Game Progress 12/4
December 04, 2016

Breath of Fire (SNES)
Just finished yet again. I shall be rewriting my old GameFAQs review for this site, but I'll publisgh it as a user. Where before I rated it 7/10 (equivalent to 4/5 here), I shall be dropping the rating slightly. I think 3/5 is more appropriate, as the game doesn't stack up to what's currently available in the RPG genre. This isn't to say that Breath of Fire is terrible, but its campaign is so ordinary and tame that it's difficult to extend a full recommendation.

Some of the nonsense the game puts you through to pad out its length is almost inexcusable, too. For instance, when you reach the final dungeon, you discover a dead end. A crack in the floor serves as your only hint, except Mogu (a mole who joins you) can't dig through the Obelisk's hard rock. So you visit Mogu's town and discover nothing. No one says a thing about advanced digging and you can only scratch your head and shrug at this point.

The answer to the riddle is obtuse and seems like a side quest at first. You have to set Nina (a winged princess) as your lead, transform into a bird and travel to a house on a deserted island that doesn't stand out whatsoever. There you find an old woman looking for a weapon buff. If you've played this far, you might recall an old weapon enthusiast living east of the ox-people. Talk to him and he'll give you a list to return to the woman, who gives you an mysterious item to show to the man, who gives you a letter for the woman, who writes another letter in response. Eventually, you find out the item is an iron claw for Mogu. Return to Mogu's town and the master digger teaches you how to dig through solid stone.

Ugh... Thankfully, this one is over and I can pen that review (as well as one for Capcom vs. SNK: Millennium Fight 2000, if I ever have time).

Final Fantasy: Brave Exvius (Android)
I'm slowly advancing. Right now, I've got eight active quests and I'd like to polish them off. I don't remember where I am in the story, but the game's plot has hit a slow, snoozy patch.

The only points of interest for me to mention are that I got Cloud of Darkness and Exdeath from summoning tickets. After I level and awaken both of them a bit, they'll replace Kain and Cyan.

Pokemon Go (Android)
128 caught Pokemon. Despite a rough patch, the last couple of weeks have been fruitful. I evolved Machoke into Machamp and caught Ditto (disguised as a Pidgey in a Rosauers parking lot). On my birthday, my wife and I caught a movie and walked around Mirabeau Point Park, where I caught a Slowpoke and evolved into Slowbro. Minutes later, I caught a Koffing and evolved him into Weezing. Mere minutes after that, a 5 km egg hatched, revealing Lickitung. In under twenty minutes, I added three new Pokemon to my dex. It was the game's way of wishing me a happy birthday, I guess. A few days later, I hatched a Sandshrew and evolved him into Sandslash. Whew...

Plants vs. Zombies (PC)
I decided to quit dragging my feet and play this game through. I won't review it, but it's a 4/5 experience. Very fun and addictive, but my main complaint is that I found too many levels that were basically the same. I only modified my strategy a little from one stage to the next.

Non-game stuff

Doctor Strange (2016)- Caught this on my birthday. I enjoyed it, but then again I'm not very picky when it comes to superhero movies. The reality-distorting effects were fun and the film's denouement was pretty cool. I thought Kaecilius was an odd pick for the villain, since he's not a major villain in the comics, but he worked well.

You Only Live Twice (1967)- Despite being a ridiculous Bond film (written by Roald Dahl, no less), it's a very fun, intense movie with plenty of gadgetry and inventive fight scenes. There's a really cool dog fight in a mini-helicopter, plus an end sequence with ninjas raiding Blofeld's base.

On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969)- A little more grounded than the previous film and not as fun, but still a solid movie. There's some chemistry between George Lazenby and Diana Rigg, and that saved the movie from being a total snoozer. Well, that and the romantic scenes didn't take center stage. I can't imagine a Bond movie loaded with romance. The ending sequence is intense, and the film's conclusion depressing. It was nice to see Bond show some vulnerability.

Diamonds Are Forever (1971)- The final Connery film and the first Bond movie of the '70s, and also my least favorite Bond movie thus far. I can't say I dig the comedic approach as much in this one. The humor was cheesy and somewhat forced and the film felt very B-movie-ish in a bad way. It's not a terrible film, though. It's just a ho-hum franchise flick.

Most recent blog posts from Joseph Shaffer...

pickhut pickhut - December 05, 2016 (05:43 PM)
I've never played Plants vs. Zombies, but I've run into that problem with several strategy or tower defense games; one simple plan or strategy is enough to plow through a solid portion of a game. I stopped playing RED CON simply because it didn't offer anything new after 20-some stages...

As for Bond films, they've always been a difficult thing for me to marathon or watch in numbers. Their quality constantly fluctuates between movies, and I think I've seen them so many times throughout the years that I've been finding it increasingly harder to come back to them. Pretty much have a very small list of Bond movies I'd watch repeatedly.
hastypixels hastypixels - December 07, 2016 (09:49 AM)
I got Plants vs Zombies on Origin for free - "On The House" - and enjoyed it right up to a point. Probably that bit where they asked me to shift tactics and I didn't feel mentally prepared to do so, which is a little strange for me. It's worth the money, but I agree ... it's awfully repetitive.

I could never get into Breath of Fire. The first one always felt like an Indie title to me; overall lack of polish and heel dragging pacing. I probably sound like a Squaresoft snob, but dangit the SNES RPGs they released are some of their best. You always knew what you were doing, and felt like you were making it happen.

If it's too easy, then forget it. Skyborn has that problem ... everything is too dang easy. Looking forward to your reviews!

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