Wow, today was a great day for the Cblogs! Lots of blogs, and most of them were good to boot, I mean look at all that ‘sauce I handed out! And most of what I didn't sauce was definitely good stuff too.
But first things first:
Trivia time! In two weeks of–isms, how many video games have I mentioned?
Answer: Zero. Squat. Bupkis. Not a single fucking one!
And come on, isn’t this supposed to be Destructoid? Hell, you’d almost think it was Kotaku up in this joint! Let's fix that, shall we?
Anyway, I’ve told you that I’ve been very busy in the past couple of weeks, and yes, that also meant that I barely played any video games at all. In fact, just yesterday I saw this on my Steam account (warning, not for the faint of heart):
I don’t think I’ve ever seen that since I got into Steam.
I took a couple of minutes on January 1st to visit Calendar Man in Batman: Arkham City, but that was literally it, when it comes to Steam at least. However, in order to preserve my mental health, I’ve been playing a bit of Pokémon Black 2 on my DS during what little free time I had. There’s one other game I’ve been playing as well, but I’m saving that for a special blog, which I will now continue to tease you with despite the fact that I know perfectly well that it may be weeks until it sees the light of day. Take that!
Anyway, Pokémon then. First off: Fennekin kicks ass. ‘nuff said. He’s awesome and I want him.
The one thing I hope, and I can’t say this often enough, is that it doesn’t turn into a Fire/Fighting. Blaziken was completely awesome in Gen III (it’s a badass kung fu fighting fire-chicken, what’s not to love?), Infernape was already meh (“So it’s like Blaziken, but now a monkey?”) and Emboar just sucked (“Oh come on! Again?! How do you even turn a pig into a fighter?”), so I hope Game Freak can revive (rekindle, if you will) my love for the Fire-starter. I have faith in Fennekin though. I believe.
As for Pokémon Black 2, I liked it I guess. I didn’t feel it was a major improvement over the past games, and the ability to catch Pokémon from previous generations was nice, but nothing amazing.
I had already played White 1 before, so I set it upon myself to make a completely different team for this one. Team Kick-ass in White, by the way: Samurott, Krookodile (this guy’s my man), Chandelure (love his design), Eelektross, Reuniclus, Lilligant (with a 120 base power Petal Dance and an Ability that prevents the resulting confusion <3) and a wild-card Archeops (the fact that they made an Archaeopteryx-Pokémon is completely sweet). Took a while to raise all of them, since almost all of them start really slow, but I’ll be damned if they weren’t worth it. When I play Pokémon I always try to go for the monsters I like and that aren’t crap, and I think I really succeeded more than ever in White, so Black 2 had a lot to live up to.
To differentiate it from my White playthrough, I chose Snivy as a starter and promptly named it “/care”. Because seriously, look at the little guy. Snivy does not give a fuck.
“/care doesn’t give a fuck” quickly became my Black 2 catch-phrase. “Wait, so you’re saying that the 8th gym, after Dragon, is Water-based? Oh, I’m so sorry, but /care doesn’t give a fuck."
Not a single fuck.
After him, I caught a Riolu in like the second route of the game (seriously, Game Freak?), and he did amazing work as a Lucario. A little later, Magnemite was added to the team and evolved fairly quickly into Magneton and later Magnezone. This guy’s beastly Special Attack pretty much destroyed anything that wasn’t resistant to Elec. Growlithe -> Arcanine wasn’t quite as useful as I would’ve liked him to be, but he still did alright. Trapinch isn’t very good in itself, but I really love Flygon, so in the end it was all worth it. The final addition to the team was a Starmie, and very late too, because for some reason Black 2 is severely lacking in decent Water types until very late in the game. In hindsight, I could’ve easily gone with Vaporeon, but I didn’t for some reason. Regardless, that was my final team. Could’ve been a bit more interesting, if I’m going to be completely honest, but eh. It was a pretty decent mix of the different Generations and they did the job alright. Definitely not on par with Team Kick-ass though.
At one point I also really want to do an all-Eevee run, because Eevee and its evolutions are flat-out the best Pokémon ever. Black or White 2 is probably the best game to try that with too. It has easily and early accessible Eevee, and 5 eeveelutions are accessible early in the game. The only downside is that both Leafeon and Glaceon can only be obtained post-Elite Four, so it’s probably going to be an Eevee + starter run, or five Eeveelutions and just plain old Eevee.
…I so want to do that now.
All in all, Black 2 was good, but it’s definitely not necessary reading if you’ve experienced Black or White. I’m also not a fan of what Game Freak did to Team Plasma. In B/W, they seemed like they generally wanted the best for the Pokémon. They didn’t want to steal them or use them for profit or whatever, they just wanted them to be free. It was a very good move by Game Freak that actually caused people to reflect on the concept of Pokémon itself. Plasma even had a genuinely sympathetic leader in N, who was apparently such a good person that he was able to befriend a Legendary Pokémon no questions asked. In Black 2 though, Team Plasma was reduced to just another evil team trying to steal Pokémon. The quotes of the grunts are so blatantly made to be evil that it puts even Team Rocket to shame. “Here’s a Pokémon I stole. If it’s not good enough to beat you, I’ll just steal another one!” is quite literally what some of these guys are saying. They’re not even trying to mask the fact that they’re blatantly evil. I haven’t seen a team this obvious about wanting to steal Pokémon and only caring about their power since Team Rocket, and it really is sad how far Plasma has fallen. Bad call, Game Freak, bad call…
Oh, and while I’m complaining: Hugh is a dick.
And that, my friends, is what I’ve been spending what little time I actually had with. Luckily, I’m complete done now unless by some freak accident I have completely screwed up my last two exams, so I finally have time to play those strange things they call “video games” again! I needed this like you wouldn’t believe, seriously. A full month of studying is really draining, let me tell ya. As a present to myself, I’m thinking about getting a Wii U in the very near future, but I’m not sure when yet. I can definitely see the potential in that system, and I hope that it’ll give me as much joy as my Wii has. Or that other Wii, but that’s going to be hard to match (winkwinknudgenudge). As long as I can get it with Darksiders 2 and New Super Mario Bros. U, though, I think I’ll be set for a while until things like Pikmin 3 and Rayman Legends come out. After that, I hope the system will be gaining a bit more steam than it’s doing right now.
Speaking of steam: for now I think my first order of business should be to work through my massive Steam backlog. I’ve got way too many games that need playing, and it’s about damn time to start doing so. I watched Indie Game: The Movie yesterday, so that’s already one thing down. I have mixed feelings about this one. Particularly the parts towards the end where Phil Fish loses it, at one point legitimately threatening to kill his “ex-business partner”, and the fact that the directors never saw fit to let said business partner give his version of the events left me with a bit of a bad taste in my mouth. I’m sure that guy (apparently named Jason DeGroot) is not in fact the devil personified, but you wouldn’t know it from the movie. It was worth it though to see the parts with Jon Blow and especially with Team Meat. Seeing the hopes of these guys that they can make something special, and how much they suffered for it, is extra special when you know how well Super Meat Boy did after the events shown in the movie. I couldn’t help but smile at Tommy’s promise to buy off his parents’ debt if the game would sell well, because I knew full well that he’d be able to do it, and then some. The best scene is where Super Meat Boy is just released and doing well, but tired, over-worked and completely stressed out Tommy doesn’t seem to care anymore. That is, until Edmund shows him Youtube videos of people playing the game. It ends up with Tommy and his family laughing hysterically, and at that point you know that it was all worth it.
Oh, and Jim Guthrie did the soundtrack. YES.
So that’s one part of the backlog done, but there’s still so much more to play! I mean, there’s still Sine Mora, Half Minute Hero, The Basement Collection, They Bleed Pixels....
- Or I could always go for some achievements in games I’ve already beaten, but haven’t quite finished, if you catch my drift. Like Dungeons of Dredmor, PixelJunk Eden, Trine 2, Awesomenauts, Ys Origin, And Yet It Moves, Renegade Ops…
Oh, you’re still here? Sorry ‘bout that.
May you always find water and shade
No matter what the experience was or which game or genre left that strong first impression, such experiences have the potential to open our eyes to the rich history of a series or genre. With any luck, we might find even more to love or something better. A great first experience with RPGs could lead to an undying love affair.
Sometimes a first kiss can be so impactful that the game gets placed on a pedestal and enshrined as a gold standard, which has its own pros and cons. I mean, it is nice to have a basis for comparison, but some folks take it too far. There are people who loved Half-Life, The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, or Final Fantasy VII so much that nothing after them really got a fair shake.
So first impressions matter -- they can shape and inform our gaming habits. I grew up on arcades, Nintendo, handhelds, and eventually into RPGs, so much of what I play will be influenced by how I acquired my tastes. I probably like Overwatch a ton because it has a passion for RPG roles, but contextualizes them closer to older shooters focused on objectives more than gear builds and grinding out perks for better killstreaks.
So for this month's Bloggers Wanted, we'd like you head over to the community blogs write about your first kiss, the games that positively influenced you or maybe biased you a little too much for a time. What turned you on to a series or genre? Was it love at first sight? Did it set any expectations in stone or possibly lead you to something better?
Whatever the case might be, remember to use the title "First kiss" and place "Bloggers Wanted" in the tags!
Community Announcements We have a Twitter account!
@CblogRecaps Help us spread the word out on these recaps and in turn, everyone's blogs too! (These tweets appear on Dtoid's official accounts as well)