ANOTHER 2009 year in review!!!
February 03, 2010

Last year, I wrote a bunch of reviews. 30-some, I think. It was fun. You should hunt them down if you haven't read them yet. That is all.

Now it's 2010 and here's my third review of this year, which I did Saturday and am just now linking to my blog because I'm really lazy and stupid.

Vandal Hearts: Flames of Judgment

In other news:

I'm working on reviews for Batman: Arkham Asylum and Uncharted 2.

Dragon Age: Origins: Almost down with the Redcliffe Village/Castle part. For some stupid reason, I decided to have the little blood mage dude redeem himself by saving the prince. Jowan vs. Desire Demon hasn't worked out in my favor yet. In fact during my first attempt at that battle, he just flat-out got massacred. I tend to have two saves going, but my other one might be at the beginning of the castle...or might be at the beginning of the village and there's no damn way I'm doing the entire siege again, so that means I might have to suck it up and deal with Jowan's suckitude.

Fire Emblem (SNES): After playing Vandal Hearts: FoJ, I really wanted to sample a classic turn-based strategy game. It seems like the old-school Fire Emblem makes up for having far less dialogue than the GBA games in the series by simply being brutally difficult at all times. In the GBA version, it was easy to win fights. I lost a tiny handful of characters and did re-start a number of fights, but that was usually due more to just not wanting a certain character to be gone because I found him/her very useful. Here....it seems like if you make even a minor tactical blunder, someone's dying. Promoted enemies are just brutal, with even snipers (promoted archers) having good enough defense to hold their own for a number of turns against heavy armors and other offensive juggernauts. Mamkutes (dragon-men) just destroy units with their breath attacks. I'm up to L11 (of 20) in Book 1 and am finding it a brutal grind at times.

L9 was easy overall, but the Mamkute boss was vicious.
L10 started out easy, but gets very tough with a Mamkute and two tough promoted enemies (a general and sniper). The boss (a bishop with a good attack spell) was easier than the last few enemies guarding him.
L11 looks sadistic. You can recruit two pegasus knights right at the beginning, but they'll be worthless, as a crapload of enemies are archers/snipers, who maul flyers. And then there's a lot of heavy armor/generals to deal with before the treasonous king boss, who's also a general. And I needed to have a brand new character (a paladin) in my party because she's needed to recruit a third character. From what I've read, Midea is a pretty damn good horse-rider, though. The real bitch of it is the training of Linda. From what I've read, she's easily the best mage in the game...but when you get her in L1, she's a L1 character, which means she currently is weak to the point that she's only useful for putting the killing blow on a near-dead enemy. Which means that she currently is more of a liability than an asset.

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Feedback
randxian randxian - February 04, 2010 (04:35 AM)
Fire Emblem kicks ass. Glad you're giving the series a fair shake.
overdrive overdrive - February 04, 2010 (07:36 PM)
A couple years back, I played the first American-released one, which was on the GBA and really dug it. On my computer, I have the other American GBA one and the translation patch for the first SNES one, which is what I'm playing. I think the first GBA one (of which the one I've played is a prequel to) is essentially done patch-wise, so I could probably play it...and I'm been waiting forever for the other SNES ones to get finished.

It's a fun series that really puts the STRATEGY in turn-based strategy just because characters actually die if they fall in battle and if you wind up with the wrong character going against an enemy, they can die VERY easily.

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