Semi-quick post

June 2, 2007 at 12:53 am | Posted in Pokemon, Xenogears | Leave a comment

I’ve been playing Pokemon and Xenogears as usual, but I haven’t had much chance to write about them, so here are a few tidbits from the week thus far.

Xeno:

-I finally got into the tent of games!  One is weird and seems pointless, but the other two are fun, especially the one where you get to pop balloons.

-The tournament is kinda cool.  Giving Bart as much time to get into the castle as Fei spends in the battles makes sense, but it also makes for a stressful and rushed situation when you’re navigating the castle.  I ended up going in confused and panicked circles for a while.

-Beating up Dan was sure satisfying, but I will be taking the passive approach this time around (I had to restart the tournament portion) so I can actually get the cool item from him.

Pokemon:

-My Budew finally evolved into Roselia.  It was a happiness evolution, and it seemed like I waited for weeks, but now I can use it in battle again without fear of it not learning moves when leveling up.

-Said Roselia is now kicking butt at the water gym.  I think I skipped the fighting gym, but I’ll go back later.

-My Prinplup absolutely adores me.  Aww.  (Never mind that I reset the game every time it faints, so it doesn’t lose happiness…) 😉

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ADD Hour – Double Team!

May 27, 2007 at 11:33 pm | Posted in Skies of Arcadia, Xenogears | Leave a comment

(Note:  I started writing this on Friday and never finished until now!)

Despite still being on hiatus, I think it would be cool to document my most recent play session. This time, things were a little different: one game was played by me, and then another was played by a friend while I watched.

When I last left our heroes in Xenogears, there had been a lot of angst, and then preparations to head for the capital (I didn’t document any of that). Now, I finally arrived at Bledavik (what a name! Sounds sort of Russian). This city is so freaking huge that I spent the better part of an hour exploring it. And there was still stuff I missed, like finding a hide-and-seek kid.

I haven’t made it to the castle yet – I have to participate in a fighting tournament first, which sounds fun – but the most entertaining part of the city thus far is the little area that includes a mysterious tent, fire-breathers, and yes, a beer booth where you can get drunk just from one “Bartweiser”. Oh, the puns. Anyway, Friend and I both agreed that it was reminiscent of Chrono Trigger – at least the big tent part. I was sad that it wouldn’t let me in, but maybe later on.

My friend took his turn with my Skies of Arcadia Legends, after I’d tired of the large Bledavik. The main female character in this game is the typical perky, upbeat, slightly-annoying stereotype. The other main female is just about the opposite stereotype – quiet, delicate, slightly unsure of herself. And apparently she has a secret mission that she can’t tell anyone. Argh.  Anyway, the game seems cool, although not necessarily one I’d prioritize at this point.  The flying ship part is definitely nifty, and maybe I’ll like it more once I actually play it myself.

Short hiatus

May 21, 2007 at 2:27 pm | Posted in RPG Hour | Leave a comment

Just to let you all know, I’m probably not going to update again until a current time-consuming commitment finishes at the end of the week.  I think all of one person reads this blog currently, but I wanted to post this just in case someone else happens to stumble across it.

I’ll probably still continue to play Pokemon and Xenogears, of course.  I just won’t have the time or energy to write about them for another week.

Free at last

May 15, 2007 at 1:19 pm | Posted in Xenogears | Leave a comment

I finally made it out of the underground cave to what I assume will be the docking area for all of my future party’s Gears.  Things of note this time:

-I swear I heard a couple of Chrono Trigger-like sound effects somewhere, maybe in the boss battle.

-Just noticed something – what is it with the guys and really long hair?  All three male party members I’ve met so far have it.  Citan even flips it when he enters battle.  o_O   Not that I think it’s bad, it just seems an unusual trend.

-The fact that you can rename Gears is pretty cool, though I don’t think I could come up with any good ideas.

-A friend told me there were biblical references in this game, but dang, there are a lot.  Like, practically everything plot-related so far, it seems like.

ADD Hour: Get Me Out of Here!

May 14, 2007 at 4:55 pm | Posted in Pokemon, Xenogears | 1 Comment

As the title suggests, this most recent play session featured confusing dungeon-like areas in which it was difficult to find the exit. It was more significant (and more annoying) in Xenogears than in Pokemon, though.

Pokemon has had me trudging along, catching a few more creatures, receiving a new Poketch app or two, and finally arriving at what is apparently the redneck center of Sinnoh – Solaceon Town. Uh, yee-haw. Nothing much of interest here… except some ruins supposedly full of Unown. I say “supposedly” because I did not encounter a single wild Pokemon while I was in there. Weird. Anyway, I became utterly confused and lost while navigating the series of nearly-identical rooms with various staircases leading up and down. Despite that, I managed to stumble across a room with several cool items on the floor, so it was definitely worth it. Afterwards I somehow found my way back without having to use the Escape Rope I found.

Xenogears was a little tougher. I was in a mostly-empty cave room with no obvious exits. After about 10 or 15 minutes of wandering around, repeatedly getting attacked, following along the walls, getting in and out of my Gears, etc., I finally gave up and checked gamefaqs. Once I was out of that one room, it was a lot easier to navigate. There was also a place further along where I could replenish my Gears’ HP (thank goodness), and I got my first Gear upgrades! Whoo! I didn’t get very far overall, but at least now I’m well on my way to getting out of that blasted cave.

There are many other RPGs that have at least one confusing — if not frustrating — dungeon. What’s been your most memorable “get me out of this freaking place” experience? Feel free to sound off.

Still alive

May 8, 2007 at 4:38 pm | Posted in RPG Hour | Leave a comment

Sorry that I haven’t posted in a while. I know this blog was started less than a month ago, but between discovering that free WordPress doesn’t allow custom layouts and dealing with life in general, I’m already having trouble keeping up with it. Few people know about it and probably even fewer read it regularly, but I just thought I’d write and let you know the blog isn’t dead. After this week I should be able to get back into the swing of things. Trust me, there’s no way I’ll stop playing RPGs anytime soon.

A much-needed change of pace

April 30, 2007 at 4:55 pm | Posted in Xenogears | Leave a comment

As much as I wanted to play yet more Pokemon, I was convinced by one colorninja to do something a little different. The reason? Not only for a change of pace, but also to celebrate the fact that Nintendo has acquired Monolith Soft, the company that made Xenosaga. (This also officially brands me as a Nintendo fan.) While they didn’t make Xenogears, the game is related to the 3-part PS2 series, so I went a little further in the Square game in my latest RPG session.

-A short trek through the desert, and an encounter with what I assume is one of the main bad guys of the game. Oh noes! He is related to Main Character’s past! I can’t help but think it seemed just a bit cheesy and cliche. Of course, this was 1998.

-After all the doom and gloom thus far, the lighthearted music playing during the first scene you see Bart (his theme?) was a refreshing change. I have a feeling I’m going to like this character. Oh, and you can’t forget the fact that he’s a hot pirate. If guys are your thing, that is.

-I’m slowly unlocking DeathBlows. Despite this, I’m already getting a little bored of the battle system. And I’m a bit confused about how you do the Gear equivalent. Hopefully it’ll get better, though.

Belated post

April 26, 2007 at 4:47 pm | Posted in Pokemon | Leave a comment

I’m still plugging away at Diamond, though I’ve neglected to write about it for a couple of days. Since I may not have time to play today, I’ll go ahead and give a few tidbits of the past two days now.

-When done over and over, 2-on-2 battles can start getting quite slow and a bit annoying. There’s a forest in the game you go through where you have to do this. However, the upside is that your partner’s Pokemon heals you completely after every battle. That makes it almost too easy.

-Said forest has cool music.

-If anyone’s seen the Disney movie Mulan, you’re probably familiar with the “lucky” cricket Cri-kee. I named my Cricketune after it for the heck of it. Well, turns out that it might just be lucky too, because it managed to barely survive two assaults from a tough opponent, after which it unleashed Bide and KO’d the other Pokemon. The move is actually quite useful every once in a while.

Yup, you guessed it

April 23, 2007 at 11:20 pm | Posted in Pokemon | Leave a comment

Pokemon Diamond again. More of the same, basically, except I got the first badge. The more angled 3-D in the gym was pretty cool. Oh, and now I have all three starter Pokemon. Mwa ha ha ha.

I don’t have much more to say for now except this: Machop’s art this time around makes it look like it’s doing a jig. Rather amusing.

Oh, and I played a bit of Xenogears too, but not long enough to be worth mentioning, really.

The Addiction Continues

April 22, 2007 at 10:40 pm | Posted in Pokemon | 1 Comment

That sounds like it should be the title of a sequel of some sort. Anyway, you’re lucky that I stopped playing long enough to write this. I thought I would at least get in some Xenogears today, but nope. And when I’m done here, I’m going to play more.

What can I say? Let’s see. Oh, in case you’re wondering, I’m talking about Pokemon Diamond, which I just picked up today. Score for game reservation.

-The graphics are updated just enough so that it feels relatively up-to-date, but without completely losing the old-school feel. A good compromise, I think.

-Most of the music is easily forgotten. This is not necessarily a bad thing; it just sort of plays quietly in the back of your head, adding that little extra bit to the mood of whatever area you’re in. The battle music has an extra-strong beat when you’re battling a trainer, which is a nice touch. And is it just me, or is the Pokemon Center music slower at night?

-I haven’t seen many new Pokemon so far, so I can’t say much about that. However, I’m assembling a decent team and I haven’t even gotten the first badge yet, so that’s a good sign.

-I got just far enough to be able to trade via WiFi with someone I know (granted, this is the third or fourth town). I got an egg of one of the starters I didn’t pick, so I’m looking forward to hatching that. And the step counter is very handy in this situation.

So yes. Um. I’ll try to play something else every once in a while. Really. Maybe after I’ve beaten the game. (Kidding!)

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