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Topics - Kevadu

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General Games / Hatsune Miku: Project Diva F
« on: June 13, 2013, 05:36:49 AM »
I just had to make a thread for this game :)

I'm still in disbelief that Sega is actually bringing this over.  I've already played the heck out of lowercase-f (the Vita version) from importing it, but I never did get F.  I kind of prefer these games on a portable and the couple extra songs in F weren't quite enough to sell it to me (well, I did almost buy it just for Tell Your World...).  But I guess I should show my support since they're actually localizing it.  Not that there was much to localize...

The demo is out on PSN already and I tried it out today.  It's just like the Japanese demo.  I was kind of surprised that they didn't even translate the song lyrics, just romanized them.  But then, it's not like you have time to read song lyrics while playing the game.  Otherwise this was obviously a super-easy game to localize.  It's really just menus.  I'm quite curious how it's going to sell.  I think a lot of the hardcore fans already imported it, especially since the games don't really require any knowledge of Japanese.  But I guess the really hardcore fans will buy it again.

My biggest concern is that it's supposed to be hitting in August.  We've already got Dragon's Crown and Tales of Xillia in August...what a busy month.  I'm also a bit concerned that despite the fact that it's supposed to be out in just a couple months they still don't have a firm date (just 'August') and it's not even listed on Amazon...

General Games / Massive Chalice Kickstarter
« on: May 30, 2013, 08:44:25 PM »
Double Fine is clearly hooked on Kickstarter and has launched a new one for what sounds like a pretty cool epic fantasy turn-based strategy game called Massive Chalice.  I couldn't help but think of Agarest War when I heard the whole spans generations thing, but hopefully this has more emphasis on strategy instead of grinding.

I really like the concept, though I am getting wary of funding yet another Kickstarter project when not a single one of the projects I've funded thus far has actually been released yet.  At the same time, this sounds like it was made for me.  If done when then it's exactly the kind of game I'll eat up.  Time to break out the wallet I guess...

General Games / Guilty Gear Xrd
« on: May 20, 2013, 04:26:17 AM »
The trailer blew me away, at least on a technical level.  I had to watch and rewatch it, in utter disbelief...these are really 3D character models?  I have no idea if I'll even play the game (Frankly, super-technical fighters aren't my thing.  P4A was enough for me...), but I'm just amazed by what they were able to accomplish.  With the Unreal engine, no less...

I have a lot of respect for ASW's games, even though I suck at them.  I'm just really interested to see what they do with this tech.

General Games / Panopticon
« on: May 16, 2013, 06:20:19 PM »
Hey, let's talk about a game we don't know anything about!  I'm putting this here for now because we don't even know the genre, but it could very well be an RPG.  We don't know the system either (though a lot of people are speculating Vita).  What we do know is that it has a pretty awesome teaser trailer.

So what have we got?  Let's analyze the heck out of limited information!

The name 'panopticon' refers to a prison design proposed by philosopher and social theorist Jeremy Bentham in the late 18th century.  It consists of cells arranged in a circle around a central guard tower, and the whole point was to make it so that guards could monitor the inmates without them knowing when they were being watched.  Remember that this was before CCTV and all that stuff, so that was actually hard to do.  In a normal prison design patrolling guards would be obvious and prisoners who were up to no good would have time to hide what they were doing.

Now obviously in this sci-fi setting there are no literal panopticons.  However the monitoring theme seems to be pretty big, so I seriously doubt that name was chosen at random.  In the trailer there are several shots of cameras and of people clearly watching what other people are doing.  Not to mention that the people in the trailer do appear to have been captured and are prisoners of some sort, but we don't really know why.

Then of course there are the numbers over everyone's heads, probably the trailer's most distinctive feature.  But what do they mean?  I've seen a lot of people speculate that it's something like the "shinigami eyes" in Death Note that shows how much time people have before they die, but I don't buy that.  I rewatched the trailer and noticed that most of the time these numbers don't change.  If they were just clocks counting down to somebody's death then they should be changing all the time.  If they never changed at all I would be inclined to believe it was some sort of ID number attached to each person (which would fit the whole monitoring theme), however there is that one scene at like 2:20 where the guy's number is changing after rescuing the girl.  That's the only point in the trailer I noticed a number changing, but it's changing fast.  What does that mean?

Then there's the color of these numbers.  Normally they're blue, but we saw people's numbers change to red after being captured (0:50 in the trailer), which would make one inclined to believe that the color has something to do with criminal status.  But, then there's the baby born at the end.  Number 1,000,000 and born with a red number.  What the heck does that mean?

I have no idea, but it's a pretty cool trailer...

Now what about gameplay?  A lot of people are speculating that this is yet another Monster Hunter clone based on the second half of the trailer that has a bunch of people fighting big monster things.  Of course this is just cinematics, not gameplay.  Final Fantasy games have cinematic moments of a bunch of people fighting big monster things, but that doesn't mean they play anything like Monster Hunter games (well, except maybe Type-0 a bit...).  Certainly the setting and style are very different, though I suppose you could say the same about Soul Sacrifice.

What we do know is that it's being made by Son's Japan Studio, though Japan Studio is actually more of an umbrella label that has a lot of different teams within it.  It's been speculated that it's the team behind Gravity Rush doing this, since they've been kind of quiet since Gravity Rush came out.  That would be pretty cool.

There's obviously a lot of stuff we don't know.  This was just a teaser.  But it was a damn nice teaser.  I'm definitely interested.

The delicious irony.

When I got to the point where the guy wrote, "I mean can I research DRM or something..." I was laughing out loud.


If they do this right it could actually be really cool.  Monster is a pretty down-to-earth Manga and well-suited for a live action adaption.  There has been talk about doing a movie version before, but it's kind of long for that.  An HBO series could totally work, though.

What do you think?

Anime, TV, and Movies / Ratchet and Clank Movie
« on: April 24, 2013, 05:19:34 AM »
Don't want to jinx it, but this looks like it could actually be...good?

I say that mainly because it's a light-hearted animated affair that seems true to the original characters.  Not that you can really tell a lot from a teaser like that.  But it does make me wonder why with all of the terrible live-action video game movie adaptions nobody has tried making an animated film before...I mean, this could actually work.

Info on Gust's next Atelier game has been revealed.  Two protagonists, up to six character battles.  Sounds like they are mixing things up a little.  And the engine is obviously the result of Gust being bought by Tecmo.  We'll have to wait and see how well it works in practice.

General Discussions / PS Plus is awesome
« on: March 25, 2013, 09:03:56 PM »
Sorry to sound like an advertisement here, but I'm really loving this service.

I was kind of skeptical about PS+ at first, and when I looked at the lists of free stuff and discounts that would occasionally be published during the early months of the service there really wasn't much I actually wanted.  But I eventually signed up for PS+ shortly after they started including Vita games in it because I hadn't had my Vita for long at that point and it seemed like a cheap way to get some more games for it.  It didn't hurt that one of the free games was Uncharted: Golden Abyss, which I wanted to play anyway and it was still going for full retail price most places.  So a year of PS+ was as cheap as that one game...why not give it a shot.

But man, I never expected to get so much use out of the service.  Uncharted was just the tip of the iceberg.  Games I was genuinely interested in, didn't already own, and became available for free on PS+ during the time I've had it (which has only been like half a year...) include:

Uncharted: Golden Abyss
Quantum Conundrum
LittleBigPlanet 2
Spec Ops: The Line
Wild Arms (PSOne Classic)

This is not supposed to be a complete list of games at all, just games that I was both interested in and didn't already own.  There are lots of other games that I've downloaded just because they were free but realistically probably won't ever play because I'm not that into them and my backlog is big enough as it is.  And of course there are games that have been free for PS+ but I already owned (like Gravity Rush, which I bought about a week before it became available on PS+ making me feel like a sucker...).  And this is just free games, I'm not even counting the discounts and things which I've also benefitted from.  And I haven't even had the service for half a year yet...still have plenty of time to go.  For only $50 a year it seems like an insanely good deal.

Oh, and I just read that Disgaea 3 for Vita is going to be free starting this week, so I'll be grabbing that too.  Huzzah.

Anyone else using PS+?  Do you love it ass much as I do?

General Games / Bioshock Infinite
« on: March 22, 2013, 04:08:02 AM »
OK, so there was a Bioshock infinite topic already but the last post in it was back in August 2011 and I'm not that into thread necromancy...

But seriously, game comes out Tuesday.  Looks pretty awesome.  IGN's review is up, but nobody else is allowed to tell you how they feel until Monday because of, you know, things.  Thems the breaks.

But it sounds like the game really does live up to its lofty promises.  Who's getting it?

Single-Player RPGs / Mind 0 is not not...
« on: March 20, 2013, 02:47:47 AM »
Hey, there's a new game coming in Japan which alternates between daily school life with 2D event scenes  and a mysterious other world where certain people can summon entities that represent their unconscious to engage in 3D turn-based battles!  And it's published by a company who's name starts with 'A'!

That's right, it's Mind 0 by Acquire!  What did you think I was talking about?

I mean yeesh, even the art style is similar:

That said, I'm a little surprised there aren't more Persona clones out there.  It's clearly a popular setup and Atlus themselves aren't exactly churning them out...being a clone doesn't mean it has to be bad.  And the Vita could use more RPGs (though it really feels like things have been turning around for it lately).

Single-Player RPGs / Neptunia and Vita
« on: March 17, 2013, 04:34:50 AM »
Apparently somebody at Compile Heart likes the Vita...

We already knew about the Idol Neptunia PP spinoff that's coming in June, but that's not an RPG (it's apparently an Idolmaster-like game in the Neptunia universe...) and it's not what this post is about.

No, apparently Compile Heart has announced two more Neptunia games, both coming this year for the Vita.  Milk a franchise much?

One of them, Hyper-Hyperdimension Game Neptunia Re;Birth1, is a remake of the original.  The other is a spinoff staring Black Heart.

Honestly I've yet to play a Neptunia game.  I'm just posting this because I thought it was interesting.  I'm not sure what they're actually doing for the remake (there weren't any real details), but if they improve the mechanics I might consider giving it a shot...seems like a reasonable place to start.  Compile Heart is clearly committed to this franchise...

General Discussions / Who publishes your games this gen?
« on: March 16, 2013, 04:35:54 PM »
With the recent SimCity debacle and all the hate EA has been getting lately, along with the hate Activision has been getting for a while for various reasons, I became curious about how many games from these big publishers I actually own.  I knew it wasn't very many, and not because I've been actively boycotting them or anything.  It just that these super-massive publishing juggernauts just can't seem to make the sort of game that I like.  I get it, my tastes are weird.

I decided to quantify exactly how weird my tastes are by cataloging all of my PS3 games by publisher (retail only, not counting expansion packs).  Because why not...

Sony: 7
Sega: 5
EA: 4
Namco Bandai: 4
Square Enix: 4
Atlus: 3
2K: 2
Bethesda: 2
Valve: 2
Konami: 1

This was just PS3 games, so Sony's lead shouldn't be that surprising.  And obviously things would change with handhelds (Xseed isn't even on this list, but I have a ton of their games on PSP.  I would also expect a big jump for Atlus.).  Even so, I thought this was pretty interesting.  I didn't even realize how many Sega games I owned.  And Namco Bandai benefited massively from me importing...I think only one of those games was actually a US release (that would be Tails of Graces f).  While there are a fair number of EA titles on my shelf (mostly thanks to Bioware...), I really don't own a single Activision game.  Again, I haven't been actively boycotting them, they just don't make any games that I care about...

Maybe I should go back and include handheld titles, it really would change things.  But I'm curious what publishers the rest of you favor.

I've been reading a lot of light novels lately in Japanese.  My Japanese has been steadily improving but I'm still a long way from any kind of fluency.  Light novels are nice to practice with because they're, well, light.  They're a lot easier to read than serious literature (and while they don't put furigana for every word the way a shounen manga does, they do it for less common words, thank god).  And of course it doesn't hurt that I enjoy them.  There's something of a light novel boom in Japan right now, with tons of them being produced and more and more anime series are being based on light novels rather than manga (not to mention all the games and spin-offs, etc).  It's a good time to get into reading them.  But reading novels in a language you're not completely confident is challenging, and in the course of doing so I've observed a few things I thought were interesting:

1.  Action is hard.  I guess this shouldn't realy come as a big surprise, but it's an interesting contrast with, say, manga.  Action in manga is mostly told with images (and maybe some commentary), so action-heavy mangas are obviously much easier to read than dialogue-heavy ones.  But in novel form it's the complete opposite.  Properly describing an action scene with just text is hard, and often involves more advanced vocabulary, metaphors, etc.

When you start out learning a language the words you learn are almost always geared towards conversation, since that's what most people want/need to do most.  But properly describing a scene just takes different words.  Words you don't necessary use in conversation very often.  I often find myself inwardly relieved everytime I make it to a start quotation mark, because I know that things are going to get easier.  Even though I enjoy long flowing descriptions in English (well, assuming they're well-written at least), when it comes to Japanese give me dialogue!  I can handle dialogue.

2.  You can end up really learning a particular author's style.  I found this interesting and quite unexpected.  Keep in mind that I'm pretty much always reading with a dictionary next to me so I can look of words I don't know.  I don't expect that to change anytime soon, it's really just a question of rates.  When I'm in the zone, so to speak, I might only have to look a one word every few pages.  But then there are times when I'm bogged down looking up multiple words in a single sentence...

Anyway, this lead me to an interesting observation.  I noticed that after I've read a few volumes from a particular author, things get a lot easier.  I spend most of my time "in the zone".  This even led me to arrogantly believe that my Japanese had substantially improved and I was ready for harder challenges.  Well, I was getting a hang of something:  I was getting the hang of that author.  Because as soon as I started reading books from different authors it felt like I was back at square one.  But after spending time with a different author my reading speed would once again substantially improve.  Only to feel like I was starting over again when I moved on to yet another author...

This is how I see it:  Really common words are used by pretty much everyone.  They're really common, after all.  But I generally already know the really common words (I have been working on this Japanese thing for a number of years, after all).  It's not the common words that I'm stopping to look up.  My hypothesis is that when you start getting to less common words their usage is far less uniform.  Certain authors will favor certain words, and end up using them a lot.  Far more often than they would appear if you looked average rate over all Japanese literature.  So it's only natural that after a while you start to get used to that author's vocabulary.  But that author's vocabulary isn't really representative of anyone besides that author.  Hence the "starting over" feeling when trying books by someone else.  Each author has their own individual stable of less common words that they favor.

I think this is much less obvious to somebody who's already fluent in the language, since they would generally know the words anyway and wouldn't take much notice.  I'm not necessarily talking about super-rare exotic terminology here.  I just mean words outside the core of staple words that everyone has to use all the time.

Anyway, I wrote more than I had planned so that's enough for now.  Maybe I'll add more observations later if people think this is interesting.

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