|Beginning: The Winnowing.|
As time goes on, I've gotten the impression that my madcap "have close to a dozen gaming projects going on at once" strategy isn't working. Every game takes time away from the others, so I might have a game I'm completely into, but taking time away from it to make progress on a half-dozen others.
And, therefore, I'm working on a plan to winnow things down to 4 games at once. One on the 360, since that system has the most games I actually really want to play, especially after the 7 I recently ordered come in the mail (nearly as many there as on the other systems combined -- like, we're talking 15-to-18, give or take). I mean, who needs newer systems when you have so many older games in your backlog? One for another system (PS, PS2, Wii, 3DS/DS, Steam). One ROM to keep up some degree of retro-ness. And, last and most certainly least, one Android deal so I can keep the ever-so-beloved Kemco Khallenge alive.
So, how long will it take to get from 11 to 4? Well, considering that part of that is turning 6 into 1, probably a while. Here's my progress with everything in the last 7 months since I gave my last update. Well, not everything...I don't know that I'll take the time to give updates on games I've beaten since then.
Mass Effect 3: Beat the Geth Dreadnaught level last night. To say I'm digging this game is an understatement. If 2 was a 5/5 like I said, this is probably a 6.5/5. Probably a 7/5 if not for how some of the cinematic parts of dungeons get tiresome. Yay! Another dark area where you put your weapon away and get out the flashlight. While nothing happens other than you hearing some atmospheric noise until you get to a light area and immediately start fighting again. However, in a lot of areas, they either improved on the formula or found a happy medium between 1 and 2. Like weapons and armor. You get more to work with than 2, but not the copious amounts of vendor trash as in 1. Dealing with planets is the quickest, most streamlined process yet. Which makes me really chagrined that one goodie in one system in the Hades Nexus has eluded me THE ENTIRE GAME! The only positive is that it about has to be a stranded ship, so I'd get nothing but a bit of free fuel. The adversaries are the toughest and most creative, making the fighting more fun than 1 and 2 put together and the backgrounds look better than ever, also.
Bastion: I think I'm getting closer to the end -- just finished a mountain region to get about the fifth shard for the monument, which leaves one shard to get. Really fun game. Took a while to truly get into the fighting aspect, but as I got more weapons, I've had more fun. The fire bellows is godly and I mix that with an early game rapid-firing gun (whatever it's called) to pretty much kick anything's ass. Except for the damn Anklegators, who fortunately are rare, as I've seen a total of two in the game so far.
Kirby's Epic Yarn (Wii): Most disappointing aspect: taking away the "get 100% to fight a real Nightmare creation" and changing it to "get 100% to have a lot of wallpapers and furniture for your house". Making a big part of getting 100% revolving around your willingness to spend more time playing seemingly never-ending mini-games with town residents that cover parts of the levels you just did also is lame. The game itself, while mindlessly easy, is charming as hell. I'd still put the NES' Kirby's Adventure as the best game in the series, but this one definitely deserves some sort of special mention. Simply a purely fun game to play. Currently about midway through the beach/water world.
Dragon Warrior VII (PS): Defeated Glacos in what feels like the gazillionth trip back in time I've made and gotten the flying carpet, so I can do a bunch of stuff in the main world I couldn't do before, such as finally meet the Medal King. Now it's time to do the present-day stuff in Glacos' chapter, which is nice since there actually are multiple dungeons here. This game is just this bizarre combination of being overly padded and almost Enix's way of saying that since DQ VI didn't originally come to America, they were going to bring lots of that game here with this one. Glacos was a boss in VI and there also was a (much, much shorter...praise all known deities) take on the "maid trying to poison someone to get with a lover" theme. At least in VI, you didn't have to spend multiple lengthy periods of time in an area where virtually all you did was talk to people in the right order. That really sucked.
Shin Megami Tensei IV, Etrian Odyssey Untold: Millenium Girl, Bravely Default (3DS): You know, over the last couple years, I've kinda lost a good bit of my former love for JRPGs. Dull as they can be at times, I have no real issue doing Kemco ones because they're short. Same with the average NES/SNES-era ones. But in the modern era, you're expected to do the same activities in a 20-30 hour game for 60+ hours. Wow! 2-3 times as many turn-based battles!!!!! No wonder I've fallen more towards the action-RPGs and action-adventures now for my longer games. Which is a big part of why I've been working on all three of these games for 2-3 years. Etrian, which I've already reviewed, is almost beaten. The final Gladsheim boss and final boss are about all I have to do. Well, other than the post-game, which I can see me starting and not finishing. BD is one I'd been making good progress in until I started binging on Etrian for the Alpha contest. Almost done with Chapter 5 there. With SMT, I'm in the whole "get volleyed back and forth between the evil mob guy and the woman he wants killed" part, going back to the guy after talking to the girl.
Avadon 2: The Corruption (Steam): This game is a decent bit tougher than the first one, which I welcome. It also has a number of more creative battles, which is also welcome. I'm guessing I'm maybe halfway or so through the game or a bit less. Top moment so far came when I caught up to the traitor from the first game as she was trying to negotiate with a powerful wind-aligned demon. The demon lost interest in both of us immediately and set up a battle. Cue you and her getting blown by the demon's wind through corridors, stopping in rooms for a turn or two. All you can do to her is stagger her so she can't fight for a few turns, while fighting off all the monsters that you encounter in those rooms. At the end, the demon simply says he banished her and tells you to get out if you know what's good for you. I'm guessing it is an optional fight for down the road, as the area I hadn't yet explored is guarded by really powerful stuff.
Seiken Densetsu 3 (SNES): Taking another go at this and have gotten all but two of the elemental spirits, which means I'm close to halfway through. Big issue I have with this game is that the only treasure chests you get are enemy drops, making exploring dungeons meaningless, so you'll either get lucky and find the route to the boss quickly or get stuck hitting every dead end while wandering aimlessly through rooms and corridors that have no actual purpose other than to make it tough to get where you're going.
Aliens: Thanatos Encounter (GBC): Stupid EmP and his stupid project ideas. Finally got around to this, beaten 4 of the 12 levels and am thoroughly annoyed by the game being very repetitive, as well as some wonky hit-boxes for enemies. It sometimes looks like I hit them and no damage is shown and then I'll think I missed, only to watch them crumble and dissolve.
Shelterra the Skyworld: Really, if I was to criticize this game, it'd be for a vague "it just feels primitive" reason that I have to expand on in order to write about. I was all set to hate on how you get skills by fighting enemies until you randomly learn them, but I tend to learn skills frequently, so there's good balance with how that's implemented. At roughly the mid-way point, I'm somewhat enjoying myself, but not loving it. I like how it's tougher than some other Kemco games I've played, but not super-tough. But on the other hand, there's a comical amount of slowdown in parts of the overworld due to the clouds (since you're in a "skyworld", the clouds are under you and their movement really effects the engine's performance).
Well, let's hope that the next time I remember to do one of these, I have a lot fewer games to talk about. I about need a nap after all this typing...
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