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Messages - Kevadu

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Single-Player RPGs / Re: Pillars of Eternity or Torment Tides of Numenera?
« on: December 29, 2017, 05:46:25 PM »
I really need to give Tides another shot but from what I played it really didn't hook me at all.  I felt no connection or engagement with any of the characters.  Admittedly I didn't get very far...but that's because I was too bored to continue.

And this is coming from someone who regularly claims Planescape: Torment is his favorite game of all time.

Pillars is great though.

Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn
« on: December 29, 2017, 05:41:57 PM »
Odd, I felt like the difficulty of Resonance of Fate was entirely front-loaded.  Don't get me wrong, it is a very difficult game early on.  But once you're past a certain point and start abusing the weapon customization and other mechanics, it's kind of a total cakewalk.  Including the final boss.

...which is not really how you're supposed to design games, but that's how I felt.

General Discussions / Re: Today In The News
« on: December 23, 2017, 07:17:46 PM »
Unfortunately the entire executive branch is broke.  We've got bigger issues.

Single-Player RPGs / Re: Trails of Cold Steel IV
« on: December 22, 2017, 11:23:40 PM »
As awesome as this announcement is, I'm still waiting on the localization announcement for Cold Steel III.  The silence since the game's Japanese release is making me nervous.  I'm desperately hoping NIS America doesn't get the rights to Cold Steel III considering their mishandling of the localisation of Ys VIII.  I might not think it is as awful as some, but I do acknowledge it was mediocre and could've been done far better.

they have the rights to CS3, sadly.

Source? I might cry if this is true. ;(((((

If it is true they haven't told anyone.  Which does make me wonder how Rook knows it...

Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn
« on: December 22, 2017, 08:15:58 PM »
What are your thoughts on The Idolmaster One For All?

I always wanted to play one of those games, but there are too many timed elements and I can't read that fast...
Actually, it's been so long, I'm not even sure if I can even read Japanese anymore.

I haven't actually played that one so I don't really have much in the way of thoughts about it.  But from from what I've read it sounds like it would fit somewhere between Idolmaster 2 and Stella Stage, not being quite the same rigorous management simulation Idolmaster 2 was but still having more of that sort of thing than Stella Stage.

The timed responses are definitely going to be an issue for anyone not comfortable with Japanese, though honestly they're not a huge part of the game and I don't know how much it really affects things if you screw them up.

I just saw the word "Idolmaster" and immediately went cross-eyed.

That sounds like a medical problem.

Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn
« on: December 22, 2017, 05:48:31 AM »
As I seem to like to talk about games that probably nobody else here will ever play, let's talk Idolmaster!

The first Idolmaster game I played was Idolmaster 2 on the PS3.  I will say without any shame that I honestly quite enjoyed it.  For those of you not familiar with the franchise I would summarize it as basically 1 part rhythm game, 1 part visual novel, and 2 parts management simulation as that was really the bulk of the game.  It was a refreshingly unique combination at the time.  You assume the role of a small-time producer for a little-known idol and try to make her into a big-time star within a time limit.  You have to split their time between things like training, live shows, promotional activities, etc. while also managing a budget and trying to increase sales of their singles.  Many of these activities involved simple mini-games to mix things up a bit and yes there were even some visual novel like elements as the story progressed.

Another interesting point: Idolmaster 2 was a hard game.  Odds are you were not going to get a good ending your first few times through.  There were a lot of things to manage in the game, for instance popularity was regional not just a single number and if you neglected a region for too long your idol would start to become unpopular there.  So you had to think not only about what activities to pick but also where to pick them.  The game also very much encouraged replaying with different idols to produce, different songs to pick, etc.  Let's just say that it would probably taken a very long time to platinum trophy it (not that I ever did).

But anyway it's been like 6 years since that game came out and I hadn't picked up an Idolmaster game since so I guess I wasn't that in love with the franchise or anything.  But I really did enjoy the game and lately after seeing some promotional material for a new Idolmaster game for the PS4 (Stella Stage) I decided to give the franchise another shot.  So why am I talking about Idolmaster 2 now?  Because I really want to contrast the two games.

I said Idolmaster 2 was 1 part rhythm game, 1 part VN, and 2 parts management simulation.  Stella Stage is more like...2 parts rhythm game, 1 part VN, and...maybe half a part management simulation.  That aspect of the game hasn't been completely removed or anything, but god damn does it feel watered down compared to Idolmaster 2.  You do still make choices about what activities to pursue but I feel like the choice hardly matters.  The differences are largely superficial.  Training was an important part of Idolmaster 2 because it was the main way you improved your idol's stats (but you also didn't want to train too much and neglect your fans) but here it just provides a temporary boost that feels largely...unnecessary.  So it feels like, why even bother.

The rhythm game aspect for performances has changed a lot too, it's more of a proper rhythm game than the simplistic minigames of Idolmaster 2.  And it should be seeing how they seemed to have just completely ripped off the Hatsune Miku games.  No, really, even the button prompts and everything are exactly the same.  Not that there's anything wrong with the Hatsune Miku games or anything but the similarities are too blatant to not comment on.  I don't know about other more recent titles in the franchise but certainly the older games were not like that at all.

There is one aspect of Stella Stage that is much less forgiving than Idolmaster 2: It constantly autosaves.  Yes, even when you screw up.  However I eventually realized that during the rhythm game sections you can just pause and select retry if you're not doing well.  This is a pretty standard feature in pure rhythm games but it surprised me a little bit that they would put that here since the rhythm game aspect is embedded in a larger game where failure is supposed to have actual consequences.  Of course I don't like failing so needless to say I started abusing that feature as soon as I discovered it.  So despite the autosave thing the general lack of difficult choices and more relaxed pacing makes Stella Stage feel a whole lot easier than the sometimes grueling difficulty of Idolmaster 2.

But you know what?  I liked the management aspects.  I even kind of sorta liked the difficulty because it did feel rewarding when you finally got things right.  Yes, Idolmaster 2 was like the Dark Souls of idol management simulations.

...sorry I just really wanted to use that phrase.

Idolmaster 2 felt incredibly refreshing to me at the time because I had never played anything quite like it before.  And you know what?  I still haven't.  Because Stella Stage really isn't the same kind of's not necessarily a bad game or anything but it's not really what I was looking for either.  And given the niche genre I wonder if we're ever going to see a game like Idolmaster 2 again...

Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal
« on: December 17, 2017, 02:05:54 PM »
Honestly the first couple of story arcs in Bleach were fine.  Pretty good, even.  It's just that after it got really popular the author started dragging everything out waaaay too long and not really going anywhere with it.

Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal
« on: December 16, 2017, 02:03:19 AM »
Death March is shit even by isekai webnovel standards...and those aren't very high.

I don't know, I'm pretty meh on the whole upcoming season.  Hopefully something will surprise me...

General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: December 15, 2017, 07:47:56 PM »
Wait wait wait... is there a video game actually called Dragon Maid, or is it some made up thing to make the weeaboo in the story seem really cringey?  I feel like Dragon Maid would be a thing. 

It's an anime.  Fairly popular one, actually.  I don't think there are any games about it yet but if there are it would probably just be a JP-only VN or something...

I think the weirdest thing about geek culture is the desire to root out the 'fake geeks'.  As if being a geek is so desirable that people are going to pretend in the first place...

In other news I got my new K-Type keyboard from Massdrop.  It came with two 'Z' keys and no 'X' key.  Seriously.  This is a $200 keyboard...amazing quality control they have there...

General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: December 12, 2017, 02:58:09 AM »
Star Trek was already ruined once J.J. Abrams got his filthy hands on it anyway.

Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal
« on: December 04, 2017, 12:12:56 PM »
Pretty sure I recommended Alderamin when it was still new...yup, I did.

But what's this about the LN being canceled?  According to wikipedia there's another volume coming out in just a few days.  Looks like it's been releasing twice a year pretty consistently.

Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn
« on: November 26, 2017, 12:18:31 PM »
I use both a tablet and my PC and it looks fine on both.  Maybe my phone too occasionally but I don't normally like browsing on a tiny phone screen.

Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn
« on: November 26, 2017, 11:17:20 AM »
The font looks the same as it always has to me...

General Discussions / Re: Whats the haps?
« on: November 19, 2017, 12:27:36 PM »
Maybe some people do need personal finance classes.  I never felt like I had a shortage of that kind of information personally, but I'm sure there are some who don't.  However I object to the notion that it would be a math class...

Frankly the actual mathematics involved in personal finance is pretty trivial.  There is a reason you're seeing the subject covered in special ed.  Stuff like "get a credit card early to start building your credit history" (which is what started this discussion I believe) isn't exactly mathematics.  It's just information about how the system works.

Look, I remember learning how to calculate compound interest in middle school.  We spent a couple of days on it because if you understand exponentiation that's all that is required.  And compound interest is probably the most mathematically complex thing you will ever do in personal finance.  Most of it is simple arithmetic.

If my high school math classes wasted time on that kind of trivial stuff I think I would have felt a mixture of boredom and being insulted by the simplicity of it all.  Give me geometric proofs over that any day.

(note: I went on to get a PhD in physics so I might not be normal...)

General Discussions / Re: Today In The News
« on: November 10, 2017, 08:44:27 PM »
There are a lot of things I don't like about the GOP's tax proposal, but as a former PhD student (I've graduated thank god) there is one particular provision that has me positively outraged.  Good description of the problem here.

Basically, imagine if you're employer threatened to charge you several times your actual salary for the privilege of working for them, but then later changed their mind.  Everything's good, right?  Now imagine that the GOP wants to tax you for the tens of thousands of dollars you just 'earned' off that interaction.  This is the exact situation graduate students are in.  It's completely insane.  That is not income.

Now to be fair that's from the House bill.  The Senate version does not appear to have this provision.  Who knows what will be in the final version.  But the fact that it's even being considered is crazy.  This would probably be the largest tax increase anyone in that income bracket has ever seen in the history of this country.  That is not an exaggeration.  And it's part of a 'tax cut' bill.

But I guess there aren't many PhD students in the GOP's base so fuck 'em.

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