Leliana Vess, Defier of Demons

Leliana Vess, Defier of Demons
Black Magic shall rule over all

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Konnichiwa.

Let's see if I can come back to updating this thing regularly. Might try to update with smaller blogs. Since I always write such long entries, it takes longer for me to write and edit the suckers, which is what happened in the last entry. I always have so much to write about.

Anyway, I just got a new psp, since my old psp-3000 is a broken down piece of crap. What happened was that I had tried to open it to remove some dust that had gotten trapped underneath the screen. Looks like I didn't tighten the screws enough because now three of them are missing, and one of the casings for it is broken. So now you can almost completely open the psp, and the analog stick is stuck in the up-left position. Thus making it impossible to play almost 75% of all my games. So I was stuck deciding whether or not I should get a new psp, or the DSi. Listening to my sister's advice, I decided to get the psp since I already have a DS lite. Glad I went that route because the psp actually has decent software now.

Bought 9 games for the psp, 3 at purchase, 3 later on and 3 even more later on lol. The first three I bought was Castlevania: Dracula X Chronicles, Jeanne D'Arc, and Dead or Alive: Paradise.

Dracula X chronicles I gotta say was quite a shock. It happens to be my first non-Castleroid Castlevania game ever, so the gameplay change felt very different. The game really is very, very hard. Like wow. And here most people think OOE was ridiculously hard. That doesn't even compare to this one. At least it helps towards my playing hard games commitment. I could just imagine how hard the original version is. Then I heard alot of people say Castlevania 1 is even harder. Urk. Like most Castlevania games its all about recognizing the enemy patterns and exploiting their weaknesses. The reason why this game is harder though is because the life bar they give you is very small, so you don't have many oppurtunities to make mistakes. Not to mention the game is very stingy with it's health items. Still, I like it anyway, as it a very fun game that still has pick up and go gameplay. Plus I absolutely love the German opening. Can't wait to unlock Symphony of the Night on this thing.

Jeanne D'Arc was another game that I wanted when it came out. I'm a big history buff, so getting to play as the legendary Joan of Arc felt juts awesome. It's kinda weird though since I'm Catholic and now I'm playing as a girl who is officially recognised as a saint by the holy Roman Catholic Church. Then again I'm not a devout Catholic so whatever. The game is really fun. I especially love how Jean can turn into a valkyrie lol. Also the whole unified guard system is cool since I always group my troops together in other SRPG's, so this mechanic helps me out a lot. It's a lot like Final Fantasy Tactics, but so far it's not as hard as that game can get. Still I really like the game. Even the cheesy French accents.

Dead or Alive Paradise was as much for me as it was my sister, since she's a huge fan of the Xtreme Beach series. No lie she put more than 90-hours into the first game, so she and I argue over who gets to play the new game lol. The game is basically a simplified version of DOA:XB2 on the 360. So now my sister and I finally get to play the 360 version. So naturally I immediately went straight for Kokoro. She's just too cute to ignore. Itagaki really knew what he was doing with her. She's a Geisha, she does one of my favorite martial arts styles (BajiQuan) and she even speaks a mix of kansai with some really girly Japanese. Moe me up girl, Moe me up! haha. But yeah the game is pretty fun, though I do hate the independent breast physics. It's not even graphically impressive or anything. Pretty much it's just one breast goes up the other comes down. My sister cracks on it every time she sees it. "Real breasts don't move like that! Have these guys ever seen real breasts before?!" haha, she's so funny. Still I can't help but feel that the actual volleyball game has tremendous amounts of lag. It feels like the game moves a whole second after you press any buttons. Sometimes the game has frozen for a second, then continued, so I'm fairly sure there is lag going on. Either way though, the game is enjoyable and I'll definitely keep playing it.

The other three games that I bought were actually Monster Hunter Freedom 1,2 & Unite. This was more of an impulse buy than anything that I gotta say I regret a little. The only one I've actually played was Unite because that's the newest one at the moment, so that's the only one I'm going to talk about.

Like most people have already said about this series, it has an extremely high learning curve that is going to frustrate you to no ends. That is exactly true. I've even heard people go so far as to say that you never really master the game. you just become kinda good until the next big wall hits. I'm going to stay with the sword and shield for now, but eventually I'll move on to the dual blades because I was having way more fun with those. Still tackling the huge difficulty though, so I decided to stay with the safer route of the basic weapons.

The last three games I then got was Persona 1, Lunar: Silver Star Harmony, and Final Fantasy: Dissidia.
Persona 1 is a remake of the original Revelations: Persona that was released for the ps1 years ago. With the absolutely butchered translation, long load times, and rather boring music, the game didn't go on to make much money. Now I guess with the success Persona 3 and 4 have reached, Atlus felt maybe it was time to fix this game up. Having played the first one then giving up due to the translation, I decided to get this game to see how new they made it, not to mention it was a special collectors edition. Got to say the game is much better. It doesn't have the anime cutscenes of it's younger brothers, but the music and art style more than make up for it. The game doesn't have the dating-sim elements that 3 and 4 have either, so that may turn off fans of the series who never played the older ones (like me). I for one though like to give any game a chance, and this game manages to stand on it's own as a really good game featuring long dungeon crawls, an interesting story, and a decent demon conversation mechanic. Will probably be playing this for a while, most likely through to the conclusion.
Now Lunar: Silver Star Harmony is a game that I've been wanting to play for quite a while, ever since I heard it was coming out on the psp. I own the original ps1 remake of the game, and fell in love with the game. I thought it was an awesome rpg, even though I never did beat it. One of the main problems with the game is that it's corny as hell, though. Alex has the personality of a piece of tissue, the story doesn't go in any direction that you did not see coming and the gameplay is like still like playing an old NES RPG. But the thing is that I guess you can say that was part of Lunar's whole charm: Just how old school the game was. For many people, it was the first rpg they ever played, before Final Fantasy ever became anything special. People have a certain magical attachment to all of the characters because of that. Plus I have to say that Luna is one of the sweetest game girls I have ever seen. The game also holds a kind of sentimental quality for me, even though it wasn't the first rpg I ever played. Getting to play the remake is kind of exciting for me, discovering all the changes that were made. Got to say, i don't like some of the new voices. I guess hearing all the new voices after becoming accustomed to the original voices was too much of a shock for me to bear. Getting to play as the legendary Four Hero's at the beginning was awesome for sure. I guess maybe they might make that Lunar 0 hehe. The limited edition version of the game comes with the new remixed soundtrack (which from what I heard is complete trash) and little cards showing the girls in fanservicy moments. Funny thing is that anyone who knows Lunar knows that these are actually the unlockable Bromides from the original and first remake. These were very hard to unlock because they usually involved talking to such and such person before such and such event happened. Now though what's the point when you can just look at them? Plus maybe back then they were considered risque, but by today's standards I've seen sexier things in most late night anime. It's just not hot anymore. Still the redone graphics in the game are really good, and I love the new interface. Maybe I never beat the ps1 remake, but I'm going to try for this one.
Yeah, next is Final Fantasy Dissidia. It's that Final Fantasy fighting game that so many people can never shut up about. My friends have been telling me that the kids in their college have been playing this game to death, and I have to admit that the Squuenix fan boy in me was screaming for me to buy it. Maybe if I had picked this up before I became all serious about fighting games, I would've enjoyed it, but now to me it's just a mess. Their like no timing involved, no skill involved. You can practically just mash and win. Plus I don't like the small amount of characters. As anyone who knows me knows, I tend to play almost exclusively girls in any fighting game I play. The only exceptions are:

1) Hokuto no Ken: Kenshiro.
2) Third Srike: Ryu and Ken, though I started playing Ibuki.
3) TVC: Ken the Eagle and Zero, though I also play Jun the Swan.
4) SSF4: Guy and Cody, though I also play Ibuki, Juri, Cammy and Sakura.

Lo and Behold this game only has two girl characters. I mean sure Terra is cute as shit and makes up for it, but damn way too screw me over. It's not like they couldn't put Yuna. She was the main character in X-2 for crying out loud. And yes I'm perfectly aware it's only the main entries in the series, shut up.

Seriously though, I don't like the way the game's mechanics have been done. Everything about the game just screams that the developers had no idea what they were doing. It's like the reviews have said, it's like they were trying to turn Advent Children into an actual game. Oh well, probably won't be playing this much further once I complete the game's stories. Other than that, there's really no incentive.

Got to say, I am super happy that I got a psp. Now that there's actually game's for it that I want, it just gives the system whole new legs from when I first got it. Plus I love the whole new design; much more sleek and sexy, and not as bulky as my psp-1001. I learnt my lesson from my first psp, and decided to get a screen protector for the dust, because this thing is a dust and fingerprint magnet. Also got one of those first generation plastic hard cases for it; the one's that were originally released by Sony. I went to J & L, a famous game store located in NYC's Chinatown, to buy the hard case. The sales guy told me it was meant for the 2000 series, but that it should fit. Nope. The rubber inside prevents the entire thing from closing properly, and the plastic encasing that protects the screen and holds the psp in place presses down on the brightness button. This means that If I play a game in the casing, there are times where if i hold the case a certain way, the screen will change brightness or just shut off all together. Still the case is really awesome. It feels really tough; I don't think even a big fall would brake it. Plus, it can hold two UMD discs inside and two memory sticks. It can even fold open too hold the stand up while you watch a movie. Definetly a great case, and I am happy I bought it. That being said, If I can find a version of it built for the 3001 series, I'm probably going to migrate to that. If this case doesn't hold my psp correctly and it works this good, imagine if when I get one that actually does hold it! Sexiness!
I also bought a case for my DS Lite from Gigaware, who makes a lot of cheap merchandise for computers. Their stuff is almost only sold in Radioshack and I've mostly always been happy with their merchandise. But still, this case is not very good. Case in point: I left my DS unattended after playing Castlevania, and I accidentally pushed it off the bed. It falls, maybe, a couple of inches, and the case breaks in half. I was able to snap the case back on, and the DS was not damaged, but still, wtf? That's not very good when the case breaks before the DS does. Def gonna have to look for a better casing. Unlike the PSP case, I just don't fell safe leaving my DS in this case's hands. I'll try to upload pics once I get the chance.
Anyway, wow. I started this at the beginning of last month, and I'm done June 1st. Not good. I'm going to have to start the next as soon as I finish this one. This blog is becoming monthly. Argh. Sorry for the slow pace everyone. I'm going to start the next right now. Lates!

Chou-Ossoi Burago Entori

Ouissu minna.

Oh my god i thought this entry would never get done. I started this post like two weeks ago and I just got completely ganked by work. I just got another part time job that's been stressing me to no end, plus I'm still working my other temporary part-time job, of which we'll be going on a two week vacation. Haven't had much time to play any games except for my handhelds. Oh well, I'm going to have to make this entry twice as long as normal to cover the time (EEEK!!). Also please note that another problem that delayed this post was the fact that I had to proofread this sucker and add the pics that I wanted to add. Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on how you look at it), blogger is being an ass when it comes to uploading pics. So I decided that I wasn't going to add all the pics that I wanted to add because it was messing up the formatting and making this entry way later than it needed to be. Thus here's the entry that took over a month to write.

Anyway in games I've really started getting into the Castlevania series. I just bought Order of Ecclesia and Portrait of Ruin for the Nintendo DS. Both games are extremely good and I highly recommend them.
Part of the reason that I never really gave the Castlevania series much of a chance is the difficulty. Castlevania is a series famous for its difficulty, and it was always too hard for me to ever beat one. However, as I said about my attempted commitment to stop sucking at games, I've decided to give the series a shot, which I am happy I did.
Portrait of Ruin tells the story of Johnathan Morris, the son of John Morris from Castlevania Bloodlines, and Charlotte Aulin, a descendant of the famed Belnades clan. Together they are investigating the reappearance of Dracula's castle. Inside they discover that another vampire by the name of Brauner, and his twin daughters, Stella and Lauretta, have taken it over due to Dracula's absense. Johnathan and Charlotte now need to investigate why this vampire artist has taken over Dracula's Castle. The game play in the game focuses on allowing the player to play as both characters in order to explore the castle. Players can switch between both characters at any time, and some enemies will change their attack patterns depending on who is attacking them. Johnathan brings the traditional Castlevania game play, using the Vampire Killer whip and fighting using weapons, while Charlotte is more magic based and can use spells of fire, ice, and lightning, similar to her ancestor Sypha. The game is very challenging but not as challenging as Castlevania: Circle of the Moon, the last Castlevania game I played. Still the music is very good and the graphics are some of the best I've seen on the DS.
Order of Eccelsia is a similar yet almost entirely different beast. In the story we go into the "age of no Belmonts" time frame, in which the Belmont clan has gone extinct. In order for humanity to counter the dark power of Dracula, humanity has created numerous organizations in order to find a way to kill him despite the absence of the Vampire Killer whip or the Alucard Lance, the only weapons known to be able to kill Dracula. The only organization that has found a way is the titular Order of Eccelsia, which uses magic Glyphs to gain weapons and power. The only person in the order who can fully use the power of the glyphs is main character Shanoa, a young stoic girl trained by the head of the order. On the day she is supposed to become the Dominus, the wielder of the glyphs, her best friend and adopted brother, Albus, comes in to the ceremonial chamber. He is angry because he says the headmaster said that HE would become the Dominus, not Shanoa. He then takes the glyphs away from her by force, which causes her to get complete amnesia and thus she must go through her training all over again. This would be the point where the game starts off. The game play in this title returns to the difficulty of some of the earlier games in the series and this caused quite a lot of people to complain. Gamefaqs members and game reviewers alike all complained about how the game gets way too difficult way too fast, and how the boss battles are some of the most frustrating in franchise history. However, I personally think all of that is highly exaggerated. The game is only hard when you are doing dumb things like constantly charging in when you know you're going to get hit. Biggest advice I have been given and will give to you: Pay attention to the enemy patterns. Most of the enemies have very visible patterns or obvious weaknesses, so take advantage. The game is really just one of those games that punishes you for not playing correctly, like Ninja Gaiden. For both games, I would definitely recommend them, as both are very great titles for the ds, in game play, art, music, story, characters and overall enjoyment.









Shanoa is definitely my favorite character in the series btw.


Now I just wanted to address something that is also really quite old. As I've stated before in this blog I am a huge fan of the Dead or Alive series. It's one of my most favorite fighting game franchises ever and a series I have loved since the first time that I played it. So naturally around two years ago, when I heard the franchise was going get a movie, I was filled with mixed feelings. I was kind of happy because finally a series I loved was getting a chance in the spotlight. On the other hand I was filled with worry about whether or not the film was going to be pretty good, like the Fatal Fury movies, or if it would be horribly butchered like Resident Evil, Street Fighter, Super Mario Bros, and the other majority of video game movies. Quite frankly, there was a very good chance that the movie was going to be a megaton shitbomb. Thus for a long time I held off on watching it. Then Joe told me that the movie was up on Youtube, and just for our interest as fans, we decided to watch it. As we sat there watching it in the library, we immediately found three things wrong right from the first five minutes.

1) The Mugen-Tenshin village is not the Imperial Palace from mainland China on top of a mountain. It is a small village just on the outskirts of a mountain.
2) Hayabusa is not Kasumi's servant nor is he a member of the Mugen-Tenshin clan. He is part of the Dragon clan and is Kasumi and Hayate's best friend.

Three was the biggest mistake of the movie, the mistake that caused Joe and I to nearly fall on the floor in laughter and nearly got us kicked out of the library that day. In the scene, Hayabusa is trying to convince Kasumi not to leave because the ninja guard outside will kill her. He then says:

"If you leave now, you will be branded a traitor...a shinobi."

WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAATTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Yeah, so, after that debacle of a mistranslation we decided to just stop watching it all together. Joe would later go on to buy the bootleg, and I would go for years without watching it. That is, until my little sister decided to watch it against my counsel. "I'm telling you, it's horrible" I told her. However, she insisted she was only going to watch it "just to see exactly how horrible it was". My sister has a little Angry Video Game Nerd, masochistic side to her when it comes to horrible movies. So of course I had to watch it with her. The movie had so many errors in terms of the story that it left me disgusted. If I had more time on my hands I would actually type up a blog showing all the errors that I find in the movie. Besides the one listed:

1) Helena is not a roller-skating bimbo as portrayed in the movie. She is a sophisticated opera singer who enjoys the high-life.

2) Tina is not some butch with a complex about being a wrestler. She is a wrestler who is just looking to branch out into other things, and actually is very lady-like.

3) Tina does not do Jeet Kune Do as they clearly have her doing in the movie. She uses straight up wrestling techniques.

4) Ayane does not fight using a katana as they have her doing in the movie. She uses dual-kodachi as seen in Ninja Gaiden 2 Sigma.


I noticed more but I don't want
to this entire entry about that. Let's just say the movie was an embarassement to the franchise. It's sad that this typically happens to franchises I like. I'm not holding my hopes up for how the Castlevania movie turns out.





For the love of God just pass this movie by. Shiver....


I also got to see the new episode of K-On!!, and wow. I don't even think they care anymore about making an anime that's good to watch. I think they just want to create an anime that's nothing but moe blobs. I know a lot of people said that about the first season but it's gotten way out of hand in this season. Now every character is just focusing on that one aspect of themselves. Particularly, Yui, Mio, and Azusa. No coincidence that the three most popular characters in the series are the ones that have gotten hit with the moe moe Kyuun beam the hardest. Then they wonder why anime sales have gotten down lately. Which isn't to say that I didn't like the episode. I did like it, and will probably keep watching the series. I'm just saying.

Sadly enough though I can't say that the episode wasn't entertaining. It wasn't as funny as the some of the first season episodes were, but they were some moments that had my sister and I cracking up. I'm just wondering if the anime's going to be able to get by on just the moeness of its characters for an unprecedented 27 episodes. It makes you wonder. Either way, I'll still read the manga. It seems like this is one of those animes that actually works better in it's original manga context rather than a full fledged anime. I don't know how Azumanga Daioh pulled the anime transfer off so well considering it was another 4-koma manga. Then again I don't think anything will ever reach the sheer brilliance of Azumanga Daioh ever again.

Another thing that has me thinking about the future of K-On is that in both the anime and manga, the girls are now high school seniors. What in the hell are they going to do with the series when the girls graduate? I hope that they do what Azumanga did and just end the series right there. If they continue the series after that then it would just seem like they're begging for money. One way I can see the story going is that the since the girls are apparently all going to the same college, they will continue the band in college and possibly go professional. Then, Azusa, Ui, Junko, and another moe blob that they recruit will start a new band in the school, of which Sawako will still be the club advisor. It's the only way I can see of them continuing the story and I really hope they don't do it that way because that will just be self-service and it will, in my opinion, dilute the series.

OK that was the first week, here's comes the next.

I also bought Disgaea 3 with those Castlevania games. It was on sale for about 20 or 30 dollars, don't remember which. The game is really awesome though. If I had more time I could definetily sink some serious time into this. I have just been doing old stages and leveling up my characters. Like all Disgaea games, this one is zanny to the extreme, but that's part of Disgaea's whole charm. The story is kind of a rehash of the first Disgaea game, except with a huge lack of Laharl, Etna and Flonne. To me, no other game in the series is going to come close to the brilliance of the first game. Laharl, Etna and Flonne were just too good to be able to beat. Even though I never actually beat the first game lol. Don't you just hate it when you're super bored and have all the time on your hands, you get something to pass the time with, then all of a sudden you become so busy that you have no more time at all? Happens to me all the time. Part of the reason why I never want to get into any MMO's, or why I don't want an internet connection in my home. I'd probably become a NEET if that were to happen.

But anyway, back to Disgaea. The game is really good. Everything you ever liked about Disgaea is back , and from what I've heard, this game has even more absurd amounts of depth to it. I've even heard some people say that this game is twice as long as the original, which is hard for me to believe. If you're a fan of the series then this should be a no brainer. It's the best Disgaea game yet. Unless you're a bigger fan of Laharl, Etna and Flonne. Hey I'm a fan too but give some new characters a chance, damn.

Another game I recently got is Dynasty Warriors 6. I know people shit on this series so much because it gets so dull after a while. That's true, but that's part of the appeal. It can get almost meditatingly dull, where all you're doing is pressing x and watching the kill counter go high. One of the things that I hate in this game is what happened to me in the Battle at Fan Castle. Right when I'm about to kill Cao Ren after fighting him and two other generals at the same time, one of the generals I'm not supposed to let die went and got himself killed by enemy reinforcements. Made me not want to play again. What, motherfucker can't protect himself for five seconds without me being there? Still the game is very fun. I like the style of just mindlessly killing enemies. It made me want to play Final Fight, but that game is so much harder, as are most games when compared to their newer counterparts. Love playing as Guy though, he is the man.

Yet another game that I've been playing lately is Luminous Arc 2 for the DS. I've been wanting it for a while since the game is one of the few DS games that comes with the OST, plus it was all anime and import-ish, so I had the desire to buy it. Finally I just said fuck it and bought the game. I've been really liking it. It actually reminds me of Final Fantasy Tactics in how the battle systems works. It has the same system quirk in that every you're opponents can attack you from behind or from the side to do more damage, and they can do the same to you. It means you need to pay more attention to where and how you position your characters, because you may be able to attack the opponent from a better position but maybe it leaves you open to an attack from behind. The game is pretty entertaining, but I'm only about an hour in since like I said, ganked by work.

The last game that I bought that I've been playing is KOF12. Like I said in my previous post this was the only KOF game that I hadn't played before, and I didn't feel right ragging on the game so hard when I've never even played it before. At the same time though I didn't want to buy the game when everywhere I go the game is like $40. I was not going to pay that much for a game I was sure I wasn't going to like. Then I found the game for $25 at some pawn shop I found.

After getting to actually play the game, I've found that the game actually isn't as bad as I originally thought it was. It's very basic KOF, but the game does have the essentials. The main problem with it though is just that the game feels very incomplete. There's a ton of characters missing, next to no modes at all. The game feels more like a downloadable game then any kind of retail. Not to mention two out of my three mains are all gone. At least they'll be back in 13. I just find it stupid that the series is famous for all the characters that you can play as, but then the newest entry, the entry that's supposed to be the series's rebirth, only has about a third of the total cast. Doesn't make sense doesn't it?
So yeah that's all the games that I've been playing lately. Yet I don't have the time to really devote any time to any single one. Ugh...
In anime, I haven't really watched anything new in these few weeks, except I got to watch the first two episodes of Railgun (To Aru Kagaku no Railgun). The anime is pretty good so far. The anime is basically exactly what I've heard people say about it: Girls with power levels. It's entertaining so I'm going to keep watching it. Like usual I've been keeping up with those new episodes of Ikki Tousen: Xtreme Xecutor, but I've been mostly spending my time either working or reading blogs. Speaking of which, there's one that I've really been following at http://d.hatena.ne.jp/elixir68k.
I found his blog off of Shoryuken.com, and started reading it. Basically he plays alot of shmups and watches anime and talks about it. Just read it you might like it.
If it seems like I'm trying to get this out fast, then you're kinda of right. Three weeks for a blog is way too long. Sorry about the wait. Laterz!