Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Auntie Pixelante Does it Again

I'm a huge fan of indie game devs who really try for something different. Now, there's nothing at all wrong with, say, retro-looking platformers or moody sidescrolling adventures but they're not exactly my style. If someone is making an independent title I like to see something really creative and new shine through (and that's a little hard when the market is crowded with a lot of "me too!" games).

Two of my current favorite devs are women and they both seem to be ridiculously awesome (Anna Anthropy and Christine Love). Anyway, the former just put together a choose-your-own-adventure sort of thing titled Encyclopedia Fuckme and the Case of the Vanishing Entree and it's excellent. The idea for it came due to her lamenting the lack of seriously sexual stories in text adventures that seem at all true to life. Well, like, where the writer seems to understand sex and sexuality instead of making a harem fantasy, anyway. I think she achieves this very well AND creates one hell of a story in general.

I really appreciate her work and wish that more people would get to play it, but that's probably a pipe dream. Or, maybe if I wait a few hours Jim Sterling will "discover" this and write about how hilarious and weird it is. Despite being a lesbian tale, I have a feeling all sexualities will be able to get a kick out of what Anna offers with her story.

PS: It might be tough to get, but working for the "good" ending is tremendously worth it.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Yakuza of the End Might Get English Release

Just saw this post over at SegaBits and wanted to share my opinion on the matter. Basically, there was a trademark filed in Europe for "Yakuza: Dead Souls" which almost certainly has something to do with Yakuza of the End.

I'm a huge fan of the Yakuza series as well as zombies so I've been gunning for this game since it was first announced. However, I didn't really expect anything from it because the last time there was a "different" Yakuza game it stayed stuck in Japan (Ryu ga Gotoku Kenzan!). Zombies are certainly a hot commodity these days though so maybe Sega figures they can safely cash in on this one - Kenzan was about samurais which, I guess, are not as profitable.

So it's only a trademark and trademarks don't always mean something but they also put up a logo with it. I'm hoping this means it does get English release. Even if it is only European release I'd be more than happy to import it.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

This is It. This is Why I Bought My 3DS

Okay, well maybe it wasn't the reason why I purchased it about a month ago but that was only because I didn't know it existed yet. However, now that I know, I'm determined to get it regardless if it comes to America or not. What am I even talking about? Well, it's this new game by Tecmo Koei of all people called FabStyle.

FabStyle looks to be a mix of Style Savvy but also Princess Debut (ballroom dancing?!) and maybe even some of the hostess training segments from the Yakuza series. You've got your styling of characters, from their clothes to their makeup all the way to going on dates with equally fabulous guys. That's what I'm getting from the recently released trailer, anyhow. Oh man I hope someone picks this up for Western release but I won't hold my breath.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Should I Start Renting Games Again?

All this stuff Netflix has been pulling lately is making me antsy. I feel before the year is done I will stop being a Netflix member (after wanting to be one for 7+ years even!) and go somewhere else. I've already cemented in my top two replacement options and will just spend some time with their free trials to discern which is the best solution.

Anyway, what I have found is that Blockbuster Online lets you rent out games at no additional cost. Netflix is going to finally add games to the rentable selection but they will come at an added fee. I am guessing the fee will be between $2 and $5 more on top of the $7.99 1 DVD-at-a-time plan. I decided to look at GameFly to see how they compare and they set their same plan (of course only with games for rent) at $15.90. Blockbuster Online's fees are slightly higher than Netflix's base rate at $9.99, but add in games (and Blu-Ray) and it looks like a much better deal overall.

If I were to get Blockbuster Online I think I'd really want to make use of game rentals. Unfortunately online the newest games don't become available until a month+ after launch. It's just like how most new to DVD movies don't appear on other services for a while too. Still, being able to try out various games I've been wondering about would be extremely useful (if a bit silly seeing how much I already own). You can get "new" games via RedBox I suppose but that charges late fees so naw...

Back in the day I used to visit Blockuster or Hollywood Video every Friday after school to try something new. After a while, I basically had rented out every N64 game they had in stock (minus Conker's Bad Fur Day, which I always gazed at longingly). I think it would be a ton of fun to rent again, but maybe the spark of "discovery" would be gone now. Either way, I have at least a month to figure this all out.

Friday, September 16, 2011

TGIF: Just Some Music Edition

I've not got much to say this night (really I'm too wrapped up in Minecraft to think up topics). I did come across a really cool video game song last night though so I'm going to share that here.

Apparently this song was made for a Half-Life 2 mod game. Personally I find it astounding that someone with musical skill would devote such effort and time for a mod soundtrack. However, people seem to get really wrapped up in HL2 mods. There's definitely nothing wrong with that because it just means more games to try!

PS Vita is Region Free!

In some of the best news I've heard today it was announced the Vita will be region free. I'm so glad this is the case because it seemed handhelds were sticking firm to region locking. When the DSi came around it was the first Nintendo handheld to employ region locks and of course they continued that with the 3DS.

It's good to see that Sony is keeping things open like this. In such a world where gamers can and will import games there's really no reason to try and lock them out. If there's not an easy way to play our imports many of us will resort to means that companies don't readily approve of, anyway! I'm still probably going to wait for the Vita to launch in America before grabbing my unit, but I'll be feeling a bit happier knowing a world of games is at my fingertips (and not just those from the US).

I'm just hoping they don't pull back this statement later. Back before the Wii came out they did say it would be region free but then went back on their word. Either that, or it was a most unfortunate mistranslation.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Guess Who's Hooked on Minecraft

I've gone and got myself stuck playing Minecraft again. I'm not sure what it was. All that happened was I wrote a news post or two detailing the most recent update to the game and then started playing again. Initially it was just to check out the newest and changed features because they seemed to address my biggest issue with the game. Basically, aside from the creative aspect it never really felt like there was a purpose to the whole thing but now there sort of is.

Anyway, the game has reeled me right back in and I'm hoping to make some really cool stuff. People who haven't played Minecraft will probably never understand what is so enthralling about the game. Even some who have played it once or twice might not get the appeal. The first times I tried to play it seemed much too silly and complex.

Just wanted to let everyone know what's up. It certainly isn't a game for everyone but is such a treat for those who enjoy it. If you've never played it I suggest maybe giving it a go someday. It's about $15 right now and will cost $20 once it "launches" on November 11th. But by that time everyone will probably be busy busting open their brand new copies of Skyrim instead.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Nintendo 3DS Conference Thoughts

Now that it's over I can review what all information came out. There wasn't much new to entice the core American crowd, but there was sure a lot for Japan to salivate over. Unfortunately, most of the stuff that interested me on display probably won't be coming here at all. Theatrhythm: Final Fantasy is the one game I think we'll see here.

Here's a list of the stuff announced during the conference that I can only dream about getting in English (not-fan patch style): 
  • Girls Mode 3DS (known as Style Savvy in the US)
  • Girls RPG: Cinderlife
  • Hatsune Miku: Project Mirai
  • Love Plus 3DS
I know that's a lot of girly and dating sim stuff but I can't help being interested in this mostly-Japanese niche. Something that we might get over here is the new pink 3DS. The color is called "Misty Pink" and it look great. I was thinking about picking up the pink DSi XL because of the color, but now I can withhold that purchase and get this one instead. It could be my import system for all these great games coming out that I won't get a chance at otherwise! Darn you, region locking. 

Friday, September 9, 2011

TGIF: Girls Playing Games

FatUglyorSlutty is totally one of my favorite sites and it's so simple. Basically, they just post screenshots of harassment/stupidity that is received predominantly by female-identified gamers. Or, they don't even need to say they're female but get insults, pick-up lines, and more directed toward them. Anyhow, it's similar to the other site Why Was I Banned just with a little different point to it.

Here's a video they made recently which would be funnier if it weren't still true in 2011:

Thursday, September 8, 2011

I Thought This Was Cute

When The Sims Social first came out on Facebook I was all over the damn game. Since then I've weaned myself off it but still check back from time to time. I think EA/Playfish are doing the best they can with the game as it receives frequent updates of new items. A lot are pay items but there are a lot of free ones too.

Anyway, I logged in today to see this new feature:
You can change the gender of your sim! I'm not going to change my sim but it made me smile to see it. Honestly, it's probably even a lot easier to do than changing your gender within Facebook (that feature is tucked right away). 

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Dead Island is... Interesting

So, Dead Island launched today and not without a bevvy of issues. What was known before today's launch was that there was going to be a day-one patch to fix up some stuff (that I guess they couldn't just fix with their final pre-launch crunch times). However, when the game went live on Steam for download everyone quickly realized there was something much worse going on.

For whatever reason, the copy that Steam purchasers got was the development version of the game. So, it's got things like noclip enabled (lets you fly about the level whenever) as well as screen prompts still mapped to Xbox controls, whatever. This has happened before with Steam but it seems really odd it could happen to such a highly anticipated title. Either way, they're supposed to get the REAL final version out by Friday. I've heard that the "real" version simply has noclip and a few other things patched out, but that would be really depressing if so, since there are a lot more problems with the game than that.

Hearing all this I was happy to not have bought the PC version (although I may still during a crazy Steam sale). Instead I picked up the PS3 version and am working my way through it. So far, I'm really not impressed with the game. But then again I was never really a fan of Fallout 3, which this game is echoing in a more simplistic way. So maybe fans of the American "modern" RPG might be more inclined to enjoy this game. Either way, it at least looks like there was a lot of work put into it.

I'm just wanting to spend more time in the world so I can formulate a more solid opinion...

Friday, September 2, 2011

TGIF: Some Music Edition

Oh man, I have been writing so much this past week and there's only more to come! I'm not especially PROUD of any of my reviews as of late so there's no need to link them... However, it at least gives a little explanation why I've been a quiet little boy on my blog. If you follow my movie blog and are feeling gypped about how that gets constantly updated, well, here's my secret... I wrote my posts a while ago and just queue them to upload days later. Maybe I'll employ the same here.

Here's a song:
It's pretty cool and the art style for the video is really attractive to me. Also, it's a bit NSFW-y.

Have a good Labor Day weekend :).
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