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Author Topic: BEST game you bought on a WHIM and LOVED <3  (Read 401 times)
Dice
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« on: July 06, 2014, 10:11:44 PM »

I bought Kid Icarus Uprising recently after really no desire to play it for the last two years (but a recent game drought and handheld itch got me thinking about it); and really, it's the best game I never wanted to play.
Each level is action and adventure PACKED with fun dialogue to keep levels from getting too.  The combat that is a lot more in-depth than ....well, really anything we've seen from a Nintendo title in some time, and there's a ton of bonus content and achievements to keep replays interesting.  The music packs a great punch, the artwork is fabulous, and the characters are absolutely loveable.  Nothing to hate, besides a somewhat pesky control scheme.

Baten Kaitos ranks too.  The pre-release media didn't appeal to me, and the epic but really cheeseball opening cutscene really kept me at arms length.  Then I said "fuck it, it's an RPG for the 'Cube", and eventually fell in love with it.  The gorgeous and imaginative world, fantastic music, as well as the plot twists and pretty epic combat (er, moreso BKII) really pulled me in.  To this day, Baten Kaitos Origins is like THE BEST game I've ever played [that I haven't beaten].

The Last of Us goes here too.  I like Uncharted enough, but this title felt like it was pushing the story of "daddy/daughter" bonding (starring cranky old man and rambunctious teenager), in an all too popular 'post-apocalyptic setting' (which is way popular these days), and how "our zombies are different!!!!".  So my enthusiasm was pretty low, and really, the gameplay (even as a post-game reaction) is really nothing special and pretty lacking.  Still, the narrative and [what felt like] a very realistic bunch of characters and dialogue made for an amazingly deep and emotional game.  For a while after beating this, a lot of other video game dialogue felt forced and phoney.  And it's silly, but I also loved all 'forms of love' in this game; The Last of Us really knows how to play out the many shapes and forms of humanly affection.

What games have you super game-enthusiasts been pleasantly surprised with?
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« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2014, 10:44:17 PM »

I wanted to get a third game at $20 or under to get a buy two get one free deal at a GameStop when I was in high school, and almost at random I picked up Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time.  My thoughts were "oh, Prince of Persia.  I played that ages ago.  A new one could be pretty good."  Yeah.  One of my absolute favorite PS2 titles.  Better than the other two games I was getting in the deal.  (One was Castlevania: Lament of Innocence and I don't remember the second). 

The second time was a LONG time ago; I'm thinking around 1996-1997 when I was 10 or 11.  It was very early in summer vacation and I had done a bunch of chores and yardwork at home and for a few neighbors - my parents told me I could go and get any SNES game I wanted at the nearby used game store after I did all of that work (LOTS of mowing, weeding, mulching, and trimming).  I really wanted to get Mega Man X2 or X3, as I adored MMX and had rented the sequels, but never bought them.  I went to the store and they didn't have *anything* that I specifically wanted or didn't already own.  I was crestfallen.  But I was determined to get something for all that work I had done, so I looked at the backs of various boxes and through some gaming magazines they had in front.  My dad started to get impatient, so I panicked a bit and picked out a game that had a sort of mysterious name: Illusion of Gaia.  I won't defend Illusion of Gaia as the best or deepest RPG on the SNES, but goddamn if I wasn't super into it for awhile.  Really weird, interesting game.  Never did get all the red jewels, though....
« Last Edit: July 06, 2014, 10:46:11 PM by Monsoon » Logged

MeshGearFox
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« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2014, 10:47:19 PM »

... Toki Tori 2+?

I used to do a lot of blind purchases at flea markets but I don't remember getting anything I super fell in love with out of doing that.

I'm trying to remember what it was like before A) access to millions of game reviews instantly and B) Steam sales making EVERY purchase a whim purchase.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2014, 10:52:42 PM by MeshGearFox » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: July 06, 2014, 10:55:38 PM »

Depending on your definition of buying on a "whim," you could say that's how I buy most of my games. For example, I picked up Valkyria Chronicles when I saw it on sale while browsing for some games to play on my brand new PS3 and that became my favorite game of all time. But I had heard good things about it before, so I can't really say I didn't expect to love it.

However, if you only count games I hadn't heard a thing about before, or had no previous experience with the franchise, series, or characters, then that narrows down the list quite a bit:

Dark Cloud 2 - Even though I don't remember the exact details around my purchase of DC2, this was still back when I didn't really pay a lot of attention to games media, so I hadn't heard anything about it. I recognized the name from somewhere, but that's about it. So I bought it and at first didn't like it. The main character was some annoying kid in overalls running around a city with an incredibly annoying piece of music playing. But the longer I played the more I loved it, and it's one of my favorite games on the PS2.

Golden Sun - All I had seen aside from the boxart for this game was artwork of the world map. But it brought back feelings from retro SNES RPG's, so I picked it up and was happy that the turn based battle system had that classic feel down quite well. The psynergy puzzles were just surprising cherries on top.

I'll post again if I think of more good examples.
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Klyde Chroma
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« Reply #4 on: July 06, 2014, 11:04:31 PM »

Shadow Hearts which I just completed was totally an impulse purchase last year, which I didn't get to until a suggestion in the SMT thread peaked my interest. Just finished it last night and loved it for the most part.

DMC in recent history was something I just grabbed off PS+ not thinking I'd ever appreciate it. I didn't love it to death but it had entertaining enough combat to keep me going til the end. And surprisingly I didn't hate Dante.

In not so recent history, the local rental store in the days of SNES shaped my tastes in gaming. Naturally as a kid I rented and played Zelda, Mario, Pilotwings, Donkey Kong et cetera.... then I rented Secret of Mana and my world was never the same. Were it not for the rental store, I wouldn't have discovered JRPGs until much later in life. You might say, the whole genre was a real "happy accident" for me as a kid.
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« Reply #5 on: July 07, 2014, 12:24:34 AM »

I used to do a lot of blind purchases at flea markets but I don't remember getting anything I super fell in love with out of doing that.

I bought System Shock 2 and Freespace while not knowing anything about those.

I can't imagine what it would have been like had I not bought SS2. I pretty much worship that game.
It's just so daaaaaaaaaamn good.

Why you should play that game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=0SeKE6voAh0#t=314
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« Reply #6 on: July 07, 2014, 12:28:17 AM »

Good topic but hard to say. Soooo many fucking games bout in the 90s before reviews and other things.

The off the cuff winner HAS to be Actraiser. New system. New "series" (IP). And I had no idea what I was getting into. Lo and behold you fucking played as GOD with worshiping minions below... Great sim segments and awesome platforming segments. It really showed what you were in store with for the SNES, better gameplay and streets ahead music. I heard this game is on Virtual Console... I'll have to look into that.

2nd... hmmm... Resident Evil? Technically I didn't buy it but I was there when my cousin brought it home for the 1st time. Neither of us had any idea what was up but we where hooked. To this day, for all it's faults, the Resident Evil series remains one of my favorites.


Lastly, Mass Effect. I bought this game shortly before ME2 came out but I had next to no idea what it was about. I have never played KotoR so I didn't have that pedigree. Even with the clunky combat, clunky inventory I was totally drawn in. I loved the characters. I loved the races. I loved the mythos because it called back to the basic premise of my favorite game ever, Star Control 2. In that game there's a similar situation where there's a cycle of evolution and devastation within the galaxy. Plus, interacting with the races is also hugely important.

With Mass Effect I was aware of it being popular but I never saw any gameplay footage. I was aware of the controversy because of adult themes.

Because of the various reasons of loving these games I tend to avoid long reviews or gameplay vids of things I really want to experience. I can't wait to get a PS4 and play Last of Us remastered because of this.


Oh.. lastyly. Halo. My buddy was lucky enough to have an Xbox. In the right time and place we enjoyed that game inside and out. It was almost a religious experience for us.

These aren't necessarily my favorite games, but games I sort of fell ass backwards into and really defined who I am as a gamer.
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« Reply #7 on: July 07, 2014, 04:24:17 AM »

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« Reply #8 on: July 07, 2014, 05:52:24 AM »

Terranigma - It looked like a RPG and it was cheap. 25 guilders ($10 at the time) was still a fairly big risk for a teen my age, but I'm a decent gambler :D

Vandal Hearts - Bought it for the same reasons as Terranigma. As it was my first SRPG I didn't really get it at first. I actually nearly sold it to a young videogame journalist (who is now a very respected colleague), but things happened and it didn't really work out. I gave the game another shot, things clicked and Vandal Hearts proved to be a perfect gateway game to the genre. Now I binge play Fire Emblem on harder difficulty settings. Thanks, Vandal Hearts!

Bust-a-Move 4 - I needed a cheap game to get the maximum discount during a sale. Took it with me when I went to visit friends and it became a thing. Even now, start humming the Tam Tam theme and everyone will join in. It will not stop. 

Also, I bought Mass Effect for my brother on a whim (he wanted some racing game for Christmas, but it was cheap and there was enough left for another game: a used Mass Effect) and he loved it. Hadn't even played the game myself back then, just thought it was something he might like since he was into stuff like Bioshock and Deus Ex (which my sister got for him because it was like €2 and she's the type that buys people cheap gifts on a whim).
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« Reply #9 on: July 07, 2014, 07:19:49 AM »

Crimson Sea 2 (off the top of my head) for $3, it's crazy amounts of fun.
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« Reply #10 on: July 07, 2014, 07:53:10 AM »

I remember at E3 2012, one of my colleagues brought a copy of Brooktown High for PSP she'd scored in a bargain bin for, like, 3 bucks on a whim.  A couple of us had WAAAY too much fun playing it.   And later on I found it in a bargain bin for $3.  That game is friggin' addictive.  One of my real life/non-RPGFan friends said he was addicted for a week straight.  

Revelations: Persona was a bit of a whim purchase for me as well.  My story with it is similar to Tomara's and Vandal Hearts.  I wasn't into it at first, shelved it, thought about trading it in for Star Ocean 2 when it came out, had nothing to play till SO2's release, gave Revelations: Persona another shot, and absolutely LOVED it! 
« Last Edit: July 07, 2014, 07:56:47 AM by Dincrest » Logged

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« Reply #11 on: July 07, 2014, 08:04:52 AM »

Suikoden - Saw a few pictures in a magazine and bough it thinking it was a Zelda clone. Despite disliking turn based RPGs at the time, it clicked with me and I beat it in two sittings. Been hooked on turn based jRPGs since.
Wild Arms - Another game I saw in a magazine. The main attraction was supposed to be BoF3 but I somehow ended up with WA as well (it was either really cheap or I was trading something in and got a 2 for 1, can't remember). Decided to give the "B game" a try first. Ended up beating Wild Arms while BoF3 gathered dust.
Diddy Kong Racing - For some reason I hated this game when I first got word of it, and I honestly can't remember why I decided to pick it up (might have been the N64 game drought). Glad I did though, because I ended up 100% the story mode (regular and mirror) twice.
« Last Edit: July 07, 2014, 08:25:34 AM by Maxximum » Logged

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« Reply #12 on: July 07, 2014, 12:38:11 PM »

Quote
I remember at E3 2012, one of my colleagues brought a copy of Brooktown High for PSP she'd scored in a bargain bin for, like, 3 bucks on a whim.  A couple of us had WAAAY too much fun playing it.   And later on I found it in a bargain bin for $3.  That game is friggin' addictive.  One of my real life/non-RPGFan friends said he was addicted for a week straight. 

Something similar happened to me with My Sims Kingdom for the Wii. It was a reviewcopy, not a bargain bin game, but the main reason it went to me was because I had a Wii and that game wasn't whatever shooter was popular back in 2008. I had no expectations and everyone else thought it was going to be a shitty kids game. I played several hours and got really into it. It was simple, but addictive and had a good sense of humour (you can totally kick an emo). My brother saw me playing and wanted to try, too. My sister soon followed. We - three adults! - actually argued who could play next.
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« Reply #13 on: July 07, 2014, 05:07:56 PM »

I didn't buy it on a whim so much as rent it on a whim at first but FFT will always be my SRPG gateway drug.

Most of my other purchases were either like the above, well informed decisions on my or my parents' part, or mediocre games that I didn't care enough for to list here.
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« Reply #14 on: July 07, 2014, 05:22:10 PM »

Quote
I remember at E3 2012, one of my colleagues brought a copy of Brooktown High for PSP she'd scored in a bargain bin for, like, 3 bucks on a whim.  A couple of us had WAAAY too much fun playing it.   And later on I found it in a bargain bin for $3.  That game is friggin' addictive.  One of my real life/non-RPGFan friends said he was addicted for a week straight. 

Something similar happened to me with My Sims Kingdom for the Wii. It was a reviewcopy, not a bargain bin game, but the main reason it went to me was because I had a Wii and that game wasn't whatever shooter was popular back in 2008. I had no expectations and everyone else thought it was going to be a shitty kids game. I played several hours and got really into it. It was simple, but addictive and had a good sense of humour (you can totally kick an emo). My brother saw me playing and wanted to try, too. My sister soon followed. We - three adults! - actually argued who could play next.

I relate to that too.  I'm often the most vocal member of RPGFan's "cleanup crew" or "dumpster divers" who'll take on reviewables of games no one really wants.  A lot of times, they're bad, but sometimes there is a pleasant surprise to be had.  For example, the Naruto: Path of the Ninja RPGs were actually good.  And, I'll admit, I do have a somewhat morbid fascination with bad gaming. 
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