May 14 //
Brett Makedonski Chapter Three: The Hospital
Piece 1: This chapter's first piece is down the stairs at the beginning. It's right next to the text "He needs his mom. He needs comforting."
Piece 2: This is the first collectible in the game that NERO really makes you work for. It's locked behind a door that can only be opened by solving a puzzle. This room's off to the right after entering the hospital. The puzzle is completed by lining up the three holes in the bookshelf and throwing a light orb at the activation switch.
Piece 3: Now that we're properly in the hospital, we see that there are a ton of optional rooms to go into, and even multiple floors. We'll tackle everything on the ground floor first before moving upstairs. Keep an eye out for signs denoting rooms, as it'll help you find the right place for collectibles.
The third piece is pretty simple. It's in the left side of the restaurant. The restaurant is right by the words "Work needs me. We have bills to pay."
Piece 4: Move past the open courtyard to find a receptionist's desk. The fourth piece is behind it, by the phrase "There is nothing, nothing left to be done. What's the point?"
Piece 5: Staying on the lower level, you'll find a room marked "Pharmacy" which is near "I try to be collected, to not cry when he looks at me for strength." Piece number five is in the pharmacy.
Piece 6: This one's in the men's bathroom, which is a bit past "I try to be collected, to not cry when he looks at me for strength."
Piece 7: Now we've cleared out the ground floor and can move upstairs. I took the stairs by the restaurant, but there are many paths leading up. The next collectible is sort of near the text "Tell David not to fear, I will be there waiting for him in a better place." But, it's kind of off on its own without anything too describable nearby it.
Piece 8: Find the room marked "Women's Ward" and move through it to find the eighth piece.
Piece 9: Here's another that requires some work. This one's also in the Women's Ward, and it's locked behind another door. Solve the puzzle to be granted access to the ninth piece.
Piece 10: Still on the upper floor, there's a room called "Supervised Observation" that houses this piece.
Piece 11: Make your way around the upstairs to the Men's Ward. Work your way through here to find a side room with the penultimate piece of the puzzle.
Piece 12: After opening the gates, go down the stairs to find the final piece resting in the room that also contains the chapter's final puzzle.
Chapter Four: The Desert
Piece 1: At the beginning of the level, there's an anchor made of rock to the right. The first piece is up against it.
Piece 2: Continuing down the path from the rock anchor, veer a bit to the left to find this piece in plain sight across from the giant glowing artifact.
Piece 3: Now get close to the artifact, as the third piece is right alongside it. It's near the text "I never meant for any of this to happen. I'm so sorry."
Piece 4: Moving forward, there are some monkey statues that are covered in moss. The next piece of the puzzle is right in front of the central one.
Piece 5: You'll eventually come across the words "It's all my fault. I should've seen it coming." The fifth piece is a bit beyond that down a short path to the left.
Piece 6: You don't have to go far to get to the next collectible. It's just beyond the fifth one, and it's in between the trees with glowing cracks in their branches.
Piece 7: This one has quite the picturesque view! It's on the cliffside immediately behind "I could have done better. I should have done better."
Piece 8: The eighth piece is hard to miss. After crossing the rope bridge, it's just waiting right on the other side, ready to be collected.
Piece 9: After opening the gate, this one's right on the other side by the words "It wasn't meant to end like this." (I redacted some text from the narrator on this screenshot that could be considered a spoiler. I did this on the last image too. Although, if you've made it this far, you probably don't care much about spoilers.)
Piece 10: We're getting awfully close to the end. The tenth piece is up the path and to the left of the previous one. It's a little ways before "Why should the ending be more important than the moments leading up to it?"
Piece 11: Before going inside the lighthouse, this piece is just beyond the stone ramp leading up to the entrance.
Piece 12: Finally! The last piece! As you're ascending the lighthouse's spiral staircase, this one will be about halfway up out on a balcony. Pat yourself on the back for finding all 48 pieces and putting together all four puzzles.
In case you missed it, here's part one of the NERO collectibles guide, which covers The Caves and The Desert.
Let's put together a jigsaw puzzle! Well, we have 24 of NERO's puzzle pieces in the bag, which means there are 24 to go. The second half of the NERO collectibles guide features The Hospital and The Desert.
No sense wasting any time; let's jump right into it. If you don't know the drill, part one of the guide has all the details. read feature
May 14 //
Brett Makedonski Chapter One: The Caves
Piece 1: In a house off to the right at the very beginning. The text near the house reads "These brigands had dozens of hideouts scattered throughout the oceans."
Piece 2: Off to the right of the first puzzle. It's behind an orange plant and a tree with three branches coming out of the ground.
Piece 3: Shortly after the first puzzle. Right in front of the text "small waterfalls and underground rivers kept the caves humid for mushrooms to fluorish."
Piece 4: In the room where you get the light ability. Down the right-hand path from "One of those contraptions was blocking the passage in a dark room filled with crystals."
Piece 5: Shortly after the text saying there are two paths up ahead. It's to the right of the multi-tiered waterfall.
Piece 6: Take the left-hand path. The sixth piece is directly behind the text that reads "A giant torso of an ancient god made of stone was crying water to the lower room."
Piece 7: This one is in the room with the three monkeys puzzle which is necessary to progress. It's off to the right side of the door.
Piece 8: You'll soon come back out to another empty village. The eighth piece is in the house with the words "An opening in the rocks gave enough light and several ponds of fresh water served the brigands well." You have to go around the side of the house, though.
Piece 9: There's a ramp leading down to a puzzle with nine circles. The next piece is right on the other side of the ramp.
Piece 10: Just to the right of "Long and dark was the road David walked to meet his fellow brigands, but the sense of love they felt for each other helped."
Piece 11: The eleventh piece is up on the balcony under the text "There was something magic about that place, something romantic about the songs the brigands sang in the evenings."
Piece 12: The Caves' last piece is in a puzzle room where the far wall has three circles with rotating dots on it. This piece is to the right of that behind a large stone.
Chapter Two: The Forest
Piece 1: This one is right at the beginning of the level, behind and to the left of the words "In a remote area of the world, existed a place filled with wonders and beauty."
Piece 2: This piece is a bit in no man's land. It's far out in the field behind the text "Right in front of the tree, David had decided to found the village." It's nestled among three giant glowing mushrooms.
Piece 3: After opening the gate, you'll see the words "They already gave their assessment, they won't save him, so I will at least try to." It's in the nook behind this and between the buildings.
Piece 4: Shortly after the last piece, walk to the base of the waterfall to find this one. If you're having trouble, it's behind the words "It is taught that even today those glowing animals are still lighting those houses, giving the village a sense of false life."
Piece 5: This one can be found while walking through the village. It's behind the text "The villagers built an elaborate stone bridge in order to cross the small river ending at the waterfall."
Piece 6: After a mandatory puzzle that opens a gate, there's a clock puzzle a bit ahead and to the left. Along the left-hand side of the clock puzzle will be a little nook containing the next piece. Off in the distance is the text "That site had a strange attraction and for the villagers it was also connected to something even darker."
Piece 7: After the words "That site had a strange attraction and for the villagers it was also connected to something even darker," follow the path under an arch. Hang a left before the words "He's sounds asleep, how long have you kept watch?," and the next piece is resting in a field.
Piece 8: This piece is right behind a very large tombstone puzzle. The text in front of the puzzle reads "He asks for you, you know. He wants you to read him the giant jellyfish story this time."
Piece 9: From the last piece, keep walking directly backward from the giant tombstone. This piece is at the entrance to a canyon which leads to another puzzle.
Piece 10: After the tree falls, the tenth piece is just to the left of the text "The treatment just needs more time."
Piece 11: Eventually, you'll find yourself in a cemetery. Take the right-hand path by the text "A statue representing a goddess was placed beneath the open mausoleum, it is said that the ghostly figures would gather there by night," and the next piece is hiding in an open stone structure.
Piece 12: Progress just a bit further through the graveyard until you see the words "Strange to say and to see, the mausoleum was the only bright and lively part of the cemetery." The Forest's last piece is directly behind this text in another stone building.
Good job! That's half of the game in the books. Here's the guide to the second half -- The Hospital and The Desert.
Let's put together a jigsaw puzzle! NERO is an experience in exploration that beckons for the player to scour every inch of its world. Scattered across the game's four levels are 48 puzzle pieces, and they're hidden in every nook and cranny imaginable. Parts of... read feature
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// Jordan Devore
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Jan 02 //
Personally, I have a rule -- if I don't already have an existing collection for something, I won't get trinkets for it. For my marquee franchises like Mario, Zelda, and Mega Man (pictured in the headers for all three Collector's Corner entries), I can't resist. I'm planning on eventually putting all of the core amiibo figures into those displays once I'm done testing out the functionality, and I think they'll look perfect next to all of my other toys.
I think this guideline keeps me sane. If I just had to have every single toy in every toy line I'd be broke and would probably go crazy from all the hunting. SMT alone would cost me thousands with all of the high-quality figures that series has. While I am a collector I'm a gamer first, so actually playing these things is my number one priority -- I'll always choose a bigger library over more stuff.
On the other hand, I do have an itch where I have to get at least one trinket per collection. For some franchises, this requirement is maddening. While Final Fantasy has no shortage of merch, locating something unique and exciting for say, Metroid, is a lot harder. That's why I love amiibo so much -- they allow me to accent franchises like Punch Out!! where it wasn't possible previously.
As always, feel free to share your collection in the comments and talk a bit about your personal preferences! I'd love to see as many trinket snapshots as possible.
Previous Collector's Corner:
01: Should you sell your current console?
02: Show us your Collection
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Oct 17 //
Donkey Kong 64 certainly wasn't the first game I ever played that put some sort of emphasis on collecting. That honor may be bestowed to either Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past, or Link's Awakening. Hell, even Pokemon Blue, which is a year older in the US than DK 64, could have instilled that mindset. Yet, it was the way that the titular 64-bit monkey was introduced to my life that made him particularly formative.
It was holiday season in 1999. I had wanted a Nintendo 64 for years. Many of my friends had the console, and we'd play it any chance we had at each of their houses. But, I wanted one for myself. I wanted to be able to play the likes of GoldenEye, Ocarina of Time, and Tony Hawk on my own time. I thought my odds were high since Nintendo recently bundled Donkey Kong 64 with the console at a pretty reasonable price.
I was right. That Christmas morning, I opened a relatively large present, and staring back at me was Donkey Kong and his crew next to a translucent green Nintendo 64. I was beside myself. I wasn't quite Nintendo 64 Kid levels of excited, but I was definitely a happy camper.
After all the less important gifts had been unwrapped, I made my way to the living room television and started setting up. That wasn't much of a chore; things were easy enough even back then. After snapping in the included expansion pack (Donkey Kong 64 was one of three Nintendo 64 games that required 4 MB additional RAM; the other two were Perfect Dark and Majora's Mask), it was time to begin the game that I think had decades-long ramifications on my life.
You know that special place you have in your heart for the first game on a new system of yours? You know the way that you just hold it in higher regard? You know the way that you play the absolute hell out of it? That was me with Donkey Kong 64. Maybe I had rose-tinted glasses on at the time, but I was determined to not put that game down until I beat it inside and out. And that's exactly what I did.
However, besting Donkey Kong 64 can be a tedious process. To truly conquer it, there's a lot that needs to be done. There are 201 golden bananas to obtain, along with other collectibles like regular bananas, banana fairies, banana coins, banana medals -- they really kind of beat you over the head with that whole banana theme. Making the process even more arduous, every level had to be completed with each of the five characters, effectively quintupling the length of the game.
To this day, I don't think any of this would have had much initial appeal to me if it weren't for one thing -- that damn percentage completion counter. I loved watching it inch closer to 100 percent with every optional objective ticked off. It wasn't an immediate fascination with collectibles that drew me in; it was a completionist mentality that suddenly depended on this playstyle.
So, I played. And I played, and I played, and I played. Before long, I looked forward to the puzzle or skill that'd be required to grab a collectible. Sometimes they'd be races, other times platforming sections. There was a lot of variation in how the collectibles were strewn throughout the world, but the underlying similarity was that they were presented in bite-sized tasks that I could always wrap my head around.
Eventually, the pieces started coming together to paint the broad strokes of a complete picture. Individual successes strung together to become mini victories that I reveled in -- like completing a level with one character, knowing that was done forever. Finishing areas with all five felt monumental. Every time I'd boot up the game, I was met with the DK Rap and a slightly higher completion percentage. It kept me pushing on.
The thing about collectibles is that they're never really remarkable in a grandiose way. There's never a seminal moment that you can point to and say "now THAT was really cool." It's a slow burn, a series of short, rather dull instances that add up to a greater sense of accomplishment. I don't know why, but that grind fuels me.
It should go without saying by now, but yes, I did 101 percent Donkey Kong 64. But, that's not really the sticking point. It laid the groundwork for future experiences like collecting all the flags in Assassin's Creed and nabbing all the orbs in Crackdown 2. Those are two extreme examples -- many more reasonable titles litter the path throughout the years -- but nonetheless, examples that I enjoyed through and through.
Perhaps Donkey Kong 64 had too many collectibles for some people. For me, it was the perfect amount.
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Jan 11 //
On the opposite side of the two shelves, there is a large flat screen back-lit TV. This is sitting in front of a large walk in closet with a curtain resembling the curtain from the opening screen of Super Mario Bros. 3. The rest of the room is basically empty, minus a couple of posters on the walls.
Now, I mention all of this because as I started off with, we were having a discussion regarding the "display" of his collection. 90 percent of his games, consoles, handhelds, boxes, toys and other tchotchkes are behind the large TV, stored neatly in his closet away from public view. Such a display is not how I would do it, and it's not how I've done it in the past. For him though, it's not about how he wants to display his stuff, but how he has to display his collection right now.
We've all been there as collectors; there are times in our lives where we have to take a step back and deal with real life situations, such as buying a new house. If you've ever bought your own home, you realize that there is a lot to be done. As you can imagine, this would put a strain on even the most hardcore collector. Brian has plenty of room for more shelving, and there is more than enough space to adorn the walls or even floor space with furniture to proudly show off his rare and valuable goodies. Eventually, he'll get to it.
So what does any of this have to do with anything? I tell this story because at this point in my life, I'm sort of in the same boat as my friend, meaning I have very little of my collection out for others to see. For me, however, it is more necessity, rather than wanting to display my stuff or being too busy with other things to care. You see, over the past two years I have moved twice, once from Illinois to Florida and then just recently within state.
I'm not "home" yet -- I'm in a temporary layover -- still waiting to put down my roots. For me, displaying my collection is more of a hassle than anything. I don't have the space right now, I don't have the time, and most importantly, I don't have the desire to "set up shop" and show off my wares, simply because I know that in less than a year, I will be moving yet again.
I am a collector without a true home, without a shelf, and without....well, my collection. As much as I would love to show all of you how amazing my displays are, how meticulous I have set everything up, and how perfect my alphabetizing is, I cannot, unless you want to see pictures of a 20x20 storage unit packed wall to wall and up to the ceiling.
This is the part where I turn the conversation over to you, my fellow collectors and community members of Destructoid. I want to see your collection. I want to show the rest of Destructoid what your collection looks like. I want you to show off, brag, boast and most importantly, be proud of your collection, no matter how big or small.
You're probably thinking to yourself, "Dang, I'd love to show off my stuff, and I'd love to have it on the front page of Destructoid! But, how in the heck am I gonna do that?"
It's easy, here's what you need to do;
Take some pictures of your collection, let's say, no more than ten but at least five. Give me a brief description of what you collect, how you collect, and how you choose to display you fine wares. I will then, in turn, take those pictures and show the world all of your cool stuff.
I want you to be the center of attention.
Email your pictures and descriptions to billplatt at Destructoid dot com. Each week or every other week (depending on what Chris has going on, my partner in crime in this feature series), I will pick two community members to highlight. I figure I'll continue to do this until I stop receiving pictures, or I'm told to stop and have all my admin rights taken away, whichever comes first.
Oh, and if you've ever wondered what Chris Carter's collection looks like, you can view it here. I figured this may give you some inspiration.
Thanks for stopping by today, I can't wait to see your amazing collection.
Previous Collector's Corner:
01: Should you sell your current console?
Sharing is caring! [The latest Collector's Corner is all about you, we want to see your collections! We want to show them off to the rest of the Destructoid Community. Keep reading below to see how you can participate!]
I was having a discussio... read feature
Nov 16 //
"Should you sell your current console for a new PS4 or Xbox One?"
Let me tell you a short story. A long time ago, I was a Nintendo fanboy. I owned boxes upon boxes of Super Nintendo games that were either gifts from family members, or games I had earned -- from doing chores, or shoveling snow for weeks on end. But my tastes changed when the PlayStation released in North America in 1995. Due to some strong-arming from my cousin, I started to make the shift to full-on Sony fanboy, and sold off almost all of my SNES haul to buy a PS1 and a few games (Oddworld and Destruction Derby). At first, I was happy with my decision. But a few years later when I normalized my gaming loyalties, I regretted it.
While you may not be a child or a fanboy in this situation, odds are you have forged memories with your system. Whether it's the fact that your launch 360 has gone strong all the way through your friend's Red Ring catastrophes, or that your Metal Gear Solid 4 PS3 still plays PS2 games -- odds are you have a small amount of attachment to your system. So why even think of selling it? One day, possibly far off in the future, you'll be playing some sequel to a storied franchise on your Xbox One or PS4, and you'll really want to experience one of the older games in the series.
Well, without 100% backwards compatibility available on the PS4 or Xbox One, there's no real way to do that without an older system. Odds are you'll take a look at the used-console market, see that sticker shock and weigh the risk of it being partially broken, and give up on re-buying an older generation console. To me, that's a shame. The modern gaming era is too much about the "now," with very little focus on where it came from, or what influenced it. While I'm very much a fan of playing all of the newest games, I think it's equally as important to explore gaming's heritage, which is why I recently went back and re-purchased all of the consoles I had sold off.
So if you're even thinking about selling your old system, think again, because you can probably just wait.
"Should you sell your current console for a new PS4 or Xbox One?"
I’m weird when it comes to buying new games and hardware. I've never been a “trade in” kind of guy; I never saw the value in it. If anything, I only saw the devaluation of the whole process. I know trading in games or consoles seems like a great deal. However, from a purely financial point, it makes no sense at all.
My experience with trade-ins has always gone something like this: I go to the store on one of the days when you get extra credit toward your trade-in. The person behind the counter takes my six games and tallies up the trade-in value, resulting in a total of $60 - 100 to use toward anything in the store. Seems pretty fantastic, right? Well, let’s say all six games were bought new, and let’s assume that all games were bought at a retail price of $59.99. That means I spent a total of $359.94 when I first bought the games, a difference of between $259.94 and $299.94. Now imagine that I’m trading in a console. I paid at least $300 bucks for the console; what do you think I’ll get in return? $75.00 - $100.00 if I’m lucky.
Now, let’s assume that you’re okay with taking a loss on your hardware because you just want something extra to take the sting off that four hundred dollar price tag for “Brand new console X.”
So you go to your local videogame store, trade your console in, and get your credit toward your shiny new box of wonders; what wonders are these? New games, new controllers, new graphics, new features, new, new, new! But what happens when the “new” wears off? Oh, and it always wears off. I’ll tell you what happens -- you’ll go looking for your last-gen console to play, since you’re probably like everyone else with a huge backlog of games.
The problem now is that you've traded your console in, so what about that backlog of games? Sorry, it’s just a stack of games that you can’t play. And do you know why you’ll go back to your last-gen console? Because you’ll have hit the inevitable, “New console game drought.” This drought usually starts around the second or third month after a new console launches, and sometimes lasts for another three to four months. That’s a long time to go with nothing to play on a new console (refer to the Wii U launch for a perfect example of what I’m talking about).
You’ll wish you had your old console, and you may even try to “rationalize” buying another to have something to play. I write “rationalize” because that’s what you’ll end up doing since you've already lost money on your first one when you traded it in. Now you’re just throwing more money away by buying something you already had and still could have if you had not traded it in.
Obviously, this is simply my opinion. Not everyone will agree with me and that’s okay. You have to do what’s best for you financially, and you have to do what makes the most since to you because you know your money situation better than anyone else. I've been there though. I've made these decisions in the past and I've always regretted them.
Plus, there are lots of other options to ensure that you have enough money to cover new hardware and games. It definitely takes a certain level of discipline but if you play your cards right you can save enough money to buy a new console without having to give up an old one, especially when you run out of games to play on your new console.
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