I finally finished up Monster Hunter Stories (not all quests or monsters, but main story and Poogies), so I popped in the game I got for the holidays, which is Hey, Pikmin!. I’ve just gotten to the second area.
So let’s chat! First thing I realized is there is so much similarity to Chibi Robo: Zip Lash. This could have just as easily been a Chibi-Robo game in that vein, it’s simply been Pikmin-fied. The collection now is random real world items versus real world candy. You use Pikmin instead of Chibi-Robo’s plug.
This sounds like a complaint, and it kind of is. Yet I enjoyed Chibi-Robo and I’m enjoying this too, I definitely understand why it was a disapointment for Pikmin fans. I feel like I’ve already played this game. I could show screenshot comparisons and it seems an obvious copy and paste job with Pikmin art instead. Granted, there are some differences, but they’re pretty minor. I do enjoy the item descriptions, as they are often amusing.
I would say that if you loved Chibi-Robo, you’ll like this but maybe don’t play them back to back. If you hated Chibi-Robo, there’s a good chance you won’t have fun with this one either.
Some secret stages are locked unless you have certain amiibos. You can use the Pikmin amiibos released for the game, Super Mario Bros series amiibo, Animal Crossing amiibo (figures only), Splatoon series 1 amiibo to unlock these stages, where you can receive the amiibos as statues in game with each one equaling 200 sparklium. Sparklium is the fuel you need to collect throughout the game, but it can easliy be achieved without using any amiibo.
I will finish the game (minus some secret stages) as I find the style of gameplay relaxing and enjoy seeing my Pikmin Park fill up. Also, I love collectables and having complete in-game collections, so that’s going to keep me playing as well. I haven’t decided what I’ll play next on my 3DS, but it might just be a replay of Radiant Historia, as the 3DS version comes out really soon! Radiant Historia is one of my favorite handheld RPGs, and I highly recommend it!
Although a rumor went around that there would be a Direct on Jan. 11th, that still has yet to be confirmed (Although there are definite teasers now, as NOA just posted a picture of Chibi Robo on fire…). However, I thought I’d do a general “what I’d like to see announced” during the course of this year, whether that is now or later (I will probably do an E3 specific one later).
So what do I want to see from Nintendo this year? Well they certainly gave us a lot in 2017, and things I wanted were announced to come this year such as Kirby and Yoshi, there’s still more I want. Isn’t that just the way of things? Without further ado, here’s the list:
Animal Crossing! I know this is unlikely with the recent release of Pocket Camp, but it’s been years since a main console title in the series. It would be the best yet due to the nature of Switch.
F-Zero! Only because I’m STILL waiting and hoping for a new entry. It’s been way too long and would be epic with today’s graphics. I love eye candy.
Golden Sun. Highly unlikely after the 3rd game, but a fan can still hope, right?
Wave Race would be cool.
A new IP as those are always welcome.
More third party titles, both indie and big titles.
A physical copy of Style Savvy: Styling Star. Why not the US??
That’s all I can think of off the top of my head. Of course I want more info/gameplay on the games already announced for this year, and games in development (like hints of the upcoming Etrian Odyssey, and SMT 5).
What games are on your desired wish list for a Direct?
I totally sang that in my head lol. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 arrived on its release date, but I was sick with a migraine so didn’t actually start playing it until that Sunday night (Dec 3rd). I have not wanted to play anything else since, it has sucked me in! I say that and I still have only about 25 hrs in, because I only play in the evening generally. But I look forward to playing it every day! Even when that doesn’t always happen for one reason or another.
Major difference that was noticed quickly was that it is not as serious as the first game. The characters are much sillier, the stakes in the plot don’t seem as high (note from progress made: not so anymore, story quickly ramps up). That said, it’s still loads of fun! You collect Blades to help you fight, and you use core crystals to unlock them. So far, I’ve gotten only 2 Rares, but they are adorable! (by time of posting, I now have 5!) You will get many commons, which aren’t very useful, but you can release Blades that are duplicates or don’t have good stats. Blades also have abilities you need for different functions you find in the environment (opening certain treasure chests, using airflows, etc) so be careful when releasing them.
The graphics are noticibly lower in handheld mode, so it’s not a game I’d suggest playing solely that way. Handheld is fine for leveling, but if you move the story forward, I recommend docking as the cutscenes will look better.
It doesn’t hit you with emotional punch at the beginning like the first game, but it does come later. Get through the first 2 chapters, because by chapter 3, it really kicks the story into gear. I’m absolutely invested now. It’s got the feel of a good book, where you just want to keep playing so you can understand what’s going on. If you love games with story elements, this one is a winner.
Sony had their presentation Monday night, but I was feeling too bad to do anything but watch and take notes. Overall, they didn’t show what I most wanted to see, and there wasn’t anything that got me too excited. I had wanted to see a new Kingdom Hearts 3 trailer, Ni No Kuni 2 or The Last of Us 2, though I guess I should be thankful I didn’t see the latter in case of spoilers (I’m still playing the first game).
They showed expansion packs for Uncharted and Horizon Zero Dawn and while I plan on playing both in the future, expansions don’t interest me on their own, unless included in GOTY editions or have a good deal (for instance, I did buy both Witcher 3 expansions, because they were loaded with content). I’m not at all interested in Days Gone. I’ve tried Monster Hunter in the past (MH4U specifically) and it wasn’t really for me, I find it too difficult. Shadow of the Collosus seems to have made a lot of people happy, but I’ve never played it and still don’t think it’s the game for me personally. Marvel vs Capcom Ultimate though? Yes, though it wasn’t “new” as I knew of it already. The only negative I have on the trailer is that it didn’t really show what kind of game it was. There was a single VR game that I wish wasn’t VR; that game was Moss. It was adorable with the mouse warrior! You’d think I would have read Redwall with how I reacted (note to self: read/listen to the Redwall series already). Detroit Become Human looked interesting (I’m a cyberpunk fan), and Marvel Spiderman was a nice surprise.
Now let’s talk Nintendo! This is what I was most excited about and they did not disappoint! I loved EVERYTHING. So let’s get started!
1. Rocket League is coming to Switch, which is awesome though I haven’t played. This fact might make me change my mind though. It will also have exclusive customizations and cross play with other platforms. I can see this being popular for Switch users.
2. Xenoblade Chronicles 2 still has British voice actors! I loved that about Xenoblade Chronicles and will definitely be picking this one up. And yay, there are still Nopons!
3. KIRBY! Not until 2018 but still makes me so happy.
4. METROID PRIME 4. Every fan has already heard about it but hooray for the confirmation, I hope we get actual footage in a future direct or next E3!
5. YOSHI! He’s felted this time, in a cardboard diorama world. The crafty geek in me loves this as much as I loved Yoshi’s Wooly World.
6. Fire Emblem Warriors makes me think I really need to start Hyrule Warriors this weekend.
7. I’m not really planning on buying DLCs for Breath of the Wild, but maybe if there’s a sale or something. There’s so much to do without and I’m nowhere near finished so it’s no rush for me.
8. Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle has me sold, even if rabbids are annoying. I like everything I’ve seen.
9. Super Mario Odyssey. Does anything need to be said? I NEED a Switch before it comes out, come on Nintendo, make them more available!
These were announced after the Direct, but nevertheless I’m going to buy both. Metroid Samus Returns is a gorgeous 2D Metroid remake of the 2nd game, but more than just a remake. And the Metroid amiibo is perfect, hope I can get my hands on it. The other game is Mario And Luigi Superstar Saga remake + Bowser’s Minions.
Overall, Nintendo did awesome this E3, while the others were sort of lackluster in comparison. The future of gaming is bright and I have WAY too many games to play already but I don’t care. What was your favorite thing about this E3? Did you watch any of the tournaments?
Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week is a freebie, meaning the topic can be whatever we want! I decided to focus on games this time. So this is my list of Top Ten Games that made me smile in 2015 (and yes, it is two days late). Not best or anything, but they were games that brought me joy during a difficult year. Though some of these are favorites, others are not but will probably always make me smile when I need it.
Fantasy Life is so adorable and addictive, I’ve fallen in love with this game. There’s loads of content to keep you busy for hours, and DLC you can add that gives you a whole new area after finishing the story. It was the highlight of my holiday in December, even if I played more of it in 2016 technically.
Bayonetta 1 + 2 combo pack was very fun. Although I’d gotten it at the end of 2014 for my husband, I didn’t play it until 2015. And when I did, I had a really great time with it. No link for this one as it’s currently not available at a decent price, but it might still be around in physical stores.
Lego Harry Potter 1-4 was my birthday gift, and having missed the HP world and never getting to play this because I’d heard of the bugs, I was so glad to get this DRM-free version on sale. So far as I played, I didn’t run into much problems, and I enjoyed getting to experience some parts of the books again (I just reread the 2nd book via audiobook, and hope to continue listening to the rest as rereads).
Etrian Odyssey Untold: Millenium Girl is a game I got when it came out, but it took me getting Fafnir Knight to prompt me to actually get into this one. And I love it a lot, as I did Fafnir Knight before I switched to this one. I should finish it this year so I can get to Untold 2, but I have a ridiculous amount of games to play, so who knows!
Puzzles & Dragons is just a fun casual game, that’s highly addictive.
Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate is a game I honestly wasn’t sure about, but when I saw the collector’s edition for only $45 at a convention, just a few months after its release, I couldn’t walk away. From what I played, I enjoyed it, until I realized how slowly I was progressing, which put a damper on things. But still, the pet pig and those felynes sure did provoke a smile out of me, and I might return to it from time to time.
Terraria is another game I had before 2015, but learned how to play in 2015, and enjoyed. I like Sandbox games quite a bit, as it turns out (which is why I got excited on Twitter this morning when I saw Starbound is now on GOG).
Chilbi-Robo Zip Lash got a lot of dislike, but I couldn’t help myself. And I couldn’t play this game without a silly grin on my face. Sweet as the candy and snacks you collect, Chibi-Robo wormed his way into my heart, despite the negativity surrounding it. I adore this little robot and hope we’ll get to see more of him.
Super Mario Bros 3D Land is a game I waited a long time to play, mainly because I’d wait for Black Friday to try and get a copy, as Target would discount it to $15. This year I had luck on my side, as I was able to grab it before it got sold out like it did in previous years. And it’s quite fun. I look forward to Mario 3D World when I can eventually pick that one up. 🙂
Honorary mention would be Animal Crossing Happy Home Designer, because I’ve loved designing spaces since the original Sims. However, it didn’t make my list simply for the absolute lack of challenge. It’s basically just a sketchbook for designing, but there’s no real point. Still fun though, but I felt I couldn’t add it to this list because of that.
*Amazon links give me a small monetary kickback if you choose to buy from them. GOG links don’t, but I prefer sending people there over Steam and these are the versions I have.*
I’ve decided I will be doing this tag, but with a little twist. I’ll be featuring not just an upcoming book, but also a game. This might evolve to also mentioning a movie at times. However, you can always count on a book and a video game, which could be for any platform, as I’m not going to break it down. Anyway, what am I excited for this week? Read on!
Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff has been on my radar ever since watching videos from BEA 2015 (Book Expo America, if you’re not familiar). This book looks so AWESOME and I am kind of a sucker for books written in a non-traditional, more experimental way (which is why I’m forever attracted to House of Leaves but am too much of a wimp to actually read the whole thing). It comes out on October 20th, though I don’t know when I’ll actually get to buy it. However, I’m eager to read this one!
Here is the synopsis: It follows a girl named Kady and she has a typical life until her planet is under attack from an unknown enemy. She manages to escape on a ship, with her mom on another and her ex-boyfriend on another. While their trying to escape their planet Kerenza, the enemy is in pursuit and at the same time a virus is spreading through one of the ships while the main ship’s AI goes haywire. It just seems like a fun ride and I love sci-fi and space operas, so I’m excited. I actually haven’t read sci-fi in quite some time, so this will be a nice foray back to the genre.
For games, I’m actually listing two that are technically out already. However, they’re still brand new, so it still applies. Both games are for 3DS.
The first game to mention was one I learned about back at E3 week, so if you read my Nintendo post, you might remember this title. That game is Chibi-Robo!: Zip Lash. It actually was released on October 9th. I preordered this game with the amiibo figure, despite not having a New 3DS or NFC reader, but it was a good deal and the amiibo is adorable (also, I plan on getting a New 3DS in the future, so it will be used, just not right now). I just couldn’t resist the cuteness of this platformer, and I love collectibles in these types of games, so I’m looking forward to trying to collect all the snacks available. It should be lots of fun. Reviews have come out that were unfavorable, but I still think I’ll enjoy it for what it is.
The other game I went to mention actually released yesterday (the 13th). It is Legend of Legacy which I heard about through Atlus, since they’re the publisher. It was actually developed by a studio I never heard of, but includes former members of Square Enix and Level 5. When I heard the writer of Chrono Trigger was working on it, my interest was piqued. I have a love for JRPGs admittedly, and I look forward to adding this one to my collection. There are 7 characters to choose from, each with their own side of the story, so you have to play through the game 7 times to get the full experience. When I play games with multiple endings like this, I usually never end up playing them all, but I’m okay with that. The focus is on exploration, and you can freely progress through the game rather than having your hand held throughout. Anyway, I hope it will end up being a great game, but check it out if you find this interesting at all.
Nintendo started off with a skit featuring puppets…similar to how they started off last years’ with Claymation, except that the puppetry didn’t show up in a game like Claymation leading to Kirby’s Rainbow Curse. This led to the first Star Fox trailer.
Star Fox is officially named Starfox Zero and given a launch window for this holiday season. I want to say it’ll either come at Thanksgiving or at Christmas time; I don’t see it coming any earlier than that. It does not support online multiplayer; the focus this time is on the single player experience. Regardless, the game looks great and I’m excited to play it. The Arwing also transforms, which is kinda fun.
Reggie then sat down with Activision and exclusive Skylander/Amiibos were introduced. They have Hammer Slam Bowser and Turbo Charge Donkey Kong, and they hold data for Skylanders and whatever game you use the amiibo version for (which is a simple turn of the base). These work with the new Skylanders Superchargers game for all Nintendo versions (Wii U, Wii and 3DS).
Then they announced a new 3DS game in the Zelda franchise, Zelda Triforce Heroes. It plays much like Four Swords, but with 3 Links instead of 4. You work together in 3 player co-op and this does have online multiplayer so you can have play sessions with your online friends. If you play single player, you simply switch between control of characters. I rather like Four Swords, so this is a game I’m looking forward to. It is slated for Fall 2015, so just a few more months!
Hyrule Warriors for 3DS was leaked a bit early, but we got to see a trailer and the actual name of Hyrule Warriors Legends. The game includes DLC characters from the Wii U version and includes new characters, one of them being Tetra. It has a launch window of first quarter 2016. I still need to get the Wii U game, but I might just end up with both.
Remember Blast Ball? It’s a side game that’s part of a new game called Metroid Prime: Federation Force. Apparently a lot of fans are disappointed by this, but Federation Force looks like a very fun FPS. I want another Samus Aran focused game as much as the next fan, but I know this is a game I can enjoy to. It’s slated for 2016.
We saw Fire Emblem Fates (originally seen under the Japanese title If) and it’ll be on 3DS in 2016. Next we saw the Fire Emblem X SMT crossover, which still doesn’t have an English title and given the same 2016 window. Hopefully it won’t be long before we see it again.
One of my happy moments was seeing Xenoblade Chronicles X get an official release date. It comes out on December 4th. If you have a Wii U and love epic, open world RPGs, this is a must buy. I’m seriously so excited for this!
Animal Crossing Happy Home Designer got a release date of September 25th, 2015. It comes with an amiibo card to start you off, and the first series of cards include 100 characters with more to come later. I love interior design, so I’ll probably be picking this up.
Fans have been wanting Animal Crossing on Wii U… Nintendo answered in a way no one expected. Disclaimer here though: I honestly didn’t see a traditional AC game on home console, I believe that simply won’t happen due to the real-time aspect being much easier on a handheld. If we got an AC game that was anything like the traditional ones, it would have had to change to in-game time. Instead, they gave us a board game called Animal Crossing Amiibo Festival similar to Mario Party and Fortune Street. I personally love board games, virtual and physical, so I’m still going to enjoy this.
Yoshi’s Wooly World hits stores on Oct 16th, Super Mario Maker arrives on September 11th. To Level-5 fans, they got the announcement of Yokai Watch finally localized for NA and Europe, something people have been wanting. I didn’t know anything about it, but after watching Treehouse play, I’ll be picking it up as well. It’ll be out sometime this holiday season.
I’m finishing this post with two new games announced for Spring and Holiday 2016 respectively. First, there’s Mario and Luigi: Paper Jam, combining both series into one action-packed RPG. There’s a lot to like if you played any of the previous games from Mario and Luigi or Paper Mario, and it’s on my list. Then they announced Mario Tennis Ultra Smash for Wii U, which I’m decidedly less excited about (I’m not really a fan of the tennis games).
Overall, I’m fairly happy. There are certainly more games coming, such as Fatal Frame, but they were left out of this event. However you can see trailers online. Like always, the full video is posted below. I’ll be posting on Square Enix tomorrow. Thanks for reading!
Yesterday I watched this live, expecting loads of fun and I was not disappointed. It was far more exciting than any sports event I ever watched and the final round had me on the edge of my seat, reacting to every moment. It was a great show, and I’d love to see them do it regularly. Not yearly, but perhaps every 4 or so years. It was exciting and perhaps the best form of advertising Nintendo could have done.
We didn’t expect any premieres here, but Nintendo is always doing the unexpected. So they premiered an upcoming 3DS game (not sure if it’s New 3DS exclusive or just general 3DS) called Blast Ball. It has a Metroid style, but it’s a futuristic soccer game with mechs and an energy ball. You have to shoot the ball with your gun to get it into the opponent’s goal and try not to let it hit you or you’ll take a lot of damage. The game is 3 vs 3 and looks like a “blast” to play, but I’m not sure how much content is there. Of course, I had the same initial thought about Splatoon, so there should be a good single player campaign and plenty of unlockables to make it worth it. I’d definitely like to learn more about the game.
The final round revealed the new name for Mario Maker, which is now Super Mario Maker. The levels shown have definitely improved my original thoughts on the game and now I want it. Good job Nintendo. Also those levels were insane, but super fun to watch. I recommend watching the whole event, but if you don’t have time, skip ahead to see Blast Ball and then make sure you catch the Super Mario Maker levels. The full video is below:
In case you hadn’t heard by now, Club Nintendo is shutting down to make way for a currently unknown, new rewards program. So over the weekend I put in all the codes which weren’t plugged in yet in anticipation of the influx of reward options. Now I don’t HAVE to play these games, but I do want the points from post-play surveys to put towards a downloadable game. As the saying goes, you either use it or lose it, and who would want to miss out? Of these games, I only actually played one, but would like to revisit it anyway. Otherwise I haven’t played any of these. As with books, I’m notorious with buying games at discount prices and then letting them sit for when I’ll eventually get around to them…if I do. It’s a bad habit, but I’m never without options.
Anyways, so this month’s To Be Played (at least 1 hour of each, or enough to take the survey) is below.
Super Mario Galaxy – This one I’ve played a bit of, but wouldn’t mind playing some more anyway.
Zelda: Skyward Sword – Looking forward to this, but kind of feel like I won’t love it as much as Windwaker and Twilight Princess. I could be very wrong and I hope that I am. Guess I’ll find out.
Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn – Having luckily found a physical copy, I’m definitely excited to check it out.
Zelda: Phantom Hourglass – Not too sure about this one being stylus controls, but Zelda is always worth trying.
Brain Age 2 – Won’t spend much time with this one, as I had 1 and mainly got it to have a handheld Sudoku again. Might be better than the first game, but I’m not expecting much. It was a $3 pick up over the summer.
If you’ve played the Zelda games and the Fire Emblem game, let me know! Also, what game do you think I should start with of these three? And which of these games should I make the effort to play to completion over these next two months?
As for reading, I’m still working on Lailah. My explanation for that is I’m the type of reader that reads best in silence. Currently, I’m in a fairly noisy environment, which really makes it hard for me to read. This bums me out honestly, but the situation should change in the next few months, hopefully. So my plan is to finish Lailah and read a couple of graphic novels to catch up on my reading goal. On the plus side, at least I’m finding a lot of time for games as noise level doesn’t bother that activity.
While I’m pretty obviously female as you can tell by my videos and icons, I certainly have my own story of what made me a gamer. I had a friend in elementary school and he had an NES system. I would go to his house after school pretty regularly. Even though I was a “girl” (this was back in the 90’s after all), he decided one day that I could play with him on the NES after we got bored doing origami. So he introduced me to Duck Hunt and it was pretty much the coolest thing ever back then. I was so amazed by it, just sitting there and having essentially an arcade game to play at his house. Seriously, Duck Hunt blew my little kid mind back then. We spent hours taking turns shooting those darn ducks. It was also the moment I knew that I loved Nintendo (many years later, I now have a Gamecube, N64, DS Lite, 3DS, Wii U and a bunch of Club Nintendo stuff too). Later I was introduced to the Zelda series at my best friend’s house, as she had an SNES with A Link to the Past, though I didn’t properly play a Zelda game myself until Windwaker. Those are my first console memories outside of a Commodore, which I played with my neighbor (Bubble Bobble being the game of choice, along with a game that I cannot remember the name of sadly).
So what made me call myself a gamer? It’s a toss up really. I sunk many many hours in Diablo 1, solidifying my absolute love for RPGs. I spent probably even more time with The Sims. The first Sims game offered so many hilarious situations and me and my friends were addicted. Seriously crazy things happened; I had a house where I made Sims of me and my friends and we all had husbands and lived in the same house. Two of the husbands fell in love with each other, leading to constant fighting between our sims. And the situations would just get weird; it was always a soap opera when I played. And then Halo 1 came, ensuring the fact that I needed games in my life and did not want to go without.
All of these games have given me very positive memories, and I couldn’t be more thankful for that. In a way, like books, these games kept me going in a time of darkness and turmoil. It’s not so much where I played them or what we ate when playing (I’m not really even sure, but M&Ms and potato chips stand out in my mind), or drinking soda (though I’ve cut that habit long ago now) while playing, but just the fact that these games connected me to friends, brought me much laughter, allowed me to be a kid and gave an escape from the bad stuff I was dealing with.
If someone were to create a personal nostalgia crate for me, it would probably include a plush of one of the Bubble Bobble dragons, a zapper gun or USB gamepad, a bag of M&Ms, a soundtrack of classic Nintendo songs, and a classic game or two (looking at you, Kirby Nightmare in Dreamland).
I was recently introduced to Man Crates, a small company which sells one time gift boxes catered to men, wooden crates that include their own crowbar to open them. Among their most popular boxes is the Retro Gaming crate (they also have a Super Retro Gaming crate). I did not receive any compensation for writing this blog post. If you’re interested at all in what the Retro Gamer Crate or Super Retro Gamer Crate include, check them out at http://www.mancrates.com.