Opinions on Stuff
July 17, 2016

Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE (Wii U) - Hey, do you like Persona 3/4? Then go play this. There hasn't been a console turned-based JPG this good since Lost Odyssey or something. Great combat system focused on creating long strings of combo attacks by targetting an enemies weakness. Much like the recent Persona game, it's very addictive. The game also offers a solid challenge, and careful character customization akin to most SMT games. The story is extremely goofy (basically artists have hidden power called Performa allowing them to use Fire Emblem characters as persona) and centers heavily on the Japanese entertainment industry. The characters are all likable. The graphics are colorful and the soundtrack is excellent. Unfortunately the budget gets stretched thin (Chapter 5 involves backtracking to 3 seperate dungeons rather than exploring a new one). Additionally, the English localization is lazy (no dub yet no subtitles for battle dialogue) and the censorship makes an entire chapter focused on gravure idols nonsensical. Despite this, one of my favorites of the year and one of the best Wii U games.

Berserk (2016) - Back story: I have read all 344 chapters of Berserk and it's my favorite manga. The new anime is watchable but a poor adapation so far. I wasn't a big fan of the CG in the recent Golden Age OVAs, but the CG animation here is a lot uglier and cheap looking. They've taken a lot of liberties with the material. Blacksworsman Arc has been deligated to about 3 scenes rather loosely adapted from the managa. The Lost Children chapters have been completely skipped (but probably because the content couldn't be aired on Japanese TV). Casca is randomly light-skinned now. The latest episode randomly threw a cannon fodder Apostle from earlier in and give him a backstory and already is setting up the events of Millenium Falcon arc, which worries me that they're rush through Conviction arc. We're only 3 episodes in so hopefully things will improve. It just feels low budget. Still better than 90% of anime though.

Inside (Xbox One) - This one came out of nowhere for me. It's a really good puzzle platformer with smart puzzles that can be challenging but never too obtuse. Aesthetically the game is beautiful, and the final twist is pretty great. The less you know the better. A bit pricey at $20 for a 3.5 hour game, but well worth playing.

Song of the Deep (PS4) - I'm a absolute sucker for Metroidvania and Insomniac is a pretty good studio, but this is a real mixed bag. The graphics, soundtrack and story are beautiful. The gameplay is heavily physics based (as the game is basically one massive water level) and it does create for some very intelligent and unique scenario design. Unfortunately the mechanics feel inconsistent at times, which can be frustrating. Combat can also get clunky as a result. Unfortunately the last 2 hours are pretty padded with combat mostly in the form of the same mini boss spammed adnauseum and too many "locked in" rooms with waves of enemies. I also encountered quite a few bugs and frequent framerate drops when using the jet booster. It feels like Insomniac were inspired by last year's excellent Ori and the Blind Forest except that game was both beautiful and well designed. Song of the Deep is mostly just beautiful.

Street Fighter V (PS4) - The new Story Mode update is trash. Awful, cheesy story with ugly cutscenes where half the time character's hair and clothing are freaking out. There's 46 fights and over half of them the CPU is set to baby mode. 5 months later and there's still no arcade ladder (though it is supposedly coming), which would have taken far less time and money and been infinitely replayable. Ibuki and Balrog are great additions to roster, but I wish I could use them for more than fighting Ken & Ryu online. A shame Capcom has mishandled this game so hard.

Guilty Gear Xrd Revelator (PS4) - Right now my favorite current fighter but at $60, it's an expensive upgrade. You basically get 5 new characters (though by now you have to pay $8 for one of them), remixed stages, and a balance patch that should have been free. Oh and there's also Easy Operation mode and a purely spectator story both of which I couldn't care less about. Plays great though. But so did Sign.

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honestgamer honestgamer - July 17, 2016 (04:34 PM)
I bought Street Fighter V at launch, and I need to get back to it. Once it has the proper Arcade mode, I probably will. I know some people like to post online and say "No one cares about Arcade mode, anyway, you noob," but they have to say that a a LOT because it's obvious that many, many people do care about precisely that. I'm one of them. I don't enjoy playing against people online, where the fights are seldom worthwhile. My opponent is either a god with a joystick, or an idiot who just button mashes a lot. I like training against a few different fighters each run, and Arcade mode makes that happen. By the time it comes to SFV, there will probably also be a few new fighters, and maybe more to come after that. I still have hopes for the game, that it will wind up providing the Street Fighter V experience most of us wanted, but it sure is taking its time getting there!
StarryPS StarryPS - July 18, 2016 (03:28 AM)
It's nice to see that TMS#FE is a good game! There was a lot of hate for it during development, and I was sorta secretly rooting for it, so I'm glad to see more and more people I liking it.

How big are the issues with the localization? Is it worth it to use the uncensored patch?
Genj Genj - July 19, 2016 (12:19 AM)
Honestly the majority of the censorship involves adding jackets and pants to idol costumes and covering up a demon's cleavage with obviously tacked on mist during an animated cutscene and I didn't really care. Clearly Nintendo just wanted to avoid an M rating possibly for sales. It's only that chapter about gravure idols where it hurts the story. It's supposed to be about how one of the party members is embarrassed about posing in a swimsuit and they just kind of vaguely dance around it and instead to make it about getting photographed and it really doesn't work well. Especially when they leave in one of the party members getting "really excited" to look at "glamor shots."

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