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Although I was only there for one day, I believe I can safely say that the Indie section once again was the most interesting area of the gathering. It's great to see both new and returning developers bring their ideas and games out for others, and most of them are willing to discuss their games with people in full detail. Anyway, I thought I'd share a few thoughts from my time at PAX. Let's get on with it!



[u]Hyper Light Drifter[/u]:



Definitely my game of show; (I played it after my Radio D interview with Nanashi, hence the shovel-knight mention as GOS.) This game was so much fun to play that my brother and I did the co-op, AND I waited in line for the single player demo. The combat is fast, tough, and creative as you can set up a few quick button shortcuts for various weapons that allow you to play in different ways. The dash really helps keeps the pacing interesting, and dodging is a crucial skill that needs to be mastered. Single player is more like an old-school zelda game mixed with segments that allow for rampant combat. Badass.



[u]Shovel-Knight[/u]:



Game is damn fun. Definitely a Megaman / Castlevania / Metroid NES feeling game. It takes all the best concepts of those old games we loved, and adds a bunch of modern touches. The 3DS version was alright, but I think PC will be the best option as having a nice monitor and sound system really brings out the character of the game. Boss battles are a ton of fun, and there are a bunch of secondary weapons (think Up+B Castlevania style), that add a lot of variety to the game. Dat Jake Kaufman soundtrack too.


[u]Gods Will Be Watching[/u]:



I had not heard of this game before PAX, but I'm glad I stopped by to check out this demo. Based on moral and ethical decisions, this game was designed to pull your heartstrings and make you regret your choices. Whether you're trying to survive on a barren planet, or dealing with ~20 days of torture, GWBW will force you to make tough decisions that inherently fuck over others. As far as I understand it, there is absolutely no way in any of the six scenarios where you can cleanly come away with a "win". You'll be sacrificing both resources and companions to make it out alive. Most importantly, you become invested in what you choose.


[u]Hotline Miami 2[/u]:



Being a HUGE fan of the first game, I had very high expectations for the sequel. For the most part, I was very satisfied with what I had played. It has the same gritty feel and challenging gameplay that allowed you to take some pride in being a homicidal maniac. Masks are instead actual new characters with various abilities, rather than simply new skins that grant minor tweaks to the game. The variety of characters in the demo was enough to warrant multiple play-through if time had allowed it, and the demo dude insisted that there would be many more characters as well. The soundtrack is still a large part of the atmosphere, and even in the crowded PAX booth I was really getting into it.


[u]A Hat in Time[/u]:



Platformers are not games I usually resonate with, but the art style and charm this game has really got me interested in it. The open-world environment and mechanics had me thinking back to my early days of Super Mario 64. Experiencing a large colorful world as a cute little girl was something I had not done previously, and the level design and innate humor within the game itself made the demo really enjoyable. The controls were super-tight, and the environments were designed to be taken on in any way that you wanted. If platformers are your thing, or if you are looking for a great game to enjoy with a friend or son / daughter, I'd highly recommend looking into this piece.



That's it for now. I figured I'd write up something quick on some of the games I really liked at PAX. It was great meeting fellow dtoiders, and I hope that more people take the time to experience and support the indie gaming scene. Thanks for reading!








Considering everyone has been slandering up their favorite Final Fantasy games in the order they love, I've decided to throw my hat in the ring. Now, I must admit I'm definitely not as familiar with the series as some of you die-hard fans are, but please bare with me as I pour my heart out to (and on) all of you.


Anyway, let's get the show on the road!!! Please listen to this song as you read:


#5. Dark Souls



This title really emanates what classic Final Fantasy is all about. The combat system encompasses everything you love about exciting turned-based battles, except it does away with all of the boring stuff like waiting for you turn, having customizable party members, etc. to make this game shine. It's amazing how the development team behind this iconic game really got the most out of the NES hardware to create such lush visuals as well. Of course, they are nothing compared to the next title on my list...


#4. Dark Souls



Okay, you guys got me. How could I not resist putting up this cutie-pie. I can't think of a more memorable protagonist than Dark Knight number three. Whenever I look into his soft hazel eyes, my heart instantly melts. True Final Fantasy fanboys like myself know that DKNT is the true hero out of all the protagonist in this series, and that is why I had this game at number 4 on my list. God he's gorgeous. MOVING ONWARD!


#3. Dark Souls




Square Enix really pulled out all this stops in this iteration in terms of character development. I choose the screenshot above to illustrate my point, but for those unfamiliar with this series, I'll try to give a short synopsis.

**SPOILERS**

Pictured above is one of the more sentimental scenes of the Final Fantasy series in which the two main Humes captains must reconcile their differences with their Bangaa brethren. Turmoil and heartache lead up to this great moment in video-game history, but I won't say anymore less I ruin the magic. A real tear drop just formed in my eye, an that's [u]EVIDENCE[/u] that this game deserves the number #3 spot..


#2: Dark Souls



I gotta hand it to the team that developed this gem. They really had a lot of pressure upon them to deliver a brilliant game with the resounding success of Dark Souls (See #4), and these guys came through for everyone. The story-writers in particular should know that many fans write their names in blood on a daily basis to celebrate the genesis that is, Dark Souls. As you can see, this title really spear-headed how most games these days handle online co-op. Take a look at this convincing statement definitely made by someone:


Usedtabe: Without the help of pk, I never would have gotten through the first level!



The selfless teamwork shown above is only a fraction of what these online interactions were in this game, and they will always stay with me for as long as I live.. Now, the moment you've all been waiting for!!!

#1. DARK SOULS!!!!!!!111!!111!



God damnit folks, I can barely contain myself over here. YES!!! Dark Souls is that all-time greatest iteration of the Final Fantasy Series!!! This iconic title started it all. This title is what made the phase "Praise the Sun" a crucial part of ever Final Fantasy fan's vocabulary! Who will ever forget the first time you were invaded? I know I won't!! All in all, if you don't agree that this is the greatest FF game to have ever graced our pathetic lives, then you might as well spit in the face of God himself.


That's it folks! It's been a lot of fun reminiscing over the Final Fantasy series with you. I hope you enjoyed it, and may Square Enix reign supreme for another ten-thousand years.










Musicians Wanted is a new series that hopes to capture the talent of the musical members of Destructoid. Every other week a new challenge will be brought forth, and your job is to put the theme/idea to music! No previous skill is required, and we hope that anyone who's interested participates!

Whew, it's been an exhausting week for me at college, but I've gotten enough interest in this project to kick it off! It'll be really awesome to see how this turns out, and without further adieu, let's see this week's theme!!!





High-Seas Pirate Ship Battle!!


..Alright, so maybe I wasn't totally original with this theme, but I figured it would be a good start to have something that everyone is at least familiar with. We're looking to recreate the mood and feeling of these dangerous high-sea battles, so make sure to try to add a dramatic flair to your creation! (Or don't, you can do whatever you want!) So, I guess let's lay down some tentative rules.


RULES:
1. All work most be original, except for small samples if desired.
2. Please Make a SoundCloud account so that you can upload your piece and send it my way once completed. I think that this will be the best way for everyone to send their music to me, as in the next recap I can post the link with your name.
3. If you would like include a short written statement about your piece, just PM me along with the link to your song and I will put it in the recap post. Please, under 4 sentences.
4. Have fun!! The point of this series is to do something creative with others!


TIPS:
1. Not sure where to start for software? See the list below and see what tickles your fancy.
- Famitracker (Free: For those who wish to create chip-tunes)
- Live (30 Free trial: Popular choice for professional DJs)
- FLStudio (30 Free trails: Easy to use, and comes with plenty of sounds)











Hello everyone!

I'm here to propose a new series that kind of piggybacks on the (retired?) popular contest series, Artists Wanted. I know that I wasn't the only one that enjoyed the pieces of art that came from the community, and now want to extend that ideology to a bi-weekly series entitled: Musicians Wanted!.


What I hope to accomplish in running this small segment is to generate an environment where the musically inclined (and not so inclined) members of Dtoid can come together and sharpen their skills with various challenges. Every other week would welcome a new theme, idea, or event that those of us participating would have to re-create in a musical sense. We would welcome all mediums (famitracker, live recordings, FL Studio, etc) and all levels of talent. I would hope that these friendly "competitions" would allow for some really awesome music to be made, and in the process, allow our community to grow in a different way. Members of the community could vote anonymously for their favorite song or songs, and I don't know, maybe you could get a badge or something if you received the most votes. A lot of this is very tentative right now and would depend on the interest level of the community.

Perhaps this man could entice you?




... Anyway, Please comment below about whether or not this would be a neat thing. If interested, please so say in your comment, and spread the word! Even if this doesn't become a popular series, I still think it would be great to see everyone's talent!

If enough interest is generated, look for a post next Monday about the details of the first challenge!!

Please visit the forum thread if you want to discuss this idea further. Thanks for your time!









Jesus Christ, that thing is big.


I think one of the greatest things about gaming in general is how differently players can experience the same exact scenarios while having wildly different perspectives or interpretations of the events that occur. This short story/recap demonstrates how my brother and girlfriend made me question why I enjoy the Monster Hunter series so much, and actually passively made me feel guilty for enjoying this type of game.



As most of you may know or have heard, the "newest" Monster Hunter is set to drop a few weeks from now on the WiiU and 3DS. I have eagerly anticipated the newest iteration of this series for quite some time; Who doesn't look forward to slaying gargantuan beasts while sitting at home in their underwear, grunting? Wussies, that's who.


If you don't hunt with a giant hammer, you're probably doing it wrong.

Anyway.. I have played the demo on 3DS a few times and can say that I'm pleased; The formula hasn't changed all that much, and it was refreshing to see new areas and monsters. Hell, even seeing the new equipment was pretty cool. I soon found myself in a giddy state and decided to try to introduce the series to my brother. This is when things went bad.


My brother recently got a WiiU and was always looking for any excuse to boot it up. Knowing that the demo was on both the WiiU and the 3DS, I figured the experience would largely be the same and that this was a neat opportunity to introduce him to the series. My girlfriend was there too, and had also never seen or played Monster Hunter. We booted up the system and soon after I was starting my hunt for this unlucky guy.




Shortly after I spotted the creature, I ambushed him from behind. After getting an effective but awkward combo in with my hammer, I heard my brother's voice, "Wow, you are literally beating the fuck out of that rabbit.". It only took a moment for his comment to register inside my brain. I didn't really think much of it, and continued merrily bashing the creature at every chance I could.

"God, this is horrible!", this time, from my girlfriend. As I tried to explain the game to them, I found myself starring at the TV and questioning as to why I was bashing a rabbit like creature's head in with an over-sized weapon. He hadn't even looked in my direction and I had the balls to ram my hammer up his ass while he was happily grazing on some mushrooms under an icy cliff. I felt some kind of remorse as the creature vomited and drooled while in a daze from my barrage. Every attack the monster made was more desperate than the last, and it always retreated to recuperate at every given chance. It was like a game of cat and mouse, except the cat was carrying a baseball bat and the mouse had thyroid cancer.

This didn't feel like hunting, it felt like slaughter.



Even now when I think about it, the premise of Monster Hunter is kind of brutal. Rather than observe and admire these noble beasts, you're kind of a gun for hire who goes out and slays dozens of rare, exotic animals for the sake of making stylish armor and trinkets. I will admit that in the full games, there is usually a small accompaniment of text that explains the purpose of the quest, but going back and looking at some of them, they feel weak and don't nearly generate a conviction strong enough for me to rampantly slay these wild animals. I guess it took the perspectives of my brother and gal pal to make me see the darker side of Monster Hunter, and how awful it really can be.

Saying all of this, I'm sure I will still get the game. The thing is though, I don't know if I'll ever be able enjoy Monster Hunter like I used to.
Photo Photo Photo








Jesus Christ, I want to throw up so badly right now.




Persona 4: Golden, is absolutely one of the most emotionally powerful games I have ever played. With it's colorful cast of characters and upbeat attitude, my psyche was not prepared for the emotional scarring that will haunt my head for years to come...DUN DUN DUN!!!



THE BAD ENDING! (Note: I was not aware that there were even multiple endings.)






I cannot even begin to describe how this ending made me feel. After 52 hours of crime fighting and making close virtual friends with the kids from Inaba, one of the darkest scenes in gaming history was about to take a monkey wrench to my stomach. After countless cut scenes that brought everyone on the team closer together, one mistake I had made was about to send everything I had worked for down the shitter. I am writing this mere minutes after this awful torrent of grief has stricken me, so I'm sorry if I'm a little shaken up.

Anyway, In a climactic scene near the end of the game, you are allowed to make a few choices that alter the ending you will receive. Sound pretty standard right? Heh heh, WROOOONG!

At a moment of tension that is delivered in a disgusting amount, you are prompted to answer a series of questions correctly in a particular fashion if you hope to move on in a the murder mystery that surrounds your town. Not knowing this and playing the game without looking anything up beforehand, everything seemed to proceed normally after I had made a fatal mistake; My ass was not prepared for the emotionally whooping it was about to be served. Without spoiling anything too much, the characters get together again, only with a darker context that hangs in the air. Three in game months pass by and everyone just looks and feels so fucking sad. It's awful, it really is. It's like getting a new puppy; You feel so excited to have this new friend in your life, and you cherish every moment you spend together. A few days after you've been together, you call it in for supper as usual, but a drunken garbage man comes barreling down the sidewalk at 45mph in his massive truck and completely destroys your dog. I imagine that this event would leave similar feelings as did the Persona 4 "Bad" ending. Fuck, I need to puke.