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http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2008/aug/30/nintendo.games

cozwn, Sunday, 31 August 2008 09:10 (thirteen years ago) link

No offence to you personally cozwn, but I could shoot holes in that article all day. Then I noticed it was written by Stephen Fry, who should really know better. His "the Arctic Monkeys are a popular beat combo" shtick is pissing me off. And his deliberate stuffed-shirt use of painfully obscure words like "rorty".

snoball, Sunday, 31 August 2008 09:19 (thirteen years ago) link

you have hurt me heavy in my heart

cozwn, Sunday, 31 August 2008 14:02 (thirteen years ago) link

The column is called "Dork Talk", but it's written by tweedy men who should be smoking pipes and growing giant vegetables. Worse than Fry is the fucker with two Amstrad PCWs...

With books, I send the manuscript to the publisher and they have to key it into their computer. With journalism, I print out a copy, then fax it.

It makes my blood boil the way he casually makes unnecessary work for other people. In both cases someone has to type the information in again, or in a best case scenario, OCR it and then check it for OCR errors.

snoball, Sunday, 31 August 2008 14:37 (thirteen years ago) link

And "rorty" means "incorrigible", so why didn't he just say that, instead of trying to show off his big vocabulary AAAAAAARRRRRGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHH!!!

snoball, Sunday, 31 August 2008 14:42 (thirteen years ago) link

Anyway, none of this is aimed at you, cozwn

snoball, Sunday, 31 August 2008 14:43 (thirteen years ago) link

It's just that everyone in England at the moment seems to be either a middle aged person pretending to be a teenager, or a teenager pretending to be a gangsta...

snoball, Sunday, 31 August 2008 14:44 (thirteen years ago) link

It makes my blood boil the way he casually makes unnecessary work for other people. In both cases someone has to type the information in again, or in a best case scenario, OCR it and then check it for OCR errors.

-- snoball, Sunday, August 31, 2008 2:37 PM (1 hour ago) Bookmark Link

oh no somebody has a job!

s1ocki, Sunday, 31 August 2008 16:37 (thirteen years ago) link

And that typing/OCRing would be done by an intern who has more than enough work to get on with already. One of the cornerstones of technology is it's ability to reduce the need for repetitive work. This guy's attitude flies in the face of that (or rather, flew, because he replaced the Amstrads with a Mac).

snoball, Sunday, 31 August 2008 17:25 (thirteen years ago) link

two months pass...

haha, take two

http://infovore.org/talks/if-gamers-ran-the-world/

czn (cozwn), Saturday, 29 November 2008 21:24 (twelve years ago) link

Tom explains a bit more

Andrew Farrell, Monday, 1 December 2008 10:27 (twelve years ago) link

the guy behind passage

czn (cozwn), Monday, 1 December 2008 12:24 (twelve years ago) link

czn oyu linked page 2 of that article!

Everyone is a Jedi (Will M.), Monday, 1 December 2008 16:05 (twelve years ago) link

passage is that zelda on rails with no enemies and bad graphics innit

El Tomboto, Monday, 1 December 2008 18:38 (twelve years ago) link

That makes it sound better than it is.

polyphonic, Monday, 1 December 2008 18:41 (twelve years ago) link

http://blog.wired.com/games/2008/12/best-of-2008-to.html

Nintendo's little console that could is shattering sales records left and right, and might just move more units in 2008 than any game system in history. Casual hits Wii Play, Mario Kart, and Wii Fit continue to captivate new players. But meanwhile, Nintendo's loyal fans, the ones who stuck with the company through the lean years, are feeling a bit like when you go to high school and your former best geeky friend is suddenly all hot and popular and doesn't talk to you anymore.

^^^^ lol!

TOMBOT, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 17:10 (twelve years ago) link

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2008/aug/30/nintendo.games

was this written by stephen fry the famous homosexualist actor

cankles, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 17:25 (twelve years ago) link

^^^ Yes

snoball, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 18:02 (twelve years ago) link

gaylord british

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 19:28 (twelve years ago) link

can somebody make one of them things where you have a picture and then a big equals sign and then another picture, and then another row of the same thing but two different pictures, and it makes a concise argument or something? I'm busy. It should look like this

totally sweet dos bootup screen into command line = ps3 controller with that fucked-up lookin blackberry keyboard addon
old-ass macintosh system <7 black and white GUI = wiimote

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 20:09 (twelve years ago) link

except I guess a dos pc was always hella cheaper than the mac so it doesn't hold up

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 20:10 (twelve years ago) link

did we ever have an actual console argument thread on here or ILE?

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 20:10 (twelve years ago) link

idk! let's make a poll!!!!

cankles, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 20:13 (twelve years ago) link

or better yet a series of polls a la the gamefaqs CHARACTER BATTLES, we can argue whether goku could beat up sephiroth!!!!

cankles, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 20:13 (twelve years ago) link

yeah we need to do a SEVENTH GENERATION CONSOLE WARS POLL so we can combine all the truths from the mind

El Tomboto, Tuesday, 2 December 2008 23:20 (twelve years ago) link

pls do

czn (cozwn), Tuesday, 2 December 2008 23:34 (twelve years ago) link

anyone read this?

czn (cozwn), Saturday, 6 December 2008 12:03 (twelve years ago) link

not read this, just putting it out there
http://www.chewingpixels.com/?p=1605

cozwn, Tuesday, 16 December 2008 23:24 (twelve years ago) link

the magical wasteland article they (he?) mention really is excellent and i would be interested in what some posters here think (or thought) of it. i'm also really glad he mentions the time extend articles which are a good template for what games reviews (as opposed to criticism) should look like. i was a lot less impressed with the "if gamers rule the world" article which strained so much to make its point it ended up sounding like a jonathan franzen parody.

handsome dude (Lamp), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 02:48 (twelve years ago) link

Some interesting stuff. I suppose every games writer has to overcome some kind of inferiority complex coming from society at large?

Nhex, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 02:52 (twelve years ago) link

What the heck is this?
http://amusement.fr/
http://pingmag.jp/2008/12/15/amusement/

Desire: Where Sex Meets Addiction (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:22 (twelve years ago) link

not read this, just putting it out there
http://www.chewingpixels.com/?p=1605

― cozwn, Tuesday, December 16, 2008 11:24 PM (Yesterday) Bookmark Suggest Ban Permalink

something about the fact that you have to make it through 700 words of meandering philosophizing to get to his list makes me value this dude's judgment a lot less

s1ocki, Wednesday, 17 December 2008 18:29 (twelve years ago) link

what, you didnt need ten paragraphs lovingly outlining this guyz movie-selection process?

j3W1SH LAGG4RD (Lamp), Wednesday, 17 December 2008 19:15 (twelve years ago) link

ya i dont know if i trust that guy's opinion on good writing.

s1ocki, Thursday, 18 December 2008 00:17 (twelve years ago) link

you shd def check out the magical wasteland blog, most stuff on their is pretty decent

cozwn, Thursday, 18 December 2008 00:20 (twelve years ago) link

man there's this great crazy japanese dude on the eurogamer forums who always posts these massive screeds about jp RPGs. totally tl;dr but I'll gobble this up all day long:

"As long as we're talking about Square Enix's output this generation, I think I'll rank everything they've done:

Egg Monster Heroes - a pleasant B-grade RPG with neither enough depth or a good enough story to be really special, but certainly very fun while you play it.

Children of Mana - still one of my favorite DS action RPGs. I really like making Mana into a dungeon hacking game. The enemy animations are awesome, I love combining magic and weapon attacks to make my own strategies and doing random errands for the villagers to get stronger stuff. The gems system is great, the boss battles are epic and I like the random different requirements for each floor of the dungeon.

Mario Basketball - another fun take on Mario sports, I'm not sure why but the portable versions are always better than the console ones. Since this is Square Enix-made the bonus Square characters are a nice touch and the dribbling with stylus feel was well-used, as well, its got lots of hidden depth and a well-tuned challenge level, but is still easy to play. Another winner.

Final Fantasy III - a superb remake of a classic game. Really nice to have the difficulty kept despite Square Enix's tendency to make games easier in their remakes. Except they really should have kept developing until they could get more than 3 enemies on the screen at a time, as that is the only thing that wasn't as good as the original. Loved the mog mail elements and redone characters. Also has probably the best DS intro movie ever.

Rocket Slime 2 - As the sequel to the incredibly fun original, absolutely nothing is lost, except a great chance to use the stylus. Better yet, the highly unique tank gameplay makes it better than ever. Fantastic humor and charm; its one of the DS's top tier games and its one of the first original games on the system to deserve the title of future classic.

Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo Tales - Leave it to Square Enix to be one of the only companies who can follow up on Nintendo's trend of mini-game collections and make an excellent game out of it. From all the loving references to the series, to the absurd character of Mog, the Super Hero, to the great and tricky card game, its a good one. Some of the minigames aren't as good as others, but luckily most of them are pure gold and the game's got a lot more to accomplish than most mini-game collections.

Heroes of Mana - The first in the burgeoning RTS meets SRPG gameplay concepts, despite some control hiccups, this one was great. It really mixed the Mana world concepts with RTS ideas well. Better yet, knowing that AI and control features weren't a match for a typical RTS, its depth was found elsewhere and thus it had a completely different feel than a Western RTS. Also, a really long and involved game.

Front Mission 1st - a port of the PS2 remake with a few more enhancements, I feel like they totally didn't pay attention to the needs of a DS game with this one. The basic game is unchanged in that its a good SRPG and the enhancements make it even better, but a failure to make sure it plays comfortably on the DS means that some of the appeal is harder to get into. Should have had more of a graphical remake as well. So great game at the core, but a lazy job done on this version.

Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings - beside the somewhat iffy way the CG characters were animated, a feeling that it doesn't have enough side content and they could have done more to make gambits more flexible, this game's light-hearted plot was a welcome throwback to the whimsical nature of Final Fantasies of old, and as the second marriage of RTS and RPG gameplay, it surprisingly plays very differently from Heroes of Mana. Overall, a much better spin-off sequel than FFX-2 and still one of the most beautiful games on the system, with an incredible soundtrack.

Dragon Quest & Mario in Itadaki Street Special - Not much to surprise here, as usual, these are great multiplayer and singleplayer board games and this one is yet another well done game in that line, except made again fresh with boards and characters with a Mushroom Kingdom and Dragon Quest theme. This and the PS2 Final Fantasy & Dragon Quest game are probably the highest peak the series has reached. As always, the AI is surprisingly challenging, making for an infinitely replayable singleplayer game on top of the multiplayer.

Dragon Quest Monsters Joker - Mmmm, yummy. What the game loses in random dungeon flexibility and the total uniqueness of the caravan gameplay in the third title it makes up for with impressively 3D environments, great online tournaments and some awesome improvements to the base gameplay. Like Tactics A2, a game that can suck up hundreds of hours if you let it.

Shall We Listen to the Classics on the DS? - Yes, I bought one of Square Enix's ventures into new gaming territory. The idea of this one was that you listened to classical music and learned all about it, with visual aids and quizzes and the like. Except, only a small piece of the whole tune is played with information on how to buy the entire thing. It plays like an elaborate ad and feels like such a cheap ripoff that I feel bad just giving it attention in this paragraph. Since classical music largely in the public domain, why on earth did they do this? Also, since several of Square Enix's composers are famous, why did they not solicit their comments on the music? Koichi Sugiyama's comments especially would have been incredible. While its true that I learned an awful lot about classical music from it, seemed like a wasted opportunity. I want them to make it up by including full tunes and doing a 100 best songs/arrangements of Square Enix game.

Blooming Flowers DS Gardening Life - Now this may not please gardening maniacs or pros, but as a beginner who always wanted to know about this stuff, but never really tried, this is excellent. Thanks to this title, I finally was able to learn all the names of flowers and plants that I could only guess at before, know how to pick flowers and plants to grow in my house that I could afford to keep up and put in the right place and even start an herb garden for cooking (which amazingly, I started due to Cooking Navi, the DS is truly a monster). Excellent, easy to use, very handy and a fantastic introduction to gardening and plant knowledge. Why Square Enix got plants and flowers so very right and not music is beyond me though.

Yosumin - Did you guys know this is probably coming to you in the near future? Be very glad, as this game kicks ass. It's a puzzle game where you select smilie thingies of the same color to make a square and they disappear replaced by random other tiles. The basic rule is that you have to make a certain amount of colors disappear on each stage before time runs out. Play a free version of the game here: http://game.nifty.com/cs/catalog/game_freetitle/free2/cat... Of course as you play, new elements get introduced. The basic strategy of bigger squares netting you more points, but potentially wiping out other colors you could use to make a square is really well balanced and the DS game adds so many ways to play, that it's basically endless. Yosumin is the best puzzle game on the DS, period.

Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles: Ring of Fates - An enormous singleplayer improvement on the Gamecube game and an extremely deep action RPG. Playing dress up with weapons and armor makes for varied replay and the puzzles, environments, enemies and abilities make for a game with a constantly evolving feel. This is where the series started threatening the Tactics games as the best Final Fantasy spin offs.

Final Fantasy Tactics A2 - After the crack cocaine addiction of the first, comes another multi-hundred hour epic. There's just so much friggin detail and so many ideas packed into this one and its so damn well thought out and fun, it will take you ages to plumb all of the jobs, side elements and ways to play it. On the other hand, it just has so much to it, it makes you wonder how they can possibly think of anything new to put in another one. You can make a case of which type of game is better, Advance or the original Tactics, but this one just smacks them both down.

The World Ends With You - 100% fresh, with all sorts of innovative ideas, totally its own identity and a great setting. The only thing really wrong with it is that it can't seem to rise above the types of characters it also wants to criticize and is kind of infected with them. Other than that, its really hard in this day and age to make an RPG that be compared with anything else, but this one achieved that. It may not have sold billions, but it seems to have been influential on the RPG market, as Blazer Drive and Devil Survivor both seem to take after it.

Final Fantasy IV - Voice-acting, new abilities, a more Celtic soundtrack, far better difficulty that brings more of the game's true depth, I remember I used to dream that RPGs would be like this one day. I can't believe it came true. Since the Dragon Quest remakes are ports of already well-done remakes, this stands as Square's best remake on the system. One wishes they kept the bonus dungeons in some form though.

Dragon Quest IV: Chapters of the Chosen - I'm still pissed that they took out party chat for English players, but the fact that this game received another dose of polish and refinement makes it easily the best version of the game you can play. It helps that its always been better than most RPGs since its release as well.

Front Mission 2089: Border of Madness - As a port of the two cellphone games, this is sooo much better handled than Front Mission 1st. Appropriately adapted and enhanced for the DS, the only downer is the lack of original music, as they are all remixes of other Front Mission tunes. Still as a prequel to the first, everything but how the antagonists are drawn is strongly of interest to the Front Mission series' plotline and carried out well. The branching missions and plot lines are as ever, fun to compare and the hugely tweaked gameplay makes it one of the balanced games in the series. Also, its great to also see cameos from Front Mission 2, aka the best game in the series.

Nanashi no Game (The Game with No Name) - Okay, so its controls are little awkward, and the gameplay is super simple, and some of the plot details are "Eh?" worthy and there's too little content. But none of that matters when this game managed to completely frighten me to the bone more so than any console game with far more graphic power at its disposal can. I guess it just shows how incredibly strong Square Enix's graphic designers and scenario writers are that they were able to accomplish this on the weakest hardware of the generation. Also an excellent example of experimenting with the culture of games itself within the game and how to make a truly powerless protagonist without using violence, and using that to make things even scarier. Running away from the threat in this game once unnerved me so badly that I called a friend and asked to stay over at his house for the night.

Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride - Because of the somewhat lower quality music, whether this is the best version of the game is up for debate, but all the other enhancements make its gameplay the best version. One of the greatest RPG stories in the history of the genre just gets even better. As usual, if you've only played the original this is going to seem like such an incredibly thorough remake you won't believe they went through all the effort they did, but even the DS version shows a lot of attention to tweaking the game to be as perfect as it can be.

Sigma Harmonics - The very idea of making murder cases wherein the detective therein can solve them in different ways is fresh. Combining it with an outstanding setting and an interesting RPG part makes it even more so. Though its not as thoroughly thought out as Remnant, Vermilion, Yosumin or World Ends With You, its another great example of what terribly unique things Square Enix comes up with when they birth new franchises.

Chocobo and the Mysterious Dungeon + - I've not finished it yet, but its nice to play the Wii game on the DS where its easier to start and stop, and dare I say it, but the DS's quainter graphics and inability for the story to get in the way as much as the console game make it stronger (not to mention the fact that its got more content). Not nearly as strong a game as Shiren, but definitely the runner-up to the roguelike crown on the DS.

Chrono Trigger DS - I hate it when a classic gets updated and I don't feel everything is an improvement. I've always felt companies should offer a way to play the original in the same package. It's nice to see them listen for once. Because you can play the original in any way you want, you can ignore the albiet nice enhancements and make sure that nothing ruins them. Again, the DS version of a classic turns out to be the definitive one. So that's 4 (definitive: this, FFIV, DQIV & V) vs. 2 (FFIII and Front Mission 1st).

Valkyrie Profile: Covenant of the Plume - strategic, typically morbidly fascinating character storyline in Norse mythology trappings with hella unique ideas backing it up. It's 3 for 3 for this series in terms of not being able to tell which one is best and up there in my games of the year for 2008. Probably my favorite brand new DS game that Square Enix has made thus far.

Final Fantasy Tactics: War of the Lions - as much as this has some great enhancements, I can't help but feel the new cutscenes reduce some of the old charm unlike the way it was handled in FFIV. Also the new guest characters break up a little consistency of the world in a game where that's kind of an important thing. Nothing added is really all that necessary and the glitches are little annoying. It's nice to have it portable of course, but of all the ports they've done, this is the only one where I think the original version was unquestionably better. Though I guess its different for the English version, since people can now actually make much more sense of the story due to the cleaned up translation.

Final Fantasy - Yep, I've bought this game a total of five times and I'll probably keep buying it as long as they add new stuff, as the original is still one of my favorites in the whole series. The new dungeon in this one is better balanced than the ones they added before, but it still lowers the game's difficulty too much to make all these changes. The graphics have gotten unbelievably good looking, I can't believe the game has changed so much from the original. At the same time, I can't but feel that it's another case of it just being a different flavor of the original and not the definitive version, mostly because of the lacking challenge now.

Final Fantasy II - On the other hand, this one keeps getting better each time they remake it, its tweaked to play even better. Better yet, the new dungeon that makes more use of the unique keyword and item system is extremely clever and was totally awesome way of getting more use out of that system. Again, the even more vibrant graphics are appreciated. Definitely the definitive version, especially since the Dawn of Souls version finally was the one that brings it up to quality with the rest of the series.

Star Ocean: First Departure - Gorgeous, gorgeous new graphics engine make this game really stand out, but the decision to go 3D on the world map takes a little charm out of the original. Otherwise, the item creation getting beefed up to the standards of the second game and the new playable characters making it a little more in-depth totally improve the game so that it can stand toe-to-toe with the rest of the series now.

Star Ocean: The Second Story - Kind of lazy in comparison to all the other ports and remakes, but the extras are unequivocally good and since the original is one of my all time favorites anyway, and this is the definitive version, *shrugs* its good to play it again and discover once again why I was so hooked to it when it first came out. I love this game's flexibility. I always get addicted to the item creation and bonus bosses for hours.

Dragon Quest & Final Fantasy in Itadaki Street Special - it's basically a way to play the PS2 game on the go and as such, I only bought it for that reason so I could get rid of the PS2 version. If you omit the time I spent playing the PS2 version, which is brilliant, I played the DS one a lot more.

Valkyrie Profile: Lenneth - The basic game is pretty much unchanged, but I don't feel like any of the additions add any real value whatsoever and in a way kind of detract from the original's feel, but only a little bit really. It's basically just as good as the original version, and at the same time, it's Valkyrie Profile, one of the best games ever. More people need to play it and see why. So Square Enix's PSP remake/port grades stand at 3 (definitive: Itadaki Street, Second Story and Final Fantasy II) vs. 4 (other versions might be better: this, First Departure, Final Fantasy and War of the Lions).

Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core - Very addictive to clear out all the missions, the random element to battle keeps the game fresh, a great example of how to design a complex game to be portable and all the Final Fantasy VII cameos and references are very fun. That said, beside some well done references and Zack's characterization culminating in the great, great, GREAT ending, man does the story stink of overthinking some good and bad ideas and mixing it together into third rate anime shlock.

Final Fantasy: Dissidia - When this game wakes up in the morning, it showers itself in AWESOME. When it has to go the bathroom, it shits out pure, unspoiled AWESOME. When it speaks, the whole room shakes in fear at its great and exalted words o' AWESOME. Where it steps, flowers of AWESOME grow. If Final Fantasy: Dissidia looks at you, you will quake in righteous fear at the power of its all-encompassed AWESOME. Yeah, I've only had it for a few hours, but in that little amount of time I must conclude that Square Enix has completely bitch slapped the shit out of fighting game makers for not thinking creatively enough (even though they still make great games, if they thought like this the genre would not be losing popularity on consoles) and has designed the best character compilation fighter ever. The Vs. series and Smash Bros. lie in shame at the feet of this game. I love how even though its based entirely on old IP, it's gameplay is the freshest and most original I've seen for a fighter since the days of the original Smash Bros. and Bushido Blade. Dear God in heaven and alive is this game AWESOME. I've never played characters who play as uniquely as Exdeath, Onion Knight or Kekfa do in any other fighter. You can laugh at Nomura all you like for some of his absurdly bad character designs in comparison to Amano, but with games like Kingdom Hearts, The World Ends With You and this, he truly has inherited the Square and the Enix round of developers ability to bring innovation in the most unlikely ways. I'm not going to be surprised if this turns out to be my all time favorite PSP game or game of the year with more play.

Infinite Undiscovery - Hmmmm, like Radiata Stories, it seems like a game where most of its ideas don't get the chance to shine as much as they could, but its still a great game in spite of that. Even though it may have been their idea to engender roleplaying responses without it, one really wishes for easier and more control of the other characters. Otherwise, it's beautiful, got lots of unique ideas and I'm probably the only person in the world who absolutely loves the main character. I also like the, "Good lord, what have I got myself into?" FFVIII feel of the plot.

The Last Remnant - SaGa team! Already talked about how much I like this game despite the technical flaws in this thread. May the SaGa team live forever, creating games that don't hold you by the hand and play so very differently than other RPGs.

Dragon Quest Swords: The Masked Queen and The Tower of Mirrors - I thought this might be the first time ever that a Dragon Quest game, spin off or otherwise, wasn't AAA. Very fortunately, I turned out to be wrong. A wonderful mix of RPG and arcade gameplay that requires the best understanding of both worlds, I hope to see many sequels and games one day take advantage of the beautiful ideas present here. I especially love the great ingenuity of implementing the various shields and how very arcade-game-style high score replayable the game is.

Chocobo's Mysterious Dungeon: Maze of Forgotten Time - Great little roguelike with fantasy remixed Final Fantasy music, but the DS game, graphics aside is the better version. Wii betrayal! Duh duh duh! Also, although its at least charming with the classic Final Fantasy characters, everything else is up there with Crisis Core as most pathetically awful plot for Square Enix this generation. What on earth were they thinking with that green haired alien baby...thing?

Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles: My Life as a King - As I said before, Ring of Fates is where the series started challenging Tactics as the best spin-offs, and here is where that challenge became even stronger. A simulation of what its like to run an RPG kingdom, so very novel and its extremely well made in that the basic idea is taken and run with as far as it can go. Rockman 9 aside, this still feels like the best Wii Ware game yet.

Lord of Vermilion - Card-based arcade RPGs are a dime a dozen these days, especially in a fantasy setting. But leave it to Square Enix to totally knock it out of the park. Moreso than Last Remnant, World Ends With You, Nanashi no Game, Yosumin or Sigma Harmonics, this feels like their most completely well-roundedly accomplished new franchise. Easy to start, easy to play, but hard to master, I'm surprised they struck such a great balance for their second arcade game. One of those arcade games where you wish you could take the cabinet home, it's so pretty and sexy.

Dragon Quest Monsters: Battle Road - Addictive in small doses as a distillation of the Dragon Quest Monsters game, and always fun to see classic monsters rendered so lovingly, but I can't help but feel there's always a more they could do with it.

Final Fantasy IV: The After - I hate to tell you this people, but Before Crisis was a great game, even though it was only on mobile phones. I also hate to tell you that this is a great game too. Again, it's such a better a sequel than FFX-2 in all its unbelievable suck was. It is so much of what you could want with an extended stay in the world of FFIV and is so fun to revisit old areas under new storylines. Lately, it seems like so many RPGs are getting lost in meaningless additions to a battle system, but this game's Chrono Trigger-esque links are a truly meaningful and well-carried out idea. I also like the Shin Megami Tensei use of moon phases, which is especially appropriate considering the plot of the original. It's also really cool to be able to play the middle portion of the game, each character's chapter in order you please like the end of Final Fantasy VI. This is too high profile not to port to the PSP or DS, so hopefully, like Border of Madness, we see that happen. The last chapter is set to be released soon, so I can't wait to see how it ends. :)

Friends of Mana - a kind of low-scale MMO, where you live in one of three Mana villages and work with the villagers by raising pets to do various things to help out the villagers. As you and your friends work together to go on quests and scenarios of varying lengths, the Mana Tree grows, the happiness ranking goes up and more things become available to do. From fall harvesting to playing board games together to fishing to summer and spring events, it's like Animal Crossing meets an RPG with Dark Chronicle-like kitchen sink array of elements to take part in. Better yet, it's been out for nearly 2 years now and Square Enix is still sending new content out for it. Very charming to dip into casually while on a train over the weeks and months, especially because of the warm Mana-esque graphics.

Seiken Densetsu - The original updated in a more conventional manner, unlike Sword of Mana, while I love Sword of Mana for doing all sorts of cool new things with the concept of the original, I feel like losing the old puzzles was kind of a downer as well. So it's nice to have a second version like this that is more faithful to the original, but updates the graphics and music a great amount. I like both remakes for different reasons.

Dragon Quest Monster Friends - It's Dragon Quest Tamagotchi! Talk, pet and raise a dozen or so Dragon Quest monsters until they introduce you to your friends and you can then use them to replace your cell phone's convenient features in a Dragon Quest fashion. Ever fancied being woke up by a Dragon alarm in the morning? Well now you can! A must for a Dragon Quest nut like me for the small price. The dialogue is so awesomely funny in this game. (Did you know those lava rock monsters have to be careful of their allergies because if they sneeze, they might blow up? Man, it's gotta be a tough life to be a Dragon Quest monster.)

Crystal Guardians - Though I feel like for once, the graphics effects could be stronger, as you don't really get much of a feel for the difference in technique between the different jobs, this SRPG puzzle game is really cool. You basically pay gil to place different Final Fantasy Tactics jobs on a field with a road on it. Waves of monsters run down the road and based on how you placed your jobs, they will be taken care of or escape and steal crystals. The better you protect crystals the more you get to work with in leveling up your jobs and such. During waves you place new jobs and power them up accordingly to handle the new threat. New elements like special crystals, new jobs and summons appear as new versions of the game get released. Tricky and fun to replay different ones, it's really quite a cool idea and well done for what it is. Again, needs a port to one of the portable systems so everyone can experience it.

Demon Chain - An original puzzle game somewhat like Puzzle Quest. You have a grid of different colored icons and if you match up three icons or three colors, you can make them disappear and affect your abilities, such as powering up two types of skills, recovering HP or damaging the enemy. When you make one set disappear, at the bottom a marker shows a color or icon that if you next make disappear will result in a chain, at the end of chain the power up effects are even stronger. You fight against six opponents until you can reach a new level and then repeat the process. As you go on, you can change costumes for each character which gives them jobs with different skills. Not as deep as it might sound, but well balanced and quite fun.

Hokkaido Serial Killer Crimes: Disappearance in Ohotsk - A remake of the Famicom of one of the adventure games before Yuji Horii got huge with Dragon Quest. Since the original is very old, this complete remaking of the visuals and gameplay take it and make it playable for a new generation. A pretty good adventure game experience somewhat like the Jinguji Saburou games.

Ellark - Due to the destruction of the world below and the lack of precious resources, a floating ark in the sky called Ellark is trying to rebuild the world piece by piece by using magical books to create new worlds. You wake up without your memory wandering which book you came from. You travel from book to book from the ark, carrying out adventures in Dragon Quest RPG fashion, except it's an online RPG (not an MMO) that you play by e-mail by sending in new decisions each week and then preparing for the next week once you get the results. I don't feel like you can do quite enough in each week for the pace of the game, but its an interesting idea with lovely graphics and the little stories are fun to take part in, as is looking at your avatar as you outfit him or her with new armor and such to change their appearance. Reminds me of the old Sword of Hope Gameboy games."

♪☺♫☻ (cozwn), Thursday, 18 December 2008 14:10 (twelve years ago) link

getting to the bottom of that required no less than six page-downs

jamescobo, Thursday, 18 December 2008 17:15 (twelve years ago) link

I know, right? a forum post! crazy!

♪☻♫☺ (cozwn), Thursday, 18 December 2008 17:41 (twelve years ago) link

GameSpot UK: Why are you sick of Katamari Damacy?

Keita Takahashi: Wouldn't you be?

cankles, Thursday, 18 December 2008 18:25 (twelve years ago) link

Yesterday As I Was Enjoying The Sonic Demo For The 1,000,000 Time My Picture Started To Go All Black And Grainy I Wasn't Sure Of The Problem So I Went Back To The Dashboard And The Screen Was Fine Apart From My Avatar That Was Also Grainy. So I Decided To Turn Off My Xbox And Switch It Back On. But When I Switched It Back On I Got 1 Red Ring And On The Screen Saying In Loads Of Diffrent Languages System Error.

I Also Got A Code At The Bottom Of The Screen Saying E 74. So I Went To Xbox.com And Went To Find Out What The Problem Was. The Only Help They Could Give Me Was Unplug Everything And Plug It All Back In. So I Did. Same Screen Came Up And I Still Had One Red Ring. It Also Said It Could Be A Problem With A Bit Of Hardware. Customer Support Was No Help The Robot Gave Me The Same Information. But I Found If I Unplug The Wire That Goes 2 The Back Of My TV Then The Red Quadrent Does Not Come Up.

Could This Have Any Thing 2 Do Wif It?

Cheers

when dont't you connect and im flying darkness (cozwn), Saturday, 20 December 2008 17:35 (twelve years ago) link

man, it must be onerous to feel compelled to capitalize like that. plus you can never get an iphone!

jamescobo, Saturday, 20 December 2008 18:04 (twelve years ago) link

this is some pretty enraging shit: http://www.lrb.co.uk/v31/n01/lanc01_.html

the curious case of poster burt_stanton (Lamp), Monday, 22 December 2008 05:55 (twelve years ago) link

i mean loldon review of books lol john lanchester lol this isnt a viditorial lol who cares but, i mean seriously: "[Bioshock] was a huge hit, and I have yet to encounter anyone who has ever heard of it." O RLY

the curious case of poster burt_stanton (Lamp), Monday, 22 December 2008 05:58 (twelve years ago) link

"Older media have largely abandoned the idea that difficulty is a virtue; if I had to name one high-cultural notion that had died in my adult lifetime, it would be the idea that difficulty is artistically desirable. It’s a bit of an irony that difficulty thrives in the newest medium of all."

difficulty in meaning, reading or understanding /= difficulty of execution, or playing

OɔIXEW (cozwn), Monday, 22 December 2008 11:36 (twelve years ago) link

btw the mental image of john lanchester hunched over a controller is a bit unbearable

http://www.smh.com.au/ffximage/2007/07/13/JL_070713111214469_wideweb__300x375.jpg
"fuckin tubular!"

OɔIXEW (cozwn), Monday, 22 December 2008 11:47 (twelve years ago) link

haha I liked that article, I didn't really disagree with anything in it

TOMBOT, Monday, 22 December 2008 14:13 (twelve years ago) link

i agree with some of his assertions and disagree with others but concluding with such a hands-in-pockets, shoulder-shrugging, bet-hedger is pretty lame. "are games art? well, not now, probably, with some exceptions but it's likely they might be, in the future, probably."

and the whole thing is really lazily argued and glib and inept esp when he's talking about games and the way they function. he invokes poole but doesn't really understand him or try considering the ramifications of routine as ritual, for example. i actually think he's right about the second way in which games can become art but that point deserves to be made better, with more clarity and rigour and generosity and less emphasis on mechanics.

i'm dreaming of a white xmas btw (Lamp), Monday, 22 December 2008 16:15 (twelve years ago) link

the way I read it, his main point was that we at least need to be having the conversation (something that gets brought up every year by different people, but his version was enjoyable enough that I actually read it) and paying attention to some of these questions - he starts off with $$$, which should tell you right away he's not trying to find a big answer in this piece.

TOMBOT, Monday, 22 December 2008 16:19 (twelve years ago) link

i think lanchester tries to tell ppl reading the lrb "hey, video games are a thing now, here's why" and then he tries to answer the "is it art?" qn. and it feels to me like he's doing the former to justify even asking the latter which gets my hackles up, and maybe it shouldn't. but that's such a big, important question to some many ppl in the industry, not just me, that i can't help but feel he's not equipped to answer it.

also the other big flaw, and i think it leads from his relative unfamiliarity with the medium, is that he keeps complaining about sequels and corporations and the money-men and yet gives no indication of playing anything other than "blockbuster" releases himself. its fair play to say that considerations of developers and others aren't important to the end result but lanchester tries to have it both ways here sating "that nothing within a world so fully made by a corporation can be truly creative" and then refusing to engage with the desires motivating "corporate" designers.

ugh i can tl;dr about this for hours but the article bothered me which is probably lame but there it is

i'm dreaming of a white xmas btw (Lamp), Monday, 22 December 2008 16:25 (twelve years ago) link

i'm such an illiterate

give the gift of gabbneb (Lamp), Monday, 22 December 2008 18:01 (twelve years ago) link

That's President Cheezfish to you.

Draymond is "Mr Dumpy" (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 4 May 2021 12:21 (five months ago) link

love it

Nhex, Tuesday, 4 May 2021 22:22 (five months ago) link

one month passes...

This was fascinating and sent me down several rabbit holes: https://if50.substack.com/p/1992-silverwolf

emil.y, Friday, 4 June 2021 16:40 (four months ago) link

wow that is interesting

na (NA), Friday, 4 June 2021 16:59 (four months ago) link

several rabbit holes

you weren't kidding. great article

diamonddave85​​ (diamonddave85), Friday, 4 June 2021 18:31 (four months ago) link

Yeah, I had to stop myself from going overboard with searching the femme-fantasy 'discipline and punish' internet archive, not sure my browser history wants too much of that. It's a shame that so much of it wound up being retrogressive, I was really hoping for a feminist text adventure utopia story.

emil.y, Friday, 4 June 2021 18:52 (four months ago) link

Fascinating article, love seeing weird bits of history unearthed like that. Anyone here alive/aware of this scene when they were around?

Nhex, Saturday, 5 June 2021 01:20 (four months ago) link

i used PAW a lot, there were a lot of PAW based games around at the time, most of them not very good. but the only one i recognise by name in the article was Very Big Cave Adventure.

koogs, Saturday, 5 June 2021 05:32 (four months ago) link

further down the rabbithole

https://i.imgur.com/TEOlI1Y.png

diamonddave85​​ (diamonddave85), Saturday, 5 June 2021 21:36 (four months ago) link

Whaaaaat?

emil.y, Saturday, 5 June 2021 22:40 (four months ago) link

lol

ciderpress, Sunday, 6 June 2021 03:03 (four months ago) link

what the

eisimpleir (crüt), Sunday, 6 June 2021 12:53 (four months ago) link

Holy shit at that article, not just for its mystery and weirdness, but for suddenly flashing me back to the early '80s when I was in a gifted and talented program called LEEP, which stood for ... learning experience enrichment program? Something like that. And I recall it had a rudimentary computer lab where we could play text based games like Zork and something else about a haunted house which I don't think I've thought about ever since.

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 10 June 2021 00:48 (four months ago) link

two months pass...

It's a video, but this Dunkey essay on video game pricing makes some good points/observations.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zvPkAYT6B1Q

I appreciate the implicit acknowledgment that even the best, most classic video games eventually face some form of forced obsolescence. Also that value is such a weirdly subjective thing, and pricing today is almost arbitrary.

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 16 August 2021 18:22 (two months ago) link

three weeks pass...

Aristasia has snuck up on me again. i've been learning japanese and watching some videos from a "virtual android sensei" named "cure dolly" (hxxps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pSvH9vH60Ig). once you get over the creepiness and bad production, there's actually some good info in there.

i was curious who she was and did some digging and found out that she was some mother-earth lesbian and i was like ok i'm 100% down with this now. i even described her to my partner as "like the woman from that spanking cult with the commodore 64 but without the spanking."

well it turns out that cure dolly is likely miss martindale

diamonddave85​​ (diamonddave85), Friday, 10 September 2021 03:02 (one month ago) link

Wow! Curiouser and curiouser.

I've been slowly dipping in to the rest of the articles in Aaron Reed's series (as he is slowly rolling them out over the year), and honestly I'd recommend them all. I've played quite a few of the games so there is definitely an element of nostalgic fondness, but I genuinely think they're good overviews, too.

https://if50.substack.com/people/21082121-aaron-a-reed

emil.y, Friday, 10 September 2021 15:33 (one month ago) link

i don't recognize most of these titles, but THIS ONE:

A Mind Forever Voyaging (1985)

Pops out at me in a really strange way. like an early memory or something? maybe not. they just seem like an old memory somehow. anyone played it?

"HYYOOOOOOONK!" is the sound I make (Karl Malone), Friday, 10 September 2021 21:01 (one month ago) link

or possibly just a game that an ilxor (maybe emil.y!) raved about years ago here, i'm not sure :)

"HYYOOOOOOONK!" is the sound I make (Karl Malone), Friday, 10 September 2021 21:01 (one month ago) link

i want to read all of those articles, but i also want to play most of those games (esp. a mind forever voyaging). but i never get around to either :(

diamonddave85​​ (diamonddave85), Friday, 10 September 2021 21:12 (one month ago) link

is it a kind of standout among standouts of the genre? perhaps i just came across it in a "best of" kind of list. it's just...a REALLY good name for a game, immediately enticing

"HYYOOOOOOONK!" is the sound I make (Karl Malone), Friday, 10 September 2021 21:14 (one month ago) link

i've played it a bit, it's really clever and well done, especially for it's age

cheesons to be rearful (Noodle Vague), Friday, 10 September 2021 21:29 (one month ago) link

emil.y is probably the authority here but as for me, i saw it on a "best of" list and it piqued my interest (in no small part due to the awesome name)

diamonddave85​​ (diamonddave85), Friday, 10 September 2021 21:30 (one month ago) link

I have a interactive fiction app called Frotz on iOS, and you can use it to download titles like A Mind Forever Voyaging from the IFDB with it. It's a good way to go into them I think.

reggae mike love (polyphonic), Friday, 10 September 2021 21:32 (one month ago) link

yeah it's still pretty easy to play a lot of the IF classics from back then

cheesons to be rearful (Noodle Vague), Friday, 10 September 2021 21:38 (one month ago) link

problem is i'm not as patient as i was back in the 80s

cheesons to be rearful (Noodle Vague), Friday, 10 September 2021 21:38 (one month ago) link

It's definitely one of the best regarded of the old guard of IF, and stands up well today. I'd be surprised if I've not mentioned it before, but I'm not sure if I would have raved about it - it has incredibly interesting ideas but in my memory I didn't get that far into it, and has been on a mental "to revisit" list for a while.

It had some great promo materials, too:

https://www.filfre.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/joybooth.jpg

emil.y, Friday, 10 September 2021 21:39 (one month ago) link

problem is i'm not as patient as i was back in the 80s

― cheesons to be rearful (Noodle Vague)

I feel like a philistine but I've never been able to properly appreciate the really old games like Zork. Parsers are far too small, the world isn't interactive enough, they're too unforgiving on the cruelty scale, hand-mapping is required - pah!

emil.y, Friday, 10 September 2021 21:44 (one month ago) link

mordy likes amfv a lot iirc

it is often cited as a masterpiece yeah which is something it is openly attempting to be-- formalists may prefer a tight little knot like spellbreaker or one of the mysteries; i bet it's been argued that the austere suspended does the interplay between top-level you-are-a-menu and bottom-level get-keycard-go-west better than amfv (which also does this); many in search of deliberate masterpieces may prefer trinity anyway. i think about it (amfv) all the time tho, certainly more than any of those-- has a v nicely paced grim arc and uses the medium for emotional effect in ways that feel v natural. be sure to read the accompanying short story before beginning play lol

difficult listening hour, Friday, 10 September 2021 22:00 (one month ago) link

I guess I'm the Polygon simp now who'll share their videos on stuff at any opportunity, even as the actual writing on the site gets worse and worse, but truly this is a really fun video:

https://www.polygon.com/videos/22633055/weird-french-adventure-games-polygon-video

Daniel_Rf, Monday, 20 September 2021 10:24 (one month ago) link

That was good. I don't think I knew anything about any of that.

Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 20 September 2021 18:20 (one month ago) link

well done, good video
also agree that the site writing has been getting worse sadly

Nhex, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 05:09 (one month ago) link

it's all bad. there's not enough news to warrant covering 40 things a day. plus, it's one of those sites that look like this:

https://i.imgur.com/ASXJyY7.png

typo punishment #4: it feels better to me to be like there, this (Karl Malone), Tuesday, 21 September 2021 05:10 (one month ago) link

i don't really have a better idea and i'm not a designer but i recognize when i hate looking at the internet

typo punishment #4: it feels better to me to be like there, this (Karl Malone), Tuesday, 21 September 2021 05:11 (one month ago) link

Yeah, way it's shaken out is all the cool ppl that made me like the site have either left or are in the video team and the writing's been left to ppl with takes like "is Ace Attorney Chronicles a convincing critique of British imperialism?".

Daniel_Rf, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 09:40 (one month ago) link

Part of me wonders if they're straight-up clickbaiting the 'gaters with that stuff

Nhex, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 12:39 (one month ago) link

Eh, I think it's done earnestly. It's just that while I think "keep politics out of my culture!" is a fundamentally ridiculous stance to take, expecting a fun little adventure game to double as the definitive historical analysis of British imperialism is also, erhm, somewhat unhinged.

Daniel_Rf, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 13:00 (one month ago) link

i think it's a strength of that game that it goes hard on that stuff! i know what you're getting at though, there's a lot of headlines like that that are way more of a stretch

ciderpress, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 13:34 (one month ago) link

yeah the problem is too many gaming articles about the politics of games

look on my guacs, ye mighty, and dis pear (Noodle Vague), Tuesday, 21 September 2021 16:28 (one month ago) link

I don't think any of the stuff we're discussing here re: Polygon's output is really about "the politics of games", tbh.

Daniel_Rf, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 17:12 (one month ago) link

as in, holding tight to even the slightest patina of progressiveness in a game and then discussing the whole thing solely through that lens is not really analysing its politics in any meaningful way

Daniel_Rf, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 17:17 (one month ago) link

i just don't think critical writing has to be a tight mathematical thesis where you get to the QED, what's wrong with riffing on whimsy?

look on my guacs, ye mighty, and dis pear (Noodle Vague), Tuesday, 21 September 2021 17:19 (one month ago) link

there's many ways that a piece of writing can be bad but i don't think the tenuousness of its conceits is one of them

look on my guacs, ye mighty, and dis pear (Noodle Vague), Tuesday, 21 September 2021 17:21 (one month ago) link

"Riffing on whimsy" is p much the opposite of what I'm discussing here, tho - finding a political hook for a game and discussing how well it lives up to that hook is very much a formula! And when that formula gets adopted as the main way to write about p much anything you're going to be leaving out a lot of interesting stuff.

Like I'd be totally down for, say, an article that actually goes deep into British imperial history based on some Ace Attorney plot points but that's not what that is.

Daniel_Rf, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 17:26 (one month ago) link

With Polygon, there's so much of this kind of output, and some of it fairly half-assed, that I do wonder if the editor is just shrugging their shoulders saying "thoughtful... enough?" It's just in the games writing, it's like everything from comic book hot takes or a middling streaming movie review every week.

As said, they have to make filler content for everyday of the week...

Nhex, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 17:56 (one month ago) link

Like maybe they're still trying, or maybe they're just buzzfeed, I don't know anymore

Nhex, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 17:56 (one month ago) link

overall tiring trend in media of the phrase "all art is political" collapsing from meaning "all art has a political dimension" to "all art must be analyzed based on whether it has Good or Bad politics"

oiocha, Tuesday, 21 September 2021 17:59 (one month ago) link

What makes it sadder is that when Polygon was trying to be weirder apparently that just didn't bring in enough money.

Gotta say they still occasionally do good work, tho: Kazuma Hashimoto is always worth reading, a queer Japanese voice who can contextualise stuff in Japanese culture from that pov. Not video games at all, but I really enjoyed Kendra James' memoir piece on being in an Ornaldo Bloomps fan community, too.

Daniel_Rf, Wednesday, 22 September 2021 10:02 (one month ago) link


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