Final Fantasy XIV First Impressions

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I had always wanted to play Final Fantasy XIV ever since I first heard about it a few years ago. When I logged onto Twitch Prime and saw that it was going to be free for a month, I just knew that I had to try it out. I didn’t get to play for that long, as the free trial was only for a month and I can’t see paying right now in the middle of the semester. But for what I did play, the game seemed a bit….lackluster.

For starters, The character creation was ok, but I couldn’t design my outfit! I wanted my character to have bright purple hair, but then the rest of her outfit came up and it was a bright red skirt. It clashed AWFULLY, so badly that I ended up just changing my hair to match. If you were able to pick at least the color of your character’s outfit, it would make things a whole lot simpler and a whole lot more fun at the start of the game.

The combat seemed to be very uninvolved. I chose Archer because I wanted to be a rogue further down the line in the game, but I felt like I was just sitting for most of the first few levels. Sure, I got to attack all of these cool monsters, but it was more just me watching my character attack them. Sometimes I had to hit a button or two, sometimes I didn’t. The Tab Targeting was pretty bad, I felt like I would have to click three or four times just to get my character to attack the squirrel right in front of her. Then, I accidentally got a bit lost, and ended up in an area with monsters that were far above my level. I felt like I was in

The best part of the game did seem to just be the environment. It wasn’t dark like many other games, and felt vibrant with all the NPCs, animals and magical creatures around. I didn’t get to talk to many other real people in the game, but I was having enough fun on my own.

Where I ended up stopping was around levels 11-12 where I had to put these things into some pots in a cave? But there were these skeletons that would run up behind me and kill me without even really allowing me to fight back. If I had googled it I could have probably gotten past this point, but school made me busy again, and this was where I stopped.

Overall, I am so, so, so happy that Twitch Prime gave me the chance to try this game for a month for free. Even though I ended up not using that entire month, I was still able to give it a try. I might even buy another month during the summer to get another chance. If you have Amazon Prime, you automatically have Twitch Prime, and you can get the game for free right now to try it out for yourself. Just go to this link: https://amzn.to/2D7ge4W (Affiliate Link) and sign in with your Amazon Prime account! There are also a few other free games and deals that they come out with every single month. I’ll be reviewing my first impressions of the other Twitch Prime games that I have, as I love a good freebie.

Thanks for reading!

Things I Dislike About Animal Crossing Part 2

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I haven’t spoken about Animal Crossing in a while, but it is my absolute favorite game series. I have played every single game except for Amiibo Festival (which doesn’t really count as an Animal Crossing game in my opinion). I know which parts of each game that I liked, and parts that I disliked, and parts that I hope will be in Animal Crossing for the Switch that is supposed to be coming out later this year. For the next 3 Video Game Tuesdays, I will be focusing specifically on Animal Crossing, and going through these topics on all the games. The first one is all the stuff that I didn’t like about each individual game.

If you missed my post from last week, check it out first!

Animal Crossing New Leaf

“Animal Crossing: New Leaf” review | stefanb33

Finishing The Game

In most Animal Crossing games, there was no way to finish the game. There still isn’t any way to finish the game in this installment, but you do get to a point where there is just nothing to do. One summer, I was on ACNL almost every day. I was a part of a trading company where we would give items to whoever asked. Someone would have a hacked DS so they could spawn in infinite items, and then we would go back and forth getting those specific items to anyone who wanted to decorate their town or house and couldn’t find them in game. The items were given for free because we got them for free. No one would actually ask for real money, it was just an easy way to get items for your house. Everyone was so nice on the forum, so they would always tip the delivery person with something.

I made millions of bells and many friends just delivering stuff to people, and I made many friends. I got hundreds of flowers and furniture items, and everything was great.  I would be meeting up in different towns every night, fishing, doing minigames, catching bugs, and having a great summer time.

Then the fall came. Most people went away, including me, because we had school. Then I went back to my town. I felt like I had everything, and this wasn’t a good thing. I felt like there was nothing left to do in the game besides….restart. So I restarted the game for the first time in 2 years. 2 years! I didn’t even know what I was doing.

Now, I have a new town. I’ve had 2 new towns in the past 2 years, and I have barely played them at all. It is so boring to start from the beginning, even though I thought that was what I needed. After having fun with friends in the game, I felt as if there was no fun in singleplayer anymore.

I hope to be able to get addicted to Animal Crossing again sometime, but I may just have to wait for the next installment for that wave of joy to come. This might not be a problem with the game, it might be a problem with myself, but I know many people who have had something similar occur. The game is amazing, but I felt like it did reach an “end.” The other Animal Crossing games have memories that make me want to go back to them, but when ACNL gets old, I just don’t feel the need to go back to it.

Animal Crossing Happy Home Designer

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Nothing To Do

There is literally nothing to do in this game besides decorating homes. I spent a bit of time in the other Animal Crossing games decorating my house, but that wasn’t the main focus in the other games. Even though this was sold like a fully priced Animal Crossing game, it was really about 10% of a game. You only got to see the villagers when you went to decorate their houses, and then you would just have little snippets of conversations. Then you would just go back to the office to work for another villager. You never had a house of your own, never had friends of your own, it was just go to work and then go back to the office, watch time pass, go to work, go back to the office, watch time pass. It became a rather dreary cycle, I think I only played about an hour or two of this game before I gave up. This was definitely the least amount of time I had ever spent on a single Animal Crossing game. Such a letdown.

Even if they wanted to do a game based on interior design, fine. That’s cool. But give it some extras! Maybe you can have your own house, and throw different themed parties to invite villagers. Maybe you have to do minigames and throw contests to win popularity with the townsfolk. Maybe you can constantly upgrade the office until you are traveling across the world to decorate houses of international villagers. Maybe you eventually move to landscape outside and building houses or mansions. This sounds ambitious, but if you are going to market it as a full game, don’t just make it designing rooms!

Pocket Camp

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Cash Grab

I know I said that Happy Home Designer took about 10% of what made Animal Crossing the game it was and tried to make it a full game. Well, this game took less than 5% of what made Animal Crossing what it was and tried to make it a full game.

Let’s start with the easy part. I like to go fishing and to catch bugs in Animal Crossing. These are ways to pass the time and have fun when there isn’t something that you have to specifically be doing in the game. This game takes those away. You can collect fruit or catch fish or catch bugs, but only a certain number every few hours. Eventually, that “hot spot” runs out. Then you have to either wait 2-3 hours, or pay money.

Everything on Pocket Camp is on a timer. You have 2-3 sites where a villager could randomly spawn, and they will ask you to do things. You have to craft furniture, or get them fruit, or get them bugs, in order to ask them to move into your “camp.” You can’t have infinite people in your camp, so if you are at the limit, they just go into your cache so you can pop them into your camp whenever you want. But, if you don’t catch the villager during their time limit in the campsite, then you have to wait for them to reappear. You probably won’t have to redo the quests, as the level of friendship will remain the same. But this makes you want to rush or pay money to get things done quickly so that you can get your villagers into your camp faster. I haven’t even mentioned the fact that these villagers want specific items in your camp to be placed! So, sorry if you were going for a mettalic theme, pretty kitty wants a flowerpot and she won’t move in until you place that flowerpot. It takes away your right to decorate your Animal Crossing house the way YOU want to decorate it.

Also, there is no multiplayer in this game. I was so looking forward to getting to play with my friends, but it just doesn’t work that way. You can only friend them to visit their town, see how they decorated, and see what villagers they have. It’s basically an art gallery. Oh, and you can also buy some meaningless fruit and shells from them if you don’t want to pay money, but you also need your cash for other items. You just can’t win in this game. I hope that this isn’t somehow implemented into the new Animal Crossing game, I would be so disappointed.


Alright, so this is the end of the line for things that I didn’t like in Animal Crossing games. Next week will be on a much happier note as I start to talk about things that I did like in Animal Crossing games! I will definitely have to split the posts up again, as I clearly have a lot to talk about in each game. Thanks for reading!

Animal Crossing (All Versions): Things that I Disliked Part 1

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I haven’t spoken about Animal Crossing in a while, but it is my absolute favorite game series. I have played every single game except for Amiibo Festival (which doesn’t really count as an Animal Crossing game in my opinion). I know which parts of each game that I liked, and parts that I disliked, and parts that I hope will be in Animal Crossing for the Switch that is supposed to be coming out later this year. For the next 3 Video Game Tuesdays, I will be focusing specifically on Animal Crossing, and going through these topics on all the games. The first one is all the stuff that I didn’t like about each individual game. This one will be split into two parts, with the second part coming tomorrow, since it is so long!

Animal Crossing Gamecube

Animal Crossing - Animal Crossing Wiki

This was my first Animal Crossing game and is my favorite one. There are so many good things about it, but it definitely had its flaws.

Fossils

In this game, you have to mail all your fossils to an outside museum to be analyzed and sent back to you. This means that you have to pay the postage for every fossil sent, and it was just too long of a wait for my impatient self. I never put more than 2 or 3 fossils in the museum at a time.

Number of villagers

This will be both in my likes and dislikes. You could have a lot more villagers in the GC version than you could have in later versions, which was both a blessing and a curse. It was hard to keep up with all the villagers, and sometimes I forgot that I had villagers and so they would move away.

No multiplayer

Even though you could have multiple people living in the town of your console, there was no way to play together in minigames through splitscreen. The villagers might mention the other character but that was it. The only way to go to another person’s town was to put their memory card into your console, and I didn’t have any friends who played the game, or even had a Gamecube, so I had no one’s town to see.

Not much to do

Sometimes, after you’ve watered all the flowers, did errands for a bunch of villagers, fished, caught bugs, shopped, and decorated to your heart’s content, you just got bored. Sure, there’s a lot to do, but I remember thinking “Man I am out of things to do” and switching to one of the newer Animal Crossing games. A lot of things were time-locked as well, the special events at least, so if you didn’t play at those times, you didn’t have the chance to participate.

Animal Crossing Wild World

Animal Crossing: Wild World (Game) - Giant Bomb

Barebones Animal Crossing Game

There is very little to do in this game. There are no more ways to ask the villagers for errands, they would have to walk up to you by chance and ask you. You can fish, catch bugs, and do decorating and digging but you really have to create your fun.

Few Events

This Animal Crossing game took out all events related to religion. No Easter Bunny, no Christmas events, nothing. They had some generic events, but they were so infrequent that it felt like you would go weeks in real life before happening to come across an in-game event.

Wifi-Locked Stores

There were parts of the game that you could only get if you had connected your DS Lite to the Wifi and traveled to another person’s town. Then, the person had to do stuff in your town, such as buy from the Nook store to upgrade it to the full department store. This was hard because some people didn’t have wifi, and some people didn’t have Wifi that the DS could connect to, like me. Also, as a kid, unless I was going to play with a stranger online, I had no one to play with. So I never got to access these parts of the game. Now that the Wifi servers for the DS Lite have gone permanently offline, anyone who gets the game will technically never be able to complete it.

Hackers

The Action Replay was a card that people got to change their games. It was an easy thing to get, some people got it for their kids to turn off Mr. Resetti in the game. Either way, it was easy to hack the DS Lite, and if you played a Wild World game with a hacker, they could mess you up big time. They could hack rocks or buildings to block your house in so that you could never leave home on that save. They could mess up your entire town and then leave, forcing the game to save, and permanently destroy it. They could even permanently brick your DS Lite, making it impossible to use it at all. This may have nothing to do with the game, but the fact is that WW became a way for hackers to mess with a lot of people. You had to be really careful, which is why I am kinda glad that my DS couldn’t connect. I couldn’t randomly connect with a stranger online and have my DS ruined.

Animal Crossing City Folk

The Top 10 Things the IGN Nintendo Team is Thankful For - IGNF’ing Grass!!

Oh my god, what the heck were the developers thinking?? In this game, the grass was supposed to wear down if you ran. But it was way too fast, so even if you walked speedily, your whole town would have huge dirt patches. You had to slow walk everywhere. Snow only lands on grass patches, so if you wanted a pretty town in winter, you better CRAWL everywhere.

Redd

Redd was in the city rather than appearing in town from time to time, and a few other characters were in the city. This might be a pet peeve, but it was kinda weird for seedy Redd to have a store, I preferred the tent. It just fulfilled the look.

Auctionhouse

The Auction house literally does nothing? I don’t even know why it was there, I never had enough friends coming over for it to do anything.

 

 

Video Game Tuesdays: Borderlands 2 Xbox 360

Borderlands 2 | Borderlands Fandom Wiki | FANDOM powered ...

I’ve been playing Borderlands 2 off and on for the past few weeks, and boy oh boy is it so much fun! I haven’t ever really played FPS singleplayer games, but I have been enjoying this one.

Borderlands 2 may be FPS, but it feels like more of a typical Action RPG that uses swords or something. I didn’t feel like I was being hindered by having to use a gun. I didn’t feel slowed down by having to aim instead of just slicing through hordes of enemies like I normally like to do. I actually felt more powerful by using my pistols!

I am not great at FPS games, but I feel that even a bad player like me could have fun. This game actually improved my skill in other FPS games, without making me feel as if there was too steep of a learning curve. I also didn’t feel like I was punished too much if I ended up using too many bullets because I suck at aiming. It gave me the chance to practice.

My main selling point of this game is the amazing multiplayer. Me and a friend have been playing this game once or twice a week together. The game saves our progress in the campaign, so we never have to worry about having to start from the beginning every time we boot up the game. We have had a third player in sometimes, and the game has 4 slots. The next time he couldn’t join, and we were still able to continue where we left off with him. The enemies weren’t suddenly too hard for two people to defeat, the game had balanced itself out. Did I mention that my friend lives in Ireland and I live near NYC? We play on Xbox 360 with little to no lag. Borderlands 2 really was amazing when it came to multiplayer design.

Also, one thing that was my pet peeve in multiplayer games was when you had to try to split up items. Like, if there was money, you would have to try to split it and figure out who would pick up what so that no one would be too poor to buy what they needed. This game automatically splits all the money between players. It even gives bullets to both players when someone picks up ammo. The only thing it doesn’t have is duplicates of every single dropped item, but trading is so easy that it isn’t a problem to trade stuff like health packs or guns or shields.

Oh, and lastly, you can get this game for 3 DOLLARS!!! 3 dollars if you buy it at Gamestop. Whether you buy it in store or online. 2.69 if you are a Pro member (like me!). So you basically get all of this fun, hours upon hours (How Long To Beat says the main story is 30 hours and Main +Extra is over 50 hours) for less than the price of a large fry or a Big Mac from McDonalds. To be honest, many of the Xbox 360 games are really cheap and you can still have lots of fun with them. You just have to buy Live to play online, but you get free games with Live too, so there’s no losing here.

I would definitely recommend this game to anyone looking for a fun, cheap game to play on your own or with friends.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Video Game Tuesdays: Caveblazers Nintendo Switch Review

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I bought this game on sale for around 11 bucks, and boy was it worth it! This game is so much fun.

The main mode in the game is running through randomly generated dungeons. There is gold hidden throughout the dungeon that can be used at shrines for various gifts, blessings around the map for free that give you powerups, and items dropped throughout the map. Every 2 (I think) rooms, you get a random boss. The point of the game is really to die, as you get to just restart the dungeon and you might get a powerup that makes it easier to kill the monster and collect more powerups.

I haven’t gotten past the fourth room past the first boss yet in the time that I have played it, but it isn’t boring. Every single round of the game is unique, as the enemies and world are randomly generated. You don’t even know what boss you are going to get at the end, which has been ruining my chances of winning so far! But I just keep trying over and over again, hoping that the next round will somehow be better.

Then, there are different game modes. One of my favorites seems to be just wave after wave of enemies, with breaks every “wave” (like 5 mini-waves) so you can choose which items to use next. This is actually really good, as it gives me the chance to try out new weapons and powerups without potentially jeopardizing my actual dungeon run. It has also introduced me to quite a few new enemies that I had never met before, and I now know how to fight them in case I come across them in the deeper levels of the dungeons.

Then there are the daily runs? I’m not quite sure how those work yet, they seem just like the regular dungeon runs, except maybe with more enemies, and you get nothing out of it? Again, this game has a lot packed into it, so I haven’t even gotten the chance to try this mode out much!

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On top of all this, there are perks that you can choose before you enter the main dungeon to change your playstyle. For example, if you love magic, there’s a perk that starts you off with a wand and no sword. You want to be a Grim Reaper? There’s a perk that starts you off like that. You can still collect items as normal, but this is a way to customize the playthrough to your own personal style. And then you can even change the look of the character with clothes that you win by leveling up in the dungeons.

There’s even a story! I haven’t unlocked much of it because I suck at the game, but I am seeing random NPCs come into my section of the dungeons and unlock different things for me. I can’t wait to see if more come and cooler things come the deeper I get into the mines.

Overall, for the cheap price, this was an amazing indie game. I would totally recommend it the next time it goes on sale over some of the 60 dollar 1st party Switch games (*cough* Dark Souls Sucks *cough*).

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Video Game Tuesdays: Lara Croft Guardian of Light (Xbox 360 Edition)

Play Lara Croft and The Guardian of Light on SHIELD ...

So, I got this game for free when it was on Games with Gold earlier this month. I actually already have on my Itunes account, probably bought it for the Ipad Mini I used to have, but I had never played it until now. I didn’t know what to expect, as I haven’t really played many Tomb Raider games. I’d only played an hour or two of the 2013 Xbox version. This game was so much different than that one in the end, so it didn’t even really matter. You can come into this game without any real experience with Tomb Raider games, and be perfectly fine.

So I was playing this in multiplayer mode. In multiplayer, one person plays as Lara while the other plays as Totec, an ancient Mayan warrior. Lara has a grappling hook that she can use to swing across gaps or climb up a wall. If she has a rope going to another area and she can’t swing over there, Totec can walk on the rope to the other side. Totec has spears that can be embedded in walls. He can’t actually walk on his spears though, as he is too heavy, so Lara must jump on the makeshift “stairs” to get to a higher area. Then they each have weapons, and there are upgrade skills that can be applied to each character. Either way, it is a pretty clean system for a multiplayer puzzle game.

Buy Lara Croft And The Guardian Of Light Tomb Raider PC ...When I got started, I thought that the puzzles were laughably easy. Then we got to this fire thing, and I thought “Oh, things might not be so simple.” We had a few fights with monsters here and there and got through around 2 challenge rooms in a few minutes without being too stumped.  Then, we got to the actual difficult part of the game. Walls were moving and trying to push you off like the coin machine at an arcade, enemies were popping up out of nowhere and actually doing damage, and there were no more super-linear corridors. You could explore to find and unlock powerups for your character, you weren’t locked in going directly from one place to the next. You even had choices of where you would explore, which was pretty neat. If I had played this on mobile, I probably would have thought it was the best game ever or something. Rarely do they have games on mobile with this much detail, I am happily surprised! Playing on the Xbox that has so many different games on it probably brings down the excitement level a bit, but if I had to choose between Flappy Bird and this on mobile, I would play this in a heartbeat.

I haven’t completed this game yet, but I am hoping to soon. I must be about an hour in, and there are only about 6-8 hours of gameplay. This seems rather short, but since it is multiplayer, I could imagine this being perfect for siblings to sit down and play. It is entertaining for when you are playing it, but you can put it down and come back to it later without completely forgetting what you are doing. Or you can have an ultimate game weekend or something and beat the game all in one go. Tons of fun to be had here! I can’t wait to see how much more difficult the puzzles get as I progress through the game.

I would recommend this game to anyone looking for a fun and easy-to-learn puzzle game for the 360, PS3, smartphone, or computer!

Overall Rating: 4.5 out of 5 controllers

Video Game Review Tuesdays: The Outfit

The Outfit Screenshots for Xbox 360 - MobyGames

I’m going to start reviewing video games! This might seem out of the blue, but I have been playing games a lot lately as a great stress-reliever. And thanks to my friends in the Xbox 360 Hub Discord server, my Xbox has stopped collecting dust. I play on it all the time, comment below if you want a link to the Discord, it is full of a bunch of great people.

Anyways, back to my review of this game. This game was on sale last week for about 2 dollars and change (It now costs 20 dollars please don’t waste your money), and so some people at the server decided to buy it and play around one night. Before I get into the game, let me get into the history of the game.

This game was released in 2006 by Relic Entertainment. This was the only third person shooter that the company has ever made, as they usually make strategy games like Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War or Company of Heroes. They also mostly make games for the PC, as this was the first of two console games that the company ever made. What was a real-time strategy game company doing making a third person shooter? The Xbox 360 was only a few months old when this game came out, and this game was released around the same time that the games Call of Duty 2, Far Cry Instincts Predator, and Battlefield 2 were released. It had some serious competition.

As I played through the first mission of the singleplayer campaign, I was immediately confused. This was before I knew who made this game. This game is about Americans fighting Nazi’s, and so you have to fight off the hordes of soldiers. But it’s not like you are on a team with random NPCs, you control everything. You have 4 soldiers behind you, if they die, you have to “call in” more soldiers to be airdropped from the sky. If you need a tank, call it in, it will be airdropped from the sky. Need a bridge? Call it in, it will be airdropped from the sky. Need a turret? No problem, it will be airdropped from the sky. Each item costs points, and you get those points by killing the enemies and doing little side missions to “capture” points.

This is a weird mechanic, as I’m pretty sure you can’t just drop a tank from one of the planes they were flying back in the 1940s, but I digress. My pet peeve was that it takes you out of the combat. You are trying to fight off Nazis, then you notice that your men are depleted, and you have to duck behind a rock and wait for them to respawn. If you need a tank to get to another point on the map, you have to call it in and wait for it to spawn. In these seconds, your men can die. And the game refuses to let you enter a tank if you don’t have a full team of 4 men? This made getting through certain portions of the mission a drag as you had to wait for stuff to spawn and hope your men didn’t die before you got the chance to place a turret or drop in a tank. Not to mention that to just call in anything you had to press y, go around the circular menu until you found what you wanted, positioned it perfectly, and then called it in. That’s too much to do when you are being fired on and are using a controller. And this was just the first mission!

I also replayed this first mission with my friend in the Discord server in Co-Op mode. This didn’t make things better, as now we were trying to both drop in tanks and fight off the Nazis. Also, did you know that if you drop the tank on someone it can kill them? I accidentally killed his teammates as I was trying to drop the tank in, even though we were on the same team, so we had to stop and wait for them to be airdropped in before we could even continue with the mission. The second mission was even WORSE, with a phantom “Nazi train” that would just go down the tracks at a random time in the mission, and you had to get your tank or car out of the way so you wouldn’t get crushed and die and have to respawn. Then when we decided to switch games, we found that there was no way to save Co-op mode, so we would have had to totally restart from the beginning of the game if we ever wanted to play Co-op again.

Speaking of moving the tank or car out of the way, the vehicle physics in this game are abysmal. You can drive your tank up the side of the mountain at top speed accidentally,  but then it gets stuck and you can’t get down. The movement is some mixture of “wherever you face is the direction you go in, but you can also move forward and backward.” And then they have a gun at the top that can go in a 360 so you can shoot the tanks of the bad guys, and you have to control that too. The vehicles are all clunky, the Nazi’s have better ones than what you use your points on so you end up just trying to steal those.  The driving is a very important part of this game, so for it to be so bad ruins the entire thing.

Then I played multiplayer with 3 other people, and that was what really made the game even tolerable. The game is bad, which makes the multiplayer hilarious, so we had fun for it being such a cheap game. No one really cares about building turrets or calling in air attacks in the multiplayer, so we would just run around, trying to drive our tanks, and trying to kill each other. It was great fun!

Overall, this game tries to be a cross between an FPS game and a strategy game, and it doesn’t do a very good job of being either. You can’t really have a game like this on a console where you have limited controls. If you could pause the game and place what you needed to place that would be fine, but then it wouldn’t really be a shooter game with any sort of compelling action. If you took out the strategy, it would be ok, but it wouldn’t be fun because of the poor controls. It’s just a bad game, but for 2 dollars and change, I had a lot of fun with my friends laughing at how bad it was.

Overall Rating: 1.5 out of 5 controllers