After my analysis of DmC Ive got both positive and negative criticisms to it, defiantly room for improvement. At the time Metal Gear Rising got the same treatment as DmC, and despite my delaying this analysis for months, arguments over it are still at large. So now finally, after so long, we can now give Metal Gear Rising a proper analysis. I will leave no stone unturned, I will present every argument for the game, and even re-evaluate the previous analysis I have been making for the past few weeks. Beware blind followers and haters, In the next 15 minutes of reading this, I will be your worst enemy.
It's time for Jack... TO LET IT RIP!
Not yet Raiden...
Just a brief history lesson for those who don't know. You'll see why I put this up later.
-Shortly after MGS4
The idea of a game around Raiden in between MGS2 and MGS4 is brought to Kojima and development for MGS:R starts. Kojima stays out of development to allow the team to advance on their own
-New trailers and interviews over viewing how the game is action oriented
-Coined the term, "Zandatsu" being "cut and take". AKA: "Blade mode" to manually cut everything and anything at will.
-It's also noted that there will be stealth, but it of a "Predatory Stealth" rather than "Tactical Stealth" the main series is known for.
-There is also hinting of Raiden possibly going insane.
-Featuring more information about "Blade Mode"
-cutting on an individual bases
-realistic cutting physics even when moving
-2-stage attacks (being able to hit one object while keeping another in tact)
-not affecting every object
-Dwarf Gekko from MGS4 making an appearance
-No appearance at E3 2011, no new info
-TGS:2011, Rising still being worked on, picture of Raiden slightly bowing with a hardhat on ("apologizing for lack of info, we are still working on it"?)
-Name change to "Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance"
-Platinum games takes over as developer, producers are as of the trailer(correct me if I'm wrong) Yuji Korekado (kojima productions) and Atsushi Inaba (Platinum games)
-Noticeably faster pace, similar gameplay style to Bayonetta.
-Raiden referencing to his nickname "Jack the Ripper"
- In an interview (and documentary), Kojima reveals the team that worked on the original game was incompetent without a strong leader, and had to cancel it from lack of progress, particularly on trying to balance gameplay and stealth. It was then Kojima asked Platinum's assistance, and the rest is what you know of today.
Both companies and their games before working on MGR, but within 10 years.
Kojima Productions 
-MGS: 1,2,3,4 (including updated versions)
-MGS: Portable Ops(plus)
-Zone of the Enders 1 and 2
Platinum Games/Clover Studio  
-Viewtiful Joe series
-Devil May Cry series(not particularly Clover Studio, but quite a few workers particularly Hideki Kamiya worked on it)
CRITICISMS AND REBUTTALS
Now what does this all mean?
As deep and enjoyable gameplay has been for their previous games (which will no doubt will be the strongest aspect of the game), story isn't their strong points. As I said in my previous analysis of DmC, story is purposely on the back burner for Platinum/Clover Studios.
The Metal Gear series has always (except for Metal Gear 1 and 2) been story driven, and is the main focus (particularly MGS4, and I'll get more into that later). Although Kojipro (Kojima productions) is working on the story, Kojima himself is still keeping himself out of the development. The Kojipro team's (as Kojima has stated) incompetence, along with Platinum's history, may bring down the game's story, which is concerning.
Graphics and Animation
CRITICISMS AND REBUTTALS
The blue and orange color palette is pleasant to look at, and I personally think it looks well. However there are quite a few criticisms about the graphics, which I am assuming are lack of polygons in comparison to other games. There are some obvious polygon edges, but nothing of "looks like PS2 graphics" but to be honest, I don't know how to properly judge this, I think anything with a good art direction infinitely looks better than having 3 trillion polygons in the face alone.
So despite liking the art direction, I can't properly argue for, nor against it in graphics.
Lastly about the frame rate. Now I'm sure you're bound to refer to the article floating around, but there is a difference between 30 and 60 frames. When I've watched trailers and actually played the demo , and boy does a 60 frames of animations look buttery smooth... well that is if the FPS doesn't drop after cutting an object into over 150~ pieces.
Now there is one thing that is urking me though, In MGR Raiden has red bloo...
EDIT: Actually... it looks like that's been fixed. The game's boss trailer shows off Raiden with Oxycyte, AKA: White Blood, just like in MGS4. Before it was irking me for him to essentially limit his oxygen intake going back to normal red blood. But now I am glad they paid attention to that and changed it to be consistent with MGS4.
The Sound effects are good, and voice actors are average. Quinton Flynn returns for his role as Raiden, and seams to pull off being older and insane/cocky well. However other characters, like Boris and aptly named Doktor, are very cliche.
Speaking of Voice actors, Codecs are back, and they are honestly pretty cool to listen too.
Raiden and Kevin have a lot of personality in these codec scenes. I also like how Raiden references what Snake said in MGS2 at 2:02. Outside of that, in the demo his conversations with Boris shows off how sincere he is and has regret for what he has done. Doktor on the other hand... Let's just say Raiden get's audibly creeped out by what he said. But again, they have a lot of personality and are hilarious to listen to.
As for the music tracks...
You can recognize the first song belonging to the Desperato Mod Ray fight. The later song was found on the demo, which we can say for certain is Mistral's theme.
And form the Ray trailer, it looks like the the boss fights switch between verses depending on what is going on in the fights.
CRITICISMS AND REBUTTALS
Oh god yes, I LOVE thrash metal! *cough*
I understand that the music isn't like the traditional MGS style but given MGR's high action gameplay in comparison to MGS's methodical gameplay, I think it just fits the setting perfectly. When fighting Wolf, the tracks were adding more and more until at the end where the vocals kicked in, it really got my adrenaline going and made that fight all the more enjoyable.
I think there is a full article on the wikia, but I don't want to spoiler myself. HOWEVER given the story trailers , it's of Desperado killing off N'mani, nearly killing Raiden, then continuing havoc in different areas of the globe. There is also a subplot of Raiden trying to understand his morality of PMCs and of his Jack the Ripper alter ego.
There is little of the story revealed so far beyond that.
CRITICISMS AND REBUTTALS
As I have said earlier, I am worried about the story aspect of the game considering Koji-pro (without Kojima) is working on the story with Platinum games, I am worried about Raiden's situation itself. Back at the end of MGS4, Raiden promised his family that he will be there for them. And yet having the game now be set 4 years later, he is out in war barren countries, working full time with a peace keeping PMC. I understand that given at the time, he is the most powerful character in the Metal Gear universe, and would be a great ally.
But what is the reason for going against what he promised his family? They really need to give a reason for this...
Edit: HO...LY... I don't know what to think of the new Detroit trailer . For one thing, I am very curious as to how he ended up like that, what did he do to become a maverick and leave his group, What is so important in Detroit, and what will happen to him later? But on the other hand... What kind of liberties did they have with Raiden?
"I've read that only 1 in 50 soldiers can kill with zero hesitation, guess I'm a two percenter huh?" "Me though, I like it... a lot." "Next thing I know, I'm getting off to cutting guys to shreds"
Ok we get it, you don't need to tell us or yourself for that matter over and over again, but that isn't the biggest issue.
It's one thing to fight your inner demons... and another of being able to put fear in the dead eyes of that cyborg in Cyberpunk 2077. Not even Big Boss pulled off this off when he made Outer Heaven in Peace Walker. This is really out of character for him, and thus bringing concern. Why now of all times that he is becoming this way? Has he gone off the deep end and essentially become a mindless villain?
I'm splitting this up between action, stealth, and a few other features, so I can handle them separately.
I think it's safe to say the gameplay is to a degree similar to Bayonetta, but the similarities end there. Unlike Bayonetta's main defense mechanic being dodging, MGR's is of Parrying. As Atsushi Inaba has said...
"The core concept behind the character in Rising is that Raiden is always moving forward. We don’t want him hiding, dodging attacks, or rolling away. We always want him to meet attacks head on and move into a combo. Even if he’s running towards enemies he is getting rid of bullets, even getting hit by them, but he is always moving forward. As a character, we didn’t want him to move back on anything. It was because of this direction of the character we went with this game design."-Interview with Spencer/Siliconera 
And of course the biggest part of the game, Blade Mode. AKA: Zandatsu "Cut and Take", Where you manually slice through multiple objects in range, if it is an enemy most of the time you can take their spine to restore energy. Another use of this is to sever their limbs forcing them to use their other hand, hop, or even crawl just like Ninja Gaiden 2.
CRITICISMS AND REBUTTALS
"Blade Mode is essentially a QTE every few seconds, breaking up the gameplay"
yes, this can be an issue, but with  at 16:19, you are not required to do blade mode every time. I personally enjoyed it as it can end fights much faster then normal, but that's just the demo, I honestly don't know how I will feel about it if I were to play the full game and do it for hours.
Now I did have some initial problems using it. Just using it to slice and dice into little shreds can be easily done by using the X and Y buttons (or square and triangle buttons on PS3), but precision cutting can be a bit difficult to pull off. Most of the time you and or the enemy are moving, so trying to get their spines is harder then it looks in videos.
"I can't cut through enemies like it would have been in the original trailers"
Previously not, but as someone pointed out on the video, now it looks like you can. But as a... for lack of a better term, "Devil Trigger". Another nod to this is where his blade mode and aura would normally be blue is now red.  (6:27)
"He went from destroying multiple Rays to one Ray"
Half right... In MGS2 Raiden fended off as low as (Normal) 6 Rays to (Extreme/European Extreme) 20 rays. However even with as many as 20 rays, it was always only 3 at one time.  In addition, unlike MGS2 standard Ray model, Desperado Ray [Mod] in MGR has...
+additional Shoulder machine gun pods
+Retractable Blade on the right arm
+and a Laser Projector replacing it's Water Jet Cutter
So yes, he does go from 6-20 Rays to one Desperado Ray, but if the MGS2 Rays had the Desperado modifications, I sincerely doubt Raiden would have been able to fight off so many, or even be alive for that matter.
"Why did the cops switch form guns to stun batons for "deadly force"?"
A pistol isn't going to go through all of that cybernetic armor, In the demo it barely did any damage, and that was on normal. Besides, he is running around the place, not even your sharpshooter would be able to shoot him, much less his head, even less when he is cutting them while running. There are a few soldiers that use guns in the back lines, but electrical weaponry is the best option they have for a body full of machinery.  (2:45)
There is Stealth elements in the game, but instead of Sneaking Stealth like in previous MGS games, it has a focus on Predatory Stealth. To put in comparison, while Snake is being hunted, Raiden is the hunter, the cheetah after his dinner.
However until recently it has been limited to a mere "press X to assassinate" . A recent trailer showed off the return of the cardboard box  (2:40), but in comparison to previous games, it isn't the MGS stealth that fans love.
And last but not least, you can purchase upgrades, however details on the upgrades aren't well known at the moment.
Otherwise though, it looks like they pulled everything they can to relate to previous MGS games, and the "feel" of the series.
-cardboard box in VR
-Jumping cat that can't be cut
-Reference to what Snake said in MGS2
-Raiden with sombrero "cameo"
-MGS4 and Grey Fox skins  (although DLC in NA, unlike in EU)
-No-Kill Wooden Sword 
-And last, but not least, having a Codec with Sunny
Now with all of this information, and given some criticisms and rebuttals on both sides of the spectrum, I hope you can create your own opinion of the game.
If you have any criticisms of your own for the game or this article itself, please comment I'll try my best to address it and be open to it. And thanks to TWOxACROSS for the harsh... but useful criticism. I hope this will be much better than before.
I'm getting bored, can I cut now?
Yes, yes you can now.
It's time for Jack... TO LET IT RIP!
And now, an abundance of sources for reference.
Have a good day.
BTW Screwattack, PLEASE fix the image resizing for pics and text when making blogs. they always revert back to their original size when I want them to be much smaller. Thanks.
For some years I constantly hear how great Beyond Good and Evil is, and how everyone wants a sequal. Recently I found a copy at my local gamestop and was imediatly hyped to play it, and thus I imediatly bought it and brung it home to play. After playing it, here is what I think of it.
First of all I would like to say I tried to play the demo on my PC before, it's an average PC but it wouldn't run it at a decent speed, and had numerious graphical glitches; like texture pop ups and misplaced eyes. I am using the PS2 version for this review, so all of those problems don't apply here, but I wanted to state them reguardless.
The art style is of like a detailed watercolor painting with a pleasent blue-green palette. Movement and attacks are pretty fluid. Characters are detailed, though can be a bit blocky at times. Not to say it's bad though, for a 2003 game, it's pretty good.
With calming piano tracks there are also a few that build suspense, however they are rather subtle comparible to other games. However there is a few latino tracks that stands out from the rest. It's neither bad nor good, it's ok, but it gets very annoying when you hear "JOLE JORE JOLE JORE CUANDO RUGE LA CHANSON" for the 20th time every time you join a race... or disk mini game. Damn it I have it stuck in my head now. It's almost as bad as my friend playing "winter rapper" remixes all night long.
The characters are charasimatic and do their jobs well, but a few voices sound a bit cartoony.
The gameplay is a mixed bag of sorts. First there is a regular beating on the enemies until they die part. Most of the time when this happens, it will either be holding off waves of enemies where they will wait around until they project their attack giving you enough time to switch to them when wailing on another monster; or a one on one approach where you pretty much have to wait until they project their attack so you can dodge and counter attack. There is also a charge AOE attack, however you will almost never use it. Other then a swarm of rats and a few sequences, most enemies are imune to it, and takes too long to charge asking for an enemy to attack and break the sequence.
Second is the stealth part. More often than not, you're will to be doing this. Why? Because some places if you're spoted even for a second.. BAM! insta death. Anyway, you're often given the chance to look from a distance, or cause a distraction, then decide when to go by. But there were a few times where there were a few too many guards in a small area, or just plain be able to find you when you're supposed to be in cover, out of their view.
Along the game you also get to take photos of creatures for money and prizes, sometimes use it to zoom in. It's ok.
You do drive vehicles in the game, and over all they do pretty well. But precise movement like jumping over a laser, avoiding a mine, or trying to move on a thin platform is tedious to do.
There are also puzzles, but they are easy to do and more often than not focused on completing it as fast as you can rather then give your brain a work out.
And at one point, (those who played will know this) there is pretty much a "bop it" quick time like sequence, then again with your movement inverted.
Overall though, it feals like playing Jak and Daxter... But trying to add everything including the kitchen sink, into it. It doesn't... have any redeaming qualities... there really isn't anything good that stands out here.
Skip to 0:56 to see the gameplay start.
You're Jade, a woman who takes care of an orphanige with your uncle Pey'j. The orphanige is attacked by aliens who are kidnapping the people where you live, and it's up to you to figure out what's going on.
Along the story, you have to get pearls which are need to upgrade your hovercraft to get to the next area... which reminds me of Jak and Daxter as well.
When I was going through the story, I can understand where the charm of the game is from, and how the characters interact with each other. Sure loved ones are being taken away, and horrible things are happening. But I felt the characters are really sappy towards each other most of the time. you saved me! ah don't mention it. If it wern't for you, I would have been a goner. etc etc. It's a shame, because I really wanted to see the characters outside of the river of tears.
As for the ending, it was convoluted, and left me with a lot of questions that are left unanswered. Leaving the story on an even lower note.
I really wanted to like it, trust me I really did. But it left a... Meh... impression on me, and I can't but help think of it as an inferior Jak and Daxter game. I'm sorry all you fans of the game. But I really didn't get the same impression as you did. If BGaE2 were to pick up from it's faults I would glady play it, but for this game, I didn't enjoy it.
Beyond Good and Evil (PS2)
4/10 Rent It
you guys might kill me if I put F*ck it on there, so I'm putting it as a rent.
Now before I get started, I would like to tell how I came across Katawa Shoujo. It may not be a secret, but for those who don't know I do graze by the /v/ board once in a while. Not to partake in their shenanigans, but rather see if there are any fighting game streams on, or some interesting game I never heard of before. (I was introduced to Dues Ex 1, Cave Story, Chrono Trigger, etc through there)
Anyway a few days ago, I see a lot of "Katawa Shoujo General" threads pop up like crazy. At first (like quite a few people did) I thought it was just some kind of sick fetish game, Japan happened to cook up for this month for the net to throw it's displeasure at (given the name directly translates to "Cripple Girls") But with more threads popping up, I noticed something... there is (almost) no trolling what so ever. 99% of the posts in the topic were formal discussion about the game, and their experience playing it. Even the most self-loathing emotionless people on /v/, admitted that after playing, they felt motivated to better themselves and some admitted to crying manly tears of joy and sorrow in the game.
If a game can do something like that...it had to be emotionally powerful, I had to give it a try.
Feels... Feels all around
Now to the Visual Novel itself. Katawa Shoujo a game where you would believe is made from Japan is in fact made in English by "Four Leaf" Studio, released just a few days ago on 1/4/12 and based off an art sketch by a person in Japan. (Sorry, that all the details I know) But you know what's the best part? It's completely free to download. So you don't need to worry about being a pirate and pissing off SOPA supporters.
Animation-The animation of the game is a mix of two styles. One, the general style you see for the dialog and animated sequences. Where the other is a watercolor theme for their CG stills. By today's anime standards, both styles are a bit dated, but I personally don't mind too much about it.
Characters/Story-Katawa Shoujo is where you play as Hisao Nakai, a student who suffers from arrhythmia (heart irregularity). Before you get into the game, he collapses after a heart attack, where after staying several months in the hospital, he gets transferred to a school for the disabled. In the game you control Hisao actions through multiple choice answers, that will lead to a route to go to, in which there are 5 character routes to chose from at the start.
The characters are...
-Lily Satou- A polite and ladylike young woman with long blond hair, who is blind.
-Hanako Ikezawa- An extremely shy girl with black hair, who suffered from burn scars.
-Rin Tezuka- A red headed girl with amputated arms, but is dexterous with her feat, which she can use them to paint.
-Shizune Hakamichi- A strong willed and competitive young woman who is deaf/mute, because of that she has her pink haired friend Misha translate for her.
-Emi Ibazaraki- An athletic girl that doesn't let her amputated legs stop her from being a star on the track.
That should be it unless I'm mis... oh wait, not part of the 5 routes, but part of the overall story, you have your buddy Kenji Setou (AKA. Harry Potter) along for the ride. He's a technically blind conspiricy theorist, but he's kinda like your friend who talks about random stuff all the time.
I wonder if it was intentional...
Each character have their own individual story, in which your actions will determine how it will turn out. With each characters, they have their own individual personalities, and thus a theme in one story and how it will be handled will not be the same in another. With it, you're not just saying something cliche as in "I love you" "I don't love you", it's not as simple as black and White, you have to handle the characters on individual bases, and you would handle the situations as such, otherwise you're bound for a depressing bad ending. In due time, you become immersed in the story, and over look their disability to see who the character actually is.
Now as engrossing as the story is, It's a VN, it's bound to have some sexual parts in it. In the main story parts, they don't sexualize the girls like a typical anime or J-game, they actually focus on the characters, which is a big thank you in my book. As for scenes, In my opinion... the parts are... Hit or Miss. And what I mean in Hit or Miss, I mean the scenes can depict how passionate the characters are for each other with a lot of precision of detail that you are still engrossed with the story. Those scenes are not typical animal lust you'll see anywhere, but rather tender love. But on the other hand... some scenes do the exact opposite, in fact they can completely take you out of the immersion and put you in a state of bewilderment. Luckily you can skip the scenes if you want too, but it still doesn't excuse the fact it puts a dent in few of the characters. (I personally haven't seen those scenes, since I only did one route, but others said they have)
Along with above, I have a small gripe with some of the options Hisao makes. Most options are fine, But a few options have Hisao do something different from what you think the option would do. It happens rarely in the game, but you will notice it once you select it.
Conclusion- even with those few faults, Katawa Shoujo despite the name and the fact it trudges into spaces people are not usually comfortable with, In fact I may still get some backlash just for even trying it out and putting a review here. But in all honesty It's an experience that gave myself and others a more open look into humanity, and I wouldn't put up this review if I didn't think so in the first place. Actually I think I should let this picture do the talking, I don't think I can convey anything better then this message.
Now that we got the warning out the way, here is the scene where you get to see Tali unmasked.
Now, I don't know about you guys, but the picture seams kinda off like her arm looks... photo shopped poorly... speaking of which, here is what I found online. (thanks to the guy who made this comparison pic)
Sure it's a royalty free picture, so they can use it. But why? It doesn't make sense. I mean sure, it's basically shopping a human, that's obvious, but there are some facts that don't make sense. Pollen, germs, virus, bugs, etc in the outdoors environment are possibly harmful for Quarians, so why would she be out there? Her hair is long, despite being in a suit for all her life, wouldn't her hair logically be much shorter or non-existent? Sure you can't see her pupils, but where is the luminescent ringed eyes that pierce through the mask? And like I said before, her arm looks photo shopped poorly, and normally her fingers would be wider.
Call me nit picking the picture, but I really think it was just lazily contradicting the Mass Effect universe. I mean look at this fan creation.
Sure it's almost human, but it fits the Quarian species characteristics. Pale skin due to lack of exposure, Check. Noticeable luminescent eyes, Check. Short hair due to helmet, Check.
In all honesty given how people liked Tali in the previous games, hiding her face all this time. Having the only way to show her face is to not go for her, but side with the geth in which she suicides, then give the player a poorly photo shopped pic bioware found off of google search?
Look, I'm not judging the entire game here, and I'm bound to get some guys call me a something similar to a "sonic/megaman" fan boy because I'm nic picking details on the character, but I really think the Tali pic is just a slap in the face for Mass Effect and Tali fans.
Comparing and ranting aside. like her look in the pic? Tell me what you think.
Like the title states, this will be a review for both of these games, with Destiny going first, then Legendia having it being the order in which I played them.
Tales of Destiny (PS1)
A few years back in high school, there were a lot of anime fan girls telling me to try out a "Tales of" games since they love the series so much. (as demonstrated by Leroy Irving in art work form all around the school) Given how similar it was to the Star Ocean series (given the developers made Phantasia before leaving bandai to make Tri-Ace) I might as well give it a shot, and after a quick refresh play to clarify my thought on it, here is what I think of it.
Backgrounds are a 2d anime style which are nicely detailed, especially the backgrounds in battle, but can be a bit muddy due to the noticeable pixelation at times. The characters themselves, even in battle but not as drastic, are chibi anime sprites. (chubby with large heads) Pretty much just Phantasia style on the SNES.
With Motoi Sakuraba as composer, the music is perfect for an action packed setting, and shows tension when needed. I personally love his work in the games he composes for, so little to no complains here. However the voices in game haven't been changed at all when it went state side. So you're bound to hear "Majinkin!", "Snipe Roa!" or "Isu Tounaedo!" and other Japanese or Engrish butchering. Nothing too serious, but can throw off a person if it's your first time playing a Japanese game.
Where you expecting over the top awesome combos Tales games are known for? Like... this?
Unfortunately, that's the PS2 Director's Cut remake... for Japan only...
The PS1 version that we have doesn't even come close to that. For starters, you only have one of single attack in a direction you want it. There are skills to use, and is the main use for damage, however do not connect well with other skills. Your party have a rather stupid AI where they will wait around for a bit, then decide to do an attack, rinse and repeat. Also whatever you do, you must NEVER have the fighting style be other then manual. The originally selected Semi-auto battle is atrocious to work around, and full auto battle will get you killed fast. Because the character you're using has to pull the rest of the team's weight to survive, it's easy, but put away your controller for a little while, and you will see a game over screen. Along with that, you really don't need to grab new weapons (other then for your non-swordian characters), your weapons gains exp along with you, and with that the swordian users completely outmatch the other character in which they become near obsolete.
Not to say the battles are bad for back then, but this simplistic style didn't age well.
There are also Puzzles, but they leave with little direction and can be frustrating at times. In fact, there was one puzzle with four spheres and four holes to put them in to get past, I tried every kind of reasonable method like lunar calender etc.. but I eventually just did the painstakingly tedious tree diagram approach. It took over an hour to finish that one.
Other then a quiz on previous games for a mediocre skill, the arena, and... admiring their in game advertisement... there is little to do outside the main game.
The party is a mix bag of sorts. Stahn is a typical protagonist, but needing everyone to tell him what everything is since he lived in a secluded place for his entire life, in which he gets pestered for being as such. Rutee is a quick tempered thief, Philia will start a theological argument at a turn of a dime, Leon is a guy you will love to hate, and Gar is... well he's probably the most mature of the group. There are more characters, but you'll have to do certain events to get them and can only 2 of the side characters.
As for the story it doesn't quite pick up until half way, it has some cliche moments, and you don't feel sympathy on supposed emotional parts.
But the ending... oh the ending... I won't spoil it, but it was one of the worst, if not the worst way to end a game that I have ever seen. It even had a paradox because I never recruited any of the other optional characters. This is my exact reaction after seeing the "End" pic after that scene.
It is THAT bad.
Tales of Legendia (PS2)
After years of swearing off from even touching another Tales game from the scaring Destiny gave me, I finally gave Legendia a shot to see if they fixed it over the years... and it was 15$ compared to Vesperia being 40$~, so I took the cheaper of the evils.
The 3D backgrounds were colorful and pleasant to look at with each area being completely new and interesting to look at. Characters are created by a different artist from the usual games, but that's not a bad thing. They are distinct and their animations are fluid and oddly, but fittingly quirky. CG cut scenes are very detailed and are almost fluid enough to be a high quality anime, the scenes are not just randomly appearing, they demonstrate the right scenes perfectly without overstaying its welcome.
This time along with the graphics, they went with a different composer by the name of Go Shiina, and even though I don't know the person's previous work, I instantly fell in love with the music. Quite a bit of the tracks are very calming, here's one of them.
The characters are voiced very well and make the characters very believable. In fact, I think they do their jobs a little too well. I'm looking at you Norma, I don't want to hear "Norma's the best ever, yay!" when you get the off chance to finish the fight. That's the reason you're not in my party when i don't need you in it.
It's still not the known combos everywhere gameplay like you would expect, but it's decent. Pretty much an upgrade from Destiny's gameplay. Unlike Destiny, you have three/four attacks in each direction (except when in the air) and skills combo better then before, though still a bit limited. Albeit the damage output from skills aren't on par with spamming the regular attacks, they can prolong the stun on enemies which can hurt like a tank if you let them. At the end of the fight, you get graded on how you did, if you did well, you'll be in the positives, if not in the negatives. It may be superfluous at first, but ill explain later.
In most dungeons, you'll encounter a Puzzle Booth which are easy at first, but later on will test your thinking. Albeit I'm good at puzzles, it may be a challenge for other people.
Unlike Destiny, there is quite a bit to do. Customize Items, quizzes for items, arena, hunt rare monsters (if you can find them with the scanner) and bake. It doesn't quite seam much, but it's enough.
However later in the game, you will have to revisit previous dungeons, and at times the game will be cruel to you and force you to traverse then entire way back. It prevents grinding, but it is a pain in my arse to track back.
I have to admit, at first after seeing first half hour with the town singing bouncers, and Mimi the baker giving you recipes, I was expecting the worst.
But it gets better, pretty fast.
It's pretty action packed all the way, and have multiple climaxes according to their situation, though it does get a tad cliche at the very end. Characters have their own personalities, and interact like they're having well thought out conversations, and at times poking fun at others, which may give hilarious titles for characters to equip. It's a well knit group that gets better the longer the story goes, and like the party, each and every individual starts out at a low point and all develop later on.
The plot is mostly around the tension between the Humans and the Ferines (People of the Water). Along the way you do feel sympathy for the protagonists, and anger for the antagonists, it may not seem extraordinary, but there are only a few games and animations that I can honestly say it can immerse me as such. The entire game will run you roughly 60~ hours if you you're going to do everything.
Not just that, but it has a satisfying ending. Individual character chapters that don't feel like an "extra" of the game, where it flows together very well. Another satisfying, but bittersweet ending to the character chapters, and a New Game + where you can unlock options like "formal" clothing and "combo" mode, if you have enough grade points. (see I told you it wasn't superfluous)
Tales of Destiny (PS1)
Bad - F*ck it
=with PS2 enhancements=
Above Average - Rent it
(if you can)
Tales of Legendia (PS2)
Good - Buy it
Albeit Legendia is known as one of the "lesser" Tales of games by people, I honestly think it was a great game, and by all means far superior then the well known Destiny. Before playing ,I was expecting the worst because of Destiny, then bashing the tales series as a hole. But I am pleasantly surprised by how great it is. Ill remember this game for quite a while, and might just go ahead and play the full 60~ hours again some time. (not soon, as it drained me) If you haven't played it, give it a try if you can find it.
As I always start, I give a reason as to why I have wrote this blog. As I was going through the comments on the DmC "Hard Truths" trailers, I came across a comment and was going to replay saying, "There are good reasons why there are criticisms, don't denounce..."
Then I noticed something... Sure I may not like a few things, but can I really judge it when I and others know so little? Well I went through the past few days looking up the new Devil may Cry, and hopefully can make a conclusion that should shut up the "War" between the supporters and haters of the game. BTW some parts will be a bit ranty, so check your sensitivites at the door.
To set the record straight, YES I have played DMC 3 and 4, NO I will not be talking about old Dante and comparing him to the current Dante. I will be comparing gameplay and how Ninja Theory thinks of the older games, but I will make this clear,
I WILL NOT BE TALKING ABOUT ORIGINAL DANTE!
Before working on DmC, Ninja Theory developed a few games, namely Heavenly Sword and Enslaved: Odyssey to the West. Critics have mixed reviews over the games, some saying the story is worth it, however gameplay undeniably is the weakest aspect for both games.
But that's how Ninja Theory wants it, they want to tell a story. By all means, this formula isn't bad, there are plenty of great games that have the Story>Visuals>Gameplay aspect. What is concerning however is using that formula for the DMC franchise when it is in reverse, Gameplay is the focus and Story purposely on the back burner. From their previous experience alone, you would expect DmC to not end well.
In the first interview after unveiling DmC, they did say they enjoyed the series, and wanted to update it to today's audience. From then on though, they have insulted the old games, saying the new Dante is better then before, the old one would be laughed out of a bar, etc etc... There is also their campaign to prove the fans wrong. This shouldn't effect the game itself, it is their game, but in business 101, you NEVER insult the customer.
Innocent game... not so innocent developer
Characters, Enemies, and Environments are detailed and is presented in an ink like style, although not my cup of tea, it is visually appealing. Speaking of environments, it's one of the things that I'm really impressed with.
Can't tell too much about gameplay other then some devs that made DMC 2,3 and 4 are helping out, so that makes up for their inexperience with previous games. but so far from has been shown, it looks like a DMC game with some changes. Combat is notably slower then its predecessors, infinite air time without the need of Jump canceling (which the game has btw), Holding down triggers to switch weapons/style, No manual Lock-on, but rather an Auto Lock-on, slow enemies, and the biggest change being the Style system. The style gauge fills much easier then before rewarding kills on enemies, and how much damage you do.
They better fix this...
If you're new to the series, or just looking for a casual action experience, this may be up your ally on gameplay alone. But for DMC vets, it may not please you...
Again, haven't heard too much, but the background music was good in the trailers ive seen, and attacks have a punch to them. Though Dante has an odd slur when speaking, hopefully there will be subtitles to help with that.
Dante the son of the great Demon Sparda... and an Angel... was raised and tortured in orphanages... controlled by demons... Dante now resents authority, and fights the corrupted government... which are controlled by demons... along with the help with... some person to fill the love interest... and his brother Vergil... and his league of AnonmOOOOHHHH COME ON!
I can't take this seriously at all! I heard Ninja Theory was GOOD at making stories! Not make something an ignorant anarchist kid would write a fanfiction of! It's just like trying to read B^Ukley's horrible Mary Sue adventures of how awesome he thinks he is. And speaking of Mary Sues...
I'm sorry, but I can't take this part seriously as well. Dante is the underdog who would disregard authority, the edge too sharp for the clubs to handle, the magnet that women will line up to have sex with[link of proof below], and had a girth too big they need a baseball bat and a loaf of bread to conceal it.
Compensating much Tameem?
And as I said before with the story, he gets a love interest, joins anonymous, and fights the government, all tell signs of an Author wanting to be "their story". It doesn't help that Tameem and Dante looked alike from day one, and the fact Tameem in all of the articles have him taking all the credit as the "Savior" of DMC (banner above), showing his struggle with the "haters" to prove them wrong! You're not playing a rebooted Dante, you're playing Tameem the Demon Killer. Oh and don't forget the FUCK YOU! he says everywhere, It's his favorite two words. Really I'm not joking here, so far he has a lot one liners that are trying to make him look cool, but to only end up making him look like a douche. Regardless if Dante is a Mary Sue or not, he isn't likable in the very least. If anything, I would rather play as Eric Sparrow from Tony Hawk Underground, at least his ass can get kicked.
Now second to Dante.
ADVERTISEMENT AND THE CONSUMER
You're probably thinking, "Advertisement?", It has to do with the "war" more then the game itself, I'll explain. Throw enough of something, in this case, advertisement at someone, and eventually they'll get used to it and think of it as the norm and would possibly want to buy it. This is a huge reason as to why games like Halo and COD sell so well and get near perfect reviews, while MOH and Darksiders doesn't. Again Business 101.
Nothing says Bought, like double XP and a 10/10!
In this situation, there is so many articles and videos in showing off the game, and how they're proving the haters wrong (IE: banner on top) which are majority positive in their favor. Unless people really analyze the game, and see criticisms behind it, they'll likely be influenced to agree with their side thus creating bias. same thing happens if you only see the negative as well. So yes, there are blind haters, but there are also blind supporters ready to retaliate. What I am worried about here is that you guys aren't doing your research and are blindly following your side. I am also worried the game will be reviewed with bias, Is Capcom and Ninja Theory going to throw enough money and ads for high reviews so people will buy it only to be disappointed if it doesn't live up to the hype? Or are reviewers going to slam it on the ground, and not give a possibly good game a chance?
Let's have a recap +Visuals
-/+ Previous Experience
-Attitude (shouldn't be added but regardless)
Do I think this will turn out to be a good game? No. Bad game? Nope, not that either. Why? Obviously, we really can't tell now. The game itself can go either way... or be stuck right down the middle if the trend continues. And with that said, I think it's safe to say, to both sides of the "war"... You are both right and wrong, now SHUT UP and decide for your own if it's good or not when it comes out. BTW if you're reading this Tameem, check your ego at the door.
Looks like Atlus is showing off their tracks up to the 3rd dungeon in the up coming Persona 5 game. Here are a few tracks that I find standing out, and along with it my speculation of what may come.
-The title and opening tracks, and so far the style is quite different then previous games.
-looks like the Velvet Room is in tact, but with more of a orchestrated presence and less of vocal we know from the past games.
-Sounds like the scene in where the MC awakens to their persona (luckily already English dubbed). In it sounds like enemies with guns in a place with a lot of people. Possibly right in the middle of a school shooting?
-Nyarlathotep? With a title like that, maybe the game will have the character's persona based off of Ancient Egypt stories, or perhaps H.P. Lovecraft's work? If the later, imagine what the MC's persona will be...
-(I would put the smaller regular versions, but im getting a plug in crash) the larger videos show off a remix of the regular tracks, and displays a picture (along the last track being [human puppet mix]). The point is, the manikins/puppets might have a big deal on the game. Perhaps symbolizing manipulation or being controlled?
-Fight, Result, Shuffle, and Game Over themes.
-Some nudges for Persona 3 and 4 by listening to the radio and picking up Iwatodai and Inaba stations, and it looks like there will be a Junes where P5 will be.
-Again remixed track of a regular song in the game. But the point here is the picture, MC and some of your team/classmates?
-Tanaka's Sunday TV Shopping is back, but with a different theme. Maybe another sales person advertising on Tanaka's show?
-Oh looky here, the reaper is back to kill you guys again.
-Woah woah woah, a remix of Pink Floyd's "Another Brick in the Wall"!? My mind is blown.
-Take a look the bottom right of Wild Card's picture... look familiar?
Yup, Marie for Persona 4 Golden, along with a theme here, I wonder what this means...
Overall, P5 seams to be a somewhat dark electronic/Jazz theme to their music, as compared to P3's rap/hip hop, and P4's upbeat Jpop. Personally I like it, and if you would like to listen to some of the other tracks, here is where you can see them. www.youtube.com/user/ATLUSxP5/videos
Like the general theme so far? Perhaps you have an idea on what's to come? What do you guys think?
P.S. remind me to never again put a lot of youtube vids on the same page.
Before we get started, I would like to point about that I'm not quite versed in the Tales series, especially for the 3D gameplay games. I have played Tales of Destiny for the PS1, and currently playing through Tales of Legendia for the PS2 (I will make a review for both soon enough) but both are 2D/2.5D so I really wouldn't know how the newer ones handle.
But with that said, this demo is a new experience to try out, so this demo review may be beneficial to those who may be new to the series as well, or know little of the series already and would like to try it out. Now let's get started.
Like Andrej said in the SA post, you start out with Sparda and Ruca. With each character, the demo shows a different mission, controlling one or the other character as they meet ways and battle other protagonists of the Tales series. BTW is Ruca a trap or reverse trap like Naoto in P4? I really wouldn't know, Ruca tends to define him/herself as "boku", a male representation. Also holy shit, I thought the person on the left of this box art for Tales of Vesperia was a woman! But in the game when you fight them both and see a little cut scene after wards, you can clearly tell it's a guy. I don't know about you guys, but it's mind blowing for me. *Cough* anyway, let's continue.
I mean.. C'MON! how could you not think the guy in purple is a woman!?
The game very easily retains the colorful atmosphere of previous Tales titles, and attacks are dynamic and appealing to look at. However the enemy models are basically one or two sets of textures, and they appear as either average size or upscaled giant sized versions of said average size models. Sure it's a demo, but have some kind of variety...
The controls are for those who don't know...
Analog Nub - Movement
X - Jump
O - Attack
Square - Guard
Triangle - Call for an assist
R - reset camera
L+O/X/Square - Skill
L+Triangle - Twin Brave mode
For the gameplay, it goes by the core Tales mechanic of standard attacks into a skill and optionally one more skill. (as far as I know), in the form of a 1,2,1,2, big attack, Skill 1, Skill 2. Though you can call upon your partner assist to extend the combo, your assist comes out where your camera is pointed rather where your character is pointing. So in order to fully utilize your attacks, you'll need to constantly reset the camera with R for your assist to attack where you want them too.
For the enemies, you'll be mostly fighting huge waves of enemy soldiers just like Dynesty Warriors, and just like DW they sit around waiting for you to attack them, or when they remember their jobs and feel like attacking you. Along with chests and enemies dropping health gels, easy is an overstatement.
As for the Bosses, or better known as other tales protagonists you fight, they can actually put up a fight as they can guard and pull off a "brave" of their own to put them in a super armor state.(fighting game term for no stun from your attacks) But I have to wonder... why do the protagonists need a small army to protect them? Are they just random soldiers/bandits occupying a small area for the hell of it?
When you finish the mission, it displays your accumulative EXP, Gald (currency), Weapon EXP, and items you found and adds them all up. From initial viewing, it looks like you wouldn't need to grind much, as my exp and weapon exp rose so fast I gained 30 levels in the Sparda mission alone.
I know it's just a demo, but just from trying out the demo, I felt it was rather... meh. Not to say it's bad, as It seams like it will turn out to be a decent game to get for the PSP, but it doesn't quite initially compare gameplay wise to Dissidia or KH:BBS, and I for one do not like mowing down waves of hundreds of enemies constantly without any difficulty or variety.
My score for the game is....
Mindless hack and slash fun
It might be an instant buy for those who like the Dynesty Warrior gameplay, or dire hard Tales fans needing a US release. But I think ill wait until later to get it, or reviewers say it's a great game when and if it released outside of Japan.
Remember Lamar Smith? The main guy pushing SOPA and PIPA? Well he isn't backing down, instead they're trying to pass a bill called H.R. 1981.
On face terms, it is a bill stop child pornography on the net, but it's actually a cover to keep track on all of your activity online. Your online Transactions, your Youtube uploads, your Screwattack blog posts, your downloads, your passwords your entire viewing history for 18 months.
You're probably thinking that, it's not bad, it has to be Safe right? NO!
First, at any time your saved information can be accessed without a warrant of any kind, and Second, it is basically asking to be hacked and stolen. People will be scared to use the internet for their online payment, thus destroying online business, which will make a big dent on the economy. Hell it's basically SOPA/PIPA But attacking not just websites, but people as well, while hiding behind a "stopping child pornography" cover to sway people votes. To top it off, it's working... It already passed through the committee, and it's only a matter of time before it reaches congress.
Don't relax now that we won our victory over the SOPA/PIPA bills. They're trying to pull a fast one on us, but we know better. We can't let them succeed, we must continue to spread the word and stop them from controlling our Internet!
This is exactly what I see when I think of playing online.
I may get it when they release the "Super Ultimate SF x Tekken Arcade 2014 Turbo 3D Remix Edition"... or rather, ill just get Tekken x SF instead.
Ranting aside, Maybe Cammy will become the number one character and Sagat gets super nerfed in SFxT? Who knows? What do you think?