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31  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Hyperdimension Neptunia U is Neptunia meets Senran Kagura on: April 09, 2014, 05:46:28 PM
Actual details about Hyperdimension Neptunia U have been revealed.

It's an action spin-off Vita game being made by the Senran Kagura team, and based on the screenshots that are available I think it's pretty likely that they're just reusing the Shinovi Versus engine.  Which is fine with me, since that was actually a pretty fun game.  In fact this could be the strongest gameplay in a Neptunia game yet (since let's face it, that hasn't exactly been the series' forte...).

How did a game as crappy as the original Neptunia spawn such a large franchise...
32  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: PS3/4/Vita SRPG Natural Doctrine on: April 09, 2014, 04:01:52 PM
Ouch, this game flopped hard in Japan.  Out of the PS3, PS4, and Vita versions the Vita was the only one to even list in the top-20, with a meager 6000 copies sold.  In its opening week.  There's just no way to put a positive spin on this.  I haven't seen a game flop this badly in a while.

Which is a shame because it's actually supposed to be a pretty decent SRPG.
33  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: RPGs you're ashamed to like? on: April 09, 2014, 03:12:19 PM
I actually really liked what they were trying to do with the narrative.

I liked the narrative of the beginning, but the last chapter just destroyed any love I could have for the plot.
Al-Qada Anders doesn't help either.

Yeah, OK, I'll grant you that.  There were some pretty dumb twists there...
34  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: RPGs you're ashamed to like? on: April 09, 2014, 07:11:02 AM
I enjoyed both DA:O and DA2.  My complaints about DA2 are pretty much limited to the obvious things (dungeon reuse, boring encounter design with enemies spawning from nowhere, etc.), but I actually really liked what they were trying to do with the narrative.
35  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Conception II on: April 08, 2014, 04:30:48 PM
Part of me wants to send tons of visual novels, dating sims and eroges to Spoony Mage.

You know that the vast majority of visual novels and dating sims do not have a harem end option, right?
36  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Leeky Cauldron: The RPGfan Food and Recipe Thread on: April 08, 2014, 02:51:44 PM
I have to force myself to eat frozen vegetables. It is even worse if they are mixed frozen vegetables. It is actually one of the reasons I decided to learn how to cook properly.

Dude, you're not supposed to eat them while they're still frozen...

It's true that frozen vegetables can be pretty bland if you don't do something with them, but what do you expect?  I make awesome stir-fry with frozen veggies.
37  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: April 07, 2014, 09:02:16 PM
A new season is upon us.  Some quick first impressions:

Blade and Soul: Killing, fanservice, fanservice, fanservice, killing, killing, fanservice...plot?  What plot?  Why did I start off with this anyway, I don't know...

The Irregular at Magic High School: Is it everything I hoped for?  Not really.  But it isn't bad, and honestly what I hoped for is probably impossible.  One of my favorite thing about the novels is just how much detail the other puts into his descriptions of the magic.  When somebody uses magic he can spend several paragraphs describing how every molecule is affected and how it all comes together.  Now how would you even portray that in anime?  You can't really, and the producers of this show seem to have decided to not even try.  The result is something that feels a lot more action-y, though there are more than a few subtle nods to all the stuff that's explained in the novels, you just don't stand a chance of catching them if you haven't already read the novels...otherwise, though, I think they did a pretty good job with how the setting feels.  We'll see how they manage from there.

The World is Still Beautiful: I knew nothing about this going in but ended up liking it way more than I expected.  It's based on a shoujo manga but really didn't feel that shoujo.  In fact if anything it reminded me of Moribito a little bit.  But I went a looked into it a little bit afterwards and apparently the first episode was almost entirely anime-original.  Didn't really follow the manga until the very end.  I liked the first episode a lot more than what I've seen of the manga, but I have a feeling that this was just for the introduction and they're going to switch to following the manga afterwards.  It's a weird feeling, hoping that they don't follow the manga...

The Kawai Complex Guide...: One big pile of cliches and tropes.  The execution is pretty good, actually.  The animation is solid, I like what they did with the colors and stuff, the characters are typical but they work.  My big problem is that I just don't sense one ounce of originality here.  Everything in this show has been done already.  Every character feels like I've seen them before.

Baby Steps: This is a long manga and the first episode of the anime does little more than get your feet wet.  But hey, the temperature seems about right...

One Week Friends: Characters with memory issues in anime have officially become cliche.  I'm honestly getting a little sick of it.  But this one ups the bar by having a character with the most contrived and specific memory problem yet: She only forgets people close to her (so I guess she can remember school stuff or else there wouldn't be much point in her going...oh, and her family is excluded for some reason) and she always completely forgets them every Monday.  Yes, her medical issue follows our arbitrary calendar system for some reason.  It's like this problem was invented specifically so that somebody could write a story about a kind-hearted boy trying to get close to a girl with this problem...no way, it's not 'like' that at all.  That's the only reason such a contrived medical issue could possibly exist.  OK, if you can get past that then I guess the show seems fine...but I guess I can't get past it.
38  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: April 07, 2014, 03:39:10 PM
I actually gave in and moved on from FFIV:TAY back to Trails in the Sky. I have a question for those who have played it: How's the difficulty curve? I get the feeling it's going to be one of those RPG's where the monsters get stronger at a much slower pace than your characters.

I'd say you're wrong about that.  I thought the final dungeon was probably the most challenging part of the game.
39  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, The Last 13 Days on: April 07, 2014, 12:41:50 AM
I've been following this discussion and thought about weighing a few times but I really didn't want to get into one of those arguments again...still I wanted to add my thoughts as an official FFXIII hater.

1.  I actually loved FFXII.  In fact I rank it as one of my favorite FF games (and I've been playing them since the original on the NES), though still second to VI.  So I was actually quite optimistic going into XIII.  I read the prequel novella and had pretty much bought into the hype.  So I certainly gave it a chance.  I knew the characters and had no trouble following what was going on.

2.  I didn't start hating FFXIII until I played the damn thing.  And boy did I hate it.

3.  I liked what the story was trying to do, but much like Dice I felt that it failed miserably in the execution.  Then add in some badly-written dialogue and stiff characters to boot.

4.  Still, 80% of why I hate it so much is the gameplay.  I've played plenty of games with cheesy writing and enjoyed them so long as the game part is fun.  But there was nothing fun about FFXIII for me.  The battle system was terrible.  I didn't find it hard, just tedious.  You end up switching between like the same three paradigms over and over and over as you fight enemies with inflated HP bars.  And then on top of that, there's nothing else in the game besides the battle system.  If you don't like the battle system there is literally nothing to like about the game.  There is no side content, no exploration, no minigames, nothing.  Just a lot of boring tedious battles.
40  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: What's the haps? on: April 07, 2014, 12:25:51 AM
Dammit! That happens when the whole post doesn't fit into the white space, and I forget to scroll down. I'm actually surprised more people don't do it more often. Or I'm just an idiot.

I just spam pagedown before typing.

And then there are times like this when I feel a compulsive need to delete the really old quotes that are being quoted in the quote I'm quoting, just leaving the most recent statement because the old ones are really not relevant anymore.
41  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: What's the haps? on: April 05, 2014, 09:38:35 PM
Wondering what to put in my KanColle panel at Sakura-con.  Less than two weeks to go...
42  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: April 05, 2014, 06:18:06 PM
I'll give you the same advice I give everyone: Watch the first half and the stop ;)


Man I hope I am of a different opinion, because so far I absolutely love this show!!!

That's probably because you're still in the first half...
43  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Anime/Manga Journal on: April 04, 2014, 10:45:48 PM
I must confess I'm a little surprised to see somebody say they just "discovered" SAO considering how big a deal it was a couple years ago...oh well, I'll give you the same advice I give everyone: Watch the first half and the stop ;)

In other news Crunchyroll got streaming rights to "The Irregular at Magic High School", aka the show of the season.  I declare before the season has really started.
44  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: What's the haps? on: April 04, 2014, 10:42:14 PM
D, look like you and I are the two "big boys'. I was 185 when I finished HS, 235 of mean muscle in college, lol, now I fluctuate between 230-240 but I could drop 20 easily if I went back to lifting

Hey, don't leave me out.  I'm about 230 now and while I probably could stand to lose a few pounds I'm not exactly out of shape.  I still bike, hike, do mountaineering, etc.  I'm just naturally a big guy.  Honestly having a large frame can kind of be a detriment for those sort of activities (more weight to haul around...), but that's what I enjoy.  I'd probably be better suited for lifting, but I have zero interest in it.

Bears of RPGFan...
45  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Re: Hyperdimension Neptunia PP is getting localized on: April 04, 2014, 04:44:57 AM
The Idolmaster games are pretty interesting.  They're part management simulation, part rhythm game, and part visual novel.  Which may sound like a weird combination but it works.  The management aspects are sort of the core of the game, as you have to plan activities every week and try balance making money and increasing your fan base.  Then there are also training minigames to up the stats of your performers and promotional activities that have a VN-esque sequences in them.  It's actually quite challenging, too.  Getting the top ranked song takes some serious planning and skill.

The most in-depth minigame is, not surprisingly, for actual performances.  And it's pretty cool since there's a strategic aspect to it you don't usually see in rhythm games.  Ultimately you're just tapping buttons to a fixed beat, but you choose which buttons to press rather than follow cues.  There's a score multiplier associated with each type and that multiplier will decrease if you just spam the same type all the time.  At first you might think you should just spread it out evenly then, but you also have to consider how the performer's base stats affect these multipliers and eventually you start buying charms that can give special effects to a certain button type, etc.  Then on top of all of that once you've built up your meter enough you can do what's essentially a super move, and you choose one of the performers to be the center for it.  You can potentially get huge points for this but it's affected by both the current multipliers when you start the super and the performer's base states.  So for example Chihaya is really good at singing so if you're going to use her it would be best to purposely build up the singing multiplier ahead of time for the maximum effect.

That might have been kind of rambling but what I'm trying to say is that even the rhythm game part has some depth to it...

Neptunia PP basically rips off the Idolmaster formula except:
1) From what I've heard their performance minigame is pretty bad, and it's hard to even tell what kind of effect your actions will have.
2) There are only 4 peformers.  OK, it could be worse but...
3) There are only 5 songs.  Yes, 5 songs.  In the whole game.  No secret unlocks or anything.  It's a music game (sort of...) with only 5 songs...
4) It's got Neptunia-style humor in it, so if you like that sort of thing there's that...
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