Monday, 30 March 2009

This is what Persona 4 is really about

Sundance Shot says:
also i think my mum just walked past brosuke and profag lying on the ground beside each other, saw the text '... That sure beat words.' and thought BEV THIS GAME SURE IS GAY
[ruben] --> says:
[ruben] --> says:
Sundance Shot says:
Sundance Shot says:
Sundance Shot says:
to make things worse, yosuke just said, complete with voice acting: YOU REALLY ARE SOMETHING
[ruben] --> says:
[ruben] --> says:
Sundance Shot says:

Sunday, 29 March 2009

Review: Nanashi no Game

NOTE: As it turns out, I wrote this review months ago and completely forgot about it until now.

Nanashi no Game: Let’s see how many times I use the word ‘game’ in a single sentence.

Title: Nanashi no Game (aka: Nameless Game)
Developer: Square Enix
Publisher: Square Enix
Year: 2008 (JP)

When I first heard of Nanashi no Game, my initial reaction was ‘Oh my god. Square Enix? Not doing a RPG?!’ Well this is true for the most part. Nanashi no Game is basically two games in one – part old-school, Dragon Quest-style RPG and part first-person adventure. ‘What gives?’ You may wonder, but it makes sense if you look at the storyline.

Now, I don’t know Japanese, but from what I can gather (along with various previews and translation efforts), they game’s about a cursed RPG that is making rounds and killing people who play it after seven days. If this sounds like a certain J-Horror film, you are totally correct! The whole point of Nanashi no Game is to find out the source of the curse and therefore, break it. Before you dismiss it as being a cheap knockoff though, I’d like to say that Nanashi no Game actually pulls it off quite well in that:

  1. You never see your character, adding a whole personal level to it; and

  2. You do get to play the cursed game – even having to navigate through a DS menu to get into it. [I’ve read from various sources that some creepy, fourth wall-breaking messages pop up (ala Eternal Darkness) so here’s hoping for an English release so we can all actually understand them.

Being a horror game, Nanashi no Game contains its fair share of jump scares, but is also notable for being one that doesn’t rely on them entirely. Every area you visit in the game oozes creepy, and it certainly doesn’t help that they are all completely empty. Maybe they mention why all the buildings are empty somewhere in the game, I don’t know.

There are a considerable amount of ‘Oh, fuck’ moments, especially when you swing round into a corridor and suddenly see a sickly-blue ghost just standing there, like it’s daring you to come closer. The ‘oh, fuck’ turns into ‘FUCK’, especially if you’re trapped in a tiny area (which WILL happen) and the ghost is actively chasing you (the control scheme doesn’t help this either, but more on that later).

Your little forays into the cursed RPG occur at the important points of your adventure. For example, at one point in the game, the main character throws a fit and smashes his DS, along with the cursed game – only to find another DS nearby! (I don’t think I’m spoiling anything by telling you about this because as we all know, you can’t outrun a curse that easily!) The DS makes a little tone when the cursed game is available for play, prompting you to hit ‘SELECT’ and go, go, go.

There’s no dragon-battling in the cursed game, though. It’s more of a story-driven thing in which you basically wander around talking to people until something significant happens. The cursed game, while probably a lot creepier if you know Japanese, is still pretty unsettling to play. It comes complete with haunting melody which distorts at various points. Couple this with graphics that go all glitch whenever you take a step and it makes you wonder if YOU’RE going to die in seven days.

Playing Nanashi no Game requires you to hold your DS like a ‘book’ as is the case with games like Hotel Dusk and Brain Training. Moving is purely touchscreen-based, with the option of using the directional pad in order to make your character move faster. It was certainly kind of them to give you this option because your character is really quite fucking slow. Does he have a broken leg or something? Maybe a sprained ankle? Even with this ‘speed boost’, he’s still terrible. It’s hard to manoeuvre, particularly if you’ve got to do a 180 degree turn. As I mentioned previously, this WILL happen, ESPECIALLY when you’re in a tiny corner.

Nanashi no Game is worth having a shot at if you enjoy survival horror and/or games like Hotel Dusk. Despite its flaws, it’s like The Ring of horror games (disregarding the godawful Dreamcast game) in a literal sense, only not a classic. Perhaps if it was ever translated and released in North America and/or Europe, it will receive, at the very least, the attention it deserves.

[6/10] – Interesting, but not interesting enough. When you get a wishbone, wish for a translation.

Saturday, 28 March 2009

Saying goodbye to Paradise

Finished Flower, Sun and Rain. It's a beautiful, albeit confusing game, even if calling it a 'game' would be a bit of a stretch. The story is something to be expected from Suda 51, I suppose. It's quite easy to see how this all fits in with killer7 and even The Silver Case.

I'll admit though, the ending confused me. But I guess that's what all the time in the world is for.

"A paradise is a place separated from the world."

Thursday, 26 March 2009

More videogames, I blame GDC

- What's that? A new Katamari? Well, it's supposedly titled Katamari Damacy Tribute, so maybe not. But seeing as Australia never got the original entry in the Katamari series, this should be worth it. Also, it's in full HD!

- NEW ZELDA OH GOD YES NEW ZELDA. For the DS again, and it's another Toon Link adventure! Also, trains. We're getting closer to our steampunk Zelda game!

- Rumours of a new Mother game! EarthboundCentral is saying that it won't be Mother-related though.

- I finally managed to track down a copy of Sword of Etheria. The guy at Gametraders complimented me on having good taste in games. This made my day.

- I've been saying this for a year now: Where the hell is Silver Case on the DS, Suda? You said there would be Silver Case! It doesn't really make much sense to make Western Kill The Past fans to play through the series backwards, does it?

- MadWorld is probably the most brutal game I've ever played (Demonophobia aside). I threw some guys onto the spikes that covered a moving train. I threw more guys into an airplane turbine. I shot all the flesh off a guy's bones. Cue moral outrage.

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

It's a videogame bonanza!

1. Enchanted Folk is fun, but in the way that it literally is Animal Crossing with real quests, more stores, lessons and magic. To be honest, I haven't played it that much, mostly because of Persona 4 eating up my hours like a hungry teenager eats hamburgers. So far though, the game seems a lot deeper. I'm not sure how I feel about the characters though - despite there obviously being more 'personality types' than in AC, the characters in EF seem much more obnoxious. Maybe I'm just getting shit characters.

2. Holy crap, where do I start with Persona 4? I heard about it on a videogame board and when it came out in America, the board was filled with endless threads about it. I have to say, it sounded like a fucking awesome game. So when it was announced for release here, I ran out and bought it ASAP.
I haven't actually played any of the other games in the Persona series, but this is the second Megaten game I've played (the first being the original). I didn't really know what to expect, but boy howdy am I impressed. The game, however, IS a weeaboo festival. Despite being an english translation/dub, they still throw in honourifics like 'Senpai' and 'San', which initially made me cringe, but it's actually adding to the experience. The characters are all likeable. The UI is clean and I have to say that I really dig the whole yellow colour scheme. Marvelous.

3. Resident Evil 5 is basically everything I expected it to be. As Ruben said, it really is just a Resident Evil 4 expansion pack. The gameplay is more or less the same, save for a new inventory system, a partner (which has one of the best AI ever) and WHAT'S THAT? AUTOSAVING? WHY, WHEN I WAS YOUR AGE, WE HAD A LIMITED NUMBER OF SAVES!
But I digress. It literally is RE4. Chainsaw guys? Check. Button mashing sequences? Check. Not that I'm complaining - it only seems logical for Capcom to take an incredibly successful formula and implement it again. But there's not much room for gameplay originality. All the 8/10 reviews are pretty much correct.

4. I have only played twenty minutes of Grand Theft Auto: Chinatown Wars. I thought it would be terrible. I was wrong. So far it seems like a job well done, but I'll have to play more.

5. I didn't really know much about Henry Hatsworth before it came out. I vaguely remember something about a violent, darkly-humoured puzzle game for the DS (which was completely incorrect). So then I pretty much expected Professor Layton 2.0 (which is also somewhat incorrect). What I got was an action-platformer crossed with a typical MATCH THREE COLOURS TO MAKE THE BLOCKS DISAPPEAR puzzle game. This is most certainly not a bad thing.
I fucking love action platformers. I like Bejeweled. Combine those with a story about a pompous English gentlemen who searches for treasure and finds a mysterious golden hat that makes him younger and look like Indiana Jones and his rival whose name is 'Leopold Charles Anthony Weaselby the Third'. That is an excellent name. That is the kind of name I give to all my ridiculous bullshit characters. When your puzzle super meter is full, you can activate a special power-up that throws you into a giant robot. This is called 'Tea Time'. When you press it, it shows Henry having tea with equally pompous English gentlemen. HOLY CRAP WHAT AN EXCELLENT IDEA! We need more games about pompous English gentlemen. I'll have to upload voice acting samples too. They are hilarious.

MadWorld came out today as well, with the OST because I preordered it. Expect a review sometime. Oh dear, Persona 4 and MadWorld? Competition for my attention, start.

Friday, 20 March 2009


Downloaded DsDsRevolution, a port of Stepmania for the DS. I was totally getting a 'font not found' error and the internet was totally not helping at all.

So to anyone who gets that error, you need to move the .nds launch file and the folder into the root of your SD card.

Monday, 16 March 2009

Oh dear...

Hayter, Carver form Dark Hero

David, I totally respect you for providing the voice of Solid Snake/Big Boss and maybe a little for starring in Guyver II, regardless of how terrible it was, but, uh, your writing really sucks.

Also, what did you do to your hair?

Thursday, 12 March 2009

This is like, the best week ever

Yesterday or the day before, I don't know anymore because EB keeps breaking street date, Persona 4 came out. Rocking up to the one in the Myer Center yesterday, I managed to grab the last sealed copy of the game, with a bonus soundtrack. I haven't played it yet because I was too busy debating with myself whether I should unwrap it and play it. I've decided I totally will, so after some SFIV, SH4 and Valkyria Chronicles it will be P4 time. Jesus christ why are they all the fourth installaments in the series, save for Valkyria?

Then today, Enchanted Folk and The School of Wizardry came out, at least on ROM sites. I'm not even sure what the full title of the game is anymore. Yesterday it was Magician's Quest: Mysterious Times. The week before it was something else to do with enchantments. And when I had first heard of it, it was Little Magician's Magic Adventure, or something. But I digress.

It was set to be released in Europe tomorrow, so I expected a ROM dump on Saturday. IT'S LIKE CHRISTMAS IS EARLY. So far, it is as I had expected: ANIMAL CROSSING + HOGWARTS + FUCKTONS MORE AWESOME. Ten minutes into the game, some guy starts telling me that if I'm sad, he will come and sing me love songs. That's kinda cool.

And then there is this video, courtesy of BTDO and his Moontube exploration skills, which just turned my day into pure awesome.

Monday, 9 March 2009

Just spreading the word.


Sunday, 1 March 2009

How belated!

I mentioned in this entry from like, two months ago that I had some godawful pictures. Now that I've finally gotten them off my phone, I can share the atrocities with you!

When I chewed out Clone Wars all the way back in August last year, I expected videogames, I expected Lego and I expected piƱatas. However, I did not expect these.

Plush toys. This is Ahsoka.

It's taken me three months to realise that the darker strip across her chest is in fact, her top. And here I just thought she was a slut.

And Anakin...

And Obi.

As you can imagine, I could not stop laughing, crying and raging for, oh, a few days. I swear to God I am not being biased her, but the Clone Trooper is easily the best of the lot.

Related to totally awful products that made me angry, I saw this the other day with J in Borders. Keep in mind that we were in the self-help section when we saw this.