Ratchet & Clank Into The Nexus Stats and Records

Stats time!

PS3 Trophy% 15%
Skill Points 3/40
Bolts 9979

World Stats

Igliak 96%
Kragg 57%
Yerek 97%
Silox 96%
Thram 18%

Weapon Stats

Dual Omniblasters 100%
Fusion Bomb 100%
Quantum Repulsor 18%
Winterizer 0%
Nightmare Box 0%
Mr. Zurkon 13%
Warmonger 66%
Nether Blades 28%

Advertisements

Ratchet & Clank Into The Nexus Review

ratchetandclankintothenexusps3boxart
It’s been a while since I really got to enjoy a Ratchet and Clank game. I tried playing All 4 One a while back, but the game kept freezing on me. I suppose it’s bound to happen when you buy as many games as I do, but that one along with Rayman advance not working definitely stung a little. I get the chills just thinking about those games. Into The Nexus was always notable for being very short and I can see why. You really breeze through the game. Considering that I took it down in a few hours while managing to die at least once in every level…it’s very short. I mainly just kept dying because I would forget about certain gimmicks. There were a lot of controls and no manual in the game so if you forgot how to do something…it becomes button mashing time. Still, it is a very solid game despite the length and there is a reasonable amount of replay value to be found here as well.

Ratchet and Clank are serving as escorts for a pair of dangerous villains that need to be brought to jail. Unfortunately, they break free and murder two of Ratchet and Clank’s friends as they head off to destroy the universe. Ratchet decides to disobey orders to retreat back to home base and pursues the villains. This time it’s personal and Ratchet isn’t playing games. He’s armed to the teeth and is ready to make the hard calls. With the whole universe in the balance, Ratchet may learn that sometimes you need to have a backup weapon at the ready. Luckily, Ratchet always has a bunch of guns.

While the gameplay appears to be the same as always on the surface, it’s less polished. You’ll quickly get used to the 3D shooting style as it’s made to be easy to pick up and play. I love 3D games and Ratchet & Clank has always nailed it. That being said, this one is missing a lock-on feature. You can use L1 to “focus” which is like locking on, but it won’t follow the enemy. You always have to manually aim while fighting. It’s not a big deal, but it can be a little inconvenient if you’re used to having a lock-on at the ready. Due to the size of the game, the weapon selection is also a lot more limited. You have less than half of the weapons that an average Ratchet & Clank game has along with half the gadgets. They each only have 3 base levels as well so you’ll max out the weapons quite easily. It seems like there are an extra 3 levels that pop up later on though so that helps. This makes the Platinum Trophy easier I suppose, but it still sounds reasonably difficult.

The weapons that we do get are pretty good though. They’ll all old I believe so don’t expect anything new, but all of the good weapons made it back. All you’ll really need are the bombs and machine gun, but I do recommend buying the missiles and metal discs once you are able to as well. Earning money certainly isn’t hard in this game and just enter a few tournaments if you want some quick cash. It’s definitely worth the trouble. There are 5-6 worlds in the game and each one can be completed in under an hour. The tournament planet was probably the shortest plot-wise, but since there are bonus tournaments, it ends up lasting a little longer.

As always, the graphics were definitely on point here. The animations were very smooth and the character designs were as sharp as you could expect. The energy attacks all look really good and I enjoyed the level designs as well. The game did a good job of grabbing the classic stage traits like a City level and a forest one as well. That’s definitely a good thing since every Ratchet game should have at least one City world. Those always look fantastic. The soundtrack never really stood out to me though and I couldn’t recall a single tune afterwards. Music is probably one of the only areas that isn’t a strength for this series.

As mentioned, there is some decent replay value. Getting all of the trophies will take some time and that helps make the game worth the price. Even without the replay value, I think the game goes for around 10 dollars now. That’s certainly not a lot of money for an AAA title. The plot may not be as grandiose as the others, but it’s still engaging. As far as the platformers go, it destroys most of the competition. Only Jak can really keep up with it consistently and I’d still give Ratchet and Clank the edge.

One thing that I can definitely get behind for this game is that the level up system is so smooth. Aside from your weapons, you can also level Ratchet up. It’s not particularly long or time consuming to power up, but you still don’t have to unless you want too. The bosses are definitely beatable if you want to go straight for them. There are also constant check points so even if you lose, you never have a long way to go. I think the phrase that I’m looking for is “Quality of Life” mechanics for this game. You never get lost for hours and hours like LoZ and you never have to go back through a long area with unskippable cutscenes like Orphen. Into The Nexus is a game that’s made with the gamer’s needs as top priority and it’s something that I’d like to see more games achieve. It’s easy to see why the series is known as one of the all time greats.

Overall, This felt like a little treat for Ratchet & Clank fans to hold them over until the next full installment. I’d think of this as more of a spinoff than a full fledged game. Think of it as the mini adventure to keep you ready for the next big title like what Kingdom Hearts does. Of course, KH spinoffs are still typically at least 20 hours long, but we’ll let that slide for now. It’s short, but that doesn’t mean that Into The Nexus is any less of a good game than you’d expect. While it’s not as polished and complete as the others, I still had a blast playing it. The time really flies when you’re blasting the opponents. I’m definitely looking forward to playing the next game although I hear that it switches up the format a little. Hopefully it keeps in the fun and intensity of this game.

Overall 8/10

Mighty No. 9 Review

k2-_edf88591-528c-4185-94e1-a0e37af8b52e.v1
It’s time to take a look at the controversial Mega Man homage game. This is also game number 2 from the Christmas batch. It’s definitely a very solid game when we look at pure gameplay, but it could definitely use some work in other aspects. The main culprit here is the level design as some just don’t make a whole lot of sense and are pretty unfair. The game has a habit of not telling you anything either, but I’ll take some very slight blame on that since I guess I could have experimented with the controls a little more. Given that the price crashed so quickly though, it is definitely worth purchasing.

The game follows Beck, The Mighty number 9, one of the last robots who is currently not corrupted. His fellow Mighty numbers have also started running amok and are causing terror in the streets. Doctor Sanda and Doctor White instruct Beck to save the day by defeating the robots and clensing them of the violent bug. It’ll be tough, but Beck is the strongest robot ever created so he should have the edge here. Who is controlling these robots though? Doctor Blackwell is a suspect since he has had many iffy crime dealings in the past, but he is currently in prison. With only one other actual character in the game, that means that we have 2 suspects. Well, lets start taking back the city!

Beck’s a decent lead although it’s hard to say what his personality is. He seems kind of sassy during some brief points, but for most of the game he is basically Mega Man when it comes to personality. He doesn’t like fighting and he’s super heroic to the point where you have to wonder if he’s faking it. He’s a good guy, but there just wasn’t much to him and you would barely even guess that he doesn’t like fighting if Call didn’t mention it a few times. Call is basically the Roll of this game. She gets one level to herself, which is cool since you get to fight as her, but she is given a terrible moveset. Her blasters deal next to 0 damage and she can’t power slide so you have to crawl the old fashioned way. Her level was also one of the very bad ones when it comes to design. She was a good main heroine though and I am glad that she isn’t reluctant to fighting.

All 3 of the doctors are fairly bland. Blackwell is easily the best of the three. He was framed and arrested so maybe the guy isn’t all that bad, but Doctor White certainly doesn’t like him. The game seems to be setting White up to be the villain of a sequel, which would certainly be interesting. White is even hiding the fact that he is related to Blackwell by changing his last name. Blackwell doesn’t like robots, which seems to be how the game is leaning him towards the dark side, but he doesn’t seem like a bad guy yet. The sinister design is probably an indication that he will do something drastic at some point, but he’s certainly no Wily yet. Sanda is the comic relief guy who constantly panics and stutters throughout the whole game. He definitely won’t be turning evil, but I wouldn’t want to see too much more of him. He doesn’t really serve any purpose in the story and is just there to be there.

The Mighty Numbers are fairly decent. They all have different personalities and none of them appear to be all that bad. They’re like the classic robot masters, but the game did a good job of not making them too identical. There is an obvious Proto Man homage, but we definitely did need a rival in the game. All good franchises develop one at some point. He was easily the best one in the game of course. Trinity was also pretty cool though and she is easily one of the stronger bots. I’d expect her to play a major role in the sequel unless they nerf her for some reason. Now that would be a shame.

As I got the PS4 version, it came with the free Ray expansion pack. I’ll definitely play that at some point, but for now that’ll go on the backburner. The character definitely looks cool though and I expect that he’d be a really good antagonist or rival figure. When I play that mode, I’ll upload an update post so that I can discuss it properly. I need to do the same with Shovel Knight at some point although this game certainly feels a little quicker so it would be higher on the list.

Lets talk about the gameplay. The positives are that they worked with the classic Mega Man style and improved it in some ways. Being able to air dodge is a lot of fun. It can be a little sensitive, but nothing too crazy. You may only slip and die a handful of times. I also like how strong the normal Mega Buster is. You’ll rarely want to use anything else, although the missile is certainly a very handy backup weapon. One thing you should know is that pressing on the PS4 touchscreen will let you use a health pack that you may have obtained during the level. If you see a blue icon under your health bar, then that’s what it means. You’ll lose them when you lose a life so use them before you die. I didn’t know about this until I was at the final boss. If I had only known earlier, I could have beaten the game way sooner and the final boss wouldn’t have been so difficult. The game never really mentioned anything about it though and I wasn’t going to surf the tips section until I found something. Again, I won’t blame the game too much, but this was a fairly important detail. You can also do back jumps while shooting by hitting the R2 button and that’s also very useful for the final boss. It only has niche uses though so you won’t be using it all that much.

One area where the gameplay failed is switching between weapons. Why wouldn’t they leave it simple like in the Mega Man games by just hitting L1 and R1 to instantly switch? Instead, that allows you to cycle through and then you have to activate the switch with triangle. It’s too many steps and will likely cause you to get hit once or twice during a boss fight. I also have to take a shot at the level designs. Purple spikes KO you instantly, but some levels have a Mario Maker esque moment where you’ll fall down and just bump into them. There’s no way to know that they’re there so you’ll always lose a life the first time that you encounter this. As the game is pretty short, there aren’t too many of these moments, but the ones that are there will certainly get on your nerves. Some segments have various jumps around the purple spikes and one death can send you pretty far back. Some of the checkpoints simply weren’t placed well.

The graphics are definitely pretty sharp and this is how retro inspired games should look if you ask me. It has the retro side scroller feel to it, but you can still see the updated graphics through the character designs and level layouts. Everything looks pretty smooth and modern, especially the aerial boosts. The game definitely looks quite good and that also helps get you into the game. The actual plot may have been somewhat underwhelming and the graphics never looked good for the cutscenes for some reason, but the actual gameplay visuals were always on point. The soundtrack is also pretty solid. Some of the themes are rather generic, but they are generic futuristic themes, which is still a win for me. The themes go very well with the moderate to fast paced gameplay. There were no “bad” themes in the game, which is always good as well.

There is a good amount of replay value to be found here. Getting that Platinum Trophy will take a very long time since the trophies are very hard. Can you imagine beating the whole game in 30 minutes or completing it on hard without any continues? Those two in particular sound crazy and there are a slew of others that will be just as hard. It would take dozens upon dozens of hours to do this unless there is some kind of save stalling technique that I’m not aware of. It’s certainly possible I suppose, but it would still take quite a while. Getting all S ranks on the normal levels will also be tricky and then you’ve got challenges and online leaderboards to worry about. It’s quite a lot of content so that’s a good thing considering that over 70000 people backed the game and that it got way more money than it ever needed. The controversies surrounding the game were certainly interesting to follow along back in the day.

Overall, Mighty No. 9 is a solid game. The level designs and the plot help to keep it from getting an 8 though. The main story won’t last you all that long either so if you’re not a big fan of the bonus content, then this game wouldn’t really be worth the 30 dollars for you. It currently goes for 10-15 though so that’s a very reasonable price if you ask me. This will also help alleviate the wait til the next Mega Man or Mega Man X game since it seems like it’ll be a very long time before Capcom gives us another one. I don’t get how a company can drop the ball so hard on one of their franchises, but that’s Cashcom for you. So, I definitely recommend this game and it was about what I expected, if not a little better. This is controversial, but I think it’s even better than Shovel Knight so that would make it my top indie game. It’s a little murky as to whether or not it counts anymore I suppose, but given that it was from kickstarter, I think we can still call it that. We’ll see if Shantae can take the crown though. The gameplay is pretty sharp and the plot is much better, but Mighty No 9 does have some advantages like the soundtrack and the graphics. Only time will tell and that review shouldn’t be too far off either!

Overall 7/10

Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith Stats and Records

Stats time!

Stage Stats: Secrets Found

Level 1 1/3
Level 2 0/4
Level 3 1/3
Level 4 1/2
Level 5 0/3
Level 6 0/2
Level 7 1/3
Level 8 1/4
Level 9 2/2
Level 10 0/2
Level 11 1/5
Level 12 0/2
Level 13 0/4
Level 14 2/5
Level 15 2/6
Level 16 –

Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith Review

ps2_star_wars_revenge_of_the_sith-110214
The Star Wars marathon continues! The last game was exceptionally good and set the bar quite high. Unfortunately, this one is not able to quite reach the same level when it comes to the pure gameplay, but the exciting story and multiplayer turn the tables. There are some obvious problems with the gameplay that hold it back just a bit, but it overcomes those odds. While it could be more polished, the rough gameplay actually helps to make the multiplayer mode more interesting. Just press some buttons and hope for the best!

The game covers the events of the third movie. Anakin and Obi Wan continue to do their best to stop the Sith forces and all of the other villains who are around. The main problem is that the head of the Republic is also evil so the heroes have to watch out for threats from both sides and one of their ranks allows the pull of the Dark side to sway him. This game covers the birth of Darth Vader!

I have to say that playing this game again reminded me why Episode III is still the most epic and exciting Star Wars film to date. It may not be the best, but it does make sense why it would be the coolest. This was back in the days where there were many Jedi warriors and lightsaber battles were commonplace. The film had a bunch of awesome fight scenes within and the game adapts them all and then some. It’s something that all of the movies since have lacked and I’m hoping that Episode VIII gives us a bunch of hype battles. I could definitely get behind that and I’m expecting great things from it.

This game starts off rather slow, but quickly picks up once Anakin joins the dark side. Suddenly you’re fighting other Jedi warriors instead of mindless droids. This makes for more enjoyable battles and also an engaging plot. The banter between the characters is brilliant during the fights and you’ll actually like some of the characters more than you did in the film. One warrior who showed up and confidently took on Anakin is safely one of the cooler Jedi warriors. It was a quick moment, but one that separated her from the common masses who were all dying in an instant.

The game didn’t adapt the cool scene where Palpatine took down the 3 warriors though. I had to quickly watch that scene myself and saw a cool video explaining why the Jedi masters lost so quickly. It was simple, they lacked the speed needed to defeat Palpatine. Apparently that is his strongest skill and he can strike so fast that he barely appears at all. Mace was only able to hold his own because he used a forbidden technique that granted him the power of the Dark as well so it was definitely an interesting watch. Needless to say, despite the video hinting otherwise, I’d still take Anakin over them even at his current level.

There are 16 levels like in the other Star Wars game. In addition, there are 4-5 bonus levels and you can unlock Darth Vader for multiplayer mode. That will be your main source of replay value since fighting friends never gets old, but you can also go back to the levels and grab the secrets. Each level has secret health and Force power ups which permanently increase the size of each. I found a bunch of them by breaking things so I imagine that’s how you find them all. The campaign is only around 3 hours long, but couple it with these other factors and I’d say that the game has a fair length. It’s just a lot easier than the last game so it goes by a lot quicker.

The gameplay is purely about hand to hand combat. It may be more accurate to call it Lightsaber combat. You have standard slashes and power moves. There are also your Force abilities of course, which allow you to lift opponents, stun them, and even push them away. I didn’t properly learn how to use the force until the final 2 levels so I recommend trying to learn it a little sooner. Boss fights in this game are quite difficult as they will block or parry just about anything that you throw at them. Ironically, the final boss is easily the weakest one in the game as he refuses to block just about anything. For the others, I recommend whacking them a few times and then going off to heal. (Yes, you can heal yourself in this game) Then rinse and repeat until the job is done. You can usually run fast enough to get this strategy to work. Alternately, you can master the rock, paper, scissors gameplay, but it didn’t make much sense the whole time so I just reverted to classic button mashing. It’s never failed me before so I have always trusted this legendary technique. Your character will gain experience after each level and you can use it to improve your force abilities (Like healing. I highly recommend focusing on that one) and physical abilities. By the end of the game, your character will be close to being maxed out.

The graphics look quite good. The lightsabers really stand out the whole time and they did a good job with the blasts getting deflected off of the swords. It’s aged pretty well and I can definitely see why this game would be thought of as an older Force Unleashed. There are a lot of similarities to be found here and I look forward to trying that game out at some point. The soundtrack is just as good. It has all of the classic Star Wars themes that you may wish for and the battle themes are all intense. It’s definitely a rock solid game on a technical level.

Overall, Episode III may have gotten off to a rough start initially, but it really grows on you. I was sure that it would only be getting a 7 at first, but the plot really picked up and the gameplay is definitely a lot more fun when you’re fighting actual sword fighters. There is a lot less variety when it comes to the gameplay compared to the other title, but how can you not like a classic 3D sword-fighter styled gameplay? It never gets old and none of the levels are painfully long so that also helps a great deal. It’s the kind of gameplay where I also wouldn’t have pictured a multiplayer mode so it’s really cool that it was featured. The cast could be longer, but I guess we’ll save that for an official Star Wars fighting game. The series certainly has enough characters for it by now. I definitely recommend checking out this title. My Star Wars marathon will likely go on a brief break here since I’ll be getting some new games for Christmas, but it’ll be back at some point.

Overall 8/10

Sly Cooper Thieves in Time Review

731080674
This game was on the backburner for many years, but I finally got around to completing it. The story takes a while to get good and honestly it is probably the weakest game in the series, but it was still pretty good overall. I just think that the game should have been a little less formulaic and should have gone for a more connected and changing story. It would have made the whole thing a lot more interesting and Ratchet and Clank is always adapting like this. It would have been simple enough for Sly to have copied that approach. Well, it is what it is.

Sly had finally gotten his happy ending after the third game. He pretended to lose his memories so he could live a peaceful life without having to force Carmelita to choose a side. Unfortunately, someone is messing with the timestream and Sly can’t just let this go unpunished. He must bring his thieving skills back to work with his old gang as they time hop to find the source of the problems. The trust that has been lost between him and Carmelita may be hard to repair so this case is going to be a very personal one. Is Sly up for the job?

As always, this Sly game is a 3D platformer. You use stealth for most of the game as you get from point A to point while getting past obstacles. You can also fight enemies and take them out easily enough, but it’s usually faster to slip past them or use the one hit KO stealth attack. Each area is very large so you have a lot of room to maneuver and you can also use that time to grab some extra collectibles. They’ll all come in handy by the end if you want to earn the shiny Platinum to add to your collection. You can never have too many trophies right? This is the only Sly game that I have not Platinum’d yet so I aim to fix that at some point in the future.

Aside from playing as Sly, you get to play as a lot of other characters this time around. That’s because one of the gimmicks in this game is that you finally get to meet Sly’s ancestors. Each era in time has a Cooper and they all have their own special abilities. One can climb walls and another has a gun. This results in some new twists that are added to the usual gameplay and that’s a good way to make the gameplay more diverse which was good. Bentley also gets his own minigames as one is like an overhead version of Tron and another is a 2D shooter. His minigames were always fun so I was glad to have them around. Murray’s is probably the least exciting as you just go around punching people. Finally, we can’t forget the short driving levels as you play in the mini car. Those were a nice change of pace as well, but in the end, the classic Sly gameplay is still the best.

As always, the gameplay is handled really well and the controls are very smooth. It makes the cases fun and going around the city is so streamlines that it makes the grind for all of the collectibles very manageable. The quick time event bosses were always handled well and they always feel great no matter how many games use them. Final Fantasy XIII-2 still did the best job out of all the games, but it’s a little hard to match the level of epicness that title was able to attain.

Graphically, Sly looks good. It may not stand out the same way that something like Super Smash does, but it holds up well on the good ole PS3. When it comes to the soundtrack, that part is a little more bland. You aren’t likely going to remember a lot of the tunes once you’re done. They’re passable, but just aren’t anything all that grand when you really get down to it.

There is a good amount of replay value here as you can go back to all of the chapters to grab treasure, collectibles, and open the safes. Buying everything from the shop will take some time as well and each story level is roughly an hour or longer. It’s certainly a game that gives you a lot of content for the money that you paid, which sounds good to me. It’s not artificial length like some other games either as you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment as you go through.

I do want to take a second to say that all of the past Coopers were annoying. I felt like the game wasn’t even trying with them as they were all super gimmicky. The cave man Cooper was the most annoying as you couldn’t understand what he was saying and he just wasn’t that smart. All of the Coopers had a lot of attitude, but it wasn’t deserved as we had to save them all from the villains. None of the Coopers were able to do anything on their own so you have to question how they got such a famous legacy. Evidently, Sly is the only cooper who can hold his own. It just makes you wonder.

Sadly, the classic banter that we had in the previous games is gone in this one between Sly and Carmelita. It’s an unfortunate side effect of their dynamic completely changing thanks to the third game. I’ll definitely miss it since the Sly games had the strongest dialogue from the three main Naughty Dog series for a while. The writing’s still good, but it’s just not as clever. Sly’s still a good main character even if he made a lot of the wrong decisions. Carmelita’s also good as the tough rival who is always making threats although this is not her best portrayal. Murray and Bentley are around as usual. I can’t say that they’re my favorite characters though. The villains are all right I suppose, but while they all technically have personality and character thanks to their origin stories, I never got too attached to any of them. The main villain is also a Skunk who is comic relief so he isn’t meant to be taken seriously either.

Overall, Sly Thieves in Time is a good installment to the series, but it’s not the game that I want to be known as the final in the series. It’s certainly a step down from the other games and that’s partially why it took me so long to complete it. I was never able to play the game with the same gusto that I tackled other titles with. It was a good throwback since a game hadn’t come out in a very long time for this series, but the plot did hold it back quite a bit. The supporting cast just weren’t all that good and this game lacked the impact that the first three did. It really survives on the gameplay alone because every other part of the game was either not that great or simply could have been better. To be fair, gameplay still is the most important quality in a game so that is enough to justify a good score. The cliffhanger for the game is pretty intense although to fully see it you better get that Platinum Trophy ready. It does make you wonder about some things though. All those months…what was Sly doing? It depends on how you interpret the ending I suppose, but another game would clear that up. This is certainly a must buy for Sly fans and generally, I think any platformer fan will be able to appreciate this title.

Overall 7/10

World of Final Fantasy Review

World_of_Final_Fantasy_PS4_Cover
I finally finished up the Postscript in World of Final Fantasy and completed all of the Interventions in the end as well. I didn’t get to complete all of the townsfolk quests although I did almost all of them and I’m fairly close to completing the Colosseum as well. All I can say about that is that it feels good. World of Final Fantasy was a game where you really felt like going out there and completing it all. It was an excellent game and continues to keep the reputation of the Final Fantasy franchise high. I only really have one complaint with the game and I’ll mention it below. Beyond that, the game was just about perfect.

Lann and Reynn are two siblings who run a coffee shop. Life was pretty quiet and normal for them until a mysterious god walks in and asks for a coffee with a lot of sugar. The strange thing is that she entered the shop while it was still closed and had apparently been there for quite a while. She tells Lann and Reynn that they have lost their memories. The two heroes quickly realize that they have never actually seen anyone in their town and don’t have any memories either. The lady tells them that to regain their memories and find their parents, they will have to explore the world of Grymoire and capture a lot of Mirages. (Monsters) The two heroes do just that as they explore this huge world which crams together all of the past Final Fantasy universes.

Naturally, it’s not all fun and games. There is an evil group of monsters who wish to destroy the universe. They stop the heroes at every corner and there final plan will be difficult to stop. Lanna and Reynn have to beef up their attack strength by grabbing more Mirages, but they will also need the help of their friends if they want to win this round. Teamwork is the name of the game and who can stop these two siblings in that department?

At first I actually thought that this was going to be a fairly short Final Fantasy game. There are 21 chapters and each chapter felt rather short. However, this was not the case as you need to factor time in to grind up the heroes and power up your monsters. Not to mention that after the 21 chapters is a Final Chapter which is quite difficult. There are also many Intervention quests which act as epilogues for all of the characters and there are even some Main Story quests in there as well. That results in a bunch of cutscenes and the game spared no expense as we even get full anime cutscenes at several points in the game. I ended up completing the game in 35 hours, which is a pretty good length. That’s slightly longer than Ocarina of Time and White Knight Chronicles, but not as long as Skyward Sword or the Kingdom Heart games.

There is also a lot of bonus content to do. I don’t think it will take you all the way up to 100 hours, but probably to at least 50 and maybe even more than that. If you want to get the Platinum in this game, you’re going to have to master all of the Mirage Boards and find all of the Treasure Chests in the game. That is bound to take a while. The leveling up part doesn’t sound all that bad to me, but finding chests when minions are constantly attacking you will be quite the trick. I got over half of the trophies so I’m pretty satisfied. I’d like to go and complete the final two town quests and the rest of the Colosseum battles at some point, but that’s probably where I will stop. At some point, it would be fun to have the bragging rights for getting the Platinum here though. I imagine that it will be very rare.

I really think there might be something to the whole “Great Graphics can make a Great Game” argument. Naturally it’s not that simple and I wouldn’t be talking about just the graphics. However, couple that with a great soundtrack and solid writing and then you’ve got a masterpiece. See, an old PS1 game could have a plot that is just as good and a dynamite soundtrack as well, but without the graphics, it could get hurt a little. (Final Fantasy VII comes to mind, but that game had a whole array of issues with it so graphics was the least of its worries) On the other hand, a game can have a fairly boring plot, a nonexistent soundtrack, and unimpressive writing like Knack, but you can still be decently engaged thanks to the good graphics. So, I do think that graphics play a bit of a role and I do find that newer games draw my attention a lot more than old ones. There’s just something very high tech and awesome about new games. That doesn’t take anything away from World of Final Fantasy though. I’m just happy to add it to my collection of other modern games that are awesome. Cyber Sleuth, Pokken, Super Smash Bros for Wii U, Dengeki, etc. They feel crisp and solid through and through.

I mentioned that there was one area where the game could have been a little better. Are you ready for this? Well, I think that Cloud and the others should have turned into their Jiant (Yes, it’s spelled that way) forms at least once. Sure, it isn’t really them and they’re just using the bodies of this parallel dimension where they are all clones, but it would have been awesome. The game could have saved up one of its anime cutscenes for the final battle and we could have seen Cloud fight the leader of the Bahamut army. Obviously this isn’t a negative that will impact the score in any way, but you have to admit that this would have been awesome and was a bit of an oversight. We needed to see big Cloud wreck everybody!

Beyond that, navigating through the Mirages could have been a little easier. It’d be nice to mess with their Mirage Boards without having to add them to the party. That’s minor though and since the loading times are very quick, it’s not much of an issue. The game is also clear on what to do next aside from the Postscript. To save you some time, I’ll just say that you need to capture the 3 elemental spirits from the Colosseum before it’ll let you complete the game. The map will never tell you this and the game never really explains how to catch Mirages all that well. It tells you about how you have to wait for a circle to appear of course, but I assumed that it was like Pokemon. I figured that weakening them would do the trick, but apparently not. Each Mirage has a different catch requirement and I believe you can use a skill to find out each time or you can just go to Reddit and they’ll help you out. Those guys are always willing to lend a hand and they have a large spreadsheet for just that purpose. I think World of Final Fantasy should have gone the Pokemon route when catching Mirages as it’d be a little simpler.

The most convenient ability at the end of the game is certainly the power to travel wherever you want whenever you want to do so. You won’t have to walk around too much aside from when you’re clearing dungeons or catching Mirages. It saves you do much time and it’s a great feature. You can really customize your party roster and everyone’s abilities quite nicely which is another good addition to the series. The whole concept of stacking monsters on top of each other is a new one and I like it. It adds a lot of strategy to the gameplay so you have to really think about who you want to use in battle. I recommend training the small Behemoth dog right from the start of the game. He’ll end up becoming your best monster once you get his XL form. Seriously, I wouldn’t have beaten the final boss without him. He can take down half of the final boss’ health in one shot thanks to his Revenge attack which gets stronger as he gets weaker. Just use the Last Hit technique so he goes to 1 HP and then prepare to one shot any boss that stands in your way. It’s awesome. The final boss used a cheesy technique that reflected the attack in the end, but the damage was done and I got my narrow win. I shudder to think about how tough that boss would have been otherwise. It’s worth mentioning that the game probably has one of the best troll endings. If you don’t decide to play the Postscript, then you’ll be in for quite the experience.

Both of the main leads are pretty good characters. Reynn does spend a lot of time insulting Lann throughout, but he takes it pretty well and it’s all in good fun. It’s just the dynamic that they have. She’s the calm and reasonable character for the most part, but she doesn’t like to be messed with and will enter full combat mode at that point. She actually taught Lann how to fight and defend himself so that shows how she was always a fighter. Lann isn’t very smart and all of the characters mock him as a result, but his heart’s always in the right place. He’s a lot more enthusiastic about saving the day and helping everyone out even if it means going out of his way. He’s also willing to make the ultimate sacrifice when necessary even if he jumps to that conclusion a little too quickly. I’d say that he was the best character from the new ones introduced in this game.

Tama is the animal mascot of the game and she is a fairly strange being who works for Enna Kros. She has the power to stop time and get the heroes to safety and can exploit a lot of game mechanics through her reality warping. She even has the power to create new timelines and mess with the past. The power never goes to her head though and she has a fun gimmick where she will use the word “the” in between words for no reason. It’s a gimmick that could have gotten old if it was misused, but I thought that the game did an admirable job. I actually liked Tama quite a bit and the execution was sound.

Enna Kros is a good high above being, but like most cosmic entities, she never really does much. Her reasoning is that Lann and Reynn are the heroes of the story so they have to do everything on their own, but she should really step in when the going gets tough. That is…unless she doesn’t have the large amounts of power that she wants us to thinks she possesses. It raises a lot of interesting questions. She was fun though and adding extra sugar to the coffee gives her some extra personality.

As for the villains, Brendires is the main one. He is a dark overlord who wants to take over the world. We don’t see a whole lot of him beyond that, but he works well as a villain and has a great design. He’s certainly very powerful since he took down Cloud and Lightning, but I’m calling plot hax on that. Even with a weakened vessel that houses his soul, Cloud should have been able to take him down. Brendires never gave up and had a lot of determination for a villain. He’s easily one of the cooler Final Fantasy end bosses. His two main minions were a little more on the bland side. The winged fighter got some hype for a while, but never did much about it. I do like the fact that she was the only one to get up after being knocked out the first time though. That’s considering that her vessel was supposedly putting up a large fight. The other villain reminded me of Fang from Street Fighter V. His constant rhyming was a gimmick that didn’t work and I couldn’t take him very seriously.

Naturally, all of the old Final Fantasy game characters showed up as well. They were all in character so there’s no need to say much about them. Lightning and Cloud are still the coolest two members. We got a tease about Sephiroth showing up and that could be a DLC quest at some point. It would definitely be neat to see him show up and thanks to owning the Day 1 Edition, we do have his Champion Medal. It’s a fun tribute to his ultimate attack from the original game.

Overall, World of Final Fantasy is a great game. I’d probably put it under both of the Final Fantasy XIII games, but it destroys VII and defeats X-2. It goes without saying that it beats the original as well and I haven’t completed any other main titles at the moment. The characters are good and the plot is engaging. You’ll be breezing through the game because it’s hard to take yourself away from it. It also has a great opening cutscene that is similar to a Kingdom Hearts intro. Even the little dance by everyone at the end is fairly intriguing since you’ll rarely get to see Cloud outshine everyone on the dance floor. If you haven’t picked up the game yet because you’re worried about the Chibi style or just dread playing long games, I’d recommend getting it anyway. It’s fine if you don’t play the post script since the normal ending is actually quite great since it’s so unexpected.

Overall 9/10

Justice League Heroes Stats and Records

Stats time! The game doesn’t let you load the completed file so I couldn’t look at the stats in more depth. This is the jist of it though…..yeah. The game definitely needed a level select.

Heroes are Level 9
Gold: 13

Justice League Heroes Review

justiceheroes_ps2box_usa_org_rp
This is a game that I’ve wanted to get for quite a few years. The Justice League rarely get their own video games after all and this seemed like a nice counterpart to Marvel’s Ultimate Alliance. Personally, I actually consider this to be the better game, but more on that later. I actually originally got this game for the DS, but playing it on big console is certainly a different experience. Both versions are a blast, but this one is certainly better.

The plot revolves around Brainiac’s plan to take down the League once and for all. Robots have started showing up in cities around the world and a lot of villains are also in on the scheme. Ranging from White Martians all the way to lesser enemies like Queen Bee. One thing’s for sure, the League is going to have their hands full. They are the world’s strongest heroes though so there is nothing that they can’t stop if they put their minds to it. Is this scheme really everything that it appears or is there another villain lurking in the shadows? Time to find out!

The gameplay is similar to Marvel’s Ultimate Alliance. It is mostly overhead although slightly 3D so you’re not too far from the actual fight. Each character has their standard attacks and power moves as well. You can link them into combos, but you really only need your standard attacks to get through the game. There are also 4 special moves per character those really tend to come in handy. In particular, I recommend upgrading the projectile attack that your character has as those can be quite useful. Whenever you get a level up, you will obtain two upgrade points. Rather than putting a little bit in each category, I’d recommend maxing out on something. Health, Power, or your Projectile are the three best options in my opinion. Max them out and you’ll be fine.

It’s worth mentioning that in this game all characters have health regeneration on their side. This means that if you are getting overwhelmed, you should try to run away. Flying away is typically ideal. Most opponents will go down quickly if you just fight them head on, but challenging a group is not recommended. They can drain your health all the way in a very short amount of time so you won’t be able to escape. Bosses are typically easier since you can hit and run as much as you like until you claim the win. Queen Bee is annoying though as she is very fast and actually camps you out from time to time. If only there was a good way to lock on and actually get the hits in.

Graphically, the game is pretty solid and we actually do get some nice cutscenes. It was a fun story and while the voice actors may have not always matched the characters well, they were still fun to listen too. Superman was a little out of character for most of the game though. He really flew off the handle once Darkseid showed up and turned into a total renegade. The team made up by the end though and at least Superman made for a good AI ally. In these kinds of games, your partner will usually die easily and you have to worry about defending them the whole time. That’s not the case here as I was the one who kept on dying so finally I just let Superman take the lead. He dealt with the minions and that definitely worked for me.

The soundtrack is fairly bland. You won’t really recall any of the themes after playing it. I suppose that anything would seem bland after hearing the classic intro for the first time. Seeing the narrator remind us that the Justice League is the strongest team in the universe was definitely neat as well. He’s got a point since the rest of the comic book teams pale in comparison to the good ole JL.

It’s a fairly short game that you will be able to breeze through. It isn’t too short though and considering that you can purchase it for a low price, it’s definitely worth the money. As they say, quality>>>quantity. You’ll be having a blast with each level and it’s the kind of game that has a lot of replay value because the actual levels are fun. There isn’t a VS mode though so you’ll mainly just be playing the game again to max out all of the characters. Once you’ve purchased everything and gotten them to the top, you’ll have completely finished the game.

The main reason why the levels are so fun is because the level up system was handled really well. Getting to the next level always feels very achievable and doesn’t take all that long. The power ups are noticeable in the gameplay and makes it all feel worth it by the end. That’s actually why I liked the classic DS port of this game so much as well. I actually did max everyone out in that game and I played it quite a lot back in the day. The main unfortunate part is that the DS version didn’t really have a story mode. Sure, there was a semblance of a story in there, but they cut most of it out. I suppose this was due to DS limitations or something like that. Both versions are really addicting, but the DS one is in more of a Pokemon Go or 1010! kind of way while Justice League Heroes is in more of a standard AAA video game style. The PS2 version wins out of course, but you should buy them both while you still can.

One thing that is pretty funny though is how Heroes basically copies the last part of the story directly from the final two episodes of the DCAU TV show. Unlimited ends with Lex trying to resurrect Brainiac and reviving Darkseid instead. In this version, Brainiac tries getting unlimited knowledge and gives himself a power up, but it turns the guy into Darkseid. The game only came out around 6 months after Unlimited finished so that was enough time to watch the episode and then turn it into a fun climax. I think it would actually have been fun to have seen a game adapt more episodes from the classic show and I’d still love to see a PS4 game do that. Imagine fighting the Justice Lords in a big 3D environment? That’d be a lot of fun. Heroes even manages to adapt most of Darkseid’s famous speech about despair before he would finish off Superman. Of course, Darkseid’s voice is a lot different. It’s fun and certainly super deep, but the TV show definitely wins here.

Overall, Justice League Heroes is a very solid game and one of the better comic book titles. The Superman Gamecube game is probably still the definitive single player experience and when we go to multiplayer it’s hard to deny X-Men Next Dimension or Marvel vs Capcom, but Justice League Heroes can hold its head high and play with the big boys. It’s certainly the best Justice League game as well. The story adds the extra dimension to the game and there is even a fight in one of them as we see Darkseid take down the whole league. There were some iffy moments like when Batman actually lost to Killer Frost, but we can chalk that up to him just not having enough prep time. Batman definitely wouldn’t fall for the same trick twice! With this game review completed, it’s hard to say which one will be next. It could be the Pizza Delivery Boy, World of Final Fantasy, or possibly even Professor Layton.

Overall 8/10