It’s nearly 5am so I won’t go into too much detail but I wanted to quickly post this video from Sony. DRM, persistant online, subscriptions and ownership are big worries this year and Sony have come out at £100 cheaper than Xbox One, DRM free and no online authentication required. The only sneaky thing they didn’t really highlight was the fact that you’ll need PlayStation Plus to experience the multiplayer modes in PS4 games.
Simply put: They’ve clearly won the show.
More thoughts on the days announcements tomorrow but I wanted to post that silly video because it makes perfectly encapsulates how ludicrous Microsoft’s used game vision is to the general gamer.
I’m a little late to the Bioshock Infinite party (thanks to Monster Hunter Ultimate 3) but very glad I waited a bit to play it. Why? Everyone and their mum were asking me what I thought of it, if I had finished it, what did I think of the ending and I just wanted that to slow down before I start to over analyse everything I see while playing.
Then it got spoiled for me.
Someone thought it was be funny to slice in some rather big plot points in the middle of the old E3 trailer. While the game wasn’t ruined as these spoilers were not in context, it did tell me a few things about the main characters that … well … left the shocking reveal a little wet.
Expect many spoilers after the jump.
I’ve finished up Ni No Kuni today and am starting to tackle all the post-game content that has now unlocked. All I have to say is how this makes a wonderful start to my gaming year. Fifty plus hours in and it’s still got more to offer.
Ni No Kuni brought back jRPG tropes fans have been screaming for in this whimsical tale of ‘boy finding self’. You’ve got a world map, boats, airships and all the old school trappings that make diving into Japanese fantasy games so magical. A partnership of Level-5 and renowned animation house Studio Ghibli make this a match made in heaven.
I’m a massive fan of Japanese role-playing games. I’m not sure if it’s the slightly dodgy story, crazy character designs, or attention to detail that they bring but I’ve always been a stickler for them. With Final Fantasy becoming somewhat of a mixed-bag these days, Ni No Kuni pretty much ticked all the boxes. It even has the Japanese language soundtrack, which I’d usually recommend, but seeing as Drippy has the most adorable Welsh accent and the English translation and writing just plays up to it, it’s well worth sitting through two or more questionable voice overs.
Also puns. Prepare for plenty of puns. Most of which are awesome.
So what’s wrong with it? Maybe I’m nitpicking but the animation shorts from Studio Ghibli was very few and far between. And if you’re expecting a grand Ghibli sign-off then you’ll be disappointed with the ending. It’s short, snappy and all done in-engine. It doesn’t really resolve much and is a let down if you ask me. Not to say it ruins the overall journey, which of course is the most important aspect, but when you look at a popular jRPG like Final Fantasy, which traditionally ends on a lengthy and expensive looking CG ending, Ni No Kuni just seems forgot to pop the cheery on top of your ice cream sundae. It was just missing that last piece of the puzzle.
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Another mild annoyance is that the capture rates on the familiars are excruciatingly low. One illusive mob called Toko has a capture rate of 2% that can be increased to 2.4% if you unlock one of the merit skills for doing side quests. Forums are rife with complaints from gamers killing hundreds of the damn things to capture one. The worst thing? They’re very difficult to find in the first place so it’s kind of like kicking you when you’re down.
Not that that should put you off. I’ve laughed, cried and had a big dorky smile creep across my face at every cheesy joke, pun and story development. It’s genuinely one of the most entertaining and heartfelt RPGs I’ve played in years.