Tuesday, October 30, 2012

4 Year RPG Special Part 4: Wild Arms for the PS1 review

As MANY other people and I have mentioned, during the SNES and PS1 era the RPG was getting super popular. We had a huge library of RPG’s, from turn-based to action, to even tactics-style RPG’s flooding both systems. We had games like Chrono Trigger, Vanguard Bandits, Secret of Mana, and you get the idea. There was just a flood of them during those times and there was just so many to choose from that it can be intimidating knowing how long each RPG can take to beat. However, we did have some bad ones that are still loved, but are hard to recommend, like Lagoon, Shadow Madness, and Beyond The Beyond. We also had some hidden gems that sold well and are still around, but do not get the same amount of love that other franchises like Dragon Quest and Final Fantasy get. One of these series is Wild Arms. The Wild Arms series is a series of RPG’s spanning 7 games, including a remake of the first game, that are all only on Playstation consoles. They are extremely solid RPG’s and I can recommend the first two since I haven’t played the other games in this series. In fact, let us talk about this hidden gem of a game that came out before FF7 and was suppose to be the FF7 killer, but it didn’t kill FF7. It did however gain a solid fan base and it still a very solid RPG to play today, Wild Arms for the PS1. Just a warning, this review will be very wordy and long, just like any of my RPG reviews. 

Monday, October 29, 2012

4 Year RPG Special Part 3: Witcher 2 Assassins of Kings for the Xbox360 review

When you think of sleeper hits in the game industry, what do you think of? House of the Dead Overkill? Beyond Good and Evil? Maybe, Earthbound, Catherine, or Rayman Origins? These are all great games that were really popular, but were pretty much overshadowed by much bigger titles. The Witcher 2 is such a title, a sequel to an average action RPG based on a series of fantasy novels that was released in 2011 for the PC only. It was generally praised for its dark storyline, amazing graphics (they are really beautiful), and the improved combat mechanics that were easier to handle than, say, Golden Axe Beast Rider or the first Witcher. It was, however, criticized for some user interface problems, tedious difficulty, terrible tutorial, and a disappointing ending. I am not a PC gamer, but a leader tester I worked under said it was his favorite game. Patches have come and gone, and made the game much better. It is now on the Xbox 360 under the title, Witcher 2: Assassins of Kings Premium Edition. It has also been re-released for the PC and I’m glad I can now play it to see if the improved package is worthy of probably one of the last amazing games for the 360. Let us get started then. 

Saturday, October 20, 2012

4 Year RPG Special Part 2: Tales of Graces F for the PS3 review

A lot of recent video game news has revolved around Namco Bandai actually listening to their fans in the Tales franchise. They are truly showing off that they want to bring over as many of the main titles as possible to the fans here in the states. While it isn’t the most popular RPG series, I feel like recently the fan base has been growing bigger, probably because fans of Square Enix are either loving or hating what they are doing with Final Fantasy 13. While again, they aren’t bad RPG’s, again, a 5 or a 6 are not worst game of all time territory. I can easily recommend those games over others I have played, but I still don’t like them personally. Love it or hate it, the Final Fantasy franchise is changing for the better or worse. Anyways, for this next RPG review in the special, I decided to take a look at, of course, a Tales game. You all probably know what it is by reading the title of this review, but this week’s review will be of Tales of Graces F for the PS3. While I have grown to love the Tales series again, thanks to the amazing Tales of Vesperia for the Xbox360, I have mixed feelings about this game. Don’t get me wrong, it is a strong and very solid action RPG. There are some things that made me “take two” on this most recent Tales game to come out in the states. I guess we should get started, so set your spells and comments to friendship, this is Tales of Graces F.

Friday, October 19, 2012

4 Year RPG special Part 1: Dragon Quest 7 for the PS1 review

As you all have heard over and OVER again, I love the RPG and JRPG genre. Moneywise, they are usually some of the best games you can get because they take hours to beat. They also have pretty fun stories, if a bit generic at times. You can get action or turn-based combat in these genres and also get a great cast of characters to carry you along the combat and story. A lot of my favorite games of all time are RPG’s and JRPG’s. Though my love for them is big, it doesn’t mean I love or enjoy every single one of them. Final Fantasy 13 and its sequel are, in my opinion, incredibly average RPG’s (if you don’t judge them as Final Fantasy sequels). Quest 64 is considered to be one of the worst RPG’s, along with titles such as Lagoon, Hoshigami, and others that I can’t list off the top of my head. However, there is one RPG that people have tried to convince me that I was way too harsh on, Dragon Quest 7. Until now, I was going off of old memories when I played a few hours of it and just didn’t like it. Now, it IS a solid RPG, but I think this is one of the hardest RPG’s to recommend to anyone. It has aged poorly and it is way too expensive for its own good. Don’t get me wrong, it is a good game. It is like I said, just super hard to recommend to anyone who isn’t a RPG fan or a hardcore Dragon Quest fan. Let us get started then on the first RPG in this special, Dragon Quest 7 for the PS1!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Two Part Tactics Game Special Part 2: Valkyria Chronicles for the PS3 review

Recently, I noticed I have taken a slight interest in strategy RPG games. They are also known as tactics games. These are games that usually have you move multiple units around on a grid-like base, and then attack once, and then hope you don’t get attacked back and die on the enemy’s turn. These games include franchises like Fire Emblem which is Nintendo’s tactics franchise, the Final Fantasy Tactics series which is usually Sony and Nintendo’s handheld tactics series, and other series like Advance War, Military Madness, Suikoden Tactics, the Japan-popular, Super Robot Taisen series, and Saiyuki: Journey to the West. I have recently reviewed a tactics games on my blog. It’s the underrated gem known as Vanguard Bandits, a rather solid tactics game where you pilot giant robots right out of Escaflowne. Its 10 dollars on PSN so I can easily recommend downloading it since hard copies go for 70 or more dollars. However, today’s review is focused on a PS3 underrated gem that just happens to be a VERY unique tactics game, Valkyria Chronicles. I am surprised this game didn’t sell better than it did, due to a very well done story, innovative combat for the genre, and a beautiful artistic and musical presentation. It is one of the best games for the system.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Two Part Tactics Game Special Part 1: Vanguard Bandits for the PS1 review

I have a quiz for you all. Here are 5 different game titles. Clock Tower, Monster Party, Kabuki Quantum Fighters, F1 Pole Position 64, and Air Boarder 64. What do these 5 games have in common? If you look at their genres, they have nothing in common, but they do share one common developer. If you don’t already know, the developer’s name is Human Entertainment. A company founded in 1983 has made some noteworthy and cult classic titles until their closing in 1999. Here is also a bit of a fun fact. Goichi Suda or Suda 51 was one of the members who left the company after Human’s closing to open up Grasshopper Manufacture. Anyway, I am here to talk about a gem that is rarely, if ever, talked about. It’s a Tactics game. It’s a genre I have never touched, but I decided to give it a try with another tactics game I found myself enjoying. Let’s start with this one made by Human first, Vanguard bandits for the PS1.