Two big winter storms in as many weeks have covered my town in snow and ice, so I’ve only had five whole days of work in that time period. Luckily, I was able to get to GameStop in-between the two snowstorms to pick up Bravely Default on 3DS and Danganronpa on Vita. If you don’t have them, you should go out and get them now.
I can’t really jump into the details of the story for either game without leaving a trail of spoilers in my wake, so I can only really talk about the gameplay.
I’ve read that Bravely Default was supposed to originally be a sequel to Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light before becoming its own thing, and that the job system is reminiscent of Final Fantasy V…but I noticed another influence that I don’t think very many people have pointed out yet – Mega Man.
In Final Fantasy III and V, your party is granted new jobs (standard RPG classes) as the story progresses and they restore/retrieve the crystals. However, in Bravely Default, you obtain jobs by defeating certain bosses who hold those same jobs and take their “asterisks”, giving them their abilities (and a whole lot more, with sufficient level grinding). I can just imagine Tiz and the gang thinking in their heads, “Now I’ve got your power!”, just as Mega did in the cartoon.
Yeah, I know that the Wii U is in dire straits right now, but that didn’t stop me from buying one on Saturday. It was my 33rd birthday, and my sister already has a PS4, so I thought “why the hell not” and tossed my money at GameStop for one. I bought the Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD bundle, which came with a code for a digital copy of Hyrule Historia (I also have the physical hardcover copy that I bought at Comic-Con last year).
As for other games, I also bought The Wonderful 101 on disc, and Unepic, Monster Hunter 3 Ultimate, Game & Wario, Earthbound, NES Remix, and a trial version of Wii Sports Club (it has updated and online-capable versions of all of the original Wii Sports games at $9.99 each). And with the 20% off coupon I got from GameStop, I used it on a used copy of Persona 4 Golden. I think I’ll keep my copy of the original PlayStation 2 game, since it has a disc with the game’s soundtrack on it.
Time for another Imperfect Play run. This time, I played through the first episode of Tiny Barbarian DX. I didn’t play this one through to 100% completion like I did with Ultionus, though. There are a lot of hidden diamonds, but I was only able to find two of them. Anyway, the video of my sub-40-minute run (the video is a bit longer, obviously) can be viewed below.
I’m still not sure how I’m supposed to pronounce the word Nidhogg. Is it Nee-dogg (as in “Yo dawg…“)? Nid-ogg? However you say it, it’s a game about fencing, and it just came out on Steam on Monday.
The controls are simple – you use the left and right keys to move, and up and down to adjust your sword stance (high, middle, or low). The jump and attack buttons jump and attack, of course. You can also dive and roll, use dropkicks and leg sweeps, and even snap the opponent’s neck if you can get close enough to them. The game supports keyboard and gamepad controls, and two players can use the same keyboard for local (offline) play. You can even set up tournaments of up to eight players.
Battles are often fast-paced, and players can die several times before a match is decided. The ultimate objective is to force your way to your opponent’s end of the map, and depending on how quickly you can finish off your opponent, a typical match can end in as little as one or two minutes. Of course, a match between equally skilled players can evolve into a long tug-of-war where the battle will go from one end of the stage to the next, with one mistake being the difference between victory and a stunning turnaround.
Nidhogg is a multiplayer-focused title, but a single-player time trial mode exists to practice your skills before going online against other human players. There don’t seem to be very many players online at once at the moment (the most I’ve seen in queues has never gone above single digits), and I’ve seen a few instances during games where I thought I scored a kill but it got awarded to my opponent instead, but other than that, the online play is solid enough. If only I could remember how many battles I’ve won and lost so far…
I just completed a full playthrough of Ultionus: A Tale of Petty Revenge. This is the first in a set of videos I’m going to call “Imperfect Play”, where I try to dig through a game inside out, probably losing a few lives along the way. The embedded video is below, and you can read my review of the game here.
(Note: These “Imperfect Play” videos are going to be annotated for because I don’t have a good quality microphone, and I can’t yet add audio commentary.)