general gaming · review · yearly recap

[2017 Recap & Review] Week 2 – Non-Otome Game Reviews

This year I’ll be doing the yearly recap & review posts a bit differently, I’ll be doing separate posts for each review subject so it’ll be posted for each week in December and finally doing an overall recap post at the end of the month.

I’m splitting things up because I won’t be available to blog during late November/whole of December as I’ll be overseas with no internet access, or at least no regular access.

This week I’ll be recapping and reviewing the general games aka non-otome games that I’ve played in 2017.


2017 Games Recap (non-otome)


I’ve been focusing more on non-otome games this year, mainly for a palette cleanser seeing that I’ve been run dry/jaded from playing a lot of otome games that are kinda “meh”.

Sorry that I haven’t been focusing on otome games this year, I truly apologise. It’s just once you get jaded from stuff you just can’t perform/review things properly, then again I’ve been too spooked to even write a lot of otome game reviews.

Anyway, here’s what I’ve been playing in 2017 and what I think about them.

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Nier Automata

nierautomata

I enjoyed this game. It’s got the smooth and satisfying combat from Platinum Games and the amazing narrative from the mind of Yoko Taro. Glad they got the composer back from the first Nier, there soundtrack is so good and sometimes even calming. Hell, I bought the soundtrack, that’s how much I loved it.

I can’t express how much I love this game. It helped me through a tough time that happened earlier this year. Made me cry a couple of times, mainly because some of the later bits hit home for me, especially what was happening during the time. It really helped me keep my mind off things and kept me sane but also helped me have epiphanies (this game is pretty nihilistic, prolly not the best thing for a person going through loss to play). I’d rather not spoil it but I’d suggest maybe giving it a go.

Like to thank the team behind Nier Automata for making such a good game, it was a wonderful collaboration between Platinum Games, Square Enix and Yoko Taro. I really hope they keep giving Yoko Taro a good team like this so he can go wild with his ideas.

Looking forward to another game if they do make one.

Persona 5

persona5

After years of waiting for this game to release and eventually come to the West, we finally get it and y’know what…. it was ok. As for style and looks go, Persona 5 went up and beyond. I’m glad they went a bit back to their roots with demon negotiation (featured in most SMT games and persona 1 & 2), really glad that they’ve improved their 3D graphics–huge improvement in terms of character models and persona/demon models.

However it wasn’t exactly what I wanted from it. After spending 170+ hours, playing it almost 24/7 for 2 weeks or so after release, I felt kinda empty. Some of the twists and plot I could see from a mile away. With the plot for Persona 5, if you played Persona 3 and 4 you prolly know all the tricks and can probably foresee the twists coming. It just really lacked with plot. You want to read the rest of my thoughts on the game you can check out this post.

I bought the art book (the Japanese release) and found out that the concept were much more interesting than the product we got in the end, but then again, that’s just my opinion. There were concept art of an ‘isolated world’–or a ‘hikikomori world’ and I was thinking “wouldn’t it be interesting if it was more centered around social isolation, with the protag being isolated by others or choosing to be isolated–a prisoner of their own voluntary isolation–and focus on how problematic a hikikomori life is” but that topic was more or less slightly touched upon with Futaba’s character but later solved so easily with the power of friendship. Like, I guess you could say the protag experienced social isolation at the start because everyone avoided him like the plague but still…

In the end it was ok, I barely remember much about it now. Might do a new game+ playthrough next year.

Yakuza 0

yakuza0

So far I’ve only played Yakuza 3 and have been collecting the other games at a snail pace, grabbing any copy I find for a cheap price. Got Yakuza 0 for $68 which is as cheap as you can get for a PS4 game after a couple of months release (unless that game is really shit that they have to discount it). Glad I picked this up, it’s nice to see Kiryu-chan as a young handsome man in the 80s, getting all the 80s STDs a Yakuza Real Estate Man can get.

I haven’t exactly finished it, I think I’m probably half way there because I keep bumbling through the side quests and getting millions of yens from doing real estate rather than doing the main story. I’ve gotta say, I’m glad the Yakuza series are on PS4 because I hardly saw any screen tears on the PS4 compared to when I played Yakuza 3 on PS3 where the screen was tearing whenever I moved the camera. I’m glad the Yakuza series is getting so much ground swell in the West that they’re localising the games ASAP. I’m waiting until Yakuza 6 comes to the west seeing how much I enjoyed the Japanese demo (there’s a goddamn cat cafe in Yakuza 6).

I like the dynamics of young Kiryu and Majima, however it feels like young Majima stole the show with his campaign/story being more compelling (plus I’m somewhat biased towards Majima even though I love Kiryu just as much). It’s interesting to see a more stable Majima, it’s got me curious how 80s Majima became the Majima we know today lol. I guess I’ve gotta keep playing until the end… one day.

Kenka Bancho Badass Rumble

Taken on:Day 2_ 10:39 Kiyomizu_0001

I was looking through the PSN store on my PS Vita and found this PSP game for a reasonable price. Now that I played Kenka Bancho Otome, I decided to check out the true OG. Sadly, only one of the Kenka Bancho games was localised (by Atlus nonetheless) so I can’t experience the latest games unless I buy a Japanese 3DS seeing that 3DS games are region locked. I guess they tried making a PS Vita game with Marvelous and made the game UPPERS but that was a commercial fail.

please at least localise Kenka Bancho 6 ~Soul & Blood~ there’s a bunch of cute delinquent boys please…..

I can see why Kenka Bancho Otome didn’t try to adopt the gameplay style of the original Kenka Bancho games it would be less focused on the story and more on the gameplay. But it would’ve been nice having a beat ’em up system, just for old time’s sake.

I haven’t played much of the game, I’d prolly play it when I’m on the plane going to my mother’s country, but so far it’s interesting. There seems to be a time limit and a set numbers of days you’re allocated to do whatever as well as timed events per day. The goal of the game is to beat up all the other Banchos reigning from different places from Japan who are on a school trip in Kyouto at the same time (what a coincidence). The introduction screens for each Bancho kind of reminded me of Yakuza that I had to double check if they were done by the same company/director or something (they are not).

It’s interesting and I’m pretty impressed they let me customise my Bancho. I ended up just having my Bancho running around in undies one time that a bunch of cops were hot on my trail trying to arrest me for indecency (I eventually got caught with about 6 cops tackling me), now if that’s not good game design of letting your players do whatever the hell they want then I don’t know what is.

Anyways, @ Spike Chunsoft, when are we getting that Kenka Bancho Otome locaisation 😆 It’s been about a year since that poll, but I kinda knew deep down they wouldn’t really do one anyways…

Danganronpa V3

danganronpav3

I’ve only played Danganronpa 2 and I’m somewhat familiar with this franchise but damn was this a good one. I think there are others who kinda hate how this one ended but I came out of this fairly entertained and pleased. I’d rather not spoil it but it was a good one, never been so captivated by a game like this for a while. Hopefully I’ll make a post for this one (insert link to post that I’ll never get around to doing it).

I appreciate these kinds of games that give you clues and let you solve it like Ace Attorney and the Zero Escape games where the plot is the main focal point when developing the game instead of the style or looks (sorry Persona 5 I’m throwing you under the bus here). Sure the Danganronpa games do reuse some music/assets from previous games but it always impresses me that with each game release they always go above and beyond from the predecessor’s story telling.

Really enjoyed this one, cried a lot of tears, Kokichi Ouma is a little shit but he’s prolly one of the truest OGs that kept it interesting. Lot of good characters in this game. Really hope this isn’t the last game but if it was then what a good way to go (but prolly a bad way to go for those who weren’t happy with the ending of this one).

Dead Rising

deadrising

The Dead Rising Trilogy Bundle was marked down for the Halloween Sale on PSN and I just happened to grab it. I’ve only seen videos of this game about wacky hijinks but never really played the game. I read that it was hard to play and after playing it I can say it ain’t no walk in the park but it’s still fun to play. You’ve got 72 hours to get a scoop on what’s happening to this isolated town that’s run amok with the living dead.

Of course, it’s main setting is a shopping mall because why would you not. The first game seems more serious but still got some goofy moments in it and it’s pretty impressive that a game made in 2006 would have such a high population of character models moving about in one place. The physics in this game is pretty neat too, but I think the AI is still a little bit exploitable (the fights with the escaped convicts can be exploited with their car getting stuck in the geometry, letting you mcfuck them up without taking much damage).

It takes a couple of tries with this game, I’m not sure you can do a perfect run without getting one death screen on your first go with this game. I failed a scoop/the game once for not coming to the security room on time because I was trying to escort other survivors and I just thought “yo, screw this”, continues to play through the 72 hours even though I failed the scoop. I got ending B and now I’m ready to do another attempt at getting all the main story scoops.

It’s a good game, I dunno if I’d recommend it to people who lack in patience or hates losing all the time because you will get fucked up, it’s not a lenient game (either that or I just suck at this game).

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Stay tuned for next week where I do recaps and reviews for the otome games I played in 2017. Spoilers: I didn’t play much, I’m sorry.

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