Cyberphile

the love of all things electronic.

What’cha Playin’? 6/30/16 – Animal Crossing — June 30, 2016

What’cha Playin’? 6/30/16 – Animal Crossing

Yesterday was a pretty busy day for me, so I only really had enough time to do my daily BS in Animal Crossing. That said, I’ve successfully caught any bugs or fish that will be disappearing tomorrow as the month changes over, the last one being the Large Char. I also scored a Game Boy Player and the appropriate startup disk for my GameCube, and that came in the mail yesterday as well. Now my GameCube looks like a double decker bus! That’s pretty much all I have to say for today.

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These “What’cha Doin’?” posts are designed to spark discussion, so feel free to post in the comments what you’ve been playin’, watchin’, or listenin’ to lately.

 

What’cha Playin’? 6/29/16 – Harvest Moon 64 — June 29, 2016

What’cha Playin’? 6/29/16 – Harvest Moon 64

I’ve kind of been all over the place with games lately, but last night I started playing Harvest Moon 64, which many revere as “the best Harvest Moon”. It’s definitely going to take some getting used to though, as I’m more familiar with Friends of Mineral Town, which, interestingly enough, is technically a remake of 64. All of the characters are the same, but they all have different jobs/roles (actually, their jobs/roles make far more sense in 64) and some actually have different family members altogether. So for starters, that’s a little strange for me. Next, you have the fact that the clock is only on the pause screen. This is only a minor inconvenience due to quick loading times, but I really do prefer to have the time available to me at a glance. Lastly, days seem to ZOOM by WAY quicker than any other Harvest Moon game I’ve played. That said, it seems like a proper Harvest Moon, and I’m looking forward to playing some more once Animal Crossing becomes more-or-less useless for the day (when Nook closes shop).

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These “What’cha Doin’?” posts are designed to spark discussion, so feel free to post in the comments what you’ve been playin’, watchin’, or listenin’ to lately.

 

What’cha Playin’? 6/28/16 – Maken X — June 28, 2016

What’cha Playin’? 6/28/16 – Maken X

As you know if you’ve been keeping up with Cyberphile, I’ve been replaying the GameCube Animal Crossing. As you progress in Animal Crossing, the main shop in town where you do all of your buying and selling eventually upgrades to carry more items. Unfortunately, to do so, it has to close down for the day, rendering most of the day useless as a player, as your inventory will fill up, and you have nowhere to unload it. So, on a whim yesterday, I tried out Maken X for the Dreamcast.

Maken X, published by Atlus and released in 2000 is a first person, sword-fighting, supernatural, action game. The art is done by the same people who worked on the early Persona games as well as Shin Megami Tensei: Nocturne. It also retains the atmosphere of the early Shin Megami Tensei and Persona games. The story is about a pharmaceutical company who is creating an artificial intelligence that will be able to cure disease, but one day the facility is attacked, and the main character’s father who heads the project is kidnapped. 16 year old Kay awakens the artificial intelligence and wields it as a sword. The AI, called Maken, (technically, you play as this AI, not the character) essentially uses the soul (called psi) to fuse with people and control them, in a process called brainjacking. Kay/Maken begin their quest to find and rescue her father.

The gameplay is first person, and really fun. You can dodge, block, and even jump over enemies to disorient them. After you complete the first stage, you leave Kay behind and brainjack an enemy, giving you stronger attacks, and new special abilities and stats. Each character has their own set of stats and skills, and no two players are the same. In fact, you often need to brainjack weaker characters just to get information or abilities out of them. Blademasters will help you in your quest to defeat baddies by offering up their bodies to Maken. You will need certain characters to progress certain ways, and there are a number of split paths, hidden areas and characters to find. As you kill enemies, you rank up, which I can only assume increase your power slightly.

I still need more time with Maken X, but I must say that I’m really enjoying it. The enemy designs are really cool and unique, and it has great level design, and, most importantly, it’s very fun to play. Check it out sometime!

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These “What’cha Doin’?” posts are designed to spark discussion, so feel free to post in the comments what you’ve been playin’, watchin’, or listenin’ to lately.

Final Thoughts on Kiznaiver — June 27, 2016

Final Thoughts on Kiznaiver

With this weekend having come and gone, Kiznaiver has as well. As I stated back near the beginning of the series, I really enjoyed the characters, their interactions, the art style, and the intro. Unfortunately, Kiznaiver, being a 12 episode series causes it to end FAR too soon. I’ve read rumors that Kiznaiver was actually supposed to be either a 24 or 36 episode series, and so things had to be cut down and removed. Whether that’s true or not, Kiznaiver definitely could have used at least 12 more episodes to help flesh out characters and their backstories, and help solidify the plot. Without spoiling anything, I personally feel as though many scenes could have carried far more weight had we had more back story and build up. Those scenes were still great though, and the fact that they were really says something.

That being said, I still think Kiznaiver is a well done show, and if you feel like something with great characters that’s emotional without being too terribly deep, I’d check it out, it’s only 12 episodes after all. I would happily watch ANY show with ANY plot with those characters, I felt they were all very likable (though you really got on my last nerve sometimes, Chidori). Again, the characters are far more interesting than the plot. I don’t do anime reviews, but if I did, I’d give Kiznaiver a “recommend”.

What’cha Playin’? 6/24/26 – Animal Crossing — June 24, 2016

What’cha Playin’? 6/24/26 – Animal Crossing

Been getting back into Animal Crossing pretty heavily. I know when I’m getting into a phase of something, and I can definitely feel one kicking in right now. All I do is think about whether or not I could be playing Animal Crossing at any given moment. I kind of want to pick up Dobutsu no Mori, which is the Japanese version that came out for N64. It’s in Japanese, but I’ve always been interested in learning Japanese and I think it would be a really good way to learn it, to an extent, anyway. I tried out a rom, and there are very few Kanji (those are the more complex characters borrowed from the Chinese), it’s mostly Katakana and Hiragana, both symbols that that I know from studying in the past. It would give me an excuse to both have fun and practice at the same time. At any rate, I hope Nook is selling a Fishing Rod today; I still need one.

For the uninitiated, Animal Crossing is like a day-to-day life style game that is relaxing, and open to pretty much whatever you want to do. You move out on your own to a small town in a forest populated by anthropomorphic animals who can talk. Upon arriving, you get set up with a house and realize you didn’t bring enough money… So you’re now in debt (just like real life!). After a short tutorial involving you working part time in the only store in town, you’re cut loose to pay off your debt however you can, usually by selling things you find or get that you don’t want. And that’s pretty much your only concrete goal; the rest is there to do as you see fit. You can fish, catch bugs, dig up fossils, plant trees, decorate your home… or just socialize and run errands for your neighbors. There are a ton of things to do, and what makes Animal Crossing so unique is the fact that the game runs on your internal clock, meaning 8:08am in real life is 8:08am in Animal Crossing. The villagers have their own sleep cycles, shops will open and close, and people will come and go… All in real time. There are events on certain days, and fish and bugs are seasonal. It’s really fun and relaxing to do just… Whatever. If you’ve never played Animal Crossing before, you’re doing yourself a great disservice.

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These “What’cha Doin’?” posts are designed to spark discussion, so feel free to post in the comments what you’ve been playin’, watchin’, or listenin’ to lately.

Happy 100 Post-Day! — June 23, 2016

Happy 100 Post-Day!

According to WordPress, yesterday’s post was my 100th post. I just want to take a moment to thank anyone who stops by, whether it’s daily, or only a one time thing. Cyberphile is more of a personal sort of thing, and it’s nice to see that I get at least a visitor a day. So thank you so much for reading my rambles. I’m thinking of starting a new segment soon, but I’m not sure how to go about it.

Anyway, I finished Mighty No. 9 last night, and the last stage and boss were pretty difficult and really brought me back to the old Mega Mans, with its multiple forms and difficult final stage. In fact, one of the moves the final boss uses MUST be a throw-back to Mega Man; that big yellow guy who turns to pieces and throws globs of himself at you. That guy.

I also got a GameCube in the mail yesterday, refurbished and bought from GameStop, who apparently is now selling some retro games and consoles at fairly reasonable prices. I used to just play my GameCube games on my Wii, but I really want to pick up a GBA player at some point. Anyway, It made me want to pick up and start replaying the original (well, original NA release) of Animal Crossing. So that’s exactly what I did. Man, that game is so much fun to me. I think I’ll go play it right now.

What’cha Playin’? – 6/22/16 – Mighty No. 9 — June 22, 2016

What’cha Playin’? – 6/22/16 – Mighty No. 9

After 3 long years, Mega Man creator Keiji Inafune’s new title has been released. Not only were those years long, but they were trying, plagued with delays, lack of effective communication and services, and more. I’m not going to go over all the details, but if you want to see for yourself, just google the Mighty No. 9 Kickstarter mishaps. All being said, it’s finally released and ready to rock.

Mighty No. 9 plays like the classic Mega Man games. Mighty No. 9 is a side scrolling platformer. Your main character (Mighty No. 9, Beck) fights his way through malfunctioning robots to defeat the bosses (mainly the other 8 Mighty Nos.) who have also malfunctioned. The stages and enemies are all themed, like you’d expect in a Mega Man game (for example, the mine stage has enemies with drills and mining hats and what-not) and the levels are very well designed. Not to mention the fact the game is visually gorgeous, done in a very cartoony style, kind of like an HD, less pastel-y Mega Man 8 (I now realize I want a Mega Man 8 HD). The first stage is pretty simple as you grasp the controls and the mechanics, but the rest of the stages can be fairly difficult if you’re not ready. Mighty No. 9, for me, required a bit if getting used to; it wasn’t really until about halfway through the beginning 8 stages did I start really getting the hang of thing and was enjoying myself. In fact, until I really got the hang of things, I wasn’t having too great a time with it.

One gripe is the balance between sounds, voices and music. Any retro Mega Man player knows that music is a cornerstone of Mega Man games. In Mighty No. 9, the music is WAY too soft, and even turning the sounds and voices down to around 50% barely helps. There is an option for 8 bit music, but again, you can barely hear it as is. Another concern is how much dialogue there is, especially early in the game. It almost turned me away. And all that dialogue, again, drowns out the music. The dialogue boxes take up a good portion of the screen too, hindering gameplay from time to time. Lastly, controls can be a little a weird (though it may just be the learning curve), with Beck taking an extra step where I don’t want him to. I also did have Mighty No. 9 crash for me once on the second stage.

The mechanics in Mighty No. 9 are pretty similar to Mega Man, with a few changes. You can shoot from your arm buster, and defeating bosses allows you to transform into them and use one of their powers. Unlike Mega Man, however, enemies take a lot of shots to destroy. However, once you’ve done enough damage, they begin to glow with pixels, making them susceptible to your dash attack, which instantly destroys them. This adds a new layer to the Mega Man formula, and allows for an even faster paced gameplay as you run, shoot, and dash through your opposition. The dash can take a little getting used to though, I know early in the game I was over or under dashing pretty often. The more enemies you kill in a single aerial dash, the higher chance of you getting an E-Tank style health replenishment. When you dash through an enemy, you’re actually absorbing them, and some enemies can give you temporary boosts, such as your shot penetrating multiple targets, or the ability to move faster. Bosses are still susceptible to other bosses’ powers, and the other Mighty Nos. will help you throughout tough parts of the stages if you’ve rescued them, often destroying annoying enemies in the background of the stages.

I still need more time with it, but ultimately, I think Mighty No. 9 is a great game to add to the Mega Man collection. If you like Mega Man, I think you’ll appreciate Mighty No. 9 for what it can bring to the table.

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These “What’cha Doin’?” posts are designed to spark discussion, so feel free to post in the comments what you’ve been playin’, watchin’, or listenin’ to lately.

What’cha Doin’? 6/21/16 — June 21, 2016

What’cha Doin’? 6/21/16

Not too much to say today. I played a bunch of Guilty Gear: Xrd – Revelator – with a friend last night, with the two of us getting some trophies that we probably wouldn’t have bothered to get on our own otherwise. I also tried out the M.O.M. mode with is kind of dulled down (and slightly more difficult) than SIGN’s M.O.M. mode. For the uninitiated, Medal of Millionaire mode enables you to collect items and medals from defeated enemies enabling you to purchase more items and level up your character’s stats, which are mostly for prerequisites for equipping said items. Items can then be used in battle and range from simple bombs and healing potions to other character’s special moves, such as Sol’s Gunflame, for instance. It’s and interesting mode. I need to play a bit more online to give Revelator a fair assessment though.

Mighty No. 9, Keiji Inafune’s (the main guy behind Mega Man) new Kickstarter-backed project releases today, so I’m sure I’ll be checking it out, seeing as I helped back the project over 3 years ago. In fact, it’s downloading now, so I’ll get back to you on it tomorrow, I’m sure.

Lastly, I started listening to Caravan Palace, an electro-swing band, which combines old swing style sounds with the electronic style you hear today. It’s pretty interesting and fun. If it sounds interesting to you, I’d recommend checking them out on YouTube or something. Suzy seems to be one of their more popular songs.

Also, did you know that Cyberphile has a Facebook page? Feel free to swing by and get our new posts in your newsfeed.

These “What’cha Doin’?” posts are designed to spark discussion, so feel free to post in the comments what you’ve been playin’, watchin’, or listenin’ to lately.

What’cha Playin’? 6/20/16 — June 20, 2016

What’cha Playin’? 6/20/16

This weekend I played a lot of Guilty Gear: Xrd – Revelator. I watched the entirety of the story (yes watched, not played), completed over 400 combos and 70 missions. Soon (probably today) I start working on this version’s M.O.M. Mode, then at some point I’ll play a bit online as well. I’ll be able to write up a review for it soon.

If you’re not familiar with Revelator, check out my review on Guilty Gear: Xrd – SIGN, as pretty much everything I wrote there holds true for Revelator, with some changes. The graphics are just a teensy bit more polished, (though you’ll need a sharp eye as SIGN looks gorgeous to begin with) there are new menus and HUD, your character will glow blue when a BURST is ready, there’s a new lobby with a customizable avatar for online mode, a fishing mode for collectibles and character colors, a new story, 5 new characters (Jam, Johnny, Raven, Haehyun, and Jack ‘O), a change to the tutorial and mission modes, and a ton of things that I’m probably missing, forgetting, or haven’t tried yet, like M.O.M. mode. If you’re a Guilty Gear or fighting game fan in general, you really should get Revelator, especially if you liked SIGN.

In anime-related news, Haven’t You Heard? I’m Sakamoto was as good as it always is (the arm sax) and Kiznaiver, well… It seems like there’s a LOT going on to be wrapped up in a single episode… I guess we’ll see what happens on Saturday.

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These “What’cha Doin’?” posts are designed to spark discussion, so feel free to post in the comments what you’ve been playin’, watchin’, or listenin’ to lately.

What’cha Playin’? 6/17/16 – Guilty Gear: Xrd – Revelator — June 17, 2016

What’cha Playin’? 6/17/16 – Guilty Gear: Xrd – Revelator

I’ve finally got around to playing Guilty Gear: Xrd – Revelator. I almost forgot how much I loved SIGN! Anyway, I’ve just been tackling the Episode mode so far (that’s like your basic arcade mode) as the stories in Episode mode take place just a few days before the main story. I only need to beat Episode mode with May and Zato and then I can get started on the actual story mode, which I’m looking forward to. I liked the story in SIGN, so I’m sure Revelator won’t disappoint.

Also this weekend we get another episode of Kiznaiver and Haven’t You Heard? I’m Sakamoto, so I’m looking forward to that too. See everyone on Monday!

Also, did you know that Cyberphile has a Facebook page? Feel free to swing by and get our new posts in your newsfeed.

These “What’cha Doin’?” posts are designed to spark discussion, so feel free to post in the comments what you’ve been playin’, watchin’, or listenin’ to lately.