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Forums > Contributor Zone > EmP Inc. Presents: RotW 19/4 - 25/4.

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Author: EmP (Mod)
Posted: May 03, 2009 (05:28 AM)
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What an odd collection of reviews we have this week, ranging from long forgotten short-jockeys that may or may not be elongated practical jokes to malicious staff alts that probably should be allowed to enter the running, but wonít be because judging myself would only lead to an ego heavy and predictable winner. Instead, I suppose Iíll judge the rest of you.

Rules are unchanged; you get one entry per RotW, if you write more Iíll deem which I preferred. Staff reviews do not count. THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE THREE!. In ascending order!

FIRST! --Valkyrie Profile Suskie

The vast amount of Suskieís review is brilliantly penned , often verging on the edge of being overwritten, but managing to instead weave right into the gameís biggest strength in an engaging an effective manner. I donít remember enough about my play through of Valk Profile to know if the examples you used were late enough into the game to be considered spoilers, so Iíll let that one go, too. Which this in mind, I would be unable to note any disappointment with real merit at this effort if not for the last two paragraphs which is seemingly the author saying ďOh shit -- I forgot to mention X!Ē then jarringly changing the direction and tone of the piece to shoehorn it awkwardly in. Itís also here that your first few typos pop up, which suggests to me that you lost patience in trying to wrap the review up and just put the concussion in to finish the job.

Itís a great review, but, should you tidy up the last two paragraphs, it could be outstanding.

SECOND! --WII Game Party Woodhouse.

While the title doesnít exactly lend itself to a exciting review (and itís probably one Woodhouse did just to nab the elusive W letter!), this review is extremely competent and covers exactly what it needs to. Each part of the game is highlighted then youíre told in an assured tone that it doesnít work and, most importantly, very clearly told why. Really, the only thing holding this back is the source material, but itís worth a mention just by being so bloody solid and competent. I find myself without any way of complaining -- and Iím great at complaining.

THIRD! --Sword of Sodan Sashanan

A lot of this review is clumsy, a lot more bordering on irrelevant. I donít need to know that you donít have a game manual on hand to delve further into the gameís plot; if the title does a crap job of covering the plot, then you donít need to back it up by saying that it could be better if you have a slip of paper further explaining it -- especially in these days rife with emulation. What helps this review is some of the observations on how things go wrong, such as the message warning you about pits only appearing after youíve fallen into them and how the avatars are pointless. Itís a review that could do with some editing and some dead wood cut away, but it gets what you want to say across.

Hammerís biggest problem is that this is a tourney piece for an ambitious event that effectively stops it from stacking up to reviews when having to be compared to reviews. Itís engaging writing that will probably fare much better in that it was intended for than in a feature like this. Likewise, that bside guy has the same problems, but would have done poorly, anyway, because heís just too cross.

Randxianís review is certainly informative, but it does often read like heís working off a checklist, moving to one point to the next without much transition, much like Ultrablue who tell us all we need to know in an extremely stiff fashion. Ascultzís review warred bitterly with Sashís for that third place finish, but I felt Sash made his points stronger and didnít constantly forgot to add the space needed between a word and a bracket. This(bad), this (good). Iím not overly sure Midís stuff is Mid, so I ignored him completely. Iím open to be proved wrong, in which case, these reviews were his early work and wouldnít have placed top three, anyway.

Next week isÖ someone else. What follows is the sweet sound of pure confusion.

For us. For them. For you.

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Author: bloomer
Posted: May 03, 2009 (05:42 AM)
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Re: Sword of Sodan. I think talking about the silliness of the title 'Sword of Sodan' is totally legitimate, and done here with the same tone of bemusement that's carried through the whole thing. If I had to get down to individual sentences, I would probably lop the 'Not that it really matters...' final line of that paragraph, as it overstates the point the preceding few lines have already made, but that's the only line.

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Author: Suskie
Posted: May 03, 2009 (07:23 AM)
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Thanks a lot. Unfortunately, I was actually aware of that issue and, yeah, wasn't sure how to fix it. The point of the review was supposed to be that Valkyrie Profile's unique and complex narrative is the game's main draw, and that the gameplay (while perfectly fine) kind of took the backseat, so I really tried to sell the story as well as I could but didn't know how to shift out of storybook mode and into gameplay. I've tried similar things before (Star Ocean, Mass Effect) with similarly jarring results.

I'm actually surprised you didn't mention the generic graphics/sound paragraph, haha.

(Didn't see any typos, though. I'll check again.)

Anyway, thanks again, and well done to Woodhouse and Sashanan for their placements as well.

Edit: Oh, and no, those weren't really spoilers. I was careful to only use examples from the beginning of the game.

Super Edit: I request 1000 HG points.

You exist because we allow it. And you will end because we demand it.

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Author: sashanan
Posted: May 03, 2009 (09:06 AM)
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Hee, didn't expect to get an RotW spot on that old thing. I deliberately avoided rewriting the review (it's a 2001 piece IIRC) because I feel that that would be opening the floodgates in my mind and convince me to spend a lot of time doing that with all of my old work. Time much better spent exploring new titles.

Thanks for the heads up at any rate.


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Author: aschultz
Posted: May 04, 2009 (11:20 AM)
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Thanks for stepping in here to do this! The reviews ahead of me were all fun to read, so good job to everyone there. I always forget the space before the parentheses. Come to think of it, I probably abuse parentheses in general. They are a lot like what you mention is a small problem with Suskie's last two paragraphs.

But I can still write a dumb Perl script to fix the parentheses/space thing.

My principal said, 'Emo, Emo, Emo.'
I said 'I'm the one in the middle, you lousy drunk!'
-- Emo Phillips

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