Leliana Vess, Defier of Demons

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

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Francisco Rosario: The King of unplanned purchases.

Yeah I’m claiming that title for myself. I mean, it wasn’t completely unplanned, but it wasn’t like I woke up in the morning and thought Hmm, I think I’m going to buy this today. It’s not like I one hundred percent regret the purchase or anything, but it’s like one of those moments where you can’t actually believe you did that. Just like to point out, I’m still happy with it.

Anyway, what is it that I bought that earned me this title? Why an all-new Xbox 360 Slim of course. I bought it mostly because I had heard that the new model has completely fixed the Red Ring problem, and I truly think they did. The new model has a lot more fans and ventilations than the previous model did, and the console doesn’t get so hot as before. I remember when Joe brought his 360 over a couple of times, after a good hard day’s worth of playing, the console would be hot enough to sear your skin. Now, the console gets about as hot my ps3 does in the same amount of time, if not less so. Plus, if you install the game onto your hard drive, the disc practically doesn’t get hot at all. In an effort to save space on the console, I decided to only install the games I play the most right now. I don’t think I would’ve bought the console had the Red Ring problem not been addressed, as I do not want to pay for a console with such a high failure rate. That was my whole reason for buying my ps3 over the 360, as it is the more reliable hardware. Now that they might have fixed the problem though, I thought, Hey, why not? The fact that I got the system for about 300 dollars also influenced my choice. Everywhere else I know they are selling it for about 400. Anyway I like the system. Its compact, sleek, and links with my mp3 player better than my ps3 does. However, I don’t like the sleek finish, as it is just a complete fingerprint magnet. My PSP is the same way. It does make the system look pretty, but you shouldn’t touch it. Also, the system attracts a lot of dust, but then again everything in my room attracts dust, so it might just be me lol. I also really don’t like the fact that the only music you can put on the hard drive is songs ripped off a CD. Taking your mp3’s off your mp3 player won’t work like on your ps3. But the system can still play them when your not playing a game. Retarded, isn’t it?

Of course I had to buy the console with some games. The games I got for it include: Dead or Alive 4, Spectral Force 3, Tales of Vesperia, Wartech: Senko no Ronde, Battle Fantasia, and Rumble Roses Double X.

The first game that I will talk about will be Dead or Alive 4. When I bought the 360, I made sure this was basically the first game I got, as this is one of my main reasons for buying the 360. It’s pretty much the only game in the doa series that I didn’t really get to play very much, plus you can get a copy at GameStop for like less than 10 bucks. Anyway, this is right now the game that I’ve been playing the most. Anyone who knows me personally or who reads this blog knows that I am a diehard fan of this series. I’ve invested a lot of time to getting good at the game, so you know I’m going to play this entry like all hell. I especially wanted the game for Kokoro. As I said before, Kokoro is definetly one of my favorite girls in the series. My favorite would still be Ayane, of course, but Kokoro would probably be number two. Kasumi would be a very hard three, and Hitomi would be four. Argh, the characters in the series are so damn likable it’s hard to choose to just one. Kokoro is very hard to use on a high level though, mostly because she’s completely based off of her mixup game. Off of her punch, punch combo, she can either go with
1) An automatic multi-throw, which she can then continue into another combo or the rest of the multi-throw, though from playtesting I think the first option is very unsafe. I continually get jabbed out of whatever I was going to continue it to.
2) D P+K, P+K
3) FF+P
4) Her qcb Multi-throw
Plus you can just free-cancel and grab your opponent when they empty counter. She has a lot of mixup opportunities but they all require having an idea of what your opponent might do once the P,P comes out. Some people just spam punches in order to get out of stuff, so this can be very bad when you’re fighting a Kasumi or a Christie, because they have the fastest jabs in the game. In fact if you were facing a Kasumi or Christie I would advise you to forgo the P,P combo all together. Kokoro is easier to play online because of the added lag that will eventually hit the game. It will become harder for your opponent to counter your P+K, P+K combo, and harder to break threw your multi-throw. I believe this is one of the main reasons why Kokoro is such a popular character to use online. I just wish I could play online, but I don’t have an internet connection at home, so I lose out on that. Plus I don’t know if I want to pay $50 a year just so I can play doa 4 online. I’ve gotten to play online a couple of times with Joe’s 360, and the competition seemed to be healthy, except that they’re were too many Nicole’s and Kokoro’s for my taste. I guess they’ve become the Dead or Alive versions of Ryu and Ken.

The next game that I will talk about will be Tales of Vesperia. I had wanted this game ever since it first came out, since before I owned a ps3. I had become a big fan of the Tales series in recent years, mostly after playing Tales of the Abyss, and watching the later anime adaption. I had been trying to buy the JP PS3 edition for a while now, but I just can’t find a copy of the damn game locally, and online is out of the question since I don’t have a credit card. So now that I have a 360, I said shit let me just get the localized version. Of course that thus means that I have to deal with the English voices. Ugh. Agh. Eww. Danielle Judovits did an ok English Estelle, but she just isn’t moe. Nakahara Mai was much better. There are so many points in the game where I know Mai-kun was being moe, but they just couldn’t translate it to English, which just leaves Estelle looking stupid. Still the game itself is very good and I’ve been having a lot of fun playing it. The battle system is great and really does feel like a much better version of the one in Abyss. Plus I really love that, unlike Abyss, the skits were left totally voiced. It helps, but besides fixing the obvious problem of not having these games come to the states, they really need to allow either for dual voice acting, or just leave nothing but the Japanese voice acting. This series really doesn’t work in English.

Another game I got was Wartech: Senko no Ronde. I had heard about this game on SRK through a thread. Basically it’s a fighting game/shmup hybrid. You control your characters and attack with long range and short range weaponry, but you can use screen filling B.O.S.S. attacks which turn you into a shmup boss. The game is notoriously popular in Japan for this mix and it’s amazing graphics, but due to Ubisoft’s horrible port of the game, including no advertising whatsoever and making a horribly generic cover art for the game, the game sold like a wet paper towel. Thus you can literally get the game at Gamestop used for about three bucks. Oh well, if you ever feel like getting a good game for an amazing price, check this game out. Anyway, I still haven’t found who I think my main is going to be, because so far I’ve only played as Changpo. I’m going to try the rest before I go specifically for one person. Haven’t played this game that much, but I’ll go back to it someday.

Another game I bought was Spectral Force 3, at a recommendation by Joseph. Also I like the companies previous works, like Chaos Wars, Cross Edge, and am interested in another game of theirs: Record of Agarest War. The last nail in the coffin was that my favorite character in Chaos Wars, Hiro, is a recruitable character. It’s actually a pretty bad SRPG to me. I especially don’t like the fact that you can’t save mid-battle. Seriously, what SRPG nowadays doesn’t have that? Even Fire Emblem, a GBA game, has that, for God’s sake. Plus the game looks pretty bad for a 360 game. Like a lot of people have said before, the game looks like it could clearly be on the ps2. I’ll try to keep playing the game, but right now it’s pretty hard because there’s so many other better SRPG’s that I could be playing right about now, like Jeanne D’Arc or Disgaea 3.
Another game that I bought is Rumble Roses XX. I’m a big fan of the original game on the ps2, and this new version is supposed to have been really buffed up in terms of game play. I would say it is; there’s a ton more game modes and match types, and obviously due to the generation jump, the game’s graphics have been buffed up quite a bit. I’m only playing the game with one of my favorite characters, Reiko, but I will definitely play the game with other characters. I like this series just because I think it’s way better than the Smackdown vs Raw games that the WWE keeps releasing every other year. Those games don’t hit the game play mark as much as this one does to me. All they ever offer is create modes, which almost never interest me. Plus I find it funny that people keep talking about all the fanservice that keeps going on in these games. The stuff in here is nothing worse than some of the stuff that goes on with the WWE divas. All they do is pose and walk around in skimpy outfits. That’s pretty much everything that Stacy Keibler and Torrie Wilson have done in their careers. Not to mention that the game comes with a whole ton of unlockables. Seriously, this game has hundreds, maybe even thousands of things to unlock, so I can really see this game having tons of re-playability. Already started on some stuff, but I’m going to focus on unlocking the extra characters. Basically, every
character comes in a default version, namely a heel or face version. You can unlock there opposite version, plus their Superstar version, which is a stronger, more flashy version of their normal selves. I’m going to go for Superstar Reiko and Dixie first before everyone, because I love their superstar character designs. I tend to think of the superstar versions as their Wrestlemania versions haha. The only thing I don’t like about this release is that there’s no story mode. That in my opinion sucks. I actually liked the story mode in the original, and was hoping they would improve on it to make it better. Nope, sorry, no story mode for you. Oh well, that’s pretty much my only knock on it.

The last game I also got was Battle Fantasia. This was a fighting game that Aksys, the makers of Guilty Gear and Blazblue, made right before Blazblue. You can totally see where they got the inspiration for Blazblue. The story mode is almost the very same style, the story involves an evil entity that was destroyed by a group of heroes (four heroes instead of six), hell, the only thing missing is that there’s no tyrannical government involved. The game is marginally fun, but playing a 2D fighting game on the 360 pad is just a torture. Then it’s going to be a pain to buy an arcade stick just for the damn 360. I think that from now on, I’m only buying fighting games for the ps3. The only fighting game I would willingly play on 360 would be Dead or Alive, simply because that game works better on pad. This game itself doesn’t seem like much of a good game to me anyway. It’s certainly fun, but I pretty much imagine there’s no real scene for it. If a fighting game doesn’t have much a scene, then it’s a pretty good idea that the game sucks competitively. Though I can’t always say that holds true. Melty Blood anyone?

Anyway, there are two main games that I am looking to buy: Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach 2, and Record of Agarest War: The Really Naughty Edition. I saw the used version of Agarest at Gamestop, but since it was 49.99, and the new limited edition is 59.99, I would lose out no matter what. Thus I said forget it and I’m just going to look for the limited edition. For Xtreme 2 I saw a used copy in ok edition at Gamestop, but when I went to buy it they said they didn’t have any copies in stock. Typical Gamestop. Why have the case there then? If they had given me a job there I would’ve checked the whole stock for them, the bastards.

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