Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Kirby's Epic Yarn Review! Currently playing new Naruto, Fallout and soon Vanquish

        Kirby's Epic Yarn is a great take on the classic 2d formula. I'd like to note i 100%ed this game entirely with a friend doing coop.We spent around 10ish hours 100%ing the game. Dreamland is threatened by Yin-Yarn an evil yarn magician and to distract Kirby, Yin-Yarn throws Kirby into Patch land which was torn into six pieces. First of all, if i took a shot for every time they said 'yarn' id have passed out an hour into the game. Kirby is tasked with stitching back together the Yarn land with Prince Fluff and finding a way back to Dreamland.

        Unlike other Kirby games, you won't be sucking up your enemies. Instead, you use your yarn-self to grab the yarn enemies and rip them apart them or ravel them into a yarn ball to throw them at other yarn enemies. Its pretty ridiculous, but its loads of fun. The level design was fantastic and bosses were very intuitive making great use of the yarn mechanics. 

        The game is beautiful, for a Wii game, taking on a very creative yarn-styled look. The game is a charm to look at and is quite adorable. The narrator that told the story kind of like a Curious George episode was kind of silly but it worked. There was one underwater level with a bunch of eels that had abysmal slowdown that made the game practically unplayable. I don't know if it was because of it being coop or what. The rest of the game ran quite nicely. 

       It's a great Kirby game i recommend for just about anyone. If you are a fan of Kirby, platforming or just plain fun definitely pick up this game. 

    +Adorable, well done art style
    +Great traditional 2d game play with the 'yarn' twist

    -If you don't like collecting everything it could be extremely short
    -Nothing else, its great

Score 4.5/5

Friday, October 15, 2010

Atelier Rorona Review! *Updated* Kirby's Epic Yarn review coming soon!

      The PS3 exclusive Atelier Rorona tells the story of Rorona, a young girl working to save her master Astrid's alchemy shop. The Kingdom of Arland informs her that they are to close down the shop unless she can complete 12 tasks assigned to her. Thats about all you'll be doing in this JRPG made by Gust. It's the 10th game in the Atelier Iris series and if you've played any of the previous ones, the alchemy mechanics will seem familiar.

      The game is entirely time based. Nearly everything costs precious 'days' including alchemy and gathering ingredients outside town. The main aspect and challenge of the game is time management. You'll spend most of your time running around Arland accepting tasks from various NPCs. Occasionally you will have to venture outside the kingdom walls to gather ingredients needed to complete the townspeople's tasks and to complete the assignments. The battle system is standard turn based, its quite simplified from previous Atelier Iris games in that there are only 4 stats: HP, Attack, Defense, Speed. HP is used for staying alive and for casting abilities.

      The graphics aren't mind blowing and certainly don't tax the PS3's hardware. Nicely done cel-shaded graphics are pleasing to the eye but at times animation is certainly lacking. It isn't short of issues, however, as during my 24 hour play through my game froze twice. This was exceedingly frustrating because both times i had been gathering outside town, where you can't save, for quite a while. Inventory management is a pain in the ass, as well. While gathering you can hold a maximum of 60 items, which is not nearly enough. When in the workshop you have access to a container which can hold a maximum of 999 items. While this seems like a lot, hours before the game ended i filled up my container and spent a lot of time going through it and discarding items I didn't think I would need. The game is way over simplified compared to the other Atelier Iris games which was disappointing but it didn't stop me from enjoying it. There are fewer ingredients, the alchemy system is simpler and the battle system is as simple as it gets.

       The characters are typical JRPG fare most of which you have seen the archetypes of elsewhere. The game can be funny at times as long as you don't take it too seriously. The english voice acting is horrid but thankfully they include a japanese option.

       There are 4 endings you can obtain: true, good, normal, bad. While completing the 12 assignments given to you by the king you can also do tasks for the citizens of Arland to raise your trust level. If you complete all assignments and have greater than or equal to 80% trust rating you will get the true ending. I managed to finish the game with the true ending and maxed a few of my friends but I made good use of having multiple saves and abused tasks with item requirements that I could buy from the store. 

   Overall, i enjoyed my time with the game and recomend it if you enjoy JRPGs, liked the previous Atelier Iris games and don't mind paying the slightly overpriced 60$ for it. It has its issues but its worth playing through.

       +Nice cel-shaded graphics making it look very anime-like.
       +Time management and alchemy is both addicting and rewarding
      -Random freezing
      -English VA is awful practically forcing Japanese
      -True ending can be difficult for some which is frustrating after spending so much time
      -Time management aspect isn't for everyone.

Score 3/5

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Hype fall. Atelier Rorona review coming soon

Gonna be an awesome fall with amazing games coming out. A short list of games i'm buying are:
10/17/10 Kirby's Epic Yarn
10/19/10 Gothic 4
10/19/10 Fallout: New Vegas
10/19/10 Vanquish
10/19/10 Naruto Shippuden: ultimate ninja storm 2
10/26/10 Fable 3
11/1/10  Patapon 3
11/2/10 god of war ghost of sparta
11/2/10 fist of the north star
11/2/10 gran turismo 5 (delayed)
11/9/10 cod: black ops
11/9/10 new xbox controller
11/16/10 Assassin's Creed Brotherhood
11/16/10 Sonic colors
11/21/10 donkey kong country returns
11/23/10 splatterhouse
11/30/10 epic mickey

Its gonna be a great fall.
Most hype games are going to be Kirby, Fallout, Vanquish, Fable 3, black ops, assassins creed and donkey kong. What games are you buying?