer, got addicted to hundreds of hours of training devoted to created a vast and varied stable of battle ready Pokemon, ranging from niche (suicide web Galvantula), to gimmicky (a sun team with Mega Houndoom and Harvest Trevenant), to break neck pace strategies (dual Intimidate Mega Manectric and Staraptor spamming U-Turn and Volt Switch).

But eventually you gotta settle on a favorite. A team that you will use when you just don't know what to expect and this personal choice will get you relatively through any problem with satisfactory results. It had to be unexpected, to throw off my opponent. It also had to incorporate a Pokemon I actually liked, but was still relatively viable. This is what a core is in Pokemon battling: a specific pairing or even group of Pokemon who go together like peanut butter and jelly because their strengths cover their weaknesses but also enhance each other. So how was I going to make Mega Aggron, one of my favorite Pokemon ever to receive a buff with a mega evolution, viable when his greatest strength was hampered by the very thing that enabled him to be so much better than what he used to be? Mega Aggron's defense is ludicrious, capable of shrugging off STAB Earthquake from the likes of Gliscor and Garchomp, who are by the way if you don't know, some of the most powerful users of Earthquake and Mega Aggron is a steel-type, which is weak to ground-type attacks. Normally you hear weak and you think you'd immediately switch him out of fear but Mega Aggron's defense is so high, not to mention it has Filter as an ability to changes super effective hits from 2x effective to 1.5x effective, that he basically has nothing to fear on the physical spectrum of attacks. But of course his special defense is mediocre but his biggest weakness is the fact that since mega evolution requires a mega stone, he can't hold Leftovers for passive recovery. Using up move slots for Rest seems like a waste if it doesn't immediately pigeonhole him into certain move sets. So Aggron got a flaw buff, so what's a fan of Aggron gotta do to make his favorite metal rhino shine like the chrome superstar he deserves to be?

Pair him with another favorite of mine, sometimes referred to as the Jerkass Dove, Togekiss. The two couldn't be more different and yet their differences make them perfect for each other on the battlefield. My own personal core of TogeAggron becomes an nigh unstoppable wall of pain. It isn't just a wall that takes hits. This is a wall that sprouts arms and punches back with boxing gloves made of cinder blocks.

Togekiss is opposite of Aggron in terms of stat composition and typing. Togekiss is a bundle of special defense and special attack that will laugh off your attempts to use Dark Pulse, Flamethrower, Psychic, whatever fancy attack it is and smack you back with Dazzling Gleam, a fairy-type attack that reminds you that the retconning of the Togepi line into fairy-type was an immensely powerful change for it. Togekiss however, fears rock-type attacks, and it doesn't have the defense to take things like Flare Blitz with a straight face. You know who is absolutely fine with taking Flare Blitz to the face?

That's not why I paired Togekiss with Mega Aggron like rubbing two of my action figures together to make them kiss though. Togekiss has immense survivability but not on an epic scale like Mega Aggron. Togekiss however can hold Leftovers and can learn Wish, a move that restores half health after one turn. Togekiss doesn't have longevity from shrugging off attacks but because it can take damage like a champ but recover that health in a jiffy. But Togekiss doesn't have to just heal itself. Wish works for anything that switches places with it on the next turn. And there you have the crux of my favorite core.

Cores can be pretty scary. This is a fusion though.

This core is built to take some of the metagame's most popular offensive types and just laugh at them while saying, "What metagame?" Choice banders like Azumarril and Talonflame can't even dream of making Mega Aggron yawn. Mega Blaziken, destroyer of worlds, might be able to break even against the solid steel of Mega Aggron but Aggron has Earthquake to extinguish Mega Blaziken's flames. But what if Mega Charizard Y steps out for Flamethrower or perhaps Greninja is stepping in with specially offensive Protean boosts? Togekiss steps in, Wish/Protects that health back, and simply wails away with Dazzling Gleam supported by Leftovers. But a steel-type like Aegislash wants to Iron Head poor Togekiss, or maybe the poisonous sea dragon, Dragalge? Not only can Mega Aggron just scare them off, Togekiss has a chance to pass a Wish onto the battered and beaten but not out Mega Aggron.

The complete set for Togekiss is Dazzling Gleam/Air Slash/Wish/Protect while Mega Aggron has Stealth Rocks/Thunder Wave/Earthquake/Heavy Slam. Yup, between the two of them there are only four attacks and one of them is dependent on the weight of the opponent to do more or less damage. But between Leftovers recovery and Wish passing keeping these walls healthy while continually dishing out a slow and steady pace of broad damage, opponents will be tempted to switch to a counter, risking Stealth Rocks damage and paralysis being spread around faster than an STD in a college dorm.

Playing Pokemon is sometimes about doing as much damage as possible as fast as possible before your opponent can regain their composure. This core appeals to me though because you can't expect to do OHKOs to everything in the game and have plan for afterwards. Between Togekiss and Mega Aggron though, I can expect to survive a lot of damage and slowly grind down my opposition between reliable attacks and Stealth Rocks damage. These two couldn't be more different but together, they can take on a lot of heat that neither one of them could deal with individually. This is what Pokemon is all about; building a team that supports each other rather than building a team that hands the spotlight to one superstar sweeper. I love this core to death because its effective, it's unexpected, and it can really frustrate an opponent who slowly realizes that their most effective offense may only be able to do 1/3 of a health bar which can easily be recovered in two turns.

Hard to break down, but it'll hurt you in the process. See? A wall.


11:08 AM on 08.27.2015



2:42 AM on 08.27.2015

Please be gentle Shiek. I want a character who's actually good at neutral for once.


Back to Top

We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -