Monday, October 31, 2005

Final Fantasy VII: Finally beat it!

Yes, after 16 months of gameplay, half of that time not even playing, I have conquered Sephiroth and stopped Meteor from crashing down on Midgar, which would have ultimately destroyed the planet. Why it took me so long to get around to beating this game, I will never know. What matters is it has finally happened.

So thanks to daylight savings time I would not feel guilty about using that extra hour to play games. I woke up at aroun 8 AM (I know it was very early) and decided to traverse down North Crater. I took my time getting a few levels up and gathering items and materia (materia which I did not even use). This time, though, I used the Save Crystal at the correct spot: right before jumping into the core of the planet to fight Jenova Absolute.

Note: None of the three final bosses killed me, it was one of the extremely strong monsters before them whom I took too lightly that did it.

So Cloud, Barret and Cid (I replaced Vincent with Barret because Mr. Valentine was a little too weak) took of Jenova Absolute. Jenova was a piece of cake my friends. After her destruction, we were at the core of the planet and saw Sephiroth in his true form.

Biazzaro Sephiroth was a bit difficult, not strengthwise, but strategy wise. I had two teams fighting, Cloud, Barret and Cid on the left, Vincent, Tifa and Red XIII on the right. I kept hammering on him with the party on the left, when what I needed to do was destroy his defenses from the right first. So boom, he geos down.

Next came the One Winged Angel himself, Safer Sephiroth. The only thing I worried about is his Super Nova attack, which packed a punch indeed, but could not kill me. My strategy here was to pound on him with Cloud, Summon with Barret, and use Megalixers with Cid. It was just a back and forth battle, I do not know what I was worried about. Once Cloud reached his Limit, I whipped out the Level 4 Omnislash and Safer Sephiroth could not take any of it. Dead.

So everyone was all "Yay, he is dead, but what about the planet?" Then Cloud went a bit crazy. He knew Sephiroth was still alive, but it was only in his head. By the way, that is because Cloud is a failed clone of Sephiroth. What Cloud did is, without hesitation, whipped out Omnislash on Sephiroth and went berserk on him. In his bloody mess, Sephiroth imploded into nothingness and was gone.

Note: I am pretty sure he comes back as a clone in Advent Children, I saw the screenshot.

But Meteor was still crashing down on the planet, and Holy was not helping defend against it, but fueling the madness. Until the planet responded with the Lifestream, and saved humanity. Flash forward 500 years, we see Nanaki (aka Red XIII) run toward a cliff with two younglings and look down upon Midgar, which has been overtaken by plants and moss and foliage.

The only thing left for me is Advent Children, out on DVD within the next two months. The puppets of Sephiroth and Jenova must be stopped.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Have I mentioned Killer 7 is freakin' sweet?

I know that I must have at least once or twice mentioned that.... But now that I have my memory card back, I can continue playing Killer 8 mode, where I can use young Harman as a persona to blow away those suicide bombing monsters. They hurt a lot more though when they get you, and the movement system still sucks when trying to run away, but I keep coming back for the story.

Which is what I wanna talk about. After completion, I was a frequent visitor and contributor to IGN's message boards, where myself and other gamers theorized what in the world happened. But recently in Japan, they released a book called "Hand in Killer 7" that explains the truth behind everything. Which means, everything theorized (maybe half) was completely wrong.

Something good came from this book: closure. We learn the truths behind the Killer 7's shape changing and personality switching ability, as well as a clear timeline to the events leading up to, and why we keep seeing the ghosts of those we have eliminated after we (we as in the Killer 7) kill them.

Something bad also came from this book: no more theories. It was great thinking that Garcian was actually having mental problems. He was the one who killed the Smith Syndicate, and took their weapons. When he armed himself with a weapon he became that person. But no. Not anymore. It was fun while it lasted.

But in the end, one must lose. Peace can never last (just ask Japan, my first playthough, I destroyed their country). I (as Emir Parkreiner) killed Kenjiro Matsuoko in cold blood. Oh boy that was a tough decision wheter or not I wanted to kill him (I did not want to, but I could feel Emir wanted to).

To conclude, I now have the game's official soundtrack. What a loser I am. But it is truly amazing. It reminds me of the game, from the song Rave On (the Vinculum Gate music) to the song Reenactment (the ending credits song, the second time we get the credits). In the name of Harman...

Too bad you do not get taht last sentence, it is from the game. So I leave you with a quote.

Christoper Mills: May the Lord smile...
Garcian Smith: ...and the Devil have mercy.

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Top 5 Most Wanted - No. 1

Here it is, the number 1 spot. True Crime: New York City. Two years ago we saw Streets of LA try to be a good attempt at a GTA, and in some ways, it succeeded. A more linear gameplay with a straight forward story intrigued me, but at my experience level, it took me under a week to complete.

What excites me about NYC is that the producers have corrected almost every flaw LA had. Almost every building you see can be entered, and all the people on the streets are interactive. That is sweet because all the buildings in LA were just giant block renderings that jumped out at you and said "Look at me! I'm an ugly house in the middle of the Downtown area!"

Also, I loved how the fighting in LA made it different from any GTA. You could kick, punch, block, anything, and this helped vary the missions and added some excitement to the game. I also loved in LA how you fought fat Russians in the bathroom of a spa.

LA lacked motocycles, but it seems as if NYC has added them in. Yay! I also hope in NYC that the physics while driving a car is realistic. Man oh man, driving in LA was terrible. Good, but not GTA good.

True Crime: New York City is scheduled for a release date of November 15. Still, I now that this game will drop in price sooner or later. It is such a shame that I totally forgot about the price drop factor when I got Killer 7. Forget that, Killer 7 is freakin' sweet! I hope you enjoyed the Top 5 Most Wanted for the first week of October. Since I had so much fun making this, expect to see a lot more Top 5's in the Star Wars and Video Game blog!

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Top 5 Most Wanted - No. 2

Star Wars: Battlefront is the unofficial game of Tim and Erik, but not since his PS2 began to suck. So it has been a while since we could play that. Despite me not having a PS2, I still want Battlefront 2.

A third-person shooter which involves some strategic actions is great, but when it takes place in the Star Wars Universe, that's better. Missions take place in Republic-Era times, and even during the Empire. You can also fight on either of the two sides for each era: Clones or droids, and Rebels or Imps. Infantry ranges from the guys with jet-packs, to Wookiees, to Super Battle Droids, and my favorite, snipers.

Battlefront 2 will be even better than the first because Jedi will be present to face off against, with, or as. Now who doesn't wanna run around with a lightsaber chopping off heads left and right? And who wouldn't want to know what it feels like to cut one down yourself? Or shoot down with an overwhelming amount of guns? You can make this happen, because missions will also take place during Episode III times.

Also, not only will it be a shooter, but you can also fly around in TIEs, X-Wings, Jedi Starfighters, or Tri fighters etc. in a space dogfight. Man, I would love to see this in multiplayer. Erik and I would play through all the missions in one sitting because we could, and if he gets Battlefront 2, we will be flying son!

Closing comments: I love Star Wars. I love video games. Put them together, and you have one giant orgasmic experience. I am still undecided about what will fill the Number 1 spot, so check back soon and find out!

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Top 5 Most Wanted - No. 3

X-Men Legends 2: Rise of Apocalypse, sequel to one of the greatest multiplayer games I have ever played. The first Legends was sweet, fun melee attacks, great mutant super powers, but load times were just a bit sloooow. From what I hear, things have been upgraded.

I am very excited for the sequel. The X-Men and the Brotherhood have teamed up, which means there will be much more characters to choose from. I hope that you have noticed the title of the game, because that is why they have joined forces. Apocalypse is threatening the world, yadda yadda yadda, time to kick some ass.

What really excites me is that Magneto will be a playable character. Booyah! I don't care how evil he is, you have to admit that he is one of the most powerful mutants to ever walk the Earth (and float above it using his powers).

Now I wish I had more to write about, but I can't really think of anything more. Other than I wish they made the characters more distinguishable on screen, and I hope the load times are quicker. I think Number 2 will be another sequel: Star Wars Battlefront 2.

Monday, October 03, 2005

Top 5 Most Wanted - No. 4

Please also check out No. 5, Fire Emblem Path of Radience beaneath this feature. Today is Battalion Wars, a similar but different game and cousin of Advance Wars for the GBA.

Advance Wars was a turn based strategy game where you took control of a Cammanding Officer (CO) and sent your troops in to fight the enemy, using tanks, planes, boats, and infantry, among other troops. Your troops can be destroyed, but you can also create troops using funds gathered from captured cities. The first AW you commanded the Orange Star Army to investigate an eerie attacker and along the way you engage Blue Moon, Green Earth, and Yellow Comet. The four countries later on team up with each other in AW2 to defend agaisnt teh ruthless Black Hole.

Battalion Wars however is a real time strategy game. You take control of one unit, whether it be infantry, tank, plane, artillery, etc. If you die, you just take control of another unit on the battlefield. This is a very fast paced game where quick decisions need to be made or it can mean certain death.

The wide array of units adds to the gameplay. Infantry units can be upgraded, and there is even a new type of infanrty that can weild flamethrowers. The tanks are powered up more, and the recon units can either be fast with little firepower, or not as fast with a whole lots of firepower.

Returning are the Crazy CO's. Their personalities always reflect in the way they fight, and add to a bit of the light hearted fun in this game, already released. Don't be turned away from this sleeper for the Gamecube, and don't think it kiddie (it has a rating of T for Teen). Check it out, and keep an eye out for my next feature: X-Men Legends 2!

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Top 5 Most Wanted - No. 5

Over the next couple of posts, I will cover 5 of my most wanted games that have been released recently or will be released by the Holidays. Today is Fire Emblem: Path of Radience.

I love Fire Emblem, that is a given. America has been deprived of many great games, and Fire Emblem is one of them. That is until the first American import came on the GBA. Turn based strategy has never been finer. Throw in a great plot with many twists, and then you have the next big thing. Then in May, Fire Emblem: The Sacred Stones came out, and I immediately downloaded the ROM. (ROMs are easier to play because I can save at the beginning of every turn, and then if someone dies, I can restart.) I am replaying it now as a matter of fact because there are many missions to play and character to unlock.

Now the first Gamecube Fire Emblem is beautiful. They keep the same gameplay, which includes the turn based strategy and RPG style level ups. Plus, if this is even possible, the story is bigger than both GBA games combined, and is sure to pack in more twists. I guarantee that 2 hours into the story, you have already abondoned the initial goal and are now helping other people with theirs. Then another 30 hours after that, you can't even remember what you started fighting for.

October 11 is the released date, but I will wait until after that. Games like these always have a price drop around mid- to late-November. The same thing happened to Metroid Prime 2: Echoes last year. And I promise you, when I get this game, all my friends will get blown off for my own personal fun. Tune in next time when I will cover Battalion Wars.