Retro Game Friday: Star Fox Command

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering a game I frequently forget exists. It’s Star Fox Command!

Plot Synopsis: The planet Venom’s forces were all but destroyed, and there is thought to be peace. This is not to be, however, as a race of beings known as the Anglar rise from the acidic oceans of Venom, thought to be unable to support life. The leader of the Anglar plans on destroying the Lylat system, which Fox McCloud and crew set out to save. The Star Fox team has broken up, but re-assembles to fight the threat…

Plot: The plot was not that great, and even more frustrating is that there is no true ending to the plot despite there being nine different endings. Unfortunately for Command the gameplay wasn’t enough to save it.

Gameplay: The gameplay was okay, but what would have been okay with just standard Star Fox gameplay was mired by the fact that you had to plot your flight path using the touchscreen of the DS. This feature was supposed to add strategy, but to me it was all pointless gimmicks made to a perfectly okay game in order to highlight the DS’s touch screen technology.

Characters: What was unusual for this game was the fact that it allowed the player to play as 14 different characters, ranging from Fox to Panther from Star Wolf.

Overall: A less than spectacular game marred by the unnecessary focus on the touch screen.

For those who like: Star Fox, Gimmicks.

Not for those who don’t like: Either of the above.

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Video Game Tuesday: Destiny 2’s Seasons Aren’t Enough

This week for Video Game Tuesday I’m talking about why Bungie’s plans for the futures aren’t what players are looking for. It’s why Destiny 2’s Seasons Aren’t Enough!

Seasons?: If you hadn’t heard, Destiny 2 will have “Seasons” which at the beginning of a new will reset many things like Clan Progress, Reputation Rewards, and Vendor Stocks. Frankly while this is a step in the right direction, it’s not nearly enough. I have absolutely no faith that Bungie will be able to keep up with a real full expansion’s worth of content every 3 months, which is the suggested time frame of each Destiny 2 Season. They are supposed to be bringing in outside help, but even with that I have no trust that they’ll be able to bring something like The Taken King every 3 months. However that’s the sort of thing they promised prior to launch.

As things stand now, we probably won’t be getting a new raid in The Curse of Osiris expansion that will launch on December 5th. That single thing being absent is already a failure in many gamer’s eyes as the only real challenging content was the raids, not that the Leviathan Raid is all that hard compared to some actual MMO hardcore encounters. Many of my friends who were excited about Destiny 2, have already stopped playing simply because there’s no point in doing things like Prestige Raids or Nightfalls, the gear rewards in such things is pitifully lacking. The fact that it’s mere vanity isn’t worth the effort in getting all of us together to do the raid. They might be adding things like Prestige Lost Sectors (How?), or Flashpoints. However these sort of stopgap measures are just that, stopgaps. It won’t be enough to keep the player base interested in the game and they’ll move onto other games and forget all about Destiny 2.

So what can they do?: I don’t know, but Seasons aren’t enough at all. Maybe we could actually get to use our ships in real gameplay like a dogfight instead of having them just be loading screen vanity.  Maybe they can add Sparrow Racing as a weekly event like Trials. But with just Seasons it’s painfully obvious that they’re not looking out for the players best interests.

That’s it for this week’s Video Game Tuesday. What do you want to see Bungie add every three months to the game? Leave your answers in the comments below!

Retro Game Friday: Battlefield 1942

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering the first entry in a series that is incredibly popular now. It’s Battlefield 1942!

Plot Synopsis: Look up World War II.

Gameplay: This was a pretty revolutionary game at the time, as it had a massive amount of players that could play in a single match at one time. 64 players was pretty amazing. As for the rest of the gameplay it follows the now standard Battlefield formula of capturing locations and holding the majority of them to slowly whittle away the enemies spawn tickets which let an enemy respawn upon death. 1942 also allowed players to pilot various vehicles ranging from Jeeps to bombers. This made the matches get really insane when you had all 64 players playing.

Art: The art has aged poorly, but that’s to be expect of a 3D game.

Music: I don’t remember a whit, I was having too much fun gaming with my friend online.

Overall: It’s might be worth a try if you can get a free copy, but I’m pretty sure the servers for online play are down now so it’s not really worth spending any money on this.

For those who like: FPS, Military Games, World War II, Vehicular Mayhem.

Not for those who don’t like: Any of the above.

Video Game Tuesday: Why Ultimate Coil Should Be The Gold Standard

This week for Video Game Tuesday I’m talking about the success of Final Fantasy XIV’s latest hardcore encounter. It’s Why Ultimate Coil Should Be The Gold Standard!

Ultimate Coil?: The Unending Coil of Bahamut (Ultimate) is the latest hardcore fight in Final Fantasy XIV. To even enter Ultimate Coil it requires the player to clear the Savage version of Omega Deltascape V4 (The Exdeath Fight). Plenty of players have yet to even clear that fight, and as of the time writing this post (9 days after the release of the encounter) there still hasn’t been a clear of Ultimate Coil. That being said there are no new mechanics to the encounter which features Twintania the boss of Turn 5, Nael the boss of Turn 9 and Bahamut the boss of Turn 13. It’s merely just incredibly unforgiving and hard. If you make a single mistake it almost assuredly will lead to a wipe. This is the type of content that should be present in every MMO out there, the type that is so hard to complete it takes people weeks or months to complete.

The actual fight is said to last for about 20 minutes in total, not terribly long compared to past Square Enix bosses like the 18 hour boss fight of XI’s Pandemonium Warden. People have yet to complete this fight and I find that fact incredibly amazing. There are no bullshit glitches (Crota I’m looking at you, you teleporting bastard), no unknown mechanics, just pure difficulty. The first group to clear this encounter will probably go down in gaming history as some of the best gamers in gaming history. They’ll be up there with the likes of Mionee, a World of Warcraft player who has been soloing the hardest encounters in the game by herself for years.

So Gold Standard?: Yea, if other developers can adopt this sort of fight to their own games it would mean a lot for the hardcore players. Imagine doing a boss fight in Destiny where you not only took on Oryx, but had to deal with Atheon and Crota with all their mechanics at the same time. It’d be insane, heartpounding and a ridiculous bragging point if you and your friends could actually complete such an encounter. Ultimate Coil has a gear reward that matches the same you’d get from V4 Savage, with just an extra materia slot, so for the most part it’s only there for bragging rights, but that isn’t a small thing.

That’s it for this week’s Video Game Tuesday! Do you want to have the hardcore boss fights in your games be like Ultimate Coil, where you just have to be nearly perfect in execution to succeed? Leave your answers in the comments below!

Edited on 11/4: The Unending Coil of Bahamut (Ultimate) was beaten 12 days and 2 hours after release on 11/4/2017.

Retro Game Friday: Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood

Hey all I’m back to daily posts, and it’s starting back up with Retro Game Friday. It’s all about Assassin’s Creed Brotherhood!

Plot Synopsis: Desmond’s story continues where it left off, in 2012. After escaping the Templars’ attack at the end of Assassin’s Creed II, Desmond Miles, Lucy Stillman, Rebecca Crane, and Shaun Hastings flee to Monteriggioni, establishing a new hideout in the ruins of the Villa Auditore. After restoring the electricity in the old tunnels under the villa, the player once again takes control of Ezio Auditore through Desmond’s genetic memory, using the Animus 2.0 (which is the game’s memory interface). Their mission is to find the Apple of Eden, an important and mysterious artifact that could prevent the impending disaster that is coming in that same year, believed to be perpetrated by the Templars…

Plot: The plot of Brotherhood was pretty amazing, and while it’s the first game which featured the same person as the main character in the past, it wasn’t bad at all. Frankly I really enjoyed the plot of Brotherhood, although it’s not quite as good as ACII, for reasons I won’t name due to spoilers.

Gameplay: This plays quite a bit like ACII, although it included use of horses inside Rome and added the Brotherhood function, which was more than a bit overpowered if you took the time to level the members up as soon as possible. Doing so would allow you to pretty much empty entire missions of guards by whistling for an assassin to take each of them out, which they would do flawlessly after getting to the max rank.

Characters: While many characters re-appear from prior games, I still think that Da Vinci was the best side character in the entire game.

Art: The art has aged, however good news for those who haven’t played Brotherhood is that it along with ACII and Revelations were remastered for HD quite recently for the latest generation of consoles.

Overall: A solid entry in the series, although the Brotherhood functions were more than a bit overpowered.

Video Game Tuesday: Changes Necessary in Destiny 2

This week for Video Game Tuesday I’m talking about some things that need to happen in Bungie’s Sci-Fi Shooter. It’s Changes Necessary in Destiny 2!

Storage Space: Why they felt the need to limit themselves to only allowing you to get 100k Glimmer, 50 Modifications and 50 Shaders is beyond me. You’d have thought they would have learned their lesson from the first game with having limited space in the Vault. Hell even the 200 spaces in the Vault aren’t going to be nearly enough for the entirety of the game if it has even just one Taken King Equivalent, let alone a Rise of Iron. As it is you don’t have enough space to have a copy of every type of Modification. Why? That’s a stupid design choice.

Transmat Effects: I like that they allow you to change the transmat effect, one of my Raiding buddies has the Cabal drop pod effect, which always causes me to jump when Isee it because I’ve died way too often to them landing on me. However the fact that they are one time use only is beyond stupid. Frankly some of the effects are really cool and I don’t want to have to not use a new ship I get if I don’t have a copy of the effect I want.

Hell even the one time use on Shaders is stupid in my opinion I don’t particularly want to run the raid every time I want to use the Raid Shader on a new gun. . I also miss my Double Banshee Shader from Destiny 1 and my Outrageous Fortune and Agonarch Karve ships.

There are other things like the various reputation vendors should only pulse on the map when you have sufficient tokens to get the next package, but the above two (three if you count Shaders) things are my biggest pet peeves.

That’s it for this week’s Video Game Tuesday. Any changes you want to see made in the next few weeks to make Destiny 2 better? Leave your answers in the comments below.

Retro Game Friday: Black & White 2

This week for Retro Game Friday I’m covering the sequel to one of my favorite games. It’s Black & White 2!

Plot Synopsis: The player is called to the world from a “pure prayer” and thus comes upon a scene of a Greek city being devastated by a huge Aztec army. After the player saves a certain number of people, their people are transported to a new land with a handful of refugee worshipers, the player must re-establish a power base from which to eventually defeat the Aztec empire.

Plot: The plot was okay, but really the meat of the game was always in the gameplay.

Gameplay: Like in the first game you could evil or good, or more neutral. Frankly I enjoyed the more neutral path as I got to make my populace happy, but was an absolute terror to my enemies. One of my favorite tactics was to have my creature toss corpses into enemy areas to cause chaos. Yeah I’m particularly evil in that manner, but frankly it was effective as hell.

Art: The art is much improved from the first, but it still has aged poorly. It’s better, but you can really tell how old the game is (12 years). There are probably mods out there to improve it if you wanted to play the game now.

Music: I honestly don’t remember much of it.

Overall: A great sequel.