Atlus to ditch PlayStation exclusive business model after Persona 4 PC success

Persona 4 atlus

Persona developers Atlus have recently been on record confirming it is looking into changing its business model. Up until now, the majority of Persona games have bene exclusive to PlayStation platforms. However, thanks to the success of Persona 4 Golden’s PC release, this could be changing.

In an interview with NintendoSmash, Atlus acknowledges Persona 4 Golden has been a “critical success.” Due to this, the publisher is seriously considering “simultaneous multi-platform releases,” for all its major franchises going forward.

Why did Atlus go all in on PlayStation?

Persona q2 3ds atlusFor many gamers it’s difficult to understand why Atlus even subscribed to a PlayStation exclusive model in the first place. Just to be clear, Sony has zero ownership over the Japanese publisher. Equally, it is not believed Sony have ever paid to keep Persona on its signature platform.

Instead, the best reason gamers have come up with is Atlus’ head director just likes PlayStation. It was probably first put on Sony’s consoles because it was cheap to do but over time this stopped making sense. Atlus has grown into a huge company and could easily afford porting to other platforms. Especially given the extra revenue it would make in doing so.

Interestingly, there is one Persona spin-off series that has managed to escape the PlayStation trap. Persona Q is a chibi styled dungeon crawler that is instead exclusive to Nintendo platforms. Both games in this series are only available on 3DS with the latter not finding its way onto Switch despite being released in 2019.

Regardless of its past intentions, Atlus seems to be ready to ditch its outdated third-party exclusive model. Hopefully, we’ll be able to see Persona 6 and any other spin-offs in the franchise find their way onto PC, Switch, and perhaps even Xbox.

The Smallest Co-op Feature Made These RPGs Amazing

Co-op RPGs

The Smallest Co-op Feature

There aren’t a lot of co-op RPGs out there. I’m not talking about hack-and-slash RPGs or (God forbid) MMOs. I’m talking about games like the old Final Fantasy series—character-driven, turn-based JRPG-style games. But there are two games that will forever spring to mind for me when the subject of co-op RPGs is brought up.

Eternal Sonata and Final Fantasy IX.

Eternal Sonata Co-op RPG
Image Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/tadeuviniciusgames/5800392578/

You’ve likely heard of the latter, but Eternal Sonata flew under the radar. Probably for good reason. I mean, the whole thing took place in Chopin’s anime Lolita fantasy fever dream. Yes, that Chopin. And no, I’m not kidding.

For what it was worth, the battle system was intriguing. It was still turn-based, but during the player’s turn, they could control a character and run around the battlefield freely, attacking and casting spells in live action—for a couple seconds, and then it would be the enemy’s turn to run around and attack.

At first glance, Eternal Sonata and Final Fantasy IX might look very different (you know, other than the big heads and insane character designs). But there was one tiny feature that connected them.

The ability to choose a controller for each character.

That one feature turned these typically single-player games into incredible co-op RPG experiences—at least for my friends and me.

Eternal Sonata Co-op RPG Battle
Image Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/unscripted360/968966575/

You could have a separate controller for each of a battle’s three player characters in Eternal Sonata. Yes, you’d still have one player controlling all the running around the world and buying items, but there was enough battle to make everyone sitting down for the whole game worthwhile. And given how batshit loco Eternal Sonata was, you pretty much have to be pulling a Mystery Science Theater on the cutscenes to be able to stomach it. And the best way to do that is through co-op play, so every player is invested in the characters they control.

I didn’t discover that Final Fantasy IX shared the same feature until later.  I already loved the game. But one summer, my roommate and I popped the FFIX PS1 disc into my backwards-compatible PS3. We split the characters between the two of us, and had an absolute blast playing through it.

Solitary experience

RPGs are usually a solitary experience. You absorb the story, fall in love with the characters, and feel a personal connection to the game world. They’re more like books than movies. But playing through Eternal Sonata and FFIX co-op, even if it was just the battles, was a gaming experience I’ll never forget.

FFIX Co-Oop
Image Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/alduinx/16558079596/

And it all had to do with one simple feature: allowing you to switch controller inputs for different characters.

Sure, if you wanted, you could pass the controller around. But it’s not the same, is it? It’s not co-op—it’s taking turns in the driver’s seat.

Turn-based RPGs make the feature easy to implement. After all, you’re not actively controlling multiple characters at a time. There is little difference to the game system to have the controller inputs switch for different characters. Especially when you can only control one character at a time anyway.

Indie developers and JRPG remaster…ers take note: adding that tiny feature to turn a single-player RPG into a co-op one makes a big difference to anyone who still enjoys a good couch co-op experience.

Final Fantasy 14: Stormblood Is Coming! Details Players Should Know About The Upcoming Expansion

Stormblood Logo

The last fan festival for Final Fantasy 14 wrapped up in Frankfurt, Germany over the weekend. It was here that fans like myself were treated to the final bit of information concerning Final Fantasy 14’s Upcoming expansion. You can find more depth coverage in this article from Nova Crystallis. There is a lot of information to cover from all three fan fests so buckle up. Stormblood is coming and here are some of the details for FF14’s upcoming expansion.

Two New Jobs Coming In Stormblood

The first job announcement came from the Tokyo Fan Fest where they announced Red Mage.

Stormblood Redmage
Image Credit:http://www.siliconera.com/2016/12/23/final-fantasy-xiv-shows-off-new-stormblood-details-red-mage-job-confirmed/

Clad in it’s customary garb that would look familiar to any Final Fantasy fan dressed in a red coat, feathered hat and rapier, the crowd went wild when it appeared on screen.

RDM Battle Design
Image Credit:http://www.siliconera.com/2016/12/23/final-fantasy-xiv-shows-off-new-stormblood-details-red-mage-job-confirmed/

The battle design has Red Mage as a ranged magic dps. Yoshi admitted that they had to change how the job worked so it could fit into FF14 but we do know that it will be able to attack from melee and further away in battle. Red Mages can usually cast Black, White and Red magic so we will need to see how it plays out in FF14.

Despite a quickly deleted after the Japan Fan Fest that hinted at only two jobs being announced for the expansion. We got our confirmation Saturday as Yoshi P delivered the opening key note. Samurai, a melee dps, was going to be the second job for the expansion and it was to be the last. Red Mage and Samurai will be available in the starting ARR areas for players at level 50. While it is not stated implicitly, players will probably need to own the new expansion in order to access these jobs.

SAM battle design
Image Credit: http://imgur.com/a/X5xZD via r/ffxiv

There are concerns over the incoming que times in the aftermath of adding the Ninja job mid expansion in 2.xx but we will have to wait and see. See the Samurai job in action here and the Red Mage job trailer here.

New Locales and Story Hints

expanded eorzea map ff14 in Stormblood
Image Credit: http://imgur.com/a/X5xZD via r/ffxiv

With Isgard and Heavensward behind us, players knew that we would be traveling to Ala Migho to liberate the peoples there. At the Germany Fan Fest, Yoshi and the team had a surprise for us. We would also be traveling to Orthard to help liberate Doma which expands the map exponentially. Here area few of the areas we will see.

We will also travel to the new player city named Kugane. In the lore, it is primarily in isolation and does not deal with many outsiders so how all the warriors of light manage to get a ticket in will be worth discovering. This city is a port town so that further highlights the swimming and diving aspects revealed in the previous fan fests. I wouldn’t be surprised if ships and pirates play an active role as well.

You can find the video showcasing more shots here.

Last expansion we were introduced to the new playable race the Au’Ra. Despite their introduction we still did not see too many NPCs of them and now we now why. The Au’Ri tribes originated from Orthard and the Azim Steppe area so we will get to know the nomadic tribes of this race come the expansion.

The next area was Yanxia but Yoshi didn’t state too many lore details about this region except for this is where Doma is located. As far as we know, Doma was obliterated when the Garleans conquered the region so I am curious to see what we will be fighting over.

New Beast Tribes and Primals

Ananta Beast Tribe Stormblood
Image Credit:http://www.siliconera.com/2016/12/23/final-fantasy-xiv-shows-off-new-stormblood-details-red-mage-job-confirmed/

Two seems to be the magic number as it seems we are only getting two beast tribes so far this expansion. The new tribes are the Kojin, who reside in The Red Sea, and the Ananta located near Ala Migho. The trailer shows us an under sea village so maybe that was theirs? Time will tell.

Susano Beast Tribe FF14 in Stormblood
Image Credit: http://knowyourmeme.com/photos/1223718-final-fantasy-xiv
Lakshmi Beast Tribe FF14
Image Credit:http://www.siliconera.com/2016/12/23/final-fantasy-xiv-shows-off-new-stormblood-details-red-mage-job-confirmed/

Each beast tribe has a primal they worship so this one is no different. Meet Susano, The Lord of Revel and Lakshmi, Lady of Bliss. While Lakshmi is native to the FF series, Susano is an original Primal like Ravana was in Heavensward. I can’t wait to see their encounters.

Dungeon Preview and Raid Preview

8 man raid Omega
Image Credit: http://www.siliconera.com/2016/12/23/final-fantasy-xiv-shows-off-new-stormblood-details-red-mage-job-confirmed/

Yoshi also informed us about the new 8 main raid called The Bend of Time, Omega. This story would involve an older character named Nero from the Crystal Tower raids in the 2.xx series. SE has responded to the criticism of the Alexander raids not being tied to the MSQ with this raid so hopefully it will recreate the magic of the Coils of Bahamut.

Return to Ivalice
Image Credit: http://kotaku.com/final-fantasy-xiv-gets-a-raid-in-ivalice-1790466397

The final type of content we were introduced to was the 24 man raid currently titled Return to Ivalice. The FF14 team has consulted the expertise of Final Fantasy 12 director, Yasumi Matsuno to direct and write the story. This is the first time someone outside the FF14 team has directed content so this should infuse a new style to the game when released.

New Residential Area

You can find the video for the district here.

Other Quality Of Life Changes

FF14 Swimming
Image Credit: http://www.siliconera.com/postgallery/?p_gal=607956|8

The new expansion also brings about a few other quality of life changes. The first change will be the introduction of swimming. All mounts that fly will be able to swim and dive in the expansion. The team informs us that while they do not plan to create swimming in all the areas they do plan to implement in some of the 2.0 areas.

Players were also informed that as of Stormblood they will be dropping all PS3 support. That means that once the game updates players who use the older platform will not be able to access the game at all. There is an upgrade campaign free to current PS3 players to move to PS4 that will continue through 2017. The team is also encouraging PC players to upgrade their hardware to 64 bit in order to accommodate the upcoming expansion.

The last change announced was the increase in inventory space. The team informed players that this increase will probably occur in 2 parts throughout the expansions. Since it was a massive overhaul to the system they do not want to risk crashing the server by implementing it all at once.

That About Wraps it Up

There will be more information to satiate players in the coming months until the expansion. We still have 2 small patches before we explore the rest of Eorzea but the hype in the air is real. The game is set to release on June 20th, 2017 with early access starting on June 13th, 2017. If you’re curious about the world or waiting to rejoin now is a great time to get lost in Eorzea.

Have you played FF14? Does this news peak your interest? Have you played an MMORPG before and how was it different? Let us know in the comments below.

Working As Intended? Tabata’s Final Fantasy 15 Decision May Disappoint Fans Of The Game

Final Fantasy 15

Final Fantasy 15

I’ve covered a lot of Final Fantasy in the last few weeks much to my joy and dismay. At the risk of inundating the audience with more news, something came out today that could not be ignored. The news was regarding Final Fantasy 15 and the story decisions. If you have not read a review of the game it can be summed up rather quickly. Most reviewers praise the game for the open world and battle system but take away points due to the obvious missing story elements. The most glaring issues coming via Chapter 13 for reasons I won’t spoil here. The team behind the game have already planned to release DLC to address this. However, the way the story is presented may be working as intended and this decision may disappoint fans of the Final Fantasy 15.

Does Story Telling Really Matter?

Most reviewers praise the game for the open world and battle system but take away points due to the obvious missing story elements.

According to the game’s director, Hajime Tabata, the unexplained nature of the story was intentional. In an interview with Game Informer cited via Novacrystallis, Tabata states that “We didn’t want to create a comprehensive and perfectly balanced story in this game. Instead, we placed importance on the main characters and for the player and Noctis to share the same experience when we tell the story.” If that doesn’t sound like a retcon then I don’t know what does.

Elsewhere in the article he mentions the time and money constraints by the latter half of the game but that doesn’t matter. I’m a long time Final Fantasy fan and this statement alone is egregious. What he just said was that even though the Final Fantasy franchise is known for their deep an intricate story telling that isn’t how I wanted to tell the story. That could have been excusable if the story was or felt complete.

Player’s Don’t Get Exposition For… Reasons?

What he just said was that even though the Final Fantasy franchise is known for their deep an intricate story telling that isn’t how I wanted to tell the story.

The main issue with things happening off screen is that it doesn’t give the players context for the events happening in the actual game. There are moments where if one of the bros are saying something important it got stopped when a battle is engaged. Did that conversation start back up once the battle concluded? No. That meant the player may have missed an important part of exposition that they didn’t realize. That’s not experiencing the game through Noctis’s eyes, that is poor story telling period.

In Final Fantasy games its not unusual to find books or documents that expand on the lore and motivations of characters. It’s not okay that the ONLY way players discover why “X” thing happened is to look in the supplementary documents scattered across the world. The game doesn’t even have a story recap that would keep track of things that may have missed by players. Some of the lore can only be found in the ancillary projects like Brotherhood, Kingsglaive and items in the collector’s edition.

Will This Be The New Direction For Final Fantasy?

I further thought that Final Fantasy would be safe because, regardless of how convoluted the stories can get at times, the stories for all the games were complete.

I have long grown weary of game developers not giving players a complete game and regulating it to DLC. JRPGs should have been safe from this phenomenon because the basis of the genre is story telling. I further thought that Final Fantasy would be safe because, regardless of how convoluted the stories can get at times, the stories for all the games were complete. If this is the trend that SquareEnix wants to start then I want no parts of the “new” Final Fantasy.

What do you think about this news about Final Fantasy 15? Does this news impact your enjoyment of the game? Do you think this direction of story telling is effective? Could this writer be overreacting? All points are valid in this conversation so let us know in the comments below.

Video Games That Tackle Social Issues

Ellie and Riley

Video Games – we all enjoy it. Whether you’re young or old, a student or an employee looking to pass the time with a little fun; we all enjoy video games. It is a means for us, an outlet, to do the things we can not do in real life; to experience the things that is not readily accessible to the most of us. Video games also help us understand different types of people by having diverse and – for some games – very realistic characters. But, not a lot of us see the underlying meanings behind the video games we play and enjoy. The implications hidden behind the realistic graphics, the heart-warming soundtrack, and the innovative gameplay. Here is a list of some of the video games that tackle different social issues. Sit back and let us dwell deeper into the meaning of these well-known video games.

War“This War of Mine” 

Video Games: This War of Mine is a video game about civilians surviving in a war-torn city.
https://wallpaperscraft.com/image/this_war_of_mine_the_little_ones_survival_stealth_shooter_105983_1280x720.jpg

Let’s start with a very well-known topic – war. We’ve all heard of different stories about war. And war has been a choice of topic or genre by a lot of video games. But, the creators of This War Of Mine, 11 Bit Studios, approached this genre in an innovative and immersive way. In this game, you don’t play as a well-trained-muscle-torn super soldier equipped with a planetary cannon. Here, you play as a civilian caught very deep in the war-devastated fictional city of Pogoren, Graznavia. You will struggle, because ‘gather’ is putting it lightly, for food. Scavenge for medicines or supplies and try your very best not to bump into soldiers or other hungry survivors.

The day and night cycle plays a significant role in the game mechanics. During the day, you’ll be managing your hideout in a very detailed manner; while keeping an eye on that sniper whose not letting you out. When darkness falls, you’ll be sneaking into buildings and areas for supplies; while avoiding being killed by other people seeking means for survival. You will also be making a lot of moral decisions; whether you’ll kill that one annoying person to save the whole group or watch as everyone slowly suffer. Add to that, the beautifully-made charcoal-style aesthetics; and you have a game that will leave you thinking and reflecting about war and its effect on the human soul.

 

Privacy“Watch Dogs 1 and  2″ 

Video Games: Marcus Holloway and the gang
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Have you ever felt like being watched? Like Big Brother is always around you, lurking in the dark, studying and recording your every move? We are living in the age and time of information and the improvement in technology is far from slowing down. Also, the number of people uploading all of their information in the internet is increasing. Which is why black hats are more eager to steal any sensitive information they can get their hands on.

Watch Dogs, is a video game about hackers waging war on the government for manipulating information and invading the privacy of their people. This video game does not really tackle or explain ‘hacking’ in detail; but it shows what hackers can do with the information that the people, themselves, gave out there in the internet. This game is a sweet reminder that internet privacy is sometimes just an illusion to make us feel safe. It also reminds us that the internet is a very dangerous place to be placing all of our information.

 

Social Difference – Multiple Video Games (Witcher SeriesLife is Strange, The Last of Us, other video games)

Video Games: The Witcher
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So what if you have white hair, feline eyes, sterile, and has high resistance, if not immune, to diseases? So what if you have pointy ears and lives longer than humans? We are all living things and we can co-exist if given the chance and consideration.

The Witcher series, which is set in the world of Temeria, is flooded with racism and discrimination. Elves and Dwarves are discriminated for not being human, despite the humans being the invaders of the land. Basically, humans are the foreigners and, yet, they are pushing away and abusing the original inhabitants of the land. Luckily, Geralt, despite being discriminated himself, acts as the median between the two worlds. That of humans and of ‘non-humans’. Geralt does not make any rush decisions when doing a job. He investigates first and looks for a way for both parties to work together. With an exception, there is no consideration to be given for evil-tainted individuals, human or non-human.

Video Games: Life is Strange
http://www.imgbase.info/images/safe-wallpapers/video_games/life_is_strange/58862_life_is_strange.jpg

Life is Strange is a video game that takes place in a small town called Arcadia Bay. A place where a lot of things happen. Including alcoholism, bullying, and child abuse. Child abuse being a social issue that’s very rampant nowadays; this video game shows the whole issue in a different perspective. You play the game and see the world through the eyes of a teenager with the ability to control time, Max Caulfield. The game also includes other issues like teenage pregnancy, social anxiety, and brats who think like they are on top of everyone. Max’s story is also a depiction of how it feels like to be bullied for being “not among the famous”. This is a game definitely worth checking out if you want a relaxing soundtrack and a story that is full of twists.

Video Games: Riley and Ellie
https://www.bhmpics.com/wallpapers/the_last_of_us_left_behind-1920×1080.jpg

The Last of Us: Left Behind, sparked a controversy when Ellie and Riley hinted quite a number of times about their feelings with each other. We all remember that photobooth scene, right? How about that scene where they dance to a tune and then unknowingly attracted a horde of infected? All of these hints led to one conclusion and a lot of people were shocked. Some related and found themselves in the position of the protagonists in terms of personal identity; some accepted the fact and were happy for the pair; but, for some…they just do not approve of the whole charade. The relationship they have and the characters themselves doesn’t actually raise an issue; but the different ways people responded to the writing of the game, present an issue on sexual discrimination.

There you go. Here are just some of the games that tackle some of the issues we are facing up to this day. There are still a lot of games that depicts issues not mentioned here. If you have played a game with an interesting theme, comment them down below and let’s have a talk. Looking forward to hearing from you!

The Final Fantasy 12 HD Remake Is Coming This Summer

Final Fantasy 12 HD Remake

Final Fantasy 12 HD Remake

Platform: PS4

Release Date: July 11th, 2017

FF12 Ashe
Image Credit:https://store.na.square-enix.com/product/404023/final-fantasy-xii-the-zodiac-age-ps4

Full disclosure, I did not finish Final Fantasy 12 (FF12). I can admit as a fan of the series, after Final Fantasy 10 (FF10) I was looking for a certain experience and this game did not do it. It was evident that the battle system and the over world were practice for their Final Fantasy 11 (FF11) MMORPG and I wasn’t trying to be a part of it. I got a healthy way into the story and while it was full of political intrigue something about it didn’t grab me.

This isn’t going to be a bash piece on FF12 but rather an invitation to players who may have missed this game during the PS2 era. Or if you were like me and didn’t give the game the chance it may have deserved and want to give it another try. Square Enix had their Fiinal Fantasy 30th Anniversary event that outlined the different games coming out this year including the release date of FF12. With that out of the way here is some information about the Final Fantasy 12 HD remake that is coming this summer.

Final Fantasy 12 Is An HD Remaster

Vaan and Penelo
Image Credit:https://store.na.square-enix.com/product/404023/final-fantasy-xii-the-zodiac-age-ps4

This is a remaster not a remake and that means that the game itself is relatively intact. There are no huge overhauls to the major systems in the game but they did decide to give it a lovely gloss of paint. If this doesn’t impress you check out the trailer they released that can show how the already beautiful game was made even more lovely. This update is also extended to the audio sounds to add more depth to the character’s performances. Some of the lines have been re-recorded to complete the package.

The Bad Ass Judges Are Still Here

FF12 Judges
Image Credit:https://store.na.square-enix.com/product/404023/final-fantasy-xii-the-zodiac-age-ps4

There has not been any major changes to the story but here is a brief synopsis. FF12 takes place in the world of Ivalice, (yes that one). The city of Dalmasca was recently occupied by the Archadian Empire leaving it in ruin. Princess Ashe, the heir to the throne who had her wedding crashed, has devoted her life since this take over to liberate her country. On the flip side of that players meet Vaan and Penelo, two street urchins with dreams of becoming sky pirates. Political intrigue complete with Judges ensue as players join these rag tag companions to free their homeland.

The Licensing System Is Getting An Upgrade

final fantasy 12 remake, Zodiac Job system

It’s not a serious upgrade as the gambits and license board are still present. However, they have added the Zodiac Job system which has made the game more like FF10 and possibly harder to break. In the original game all of the license boards were identical while in the remaster each character’s board is different. They have even made it so that every character cannot obtain each Esper which is more traditional for the series.

However, they have added the Zodiac Job system which has made the game more like FF10 and possibly harder to break.

The other big change has to do with the characters limit breaks or Quickening in this game. The characters can only learn 3 of their Quickening licenses with the fourth one disappearing from other boards when achieved. This is something that I will need to explore but this is a different step for the game that could impact the game play in a major way.

There Are Quality Of Life Additions

final fantasy 12 remake, trial mode

The point about the licensing board is major but they have also added some quality of life changes that players will appreciate. They have added a “speed mode” which will quicken movement on the map. The new Trial Mode allows players to take saved characters into 100 battles that test their strategic prowess. This adds an extra element of challenge for players that take a break from the main story or when the adventure is complete. Finally they have added PlayStation trophies, auto saving and shortened load times for more fluidity. It’s apparent that PS2 limitations stopped these changes from happening so it’s good to see it added here.

Are you excited for Final Fantasy 12 HD Remake? Do you plan on picking up the remaster? Will the time that has passed make the game be received better? Let us know in the comments below.

Until Next Time Guys!

5 RPGs That We All Forgot But Are Still Awesome

Final Fantasy XII

RPGs

2016 has been a great year for Role-Playing Games (RPGs) and just to name a few, we have XCOM 2, Deus Ex: Mankind Divided, The Witcher 3, Fallout 4, and Final Fantasy XV. Also, a tormenting torture device called Dark Souls III came out last 2016. While these games have their own share of glory and fame, some wonderful RPGs were forgotten in the box down in our basements. To give you a drop of that nostalgia potion, here are 5 RPGs that we all forgot but are still awesome.

Vagrant Story (also known as “The Phantom Pain”)

RPGs Gem: Vagrant Story
http://wallpapercave.com/wp/OQD8sNj.jpg

Once upon a time, in the year 2000, the developers of Final Fantasy (Square Co., Ltd. which is now known as Square Enix after merging with Enix) decided to make a game with a lot of puzzles, a unique battle system, and a weapon and crafting system that is comparable to a lot of modern games like Fallout 3 and the Elder Scrolls Series. That game was Vagrant Story. Also known as “The Phantom Pain”, Vagrant story is an action role-playing game that has elements of a dungeon crawler game, a hack and slash game, and a rhythm game.

The game received high ratings from various video game critics. Knowing Final Fantasy developers, they sure hid a lot of gems in the game for you to discover. Go add Vagrant Story in your list of “to-play” games and enjoy the world of Valendia.

Valkyrie Profile Series

RPGs Gem: Valkyrie Profile
http://www.zerochan.net/295361

Valkyrie Profile is a series of RPGs based on the Norse mythology and follows the story of three Goddesses of Fate namely – Silmeria, Lenneth, and Hrist – as they (well, mostly Lenneth) venture into the world of mortals, in the realm of Midgard, in order to gather brave human souls to serve as ‘einherjar’ or warriors for the coming Ragnarok, the final battle which decides the fate of all creation.

The game has a unique battle mechanics wherein, you link or assign the characters to the buttons on the controller and when pressed, the respective character linked to that button performs an action. It’s a mechanic worth experiencing and the story is fine, especially it covers human behavior and honor. If you want to play this forgotten gem, it’s available on the PlayStation Portable. Enjoy and defeat those enemies, Nibelung Valesti!

Final Fantasy Tactics (Original and the “War of the Lions” version)

RPGs Gem: Final Fantasy Tactics
http://fantasyanime.com/finalfantasy/fftactics/images/fftacticswlpr06-800×600.jpg

Who doesn’t love Final Fantasy Tactics? Well, that is probably because you haven’t played it yet, young squire. This entry in the Final Fantasy franchise was made last 1997 and was re-released for the PSP in 2007 as “Final Fantasy Tactics: The war of the Lions”. Which added new movies, scenarios, jobs, and a lot of words that made me grab a dictionary. You can’t miss a single point in the wonderful story of greed, revenge, corruption, friendship, and betrayal that gave life to the world of Ivalice.

Oh and, various characters from the ‘main’ Final Fantasy franchise also appeared in FFT. Having trouble where to get it? Well, worry no more. The game was made available on the smartphone last 2011. Go on and visit your app store and grab a copy of this critically acclaimed entry in the Final Fantasy universe.

Breath of Fire III

RPGs Gem: Breath of Fire
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First off, I’ve also played Breath of Fire IV but I never finished it…and I apologize for that, my dear BOF IV fans out there. That being said, I chose Breath of Fire III, the first three-dimensional entry in the series. It offers a lot of mechanics that will make you play for hours and hours. Collecting all of Ryu’s Dragon Genes, fishing, and learning all the skills, are just some of the things that will make you come back and play some more. Battles occur quite similarly to another RPG – ehem, Final Fantasy – which is random. I won’t spoil the story, because there are a lot of plot twists in this game accompanied by a very gorgeous soundtrack. Plus, the diverse characters that will make you properly plan the composition of your party in order to defeat the myriad of enemies that will cross your path.

The game was re-released for the PlayStation Portable for you, guys, to pick up and enjoy.

Xenogears

RPGs Gem: The Xenogears Title Screen
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Have you ever heard of that game that has a long-haired main character? The one that fights with his fists and has a giant Gundam-like robot? Well, that is Fei Fong Wong. He is the protagonist of the gem that I think is lost in the back of the minds of most people, Xenogears. This game tackles a lot of social issues that makes it more appealing to more matured audiences. Issues include slavery, war, prejudice, and corruption. A lot of critics hailed Xenogears for its somewhat controversial take on religion, humanism, and psychology.

The gameplay involves the use of Action Points or AP in order to execute combos. The Triangle, Square, and X buttons on the controller are used to perform those combos. Then, there are gears. These are combat robots, fighting machines that bear a similar fighting style as the owner or pilot. For example, one character in the game, Bart, uses a whip when outside his whip-wielding Gear. Xenogears has anime-style cutscenes which are backed by gorgeous soundtracks composed by Yasunori Mitsuda, the composer for Chrono Trigger, Xenosaga, Soul Sacrifice Delta, and a lot more.

You can get it from the PlayStation Network and enjoy the brain-teasing world of Xenogears.

I hope you enjoyed my list of some of the top RPGs of the previous generations that seem to have been forgotten. If you are looking for games to play while waiting for that next-level role-playing game coming out in just a few months, you can try the games above. You will not regret it.

How about you? If you know any role-playing games, that made you feel like you live in another world, that seem to have been forgotten now? Let us know in the comments down below and happy gaming!

Delays, Death Threats, And Gamer Entitlement

With the recent announcement that No Man’s Sky would be delayed for one measly month, a small group of internet psychopaths has once again demonstrated why gamers continue to get a bad rap from both the older generation and the media.

The news broke a few days ago on the official Sony blog, where Managing Director Sean Murray explained that, in order to get the game where he wanted it in terms of polish, they’d need to delay it for a little bit longer to make sure it’s at the right place upon release.

While sane human beings would understand this logic, thereby accepting it and moving on with their lives, a few of the salty polyps that sadly grow on the undercarriage of the internet happened to react differently.

What is the big deal with a game being delayed?

Truthfully, it isn’t a big deal, which brings me to my first point. Who cares? I get that we’re all excited to play No Man’s Sky, but a delay of only one month is not a huge deal. We’ve already waited this long, so what is one more month? I remember back in 2006 seeing the reveal of Final Fantasy 13 Versus, which would take another 10 years to come to fruition. I bought my PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 consoles for that game, and even then, I didn’t feel the need to threaten Square-Enix employees over it.

Hello Games is under no obligation to release the game in June unless they’ve agreed to. Judging by the delay, I’d say that Sony is perfectly willing to wait, and so should you be.

Delays are a good thing!

I never understood the negative reaction to delays, as it generally means that the developer and/or publisher is more concerned about quality than hitting some arbitrary deadline for what I presume to be anxious investors. It is true that some delays end up helping nothing in the end, but by and large, they are for a noble and honest cause.

Hello Games deciding that No Man’s Sky needs more time in the oven is a fantastic thing because it means the product we all want will be a better game when it drops. We will have a smoother, more polished version of the game. Really, that is what is most important, not the day it comes out.

To those of you slinging insults and making threats, I ask this: Would you prefer a buggy, unfinished or unpolished game over having to wait one more month? This sort of reaction reminds me of spoiled children and how they must have what they want right now, even if it means that they will miss out or suffer for their impatience.

 Death threats? Really?

While I completely understand wanting a game when it is supposed to release, is sinking to a level where you sign on to Twitter or Facebook or whatever to send a hateful or threatening message to a person who is just trying to do their job, really the best course of action? Why do you feel so angry about this? Why is there such an overwhelming feeling of resentment?

Hell, if you just insist on voicing your concern, why can you not, like other normal human beings, voice it in a constructive manner? I do not ever understand why some gamers have this hot-headed or entitled approach to things.

Sonic has longer, thinner legs now?! Better threaten Sega. Diablo III looks too colourful for a Diablo game? How about a boycott, a petition, and some death threats? Dante has dark hair now? let’s attack Ninja Theory about it, just because!
It is this type of behaviour that makes us look like spoiled, entitled little brats, and I’m sick to death of outsiders viewing us as such. Maybe, just maybe, next time you feel like threatening someone over something so benign or so unimportant, you instead assess your actions and take a less hostile approach.

Ratchet And Clank (2016) Review

The Same Amazing Tale Through The Eyes Of Another.

Insomniac Game’s world renowned duo of the galaxy’s finest heroes have finally made their comeback and to say the very least, they have done so with an inter-galactic bang. Ratchet And Clank (2016) is jam-packed with a combination of the most profound characters from the series to date, oodles of outer-space adventure throughout the now revamped reaches of the the Solana galaxy and sprinkled with the famous Ratchet And Clank humour that fans of the series have grown to love and adore. For those who are yet to indulge in this blast from the past, I will be keeping spoilers under the hat, so don’t fret.

Developer of the series, Insomniac Games have recreated this heroic pair’s first adventure together which players first indulged in upon it’s Playstation 2 release in 2002. This recreation of the first Ratchet And Clank instalment is narrated from the perspective of Captain Quark, famous muscular antagonist, wannabe protagonist of almost each and every game in the series to date. In taking this approach with the games narrative, Insomniac have been able to collectively bring together numerous characters, races and tie in events of quite significant contextual value from the more recent instalments. With this, Ratchet And Clank (2016) is not only nostalgic gold for the die hard fans of the prior games but is also riddled with the very best content from the series as a whole, making it all that more appealing as a new game to first-time players.

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Where It All Began

Ratchet And Clank (2016) as mentioned prior is a slightly new take on the very first of Ratchet And Clank’s heroic endeavours. The Lombax and his robotic companion still have the same fateful meet and still spend the duration of the game trying to stop the infamous Blarg, Chairman Drek. The planets from the first Ratchet And Clank make a reappearance, looking as stunning and visually encapsulating as ever. Although initially some would consider it boring playing a recreation of game you’ve played numerous times before, this new addition to the Ratchet And Clank series holds no monotonous or tedious feel whilst playing through it’s beautifully remastered levels. Insomniac did a great job of  hurling in some different characters to mix up the general story line, consequently planting seeds of doubt causing you to question how the game would actually meet it’s conclusion. This feeling of unknowing gave the game good drive and definitely maintained the heart of my eagerness as I played.

Ratchet And Clank (2016) plays out almost as a movie, possessing all the typical twists that have been the ebb and flow of the series so far. I also found myself beset by the Ratchet-y humour the series is predominantly renowned for that by no means fell short in this instalment.

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Moving On Up 

Although the first game in The Ratchet And Clank series (2002) was the pinnacle of the greatness Insomniac Games has tried to maintain throughout the games over the years, it’s potential was far from utilized due to the platform it was made for. Now thanks to the ever-expanding capabilities of Playstation 4, Insomniac has been able to take the blocky, 2D graphics from the original game and transform them into being very smooth and pleasing to the eyes of the player. Vibrant colours and the smooth dynamics of the environment bring the game to life around you, making your playthrough that much more pleasurable. It also entices the more thorough level of exploration Insomniac like to draw out of players when it comes to Ratchet And Clank.

Not only are the planets scattered throughout the Solana galaxy rich with colour and overwhelmed with visual goodness – like seriously, don’t get me started on the water; so pretty, but the level of detail put into each and every character and NPC (non-playable character) in the game is phenomenal. We see these amazing characters that Insomniac has developed oozing with accentuated emotions and expressions, seriously Ratchet looks absolutely adorable. Even during a challenge playthrough I found myself re-watching each and every cut scene, mesmerised by just how great the characters looked. Furthermore, not only do the characters, planets and well EVERYTHING about the game look absolutely on point, they feel great too. Gameplay is joyously smooth and unlike it’s predecessor, Ratchet And Clank (2002) character manoeuvring isn’t at all clumsy and Ratchet will come to a halt when you demand so as opposed to running a marathon at the flick of an analog – I understand that’s some serious over-exaggeration there but back in the day, that was some frustrating stuff right there.

On another extremely positive note, in the time I spent trophy hunting and eventually picking up the platinum for this game I hadn’t encountered a single glitch that had effected my gameplay or that i’ve even noticed to be quite honest. Insomniac were seemingly efficient on tying up any glitchy loose ends as patches were swiftly introduced in order to address any issues other players may have encountered. Good on ‘ya Insomniac.

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Out With The Old, In With The…No Wait, keep the old 

The beauty of this Ratchet And Clank instalment above all others is Insomniac’s attempt to bring together the series as a whole. As you sift through the many planets of the Solana Galaxy, you come across countless references to various other instalments to date. Whether it be a reference to a seemingly cute, blue, menacing ball of fur (Protopet from Ratchet And Clank 2) or a certain space pirates treasure buried at the bottom of the ocean in a resort (Romulus Slag’s treasure from Ratchet And Clank Future Series). Not only are there physical signs of Insomniac’s attempt to reconcile the series but also in the general game dynamics it becomes evident that there is some means of combination of the weapons from the original trilogy and the graphics and visual style of the future series – I find it hard to believe it was unintentional.

However, Ratchet And Clank (2016) isn’t all just a reiteration of the prior games as there are also some pretty nifty new features that have been added. Although the gold bolts have maintained their position as the prime collectible throughout the game, skill points have sneakily found their way into becoming trophies as opposed to an in game collectible. Do not worry yourselves however as the replacement collectible although not as challenging, is just as fun and also gives you the opportunity to test yourself with a bit of Ratchet And Clank trivia – I’m trying not to spoil it too much here.

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We’re Glad You’re Back Ratchet

For me personally, the Ratchet And Clank series has always won me over with it’s prominent sense of humour, fantastically constructed planets and galaxies alike, and indescribably brilliant characters complete with on point voice acting. Insomniac have carefully filtered through and identified the greatest elements of the series as a whole and strung them together in order to successfully make a fan-orientated game that is also a fine addition to any first-time players collection. As a long term fan of the series I would hands-down say Ratchet And Clank (2016) met my expectations and furthermore, it exceeded them.

First PSN Flash Sale Of 2016 Wants All Of Your Money

It seems routine at this point for Sony to suddenly drop another flash sale, yet they somehow keep making these sales both surprising and tempting. This week’s theme is indies, and this time, they seem committed to actually following the theme.

Here are a few of my personal favourites for your consideration.

FlowerA vibrant ‘art game’ that doubles as a relaxation exercise. From the creators of Journey, it’s priced at a little over a dollar and your purchase unlocks the game on PS3, PS4, and PS Vita. Pretty nice bargain.

Bastion An incredibly beautiful action game where your every move is narrated in real time. A lovely western soundtrack, unique enemies and locales, and great voice acting make this game a definite must-play for anyone who is a fan of swinging big hammers.

LimboEveryone knows what Limbo is, but many of you probably haven’t taken the plunge. This game deserves all of the praise it receives. A moody, tense, and bone-chilling experience that every fan of platformers should try. Great puzzles help make this game all the better too.

OutlastWhile Outlast fails to remain horrifying throughout its entire runtime, this game starts off with a huge bang. I still get creeped out thinking about some of the events that take place, and any fan of horror games would feel right at home with this one.

Sound ShapesOne of my favourite recent platformers. It manages to blend music and platforming in a unique and interesting way that simply doesn’t get stale. An excellent soundtrack and wonderfully simplistic art make this one worth trying.

The Unfinished SwanOne of the coolest indie games to ever grace the PlayStation 3 and 4, The Unfinished Swan is both an intriguing puzzler. It consistently changes up the mechanics while offering a concise and charming tale about a boy chasing a swan, all told in the style of a children’s storybook.

TransistorOne of my all time favourite games and certainly an underrated masterpiece, Transistor should be played by absolutely everyone.

For the full list of games and their respective prices, check out the official sony blog post here. This sale only lasts until the 25th, so get on it while you still can!