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61  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dark Souls 3 on: April 12, 2016, 09:56:33 AM
Thats odd that you found bows useless in Dark Souls 2 because they were already improved in that game and were much more viable than in Dark Souls 1.

Better than bad still doesn't necessarily equate to good when you contrast their ranged efficacy against spell-casting. Then again so much is build-dependent, I am well aware you COULD have may them viable but my stance on the matter doesn't change. Couple the fact that having int/faith is extremely advantageous to EITHER a dex or strength build (imbue weapon w/ magic = OP) and I really see no distinct advantage to the bow whatsoever.
62  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: April 12, 2016, 09:43:29 AM
Welp folks, today is the day that kicks off the rest of the calendar year for me if last year is any indication. That is....

.... DARK SOULS 3 -- Just started. Sometimes, I can't believe I really became a Soul-Tard in my gaming career. It is sort of like how I grew up loving meat and chocolate and became a long-term adult raw vegan. I won't even admit it in conversation as I always refer to my nutritional habits as being "plant based" to avoid the stigma of being a hypocrite.

Truth be told though, eating plants makes me feel better than meat and playing Souls games transcends the atypical gaming experience for me. I worked a self imposed double yesterday so I could be late and get a solid start on the title this morning- LoL
63  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Dark Souls 3 on: April 12, 2016, 09:34:53 AM
Sort of surprised this thread has been dead as long as it has. Reviving it for release day.

Just gave it a spin, and it certainly feels way more "Bloodborne" to me (this is a good thing) in terms of the gameplay.

Hoping I didn't screw myself picking a Thief starting class with the intention of eventually fleshing out a Dex/Faith build. Starting with higher luck and a bow at a lower level with decent dexterity seemed like an appealing foundation for me in theory. I was curious to see if bows have been improved upon in this installment anyhow because I found them totally useless vs. other ranged options last game.

Anyone else hopping on deck for this newest exercise in punishment and sufferance? Mind you that exercise eventually becomes "behavioral addiction" for me---***THE PAY OFF***
64  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: April 07, 2016, 05:47:59 AM

@ Kylde - The other thing wrt mana games is like, if I want to replay them there's various mods for SD3/LoM now which is like... maybe they do improve things but at the same time am I really playing the same game anymore? If I end up liking it, is it the game or someone's re-imagining of it that I'm liking? It's, in part at least, that indecision that stops me from playing them.

Morrowind left a... weird taste in my mouth with regards to modding. You can drop in all these features and maybe they add to the game or at least change it in a way that... let's you better fulfill whatever fantasy the game is trying to let you fulfill, but at the same time they... erode the sense of gestalt of the project. Start busting cracks in it. Turn it into something where you're not playing the game but playing with something malleable floating on top of it.

And it's not strictly user mods. The Minecraft I played in 2010 doesn't exist anymore. Neither does the Euro Truck 2 I played in 2013. And the Mass Effect 3 ending mulligan DLC gives me bad vibes for the same reason Kanye still messing around with TLoP does. Or why something like Banished, or to a lesser extent Cities Skylines, where the game exists (almost?/totally?) as a modding platform is hard for me to embrace.

So even if I'm talking about the LoM mod -- which I made, and only has like three really minor changes, all of which I can justify and all of which feel /better/ to me -- there's still something that feels like... I don't know like I replaced all the alien portraits from GalCiv with the ones from Furcadia because I read too much Larry Niven as a fetus and would rather act out catgirl space adventures than experience what Stardock came up with.

(Specific to Morrowind, I didn't enjoy it until I quit modidng it because I ended up learning how it worked instead of trying to fix stuff that wasn't actually broken).

It is posts like this that make me adore coming here and reading what you have to say. Seriously, you touch upon some FO REAL crappola I can relate to.

In short. Your "Mana Mod Conundrum" is exactly the issue I've had (in my grey matter that is) with replaying FF6. So many options nowadays. Does Leo live? Do I want a new narrative about Crystals? Do I want Cloud in my party? And if in fact I do choose to indulge these things what happens to the illusion of a "perfect game" I've crafted from years long since past? Do I jeopardize it? Maybe some things are better left fondly in memory and not tampered with.

Worse yet for me, to expand on my personal completely fuck-errd nature problems with replays of Mana and old RPGs I know and love. Does this somehow undermine or negate my ability to possibly enjoy anything new? New games I've never played have a disadvantage when run against games I fondly remember. This simple matter of compare and contrast scares me. I know that, at the very least, if I am replaying Chrono Trigger and I pick up a new title a very unfair judgement will be made. Now the screwed up part.... I have tarnished my interpretation of Chrono Trigger because I resent the fact that it compromised my sensibility. Now I've completely undermined my present perception and fond recollection because I'm a screwball broken ninja that can project himself into a nervous breakdown over game selection.

It is my hope to someday get over this and be able to have new appreciable experiences with old games while ALSO having new appreciable experiences with media I have yet to ever lay eyes on. But in truth I suspect strongly that the indulgence of nostalgia need be something I am VERY careful with. That is, not to deny myself its splendor but also to realize its true potential to utterly destroy the moment (present).

Aaaaaaaaaand I just officially made this a completely inappropriate post for the journal so let me address that.

DISGAEA 5/ Red Magnus wrestler persona has (by chapter 9) become somehow off-putting with the Jap-voice over. Minor complaint.

MURAMASA DLC 1/ Beat. Underwhelming final boss. Absolutely charming ending. DLC done right. If DLC is post game, and there is post game content to the DLC itself does that make it POST POST GAME DLC POST CREDIT CONTENT?????

Drafting this post has injured my brain.

EDIT: One final note @Mesh. Personally worth noting, as I look back in memory over adulthood and I think on times I have played games in various residences since roughly 20 years of age I notice something odd. Any recall I have of playing Mana, Chrono Trigger, Old Final Fantasy titles, Lunar and a few other offerings totally hinders my ability to recall any other game I was playing at that time.--- This fact alone, granted me by the passage of time and the development/cataloguing of memories proves to me the true peril or danger of falling prey to the desire to chase/re-experience some titles over and over again.
65  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: April 06, 2016, 07:01:47 AM
^ the game came out in 1996.  Games where still supposed to be challenging in 1996 and saving anywhere wasn't at all the norm back then.

I actually miss save points.  Knowing you had to be hella prepared before barreling head first into a dungeon added an element of thoughtfulness and skill to rpgs that is often sorely lacking in newer titles. I remember taking dying in a game HARD (I still do to an extent) because it meant that I'd lost a certain amount of prep work and effort.  Knowing you'd have to redo things if you got murked added a lot of excitement that just isn't there. Anyone who has ever permanently died during D&D understands what I'm talking about.  Now, with respawning (bleech) you can just run into almost any area like an asshole with minimal consequences.

The problem is when you're playing video games on ancient hardware that wasn't all that well designed 20+ years ago and are just falling the hell apart. Then suddenly, you'll find yourself wishing to not be constrained by having some kind of badly placed save point half an hour away from where you are, while hoping that by standing your PSX on end it won't freeze on you for the next 30 minutes.

This would be funny if it were not absolute truth. It took me well into adulthood to finally finish breath of fire 3 for this reason. A dead PS1 plus loss of data resulted in my never having the motivation to pick it back up as a kid. It was crushing.

Still getting vague urges tURJEZ vague desires to replay the Mana games for the millionth time because i'm dum.

I feel like I am always fighting an urge to play Mana that has the potential to be unhealthy. That is, if I let myself, I can easily see me replaying Mana titles to a point that detracts from me ability to have new "favorites" or enjoy modern gaming as much as I do. There should be a retro-gaming support group for people like me.

I think I'm gonna have a Legend of Mana and Sword of Mana run in the not so distant future but self impose some arbitrary rule. Something like "Only give myself 1 or two retro treats for my b-day and christmas".
66  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: April 03, 2016, 06:54:25 AM
REEEAAAL busy this week and I was a bad RPGFan. I didn't come back to the journal til just now. Read over what I missed in the MMX discussion and now feel like I have to keep dying trying to nickel and dime X4. I am just compelled although realistically speaking I can't do it. That is, there just is not enough time in the day for all the games I want to play even though on a weekly basis the illusion arises where I fallaciously believe my brief time off is eternal.

The again, Zero had never been handled well in the X games since he was either not playable (X1 & 2), an afterthought (X3, 6), suffered from implementation issues

I highly agree with this ^^ and it is worth noting that it makes me a sad ninja.

MAJOR DISCOVERY GAME MODE on my TV makes a HUGE difference for PS1 titles played through the PSTV. I didn't think it would matter in terms of input lag because it doesn't for PS3/4 Vita, PSP, PS2 or seemingly anything else. Tried it out and to my amazement X4 suddenly feels playable. Sadly I just still don't have the time ATM to incorporate the title in my regimen.

DISGAEA 5: Made it to Ep 9. The difficulty curve in this game is perfect for Disgaea/me. Is it strange I'm actually caring about the plot to some extent and enjoying the characters? Cause I am and I don't know what that says about my sensibility.

MURAMASA KITTY DLC: I venture to guess I'm at the end of this short but oh so sweet chapter. The bottom line of "mindless action fun" resonates strong as could be with this one. Worth noting, the script focus on a magical scrotom/set of testicles briefly was highly original (can't say I saw that coming).

Only major complaints so far: 1. No Eight Way Movement.

It is worth noting this ^^ also makes me a sad ninja.
67  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: March 26, 2016, 10:26:36 AM

In all fairness, X4 was a medium tier MMX game. The order basically goes X1 > X2 >>> X3 = X4 >>>>> X8 >>> X5 >>>>>> CM >>>>>>>>>>>>>>> Xtreme 2 >>> Xtreme 1 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> X6 >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> X7 >>>>>> *insert a > montage here* >>>>>> DOS

I am almost in agreement except with 1-2-3. Those are all a fair toss up for me. The bittersweet part is Zero (my fav) being playable in the latter games where stage design seriously took a hit. Never got into the handheld Zero or ZX titles either, so I've no frame of reference there.
68  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: March 26, 2016, 04:35:17 AM
MEGAMAN X4 -- I feel like I want to play Megaman every so often cause of tattoo work I do (lots o' megaman tattoos make me stare at crapcoms luscious art for too long). And SOMETIMES I give in. This time, with MMX4. I realize now the current and last gen ruined my ability to appreciate the ol' blue bombers gameplay. Then again, I never did really dedicate myself to the "follow through" with an MM title since childhood so maybe I never quite adored it as much as I thought.

In any event, while playing as Zero kicks ass, games like Muramasa Rebirth and Rayman Legends make it freakin' impossible for me to enjoy MMX now. This bums me out.

Luckily I had the Muramasa DLC to get into which I never touched after beating the main campaign.

Tried out the "Nekomata" DLC and recovered from my Mega-Disapointment pretty quick.

DISGAEA 5-- The plot thickens and the difficulty spikes at the end of Episode 6. Luckily the game gives one so many different approaches to pumping up the characters this step didn't exactly feel like a grind in the traditional sense at all and was easily accomplished.

The hype is REAL for me when it comes to Dark Souls 3. Thing is, I was totally oblivious to the calendar rolling through digits and now its only 2 weeks away. There is quite literally no way I can deny this and the second it is available it will most certainly halt my progress in everything else hence I need to majorly dedicate myself to Disgaea ATM. I would be heartbroken if my souls-addiction compromised my ability to enjoy my time with D5 as I have been.
69  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: March 18, 2016, 02:31:10 AM
Lunar 2: Eternal Blue Complete: YA KNOOOOOOOOW the two things I noticed right off the get-go is how much worse the voice acting and spritework in this are than in SSSC.

Hiro and Ruby hit you right from the door as a blow to the VA quality but in truth as I played through I didn't find it bad across the board.

SSSC just did too much right. It all gelled in a way to convey that "charm" we find so elusive in sturdy old titles from yesteryear if you ask me. EBC on the other did everything well enough, or same-ish enough but the pieces just didn't fit together the same way. Its BIGGEST flaw in fact may be that everything it does do, from VA to sprites to character design and plot force you to compare it to its predecessor and thus it feels weaker than it could have if it were a bit more evolved a product IMO.

All that said, I'm just stressing that while I agree with you, I ADORE ETERNAL BLUE. In all its ugly imperfection it had some of the best "nods" to its prequel I've ever seen in a sequel. The real neat thing the narrative did was solidify the lore and legend of Alex and Luna in my mind as something absolutely historically epic. You think to yourself as a player "yep, I saw that through..." and it just feels like you had a hand in something sacred or profound.

SALT AND SANCTUARY -- Picked this up with two things in mind. First, I knew I couldn't move into Souls 3 in a few weeks without satiating this curiousity. Second, I also knew I was more or less deciding whether or not I just wanted to commit myself to playing this in the future given the fact that I have Disgaea on deck now.

My impression. Abso-freakin'-lutely awesome. It is the perfect blend of Metroidvania-Souls-Light. Thing is, I feel like it could have done without the tacked on "Souls" mechanics. The game would have felt find as a  metroidvania without everything that robs it of its own identity.

Also, I understand "Souls" is considered by some to be a genre and I think that really undermines the integrity of some games, this being one. Its a damn shame this game will never be looked at as something other than 2D Souls when it is clearly its own beast. I never picked up Suikoden and said "Gee, here is another Final Fantasy-like title" (point).

DISGAEA -- I'm done talking about how amazing this game is in a longwinded fashion. Made it to episode 6. The Character World mini game makes me happy as hell. Nuf said.

EDIT: Coolest thing about ETERNAL BLUE btw... The hidden audio track that address anyones attempt to rip the soundtrack from the game disc. I didn't actually know about this until recently and found it hilarious. If anyone doesn't know what I am talking about, put DISC 2 into a PC to listen to the audio and there is a track with Zophar praising you for your vile efforts!!!
70  Media / The Soundroom / Re: Recommend Dincrest some music on: March 13, 2016, 01:42:52 AM
I'm already familiar with Screaming Trees and Dinosaur Jr.  I remember that Screaming Trees song from the Singles soundtrack and I like the song Alice Said.  Circa 2007 or 8, when I was chubby and my hair was long and shaggy, I was tabling for the Rutgers U Musicians' Guild and a student comes up to the table, points to me, and says, "J. MASCIS!!!!"  Apparently I looked like J. Mascis in his mind.  That was cool. 

As for the music suggestions, I really liked that Dead Astronauts song.  It felt like a modern version of New Order, Depeche Mode or One Second era Paradise Lost (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jy3zsrEJZTc) when they were experimenting more with non-metal styles.  I do enjoy me some industrial (Ministry, KMFDM, ohGr).  This song is always stuck in my head: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_fjoIU1ZWg&list=PL0722DFF5DD5CB001

And that Marazene song was cool too.  It was like a rawer, grittier Marilyn Manson or White Zombie with shrapnel tooth-gnashing. 

Long ago in a galaxy far far away when I was drug addled and homeless I tried to snag a free meal at a buffet for a movie being shot locally. I believe the title of the film was "The Trouble with Cali" or something like that by Paul Sorvino (sp?). I was approached there and asked to be an extra because the script called for a "Kurt Cobain" look-alike. I still don't know whether this was flattering or offensive to me being a huge Nirvana fan but all too aware of the circumstances...

And I'm really stoked you brought up Depeche Mode because I've been fickle with my tattooing--playlists lately and forgot my motivation to delve into their career and work. Thanks for the reminder. As for Dead Astronauts, I discovered them when I was looking for something similar to July Talk and they initially reminded me of Joy Division somehow.

As an aside, your sentiment about Marazene mirrors my own. I actually found them to be one of the only acts that sounded very "Manson-like" by my measure.
71  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: The "I WANT TO LOVE YOU BUT I HATE YOU" Thread on: March 13, 2016, 01:30:02 AM
A personal one.  I want to love swimming because it is a great form of exercise and has almost no impact on my joints, but I don't enjoy being submerged in water at all.  Something about being submerged just gives me the heebie-jeebies.  I don't like soaking in baths either.  Shower all the way!  I avoid any and all swimming-related activities as possible.  

Swimming. I want to love it but can't AT ALL. If I get any water in my ears whatsoever I always end up with mondo-sinus-issues often resulting in full blown infection. This is strange because I used to love swimming and this problem didn't begin plaguing me until I was about 25-26ish.

Other forms of exercise-- ALL WEIGHT TRAINING. I want to love it because I feel great after it. But I freakin' hate the actual performance of anaerobic workout routines altogether. Next up, any super high intensity cardio. I like the fact I can get my workout done faster if I crank the intensity but I hate how I feel the rest of the day.

I'll forever be a "slow burn" sort of dude when it comes to workouts. Nice long, low intensity, distance running/jogging or even walking is just fine :)
72  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: March 13, 2016, 01:20:33 AM
I want to get back into gaming. Are there any videogames about exploring beautiful and delightful cities/worlds where nobody dies and nothing bad ever happens?

The Witness?

Or just go on vacation

Walking sims are a thing now. Albeit, a thing I don't really get due to having some form of horrible ADD-like disposition with my games. That is, without an adversary to outsmart/fight/beat I find I become bored to tears. This may be a good/healthy thing considering in life I'm far too passive for my own good. I'm gonna stop now before I start thinking leagues too far into all this.

DISGAEA 5 -- Took the plunge and bought the season pass. I NEVER buy season passes for games and I've yet to explore all the DLC for any of the other Disgaea titles making this a double first for me. I like that I can do DLC at my leisure instead of having to wait til post game as this enables me to exact some silly routine like "1 DLC ep. every weekend"

BORDERLANDS 2 TPS -- Turned it on. Realized it wasn't Disgaea. Turned it off.

I need to be mindful of what is happening here. I am becoming Disgaea obsessed which can easily lead to JRPG obsessed which can easily lead to me forgetting other games exist for years (again). The virtue of balance is not strong with this ninja (working on it)

73  Media / The Soundroom / Re: Recommend Dincrest some music on: March 10, 2016, 10:48:19 PM
Never saw this thread. I feel like a fool.

MMMkay, here are my "NOT ROCK but still ROCKIN suggestions". If indie Alt. rock with a flair of the past dressed up with a contemporary finish doesn't sound appealing to you then skip em. Truth be told though, I freakin' love these though.

-July Talk https://youtu.be/iU5qp-cAtOU
-Metric https://youtu.be/ttqMGYHhFFA

Something old but new and still wearing flannel.

-Screaming Trees https://youtu.be/PE5f561Y1x4
-Dinosaur Jr. https://youtu.be/FpsGcnLEZbk

Something... punkerly prog rock? I don't know man, I am bad with genres. (Heavier but clean vocals and catchy riffs)

-(acoustic, much heavier plugged in) Tides of Man https://youtu.be/LVnl-_I_5Xo **** Very Circa Survive' ish
- Circa Survive https://youtu.be/cOZlAunMb8o
- (More popular but their newest album is TOTALLY WORTH LISTENING TO) Dance Gavin Dance https://youtu.be/Qq_caFxzKqg (same singer as Tides of Man but faster and heavier)
- Picture Me Broken https://youtu.be/-_vF5NqgC7E (not the most inspiring writing but the female lead most certainly rocks)

Retro-Wave (sounds like contemporary darkwave or synth sort of. Not rock your socks off stuff but I like it.)

-Dead Astronaut https://youtu.be/AfZJansbHNY

I know you mentioned an appreciation for the rather obscure/lesser known and in truth I don't really know if any of these are mega-popular or not. I like what I like and sometimes I am totally oblivious to whether or not the music is in fact well known, so forgive me if some suggestions don't qualify.


Here is my token Metal Suggestion for the day -- LoL

-Marazene https://youtu.be/3InJ7jDjteY
74  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: March 09, 2016, 12:13:37 AM
DISGAEA 5 -- Mmkay, Episode 4 was just ridiculous. The fact I could love this with a narrative that did that says something both about the game and myself that I'm not entirely comfortable with. That is, clearly, the game sports mondo-addictive qualities and I am, obviously, of a terrible addictive personality type. No other conclusion could be drawn.

Mechanics keeps ramping up the gameplay loop. This is a good thing. One other positive I realized about the mechanical additions to the title, that I love, is the actual relevance of making a ton of generic character types. Past entries in the franchise never came close to providing the incentive to recruit more troops that Disgaea 5 does. In fact, larger rosters seemed almost useless as a point in the past, whereas now there are plenty of roles to be played off the battlefield.

The drawback I'm beginning to see stems from the fact that there is so much to take advantage of it is easy to overlook some of it. In fact, I don't think the player is really intended to see the first good stretch of this game as anything but a tutorial. They sort of pulled off making the campaign a "warm up" for post game in the past but it truly feels as though they did it for real here.

BORDERLANDS (HJC) 2 The PRE-SEQUEL -- Either I've gotten much better at shooters since my time with Borderlands 2 or the Pre-Sequel is much easier. Not much to report. My brain hurts from Disgaea here and there so I'm turning this on to basically shoot, giggle and refresh myself. That doesn't mean I'm not enjoying my time with it. I think that is precisely what Borderlands is for.

Biggest gripe so far is the fact that looting for the perfect gun is useless. I can use damn near any weapon to be effective and I got so many bonus golden key's from playing borderlands 2 that, should the need arise, I can have an arsenal of rare and overpowered weaponry with zero grind. I feel like I used game-genie for infinite lives and power ups but the thing is, I DIDN'T!!
75  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: March 04, 2016, 10:52:38 PM
Klyde, I was talking to a friend of mine about Disgaea the other day and realised that it took me 4 games to actually understand all the mechanics. So by the time 5 came out I knew what to do as soon as the game kicked off and boy did it make a difference! Unlocked stuff so much earlier. You're absolutely right about the steramlining though. Nothing is lost and so much is gained.

It truly is/was crafted a sequel with fans who've grinded through past installments in mind. I highly doubt its the last Disgaea and the blend/balance of mechanics in 5 begs the question "where can they go from here?". Makes me wonder if this isn't the zenith of Disgaea as we've come to know it.

One thing for sure though. I feel bad for anyone who hops in at 5, falls in love and goes back to experience earlier installments. After this, that type of experience would just be brutal! LoL
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